‘His death is a catastrophe’: Gaza doctors mourn specialist killed in air strike – BBC News

Without warning, an Israeli air strike destroyed the four-storey building in the Gaza Strip where Dr Ayman Abu al-Ouf lived early on Sunday.

The doctor, who was head of internal medicine at the Palestinian territory’s main hospital, was killed along with 12 members of his extended family.

They included his mother and father, his wife Reem, and their 17-year-old son Tawfik and 12-year-old-daughter Tala.

“This is a really big loss not just for us personally because we knew Ayman – this is also a loss for his patients and students,” Dr Ghaith al-Zaanin, a close friend and former colleague who lives in Canada, told the BBC.

Dr Ayman Abu al-Ouf (file photo)
Dr Abu al-Ouf oversaw al-Shifa’s hospital response to the coronavirus pandemic

As well as being in charge of internal medicine at al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City, Dr Abu al-Ouf oversaw its response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Source: ‘His death is a catastrophe’: Gaza doctors mourn specialist killed in air strike – BBC News

Red-headed Woodpeckers are nature’s show birds

Roadtirement

Today was a little wild with all the new young starlings leaving their nests, and their apparent feeding frenzy with the adults.

Then suddenly Sher and I witnessed the arrival of one of the most striking birds in North America. The Red-headed Woodpecker has beautiful crimson head plumage accompanied by a pure white body and wings that are half white and half ink black. These birds are striking both at rest and in flight. This one was kind enough to stick around on the feeder long enough for the capture you see above.

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Just a walk

Ruelha

I really enjoy taking a walk. Been doing it since I wore frocks. Yesterday was no different from most days. Out on the main road, my usual way. For those of you who don't know about Tauktae. Well, she did come out in full swing to play. Rains and winds, so much of breeze. Approaching monsoons, a wonderful tease. A relief from the scorching summer heat. But though many of us thought it was a treat, it caused quite some destruction with people and trees praying for protection. In all honesty, we've endured much worse. Experts say the spread of covid will be adverse. All through the streets, there were trees fallen. Dying branches and leaves getting rotten. I witnessed some huge trees fall down right before my eyes. But at that moment I was at my window, blessed to be inside. Nature is just so gorgeous and beautiful. Sometimes…

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Good People Doing Good Things — A Trio Of ‘Em

Filosofa's Word

Well, folks, it’s Wednesday morning again, time for more good people doing good things!


A bank with a heart – no joke!

Typically, if you pondered a business that was least likely to win an award for altruism, it might be the banking industry.  Banks and bankers are not known for giving or being compassionate.  There is at least one exception, though … Ulster Savings Bank (USB) in upstate New York’s Hudson Valley.  Ulster started doing business in 1871 and this spring is celebrating its 170th anniversary!  But to celebrate, they aren’t giving raises or huge bonuses to CEOs, they are giving back to the community!

The bank’s CEO and President Bill Calderara explained …

“As a mutual savings bank, we were created for the benefit of our customers and the community, we have no shareholders. That enables us to keep all profits local and reinvest into the community…

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Vietnam Sees Hundreds of New COVID Cases, With Two Provinces Largely Locked Down — Radio Free Asia

Vietnam Sees Hundreds of New COVID Cases, With Two Provinces Largely Locked Down Vietnam’s northeastern provinces of Bac Giang and Bac Ninh now lead in new cases of COVID-19 infection in Vietnam since the fourth outbreak of the disease began on April 27, with both provinces under partial lockdown to control the spread, official sources say.

As of Wednesday, 605 cases have been reported in Bac Giang, with 353 cases reported in Bac Ninh.

The Ministry of Health has issued an urgent order to set up two field hospitals to treat the rising numbers of infected, with each hospital staffed by 500 health workers and holding 300 beds, with space prepared for a total of 500 beds each if needed.

Source: Vietnam Sees Hundreds of New COVID Cases, With Two Provinces Largely Locked Down — Radio Free Asia

New nano-fiber filter can capture nearly all coronavirus aerosols – Study Finds

Although many regions are rolling back their COVID-19 mask requirements, there are still plenty of situations which call for extra protection. Now, researchers have developed a nano-fiber filter using polymer nano-threads which can capture 99.9 percent of all coronavirus aerosols they encounter. That’s far more protection than any current mask can provide.

“Our work is the first study to use coronavirus aerosols for evaluating filtration efficiency of face masks and air filters,” says corresponding author Yun Shen, a UC Riverside assistant professor of chemical and environmental engineering, in a university release. “Previous studies have used surrogates of saline solution, polystyrene beads, and bacteriophages — a group of viruses that infect bacteria.”

Engineers from UC Riverside and The George Washington University investigated and compared how well surgical and cotton masks, a neck gaiter, and electrospun nanofiber membranes could contain and destroy coronavirus aerosols. Results show the cotton mask and neck gaiter eliminated roughly 45 to 73 percent of the aerosols. Meanwhile, the surgical mask took care of 98 percent of virus particles. Ultimately, the electrospun nanofiber membranes are the clear-cut superior option with 99.9 percent efficiency. 

Source: New nano-fiber filter can capture nearly all coronavirus aerosols – Study Finds

Food giants accused of links to illegal Amazon deforestation | Amazon rainforest | The Guardian

Three of the world’s biggest food businesses have been accused of buying soya from a farmer linked to illegal deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon.

Cargill, Bunge and Cofco sourced soya beans from the Chinese-owned Fiagril and the multinational Aliança Agrícola do Cerrado, both of which have allegedly been supplied by a farmer fined and sanctioned multiple times after destroying swathes of rainforest, according to a new investigation.

Soya beans are a key ingredient in poultry, pig and cattle feed, particularly for animals reared on intensive farms.

Source: Food giants accused of links to illegal Amazon deforestation | Amazon rainforest | The Guardian

Stench of death pervades rural India as Ganges swells with Covid victims | Coronavirus | The Guardian

Stigma and cost of wood leave families with no choice but to immerse their dead in river

There was a time before when the Ganges was “swollen with dead bodies”.

In 1918, when the great flu pandemic swept through India and killed an estimated 18 million people, the water of this river – upon which so many lives depended – was filled with the stench of death.

Source: Stench of death pervades rural India as Ganges swells with Covid victims | Coronavirus | The Guardian