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COI\TEI\TS THE Welsh evening at the FCC proved to be an outstanding success on a1l counts. The food, drink and music were excellent, but the real hit of the evening \Mas the

THIì FOREIGN CORRIìSPONDIìn-TS'

Welsh Regiment's mascot, a magnificently handsome goat, who won many friends with behaviour that was as impeccable as his breeding. Story and pictures 14-15

CLUB Nor th Block,

2 Lou'er .{lbcrt lìoad, Hong liong Telephone: 121 l51

Presitlent

-

l

F'ax: 868 .10!)2

Paul [ì¡viirld

F'irst Yice-Presiclent - l)rtcr Srirllitz Sccond Yice.President S¡ul Locklrar

-

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Correspondent l\fember Gor ernors .ìohn ,\nrlr cr.. ßolr I rrri.. Pr tL.r (,r v¡rr. Roìrin Ifoyer. Chlis I'cterson, Clauclia RosctL, \lichacl 'l'¡vlor, Stuc Yincs

Journalist Member Golernors [)arid Thur ston, Stuar t \\'olienda]c .lssociate Member Governors Ktn Baìì \\'endl Hugìrcs. Pttcr Hrrnrblc, I)orothr Rran Professional Committee:

(ìur ¡nl:

Pauì Bar'Iickl,

I/ruôrr:s Pctcr Seirlìitz, Pctel Ilunrble, Sauì Lockhart. Dorotht Rvan

\\

V/HY SO glum

Caspar? No-one would believe that the former US Secretary of Defence Caspar Weinberger, now pub-

endv ì1ught's. Pcter Gwvnnc, t \\.ollcndalc, llichael Tar lor. Boìr l)ar is

Stuar

Ilembership Comnrittee:

lisher of Fot'bes magazine, had plenty to be pleased about when he was the Club's luncheon speaker last month. His visit coincided with the second day of the Alliance's ground offensive against Iraq, and superhawk Weinberger's massive arms expenditure during the Reagan presidency was paying off in a big way with thousands of 10 enemy deaths and wounded

Stcve Iines, John Ancìrcus

Social Committee:

Cìu¿rlll: Dorothr Rv¡n.

.lfrlòrrr

\'lichael Tavìo¡

Yideo Committee:

(ì,r¿rl,r.

Dar id

l

¡)llston.

1/¡nå¿¡r Dororhv Rran, Ken

Baìì,

l)aul Bar iicld

Publications Committee: fir¡l¿¡l¿r: Sarrl Lockhart, l/ruò, rs Pauì Barfieìd. Bob l)aris. \\'endr Hughes, David Thurston. Stuar

t \Çoliendale, Ken Ball

Food and Beverage Consultation Group: (.ill¿ r)ro¡r Chris Peterson. -lfuôos Ilikc Snrith, Saul Lockhart. Jo I,lar'licld. l'largarct Brvan, Jim Shaw

Club Manager: Heinz Grabner Club Steuard: Julia Suen

Ï.trD C{IRRE|PÍ'TIITJYT Only

Editor: Ron Knorr'1es Advertising Manager:

Cathay Pacific has an all

Ingrid Gregoq,

Rolls Royce powered wide-bodied

EDITORIAL OI'I.'ICE:

fleet, including the 747-400 Which is why we can fly more non-stops to

Pacilic Dirc.torics Lt(i. '\sia {)/[i (ìranrl Vies Conr¡erei¿l Ccntre 2!) lll Sugar Strcct C¿user¡r Bar, [Jong fiong I'elephone: õ77 1i331: I"ax: S!)fl î237

: and from our home in Hong Kong, the

THE HKJA Cup soccer com-

petition reached its climax with finals day on March 10.

The

details

Corresþondcnl gives this of

intriguing contest which is the highlight of the HKJA's sporting

caiendar

24

Thc Corrcspondcnt

0pinions crpressccl by s rilcrs are not nccessaril¡ those of the !'oreign Correspondents Cluìr

heart of Asia And with cabin attendants

Departments

'L.hc Corresponclcnt is published

from 10 Asian lands, we stop at nothing

on

nronthl\ for ard l¡ehalioi'l'he l'oreign Corr espondents Club br :

AsiaPacific Directories Ltd.

to help you arrive in better shape

^t ^--

CATHAYPACIFIC Arrive in better shape.

li Crancì \'icg Co¡ìnlcrciäl Ccntrc. lJl Sugar Strect. Causerar lìar, Hong liong Tcl: r77 !l3ill lìa\: ¡i!lr) 728;

Letters

4

Irüew members

2T

I'ublishcr: \ onnir ßishop llatraging Dircctor: Ilike Bishara I'rinted b1 \\'illr Prìrtin(Co liìlP, Deuick lnd Bklg , llr \\ ong Chuk Hang Rd H lt 'lcl: óil 7132

T}¡.e Zoo

Books

Prisoner at the bar Peddler

11 16 L7

20 24 26

l)i

21)

HKJA news Crossword

THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL

1991

3


LET-TERS

CLUBNEWS

Dump Sir Piers in the ashtray of history SIR Piers Jacobs, announcing his new tobacco tax hike, said that his motivations were purely health-oriented. He did mention, however, that at the same time some extra cash of the order of a billion dollars plus is expected to augment our Treasury as a direct result of this measure. It is on this particular point that I beg to disagree with our Financial Secretary. 1. Most of our young and affluent (withthe notable exception of Wanchai

girls and stockbrokers) are healthconscious. In most of our clubs and posh restaurants the pens reserved for

the smokers hardly exceed 10 per cent of the total floor space and at that they remain mostly unoccupied. 2. At the same time please look at the films on our cage dwellers and streetsleepers. Most of them seem most of the time happily smoking away. 3. Taking the above two points, it is fair to assume that an increase o1200

Warm heart of the FCC FOLLOWINGthe tragic event inVictoria Harbour at Chinese New Year in which Eddie Donoghue lost his legs and subsequently his life, the outpour-

ing of support and sympatþ to both Eddie and myself was overwhelming. Eddie was very touched by the Fund set up at the FCC and by the many

friends who rallied around and was

and associates. Thank you all very

looking forward to thanking those concerned. Unfortunately, he did not live

Marion Bourke

to do

(See

so.

I AM writing to bring you up to date on Ted's condition and also to thank you

very much for the further donation of C$1966.03 that was deposited to my bank account late last month. Ted, his mother and I are most grateful for your great generosity. I have better news to report in that Ted can now carr]¡ on a conversation and remembers more and more of his past. He has better memory of his school days than he does of recent times, but his memory of Thailand and

Splenetic advice from Nguyen

derably their life expectancy, lead to the general ageing of our society and, consequently, will appreciably prolong

day (if it is not raining) I go to the Library of Congress, seeking and accu-

ed with all this, such as all kinds of welfare services, pensions, medical care and so on. In the long run these extended expenditures may exceed whatever additional revenue our Treasury may get from increased tobacco taxation.

5. Since these destitute oldsters under the new terms of clean and smokeless life may still be with us "up to 1997 and beyond", and the extra burden which they will surely create will have to be shouldered by the Hongkong people in the post-1997 Special Administrative Region, timely consultations with the Chinese authorities and possible convergence on the matter of increased tobacco taxation should have been sought well before the publication of the Budget.

(a reformed non-smoker). 4 THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL

1991

Wolftndnle at lnrge

-

thanks.

Don Dunfee total of HK$202,645.09 hns

been

raised through contributions frorn 176 mernb ers and rnn-rnemb ers

PEOPLE

U.S.A. Tel.: (703) 780-8851 Nguyen Tu, it will be remernbered, was the Vietm.rnese journalist who sailed into Hong Kang in lnte 1989 and was assisted b9 the FCC to gain refugee status. He has been settled

in

Washington D.C. since

Lengthy negotiations over the rent

involving the Governor, the Chief Secretary and the Government Properly Agency were conducted and we

Christopher Forbes (of Forbes màgaj zine) were wearing "Capitalist Tool" ties that were made famous by the late Malcolm Forbes. This, of course gave us the opportunity to present them with the FCC's "Fine-Tool-of-Truth" tiès. Weinberger, as publisher of Forbes,

received modest success in reducing the rent from the original HK$200,000 requested to HK$125,000 per month. Our current lease has been mutually rescinded and replaced by a six-year lease and we have been assured that there are no plans for development of the area. The rent will be reviewed in 1993 and 1995 in accordance with

was in town to launch the Chineselanguage edition of the magazine. Unfortunately, Forbes was unable to attract sufficient advertising for the magazine, so the launch was delayed until later in the year. At the same time another new magazine was to be launched, but was postponed for the same

Correspondent and journalist members

appear

to be stayitg longer in their

market and inflation rates at those times.

To cover the rent increase, Associate membership subs will be increased to HK$15,000 from May 1. The shortfall

of rental will be derived from

AFTER five years in Asia

-

two in

Singapore and three in Hong Kong Eannmist conespondent John Andrews

-

is returning to London where he will become the magazine's Asia editor. John, a popular member of the FCC, has been a Correspondent representative on the Board for the past year. John was on the staff of the Gunrdi.an in London beforc"the Economistmade me an offer I couldn't refuse." He and his wife will be able to see more of their son, a modern languages student at

Cambridge, although he

is currently

spending ayear in Germany.

