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  • 2020 election polls: Donald Trump and Joe Biden's key battleground state polling numbers news

    These states could decide the outcome of the election

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 10:45:45 -0400
  • Teacher's elevator death blamed on human error news

    Officers found 38-year-old Carrie O'Connor in the elevator on September 14.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 06:27:27 -0400
  • First nest of Asian 'murder hornets' vacuumed out of tree in United States news

    Agricultural department workers wearing protective suits have eradicated the first nest of giant "murder hornets" discovered in the United States, vacuuming them out of a tree in Washington state. The nest of Asian giant hornets was found on Thursday by Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) entomologists on a property in Blaine, near the border with Canada, the agency said. They spent weeks searching for the nest, trapping hornets and tracking them, using dental floss to tie tiny radio trackers on the insects, which are nearly two inches (five centimeters) in length and have a painful sting. Before dawn on Saturday, a team of workers dressed from head to toe in protective suits vacuumed the insects out of their nest in the cavity of a dead tree. "Got 'em. Vacuumed out several AsianGiantHornets from a tree cavity near Blaine this morning," the state agriculture department said on Twitter later Saturday, along with a video showing a mass of hornets in a transparent container. It said removal of the nest appeared to have been successful and more details would be provided at a press conference on Monday. Scientists in Washington state have been actively searching for the Asian giant hornet since the first such insect was detected in December 2019 and after one of the wasps was trapped in July in Whatcom County, where Blaine is located. Canada also found Asian giant hornets in two locations in neighboring British Colombia. Several more of the invasive pest not native to the US were subsequently caught, all in the same region. The WSDA believes there was a good chance that there are more nests and "stopping this cold is very crucial," said Sven Spichiger, an entomologist with WSDA, during a press conference on Friday. "If it becomes established, this hornet will have negative impacts on the environment, economy, and public health of Washington State," the WSDA said.

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 09:03:52 -0400
  • Suspect arrested for allegedly abducting two girls from home where two boys found dead news

    Donny Jackson, 40, was arrested after allegedly abducting his two daughters, who were later found safe. It is unclear what his relationship is to the two dead boys.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 08:24:00 -0400
  • Border Patrol agents fatally shoot man in Texas after he backed vehicle into agent, official says news

    Authorities used lethal force after a man backed a vehicle into a Border Patrol agent and a suspect, pinning them against a parked car, an official said.

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 20:13:11 -0400
  • The Barrett Vote: There’s Not a Good Reason for Mike Pence to Preside Over It news

    Five aides to Vice President Mike Pence, including chief of staff Marc Short, have tested positive for COVID-19. Pence and Short reportedly were in close contact as recently as Friday, but Pence has decided to continue campaigning across the country — and preside over the Supreme Court confirmation vote of Amy Coney Barrett in the U.S. Senate on Monday night — rather than self-quarantine as the CDC recommends.“As vice president, I’m president of the Senate,” Pence said at a rally in Florida on Saturday. “And I’m going to be in the chair because I wouldn’t miss that vote for the world.”Presiding over the vote obviously would make the vice president feel good, and the photo of the moment could come in handy in 2024, but Pence’s presence is not necessary. There are 52 senators who intend to vote for Barrett and 48 senators who intend to vote against Barrett. It would take the absences of four Republican senators who support Barrett to make a tie-breaking vote by Pence necessary.So why would the vice president be in the Senate on Monday night, three days after he was in close contact with a person infected with the coronavirus?Pence has been testing negative on a daily basis over the weekend, but it’s not clear how effective tests are at detecting infections before the onset of symptoms. Why take the risk sitting in a windowless room with a bunch of senators who are in their 70s and 80s? As the presiding officer of the Senate, Pence would be sitting fairly far away from senators, but floor staff would be in closer proximity.Any senator who wants to do so may cast a vote from a doorway to the Senate chamber, as a few did on Sunday during the vote to cut off debate on the Barrett nomination. But even if it’s not very risky, Pence’s presence creates a controversy that tarnishes Senate Republicans a week before the election. Earlier this month, Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell criticized the White House’s cavalier approach to the virus.It’s true that Democratic Senate leader Chuck Schumer has insincerely tried to use pandemic concerns to block a vote on Barrett. Last week, Schumer said it was too dangerous for the small number of Judiciary Committee members to conduct a socially distanced hearing. This past week, Schumer forced the Senate into a closed session that required the doors to the Senate chamber to be literally locked with the senators stuck inside — a stunt to show the Democratic base that he was fighting. When he speaks on the Senate floor, Schumer takes his mask off, as most other Republican and Democratic senators do. But Schumer’s insincerity is not a reason for Pence to do something that has no potential upside and presents at least some risk to others.President Trump’s former FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb was asked on Sunday during an appearance on CBS’s Face the Nation whether Pence was putting others at risk by campaigning. “He could be closely monitored, so the short answer is yes, but you can closely monitor the vice president,” Gottlieb said. “I would understand why they wouldn’t want to quarantine the vice president, but they need to be very explicit about what they’re doing, and the risks that they’re taking. He should be wearing a high-quality mask — an N95 mask — at all times. He should be distancing wherever possible. They should be serially testing him.”Outdoor campaign events may be ill advised because there are still staffers who have to travel with Pence, but it’s even harder to justify a totally unnecessary appearance at the Senate on Monday.

