ANKARA: The removal of Turkey from the US F-35 joint strike fighter program is a massive loss for its defense industry, analysts told Arab News on Saturday.
The move had been widely expected since Turkey took delivery last year of the Russian S-400 surface-to-air missile defense system. It was confirmed when Turkey’s name was removed from the F-35 program’s official website.
Until this week Turkey was named as one of the nine principal contributors on the program’s official website, along with the US, Australia, Canada, Denmark, Italy, Netherlands, Norway and the UK.
Can Kasapoglu, a defense analyst from the Center for Economics and Foreign Policy Studies, said the exclusion was a blow to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
“Many aerospace firms were involved in the project with lucrative technology know-how gains and co-production opportunities,” he told Arab News. “All these achievements were perfectly in league with Turkey’s defense modernization priorities.”
Turkey’s industrial engagement in the F-35 program brought a significant economic boost, with 10 contributing companies supplying more than 900 parts worth about $12 billion.
Lockheed Martin, the prime contractor on the F-35 program, and the US government must now find new suppliers for the parts manufactured by Turkish companies.
The US argues that participation in the F-35 program is incompatible with operating a Russian defense system, because of the risk of a security data breach. Turkey has already tested its radar system in Ankara against some of its air force’s US-made F-16 fighter jets.
However, activation of the $2.5 billion S-400 system, scheduled for April, has been delayed.
A retired senior official from Turkey’s Foreign Ministry told Arab News the delay would continue for a lengthy period. “Under a deepening economic recession, Ankara will not risk US sanctions by making the Russian system operational,” the official said. “Turkey also hopes for credit opportunities from the US for overcoming its cash problems. It may force Ankara to think twice.”
Food insecurity in the US increasingly linked to obesity
Nearly 23% of people with obesity in the United States have reported food insecurity, compared with 15% of people with moderate weight. This association with obesity has doubled since 1999–2000, according to a recent analysis of trends in food insecurity.“Food insecurity” refers to a lack of access to enough food for an active, healthy life.…
Nearly 23% of people with obesity in the United States have reported food insecurity, compared with 15% of people with moderate weight. This association with obesity has doubled since 1999–2000, according to a recent analysis of trends in food insecurity.“Food insecurity” refers to a lack of access to enough food for an active, healthy life. In the West, this issue is most often due to limited financial resources. People with low food security report concerns that food will run out before they can afford to buy more and being unable to afford balanced meals.Internationally, food insecurity more often relates to the frequency of conflict and to climate-related failure of harvests. Very low food security is more likely to lead to reduced food intake and undernourishment.While there are varying degrees, low food security can reduce the “quality, variety, and desirability” of a person’s diet, even in wealthy nations like the U.S. Very low food security in the U.S., for example, leads to skipping meals and the disruption of regular eating patterns.In 2019, 10.5% of U.S. households had some level of food insecurity — 6.4% had low food security, and 4.1% had very low food security. Now, there are concerns that COVID-19 may be exacerbating this problem.Recent Census Bureau data show that before the pandemic, 1 in 10 respondents said that they “sometimes or often did not have enough to eat.” In early March, this figure rose to 25%. The survey respondents mentioned not having enough money to buy food or being unable to get out to buy food as reasons for the insecurity.Food insecurity is associated with a range of negative health outcomes. For children, these include anemia, asthma, poor cognitive performance, and behavior problems. In adults, there is a higher risk of depression, asthma, diabetes, and hypertension.Meanwhile, the link between obesity and food insecurity has been a topic of debate. In 2011, a review of 42 articles concluded that while women with food insecurity were more likely to have overweight or obesity, there was no evidence that food insecurity caused weight gain over the long term. More recently, researchers have proposed a resource scarcity hypothesis to explain the ongoing associations between food insecurity and increased weight. According to the theory, an increased intake of inexpensive, high-calorie foods forms a cycle with skipping meals and intermittent hunger. This, in turn, leads to physiological changes that encourage the deposition of fat and decreased energy and exercise.The new analysis was based on data from over 46,000 adults in the U.S. collected through the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). The goal of NHANES is to assess the health and nutritional status of people in the U.S. through regular surveys.To better understand trends in obesity and food insecurity in the U.S., the analysis, from the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, in Baton Rouge, LA, analyzed data collected between 1999 and 2016. The researchers focused on measures relating to food security and body fat — body mass index, or BMI, and waist circumference.Their findings, which feature in the journal JAMA Network, point to a significant increase in food insecurity rates during this time, reaching 18.2% in 2015–2016. This is in contrast to declines in food insecurity before the COVID-19 pandemic. At the beginning of the study, in 1999–2000, 12% of women with obesity were food insecure, compared with 7% who were not. By 2015–2016, the number of women with obesity and food insecurity had risen to 25%, compared with 16% of women with moderate weight, what the researchers referred to as “normal” weight. In men, there was a similar trend. At the beginning of the study, in 1999–2000, food insecurity was more prevalent in men with normal weight (10%), compared with 9% of those with obesity. By 2015–2016, food insecurity was more prevalent in men with obesity (20%), compared with those who had normal weight (16%).