News Burst 20 February 2022
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News Burst 20 February 2022 – Featured News
- ‘Epstein Accomplice’ Jean-Luc Brunel reportedly found dead in french prison. Brunel was largely held behind bars since December 2020 as French authorities pursued charges of sexual abuse and sex trafficking against him. Much like Epstein’s own death in August 2019, the 75-year-old Brunel reportedly died by suicide before he could stand trial, with Le Monde reporting that Brunel was found hanged in his cell during a night check. Following news of Brunel’s death Saturday, Giuffre tweeted, “The suicide of Jean-Luc Brunel, who abused me and countless girls and young women, ends another chapter. I’m disappointed that I wasn’t able to face him in a final trial to hold him accountable, but gratified that I was able to testify in person last year to keep him in prison.”
- According to data compiled by Bloomberg, the social media giant Facebook has tumbled out of the world’s 10 largest companies by market value, hammered by its worst monthly stock decline ever. The company has warned that the rest of the year is shaping up to be a choppy one as it deals with “macroeconomic challenges” and continues its long-term strategic shift “towards building the metaverse.”
- Teenage figure skater Kamila Valieva has faced intense scrutiny at the Beijing Olympics, but the media has also been drawn to coach Eteri Tutberidze – someone who would otherwise have been a much less prominent presence. Tutberidze has faced criticism and accusations of exploiting young talent and pushing young girls’ bodies to the limit. After it was reported that Valieva had tested positive for the banned heart drug trimetazidine in a sample taken at the Russian championships in December, attention inevitably turned to the figure skater’s entourage, considering her status as a minor. Weighing in on Friday, IOC president Thomas Bach claimed Tutberidze had created a “chilling atmosphere.”
- Meta’s manager of community development, Jeren Miles, has been dismissed from his post, a spokesperson for the social media giant told the Daily Caller on Thursday, after video of Miles being interrogated by members of ‘Predator Catchers Indianapolis’ went viral. Miles, who is 35 years old, is seen on video appearing to admit to having sent multiple sexually explicit messages to an individual he believed was a 13-year-old boy, even making plans to meet the teen at a hotel. “The seriousness of these allegations cannot be overstated,” the spokesperson said. While Miles initially told the ‘predator catchers’ he was just “flirting” and “talking” to ‘Cory’, the nonexistent boy, insisting he had no “intention of meeting up with him,” he later admits that he “gave information” and “a location” for the meet – the Le Meridien Columbus hotel in Ohio, where the architects of the sting interviewed him. ‘Predator catcher’ Eric Schmutte, who filmed the encounter, reportedly told journalist Andy Ngo that he was sending all chat logs and other evidence related to the incident to authorities in both Columbus and Palm Springs, California – Miles’ home city.
- Some 50 liters of treated water used to cool down the Fukushima melted nuclear reactors will be sent for analysis to “independent” laboratories in Austria and Monaco, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said in a statement on Friday. The international nuclear energy watchdog has launched a review of Japan’s plans to release over 1.25 million cubic meters of treated water into the ocean, which are expected to come to fruition around April 2023.
- A military surveillance drone, used in Middle Eastern wars, is about to take flight and patrol the English Channel, searching for migrants with its high-tech sensors, reported The Daily Telegraph. Deployment of the drone comes as the British government vowed to strengthen border measures as a record number of migrants illegally crossed the channel in the first eight months of 2020.
- The White House has pinned responsibility for a recent burst of DDoS attacks directed at the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense and state-owned banks on Russia. “We believe that the Russian government is responsible for wide-scale cyberattacks on Ukrainian banks this week,” the deputy national security adviser for cyber and emerging technology, Anne Neuberger. Neuberger explained away her agency’s rush to attribute the attacks to Moscow by declaring that Russia “counts on a long process of attribution so it can continue its malicious behavior against Ukraine in cyberspace, including pre-positioning for its potential invasion.” She admitted there were no credible threats to the US from Russia, but spoke at length about the cyber-reinforcement being mandated across American utilities, particularly with regard to pipelines as well as the aviation and railroad sectors.
- The China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission warned on Friday about the associated risks the emerging metaverse technology could bring as the virtual space fever sweeps the world. The watchdog said in a statement published on its website that some companies were engaging in illegal fund-raising, fraud, and virtual real estate speculation. The first and most common form of the scam includes projects promising high-tech integration, such as AI and virtual reality support. These projects often lure investors by promising high returns, then the fraudsters get away with the investor funds. The second most common form of metaverse scams is blockchain play-to-earn (P2E) projects, where scammers promise high profits for investing in the native gaming token and often run away with the funds once they reach a set goal. Another scheme such projects use includes hyping up the metaverse real-estate to induce panic buying among users, the regulator said.