Peace-seeker Gareth Evans a very direct and critical view of conditions in Burma and the role of the

used to be a relatively easy proposiiion,

government.

in. These days the advertising dollar is much harder to get, even for the likes of Time, Asiaweeh and the Far Eastern Economic Reuiøw. If. ev er you needed to

find signs of recession, just count the ads in your favourite magazine. Which

Other speakers lined up were Reuven

Merhav, the Director General of the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Laurie Smith, the skipper of the controversial maxi-yacht Rothmans, and the Australian Foreign Minister and

of course brings us to the Corresþondcnt one of the best magazines magazine of its type anywhere. also needs

one of the architects of the UN peace plan for Cambodia, Gareth Evans. Most of you would have received a letter this month announcing the in-

advertising to survive. So if any reader has contacts that might help us please let us know. The day after Weinberger's speech we had the former US ambassador to Burma and the former Consul-General of Hongkong, Burton Levin, who gave

HK$480 from May 1. This represents a12 per cent increase in staff salaries. As salaries are normally covered by subscriptions, the board had no alternative but to increase subscriptions. At one stage it was thought to use

-

It

the

Development Fund in that our current practice of attributing 5070 of entrance fees to this fund will now be reduced to

jobs, as the opporbunities in their home countries and around theregion dryup. To latmch a ne'¡¡ magazine in Asia

with advertisers willing to leap

subs to cover the latest increase in rent,

which would have increased subs by about 40 per cent. Forlunately, other means were found.

the established magazines. Times are tough for the publishing industry and the FCC's membership reflects this.

spleen's health!

Alexandria- VI^22306,

Weinberger. At the time the Gulf ground war was in fulI flight, so his

lined up

These two cases highlight the difficulties faced by magazines and newspapers all over the region - including

than six years awayfrom nowto midnightJune 30, 1997. Keep laughing! And drinking, also. Nothing is better for your

7955 Audubon Ave., A-5,

tffiii

reason.

It is still more

Nguyen Tu

r

Both he and another of his parly.

mulating materials for what could sort out to be a book. I extend my warmest regards to all and urge you not to worry about the

countdown.

The hawk talks, and the dove is

over-full house.

Hong Kong is swiftly returning. Ted has been accepted by the rehab hospital and we expect him to be able to walk in the near future. The doctors also intend to try to fit Ted with contact lenses so that he cal read. That will be a great day for him. Best wishes to all members and our

A

From the President

opinions had particular meaning for the

þages 1 9 ).

I JUST moved to Alexandria and every

Febrm.ry 1990. This letter is rnnde uþ of excerþß from aþersonnl letter hewroteto one of the Board members.

Michael Fly

much.

Ted Dunfee on the mend

per cent on tobacco tax, while being absolutely irrelevant to the affluent smoking minority, will greatly curtail puffing by the old poor. 4. This, in its turn will extend consi-

the government expenditures connect-

Eddie was a big man in every way, but especiaþ so in character and heart - as the five days he spent in hospital after the accident proved so magnificantþ. For him, the support bolstered his courage and made him feel special. For me, it was heart-warming to see his bigness matched by that of his friends

crease

in

monthly subscriptions to

35%. Instead of covering all of the increase from this fund, it was felt that it was essential to maintain this fund for future contingencies and to attract interest income, without which the club could not survive. Elsewhere in this magazine are stories on the amounts raised for the two funds we organised this year for Ted Dunfee and Eddie Donaghue. I feel rather proud of a club that can dig deep into its pockets for members in trouble. Hopefully, we won't need to do this

Although the current Board's term finishes at the end of May, we have one

Board member leaving Hongkong

as

well two months before his time, John Andrews, Hongkong bureau chief for Tke Economzsl takes up a new post in London in April. John has been a very conscientious governor who also served

on the membership

sub-committee. We are sorr5' to loose him, but wish him well in his new job.

Paul Bayfield THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL

1991

5


:1::

l:ì

:

l

PEOPLE Around the bar

ed walking the streets

Passing through the ground floor bar in

early March was Frank Beatty, former UPI vice-president for Asia.

Frank nowlives in Melbourne (Florida) working as the Asia-Pacific marketing director of a company dealing in

ded to become Streetwise her venture would prove feet.

communications technology. In February Arnold "Skip" fsaacs and wife Kathy paused en route back to the US after a six-month stint teaching in the foreign language department of

Northwest University in Xian. Absent member Skip was the Baltimore Sun corespondent in Saigon from lg72 to 1975, and subsequentþ in Hong Kong until 1978. He alerted to FCC to thé

plight of Vietnam

nterprise that the former ed early last year with her er three years of

gazine.

Trio in Bali

correspondent page

ed journalists were battling the balmy

for latest news). Skip and the FCC were instrumental in getting Tu classified as a refugee so he could qualify for resettlement in the US. Skip is now teaching in the political science department of Towson State University in Maryland and is writing another book.

tlok-bat saam'

airs of Bali. "Life is tough," said freelancer Mark Graham as he sipped a cocktail made of mango juice and grenadine.

US$60 million Bali Hilton International, opened by Indonesian President

"Precisely," agreed fellow travel writer Ken Barrett, enjoying a baked lobster with garlic. "Couldn't agree more," lamented

Suharto. Our picture shows (left to right) Ken

-

He the

Although I have made several trips to Hong Kong since leaving the territory in January \990, Thp Cowesþondent continues to provide an invaluable life-line with the club and with old friends and members around the globe. The new publisher and editor are to be commended on maintaining the high standards set by Viswa Nathan and his crew (Salaam, Vis. Kum esta?) Ice House Street may be eight flying hours away, but FCC alumni are all around. Bumped into Russel Spurr at Sydney Airport last month. George Mackenzie is up the Blue Mountains, building a guest house to accommodate passing gurkhas and bagpipe wrestlers. Mike Foote has just moved to Sydney to establish the Australia HQ for

Mont Blanc writing instruments (i.e. pens). Kumar

Pereiira is somewhere at large in the city. Barry Girling and Florence Chong are constantly evident from their bylines in prominent national journals. Len Tracy, ex RTHK, is alive and jamming in Melbourne. Penny Brindisi is alive and well in Palm Beach. Andy 1991

How Streetwise Jane sees Causeway Bay

Barrett, Mark Graham and Kevin Sinclair.

So, after initial research from other books and maps, and listening to the recommendations of friends and colleagues, she began pounding the streets to check the infor-

avoice from the past

-

6 THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL

ällåffii,11'-åilJil,

scribe Kevin Sinclair reaching for just one more bottle of Bintang beer, which all three voted a cheeþ little vintage with some claims to aristocracy.

The FCC members were among Hongkong-based freelancers in Bali to visit the new 11-hotel Nusa Dua beach conference-resort complex and the

Peter Bennett was a stalutart member of the FCC from 1g68 untit he and his famiþ moued to Sltdney in earþ 1990. A raconteur, who hell his own for decadzs at the uarious club tables at lunchtirnes, to say nothing of the bar, he reþorts in this t¿tter oneof woùdstori¿s". oþ on Pitt a client when ed unnoticed by Peter and declared a second lnter "lok bat saan't" Peter's FCC ruembershiþ number. The waiter was none other than former barmnn Thomns Tsang.

tho S

trt^-i$frY'iåYilJü;

ookstoresofHongKongt0ÌsoflJlTtfitsll|JtÅilß

As some FCC members shivered in the helicopter sandstorms whipped up during the Iraqi invasion, other harden-

Nguyen Dinh Tu (see letters

covering

Sloan continues to ply his trade for

mation.

"I didn't appreciate how tiring it would be, " she says. "I went out, with my notebook in hand, at the height of the summer, trying to get to know Hong Kong better. By the end of the day my feet were so swollen that I couldn't wait to get home and bathe them." But the agony seems to have been worth it. "I wanted the guide map to be practical as well as offbeat. There was nothing like that in Hong Kong and I was aiming to fill a gap in the market. It also had to look attractive. The artwork had to be first class," she says. The Streetwise guide maps certainly live up to Jane's demands. In addition to their fine colouring and excellent design, they contain a mass of information and such personal and intriguing observations as "sleazy bit". Much of the credit must go to Streelwise art director Benny Yip, whose aim was to produce a guide map that would be good enough to frame and put on the wall. During the hours she spent pounding the streets Jane discovered a few treasures previously unknown to her.

Hill & Knowlton here.

