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The Latest: Aggressive China, Fukushima Wastewater, Spanish Beach Lessons

While many Britons opted for a haircut or a pint after the UK partially eased lockdown restrictions, these folk chose to visit the Alton Towers theme park in England.
While many Britons opted for a haircut or a pint after the UK partially eased lockdown restrictions, these folk chose to visit the Alton Towers theme park in England.

Welcome to Tuesday, where Japan is set to release Fukushima wastewater into the sea, Prince Harry remembers his grandpa and Spanish children swap classrooms for lessons on the beach. We've also gone on a world tour of the most random livestreams.

• "Record number" of China jets enter Taiwan air zone: The Taiwanese defense ministry has said that 25 Chinese military jets flew into its air defense zone on Monday. The U.S. has recently warned against an "increasingly aggressive China."

• Japan to release Fukushima wastewater: The Japanese government has announced it will release over 1 million tons of treated contaminated water from the shattered Fukushima nuclear station into the ocean over the next two years. Neighboring countries have expressed "grave concern." This announcement comes ten years after an earthquake and a tsunami destroyed the nuclear facility.

• 42 migrants drown off East African coast: Sixteen children are among the 42 people killed after a boat carrying migrants capsized off Djibouti, the small nation in the Horn of Africa.

• Dozens arrested in new round of Minneapolis protests: At least 40 people have been arrested in Minneapolis in a second night of unrest over the police shooting of a black man. Police said Daunte Wright, 20, was fatally shot after an officer mistook her gun for a Taser during a traffic stop. The incident comes during the second week of the trial in the same city for the police killing of George Floyd.

• New Year festivities cancelled, silent protests held in Myanmar: Pro-democracy protesters have cancelled traditional new year festivities. Small protests were also held in several cities where people showed plancards reading "Save Myanmar" in silence.

• German far-right group on trial for "terror plot": The trial of 11 suspected members of a far-right ‘terror" group starts in Stuttgart. They were arrested in February over accusations of planning attacks on migrants, Muslims and politicians, aimed at sparking a civil war.

• Spanish pupils to get beach lessons: Barefoot and mask-wearing Spanish students are having school at the beach as part of a teaching project to create better air quality for children during the pandemic.

Indonesian daily The Jakarta Post reports on the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on the fasting month of Ramadan, which is being restricted for the second year in a row.

From astrophysics to zebras, a world tour of weird livestreams

COVID-19 lockdowns and curfews have pushed us into a new, suspended period that Belgian philosopher Pascal Chabot calls "hypertime," where some have kept calm and carried on by baking bread as others sink deep inside the Netflix catalogue. But with our collective cabin fever now over the one-year mark, the number of at-home pastimes to occupy us seems to be dwindling. That leaves us time (eternity?) for the internet's ultimate time suck and virtual link to the outside world: the livestream. Here is a round-up of some of the most random real-time feeds from around the globe:

Stop Sign Cam

WHERE: Salem, Massachusetts, USA

WHAT: A Twitch channel devoted to one camera hanging at a street intersection in Salem, Massachusetts, where viewers watch cars as they approach a stop sign. What makes the livestream enthralling to viewers is the astounding number of vehicles that roll right on down the street, blatantly disrespecting driving etiquette.

POTENTIAL SIDE EFFECTS: Road rage, an unexpected predilection for rules and order.

IF YOU LIKED THIS, YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: Las Vegas Cams, another outlet for watching people make scandalous decisions as the livestream includes a view of the famous Viva Las Vegas Wedding Chapel.

Naledi Dam Webcam

WHERE: Kruger National Park, South Africa

WHAT: A camera that rotates 180 degrees located at a waterhole where the local fauna, from zebras to jaguars, refresh themselves.

POTENTIAL SIDE EFFECTS: The feeling your household pets are slightly subpar.

IF YOU LIKED THIS, YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: The Brooks Falls Brown Bears webcam that records these Alaskan beasts in their native habitat.

International Space Station on UStream

WHERE: Outer space

WHAT: Real-time footage of brave astronauts floating about their daily lives at the International Space Station.

POTENTIAL SIDE EFFECTS: The sudden realization that you are but a finite speck in a vast and senseless universe, and that astrophysics is much more fun in practice.

IF YOU LIKED THIS, YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: The Northern Lights Webcam, which monitors the aurora borealis live from Churchill, Canada.

➡️ Read more on Worldcrunch.com


Average global daily TV consumption stood at 2 hours and 54 minutes in 2020 — a six-minute increase compared with 2019, according to a report by Glance (Global Audience & Content Evolution). The pandemic and national lockdown are believed responsible for the first increase since 2012, boosting the interest for television all around the world, with the exception of North America (- 8 minutes), where viewers have increasingly switched to the SVOD platforms such as Netflix or Disney+.

He was my grandpa: master of the barbecue, legend of banter, and cheeky right "til the end.

— Prince Harry said in a statement, paying homage to his grandfather Prince Philip, who died at Windsor Castle last week at the age of 99. The televised royal funeral for the Duke of Edinburgh will take place on Saturday.

✍️ Newsletter by Anne-Sophie Goninet & Emma Flacard

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Life On "Mars": With The Teams Simulating Space Missions Under A Dome

A niche research community plays out what existence might be like on, or en route to, another planet.

Photo of a person in a space suit walking toward the ​Mars Desert Research Station near Hanksville, Utah

At the Mars Desert Research Station near Hanksville, Utah

Sarah Scoles

In November 2022, Tara Sweeney’s plane landed on Thwaites Glacier, a 74,000-square-mile mass of frozen water in West Antarctica. She arrived with an international research team to study the glacier’s geology and ice fabric, and how its ice melt might contribute to sea level rise. But while near Earth’s southernmost point, Sweeney kept thinking about the moon.

“It felt every bit of what I think it will feel like being a space explorer,” said Sweeney, a former Air Force officer who’s now working on a doctorate in lunar geology at the University of Texas at El Paso. “You have all of these resources, and you get to be the one to go out and do the exploring and do the science. And that was really spectacular.”

That similarity is why space scientists study the physiology and psychology of people living in Antarctic and other remote outposts: For around 25 years, people have played out what existence might be like on, or en route to, another world. Polar explorers are, in a way, analogous to astronauts who land on alien planets. And while Sweeney wasn’t technically on an “analog astronaut” mission — her primary objective being the geological exploration of Earth — her days played out much the same as a space explorer’s might.

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