ISS, space exploration, new view, cosmonauts
Photo credit: NASA Johnson / Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

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New Cosmonaut Photos Show International Space Station From Rare Perspective (Maria)

The author writes, “If you’ve started taking the International Space Station for granted, these new photos could serve as a tonic. The two images, shared on Twitter Sept. 29 by cosmonaut Oleg Novitsky, show the orbiting lab in all its complex, multimodular glory. The photos were taken September 28 from a Russian Soyuz capsule, which Novitsky, fellow cosmonaut Pyotr Dubrov and NASA astronaut Mark Vande Hei were relocating from the station’s Earth-facing Rassvet module to the active docking port of the Nauka multipurpose laboratory module.”

Jan. 6 Rioters Exploited Little-Known Capitol Weak Spots: A Handful of Unreinforced Windows (Reader Steve)

From the Los Angeles Times: “Four major access points that Jan. 6 rioters used to break into and overtake the U.S. Capitol had something unusual in common: They were among a dozen or so ground-floor windows and glass-paned doors that had not been recently reinforced. The majority of the Capitol’s 658 single-pane windows were quietly upgraded during a 2017-19 renovation of the historic building. The original wooden frames and glass were covered with a second metal frame containing bomb-resistant glass. But planners skipped about a dozen ground-floor windows, including some located in doors, because they were deemed to be low risk in the event of implosion, largely due to their discreet or shielded location, or because the building couldn’t structurally handle the load of the heavier frames.”

Hack Exposes Law Enforcement Officers Who Signed Up to Join Anti-Government Oath Keepers (DonkeyHotey)

The authors write, “The law enforcement officers described what they could offer the Oath Keepers: ‘I have a wide variety of law enforcement experience, including undercover operations, surveillance and SWAT,’ one wrote on the membership application. ‘Communications, Weapons, K9 Officer for local Sheriffs office 12 years to present,’ another wrote. ‘​​I am currently working as a deputy sheriff in Texas,’ a third typed. These men, who had sworn to uphold the law, signed up to join an armed, extremist, anti-government group.”

The ‘Forever Virus’ Won’t Go Away Until Kids Get Vaccinated (Sean)

From Wired: “Vaccinations were supposed to end our nightmare and we’d enjoy a 2021 ‘summer of freedom.’ But when the season ended with some of the highest case and deaths numbers to date, I knew it was time to talk to Larry Brilliant again. Brilliant is CEO of Pandefense Advisory and senior counselor of the Skoll Foundation, and he was part of the global team that helped eradicate smallpox. … He’s audibly frustrated after seeing failed policy and the devastating politicization of a viral outbreak. Yet he still reminds us that we’ve come a long way: We have an effective vaccine and a current presidential administration committed to addressing the problem. But obstacles remain, and at the moment, one of the biggest is the presence in school of millions of unvaccinated kids under age 12.”

While Foreign Aid Poured in, Jordan’s King Abdullah Funnelled $100M Through Secret Companies to Buy Luxury Homes (Mili)

The author writes, “Jordanian protesters took to the streets — again — demanding an end to corruption and poverty in the aid-dependent Middle Eastern monarchy. Masked police broke up the demonstrations and jailed critics of the country’s leaders. Still, the people chanted for change. Finally, in a bid to defuse the crisis, Jordanian authorities in June 2020 trumpeted a crackdown on hidden wealth, designed to help stanch the flow of an estimated $800 million a year out of the country. Then-Prime Minister Omar al-Razzaz said the crackdown was especially needed to respond to COVID-19’s impact on the state’s finances. Jordan would track every last dinar that citizens had hidden in tax havens, the prime minister said; No offshore wealth was beyond scrutiny. None, it seems, except the king’s.”

For National Hispanic Heritage Month, 11 Recent Books on Latino Life (Dan)

From The New York Times: “National Hispanic Heritage Month, a celebration that runs from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15, captures a period covering seven different independence days across Latin America. In recent years, however, the celebration has prompted Latinos in the United States to look inward, grappling with issues of representation, colorism and sexuality. To better understand these perspectives, here are 11 recent books that provide a glimpse into distinct corners of contemporary Latino life in the United States.”

Kilogram of Nails, Screws and Knives Removed From Man’s Stomach (Dana)

The author writes, “A Lithuanian man has had more than a kilogram of nails, screws, nuts and knives removed from his stomach by doctors, local media report. He had been swallowing metal objects for a month after quitting alcohol, doctors said. Some of the objects retrieved during a surgery in Klaipeda University Hospital were 10cm (4in) long, according to Lithuania’s LRT public broadcaster.”


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