Going back 15 years or more, Gareth Powell (regular traveVcomputer column in Sydney Morning Herald; John

Crawley; Geoff Pike; Ken Kiernam; Barry Haselden; David Mitchell - not to mention my brother Paul, Geoffrey Vincent Somers and Dr. Nick Nicholls up there in Pineapplesville. There must be many, many more - enough to form a southern hemisphere branch of the FCC. And, if the Club's friendly and efficient service is required, there's always Thomas Tsang, late of Sutherland House, now working at the Remada Rennaissance in Pitt Street. (The other day, I was sitting in the coffee shop of that hotel when I was approached by this familiar face. "Lok-bat-

saam", says Thomas, giving my FCC membership number. Not bad for a guy who left the Club and Hong Kong at least eight years ago!) Eclitur's note: Other FCCers in Sydney include ex-President

Ian Stewart, Barry Pearton, now the publisher of Asia Tod"ay (ex-HKhackette Florence Chong Mrs Pearton is the editor), Qantas' PR supremo Neville Kitto and ex-

-

-

RAN PR Kenelm Creighton. Thanks for the story Peter and congratulations on your appointment as The Corresþondnnt's ace coffespondent Down Under. He will have

to fit it in with his duties in his new job. Peter reports that

he has jointed the Chicago-based head-hunting firm, A.T. Kearney, and will be working out of their Australian affi-

liate Frieze & Associates' Sydney office.

After Sunday Post M Magazine editor Peter Cordingley and, Sunday Morning Post Post deputy editor Ann Quon cemented their ten-year romance by getting married in a civil cermony at City Hall on February 2í,Peter set off for a "honeymoon" on his own a trip to Spain for 1O days. "It was the only time- I could go," he confessed. Now the couple have announced they are expecting a baby.

Her particular favourites were Jordan, St Andrew's Church, Kimberley Road and the dumpling shop in Granville Road, which earns a specially enthusiastic endorsement in the guide. Yes, FCC member Jane does not forget to include the Club among the hundreds of places which earn their spot on the map. Streetwise maps are available in Hong Kong bookshops

at HK$40 each. THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL

1991 7


{'?

NEWS

Travel writers'fury over Malaysian demands PLEASE PATRONISE THESE FCC SUPPORTERS

gether

By Kevin Sinclair

ñuï-v

1¿'tini

.l-'

ence, which attracts about 200 leading

Pu.

(PATA) conference in Bali over a clumsy and insulting move by Malaysia's tourism officials to censor stories, photographs and broadcasting material.

The Malaysian authorities were trying to impose quasi-legal agreements on travel journalists which would oblige them to surrender all control of their material, ignore all professional

ethics and give the authorities prepublication rights of scrutiny and veto of all material. The Malaysian demands were not

directly connected with the PATA conference, but they cast a shadow over the gathering and became the

majortalkingpoint around the bars and swimming pools of Bali. Most travel writers who received the pompous "letter of undertaking and indemnity" document promptly hurled it into the nearest dustbin and it seems that most of the two dozen or so who were invited on the "Make it Malaysia" trip rejected the invitation.

It

Malaysia" press

programmes. One of these was in conjunction with the PATA confer-

travel trade and consumer-oriented writers, who are usually given the option of tour packages for either

ment about what was "detrimental" would be left to the TDCM, MAS and

before or after the PATA conference.

They would "in all circumstances"

The "Make it Malaysia" scheme was separate from the PATA visits, but became confused with them because of the coincidence of timing. It was the journalists who accepted

the invitations under the "Make it Malaysia" scheme who subsequently received the l0-clause indemnity letter which demanded that only favourable stories and photographs should be published and that all material should be subjected for scrutiny and approval by Malaysian tourism authorities before use.

'The recipients were stunned. They had never seen anything like it.'

is astonishing that any self-respect-

ing writer could accept the trip on terms which surrendered rights and duties that journalists have fought for centuries to attain. Some publishers who saw thebizane document instructed their staff not to

go on the trip. Travel writers have

It

was in the form of a legal agree-

ment between writers and the TDCM, Malaysian Airlines System (MAS) and the Malaysian federal and state governments. It was to be signed by those invited and witnessed by an individual

drawn the Malaysian's demands to the attention of their professional organi-

who was expected to give an identity

sations,

and passport number.

Oddly, until they received the fourpage letter from the Tourist Development Corporation of Malaysia (TDCM),

most travel writers considered the TDCM as one of the more efficient national tourism bodies. Now its ham-

fisted efforts of press control have served only to create an international wave of ill-will towards TDCM. The problem began some months ago when TDCM began putting to8 THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL

1991

Not only did the "indemnity

and

undertaking require the journalists to waive all claims for personal injuries or damage to equipment during the trip, they were subject to skingent condi tions about their work. Among the promises they were asked to sign were: They would not "publish, screen or release to the public photographs, films, videos, slides, articles or any other

3*

materials or forms which are deemed to be detrimental to the Malaysian public or its image of Malaysia." They would agree that the judge-

9ào¿o

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now, caters for you either at home or for your business lunches in your office , as well for your boat parties, and, of

Amístad

Y

as

course, with its piauo ambiance at 8-13, Wo On Lane, 1st/F., 6s¡¡¡n1.

the federal and state governments.

agree that the TDCM, MAS and

Buen Vino Tl,pls Bnn

Reservar¡on no : 526 596515966

Malaysian civil servants could "screen and vet" all material before it was published or broadcast. They would agree that the TDCM, MAS and various governments would have the sole right to determine "the mode, method or form" in which anything could be published. They would "comply with all oral and/or written instructions, directives and orders" issued by TDCM, MAS, any Malaysian government, its institutions or agents. Any breaches of the above would mean that offenders would be banned from the programme. Even after the "guest" left Malaysia

3t

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he or she would be bound by the signed undertzkings; there was a hidden threat

'SÍxC-e$,

that the agreement would be "enforceable" on return to Malaysia.

As press fury mounted and faxes sped across the Pacific, several FCC members received copies of the letter plus ribald comments -in North - from friends America who had rejected the trip because of the conditions attached. One angry writer said he thought the form was "a sick joke".

Malaysia's tourism industry has been booming. The country hosted the PATA conference in 1986 with some

flair and since then the number of visitors has soared. But who decided to issue such a counter-productive series of demands on travel writers? Nobody seems to know. Questions onthe matter sentto Hong Kong offices of TDCM and forwarded by the corporation to its head office

in Kuala Lumpur had produced no answers as the Corresþondent went to

press.

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LUT{CHEOI{ SPEAKER

LL]IICHEOI{ SPEAKER

'May the force be with you,' Weinberger tells Saddam

Former envoy lashes Burma's rulers

FORMER US Secretary for Defence

ruled Burma since 1962 as "third rate people" and branded füneral Ne Win

tl seari

there six months after invading the island. He didn't think Iraq would warrant a longer occupation.

After quoting President

Nixon's Secretary of State Henry Kissinger in approving terms, Weinberger took several swipes at Mikhail Gorbachov. He vouchsafed his expert opinion that the Soviet leader ',¡¡as "not a man of peace," and suggested that Gorbachov's Nobel Peace Prize cheque should be stopped.

THE. ZOO

FCC

dedly undiplomatic language, Levin labelled the military men who have as an economic "disaster".

The ills besetting Burma could be put down to "simply a case of bad Former US Secretary of Defence Caspar Weinberger talking to a couple of "196O's bearded, pinko degenerates", president Paul Bayfield and second vice-president Saul Lockhart, before his speaking engagement.

He did not see any distinction

be-

tween Gorbachov and his predecessors, except that Gorbachev was "cleverer".

Weinberger did not make the same claim for the president he served. Weinberger was good enough to point out that Saddam Hussein was an unpleasant character who ruled through brutality, terror, torture and murder. So that's why the US felt it had to put a stop to his capers? But did not the US, when it felt it to be in its own interests, support such monsters in places like Chile, for example, I asked. No. The US had never

supported the Pinochet regime, he said.

A second question shared a similar fate. During his period of office there were reports in Britain that the US was BY ARTH IJR. HACKEF.

I,LL SWEAR

HEs ON ^^ARATHON

STEROI DS

considering fighting a theatre nuclear war in Europe in response to a conventional attack by Soviet forces; were such reports valid? The idea had never been discussed at high level, though it might have cropped up in conversation between a couple of Nato officers, he said.

In October 1981 President Reagan burbled vaguely about how the US would deal with any threat by Soviet forces invading Europe. His comments

were couched in such terms as to arouse widespread unease that he would sanction the use of nuclear

1950s and into the 1960s which "played

one of the leading roles in the nonaligned movement and was extremely active in international affairs" with the

economically stagnant and politically isolated nation of today. It could all be put down to one man. "I have never been in a country in all

my 37 years in the foreign service

where a single man has so stamped his idiosyncratic behaviour on the life of a

country as has Ne Win - a man of mercurial attitudes, extremely superstitious, xenophobic and unfortunately

a very skiliul political manipulator; a man whose power has rested on his control of the Burmese army, a reliance that has been welded out of affording the army a special position in society in

weapons to counter a threat of this sort. On October 16 the State Department felt it necessary to issue an "amplification" of his remarks and said they were

Burma." This special position allowed the military officers to make huge profits

"completely consistent with the (Nato)

at the official exchange rate. The best

alliance's long-standing strategy of flexible response, maintaining an assumed military capability to deter the use of force, conventional or nuclear, by the Warsaw Pact - preferably at the lowest level." On November 4 Secretary of State Alexander Haigh told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that it was part of US policy that a possible "demonstrative" detonation of a nuclear rveapon would be required to deter the USSR from seeking to ovemrn Europe.

