We can think of only one reason: Russian authorities and major internet providers are planning to disconnect the country from the internet as part of a planned experiment, Russian news agency RosBiznesKonsalting (RBK) reported last week. This is significant, as it is an indicator that Russia feels this may one day be necessary. When would such a move potentially be necessary? In time of war with the U.S. and its allies.  READ MORE

Two kinds of internet: The global internet is splitting in two. One side, championed in China, is a digital landscape where mobile payments have replaced cash. Smartphones are the devices that matter, and users can shop, chat, bank and surf the web with one app. The downsides: The government reigns absolute, and it is watching—you may have to communicate with friends in code. And don’t expect to access Google or Facebook. READ MORE

SUSTAINABILITY

How to speed up evolution: Consider the groundcherry. Unlike its relative, the tomato, the groundcherry has never been fully domesticated. Farmers don’t have the option of domesticating the groundcherry over thousands of years of selective breeding, as agriculturists did tomatoes, so researchers are using CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing technology to reproduce some of the tomato’s domestication-associated genetic changes. READ MORE

HUMANITARIAN CRISES

Haitian protests grow: Sporadic gunfire echoed through the streets of Port-au-Prince on Monday as the government remained silent in the face of protests that have paralyzed the Haitian capital and triggered rising violence. This could be significant.  Close attention should be paid to the deteriorating political situation in Haiti.  READ MORE

Humanitarian aid to Venezuela blocked: A week after the Nicolas Maduro regime threw up barricades along the border, there are still no signs that truckloads of humanitarian aid will be allowed into Venezuela from their way station in eastern Colombia. That doesn’t mean food isn’t being shipped over — but it has been going in the other direction. READ MORE

SOCIAL MEDIA

Uh oh: The inflammatory website of a violent terrorist group responsible for killing hundreds of U.S. and coalition soldiers in Iraq is currently being hosted by one of America’s biggest web companies, according to an Australian television report. READ MORE

FOOD SAFETY

Yes, raw milk can make you sick: Although it’s illegal to sell unpasteurized milk across state lines, federal officials say people in 19 states have been exposed to drug-resistant Brucella after consuming raw milk from Miller’s Biodiversity Farm in Pennsylvania. READ MORE