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September 09, 1977 - Image 9

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1977-09-09

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The Michigan Daily-Friday, September 9, 1977-Page 9

Ami reported in a coma

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP - Idi Amin,
self-proclaimed president-for-life of
Uganda, was reported "in a coma" in a
Kampala hospital yesterday after un-
dergoing surgery for an undisclosed ail-
"We believe he'll pull out of it," said
Robert Astles,,British-born confidant to
the 51-year-old military strong man.
But atother aide said later: "The presi-
dent is in so-t of a coma. It is serious."
ASTLES RUSHED to the former box-
ing champion's bedside after learning
that something was amiss following the
operation by a Soviet physician in Mu-
gala Hospital where Amin, in power
since 1971, has received medical treat-
ment before.
"We don't exactly know what's
wrong. But he's in a coma," Astles said

in a telephone interview with The
Associated Press from Kampala.
"We believe he'll pull out of it. I'm
going over to the hospital right now to
see what's happening."
Astles, a white Ugandan citizen who
is married to the country's black min-
ister of culture, said he did not know
why Amin needed surgery. Nor could
he say whether the comatose state was
a normal after-effect of anesthesia, or
whether it was induced by postopera-
tive complications.
radio announced that Amin had un-
dergone surgery Wednesday by Dr.
Feodor Senkof. Reports received in
Washington listed the name as Petrov

Soviets find vodka
an me adon's mix

MOSCOW (UPI - Liquor, cramped
living quarters and ignorance are tak-
ing their toll on marriage in the Soviet
union. Especially liquor.
A doctor of history said this week 33
per cent of all marriages in the work-
er's paradise end in divorce. He argued
it's time to do something about it.
DR. IGOR Bestuzhev-Lada, a specil-
ist in historical science, has traced the
history of Soviet marriages. Writing in
the magazine Nedelya, he lamented the
disappearance of large families and
said drinking is the No. one cause of di-
vorce in thle Soviet Union.
Soviet authorities previously have
blamed alcoholism for causing more
than half of the suicides, accidental
deaths and crimes in the country. They
view it as a major sociological problem
and have mounted a string of cam-
paigns -aimed at labeling excessive
drinking a health hazard.
THE DRINKING problem has been
blamed on "growing prosperity"
among Soviet workers. Sociologists say
the masses are not equipped to handle
their new life style, which is affluent in
contrast to standards of the Stalin re-
Western researchers are skeptical of
that explanation, however. They
believe drunkenness has more
traditional causes - poverty, depres-
sion and the problems coping with
life in a total grit w

Nedelya, where Bestuzhev-Lada
penned his appeal, is a weekly men's
magazine. Rarely an issue passes that
doesn't include a lecture, story or study
on the problems of drinking and divor-
IN AN ARTICLE titled "From
Nuisance to Divorce," the Soviet histor-
ian said women are far less willing to
put up with the beatings and aggrava-
tion of a drunken husband than they
used to be.
-"For ages, a woman had to accept it
quietly when her husband came home
drunk," he said. "Sometimes she has to
accept it now. But more often, she says
The bright side of the statistics, the
historian said, shows Soviet women
know their legal rights and are no
longer afraid to use them against
drunken or abusive husbands.
BESTUZHEV-LADA said "cultural
everyday problems" are the second
greatest cause of divorce - the difficul-
ty of finding a good apartment or facing
the prospect of living with parents in
cramped quarters.
Another factor, he said, is "ignoran-
ce, misunderstanding or the inability of
couples to construct relationships with
one another."
One of the offshoots of his studies, the
researcher said, was the discovery that
fewer and fewer Soviet couples are will-
ing to have children.

The broadcast said Amin expressed
full confidence in the Soviet doctor
before entering the hospital, praising
him for stopping an epidemic recently
at a girl's school in Namagunga.
The announcement said Amin was
accompanied to the hospital Wed-
nesday by Soviet Ambassador
Yevegniy Musiyko. Reports from
Washington said the two men discussed
expanding medical cooperation bet-
ween Uganda and the U.S.S.R. before
amin went into surgery.
IN OCTOBER 1972, the 240-pound, 6-
foot-4 field marshal was admitted to
Mulggo Hospital for what Uganda radio
described as a "complete rest." He re-
portedly was sick with throat trouble.
Visitors to Uganda who have met
with Amin in recent months say he ap-
peared to be in robust good health. But
two of Amin's former physicians claim
the president suffers from gout and
may have contacted :syphilis at one
Dr. John Kibukamusoke, who fled
Uganda four years ago because he said
he feared for his life, says he is convin-
ced that Amin is a victim of hypomania,
a mild form of the manic phase in the
manic-depressive psychosis.
AMIN REPORTEDLY has survived
at least 14 assassination attempts dur-
ing his administration. The latest oc-
curred in July when a group of army of-
ficers was said to have failed in an at-
tempt to blow up Amin's car.
Twelve Ugandans are scheduled to be
executed Friday for plotting to topple
Amin. Despite an appeal from Liberian
PresidentWilliam Topple to show mer-
cy, Amin said he was obliged to follow
the directives of his Military Defense
in a FREE outdoor
Friday, September 9th
11:30 a.m. to l p.m.
on the steps in front of the
Grad library
(in case of rain, Monday, Sept

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