National geographic magazine asia edition,national geographic underwater photographer brian skerry,national geographic channel egypt unwrapped - Reviews

In the city of Kirkuk, one of the most hotly contested places in Iraq, members of a Kurdish security force patrol an otherwise deserted street. Saints of the Shiite Muslims adorn rugs for sale in Erbil, capital of the Kurdish region in the far north of Iraq—and a place where most of the population is Sunni Muslim. Preparing to lead all-female units of the Kurdish militia, or peshmerga, women officers study military strategy at a base near Suleimaniya. Inspired by Egypt, obelisks punctuate a temple in Byblos, Lebanon, that was likely dedicated to the god Reshef about 1800 b.c By that time Egypt had already been trading with the cities of the eastern Mediterranean for at least a thousand years, importing luxuries such as wine, olive oil, and cedar timbers. With dawn streaking the sky, fisherman Adib Boueiry motors his boat from his home in Tyre, Lebanon, to begin his day's work at sea. At the archaeological site called Huanbei Shang City, a young girl peeks at the excavation of the largest building ever discovered from the Shang dynasty, which ruled on China's Yellow River plain from about 1600 to 1045 b.c. In Shanghai a giant reproduction of an ancient bronze ding, or cauldron, serves as a visible reminder that China's past may be gone but is never forgotten. Excavating Shang tombs near Anyang in 1971, archaeologists uncovered a horse's skull studded with the bronze decorations left behind as the leather bridle deteriorated. While the bodies of two humans and two horses have decomposed since they were entombed near Anyang more than 3,000 years ago, the war chariot beside them seems, at first glance, to have held together quite nicely. Shang vessels are decorated with a patterning known as taotie, which looks like a stylized animal face. Endowed with one of nature's most outlandish noses, a proboscis monkey munches a tender leaf. Displaying the muscled limbs of a constant climber, a male proboscis monkey scales a tree, preparing to leap across a river in Sabah.
The whole forest is a giant jungle gym for young proboscis monkeys, who seem to have plenty of time to play.
To get a different angle on Mount Fuji and the surrounding countryside, some try paragliding or fishing, boating, cave exploring, even bathing in a geothermal spring. Climbing Mount Fuji is a religious pilgrimage for some people, a test of strength and endurance for others. While the trek up Fuji takes about six hours, the descent takes roughly half as long—with particular emphasis on rough: "Going down was tougher because the path zigzagged," says climber Taiji Igarashi. Winter brings 2,000 Steller's sea-eagles to the coast of Hokkaido—almost a third of the species' population. Whooper swans split the still winter air on a frozen lake in Hokkaido, the nothernmost of Japan's big islands. It may be called the Jigokudani Wild Monkey Park, but the Japanese macaques here have taken up one of life's more civilized pleasures: hot tubbing. Punctuated by leaps that can reach ten feet, the dance of the red-crowned crane is so arresting that Japan actually named a city for it: Maizuru, or Dancing Crane. The Moken are fed from the sea, hunting with harpoons, hooks, and hands rather than fishing with nets and lines. Farmers and animal health workers in Thailand corral ducks to be tested for the H5N1 bird flu virus. A bundle of live chickens gets a quick squirt of disinfectant on its way into the poultry section of the Long Bien market in Hanoi, Vietnam. Andrew Reid, 3, is transfixed by a jet touching down at Baltimore-Washington International Airport.
Pham Van Oanh, a lotus farmer in Vietnam's Mekong Delta, lost his wife and 13-year-old daugher to bird flu last January.