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 20:54:42 -0400
  • Who are the Boogaloo Bois? A man who shot up a Minneapolis police precinct was associated with the extremist movement, according to unsealed documents news

    White men wearing Hawaiian shirts and wielding rifles keep showing up at police brutality protests in the US. Here's what to know about Boogaloo Bois.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 14:39:00 -0400
  • Mexico seizes industrial-scale meth, fentanyl lab in capital

    No description related. Click here to go to original article.

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 18:24:13 -0400
  • Belarus opposition leader says supporters launching strike news

    Belarus opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya said Monday supporters were beginning a nationwide strike after her deadline expired for strongman Alexander Lukashenko to step down.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 05:14:23 -0400
  • Dr. Fauci contradicted Trump's repeated claims that the US is 'rounding the corner' on COVID-19. It's 'actually going in the wrong direction' news

    Dr. Anthony Fauci said that a recent surge in COVID-19 cases show the country is "actually going in the wrong direction."

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 10:36:41 -0400
  • Backhoe thief drove through Florida town allegedly digging up Biden-Harris campaign signs news

    James Blight was arrested in Haines City, Florida, for allegedly stealing a backhoe to dig up the yards and vandalize the homes of people displaying Joe Biden signs.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 12:46:45 -0400
  • France may be at 100,000 virus cases daily as Molotov cocktails thrown at German public health agency news

    Pressure in France for local lockdowns is increasing after the government's chief scientific advisor estimated that the country is seeing 100,000 new coronavirus cases every day. On Sunday, 52,000 new Covid-19 infections were reported in France, another daily record - but yesterday Jean-François Delfraissy, the government's chief scientific advisor, said the true figure was probably twice as high. Dr Delfraissy joined other senior doctors in urging the government to introduce local lockdowns or a weekend lockdown that would effectively extend the current 9pm curfew in force in much of the country to weekends in order to limit social contacts.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 08:22:01 -0400
  • Snow due to hit Colorado wildfire areas news

    "We don’t anticipate it will be a season-ending event, but we do believe it will help us a great bit," said a fire incident spokesman.

    Sat, 24 Oct 2020 18:07:00 -0400
  • Two Notre Dame students killed, 1 injured after being hit by car news

    A vehicle is believed to have hit the three students, who were walking in the street, and then crashed into a house.

    Sat, 24 Oct 2020 18:56:59 -0400
  • Florida Democrats need to flip 3 state Senate seats. Here’s why they’re going for 2. news

    Florida’s government could undergo a seismic shift it hasn’t seen in more than a quarter century.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 10:50:00 -0400
  • A white woman yelled 'f--- Black Lives Matter' at a Starbucks barista after she told her to wear a mask news

    An unnamed white woman yelled at barista Alex Beckom when she told her she had to put on a mask in Starbucks. A video of the encounter went viral.

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 11:03:17 -0400
  • 7 held for suspected tanker hijack after UK commando raid news

    Seven stowaways seized when British naval special forces stormed an oil tanker in the English Channel have been arrested on suspicion of hijacking, police said Monday. Hampshire Police said the men, believed to be from Nigeria, were being held at several police stations on suspicion of “seizing or exercising control of a ship by use of threats or force.” Special Boat Service commandos were lowered by rope from helicopters onto the tanker, whose crew had locked themselves in a secure part of the ship known as the citadel.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 05:25:18 -0400
  • Pence urged to skip Barrett vote after aides test positive for COVID-19 news

    A deeply torn Senate is set to confirm Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, but Democratic leaders are asking Vice President Mike Pence to stay away from presiding over Monday’s session due to potential health risks after his aides tested positive for COVID-19.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 08:50:10 -0400
  • 16 lies in 60 minutes: Every misleading claim Trump made during prime-time CBS interview news

    US president stormed out of sit down after 38 minutes

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 13:02:39 -0400
  • Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is heavily favored to win her reelection race. Her challenger has still raised $10 million because Republicans are desperate to beat her. news

    "I guarantee you 75% of his contributors don't know anything about him," a Republican strategist told The New York Times.

