The Ganjam District Disaster Response Forum (GDRF), a joint front of 47 NGOs, continues to be a major relief force during natural calamities,like the recent cyclone Fani, in this district of Odisha.The GDRF now has reach in all the 22 blocks of Ganjam district. Their volunteers have direct contact with people living in remote and vulnerable areas. They help the administration in evacuation of people to safe places before any cyclone. “We coordinate between the people and the administration to ensure basic amenities at cyclone shelters”, said convenor of GDRF, Mangaraj Panda.Since 2015, the GDRF has trained up over 400 volunteers in 27 villages that are prone to cyclones and floods. According one of the trained volunteers, Rabindra Das of Badapalli village of Ganjam block, they know basic skills of search and rescue as well as first aid for immediate attention in case of need.These volunteers are also trained to report about losses to the local revenue officials. In most cyclone prone coastal villages, literacy rate is low and inhabitants find it hard to report their losses to administration.Members of the GDRF also reach the vulnerable villages near the coast to urge fishermen and their families to leave their dwellings and shift to cyclone shelters. “Volunteers of GDRF look after the well being of the people at cyclone shelters”, said Loknath Mishra, co-convenor of GDRF. Members of the GDRF also monitor cyclone preparedness in slums of Berhampur city. GDRF had arranged its own dry food stock and was ready to reach out to affected people immediately if any major devastation would have occurred in any part of Ganjam district due to Cyclone Fani.
Aiming for a third Indian Premier League (IPL) title, the formidable Mumbai Indians (MI) will face an imposing challenge from Rising Pune Supergiant (RPS) in what promises to be a riveting final of the tenth edition of the Indian Premier League in Hyderabad on Sunday.Billed as a “Maharashtra Derby”, the summit clash is set to be a bit more than an inter-city battle with huge reputations of big stars at stake.Even on paper, there is not much to choose, especially with Pune beating Mumbai thrice this season including a comprehensive victory in Qualifier 1. But the final is a new day and Mumbai can always be fourth time lucky.Two-time champions Mumbai will be playing their fourth final and should have been termed as clear favourites had it not been for a certain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who will be playing a record seventh IPL final.Some of the Mumbai stars, like skipper Rohit Sharma, Kieron Pollard, Harbhajan Singh and Ambati Rayudu, have a fair idea of how to win a mega final as they have been a part of the victorious 2013 and 2015 sides.Mumbai’s strength has been their bench with like-for-like replacements. When Jos Buttler left, they had Lendl Simmons to fill in for him. Similarly, fast bowler Mitchell McClenaghan (19 wickets) can cool his heels with Mitchell Johnson tormenting the batsmen.Nitish Rana (333 runs) has been one of the finds but when Rayudu came back from injury, he was equally effective.Harbhajan Singh has been economical as ever but the team management had faith in leg-spinner Karn Sharma who crushed the Kolkata Knight Riders batting during the second Qualifier. In Lasith Malinga and Jasprit Bumrah — they have the best death bowlers in the business.advertisementPollard hits big and is a livewire on the field.Pandya brothers — Krunal and Hardik — provide the all-round balance and above all there is Rohit, who can singlehandedly turn the match on its head.Going into the final, Mumbai will have their tails up after their comprehensive six-wicket win against the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in the second qualifier in Bengaluru on Friday.ROAD TO FINAL:Mumbai Indians breezed into the final of the Indian Premier League 2017 with a six-wicket win over Kolkata Knight Riders in Qualifier 2 at Bengaluru’s M Chinnaswamy Stadium on Friday.Mumbai, who came into the match after a 20-run defeat against Rising Pune Supergiant in Qualifier 1, displayed a clinical performance to enter their fourth IPL final.The Rohit Sharma-led Mumbai have been in rampaging form this year. With 10 victories in 14 league matches, they finished on top of the table and ensured themselves a double bite at the cherry.CAPTAIN’S CORNER:Rohit Sharma: “We have been working hard. So we don’t want to shy away from going into the finals the hard way. We deserve to be in the final. We’ve played really good cricket through the tournament. I hope we continue for one more game. It is going to be an exciting contest. We don’t have a good history against RPS. We have to focus on what we need to do as a team. Hyderabad is a different venue so we need to assess conditions quickly. It is all about getting used to those conditions. So far we’ve been doing really well as a team, just one more hurdle.”Team:Rohit Sharma (Captain), Jasprit Bumrah, Harbhajan Singh, Mitchell Johnson, Shreyas Gopal, Krishnappa Gowtham, Asela Gunaratne, Kulwant Khejroliya, Siddhesh Lad, Mitchell McClenaghan, Lasith Malinga, Hardik Pandya, Krunal Pandya, Parthiv Patel (WK), Kieron Pollard, Nicholas Pooran, Deepak Punia, Nitish Rana, Ambati Rayudu, Jitesh Sharma, Karn Sharma, Lendl Simmons, Tim Southee, Jagadeesha Suchith, Saurabh Tiwary, Vinay Kumar.TWEETS DECK:MI strength,bowling. Batting,hit & miss. Pune overall, not as strong, but have 2 big match players in Dhoni & Smith. MI hold slight edge.- Sanjay Manjrekar (@sanjaymanjrekar) May 21, 2017MOM in IPL finals – Yusuf, Kumble, Raina, Vijay, Bisla, Pollard, Pandey, Rohit & Cutting. So it’s not just big names on the big nights.- Sanjay Manjrekar (@sanjaymanjrekar) May 21, 20177 #IPL finals in a decade of the IPL. Baap Re Baap. That’s finishing off in style. The ultimate IPL BOSS – @msdhoni #IPLfinal pic.twitter.com/mlmI3t0J0l- Ravi Shastri (@RaviShastriOfc) May 20, 2017
