Seven years ago the impressionist Rory Bremner complained that politicians had become so boring that few of them were worth mimicking: “They’re quite homogenous and dull these days … It’s as if character is seen as a liability.” Today his profession has the opposite problem: however extreme satire becomes, it struggles to keep pace with reality. The political sphere, so dull and grey a few years ago, is now populated by preposterous exhibitionists.
This trend is not confined to the UK – everywhere the killer clowns are taking over
Although Donald Trump can barely place a single country in Africa, his few utterances on the continent have yielded what can only be described as a nostalgia for the 1960s. It was a decade that saw three white minority-ruled governments ruling in South Africa, Rhodesia, and the South African territory of South-West Africa. All three white-ruled entities practiced varying degrees of apartheid. This was accomplished through economic, social, and political means.
In January 2018, when Trump referred to African nations as “shithole countries,” he was relishing the time when apartheid South Africa, Rhodesia, and South-West Africa were considered a pro-US bloc in southern Africa. The links between southern Africa’s exiled black African liberation political parties and movements to Communist- and Marxist-ruled nations, in the minds of Trump and his equally right-wing father, Fred Trump, Sr., made South Africa, Rhodesia, and South-West Africa model nations in the eyes of the Trumps.
International lawmakers should adopt a fifth Geneva convention that recognises damage to nature alongside other war crimes, according to an open letter by 24 prominent scientists.
The legal instrument should incorporate wildlife safeguards in conflict regions, including protections for nature reserves, controls on the spread of guns used for hunting and measures to hold military forces to account for damage to the environment, say the signatories to the letter, published in the journal Nature.
This Summer, Make Sure Your Sunscreen Protects Coral Reefs
By Candice Gaukel Andrews- 23. July 2019
Ah, summer. Time to enjoy the long days of sunlight with outdoor picnics, paddling, and swims in lakes and pools. In this second season of the year, we take in lots of fresh air—and apply lots of sunscreen.
Unfortunately, while we’ve put decades of research into developing the most effective sunscreens for ourselves, it’s only in the last few years that we’ve been able to learn how these products are affecting the environment: particularly, coral reefs.
As one of the most valuable ecosystems on Earth, coral reefs provide billions of dollars in economic and environmental services, such as coastal protection, food and tourism. But around the world, coral ecosystems are now facing a number of serious threats, including climate change, coastal development, disease, invasive species, land-based pollution and unsustainable fishing. And recently, scientists have discovered that the chemicals commonly found in sunscreen are contributing—in large measure—to the problem.
Ethiopia again in state of emergency and most regions under martial law
Western and Southern Oromiya, Amhara, Benshangul Gumuz and SNNP states are now under military command posts. The so-called “transition to democracy” has failed again, and the EPRDF-led Ethiopia is now back to square one.
U.S.American promoted poster-boy Premier Abiy Ahmed Ali has as Commander in Chief - despite all the regional public relations games and award-collecting stunts - only achieved that since the 2018 election of Abiy, around 1.5 million Ethiopians were forced from their homes by so-called ethnic violence – the highest number of internally displaced persons (IDPs) of any country worldwide in 2018. In reality it is the heavy hand of the EPDRF government that like before under the TPLF regime, through which Prime Minister Abiy rose in ranks, rules with a brutal dictatorship.
UPDATE 28.07.2019: John McAfee via @officialmcafee: The bad guys never came close. We are out of England now and on our way to complete safety. We will not be silenced.
Via @officialmcafee: On the move again. The long arm of the U.S. is reaching for us here in London. Thank God it's a weekend. Government bureaucracy paperwork is stalled until tomorrow morning. We are never stalled. Will update you soon.
UPDATE 27.07.2019: via @theemrsmcafee: The dogs are safe-ish! They were taken to a French resident's farm in the Dominican Republic. Thanks to our lawyer Carlos Olivares for making this happen.
Via @officialmcafee: Our dogs are safe. The D.R. officials left them on our boat with no food, water or air conditioning for more than 60 hours but they survived.
John McAfee on Twitter from London/UK: " The issue we now have is that the D.R. has not returned our dogs to us. We were not allowed to leave anyone in our boat to care for them when we were deported. The D.R. government took custody and we've heard nothing."
UPDATE 24.07.2019: via @officialmcafee by@Loggiaonfire: I have spoken with John over the phone and can confirm their safe release. They are underway to a new location, but have been forced to leave The Freedom Boat for now. John will be assuming control of this account again after travel. #FreeMcAfee
Update via @Loggiaonfire : John, Janice and his crew are alive and in the process of being released from confinement. #FreeMcAfee
The man who gave the world the first free anti-virus program to keep the spooks out of our internet computers is haunted by dark forces. Most recently he offered to help the Cuban state develop its own cryptocurrency in the interest of avoiding U.S. interventionism in trade and cruel U.S. sanctions imposed on Cuba for helping Venezuela.
John McAfee Detained Days After Warning CIA Hunting Him
‘My crime is not filing tax returns – not a crime’
-- update 22. 07. 2019: Now finally stopped - see below!
- report targets EU funding in Sudan
According to a new report published by the US-based Enough Project, Sudan’s infamous Janjaweed militia force is now being used to control Sudan's borders, with financial support from an EU migration management program.
