of Turks spent the first day of the Muslim feast of Eid al-Adha holiday
in emergency wards today after stabbing themselves or suffering other
injuries while sacrificing startled and agitated animals. . . .
In Turkey, at least 1,179 people - dubbed "amateur
butchers" by the Turkish media - were treated at hospitals across the
country, most suffering cuts to their hands and legs.
people were severely injured when they were crushed under the weight of
large animals that fell on top of them, it was reported. Another person
was hurt when a crane, used to lift an animal, tumbled onto him.
Note to Westerners: don't laugh so hard you forget to point the champagne cork AWAY from you tonight.
Oddly enough, it's rarely mentioned in the press, but the Washington Post actually pays attention to it here:
President Bush's legacy is sure to be defined by his wielding of U.S. military power in Afghanistan and Iraq,
but there is another, much softer and less-noticed effort by his
administration in foreign affairs: a dramatic increase in U.S. aid to
The president has tripled direct humanitarian and
development aid to the world's most impoverished continent since taking
office and recently vowed to double that increased amount by 2010 -- to
nearly $9 billion. . . .
Beyond increasing aid to Africa, Bush has met with nearly three
dozen African heads of state during his six years in office. He visited
Africa in his first term, and aides say he hopes to make a return visit
Although some activists criticize Bush for not doing
more to end the ongoing genocide in the Darfur region of Sudan, others
credit him for playing a role in ending deadly conflicts in Liberia,
the Congo and other parts of Sudan. Meanwhile, Bush has overseen a
steady rise in U.S. trade with Africa, which has doubled since 2001.
should be known for increasing -- doubling development assistance and
tripling it to Africa after a period in which U.S. development
assistance was essentially flat for decades," Secretary of State
Condoleezza Rice said in a recent interview with the Associated Press.
"He should be known for the largest single investment in AIDS and
malaria, the biggest health investment of any government program ever."
Francesco I de Medici and his wife Bianca Cappello, both pictured above, died within twelve hours of each other in 1587. Rumors circulating at the time suggested the couple were poisoned by Francesco's brother, Cardinal Ferdinando, who was visiting at the time and who ordered immediate autopsies, presumably to prove a non-toxin-related cause of death -- malaria. Recent research reported in the BMJ shows that "murder will out":
The results of toxicological investigations carried out on the samples identified as biological tissuesand attributable, according to DNA profiling, to Francesco I de' Medici and, tentatively, to Bianca Cappello, and on the femur and beard hair of Francesco I, are consistent with the hypothesis that the Grand Duke and his wife were victims of an acute arsenic poisoning. The 11 day survival time after the onset of the illness could explain the not extremely high—though still in the lethal range, according to the literature—arsenic concentrations measured in soft tissues on the one hand and the very low concentrations detected in bones and hair (insufficient time for significant incorporation) on the other.
Some mourn the passing of sharia in Somalia. This quote from an article in the Guardian is representative of the wistful sentiments:
'Nobody expected the Islamists to show this little political
resilience,' said Matt Bryden, a consultant to the conflict-monitoring
body, International Crisis Group. 'They were the first movement to
pacify southern Somalia for 16 years, yet they crumbled like a pack of
Fascists are so good at pacifying. If only we were all under the thumb of some cracker with a whip and a holy book, maybe there would be world peace at last. But wait . . . that would be . . . theocracy, and theocracy is for dusky foreigners who need pacifying, innit?