- -05-06-10 Violence Continues in Greece (MSNBC News)
Tensions remain high. 05-10
- -0001 Who Is Igniting Outrage? (Time.com)
"The violence looked spontaneous; it was anything but. Instead it was the product of a sequence of provocations, some mysterious, some obvious. It seemed to start in the U.S., then became magnified in Egypt and was brought to a deadly and sorrowful climax in Libya—all on the 11th anniversary of 9/11. The cast of characters in this tragedy included a shadowy filmmaker, a sinister pastor in Florida, an Egyptian-American Islamophobe, an Egyptian TV host, politically powerful Islamist extremist groups and, just possibly, an al-Qaeda affiliate in Libya. The instigators and executors didn’t work in concert; they probably didn’t even know they were in cahoots. Indeed, some of them would sooner die than knowingly help the others’ causes." 09-12
- -001 Antiviral Drugs for Influenza (Flu) (CDC.gov)
"Although yearly vaccination with the flu vaccine is the best way to prevent the flu, antiviral drugs can be effective for prevention and treatment of the flu." 04-09
- -001 Flu Vaccinations (CDC.gov)
"The single best way to protect against the flu is to get vaccinated each year."
Editor's Note: As of April 27th, a vaccine for "swine flu" had not been made available. 04-09
- -001 One-Stop Access to Pandemic Flu Information (PandemicFlu.gov)
"The CDC is actively investigating isolated human cases of swine influenza A (H1N1) in several states (CA, TX, OH, KS, NY) and is working closely with Canada and Mexico and with the WHO. The CDC is continuously updating investigation information." 04-09
- -001 Osama Bin Laden Is Dead (MSNBC News)
"Al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden is dead and the U.S. has his body, says a person familiar with developments."
"CNN reported that the al-Qaida leader was killed in a mansion outside Islamabad, the Pakistani capital." 04-11
- -001 President Obama Nominates Dr. Jim Yong Kim to Lead World Bank (Time.com)
"President’s Obama’s surprise choice to lead the World Bank, Dartmouth President Dr. Jim Yong Kim, is a widely respected figure with decades of experience working to tackle some of the world’s most intractable problems in public health. Obama’s nomination of Kim, who would be the first doctor to lead the World Bank, underscores the critical link between global medicine and economic development." 03-12
- -001 Swine Flu Update Worldwide (World Health Organization)
"Human cases of swine influenza A (H1N1) virus infection have been identified in the United States. Human cases of swine influenza A (H1N1) virus infection also have been identified internationally. The current U.S. case count is provided below." 04-09
- -001 Top U.S. Expert: Japanese Radiation "Extremely High" and Crisis Worsening (New York Times)
"Mr. Jaczko’s most startling assertion was that there was now little or no water in the pool storing spent nuclear fuel at the No. 4 reactor of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station, leaving fuel rods stored there exposed and bleeding radiation into the atmosphere."
"As a result, he said, 'We believe that radiation levels are extremely high, which could possibly impact the ability to take corrective measures.' "
Gregory Jaczko is the the Chairman of the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission." 03-11
- -01-02-10 Corn Biofuel Causes Food Prices to Rise (ABC News)
"Food prices worldwide have risen dramatically in the past few years, due in part to a similarly dramatic rise in the amount of corn used for ethanol production in the United States. Now, in an effort to make food less expensive, experts are calling for limits on ethanol production, subsidies for corn, and more incentives for biofuels made from nonfood sources."
"From 2001 to 2006, the price of food increased each year by an average of only 2.5 percent. According to the World Bank, the situation worldwide is more dire: food prices have nearly doubled over the past three years. That's erased a decade of economic gains for the poor in some countries." 01-10
- -01-12-12 China Grumbles over U.S. Concern over Self-Immolations (Time.com)
"The Chinese Foreign Ministry has some advice for its U.S. counterpart: Stop meddling in Tibetan affairs. Earlier this week, a U.S. State Department spokesperson expressed “serious concern” over a series of self-immolations in Tibetan regions that have claimed at least 11 lives since March 2011." 01-12
- -01-21-09 Last Israeli Troops Leave Gaza (Time.com)
"The last Israeli troops left the Gaza Strip before dawn Wednesday, the military said, as Israel dispatched its foreign minister to Europe in a bid to rally international support to end arms smuggling into the Hamas-ruled territory." 01-09
- -011-01-09 U.N. Needs $39 Billion to Combat Top Killer of Children (Time.com)
"To fight pneumonia, the world's top killer of children, United Nations officials say they need $39 billion over the next six years." 10-09
- -02-01-12 Editorial: The Global Crisis of Stunting (Time.com)
"Stunting, or stunted growth, is the result of chronic nutritional deficiencies. A stunted 5-year-old is four to six inches shorter than a non-stunted peer. But lost height is the least of concerns: a stunted child, for instance, is nearly five times more likely to die from diarrhea than a non-stunted child because of the physiological changes in a stunted body. Stunting is also associated with impaired brain development. A typical stunted brain has fewer cells. The cells themselves are somewhat smaller, and the interconnection between them is more limited. This means lasting impaired functioning, which leads in turn to significantly reduced learning. Considering the severe effects, stunting has received far too little attention for far too long."
