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[Weekly Review]

Weekly Review


Ebola arrives in New York, a high school student opens fire on classmates in Washington, and protestors in Hong Kong worry that Kenny G is an agent of the Chinese government

Saluting the Town (Weekly)A Doctors Without Borders physician returned to New York City from Guinea and began showing symptoms of Ebola after spending an evening out with friends at a meatball restaurant in Manhattan and a bowling alley in Brooklyn. New York governor Andrew Cuomo and New Jersey governor Chris Christie each decreed a 21-day mandatory quarantine for medical workers arriving from West Africa, which Cuomo relaxed 72 hours later at the behest of the White House; Christie defended his decision to quarantine an asymptomatic nurse, who was traveling to Newark from Sierra Leone, in an isolation tent at a New Jersey hospital where she was held with no toilet or shower for three days until she threatened to sue the governor. Scientists considered using robots to bury Ebola victims, and the Canadian government announced it would send 800 vials of an experimental Ebola vaccine to the U.N. in Geneva. “There’s never been a big market for Ebola vaccines,” said a researcher who collaborated in 2005 on a potential vaccine that was 100 percent effective in monkeys but never tested in humans. “Who are they going to sell it to?” A gang of middle school students in New York City beat up two of their Senegalese-American classmates, chanting “Ebola, Ebola.” Several children under quarantine in Texas were allowed to return to their Dallas middle school. “They said that … if they hear anything about the kids making fun of them,” said a student of his teachers’ instructions, “that’s an automatic suspension.”[1][2][3][4][5][6][7] Boko Haram, with whom Nigeria maintained plans to negotiate for the return of more than 200 kidnapped schoolgirls, kidnapped another 25.[8] Paris’s Opéra Bastille expelled a woman from a performance of Verdi’s La Traviata for wearing an Islamic veil, and thousands of protesters gathered in Isfahan, Iran, following a spate of attacks by men throwing acid from motorcycles at incompletely veiled women.[9][10] Four former Blackwater guards were convicted for a 2007 shooting spree in Baghdad that killed 14 Iraqi civilians and injured 17 others. “I know that America is the country of justice,” said an Iraqi government employee whose mother was shot in the attack. “But to be honest, I was shocked when I heard about it.”[11][12]

In Quebec, a deadly hit-and-run attack on two soldiers by a recent convert to Islam who identified himself on Facebook as Ahmad Le Converti was deemed “clearly linked to terrorist ideology” by Canada’s public safety minister; in Ottawa, a man with a hunting rifle killed a soldier guarding the tomb of the unknown soldier at Canada’s National War Memorial and stormed the House of Commons via a door beneath Peace Tower before he was shot and killed by a sergeant-at-arms. The shooter, who had once turned himself in to police in an attempt to receive treatment for his heroin and crack addiction, had hitchhiked east from a Vancouver Salvation Army shelter, apparently seeking clearance to fly to Saudi Arabia to study the Koran. Following a three-day shutdown, Parliament Hill was reopened and the House Speaker announced the scheduled resumption of public tours. “One single incident can’t be bigger than our whole democracy,” said a Canadian.[13][14][15][16][17] A homecoming prince at MarysvillePilchuck High School in Washington State opened fire on classmates with a handgun in the school’s cafeteria, killing one student and injuring four others, including two of his cousins, before killing himself.[18] Mexican authorities claimed that the abduction of 43 left-wing teachers’ college students, who were last seen a month ago in Iguala, was carried out on the orders of the city’s mayor to minimize disruptions at a speech given by his wife.[19][20] Swedish authorities ended a search for an unidentified submarine spotted in the Stockholm archipelago, while Russian officials denied claims that the vessel was theirs and questioned whether it had existed at all. “The eyes of fear,” read a column in an official Russian state paper, “see danger everywhere.”[21][22][23] Police in Stockholm were called to the home of an eleven-year-old boy who heard a loud thump he believed to be a burglar; the officers found no evidence of intrusion but stayed to help the boy practice his multiplication tables. “Even though it wasn’t a thief,” said the police, “it was a good thing to do.”[24]

The Swiss retailer Migros cut off ties with a collectible-creamer company following the distribution of 2,000 creamers whose lids bore images of Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini. “You cannot put Pol Pot or a terrorist on a milk creamer,” said Tristan Cerf, a Migros spokesman.[25][26] The Thessaloniki Bakers Association made a 1.35-ton bagel encircling the town’s medieval White Tower.[27] Reynolds American Inc., the second largest cigarette manufacturer in the United States, announced that it would ban most workplace smoking. “Most people expect a smoke-free business environment,” said a company spokesman.[28] Fashion designer Oscar de la Renta died at age 82; longtime Washington Post editor Ben Bradlee, whose publication of reporting on the Watergate scandal led to Richard Nixon’s resignation, died at 93; and Joan Quigley, the former astrologist to Nancy Reagan, died at 87. “Ronnie’s ‘evil empire’ attitude has to go,” Quigley once told the first lady. “Gorbachev’s Aquarian planet is in such harmony with Ronnie’s, you’ll see … They’ll share a vision.”[29][30][31] Hong Kong’s chief executive Leung Chun-ying, whose administration met with student Occupy Central activists for the first time in three weeks of pro-democracy demonstrations, decried the idea of adopting open elections, which he said would over-represent the poor. Protesters theorized that an appearance at Occupy Central by Kenny G, whose 1989 song “Going Home” is used across China to get people to depart public spaces, was a Chinese conspiracy intended to persuade demonstrators to disband. “We didn’t leave when the police used tear gas on us,” said one. “Why would a single Kenny G tune shake our determination?”[32][33][34][35] A woman in Chengdu, China, ended her weeklong stay in the 24-hour KFC she had been living in since her boyfriend broke up with her. “I just wanted some chicken wings,” she said, “But once I got in there and started eating I decided I needed time to think.”[36]

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