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Netflix gave fans of Stranger Things another glimpse into the show’s upcoming season on Sunday, releasing an ominous new trailer showcasing the names of next year’s episodes. The Stranger Things Season 3 episode titles offer just enough information to leave fans even more eager for the show’s return, especially because the finale’s title hints at a battle of epic proportions.
Sunday’s trailer features the names of each of the season’s episodes appearing on screen one by one, as haunting instrumental music plays in the background. The trailer reveals that the season’s eight episodes have the following titles: “Suzie, Do You Copy?,” “The Mall Rats,” “The Case of the Missing Lifeguard,” “The Sauna Test,” “The Source,” “The Birthday,” “The Bite,” and “The Battle of Starcourt.” After flashing the episodes’ names across the screen, the trailer wraps up with a simple line alluding to what awaits fans next year. "In the summer of 1985, the adventure continues."
As TVLine reported, Sunday’s preview constitutes the second trailer Netflix has released showcasing Stranger Things’ upcoming third season. The original trailer appeared in July and was a feature for the fictional "Starcourt Mall" — one that was full of 1980s culture references. Notably, Starcourt Mall is also mentioned in Sunday’s trailer, seemingly as the location for the season finale’s battle.
Back in October, Digital Spy reported that series co-creator Ross Duffer reflected on the role of Starcourt Mall in the show’s upcoming third season in a book entitled, Stranger Things: Worlds Turned Upside Down. Digital Spy reported that Duffer revealed in the book that the mall will give the season a joyful vibe:
However, Duffer also hinted that there will be an especially dark side to Season 3 as well, explaining that the season is somewhat influenced by The Thing, a well-known science fiction story about a parasitic extraterrestrial being. Duffer ruminated on The Thing‘s influence on the show’s forthcoming season — and on the influence of other horror film directors — in the aforementioned book (as reported by Digital Spy):
Stranger Things fans have a lot to look forward to in Season 3, as the series’ latest trailer reveals. Though, unfortunately, they still have to wait awhile to tune in to these new episodes. Netflix revealed back in July that the series won’t make its 2019 debut until summertime. Cindy Holland, Netflix’s VP of Original Series, explained to Entertainment Tonight that the show’s producers want to take time to ensure that Season 3’s episodes meet their high expectations. "It’s a hand crafted show. The Duffer Brothers and Shawn Levy have worked really hard," she said. "They understand the stakes are high. They want to deliver something bigger and better."
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Can you spot what’s unusual about these bikini photos? The bizarre new swimwear trend set to take over Australian beaches this summer
- A group of Australian models are leading the pack on a new summer bikini trend
- They are wearing regular triangle bikini tops sideways to accentuate their chest
- Brands like Heartland & Baulch showcased a woman pulling off the stunning look
- Earlier this year the ‘upside down’ bikini, created in a similar way, took off online
As summer gets under way, swimwear designers are coming up with innovative ways for women to show off their curves in and out of the water.
But it would seem sometimes the best creatives are the bikini shoppers themselves, with models and customers alike buying regular triangle tops and giving them a modern update – no sewing machine required.
Australian label Heartland & Baulch shared an image of a model on Instagram wearing her swimsuit sideways – and it’s becoming a regular fixture on Instagram feeds.
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Australian label Heartland & Baulch shared an image of a model (left) on Instagram and American model Sierra Skye (right) has also worn the look online
Fellow American models Sofia Jamora and Sierra Skye, as well as UK influencer Hollie Parsons, have also been spotted rocking the trend in eye catching colourways, but some of their followers were confused by the look.
‘Where did you buy this top from? It’s so unique,’ someone wrote underneath a sultry photo of Sierra in a black top.
One very clued-up fan answered: ‘It’s a regular black top, love. The neck strings are just tied behind her back.’
