A new era of U.S.-Africa partnerships

by ShareAmerica, about 1 month ago

Learn about some of the initiatives resulting from the December 13–15 U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit hosted by President Biden.

Did He Jiankui 'Make People Better'? Documentary spurs a new look at the case of the first gene-edited babies

about 1 month ago

These diplomats keep ties to home

by Noelani Kirschner, about 1 month ago

Read how six U.S. diplomats feel their work at the State Department was shaped by where they grew up and their hometown memories.

The Jan. 6 committee makes its case against Trump, his allies and their conspiracy to commit an insurrection: Five essential reads

about 1 month ago

2022's US climate disasters: A tale of too much rain – and too little

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China's lucrative orchid industry is a test for the nation's commitment to conservation

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Why winter solstice matters around the world: 4 essential reads

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How an American magazine helped launch one of Britain’s favorite Christmas carols

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Disney's Black mermaid is no breakthrough – just look at the literary subgenre of Black mermaid fiction

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Chickenpox and shingles virus lying dormant in your neurons can reactivate and increase your risk of stroke – new research identified a potential culprit

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Americans’ personal savings rate is near an all-time low – an economist explains what it means as a potential recession looms

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This course teaches students how to connect with older adults to forge intergenerational bonds and help alleviate loneliness and isolation

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U.S. towns named for Christmas

by ShareAmerica, about 1 month ago

Santa Claus, North Pole, Noel and Garland are among the Christmas-themed names of towns across the United States. Learn more about them.

The FREEDOM Support Act at 30 years

by ShareAmerica, about 1 month ago

Learn about the lasting impact of a 1992 law called the Freedom for Russia and Emerging Eurasian Democracies and Open Markets Act.

A recipe for trustworthy journalism

about 1 month ago

What the criminal referral of Trump means – a constitutional law expert explains the Jan. 6 committee action

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Even if Jan. 6 referrals turn into criminal charges – or convictions – Trump will still be able to run in 2024 and serve as president if elected

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Ethiopians Voice Hopes and Fears About Peace Process

about 1 month ago

As Ethiopians around the world anxiously watch to see if a fragile peace agreement will hold, a group of people from the diaspora gathered at VOA headquarters in Washington for a town hall discussion.   The “Ethiopia: Paths to Peace” televised event brought together activists, scholars and others from multiple ethnic groups for a rare opportunity to speak about the two years of conflict that has torn the country apart.   Participants said frank discussions like this are badly needed.  “To move forward beyond ethnic divisions, it is important to debate and negotiate to get clarity,” said panelist Etana Habte, an Ethiopian scholar specializing in the political history of Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa. “The problem in the country isn’t something that started in a day or two. A problem that was caused in a day can be solved in a day. The problems in this country date back 150 years.”  Speaking for women   Meaza Gebremedhin, a Tigrayan activist, researcher and human rights advocate, was one of the panelists. Since the outbreak of war in Ethiopia’s Tigray region, she has organized protests and has spoken about atrocities in her home country.   She has received death threats, and someone even pulled a gun at her during a rally in Los Angeles, but she says it pales in comparison to the horrors that have occurred in Tigray.  “We didn’t just hear about how bad the war is, we lived it,” she said.  Meaza had been active in advocating for women’s rights and against rape before the war, but she said sexual violence was weaponized during the conflict. In Tigray, she said, rape by men in military uniforms was committed as a brutal form of ethnic cleansing.  “The attacks against women were to eliminate them so their wombs won’t give birth to another Tigrayan, so she can’t continue producing the next generation,” Meaza said. “So, I speak louder because the attacks on women [in Tigray] isn’t just because of their gender but also their identity.”  Human rights organizations join in Meaza’s concern. In September, the United Nations Commission of Inquiry on Ethiopia concluded that Ethiopian forces along with their allies from the Amhara region and neighboring Eritrean forces used “sexual slavery” against Tigrayan women and girls.    Tigrayan forces, the U.N. report added, “committed war crimes and human rights abuses” in areas they occupied in the Amhara and Afar regions during the course of the war, “including large-scale killings” of civilians and “rape and sexual violence.”  Acknowledging suffering   On November 2, the Ethiopian federal government signed a peace agreement with the leadership in the Tigray region in Pretoria, South Africa, days before the war marked its second anniversary.  Panelists, however, believe there is still a long road ahead to establish a durable peace. Henok Abebe, a member of the Ethiopian diaspora who specialized in human rights law, said the country finds itself in a precarious situation.   Tigray suffered immensely, Henok said, but in order to move forward, the country must also acknowledge the damage done in the Afar and Amhara regions.   The war in Tigray “is a double-edged sword” he said. “If one Tigrayan is killed, Ethiopia suffers and if another soldier is killed, it is Ethiopia that is hurt. If we take any route, it is Ethiopia that is slaughtered,” he added.   He said although the war was avoidable it is now time to abandon the idea that a certain ethnic group is only bearing the brunt and understand that the country as a whole is suffering. “We need to show humanity beyond ethnicity, language, or identity.”   Henok said the use of “coded words” such as genocide isn’t going to invite dialogue between the people and should be avoided.  “Yes, there was destruction because of war but when we use such terms, we are gravitating it. We should ask was there an intention to eliminate the people as people? It is difficult to imply the intention. But that doesn’t mean attacks and suffering didn’t happen,” he said.  But Etana said there is a need for accountability, including examining how the federal government allowed troops from neighboring Eritrea to enter the country and occupy large areas while allegedly committing war crimes. There is also a need for a truthful account and acknowledgment of what occurred during the war, he said.  “When churches and mosques are bombarded, when foreign troops are invited into the country and there are mass killings, if that is not the intention, then what is it? Is it an error?” he asked. “If we begin with such denials, it is wrong. We need to acknowledge what happened first.”  Constitutional reform  Some in attendance said structural reforms are needed for Ethiopia to remain united as a country. Its 1995 constitution uses a system known as “ethnic federalism” that divided the country into regions based on ethnicity. Critics have blamed the system for exacerbating ethnic divisions and conflict.   Derese Getachew, an associate professor of sociology at Iona College, New Rochelle, New York, pointed to continuing power struggles between ethnicities and calls to divide the country as hanging over the peace process, threatening a return to war. He stressed the importance of reform at a constitutional level.  “There are those organized under different ethnic groups, including the demand for secession, and it is such friction that led us to a state of war to begin with,” he said. “Therefore, such disagreements need to be resolved for a truthful solution.” He said the current constitution didn’t come through a legitimate process in which the people’s voice was included.   Alemayehu Fentaw, an Ethiopian lawyer specializing in conflict resolution said the fact that the cease-fire has stopped the bloodshed is a big achievement and the opening of humanitarian corridors is a promising sign.  The war in Tigray has displaced thousands, causing a shortage of food, medication and access to basic care for millions of people living in the region. An estimated 5.2 million people are in urgent need of food assistance, the United Nations World Food Program says.   Another panelist, Alemayehu Biru, a political philosophy professor who taught at Addis Ababa University and now teaches in Virginia, said the parties must take advantage of the cease-fire to lay the foundation for lasting peace.   “The peace agreement is a ‘negative peace’ because violence has stopped but to go further, the opportunity of a cease-fire is important and gleaning from conflicts in other parts of Africa to understand the logical pattern of war and address the core issues of how the war started,” he said, adding that there is potential for war to relapse because of a disagreement between the elite.   Derese said true healing must begin with empathy across ethnic lines.  “What surprises me is that as much as some people are dedicated to their own side and ethnicity, why is it difficult to empathize with those who they live side-by-side when they are suffering?” he said. “When are we going to cut the cycle of never-ending crimes and continuous feelings of being attacked and build a country that is enough for all of us and stands for justice, equality and democracy? When are we going to be human?”  This story originated in the Horn of Africa’s Amharic Service. The town hall was conducted in Amharic, on December 3, 2022, at VOA’s headquarters in Washington D.C.  

