Russia

Global Scan

This crash test dummy family is getting an overweight uncle — to reflect America's expanding waistlines

America's rise in obesity isn't just raising health alarms. It is challenging designers of all sorts of consumer products, including car safety experts, who are moving to a morbidly-obese crash test dummy. Meanwhile, in Russia, Apple's gay CEO is under attack. France and Spain, however, seem more worried about clowns. Those stories and more in this weekend's Global Scan.

Global Scan

A computer saves a Russian man from a bear attack

Encounters between hungry bears and people are increasingly common in Russia. But one encounter had an unexpected twist — and suggests a new use for that outdated computer. Meanwhile, in Hong Kong, the city's top leader says the city's poor can't be trusted with the right to vote. And Rwanda starts screening Americans for Ebola. Those stories and more in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

Scientists come a step closer to making Star Trek's tractor beam a reality

Science fiction has long envisioned "tractor" beams that could grab and move physical objects using a laser or other stream of energy. Now scientists have created one, at least on a small scale. And we have some advice if you use heat in the winter. Most Brits, and many of us, apparently don't know how to use our thermostats. Also, Chinese officials go on a worldwide corruption hunt, in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

Forget the apple. Saudi Arabia is offering its best teachers a Bimmer

Saudi Arabia has a plan to reward its best teachers with thousands of dollars and luxury cars. Student rewards come next. Elsewhere, a Russian monastery hopes to solve the country's mozzarella shortage. And a three-year-old movie gives you a an accurate sense of what it is like fighting the Ebola outbreak. All that and more in today's Global Scan.

Global Politics

Edward Snowden is OK with what he's given up to start a debate on surveillance

Washington Post contributor Barton Gellman sat down with Edward Snowden in Moscow for a 14 hour interview, recently. It was the former NSA contractor's first major interview since he was granted asylum in Russia. Gellman describes Snowden as something of a shut-in who doesn't mind living alone in his Moscow residence, now that he's sparked an international debate on surveillance.

Arts, Culture & Media

A Russian writer who wrote about the absurdity of life now has a street in Queens named after him

Last week, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio signed legislation to rename 63 different thoroughfares and public places throughout the city. Soon, 63rd Drive in Queens will be the first city street named after a Russian writer — Sergei Dovlatov, whose stories appeared in the New Yorker. And his wife still lives there.

Global Scan

Russia demands that Bulgaria treat Soviet memorials with a little respect

Monuments showing heroic Soviet soldiers dot many of the former USSR satellite countries. And since the end of the Cold War, they have been refashioned by activists into political statements, infuriating Russian officials. In Africa, social media networks have been spreading a folk 'cure' for Ebola. And the Israeli government has kept independent human rights investigators out of Gaza. That and more, in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

Egypt's oldest pyramid is being destroyed by a repair effort

Egypt's ancient pyramids are a huge part of the country's history, culture and economy. That's why a government decision to give an important rehabilitation contract to a country with a bad track-record has invited so much scrutiny. The bad news is it seems critics fears are already coming true. Meanwhile, monkeys actually learn — and seem to want to learn — from watching video. Those stories and more in today's Global Scan.