The Best and The Worst of the British Press

The fundamentalist Islamic militia that rules Afghanistan is lightening up this summer by opening the country's first swimming pool in 10 years, The Guardian reports.

The pool is located on the grounds of the Intercontinental Hotel in Kabul — but only half the population will be allowed to enjoy it.

The Taliban bans women from holding public positions, receiving higher education and taking most jobs, and requires them to cover themselves head-to-toe when in public. So it's no surprise they will not be allowed to swim in the pool.

The hotel convinced the hard-line rulers to open the pool with a view to attracting tourists. It's a rather ambitious plan, given many tourist attractions have been desecrated on the orders of the Taliban or been destroyed by years of fighting.

Kidman Takes a Shot

Nicole Kidman is set to take the starring role in a film about American photographer Lee Miller, The Independent reports.

The script was written by Sir David Hare, a friend of Kidman. She appeared naked on stage in the London and New York productions of his steamy play The Blue Room.

According to Hare: "When we were doing The Blue Room, we were discussing people we both admired and we hit upon a happy chance that we both adored Lee Miller very much. Nicole has been collecting her photographs for some time."

Miller, both model and photographer, is renowned for her affair with Pablo Picasso and as the lover and muse of legendary surrealist artist Man Ray.

Kidman, currently embroiled in a highly publicized divorce from Tom Cruise, can currently be seen in Moulin Rouge.

And The Times reports that children placed in quality day care at a young age excel in later life.

reports. Contrary to popular belief, day-care children perform better in school, have more friends and are more creative, according to a new research report called "Quality Matters."