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It’s almost 6,000 miles from Istanbul to Atlanta, and it’s going to be a long flight. The passengers on this flight really need to stretch their legs — all four of them, to be exact.

This is not the departures lounge; it’s the Ataturk Airport cargo hall, a vast, echoing hangar full of forklifts, packages and 18 empty dog crates. They’re slowly being filled by golden retrievers whose hues range from pearly white to burnished bronze. The dogs seem a little overwhelmed by the airport, but they’re cooperating.

David Mdzinarishvili/Reuters

The White House press briefing on Wednesday was a little strange.

Trump policy advisor Stephen Miller was at the podium to defend the president’s new immigration proposal, which would prioritize high-skilled immigrants who already speak English.

Miller faced pushback from reporters, including a heated back-and-forth with CNN’s Jim Acosta, who quoted the Statue of Liberty’s famous inscription (“give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses...”) and questioned whether the immigration policy changes were in line with those values.

Eric Gaillard/Reuters 

A French appeals court on Tuesday increased the sentence against a farmer who has made a point of helping migrants cross the border from Italy but stopped short of jailing him.

The court in Aix-en-Provence gave activist Cédric Herrou a four-month suspended sentence — half the length the prosecutor had asked for, but more than his initial sentence.

"This is a warning sentence," the court's senior judge told him. "If you are convicted again, you risk having this sentence applied."

Sonia Narang

Since World War II, the US has operated a large military base in the central part of Okinawa — a now-crowded island city in Japan's southernmost prefecture. More than half of about 50,000 US service members in Japan are stationed on Okinawa.

Now, the US and Japanese governments are planning to move the Marine base to a more pristine place — the rural fishing village of Henoko. There's already a small base there, but locals are waging a major fight against the expansion.

When I first bought Zoe, my poodle mix, I had high hopes for her future.

I was convinced she’d be an astrophysicist like Mr. Peabody on "The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show." 

But it’s been three years, and while Zoe has had plenty of time to think, she has made zero progress on her time machine.

So now, I'm looking at backup careers for her.

'Act of terrorism' at Minnesota mosque rattles Muslims

Aug 8, 2017
Courtesy of Dar Al-Farooq Islamic Center Facebook page

A violent message was delivered to Minnesota’s Muslim population early Saturday morning. At 5:05 a.m. local time, an improvised explosive device went off inside an imam’s office at the Dar Al-Farooq Islamic Center in Bloomington, Minnesota.

About a dozen worshipers were gathered nearby in the mosque for morning prayers, but no one was injured in the explosion. Congregants called the attack a hate crime, a sentiment echoed by Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton.

Ziynda Kamte says she looked out the bus window the whole way to Cape Town.

She says she never stopped looking back. She was terrified that he would pop into her view, coming to get her and their two kids.

“My husband — he changed,” Kamte explains. “He started being abusive, beating me, treating me like nothing. There were days in which he would come home at 4 a.m. And he just wanted us to jam into it, and make love.”

Eastport, Maine, earned its name because it's the easternmost port, and city, in the United States. It’s just a three-minute boat ride from Canada. The city has survived more than 200 years living off the sea, a constant tale of reinvention.

From a peak population of just more than 5,000 in the year 1900, the city has dwindled to an estimated 1,352 residents. Today, a handful of restaurants dot its tiny downtown. During winter, they’re mostly closed.

From the very first minutes of the new documentary “Liberation Day,” Norwegian director Morten Traavik is out to challenge your assumptions about North Korea.

Scenes of screaming mobs at the height of Beatlemania. Rock stadium crowds waving in sync to Queen's Freddy Mercury. A young fan's hysterics at Michael Jackson's embrace. These images are interspliced with scenes of North Korean military marches and crowds behaving madly for their Dear Leader, currently Kim Jong-un.

Brenna Daldorph

Two videos emerged recently on Kenyan social media: One appeared to be from the BBC, the other from CNN. Both claimed that incumbent President Uhuru Kenyatta was way ahead in the polls for the presidential election on Tuesday.

But, in reality, the most recent polls show Kenyatta is neck-and-neck with his opponent, Raila Odinga.

England's new psychedelic renaissance

Aug 7, 2017
Leo Hornak/PRI

It was 50 years ago that Britain first went psychedelic — a generation of music, culture and creativity becoming refracted through the power of mind-altering substances.

