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By Syed M.Aslam
Feb 26 - Mar 04, 2001

*** "THEY WENT INTO my closets looking for skeletons, but thank God all they found were shoes, beautiful shoes. This museum is making a subject of notoriety into an object of beauty . . . this museum will symbolise the spirit and culture of the Filipino people."

(Former Philippine first lady Imelda Marcos inaugurating a Shoe museum displaying 220 of her 1,220 pairs)

*** "PRISON IS never comfortable, but I 'll go. I'm not going to ask for any judicial pardon."

(French sheep farmer Jose Bove convicted for ransacking a McDonald's restaurant as a protest against anti-globalisation)

*** "HE WAS ONE STEP away from disaster, and he has now taken that step."

(Political scientist at Tokiwa University Japan, Yasunobu Iwai, predicting that failure to stop playing golf after hearing the news of a US submarine collision with Japanese trawler would cost prime minister Yoshiro Mori his job as it would bring a no-confidence motion against him next month)

*** "IT IS OBVIOUS that the young man is very capable and it is in our interest to employ people like him in our information technology department."

(Mayor of Sneek city in northern Netherlands offering a job to computer hacker who unleashed an e-mail virus that wrought havoc on millions of computers worldwide)

*** "PEOPLE DON'T UNDERSTAND why they should have to pay higher and higher prices for worse and worse service. For dirty entranceways to their buildings, for electrcity that shuts off all the time."

(Russian President Vladimir Putin saying that people were no longer willing to tolerate increase in state-controlled prices for heat, electricity and civic facilities)

*** "LAST NIGHT the earth shook every 20 minutes. You couldn't sleep for the fear."

(El Salvadoran cab driver Joaquin Angel recalling the quake which killed hundreds of people early this month)

*** "THE IRAQI PEOPLE are not guinea pigs for American weapons. With our blood and our souls we will redeem you Iraq . . . They hit Iraq but they never do anything against the Israeli murderers of Palestinian children."

(Thousands of Lebanese students who marched on the US embassy to protest air attacks on Iraq)

*** "LET HIM PICK his 10 best men and I will put up my own 10 and finish with this mythical EZLN leader."

(Pistol-packing Mexican lawmaker Salomon Salgado challenging 'Subcomandante Marcos', chief of rebel Zapatista National Liberation Army group, to a duel to death rather than allowing a rebel protest march)

*** "IT SHOWS that complex carbon chemistry is not unique to Earth. We now see similar chemistry everywhere in the universe."

(Martin F. Kessler, a scientist at European Space Agency, saying that traces of carbon molecules around distant stars hints at possibility of life)

*** "IT'S SORT of appropriate that Larry Ellison introduced me by mentioning unpopular decisions."

(Former US president Bill Clinton joking about his introduction which cited his courage to support the financial bailout of Mexico in 1994 at a $ 100,000 speech to hi-tech executives)

*** "THE MEDIA is dreadful in Scotland because its under foreign ownership."

(Sean Connery, the actor best known to play James Bond roles, saying he is not yet ready to return to his native Scotland. Connery is a fierce advocate of Scotland's independence from Britain)

*** "MR POWELL'S much awaited first visit will not help mend the bridges between the United States and the Arab nation if the US secretary cannot distance his administration from the Clinton administration's double-standard policy."

(Syrian English-language newspaper Syria Times saying that US Secretarsy of State Colin Powell's forthcoming visit to the region will be fruitless)