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Joyeuses fêtes! La saison des fêtes est arrivée, ce qui signifie que les célébrations seront bientôt en cours, la famille et les amis feront leurs visites et bon nombre de personnes seront occupées à se préparer pour cette période de générosité. L’une des meilleures choses que l’on puisse s’offrir et offrir à nos amis et à notre famille cette année est la tranquillité d’esprit de savoir que la grippe H1N1 ne sera pas une raison de ne pas célébrer cette saison. Les fêtes et repas de Noël et les célébrations de bureau signifient que nous serons tous en contact direct les uns avec les autres. Pour assurer votre bonne santé pendant les fêtes cette année, suivez ces quelques conseils : Restez à la maison si vous présentez des symptômes de la grippe et demandez à vos invités de faire de même. Couvrez votre bouche avec votre manche pour tousser et éternuer. Lavez-vous les mains souvent avec du savon et de l’eau ou du désinfectant pour les mains à base d’alcool. Nettoyez les surfaces couramment utilisées telles que les poignées de porte et les robinets avant et après l’événement. Ne partagez pas vos boissons et votre nourriture avec les autres. Ne partagez pas vos verres ou vos ustensiles. N’oubliez pas de ne trempez vos légumes qu’une seule fois! Ces simples mesures vous aideront à prévenir non seulement la grippe H1N1 mais toute une gamme d’infections virales et bactériennes. Nous pouvons tous faire notre part pour réduire la propagation de la grippe H1N1, mais la vaccination demeure le meilleur moyen de se protéger. La grippe H1N1 est une maladie grave qui touche les gens de tout âge. Tout le monde est donc à risque. Nous avons vu des cas de personnes en bonne santé qui développent une maladie grave et débilitante après avoir contracté le virus H1N1, et même qui sont décédées. Quelques précautions peuvent faire toute une différence. En cette période des fêtes, pensez à la façon dont vous pouvez protéger vos proches. Passez les fêtes en famille et entre amis, et non au lit. Faites-vous vacciner. Rester au courant de la situation entourant la grippe H1N1 vous aidera également à rester en santé durant la saison de la grippe. Consultez notre site Web à l’adresse www.gov.ns.ca/h1n1/fr pour obtenir des renseignements à jour. Vous pouvez également consulter nos pages Facebook et Twitter aux adresses gov.ns.ca/facebook ou twitter.com/nsgov . Pour savoir comment prendre soin d’une personne malade de la grippe, veuillez appeler Info-Santé au 811. -30-
Families in the Cornwallis, Annapolis Co. area will have access to a safe, modern recreation facility when the wellness centre in Cornwallis Park becomes the Fundy YMCA. All levels of government and community organizations committed a total of $650,000 toward the project today, Dec. 18, including $150,000 from the province. “Helping to reopen this facility is the right decision for the people of this region, providing opportunities for residents to lead active, healthy lives,” said Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations Minister Ramona Jennex, on behalf of Health Promotion and Protection Minister Maureen MacDonald. “Investing in recreation facilities is part of our commitment to make life better for families in Nova Scotia.” Project funding also includes $300,000 from the federal government and $100,000 each from the Municipality of the District of Digby and the Annapolis Basin Conference Centre. The Municipality of the County of Annapolis will continue to own the facility, making mortgage and debt payments. A community fundraising campaign is also underway and kicked off with an $80,000 donation from the Annapolis West Health Foundation. “Government’s investment in these essential improvements to the centre will help ensure that the people of Cornwallis and surrounding communities continue to have access to a valuable community recreational resource,” said MP Greg Kerr, on behalf of ACOA Minister Keith Ashfield. “The YMCA’s role in the management of the upgraded facility will add to the quality of the services offered through the centre and to the attractiveness of Cornwallis as a place in which to live, work and invest.” “Strong partnership is the key to any success and this is a good example of the outcome,” said Reg Ritchie, warden of the Municipality of the County of Annapolis. “The financial support of these organizations shows a combined effort in reaching a common goal of ensuring a sustainable wellness facility for the people in our region wanting to pursue and maintain a healthy and active lifestyle. This financial support and the YMCA’s dedication have given us confidence that this project will come to fruition.” The investments will assist the Municipality of the County of Annapolis in upgrading the wellness centre and its exercise equipment to meet YMCA standards. Planned upgrades include an expansion of the cardio fitness area, reconfiguring office space, safety improvements and a state-of-the-art air conditioning system. Once upgrades are complete, the facility will be managed by the YMCA and will serve area residents and clientele of the Annapolis Basin Conference Centre and the Pearson Peackeeping Centre.
ALBANY, N.Y. — A city in New York state has found a novel way of motivating residents to pay their back taxes: personal notes handwritten by city officials.The idea stemmed from an experiment on late-tax payments, in which the city of Syracuse partnered with researchers at Syracuse University. City officials wrote and signed thousands of notes by hand, rather than sending standard legal letters demanding payment.The result was the city collecting nearly $1.5 million more than it predicted traditional methods alone would have brought in. University researchers estimate that the personal approach brought in 57 per cent more revenue from delinquent property owners than the city could expect from using more traditional letters.The notes took a less threatening approach, focusing on steps the resident could take to avoid late penalties or legal action. Instead of being addressed “dear property owner,” the notes were all personally addressed to the resident. Each had a brief, handwritten message on the outside of the envelope as well, researchers said.“It’s the kind of positive outcome that occurs when you aren’t afraid to try something new,” Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh said in a statement.Collecting late taxes is a big challenge for many cities, which often use computer-generated letters to residents threatening action if the money isn’t paid. The researchers said the experiment could have broad applications to a number of different government services. The researchers said they aren’t aware of any other city in the U.S. using the personalized note method to collect taxes.“These are small, simple changes that can have huge payoffs,” said Leonard Lapoo, a Syracuse professor and director and co-founder of Maxwell X Lab, a behavioural research centre at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School.The lab’s managing director, Joe Boskovski, called the experiment common sense, saying treating people as humans can yield results.The findings were first reported by The Associated Press. City officials announced them publicly on Tuesday.David Klepper, The Associated Press
