France Crackdown, Manchester Restrictions, Nazca Strains Cat: Your Tuesday Briefing
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We cover France’s approach About Muslims accused of extremism, a Conflict over coronavirus restrictions in England and the discovery of one very, very old cat.
France’s action against “the enemy within”
The brutal murder of Samuel Paty, a teacher in a suburb north of Paris who showed caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad in the classroom, reopened old wounds in France – and sparked a swift official response.
On Monday, the country sparked sweeping crackdown on Muslims accused of extremism, carried out dozens of raids, promised to shut down aid groups and threatened to expel foreigners.
Thousands of people took to the streets over the weekend to express their horror at Friday’s murder. And politicians, especially on the right, rushed to raise the alarm against “the enemy within,” as the persistent Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin put it in a radio interview with reference to so-called radicalized Muslims.
Go deeper: Many of those involved in raids were already in police files for showing “signals” of possible radicalization, such as preaching radicalized sermons or sharing hateful messages on social networks, government officials said. Other target groups were Muslim associations that had previously received state subsidies for their work to promote better civil relations.
Manchester and Westminster argue over the virus plan
Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham has been arguing for days with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson over the government’s plan to impose the highest coronavirus restrictions on hard-hit Manchester, close pubs, bars and gyms, and ban people from socializing different households.
Mr Burnham says the restrictions would destroy the city’s economy and that the central government has not offered adequate financial assistance to people who would lose their jobs during the lockdown. Almost ubiquitous on television, he led a violent uprising on behalf of his 2.8 million voters.
“People can’t just be pressured,” said Mr. Burnham. “I am not pressured. And I’m not going to turn around somehow just looking at a check. “
Analysis: The stalemate reflects growing frustration with Mr. Johnson’s unpredictable, often opaque handling of the pandemic, as well as the long-standing complaints people in the old industrial cities of northern England have against the richer – and more powerful – south.
Connected: Museums in Europe have reopened, but visitors have not returned in large numbers. The institutions only report about a third of the visitors they had in the past year. Even government bailouts may not be enough to offset the decline in ticket sales.
Here are the latest updates and maps of the pandemic.
In other developments:
Polish deputy prime minister and de facto leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski is being quarantined after learning that he has been in contact with someone infected with the coronavirus.
Officials in Melbourne, Australia eased the lockdown so residents could travel up to 15 miles from their homes and up to 10 people from two households could socialize outdoors.
25 crew members aboard a cattle truck docked in a port in Western Australia have tested positive for the virus.
The South African Minister of Health Dr. Zwelini Mkhize said he and his wife Dr. May Mkhize had tested positive for the virus and he was optimistic that they would “fully recover”.
The US accuses Russians of major cyber attacks
The Justice Ministry announced charges against six Russian intelligence officers in connection with a global hacking campaign, accusing them of targeting targets such as the opening ceremony of the 2018 Winter Olympics, the French presidential elections and the Ukrainian power grid.
Prosecutors said the suspects came from the same Russian unit that carried out one of the Kremlin’s key operations to interfere in the 2016 US election – the theft of emails intended to embarrass Hillary Clinton.
Details: In the attack on the 2018 Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, internet access and television broadcasts were turned off, broadcasters’ drones were grounded and viewers were prevented from attending the opening ceremony. Security experts called the attack Sour Grapes because they believed it was carried out by Russians despite a ban on Russian athletes.
European interference: The Justice Department said the hackers released stolen documents in 2017 in an attempt to injure Emmanuel Macron in his presidential race in France against Marine Le Pen, a far-right candidate backed by Moscow. They are also accused of hacking the Ukrainian Parliament, Ministry of Finance and the power grid.
If you have 5 minutes, it’s worth it
A hashish boom goes bankrupt in Lebanon
Yamouneh, a village in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley, has long been reliant on its cannabis industry. But for the first time since growing the crop two decades ago, farmers are rethinking their reliance on hashish.
The pandemic, the country’s economic crisis and the war in Syria that confused smuggling routes have all wiped out profits. Now the drug is making so little money that some producers in Yamouneh have doubted it’s still worth making.
“It’s over,” said the village chief. “Growing hash is now a hobby.”
The following also happens
China’s economy: With most of the world still grappling with the pandemic, China’s economy is growing. It rose 4.9 percent from July to September year-over-year, suggesting that a quick economic recovery is possible if the coronavirus is firmly brought under control.
US election: President Trump named Dr. Anthony Fauci, the country’s leading infectious disease expert, “was a disaster” and said people were “tired” of hearing about the coronavirus. Increasing voter registrations in three critical states – Florida, North Carolina and Pennsylvania – offer Republicans new hope. And Republican voters are mainstreaming radical QAnon conspiracy theory.
Narwhal tusk: Queen Elizabeth II has approved a rare royal pardon for a murder convicted inmate who used a whale tusk – as a wall decoration during a conference he attended a daytime program – to stop a deadly terrorist attack in London in late 2019.
Snapshot: Above, the figure of a lazy cat engraved in the side of a hill in Nazca, Peru. Archaeologists discovered the 40-meter-long, 2,000-year-old drawing on the UNESCO World Heritage Site known as the Nazca Lines.
Lived life: Ed Benguiat, the famous graphic designer behind more than 600 fonts – including those you see above in the print and web editions of this newspaper and in the cover sequence of the Netflix series “Stranger Things” – died last week at the age of 92 .
What we read: This New York interview with Russian opposition leader Aleksei Navalny. “This takes you into Navalny’s hospital room and the aftermath of his coma in certain details, including the fact that he watched ‘Rick and Morty’ on the plane when he was feeling sick,” writes Claire Moses of The Morning.
Now a break from the news
Cook: This roasted eggplant lentil orzo stew is rich, calming, and great for leftover lunches.
Listen: Bruce Springsteen’s new album with the E Street band “Letter to You” is based on lessons and skills gathered in the past. But the boss is concentrating on where he is now – and where he’s going next, writes our reviewer.
To do: Think big when choosing a bed, even in a small space. Here is our buying guide.
Take a break from work when you can. At Home offers a comprehensive collection of ideas on what to read, cook, see, and do while staying safe at home.
And now for the background story about …
Maintain a few (feather-light) friendships
Bird watching in the back yard could be the perfect pandemic pastime. If you don’t have access to a back yard, a porch or roof will do. Here are steps to kickstart your bird watching.
Set the table. To draw a large and diverse population, several feeds are required, each with a treat to attract specific species. Tubular-shaped, equipped with perches too small for large birds and filled with finch feed with mixed seeds, attract finches and other small birds. A perch feeder large enough for large birds and filled with a wild bird feed mixture rich in nuts, fruits, and sunflower seeds will attract cardinals, blue jays, common gray crayfish, and other large birds.
Be patient. It can be weeks before birds discover their free buffet. Once your feed troughs are set up, you’ll see birds you’ve never seen before. While you sit back and wait, read a field guide or download the Audubon Bird Guide app to learn more about your new feathered guests.
Take a closer look. Watching birds with the naked eye is entertaining, but most bird watchers use binoculars. You can buy a good pair for under $ 150 or spend $ 3,000 on the best models. Look for models that are magnified 8 times or greater so that a bird appears at least eight times larger when viewed than when viewed with the naked eye.
Or take a picture. If you want to take pictures of the birds, start with your smartphone. For more professional results, you’ll need a high-resolution 35mm digital camera and a telephoto lens. But even if you buy used equipment, expect at least $ 500.
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Thank you very much
To Theodore Kim and Jahaan Singh for the break from the news. You can reach the team at [email protected]
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