"Stunting is so common in some areas that it is sometimes mistaken for a genetic heritage, rather than a preventable condition. Just 21 countries straddling the globe account for more than 80% of the problem around the globe. In six countries — Afghanistan, Burundi, Ethiopia, Madagascar, Timor-Leste and Yemen — 50% or more of all children under age 5 suffer from this condition. In Afghanistan, a staggering 59% of children under age 5 are stunted."
"How can a community, a nation or a continent ever hope to develop to its full capacity if its children cannot? In all conscience, how can those of us in societies not so afflicted withhold our help to combat stunting in the developing world? We know how to address the problem by providing expectant mothers, newborns and very young children nutrients such as proteins, fat and vitamins and minerals such as vitamin A, iron and zinc." 02-12
- -02-01-12 Syrian Soldier Defects and Tells His Story (New York Times)
"Ammar Cheikh Omar recalled the first time he was ordered to shoot into a crowd of protesters in Syria. He aimed his AK-47 just above their heads, prayed to God not to make him a killer and pulled the trigger." 02-12
- -02-02-12 Facebook Goes Public (New York Times)
"The social network company announced its $5 billion public offering Wednesday afternoon, which is expected to value the whole company at $75 billion to $100 billion. Ultimately, that offering will mint a lot of billionaires and millionaires." 02-12
- -02-02-12 Insurance Companies Required to Disclose Climate-Change Response Plans (New York Times)
"Insurance commissioners in California, New York and Washington State will require that companies disclose how they intend to respond to the risks their businesses and customers face from increasingly severe storms and wildfires, rising sea levels and other consequences of climate change, California’s commissioner said Wednesday."
"Last year’s level of natural disasters was unprecedented, according to an August report by the A. M. Best Company, which rates the financial strength of insurers. By late June, the estimated $27 billion in losses suffered by the American industry exceeded the 2010 total." 02-12
- -02-11-12 Saudi King Criticizes Syrian Vetoes (New York Times)
"The king of Saudi Arabia inserted himself directly into the Syria crisis on Friday, castigating Russia and China for vetoing a United Nations Security Council resolution over the weekend aimed at ending the Syrian government’s deadly repression of a nearly year-old uprising." 02-12
- -03-13-09 Study: 42.5 Percent of Children in India Underweight (New York Times)
"Small, sick, listless children have long been India’s scourge — 'a national shame,' in the words of its prime minister, Manmohan Singh. But even after a decade of galloping economic growth, child malnutrition rates are worse here than in many sub-Saharan African countries, and they stand out as a paradox in a proud democracy."
"China, that other Asian economic powerhouse, sharply reduced child malnutrition, and now just 7 percent of its children under 5 are underweight, a critical gauge of malnutrition. In India, by contrast, despite robust growth and good government intentions, the comparable number is 42.5 percent. Malnutrition makes children more prone to illness and stunts physical and intellectual growth for a lifetime." 03-09
- -03-14-11 Mechanics of a Partial Meltdown (New York Times)
"The difference between a partial meltdown and a full meltdown at a nuclear plant is enormous, both in the degree of damage and in the potential release of radiation, experts in nuclear power said."
"If a full meltdown were to occur at one of the Japanese reactors — meaning operators were unable to keep pumping water and the core became completely uncovered — molten fuel would soon pool on the floor of the pressure vessel. 'The worst case is that the molten mass leaves the vessel and creates a steam explosion,' Mr. Gunderson said. 'That would destroy the containment.' " Arnold Gunderson is "a former nuclear engineer who worked on reactors of the same design as those in Japan." 03-11
- -03-15-11 President Obama Moves Forward With New Nuclear Plants (CBS News)
"The Obama administration on Tuesday insisted that nuclear power plants in the United States are safe even as they kept an eye on the unfolding nuclear crisis in Japan."