“Food insecurity and obesity are not mutually exclusive […] Rather, these health issues are linked in such a way that a solution will require public policy that addresses both at the same time.”– Dr. Candice Myers, an assistant professor at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center and the study’s lead authorThe prevalence of food insecurity was highest among people with obesity. This may be partly because the cheapest and most accessible foods are often the least healthful.The fact that food insecurity can coexist with obesity — and in fact correlate with it — highlights the importance of making healthy and nutritious food affordable for all.The researchers also identified differences that aligned with race and ethnicity, with food insecurity in 2015–2016 being greater among Black participants (29.1%) and Hispanic participants (35%), compared with their white counterparts (13%).The researchers observe that rising rates of food insecurity following the start of the ongoing pandemic in the U.S. are a critical public health concern.“The COVID-19 pandemic has undoubtedly worsened the situation. The country may face long-term economic and health consequences unless we solve this public health crisis,” says Dr. Myers.The researchers recommend various ways that public health professionals can combat rising levels of food insecurity — including using screening tools to identify people at risk of this issue, who can then be referred to support services, such as food banks.They also recommend further research to better understand the link between food insecurity and obesity, as well as the racial and ethnic disparities in food security.Dr. John Kirwan, executive director of the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, concluded, “Our research has set the stage to not only continue our current efforts to explore these issues, but also develop new and innovative projects that delve into understanding their impact on the health of the citizens of our community, state, and the entire country.”
China, Russia and U.S. clash over pandemic responses | CBC News
China, the United States and Russia butted heads at the United Nations on Thursday over responsibility for the pandemic that has interrupted the world, trading allegations about who mishandled and politicized the virus in one of the few real-time exchanges among top officials at this year’s COVID-distanced UN General Assembly meeting. The remarks at the UN Security…
China, the United States and Russia butted heads at the United Nations on Thursday over responsibility for the pandemic that has interrupted the world, trading allegations about who mishandled and politicized the virus in one of the few real-time exchanges among top officials at this year’s COVID-distanced UN General Assembly meeting. The remarks at the UN Security Council came just after UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres decried the lack of international co-operation in tackling the still “out-of-control” coronavirus.The sharp exchanges, at the end of a virtual meeting on “Post COVID-19 Global Governance,” reflected the deep divisions among the three veto-wielding council members that have widened since the virus first emerged in the Chinese city of Wuhan. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, speaking first, stressed the importance of UN-centred multilateralism and alluded to countries — including the U.S. — opting out of making a COVID-19 vaccine a global public good available to people everywhere. “In such a challenging moment, major countries are even more duty-bound to put the future of humankind first, discard Cold War mentality and ideological bias and come together in the spirit of partnership to tide over the difficulties,” Wang said. And in a jab at U.S. and European Union sanctions including on Russia, Syria and others, he said: “Unilateral sanctions and long-arm jurisdiction needs to be opposed in order to safeguard the authority and sanctity of international law.” WATCH | Trump says nations must fend for themselves: The virtual 75th United Nations General Assembly focused on COVID-19, but recorded speeches had very different approaches to the pandemic. While the secretary-general maintained a message of working together globally, U.S. President Donald Trump told other leaders to take care of their own countries first. 2:00 Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said the pandemic and its “common misfortune did not iron out interstate differences, but to the contrary deepened them.” “In a whole number of countries there is a temptation to look abroad for those who are responsible for their own internal problems,” he said. “And we see attempts on the part of individual countries to use the current situation in order to move forward their narrow interests of the moment in order to settle the score with the undesirable governments or geopolitical competitors.” That was too much for the United States’ UN ambassador, Kelly Craft, who opened her remarks late in the meeting with a blunt rejoinder. “Shame on each of you. I am astonished and disgusted by the content of today’s discussion,” Craft said. She said other representatives were “squandering this opportunity for political purposes.” “President Trump has made it very clear: We will do whatever is right, even if it’s unpopular, because, let me tell you what, this is not a popularity contest,” Craft said. WATCH | UN chief says nations need to work together: United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres counselled solidarity as the key to tackling the world’s tough challenges at the opening of the 75th annual general assembly. 