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America’s climate plus spending bill

Climate change affects everything from geopolitics to economies to migration. It shapes cities, life expectancies and wine lists. After a long path through Congress, a giant tax-and-spend package is on the verge of being passed by Democrats. It will be America’s first significant climate law and a cornerstone of President Joe Biden’s agenda. The bill

Changing Germany face

The crisis brought on by Russia’s attack on Ukraine this February is of a different order. Olaf Scholz, who took over from Mrs Merkel last December at the head of a coalition of social democrats, greens and liberals, was quick to grasp the shift. Germany would support Ukraine to the hilt, he said. It would

China’s huge exercises around Taiwan

On August 4th, the People’s Liberation Army kicked off the largest and most sophisticated military exercises it has ever conducted. Over a week, the Chinese launched dozens of missiles and conducted drills near Taiwan with 100 aircraft, ten destroyers and support vessels. Submarines and aircraft-carriers also played a role. Now China’s armed forces are comparable

Islamic State are digging into Africa

Americans and Europeans are preoccupied with other crises, from Ukraine to Taiwan. But the two Hellfire missiles that killed Ayman al-Zawahiri, al-Qaeda’s leader and Osama bin Laden’s successor, on a balcony in Kabul on July 31st were a reminder of his group’s staying power. Thirteen years have passed since al-Qaeda’s last big plot against America,

Growing in nuclear arsenals of China, India and Pakistan

in many ways, all three countries were hesitant nuclear powers. China did not deploy a missile capable of hitting the American mainland until the 1980s. When India and Pakistan fought a war over Kargil, in the disputed region of Kashmir, in the summer of 1999, India’s air force, tasked with delivering the bombs if needed,

The computer can identify different types of plastic in the sea

plastic waste was a major part of the global pollution crisis, but monitoring it was challenging given the scale, complexity and time required to do so manually. The data the computer was gathering would eventually allow the use of unmanned boats to identify plastic pollution in the oceans around the world. Scientists are using a

Facebook sued against sharing private message

Facebook has been roundly attacked for sharing private messages with Nebraska police in a criminal abortion case against a mother and her teenage daughter. The messages allegedly showed that Jessica Burgess obtained abortion medication for her daughter and instructed her on how to use them when she was 23 weeks pregnant – beyond Nebraska’s 20-week

new foldable Samsung Galaxy phones

Samsung has announced its new foldable Galaxy phones at its Unpacked 2022 event – the Z Flip 4 and the Z Fold 4. The Fold is a traditional-sized smartphone which opens horizontally, like a book, to reveal a larger, tablet-sized screen, while the Flip is a smaller device which opens vertically to reveal a nearly

Facebook new encryption technology

Facebook has been promising that it will encrypt and secure messages for some time. Facebook is rolling out new encrypted messages, to keep Messenger chats secure. The new end-to-end encryption should mean that messages can only be read by the sender and recipient and that nobody, including Facebook, can intercept them on their way. But

space debris that keeps almost crashing

There are currently around 25,000 objects of space debris larger than 10 centimetres in size orbiting the planet, and between 600,000 and 900,000 pieces of non-trackable debris that could pose a risk to spacecraft and satellites. The ISS had already had to conduct an avoidance manoeuvre in June to avoid fragments of Cosmos 1408, as