Haigh resigned shortly afterwards.

q

a very long time," said Levin, contrasting the Burma of the

government for

BEER

ÞRINK ING

urma

launto US ambassador former the ched by Rangoon, Burton Levin, in a luncheon address at the FCC last month. In deci

Caspar Weinberger was in his element when he addressed an FCC luncheon in late February. It was the second day of

Operation Desert Storm and the USled alliance forces were on the offensive and clearly winning against the Iraqi army, or what was left of it. Although he is now the publisher of Forbes magazine, the old hawk has lost none of the bellicose instincts. He was particularly keen, it seemed, on the establishment of an occupation force - mainly made up of Arab units - to police Iraq after the fighting had to come to a halt. Without even a blush of embarrassment, Weinberger mentioned Grenada as a precedent. The US forces had left

litary

fl gou. l- Iover

-

Ron Knowles

on the blackmarket after buying things

housing, access

to automobiles,

the

best schooling, were made available to the officers in the army. There were no alternatives for anyone seeking a modicum of security and wellbeing for his family. The economy'üfas so stagnant that the arrny was the only path "if not to glory, certainly to economic security" in Burma. So he had this tremendous hold over the military and one of his hallmarks was to demand absolute loyalty, and that was something that he

Former ambassador Burton Levin pictured at the FCC recently with veteran correspondent Clare Hollingworth and FCC vice'president Peter Seidlitz. got through frequent use of purges. concluded that in addition to the ab"When he came to power he pro- sence of the grinding poverty that claimed a socialist regime. He was not

disfigured some other societies in Asia,

was not a

the country was also so abundantly

of somebody from the 1940s, 1950s or 1960s believing in socialism as a means of economic development for

"There were natural resources. The agriculture was good, so you had

an ideological socialist.

It

sense

the betterment of the people.

It

was

simply a means of destroying the economic power of the Chinese and the Indians who controlled most of the economic power in Burma. He nationalised all of industry. He was a disaster to the economy of Burma, but he did achieve what he set out to. He removed the Chinese and Indians. "He also had an animus towards in-

enough to go around. You did not have a population bordering on desperation. The people were grumbling, they were

unhappy, but they stoicly bore this situation.

with the West. "In Burma the military ran everything and without the expertise to do

"Then, of course, there was always the fear of informers. There were informers all over the place. People kept their mouths shut. "Despite this authoritarian control the government hand rested lightly on the population. In essence, if you kept your mouth shut and your skirts clean you reaþ didn't have to worry too

so, and so a disaster was created. When

much about the government."

I arrived in May of 7987 I encountered a very sleepy, stagnant society. Ne Win's position was unassailable. He was almost a divine figure. The Bur-

At that time US policy towards Burma was shaped by Cold War considerations. The US tried to cultivate the Burmese to avoid them turning

mese would not even mention his name.

towards China or the Soviet Union. "Itwas this huge scoreboard we kept in those days - which countries were pro-American, which countries were

tellectuals as tainted by

There was this fear that

I had never

Levin said he wondered why the populationremained so stoic in the face of such terrible misgovernment and

'A simple case of bad government for a very long time'

pro-communist. That very much shaped

our policy. "For Cold War considerations and because of our anti-drug efforts we cultivated the Burmese government; we fawned over the Burmese govern-

(continued on page 12)

v

{ I

THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL 1991 11


LUNCHEO¡{ SPEAKER (Levin: from page 11)

LLTI\CHEON SPEAKER

Levin said: "When Ne Win stepped

down his replacement was

a man

sive government. We had speakers' platforms erected right outside our

ment. We were not alone in doing so. Almost every country followed suit and I think this had the unfortunate consequence of enhancing Ne Win's prestige and to an extent consolidating his

whose nickname was the Butcher of Burma - General Sein Lwin, a man who in 1962 and again in 7974 had commanded troops that had fired and

Levin went on: "During my calls on

killed students. U/ithin a few days the demonstrations grew even larger. Liv-

anything."

ing up to his name, he had troops open fire on peaceful demonstrators sitting before one of the pagodas downtown in

free press

power."

the Burmese ministers when

I

first

arrived I was appalled at the quality of the people that I was meeting. These literally were third-rate people. They owed their positions not to ability, but to servility. Many of them had been noncoms in the Burmese army who had served inthe same regiment as Ne Win

and

it

Rangoon.

"Troops wounded

a

number of nurs-

es and doctors. Nurses and doctors occupy a special position in Burmese society.

was almost impossible to hold

any meaningful conversation with any of them. Some of them I doubt very

much knew what ministry they were heading. Most of them would talk about the weather, and, most importantþ, golf . Golf was the passion there. " The first cracks appeared in September 1987 with a speech in which Ne Win called for a more open economy

and a greater role for private enterprise, allowing the farmer to grow what

'Third rate people who owed their positions not to ability, but to servility'

he wanted and sell it on the open market. But rising hopes were dashed

"Sein Lwin was forced to resign and was then replaced by a Dr Maung

within days by what amounted to a Zb per cent devaluation of the Burmese

Maung, a man whom I met on a number of occasions, who was quite an intelligent fellow who actually went to Yale

cuffency. People's savings were wiped out overnight. Students took to the streets in riots which marked the first overt opposition

the passed to

it

Ne Win's intellectual prostitute." At that time Aung San Suu Kyi, the

g

woman who was soon to assume

would But in March 1988 a tea-shop dispute

between college students and town youths arguing ovei'a tape proved to be a deadly flash-point in which police attacked the students and killed one of them. The students went back to campus to bring out their colleagues and a brawl developed. Again the police

cracked down heavily, resulting in further student demonstrations - initially to the supreme indifference of the population of Rangoon.

But as the brutality of the

police

counter-measures becamc apparent, the mass of people began to join them

in

anti-government demonstrations

which grew throughout the spring and early summer of 1988 to the point where in July Ne Win announced his resignation and called for a referendum on the creation of a multi-party system. 12 THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL

1991

and lectured there for a while, but a man who had for 20 years or more been

a

lead-

ing role in the opposition to the tary, came to the fore.

mili

Levin described her as "a woman of great charismatic ability, a woman of tremendous oratorical skills and a figure who in a short time . . . on the basis of her own skills and ability, emerged as a hugely popular opposition figure." He went on to describe massive demonstrations which focused on the US embassy. "There were hundreds of thousands on demonstrations that dwarfed Tiananmen. Ranks upon ranks of demonstrators going by the United States embassy as a sign of appreciation and gratitude for the position of the United States government. We were the first

government

to criticise the earlier

shootings of the demonstrators and to voice support for the demands of the people for a more democratic, respon-

embassy.

"It

was quite an experience to see mobs of people in front of an American embassy, smiling instead of throwing For about six weeks there emerged a some of it sensationalist

-

tabloid, but

a surprising number of

broadsheets and papers that were re-

sponsible and well written. It was a tremendous contrast to "the pap that the government had served for so many years, and it was kind of refreshing and, I think, uplifting to realise that despite these 26 years of suppression these talents were still available in Burmese society," Levin added. The demonstrations continued and

the army took power directly with a considerable display of armed force. "Nobody will ever put a figure on the numbers of people killed. The government itself talked aboutmore than b00, claiming they were all looters. I think if you said several thousand, you're probably closer to the correct figure. But nobody will ever know how many people were killed, other than it far surpassed the numbers killed in Tiananmen.

tion hadn't

seen

it really didn't

happen." Levin said the army put down the demonstrations and for the next six to eight months carried out a programme of repression of all political life. Aung San Suu Kyi travelled throughout the country arousing tremendous popularity to the extent that in July 1989 she and her deputy, Tin U, former minister of national defence, were arrested. Since then Tin U has been in prison and Aung San Suu Kyi under house arrest. Preparations went on for elections at

a period of no political life, wlth tþe press once again in government hands.

The striking aspect of all this was the absence of any sense of vision or policy

awareness on the part of the military. There'vr/as no understanding of conditions required for economic development. There was some movement towards opening up to outside in-

vestors. Foreign oil companies ¡¡/ere allowed, primarily because Burrna was

desperately in need of foreign exchange. Nonetheless, the economy

continues to deteriorate.

"Malnutrition

is

growing, health

standards are down, educational standards are in a shambles. Universities have been closed for three years. Burma, which at one time prided itself on the highest rate of literacy in the third world, is now rapidly degenerat-

ing into growing illiteracy. UNICEF figures have 30 per cent of school-age population not attending school at all and 70 per cent of those in school dropping out by the fourth grade." The elections were a serious miscal'

culation. The military expected the rural areas to back the party identified with the government. But fully B0 per cent of the seats went to Aung San Suu Kyi's parly the National League for Democracy. The military regime refused to accept the result and claimed the

-

poll was reaþ to elect a constituent assembly to draft a constitution, which would thenbe submitted to the military for approval.