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 12:22:32 -0400
  • China Communist Party plenum kicks off in Beijing news

    The three-day meeting comes amid speculation that President Xi intends to be "president-for-life".

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 03:43:00 -0400
  • 18-year-old freshman at University of Dayton apparently dies from Covid-19 news

    Michael Lang, 18, died on Thursday “apparently due to complications from" coronavirus after a long hospitalization, officials at the Ohio school said.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 13:01:00 -0400
  • Iran reports COVID-19 death every four minutes, extends curbs news

    Iran extended COVID-19 curbs in Tehran and across the country on Monday as health authorities said they were recording a death from the virus every four minutes. The health ministry in the Middle East's hardest-hit country reported 337 new deaths and 5,960 new cases over the past 24 hours. A banner on state TV said that amounted to a death every four minutes.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 05:58:53 -0400
  • The Electoral College can pick a president who got fewer votes. Here's why and how. news

    The 2020 presidential election again highlights one of the most confusing and controversial parts of the U.S. elections: The Electoral College.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 14:06:25 -0400
  • Qatar airport accused of  invasive passenger strip-search as it sought mother of newborn baby found in toilet news

    Australian officials have raised “serious concerns” with Qatari authorities after airline staff were accused of invasively strip-searching women, including 13 Australians, having taking them off a flight from Doha to Sydney. The events of Friday, 2 October, came to light in a report by Australian broadcaster Seven News on Sunday night. Flight QR908 to Sydney was due to leave Hamad International airport at 8.30pm but was delayed for four hours after a newborn infant, believed to have been prematurely born, was found in a terminal bathroom. Women on board the flight were ordered to disembark without being told why and reportedly forced to strip and undergo an invasive medical examination nearby. After their return to the plane it was allowed to depart. A spokesperson for Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade told ABC it had raised the incident with Qatari officials. “We have formally registered our serious concerns regarding the incident with Qatari authorities and have been assured that detailed and transparent information on the event will be provided soon,” he said. One of the 34 passengers on Flight QR908, Dr Wolfgang Babeck, told Guardian Australia that after about three hours of waiting on board the plane, the airline asked all the women on board to disembark. Upon their return “most of them were very upset”, Dr Babeck said.

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 11:08:27 -0400
  • Protesters storm churches in Poland on the 4th day of unrest after a court ruling tightened the country's already-strict abortion laws news

    The court banned abortion in the case of fetal defects, making abortion legal only in cases of incest, rape, or danger to the mother's life.

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 20:17:12 -0400
  • Man charged in burning of ballot drop box in Boston news

    A man was charged with setting a Boston ballot drop box on fire and damaging dozens of ballots, police said Monday. Worldy Armand, a 39-year-old Boston resident, was taken into custody late Sunday, hours after he started a fire inside a drop box outside the Boston Public Library in the city's Back Bay neighborhood, authorities said. The box contained more than 120 ballots.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 12:43:00 -0400
  • CNN's Jake Tapper presses White House chief of staff after new round of coronavirus cases among top officials news

    CNN’s Jake Tapper grilled White House chief of staff Mark Meadows after it was revealed that top aides to Vice President Pence tested positive for COVID-19. Under CDC guidelines, this development would call for Pence, who has been in close contact with them, to self-isolate. But Pence is still hitting the campaign trail.

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 11:20:02 -0400
  • Police in Ohio are reportedly investigating a group that recruited for a plot to arrest Gov. Mike DeWine for tyranny news

    The plot came to law enforcement's attention when a man reported a group had tried to recruit him to the plan, Ohio's WSYX reported.

    Sat, 24 Oct 2020 20:23:00 -0400
  • Texas boy, 3, dies after accidentally shooting himself in the chest at birthday party news

    The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office said its "thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends of this tragic accident."

