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The Daily Brief: WHO Stops All Covid-19 Booster Shots As Coronavirus Cases Surge

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As the delta and lambda variants increase rapidly, the World Health Organization has halted booster shots in order to focus on vaccinating poorer countries. 

Summary: 

  • This Wednesday the World Health Organization (WHO) stopped all Covid-19 booster shots through September due to the struggle faced by poorer companies in vaccinating their populations. 
  • The move was called a “false choice” by United States Press Secretary Jen Pskai, but WHO general director Tedros Adhanom stated at the recent conference how vaccines shouldn’t be supplied to countries who have had access to the largest supply while “the world’s most vulnerable people remain unvaccinated.”
  • WHO will now be focusing on fixing these disparities by aiming to have 10% of each country vaccinated by the end of next month. 
  • The halt of booster shots comes as the delta virus rapidly spreads in over 100 countries, deemed to be the most transmissible of all the coronavirus types and focing many countries back into lockdowns.
  • A new variant called lambda has also been gaining traction, mainly in South America, and is believed by experts to soon become the most dominant strain in the upcoming months. 
  • Although it is unclear whether or not the vaccines debilitated under the Labda variant, the CDC stresses the best way to stay protected and continue to stay protected against alarming strains of the coronavirus is to get the vaccine. 
  • Vanguard Group has recently offered $1,000 to it’s employees if they’re able to show proof of their vaccination status in order to see an increase of vaccination status in their workforce. 
  • They join many other companies offering incentives to stop the spread of coronavirus, including Cigna, Kroger, and different financial companies.  

Sources

https://thehill.com/changing-america/well-being/longevity/566404-is-the-rapidly-spreading-lambda-variant-more-dangerous

https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2021/08/04/coronavirus-covid-live-updates-us/

https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2021/08/03/delta-plus-coronavirus-variant-explained/

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/vanguard-offers-1000-to-vaccinated-employees/

Tweets: 

IDF Responds to three Rockets fired from Lebanon

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  • In response to the three rockets fired from Lebanon to Israel, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) fired three artillery shells right back within three hours. 
  • Two rockets fired from Lebanon landed in open fields, while the last was just shy of the Kiryat Shmona border. No injuries or deaths were reported from the rockets, but Israeli forces stated worse was to come if Lebanon escalated tensions any further. 
  • The incident mirrors similar events that occured in the past month, and Israel accuses Palestinan groups operating in Lebanon to be the cause. 
  • The militant Hezbollah group in Lebanon have yet to comment on the rockets or investigations into the event. A United Nations representative in Lebanon who works on peacekeeping stated the importance for both sides to “exercise maximum restraint to avoid further escalation.”

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Hundreds March in Remembrance On The One Year Anniversary Of the Beirut Explosion

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  • On the one year anniversary of the Beirut Port explosions, hundreds of people march in remembrance of the hundreds of lives lost. 
  • Local law enforcement clashed with some protestors who were angry and demanding explanations for the event, causing the release of tear gas, water cannons, and some beatings. 
  • In a first address post intestinal surgery, Pope Francis stated his great desire to visit Lebanon, calling for more donors to assist in Lebanon’s efforts. 
  • President Joe Biden has pledged $100 million towards Lebanon to assist as humanitarian aid, urging world powers to “step up their support for the Lebanese people.”

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Turkey Rejects US Program to Resettle Afghans

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  • The US State Department announced a plan to resettle Afghan refugees in the US. The plan involves third countries, such as Turkey and Pakistan, housing the refugees for 12-14 months while their applications are being processed.
  • Turkey’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Tanju Bilgic stated that this would cause a migration crisis that Turkey will not be a part of. He also criticized the United States, stating, “if they want to take these people to their country, it is possible to transfer them directly to their country by planes”.
  • Turkey is currently hosting around four million refugees. Hundreds of Afghans have already traveled to Turkey amidst the recent violence.
  • The Taliban are currently making aggressive advances in Afghanistan, including air strikes, gunfire, and an atmosphere of danger for thousands of Afghans. The recent surge in violence began as the US started withdrawing troops from the region.

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Mexico Sues American Gun Manufacturers for “Unlawful Trafficking”

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  • Mexico has filed a civil lawsuit against eleven American gun manufacturers for business practices that create a flow of weapons from the US to criminals in Mexico. Smith & Wesson, Barrett Firearms, Colt and Glock are among the Defendants.
  • The complaint states that gunmakers are “actively facilitating the unlawful trafficking of their guns to drug cartels and other criminals in Mexico,” using “dangerous and illegal sales practices”.
  • The lawsuit reports that criminal activity in Mexico increased in 2004, which was the same time that production and distribution of military grade weapons increased in the United States. The Mexican government is seeking around $10 billion in compensation for the damages and financial toll caused by the alleged illegal actions.

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Robinhood Named Meme Stock as Shares Soar 82%

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  • Robinhood shares soared as high as 82% on Wednesday, closing at 50.4%. Its market value of $29 billion last week jumped to $65 billion. Trading was halted several times for volatility.
  • On Tuesday, Robinhood finished the day at 24%, rising above their initial public price. The same investors behind the GameStop surge, specifically WallStreetBets and other retail investors, are showing sudden interest in Robinhood.
  • Some are now calling Robinhood a meme stock due to its volatility. The stock began trading on the NASDAQ last week, falling 8% on its first day.

