OPENING NOTES

Lloyd Axworthy finds a leak in the family, Washington’s iron grip on a spy’s wife, and Jeffrey Simpson tells all

October 9 1989

OPENING NOTES

Lloyd Axworthy finds a leak in the family, Washington’s iron grip on a spy’s wife, and Jeffrey Simpson tells all

October 9 1989

OPENING NOTES

Lloyd Axworthy finds a leak in the family, Washington’s iron grip on a spy’s wife, and Jeffrey Simpson tells all

DINNER FOR 2,000

John Turner's federal Liberals have chosen Nov. 1 for the party's annual big fund-raising event—but at week's end, only about half the 2,000 tickets available had been sold for the Confederation Dinner in Toronto's Sheraton Centre. Indeed, the Conservatives are directly competing for political donations by staging their gala fund-raising dinner that night at the nearby Harbour Castle Hotel. To stimulate sales of the $400 tickets, Grit organizer William Somerville last week recruited Elvio Del Zotto, the president of the federal party's Ontario wing. They did so even though Del Zotto has been a controversial figure this year: his companies have links to Patricia Starr, another Liberal fund raiser who allegedly made improper political contributions from a charitable fund that she controlled. In any event, Del Zotto's first few days on the dinner team were frustrating: no one could find a list of 80 key Liberals who helped make the 1988 event a success by distributing huge blocks of tickets. Misplacing a sales lineup can be costly.

The walls have ears in Ottawa

Axworthy retrieved his four-yearold son, Stephen, from an Ottawa day care centre that is heavily used by the children of other federal politicians and senior bureaucrats.

There, a supervisor expressed concern that Stephen had revealed family secrets during a show-and-

Lloyd Axworthy revealed last week that he had held a family discussion about the Liberal leadership race last spring—only to have it become public one day later. The Manitoba Liberal MP, who was in Toronto gauging support for a formal entry into the race, told about 60 businessmen that he and his wife, Denise, had talked about the leadership on May 3— the day that Opposition Leader John Turner announced that he was stepping down. One day later,

tell exercise. According to the worker, the child had said, “My daddy’s boss has just quit his job and my daddy wants it.”

NO TALKING IN THE RANKS

Two recently retired military officers clearly angered Ottawa last month when they criticized a plan to shift an air-rescue squadron from Summerside, Prince Edward Island, to Nova Scotia. For one thing, Maj. Gary Naylor noted, CFB Greenwood in the Annapolis Valley frequently has worse flying conditions. Col. Denny Hopping holds similar views— but he still commands the Island’s militia forces, and department of national defence officials have found a quick way to muzzle him. They gave him a direct order: keep quiet.

Moscow believes in Santa Claus

Hamburger magnate George Cohon has sold more than Bolshoi (Big) Maks to the Soviets. During a visit to Moscow last year—where McDonald’s Canada will open its first outlet early next year— the firm’s president persuaded Soviet authorities to pick up Global Television’s broadcast of Toronto’s 84th annual Santa Claus Parade next month. According to Cohon, the Soviets agreed to do so when they learned that the event was the world’s longestrunning children’s parade. This year’s parade will have a distinctive Russian touch: Moscow has commissioned a float in the shape of a samovar, a traditional tea urn.

THE PAINFUL TRIALS OF A SPY’S WIFE

Relations between Washington and Tel Aviv were severely strained when U.S. naval intelligence analyst Jonathan Pollard received life imprisonment in 1987 for selling secrets to Israel. Pollard’s wife, Anne, also received a five-year jail term as an accessory to espionage and she will be automatically paroled on March 30 after serving three years of that sentence. But her friends and relatives say that she may not live that long. Declared Wolf Blitzer, the Washington bureau chief of The Jerusalem Post newspaper:

“Mrs. Pollard is very ill. Another seven months in jail could kill her. She is frail, almost constantly bent over and in great pain. She has a rare stomach disorder, biliary dyskinesia, which makes digesting food extremely painful. Her involvement in the spy ring was marginal. She was motivated by a blind love for her husband.” But U.S. Justice officials told Maclean’s that Pollard's speedy release is unlikely. The reason: Washington is prepared to see her die in prison in order to demonstrate its tough stance against spies.

CUT-RATE MESSAGES IN THE WAR ON DRUGS

U.S. congressmen recently came close to losing a cherished perquisite because of the war on drugs: their free mailing privileges. It occurred when California Senator Peter Wilson asked his colleagues to scrap a $ 100-million yearly subsidy for congressional mailings—and spend half the savings on treatment programs for pregnant addicts. Both the House of Representatives and the Senate supported that proposal last month, even though many congressmen acknowledged privately that they had been hoping to retain the subsidy. To that end, another California politician, Representative Victor Fazio, has proposed a plan under which Congress would allocate $81 million yearly for mailings while earmarking another $50 million to treat pregnant addicts. Insiders say the amendment will pass easily.

Getting the inside story

John Fraser,the editor of Saturday Night magazine, is preparing to publish a lengthy article about recent turmoil at the Toronto Globe and Mail, where publisher A. Roy Megarry has dismissed editor Norman Webster and managing editor Geoffrey Stevens during the past year. Apart from Megarry, the newspaper’s Ottawa columnist, Jeffrey Simpson, is almost certain to be an avid reader of the forthcoming 8,000word article on recent events at the newspaper. That is because Simpson was one of the key sources for Michael Harris, the article’s author—and, like Fraser, a Globe alumnus. Indeed, since speaking to Harris, Simpson himself almost left the Globe to become editor of The Ottawa Citizen. Simpson said that he stands by his words, as Globe executives await their staff’s tough appraisal of the newspaper: in the December issue of Saturday Night.

Shedding suits

Business is booming for Gordon Henderson, a New York City-based designer who may sell up to $8 million in wom-

en’s sportswear this year. But his popularity has caused problems for Keiko Fukuzaki, whose eye-catching bathing suits grace Sports Illustrated’s annual swimwear issue. Both designers worked for World Hong Kong USA, a company that has decided to produce only Henderson’s lines, dropping Keiko’s slower-selling creations. Many swimwear fans want Keiko to find new backers swiftly.