Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Foreigners fighting against the Islamic State in Syria

  • Foreigners fighting Islamic State in Syria: who and why? - “So far an estimated few dozen Westerners have joined Kurdish fighters battling Islamic State in northern Syria, including Americans, Canadians, Germans, and Britons. The Syrian Kurdish armed faction known as the YPG has not released official numbers confirming foreign or “freedom fighters” and academics say it’s hard to assess the total.  But the number pales compared to an estimated 16,000 fighters from about 90 countries to join Islamic State since 2012, according to the U.S. Department of State figures.”
  • The Isis economy: Meet the new boss – “Signs of discontent are evident across the ‘caliphate’ as people tire of its taxes, price caps and shoddy services.”
  • Tropical Pacific waters show signs of cooling – “El Niño-like conditions in the tropical Pacific Ocean weakened over the past fortnight, after being close to or exceeding El Niño thresholds for several weeks. Despite this easing, the Bureau’s ENSO tracker status remains at El Niño ALERT.”
  • Knocking on tax haven’s door: Multinational firms and transfer pricing – “Allegations of tax-avoiding transfer pricing by multinational firms are common, but economic evidence is scarce. This column discusses detailed price data for intra-firm and arm’s length transactions that reveals tax-driven transfer pricing, and suggests that it may be reduced by focusing on a small number of large firms in a small number of tax havens.”
(A) Two dogs, Molly (left) and Charlotte, playing tug-a-war. This game went on for more than five minutes and was interspersed with social and self-play. (B) Three dogs (left to right), Yekeela, Charlotte, and Molly, playing during which they rapidly changed positions and used a variety of actions including bows, biting accompanied by head shaking, and body slamming. (C) Ruby (left) performing a play bow in front of Scone. (D) Scone (right) mounting Ruby.
(A) Two dogs, Molly (left) and Charlotte, playing tug-a-war. This game went on for more than five minutes and was interspersed with social and self-play. (B) Three dogs (left to right), Yekeela, Charlotte, and Molly, playing during which they rapidly changed positions and used a variety of actions including bows, biting accompanied by head shaking, and body slamming. (C) Ruby (left) performing a play bow in front of Scone. (D) Scone (right) mounting Ruby.
  • Playful fun in dogs – “What we know of fun and play in domestic dogs – particularly its apparent role in socialization.”
  • Study: Disparities seen in immigrant application results – “Immigrants to the U.S. with job offers often apply for work authorization. But immigrants from Latin America are less likely to have those requests granted than are immigrants from other regions, according to a new study conducted by scholars at MIT and Brown University — a study that also suggests a potential remedy for this problem, by finding that this regional disparity does not exist when officials examine cases in greater detail.”
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