National / International News

Rain could increase river pollution

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 22:00
Wetter winters in the future could increase agricultural pollution in Britain's rivers, say scientists.

Reports: NSA spied on China telecom giant Huawei

Marketplace - American Public Media - Sun, 2014-03-23 21:19

The U.S. National Security Agency reportedly gained access into Huawei’s servers in 2009, at the same time that the U.S. Congress was about to block Huawei from the American market because of fears that Huawei would gain access to U.S. servers. In recent years, the U.S.government has viewed Huawei with suspicion, and that’s allegedly the reason the NSA was spying on the company. The U.S.government's biggest fear about Huawei has been the fear that the company has close connections to China’s military.

Neither through New York Times nor the Der Spiegel stories about what the NSA learned about Huawei confirm that suspicion. The extent of what is reported is that the US has been spying on Huawei and it was also interested in gaining access to information about Huawei’s customers, too, a list that includes the countries of Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, just to name a few.

More than 140 countries – a third of the world’s population - use Huawei routers, servers, and cell phone towers. Huawei, the largest telecommunications company in the world, is a potential goldmine of information for an agency like the NSA.

The timing of the release of these reports has raised a lot of questions. Edward Snowden disclosed a trove of NSA documents nearly a year ago - many experts wonder: why are just learning about the targeting of Huawei now? Snowden first made headlines last year on the eve of a summit between President Obama and Chinese leader Xi Jinping. At that time, the Obama administration was openly complaining about China stealing data from US companies.

The disclosure that the NSA is spying on Huawei happens to fall on the eve of another meeting between Presidents Obama and Xi today in the Hague.

“This completely destroys any argument that the US has been making about cyberespionage or cybertheft," says Bill Bishop, publisher of the China media site Sinocism. "The US has absolutely no moral high ground to argue publicly that the bad Chinese have been stealing stuff online.”

Bishop says American tech companies like IBM and Cisco - competitors of Huawei with a presence in China- have  already been under a lot of pressure in China since the Snowden leaks. He says this latest revelation will probably make it worse for these companies.

If you’re a Chinese company, says Bishop, you’re going to be re-evaluating where you buy your network equipment, and state-owned companies will likely steer clear of US products, and maybe even Huawei products, now, too, given today's news.


Taiwan students storm government HQ

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 21:06
Dozens hurt as Taiwan police disperse students who had occupied government headquarters to protest at a trade deal with China.

Washington Landslide Death Toll Doubles To 8

NPR News - Sun, 2014-03-23 20:36

Searchers found 5 more bodies Sunday in the tangled sludge of a massive landslide in rural Washington state. On Saturday, a wall of debris swept through a riverside neighborhood north of Seattle.

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Oil Spill Cleanup Impedes Major Texas Ship Channel

NPR News - Sun, 2014-03-23 20:16

Oil spill cleanup impedes major Texas ship channel

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After Winter's Chill, Economists Predict A Warming Trend

NPR News - Sun, 2014-03-23 20:02

A cold, snowy winter in most of the country hurt economic growth, but forecasters see conditions improving for the rest of the year.

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Rising death toll from US landslide

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 19:58
Rescuers searching the area of Saturday's massive mudslide in the US state of Washington find eight bodies, with a number of people still missing.

Japan PM visits Anne Frank museum

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 18:58
Japan's Shinzo Abe visits Amsterdam's Anne Frank House museum, weeks after 300 copies of her famous diary were vandalised in Tokyo.

China's factories reveal slowdown

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 18:41
China's manufacturing sector showed further contraction in March, according to a new report which mainly tracks activity in smaller factories.

VIDEO: Mexico's mariachi academy run by American

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 17:18
Mexico's first mariachi academy plans global domination

Elton John: On the Yellow Brick Road

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 17:17
The story of Goodbye Yellow Brick Road by the people who made it

Did Hyman Minsky find the secret behind financial crashes?

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 17:14
Did this man find the secret behind financial crashes?

Cows connected to web to boost milk

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 17:09
Scottish dairy famers are connecting their cows to the internet to help track the animal's health and improve their milk yield.

Will nuclear summit be damaged by rift with Russia?

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 17:04
James Robbins reflects on a nuclear summit without Russia

Scots constitution to be published

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 16:53
An interim written Scottish constitution will be published this summer, the country's deputy first minister announces.

Warmer springs boost tit survival

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 16:45
Warm spring weather boosts long-tailed tits' chances of surviving the winter, say scientists.

New tool to help catch child abusers

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 16:43
Victims of child sexual abuse could soon be identified more quickly, thanks to law enforcement agency work on a cloud-based archive of abuse material.

Stamps honour 10 greats born in 1914

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 16:31
Actor Sir Alec Guinness and poet Dylan Thomas are among 10 "remarkable" people - all born in 1914- who feature on a new set of stamps.

Nato warns over Russia border force

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 16:20
Nato's top military commander warns of the size and readiness of Russia's forces on Ukraine's border, but Russia says it has no "expansionist views".

VIDEO: Rain could increase river pollution

BBC - Sun, 2014-03-23 16:17
Soil and water scientist Prof Philip Haygarth explains how wetter winters in future could pollute our rivers, and how science could help.

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