2012 YEAR IN REVIEW
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- Retirement regrets: Costly mistakes to avoid
- US: Russia violated 1987 nuclear missile treaty
- Tax fraud case against Lionel Messi goes ahead
- Fist bumps more hygienic than handshakes, say scientists
Fist bumps are more hygienic than handshakes and drastically reduce the risk of spreading infectious diseases, researchers in Britain have found. The study discovered that a handshake transfers 10 times as much bacteria as a fist bump, following a series of tests at Aberystwyth University on the west coast of Wales. Doctor Dave Whitworth, who led the research, said the study could have a serious impact on public health. The results of the research, published in the American Journal of Infection Control, showed that handshakes passed on far more of the dangerous bacteria than fist bumps or high fives.
- Fighting in Ukraine prompts residents to flee
SHAKHTARSK, Ukraine (AP) — Panicky residents in an eastern Ukrainian town fled their homes Monday carrying a few possessions in plastic bags and small suitcases as shells exploded in the distance, fighting that also prevented an international police team from reaching the area where the Malaysia Airlines plane was downed.
- Pilots of Air Algerie jet asked to turn back: France
France said Monday the pilots of the Air Algerie passenger plane that crashed in Mali, killing all 118 people on board, had asked to turn back in a new development to a complex probe into the tragedy. "What we know for sure is that the weather was bad that night, that the plane crew had asked to change route then to turn back before all contact was lost," Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius told reporters in his latest briefing about last week's disaster. Speaking hours after the black box flight recorders of the McDonnell Douglas 83 jet arrived in Paris from Mali to help investigators, Fabius said air crash experts currently on the remote desert site of the accident were working in "extremely difficult conditions". More than 20 French experts from the country's Bureau of Investigations and Analyses (BEA), which probes air accidents, as well as specialist police forces were on site in Mali's barren Gossi area where the plane came down, he said.
- Rocket blasts off with U.S. ‘neighborhood watch’ spy satellites
An unmanned Delta 4 rocket blasted off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on Monday with a pair of U.S. military satellites designed to keep watch on other countries’ spacecraft. The 206-foot (63-meter) tall rocket, built by United Launch Alliance, a partnership of Lockheed Martin and Boeing, lifted off at 7:28 p.m. EDT and blazed through partly cloudy skies as it headed into orbit, a United Launch Alliance live webcast showed. Launch of two satellites for the U.S. Air Force’s recently declassified Geosynchronous Space Situational Awareness Program, or GSSAP, had been slated for July 23, but was delayed one day to resolve a technical issue with ground support equipment and then three more times by poor weather. Once in orbit, the GSSAP satellites, built by Orbital Sciences Corp, will drift above and below a 22,300-mile (35,970-km) high zone that houses most of the world's communications satellites and other spacecraft.
- US star Duchovny sparks controversy with patriotic Russian ad
US actor David Duchovny has stirred up a storm of debate in Russia by appearing in an ultra-patriotic beer ad in which he fantasises about being Russian. The "X-Files" and "Californication" star appears in a glossy ad for a Russian beer brand that is inspired by his eastern European origins. "There is another country, where I got my family name from, and sometimes I wonder, what if things turned out differently, what if I were Russian?" the actor says in the ad posted Friday on YouTube. Duchovny has said in interviews that his father had Polish and Russian roots but recently wrote on Twitter that he is in fact Ukrainian.