Forty years after being hit by a devastating earthquake, a building dubbed a “jewel” of the ancient Roman ruins of Pompeii has finally reopened to the public.
The restoration of the House of Lovers ― reportedly once a brothel and so-called because of a Latin inscription that reads “Lovers like bees live a sweet life like honey. I wish it were so” — was officially completed Tuesday, reported the AFP agency.
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Archaeologists first discovered the building in 1933. It had been buried in volcanic ash, along with the rest of the historic settlement outside of modern-day Naples, Italy, for almost two millennia following the eruption of nearby Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 79.
It was closed for repair in November 1980, however, after suffering severe damage during the 6.5-magnitude Irpinia earthquake that struck the Naples area, killing some 2,735 people.
The House of the Orchard and the European Ship House were also reopened Tuesday as the Great Pompeii Project ― a six-year, $113 million initiative to repair and restore further swaths of the site that in 2013 was at risk of being placed on UNESCO’s list of heritage sites in jeopardy ― drew to a close.
Check out more photos from the newly reopened sites here:
The Wyoming representative stands by her opposition to Trump’s election lies as she prepares to be removed from No 3 House role On the eve of a vote almost certain to remove her from a leadership role in the Republican party, a defiant Liz Cheney embraced her fall from party grace and offered a final appeal to her colleagues: “We must speak the truth.” Republicans are poised to remove Cheney from her House leadership position over her refusal to support Donald Trump’s “big lie” that last year’s election was stolen from him. Cheney, a Wyoming representative who hails from a Republican political dynasty, was one of 10 Republicans who voted to impeach Trump for “incitement of insurrection” following the deadly 6 January attack on the Capitol. In the weeks since, her assertions that the 2020 elections were valid, and that Trump was wrong to sir up supporters who rioted in his name, have driven a wedge between her and fellow Republicans who remain loyal to the former president. In a speech on the House floor on Tuesday evening, Cheney was steadfast. “I will not sit back and watch in silence while others lead our party down a path that abandons the rule of law and joins the president’s crusade to undermine our democracy,” she said. Wearing a pin replicating George Washington’s battle flag, Cheney justified her positions by referencing her time at the US state department, comparing the Capitol attack to events she’s seen in authoritarian countries. A staunch, lifelong conservative and the daughter of former vice president Dick Cheney, she is almost certain to be replaced on Wednesday as the No 3 House Republican by Elise Stefanik, a New York representative who holds more moderate views on most matters, bar the validity of the last elections. “This is not about policy. This is not about partisanship,” Cheney said. “This is about our duty as Americans.” Critics have said that Cheney’s appeals for a fair democracy sound hypocritical, considering that she voted against the For the People Act to protect voting rights, and against enfranchising Washington, DC residents. Cheney’s fate is a sign of Trump’s enduring grip on the Republican party. Her ouster comes as Arizona Republicans carry through a sham audit of the votes in Maricopa county, Arizona, employing a firm called Cyber Ninjas to investigate conspiracy theories including the false claim that ballots with traces of bamboo were smuggled in from Asia. As part of her swan song on the House floor, Cheney referred to Trump as a “threat” and reiterated: “The election is over. That is the rule of law.”
An American lawyer on trial in Japan on charges related to reporting of former Nissan Chairman Carlos Ghosn’s compensation asserted his innocence Wednesday, testifying he acted legally and in Nissan's best interests. Greg Kelly, a former executive vice president at Nissan Motor Co., told the Tokyo District Court he was worried Ghosn might job-hop after taking a big pay cut in 2010, when Japan began requiring disclosures of high executive pay.
Iran's state television reported Wednesday that the country's former firebrand president will run again for office in upcoming elections in June. Broadcast footage showed Mahmoud Ahmadinejad marching accompanied by supporters to a registration center at the Interior Ministry where he filled out registration forms. Ahmadinejad in recent years has tried to polish his hardline image into a more centrist candidacy, criticizing the government for mismanagement.
