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☕️ Crackdown

☕️ Crackdown

Dozens of persons have been arrested by security agents in a nationwide crackdown on suspected financiers and collaborators of Boko Haram and other criminal groups in Nigeria, Daily Trust reports.

 

 

Good morning. A groom ended up at wrong wedding venue after Google Maps leads him to different address where engagement party is taking place. Assumes the strangers are his bride's family, so waits for ceremony to start...

What a wedding story to have...

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☕️QUICK BITES

Russia. Opposition leader Alexei Navalny has been transferred to a prison hospital. Navalny, 44, has been on a hunger strike for nearly three weeks and his health has deteriorated. Since surviving an attack with a Soviet-era nerve agent last year, Navalny has suffered from heart and kidney problems, as well as leg and back pain.
Chad. Newly re-elected President Idriss Deby Itno, in power for three decades, died of injuries while fighting rebels in the north of the Sahel country. The Chadian army have confirmed that General Mahamat Idriss Deby Itno, a four-star general who is the son of slain president will replace him at the head of a military council.
South Africa. Firefighters have finally taken control of a major wildfire that burned vast areas of Cape Town, including the slopes of the city’s iconic Table Mountain. The fire also destroyed large parts of the University of Cape Town’s historic library that holds priceless antiquities documenting South Africa’s history. A man has been arrested on suspicion of arson but it’s not clear he ignited the initial blaze.
India. Authorities have put the capital, New Delhi, under a week-long lockdown to contain the spread of coronavirus. The city's healthcare system is struggling to cope with an influx of COVID-19 patients that has led to a shortage of hospital beds, oxygen, and life-saving drugs. There are fewer than 150 ICU beds and fewer than 100 beds with ventilators available in New Delhi, which is home to 29 million people.

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ONTHISDAY

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NIGERIA

Crackdown on Boko Haram financiers

 

The Story
Dozens of persons have been arrested by security agents in a nationwide crackdown on suspected financiers and collaborators of Boko Haram and other criminal groups in Nigeria, Daily Trust reports.

Really?
This move comes five months after six Nigerians were imprisoned in the United Arab Emirates over allegations of terrorism financing. The paper said the ongoing inter-agency operation is being led by a top intelligence officer, with an army general leading a task team comprising military personnel and staff from intelligence services.

Any word from the government on this?
Citing multiple unnamed sources, the Daily Trust said that the closely guarded operation is being coordinated by Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA), in collaboration with the Department of State Services (DSS), Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). As part of the operation, billions of naira traced to businesses belonging to persons of interest have been blocked in banks in a series of “post no debit” letters sent out to banks by the CBN and NFIU.

The regulator has also obtained court orders directing the freezing of dozens of accounts flagged for suspicious transactions. While officials expressed hope that the ongoing operation would be a “game-changer” in the lingering fight against Boko Haram insurgents and other criminal gangs, some analysts say the method may not provide the needed elixir as terrorists and bandits operate largely outside the financial system. SOURCE

EUROPE

Boris' Partial Impartiality

 

Image Source: Guardian Nigeria

The Story
The International Criminal Court (ICC) launched a formal inquiry last month into alleged war crimes committed in the occupied West Bank, East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip, including the period covered by the 2014 Gaza war, the 2018 Gaza border clashes, and Israeli settlement building in the West Bank.

Whose actions are being investigated?
Hundreds of Israelis -- including soldiers and senior political figures -- could be at risk of prosecution. Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rejected the case as "undiluted anti-semitism." In a letter to the UK's Conservative Friends of Israel lobby group, Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that while his government had "respect [for] the independence” of the court, it opposed this particular inquiry into Israel.

On what grounds?
He backed Israel's claims that the court has no jurisdiction to investigate because "Israel is not a party to the statute of Rome [that established the court] and Palestine is not a sovereign state." Johnson also wrote that the investigation "gives the impression of being a partial and prejudicial attack on a friend and ally of the UK’s."

