IN A NUTSHELL 18/20

IRAN STRIKES BACK AFTER SULEIMANI’S DEATH

After the USA had killed Qassem Suleimani, an Iranian general, the country’s leaders promised to take revenge on America. The general was a very important person for the Iranians and the crowd which gathered at his funeral was more than 3 kilometres long. On the night on January 7, 2020 more than a dozen missiles were fired at a military base with American soldiers and troops of the coalition forces. There is no doubt the attack was the promised revenge. Iranian officials said they targeted the base which organised the attack on Suleimani and it was the least that they could do.    They also call the US to pull troops out of the region to avoid more attacks and deaths.

Source: https://www.reuters.com/video/watch/idPdqG?now=true

NO PHONES IN AUSTRALIA’S SCHOOLS

”Off and away all day” is the name of the programme whose aim is to prevent phone addictions among young people in Australia. The programme is for all public schools in Australia and concerns not only phones and tablets, but also intelligent watches or even headphones. Students are not supposed to use them during lessons and brakes. There are some differences depending on the age of students. The youngest ones (grades 0-6) can’t bring phones to school at all, older ones (grades 7-12) must have devices turned off and hidden. Wearable devices have to be in flight mode. The solution has first been tested in a group of schools and after the reviews turned out to be all positive, the government has taken a decision introduce on all-national scale.

Source: highlab.pl, an article about ban on telephones in Australia’s schools

WHEN TOURISTS START TO BE A PROBLEM

Sequels of films rarely manage to meet the expectations of fans. Many agree, however, that ”Frozen 2” did a good job in this respect. Interestingly enough, there is a village in Austria which could perfectly constitute an inspiration for Arendelle, the place in which the film is set. The village’s name is Hallstatt and so many people want to see it that the tourists started being a problem for a population of just 780 people. There are days when the place has even 10,000 visitors and the city’s authorities are now thinking how to handle the problem. Hallstatt is not the only place where many people is not always a blessing. Venice, Barcelona, Dubrovnik, Amsterday have all introduced fees or limits of some sort whose aim is to discourage so many people from coming.

Source: CNN 10, material from Friday 10, 2019 about popula tourist spots

NO END TO BUSHFIRES IN AUSTRALIA IN SIGHT

Bushfires aren’t anything new during Australian summers. What is new, however, is that the country is currently experiencing its worst fire season in history. As of January 8, a record-breaking 10.7 million hectares (an area nearing the size of Belgium and Holland combined, or a rectangle stretching from Częstochowa to Zamość to Augustów to Starogard Gdański and back to Częstochowa) has burnt or is currently burning, of which almost 5 million hectares in New South Wales. Living in Sydney right now apparently equals smoking a packet of cigarettes a day. The fires have claimed 23 lives – human lives, that is, because animals have been perishing in hundreds of millions. The fires (on such unprecedented scale) started over three months ago and, according to experts, will be burning at least three more months. Dr Bodie Ashton, both British and Australian citizen, a writer and historian from the University of Passau in lower Bavaria, has taken to Twitter to shed some light on the political reality of the country where the government officially disputes the role of climate change in the fires and whose prime minister takes a holiday in Hawaii at the height of the crisis and tweets that the country should „take heart from its brave and courageous… cricketers”, who were recently playing New Zealand. Another issue showing that life clearly does go on in a new climate change reality, is this January 7 bbc.com headline: „Formula 1 says it is monitoring the Australian bushfire crisis before the start of the 2020 season in Melbourne on 13-15 March.”

source: theguardian.com, a January 8, 2020 articles on the scale of the 2019/2020 Australian bushfires [Please visit this interactive map by The Guardian showing updated total area burned, overlaid on different capital cities in the world.]

DISCUSSION:

1. The USA should never try to solve conflicts with aggression.

2. Phones have so many advantages schools should not ban them.

3. Visiting the most popular tourist spots is a good idea.

4. There isn’t much a regular person can do about the consequences of the global warming at this stage.

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