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Fellow American models Sofia Jamora and Sierra Skye, as well as UK influencer Hollie Parsons (pictured), have also been spotted rocking the trend in eye catching colourways
You can even try the look with a one piece bikini (pictured on Sofia Jamora)
The trend of wearing an ‘upside down’ bikini took hold earlier in the year after Australian brand Cantik shared a cleavage-filled image online.
Unlike the traditional triangle bikini top the suit leaves a gaping hole in the middle of your chest – highlighting cleavage more than ever before.
The trick? You can create an ‘upside down’ bikini with any of the tops already in your wardrobe.
Australian swimwear label Cantik posted an image of a model wearing an ‘upside down’ bikini on Thursday (pictured)
Believed to be invented by Italian model Valentina Fradegrada the wearer simply ties a knot at the top of their chest with the halter straps and separates the ‘triangle’ portion of the material more than usual.
The only issue is that the bust is the only thing holding the bikini together – it isn’t supported by the straps.
So one rogue wave in the ocean would be enough to dislodge that tiny thread of fabric.
The trick? You can create an ‘upside down’ bikini with any of the tops already in your wardrobe
The only issue is that your chest is the only thing holding the bikini together – it isn’t held up by your neck or by straps over your shoulder
Some people were astounded by how enhanced it made their chest look, calling it an ‘instant boob job.’
But others were less convinced by it and said the style could only suit people with ‘specific breasts.’
‘My boobs would fall into the hole,’ one woman remarked.
Some people were astounded by how enhanced it made their chest look, calling it an ‘instant boob job’
So far the girls involved all appear to be from Europe, and specifically, Italy
‘Possibly the stupidest thing I’ve seen all day,’ another said, adding ‘it’s absolutely ridiculous.’
Valentina, the self-dubbed creator, has started an Instagram titled ‘Upside Down bikini’ to showcase other wearers of the fashion.
So far the girls involved all appear to be from Europe, and specifically, Italy.
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‘His face would bleed’: Mother whose toddler son’s eczema was so severe he would scratch it against the wall in agony reveals how she cleared his skin overnight with the use of $10 ‘miracle’ cream
- Bea Joseph, from Perth, cleared up her toddler son’s eczema with a $10 cream
- The 31-year-old was at her wits’ end after trying steroid creams and moisturisers
- After using the Childs Farm moisturiser once, she noticed a difference in Javi
- Bea isn’t the only mother who has found success with the $10 ‘miracle’ cream
A mother has revealed how a $10 cream cleared up her toddler son’s crippling eczema almost overnight.
Bea Joseph, 31, from Perth, was at her wits’ end from using steroid creams and moisturising little Javi’s skin up to 20 times a day to no avail, when a British friend recommended the $10 baby moisturiser from Childs Farm.
After using the product just once before bed, the 14-month-old’s skin was instantly less red, smoother and not as painful.
‘Even the next morning his skin was improved,’ Bea recalled to FEMAIL. ‘The texture was different and he no longer tried to scratch against my clothes.’
Bea Joseph, 31, from Perth, was at her wits’ end from using steroid creams and moisturising little Javi’s skin (left, before, and right, after) up to 20 times a day to no avail, when a British friend recommended Childs Farm moisturiser
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‘Even the next morning his skin was improved,’ Bea (oictured with Javi) recalled to FEMAIL. ‘The texture was different and he no longer tried to scratch against my clothes’
Childs Farm products (pictured) have proven to be hits with both mothers and babies
The 31-year-old mum-of-one said Javi has struggled with eczema since birth.
‘At the beginning we were told to use steroid creams by the doctors, but I wasn’t keen on using them on Javi because he was so young,’ Bea recalled.
‘Instead, I bought various different types of moisturisers and moisturised his skin 20 times a day, with varying degrees of success.’
But, she said, it was ‘so difficult’ because ‘nothing worked for very long’.
‘His skin would bleed from scratching his face against the walls and our clothes, even though both myself and my husband wore silk pajamas to keep him from being able to scratch,’ she said.
