World News

Dubai Expo presents a facade of 192 nations at peace. The reality is never far from the surface
KARIM SAHIB/AFP via Getty Images

Dubai Expo presents a facade of 192 nations at peace. The reality is never far from the surface

Spend a few hours wandering the manicured walkways of the Expo 2020 grounds and the world — or at least this sanitized version in the Dubai desert — feels at peace and in harmony. But, for many nations, it’s all a façade. A record 192 countries are represented at this year’s postponed Expo — up…

Afghan evacuee flights to the US from Ramstein Air Base in Germany resume

Afghan evacuee flights to the US from Ramstein Air Base in Germany resume

Flights of Afghan evacuees from Ramstein Air Base in Germany to the US resumed Saturday after pausing for weeks due to confirmed cases of measles amongst evacuees. One flight left the base Saturday with a few hundred evacuees headed for Philadelphia, a spokesman for the 86th Airlift Wing told CNN. Five more flights are expected…

‘Once-in-a-generation’ find reveals microscopic fossil in amber
Holly Sullivan/Harvard/NJIT

‘Once-in-a-generation’ find reveals microscopic fossil in amber

Let’s hear it for the trailblazers. This week, the winners of the Nobel Prize in physics, medicine, chemistry and literature were announced, as well as the Nobel Peace Prize. The research, discoveries and contributions of these individuals cannot be understated — they can change lives, enhance understanding and shift perspectives. Scientists Syukuro Manabe and Klaus…

UN says access to a ‘clean, healthy’ environment is a human right
Salvatore Di Nolfi/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

UN says access to a ‘clean, healthy’ environment is a human right

The United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHCR) acknowledged Friday that access to a “safe, clean, healthy and sustainable environment” is a basic human right for the first time. Despite criticism from some countries, including the United States and United Kingdom, ahead of the UNHCR session, the new resolution — proposed by Costa Rica, the Maldives,…

A group of little-known killer whales have been identified as big hunters of the sea
Josh McInnes

A group of little-known killer whales have been identified as big hunters of the sea

Swimming deep in the Pacific Ocean, a group of little-known killer whales that eat large sea mammals including grey whale calves has been found, researchers say. In a recently-published catalog, researchers from the University of British Columbia examined 13 years of photo-identification data and more than 100,000 photographs taken off North America’s west coasts. What…

Must-watch videos of the week

Must-watch videos of the week

Capt. Kirk cracks Anderson Cooper up with his real-life trip to the final frontier, a “Hamilton” star sends a history teacher a message, and surveillance videos across Colorado capture an “event of a lifetime” on camera. These are the must-watch videos of the week. Space: The final frontier William Shatner, known for playing Capt. Kirk…

The Draconid meteor shower peaks October 8. Here’s how to watch
Yuri Smityuk/TASS/Getty Images

The Draconid meteor shower peaks October 8. Here’s how to watch

The Draconid meteor shower is expected to peak on Friday, October 8, and last through October 10, bringing with it a drizzle of meteors for dedicated stargazers. The Draconids are notoriously “sleepy” showers, only producing five meteors per hour most years, according to EarthSky. This weekend’s shower is expected to be that sort of “slow…

New lunar samples reveal more recent volcanic activity on the moon

New lunar samples reveal more recent volcanic activity on the moon

When its Chang’e-5 mission landed on the moon in December 2020, China became only the third country to collect lunar rocks and soil. The mission, named after the mythical Chinese goddess of the moon, brought back the first fresh lunar samples in more than 40 years to Earth later that month. An international team of…

Turkey finally ratifies Paris climate agreement but protests key detail
Burhan Ozbilici/AP/FILE

Turkey finally ratifies Paris climate agreement but protests key detail

Turkey became the last G20 nation to ratify the Paris climate agreement on Wednesday, almost six years after initially signing it, but at the same time, lawmakers protested a key detail — the country’s classification as a developed nation. Turkish environment and urbanization minister Murat Kurum said Wednesday that lawmakers had voted unanimously in favor…

New UAE space mission will orbit Venus and land on an asteroid
ATG medialab/ESA

New UAE space mission will orbit Venus and land on an asteroid

The United Arab Emirates is setting a course for Venus and the main asteroid belt. The new interplanetary mission, announced by the UAE Space Agency on Tuesday, will launch in 2028. The spacecraft will go on a five-year expedition, orbiting Venus and Earth before reaching the main asteroid belt located between Mars and Jupiter in…

The day Facebook went dark
Photo Illustration/CNN

The day Facebook went dark

A businessman in Atlanta changed his passwords because he thought his phone had been hacked. A Long Island woman who sells vintage items on Instagram lost revenue when she was forced to cancel a sale event. And a graduate student in Texas, freed from the distractions of social media, whipped through four assignments. For some…

Why it took nearly 50 years for scientists to name this mysterious tropical plant
Patricia Álvarez-Loayza/Chicago Field Museum

