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200 girls are missing in Nigeria – so why doesn’t anybody care?

Anne Perkins
Soldiers stand guard in front of the school in Chibok, Nigeria, where 200 students were abducted last week. Most of them are still missing. Photograph: Haruna Umar/AP

Nigeria’s grief over the abducted girls is uniting our country Where are they? Every morning for a week the news has been dominated by the South Korean ferry tragedy. The terrible grief of the parents, the shocking response of the crew to the unfolding disaster, and the inexorably rising body count. Two days before the South Korean students boarded their ferry ... Read More »

Agency: banking system in independent Scotland risks Iceland-style meltdown

Larry Elliott and Jill Treanor
Welcome to Shetland 1a LLL

S&P says it would be ‘challenging’ for Edinburgh government to support its banks without backing of London – Jump to comments (113) An independent Scotland would need the support of the UK Treasury and the Bank of England to prevent savers in its banks being as vulnerable as those who had money in Iceland during the 2008 financial crisis, according ... Read More »

Genocide goes on globally despite international efforts

Tutku Senen

There are many actions the international community can take to prevent or stop genocide but many of these are difficult, controversial or costly International communities have been focusing on preventing genocide since the second world war where millions of people were systematically killed. However, the ongoing massacres in the Middle East and Africa bring the question of the effectiveness of these international ... Read More »

Hey Good Lookin’

Josie Glausiusz
Numbers on her back 1a LLL

Brain scans show that mathematicians register degrees of beauty when shown formulas When I heard soprano Lianna Levine sing Handel’s cantata Mi palpita il cor (“I feel my heart beating”), tears fell from my eyes. My friend’s voice was so beautiful, so pure, so impassioned, that my own heart was filled with happiness. I did not realize it then, but ... Read More »

Saudi Arabia: preparations for regime change

Viktor Mikhin

A sequence of important events that occurred in Saudi Arabia, simultaneously with the recent visit of U.S. President Barack Obama to that country, have roused close attention and numerous comments of analysts around the world. First of all, this is because the kingdom is one of the leading oil producers and exporters in the world. Moreover, not only is Saudi ... Read More »

Assessing the costs and benefits of legalising cannabis

Marian Shanahan and Alison Ritter
Smoking cannabis 1a LLL

About one-quarter of Australians support the legalisation of cannabis. And advocates often point to the potential of raising tax revenue from sales as part of their argument. But there has been limited analysis of the economic costs and benefits of legalisation – until now. A study we published today in the journal PLOS ONE compared the status quo with legalisation. ... Read More »

Brandis confuses right to be heard with right to be taken seriously

Peter Ellerton
Alien abduction 1a LLLL

In a recent interview, federal attorney-general George Brandis laments that deniers of climate science are being “excluded” from the debate. On the surface this seems a justifiable complaint, but the point hangs on what he means by “excluded”. Brandis said he was: …really shocked by the sheer authoritarianism of those who would have excluded from the debate the point of ... Read More »

Russia threatens force in Ukraine

Olga Rudenko

KIEV, Ukraine — Ukrainian police liberated a small town in the east of the country from pro-Russian separatist groups Wednesday, a day after Ukraine’s president revived a military offensive. Police took back Svyatogorsk, a small town close to the city of Slovyansk. Pro-Russian separatists still occupied government buildings in major eastern cities such as Donetsk and Luhansk. President Oleksandr Turchynov ... Read More »

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