By Isaac Mugabi - DW - 06. April 2019
DW: Dr. Baldo, please tell us about the contents of your report and your findings.
Dr. Suliman Baldo: The report focuses on a partnership that the European Union established with the government of Sudan in the course of 2014 to date with regard to the prevention or containment of migration from Sudan and from neighboring countries in the Horn of Africa towards Europe. Sudan is a country of origin for many of these migrants but it is also a country of transit for migrants coming from Eritrea in particular, Ethiopia, Somalia and beyond in sub-Saharan Africa.
With reference to that program, I am questioning the fact that the European Union is legitimizing an abusive government which is on record for attacking its own populations in conflict areas and is relying on abusive militias, paramilitary forces, that are under the command of its security forces and the national army to enforce the border controls under the European Union partnership. In particular we are concerned about the designation by Sudan of Rapid Support Forces, which is a particularly vicious militia, for the control of its borders under this program.
Several African governments have ordered some form of internet restriction in recent years. The blackouts are a major risk, especially for telecoms, which can be considered complicit. And that could cost them.
By Chiponda Chimbelu - DW - 22. 07. 2019
Chad ended its social media blackout last week. Facebook, Twitter and other similar apps were blocked in the country since March 2018. That could have cost the Chadian economy more than $200 million (€177 million), based on calculations from NGO NetBlocks' Cost of Shutdown Tool (COST).
The students at Westmeade Elementary School worked hard on their dragon. And it paid off. The plastic bag receptacle that the kids painted green and outfitted with triangular white teeth and a “feed me” sign won the students from the Nashville suburb first place in a recycling box decorating contest. The idea, as Westmeade’s proud principal told a local TV news show, was to help the environment. But the real story behind the dragon — as with much of the escalating war over plastic waste — is more complicated.
The latest IUCN Red List update, which includes assessments of 105,732 species, lists more than 28,000 species as threatened with extinction.
The declines of many of these species can be attributed to human overexploitation, according to the IUCN. The red-capped mangabey (Cercocebus torquatus), for example, has moved from vulnerable to endangered in 2019, largely because of threats from illegal hunting for bushmeat and conversion of much of the monkey’s Atlantic coast forest habitat in West Africa to agriculture.
More than 5,000 trees from 180 countries, and 500 deep-sea bony fish species like the bioluminescent lanternfishes, were also added to the Red List this year.
No species was assessed as having genuinely improved in status enough to earn it a place in a lower threat category, according to the IUCN.
From rays to deep-sea snails, primates to rosewood trees, the latest IUCN Red List update paints a gloomy picture for our world’s species.
No species were recorded as having genuinely improved in status enough to move them into a lower threat category for the 2019-2 Red List update.
Authorized to Steal reveals the extent to which public officials play a role in the proliferation of illegal logging. The report analyzes more than 1,000 timber transfer permits and reveals that certain officials approved permits in zones in which more than 40% of trees approved for harvest never existed. The authors conclude that 40% is far above a reasonable margin of human error, and therefore the data strongly suggests these officials are complicit in the laundering of timber from the Peruvian Amazon. Though Peruvian law imposes criminal and administrative penalties on those involved in trafficking and selling illegally logged wood, the report finds that so few sanctions have been applied that there is little incentive to observe these laws.
Author links open overlay panThe UN declared 2010, as the International Year of Biodiversity. However, around that time, media outlets and other sources of information revealed that most people do not fully understand what biodiversity is. Public understanding has hopefully improved since 2010.
The recent global assessment by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services attracted high levels of media interest in response to their shocking findings; for example, one headline stated that there are 1 million species facing extinction.1
Political awareness is increasing as a result of the IPBES report, which states clearly that biodiversity loss is as important an issue for society as climate change.2
Communities demand primary responsibility for conservation efforts
By UN/TI (*) - 16. July 2019
Communities living with wildlife are asking for a new deal for conservation—one that places them as the primary guardians of the natural resources at their door step and allows them to reap the benefits.
In a declaration presented to Heads of State, the private sector and international organizations at the African Wildlife Economy Summit in June 2019, 40 community groups from 12 African countries asked for a new agreement that respects their right of ownership and management for the natural resources that drive the continent’s wildlife economy.
That must remain or become again the guideline of proper journalism.
Britain's Ambassador to Washington Sir Kim Darroch claimed that Donald Trump abandoned the Iran nuclear deal as an act of 'diplomatic vandalism' to spite his predecessor Barack Obama - a leaked cable reveiled.
The cable was included in a second batch of leaked reports published by the Mail on Sunday newspaper, the first of which caused Darroch to resign earlier this week.
Las Vegas, Nevada – “The United States is brokering land deals to enrich corporations and deprive the Shoshone of our lawful property rights and interests,” Ian Zabarte, a member of the Western Shoshone nation, says while sitting at his home in the Las Vegas area. Zabarte recently celebrated his 54th birthday and also marked 30 years of defending his community against the controversial Yucca Mountain Nuclear Waste site.
Despite having waged this fight for three decades, Zabarte is prepared to continue fighting until his death. His efforts are only the latest in a long history of resistance to nuclear testing and encroachment on native lands.