Newsweek Aug-01-14

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United States
The Newsweek/Daily Beast Company LLC
37 号


migrant hunters

Michael Vickers’s ranch 70 miles north of the U.S.Mexico border in Brooks County, Texas, is near a U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint. Undocumented migrants trek through harsh brushland onto his property to avoid capture. An electric fence encloses the nearly 1,000 acres; at 220 volts, says Vickers, a local veterinarian and avid hunter, “it won’t kill them, but it will make them wet their pants.” Before taking a reporter on a tour of his ranch, Vickers pulls out a dozen blown-up photographs of migrants who died or have been apprehended on his property. In one, the body of a shirtless man sits slumped against a tree, his head lying limply on one shoulder. The man’s eyes are gone, trickles of blood running down from the sockets. Leafing through a bird identification book,…

a family’s lost love letters, a stranger, and a history revealed

The story of my mother’s family is built on dark secrets and tragic losses—suicide, sudden death and fatherless children—yet there was always a treasured relic that transcended the pain: the many love letters my grandfather wrote to my grandmother when he was fighting in World War II, the letters that won her heart and her hand. Sally Anne Rudolph and First Lieutenant Charles Brand—Charlie, she always called him—had gone on only two dates when he was shipped off to Europe, and Sally didn’t see him for two and a half years. But while Charlie was away, he wrote her almost every day. Two dates. Gone for more than two years. Hundreds of letters. It is a stirring, romantic and optimistic story, but it too is tinged with tragedy. My grandmother, in a…

putin the pariah

Call it Putin’s Lockerbie moment—the week the world’s attitudes toward Russia’s leader tipped from wary distrust into frank hostility. It has been a precipitous descent. Just a few months ago Putin’s international standing was at an all-time high as he presided over the Sochi Olympics and released imprisoned oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky and Pussy Riot. But his reputation began its downward slalom with Russia’s occupation of Crimea. And now it has gone off a cliff as Putin’s name has become inextricably linked to the tragedy of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17. “Politics is about control of the imaginary—and [MH17] has become symbolic of something deeper,” says Mark Galeotti, clinical professor of global affairs at New York University. “It is becoming very difficult not to regard Putin’s Russia as essentially an aggressive, subversive and destabilizing…

israeli and palestinian kids caught in the crossfire

The Gaza Strip, one of the most densely populated places in the world, is a dreadful, sorrowful place. Even when it is not the subject of a full-frontal Israeli assault, it is a sea of desperation for its 1.7 million residents, half of whom are children. The toll of the current war has already been horrific. According to UNICEF, 59 Palestinian children—43 boys and 16 girls—were killed in the first nine days of the conflict, before the Israeli ground assault began. Most were under the age of 12. “That means an average of four children a day,” says Bruce Grant, the chief child protection officer at UNICEF in Gaza. “It means for every two militants killed, three Palestinian children are killed. It means the kids are paying a deadly price.” Eleven more children…

passenger jets are sitting ducks

Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 was shot down at over 30,000 feet by a sophisticated missile system, but even a cheap shoulder-fired weapon of the kind that has proliferated since the wars in Libya and Syria could easily bring down a plane, especially in the vulnerable minutes around takeoff and landing. Airlines and governments have rushed to offer assurances about how a similar disaster will never happen again, but some security and aviation experts aren’t so sure. “Events like MH17 and the impact it has had—with a global audience—will only serve to inspire terrorist groups such as ISIS and Al-Qaeda,” says Mark Birdsall, editor of the international security magazine Eye Spy. “It is a graphic reminder that downing a passenger plane would devastate the morale of their perceived enemy, massively denting confidence.” He adds…

labor pain

Kyle Grant was still living in a Bronx homeless shelter when he started interning at Warner Music Group (WMG) in August 2012. The gig was unpaid, and he couldn’t afford an apartment of his own after moving out of his girlfriend’s mother’s house, but he took it anyway. He’d already worked at JAMBOX Entertainment, a much smaller music production company. He was planning to launch his own record label one day. A stint in Warner’s Music Promotions Department seemed a pretty great way to learn the basics. But like so many facets of the unpaid intern industrial complex, it wasn’t quite what it appeared. “As an intern I wanted to do whatever I could to make a name, to at least stand out to somebody,” Grant, now 23, told Newsweek in a…