March 9, 1987



It had all the ingredients of a bestselling thriller: a web of international intrigue spun by people in the highest offices of the land, arms dealers, spies—and a stunning blond secretary, who falsified documents. The settings were exotic and the dialogue was full of colorful boasts and spicy gossip.
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Immigrants in an uneasy wait

Manuel Navarrate arrived at the Blackpool, Que., border crossing on Feb. 21 with $100, warm clothes and high hopes of beginning a new life in Montreal. Instead, in a scene repeated hundreds of times last week along Canada’s border with the United States, the 25-year-old Salvadoran discovered that the once-porous border had become impenetrable.
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Celebrating body and soul

The cast of characters included tragic and unfaithful lovers, a murderer, sultry harem dancers and a man in spiritual distress—played by dance legend Rudolf Nureyev. All were participants in the National Ballet of Canada’s 35th birthday party in Toronto last week—a gala celebration that forcefully demonstrated the diversity and power of dance.


As expected, the Tower commission’s report depicted the President of the United States as an amiable dotard held captive by his retinue of zealous and remarkably stupid subalterns. Although muffled in the language of bureaucratic euphemism, the report made it plain enough that Ronald Reagan knew as much about the Iranian arms transfers (or about any other aspect of American foreign policy) as he knew about the dark side of the moon.
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Paying for a good squeeze

You could never get blood from a stone, no matter what. Blood from a stone was the symbol of the impractical, the unattainable. No matter how hard you tried, no matter how deserving you were, no matter how much money you had, it didn’t make any difference.


Your coverage of the Nicaraguan situation (“In the shadow of war,” Cover, Feb. 23) has presented to Canadians a much-needed perspective for which I am most grateful. I felt proud and happy that a Canadian magazine had the guts to tell the story as it is.
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Spectacular death throes of a star

At 11 p.m. on Feb. 23, inside a small observatory on a barren mountaintop in northern Chile, Ian Shelton noticed a surprisingly bright star on an astral photograph he had just taken through a 10-inch telescope with a lense the diameter of a dinner plate.
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A born-again politician

Maclean’s: Is the Michael Manley of today different from the Michael Manley of seven years ago? Manley: Enormously. I have learned so much and done a lot of thinking about all the things we went through. I tried many things that I believe are still right, but we made a lot of mistakes.
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May your best friend fail, too

This is, it says here, a great year for optimists. Too many people are down in the mouth, whining and complaining about their children’s university fees, the onslaught of AIDS and the lack of clerks in department stores. There is too much despair over morons who insist on getting stuck in the middle of intersections against the light and plumbers who charge the same rate as brain surgeons.
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Stonewalling the banks

The blunt announcement sent Canadian bank stocks plunging. Brazil’s president, José Sarney, said that his government would suspend interest payments on the $90.4 billion in long-term debt that it owes to foreign banks. And bankers around the world expressed concern that other countries would follow suit.
March 21987 March 161987