But there are stresses among the army because many troops feel appalled that they are hated by their own

people. "Whether this will manifest itself in any way is very difficult to say. I doubt it very much as long as Ne Win remains alive. The Burmese people are politicised to a degree that they have

not been before, but they are

eign opinion. Keep in mind that Ne

What happened in Burma scarcely nine months prior to that was on a much greater scale and would have aroused far more emotions in the sense that here you had scenes in some instances of demonstrators car4ring home-made American flags going past the American embassy - a tremendous identification with America and what it stood for. "The end to all this was by brute force - a physical force on the part of the army. None of this really registered with the American public orwithworld opinion simply becauSe the television cameras were not there to cover the scene. There was some print reporting on the subject, but it is really a very strong evidence of the role that television plays in shaping American opinion on any subject. If the American popula-

does encourage opposition and conceivably over time, if opposition within the

military grows,

it

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would be to our

advantage to have these figures within the military realise that their present leadership earns only disdain and the coldness of the civilised world."

Ft*^*oil^il S*nrilo*u Private Banking

Win

was the pretty boy of the world community and now major nations - the UK, the US, all of the western European communities -' are constantly criticising the leadership of Burma. I think it does have an impact. I think it

"One of the interesting aspects of this situation, and something that will appeal to the press here, or rather cause despair among the press here, was that I was home in the United

States for the Tiananmen demonstrations and the population of America was glued to the television screen.

also

aware that at the slightest movement they are going to be swept up and put into prison," said Levin. There was not a lot the US and other countries could do, but he advocated a policy of non-association with the Burma government. "I think there is a sensitivity to for-


COVER STORY

Welsh night and the goat "HWYL" came to the FCC on March B when 80 or so FCC members and their guests attended the club's Welsh Night. (A pale English translation of "hlrryl" is fun).

Guests were greeted at the door by Taffy III, the goat mascot of the Royal Regiment of Wales, with his stern scarlet uniformed minder. Upstairs, the regimental band, con-

ducted by bandmaster Phil Shannon, played soft background music during dinner but came into their own right afterwards when they laid down their instruments and became a male voice choir, treating us to a vigorous round of Men of Harleck and the sentimental love song Myfanny. Yet another metamorphosis took place later in the evening when the gallant soldiers switched their green mess kits for casual shirts and slacks and became the pop group Tequila Sunrise, belting out a non-stop barrage 14 THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL 1991

rsawowcame too of danceable rock and Beatles tunes. Heinz Grabner, the FCC manager, and his team, with not a Welshman among them, had planned a feast of

Welsh dishes adapted from recipe books supplied by Wendy Hughes and Penny Byrne, and some expert advice

from Mary Bewley (nee Jones). Included on the menu were such delights as Ccawl Cymmreig (leek soup),

Cig oen (roast lamb) and Pwdin y Wyddfa (Snowdon pudding). And even looked more like petits fours, being one-tenth the size of the genuine article, they certainly tast-

if the Welsh Cakes

ed authentic.

Late that evening, the trusly Taffy III left his post at the door and was seen to bound up the steps into the main dining room and around the verandah,

faithful minder in tow. Heinz would have had a fit but he was out of town attending a conference and no-one else minded Taffy joining in the fun. THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL 1991 15


A PEDDLER'S JOURNAL

PRISO¡{ER AT THE BAR

w

Is Moles moonligþting?

little since the end of the war. Under the iron-fisted rule of General Ne Win

ASSOCIATE member Dr Michael Moles (anaesthetist to the Governor) denies that he has been moonlighting as an advertising model, despite the

LEIGHTON WILLGERODT, an Associate Member of tke FCC, is a with a US multirutionnl

sales exerutiue

cheruiml comþany.

the government had done a remarkable

downstairs bar of the FCC, where the Moles double stares challengingly from

job of sealing the country off from the rest of the world. Its policy of carefully filtering any so-called "comrpting influences" from the West had the net effect of putting a hold on progress of any kind. Very few tourists were allow-

an advertisement for a certain alcoholic

ed in and business visas were obtained

evidence of this photograph. The snap

was taken by David Thurston in the

beverage. It can't be Moles, though. He wouldn't touch the stuff.

only by invitation from one of the government export-import agencies. To visit Burma was to take a step back in time. It was one of the few places left where you could get a feel

for what Asia used to be like. The country was stagnating and mired in the past.

Strand-ed in a time gone by I used to stay in the Strand Hotel. In line with Ne Win's economic policy, "the Burmese way to socialism, " it had been nationalised along with all other private enterprise. However, one of the Sarkies brothers, from the family who

had founded and managed the hotel since before the turn of the century, had wisely been retained by the government as the general manager.

The Sarkies were an

Armenian

family who, as early as 1821, had established themselves in business in Singapore. Members of the family went on to found the Raffles hotel in Singapore, the Eastern and Oriental in Penang, and the Strand in Rangoon. I believe the Sarkies of the Strand was

the last of his line, the others having Iong since retired. -He a short, thick-set man, probably his early (Continued on page 18)

George's hat-trick goes unnoticed CHIEF editorial bloodhound at the Sundny Posf, David Fox, missed the story behind this picture ... unable to sniff it out, even though it was right under his nose. Fox emerged from behind one of the FCC pot-plants one lunchtime recentþ to scribble down the details as our editor was ordered by a resident virago to remove his hat. The embarrassment of our chastened, hairy dwarf was subsequently recorded in Fox's column in the Sunday rag. However, neither the accuser nor

Fox

-

who were both on hand

-

made

the slightest comment when George Melly, topped by an outrageous straw creation, marched into the Main Bar for a drink after his recent address to lunchtimers. Sunday

M Magazine maestro David

Thurston captured on film this shot of the behatted George giving some close-

quarters jazz talk to a lady member. Well done David! You proved that at least one of Murdoch's minions isn't asleep.

How wrong can you get?

Hong Kong Standard

-

March 15

16 THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL

1991

THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL 1991 17


A PEDDLER'S JOURNAL (Strand: from page 17) seventies at the time, and had a shaven head. He could be seen forlornly wandering the usually empty lobby and

halls, always, no matter what time of day, attired in black formal dress. Each evening at about the same time he sat down in his sartorial splendour to

a solitary meal in the spacious highceilinged dining room. I remember once being the only other diner in the room. There must have been at least thirty empty tables, each set with the full complement of silverware and glasses. I often regret that I did not approach him for a chat, but I didn't, and the two of us worked our way in silence through the set meal for that evening. The menu rarely varied. It was old-fashioned British: a fish course, a meat course, boiled vegetables and a pudding. The only concession to Eastern cuisine was the mulligatawny soup

to sta::t off with. Like everything else in Rangoon, the Strand was in a sad state of repair and appeared to be steadily going downhill. On the other hand it retained a certain faded elegance and dignity. It still projected the grandeur of the position it once held as an institution of the British colonial regime. It preserved the style and traditions of an earlier era, ìMhich, with the exception perhaps of a few Indian hill stations, have largely disappeared from the rest of Asia. The check-inprocedure required one to fill in an old ledger book kept on the counter. On the wall behind the counter was a picture of General Ne Win where it was easy to imagine there once had

been the stern visage of the British Governor General of the day. In one corner of the lobby was

a

glass

cabinet containing three shelves on which were laid out a collection of musty old items. They included a cheap plastic comb, a hair-brush, some shaving utensils, a small mirror, a sewing kit, a woman's necklace, and most incongmously a set of used dentures. That they had been there a long time could be attested to by the fact that the paper label marked "lost and found," and attached to the glass, had yellowed

with age and the ink had faded. A spider had put one of the items to good use by using it to support his web. recall one evening sitting in the

I

18 THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL 1991

WOLFEI\DALE AT LARGE

Reciprocal clubs

cocktail lounge nursing a tepid gin and tonic. It had not warmed gradually to room temperature because I am a slow drinker, butbecause it had been served that way. The refrigeration rarely worked. It was a little after six when I

noticed the bartender glancing nervously in my direction. Finally he came over and said: "I am sony sir but a

jacket and tie or national dress are required after six o'clock." Somewhat startled and quickly surveyingthe empty roomin an attemptto emphasize my point, I said, "But there is nobody else here." "I am sor4r sir," was his only reply. Pulling at my collar and glancing up

at the slowly revolving ceiling fans, I tried another tack by protesting: "But it is rather warm in here tonight for a jacket and tie. Can't you make an ex-

The following clubs have reciprocal agreements with the FCC. This means you can enjoy the facilities at these clubs, on cash basis, upon presentation of your FCC membership card.

AUSTRALIA

Canberra National Press Club,

16 National

Circuit, Barton, ACT 2600

The Victoria Club, Level 41, Rialto South Tower, 525 Collins St., Melbourne, VIC 3000

Darwin Press Club,

Cavenagh St., Sydney

NSW 2000

Rugby Club, Rugby Union House, Crane Place Off 314 Pitt St., Sydney 2000 REPUBLIC OF PALAU

Palau Community Club, P.O.Box 598, Koror, Palau 96940

150

Wellington, Ottawa Kip 544

DENMARK

International Press Centre,

14 Snaregade,

DK-1205 Copenhagen K

GERMANY

ception?"