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 10:18:00 -0400
  • Prince Harry says it took him 'many, many years' to realize unconscious bias exists news

    Prince Harry is opening up about how Meghan Markle helped him become aware of unconscious racial bias, which he didn't realize existed for "many years."In a conversation with Black Lives Matter activist Patrick Hutchinson published by GQ on Monday, Harry praised the "incredibly important" movement and described how for a while, he did not realize that unconscious biases exist in society."Unconscious bias, from my understanding, having the upbringing and the education that I had, I had no idea what it was," Harry said. "I had no idea it existed. And then, sad as it is to say, it took me many, many years to realize it, especially then living a day or a week in my wife's shoes."Harry, who has spoken out against racist harassment the Duchess of Sussex has been subjected to, described unconscious bias as a "huge thing globally" and said it's "dangerous" when those in power aren't aware of this."I think one of the most dangerous things is people within positions of power, whether it's politics or whether it's the media, where if you're not aware of your own bias and you're not aware of the culture within your system, then how are we ever going to progress?" Harry said.Harry added that "anyone that's pushing against" such attempts to make progress should "take a long, hard look at themselves in the mirror," as "everyone benefits if the Black community gets treated the way they should be treated." He previously spoke on his "awakening" on systemic racism."I've had an awakening as such of my own, because I wasn't aware of so many of the issues and so many of the problems within the UK, but also globally as well," he told the Evening Standard. "I thought I did but I didn't."More stories from The very different emotional lives of Trump and Biden voters The 19 greatest and worst presidential campaign ads of the 2020 election The Trump administration has surrendered to the pandemic

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 12:16:00 -0400
  • Mitch McConnell’s Conservative Challenger Gets a Boost... From Dems news

    In a last-ditch effort to unseat Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), a deep-pocketed Democratic group has begun airing ads backing the Libertarian candidate in Kentucky’s U.S. Senate contest.A new super PAC called True Kentucky Patriots started buying television and digital ads last week in support of Libertarian Brad Barron, calling him “Kentucky’s true conservative for U.S. Senate,” in the words of one thirty-second spot. “Barron is one hundred percent pro-Second Amendment, one hundred percent pro-life, and one hundred percent pro-term limits. Sorry Mitch, 36 years is too long.”The group is clearly designed to peel off conservative votes from McConnell, who faces a challenge from Democrat Amy McGrath. Federal Election Commission records show that True Kentucky Patriots is affiliated with one of the Senate race’s largest independent spenders, a pro-McGrath group called the Ditch Fund.True Kentucky Patriots also shares a treasurer with the Ditch Fund, and both groups have paid a Democratic firm called Beacon Media to produce and place their respective digital ads.It’s not uncommon for political operatives to attempt to boost third party candidates that they hope will act as spoilers, and split an opposing ideological coalition’s votes to the detriment of one major party candidate or the other. But it’s less common for groups doing so to disclose those efforts in publicly available campaign finance filings.True Kentucky Patriots hasn’t been around long enough to reveal any of its donors, and it won’t have to do so until nearly three weeks after election day. But pro-McGrath forces have already attempted to promote Barron’s candidacy through other means. Another anti-McConnell super PAC, Fire Mitch Save America PAC, has sent mailers promoting Barron’s Senate bid.FEC filings also show that Democrats have sought to boost Barron directly. At least five of Barron’s donors have also given to McGrath’s campaign. One of them, a New York-based Microsoft employee, even donated to both McGrath and Barron on the same day.Polling in the Kentucky Senate contest has shown McConnell with a consistent lead, though his margin has varied from as little as five points to as much as twelve. The most recent poll of the race has McConnell with a nine point lead over McGrath, and just four percent saying they support Barron’s candidacy, meaning the Libertarian likely will not draw enough votes to tilt the election. The race has nonetheless drawn massive investments from both parties. McConnell and McGrath have together spent nearly $115 million, with outside groups dropping another $26 million, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.Kentucky isn’t the only state where Democrats have attempted to boost a third party spoiler in a tight Senate contest. In South Carolina, Democrat Jaime Harrison’s campaign has run ads ostensibly attacking an obscure Constitution Party candidate by calling him too conservative for the state. It appears to be an effort to encourage support for the more right-wing contender among the state’s more conservative voters—to the detriment of Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham.But the most famous would-be spoiler candidate of the 2020 election cycle is Kanye West. A number of Republican operatives have lined up behind his dead-end presidential campaign in an effort to draw votes from Democratic nominee Joe Biden in some key battleground states.Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 12:16:52 -0400
  • Opposition leader flees Venezuela, heads towards Spain and the United States news

    Venezuelan opposition leader Leopoldo López escaped from the South American country and was traveling on Saturday to Spain, where he will spend time with his family before eventually heading towards the United States to continue the efforts to outs the Nicolas Maduro regime, sources close to the former political prisoner told el Nuevo Herald.

