Global Scan

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Global Scan

Will a new strain of cacao tree save us from the coming chocolate shortage?

Chocoholics beware: What would you do if you couldn't buy chocolate — or if the price suddenly went through the roof? We may soon find out, unless science can save the day. Meanwhile, there's no looming shortage of human waste, and Britain is using it to fuel a passenger bus. Also, the Mafia's secret initiation rite is now on video for all to see. Those stories and more in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

A US nursing association sides with a Navy nurse who refused to force-feed Gitmo prisoners

When a naval nurse decided that force-feeding prisoners on hunger strike in Guantanamo Bay was unethical, the potential career consequences were severe. Now fellow nurses are supporting the act of conscience. Meanwhile, a British couple gets fined for writing a critical hotel review on TripAdvisor. And Indian street vendors take on Walmart, in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

A German town turns a neo-Nazi march into an anti-hate walkathon

A German town has spent decades grappling with a neo-Nazi group marching through it, honoring a Nazi hero. But this year, they came up with a way to make a little good come out of the march. Meanwhile, Norway is making its passports into works of art that reflect their country. And a video explanation of why the US and Liberia are linked by history. Those stories and more in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

Protesters attack a Dutch Santa Claus tradition as blatantly racist

In the Netherlands, a Christmas holiday tradition is leading to protests, clashes and arrests. Meanwhile, Turkey's president wants to build a mosque in Cuba — to honor the Muslim sailors he says arrived in North American 300 years before Columbus. And China discloses how it tried to clear Beijing's polluted skies before welcoming last week's APEC leaders. All that in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

'Magic' mushrooms to treat depression? Some researchers think so

Hallucinogenic mushrooms are one potential treatment for depression. Another is hip hop music — it seems the dark lyrics might reach those who feel equally hopeless. Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin comes to the rescue of China's first lady and his gallant act gets erased by Chinese censors. And in Pakistan, a group of schools hold an "I am not Malala" Day. All that and more in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

Should the matching shirt summit tradition live or die?

In 2011, US President Barack Obama spared world leaders the indignity of sporting Aloha shirts at a summit in Honolulu. But the matching shirt tradition is a hard one to kill. Meanwhile, millions of Catalans cast a symbolic vote for independence from Spain on Sunday. And a once-secret recording shows Ronald Reagan at his most charming in defusing a crisis. All that in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

Soon women in Saudi Arabia may be driving — as long as they don't wear makeup

Saudi Arabia has been criticized for years for refusing to allow women to drive in the kingdom. That ban may soon be lifted — though the change comes with some fine print. Meanwhile, leaked documents reveal how IKEA avoids paying corporate taxes. And the Miss Uganda competition takes an agricultural turn. Those stories and more, in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

Mandela brings people together, even in death

World leaders and regular people gathered Tuesday in South Africa to honor Nelson Mandela — a man who was labelled a terrorist by the US until 8 years ago, a friend of China and Cuba, and now a symbol of hope and reconciliation for millions. We also look at Saudi Arabia's interest in its own human genome project, one of the most extreme zipline rides in the world, and a video game where the villian is alcoholism. All that and more, in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

Ukraine waits in suspense, and China blocks embarrassing details of secret bank accounts

Ukraine's protesters suspend clashes to negotiate with President Viktor Yanukovich, while China's leadership scrambles to block the web and keep their secret offshore bank accounts from being revealed to Chinese citizens. Curling gets fancy at the Sochi Olympics and South Korea welcomes Canadian hockey players in its bid to qualify for the next Winter Olympics. All that and more, in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

Is the Russian bear awakening?

Rumors of possible Russian intervention abound as protests in the Ukraine escalate. And even the Pope's weekend prayer for peace in the country ended in an ominous sign. Working-class stiffs in the Republic of Congo show that style isn't exclusive to the rich. And a New Zealand doc doesn't let a shark attack ruin his day, in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

So just where will the NSA stop?

A judge rules against the NSA's widespread surveillance, while Edward Snowden applauds and offers to help Brazil block NSA eavesdropping on its citizens. Also, an international spat begins when the US arrests an Indian diplomat for underpaying her housekeeper. And the Boston Globe finds mental illness may have played a role in the Boston Marathon bombing. All that and more, in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

When it comes to spying, everyone is in everyone else's business

The NSA ha ignited a firestorm over its extensive spying on friends and allies alike, but it's clear the US is far from alone. Also, a new study finds billions of planets in the Milky Way that might be like Earth, and a former US president says he almost punched out a foreign leader. All this and more, in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

My affair? Next question...

François Hollande has long been under pressure for his policies. Now, he's under pressure around the details of an affair. Perhaps he needs a lesson from Abdul Saboor, praised as "Afghanistan's most honest man" in a country known for corruption. And is a woman on a swing a bit enticing? Some in Saudi Arabia say yes and want to stop it. All that and more, in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

In one particular part of Beijing, stray cats are more than welcome

If you're a stray cat in Beijing, the Forbidden City is the place for you. The museums there use stray cats to protect their artifacts from rats and other vermin. In Ukraine, they're less interested in stray cats and more interested in Bitcoins — the cryptocurrency may be a quick way to support the protesters who are still camped in Independence Square.

Global Scan

Spain may finally get to see a finished version of Gaudí's famous church — in Finland

Barcelona's famed Sagrada Familia church is still being built after more than a century. Now, impatient Finnish students plan to finish their own scaled-down version, imagined in this photo — out of ice. We also spotlight new relevations about Blackwater Security's lawless tactics during the Iraq War and wonder if Scotland's national dish is headed for the US, in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

Germany goes a bit greener — as in marijuana green

Germany opened the door to legal medical marijuana in 2008, but only a crack. Now, a German court has kicked the door a bit wider, by allowing some patients to grow their own pot. Meanwhile, Hamas is having trouble getting is old ally Hezbollah to help in its conflict with Israel. And most Brits say no to their government's new porn filter, in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

The US says the crisis for Yazidis in Iraq is over — but the UN disagrees

Earlier this week, the US considered the possibility of sending American troops to rescue members of the Yazidi minority trapped by ISIS militants on Mount Sinjar in Iraq. Now, President Obama says the crisis has passed ... but others aren't so sure. And if you think women's rights are relatively new, guess again. And we explain why Ferguson, Missouri seems like a war zone, in today's Global Scan.