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Anti-nuke Xena keeps her status

Posted 02/10/99

Waikato Times (Hamilton)
Page 2
2 graphics: "LUCY LAWLESS: no nukes. MADELEINE ALBRIGHT: inspired."


The argument over whether Xena is a hawk or a dove still continues, as it was reported that NZ Prime minister Jenny Shipley discussed Xena with USA Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.


   Actress Lucy Lawless may be a peacenik but her alter ego, Xena, Warrior
Princess, is still the heroine of US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.

   On a visit to New Zealand last year, Mrs Albright said she felt at home
because Xena was her role model.  

   Mrs Albright was asked whether, if Xena was anti-nuclear, that might help
change Mrs Albright's attitude to New Zealand on defence matters.

   Mrs Albright replied: "I'm sure she isn't, it isn't her style."

   But Lawless subsequently said she certainly held anti-nuclear views.

   In Washington yesterday Prime Minister Jenny Shipley held talks with Mrs
Albright and, among discussions on Iraq, defence, Apec and financial crises,
there was still time for an update on Xena.

   Mrs Albright apparently refuses to believe any character so gutsy could
possibly also be a dove, but Xena remains a source of inspiration.

   "She told us that when she feels frustrated she uses the Xena symbol and
says, 'now look, this is important and anything is possible'," Mrs Shipley said.

   "What else could a country want than the Secretary of State of the US, when
she gets in a spot, in a very generous sort of way uses a New Zealand television
programme and actress?"

If you are curious to what else they talked about, here it is:

Waikato Times (Hamilton)
January 16, 1999
Pg. 1

PM clinches brief talks with Clinton

   Prime Minister Jenny Shipley had a 15-minute meeting with US President Bill
Clinton today, just hours before she was due to leave Washington to return home.

   Clinton's wife Hillary was not at the meeting at the State Department but had
sent her regrets, a spokesman for Mrs Shipley said.

   The meeting was just a few blocks away from where Clinton's Senate trial was
about to resume for the day.  

   Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, who is understood to have been
instrumental in finally nailing down the meeting that officials had been unable
to secure, also attended.

   After the meeting Mrs Shipley said only that it was "a very, very good

   A US spokesman said Clinton had thanked Mrs Shipley and New Zealand for
supporting the US policy on Iraq. He had also commended New Zealand on its
commitment to free trade and privatisation.

   The spokesman also said Clinton had thanked New Zealand for the decision to
lease 28 F-16 fighter planes.

   No reporters or television cameras were allowed near the meeting, which was
held in a State Department room next to an auditorium where Clinton had just
finished delivering a speech to the Global Forum on Reinventing Government.

   It was the same conference that brought Mrs Shipley to Washington after
Vice-President Al Gore invited her to be a main speaker, concentrating on New
Zealand's experiences in making government smaller and more efficient or "leaner
but not meaner", as Mr Gore put it.

   In his speech to the conference, Clinton was witty, relaxed and focused on
his topic even though Republican prosecutors at his trial continued to argue he
should be sacked.

   Today they continued to push for testimony from witnesses and for the first
time a prosecutor called on the Senate to include Clinton on the witness list.
"Let's examine Monica Lewinsky, Vernon Jordan, Betty Currie and the other key
witnesses," Republican Representative Bill McCollum of Florida told the Senate.
"Invite the president to come, judge for yourself their credibility."

   The issue of witnesses has polarised the Senate, with Democrats arguing the
mountain of evidence passed on from the House should serve as the official
record in the first presidential impeachment trial since President Andrew
Johnson escaped conviction by one vote in 1868.

   Meanwhile, Mrs Shipley insisted to reporters that a meeting with Clinton was
not essential to the success of her US trip, and she was plainly wearied by
media focus on the point.

   Mrs Shipley and her party are due to arrive back in New Zealand tomorrow.

   SEE Xena keeps her status, page 2



   LEADERS TOGETHER: Prime Minister Jenny Shipley and US President Bill Clinton
today. PICTURE: Reuter

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