Global Scan

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Global Scan

When it comes to police, Russia gets the gold

Russia is proud of being out in front of other countries. But on one measure, it might not be quite so proud. It has more police per citizen than any other country tracked by the UN. Meanwhile, the Loch Ness monster is back in the news after 18 months without a peep. And a 100-year-old woman has a long-held dream come true and it gives her shivers. All that and more in today's Global Scan.

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

Antarctica is sending the equivalent of 9.8 quadrillion ice cubes into the oceans each year

The melting of the Antarctic ice sheet is happening far faster than anyone previously thought. New research suggests Antarctica is releasing enough ice each year to make 9.8 quadrillion one-inch ice cubs — and that's contributing to a major increase in sea levels. Meanwhile, the violence in Nigeria is getting worse and French Catholic leaders are looking for donors. That and more in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

Brazil wins the title for most faked injuries in the World Cup

Updated

The drama has been intense on the field during the World Cup... and then there have been the games. The Wall Street Journal tallied up the theatrical moments of feigned injuries — and Brazil is the clear winner. At least in Brazil, women can attend the matches. Not so in Iran. And the US warns travelers away from visiting much of Africa, all in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

Another gang rape in India, with a complex twist

A woman was sentenced by elders to a public gang rape in her village in the West Bengal area to punish her for an affair. India's Supreme Court is investigating. A signal room in London's Underground gets flooded, with quick-drying cement. And an artist is painting and placing cut-outs of immigrant workers around LA. All that and more, in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

This is a message for US drone pilots: we are not bugs

How do you let drone pilots dropping bombs by remote control know the consequences of their actions? Some Afghan artists are using a giant photo. And a journalist now claims the US didn't attack Syria's government after evidence of chemical warfare emerged because it may not have been Assad's fault. All that and more, in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

Vladimir Putin would like you to know he too opposes fracking

Imagine the foes of fracking and you'd probably put Greenpeace at the top of the list. But add Vladimir Putin too — someone who rarely sees eye-to-eye with the environmentalists. But he has his own reasons, not tied to saving the Earth. Meanwhile, there's tension over US military actions in Iraq. Those stories and more in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

Please note, you have not 'conquered' Everest — if you used a helicopter to do it

Expeditions to climb Mount Everest were put on hold this year, after an accident killed 16 Sherpas. But a Chinese woman reached the summit, and officials suspect she may have inappropriately used a helicopter. Meanwhile, in China, officials are using public trials to send a message to Uighur separatists, and Norway's touted prostitution reform is under attack. 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

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

This artist is taking snow angels to an extreme

Call it snowshoe art or perhaps folly in the freezing cold, but it takes imagination to create patterns that you can only see from a distance. And Alan Turing, the father of computer science, gets a posthumous pardon from Britain. Pakistan's long experiment in natural-gas cars is crashing. We also explore why Muslims and Jews are celebrating Christmas, and more, in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

He became famous for fake interpreting Nelson Mandela's funeral — now he's plugging an Israeli start-up

South Africa was mortified when it discovered it allowed a sign language interpreter on stage next to world leader to sign what amounted to mere gibberish. The situation got worse when reports emerged he had been connected with criminal behavior. But the man at the center of the controversy is a star once more. That and more in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

Caught in a bad romance?

Poor Ukraine is caught between two lovers as its president searches for a happy end to this love triangle. Amazon's cute little PrimeAir drone, delivering packages like a stork delivers babies, has about the same level of reality. And we explore the many faces of yoga, in today's edition of the Global Scan.

Global Scan

Greenland's snow is getting darker, and that's bad for you and me

Greenland is home to a huge chunk of the Earth's frozen water. And every winter that ice is covered with snow, usually white snow that reflects sunlight back into space. But new information suggests that pollution and a warming climate are making that snow much darker — and consequently making it melt much faster. That story and more in today's Global Scan.

Global Scan

A Russian billionaire offers to help save the dogs of Sochi

Sochi's dogs were recently described as pests, expected to be exterminated from the Olympic venues. But that cavalier attitude prompted international outrage and at least one Russian billionaire has opened up his wallet to help save some of Sochi's dogs. Meanwhile, in the UAE, the government is ready to launch a drone delivery service. And a homeless man in England looks set to return to his native Jamaica, thanks to the generosity of strangers.

Global Scan

Even the New Year's baby can't escape the NSA

Public smoking is widespread in China, despite its official prohibition. So Chinese officials are turning up the pressure, telling Communist Party officials to stop — or else. Meanwhile, in France, a new law requires mobile-based ride hailing services like Uber to wait 15 minutes before picking up passengers. And this weekend's terrorists attacks in Russia are a problem.

Global Scan

How do you capture a drug kingpin without firing a shot?

Over the weekend, US and Mexican officials teamed up to capture one of the Mexico's most notorious drug kingpins, El Chapo of the Sinaloa cartel. And they did it without firing a single shot. Meanwhile, all the gunfire and violence in Ukraine finally forced its president from power and into hiding, but his time is running out. That and more, in today's Global Scan.