Friday Wrap: Sanctions, Sperm Whales and the Rapture

Happy Friday, Care2 members! This has been quite a crazy week. Take a look.

The Middle East and North Africa

Libya: As the International Criminal Court seeks to issue an arrest warrant for Muammar el-Gaddafi for crimes against humanity, Gaddafi’s wife and only daughter have fled to Tunisia. Could Gaddafi be worried about his chances of victory?

Syria: Violence has broken out along the Israeli/Syrian border in the Golan Heights, an area seized from Syria by Israel in 1974. The White House has accused the Syrian government of provoking violence along this border to divert attention from its own bloody crackdown against protesters. 

In a further display of disapproval of the Syrian government, the Obama Administration has imposed sanctions against President Bashar al-Assad. This is a strong message from the U.S. that violence against civilians needs to stop. Unfortunately, bloody protests continue, and as many as 34 people were killed today amidst huge rallies.

Yemen: President Ali Abdullah Saleh continues to stall despite his promise to step down and transfer power to the opposition party. As a result, unrest continues.

Bahrain: 9 protesters were given 20 year prison sentences this week, continuing the Bahraini government’s crackdown on protesters, some of whom have even received death sentences.

In a speech on Thursday, President Obama spoke of the U.S.’s desire to support democracy and peace in the Middle East and North Africa. He also called to Israel and Palestine to create a two-state solution to their decades-long conflict based on 1967 borders.

For more Care2 coverage of the Middle East and North Africa, click here.

Captive journalists

The world has been waiting for news about the journalists held captive by governments in the Middle East and North Africa, and this week marked a dramatic turning point for many.

Dorothy Parvaz, an Al-Jazeera journalist, was released after being in Syrian custody (and later Iranian custody) since April.

In addition, 4 journalists in Libya who had been detained for allegedly entering the country illegally were freed and are on their way home.

Unfortunately, the photojournalist Anton Hammerl, who went missing around the same time as the other journalists, is confirmed to be dead. Family members have learned that Hammerl was shot by pro-Gaddafi forces over a month ago, and the Gaddafi regime has been covering up the murder since then. Our hearts go out to Hammerl’s family and friends.

International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia

This week we promoted awareness of issues surrounding homophobia and transphobia in honor of the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia. Click here for all the Care2 coverage on the subject.

Strange stories of the week

Watch out when you head to the local 7-11 to find a little something to satisfy your sweet tooth — you could end up with a brownie that contains melatonin, a drug that causes drowsiness. These desserts, called Lazy Cakes, Kush Cakes or Lulla Pies, are marketed as a way to relax. This may seem harmless, but just be careful not to eat the whole thing! Recommended dosage is half a brownie.

What happens when you combine natural ingredients with some interesting growth hormones? Apparently, you get exploding watermelons.

Let’s just get this out of the way so we can stop talking about him once and for all. The Donald is not running for president. And good riddance to him.

Get your holy water ready, folks. The rapture is set to occur tomorrow (Saturday, May 21). Don’t forget to make sure you have arranged for some “certified atheists” to care for your animals after you’ve been saved.

Animal welfare success stories

A new study shows that sperm whales have accents and dialects when they communicate. These amazing animals have a beautiful and diverse language system. Unfortunately they are threatened by noise pollution because of their sensitive hearing.

Social media isn’t just for people anymore. Check out these 6 animals who have more Twitter and Facebook followers than most people.

Congrats to the city of Austin, Texas which just became a no-kill city! Thanks in part to support from Care2 members, the city is making sure that animal shelters do not have to put unwanted animals to death.

If you want to further support animal shelters around the country, you can vote in America’s Favorite Animal Shelter Contest. So far, the Blind Cat Rescue & Sanctuary of St. Pauls, NC is in the lead. Cast your own vote!

Thanks for reading! I’ll be back next week… pending, of course, the apocalypse.

 

Image by Peaco Todd, a Care2 blogger

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45 comments

Linda E.
Linda E.4 years ago

Sometimes it seems like the world is falling apart. At least we survived the rapture.

Michael S.
Michael S.4 years ago

Camping proved once again that it is very easy to get stupid people to send you money. My bet goes on the same stupid people who support Ryan, Palin, Rand Paul and the tea party. As William Rivers Pitt put it, PT Barnum is chuckling from his grave!

Susan T.
Susan T.4 years ago

Who are the idiots who keep sending money to religious leaders who keep predicting the rapture and then, oops, it doesn't happen musta made an error in calculations...I mean seriously how many times can they sucker people? Harold Camping of Family Radio, who was sounding the alarm on the May 21st date, has MILLIONS in his church's coffers. He previously sounded the alarm in 1994. OOPS. WTF???

Hege Torset
Hege Torset4 years ago

thanks

Walter Firth
Walter Firth4 years ago

What a wonderful week in a wonderful world.

Zee Kallah
.4 years ago

Sperm Whales and the Rapture? That's what the heading said.

That's ok. They're coming with us.

Only 1 hour and 21 minutes left to sign petitions.

Then we'll know that "no man knoweth the day or the hour".

Well, we'll know it wasn't today.

Wait a minute, on second thought maybe I'd better call a Christian friend to be sure she's still here. lol

pam wilkerson
pam wilkerson4 years ago

Silly!

Eternal Gardener
Eternal Gardener4 years ago

The rapture still cracks me up!

Camila K.
Kamila A.4 years ago

This world cracks me up sometimes.

Robert H.
Robert H.4 years ago

Well, it is after 6 pm local time, and to the best of my knowledge, all the holier than thou republicans are, unfortunately, still around.
Damn!