Athens's main port was sealed for two hours yesterday to allow divers to install an underwater monitoring system as part of an Olympic security network that protesters contend is a privacy invasion.
The fiber-optic cables are a key element of an electronic web of cameras, sensors and other intelligence-gathering devices designed to help safeguard the Aug. 13-29 Olympics. Greece is spending $1.24 billion on Olympic security.
_____ Countdown to Athens _____ • The Olympics are less than a week away and organizers are pulling the pieces together for the Aug. 13 opening.
_____ From The Post _____ • Dana Vollmer will be one of those tales of courage that come up during the Olympics.
• Michael Wilbon: In Athens, the new can't hold a torch to the ancient.
• Lauryn Williams is far more interested in chasing goals she can see rather than those she can imagine.
• Notebook: Jerome Young reportedly tested positive for the banned drug EPO at a meet last month.
_____ Live Online _____ • Tony Azevedo, the top scorer on the U.S. Men's Water Polo team, took questions July 28.
• Alexander Kitroeff discussed his book, "Wrestling with the Ancients: Modern Greek Identity and the Olympics," and the history of the Games on July 27.
_____ On Our Site _____ • Photos: Swimming trials.
• Photos: Track and field trials.
_____ Swimming's Wonder Boy _____ • Phelps's main training partners and buddies reflect on blown chances. (July 27)
• Coach Bob Bowman has been the guiding force for Phelps. (July 4)
• Gallery: Coach shows the way to Athens.
• Numerous endorsements already have made Phelps a millionaire. (June 1)
• Gallery: The road to the Games are paved with gold.
• Phelps expected to be the Games' most-decorated athlete. (April 18)
• Gallery: Phelps making a splash.
Although the devices are considered necessary for security, several groups said they will demonstrate against their use. Anti-globalization groups said they would protest outside Greece's parliament. Some political parties also have expressed concerns.
Police officials tried to reassure Athenians that the electronic monitoring system, which includes a blimp and thousands of infrared and high-resolution cameras, will not violate privacy.
The 200-foot blimp, which carries chemical "sniffers" and high resolution cameras, will start flying over the city this week, police said.
The underwater cables at the port of Piraeus will help secure an area that will host one of the world's largest gatherings of cruise ships during the Olympics.
McConneloug Wins Appeal
Mary McConneloug won her appeal to be nominated to the U.S. Olympic women's mountain biking team, overturning USA Cycling's selection of Sue Haywood and ending a bizarre process that will likely be remembered more for confusion than accomplishment.
The arbiter ruled that USA Cycling's decision to add 15 points to Haywood's international total -- a decision that pushed her one point ahead of McConneloug in a yearlong battle for the lone women's mountain start position allocated to the Americans for the Athens Games -- wasn't justified.
The ruling is binding, and McConneloug's name will formally be added to the official Olympic roster today.
Davis Makes British Team
American runner Malachi Davis was added to the British Olympic team, two weeks after receiving his British passport.
Davis was given provisional spots in the 400 meters and 4x400-meter relay for his adopted country.
Davis is from Sacramento but his mother was born in England. He decided to try for a place on the British team, figuring he had little chance to make the American squad.
"I'm extremely happy, I'm excited," Davis said. "It was definitely up in the air because I know there were quite a few athletes that still were part of the selection process."