    Sat, 24 Oct 2020 17:46:38 -0400
  • How the name 'Karen' became a stand-in for problematic white women and a hugely popular meme news

    The "Karen" meme depicting women who ask to "speak to the manager" has become nearly ubiquitous online. Here is the meme's history and origin.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 15:43:00 -0400
  • Atlanta rapper Silento charged with driving 143 mph on I-85 news

    Atlanta rapper Silento was arrested Friday and accused of driving 143 mph (230 kph) on Interstate 85, authorities said. Silento, or Richard “Ricky” Lamar Hawk, was charged with reckless driving, speeding, failure to maintain lane and improper stopping, news outlets reported. A DeKalb police report said Hawk was pulled over around 3 a.m. after an officer witnessed Hawk's white BMW swerving around slower cars.

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 23:26:51 -0400
  • China reports surge of asymptomatic coronavirus cases in Xinjiang news

    China reported the highest number of asymptomatic novel coronavirus infections in nearly seven months on Monday following the discovery of a cluster of cases linked to a garment factory in the northwestern region of Xinjiang. Health authorities found 137 asymptomatic cases on Sunday during a drive to test 4.75 million people in the Kashgar area triggered by an asymptomatic infection in a 17-year-old female garment factory worker reported on Saturday. It was not clear how the teenager was infected though the official Xinhua news agency said all of the new cases were linked to another garment factory where the patient's parents work.

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 20:45:55 -0400
  • The week in polls: Trump gains in 9 of 12 swing states, but Biden still leads in 10 of them news

    With just eight days to go to Election Day, both national polls and swing state surveys make it clear the race between Trump and Biden is tightening.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 12:50:20 -0400
  • The dark secret at the core of the yachting industry: 15 current and former crew members describe what it's really like to work on a superyacht, from bullying to sexual harassment news

    In conversations with Business Insider, yacht crew members described an endless cycle of abuse on board and having nowhere to turn for help.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 11:29:00 -0400
  • Spain declares state of emergency over coronavirus as Italy closes cinemas, theatres and gyms news

    Pedro Sánchez, the prime minister of Spain, declared a state of emergency and imposed a nationwide curfew on Sunday, as Italy closed down event halls and Bulgaria’s leader tested positive for coronavirus. Under Spain’s state of emergency, which was due to come into force on Sunday, citizens must remain inside their homes between 11pm and 6am unless they have a valid reason, such as work or other essential activities. Regional governments have been allowed to adjust the timing of the start and end of the curfew by one hour, while the Canary Islands have been exempted from the curfew altogether. After Spain recorded 110,000 new cases last week, passing a milestone of one million cases, Mr Sánchez said the situation was “extreme”, and urged citizens to “stay at home wherever possible”. The state of emergency also allows regional governments to apply a “rule-of-six” limit on social gatherings and seal their borders against non-essential entry or exit, as well as place districts or cities under perimeter lockdowns. Mr Sánchez said he wants parliament to approve the state of emergency for six months, until 9 May. “Experts estimate that is the time we need to overcome the most destructive phase of the pandemic. The cost in terms of lives must be as low as possible,” he said. It came as Italy announced it would close cinemas, theatres, gyms and swimming pools, while restaurants and bars were told to shut at 6pm, in a fresh round of tough restrictions. The new rules, which come into force on Monday, were imposed after 20,000 cases of coronavirus were recorded on Saturday. Giuseppe Conte, the Italian prime minister, has stopped short of a full nationwide lockdown as the country’s economy was severely damaged by a ten-week lockdown imposed earlier in the pandemic. "Our aim is to protect health and the economy," Mr Conte said.

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 12:16:35 -0400
  • Hundreds of thousands lose power as Northern California braces for more wildfires news

    "This is the fire weather forecast I was hoping wouldn't come to pass," a climate scientist said.

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 22:18:00 -0400
  • Erdogan doubles down in backlash against Macron's Islam comments news

    The backlash against President Emmanuel Macron's comments on Islam intensified Sunday, with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan again urging him to have "mental checks" and protests in Muslim-majority nations.