The 31-year-old mum-of-one said Javi (pictured left during a flare up, and right: while trying Childs Farm) has struggled with eczema since birth – he was prescribed steroid creams
Within 12 hours, the 14-month-old’s skin was noticeably less red, irritated and bumpy – and Bea said she was ‘so impressed that we finished the bottle within weeks’
It was only by chance that Bea spoke to a friend from the UK, who recommended the Childs Farm $10 moisturiser, after she found success with it.
‘I ordered it right away and coated Javi in it so he looked like a little geisha before bed,’ she said.
Within 12 hours, the 14-month-old’s skin was noticeably less red, irritated and bumpy.
‘I was so impressed that we finished the bottle within weeks and ordered several more, and other products from the range,’ Bea added.
They later ordered other products from the range, including the 3-in-1 swim (left), which has helped little Javi, as well as the shampoo and body wash (right)
Since that point, Javi’s skin has improved tenfold – to such an extent that Bea no longer needs to use steroid creams and he is much happier as a toddler (pictured: their family)
Since that point, Javi’s skin has improved tenfold – to such an extent that Bea no longer needs to use steroid creams and he is much happier as a toddler.
‘He knows the routine now,’ Bea said. ‘Javi even claps when he sees the moisturiser come out as he realises how much it helps him. These days, we use the moisturiser, the hair and body wash and the 3-in-1 product for swimming – which has been great as he loves swimming.’
Doctors and dermatologists have been similarly impressed with the toddler’s transformation.
‘Before, we would have to go to the doctor at least once a week because Javi’s skin was so bumpy,’ Bea explained.
‘His skin would often get so red it would get near his eye and that was worrying.
‘But now, he hardly ever flares up – and if he does, then I know we have the Childs Farm at hand.
‘The quality of his skin is much better and he is in a much happier place.’
Bea said she and her husband even use the Childs Farm products, they are that obsessed with them (pictured: Javi before, and Javi in the bath after)
Bea said she and her husband even use the Childs Farm products, they are that obsessed.
‘After we found success with it, I rang my other mother friends and they are now all using it too,’ she said.
‘I don’t know if it will work for Javi forever, but it’s working now and I can’t rave about the product enough.’
Bea isn’t the only mother who has found success with Childs Farm products.
In March, Facebook user Laura Gray shared her awe of the product on social media – leaving her with 64k shares and 18k reactions.
She stated: ‘Needed to share this with you all. I suffer from psoriasis, have done for years.
‘I get it all up my arms, neck and chest and up until yesterday only hydrocortisone cream would get rid of it, but it’s really harsh and only pharmacists can give it you.
‘Yesterday my Mam told me [to] try this baby moisturiser, I’m not joking 24 hours later my psoriasis is gone! Anyone suffering with psoriasis or eczema you need to try this.’
The product has been feted as a wonder product that clears up eczema and other skin conditions for babies, including little Kelisha (pictured before), whose mother said the product has made her baby a ‘different’ child
Meanwhile, another user from New Zealand, Catherine, said on the reviews section of the Childs Farm website:
‘Wow this product healed my painful weeping eczema on my hands.
‘I had tried so many products including prescription products and this fixed it. I need to use it at least twice a day and use gloves for cleaning etc to prevent the eczema coming back.’
‘Her face was full of patches as if she’d had boiling water poured over her. It was just a big scab. She was always scratching and uncomfortable,’ Kelisha’s (pictured) mum, Joanne, recalled
Paige Sweeney also posted on the Childs Farm Facebook page about how it helped her daughter:
‘Anybody that knows me and my daughter will know the trouble we have had with her eczema and allergies… We have tried every single steroid cream and moisturiser, but nothing works,’ she wrote.
‘We see the dermatologist every eight weeks for two and a half years and still no improvement! [I] was in Boots and came across this cream and bath range. I thought I would give it a go and look at the improvement in her skin in a week!’.
