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While you were sleeping: 6 January 2016

By John Stupart 6 January 2017

Intelligence chiefs pin their flags to Russia, Samsung post serious profits, and cancer deaths on the decline in the USA.

TGIF, 6th January

“You must not ever stop being whimsical. And you must not, ever, give anyone else the responsibility for your life.”
Mary Oliver

 
 
Op-Ed: Independence of Western Sahara is an inalienable right

Kyle Abbott and Rilee Rossouw became the latest two players in a long list of “Kolpak” signings over the last few months. Both came as a surprise to the team and management staff, but in the grander scheme of things, it speaks more of the global political climate. Still, there is a number of reasons to be concerned, especially considering Abbott high-profile. 

 
 
 

WHILE YOU WERE SLEEPING

Russian hacking theme of intelligence chief briefing

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper has told the Senate that they had a “very high” confidence in their findings that the Russians mounted a major cyber attack aimed at disrupting the 2016 elections. The announcement was made just one day before the USA’s intelligence chiefs are set to brief the country’s next president. Whether Donald Trump wants to hear the news is another question entirely.

 

Samsung profits expected to skyrocket

Samsung Electronics announced today that it expects profits to soar by 50 percent this quarter. High memory chip prices and a healthy demand for smartphones has fueled the company’s $7.8 billion operating profit. It appears as though having devices that literally explode in your hands does not hamper a company’s overall success.

 

Thai flooding kills six

At least six people have been killed by widespread flooding in southern Thailand. Nine provinces have been affected by the downpour, including the popular tourist spot of Samui. Rail lines have been washed away and flights cancelled. If you’d planned a post-Christmas getaway to Southern Thailand, you may want to double check your flight.

 

US cancer death rates plummet

A new study released on Thursday has shown cancer-related deaths in the United States fall dramatically. Death rates fell 21 percent from a high point in 1991, according to the American Cancer Society’s annual report. New treatments and broader access by the public to healthcare were cited as the main contributing factors to this.

 
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IN NUMBERS

23

The years so far that Germans have been maintaining a meme that the town of Bielefeld does not exist.

 

FACT OF THE DAY

Today in 1995 Joe Slovo passed away.

Riding a Black Unicorn Down the Side of an Erupting Volcano While Drinking from a Chalice Filled with the Laughter of Small Children is the title of a dark cabaret album by ‘Voltaire’

 

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In other news...

South Africa is in a very real battle. A political fight where terms such as truth and democracy can seem more of a suggestion as opposed to a necessity.

On one side of the battle are those openly willing to undermine the sovereignty of a democratic society, completely disregarding the weight and power of the oaths declared when they took office. If their mission was to decrease society’s trust in government - mission accomplished.

And on the other side are those who believe in the ethos of a country whose constitution was once declared the most progressive in the world. The hope that truth, justice and accountability in politics, business and society is not simply fairy tale dust sprinkled in great electoral speeches; but rather a cause that needs to be intentionally acted upon every day.

However, it would be an offensive oversight not to acknowledge that right there on the front lines, alongside whistleblowers and civil society, stand the journalists. Armed with only their determination to inform society and defend the truth, caught in the crossfire of shots fired from both sides.

If you believe in supporting the cause and the work of Daily Maverick then take your position on the battleground and sign up to Maverick Insider today.

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"It's the friends you can call up at 4am that matter." ~ Marlene Dietrich