"I

am sor4r sir. We have our standards. If you need a jacket we can lend you one." Realising then that the subject was closed, I went back to my room to get tie and draped myself in a jacket kept behind the bar for such occasions. The managementhad the foresight to stock a

the largest size available in order to cover all contingencies. About this time, four elderþ Indians carrying beat-up old cases entered the room. One of them took a seat at the

Journalisten Club, Berlins E.V., Kurfurstendamm 224, 1000 Berlin 15

Presse Club Munchen, 8000 Munchen

JAPAN FCC Tokyo, 7-l Yurakucho, l-Chome, ChiyodaKu, Toþo Tel: 211-316f KOREA Sadan Pubin Seoul Club, #208 JangchoongDong-2-Ka, Chung-Ku, Seoul

Seoul Foreign Correspondents Club, 18/F Korea Centre Bldg, 25 l-Ka Taepyong-Ro, Chung-Ku, Seoul

THE NETHERLANDS

to reveal a violin and other stringed

Holfsingel 12, Den Hague

instruments. Theywere the nightly entertainment. Following a series of tuneup plinks and squeaks they launched

into their repertoire. The

melodies 1¡¡ere dated and for the most part, to me atleast, unrecognisable. Like the hotel, and for that matter like the musicians themselves, they were leftovers from

an earlier era. "Brighton 1935," I thought, as I wiped a drop of perspiration from my forehead and, still wearing my borrowed jacket, two sizes too large, made mywayto the diningroom.

A year or so after my last trip I

learned from a friend that Sarkies had packed his bags and left forAustralia to

join his brothers in retirement. The Strand is still the place to stay in Rangoon. General Ne Win is still running the country, only now from behind the scenes, and am told by recent visitors that Burma still has not changed very much.

I

2,

Marienplatz 22, Munich

piano while the others opened the cases

Nieuwspoort International Press Centre, NEW ZEALAND

National Press Club of Wellington, P.O.Box 2327, Wellington

SINGAPORE

Singapore Press Club, Times House, 390 King Seng Rd.

THAILAND Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand, 23lF Dusit Thani Hotel, 946 Rama IV Rd, Bangkok 10500

UNITEDKINGDOM

The Foreign Press Association, 1l Carlton House Terrace, London SWIY SAJ Tel: 01-930-0445

London Press Club & Scribes,4 Carmelite St., London EC4

Wig and Pen Club,2291230 Strand, London WC2R 1BA Tel: 01-353-6864

UNITED STATES

The Greater Los Angeles Press Club, Equestrian Center, Griffith Park, 480 Riverside Drive, Burbank, CA 9f506

Honolulu Press Clut¡, P.O.Box Hawaii 96808

ffiÊ'6r u'*"äfi;;*-

Freelancers ooo freeloaders .oo and free laughter

r I-

iffiiî"i:il't-,iî was wounded and

died.

We'd made fast friends, Eddie and I, not least because we were neighbours on Lamma Island and, being freelancers, we shared a tendency to write as much as we could before 1.30pm and let the couple of hours after that

CANADA

Ottawa National Press Club,

YÞR

817, Honolulu,

look after themselves. Eddie loved his food ard knew how to cook but he wasn't picky with it. So, at the strategic hour, he'd consult me on the phone to see if we wanted "a hop skip and a play and a bucket of filth" in one of the local restaurants. Here we discussed the shortcomings of the world and, since it figured so largely in both of ours, these included Illustration by Gauin Coates the FCC. Our favourite mutual moan, so often tuned together it became almost harmonic, Lammawherenoteventhemoststead- Eddie savouring the image of my 2501bs of creaking fat in a lined rainwas the phenomenon of the roaming fast freeloader would want to roam. For some of the time between his coat attempting to secrete themselves, freeloading guest in the Main Bar. The FCC's verbal history, handed injury and his death I was in Paris and unnoticed, under one of those kneedownfromdrinktodrink,tellsof oneso there was a moment there he would knockingly Èilded little French cafe notorious that he did not even bother have chinked with chuckles if he'd tables, designed still to the general with the cosmetic of actually coming in have lived to know about it. As I sat in proportions of Toulouse Lautrec. I have with a member and ended up being thewindowofacaleontheRueRoyale, never swallowed that sub-Hemingway chased off down the street. up the wide pavement, looking this way crap about spending hours over an The problem is that most do come in and that with that unquenchable in- armagnac and a coffee on a cafe pavewith members, get pulled into the stinct of a freebie seeker, strode the ment table. In all the chic arrondissewarm hop and barley embrace of "the Club's most recently audacious roam- ments, the chairs are arranged in the tight, unforgiving lines of a school round" and find themselves in a lovely ing freeloader. speech day hall with four vaguely sharlunchtime fug, their original host long ing a tray-sized table and the serried and forgetfrlly gone, working an effortpatrons looking glumly at the passing less progression of acquainted members in the hour-and-a-half it takes them to traffíc. get back to the front door. Back at the Club, Eddie would have Admittedly, the first or second time enjoyed the goat too. It is rare we have livestock wanderit happens, there is probably no preing about the premises more snazzlly meditation, but there is the guest who It almost took my pernod away to dressed that Simon Winchester, but can't help planning the third. wonder how he got so far. I learned the Welsh night last month saw the Eddie and I were once drinking more into tea-time than late lunch with four later that he was doing the equivalent of occasion for it. The Royal Regiment of other splendid fellows and only fully selling ice to the Eskimos and bamboo Wales played for the evening and realised after the dust of the cheerios to the Burmese by selling something as brought their mascot, Taffy III, in full had settled that not one of them came hopeless as manuals on humility to the regalia. I was a guest, not at the function but in with us, and not one of them had French. shirt. It the barman's of man to bought a whiff would a private dinner party held in the If I had been spotted the have walked without pain through the Wyndham Room. It was 20 strong, was a testimony to the Irish gentleman plate-glass window with his gate-wide hosted by John Miller for, as coincidthat Eddie always was that no inhospitality could be shown to a roaming smile and I'd have been down a bottle ence would have it, a British Army freeloader's face. We just belched major general. Well, what could they before I could burp. So I panicked. (Continued on page 2O) about it over our buckets of filth on I would have enjoyed the idea of

"Eddie would have enjoyed the goat, too.tt

THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL 1991 19


-rINEWMEMBERS

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THE PRIVATE LIFE OF OLD HONG KONG Women - Western in the British Colony 1841-1941. Written by Susannn Hoe and þublisked by Oxford Uniaersity Press, HK$95.

Cor:respondent Goran Leijonhufuud is the Asia correspondent for

FCC member Susanna Hoe has pro-

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duced a valuable addition to the history of Hong Kong, highlighting the con-

tribution that the woman of the colony made as people in their own right as opposed to being merely a support group to their men. Certainly they were a great support to their husbands, as Mable Cantlie was, taking on the role of nurse, assistant and welfare worker, attending the patients with her husband - selfimposed duties which she had not previously been trained to perform.

(from page 19) do but troop in the goat to pay respects just before the main course. "Does it," asked the General, "ever shit on these occasions?", by which he meant our carpet. "Well," replied the sergeant-in-charge, "its going to be funny you said that, sir, because Taffy only does that when anyone brings the subject up."

And sharp-eared Taffy did it more or less there and then in a discreet round of clear, perfectly circular pellets which left not a trace when they were scooped up. You can see why goats are popular in the Mess. "And it didn't even pee, doing it!" I declared to the Club waiters afterwards. Yes it did .. Just by then I was standing

it. Eddie's humour was never lavatorial,

but goats doing it where prime ministers take drinks before lunch would have provoked one of his mountainous chortles. If there is, indeed, a house of

God, fill it to the rafters with your laughter, Eddie, because we'll not be hearing it here again. 20 THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL

1991

Erik Guyot is a reporter-editor with Asian Finance

Publications. He was previously a fellow of the Institute of Current Affairs in Bangkok and Manila, and before that worked in Washington, DC, as a consultant with Asia Watch and a researcher for the Centre for Defence Information.

Peter Morrow is the business manager of Petroleum

Then there were the wives of the

memoranda and reports exchanged

Governors of Hong Kong who under-

betweenhead offices in Europe and the local committees. These thorough chronicles of the

took the organisation of welfare groups. Many other women worked and supported themselves in Hong Kong in

such diverse callings as nurses, milliners and prostitutes. Within these working groups and the families of soldiers and policemen, in addition to

the middle and upper-middle

class women, there developed mutual sup-

port groups. This sisterhood did not encompass the whole community - just those of their own socio-economic groups, but their efforts were supplemented by the

benevolent activities of the uppermiddle class towards the "less forbunate woman" in the colony. It is no fault of Hoe's research that we are often denied a fulI insight into the personalities of these individuals, since much of the information about them has been available only via snippets of conversation recorded in letters sent "home" or, in the case of missionary workers, as virtual footnotes to

past certainly whet the appetite to know more about the women. What we do know is the hardships they endured due to many factors, particularly the climate, which took a heavy toll. Rarely, it seems, did women survive to middle-age, with many dying in their early twenties and thirties

or returning "home" with deteriorating health.

Culturally they were restricted in their movements, not only in China but also in Hong Kong. Some were attacked by pirates, as poor Mary Ann was.

And veryfewwere received by Chinese society; invitations to businessmen did not extend to their wives. Hoe has put a human face on the history of the colony and provided an interesting, well-written work that is a

must for anyone genuinely curious about Hong Kong's past.