"The two plants that have perhaps attracted the most attention for potential earthquake risks are in California: The Diablo Canyon and San Onofre plants, both of which are near Los Angeles - and both of which were built on what were later found to be earthquake fault lines. Pacific Gas and Electric, which owns Diablo Canyon, says the plant is built to withstand a 7.5 magnitude earthquake."
"Daniel Hirsch, a lecturer in Nuclear Policy at the University of California Santa Cruz, noted that both plants had to be retrofitted after the faults were discovered after they had been built. He said a significant quake in the area could have devastating results." 03-11
- -03-15-12 Bo Xilai Is Removed from Chinese Post (Time.com)
"Bo Xilai, the high-profile Chinese official who was once seen as a favorite for elevation to the top echelon of Chinese political power, has been removed from his office as Communist Party secretary of the southwestern megacity of Chongqing, the official Xinhua news agency announced. Bo’s axing comes one day after he was publicly criticized by Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao. Bo’s rise was derailed last month when a key deputy, former police chief and Chongqing vice mayor Wang Lijun, made a surprise visit to a U.S. consulate.” 03-12
- -04-04-12 Diagnosis of Autism Through Mutant Genes (New York Times)
"Teams of scientists working independently to understand the biology of autism have for the first time homed in on several gene mutations that they agree sharply increase the chances that a child will develop the disorder, and have found further evidence that the risk increases with the age of the parents, particularly in fathers over age 35."
"There are probably hundreds, perhaps more than a thousand, gene variations that could disrupt brain development enough to result in social delays. An intensified search for rare mutations could turn up enough of these to account for 15 percent to 20 percent of all autism cases, some experts say, and allow researchers a chance to see patterns and some possible mechanisms to explain what goes awry."
"In one of the new studies, Dr. Matthew W. State, a professor of genetics and child psychiatry at Yale led a team that looked for de novo mutations in 200 people who had been given an autism diagnosis, as well as in parents and siblings who showed no signs of the disorder. The team found that two unrelated children with autism in the study had de novo mutations in the same gene — and nothing similar in those without a diagnosis.
“ 'That is like throwing a dart at a dart board with 21,000 spots and hitting the same once [sic] twice,' Dr. State said. 'The chances that this gene is related to autism risk is something like 99.9999 percent.' " 04-12
- -04-10-12 China Is Headed for Change (New York Times)
"The dust hasn’t settled on the dramatic Bo Xilai affair in China."
"But the Bo affair is, essentially, a sideshow, a distraction from the essential challenges facing China under its changing leadership. Nobody can deny the country’s huge material achievements, and individuals live far better and freer lives than they did under the Great Helmsman. But the economic model is out of date."
"China is gripped by a major environmental crisis and an acute water shortage is building up in the north of the country. Beijing lacks a coherent foreign policy. Corruption is rife. Regulation and safety standards are weak. There is a broad lack of trust in institutions. The falling birth rate and increasing longevity mean that the demographics will shift during this decade so that the People’s Republic may become old before it gets rich."
"There is broad acceptance of the need to rebalance the economy’s excessive dependence on investment in infrastructure and real estate plus exports, moving it toward domestic consumption." 04-12
- -04-26-12 Masses Sing to Annoy Mass Killer (CNN News)
"Norwegians raised their voices in unison on Thursday to get under the skin of admitted mass killer Anders Behring Breivik."
"An estimated 40,000 people turned out in central Oslo's Youngstorget square to sing 'Children of the Rainbow,' a Norwegian version of 'My Rainbow Race,' written by American folk singer Pete Seeger." 04-12
- -05-06-12 Hollande Defeats Sarkozy in French Elections (CBS News)
"Socialist François Hollande defeated conservative incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy on Sunday to become France's next president, heralding a change in how Europe tackles its debt crisis and how France flexes its military and diplomatic muscle around the world." 05-12
- -05-07-12 Teen Gets 200 MPG in Car (KCTV)
"It doesn't really look like there's a lot to his 1994 Geo Metro. But, when he bought it, he pulled out the gas engine and replaced it with an electric forklift engine he bought on eBay." 05-12
- -05-18-12 WHO Report: One Third of World Has Hepatitis (CBS News)
"Hepatitis takes a huge toll on health. More than two billion people - roughly one-third of the entire world population - is infected with one of the viruses that causes the potentially deadly liver disease, according to a new estimate from the World Health Organization."
