They hope that international pressure might help to facilitate peace settlement talks with the Jewish state. In September, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas assured the UN General Assembly that Palestine would renew its strive to pass a Security Council resolution declaring Jewish “settlements” illegal.
Almost half of all respondents in a recent opinion poll said they feared that the aggravation of relations between Russia and the West caused by the ongoing crisis in Syria could develop into a global military conflict. The share of those who see the probability of World War Three in the near future as high or very high is now at 48 percent and those who appraise it as low or very low comprise 42 percent of society,
the privately-owned public opinion research center Levada reported on Monday. The remaining 10 percent of respondents said they couldn’t give a simple answer to the question. When researchers asked citizens if they considered it possible that Russia and the West would eventually find a mutually acceptable solution to the crisis, 35 percent answered that this scenario was likely or very likely. READ MORE
NASA’s ‘Intruder Alert’ System Spots Asteroid On Near-Collision Course With Earth
A large chunk of space rock is coming dangerously close to the vicinity of the Earth, but scientists are sure it won’t collide with our planet, thanks to a new NASA tool designed to detect potentially hazardous space fly-bys. The incoming rock was detected by the NASA-funded Panoramic Survey Telescope & Rapid Response System (Pan-STARRS) on Maui, Hawaii, on October 26. A new early-warning system, named Scout, promptly analyzed the data on the rock and concluded that the object went in the direction of Earth,
but would miss it by about 500,000km (310,000 miles). “The NASA surveys are finding something like at least five asteroids every night,” NASA Jet Propulsion Lab astronomer Paul Chodas said. Scout is a computer program currently undergoing tests in JPL in Pasadena, California. It is constantly scanning data from telescopes worldwide, in search for so-called Near Earth Objects (NEO). FULL REPORT
DEVELOPING: Mystery Continues As Hundreds Of Kids Suddenly Paralyzed
Erin Olivera waited weeks for doctors to tell her why her youngest son was paralyzed. Ten-month-old Lucian had started crawling oddly — his left leg dragging behind his right — and soon was unable to lift his head, following Erin only with his eyes.
She took him to a hospital in Los Angeles, but doctors there didn’t know how to treat what they saw. Lucian’s legs felt soft as jelly and he couldn’t move them. His breathing became rapid. The left side of his smile drooped as his muscles weakened. FULL REPORT
DEVELOPING: Italian Earthquakes Could Go On For Weeks In Domino Effect
The earthquakes that have buffeted central Italy over the last two months could continue in a devastating domino effect with one large quake leading to another along the central Apennine fault system, a leading seismologist warned on Sunday. An earthquake measuring 6.6 according to the U.S. Geological Survey struck on Sunday in the same region where a 6.2 quake on Aug. 24 killed 297 people. In between there have been thousands of smaller tremors,
including a 6.1 quake on Wednesday. The latest earthquake caused no known casualties but was the strongest to hit Italy, one of the world’s most seismically active countries, since 1980.Gianluca Valensise, a seismologist at Italy’s National Institute for Geophysics and Vulcanology, told Reuters there was a “geodynamic link” between the deadly August earthquake and all those that have followed. READ MORE
Genetically Engineered Humans Will Arrive Sooner Than You Think. And We’re Not Ready.
Artificial intelligence has become the pet anxiety of luminaries like Elon Musk, Bill Gates, and Stephen Hawking. They have all expressed concerns about our Promethean quest to develop machine intelligence, and those concerns seem to be spreading every day. But there’s another dimension of technological change that ought to worry us every bit as much as AI, if not more so. Bioengineering has already allowed human beings to take control of their own evolution.
Whether it’s emergent cloning technologies or advanced gene therapy, we’re quickly approaching a world in which humans can — and will — change the way they live and die. Michael Bess is a historian of science at Vanderbilt University and the author of a fascinating new book