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Happy Wednesday! Great athletes change their sports forever. But sometimes outsiders or ordinary fans can serve as the ultimate change makers. Today, meet boxing’s surprising disruptors before taking a trip to a new canal that could serve as China’s route to maritime dominance. Learn about Northern Ireland’s latest language dispute and savor caramelized peanuts from Latin America. Read to the end for winners of last week’s caption contest.
Stephen Starr, Senior Editor, with Toyloy Brown and Liam Jamieson, Reporters
It’s the exact same vaccine, made both in India and Europe. But Brussels has only approved the European version of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 shots for its digital “green pass” that will allow fully vaccinated people to move freely within the European Union. Vaccination programs in India and across Africa are being powered by the Indian-manufactured AstraZeneca doses. New Delhi and the African Union have protested Europe’s decision. Meanwhile, Brazil has suspended a $324 million deal to purchase a different Indian vaccine amid corruption allegations against President Jair Bolsonaro’s government. (Sources: The Hindu, Quartz, CNN, Guardian)
2. Saved by the Gavel
The Supreme Court narrowly upheld the CDC order instituting a federal moratorium on evictions, handing a lifeline to millions of Americans at risk of losing their homes amid the pandemic. President Joe Biden’s administration has extended the moratorium until July 31, but has made clear it will end then. Read more about the coming global homelessness crisis on OZY. Should the moratorium be extended beyond July? Vote here or on Twitter. (Sources: AP, NPR)
3. Hope Against Hope
Hundreds of families continue to wait for news of their loved ones, with 149 people still missing following last week’s collapse of a condo near Miami. Experts are probing whether a damaged pool deck could hold clues to the disaster. Twelve people have been declared dead. (Sources: USA Today, WaPo)
4. Jail for Zuma
A court has sentenced former South African President Jacob Zuma to 15 months in prison for defiantly refusing to cooperate with an investigation into corruption allegations against him. (Sources: BBC, Al Jazeera)
5. Didi Dominance
Chinese ride-sharing giant Didi Chuxing raised $4.4 billion in a highly anticipated IPO listing on the New York Stock Exchange that gave the Uber rival a valuation of $67 billion. (Sources: Reuters, WSJ)
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Until this month, the brothers from Ohio were better known for their YouTube antics and social media nous. But on June 6, Logan stepped into the ring with the undefeated Floyd Mayweather, regarded as pound-for-pound one of the greatest boxers of all time. The exhibition bout was a draw, with the pair sharing upwards of an estimated $100 million. Jake, meanwhile, is set to take on former MMA champion Tyron Woodley in August. They’re blurring the lines between serious fighting and gimmickry, but in the process are bringing new fans to the sport. Watch Jake on The Carlos Watson Show.
2. Soccer Fans
When 12 major soccer clubs in England, Italy and Spain announced plans for a breakaway “super league” in April, an outcry was expected. What wasn’t expected was just how influential ordinary fans would be. Fearing that the proposed super league would turn their beloved clubs from a cornerstone of their community to money-spinning businesses with little regard for regular supporters, they protested so vociferously that within two days, nine of the founding clubs backed out of the effort, essentially killing it.
3. David Gandler
Through his fuboTV streaming service, the Boston University-educated Gandler is changing how sports is consumed. The service started out in 2015 sublicensing and streaming basketball, soccer, hockey and other major sports to audiences in the U.S., Canada and Spain. But under Gandler, it has recently waded into sports betting, predictive gaming such as fantasy sports and regular television content. The markets are betting on him too: FuboTV’s IPO last October raised $183 million.
The Next Suez Canals
The perils of depending too much on any one maritime route are clearer than ever after the Suez fiasco this March. Check out new canals that could reshape sea trade.
Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan wants to spend up to$25 billion to build a new channel parallel to the Bosporus, ostensibly so that Turkey can raise more toll revenue. The Istanbul Canal, which would be roughly the size of the Suez Canal, could threaten water supplies, marine life, marshes and forests. Erdoğan himself called it a “crazy project” when he first proposed the idea in 2011. To him, crazy is good.
2. Northern Sea Route
Meanwhile, Russia’s eyeing the far north, with climate change as its ally. With global warming melting Arctic sea ice, Moscow is developing a Northern Sea Route connecting Asia and Europe at a far shorter distance than is possible at present. If the plan is successful, it could bolster Russia’s economic ambitions, which also include oil and gas drilling in the Arctic.
3. Thai Canal
Further south, China’s making its next big strategic move. The plan? To cut 75 miles across Thailand’s Kra Isthmus and connect the Malay Peninsula to “mainland” Southeast Asia as an alternative to the Malacca Strait, the narrow passage between Sumatra on one side and Malaysia and Singapore on the other. It could give China further strategic leverage over India, months after a deadly Himalayan standoff between the two powers.
L.A. Week: ‘The Carlos Watson Show’
She won an Oscar at age 11. Now a Hollywood veteran, Anna Paquin reveals the secret behind her continuing love for acting and shares parenting tips. Also stay tuned for Banksy’s favorite Angelino street artist.Watch later today.
War of Words
These modern day language battles are reminders of just how deeply we are defined by what we speak — and what we’re told not to speak.
1. Northern Ireland
Céad Míle Fáilte to Northern Ireland? Not if some politicians have their way. If the constituent country’s two biggest political parties and rivals, Sinn Féin and the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), don’t resolve a row over the Irish language soon, the Northern Ireland government could collapse, setting in motion the latest political crisis to befall the region. Sinn Féin has argued for legislation that promotes the Irish language as part of a deal last year. The DUP opposes that demand and has just ousted its leader for not fighting back enough.
The “Anglophone problem” has rumbled for decades in this West African nation, descending into all-out conflict in 2017, when the 20% of Cameroon’s population who speak English took to the streets to protest their cultural, political and economic marginalization by the French-speaking majority. Secessionist Anglophones took up arms, with the resultant war displacing hundreds of thousands and causing several thousand deaths. Now observers are warning the conflict could spread.
Not the snake, we’re talking about Haitian peanut butter. One of the Carribean country’s most popular condiments, it’s spiced with chilli, so you want to slather your toast with it only so much.
These are caramelized peanuts popular in Argentina, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, Uruguay and Chile. It needs sugar, peanuts, vanilla ... and oodles of patience, since they’re best when cooked slowly, without turning the heat up too much.
3. Kare Kare
It’s a peanut sauce-based oxtail stew with an overload of protein: You can add calves feet, pork hocks, prawns and much more. It’s a staple in the Philippines. If you like meat and peanuts, it might soon be a regular fixture on your menu too.
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