Comedy CentralThe Daily Show host Trevor Noah on Tuesday addressed the recent tensions in the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestine—as much as could reasonably be done in the time it takes to boil an egg.In recent days, Israeli police clashed with Palestinians at a Jerusalem mosque, nine children were among at least two dozen people killed by Israeli airstrikes, and Gaza militants fired rockets of their own at Israel, killing three.Noah, who acknowledged that there isn’t “any TV show [that] in ten minutes is going to solve [the] Israel-Palestine [problem],” did make some keen observations.For one, as a topic that has perplexed even the world’s best diplomats, it is even harder to unravel if no one can agree on where to begin analyzing it.“If you start from ‘Israel fired rockets into Gaza,’ then Israel is the bad guy, because they’re bombing Gaza,” Noah explained. “But then you take a step back in time, and you go, ‘Well, but Hamas fired rockets at Israel.’ Then Hamas is the bad guy. But then you take a step back, and you go, ‘But the Israeli police went in and started beating people up in a mosque during Ramadan, the most holy time in the Muslim calendar.’ Well then, Israel is the bad guy.”MSNBC Host Challenges Ex-Israel Ambassador on Possible ‘War Crimes’ “And back and back and back, and who knows how far. The first cavemen who hit each other with clubs were probably Israeli and Palestinian. I don’t know.”Noah then pointed out the relative superiority of the Israeli military because of its ability to produce high-end, high-tech weapons (in part thanks to U.S. funding).“I just want to ask an honest question here,” Noah said. “If you are in a fight where the other person cannot beat you, how much should you retaliate when they try to hurt you?”“Everyone has a different answer to the question, and I’m not trying to answer the question, nor do I think I’m smart enough to solve it. All I ask is, when you have this much power, what is your responsibility?”Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
The United Nations on Tuesday responded to the rebounding Chinese and U.S. economies by revising its global economic forecast upward to 5.4% growth for 2021, but it warned that surging COVID-19 cases and inadequate availability of vaccines in many countries threaten a broad-based recovery. In raising its projection from January of 4.7% growth, the U.N.’s mid-2021 World Economic Situation and Prospects report pointed to the rapid vaccine rollout in a few large economies led by the U.S. and China and an increase in global trade in merchandise and manufactured goods that has already reached its pre-pandemic level. Lead author Hamid Rashid, chief of the Global Economic Monitoring Branch in the U.N. Department of Economic and Social Affairs, told a news conference that “Europe’s outlook is not as bright as we expected” because of signs of second and third waves of COVID-19 infections.
Rockets streamed out of Gaza and Israel pounded the territory with airstrikes early Wednesday as the most severe outbreak of violence since the 2014 war took on many hallmarks of that devastating 50-day conflict, with no endgame in sight. Gaza's Hamas rulers and other militant groups have fired barrages of hundreds of rockets that at times have overwhelmed Israel's missile defenses, causing air raid sirens and explosions to echo across Tel Aviv, Israel's biggest metropolitan area, and other cities. Israeli airstrikes have leveled multistory buildings across the Gaza Strip, where 2 million Palestinians have lived under a crippling Israeli-Egyptian blockade since Hamas took power in 2007.
India has confirmed 4,205 more deaths, setting another daily record and taking its official COVID-19 toll past 250,000 as it battles a ferocious surge in infections. Around 370,000 new cases were added in the last 24 hours, pushing India's total past 23 million, according to the health ministry. On Tuesday, authorities warned that nearly 90% of districts in the country are seeing a high positivity rate, sparking fears the coronavirus is spreading to India’s rural areas faster than it during a surge last year.
The number of unaccompanied children encountered on the U.S. border with Mexico in April eased from an all-time high a month earlier, while more adults were found coming without families, authorities said Tuesday. Authorities encountered 17,171 children traveling alone, down 9% from 18,960 in March, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, but still well above the previous high of 11,475 reported in May 2019 by the Border Patrol, which began publishing numbers in 2009. Overall, the Border Patrol’s 173,460 encounters with migrants on the Mexican border in April were up 3% from 169,213 in March, the highest level since April 2000.
During the gloomiest stretches of the pandemic, Dr. Diona Krahn's veterinary clinic has been a puppy fest, overrun with new four-legged patients. Typically, she’d get three or four new puppies a week, but between shelter adoptions and private purchases, the 2020 COVID-19 pet boom brought five to seven new clients a day to her practice in Raleigh, North Carolina. Many are first-time pet owners.
