By Jeffrey E. Stern The New York Times Tues., Dec. 11, 2018 Just before midnight, a businessman named Rabee’a was on the phone, trying to calm his friend down. Rabee’a owned a drill rig, and his friend had heard stories from elsewhere in Yemen about jets bombing well sites. It was Sept. 10, 2016, a year and a half into the war between the Saudis and the Houthi rebels. But to Rabee’a, it was a war happening over the horizon, out of sight. He was unbothered. That kind of thing wouldn’t happen in a poor place like this one, a district called Arhab that, though deep in rebel territory, was home to nothing and no one of interest to a fighter jet. Besides, things like airstrikes didn’t happen to people like him. Rabee’a was a charitable man from a privileged family — a little self-satisfied, perhaps, but he had enjoyed good fortune for much of his life, and that wasn’t about to change. Despite a mischievous grin, he was a godly … [Read more...] about A tragedy in Yemen, made in America
Global eye and laser center
By Daniel Michaels The Wall Street Journal Sun., Nov. 11, 2018 LEUVEN, BELGIUM—The new look in eyewear is 3-D, but today it isn’t about movie effects. The focus is on how glasses are made. Additive manufacturing, better known as 3-D printing, is edging into the roughly $60 billion (U.S.) global eyeglass-frame market, promising more choice for consumers and savings for producers. Today, huge numbers of frames sit unsold because traditional production entails big runs, while 3-D printing doesn’t. Eyewear makers throw away roughly 75% of every sheet of acetate from which most plastic frames are cut, while 3-D printing leaves almost no waste. Consumers will pay up to 20% extra for customized frames, producers say, and personalization adds no cost with 3-D printing. Achieving such gains still requires leaps in the speed of printers and versatility of the chemicals they use. Current printers, which need a day to produce a batch of plastic frames that … [Read more...] about Design your frames: 3-D printing comes to eyewear
MANILA, Philippines — After repeated attacks against her from President Duterte himself, Vice President Leni Robredo believes she is the “most vilified” government official in the country. Robredo made the statement during an open forum at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington yesterday. The Vice President keynoted the CSIS-Pertamina Banyan Tree Leadership Forum and US-Philippines Strategic Initiative. “We have been surviving pretty well. I am, I think, the most vilified of all national government officials,” Robredo said when asked about her working relationship with the President. “But I have not allowed it to affect the work that I’m doing. Most of my days are focused on reaching the farthest peripheries of the country,” she said. Since October 2016, Robredo’s office has been assisting poor communities in different parts of the country through the Angat Buhay project. “Despite the … [Read more...] about Leni Robredo: ‘I’m the most vilified gov’t official’
China’s Xinjiang region is home to 1.5% of the country’s population, but accounted for one in five arrests in 2017. This didn’t include the hundreds of thousands of people, possibly as many as 1 million, who are being held in extrajudicial political “re-education camps” designed to indoctrinate ethnic minorities and force them to reject their religious beliefs. Xinjiang residents and, in particular ethnic Uyghurs, are banned from many religious acts and are monitored by authorities living in their homes, as well as surveillance apps, voice printing, and facial recognition cameras. Residents are also banned from entering certain stores and must swipe their ID cards first, which describes them as “safe,” “normal,” or “unsafe.” Authorities use the fear of family being put in re-education camps to control and silence Xinjiang residents and students while abroad, and many are detained … [Read more...] about How a Chinese region that accounts for just 1.5% of the population became a testing ground for the most intrusive police state in the world
As early as 2016, Hollywood was already abuzz that a new Mary Magdalene movie was in the works. After all, the often-controversial female follower of Jesus—what with varying accounts of her true role during the life, passion and death of the Lord—has never had her own biopic since first appearing in a 1912 movie “From the Manger to the Cross.” Simply titled “Mary Magdalene,” the movie, which opened in Philippine cinemas on Wednesday, created an even bigger buzz when two-time Oscar-nominated actress Rooney Mara (“The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” and “Carol”) was confirmed to play the titular role. As a whole, its producers describe the period film as an “authentic and humanistic portrait of one of the most enigmatic and misunderstood spiritual figures in history Joaquin Phoenix and Rooney Mara play Jesus Christ and Mary Magdalene in the latters first biopic With three-time Oscar-nominee Joaquin Phoenix … [Read more...] about Is ‘Mary Magdalene’ worth seeing this Holy Week?