John Perreault, a clinical research coordinator at the University of Maryland, holds a dressing to Heather Casler Carter's arm after her shot of an experimental bird flu vaccine. Nguyen Si Tuan, 21, fights for his life in Hanoi's Bach Mai Hospital, lungs devestated by a virulent flu he caught from an infected chicken.
Bristling with weapons and tactical gear, a guard stands ready to defend steel and concrete casks holding spent fuel from a reactor in eastern Washington. Under UN supervision, several billion dollars of Iraq's oil revenues have been invested in the three Kurdish provinces in the north of the country during the last decade, feeding their residents, rebuilding villages smashed by Saddam Hussein, and bringing roads, electricity, and health clinics to rural areas. Anchor store in a growing megamall, the Mazi adjoins an amusement park that includes a spin-and-tilt ride, video games, and air hockey. During the Kurds' long struggle against Saddam Hussein, women at first worked behind the front lines building camps, tending the wounded, and spying on the enemy. In return the Phoenicians acquired Egyptian articles such as gold, scarabs, and stone vases, which have survived as votive articles buried at temples. Hovering as a silhouette in the harbor, a horse-headed tour vessel replicates the ships that merchants sailed from this and neighboring ports more than 3,000 years ago. The structure might have been a palace, suggesting that this area once served as the Shang capital. Three thousand years ago much smaller ding were used to make ritual offerings of food and drink to ancestors. Other Shang tombs were filled with weapons, drinking vessels, chariots, ivories, jades, and a mother lode of other items.
But in 1986 when a trove of artifacts—including some 50 bronze heads such as these—were unearthed nearly 700 miles (1,000 kilometers) to the southwest in Sanxingdui, the experts realized they were wrong: China had not one ancient center but many. These unique primates live only on Borneo—on land increasingly threatened by chain saw, fire, and farm.
While females are resting or foraging, energetic youngsters play games in the canopy: swinging from vines and branches or even from the foot of a dangling playmate. While such regional diversions may not resonate with the same deep meaning as a hike up Fuji itself, they still lure hordes of tourists who seek no higher purpose than simply to hang out.
Regardless of the reason, scaling this peak in order to stand on its summit at sunrise is a must for most Japanese. But how these four men, who are around 70, managed to climb Fuji yet again—well, that's another story.
Deadly to chickens and people, the virus can also infect ducks, yet the birds remain healthy as they are herded through the rice fields to fatten on leftover grains.
At "wet" markets like this one, where chickens and ducks are sold and slaughtered on the spot, flu viruses can spread among the live birds and infect customers. Watching them is Rungrueng Yingchareon, the chairman of the club and a cockfighting devotee, like millions of other Thais.
If the bird flu virus now circulating in Asia adapts to spread easily from human to human, it could cause a global pandemic, and jet travel would speed it from continent to continent.
They fell ill after eating infected chicken prepared by his brother-in-law, who stands in the doorway behind him. A volunteer in a clinical trial of the vaccine, which is designed to protect against the H5N1 virus that has emerged in Asia, Carter will keep a journal documenting any reactions to the injection. But beneath the fun lies a painful chapter in Kurdish history: The complex was built on the site of a former Iraqi military facility where Kurds were imprisoned and tortured during the dictatorship of Saddam Hussein. But beginning in 1996 they officially took up arms as members of the Peshmerga Force for Women.


As the seaborne traders from the eastern Mediterranean expanded their shipping business into the Aegean, the Greeks gave them a name that has endured: Phoenicians.
According to texts from the Zhou people, who conquered the Shang, if a king no longer had the wealth and power to produce ritual bronzes, it was a sign that he had lost heaven's mandate and that his days on the throne were numbered. As its wooden wheels and frame gradually deteriorated, tiny bits of sediment settled in their place, then hardened, forming a soil cast of the chariot. Creating such totems required great technical sophistication because bronze is a tough material to work, says Robert Murowchick, a professor of East Asian archaeology and anthropology at Boston University. But as one of the oldest and biggest males in the group, he's about ready to go solo and establish a harem of his own.
They're among the marquee attractions at Fuji Safari Park, which was built by a Japanese industrialist who had gone on safari near Mount Kilimanjaro and returned to Japan enthralled by Africa's wildlife. With a wingspan of up to nine feet (two meters) and weight of up to 20 pounds (ten kilograms), the Steller's far outsizes North America's bald eagle. Also known as snow monkeys, Japanese macaques are the world's northernmost non-human primates. The perfunctory spray is unlikely to do much good against a virus that lives in the birds' lungs and intestines. Fighting cocks are both victims and culprits in the bird flu epidemic: Thousands have died of the flu or been killed to stop its spread. A portrait of his wife rests on the table in Oanh's hut, which overlooks a canal 30 minutes by water from the nearest village. Now, under the leadership of Jalal Talabani, Iraq's first Kurdish president, they're helping to reshape the country—but with reservations.
While his ersatz safari is oceans away from the real thing, it provides photo ops you won't get on the plains of Africa: Not far from the giraffes prowl an American black bear and a Siberian tiger.
This flock will spend eight days waiting for the results of the blood tests; only if they are free of the virus will their owner be allowed to move them to new paddies. In any case, vendors headed into the market the day this picture was taken often bypassed the disinfection station.
But the roosters are also suspected of spreading the virus, and at least one man died after catching the disease from his rooster. But no one can be sure that the next killer flu will be caused by H5N1, or by another of the many flu viruses lurking in the animal world. A government plan to collect all the nation's nuclear waste in a massive storage vault built within Yucca Mountain, about 80 miles (130 kilometers) northwest of Las Vegas, has encountered vehement opposition from Nevada residents and politicians. Did dispensing with so many valuables create a material absence that helped the living remember the dead? New technology may help address the waste problem, allowing future reactors to burn nuclear fuel more efficiently, and leaving waste that is toxic for a shorter period of time.
There's more than ethnic pride and history at stake here: Kirkuk sits on one of Iraq's largest oil reserves.
But Thailand's export-driven poultry industry has opposed the measure, fearing a vaccine would simply mask infections that could cause other countries to ban Thai poultry.



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