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1. Zimbabwe government attacks Pius Ncube, its chief critic
Roman Catholic Archbishop Pius Ncube has been heralded around the world for his brave opposition to Zimbabwe president Robert Mugabe. Last month, he made headlines for saying Britain would be justified in invading the country to oust Mugabe. "We should do it ourselves but there's too much fear. I'm ready to lead the people, guns blazing, but the people are not ready," he told the London Times.

In that same interview, Ncube noted that Mugabe had spent millions of dollars on surveillance equipment. "How can you expect people to rise up when even our church services are attended by state intelligence people?"

Now Mugabe is saying that some surveillance equipment caught Ncube in an extramarital affair. Government run newspapers this week published hidden camera photos purporting to show Ncube with a married woman. The woman's husband is reportedly suing the archbishop for Z$20 billion (about $82.7 million in the official exchange rate; but more like $180,000 on the actual black market rate).

Ncube so far isn't saying much in response. "I will not answer this question concerning my private life," he told the state-run television service. "Yes, I did take a vow. There are a whole lot of other circumstances that take place in a person's life. I would not be able to answer those items." He also said, "We all have weaknesses. That's why when we pray we ask God for forgiveness."

Sounds bad, but Ncube's attorney says the archbishop will deny the allegations in court, and The Times of London, at least, is skeptical. "The only photographs indisputably of Archbishop Ncube picture him alone. Others are blurred, and one — allegedly of him standing naked — ...

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Ted Olsen
Ted Olsen is Christianity Today's managing editor for news and online journalism. He wrote the magazine's Weblog—a collection of news and opinion articles from mainstream news sources around the world—from 1999 to 2006. In 2004, the magazine launched Weblog in Print, which looks for unexpected connections and trends in articles appearing in the mainstream press. The column was later renamed "Tidings" and ran until 2007.
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