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Japan forcibly sterilized tens of thousands of 'inferior descendants' in a massive eugenics program

TOKYO (Reuters) — One day when Saburo Kita was 14, he was taken from an institution for troubled children to see a doctor. Despite protesting that his health was fine, he was ordered to strip, lie down on a table, and was given a local anesthetic.<p>Then the surgery began.<p>He was left with a thick, …

Why the U.S. government built three top-secret cities during WWII

“Secret Cities,” a new exhibition at the National Building Museum, traces the Manhattan Project’s experimental urbanism<p>Midcentury suburbia is usually viewed through the lens of middle-class idealism: safe neighborhoods with affordable homes for families, picket fences, lawns where kids can play, …

Graying Americans Will Outnumber Kids by 2035

By 2035, Americans age 65 and older are forecast to outnumber kids for the first time.<p>The U.S. Census Bureau projects that the population of older …

Much of the modern world is explained by one population spike

We like to think of the story of human growth as a single, long ascent. In fact, it’s a solitary spike. The population growth rate hovered just above zero for more than 10,000 years. Only after something happened in the 1700s did the growth rate begin to climb, and climb, and climb.<p>With the …

Geography

Extra Doorbells, Satellite Dishes: How Cities Search for People the Census May Miss

SAN JOSE, Calif. — The Census Bureau, charged with counting every person living in the United States in the coming decennial, may never find whoever is living here in this converted garage on the east side of town.<p>The property owner has replaced the garage door with siding, painted it the same …

Inside the mind of a former radical jihadist

"For a long time, I lived for death," says Manwar Ali, a former radical jihadist who participated in violent, armed campaigns in the Middle East and …

South Korea’s Most Dangerous Enemy: Demographics

When the whirlwind of the Winter Olympics spins to a close this weekend, the host city, Pyeongchang, South Korea, will settle down to a life beyond aerial flips, halfpipe pretzels and metronomic North Korean cheerleaders. The place will become, once again, a quiet spot where very few children live …

The Independent | News | UK and Worldwide News | Newspaper

President takes nascent trade war between two huge economies to next level with taxes on aerospace, robotics, cars and industrial machinery<p>The …

India has a new caste for native English speakers only

Sometime around 2012 or 2013, my daughters stopped speaking in Konkani, our mother tongue. It isn’t entirely clear what provoked it, perhaps it was a teacher at their Mumbai school encouraging students to speak more English at home. Or perhaps it was something else. It doesn’t matter.<p>What did …

India

Meet the Men Who Literally Dance With Scissors

Forget running with scissors; this competitive Quechua dance takes danger to the next level. (Don’t try this at home.)<p>For more than 500 years, the heart-stopping clanging of the <i>Danza de Tijeras</i> has echoed throughout the Andean mountains.<p>Named for the pair of iron rods each dancer wields in his …

Low-caste Indians are better off than ever—but that’s not saying much

FOR Dalits, these are the best of times. Once known as untouchables and reviled as ritually unclean, this sixth of India’s population has never been …

The island that switches countries every six months

<b>Next week, France will hand over 6,820 sq m of its territory to Spain without a single shot being fired. But in six months' time Spain will voluntarily hand back the land to France. As Chris Bockman reports, it's been that way for more than 350 years.</b><p>The French Basque beach resort of Hendaye is the …

How ‘Dubaization’ Transformed Skylines

Magazine<p>Idiosyncrasies abound in nations rich in resources but poor in traditional architecture.<p>Giant shopping malls and soaring hotels have redrawn the skylines of cities like Dubai and Abu Dhabi. In the sweltering desert, indoor ski slopes are dusted in snow and flower gardens bloom. “They are …

Abu Dhabi

Why horrid tales alone won't help German asylum applications

Afghan asylum seekers in Germany often narrate terrifying accounts of the circumstances that led to their departure from their home country. But can …

First step in changing Japan's workaholic culture: less overtime

TOKYO — It might seem more appropriate at a children's costume party, but a purple cape has become an unlikely weapon in Japan's efforts to get its workers to work fewer hours.<p>Employees at a Tokyo-based IT services company were recently forced to wear such "embarrassment" capes if they worked late …