FILE – Canadian cannabis producers say they are ramping up their operations to keep up with growing demand for medical marijuana and in anticipation of legislation that would allow for recreational use of the drug. Cannabis plants intended for the medical marijuana market grow at OrganiGram in Moncton, N.B., in an April 14, 2016, file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ron Ward, File Vancouver expo shows breadth, growth of Canadian marijuana industry VANCOUVER – A two-day marijuana exhibition in Vancouver is giving people an idea of just how large and varied Canada’s cannabis industry has become.Natasha Raey is the spokeswoman for Lift Cannabis Co., which put on the event.She says the show helps to break down stereotypes and prove there is a credible side of the industry.More than 100 exhibitors are showcased their wares this weekend, including businesses selling seeds and growing equipment, producers licensed by Health Canada to grow and sell marijuana, and a firm that provides financing marijuana-related businesses.The show also hosted a variety of panels, including how to speak to your doctor about marijuana and parents talking about treating their children with cannabis.Raey says there has been an up swell of interest in the industry in recent years, particularly in the corporate side as the country moves toward creating legislation for the legalization. by The Canadian Press Posted Sep 18, 2016 3:14 pm MDT Last Updated Sep 18, 2016 at 4:39 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email
“Governments will need resources to help communities prevent infection, detect potential cases and respond rapidly and effectively,” Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told a regular informal General Assembly meeting on Ebola recover and response, stressing that the international community must make good on the pledges made in 2015 to support the over 10,000 survivors in West Africa.Remarks were also made by World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Dr. Margaret Chan (via video link), Administrator of the UN Development Programme (UNDP), Helen Clark, Special Adviser on 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and former Special Envoy on Ebola Briefing Dr. David Nabarro, and the Deputy Health Minister of Liberia, His Excellency Tolbert Nyenswah (video link), among others, including Ebola survivors.Sierra Leone declared the end of Ebola transmission on 7 November and Guinea, where the epidemic began two years ago, on 29 December, with both countries now observing a 90-day period of heightened vigilance. Liberia is slated to declare the end of the recent flare-up tomorrow. “That means that tomorrow – January 14th – all known chains of transmission will have been stopped in West Africa,” Mr. Ban said. “These achievements could not have happened without the decisive leadership of the Presidents and other national authorities of the three affected countries, and the engagement of all communities. “Of course, significant challenges remain. We can anticipate future flare-ups of Ebola in the coming year,” he added, noting that Liberia’s experience in combating two flare-ups shows the resilience and capacity of affected countries to reactivate emergency response mechanisms and contain the virus. “But we also expect the potential and frequency of those flare-ups to decrease over time. Governments will need resources to help communities prevent infection, detect potential cases and respond rapidly and effectively.”Apart from the original chain of transmission, there were 10 new small outbreaks between March and November this year, apparently due to the re-emergence of a persistent virus from survivors. One challenge is that after recovery and clearing the virus from the bloodstream, the virus may persist in the semen of some male survivors for as long as nine to 12 months.Mr. Ban paid tribute to the “courageous health workers, burial teams, and others,” and called for a concerted effort to counter the distress, mistrust and stigma caused by Ebola.In the face of “an active outbreak, a rising death toll, an exponential infection curve, and perhaps, above all, uncertainty and mounting fear […] our Organization faced a fundamental test of our collective strength and will – and we mobilized,” he emphasized. “Governments and communities in the region stepped up in extraordinary ways. Dozens of countries provided life-saving contributions. We created the first-ever United Nations emergency health mission and coordinated a unified response, with key contributions from UN Country Teams,” he said.“The end of Ebola transmission in West Africa is testament to what we can achieve when multilateralism works as it should, bringing the international community to work alongside national governments in caring for their people,” the Secretary-General said. General Assembly President Mogens Lykketoft also praised the role of national authorities, local communities, health workers, ordinary citizens, civil society and the international community in combatting the epidemic, including the Assembly itself.“Both by generating political engagement through six dedicated meetings and by establishing the UN Mission for Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER), the Assembly demonstrated solidarity and an ability to take swift action in the face of an emergency,” he said, while warning that the crisis is far from over since both survivors and the three Governments continue to face considerable challenges. “It is important therefore that the international community remain seized of this matter; that partners continue to provide support to affected communities; and that lessons are learned on how best to prevent and manage future global health crisis,” he said.For her part, WHO chief Dr. Chan said tremendous strides had been made towards defeating the largest, longest and most complex Ebola outbreak in history. And with Liberia set to be removed tomorrow from the list of countries with ongoing Ebola virus transmission, marking the first time that all three most-affected countries had logged 42 days without a case of the disease – twice the incubation period of the virus – “this is a monumental achievement.”Indeed, she explained, every chain of transmission had to be broken; tens of thousands of contacts had to be monitored. And while vigilance and response capacity must be maintained throughout 2016, WHO expected that “all survivors will have cleared the virus from their bodies by the end of the year.” Meanwhile, the countries would need international solidarity to ensure a safe transition, and the period of intense vigilance must continue as recovery proceeded.“While the job is far from being finished, the situation will not return to what it was 15 months ago. The steps taken at national and international levels to defeat the disease were unprecedented [and] no one, no one, will let this virus take off and run away again,” underscored Dr. Chan.
