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News of the day: Vladimir Putin and MH17, earthquakes in Syria and Turkey, coronavirus


In the case of the crash of the passenger plane MH17, a lead leads to Putin. The earthquake in Turkey shakes Erdoğan's power. And three out of four children are still suffering from the consequences of the corona policy. This is the situation on Wednesday evening.

1. Putin's Missile Order

Russian President Vladimir Putin apparently played an important role in the downing of the MH17 passenger plane in 2014. Dutch investigators came to this conclusion based on wiretapped telephone calls.

298 people died when a Malaysia Airlines plane was shot down over eastern Ukraine.

A Dutch court has already sentenced three pro-Russian separatists to life imprisonment in absentia.

Enlarge image

Wreckage of MH17 at the crash site in Donetsk region

Photo: Antonio Bronic / REUTERS

A background report presented today in The Hague said there was strong evidence that Putin was actively involved.

He personally probably ordered the delivery of the rocket system that was later used to launch it.

However, the investigators qualified that the evidence was not yet sufficient to bring a new charge.

In addition, Putin cannot be prosecuted.

That's why the investigation is being suspended for the time being, but will continue to try to hold Russia accountable, according to Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte.

So far, Putin has denied any Russian involvement in the downing of MH17.

Which is already unbelievable because at the time of the crime Russia was in full control of the separatist area in eastern Ukraine.

Russian claims that the missile was fired by Ukrainian soldiers were quickly exposed as lies.

Now, no further proof is needed that Putin is a nefarious villain.

But one wonders all the more how Western politicians were still able to overlook Putin's criminal activities in Ukraine after 2014.

  • Read full story here: MH17 shot down - Putin apparently approved delivery of missile to separatists

And here is more news and background information on the war in Ukraine:

  • "The problem is the way the Ukrainians fight":

    Even German tanks will not significantly influence the course of the war, says US military expert Michael Kofman.

    Here he explains why a peace offer from Vladimir Putin would be the toughest test of all.

  • Zelenskyj is pushing for fighter jet deliveries in London:

    On his second foreign visit since the beginning of the war, Volodymyr Zelenskyj emphasizes the close ties to London.

    In the British Parliament, he spoke to hundreds of MPs - and called for new sanctions and military aid.

  • AfD politicians appear again on the Russian talk show:

    An AfD member of the Bundestag recently caused a stir with statements on the talk show by a Kremlin propagandist.

    Now party colleagues were switched to Russia again.

    Another apparently traveled to Belarus.

2. Does the earthquake shake Erdoğan's power?

Two days after the earthquake, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan traveled to the disaster area.

His office announced today that he was in Kahramanmaras province and on his way to a tent city.

He also wants to visit Hatay province.

Both areas have reported thousands of deaths.

According to the Reuters news agency, Erdoğan admitted that there were “problems in responding to the earthquake” on the first day.

Now the salvage operations were running normally.


Those affected in some regions complain that there is hardly any help.

Kemal Kilicdaroglu, leader of the largest opposition party CHP, accused Erdoğan of failing to prepare the country for such an earthquake during his 20-year reign.

Enlarge image

Debris in Hatay: Thousands of dead are recorded in the area

Photo: Ibrahim Oner / dpa

The almost incomprehensible destruction caused by the quake can be seen on satellite images and before and after photos compiled by Bernhard Riedmann and Amelie Rubin from our graphics department.

For example from the historical fortress of Gaziantep.

The centuries-old landmark looks mostly like a pile of rubble.

Critics of the president are asking where the money from the earthquake tax that was introduced after the 1999 earthquake actually went.

88 billion Turkish lira came in through the tax, which corresponds to 4.67 billion US dollars at today's exchange rate.

But by no means everything went into the construction of more stable buildings.

In a video recorded in 2011, Erdoğan's finance minister divulges that revenue from the tax was spent on roads, railways, agriculture and debt servicing.

Does the earthquake shake Erdoğan's power?

The presidential elections planned for May 14 could be both: The confirmation of a man who has just proven himself as a crisis manager.

Or settling accounts with a loser.

For Erdoğan's predecessor, Süleyman Demirel, the second case occurred after the 1999 earthquake.

Many Turks blamed Demirel for the many fatalities, the president lost political support and was elected three years later.

So Erdoğan has been warned.

  • Read more here: An earthquake as big as Germany 

3. Children suffering from the wrong corona policy

Three out of four children and young people are still suffering from the psychological consequences of the corona pandemic.

This is the devastating result of the final report of a working group presented today in Berlin by Family Minister Lisa Paus (Greens) and Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD).

Enlarge image

Boy with a mask in a school corridor: Think of the long school closures and cordoned off playgrounds

Photo: Westend61 / Getty Images

It would be more correct to speak of the mental consequences of the messed-up corona policy.

Just think of the long school closures, which even Lauterbach now considers a mistake.

Of the insane blocking of outdoor playgrounds and other curfews.

The talk of children as alleged »superspreaders«.

What can be done to help those affected?

The working group, commissioned by the federal government, has identified five fields of action: more family support after the birth of a child, more daycare, health coaching in schools, better pediatric medicine in hospitals and new entitlements to psychosocial support.

