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The 'Wild West on steroids' cools off

9 hours ago
Jason Margolis

The small town of Williston, North Dakota, became an international destination a few years back — people came streaming in from across the globe to cash in on the area’s oil boom. Improvements in hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, turned the small, conservative, rural outpost into one of the nation’s fastest growing economies.

After landing at the tiny Williston airport, many new arrivals made their way next door to Lonnie’s Roadhouse Café.

There's one happy political cartoonist in Turkey today: Musa Kart.

Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters

The showdown between the government and opposition is coming to a head this weekend in Venezuela. The government is holding a vote on Sunday to choose members of a body that would rewrite the constitution.

Critics around the world say it's a power grab by President Nicolás Maduro.

So the opposition has called for a fresh round of protests against him.

The government has tried to ban all protests before the vote and has threatened long prison sentences for anyone who defies the ban. 

Reuters/Khaled Abdullah

Nurses and doctors have been working overtime in public hospitals — without pay — to keep pace with the cholera epidemic in Yemen, which has now infected an estimated 400,000 people across the country. An American documentarian recently took his film crew to a hospital in the rebel-held capital, Sanaa.

Young, undocumented and trying to 'keep my sanity'

10 hours ago
Courtesy of Erick Silva Palacios

Erick Silva Palacios is at his kitchen table, glued to his laptop. He’s watching a press conference with Dick Durbin, the Democratic Illinois senator, and a bipartisan group of senators introducing the latest version of the Dream Act. It would help people like Silva Palacios.

What's the word of the week around the globe?

10 hours ago

If you had to sum up the week's news in a single word, what would it be? The World asked journalists in four different countries what everyone's talking about.  

1. RUSSIA: sanctions

The Creator’s game. That's what the Haudenosaunee Nation, which straddles the US and Canada, calls lacrosse.

And they should know — they invented the game.

This month, the women's national team went to England to compete in the Lacrosse World Cup, and they were able to travel on their tribal passports.

What to do with captured women and children of ISIS?

14 hours ago
Goran Tomasevic/Reuters

The military defeats suffered by ISIS over the past few months, in Syria and Iraq, are leading to some unexpected problems. ISIS supporters, women and children, are being displaced and sometimes captured.

It's an uncomfortable reality, but ISIS supporters are people too. That raises issues about what happens to them now.

Alex Newman/PRI

In a cramped Harvard University sub-basement, a team of women is working to document the rich history of their predecessors.

More than 40 years before women gained the right to vote, women labored in the Harvard College Observatory as “computers” — astronomy’s version of NASA’s “Hidden Figures” mathematicians.

Elie Gardner

Loury Rasheed is just 17 years old, but she looks and sounds older than her age. That might have to do with the fact that Loury has been working instead of going to school for nearly five years. Her family fled their home in Aleppo back in 2012, in the early days of Syria’s war. At the time, the crisis was considered to be temporary, and Syrian kids weren’t registered in Turkish schools.

A new way to go local: Buy solar energy from your neighbors

20 hours ago

The green trend these days is to go local — and if urbanites can source everything from veggies to craft beer in their neighborhoods, why not solar energy?

LO3 Energy, a New York-based startup, is working on one way to do so. Its project, Brooklyn Microgrid, aims to help electricity users buy energy from their energy-producing neighbors, using smart meters and an app.

Alan Alda: To Talk Better, Listen

20 hours ago
<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/mattradickal/6214765816/">Matt Radick/The State News</a>/<a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">CC BY 2.0 (image cropped)</a>

Just over a year after President Barack Obama introduced a new policy to allow transgender people to serve openly in the US military, President Donald Trump is reinstating a ban on transgender service members.

He announced the reforms on Wednesday over Twitter:

Jason Margolis/PRI

It's hard to imagine that anyone hasn't heard President Donald Trump talk about how America is losing badly at trade. And, it’s true that the US is a net importer of goods: We buy more than we sell. But not all states are “losing” when it comes to trade balances.

UK to ban sale of gasoline and diesel cars by 2040

Jul 27, 2017

Britain said Wednesday it will outlaw the sale of new diesel and gasoline cars and vans from 2040 in a bid to cut air pollution but environmental groups said the proposals did not go far enough.

Environment minister Michael Gove announced the move as part of the government's keenly-awaited $3.9 billion air pollution plan, which will demand that councils propose measures by March next year to reduce nitrogen dioxide (NO2) levels.

