Watercooler Stories

By DENNIS DAILY, United Press International  |  April 12, 2002 at 2:49 AM
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It's one of the most famous photos of all time ... the classic black and white portrait of beret-wearing revolutionary Ernesto "Che" Guevara in his prime, at age 32. It's called the "Heroic Guerrilla" and it was taken in 1960. Now, according to the Miami New Times, it is for many a symbol of the past that has less relevance in the present.

The paper's Kirk Nelsen says although Guevara appears "forever young" in the photo -- used in thousands of ways, from advertising to rabble rousing -- his contemporaries now have the "sagging faces" of elderly comrades. In many ways it is the photo that has kept the larger-than-life persona of the '60s revolutionary in the minds of people around the world ... long after his death.

Now, some quarter of a century after Guevara's execution at the hands of a Bolivian firing squad, a rebellion of another kind is going on. This one is over ownership of the photo. The man who took the original picture died last year. There is now a struggle among his heirs for ownership of the rights to the classic image. By the way, were he alive today, Guevara would be 74.


Investigators now think that it simply ran out of fuel. How it happened is a mystery. After all, two crack, veteran Boeing pilots were at the controls when the only remaining 307 aircraft made a crash landing in the waters near Seattle last week. The Post-Intelligencer says the aircraft, which had just been lovingly restored and was bound for a museum, crashed while on a test flight when all four of its engines lost power.

The one-of-a-kind Stratocruiser was to be a shining representative of the era of propeller flight.

Investigators are not only trying to figure out how much fuel was on board when the plane took off but whether there might have been a problem with its monitoring system or the pumps. The entire plane was reconstructed during the past few years; many of the men who worked on the plane had helped build it decades ago.


Court officials in Colorado say the results of the newest investigation into the events of April 20 three years ago at Columbine High School in the Denver suburbs will not be released until after the anniversary of the massacre. Many parents have severe questions about the police action concerning the incident and whether or not "friendly fire" may have resulted in the death of at least one student.

The Denver Post is reporting county officials already have the report, said to contain about 1,200 pages.

The main question remains whether 15-year-old Daniel Rohrbough was killed by the two fellow students who carried out the slayings or whether he died after being struck by a police bullet. The acrimonious debate during the past three years has extended to the halls of the state Capitol.


Veterinary epidemiologists working for the U.S. Department of Agriculture say they have confirmed the presence of a disease that could be a derivative of so-called "mad cow disease" in two sheep in Vermont. The agency says the sheep could actually have a condition called scrapie, a disease common to sheep that is not harmful to humans. But the researchers have launched a full-scale investigation ... just in case.

The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service says that if the condition is diagnosed as being mad cow, eradication efforts will begin immediately and all animals in the area will be quarantined and inspected.

So far about 100 people have died of the human disease that comes from mad cow. In European it was top news for the past few years and nearly decimated some cattle industries, particularly in parts of the United Kingdom.

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