Why it took nearly 50 years for scientists to name this mysterious tropical plant

After nearly half a century, the mystery of Manu is finally solved. In 1973, scientist Robin Foster discovered a plant with bright orange fruit shaped like paper lanterns inside Peru’s Manu National Park. It’s now been classified as Aenigmanu alvareziae, or Mystery of Manu, according to a paper authored by Foster and published Wednesday in…

The unused “miracle”
CDC

The unused “miracle”

Before the advent of Covid-19 vaccines, the San Francisco Department of Public Health needed three whiteboards to capture all the names of senior facilities that had outbreaks, Jen Christensen reports. But by February, when seniors were being vaccinated in greater numbers, the department started to erase names of the facilities from these outbreak lists. “It…

Nobel Prize in chemistry awarded for ‘simple’ yet ‘ingenious’ discovery
JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP via Getty Images

Nobel Prize in chemistry awarded for ‘simple’ yet ‘ingenious’ discovery

The Nobel Prize in chemistry has been awarded to Benjamin List and David W.C. MacMillan, two scientists honored for creating “an ingenious tool for building molecules” that has helped develop new drugs and made chemistry greener. The pair were awarded the prize in Stockholm, Sweden on Wednesday, “for the development of asymmetric organocatalysis.” Their discoveries…

‘Terrifying’: Facebook whistleblower cites violence in Myanmar and Ethiopia, spying by China and Iran
Drew Angerer/Getty Images

‘Terrifying’: Facebook whistleblower cites violence in Myanmar and Ethiopia, spying by China and Iran

During much-anticipated testimony Tuesday before the Senate Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen repeatedly pointed outside of the country for examples of how the social network could be used to dangerous ends — so much so that lawmakers wondered during the hearing if they should meet to specifically discuss national security concerns. The…

Tiny rare fossil found in 16 million-year-old amber is ‘once-in-a-generation’ find

Tiny rare fossil found in 16 million-year-old amber is ‘once-in-a-generation’ find

Microscopic tardigrades have thrived on Earth for more than 500 million years, and may well outlive humans, but the tiny creatures don’t leave behind many fossils. Hiding in plain sight, the third-ever tardigrade fossil on record has been found suspended within a piece of 16-million-year-old Dominican amber. The find includes a newly named species, Paradoryphoribius…

Planet with iron rainfall is even more extreme than scientists thought
M. Kornmesser/ESO

Planet with iron rainfall is even more extreme than scientists thought

On this sizzling exoplanet hundreds of light-years from Earth, droplets of iron rain fall from the sky at night. Now, researchers have also detected sodium and ionized calcium in the planet’s atmosphere, based on observations from the Gemini North Telescope, which is located near the summit of Mauna Kea in Hawaii. The new findings suggest…

NASA’s DART mission will deliberately crash into an asteroid’s moon in the name of planetary defense
Steve Gribben/Johns Hopkins APL/NASA

NASA’s DART mission will deliberately crash into an asteroid’s moon in the name of planetary defense

A spacecraft that will deliberately crash into an asteroid is preparing to launch. The DART mission, or NASA’s Double Asteroid Redirection Test, will lift off at 10:20 p.m. PT on November 23 aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Vandenberg Space Force Base in California. After launching in November, NASA will test its asteroid deflection…

Nobel Prize in physics awarded to scientists whose work warned the world of climate change
Niklas Halle'n/AP

Nobel Prize in physics awarded to scientists whose work warned the world of climate change

The Nobel Prize in physics has been awarded to scientists Syukuro Manabe, Klaus Hasselmann and Giorgio Parisi, whose groundbreaking work over the past 60 years predicted climate change and decoded complex physical systems. Manabe, 90, and Hasselmann, 89, were jointly honored for “the physical modelling of Earth’s climate, quantifying variability and reliably predicting global warming,”…

Mars robots take cruise control during solar event
Shutterstock

Mars robots take cruise control during solar event

Everyone needs a break. My technology-cluttered surroundings were replaced recently with mountain trails and a lake where sunlight scattered like diamonds. Standing at the base of two converging waterfalls, the fine spray of mist on my face, I was reminded that natural marvels are never out of reach — we just forget to seek them…

2021 has ‘not been a good year for peacemaking.’ But WHO is tipped for the Nobel Peace Prize
BERIT ROALD/AFP/Getty Images

2021 has ‘not been a good year for peacemaking.’ But WHO is tipped for the Nobel Peace Prize

After 18 turbulent months spent tackling the global Covid-19 pandemic, the World Health Organization (WHO) is being broadly tipped as the frontrunner to take this year’s Nobel Peace Prize. The United Nations agency, which runs the vaccine-sharing program COVAX, is certainly the bookmakers’ pick for the prestigious accolade. British firms Betfair and William Hill both…