‘Within four weeks Kelisha was like a different baby,’ she said. ‘She was more settled and happy because she wasn’t as itchy and agitated,’ Joanne said of Kelisha (pictured now)
CHILDS FARM SUCCESS STORIES
Paige Sweeney, 23, spent more than two years with dermatologists trying to find a cure for the eczema afflicting her daughter Evie-Rae, now three, but nothing worked.
The toddler would wake up every night, scratching herself until she bled, Paige said.
Then, as a last resort, the Nottingham-based mother spotted the $8 Childs Farm Baby Moisturiser on the shelves at her local Boots and decided to give it a go – to her amazement Evie’s eczema quickly vanished.
Describing it as a ‘miracle cream’, Paige said: ‘Within a matter of days I could see her skin starting to clear up. I couldn’t believe it.’
Paige Sweeney, 23, from Nottingham spent more than two years with dermatologists trying to find a cure for her daughter Evie-Rae’s eczema (left). After using Childs Farm Baby Moisturiser the condition started to clear within days (right)
Nicole O’Dwyer, 21, from Tipperary, Ireland, suffered from chronic eczema on her hands since birth and tried countless products on prescription including steroid cream and emollient moisturisers.
Frequently having her hands in water and using hair products made her condition even worse, and she was in constant agony.
But in July Nicole’s dad Kieran suggested she should try $8 Childs Farm Baby Moisturiser, after he read about the product online.
Hairdresser Nicola O’Dwyer, 21, from Tipperary, Ireland was advised to give up her job because her eczema was so bad (left). But after two weeks of using Childs Farm she was able to carry on without any problems (right)
Nicole started applying the cream regularly, and within two weeks her eczema had disappeared, leaving her able to carry out her job without any problems.
Psoriasis sufferer Damien Broderick, 26, had to fetch a vacuum cleaner every time he removed an item of clothing in order to clean up flakes of skin that would fall off his body.
Damien from Dublin, previously used a steroid cream to treat the condition, however when the disease returned his GP advised him to look into alternative therapy, as another course of steroids may not have the same effect and could potentially do more harm than good.
Desperately looking for a solution, he looked into everything from Chinese medicine to acupuncture, but was advised to try Childs Farm products by a colleague.
Damien bought the brand’s Baby Moisturiser and Hair and Body Wash, and within days he started to see a visible difference in his skin.
Damien Broderick from Dublin had such bad psoriasis he would have to vacuum up the flakes of skin (left) but within days of using Childs Farm he could see a visible difference in his skin (right)
Boasting a ‘mild fragrance, gorgeous shea and cocoa butter and some of nature’s finest ingredients’, the cult product sells a bottle every single minute around the world
Another mum, Joanne Nevin, 28, from Ballynahinch, Ireland, also shared how the cream cleared up her baby’s eczema that was so severe it looked as if she’d been burned the condition in just four weeks.
‘Within four weeks Kelisha was like a different baby,’ she said. ‘She was more settled and happy because she wasn’t as itchy and agitated.’
Kelisha’s eczema hasn’t returned since and Joanne continues to use the Childs Farm moisturiser as well as the brand’s bubble bath.
Speaking about her daughter’s condition, Joanne recalled: ‘Her face was full of patches as if she’d had boiling water poured over her. It was just a big scab. She was always scratching and uncomfortable’.
‘Kelisha’s skin is completely clear now,’ she said. ‘I am just over the moon to have such a happy baby back again.
According to the Victorian Government’s Better Health Channel, eczema is ‘an inherited, chronic inflammatory skin condition that usually appears in early childhood. Patches of skin become red, scaly and itchy. Sometimes, tiny blisters containing clear fluid can form and the affected areas of skin can weep’.
Experts recommend ‘using moisturisers and cortisone-based ointments to help ease the symptoms.
‘It is also important to avoid skin irritants, such as soap, hot water and synthetic fabrics,’ the site reads.
Boasting a ‘mild fragrance, gorgeous shea and cocoa butter and some of nature’s finest ingredients’, the cult product sells a bottle every single minute around the world.
