Earlier this year we heard about a curious case of leprosy that jumped from armadillos to humans. We also know that a certain nefarious flu came to us via water fowl, and HIV likely affected chimpanzees before humans.
The Obama administration is expanding its controversial drone program to the Horn of Africa and the Arabian Peninsula.
The Washington Post first reported last week that the administration was setting up secret bases for the unmanned aircraft all over the region. U.S. officials say the drone surveillance will allow them to keep watch on terrorists in Yemen and Somalia. The question is whether the program will eventually go a step further and include armed drones to kill terrorists before they strike.
Afghanistan buried a former president last week, but there is concern in Kabul that something else may have been buried as well: the peace process. In nearly two years since the U.S. opened the prospect of negotiations with the Taliban, progress has been hard to discern.
The assassination of Burhanuddin Rabbani, who was also the head of Afghanistan's High Peace Council, may have quashed any negotiations that were under way. It also may have given new strength to those who never supported the idea of talking with the Taliban.
Wangari Maathai, the first African woman to receive the Nobel Peace Prize, has died of cancer in a Nairobi hospital. She was 71. Maathai, of Kenya, became a Nobel laureate in 2004 for her work promoting environmental stewardship, empowering women and peaceful resistance to violence.
China's high-speed trains were supposed to be a gleaming testament to the country's progress and modernity. Instead, a recent crash that killed 40 people has come to symbolize much that's wrong with China's warp-speed development. In particular, a "Great Leap Forward" mentality toward development is clashing with questions of safety.
The notion that fatal accidents are the price of progress seems to have trickled down to some of the passengers on a recent high-speed train journey between Beijing and Nanjing, many of whom characterized the accident as "normal."
For more than a week, a group of protesters have been encamped at New York City's Zuccotti Park. They're part of a protest they've termed "Occupy Wall Street." While the group was intent on making a point about what they say is Wall Street's "greed and corruption," much of the media focus has been about the scattered nature of the movement.