June 29th, 2010
08:13 AM ET

Tuesday's intriguing people

Sen. Daniel Inouye

The 85-year-old Democrat from Hawaii is about to become the highest-ranking Asian-American in U.S. history.  Inouye, who is Nisei - a second generation Japanese-American - will become the president pro tempore of the Senate, replacing Sen. Robert Byrd,  who died early Monday after nearly 52 years in the Senate.

Politico reports that the position puts Inouye, now also the most senior member of the Senate, in the presidential line of succession behind Vice President Joe Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-California.

On June 11, Inouye became the second longest-serving senator in U.S. history - 47 years - beating the record held by the late Sen. Strom Thurmond. When he surpassed Thurmond's record, the highly decorated World War II veteran was honored on the Senate floor by his peers.

"This is a very special day for me and my family and friends who helped make it possible. When I took the oath of office in 1963, I pledged to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States. I spend every day trying to live up to that oath," Inouye said.

Politico: Daniel Inouye now in line of presidential succession

Inouye's Senate website

Oleg D. Kalugin

Ten people were arrested Monday on charges of being Russian agents involved in a long-term mission in the country.

The suspects - caught in New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts and Virginia - were "trained Russian intelligence operatives," a Justice Department spokesman said, and information from court documents alleged they were part of a mission to plant "deep-cover" agents in the United States.

Police in Cyprus arrested an 11th suspect Tuesday.

The Justice Department said they were supposed to recruit intelligence agents but were not directly involved in obtaining U.S. secrets.

"The magnitude, and the fact that so many illegals were involved, was a shock to me," Kalugin told The New York Times.

Kalugin is a former KGB general who spied in the United States in the 1960s and 1970s. His cover was as a diplomat and Radio Moscow correspondent, according to the newspaper.

"It's a return to the old days, but even in the worst years of the cold war, I think there were no more than 10 illegals in the U.S., probably fewer," said Kalugin, now an American citizen.

He also remarked that he was impressed by the FBI's use of secret microphones and searches to bring down the Russian agents.

CNN: Feds arrest 10 accused of being Russian agents

The New York Times: In ordinary lives, U.S. sees the work of Russian agents

Melissa Rosenberg

You'd have to have spent the last five years hanging upside down in a cave not to know that the brain cells of millions of readers and moviegoers are hopelessly devoted to the fictional activities of three remarkably moody, yet feverishly romantic high school students: the reserved, but stunning Bella; Edward, the centenarian vampire who loves her; and Jacob, Bella's friend who happens to be the shape-shifting werewolf type.

Rosenberg adapted the hugely successful novels by Stephenie Meyer into two blockbuster movies, "Twilight" in 2008 and "New Moon" a year later. The third installment, "Eclipse," also written by Rosenberg, is scheduled to open in theaters at midnight Tuesday.

No stranger to the world of self-absorbed characters, Rosenberg - born in Marin County, California, in 1962 - was co-executive producer and a writer of such hit TV series as "Dexter" and "The O.C." She told the ScreenStar website that the popularity of the "Twilight" series begins with Meyer's imagination.

"Stephenie created this whole world and we'd have none of it without her," Rosenberg said. "I think a screenplay is definitely more than an interpretation. It's an expansion. There's a lot of invention that happens. It's painting versus sculpting. You work on the same subject and yet there will be two very different pieces of art. So I personally feel that you'd have no movies without screenplays."

ScreenStar: Interview with Melissa Rosenberg

Official website of Stephenie Meyer

CNN video: Fans celebrate 'Eclipse'

Jim Keady

The 38-year-old activist and former professional goalie says the international soccer competition taking place in South Africa is getting just the kind of attention he needs.

"Right now, the eyes of the world are on the World Cup," he said. "Now is the time to get out my message."

Keady's message? That if Nike raised the price of its athletic shoes by $2.50 a pair and gave that money to the workers who made them, it would help lift most of those people out of poverty.

The Los Angeles Times caught up with Keady in Indonesia, where he was meeting with workers who stitch together the Nike Jerseys worn by nine of the teams at the FIFA games.

The newspaper reports that Keady began his workers' rights campaign in 1997 when he was coaching soccer at St. John's University in New York. As a follower of Catholic social teaching, he questioned the university's negotiations with Nike for a $3.5 million endorsement deal.

"I was told to drop the issue or get out," he told the paper. "So I resigned in protest."

To learn for himself about the lives of Nike's factory workers, he went to Indonesia to live with them - and to try to subsist on the wages that workers were paid - which was $1.25 a day, according to the paper.

Keady returned many times for nearly a decade and founded Team Sweat, a nonprofit group that monitors Nike's business practices.

Los Angeles Times: As world watches soccer's Cup, Nike critic sees red

Team Sweat website

Lance Armstrong

The record-holder in the cycling world says this year's Tour de France will be his last, according to his official Twitter site.

"And yes, this will be final Tour de France. It's been a great ride. Looking forward to 3 great weeks," the post says.

In May, Armstrong denied allegations by former teammate Floyd Landis that he used performance-enhancing drugs. Also last month, Armstrong was taken to a hospital after crashing in the Tour of California race.

Born in Plano, Texas, in September 1971, Armstrong won seven Tour de France titles between 1999 and 2005. He also beat advanced testicular cancer after it had spread to his lungs and brain.

Armstrong's website

soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. Dave

    An American winning 7 will never be accepted by the French, impossilbe they say and brood over.

    June 29, 2010 at 10:57 am | Report abuse |
  2. Chris

    Who cares if the French accept it? The French have shown over the years how poor at sports and how poor of sports they really are. The world cup put the final send off stamp on France's athletic credibility and mailed it off, hopefully never to be seen from again...they can always fall back on chocolate croissants though, mmm tasty.

    June 29, 2010 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
  3. observer

    What blows my mind is that Lance MUST have beaten MANY riders who WERE using performance enhancing drugs! That is, if Lance was NOT using them, that IS truly amazing.
    I haven't really heard anyone mention this before. Interesting to think about.

    June 29, 2010 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
  4. Dan

    Well, I think almost everyone in the cycling world knows that Lance WAS using various PEDs throughout his career.

    June 29, 2010 at 11:23 am | Report abuse |
  5. fred

    look at pictures of Lance pre and post cancer, he went from 180 to 150lbs or so, losing that 30lbs of upper body muscle (muscle gained from triathlons lost as a result of his cancer) is the difference, he looks completely different after cancer and is what gave him the edge against everyone IMO (30lbs less to carry up the mountains!)

    Landis is a tool, LIVESTRONG!

    June 29, 2010 at 11:25 am | Report abuse |