Those are valid reasons, aren't they?
Palestine countered in a statement saying the letter was a "deeply regrettable" contradiction of international law and previous British policy. "It is clear that the UK now believes Israel is above the law. There is no other interpretation...." The statement added: "On the one hand, [Johnson] claims to support the mission of the ICC. On the other, he seems to argue that its mission cannot extend to Israel because it is a ‘friend and an ally’ of the UK." SOURCE

SPACE

Something Unidentified This Way Comes

 

The Story
Alien conspiracy theorists everywhere rejoiced this week when the Department of Defense confirmed that recently leaked photos and videos of unidentified flying objects (UFOs) -- which the government calls unidentified aerial phenomena (UAPs) -- are legitimate and were taken by navy personnel.

Did the DoD confirm they're aliens?
A Pentagon spokesperson confirmed that, in 2019, navy personnel captured images and footage of a blinking triangular object in the sky, as well as other UAPs they categorized as a “sphere,” “acorn,” and “metallic blimp.” The spokesperson declined to comment further or provide any explanations of the footage.

How's this a reason for the Alien conspiracy theorists to rejoice?
After the Pentagon released three videos of UAPs last April, the federal government became more interested in UAPs, leading congressional lawmakers to pressure the DoD to create a UAP task force. According to a directive from Congress, the task force -- which may not be the best use of taxpayer dollars in an already-bloated military-industrial complex -- must publish a UAP report by early June. SOURCE

FOOTBALL

Football's biggest clubs want to break away

The Story
Millions of football fans and stakeholders were dismayed on Monday, when some of the world's biggest football clubs announced a plan to start a new European Super League (ESL).

What European Super League?
The clubs involved say the ESL will benefit football as a whole, but critics say it's driven by greed. Twelve clubs have signed up - including six from the English Premier League. Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham have joined Atletico Madrid, Real Madrid, Barcelona, AC Milan, Inter Milan, and Juventus.

Are they quiting the existing leagues?
No, the clubs want to carry on playing in their respective national leagues, but would also play each other in a new midweek competition. One of the main movers behind the ESL, Real Madrid president Florentino Perez, claims that it will "save football" at a time when young people are "no longer interested" because of "a lot of poor quality games". The founding clubs have been promised a share of a €3.5bn (£3bn) grant provided by the investment bank JP Morgan.

How will it run?
Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund and Paris St Germain - the biggest clubs in Germany and France - are not supporting the breakaway league. Under the proposals, the ESL would start in August each year, with plans to launch "as soon as practicable". The plan is for the ESL to have 20 teams. Of these, the 12 founding members - plus three yet to join - would be permanent and never face relegation. Five other sides would qualify from across Europe each year.

Where's the sportsmanship in that?
The move has been condemned by fans, pundits and by most football bodies not involved. With 15 teams in the ESL not facing qualification or relegation, one of the main criticisms is that it would be unfair and uncompetitive. For instance, a future winner of the Premier League would not necessarily qualify for the ESL if it were not one of the permanent members. Critics have said, rightly, that removing the element of competition for places devalues the game itself.

UEFA's president, Aleksander Ceferin, says he wants the 12 clubs banned from European competitions at the earliest possible opportunity - including Champions League or Europa League games this season - and their players prevented from appearing at major tournaments. In his own reaction, the head of Fifa, football's world governing body, said he "strongly disapproves" of the ESL's plans, saying it was "a lot to throw away for maybe a short-term financial gain for some". SOURCE

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Lagos, UAE pick Alimosho for heritage centre

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Man Utd announces Ed Woodward to leave role at end of 2021

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Senate in Heated Debate over Livestock Control Bill

PICKS OF THE DAY

How the Oval Office has changed over the years. Ahs

Ranking life's biggest decisions. The Conversation

The 15 ways the pandemic changed daily life. Fortune

How to have better arguments online. Guardian

The U.S. military takes UFOs seriously. Why doesn't Silicon Valley or academia? NBC

Have Read Thousands of Résumés, and I Have some Advice. NY Times

13 Key Moments That Shaped the Trial of Derek Chauvin. NY Times

A Guide To Mindfulness: Why You Need To Start Training Your Mind (And How You Can Begin). Entrepreneur

TODAY'S TRIVIA

Which ocean separates Africa and Australia?