2:02 She quoted Trump’s speech Tuesday to the virtual opening of the General Assembly’s leaders meeting in which he said that to chart a better future, “we must hold accountable the nation which unleashed this plague onto the world: China.” “The Chinese Communist Party’s decision to hide the origins of this virus, minimize its danger, and suppress scientific co-operation [that] transformed a local epidemic into a global pandemic,” Craft said, adding that these actions “prove that not all member states are equally committed to public health, transparency, and their international obligations.” Chinese UN Ambassador Zhang Jun asked for the floor at the end of the meeting and delivered a lengthy retort, saying “China resolutely opposes and rejects the baseless accusations by the United States.” “Abusing the platform of the UN and its Security Council, the U.S. has been spreading political virus and disinformation, and creating confrontation and division,” Zhang said. Zhang said: “The U.S. should understand that its failure in handling COVID-19 is totally its fault.” The United Nations chief said in opening the Security Council meeting that the world failed to co-operate in tackling the COVID-19 pandemic. Guterres said that if the world responds to even more catastrophic challenges with the same disunity and disarray, “I fear the worst.” He said the international community’s failure “was the result of a lack of global preparedness, co-operation, unity and solidarity.” Guterres pointed to the nearly one million people around the world that the coronavirus has killed, the more than 30 million who have been infected. He said the global response is more and more fragmented, and “as countries go in different directions, the virus goes in every direction.”
Ring’s second-gen Video Doorbell brings better video quality for just $100 – CNET
Ring has finally updated its original Video Doorbell with 1080p HD live streaming (up from 720p in the original model), crisper night vision and more customizable motion zones. It *is* better than the 2014 doorbell, but this $100 second-gen Ring Video Doorbell retains the most annoying thing about the original — you have to remove…
Ring has finally updated its original Video Doorbell with 1080p HD live streaming (up from 720p in the original model), crisper night vision and more customizable motion zones. It *is* better than the 2014 doorbell, but this $100 second-gen Ring Video Doorbell retains the most annoying thing about the original — you have to remove the entire doorbell to charge it.
LikeIt costs $100Improved specs and performance
Don’t LikeThe battery isn’t removable
Fortunately, you can hardwire this model, too, and if that’s your plan, this new Ring doorbell is a reasonable option. If you need to go the battery-powered route, you’ll have to decide whether it’s worth having a several-hour gap in video monitoring while your doorbell charges inside — or make clever use of extension cables so the doorbell can charge outside and continue to keep an eye on things. Ring sells a $50 Solar Charger if your doorbell is installed in a place with direct light, to mitigate some of the limitations of the battery. While Ring’s second-gen Video Doorbell is a clear improvement over the original, it isn’t enough to appeal broadly to potential buyers. Folks looking for an affordable hardwired doorbell should consider this model; everyone else should weigh the above battery considerations. Ring’s privacy and security policies should also factor into your buying decision — I’ll cover that in a section below.
Read more: The best video doorbells of 2020The basicsBefore Ring was, well, Ring, it was Bot Home Automation, a startup with a smart idea to combine a security camera and a doorbell into one device, dubbed the Doorbot. While Bot Home Automation was among the first brands to have a smart doorbell, its 2013 device had a lot of issues. In 2014, Bot Home Automation rebranded to Ring and introduced its inaugural product, the $200 Ring Video Doorbell.That first-gen Ring buzzer was a big improvement over the Doorbot, but it still had some performance and design limitations. Six years later, Ring is now an Amazon company that sells a variety of video doorbells, security cameras, a security system, lighting products and accessories — including its original Ring Video Doorbell for the reduced price of $100.
Now Ring has replaced its first-gen Video Doorbell with similar, but new hardware, and some updated specs — all for the same $100 price. Setting up the doorbell is the same as any other. Log in or create an account if you don’t already have one, select the device you want to configure from the list in the app and follow the steps to connect the doorbell to your Wi-Fi network. The steps include tutorials for installing the doorbell, either via hardwiring or simply mounting it to your door frame and relying on the battery. The app setup portion is very fast — just a few minutes — but tack on more time to the estimate if you need to drill holes and plan to hardwire your Ring Video Doorbell. As always, if you have any questions about installing your doorbell, consult a professional installer. You can also take a look at the below video where I install the Ring Video Doorbell 2, which has a similar design and configuration process as the second-generation Ring Video Doorbell. Please note that this video isn’t a replacement for consulting a professional installer with questions.
