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Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Bengali Garment Factory Fire Kills

A fire broke out earlier today in Gazipur, Bangladesh just outside of Dhaka. According to Fire official Zafar Ahmed at least 10 people were killed in an ostensibly closed Aswad garment factory. It appears that while the building should have been shuttered for the day, a number of employees were working overtime at the moment of ignition. While the blaze has been brought under control, authorities have not yet released a cause for the fire. After a space of devastating workplace accidents have cast a pall over the garment industry in Bangladesh, worldwide conglomerates which contract with factories in the nation have pledged to step up their lax safety codes.

CERN Stares Into the Dark

Now that Peter Higgs and Francois Englert have earned the Nobel Prize in physics for postulating the existence of the now confirmed Higgs boson, European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) director Rolf Heuer has suggested the next target is dark. “We have now completed the Standard Model,” said Heuer, “It is high time for us to go on to the dark universe.” CERN’s Large hadron collider (LHC) is due to resume operations in early 2015 with its power doubled after the completion of a two-year refitting. CERN deputy Sergio Bertolucci was optimistic about the refit, saying it “will open promising territory into new physics.”

Sarkozy No Longer Being Charged in ‘Bettencourt Affair’

Having been left off a list of those to appear for trial for soliciting cash from the allegedly mentally frail L’Oréal heiress Liliane Bettencourt, former French President Nicolas Sarközy may now be clear to run for president again in 2017. While Individual campaign contributions are limited to €4,600, Bettencourt’s accountant Claire Thibout alleges that she withdrew €150,000 ($203,715) in cash to give to the conservative Union for a Popular Movement(UMP) party during Sarkozy’s presidential election campaign in 2007. Ten people are still facing trial over the allegations.

While he was soundly drubbed out of the presidency by Hollande in 2012, polls since have suggested Sarkozy is regarded favorably in light of the François Hollande presidency.

Rabbi Yousef Dead

Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, leader of the ultra-Orthodox Shas Party, Talmudic scholar, and halakhic posek, died yesterday at the age of 93. The announcement of his death was met by a massive outpouring of people into the streets and onto the rooftops of Israel. According to police roughly 800,000 people, in a nation of 6,066,000 Jewish people, mobbed along the funeral procession path, many chanting, wailing, and tearing at their clothes in a show of deep sadness.

Yosef was, perhaps, most known as a tireless champion of working-class Arab-world Jews, also known as Mizrachim, in the face of Israel’s early European-born Ashkenazi elites. “He restored the pride of the Mizrachi public because nobody could deny that he was a great authority,” said Yehuda Ben-Meir, a public opinion expert at the Institute for National Security Studies and a onetime politician in the Ashkenazi National Religious Party. “He could compete with the greatest Ashkenazi rabbis as a Torah authority. That was the essence of his power.” In the wake of Yousef’s passing, the Shas party has already evinced signs of its instability. There are currently no Shas politicians or religious leaders with the universal esteem and clout that Yousef enjoyed.

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