To find out more about Childs Farm, you can follow them on Instagram here.
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The Amazon Go stores let customers pick up their shopping and leave without going through a checkout – instead they are charged automatically through their phones.
There are already several of these stores in the US, Seattle, where the tech giant is based, Chicago and San Francisco. It is reportedly planning another in New York.
Now the internet giant wants to open it's first British real-life store close to Oxford Circus, The Sunday Telegraph reported.
In order to use the futuristic stores customers must install the Amazon go app on their phones.
On entering the store they scan a code and are tracked as they move around the shop by hundreds of cameras and facial recognition software.
When they leave their credit card is automatically charged.
So far Amazon has been opening continence shops which sell staple items.
It has reportedly been looking at a vacant shop space in the UK for several months.
The company did not comment yesterday.
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With the rumbling of semis careening by and the sound of Middle Eastern music in the distance, “The Jungle” aims to vividly immerse audiences into the world of the real-life migrant and refugee camp of the same name. By telling the story of the Jungle’s creation in Calais, France, in 2015, and its eventual destruction in 2016, it hopes to bring attention to the ongoing European refugee crisis. But in spite of exquisite design and a substantial production (co-directed by Stephen Daldry), the play itself is shaky.
In real life, playwrights Joe Murphy and Joe Robertson set up a theater within the Jungle. This play is borne from those experiences, and co-stars several performers the playwrights met in the camp.
However, despite extreme efforts at verisimilitude, a noble purpose and a vitally important subject, the storytelling comes across as heavy-handed and constructed, substituting atmosphere for dramaturgy. It’s a lot of vivid illusion without emotional impact. The excessively theatricalized production, directed by Daldry and Justin Martin, puts distance between its subject and the audience when it could be collapsing it.
The story follows several of the camp’s refugees. Safi (Ammar Haj Ahmad), an even-keeled, English Literature academic from Syria, narrates. Salar (Ben Turner), a vivacious Afghan café, owner, is one of the camp leaders; he’s assisted by his jovial teenage helper Norullah (Mohammad Amiri). Okot (John Pfumojena) a Somali teenager, tries every night to escape to the UK. A number of British volunteers show up to “help,” but are wildly unprepared for what they encounter.
Although the refugees have already made a perilous journey to get to France, the Jungle represents the final hurdle. There they wait before attempting to sneak into the UK to seek asylum. Often paying smugglers to assist them, they hide in trucks or the Eurostar train, or stowaway on the ferry. Meanwhile, the French government views this community of Kurdish, Syrian, Somali, Eritrean, Afghan, Palestinian, Iranian and Iraqi people as a growing problem.
With careful detail, the set (by Miriam Buether) revives the Afghan cafe that was the heart of this multiethnic community. The audience is seated within this rickety restaurant, with a dirt floor, wooden tables covered in oil cloth, and walls and a ceiling made of a patchwork of tarps, cardboard, fabrics, and found objects,. Completing the immersive setting, the actors weave through the audience, pour chai for us to drink, or sit on the periphery amongst us.
Adding to the immersion, finely tuned sound design (by Paul Arditti) makes the room shake when tractor-trailers barrel by on the nearby highway and also provides a persistent industrial hum as a background. Against this is the babel of teeming humanity. With the thousands of people living closely together, we hear distant strains of music, singing and life.
The play deals with the escalating tensions and fading hope at this temporary waystation, as well as the increasing anger at the squalid conditions. But while it is peopled with refugee characters, they are not wholly at its center. The narrative lens is slightly larger—dwelling on the politics of the French and British borders, the dangers of the asylum process, and the mistakes made by all sides in trying to manage the encampment.
By concentrating on the disorder and disputes of the camp, the play spends little time on how the refugees got there. But those histories deeply inform the present discord. The few scenes where characters talk about their past give us emotional clarity and a window on the agonizing choices they made to come here. But these personal, specific moments (with strong performances by Amiri, Turner, Ahmad, and Pfumojena) are far too rare.