Tweets

Hundreds Protest Rape of Nine Year Old Girl in India

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  • Hundred of protesters have swarmed India’s capital for the last four days after a nine year old girl from the Dalit community was allegedly gang-raped, murdered, and cremated. The girl was getting water from a Delhi crematorium when the crime was committed.
  • The Dalit community is one of the most oppressed groups in India’s caste-based social hierarchy. Protesters from different backgrounds chanted, “We want justice,” and “Justice for India’s daughter”.
  • Four men have been arrested, and an investigation has been created to investigate the allegations of caste violence, gang rape and forced cremation. 
  • Dalits are sometimes referred to as “untouchables,” and experience extreme discrimination and often assault. 

Tweets

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

Daily Brief

Salman Rushdie Severely Stabbed due to his Publication of the Book “The Satanic Verses”

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  • Salman Rushdie, an author, was severely stabbed in his neck and abdomen on stage by a suspect named Hadi Matar, causing him to be on a ventilator and potentially losing an eye.
  • An Iranian leader back in the 20th century wanted Rushdie killed because of his novel, Satanic Verses, that many Muslims found disrespectful. This led Salman to go into hiding for almost a decade.
  • Translators from different countries reading this book were harshly stabbed to death when the book came out and Iranian leader, Ayatollah Khomeini called for Salman’s execution for three million dollars.
  • The Iranian government has not yet responded to this issue, but many Iranians in the media claim him to be an apostate who later became an atheist.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

China Threatens Consequences if Pelosi Visits Taiwan

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  • US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi has landed inTaiwan. Prior to the visit, China’s Foreign Ministry has voiced their disapproval, stating that “China will take resolute responses and strong countermeasures to defend its sovereignty and territorial integrity.”
  • US Secretary of State Antony Blinken emphasized in response  that “The speaker will make her own decisions about whether or not to visit Taiwan,” and that the US is looking to Beijing to “act responsibly and not to engage in any escalation going forward.”
  • The US has made it clear that members of Congress routinely visit Taiwan and that this trip is non-threatening and has precedent. Even so, some officials have expressed concern that China may invade Taiwan’s air defense zone or send missiles near Taiwan in retaliation.
  • Pelosi has criticized China’s leadership and vocalized support for Taiwan in the past. She is currently on her tour of Asia, with scheduled visits to Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea and Japan.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

First Grain Ship Departs Ukraine After Six Months of Russian Blockade

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  • The first shipment of grain departed the port of Odesa on Monday after Russia’s blockade of Ukrainian ports for the last six months trapped around 20 million metric tons of wheat and corn.
  • Russia recently made a deal with Ukraine, brokered by the UN and Turkey, allowing grain exports to resume, appeasing fears of a global food supply crisis and rising prices.
  • Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba celebrated the shipment, calling it a “day of relief for the world, especially for our friends in the Middle East, Asia, and Africa.”
  • Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was more hesitant to celebrate the shipment, stating “it is too early to draw any conclusions and make any forecasts” and he wants to “see how the agreement works and whether security will be really guaranteed.”

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

Concerns Rise As US Teeters on the Brink of Recession

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  • The US economy declines for the second quarter in a row, causing, what other countries would consider, an economic recession. 
  • The prices for groceries, gas, and other basics are rising at the fastest pace since 1981. The US Central Bank is quickly trying to raise borrowing costs in order to cool the economy and ease the prices on goods, but with the contraction, at the annual rate of 0.9% in the 3 months to July, many are still getting concerned. 
  • President Biden struggles to convince the public that the economy is sound, with the unemployment rate at a low 3.6%. But with inflation in the US hitting 9.1% in June, the fastest price appreciation in 4 months, consumer spending has slowed at an annual rate of 1%. 
  • Many other countries, such as China and the UK, have been hit harder by the surge in energy prices and the War in Ukraine, causing risks from abroad. Other countries are facing much more serious problems and once they’re hit, their problems can spill over and affect the US. 

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

North Korea Could Possibly Be Preparing another Nuclear Test

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  • North Korea could be preparing a seventh nuclear test, especially after Mr. Kim announced that the country is fully ready for any military confrontation with the US at a Korean War Anniversary event. 
  • A US special representative in North Korea states that Jong-Un has tested an unprecedented number of missiles this year—31 to 25. Jong-Un also stated that threats from the US required North Korea to achieve the urgent historical task of strengthening its self-defense. 
  • Jong-un also stated that South Korea is reviving a plan to counter North Korea’s threat by mounting precautionary strikes; in June alone, South Korea launched 8 missiles of its own.
  • The North Korean regime is especially angry with South Korea’s new president Yoon Suk-yeol and his so-called Kill Chain strategy. This strategy allows South Korea to launch ballistic missiles and air strikes on North Korean targets if it ever feels threatened. 
  • North Korea has also not been getting as much engagement with Washington ever since Biden replaced Trump, and could be hinting at some sort of deliberate escalation by the North, and preparations have been underway at the Punggye Ri test site since March.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

Russia Limits Gas Supply to Germany

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  • Gazprom, a major Russian energy provider, has stated it will reduce the supply of gas to Germany by half via the Nord Stream 1 pipeline due to repair work. 
  • Germany has said that they see no technical reason for the decrease in gas supply. The European Union continues to accuse Russia of weaponizing energy, with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky stating, “This is an open gas war that Russia is waging against a united Europe.”
  • Ukraine and Russia signed an agreement to allow the export of grain via the Black Sea after Russia continued to block millions of tonnes from being exported. The next day, Russia struck missiles at the port, some of which hit the infrastructure of the port.
  • The US and Ukraine are optimistic that the agreement will still be implemented, with the US State Department stating, “Despite these attacks, we do understand that the parties are continuing preparations to open Ukraine’s Black Sea ports for food and fertilizer exports…we also continue to expect that the Black Sea agreement will be implemented.”

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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