A. Indian Ocean

B.The Red Sea

C. Atlantic Ocean

QUESTION & ANSWER

QUORA QUESTION: 

What is the most amazing thing you overheard because people didn't think you understood their language?

Ryan Fernandez:

So so many…

When my wife (Chinese) and I (Hispanic) were at a Chinese grocery, an older Chinese lady saw us and asked her, right in front of me:

“Why are you with one of those people?”

To which I responded, in Chinese:

“I love her unconditionally”

She turned white.

Had another one, this time at a Latin grocery near our house. My wife is starting to like sliced turkey so we go to their deli counter and I'm translating from Spanish to Chinese. This other Hispanic guy is also standing there waiting:

“Hey, your wife's Chinese?”(in Spanish)

“Yes” (in Spanish)

“How'd you do that?” (in Spanish)

I lived in Japan for a fair amount of time so I can communicate pretty well. Ten years or so ago my parents, sister and I stumbled into a tiny restaurant. Before I could let them know I speak Japanese, the staff start shouting in Japanese:

“We can finally use the English menus!”

“Try not to f*ck anything up!

My dad was stationed in Thailand during the Vietnam War, and speaks Thai rather well. We went to Chiang Mai and were in a cab when the driver started talking on his cell phone in Thai:

“I'll probably take them the longest way I can. I want a big fare.”

Dad leans forward and says, in Thai:

“Take us straight to the hotel or drop us here, bastard”

Nobody expects the little Hispanic guy to speak Thai.

EDIT: Wow 6.5k? I'm surprised. OK, bonus round;

When my wife and I were dating, her friends were divided into two camps: one that liked me and one that hated me. Now at the time, I had just relocated for work after having a Chinese roommate for a decade. While my Mandarin wasn't spectacular, I could understand speech pretty well. Anyway when she, I and some of her friends went to dinner, one of her friends in the “hate” camp decided to bad-mouth me right in front of my face. This is a close approximation of the experience.

Friend (in Mandarin): “You shouldn't get involved with Western men. They don't want Chinese women. He just wants to date you because you're Chinese. He will never marry you.”

Me (also in Mandarin): “Why would I not want to marry her?”

That was the last time she ever said anything bad about me, not in front of me, and according to GF (now wife) never said anything bad to her about me either.

EDIT 2: 18k? Ok I got another one. This isn't really a language one, but rather interesting anyway. When my wife and I were just dating, she mentioned she'd never been to a rodeo. Being that we were in Texas, I was kind of surprised by this and decided to take her to some local rodeo in the Denton area. We went, she thought it was pretty interesting, seeing so many different people cheering for Black/White/Hispanic/etc cowboys as they rode out. We got to talk to one guy, probably the most stereotypical Texan you'd ever seen. Wife noticed he had a Chinese coin on a necklace next to a cross. She asked him and was surprised he could speak Chinese. Not just Chinese, but really, really good Chinese. So the three of us were staying there, in the Texas heat, at night, speaking Mandarin Chinese while people were looking on. It turned out he had done some kind of American rodeo show in China for a year and had picked up the language pretty well. Small world. SOURCE

TRIVIA ANSWER

Which ocean separates Africa and Australia?

A. Indian Ocean

LITERATURE

Fiction
Kwerekwere - Alieu Bundu

Poetry
Here or to Go?

Satire
Homicide Detectives Announce They Looking For Real Knockout After Discovering Long Blond Strand Of Hair At Crime Scene

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