The central problem is the plays structure. The overpadded first act meanders, setting the ambiance and loosening up the audience with some occasional good cheer (dancing, juggling, comic relief), but it functions baldly as manipulation so the second act can tear it all down. Eventually, the stakes become clearer as the camp starts to collapse — emotionally and physically under pressure from the French government’s evictions.
Even with the production design’s “authenticity,” the theatricality of the production keeps pushing reality further away. You are acutely aware you’re at a show being acted.
It’s devastating to spend all this time in a room with these characters and in this place, and emerge knowing less than when we went in. Disillusion may be part of the point, but it also feels like a lost opportunity.
Off Broadway Review: 'The Jungle'
St. Ann’s Warehouse; 313 seats; $86 top. Opened December 9, 2018. Reviewed December 7. Running time: 2 HOURS, 45 MIN.
A St. Ann’s Warehouse presentation, with major support from The Jean Stein Foundation, The Ford Foundation, SHS Foundation, The British Council, Jolie Schwartz, Jon and Nora Lee Sedmak, and Leyli Zohrenejad, of a play in two acts by Joe Murphy and Joe Robertson.
Directed by Stephen Daldry and Justin Martin. Sets, Miriam Buether; Catherine Kodicek, costumes; Jon Clark, lighting; Paul Arditti, sound design, and John Pfumojena, musical direction, compositions and arrangements; Tristan Shepherd and Duncan McIean, video design; and casting by Julia Horan CDG and Telsey + Company, and Georgia Bird, Stage Manager.
Mohammad Amiri, Alexander Devrient, Elham Ehsas, Trevor Fox, Milan Ghobsheh, Ammar Haj Ahmad, Jo McInnes, Alex Lawther, Yasin Moradi, Jonathan Nyati, John Pfumojena, Rachel Redford, Dominic Rowan, Rachid Sabitri, Mohamed Sarrar, Ben Turner, Nahel Tzegal, Vera Gurpinar, Annika Mehta.
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Arsenal manager Unai Emery is enjoying an exceptional run in his first season with the club after replacing the legendary Arsene Wenger. Arsenal hasn’t lost a match since August 18, covering a stretch of 21 straight contests in all competitions. The terrific run of form has predictably earned Emery an enormous amount of praise, but has also surprisingly spawned some skepticism regarding his long-term success.
Emery is a meticulous planner whose strength often lies in preparation, and he is resistant to departing from a planned course of action, according to the Daily Mail. He sits over hours of video prior to a match, and prepares for all contingencies to the point of obsession. This discipline is funneled down to his players, one of whom once joked about leaving Emery’s pre-match video sessions because he “ran out of popcorn.”
Emery faced a difficult challenge to his methods this week, as his obsession with preparation was pitted against his commitment to discipline. After photographs were published on Tuesday of seven of Arsenal’s players smoking “hippy crack” (nitrous oxide) outside of an exclusive nightclub, pundits wondered how Emery would react. Emery, who micromanages his players down to their sleeping and eating habits, doesn’t allow Arsenal’s players to smoke anything, never mind “hippy crack.” Yet on Saturday, it was preparation that won out, with Emery fielding his planned lineup. Five of the seven guilty players started the game, another came on at the half and played 45 minutes, while the seventh sat out due to injury.
Emery’s planning and preparation paid off once again, as the preconceived halftime substitutions of Alex Iwobi and Henrikh Mkhitaryan created a better flow to the match against Huddersfield in the second half, and Arsenal won it on a late goal from Lucas Torreira.
Emery’s success has not come without its detractors, some of whom doubt that Emery’s methods can create sustained success at the professional level. Emery, who has introduced far more intense training sessions to Arsenal than those under Wenger, is assisted by Pablo Villanueva, who the Express says players have dubbed “The General” and lamented that “He is a beast in training.” Some have suggested that these intense training methods are responsible for the rash of injuries that Arsenal has experienced heading into the holiday season, according to the Evening Standard.
