Indiana Rep. Frank McCloskey has announced plans to unfurl "The Great American Flag" on the Washington Monument grounds next month in support of U.S. troops in the Persian Gulf. The five-ton-plus flag was made in Evansville, Ind., in 1980 to honor hostages returning from Iran and has been in storage in a General Services Administration warehouse since 1984. At 210 feet by 406 feet, it's not easy to fold and store and is said to need a cleaning, which it will get. Plans for a March 2 unfolding fell through because of the cleaning schedule, but it will get a March showing, and another on Flag Day, June 14. McCloskey, in making the announcement, said, "It's a great way to show our support for the troops, and with something this big, they're bound to hear about it over there."
Celebration of Mandela Release
South African journalist Donald Woods will be the main speaker at the District's St. Augustine Catholic Church tonight for a celebration of the first anniversary of the release of South African Nelson Mandela. Woods, whose works "Biko" and "Looking for Trouble" were the basis for the film "Cry Freedom," will be joined by the church's gospel choir for the event, which is to benefit the Mickey Leland Pharmacy Scholarship Program in South Africa. Both the evening and the scholarship program are sponsored by the Medical Education for South African Blacks. On its board and scheduled to attend are Alison Leland, widow of the late congressman; HHS Secretary Louis Sullivan; former Georgia state senator Julian Bond; former D.C. delegate Walter Fauntroy; Amelia Parker, director of the Congressional Black Caucus; and newscaster Renee Poussaint.
World's Richest Women
Queen Elizabeth II is once again at the top of the annual "world's wealthiest women" list compiled by the British magazine Harpers and Queen. In 1990 the monarch reportedly increased her personal wealth by 25 percent, and is now estimated to be worth an astonishing $13 billion. Next on the list, with less than half the queen's amount, is German BMW magnate Johanna Quandt, at $5.1 billion, followed by Imelda Marcos. The wife of the late former president of the Philippines, who made a diamond-studded visit to Washington last week, is said to be worth a mere $3 billion.
Udall to Begin Rehabilitation
Rep. Mo Udall of Arizona was moved yesterday from the hospital at the National Institutes of Health to the National Rehabilitation Hospital on Irving Street NW, where he will begin a full physical therapy and rehabilitation schedule after having broken several bones in a fall last month. Spokesman Matt James reports that Udall is "very frustrated at the slow process," and says the congressman is expected to be at the rehabilitation hospital for at least a month. Dr. Ruth in Israel
Sex therapist Ruth Westheimer arrived this week in Israel to study (what else?) sex under stress. Dr. Ruth, as she's known to her legions of radio listeners, arrived at Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion Airport Monday and right away tried on a gas mask, following her own best advice: Always carry protection.