Your Wednesday Briefing – The New York Occasions
A secret trial in Myanmar
The trial of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, Myanmar’s civilian leader who was overthrown in a military coup two weeks ago, began in secret on Tuesday. The defense attorney was briefed on the trial at the last minute. When he rushed to the court, it was over.
Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi faces obscure charges that could jail her for six years: violating import restrictions after walkie-talkies and other foreign equipment were found on her villa compound, along with a previously undisclosed charge during the Pandemic interacting with a crowd.
U Win Myint, the deposed president who was tried Tuesday for interacting with a crowd, could spend three years in prison if convicted.
Context: The first day of the trial followed two dizzying weeks in which the military had stripped the entire population of civil liberties, imprisoned hundreds, and ignored the millions who protested their seizure of power. “This is a battle for our future, the future of our country,” a youth activist told the South China Morning Post. “We want to create a real federal union in which all citizens and all ethnic groups are treated equally.”
Protesters: Despite the great personal risk, the demonstrators meet daily with posters and signs from Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi. A new law means protesters could sit in prison for 20 years, the BBC reports. A group of Buddhist monks have also joined the effort, according to Reuters.
From the opinion: Proponents of democracy “must use the current protests as a lever to use international negotiators to ensure that the Tatmadaw do not dissolve or otherwise override the NLD,” writes Aung San Suu Kyi’s party, Min Zin, a political scientist in Yangon, part of was a 1988 democracy rebellion.
The right-wing branches will borrow heavily from US Fox strategy, and Mr. Murdoch’s News UK TV is hoping to fill a void in the UK market for edgy commentary and big-name figures. The rollout begins in April.
Executives said News UK TV would stay within the regulatory “guard rails”. However, critics say Mr Murdoch has stepped into other markets, including Australia, with similar assurances in an attempt to make the channels more politically extreme over time.
A second, rival company, GB News, has various backers but is stocked with veterans of the Murdoch Empire. GB News reckons there will be an audience for a channel that rejects what it sees as the BBC’s left-wing politics.
North Korea tried to hack vaccine information
North Korea attempted to interfere in the computer systems of international pharmaceutical companies, including Pfizer, to steal information about the Covid-19 vaccine, a South Korean lawmaker said Tuesday.
North Korea, which has a rundown public health system, officially claims to be free of Covid-19. It sealed its borders early last year. Lawmaker Ha Tae-keung, affiliated with a South Korean opposition party, spoke to reporters after being briefed by intelligence officials.
Context:Western officials have long accused North Korea of hacking technology and cash from the outside world.
Here are the latest updates and maps of the pandemic.
If you have 5 minutes, it’s worth it
“It’s ugly, but it’s ours”
The House of the Soviets, an office building in Kaliningrad designed as a symbol of Soviet control over the land conquered during World War II, has instead become a symbol of the shortcomings of the Soviet system. Due to poor construction and structural defects, it was never occupied.
But its ugliness strangely made it popular with young people as a symbol of a Soviet Union they never knew. Now, 42 years later, when the regional government plans to demolish it, some want to keep it. “People like things with flaws,” said one resident. “It’s ugly, but it’s ours.”
The following also happens
Killing of a journalist in Bangladesh: A court sentenced five members of a militant Islamist group to death Tuesday for killing an American blogger criticizing religious extremism. Blogger Avijit Roy, a US citizen of Bangladeshi origin, was killed in 2015.
Australian Open: Serena Williams defeated Simona Halep and started a showdown with Naomi Osaka. Aslan Karatsev from Russia, an unknown player, was one of the few players to reach the semifinals of a Grand Slam. There is still something to see here.
China box office: Hundreds of millions of people across China who typically celebrate the New Year holidays go to the movies instead – causing a resurgence at the box office. Detective Chinatown 3 raised an estimated $ 397 million over three days – a world record for the largest opening weekend in a single market.
Snapshot: Above, refugees in a tent city in Afrin, Syria. Our journalist visited Turkey’s security zone in northern Syria, where President Recep Tayyip Erdogan sent troops across the border three years ago. Kurdish families fled the invasion, but the Syrians who moved there said they were grateful for the Turkish presence despite their hardship.
What we see: This 11 hour underwater shot of marine life on YouTube. It’s the perfect calming backdrop to focus on.
Now a break from the news
Read: In Cherie Jones’ debut novel “How the One-Armed Sister Sweeps Her House”, the lives of tourists and locals crossed in the Caribbean.
We can help you stay engaged, and active with our At Home collection of ideas for what to read, cook, see, and do while staying safe at home.
And now for the background story about …
Adolescents in vaccine trials
Sheila Mulrooney Eldred, a health journalist, earns a front-row seat in one of the most anticipated pediatric trials in history as her two teenagers take part in the Moderna Covid vaccine trial. She wrote about how it was.
For Wes and Zoe, the shot itself was anti-climactic; Even Nadaverse Wes said it hardly hurt. Since most allergic reactions can happen within 30 minutes of a shot, we had to wait an hour.
Like all children in the current study, Wes and Zoe received the same dose as adults, which is typical of Phase 3 clinical trials, said Dr. Jill Weatherhead, Assistant Professor of Infectious Diseases at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston.
Over the next seven days, Wes and Zoe answered questions about pain, pain, swelling, fever, or fatigue in their online diaries. Unlike most adult Covid vaccine trials, which favor participants who come in regular contact with people outside their household, Moderna had no instructions for us to change our lifestyle. So life returned to distance learning and socially distant skiing practice.
Then, on day 7, my phone buzzed with a text from a friend whose son had attended the trial that day: “Well, Zach has a rash at his injection site.”
I brushed aside my instinctive jealousy (we promised to stay friends even if one of our families was stuck with the placebo). The next evening I heard some excitement upstairs that led me to put my book aside: Wes had seen a similar red mark on his arm. We measured the rash to report to our coordinator.
Even if it turns out that one or both of my children were given the saltwater placebo that is given to a third of the teenagers’ study participants, neither of us will regret signing up.
That’s it for this briefing. Until next time.
– Melina and Amelia
Carole Landry helped write this briefing. Theodore Kim and Jahaan Singh took the break from the news. You can reach the team at [email protected]
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