"Tragically, most people infected with one of the viruses that cause hepatitis don't know they're infected. That increases the risk that they will unwittingly transmit the virus to other people.” 05-12
- -05-24-12 Tens of Thousands of Elephants Likely Killed (MSNBC News)
"Providing the grimmest count yet on Africa's wildlife crisis, the global body tracking endangered species reported Thursday that tens of thousands of elephants likely were slaughtered last year by poachers after their tusks. Rhinos, while fewer in number, also saw mass slaughter as poachers went after their horns." 05-12
- -05-29-12 US and Other Nations Expel Syrian Diplomats (MSNBC News)
"The United States and a string of other nations expelled Syrian diplomats Tuesday, in response to a United Nations announcement that most of the 108 victims of the Houla violence had been executed."
"Images of bloodied, young bodies laid out in a shallow grave after Friday's onslaught triggered shock around the world and underlined the failure of a six-week-old U.N. cease-fire plan to stop the violence."
"Most of the victims were shot at close range. 'At this point it looks like entire families were shot in their houses,' Colville was quoted as saying by The Telegraph."
"U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton demanded that those who carried out the killings be held to account.'The United States will work with the international community to intensify our pressure on Assad and his cronies, whose rule by murder and fear must come to an end,' she said." 05-12
- -06-11-12 Spain Agrees To Be Assisted (Time.com)
"Knowing how bailouts doomed the governments of other countries, Spain insists it has accepted a massive 'loan' to recapitalize its banks. Others, however, are calling it as they see it." 06-12
- -06-12-12 Spain No Longer in Denial? (PBS.org)
"As Spain secured up to $125 billion from the eurozone to bolster its ailing banks, early optimism was overshadowed by worries that the amount might not be enough."
"All of this stems from the collapse of the real estate bubble in Spain and the banks holding the bag, in essence."
"And the bust breaks the back of the banks. There needs to be a bailout. Unfortunately, the Spanish government has been in denial about the true state of its banks for pretty much since the crisis began. But you could say that finally they have run out of options. So what happened over the weekend was really the end of denial." 06-12
- -06-20-12 Scoreboard for Saving the Environment (Time.com)
Recommends what should be done globally, but won't be done:
"CONFER tangible value to species in biologically diverse regions by requiring payment of royalties for the use of their genetic materials."
"FIND a way to put the brakes on the world's spiraling population, which will otherwise double by the year 2050."
"PUT an international tax on emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases."
"PUT strict limits on the trade of timber from the earth's remaining virgin forests."
"SET up a recycling plan in every major city in the world."
"GIVE the United Nations broad powers to create an environmental police force for the planet." 06-12
- -06-24-12 Muslim Brotherhood Candidate Wins Egypt's Presidency (CBS News)
"Mohammed Morsi was declared Egypt's first Islamist president on Sunday after the freest elections in the country's history, narrowly defeating Hosni Mubarak's last Prime Minister Ahmed Shafiq in a race that raised political tensions in Egypt to a fever pitch." 06-12
- -07-06-12 New President of Egypt Orders Parliament to Convene (MSNBC News)
"The military had been running Egypt since Hosni Mubarak was ousted last year. But, shortly before the handover to the elected president, the army put some curbs on the presidency and gave itself legislative powers."
"After a little more than a week in office, Morsi's move highlights the power struggle likely to define his term, pitting long repressed Islamists against generals used to calling the shots and an establishment full of Mubarak-era officials." 07-12
- -07-11-12 Melinda Gates Launches Global Effort for Contraception (Time.com)
"Decades of research shows, conclusively, that improving access to contraception is good for women, good for children, good for countries. Yet over the last 15 years, support for family planning programs has plummeted. The redirection of development funds to HIV/AIDS programs explains some, but not all, of the drop. Coercive campaigns like China’s one-child policy and forced sterilizations in India have fostered suspicion about state-backed population programs. Conservative religious groups, particularly in the United States, have tried to link family planning to forced abortion. In 2002, President George W. Bush cut funding to the United Nations Population Fund completely, turning birth control into a bad word. The cause has yet to recover. Support from Gates, a Catholic who enjoys support from conservatives and liberals alike, could turn this around." 07-12
- -07-18-12 Blast Against Assad in Syria Changes the Situation (Time.com)
"Once he has ordered his security forces to exact a bloody revenge for the assassination of four key members of his inner circle in a spectacular bomb attack on the Syrian regime’s counterrevolutionary nerve center on Wednesday, President Bashar Assad will face the challenge of replacing those slain comrades."