Kansas City>9997-2 2. Miami 34, Buffalo 31 (Week 16) 10. New Orleans 31, Tampa Bay 24 (Week 16) Philadelphia56%72%+16 AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE The game to watch for Week 16 was one of the best of the year. Buffalo came back from a 21-7 deficit, but the Dolphins hit a 55-yard field goal at the end of the fourth quarter to send the game into OT. Buffalo immediately drove 58 yards to Miami’s 17-yard line before moving backward 10 yards on two running plays and missing a 45-yarder. The Dolphins eventually won it on a chip shot field goal, sending their playoff chances skyrocketing to 92 percent at the expense of Denver and Baltimore. Philadelphia3835-3 Tennessee4542-3 Houston8682-5 Indianapolis2311-12 Houston7987+7 9. Philadelphia 34, Pittsburgh 3 (Week 3) Based on the Cowboys’ terrible performance last season, our NFL predictions projected them to go 7-9 in 2016. And it took a little while for our model to figure out that Dallas was for real. This Week 6 drubbing of Green Bay improved the Cowboys’ record to 5-1 and sent their playoff chances shooting up 22 points to 78 percent; the suddenly struggling Packers saw an equivalent drop. Game had 116.6 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown Detroit7380+7 Miami4145+3 Tennessee16%44%+28 1. N.Y. Giants 19, Washington 10 (Week 17) Game had 76.0 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown Houston5855-3 Tennessee11%25%+14 Washington580-58 Miami55%92%+38 Detroit72100+28 AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE PLAYOFF CHANCES Indianapolis344-30 Indianapolis3934-5 AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE PLAYOFF CHANCES 3. Tennessee 13, Denver 10 (Week 14) Game had 66.3 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE Houston44%74%+30 Dallas2623-3 PLAYOFF CHANCES Cincinnati159-7 AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE Green Bay6269+6 Game had 59.7 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown PLAYOFF CHANCES Buffalo712+5 Green Bay5434-20 Game had 57.2 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown Dallas56%78%+22 Baltimore3841+3 Indianapolis73-4 Houston7957-22 Denver7348-24 Game had 65.0 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown Baltimore2814-14 Tampa Bay29<1-28 4. Houston 22, Indianapolis 17 (Week 14) Let’s take a moment to acknowledge Tennessee’s season. The Titans were one of the NFL’s worst teams in 2015 but rallied to go 9-7 this season, with a 5-2 record against eventual playoff teams. Their peak came in back-to-back wins against Denver (Week 14) and Kansas City (Week 15), giving them a serious shot at an AFC South title. Unfortunately, it was all for naught — the bad version of the Titans came out in Week 16 and lost 38-17 to the Jaguars, allowing the Texans to clinch the division. Tennessee’s victory over Denver did make a big difference for Miami, which eventually took the second AFC wild card spot. Green Bay70%100%+30 Houston5144-7 Pittsburgh9388-5 After Green Bay’s late-season surge to make the playoffs (and the collapse of Washington and Tampa Bay), the Packers’ midseason foibles are all but forgotten. But they really almost blew it, going on a four-game losing streak that started at the end of October during which the Green Bay defense allowed 38 points per game and the team’s chances of making the playoffs dropped (at 4-6) to just 6 percent. This Week 9 loss to the Colts — the second loss in the streak — was one of the most damaging for Green Bay while simultaneously reviving Indianapolis’s hopes. N.Y. Giants4850+2 7. Pittsburgh 28, Indianapolis 7 (Week 12) PLAYOFF CHANCES Detroit4650+4 AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE The most important game of the year came in Week 17, even though one of the teams — the New York Giants — had absolutely nothing to play for. Washington’s loss ended its playoff hopes and rendered the highly anticipated Green Bay-Detroit evening matchup mostly moot by guaranteeing playoff spots for both the Packers and Lions. AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE Pittsburgh was an early favorite to make the playoffs, with a 62 percent preseason chance of advancing to the postseason that improved to 90 percent after a 4-1 start. But then the Steelers lost four straight, dropping down to 16th in our rankings, which are based on Elo ratings (a measure of team strength based on game results that we use quite a bit around here). They would go on to beat the Browns in Week 11, but this road victory against the Colts was when Pittsburgh really righted the ship. The Steelers closed the season with five more wins, easily making it to the postseason; they enter as the fourth-ranked team by Elo. Minnesota6164+3 Miami1626+11 Baltimore3224-8 The second ultimately meaningless late-season Titans victory that briefly shook the AFC South playoff race. Better luck next year, Tennessee! Washington2831+3 Game had 58.9 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown Pittsburgh55%71%+16 Denver4139-2 5. Tennessee 19, Kansas City 17 (Week 15) Washington1815-3 PLAYOFF CHANCES Green Bay7249-22 After a tedious Week 17, the NFL playoff picture is finally set. Every week since Week 12, we’ve looked at which games could have the biggest impact on postseason chances throughout the league. Now, instead of dealing with hypotheticals, we can look backward to see which results from the entire 2016 regular season actually affected the playoff race the most.This is pretty easy to measure. Our NFL predictions update after every game, so the most important games are simply the ones that caused the largest net change in playoff probabilities. For example, when Buffalo beat Los Angeles in Week 5, the Bills’ playoff chances immediately improved from 50 percent to 64 percent (+14) while the Rams’ dropped from 49 percent to 34 percent (-14, with rounding). That’s a net change of 28 points. If we add to that number the impact the Bill’s victory had on Arizona, Seattle, New England and Oakland and its minor impacts on every other team in the league, we get an overall playoff swing of 57 points for that game.1The playoff swing totals in this article are lower than what we had listed in previous weeks. That’s because the scale has changed a bit, now that we’re measuring based on one actual game outcome instead of two potential game outcomes. An example: Going into their Week 17 matchup against New York, Washington had a 58 percent chance of making the playoffs. It would be eliminated with a loss and would more or less clinch with a win, so the team’s total potential range of outcomes, which we called its swing, was zero to 100 percent, or 100 percentage points. But Washington lost that game, so its actual, non-potential swing was from 58 percent to zero, or 58 percentage points.By this measure, the 10 biggest games of the regular season are below. Note that some of these results didn’t actually “matter” in the end. Going back to the example above: Buffalo didn’t make the postseason. But that game did make a significant impact on the playoff race at the time, so it was still important to the arc of the season. PLAYOFF CHANCES Pittsburgh6870+2 6. Indianapolis 31, Green Bay 26 (Week 9) AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE Game had 58.7 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown Baltimore5154+3 PLAYOFF CHANCES AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE N.Y. Giants3429-4 Pittsburgh8067-13 PLAYOFF CHANCES Game had 58.5 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown Game had 75.9 total “swing” points; only teams with a playoff swing of at least 2 percentage points based on the game outcome are shown PLAYOFF CHANCES AFFECTED TEAMBEFORE GAMEAFTER GAMECHANGE Washington37%51%+14 Indianapolis11%21%+10 8. Dallas 30, Green Bay 16 (Week 6) The Texans ended the regular season with a 9-7 record, a -49 point differential and just the saddest kind of quarterback controversy (the kind where both quarterbacks are bad). So how did they find themselves in the playoffs, with room to spare? Houston’s secret weapon was a 5-1 record against its AFC South opponents, spoiled only by its final meaningless game against the Titans. Whenever Houston’s lead in its terrible division was challenged, the team rose to the occasion, getting a particularly large boost to its playoffs chances in this narrow victory over the Colts. Denver177-10 Remember Philadelphia? After a 3-0 start, capped by this shellacking of the highly rated Pittsburgh Steelers, the Eagles saw their playoff chances rise to over 70 percent. After a bye in Week 4, it was all downhill. Philadelphia went 2-9 over their next 11 games and were eliminated from playoff contention in Week 15. Going into Week 15, the 8-5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers had a 54 percent chance of making the playoffs but blew it with back-to-back narrow losses to the Cowboys and Saints. Although this game didn’t technically eliminate Tampa Bay from playoff contention — the team had a very outside chance of making the playoffs in Week 17, if seven games broke their way — it more or less ended the Bucs’ playoff hopes.Check out our latest NFL predictions.