-

Marina Knowles

Members who write books are invited to submÍt their works or their publishers to do so. The Correspondent will be happy to consider them lor review.

glet

Neus. He came to Hong Kong after working as the US representative for Asia 2000 Ltd. Andrew Waller, an assistant editor on the business desk of the Far F-astern Economic Reuiew is a former copy editor with the Asinn Wall Street tournal and before that was a sub-editor on the South Chiru Moming Post. Richard Henry Hornik, Time-Life Southeast Asia bureau chief, was previously wíth Tirne in Washington, Beijing, Boston and Warsaw. He is the co-author of Massacre in Beijing.

Dan Thomas is a sub-editor on the Reuters world desk. He came to Hong Kong last year after a two-year stint with the Western Mail in Cardiff. Freelance photo-journalist Alain Evrard, who formerly worked closely with SIPA Press Agency in Paris, has had his work published in many leading journals. Nicholas Elliot is a director-publisher of Lloyds of London Press. He is a former assistant general manager of Dodwell Shipping. Mette Holm is the Hong Kong correspondent of the Danish news paper Morgenhauisen Jyllnnds-Posten. She has previously held posts as foreign news reporter with Danmarks Radio in Copenhagen, TY2lDanmark in Odense, and Titzau's Bureau in Copenhagen. David Jackson, from Nashville, is a Time magazine correspondentwhohas recently moved to Hong Kongfrom Seoul after serving Time in Cairo, Houston, Washington and Chicago. Peter Engard, a correspondent with Businæs Week, formerly worked for the magazine in Miami and Atlanta. He previously worked in Seoul with Business Korea and the Korea Herald and before that was with the Bay City News Service in San Francisco.

Tan Lee Hok is the deputy edítor of Asian Finnnce. He is a former business journalist for the Business Tintes in Kuala Lumpur. Australian Terry Duckham is a partner, director, photographer and writer with Asiapix Inc. He was former-

ly with Asiapix in Manila after a fivé-year spell as a freelance in the Philippines. Terry worked in Sydney for seven years before that. Hong Kong correspondent for the Chinese Daily, Chiew Chee Phoong, brings an impressive list of awards with him, having won no fewer than five during his career with Linnhe Zaobao in Singapore over the past six years. John Whitesides, a sub-editor on the world desk at

Reuters, was previously a reporter with the Hartford Courant, the Onnhn World-Herald and his hometown newspaper, The Kansas City Star.

Katherine Ling Chen, a Reuters correspondent, is a former Taiwan correspondent for UPI, and before that was a stringer in Taiwan for Newsweek and a sub-editor on the Chivn Post. Eric William Ransdellis a special correspondentfor Southeast Asia with the US News and World Reþort. He formerþ spent two years in Africa in a similar capacity for

the magazine.

Associate Suresh Panjabi is a director with the jewellery trading company, STS Gems Ltd. Tourism promoter James Scullion works with the Hong Kong Tourist Association. Ian Chrystie Underwood is abankerwith the Hong Kong and Shanghai Bank. Mahendra Koomar Gokal is the managing director of a trading company.

Linda Lawrence

a

research director with

Asiaweek.

Steven Clayton is a corporate banking manager with a New Zealandbank.

Eric Charrington is a an executive with American International Underwriters Ltd. Canadian-born Eric Angus Matheson is a first officer with Cathay Pacific Airways. Iain Steele is the regional manager for international relations for British telecom Far East. THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL

1991

21


PEOPLE

I\üEWMEMBERS Peter Doughty is a producer-writer with Metropolitan Broadcasting.

James Thomson is a self-employed import-export director.

David Henderson is a vice-president of the Bank of America.

Trevor Thomas Hood is the director of marketing, open systems, with Unisys (Asia) Ltd. Peter Nickerson is the managing director of Growthlink Trade Services Company Ltd. Walter R. Kent is a vice-president and manager of area operations services for the Chase Manhattan Bank. Steven Douville is a market analyst for a base metals company. Rosalind Fowler is an information officer with the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Rachel Pong is a regional customer support manager with a computer company. Noel Rands is the Asia regional manager of Midland Bank. Horst Vinke is the group managing director of the Frankfurl-based Metallgesellschaft Far East Ltd. William McGrath is the vice-president of American International Underwriters (Hong Kong) Ltd.

Kingsley Smith is the chairman and managing director of McCann Erickson (HK) Ltd. advertising agency.

Hwang Sok In is a partner in a firm of solicitors. David Parry is a partner in a law firm. Roger Denny is a solicitor. Dr Laurence Siu Lam Shek is a self-empioyed medical practitioner.

Conor McCabe is a saies manager with Wadsworth

Cable News Network corresþondcnt in Peter Arnett, nho recently drew criticism from US Sevntor Alan Simþson as an enemy "symþathiser", deueloþed his hnack for being at the heart of a story while in Vietnnvn. A fellow corresþondent and Absent Member of the FCC, Washington

kghdrd

Journalist

neter

Gareth Marketingi Colchester,

h

Monett

TimesiÁ

Morning

Post.

Ann Williams is a freelance, formerly a sub-editor with The Peak and The Regent. She was previouslv with

the Sunùty Morning Post and before moving to Hong Kong

worked as a freelance sub-editor in London after spells

with the lllustrated l-ondnn News andthe Radio Times. Jeanette O'Shea is a reporter with the Hong Kong Standnrd. She began her career as the editor of a youth newspaper inNew Zealand and laterbecame a repofterfor a women's magazine. She was then appointed editor of Waterline magazine in Wellington before becoming a reporter with the Auchlnnd Star.

Arnett. CNN's man in PBagh¿ad, cÌeveloped a knack ror

.a

beiig at the heart of a story

a

long time ago.

Recently, the New ZeaTand-born newsman has been dodging incoming rounds of criticism fired by distant bystanders in response to his reports from an Iraqi capital under siege, interviews with President Saddam Hussein, and his relays of what he saw with his own

For this stellar performance that made his name a household word to viewers of the daily television drama called "The Gulf War", Peter Arnett was portrayed as an enemy "sympathiser" by Republican Senator Alan Simpson of Wyoming. Sen. Simpson made his own visit to Baghdad last April and reportedly told President Saddam that his problems "lie with the Western media and not with the IJS government". Bless them both. The world needs more interested legislators, however far off-base their comments, and the world needs more Peter Arnetts. I first met Peter nearly 30 years ago in Vietnam. In one personal incident a

glimpse of his character, he

The full version of the following "war story" may be purchased for the price of a cold libation some evening in the No.1 Shimbun Alley bar of The

riddled helicopters with my own eyes and counted the bullet holes, was gloss-

ed over.

David Halberstam, of the New Yorh Times, and Neil Sheehan, of United Press International, to whom I recount-

Peter Arnett scene of action that had been described

at the briefing before my arrival, the US Army colonel in charge asked if I would give an eyewitness report. I agreed and proceeded to describe the mission of 25 CH-2\ "Flying Banana" helicopters flown by American pilots to ferry Republic of Vietnam Army (ARVN) troops into the Eagle's Beak

ed the story later over a coffee at Giwal's, used some of my comments but led their dispatches with the official version. At that early stage of the Vietnam War, the discrepancies in the official versions of battles had not yet become so apparent. Peter Arnett led his Associated Press

dispatch with my version of the engagement, after double checking with some of the US helicopter crewmen. It was this kind of probing beyond the official line that won him aPulitzer Prize. Sen. Simpson said "Arnett won

here:

area at the Cambodian border, where NorthVietnamese troops exited the Ho Chi Minh trail. In two trips from the Tay Ninh stag-

It

ing area to the landing zones, I reported,

rial and he was married to a Vietna-

two US choppers were destroyed by enemy ground fire, that being the first

mese whose brother was active with the Viet Cong." The Gulf War was probably over a lot sooner because Peter Arnett was in Baghdad pursuing the truth.

Foreign Correspondents' Club of Japan

in Tokyo. A brief version will suffice was August 30, 1963, and I had just returned to Saigon by Beechcraft aircraft from Tay Ninh near the Cambodian border, in time to join part of the

"Five O'Clock Follies" press briefing 1n

progress.

Since

1991

I

my story, claiming that may have been too close to the action to get the correct facts. His version, which he had presented earlier at the briefing and repeated, was: "Two IJS helicopters were damaged slightly by heavy Viet Cong automatic weapons ground fire." He did confirm my report that the 19-year-old door gunner of the chopper in which I was riding, Felipe Lariosa, of Hilo, Hawaii, had literally shot a Viet Cong sniper out of a tree as we lifted off after unloading troops. My protestations that I had seen the

eyes.

US military version.

22THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL

least one bullet hole in their fuselages from enemy ground fire. Four bullets hit the helicopter in which I was riding, one of them coming through the floor close to my left foot and embedding itself in the cabin ceiling. I have that bullet among my souvenirs as a foreign correspondent. Two American crew members were killed and the other crewmen of the two downed helicopters were rescued. At this point the colonel intemrpted

NEILAN, þrouides a reminiscence of Arnett in Vi¿tnam. Arnett was a aisitor to the FCC seueral times in the 1960s and eaily 1970s.

