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The News Hole

What a Wonderful World

Posted 11/29/2006

Future Force Company Commander, a new video game the U.S. Army uses as a recruiting tool, isn't completely realistic. According to Mark Long of Zombie Games, the company that designed the game on the military's behalf, the equipment never breaks down and the enemy doesn't learn better tactics over time. "High-tech has all kinds of low-tech vulnerabilities, and they didn't want the vulnerabilities programmed in," Long said. (

Akira Makino, an 84-year-old surgeon formerly with the Japanese navy, has admitted that he performed dissections, amputations, and other surgeries on around 30 live, relatively healthy Filipino prisoners during World War II. He said he was acting under orders; those who survived their operations were strangled. (The Guardian/United Kingdom)

British scientists have discovered that human beings share less common DNA than previously thought. The researchers discovered that as much as 12 percent of the human genome may differ from person to person. (BBC)

Antarctica is now studded with more than 70 ad hoc garbage dumps, many of which contain toxic material. (

About 18 percent of the mercury found in the Willamette River in Oregon comes from industrial emissions in China. (The Oregonian/Portland)

Wal-Mart plans to open "hundreds" of stores in India. The retail giant has joined with Indian company Bharti Enterprises to begin rolling out the stores as early as next year. (International Herald Tribune)

An Ethiopian zoo devoted to housing and showcasing lions recently acknowledged that it regularly poisons cubs--including rare Abyssinian lions--because it doesn't have the resources to raise and keep them. (BBC)

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