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Watching and Ignoring


Ebola in the DRC — According to the Health Ministry of the Democratic Republic of Congo, “Our country is facing another epidemic of the Ebola virus, which constitutes an international public health emergency.” At least 17 people have died following the latest outbreak, the ninth documented in the DRC. The virus, discovered in the DRC in the 1970s, takes its name from the country’s Ebola river.

Brazil after Barbosa — Former Supreme Court President Joaquim Barbosaannounced this week he won’t run for president. With less than five months to go, Brazil’s election remains wide open, if now a little less interesting.

Clown protest — In April, 100 people were murdered in the Mexican resort town of Acapulco. Residents are angry, but not surprised. This week, a group of professional clowns dressed in white made international news by marching to protest the violent crime that has become common in many Mexican cities and towns. Love them or fear them, clowns command attention.


Mr. Sandman — In Rio, there are three kinds of people: those rich enough to afford a home with an ocean view, those who can’t afford such luxury, and Marcio Mizael Matolias. This third category consists of one man who lives on Barra da Tijuca beach while avoiding the high cost of housing by living in a (literal) sandcastle. Hold off on jokes about “unsustainable development,” because he says he has lived there for 22 years. So far so good. But his commitment isn’t total: When the sand gets too hot, he stays at a friend’s house.

The Robert Mueller Rumor Mill — Again this week we saw “bombshell” media reports on various allegations against President Trump followed quickly by news that Robert Mueller was investigating the same issues months ago. The Special Counsel is obviously 187 steps ahead of everyone talking and writing about his investigation. #Wait for Mueller

Carbon has a bad rep, but did you know it's a building block of life? As atoms evolved, carbon trapped in CO2 was freed, giving way to the creation of complex molecules that use photosynthesis to convert carbon to food. Soon after, plants, herbivores, and carnivores began populating the earth and the cycle of life began.

Learn more about how carbon created life on Earth in the second episode of Eni's Story of CO2 series.

On September 23, GZERO Media — in partnership with Microsoft and Eurasia Group — gathered global experts to discuss global recovery from the coronavirus pandemic in a livestream panel. Our panel for the discussion Crisis Response & Recovery: Reimagining while Rebuilding, included:

  • Brad Smith, President, Microsoft
  • Ian Bremmer, President and Founder, Eurasia Group & GZERO Media
  • Jeh Johnson, Partner, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, LLP and former Secretary of Homeland Security.
  • John Frank, Vice President, UN Affairs at Microsoft
  • Susan Glasser, staff writer and Washington columnist, The New Yorker (moderator)

Special appearances by UN Secretary-General António Guterres, European Central Bank chief Christine Lagarde, and comedian/host Trevor Noah.

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Carl Bildt, former Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Sweden, shares his perspective on the Navalny poisoning on Europe In 60 Seconds:

Can Europe get to the bottom of Russian opposition leader Navalny's poisoning? And if so, would it change anything?

One has got to the bottom of it, to certain extent. The evidence, there was a German laboratory confirming nerve agent, Novichok. They sent it to a French laboratory and the Swedish independent laboratory, they came to the exact same conclusions. I mean, it's dead certain. He was poisoned with an extremely poisonous nerve agent coming from the Russian state laboratories. Now, there is a discussion underway of what to do. I mean, the Russians are refusing any sort of serious discussions about it. Surprise, surprise. And we'll see what actions will be taken. There might be some sort of international investigation within the context of the OPCW, the international organization that is there, to safeguard the integrity of the international treaties to prevent chemical weapons. But we haven't seen the end of this story yet.

Watch as Nicholas Thompson, editor-in-chief of WIRED, explains what's going on in technology news:

Would Facebook actually leave Europe? What's the deal?

The deal is that Europe has told Facebook it can no longer transfer data back and forth between the United States and Europe, because it's not secure from US Intelligence agencies. Facebook has said, "If we can't transfer data back and forth, we can't operate in Europe." My instinct, this will get resolved. There's too much at stake for both sides and there are all kinds of possible compromises.

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Jon Lieber, who leads Eurasia Group's coverage of political and policy developments in Washington, offers insights on the Supreme Court vacancy:

Will Senate Republicans, who stopped a Supreme Court nomination in 2016, because it was too close to an election, pay a political price for the change in tactics this time around?

Not only do I think they won't pay a political price, I think in many cases, they're going to benefit. Changing the balance of power on the Supreme Court has been a career-long quest for many conservatives and many Republicans. And that's why you've seen so many of them fall in line behind the President's nomination before we even know who it is.

At this point, do Senate Democrats have any hope of stopping President Trump from filling the ninth seat on the Supreme Court?

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Panel: How will the world recover from COVID-19?

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