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    "Security considerations" keep away Olympic crowds Paid Member

    China is getting a little bit of security-itis. They must have caught it from Dick Cheney's America. The plush lobby of Beijing’s Kerry Center Hotel is usually crowded with foreign guests, many of them listening to jazz and sipping martinis in Centro, the hotel’s fashionable bar, or lining up for taxis after dinner at the Horizon restaurant. Tiananmen Square in Beijing is a landmark for tourists. But the city has yet to experience an expected boom in foreign visitors. More »
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    Torch cruises through Lhasa Paid Member

    Where are Lhasa's monks? They've been well hidden by the government, and so were all Tibetans as the torch toured Lhasa. More »
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    Flame approaches Lhasa Paid Member

    Burmese farmers need some $83 million dollars in aid in order to get back up and running after salt water inundated their fields as a result of Nargis. U.S. farmers, especially in Iowa, aren't in such great shape either, but they have a government that that will advocate for them, at least in theory. The Olympic torch is due to reach Tibet Saturday, and though things have quieted somewhat in terms of international press, the relay has been delayed and will be shortened to one day from three. China will not comment on why the relay in Tibet was shortened, but it's pretty obvious. It's gratuitous to send the torch through Lhasa. More »
  • Smooth Run in Australia Paid Member

    The Canberra run went smoothly enough. And more horrifying violence in Sri Lanka - perhaps 90 dead in one day. More »
  • Japanese temple backs out of route Paid Member

    Thanks to Marcus for pointing this one out: A Japanese Buddhist temple has removed itself from the torch's route. Japan and China continue to disagree over whether Tibet is an international issue or just a domestic issue of China's. Edward Gomez notes the rhetoric is running high: China stoked the nationalist fires and is now trying to temper its citizens call for boycotts of products from countries where the torch relay has run into trouble. More »
  • The Torch in India, Australia Paid Member

    The relay begins amid heavy security in New Delhi. Meanwhile, China cancels its plan to open Tibet on May 1st and seals the borders. And if you wonder why Nepal is cracking down on protesters so hard: Chinese security police in athletic wear can be seen lounging in tea shops and strolling the sole street in the border town of Liping. They shadow three Associated Press journalists from the moment they arrive, ordering them not to take photographs — on Nepalese territory. More »