The detailsAfter that initial setup, this doorbell is pretty easy to use. Receive alerts on your phone whenever the doorbell detects activity — or when someone rings the buzzer. Pull up the live feed whenever you want and customize your settings in the app. Ring also claims improved night vision and motion detection over its first-gen model. Since it’s been about six years since I tested that original doorbell and I don’t have one handy, I can’t test this side by side. I can say the night vision in this model worked well for me, allowing me to distinguish between my two similar-looking dogs in the dark and make out other activity in my yard at night, like the neighborhood cat Roger roaming around. If you rely exclusively on the doorbell’s built-in battery for power, it should last between three to six months on a charge and take between five to 10 hours to charge. My front door is covered by a porch and largely protected from the elements, and I was able to charge the doorbell outside while it still monitored the front yard (propped on the porch floor, against the house), but the charging cable Ring includes isn’t weatherproof or recommended for this purpose. Still, that’s a potential workaround to allow 24/7 monitoring, even when you need to charge your doorbell, as long as the charging cable and the doorbell are clear of the elements.
Again, Ring does sell a solar accessory to limit or completely remove the need to charge your doorbell. Since my door is under a porch, that wouldn’t work, but it’s an option. Ring also sells chime accessories so you can hear your doorbell ring inside, even if it isn’t hardwired to a chime transformer. The easy customizability in the app stands out the most, from being able to set your own motion zones to setting your doorbell to Home, Away or Disarmed mode. You do have to pay for Ring’s optional Protect service, starting at $3 per month, to be able to view saved motion clips for up to 60 days, as well as access to Snapshot Capture. Snapshot Capture takes pictures in between video clips to show you a little more of what’s happening around your house, although I don’t find that feature particularly useful, since I only want to see what’s happening when motion is detected. This device also supports Ring’s People Only Mode, a feature that only works with a Ring Protect subscription that allows your doorbell to filter out all non-person motion alerts, like animals, vehicles and other activity. It works with Alexa, too, so you can ask your Alexa-enabled smart speaker to show you your camera’s live feed. I don’t have a smart display at home, but I did test this feature successfully with other Ring doorbells at the CNET Smart Home pre-quarantine. Inside the Ring app.
Screenshots by CNET
Privacy mattersGiven today’s wide and increasing variety of microphone-and-camera-enabled smart home devices, it’s important for product reviewers to factor in privacy and security alongside the hardware, so you can make the most informed decision possible. My commentary, Ring’s new privacy and security features prove that hardware isn’t the only important thing, goes into this in detail, but the gist is that reviewing products can’t just be about the hardware anymore.Ring isn’t the only company I’ve had a complicated relationship with as a product review because of this — ahem, Facebook. But Ring’s privacy and security track record, partnership with US police stations and security concerns, like user information that was exposed in December 2019 led CNET to temporarily stop reviewing or recommending Ring products. However, Ring has since made improvements, including introducing a Control Center dashboard with more easy access to privacy and security settings and two-factor authentication, so we are again reviewing Ring products. “Protecting our customers’ privacy, security and control over their devices and personal information is foundational to Ring, and we’re constantly working to deliver on this commitment,” a Ring spokesperson told CNET over email in April. “This was demonstrated most recently when we were the first smart home security company to make a second layer of verification mandatory for all of our customers. We will continue to add features to protect user privacy and enhance data security as we work towards our mission of making neighborhoods safer.”Ring’s products are intended to be used on private property, and we require all of our customers to comply with any applicable laws when setting up their Ring devices,” the spokesperson added. “We’ve taken steps to help customers respect people’s privacy while using their devices, including [the Privacy Zones feature and free Ring stickers].”If you have more questions about Ring’s policies, start with my colleague Alfred Ng’s story, Amazon’s helping police build a surveillance network with Ring doorbells. Here’s Ring’s privacy statement, too, if you want to read it in detail.The verdictThe Ring Video Doorbell is a decent buzzer with decent features. Given the updates Ring added here, this $100 model somewhat catches up to the Amazon company’s other doorbells. The need to remove the doorbell to charge it is still a major drawback. If that doesn’t bother you — or if you plan to hardwire it anyway — this affordable doorbell might be a good choice. As always, weigh its price and performance alongside Ring’s privacy and security policies to decide if the second-gen Ring Video Doorbell is right for you.Read more: The best outdoor security camera to buy in 2020