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 17:09:04 -0400
  • Rats help clear minefields in Cambodia – and suspicion of the military news

    Editor’s note: Dr. Darcie DeAngelo is a medical anthropologist at the Institute for Genocide and Mass Atrocity Prevention (I-GMAP) at Binghamton University, State University of New York. In this interview, she explains the relationship between locals who live near minefields in Cambodia and the mine detectors, often former military combatants, who are viewed with suspicion because of divisions caused by the series of civil wars between the 1970s and 1990s. Why are there so many unexploded bombs and minefields in Cambodia?Cambodia is known for being the site of U.S. bomb droppings during the Vietnam War and for the Khmer Rouge genocidal regime, which also planted land mines from 1975 to 1979. Today a majority of Cambodia’s population is age 35 or younger, which means most of the population has grown up since the Khmer Rouge regime ended in 1979. This statistic fails to take into account the uneven distribution of the regime’s end in the country as fighting continued in the northwest of the country where the Vietnamese and their Cambodian allies fought to keep the Khmer Rouge army out of the country. Most of the land mines in Cambodia were planted between 1985 and 1989, when the Vietnamese-allied government installed a “bamboo curtain” against the invading Thai and Khmer Rouge along the Thai-Cambodia border in the northwest. This area, called the K5 belt, remains the most densely land-mine-contaminated region of the world, a 1,046-kilometer (650-mile) strip of land with “up to 2,400 mines per linear kilometer.” Cambodia’s problem of millions of undetonated land mines makes it the country with the highest population of amputees in the world. On average it has 100 land mine accidents per year. Why are the military and other de-mining organizations viewed with suspicion by the locals?Land mine clearance requires a huge amount of military infrastructure. Decontamination, which is the term used for removal of land mines, depends on the same military skill sets that contamination depends on. So people who are de-miners are often soldiers or former combatants in Cambodia, and the divisions from the civil war still run deep. The largest de-mining organization in the country is part of the military branch of government. The current Cambodian state has been running operations to clear the land mines since the 1990s, but the state is also rumored to grab village lands, disappear people who disagree with the ruling party, and quell legitimate protests, so de-miners carry a stigma of military corruption. After war and mass atrocity, the state loses legitimacy. And so what happens is the villagers distrust even peacekeeping efforts, so even efforts to decontaminate the country result in a kind of mistrust. When you distrust the state, you need to build state legitimacy, and de-mining offers a real opportunity for states to do so. They can rehabilitate soldiers and build relationships between villagers and soldiers. But in Cambodia, I heard from villagers that they distrusted the de-miners and found them untrustworthy. They didn’t think that their land would be returned to them when the land mines were cleared, which causes some problems when it comes to information about where the land mines are. How does mine clearing with rats work?Rats are being used in de-mining because of their incredible sense of smell, relatively low cost of maintenance and ease of transport. Just like dogs, they don’t detect any false positives, as a metal detector would.In the minefield, the rat is connected to two de-miners who walk on cleared corridors with the decontaminated area in between them. The de-miners step down the field in unison as the rat sniffs for mines in the pit, scratching twice when it smells TNT. Then the de-miner maps the location, and clicks a clicker, telling the rat it can go get its reward, a delicious banana. The rats don’t get blown up by the mines because they’re so light. The rats each weigh 1 to 3 pounds, so they are weightless to a land mine, which usually requires a minimum of 11 to 35.3 pounds of pressure to activate. How did the introduction of rats to de-mining change how it is viewed in Cambodia?Rats have successfully been used to decontaminate Mozambique in Africa, and as for their import into Cambodia, the success story really lies in the fact that the organizations using them have been able to obtain donations and become independent so that they can work on demilitarizing the de-mining industry.Rats don’t fit in with the military aesthetic of de-mining, unlike dogs, which are military aid animals and have been used within militaries for centuries. The image of a soldier proudly standing next to his dog is very different from a soldier cradling a small rat in his arms. So when the villagers first saw the rat, they were a little bit puzzled, but I actually think the rat humanized the de-miners in a way that demilitarized them. When they see the rat with a soldier, it’s more of this kind of absurdity. So it make them pause and think, “OK, what is a rat doing there?” Villagers have said in interviews that they wondered about it and it made them take a second glance. It undermines the kind of villainous characterization of the de-miners for the villagers. APOPO, an organization that uses the rats in de-mining, posts publicity photos where the rats snuggle with their handlers. Since then the land mine detection dog organizations have started posting photos of their dogs being playful, and pictures of the puppies. So there is an effect which pervades other organizations, and demilitarization is seen as something to be valued, even in a highly militarized industry. These are opportunities for demilitarization of de-mining for the country itself, for the state and for people’s trust in authorities.This article is republished from The Conversation, a nonprofit news site dedicated to sharing ideas from academic experts. It was written by: Darcie DeAngelo, Binghamton University, State University of New York.Read more: * Rise of the super rat: rodents detect landmines, sniff out TB, find disaster victims * Cambodia has come a long way in 25 years of peace – but it’s far from perfectDarcie DeAngelo does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organization that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 07:59:14 -0400
  • AstraZeneca's coronavirus vaccine is looking especially promising for the elderly news