- TThe Solar Orbiter has captured the largest solar ‘prominence’ eruption ever observed in a single image together with the full solar disc, the European Space Agency (ESA) said in a statement. The ESA says that the latest CME, which extended millions of miles into space, took place on 15 February.
- Melania Trump has pilloried “dream killers” in the media for creating a false narrative about her initiatives aimed at helping children. “Despite my actions, the press continues to publish inaccurate, misleading, and outright incorrect articles about my work. The media has created a narrative whereby I am trying to act in an illegal or unethical manner,” the former First Lady said in a statement on Friday. Tickets to a “Tulips and Topiaries” high tea fundraising event, slated for April in Naples, are being sold by Melania Trump, with profits ostensibly to be channelled into the “Fostering the Future” initiative – part of her “Be Best” public-awareness campaign, The New York Times reported on 12 February.
- Masterpieces ‘The Origin of the World’ by Gustave Courbet and ‘Liberty Leading the People’ by Eugene Delacroix have been removed from Facebook, Twitter and Instagram due to nudity. According the prestigious French Academy of Fine Arts, companies “cannot claim the right to censor the distribution of a work of art on the sole ground that its representation does not fully fall within the criteria they have established”. Platforms for disseminating works of art (mainly social networks) do not allow the viewing of nudity and therefore remove any image where they spot them, the academy said.
- The world’s largest online retailer Amazon has excluded the Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation (BLMGNF) from its AmazonSmile charity program, as the organization was unable to provide information on what tens of millions of donations were spent on, The New York Post reported on Friday.
- Prince Andrew may receive a sizeable sum of money if he’s forced from his grace-and-favour 31-bedroom lodge in Windsor, MailOnline reports. According to the media outlet, a 2005 National Audit Office report suggests that the Duke of York is “entitled to be repaid” for the refurbishment he funded after he moved in back in 2003. “The maximum compensation of just under £7 million is subject to annual reductions over the first 25 years of the lease, so that at the end of that period, there is nil compensation payable,” the report states. This revelation comes as the royal finally reached an out-of-court settlement with Virginia Giuffre (nee Roberts) who claimed that she was forced to have sex with the prince in 2001 when she was only 17 years old.
- French President Emmanuel Macron’s wife, Brigitte Macron, has filed a lawsuit against two women in Paris for spreading false conspiracy rumours on the Internet that she was a transgender woman, Agence France-Presse reports, citing a judicial source. It was noted that the first hearing in the civil case was scheduled for 15 June. This January Brigitte Macron had accused those questioning her gender identity of altering information on online genealogy sites to prove that she was her brother. “They changed my family tree”, she lamented at the time.
- On Friday, the co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Bill Gates stated that the dangers of serious disease from COVID-19 have decreased. However, he also said that a new pandemic is certain. As per the reports of CNBC, Gates stated that a hypothetical new pandemic would most likely be caused by a pathogen other than the coronavirus family. The pathogen can be referred to as an infectious agent, or simply a germ.
- A comment made by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in 2013 may explain his true sentiments and his actions against the Freedom Convoy fighting back against vaccine mandates. Trudeau actually admitted a “level of admiration for China” because of their “basic dictatorship.” “There is a flexibility that I know [Prime Minister] Stephen Harper must dream about: having a dictatorship where you can do whatever you wanted, that I find quite interesting.” Just Monday, Trudeau announced he was activating an emergency power in” an effort to suppress the Freedom Convoy, a movement originally created to protest vaccination mandates for truckers crossing the US border that has morphed into a broader protest against COVID restrictions” reports Tampa Free Press.
News Burst 20 February 2022 – Bonus IMG
Authorities responded to public outrage after mounted officers charged into the crowd of protesters in Ottawa on Friday, assuring Canadians that “no one has been seriously injured or passed away” during the incident.
News Burst 20 February 2022 – Bonus IMG
A graduate of MIT with dual masters degrees in Nuclear Engineering and Technology and Policy Programming.
News Burst 20 February 2022 – Bonus Video
Prague, February 2022
News Burst 20 February 2022 – Earthquakes
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