Hard Numbers: “Call Me Ishmael-San,” Japanese Whaling Returns

7: US negotiators sat down with the Taliban for a 7th round of peace talks over the weekend, amid ongoing violence in the country. Two US special forces soldiers were killed in a firefight with Taliban fighters last week.

121: It's been 121 months since the US emerged from the steep recession that followed the financial crisis in June 2009. That's the longest economic expansion in US history.

31: Japan resumed commercial whaling on Monday, ending a 31-year hiatus. The move follows Japan's withdrawal from the International Whaling Commission, a global conservation organization that passed a moratorium on whale hunting in the 1980s. Japan insists it can whale in an environmentally responsible way, but the move has sparked criticism from activists.

72: Just 72 percent of people in North America (and 73 percent of Northern Europeans) think vaccines are safe. Contrast that with the 95 percent of South Asians and the 92 percent of East Africans who agree with that statement. Overall, 79 percent of the world believes vaccines are safe to administer. #FirstWorldProblems
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