Inside The Abandoned Babylon That Saddam Hussein Built
In the 1980s, during the Iran-Iraq War, Saddam Hussein became obsessed with the Babylonian ruler Nebuchadnezzar. Saddam saw himself as a modern reincarnation of Nebuchadnezzar, and to prove it, he spent millions building a massive reconstruction of Babylon.
Coming Out Of The Shadows: What It Means To Be French And Chinese
France is home to large Vietnamese and Cambodian communities who arrived in the country in great numbers following the wars in the former French colonies in the 1970s. People of Chinese descent have long faced prejudice and violence in France. But today a new generation is staking out its rightful place in society.
In Japan’s Vanishing Rural Towns, Newcomers Are Wanted
Kanna-machi is living on borrowed time. It’s set to be among the first municipal victims of Japan’s demographic trajectory. The phenomenon is called shoushikoureika—the combined effects of an aging population, anemic birthrate, and surging demand for social services.
Who Killed Two Journalists In Ukraine? And Why?
An investigation and trial has answered some of the questions about what happened to Andrei Mironov and the Italian photographer he was accompanying. Yet so much remains uncertain. Theirs is a story of the murky nature of facts in a war zone. It’s a story of elusive moral clarity in a land where death comes from who knows where.
Inside The Daring Mission To Reach The Bottom Of All Earth’s Oceans
Science fiction obsessed Victor Vescovo wanted to be the first person to reach the deepest points of all five oceans – but first he had to build a submarine that was up to it.
How Half A Tonne Of Cocaine Transformed The Life Of An Island
In 2001, a smugglers’ yacht washed up in the Azores and disgorged its contents. The island of São Miguel was quickly flooded with high-grade cocaine – and nearly 20 years on, it is still feeling the effects.
You Can Own This Former ICBM Silo In The Arizona Desert
A former Titan II missile complex, the complex is a fixer upper and ready to become one of the few homes that once stood ready to pummel America’s enemies with the destructive force of 9,000,000 tons of TNT. The realtor posted a listing price of just $395,000.
The Man Who Walked Backward
When the Great Depression put Plennie Wingo’s bustling Abilene, Texas, cafe out of business, he tried to find fame, fortune, and a sense of meaning the only way he knew how: by embarking on an audacious trip around the world on foot. In reverse.
The Junk Art King Of Zambia
Frederick Phiri is the junk-art king of central Africa: At just 22, he’s started to earn an international reputation for being able to make intricate and elegant sculptures from scrap metal found in his community.
Slice Of Prime Zurich Real Estate Sold For $134 Million On Blockchain
A building on Zurich’s most exclusive shopping street has been converted into a blockchain-powered investment following its CHF130 million ($134 million) sale. It is the latest attempt to unlock the value of bricks and mortar using digitally-coded tokens.
How One NASA Image Tells Dozens Of Stories
In 2016, NASA used the Suomi NPP weather satellite to create a high resolution image of the earth at night. It can help us better understand the current developments and conflicts underway. The amount of light pollution is most severe in heavily populated areas, as well as in regions of high prosperity.
Kings Of Cocaine: How The Albanian Mafia Seized Control Of The UK Drug Trade
Hellbanianz belong to the “retail game” of the cocaine trade. They are the street dealers and enforcers of the Mafia Shqiptare, the Albanian organised criminal syndicates who, the National Crime Agency believe, are consolidating power within the UK criminal underworld and on their way to a near total takeover of the UK’s £5bn cocaine market.
The Primal Pleasure And Brutal History Of Sugar
In the Western imagination, sugar is pleasure, temptation, and vice — and in modern history, it is original sin. How a taste for sweetness, developed for survival, became a stand-in for everything good — and evil — about our culture.
The True History Behind ‘The Plot Against America’
Philip Roth’s classic novel, newly adapted by HBO, envisions a world in which Charles Lindbergh wins the 1940 presidential election. Roth’s account of a celebrity-turned-politician winning the presidency on a platform of fearmongering and “othering” proved more prophetic than he could have predicted.
The Many Lives Of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”
Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” has been covered by more than 300 other artists in virtually every genre. It’s an impressive feat by any standard, but even more so when you consider that “Hallelujah” was originally stuck on side two of an album that Cohen’s record label deemed unfit for release.
The Oldest Tattooing Family In The World
Wasim Razzouk is a tattoo artist in Jerusalem’s Old City. Ink runs deep in his family. The Razzouks have been tattooing visitors to the Holy Land for 500 years (and in Egypt for 200 years before that). Christian pilgrims flock to Razzouk Tattoo to get a cross tattoo based on one of the designs on wooden stamps that have been in the Razzouk family for generations.
A Mysterious 25,000-Year-Old Structure Built Of The Bones Of 60 Mammoths
A jaw-dropping example of Ice Age architecture has been unearthed on Russia’s forest steppe. But exactly why hunter-gatherers enduring the frigid realities of life 25,000 years ago would construct the 40-foot diameter building is a fascinating question.
The Global Drive To Reclaim Routes For Cyclists & Pedestrians
In many places, car-curbing efforts have begun to gain traction, driven in part by citizen activism. Cities like Paris have proclaimed car-free days. There are also plans to oust private vehicles from major metropolitan areas and there have even been proposals to create entirely new car-free cities from scratch.
Is An Island Off Cuba The Last Surviving Piece Of East Germany?
The Unification Treaty signed in August 1990 re-Germanied the Germanies, and that West Germany (now known as “Germany”) inherited East Germany’s territories. But there may have been a tiny oversight. Turns out, there could still be a sliver of the Deutsche Demokratische Republik remaining in the Caribbean, just west of Cuba’s Bay of Pigs.
Why Prices Differ Around the World
If you have ever traveled somewhere, especially to countries that are either a good deal richer or poorer than your own, you might have noticed that some places are certainly a lot more expensive than others. There seems to be a strong correlation between the average wealth of a country and the cost of goods and services.
Inside The Pampered And Personalized World of DC’s VIP Diners
The big restaurant lie: Everyone is treated the same. For a select group of dining heavies around town, a whole other world of special perks and suck-uppery awaits.