Shkrodan Mustafi’s injury in the Huddersfield match made him the seventh member of the first team relegated to the sidelines, but Emery didn’t believe that the increased intensity of the training sessions was the culprit.
“No. I don’t know if this is the reason. Big injuries like with Rob and Welbeck is… then it is normal,” Emery said after the match. “We have played three matches. Mustafi is ok. It’s only because he is feeling muscular [that he came off], but [it’s] not a break.”
Reporters suggested that Arsenal’s lethargic performance against an overmatched Huddersfield squad could be another sign of fatigue setting in.
“Each match is different. Each match is tough. The way to win is different,” Emery defended himself. “We know today was more difficult than last week. Why? Because the opposition were going to play with that slow rhythm. If we can score quickly we can start better in the game. Maybe it would have been more easy for us but it can happen like today. We need calm because we are looking for a win today to finish the week in a good position in the table. We finished like we wanted.”
Arsenal will try to extend their unbeaten streak in their final Europa League Group Stage match on Thursday.
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The brutal killing of Washington Post Journalist Jamal Khashoggi has pointed the spotlight at Saudi Arabia, bringing attention to the regime’s many atrocities, the most significant one being the ongoing Yemen war, which the United States supports. According to the Wall Street Journal, that might soon change since Senate is set to vote on a resolution meant to withdraw American support.
In spite of overwhelming domestic — largely bipartisan — and international pressure, President Donald Trump has stuck with Saudi Arabia, once going as far as contradicting the Central Intelligence Agency’s conclusion that it was indeed the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman that ordered journalist Jamal Khashoggi’s murder, according to the Guardian.
In charge of cultivating the United States relationship with Saudi Arabia is Donald Trump’s son-in-law and White House Adviser Jared Kushner. But both Kushner and Trump have been “played for suckers” by the Saudi government, according to conservative author and military historian Max Boot.
In a CNN interview broadcast Sunday, Boot argued that an intelligence report about conversations between Kushner and bin Salman shows that Saudi Arabia has found a way to take advantage of the president and his son-in-law, Raw Story reports.
“The impression from that report is that the Saudis have played Kushner and Donald Trump for suckers. There was even a slide quoted in that report, the Saudi report, that they were saying that Jared Kushner revealed his lack of familiarity with U.S.-Saudi relations. And, essentially the Saudis took advantage of that to feed a line to Kushner.”
According to Boot, the Saudi government thought to have “scored a blank check” with the Trump administration, hoping that it would broker a peace agreement between the Saudis and the Palestinians. The administration, however, is not going to change course, according to the author, which is why the Congress has to act and end the relationship between the two countries.
Throughout the interview, Boot kept referencing a New York Times report which alleges that Saudi Arabia’s government found a way to influence and cultivate inexperienced Jared Kushner. The “wooing” of the young White House adviser, according to the report, lasted for more than two years. According to the NYT, Saudi Arabia made a slew of promises in order to impress the administration, and Donald Trump appears to have fallen for them.
One of the promises Mohammed bin Salman’s government made was to buy $50 billion worth of arms deals. Trump and Kushner, however, have repeatedly insisted that the regime is going to buy $110 billion worth of arms.
According to Max Boot, the Saudis are only buying $14 billion worth of arms. Trump and Kushner “might as well claim it is a trillion dollars; it is all nonsense. It is just not true,” the author concluded, pointing out that “the benefits that Donald Trump claims for U.S.-Saudi relationship are vastly exaggerated.”
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Editor’s note: 60 Minutes’ Guy Campanile has produced two reports with Anderson Cooper on the impact mobile devices may have on the brain.
It’s pretty easy to find the parent of a preteen with strong opinions about the amount of time their children spend on smart phones or tablets. I need to look no further than my own living room, where there seems to be a loud nightly struggle with our 14-year-old son over the hours he spends staring at his smartphone. However, it’s extraordinarily difficult to find well-established neurological studies that can determine whether all that swiping, scrolling, and texting is actually shaping the development of his young mind. The reporting on “Screen Time” allowed us a peak into early research that may answer that riddle.
