Author: Bassam Khabieh
Posted on: RT | February 12th, 2018
Russia has invited its partners among the BRICS nations (Brazil, India, China and South Africa) to establish a foothold in the promising Syrian market, according to the Russian Ambassador to the country, Alexander Kinshchak.
“According to Syrian estimates, losses in the real sector of the economy topped $75 billion,” the ambassador told TASS news agency. “UN experts believe that it will take nearly $200 billion to achieve the pre-crisis GDP growth rate,” he added.
“We are aware that the Syrian government will find it difficult to obtain a huge amount of money required for the post-crisis recovery,”Kinshchak explained.
“Therefore, Russia suggested that the international community, first of all, the nations friendly to Syria, should join efforts in order to work out a complex program for its revival,” he added.
Author: George Ogleby
Posted on: Euractiv | February 19th, 2018
Clean energy investments have almost doubled the performance of fossil fuel energy stocks over the past year and a half, new figures have revealed. EURACTIV’s partner edie.net reports.
The Clean200 group, which includes the largest publicly traded companies making revenues primarily from clean energy, generated a combined return of 32.1% in the past 18 months.
That is compared to the 15.7% for the Clean200’s fossil fuel benchmark the S&P 1200 Global Energy Index, despite a general upswing in oil prices during that period. The report was co-authored by green media research firm Corporate Knights and non-profit As You Sow.
“Market forces continue to show that the new energy economy is not only a growth sector, but continues to outperform fossil fuel based energy,” said Andrew Behar, chief executive of As You Sow. “We are witnessing the ‘Great Transition’ that has been predicted.”
The outperformance is driven by companies involved in the provision of products, materials and services related to energy efficiency. . .
“The gut is the epicenter of our health, and its functioning affects most, if not all, other aspects in the body,” explains Frank Lipman, MD, author of How to Be Well and founder of Be Well. A greater understanding of both mental illness and microbiome interactions has lead scientists to study the relationship between the two systems, and there’s mounting evidence that supports a link between gut health and anxiety. With this continually growing and evolving information, you may soon be on your way to treating mental illness with proper nutrition. Ahead, Lipman explains how gut health and anxiety may be linked and what foods you should eat to take advantage of this connection.
Gut Health and Anxiety
“More and more, we are seeing the direct correlation between gut health and mood,” says Lipman. This is because the gut produces neurotransmitters and hormones that can affect a person’s mood. “If these bugs are compromised in any way, the production of these neurotransmitters and hormones will also be compromised and will affect how we function and how we feel,” he says.
There are multiple scientific studies that back up these statements. A 2016 study conducted by Emily Deans, MD, at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital at Harvard Medical School looked into the role of microbiota in mental health. According to the study, the modern microbiome is drastically different than that of human ancestors due to diet, antibiotic exposure, and differences in the environment. All of this may contribute to changes in brain health.
In 2015, researchers tested theories about gut health and mood on people. They gave healthy participants without mood disorders a four-week probiotic food supplement. Compared to those who received a placebo, participants who took the probiotic had a significantly reduced reactivity to sad moods. Researchers concluded that these results were evidence that probiotics could reduce negative thoughts associated with sad mood.
Additionally, a 2017 study performed on mice concluded that the microbiome is necessary for balancing gene regulators in the brain known as miRNAs. Its findings were based on observations of mice living in germ-free environments that ended up with unusual amounts of anxiety. After researchers reintroduced gut bacteria to the mice, the gene regulators normalized, proving that probiotics could be necessary for maintaining mental health. . .
That’s the essence of a report (pdf) from several campaign groups released today. Based on a set of new figures, it finds that sub-Saharan Africa is a net creditor to the rest of the world to the tune of more than $41bn. Sure, there’s money going in: around $161bn a year in the form of loans, remittances (those working outside Africa and sending money back home), and aid.
But there’s also $203bn leaving the continent. Some of this is direct, such as $68bn in mainly dodged taxes. Essentially multinational corporations “steal” much of this – legally – by pretending they are really generating their wealth in tax havens. These so-called “illicit financial flows” amount to around 6.1 percent of the continent’s entire gross domestic product (GDP) – or three times what Africa receives in aid.
OPINION: Africa’s natural resources – From curse to a blessing
There are also more indirect means by which we pull wealth out of Africa. Today’s report estimates that $29bn a year is being stolen from Africa in illegal logging, fishing and trade in wildlife. $36bn is owed to Africa as a result of the damage that climate change will cause to their societies and economies as they are unable to use fossil fuels to develop in the way that Europe did. Our climate crisis was not caused by Africa, but Africans will feel the effect more than most others. Needless to say, the funds are not currently forthcoming.
Contrary to the belief of some idiots on social media, Marvel’s Black Panther has nothing to do with the Black Panther Party. The first appearance of the Black Panther character in a comic book was in July of 1966, roughly five months before Bobby Seale and Huey Newton founded the Black Panther Party for Self Defense. That doesn’t mean Marvel’s Black Panther character and the Black Panther Party didn’t hold some of the same beliefs; hell, T’Challa has a history of kicking white supremacist ass. Still, let’s get this straight: what Ryan Coogler and company are bringing to the silver screen with Black Panther isn’t a reimagining of the Black Panther Party.
That said, there have been a number of films and documentaries that have examined what the Black Panther Party stood for during their run, which went from the fall of 1966 to some time in 1982. Their movement still lives on, but their impact on today’s society isn’t as massive as it was in their heyday. For those who can’t wait to see Black Panther but also want to learn more about the Black Panther Party (as one should do, especially during Black History Month), here’s a look at some of greatest stories from the Black Panther Party that were told on the silver screen.
The Murder of Fred Hampton
Year: 1971 Star(s): Fred Hampton How to watch: You can purchase the DVD via Facets.
What started out as a documentary on Fred Hampton and the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party turned into an examination of his tragic murder. For those who were unaware, Hampton emerged as one of the most important voices in the Civil Rights movement in America; that prompted a pair of filmmakers to start documenting his life for what they felt would be a portrait of Hampton in action. After his untimely death in December of 1969, the documentary shifted into an investigation of the killing. For fans of the true crime podcasts and series of today, you can look to The Murder of Fred Hampton as a true look at what can happen when independent media is allowed to thrive. . .
FBI agents in the Arkansas capital, he wrote, “have taken the lead” in a new Justice Department inquiry “into whether the Clinton Foundation engaged in any pay-to-play politics or other illegal activities while Hillary Clinton served as secretary of state.” (Source)
Solomon reports that the probe “may also examine whether any tax-exempt assets were converted for personal or political use and whether the foundation complied with applicable tax laws.”
Talk about a “Win-Win” situation.
When one hears of murder in their area the Clinton name must immediately come to mind.
Main Justice also is “re-examining whether there are any unresolved issues from the closed case into Clinton’s transmission of classified information through her personal email server,” Solomon notes.
And earlier this month, investigative journalist Peter Schweizer cryptically told SiriusXM radio that federal authorities should “convene a grand jury” in Little Rock “and let the American people look at the evidence” about the Clinton Foundation. . .