Xinjiang in far western China had the sharpest known decline in birthrates between 2017 and 2019 of any territory in recent history, according to a new analysis by an Australian think tank. The report from the Australian Strategy Policy Institute, obtained exclusively ahead of publication by The Associated Press, showed the 48.74% decline was concentrated in areas with many Uyghurs, Kazakhs and other largely Muslim ethnic minorities, based on Chinese government statistics over nearly a decade. Birthrates in largely minority counties fell 43.7% between 2017 and 2018 alone, with over 160,000 fewer babies born.
Attorneys for a white father and son charged with chasing and killing Ahmaud Arbery are asking a judge to allow evidence of the slain Black man's past problems to be presented when their clients stand trial for murder. Prosecutors are fighting to keep Arbery's criminal record and other prior problems out of the trial, while seeking the judge's permission to introduce unflattering evidence about the defendants — namely text messages that contain racist slurs and social media posts with racist themes. Superior Court Judge Timothy Walmsley has scheduled hearings on legal motions Wednesday and Thursday at a courthouse in Brunswick, 70 miles (110 kilometers) south of Savannah.
Not so long ago, Bill Mathis would have headed to his high school classroom to discuss great literature like “To Kill a Mockingbird” and “The Odyssey” with his freshman. Now Mathis has taken a new job, in Michigan’s newly legalized cannabis industry. “What about us and our families?” he asked his school board in Romeo, Michigan, last August after it unveiled a plan to offer in-person classes.
Analysis: The White House is playing for time and needs to decide quickly how to deal with Trump’s legacy of unwavering support for NetanyahuIsrael-Gaza violence: death toll rises to 38 as UN envoy warns over escalation Joe Biden has reversed some of Trump’s more radical Israel policy steps, restoring US funding for Palestinians and resuming diplomatic contacts with Palestinian officials, but other policies remain. Photograph: REX/Shutterstock Joe Biden came into office thinking he could put the Israel-Palestine issue on the back burner to focus on other, bigger, issues. That is not working out well. The upsurge in violence has caught the new administration on the back foot, under-staffed and without a clearly defined approach. There is not even a nominee for the post of US ambassador to Israel. Faced with calls for a united UN security council statement on Tuesday, the US balked and played for time. But trying to duck the traditional US mediating role is no longer looking like a viable option. The approach thus far has been described as “hands-off”, but Khaled Elgindy, senior fellow at the Middle East Institute, argues that implies a neutrality that is lacking in reality. “They are heavily involved. They are just not involved in the part that has to do with conflict mitigation,” Elgindy said, pointing to the $3.8bn annual US support for the Israeli military, and the blocking move at the security council. “So they are not hands off. They are quite hands on, but not in the ways that are needed to make things better, because that would require putting pressure on Israel and that is anathema to this administration.” The Trump administration trashed the US mediating role by adopting a policy of unstinting support for Benjamin Netanyahu and hostility towards the Palestinians. Its principal foreign policy achievement, the Abraham Accords, which moved towards normalising relations between Israel and some Gulf monarchies, was an attempt to sideline the plight of the Palestinians as an intractable issue. The Trump White House saw emphatic Palestinian defeat, and the Gulf abandonment of the Palestinian cause, as the resolution to the conflict. Trump escaped the consequences of that policy and they have come to haunt his predecessor. “Turns out that the strategy of having some wealthy Emiratis post selfies in Tel Aviv will not in fact bring peace to Israel-Palestine,” Senator Bernie Sanders’ foreign policy adviser, Matt Duss, wrote on Twitter. Biden has reversed some of Trump’s more radical steps, restoring US funding for Palestinians and resuming diplomatic contacts with Palestinian officials, but other Trump policies remain, such as the moving of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The administration has also been coy about a return to pre-Trump official references to the occupied territories. “The latest escalation of violence demonstrates the folly of trying to marginalise this conflict: folly for Israel, for its new Arab partners, and for the Biden-Harris administration,” Tamara Cofman Wittes, a former state department official now senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, said. “They may all prefer to focus on cooperation in pursuit of what they see as higher priorities. But the current crisis threatens to overturn that fragile consensus and divert the new administration’s attention from other foreign policy goals.” The low-key approach has not just been dictated by past failures, the difficulty of the problem, and the desire to conserve diplomatic resources for other issues. Biden also has to maintain a political balance at home, where Trump set the bar high for support of Israel, and where his own party is divided. The president’s perceived inaction is now a focal point for progressive dissatisfaction, however. “Right now, it’s critical that the Biden administration engage proactively in securing an immediate ceasefire and pushing all sides to de-escalate,” the liberal Jewish American lobby, J Street, said in a statement. “With lives on the line, our government can and should be doing more.” Now that standing by is no longer an option, the battle is on within the Democratic party to guide what path the administration takes now. “It was absolutely understandable for them not to want to prioritise this issue, but this issue has a way of prioritising itself at inconvenient moments. What starts in Jerusalem does not stay there,” a senior Democratic congressional aide said. The aide added: “If you want to put human rights back on the US foreign policy agenda, don’t just do it where it’s easy. Even Trump did it where it was easy. If you want to actually be credible, you have to do it where it’s hard.”
