Tag Archives: Middle East

Healthy soil for healthy plants for healthy humans

The human gut microbiome is a complex system of gazillions of bacteria, fungi, viruses, protists and archaea that has an enormous effect on our metabolism, health and well‐being. The same holds true for the plant rhizosphere, where the roots are immersed in a soil microbiome that provides plants with important nutrients, protects them from disease and pathogens, and helps them …

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KAUST Research: Potential to conserve reef shark populations

KAUST Research: Potential to conserve reef shark populations

Decades of overexploitation have devastated shark populations, leaving considerable doubt as to their ecological status. Yet much of what is known about sharks has been inferred from catch records in industrial fisheries, whereas far less information is available about sharks that live in coastal habitats3. Here we address this knowledge gap using data from more than 15,000 standardized baited remote …

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Why US diplomatic muscle could achieve more in Somalia than drone strikes

A military drone replica is displayed in front of the White House during a protest against drone strikes on January 12, 2019 in Washington, DC. Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

A military drone replica is displayed in front of the White House during a protest against drone strikes on January 12, 2019 in Washington, DC. Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images Paul D. Williams, George Washington University The United States has used airstrikes against al-Shabaab forces in Somalia since January 2007, including armed drone strikes from June 2011. From early 2017, …

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It’s time for states that grew rich from oil, gas and coal to figure out what’s next

A surface coal mine in Gillette, Wyoming, photographed in 2008. Greg Goebel/Flickr, CC BY-SA

A surface coal mine in Gillette, Wyoming, photographed in 2008. Greg Goebel/Flickr, CC BY-SA Bradley Handler, Colorado School of Mines; Matt Henry, University of Wyoming, and Morgan Bazilian, Colorado School of Mines These are very challenging times for U.S. fossil fuel-producing states, such as Wyoming, Alaska and North Dakota. The COVID-19 economic downturn has reduced energy demand, with uncertain prospects …

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Bahrain v Israel: how sport could help cement peace accords in the Middle East

Sporting events and initiatives could help strengthen ties between the Gulf states and Israel. EFKS/Shutterstock

Sporting events and initiatives could help strengthen ties between the Gulf states and Israel. EFKS/Shutterstock Hussa Khalid, Loughborough University Back in 2016, I was excited for the Bahrain Women’s National team to compete in the Aphrodite Cup, an international football tournament held in Cyprus. Bahrain’s team, of which I was in charge, had previously participated in an earlier edition of …

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Iran’s secular shift: new survey reveals huge changes in religious beliefs

Iran is becoming more secular. Abedin Taherkenareh/EPA

Pooyan Tamimi Arab, Utrecht University and Ammar Maleki, Tilburg University Iran’s 1979 Islamic revolution was a defining event that changed how we think about the relationship between religion and modernity. Ayatollah Khomeini’s mass mobilisation of Islam showed that modernisation by no means implies a linear process of religious decline. Reliable large-scale data on Iranians’ post-revolutionary religious beliefs, however, has always …

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Prehistoric desert footprints are earliest evidence for Homo sapiens on Arabian Peninsula

© Paul Breeze, Author provided

© Paul Breeze, Author provided Richard Clark-Wilson, Royal Holloway Humanity originated on the African continent at least 300,000 years ago. We know from fossil evidence in southern Greece and the Levant (modern-day Israel) that some early members of our species expanded beyond Africa around 200,000 years ago, and again between 120,000 to 90,000 years ago. They likely travelled through the …

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