"But by killing four of the key figures in security structure (curiously enough, they included two Alawites, a Christian and a Sunni) that has overseen the 18-month crackdown on the uprising that has claimed 16,000 lives, the rebels have struck a devastating blow at a critical moment — and challenged the regime’s coherence." 07-12
- -07-18-12 Kim Jong Un Takes Over in North Korea (Time.com)
"Many analysts have openly questioned whether Kim Jong Un was anything but a front man in North Korea. Shortly after assuming power, a senior U.S. official told TIME that the military would effectively run and control North Korea, given Kim Jong Un’s utter inexperience. His father had practiced 'military first' politics in the North, in order to keep the generals happy, and there was virtually no one who thought Kim Jong Un would do anything other than what he was told by the generals. Now, in the span of two days, the country’s senior military figure — Ri — is out, and Kim Jong Un is the titular head of the military, as well as the ruling party. Cheong Seong-chang, senior fellow at Seoul’s Sejong Institute, viewed the Ri sacking as a clear collision between the military and the ruling party. The KWP has plainly won and so too, apparently, has young Kim Jong Un." 07-12
- -07-31-12 Chinese Men's Gymnastic Team Wins Gold (Time.com)
"For the Chinese, the night simply underscored what they already knew. “ 'We are the best in the world,' says Li Xiaopeng, a double gold medalist in both Beijing and Sydney, who has since retired and was covering Monday’s competition for state broadcaster CCTV." 07-12
- -07-31-12 India: 620 Million in the Dark (Time.com)
"India‘s energy crisis cascaded over half the country Tuesday when three of its regional grids collapsed, leaving 620 million people without government-supplied electricity for several hours in, by far, the world’s biggest blackout." 07-12
- -08-13-12 Editorial: Is Israel Growing Closer to War With Iraq? (Time.com)
"Clearly, someone wants Israelis and the world to think Israel is moving closer to launching a fateful attack on Iran. Whether such a scenario has really become more likely than it was two weeks or two months ago, or the agenda is part of some game of bluff designed to change either Iranian or Western behavior, there’s a growing danger that the Israeli public’s expectations of war are being raised to a critical point. After all, as many in the security establishment have long warned, you can’t keep telling Israelis that there’s a grave and gathering danger of annihilation looming on the horizon without creating overwhelming pressure to act." 08-12
- -09-25-07 Candidate Match Game (USA Today)
"Polls suggest Americans are concerned primarily with a few key issues in the 2008 presidential election. USA TODAY researched candidate positions on those top issues — Iraq, immigration and health care — as well as a few others that may influence the election. We then came up with 11 multiple-choice questions that would help differentiate the candidates and their stances." 09-07
- -11-29-12 U.N. Recognizes Statehood for Palestine (CBS News)
"The United Nations voted overwhelmingly Thursday to recognize a Palestinian state, a long-sought victory for the Palestinians but an embarrassing diplomatic defeat for the United States."
"The resolution upgrading the Palestinians' status to a nonmember observer state at the United Nations was approved by a more than two-thirds majority of the 193-member world body -- a vote of 138-9, with 41 abstentions." 11-12
- -12-08-12 Egyptian President Gives Up Sweeping Powers (USA Today)
"A national dialogue committee said a referendum on a disputed draft constitution will be held on schedule, but President Mohammed Morsi has agreed to rescind the near-absolute power he had granted himself." 12-12
- -12-12-12 North Korea Launches a Long-Range Rocket (CBS News)
"South Korean and Japanese officials confirmed that liftoff took place Wednesday morning. Each nation had been urging North Korea to refrain from a launch widely seen as a cover for a test of banned ballistic missile technology."
"The White House condemned the launch calling it 'a highly provocative act,' that was both a threat to regional security and a violation of U.N. resolutions." 12-12
- -12-19-12 Malala Yousafzai Advocates Education for Girls (Time.com)
"She has become perhaps the world’s most admired children’s-rights advocate, all the more powerful for being a child herself. Her primary cause — securing Pakistani girls’ access to education — has served to highlight broader concerns: the health and safety of the developing world’s children, women’s rights and the fight against extremism. Former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, who is now the U.N.’s special envoy for global education, declared Nov. 10 Malala Day in honor of her and the more than 50 million girls around the world who are not at school. Nearly half a million people have signed petitions on Change.org to nominate her for the Nobel Peace Prize. That is not how the Taliban intended things to turn out." 12-12