Can more fiber slow MS progression?

by Andrew Smith-Rutgers, about 1 month ago

Poor gut health may drive the progression of multiple sclerosis. The good news is a better diet may slow it down.

This sales combo reels in new customers

by Pate McCuien-U. Missouri, about 1 month ago

The enthusiasm of their new salespeople and the experience of their veteran staff are key to attracting new customers, research finds.

Gummy robot does 'the worm' when temps change

by Jill Rosen-Johns Hopkins, about 1 month ago

A soft robot powered by nothing more than temperature change may one day be able to crawl through the human body to deliver medicine.

Greenland's glaciers might be melting 100x faster than thought

by Rebecca Riley-UT Austin, about 1 month ago

Glaciers in Greenland may be melting as much as 100 times as fast as than previously thought, researchers report.

To improve nutrition, track fish from water to plate

by Sue Nichols-Michigan State, about 1 month ago

A new method tracks and measures how fish make their way from the water to the plate within Malawi.

Webb telescope sees through dust to find young stars

by Jade Boyd-Rice, about 1 month ago

Images from NASA's James Webb Space Telescope contain telltale signs of two dozen previously unseen young stars about 7,500 light years away.

Genome tool may pave way for new tuberculosis treatments

by Andrew Smith-Rutgers, about 1 month ago

A new genome assembly tool could spur the development of new treatments for tuberculosis and other bacterial infections.

Poll: What if your teen refuses holiday religious services?

by Beata Mostafavi-Michigan, about 1 month ago

In a poll, 44% of parents said that teens shouldn't get to choose whether or not to attend holiday religious services until they're 18.

Racial discrimination is 'contagious' for couples

by Bert Gambini-Buffalo, about 1 month ago

Racial discrimination's effects on health are greater than thought, researchers report. It can also affect partners, they say.

Dark therapy may treat lazy eye

by Jocelyn Duffy-Carnegie Mellon, about 1 month ago

New research investigates the mechanisms that underlie a treatment for patients with amblyopia, also known as "lazy eye."

Why Our Electricity Prices Can’t Be Left to Bogus ‘Free Markets’

by Prabir Purkayastha, about 1 month ago

This post is originally published on Citizen Truth by Prabir Purkayastha “This steep rise in electricity prices is the other side of the story of the so-called market reforms in the electricity sector that have taken place over the last 30 years.” Download the Spanish translation Descargar la traducción al español de este artículo The price of electricity has risen astronomically in Europe over the last two years: […] Read more at Why Our Electricity Prices Can’t Be Left to Bogus ‘Free Markets’

Why Lithium Power Politics Are Playing Out Very Differently in Chile and Bolivia

by Vijay Prashad and Taroa Zuniga Silva, about 1 month ago

This post is originally published on Citizen Truth by Vijay Prashad and Taroa Zuniga Silva Download the Spanish translation Descargar la traducción al español de este artículoDownload the Portuguese translation Baixar a tradução em português deste artigo In late July, a large sinkhole appeared near the town of Tierra Amarilla in Chile’s Copiapó province in the Atacama salt flat. The crater, which has a diameter of more than 100 feet, emerged in […] Read more at Why Lithium Power Politics Are Playing Out Very Differently in Chile and Bolivia

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