Despite urgent pleas from top federal health officials for Congress to approve Obama’s $1.9 billion emergency request to battle Zika virus earlier this week, House Republicans said they’ll probably grant part of it, but perhaps not until September, the Associated Press reported today. Federal health officials have said the money is needed to help states boost mosquito surveillance and control, to assist efforts in Puerto Rico and other US territories where the disease is already spreading, and to follow through on countermeasure development.
Following her talks yesterday with Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto in Berlin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced that Germany will strengthen its partnership with Mexico. It will train members of the police and armed forces and enhance economic cooperation with that country. Mexico, traditionally, has been one of the German companies’ two most important trading partners in Latin America. Particularly German automobile companies use Mexico as a low-wage production site for the lucrative US market. Cooperation now will also be strengthened with the military and in the field of domestic repression.
Zimmerman is hardly an anti-Semite. A native of Los Angeles born in 1990 and the great-granddaughter of a Holocaust survivor, Zimmerman grew up in a Conservative Jewish household, went to Jewish day school and Jewish camp and was active in United Synagogue Youth, the Conservative movement’s youth organization, according to a biography of Zimmerman on the website of the American Jewish Peace Archive. The bio is based on an interview with Zimmerman last May. Zimmerman said she visited Israel a number of times during her childhood.When she started college at the University of California, Berkeley, Zimmerman initially gravitated toward the traditional pro-Israel camp. She joined Berkeley’s Israel Action Committee, protested a divestment bill in the student senate and went to Washington in the spring to attend AIPAC’s annual policy conference.But Zimmerman’s political views changed as she learned more from advocates of divestment and witnessed Israeli mistreatment of Palestinians during a visit to Israel, she said. She soon joined her campus chapter of J Street, the “pro-Israel, pro-peace” lobbying group that supports US pressure on Israel to support a two-state solution. She spent the summer after her sophomore year studying colloquial Arabic at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. In 2012, Zimmerman was elected president of the national student board of J Street U, the group’s campus arm.
“Our research has made it clear that viruses such as Ebola can affect gorillas and chimps, as can human respiratory viruses,” Walsh tells McKie. “Within five years, I would want all gorillas and chimpanzees that come anywhere near humans to be vaccinated against Ebola or respiratory diseases. That is the only way we can go.”