• Tunnel Vision: Staff writer Dan Murphy got a taste of Gaza tunnelers' lives after being shown a half-finished shaft along the border with Egypt (see story). "I was standing with these Palestinian guys and they were urging me on, so I went for it," says Dan. He slid down a rope about 12 feet, then crawled on his hands and knees into a shoulder-width tube.
Dan says he started to have second thoughts a few seconds in. "It didn't help that every time my head bumped the roof, chunks of sand fell on me." But with an amused Palestinian guide at his back shouting "go, go," he scuttled to the end, where he was told he was about half way to Egypt. "At this point, about 100 yards from safety, in a tunnel without structural supports, I realized what an idiot I was. I practically flew back."
THE WEEK AHEAD
•MONDAY, JAN. 14Beijing – Adm. Timothy Keating, head of US Pacific Command, is on a three-day visit to discuss Hong Kong port visits and ways to strengthen US-China military relations. Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte visits Jan. 17-18 for more talks on broader issues.Warsaw – Poland's Defense Minister Bogdan Klich travels to Washington for talks with US Defense Secretary Robert Gates on missile defense plans for Poland.Dubai, United Arab Emirates – President George W. Bush is scheduled to visit before stopping in Saudi Arabia.
•Wednesday, Jan. 16 Sebokeng, South Africa – Court hearing scheduled for dormitory matron accused of abusing students at Oprah Winfrey's school for disadvantaged South African girls.Cairo – President George W. Bush is scheduled to meet President Hosni Mubarak before returning to Washington.
Deputy World editor