For an article on FiveThirtyEight today, Mike Lopez and Noah Davis charted the relationship between spending and win percentage for every baseball season since 1985. They found that the relationship between money and winning in baseball is as strong now as it’s been any time in the free-agency era. Below you’ll see that relationship for each team in the majors. Each season is one dot in the figure, and the colored line is a smoothed curve fit through the points. Essentially, the higher the curve, the more the team’s money was well-spent. The gray line is an aggregation of all the data points across the entire league, and that line shows a pattern: More money generally means more wins.Read more: Don’t Be Fooled By Baseball’s Small-Budget Success Stories »
Sandvik Mining has won the NSW Minerals Council’s Mining Technology Award for the development and implementation of the AutoCut system for its MB Series of miner-bolter continuous mining machines. These types of innovations allow the industry to achieve more efficient mining and development. Sandvik Mining’s AutoCut system is an automated cutting system for miner bolter operations, designed to provide a consistent interaction with the coal seam and the mining horizon. This kind of technology forms part of the remit of our annual Rapid Development conference, held in Sydney this year from 14th to 16th August. The dates and venue for the 2014 event will soon be announced on www.im-mining.comThe Award was announced at the Minerals Council’s second annual NSW Mining Suppliers Awards held in Sydney on October 24, and was presented by NSW Resources and Energy Minister Chris Hartcher. In addition, Sandvik Mining was runner-up in the Manufacturing and Engineering category for its MB Series AutoBolt eBox rock-bolting system –which was invented and developed in Australia. Originally developed at Centennial Coal’s Mandalong mine, southwest of Newcastle, AutoCut was adapted to overcome issues with poorly cut and uneven floors – which resulted in equipment damage, potential slips and falls for personnel, and reduced coal clearance speeds.Since AutoCut was introduced at Mandalong in 2009, monthly production records have increased to well over 40%, slips/trips and falls have been reduced by 60%, and incidents/near misses involving development panels have been reduced by over 80% per month. In addition, with the smoother roadway, there has been a marked reduction in rubber-tyred vehicle fatigue and jarring injuries to passengers and operators. Damage previously attributed to rough roadways, wear and tear on vehicles, re-work and roadworks has been reduced by 50%.Since the development of AutoCut, Sandvik Mining has established a Miner-Bolter User Group, aimed at delivering the benefits of the system to other mines in Australia, and setting up networking opportunities among mine personnel, from managers to operators. According to Rowan Melrose, Sandvik Mining’s Global Automation Manager, all Sandvik Miner Bolters can be upgraded to AutoCut with a small software upgrade, along with implementation of a minesite-based process control to ensure improved safety, development and sustainability. “We expect that all Sandvik Mining MB Series machines will at some point in the future operate in AutoCut mode as standard – with manual operation being the exception. For underground coal mine operations, the benefits will continue to multiply as this technology optimisation process continues to roll out.”He adds: “With process optimisation, process integration and automation technologies all critical enablers for mining operations of the future, Sandvik Mining’s development of AutoCut and our collaboration with the customer in successfully implementing it has clearly demonstrated the benefits of our approach. The resulting significant improvements in safety performance, productivity and operational efficiency have created a great deal of value for our customers. In addition, the consistent machine performance we have been able to achieve through the AutoCut automation process has delivered major reductions in preventative machine maintenance costs, not only for the bolter-miner but also for all auxiliary equipment as a result of improved development panel conditions.”Melrose said this award was an example of how Sandvik Mining continued to optimise its existing machinery, as well as delivering operational improvements through a holistic approach to machine development. “Sandvik Mining is proud to have won this award, which is a recognition of the efforts of our customer support and engineering people in working with customers to develop innovative ways to increase site safety and productivity.”
← Previous Story World Handball left back 2017? Next Story → Zlatko Saracevic overtakes RK PPD Zagreb EHF Cup Here are the complete results of the Men’s EHF Cup – Round 3 which have been played during last weekend.The second leg will be held next Saturday and Sunday all over Europe.Results:Lugi HF 29 – 29 Pfadi Winterthur Cyeb Budakalasz 27 – 35 Helvetia Anaitasuna HK Malmo 25 – 23 Bjerringbro-SilkeborgSC Magdeburg 27 – 25 Dobrogea Sud Tatabanya Carbonex 25 – 24 Chambery SavoieFraikin BM Granollers 28 – 21 Balatonfuredi Saint Raphael 40 – 29 DubravaKS Gwardia Opole 30 – 25 Koper 2013 FC Porto Vitalis 27 – 30 Fuchse Berlin KS Azoty Pulawy 30 – 27 Team Tvis Holstebro Wacker Thun 19 – 17 Alpla HC HardSKA Minsk 36 – 28 Naturhouse La Rioja Ribe-Esbjerg HH 29 – 26 Nasice NexeFrisch Auf Goppingen 27 – 27 OIF Arendal
HSE has ‘no plans’ to provide ambulance staff with stab vests>BUMBLEance: The ambulance specially made for critically-ill kids> THE IRISH HEART and Transplant Association has said that it is “incumbent that the authorities investigate the incident” where an ambulance broke down while carrying a transplant patient from Cork to Dublin.It is understood the HSE has launched an investigation into the incident.Transplant operationThe patient received a call on Thursday afternoon and was told to report to the Mater Hospital in Dublin to undergo a transplant operation.After the ambulance broke down, gardaí escorted the patient to Dublin, where the patient underwent a successful operation.Speaking to TheJournal.ie, Brendan Gilligan of the IHLTA said “we need to make sure that it doesn’t happen again, for everyone’s sake. People need to realise that the timescale is very important. Surgeons need to operate as soon as possible as the timescale from the time of harvesting the organs to the transplant operation is tight”.He said that the full investigation needed to be done as to why the ambulance broke down and so as to ensure it could never happen again.“The patient was very fortunate that the gardaí were there to bring them to the Mater. I know the operation went alright, which is the good news here,” he said.Few and far betweenHe said that incidents of this kind are “few and far between,” but said that the experience of waiting to get the call, then having to rush into hospital can be stressful enough for the patient, without having mishaps like this happening, he said.He said it was also important to remember the donor’s family at this time. “It was their loved one that has given someone else a second chance at life, it’s important we remember that” he said
A khadem (caretaker) of a mazar (shrine) was slaughtered by miscreants at Hatgaon area in Sonaimuri upazila of Noakhali on Wednesday night, reports news agency UNB.The deceased is Sona Miah, 65, a Khadem (caretaker) of Afzal Shah Mazar (shrine) at the area and hailing from Madaripur district.Police have arrested two men in this connection.Md Shamsuzoha Mojnu, a resident of the Afzal Shah Mazar bari and member of Nodna union parishad said three youth went to the mazar as the devotees around 8:00pm. They entered the mazar and talked with Sona Miah for some time .Later they took Sona Miah to an orchard (garden) adjacent to the mazar and stabbed him indiscriminately, leaving him slaughtered.Hearing the screaming of Sona Miah, his wife and locals went to the spot to rescue him and spotted him dead.Locals saw the attackers trying to flee the scene but they managed to hold an attacker, Ilias Hossain, a resident of Shaktola village of the upazila. Other two attackers managed to flee the scene.Getting information from Ilias in primary interrogation, locals also held another attacker, Sumon, 40, of the area.Later the locals handed them over to the police.Jahirul Islam, Additional Superintendent of District Police said the motives behind the killing could not be confirmed immediately.
