Globe Trot: Russia starts new year with street protests

by Mindy Belz
Posted 12/31/14, 11:40 am

RUSSIAN opposition leader Alexei Navalny launched street protests in Moscow yesterday after his brother Oleg was sentenced to prison on spurious charges. Navalny himself, along with about 100 other protesters (among thousands), was then arrested. Global attention on the Navalny brothers highlights the growing disaffection with President Vladimir Putin in his own country.

EBOLA: We long have questioned what happens when a tree falls in the forest, but what about when it catches fire? Scientists suspect that fruit bats, dispersed when a tree in the Guinea forest burned last year, may have carried the Ebola virus that infected Emile Ouamouno, the young child who was its first victim.

The early failure of leading scientists to appreciate the catastrophic nature of the outbreak was the subject of a harrowing, extensive story in The New York Times yesterday. Given the leading role played by Christian medical workers, I asked Samaritan’s Purse vice president Ken Isaacs for more perspective:

“The focus of the article showed a time when the world thought Ebola was vanishing from West Africa. Even we thought it was defeated in the April and May window when we were solely focused on public awareness. Then in mid-June, when it returned, we assumed all clinical care of Ebola patients in Liberia. From that time till late July or early August ,we carried that full burden and MSF [Doctors Without Borders] did likewise in Guinea and Sierra Leone. The beginning of this period of explosive destruction by Ebola was the end period for the article.”

INDONESIA: Rescuers have recovered at least 10 bodies from the Java Sea after the weekend crash of AirAsia flight QZ8501. We at WORLD often say “man knows not his time,” and profiles show the variety of circumstances that put the 162 passengers and crew members on that particular flight. I posted an incorrect link on Monday concerning the young South Korean missionary couple onboard, and here’s a more complete story.

2014: The White House has posted its photo collection of a turbulent year using primarily the work of the inimitable Pete Souza, and TIME’s collection of 2014 images includes the Oscar selfie seen round the world. WORLD’s timeline of events also will help you close out an eventful 2014. Happy New Year.

Mindy Belz

Mindy is senior editor of WORLD Magazine and the author of They Say We Are Infidels. Follow Mindy on Twitter @mcbelz.

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