Marketing and Media Services.

went with what he felt were important facts that were contrary to the official

at the

it, Peter!

Times Tok1,o bureau chief EDWARD

that gives

Shape up

Go for

I

had just returned from the

day that the Viet Cong were confirmed to be using automatic weapons, and after the second flight I had counted 18 of the remaining 23 choppers with at

itbecause of his anti-government mate-

Go for it, Peter.

THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL

1991

23


JOUR]\ALISTS' ASSOCIATION NEWS

Having a ball at the

Gorbachev urged to curb attacks on journalists Journalists

G-orbachev to protest against the shooting and wounding of journalists by Soviet troops. sault bY

THE HKJA annual fund-raising ball was held Ballroom of the Grand Hyatt on April 4.

ter the nts

at the Grand

A good number of tables were booked as follows:

So, HK Trade Development Council 1 l4r Jact< Francis Yuen, HK Stock Exchange ? Mr phe¡1g Man-yee, Radio Television Hong Kong 9 Mr -\{s 4. Paul Cheng,

Legislative councillor

5. Mrs Selina Chow, 6. Mr Cheung Yan{u lor 7. Mr Lau Wong-fat, 8. Mr Ronald Arculli, Legislative councillor 9. Mrs Nellie Fong, Legislative councillor

Affairs astfour

It

expresses the HKJA's solidarity with Latvian journalists. It notes the following reports: * The editor of the Finnish Yleisradio, Hannu Vaisanen, was beaten up and his tape-recorder was confiscated. He was admitted to hospital with a fractured elbow.

21.

Services bepartment

Mr Mr 27_. \r 28. Dip

Radio Television Hong Kong

29. Lion's Club of Mt. Cameron 30. Lai Sun Development Co Ltd 31. Far Eastern Economic Review 32. Mr J.P. Lee, Hong Kong Chinese Bank 33. Mr J.P. Lee, Lippo Asia Ltd 34. Philip Morris Asia Inc. 35. Mr Li Shu-fung, Local Inspectors, Association of Hong Kong Police 36. Mr W.K. Tam, Lions International District 303 37. The Law Society of Hong Kong 38. Mr Stuart W. Pallister, HKJA member

a member of the Moscow TV crew for the popular programme Vzgljad, was shot while he was filming the assault, and an Eétonian cameraman was also fired upon. * The documentary journalist Gvído Zvaigzene was seriously wounded and is understood to have undergone two life-saving operations.

24 THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL

Treasurer, Mrs. Dorothy Ryan, clzclaring thnt a uorum uas þresent, mll¿d the meeting 1o order

for Correspondent

by peter

Seiditz,

President Mrs. Ryan then read the following nomination that had been received for President:

First Vice-President Mrs. Ryan read the following. nomination that had

repeated, and that those responsible will be brought to justice.

"We hope you understand that events in

Eastern sely watched in every corner of the o suppress the development of press

democratic rights condoned."

will never

be

Sing Tao triumph in Cup UNDEFEATED throughout their eight games in the long and demanding competition for the 7th HKJA Cup soccer tournament, Sing Tao ran out the eventual winners with a close-fought 2-7 victory over Sing Pao. During the tournament, they scored 24 goals and conceded only

received for 1st Vice-President:

Mr Steve

Vines

of

been

_ The

Obseruor, nominated by , Paul Bayfield, seconded by John Andrews. being no further nominations, Mrs. Ryan declared that _ Jh_.I. Mr. Vines was the sole candidate ior the position of First Vice-President.

J

Mr Mike Bishara of Asialine Hang Kong, nominated +.M Malik, seconded by Huberr V;;-E""'-'

by

Mrs. Ryan declared this oral no-ináiio"'to be in order and accepted.

Associate Members

Second Vice-President

HK$500 HK$500 HK$100

received for 2nd Vice-President:

three.

Journalist Members

Friendship match:

_

HrJe

1

crs

_Mrs. Ryan read the following nominations Member of the Board of Governo?s:

0

for Journalist ing

Post,

tBayfiel¿,

Final: Ming Pao

Donors: Anonymous

The cons

Correspondent Members

Mrs. Ryan read the following nominations that had been

i, Next Magazine , Sing Tao Ltd

Wing On Department Store H.K. Ltd Edward Ho, Legislative Councillor

April B, lggl

* Vladimir Brezhnev,

22.

Mr Lung King-cheong, Hong Kong Daily News Mr Paul Simpson Giles, pBG privãtbank Geneve

Wednesday,

at 6.

Mr Patrick Ma, Oriental Dailv News Mr Raymond Donner, R.J. Róynolds Tobacco Inter_

national (H.K.) Lt¿ 77 Mr Martin Spurrier, Turner, Spurrier/Rowland Ltd 18. Mr Philip Bowring, Far Eastern Economic Review 19. Hong Kong Bank 20. sion Hong Kong

23. 24. 25. 26.

MNUTES OF THE A¡üI{UAL I\üOMIIüATIOI{ MEETNG

THE HKJA has joined the International Federation of in an appeal to Soviet President Mikhail

Grand Hyatt

15. 16.

CLUB NEWS

1

Express

1

Grand final: Sing Tao 2

Sing Pao

1

Mr

Stuart Wolfendalç, freelance, nominated by J.A.M. Malik, seconded by M.J. Taylor. There being no further nominations, Mrs. Ryan declared that _ these nominations to be in order and accepted.

1991

THE CORRESPONDENT APRIL

1991

25


-

GRIPHOS WIN

Prize A

NO

1O

ACROSS

";:*::r";:';*,n

watker

A ner,v puzzle This puzzle contains four columns of 12 words. In each column, two of the words do not belong. Which are the two words from each column - and why are they the "odd men out"? SPOOLS

GOD

NOW GOAT

MAR

EDIT POT

LIVE FLOW FINE TINKER EDAM GNATS RETOOL

DON

ARE LAGER

KEEL FOUL PEEK DIAPER

NOW

owL SAW

THERE'S A1WAYS A STORY AT THE HONG KONG TRADE DEVEIOPThENT COUNCIT

STRESSED DRAWER

ME REVIEW REEL TIN SPAR TORT DUNCE FLOG DIVA TIP REVILED ERGO CASE TOR STAR SPOTS DEVIL PAT ETON DIAL REVEL FEET

Comþiled by Brinn Neil

March crostic puzzle There were six entrants in the FCC Griphos competition. All submitted correct answers. Congrahrlations to Peter Caldwell (5553) in being the lucky winner. Hiram Walker have kindly agreed to provide a bottle of spirits to the Griphos winners.

The solution was:

1. 4. 7.

Old one has lots of troubles (6) Lights amount to very little (6) Frequently drops flag (4) B. Ops not in for exercises (B) 9. Shamed to the point; ends up in little 12. Where flowers nod off (3) 14. ICAC joins motoring club in order to blossom (6) 15. The rotisserie seems to contain an orderly qroup (6) 16. Infant to make fun of (3) 18. Brings hall back to contain a vegetable (7) 22.'|om Jone's creator at work on an oval? (B) 23. Pans back for a break (4) 24. Belonging to Aussie writer, so they say, but usually' fatal if unopened during use (6) 25. Doctor or soldier? Could be both (6)

DOWN 1.

Location where we hear the right people first took

off

(9)

2. Where one could be waiting for the sevens (9) 3. Stares quite stupidly (5) 4. Deserves to have an ace for example (5) 5. Not out of the way at present (4) 6. Dost thou see where one eleven could be (5) 10. Varies loses five for sign (5) 11. Note a source to reside in (5) 12. Short English chap takes his medicine in a language he rarely uses these days (9) 13. HRH's mood not fit for a dog? (9) 17. Jokes about paddies? (5) 19. Big rabbits sound as if they could be raised on the back

-

of the neck (5) 20. Blowing a gale left behind makes it right (5) 21. Pontius loses me to a scheme (4)

FranzListz proclaimed himself Magyar in heart and mind yet never spoke Hungarian, forgot much of his native German and preferred French tlroughout his lifetime.

-

Porter Eield, "FranzListz".

II LII-ES 1. Entries must be sent to:

CROSSWORD

Asia Pacific Directories, 9/F, Grand View Commercial Centre, 29,-31Sugar St, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong.

The HKTDC can help you make business headlines every day of the year. As a major force in world trade you'llfind we've always got a good story t0 tell: no padding, no puff and backed by accurate up-tolhe-moment figures and statistics. Next time you receive

2. Entries must reach the office not later than April 26 3. Entries must carry the name, address and the Club membership number of the contestant. 4. The first correct solution drawn from the entries received will be awarded a bottle of Chivas Regal. 5. The solution and winner's name will be published in The Conesþondznt the following month.

26 TIIE CORRESPONDENT APRIL

1991

we I{ }le¡g KongTrade Development Council trade. trlE wE cBEATE oppoRruNntEs

0ne 0f our press releases, give it a good once-over You'll soon see what mean.

JOf annes

NelmaNr

0r contact us

Iei

rf

l43l 0222 533 9B1B

.

you need details on any aspect of Hono Kong

Zulich

J F.

tuter

Iu

i41 )

0l -383 295û


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The Correspondent, April 1991