    Another potential coronavirus vaccine is moving along, with especially good news for the elderly.AstraZeneca announced Monday that its COVID-19 vaccine in development with the University of Oxford has produced a similar immune response in both younger and older adults. The vaccine also results in low adverse responses among older people, the pharmaceutical giant said. That's a standout response considering COVID-19 tends to be more severe in older patients.Several dozen coronavirus vaccines are in the works around the globe, with AstraZeneca's one of many undergoing clinical testing. It's unclear when AstraZeneca will publish the results of its large ongoing trial that will help determine its vaccine's safety, but it is expected to be one of the first vaccine candidates to seek regulatory approval, Reuters reports. This vaccine is expected to protect people from the coronavirus for about a year.More stories from The very different emotional lives of Trump and Biden voters The 19 greatest and worst presidential campaign ads of the 2020 election The Trump administration has surrendered to the pandemic

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 13:04:02 -0400
  • 45 missing kids rescued in Ohio’s largest anti-human trafficking effort, officials say news

    The U.S. Marshals Service worked alongside 50 state law enforcement agencies.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 15:38:57 -0400
  • China retaliates against news media in latest feud with US

    No description related. Click here to go to original article.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 11:18:53 -0400
  • 2020 polls: The Trump ‘hidden voter’ isn’t a real threat this election - here’s why news

    House district-level polling is being closely monitored by experts, as it was the canary in the Trump coal mine in 2016. Thus far, that polling actually predicts an even bigger Biden victory

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 16:16:47 -0400
  • American Airlines is planning a charm offensive to reassure skeptical fliers the Boeing 737 Max is safe, report says news

    American Airlines is planning ways to soothe passenger fears about flying on the Boeing 737 Max plane, CNBC reported.

    Mon, 26 Oct 2020 09:31:17 -0400
  • British-Australian academic Kylie Moore-Gilbert detained in Iran moved out of desert prison news

    Kylie Moore-Gilbert, the British-Australian academic who has been detained in Iran for the past two years, has been moved from the notorious desert prison of Qarchak to an unknown location. Her move was first reported by the Iranian Association of Human Rights Activists, who said that she was moved, along with all of her belongings, on Saturday. A source close to the case confirmed the move, but did not know any further details. There has been no official word from the Iranian government. Dr Moore-Gilbert, a lecturer in Islamic Studies, was arrested for espionage after attending a conference in Qom in 2018. She was charged in a secret trial and given 10 years imprisonment. Both Dr Moore-Gilbert and the Australian government reject the charges, which they say are politically motivated. Iran’s Revolutionary Guards claim that someone she interviewed for a research project flagged her as suspicious so they stopped her from returning to Melbourne. Qarchak prison, in the desert on the eastern outskirts of Tehran, has a reputation for being the most dangerous of the country’s women’s prisons. Dr Moore-Gilbert had been moved from Evin prison in Tehran to Qarchak in August, which activists at the time believed to be a “punishment”. It was not immediately clear where Dr Moore-Gilbert has been taken. Just 11 days prior to her movement she had been transferred to Ward Eight (formerly known as the Mothers’ Ward) of Qarchak, alongside at least 15 other political prisoners. While those campaigning for her release see her move as a sign of hope, not knowing where the mystery location she has been sent to or the reason behind the move, gives little to base it on.

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 09:43:51 -0400
  • Gov. Mike Huckabee weighs in on Trump, Biden battling for key swings states news

    Fox News contributor and former Arkansas Republican Governor Mike Huckabee joins 'Fox & Friends Weekend.'

    Sun, 25 Oct 2020 08:42:38 -0400
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