"Israel versus Palestine — and I know that even saying that sentence means I'm losing followers online and I'm on the verge of being blocked on all social media and in life," Trevor Noah said on Tuesday's Daily Show. "But guys, we have to talk about it. Because this is one of the most difficult stories that has existed in our lifetime," even more than India versus Pakistan, China versus Tibet, or "white people versus rhythm." Israel versus Palestine "is a 73-year-old beef that has that has stumped everybody," Noah said, and because it has gone on for so long, "people forget that it is ongoing — that is, until there are flare-ups that the world cannot ignore," like what happened this week. What makes the conflict so difficult to discuss is "all the layers that are packed into it," he said. "No matter how much you try and break it down, people are always going to say that you're leaving out some crucial piece of context," and "they're probably right." There's the Holocaust, Britain's seizure of Palestine, clashing religions, and surrounding countries with their own agendas, Noah said. "And you know what makes it even harder is the fact that who's right and who's wrong always seems to change depending on when you start measuring time. This week was the perfect, perfect example of it." But "I don't want to have that argument," he said, "the part where we say who's good and who's bad and who started it. Let's step away from that and instead ask a different question. Instead, let's look at who's dead and who's alive this week." It's just not a fair fight, Noah concluded, "and I know this is contentious, and I know people are going to hate me for this, but I just want to ask an honest question here: If you are in a fight where the other person cannot beat you, how hard should you retaliate when they try to hurt you?" He ran through some imperfect personal analogies, admitted he didn't have any answers, and left viewers with one question: "When you have this much power, what is your responsibility?" More stories from theweek.comTed Cruz walks out of gun violence hearing after failing to change the subjectFighting between Israel and Hamas intensifies, with dozens deadMcCarthy is reportedly gambling that dumping Liz Cheney will get Trump to help make him House speaker
The reason why some gas stations are running out of fuel isn't because of the Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack, Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said Tuesday, but rather because people are panic buying. "Much as there was no cause for, say, hoarding toilet paper at the beginning of the pandemic, there should be no cause for hoarding gasoline," Granholm told reporters. Running from Texas to New Jersey, the Colonial Pipeline transports 45 percent of the East Coast's fuel supply. It shut down on Friday when the company learned it was the target of a ransomware attack, but the pipeline is expected to be "substantially operational" by the end of the week, Granholm said. On Tuesday, more than 1,000 gas stations in the South and along the East Coast reported being out of fuel. There are long lines at other stations, and this is due to a "supply crunch" rather than a worrisome shortage, Granholm said. With summer approaching, gasoline prices are starting to go up, and Granholm warned gas station owners there will be "no tolerance for price gouging." More stories from theweek.comTed Cruz walks out of gun violence hearing after failing to change the subjectFighting between Israel and Hamas intensifies, with dozens deadMcCarthy is reportedly gambling that dumping Liz Cheney will get Trump to help make him House speaker
Republicans in the U.S. Senate mounted an aggressive case against Democrats' sweeping election and voter-access legislation, pushing to roll back proposals for automatic registration, 24-hour ballot drop boxes and other changes in an increasingly charged national debate. At the end of a long, contentious day, the Rules Committee deadlocked 9-9 on Tuesday over advancing the bill to the full Senate in its current form.
President Joe Biden’s sit-down on Wednesday with Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell and other congressional leaders comes as the White House accelerates its efforts to reach a bipartisan infrastructure agreement — or at least aims to show it’s trying. The president's meeting with McConnell, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy is the first formal gathering of the “big four” congressional leaders since the president took office — a late start after a tumultuous new year.