It was a test for Brussels. After Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko ordered the brazen hijacking of a Ryanair plane to nab a dissident journalist, all eyes were on the EU to see how the bloc would respond. The 27-country body banned Belarusian aircraft from EU airspace and airports, leveled new sanctions at government officials and also demanded the release of the journalist, Raman Pratasevich. The 26-year-old was shown on state TV last night, and appeared to be under duress, saying he was being treated “with maximum correctness” and was giving evidence about organizing mass demonstrations.
2. America Marks First Anniversary of George Floyd’s Killing
It was the day that changed America. Or did it? One year ago today a Minnesotan police officer knelt on George Floyd’s neck for more than nine minutes, and he died begging for his mother. A video of the killing sparked a racial reckoning, and protests across the country. The former officer, Derek Chauvin, was convicted of murder in a rare case of police brutality being punished. Despite President Joe Biden’s goal of passing a policing act named for Floyd by this anniversary, the bill has stalled in the Senate. However, Floyd’s family will visit the White House today and there will be memorial events in Minneapolis and elsewhere. Read what OZY CEO Carlos Watson had to say to mark the anniversary.
What do you think? Has any progress been made in combating racial injustice in the U.S. since George Floyd’s death? Take our poll here.
3. Fallout Continues Between Indian Government and Twitter
Modi’s getting moody. Indian police raided the offices of Twitter in New Delhi yesterday after the platform tagged a tweet by a ruling party spokesman with a “manipulated media” warning. The raid is the latest incident in heightened tensions between the social media giant and Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist government. Earlier this year New Delhi asked Twitter to block accounts related to the farmers’ protests, something the tech company has since reversed. Last month the government ordered it to remove tweets criticizing Modi’s handling of the pandemic. Police say they now are investigating why the tweet was labeled with the warning.
From silent movies to streaming movies. Hollywood studio MGM, which started in the era of silent films and went on to produce classics like Singin’ in the Rain and The Wizard of Oz, is expected to be sold to Amazon soon. An almost $9 billion deal would make it the second-largest ever purchase for the e-commerce giant and comes amid the so-called streaming wars as companies compete over content. MGM’s share price has soared since talks were reported — and AT&T announced it was forming a new company with Discovery. If a deal is agreed, it could be announced as early as this week.
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken has arrived in Israel and plans to meet with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as well as Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.Mali’s military has detained the heads of government, just nine months after a coup in the West African nation. And 18 people were killed in a remote area of Peru amid a presidential campaign, with the government blaming the Shining Path guerrilla group.
Coronavirus Update: The U.S. has advised its citizens against travel to Japan, just two months before the Tokyo Olympics. Doctors in Afghanistan are worried the coronavirus variant discovered in India could be spreading rapidly in the country.
Today on ‘The Carlos Watson Show’:Marcus Samuelsson is so much more than just a celebrity chef. He’s a community-minded global citizen making real change with his restaurants. Today, the acclaimed chef gives a cooking demonstration (Cuban-coffee tuna tataki anyone?) plus talks about elevating the voices of Black chefs and his struggles with identity. What’s his secret weapon in the kitchen? Watch now to find out.
Rhone is premium clothing made for men. Clothing that seamlessly integrates fit, form and function. Clothing made for everything from the gym to the office. Clothing that inspires men to live healthy, strong and free.
Forget about being caught with your fingers in the cookie jar. British police managed to catch a wanted drug dealer after he shared a photo of a piece of cheese in his hand. How? Police used the image to analyze his fingerprints. Carl Stewart, 39, has now been jailed for 13-and-a-half years for dealing cocaine and heroin, so the innocent cheesy snap was quite the costly slip-up. They say crime doesn’t pay, but it seems drug dealers can afford good cheese: The one in the picture was a mature blue Stilton from upmarket British store Marks and Spencer.
The most-viewed video clip of all time on YouTube just sold for $760,999 as a non-fungible token (NFT), meaning the site will remove it soon. So, if you want to watch “Charlie Bit My Finger,” you’d better hurry up. The video, which shows a baby chomping on his big brother’s hand, went to an anonymous bidder at auction on Sunday. The 55-second clip has been viewed more than 880 million times since the parents of the brothers — now aged 15 and 17 — put it on YouTube 14 years ago. The family plans to use the funds to send older brother Harry to college.
3. Cell-Altering Technique Restores Some of Blind Man’s Vision
Scientists have partially restored the sight of a blind man in a groundbreaking first. The neuroscience technique they used is known as optogenetics and involves altering cells to make more light-sensitive proteins. The U.S. and European scientists used the method on a man who had an inherited photoreceptor disease, which occurs when light-sensing cells in the retina degenerate. Using injections and stimulation with light emitting goggles, the 58-year-old man had enough of his eyesight restored that he could recognize, count and locate different objects put in front of him. It will likely be some time before the therapy can be offered more widely however.
4. British Losing Their Heads Over Mary Queen of Scots Theft
The thieves who broke into a British castle and stole an antique rosary should watch out. It belonged to Mary, Queen of Scots — who was beheaded for treason in 1587. The gold beads were among treasures worth more than $1.4 million stolen from Arundel Castle in West Sussex on Friday night, the same week the castle reopened to visitors. “The theft of these irreplaceable artifacts connecting us to our shared history is a crime against us all,” Andrew Griffith, an MP representing the area, told media. Police have one lead, an abandoned four-wheel-drive vehicle set on fire near the castle.
5. WNBA Coach Fined Over Comments About Player’s Weight
“I will never let a man disrespect me, ever, ever, ever, especially a little white one.” That’s what Liz Cambage, a player for the Las Vegas Aces, said after a WNBA head coach from an opposing team made a disparaging comment about her weight at a game on Sunday. Connecticut Sun head coach Curt Miller called Australian Cambage “300 pounds.” Despite apologizing, he’s now been suspended for one game and fined $10,000. Cambage, 29, is in her fifth season in the WNBA, having briefly returned to Australia to play last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Today’s OZY Genius Award Winner: Arleen Lopez, Rutgers University. More than ever, the past year has revealed racial, economic and linguistic disparities in health care access and outcomes. Lopez wants to create a consortium of translators who can advocate for patients. If you want to help, please let us know HERE.