Police in a raid detained nine Rohingya people from Manihar Bus Stand area in the district town in Jessore on Wednesday, reports UNB.The detainees are Tafur Alam, 40, his wife Murshida Begum, 30, their daughter Yeasmin, 9, their three sons – Riazul Islam, 7, Saiful Islam, 3, and nine-month-old boy Shahidul Islam, their niece Jannat, 20, and Jannat’s nine-month-old son Hamid.All of them were residents of Panigajiri area in Rakhaine state of Myanmar.Azmal Huda, officer-in-charge of Sadar police station, said suspecting movement of some people in the bus stand area, police challenged them and after interrogation police came to know that they are Rohingyas.Later, police detained them and took to Kotwali police station.The detainees entered Bandarban through Myanmar border amid persecution in Myanmar.Some people boarded them on a Jessore-bound bus in exchange of some money, claimed the detainees.
The dawn of Easter Sunday with its message of new life is a high point in the Christian calendar. Easter is meant to be a symbol of hope, renewal and new life. Enjoy an Easter themed indulgent Sunday Brunch painstakingly curated by the team of chefs at Shangri-la’s contemporary new all day dining restaurant, Tamra. Celebrate this season of new beginnings with Tamra’s Easter Sunday brunch on April 5. Blending tradition with world flavours in the magical setting of Tamra, the young patrons will find an array of fun activities specially designed with Easter goodies and a complimentary access to the pool.The Easter goodies are available at UNO2GO, the hotel’s patisserie from March 27 – April 5.The Easter Sunday brunch is priced at Rs 3,500 plus taxes with free flowing Moet Chandon champagne and Rs. 2,750 plus taxes with free flowing cocktails, beer and mocktails. Kids buffet is priced at Rs 1,500 plus taxes.
News | Radiology Business | August 01, 2019 Philips Completes Acquisition of Carestream Health’s HCIS Business … read more Body language expert Traci Brown spoke at the AHRA 2019 meeting on how to identify when a person is not being honest by their body language. She said medical imaging department administrators can use this knowledge to help in hiring decisions and managing staff. Feature | Radiology Business | July 23, 2019 | Greg Freiherr Liars in Radiology Beware! Can you tell when someone is lying? read more News | Radiation Oncology | July 17, 2019 CMS Proposes New Alternative Payment Model for Radiation Oncology The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a proposal for an advanced alternative payment model (APM)… read more Video Player is loading.Cynthia McCollough discusses bridging diversity gaps in medical physicsPlay VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 6:05Loaded: 2.67%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -6:05 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. 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April 11, 2016 — The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced its largest-ever initiative to transform and improve how primary care is delivered and paid for in America.The effort, the Comprehensive Primary Care Plus (CPC+) model, will be implemented in up to 20 regions and can accommodate up to 5,000 practices, which would encompass more than 20,000 doctors and clinicians and the 25 million people they serve. The initiative is designed to provide doctors the freedom to care for their patients the way they think will deliver the best outcomes and to pay them for achieving results and improving care.“Strengthening primary care is critical to an effective healthcare system,” said Patrick Conway, M.D., CMS deputy administrator and chief medical officer. “By supporting primary care doctors and clinicians to spend time with patients, serve patients’ needs outside of the office visit, and better coordinate care with specialists we can continue to build a healthcare system that results in healthier people and smarter spending of our healthcare dollars. The Comprehensive Primary Care Plus model represents the future of healthcare that we’re striving towards.”Building on the Comprehensive Primary Care initiative launched in late 2012, the five-year CPC+ model will benefit patients by helping primary care practices:Support patients with serious or chronic diseases to achieve their health goals;Give patients 24-hour access to care and health information;Deliver preventive care;Engage patients and their families in their own care; andWork together with hospitals and other clinicians, including specialists, to provide better coordinated care.Primary care practices will participate in one of two tracks. Both tracks will require practices to perform the functions and meet the criteria listed above, but practices in Track 2 will also provide more comprehensive services for patients with complex medical and behavioral health needs including, as appropriate, a systematic assessment of their psychosocial needs and an inventory of resources and supports to meet those needs.CPC+ will help practices move away from one-size-fits-all, fee-for-service healthcare to a new system that will give doctors the freedom to deliver the care that best meets the needs of their patients. In Track 1, CMS will pay practices a monthly care management fee in addition to the fee-for-service payments under the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule for activities. In Track 2, practices will also receive a monthly care management fee and, instead of full Medicare fee-for-service payments for Evaluation and Management services, will receive a hybrid of reduced Medicare fee-for-service payments and up-front comprehensive primary care payments for those services. This hybrid payment design will allow greater flexibility in how practices deliver care outside of the traditional face-to-face encounter.To promote high-quality and high-value care, practices in both tracks will receive up-front incentive payments that they will either keep or repay based on their performance on quality and utilization metrics. The payments under this model encourage doctors to focus on health outcomes rather than the volume of visits or tests.Practices in both tracks also will receive data on cost and utilization. Optimal use of health information technology (IT) and a robust learning system will support them in making the necessary care delivery changes and using the data to improve their care of patients. Track 2 practices’ vendors will sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with CMS that outlines their commitment to supporting practices’ enhancement of health IT capabilities. These partnerships will be vital to practices’ success in the care delivery work and align with the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT priority to ensure electronic health