For the past few years, humanitarian workers have been carrying out rescues of migrants trying to cross the Mediterranean Sea to Europe — but a new group wants to put a stop to it.

A dozen mostly 20-somethings from Europe are trying to head out to sea to investigate and possibly disrupt the rescue operations, aiming to prevent more migrants from reaching Europe’s shores.

What is Defend Europe?

In Texas, women with limited access to abortions are traveling across the border to find a drug that will induce miscarriages. In Mississippi, anti-abortion groups are opening crisis pregnancy centers across from abortion clinics to persuade women to keep their babies. And one company offers permanent birth control through the insertion of a simple device – that’s ended up causing health complications for thousands of women. This week, we look into pregnancy and the ways people try to prevent it, end it and save it.

About McCain's 'beacon of liberty' vision of America

Jul 27, 2017
Senate TV/Handout via Reuters

Sen. John McCain described America as a "beacon of liberty and defender of the dignity of all human beings," in an impassioned address on Tuesday.

So what does that sound like to the rest of the world, especially in the Donald Trump era?

"In countries like China, countries like Russia, they point to America's political woes at the moment and they say, 'You see, we told you this messy Western democracy, it was never a good idea. They can't take decisions. They're completely stuck,'" says David Rennie, DC bureau chief for The Economist.

Jonathan Ernst/Reuters

President Donald Trump announced Wednesday that transgender people may not serve "in any capacity" in the US military, citing the "tremendous medical costs and disruption" their presence would cause.

In late June, Pentagon chief Jim Mattis delayed for six months a plan put in place under Barack Obama's administration to start accepting transgender recruits. 

An estimated 2,500 to 7,000 transgender people are among the 1.3 million active duty service members.

Bokanté serves up songs in the key of Creole

Jul 27, 2017

The Vancouver Jazz Festival recently drew musicians from around the world to Canada’s West Coast. One band brought a distinctive sound flavored with Caribbean rhythms, West African music, and Mississippi Delta blues to the stage. They call themselves Bokanté, which means “exchange” in the Creole language of the Caribbean. 

Charles Reed/ICE via Reuters

Most Sunday evenings in the rural South Florida town of Homestead are quiet. Young people congregate at a handful of restaurants that sell Salvadoran pupusas, Honduran baleadas and Mexican enchiladas.

They stop for ice cream and chat on the sidewalks, or sit on the numerous park benches that populate the cement square outside City Hall. Sometimes their parents or elders usher them into one of the town’s Pentecostal churches.

There are some epic public apologies out there: the church's apology to Galileo, for instance, or Tiger Woods' apology to his wife.

This one, below, is a personal favorite.

But even with the Bill Clinton lower-lip bite, this one pales in comparison to the historic mea culpa issued this weekend.

Jens Buettner/Reuters

Many in Slovenia, once Melania Trump’s home country, wonder why the world’s famous Slovenian-American lady never comes to visit, why she is reluctant to speak her native language.

But regardless, her new status has put her country, and her hometown, on the map.

Many people here feel proud of Trump and call her the world’s first lady, asking why she is trying to cut off two decades of her life in their charming country surrounded by the Alps and the Adriatic Sea.

Jason Margolis

Small, rural companies in North Dakota are increasingly turning to the US government to help grow their businesses, create jobs, and, in turn, boost their local economies. North Dakota business groups want the program expanded; they’ve been waiting a long time.

Love, quantum physics and 'entanglement'

Jul 26, 2017

Love. Quantum physics. Completely unrelated, and yet strangely parallel.

For one thing, they're both mysterious — we don’t really understand how either one of them works. But they share something else — what scientists call "entanglement."

People get entangled with each other when they fall in love, and it can start when they’re nowhere near each other, perhaps catching each other’s eyes for the first time across a crowded room.

The future is electric for the global car industry

Jul 26, 2017
Phil Noble/Reuters

It wasn't long ago that hybrid and electric cars seemed a futuristic novelty. But cars that do more than burn gas passed a new milestone this week.

Volvo has announced that from 2019 onwards, none of its new models will be conventional gasoline-only. All of them will be electric-only, or hybrid gasoline-electric.

There are planned to be five fully electric Volvo models by 2021, as well as hybrid models. Volvo will still manufacture earlier models that have pure combustion engines.

Could this be the start of a new electric era in driving? Some experts think so.

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