This week in photos: Destruction continues, U.S. to leverage Russia-Ukraine bloc against China as the war wages on
Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Thursday that U.S. President Joe Biden’s administration is aiming to lead the international bloc opposed to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine into a broader coalition to counter what it sees as a more serious, long-term threat to global order from China.
Photos from overseas: Russia pounds Ukraine, targeting supply of Western arms
Russian forces pounded targets across Ukraine, taking aim at supply lines for foreign weapons in the west and intensifying an offensive in the east, as the European Union moved Wednesday to further punish Moscow for the war with a proposed ban on oil imports.
These latest images illustrate the reality of the harrowing situation in Ukraine
Russia’s relentless bombardment of Ukraine has edged closer to central Kyiv. Large explosions thundered across Kyiv before dawn Tuesday as Russia’s assault on the capital appeared to become more systematic, The Associated Press reported.
This sinkhole in Mexico has swallowed a house and 2 dogs. And it’s still growing.
Back in May, a farm in Mexico started developing a sinkhole that has since caused the evacuation of a family living in a nearby house, the collapse of that same house and a rescue operation for two dogs that, like the house, were also swallowed up by the sinkhole.
2020 in headlines: All the biggest news stories of the year
(2020 Getty Images)On Jan. 9, the World Health Organization first announced news about the deadly coronavirus that had emerged in Wuhan, China. (2020 Getty Images)On March 24, it became official: The Olympics would be postponed. (2020 Getty Images)On May 4, it was reported that giant insects called “murder hornets” were spotted in the U.S., specifically, Washington state. (Getty Images)On Aug. 18, on the second night of the (virtual) 2020 Democratic National Convention, the party officially nominated Biden. (Getty Images)On Oct. 11, the Los Angeles Lakers beat the Miami Heat in NBA Finals to win another championship.
Face masks required: Not in all U.S. schools, but it’s happening in Spain
MADRID – Masks will be mandatory for all students in Spain, ages 6 or older, when returning to schools in September because of increased coronavirus cases, the government announced Thursday. Previously, masks were only required for students above age 12 by some Spanish regions. Students will receive a daily body temperature check, must wash hands at least five times per day and classrooms will need frequent ventilation, the government said. That allows localized quarantines if there’s a positive test, rather than closing entire schools. Parents and teachers have expressed concern, with new waves of outbreaks since the country emerged from a strict lockdown.
Police in one country are using drones to enforce social distancing
Police in Singapore have taken an extraordinary step to ensure people are following social distancing rules. In a 3 1/2-month trial, police have used 22-pound pilotless drones, developed by Israel’s Airobotics, as a way to enforce social distancing and contain the spread of COVID-19, according to Reuters. Airobotics CEO Ran Krauss told Reuters the company is simply helping police maintain normal operations, specifically related to COVID-19. “The pandemic created a situation where it might be difficult for police to maintain,” Krauss said. The trial continues on in the social distancing aspect, according to Airobotics, and Krauss said the company is in talks with other cities to deploy drones.
PHOTOS: Beirut explosion leaves behind unspeakable damage
Photo by Daniel Carde (Getty Images)Scenes in Beirut, Lebanon following an explosion near the city's port area on Tuesday. Photo by Daniel Carde (Getty Images)Scenes in Beirut, Lebanon following an explosion near the city's port area on Tuesday. Photo by Daniel Carde (Getty Images)Scenes in Beirut, Lebanon following an explosion near the city's port area on Tuesday. Photo by Daniel Carde (Getty Images)Scenes in Beirut, Lebanon following an explosion near the city's port area on Tuesday. Photo by Marwan Tahtah (Getty Images)Scenes in Beirut, Lebanon following an explosion near the city's port area on Tuesday.
These basic functions prove challenging on International Space Station -- here’s how astronauts cope
Here are answers to five questions about what “basic” life is like for astronauts on the ISS. As if they are going to a restaurant, astronauts can choose which food items they want off of a menu. On the ISS, astronauts use liquid soap, water and no rinse shampoo. Given the microgravity means, there is no up or down, and astronauts can sleep in any orientation, according to NASA. The station has small crew cabins with sleeping bags that astronauts sleep in.
This week, the world lost Ravi Zacharias: A look inside his life
This week was a sad one for Christians around the world, as advocate, author and apologist Ravi Zacharias died Tuesday of sarcoma. Here are notable facts about the life of Zacharias:He was an atheist until a suicide attempt changed his life. He attempted suicide by swallowing poison, but he survived, and his life completely changed while at an Indian hospital, according to the Ravi Zacharias International Ministries website. At age 19, Zacharias won a preaching contest, and his life in ministry was off to a flying start. Celebrities, politicians and church leaders around the world paid tribute to Zacharias this week on Twitter.
Can you fathom no St. Patrick’s Day celebrations at pubs in Ireland?
A St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland without celebrations at local pubs? Yes, it is true, and just the latest example of how serious the coronavirus pandemic has become. The Irish government sent a release Sunday asking all pubs be closed from Sunday night until March 29 to help quell the spread of the coronavirus. St. Patrick’s Day celebrations surely will be affected around the world, and it’s hard to imagine you can’t even go to a pub in the heart of Ireland anymore to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. But that once again emphasizes the seriousness of the pandemic and the sacrifices so many are making.
Shakira’s meme-worthy tongue trill is actually called a zaghrouta -- and it’s culturally significant to the singer
Shakira may have created the best new meme of 2020, but there’s cultural significance behind the tongue trill that instantly became iconic Sunday night. There were hit songs, lasers, sexy backup dancers, guitar solos and Lopez on a stripper pole absolutely living her best life. Most people know that Shakira is Colombian, but her father is Lebanese, and the tongue flick she did is actually called a zaghrouta, which is a traditional Arabic expression of celebration and happiness. This is called zaghrouta. https://t.co/bixdVn34vF — Bozi Tatarevic (@hoonable) February 3, 2020Chiming in because I know everyone will be making jokes about this for days — this is a popular Arab tradition, called zaghrouta, used to express joy at celebrations.
More harm than good: Compassion is noble, but what does Haiti really need, 10 years after quake?
“Deep down, I know there was an element of trying to get a pat on the back,” Albert said. “That’s when they completely blew me away with their response.”What the community leaders essentially told Albert and Zelaya was this: Thanks for your efforts and compassion, but you actually did more harm than good. The experience was such an eye-opener that it led Albert and Zelaya to a greater purpose and mission. “That goes back to the negative aid that is undermining the natural development of the Haitian people,” Albert said. The two discovered that nearly 80% of Haitian teachers haven’t been properly trained, and 60% of kids dropped out of classes during elementary school.
Boy gets word his letter to father in heaven was delivered
A 7-year-old Scottish boy addressed a letter to his father in heaven, left it for his postman and received a heartwarming reply. Just weeks after Jase Hyndman dropped the letter in the mail, he received confirmation from postman Sean Milligan with Royal Mail that his letter had made a safe delivery. "This was a difficult challenge avoiding stars and other galactic objects on the route to heaven ... " Milligan wrote. “However please be assured that this particular important item of mail has been delivered.”Jase's mother, Teri Copland, took to Facebook to show her gratitude for the postman's response, thanking him for his effort and saying that he "just restored my faith in humanity." The BBC reported that Jase was overwhelmed after receiving Milligan's letter, telling his mother, "Dad really got my letter, Mum.”