information is available when and where it matters to consumers and clinicians.Under the CPC+ model, Medicare will partner with commercial and state health insurance plans to support primary care practices in delivering advanced primary care. Advanced primary care is a model of care with five key components:Services are accessible, responsive to an individual’s preference, and patients can take advantage of enhanced in-person hours and 24/7 telephone or electronic access;Patients at highest risk receive proactive, relationship-based care management services to improve outcomes;Care is comprehensive and practices can meet the majority of each individual’s physical and mental healthcare needs, including prevention. Care is also coordinated across the healthcare system, including specialty care and community services, and patients receive timely follow-up after emergency room or hospital visits;It is patient-centered, recognizing that patients and family members are core members of the care team, and actively engages patients to design care that best meets their needs; andQuality and utilization of services are measured, and data is analyzed to identify opportunities for improvements in care and to develop new capabilities.CMS will select regions for CPC+ where there is sufficient interest from multiple payers to support practices’ participation in the initiative. CMS will enter into an MOU with selected payer partners to document a shared commitment to align on payment, data sharing and quality metrics in CPC+.CMS will accept payer proposals to partner in CPC+ from April 15 through June 1, 2016. CMS will accept practice applications in the determined regions from July 15 through Sept. 1, 2016.For more information: www.innovation.cms.gov FacebookTwitterLinkedInPrint分享 John Carrino, M.D., M.Ph., presents “Challenges and Opportunities for Radiology to Prove Value in Alternative Payment Models” at AHRA 2019. Photo by Greg Freiherr Related Content Feature | Radiology Business | July 22, 2019 | By Greg Freiherr Payment Models Seek Traction in Transition from Volume Efforts to reform healthcare are booming, b read more Feature | Radiology Imaging | July 29, 2019 | By Greg Freiherr Imaging Market in U.S. Could Rise In Coming Years The coming years may be good for the medical imaging community in the United States. But they will not be easy. read more Feature | Radiology Business | July 18, 2019 | By Stefanie Manack and Judy Zakutny Finding A Common Data Language for Radiology Approximately 30 percent of a hospital or health system’s profit comes from imaging according, to… read more News | Radiology Business | April 11, 2016 CMS Launches Largest-ever Multi-payer Initiative to Improve Primary Care New Affordable Care Act initiative, designed to improve quality and cost, gives doctors and patients more control over healthcare delivery Videos | AAPM | July 23, 2019 VIDEO: Bridging Diversity in Medical Physics to Improve Patient Care Cynthia McColl… read more Key Topics for Radiology Administrators at AHRA 2019Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 7:33Loaded: 2.15%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -7:33 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button. Feature | Information Technology | July 31, 2019 | By Greg Freiherr How Smart Devices Can Improve Efficiency Innovation is trending toward improved efficiency — but not at the expense of patient safety, according to… read more Image by rawpixel from Pixabay Demand for ultrasound scans at U.S. outpatient centers could grow by double digits over the next five years, according to a speaker at AHRA 2019. A variety of factors, however, could cause projections for this and other modalities to change. Graphic courtesy of Pixabay Videos | Radiology Business | August 02, 2019 VIDEO: Key Topics for Radiology Administrators at AHRA 2019 Association for Medical Imaging Management (AHRA) President … read more News | Radiology Imaging | July 22, 2019 AHRA and Canon Medical Systems Support the 12th Annual Putting Patients First Program For the past twelve years, Canon Medical Systems USA, Inc. has partnered with read more
From the print editionBy Jessica Tyner | Special to The Tico TimesLiberia, the provincial capital of Guanacaste, has more to offer than idyllic beaches – although it is possible to take a piece of paradise home with you. Wendy Tayler, owner of Costa Rica Silks, creates beautifully hand-painted designs on silk scarves, shawls and lounge pants. Inspired by the beauty of the country, each piece is one-of-a-kind and features a landscape, a native plant, or a wild animal like the blue morph butterfly or scarlet macaw. Tayler, an expat from the United States, moved here 20 years ago and inherited the silk-making supplies from a fellow foreigner. A natural-born artist, she fell in love with the process of capturing the world around her in a functional keepsake. She spent two hours in a crowded kitchen learning the ropes in 1999, and the process of watching vibrant colors spread across the silk has kept her mesmerized. Gabe Dinsmoor Special requests are gladly accepted, and Tayler has had some unusual projects in the last two decades. Her most memorable request was a wall hanging depicting 50 years of marriage. The piece now hangs in a couple’s home in Mexico and was a loving anniversary gift from their daughter. Other special creations include baby silks for baptisms and shawls for weddings and the terminally ill. Every piece is infused with Tayler’s passion and spirit, making it impossible for her to choose a favorite. A shawl she made for a groom’s mother featured butterflies that represented each of her children. Each shawl that is created for terminally ill patients is tucked away in her heart. The most personal item is the silk she created for her mother, blossoming with the flora they had seen together over Thanksgiving in Costa Rica. It was gifted shortly after Tayler’s father’s death.Like many artists, she considers the art scene here limited but overflowing with undiscovered talent. Since she is not formally trained, Tayler does not consider herself an artist, though she regularly attends shows and exhibitions frequented by clients from around the world. Efforts have been made to improve the art-scene visibility in Guanacaste and allow talented artists to show their work, but the turnout is usually minimal.Expats or travelers can stop by the studio or order pieces online. Add an exquisite addition to your wardrobe with a scarf that is the perfect accessory for a swimsuit or hat. Every piece can be dry cleaned or washed by hand. Visit Costa Rica Silks at www.crsilks.com or call 8333-7555. Tayler can also be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. Facebook Comments No related posts. One of the painted scarves.