We first began looking into this when we met Tristan Harris in the winter of 2017. Harris was a former manager at Google and one of the first Silicon Valley insiders to reveal that apps were being designed by software engineers to capture and keep users’ attention.
“Every time I check my phone, I’m playing the slot machine to see, “What did I get?” Harris told us. “This is one way to hijack people’s minds and create a habit. What you do is you make it so when someone pulls a lever, sometimes they get a reward, an exciting reward. And when they pull a lever another time, they don’t get an exciting reward. And it turns out that this design technique can be embedded inside of all these products. And when it’s variable, that makes it addictive.”
Programmers call it “brain hacking,” and Anderson Cooper reported on it in the 2017 piece embedded below. He found that brain hacking depends heavily on building unexpected rewards into apps. As users stumble onto these hidden treasures, the surprise stimulates production of a brain chemical called dopamine. Neurologists told us dopamine signals the body that something pleasurable is about to occur. It plays a pivotal part in cravings and desire.
“Toddlers need laps more than apps”
While dopamine may have a role in why my 14-year-old spends so much time staring at his phone, we found brain scientists had not studied large number of kids to see if heavy screen use resulted in lasting changes. By one measure, kids spend an average of 4 and half hours a day gazing at their phones. Increasingly toddlers are also being given smart phones and tablet devices, according to Dr. Dimitri Christakis who is lead author of the latest screen time guidelines for children by the American Academy of Pediatrics.
In the video at the top of the page, Dr. Christakis tells Anderson Cooper that toddlers are increasingly using mobile devices to self-soothe, rather than learning to do that on their own. He warned that interaction with a parent or caregiver is being replaced by technology, and his guidance for parents is simple: Toddlers “need laps more than apps.”
Our questions about the impact of screen time on kids’ brains coincided last spring with the beginning of the largest government study ever attempted of adolescent brain development. The Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development (ABCD) study will follow more than 10,000 kids. Dr. Gaya Dowling of the National Institutes of Health explained that project was initially looking at the impacts of alcohol, drugs, sleep patterns and sports injuries might have.
“I think the screen time component really came into play because we were wondering, what is the impact?” Dowling said. “I mean, clearly kids spend so much time on screens. And they’re very engaging, very interactive. The likelihood that they have an impact on brain, and cognition, and social development is pretty high.”
The NIH researchers allowed us to visit test centers in California and Maryland as they began their first MRIs and interviews with nine and 10 year olds. We were all surprised when results from the scans of 4,500 participants showed evidence of differences in the brains of some of the heaviest users of electronic devices.
“We have these snapshots of their brains now. And then we’ll be able to see as they escalate their use, and they come back and get their brain scanned again, whether there have been changes,” Dowling said. “And when you’ve got 12,000 kids, you can then control for a lot of things. So in order to figure out if it’s really screen time that’s causing it, you can look at kids who spend a lot of time on screens, versus kids who don’t, kids who spend a lot of time on screen, and participate in sports, versus kids who spend a lot of time on screens, and don’t. So you can tease apart some of the impacts on what you’re seeing in terms of outcomes in the brain.”
The information provided by the ABCD study has also already revealed that kids who spend two hours a day or more on screens scored lower on memory and language tests.
Many more discoveries are expected as the data the NIH collects is made available to researchers around the world. But it may take many more years before scientists can solve the chicken-and-egg paradox at the heart of screen time’s impact: Does screen time shape a child’s brain, or is it a kid’s brain that shapes how much time is spent on screens?
All of the brain researchers we spoke to agreed that by the time they figure out the answer, there’s a good chance a new technology will have come along to replace the gizmo that commands my son’s attention. As one researcher told us, “Silicon Valley always moves faster than science.”
To watch Anderson Cooper’s 60 Minutes report about the impact of screen’s on the brain, click here.
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