How to hack the internet, Cuban-style

Aug 7, 2017
Alexandre Meneghini/Reuters 

Facing limited internet options, high costs and low speeds, Cubans are creating workarounds to get online.

Since 2014, the government has opened hundreds of public Wi-Fi hot spots for Cubans and tourists who visit the island. But for many Cubans, the costs to get online are too high. And when they do, many find the connection speeds too slow.

That's why some Cubans are creating workarounds to get online. 

Want to learn about sex? In South Africa, just turn on the radio.

Aug 7, 2017
Siphiwe Sibeko/Reuters

When Marlene Wasserman was a young woman, she wanted to study sex.

It’s ironic that she was interested in how people get together in the most intimate of ways because she lives in a country that is obsessed with keeping people apart.

“You’ve got to remember that we had censorship,” explains Wasserman. “There was sexuality censorship so there was absolutely no exposure to pornography, to sexuality education, to sex toys.”

South Africa was in the grips of apartheid — a brutal system of white minority rule that kept people of color separate from whites.

In small collisions, scientists find big new physics questions

Aug 7, 2017
Pierre Albouy/Reuters

In physics, the Standard Model describes how particles like quarks, leptons and bosons should interact. But as a review paper detailed in the journal Nature in June, recent experiments at particle colliders around the world have turned up anomalies that the rule book doesn’t quite account for.

'The oldest not-18-year-old'

Aug 7, 2017

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Mobeen Azhar

For centuries, South Asia has had its own Khawaja Sira or third gender culture. The community, identifying as neither male nor female, are believed by many to be "God’s chosen people," with special powers to bless and curse anyone they choose. 

The acceptance of Khawaja Sira people in Pakistan has been held up internationally as a symbol of tolerance, established long before Europe and America had even the slightest semblance of a transgender rights movement. 

Shawn Brackbill

You may not know what a Quindar tone is, but you have definitely heard one.

Quindar tones are the beeps heard in the background of famous space communications, like Neil Armstrong’s “the Eagle has landed” message to Mission Control when the lunar module first reached the moon.

The first time Zain Alam’s music video was screened in public, at a symposium hosted by the South Asian American Digital Archive (SAADA) in Philadelphia in April, an elderly Sikh woman approached him in tears.

Alam was nervous. He had created the music video as part of the "Where We Belong: Artists in the Archive” project, an initiative to encourage artists to use SAADA’s collection — photographs, videos, letters and publications that date all the way back to the late 1800s — to create works that bring to life histories often overlooked by cultural heritage institutions.

Can we pay people to save the rainforests?

Aug 6, 2017
<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/rod_waddington/21429887344/" style="font-size: 13.008000373840332px;">Rod Waddington/Flickr, CC-by SA 2.0</a>

Earth’s forests are crucial for controlling the rising levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and for maintaining biodiversity, so efforts are underway around the world to stop deforestation. But what happens when those same trees are also crucial to a family’s livelihood?

One solution being tried in countries like Costa Rica and Uganda is to pay landowners not to cut down their trees.

<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/widnr/">Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources</a>/<a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/">CC-BY-ND 2.0</a>

On a cloudy summer day, Iowa farmer Wendy Johnson lifts the corner of a mobile chicken tractor — a lightweight plastic frame covered in wire mesh that has corralled her month-old meat chickens for a few days — and frees several dozen birds to peck the surrounding area at will. Soon, she’ll sell these chickens to customers at local markets in eastern Iowa.

The demand for beef, pork and chicken raised on smaller farms closer to home is growing. Now, some Midwest farmers, like Johnson, are exploring how to graze livestock to meet those demands while still earning a profit.

The Midnight Scan Club

Aug 5, 2017

A Relatively Important Eclipse

Aug 5, 2017

Neutrinos Caught In The Act Of Collision

Aug 5, 2017

Montreal's iconic Olympic Stadium has undergone a temporary transformation into a refugee welcome center.

The stadium has agreed to house about 450 asylum-seekers for a couple of months while the government figures out what to do next.

On Wednesday, the first busloads of people arrived, and now they are sleeping on cots, in a hallway, by the concession stands.

“The ambiance is camplike,” says Mireille Paquet, an immigration policy expert at Concordia University in Montreal, “but for now at least they're safe.”

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