Also, the Sunni countries, along with Turkey, support the Sunni-dominated opposition waging the civil war against Assad’s rule in Syria.The axis had been gaining power over the decade before the Syrian uprising began in March 2011 and formed a powerful front against Israel and the key U.S. allies in the Middle East such as the oil-rich Gulf states. Iran has long supported Hezbollah and Hamas as proxies in its battle against Israel. And Tehran also troubled the west with its dogged pursuit of uranium enrichment, a program the U.S. and its allies suspect is aimed at producing nuclear weapons but which Iran says is for peaceful purposes.Syria has long boasted about being one of the few protectors of militant groups fighting Israel. It is the main transit point of weapons brought from Iran to Hezbollah and a collapse of Assad’s regime would make it difficult for arms to reach the militant group that has been exchanging threats with the Jewish state and fought a 2006 war with Israel.The axis also spread its influence to Shiite majority Iraq, where the fall of Saddam Hussein and his Sunni-dominated regime gave way to a government controlled by Shiites.Only few years ago, the coalition was becoming so powerful that King Abdullah of Jordan warned of a “Shiite crescent,” meaning countries from Iran, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon. Men’s health affects baby’s health too This about-turn also caused new tensions with the Palestinian movement’s main financial backer, Iran. Tehran demanded that Hamas step up and support Assad publicly. Hamas refused to do so, but didn’t break ties entirely with Tehran, for lack of an alternative source of funds.However, another benefactor may now be stepping forward.Last week, the emir of Qatar, a vociferous critic of Assad, became the first foreign leader to visit the Gaza Strip. In a way, it formally sealed the break by Hamas from the “Axis of Resistance.”The trip offering the internationally isolated Hamas leadership there an unprecedented stamp of approval and Qatar promised more than $400 million in development projects for the impoverished territory.The Qatari leader’s generosity will likely give him some leverage over Hamas’ decision-making at a time of growing debate within the movement over whether to stay in the orbit of Iran and other radical groups or move closer to the more moderate Gulf Arab camp.Syria’s president has painted the uprising against him as a universal attack designed to destroy the entire “Axis of Resistance.” Last month, Assad told Iran’s visiting foreign minister that the fight against his government “targets resistance as a whole, not only Syria.” Associated PressBEIRUT (AP) – When the Hamas rulers of Gaza recently gave a hero’s welcome to the ruler of Qatar, an arch foe of the Syrian regime, it sent a strong message reverberating across the capitals in Tehran, Damascus and Beirut.The powerful, anti-American alliance of Iran, Syria and militant groups Hezbollah and Hamas, once dubbed the “Axis of Resistance,” is fraying.Iran’s economy is showing signs of distress from nuclear sanctions, Syria’s president is fighting for his survival and Hezbollah in Lebanon is under fire by opponents who blame it for the assassination of an anti-Syrian intelligence official. Hamas _ the Palestinian arm _ has bolted. Early signs of cataracts in your parents and how to help Israel has threatened to carry out a military strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh, who heads the Iran’s powerful Revolutionary Guard’s aerospace division, warned that Iran will target U.S. bases in the region in the event of war with Israel.“The question is not whether it (the alliance) will survive or not. The question is will it have the capacity to act offensively,” said Gerges. It is on the defensive.”___Associated Press writers Karin Laub and Zeina Karam contributed to this report.___Bassem Mroue can be reached on twitter at http://twitter.com/bmroue.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Top Stories Comments Share Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project “There will have to be serious adjustments in the axis should Assad go and preparations in Tehran for the day after are, I assume, already underway,” Saab said.Hezbollah, which supported revolutions in Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen, Libya and Bahrain, backed Assad in the crackdown. That support turned much of the Middle East’s Sunni population against the group they once looked up to.The group came under renewed pressure and criticism earlier this month when a car bomb in Beirut on Oct. 19 killed one of the country’s top intelligence officials, an anti-Syrian figure. Hezbollah’s opponents at home immediately pointed fingers at the group, calling for the resignation of the government Hezbollah now dominates.Iran, the wealthiest and most powerful member of the alliance, has reportedly sent billions of dollars to Assad to help suppress the uprising, according to a recent report by Times of London. Tehran has given Hezbollah billions since the group was created in 1982.But now Iran is struggling to cope with Western sanctions that have ravaged its economy. The sanctions aim at thwarting its nuclear program.The distress was all too apparent in the freefall of Iran’s currency the rial, which lost more than a third of its value in a week. The decline is widely tied to the effects of sanctions. Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement A new boldness was seen in 2010 when Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah emerged from hiding for a rare public trip to Damascus, where he attended a meeting with his powerful regional allies, Assad and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The leaders smiled confidently and appeared relaxed in footage of their meetings, a show of force meant to deter and demonstrate the unshakable power of the “Axis of Resistance.”The uprising against Assad that erupted 19 months ago, amid tumultuous changes sweeping the Arab world, shook a major pillar of the alliance.“The fate of the alliance rests on the future of the Assad regime. If Assad goes, Iran and Hezbollah will suffer and find it much more difficult to plan, coordinate, and communicate,” said Bilal Saab, a Middle East expert at the Monterey Institute of International Studies.The brutal crackdown by Assad’s regime on the Sunni-dominated uprising was an embarrassment to Hamas, the main Palestinian arm of the coalition. Hamas leaders in exile, who had been based in Damascus since the late 1990s, left for Egypt, Qatar and other countries.Hamas officials say they could not be seen supporting a regime that was brutally suppressing a popular rebellion, particularly since most of those rising up against Assad are fellow Sunni Muslims. Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix “We’re seeing basically the resistance axis becoming much more vulnerable and under duress. So even if it survives, it’s really under tremendous pressure,” said Fawaz Gerges, director of the Middle East Center at the London School of Economics.“The Hamas shift to the Saudi-Qatari-Turkish orbit represents a major nail in the coffin of the resistance axis,” he said. “Now you are talking about Iran and Syria and to a lesser extent Iraq and this undermines the social element because Hamas added the very important Sunni dimension.”The axis is one of two powerful camps that divide the Middle East into spheres of competing influence. It faces off against the wealthy, powerful monarchies of Saudi Arabia and Qatar allied loosely with most of the other Arab countries and neighboring Turkey, which like Iran is Muslim but not Arab.The fault line is sharply sectarian _ Iran and Hezbollah are Shiite and Assad’s regime is dominated by the Alawite sect, an offshoot of Shiite Islam. Hamas, which is Sunni, had been the exception before it strayed. Qatar, Saudi Arabia and other Sunni Muslim-led Arab countries in the Gulf have been trying to stem the regional influence of Iran. Clean energy: Why it matters for Arizona Sponsored Stories
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