Tattoo's debt to Moscow's generals
Vitaly Mironov, the irrepressible Scotophile impresario, who next month stages Kremlin Zoria, the first ever Edinburgh-style tattoo in Moscow Red Square explains: "Military bureaucracy and the short notice did not make it easy but we decided to do our best and explain to the generals in Moscow that the Tattoo are our friends. This is real life, we know how it is, we decided to do our best for them.
"Call it military solidarity, it's a great honour for us, that you trust us to help out by sending you the best band."
All the more appreciated given that relations between London and Moscow are, er, hardly at their cosiest right now.
THE punitive duty rates haven't allowed people in India access to the real stuff [whisky]. They've been buying fakes. When those barriers come down, imagine what's going to happen."
Paul Walsh, chief executive of Diageo.
FACT OF THE DAY $2.4bn
THE amount (1.7bn) spent on developing the Venetian Macao, the most ambitious and riskiest new gambling emporium ever built in Macau, the Chinese island that takes more gamblers money than even Las Vegas. Opening tomorrow, it was built by US billionaire Sheldon Adelson, chairman of Las Vegas Sands Corp.
THE former French finance minister who now looks all but certain to clinch the top job at the IMF after the close of nominations this week. Anti-poverty campaigners, who want a non-European candidate, are crying foul.
THE "big four", increasingly pilloried for their alleged exploitation of farmers and small suppliers, may have a to answer to a legally empowered watchdog, if a high-profile group of MPs and think tanks get their way in the creation of "Ofshop".