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Special Report

A British Politician Goes on a Fictitious Trial for War Crimes

Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

On Trial

A British T.V. station is planning to broadcast a fictional account of the buildup to a war crimes trial for outgoing Prime Minister Tony Blair. Britain's Channel Four was also behind last year's controversial program that dramatized an assassination of President Bush.

Now it is coming out with what it calls a "comedy-drama" set in the year 2010, in which the international criminal court is about to indict Blair for his use of British forces in the Iraq war.

A Channel Four spokesman denies any political motivation behind the show — although he acknowledges others will disagree. The program airs next Monday.

Our Mistake

The New York Times Magazine has at last published a correction of an April 9 cover story that reported some women in El Salvador had been given 30 year prison sentences for having illegal abortions. A pro-life Web site has been critical of the Times for months, saying the woman profiled in the piece was actually convicted of strangling her baby.

Times public editor Byron Calame corroborated that a week ago, saying that the writer never checked the court ruling. Yesterday the magazine editors admitted that was true. The Web site – archbishop of Warsaw resigned Sunday after only two days on the job — following an admission he cooperated with Poland's secret police while that country was under communist rule.

Stanislaw Wielgus had originally insisted his contracts with Poland's feared security service were routine. But Friday he admitted to deeper involvement after media reports suggested he had informed on fellow clerics for decades. Today the head priest of Krakow's prestigious Wawel Cathedral resigned amid similar allegations.

The scandal has exposed deep divisions in Poland's catholic church — which was instrumental in the successful revolt against communism in the 1980's.

High Life

The president of one of Africa's poorest countries spent $400,000 on hotel bills in two short visits to New York last year.

The London Sunday Times says Denis Sassou-Nguesso of the Republic of Congo — also known as Congo-Brazzaville — stayed twice at the Waldorf-Astoria. On one visit his entourage occupied 44 rooms and ran up a bill of $252,000 — some of it spent on high-priced champagne and other expensive beverages.

More than 70 percent of the country's three million people live off less than two dollars per day — despite oil revenues of $2.5 billion in 2006. And last year the country was given a large debt relief package by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund — because it said it was too poor to meet its financial commitments.

—FOX News Channel's Martin Hill contributed to this report.