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  • United States in Somalia: An Autopsy

    Khanna, Yesh (2022-02)
    During the Cold War, the Horn of Africa region served as a battleground for proxy warfare between the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and KGB, the foreign intelligence acengy of the Soviet Union. Ethiopia was heavily backed by the CIA, whereas the KGB backed Siad Barre's authoritarian regime in Somalia. In 1977, Somalia and Ethiopia went to war against each other for control over the Ogaden region. This war turned out to be a disaster for Somalia, and Barre became more repressive, leading to anti-government protests and Barre fleeing Somalia in 1991. The immediate aftermath of this was the resurgence of clan violence which resulted in the collapse of whatever was left of the Somali government; this further led the country into economic chaos. The warlords, who headed these clans, found the perfect weapon to inflict damage upon one another: food. As Dr. Richard W. Steward writes in his brocher The United States Army in Somalia, 1992-1994: "as Somalia lapsed into sectarian and ethnic warfare, regional warlords drew upon clan loyalty to establish independent power bases. This situation led to a struggle over food supplies with each clan raiding the storehouses and depots of the others. Coupled with a drought, these actions brought famine to hundreds of thousands of the nation's poor." As a result, around a million Somalis started to flee to the neighboring urban areas where various non-governmental organizations were providing humanitarian assistance; additionally, around another one million Somalis were forced into exile.
  • 1971: The Bloodied Legacy of the United States in South Asia

    Khanna, Yesh (2021-05)
    In 1971, South Asia saw one of the most horrific genocides in modern history. It took place in East Pakistan (now known as Bangladesh) under the oversight of General Yahya Khan. This genocidal campaign was named Operation Searchlight; its primary objective was to 'suppress' the members and sympathizers of the Awami League - the Bengali nationalist political party, led by Sheikh Mujib-ur-Rahman - protesting for greater autonomy of East Pakistan. Later, they started demanding complete secession and the creation of 'Bangladesh'. The military crackdown began on March 25th in Dhaka and neighboring areas with the Pakistani army killing civilians, firing indiscriminately at unarmed university students, and raping women. Even though the U.S. consulate in Dhaka witnessed these horrors and reported each and every update to Washington, the Nixon administration not only chose to turn a blind eye to the atrocities being committed by the Pakistani army in East Pakistan but secretly approved of Yahya's crackdown.
  • Friction in China-Japan Relations: Causes and Challenges

    Khanna, Yesh (2021-09)
    Because of its location, Japan has an array of unique neighbors, though not all of them hold a warm attitude toward the country. China is one such example - the recent actions of the Chinese government pertaining to the Senkaku Islands, its growing military might, and the country's hegemonic aspirations are all reasons why the Japanese Ministry of Defense classifies China as the biggest current threat to Japan. Given the facts that Japan is one of the United States' most strategic allies and China is the biggest threat to the United States' superpower status, it becomes more important than ever to better understand the history and the future of relations between the two countries. This piece explores various causes of Japan-China tensions and the strategic challenges that China poses to Japan.
  • Invadopodia enable cooperative invasion and metastasis of breast cancer cells

    Fox Chase Cancer Center (2022-08-01)
    Invasive and non-invasive cancer cells can invade together during cooperative invasion. However, the events leading to it, role of the epithelial-mesenchymal transition and the consequences this may have on metastasis are unknown. In this study, we demonstrate that the isogenic 4T1 and 67NR breast cancer cells sort from each other in 3D spheroids, followed by cooperative invasion. By time-lapse microscopy, we show that the invasive 4T1 cells move more persistently compared to non-invasive 67NR, sorting and accumulating at the spheroid-matrix interface, a process dependent on cell-matrix adhesions and independent from E-cadherin cell-cell adhesions. Elimination of invadopodia in 4T1 cells blocks invasion, demonstrating that invadopodia requirement is limited to leader cells. Importantly, we demonstrate that cells with and without invadopodia can also engage in cooperative metastasis in preclinical mouse models. Altogether, our results suggest that a small number of cells with invadopodia can drive the metastasis of heterogeneous cell clusters.
  • Children show adult-like hippocampal pattern similarity for familiar but not novel events

    Benear, Susan; Horwath, Elizabeth A.; Cowan, Emily; Camacho, M. Catalina; Ngo, Chi T.; Newcombe, Nora; Olson, Ingrid; Perlman, Susan B.; Murty, Vishnu; Benear|0000-0001-7448-9230; Cowan|0000-0002-9956-0475; Newcombe|0000-0002-7044-6046; Olson|0000-0001-8947-6432; Murty|0000-0002-1360-3156 (2022-06-29)
    The ability to detect differences among similar events in our lives is a crucial aspect of successful episodic memory performance, which develops across early childhood. The neural substrate of this ability is supported by operations in the medial temporal lobe (MTL). Here, we used representational similarity analysis (RSA) to measure neural pattern similarity in hippocampus, perirhinal cortex, and parahippocampal cortex for 4- to 10-year-old children and adults during naturalistic viewing of clips from the same compared to different movies. Further, we assessed the role of prior exposure to individual movie clips on pattern similarity in the MTL. In both age groups, neural pattern similarity in hippocampus was lower for clips drawn from the same movies compared to those drawn from different movies, suggesting that related content activates processes focused on keeping representations with shared content distinct. However, children showed this only for movies with which they had prior exposures, whereas adults showed the effect regardless of any prior exposures to the movies. These findings suggest that children require repeated exposure to stimuli to show adult-like MTL functioning in distinguishing among similar events.

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