As far as the pious wishes.

The experts could see what the reality looks like this week in Tübingen, for example.

Because there is a lack of staff in the city daycare centers, many of the opening hours are now to be reduced.

It's over at 1:15 p.m.;

after that the children have to see for themselves where they stay.

Well, if you still have a robust mind.

  • Read the whole story here: 73 percent of all minors are still mentally affected by Corona

What else is important today

  • When the dam breaks – glacial lakes endanger 15 million people:

    When dams from glacial lakes break, huge masses of water rush into the valley and leave a trail of devastation in their wake.

    According to a study, more and more people are threatened by such accidents.

  • Both “Geo” bosses are resigning:

    Bertelsmann wants to cut hundreds of jobs at its publishing subsidiary Gruner + Jahr and stamp out numerous titles.

    Now the editors-in-chief of the flagship »Geo« are reacting.

  • There is a rat problem in Munich:

    Rats have apparently spread massively at a Munich train station - also through human intervention.

    Local residents are worried, the city is alarmed.

  • 'Caught once again in the glare of ageism and misogyny':

    Madonna has responded to discussions about her face on social media.

    The singer faces age discrimination and misogyny.

My favorite story today

How do you explain to a child why Germany is sending heavy weapons to Ukraine?

Is war good?

Wouldn't it be better to push for peace negotiations?

Many parents and grandparents, including those in my family, are concerned with these questions.

Difficult enough to form your own opinion.

But which information can be expected of children and which not?

The new issue of »Dein SPIEGEL« – available at newsstands from today

Our child reporters Leni and Flora took their questions to Claudia Major, security expert at the Science and Politics Foundation.

In an interview, she then answered the question about the arms deliveries as follows: »Every war is accompanied by enormous destruction and enormous suffering.

But one must not believe that there will be peace if we stop supplying arms to Ukraine.

Then the Ukrainians would no longer be able to defend their country and would have to respond to Putin's demands.

They would thus give up their country for annihilation.

Then there would be no more Ukraine.

And Putin would learn a dangerous lesson from the war.”

Perhaps the interview will help you when you talk to your children or grandchildren about the news from Ukraine.

You can find the text in the new issue of "Dein SPIEGEL," which is now on newsstands.

  • Read the full interview here: »Ukrainians must be able to attack in order to defend themselves« 

What we recommend at SPIEGEL+ today

  • Why many people have to wait a long time for psychotherapy:

    Officially, there are enough therapy places in Germany.

    Nevertheless, patients report long waiting times.

    Why is that, and in which regions are the biggest problems? 

  • What does Lindner actually say about the carnival speech against Merz?:

    The FDP politician Marie-Agnes Strack-Zimmermann causes a stir with a carnival speech full of punchlines against CDU leader Friedrich Merz.

    Now her party leader took a position.

  • The agents with the perfect camouflage:

    Out of conviction, the Schevitz couple provided East Germany with information from the Chancellery and nuclear research centers.

    In court, a brazen lie saved the sociologist and his wife.

    A meeting with two who regret nothing.

  • Her life person:

    He was a writer, publisher - and husband of Christa Wolf.

    Gerhard Wolf was a defender and companion for many GDR authors.

    He died in Berlin at the age of 94.

Which is less important today

Enlarge image

Predecessors and successors: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar symbolically passes the ball to LeBron James


Ashley Landis/AP


LeBron James, 38, is now the most successful thrower in American NBA history.

The Los Angeles Lakers star broke Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's record last night with 38 points against Oklahoma.

James has a total of 38,390 total points in NBA regular season games.

The analysis of our data team shows that LeBron James is characterized above all by his consistency: In more than 20 NBA years he has not had a weak phase.

And he wants to keep going.

His goal is to play in the NBA alongside his son, LeBron James Jr.

This case could occur in 2024.

Mini concave mirror

Here you can find the whole concave mirror.

cartoon of the day

And tonight?

The film company Castle Rock Entertainment has announced that it will produce new episodes of the British comedy classic »Fawlty Towers«, again starring John Cleese in the role of hotel owner Basil Fawlty.

His daughter Camilla Cleese will play another leading role.

The background story: Father and daughter decide to run a small hotel together.

In doing so, according to the film company, one will be able to see how John Cleese' cocky, cynical and misanthropic character copes in the modern world.

Rob Reiner (»Harry and Sally«) is set to direct.

Enlarge image

Scene from the original series »Fawlty Towers« with John Cleese as the hotel owner and Andrew Sachs as the Spanish waiter Manuel

Photo: Mary Evans / Ronald Grant / IMAGO

The old episodes of "Fawlty Towers" from 1975 and 1979 can be found on the usual platforms;

they are just fabulous.

The British Film Institute rightly voted the series number one in its list of the best British TV programs of all time.

And the fact that the BBC temporarily removed the episode "The Germans" from its streaming service in 2020 because it allegedly fueled racism has damaged the BBC's reputation more than the reputation of the series.

I wish you a nice evening.


Yours sincerely, Alexander Neubacher, Head of Opinion and Debate

Source: spiegel

All news articles on 2023-02-08

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