How ‘Not in My Backyard’ Became ‘Not in My Neighborhood’

In Seattle, the neighbors don’t want apartments for formerly homeless seniors nearby. In Los Angeles, they don’t want more high-rises. In San Jose, Calif., they don’t want tiny homes. In Phoenix, they don’t want design that’s not midcentury modern.<p>Homeowners in each of these places share a common …

Missing migrants: Germany's Red Cross receives thousands of inquiries

The German Red Cross president said it was "frightening" how many of the disappeared are unaccompanied minors. But some of the missing may have died …

Childless Iowa: More communities left with few, if any, kids

CLOSE<p>Ford Lillard grew up in Wiota and is now raising his two kids there with his wife, Liz. Only problem is their children, Bailey and Hunter, are …

Des Moines

Shanghai to cap population at 25 million to battle 'big city disease'

SHANGHAI — China's financial hub of Shanghai will limit its population to 25 million people by 2035 as part of a quest to manage "big city disease", the cabinet has said.<p>The State Council said on its website late on Monday the goal to control the size of the city was part of Shanghai's masterplan …

China

Photos: The architectural mastery of Ethiopia’s ancient churches

Ethiopia is legendary for its medieval, rock-hewn churches, the cruciform and colorful frescoes of which have attracted tourists from across the world. The ancient kingdom of Abyssinia, which we now know as modern-day Ethiopia and Eritrea, was probably the site of the first Christian nation, and …

Archaeology

What's the Ideal Number of Humans on Earth?

Earth might be looking a little worse for wear, after the last four-hundred years of reckless wide-scale resource extraction, but to its credit it …

Population

Just when you thought eugenics couldn’t get any worse

White America’s 20th century obsession with racial perfectionism involved rulers, scales, and Westminster-style “Better Babies” contests<p>“How healthy …

The Nazi breeding and infanticide program you probably never knew about

<b>Forced procreation, kidnapping, and execution of babies were all carried out in the name of a master race</b><p><b>By Erin Blakemore</b><p>It sounds like the stuff of …

“No Questions”: The Russian Revolution, My Father, and Me

This year marks the hundredth anniversary of the Russian Revolution. This photograph was taken seven years before “the events that shook the world,” in a studio in a Ukrainian town with the consonant-crammed and barely pronounceable name of Medzhybizh—a center of Jewish culture since the …

Chinese authorities collecting DNA from all residents of Xinjiang

Officials build database of iris scans and blood types of everyone aged 12 to 65 in region home to 11 million Muslim Uighurs<p>Chinese authorities are collecting DNA samples, fingerprints and other biometric data from every resident in a far western region, Human Rights Watch has said.<p>Officials are …

China

How kid-friendly urban design makes cities better for all

A new report from Arup argues that child-friendly design is our urban future.<p>Promoting urban planning projects often relies on an inspiring narrative: what are we as a community trying to accomplish, and how do we want our neighborhoods to evolve? Few stories are as universal as building a better …

Religion in the U.S.: These maps show which states are most and least religious

With Hanukkah and Christmas coming up, we look at religion in America.<p><b>Highly religious by state</b><p>California is ranked as the 35th most religious state …

Meet The Students Who Were Sent From The Caribbean To The North Of England After Hurricane Irma

After deadly Hurricane Irma struck, an entire university was relocated 4,000 miles away from the Caribbean – to Preston, northern England.<p>When more than 700 students and staff from an American university in the Caribbean were unexpectedly relocated to the small English city of Preston in October, …

The Conflict in Jerusalem Is Distinctly Modern. Here’s the History.

In December 1917 — 100 years ago this month — the British general Edmund Allenby seized control of Jerusalem from its Ottoman Turkish defenders. Dismounting his horse, he entered the Old City on foot, through Jaffa Gate, out of respect for its holy status.<p>In the century since, Jerusalem has been …

Israel

10 of the Most Iconic Buildings by Architect Frank Gehry You Should Know

It’s rare for an architect to become a household name, but the ones who earn this distinction have their designs lauded for decades to come. Frank Gehry is one of these visionaries who has planned and built awe-inspiring structures since the early 1960s. Known for his bold architectural features …