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  • World News Desk
  • WEATHER & ENVIRONMENT

Jack Dwyer pursued a dream of getting back to the land by moving in 1972 to an idyllic, tree-studded parcel in Oregon with a creek running through it.

“We were going to grow our own food. We were going to live righteously. We were going to grow organic,” Mr. Dwyer said. Over the decades that followed, he and his family did just that.

But now, Deer Creek has run dry after several illegal marijuana grows cropped up in the neighborhood last spring, stealing water from both the stream and nearby aquifers and throwing Mr. Dwyer’s future in doubt.

  • Articles
  • GEOPOLITICS

North Korea carried out successful tests of a new long-range cruise missile over the last weekend, state media said on Monday, seen by analysts as possibly the country’s first such weapon with a nuclear capability.

The missiles are “a strategic weapon of great significance” and flew 930 miles before hitting their targets and falling into the country’s territorial waters during the tests on Saturday and Sunday, KCNA said.

North Korea’s cruise missiles usually generate less interest than ballistic missiles because they are not explicitly banned under UN Nations Security Council Resolutions.

  • World News Desk
  • POLITICS

Ten years after the 9/11 attacks, Americans were reasonably positive about the state of their rights and liberties. Today, after 20 years, not as much.

That is according to a poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research that builds on work conducted in 2011, one decade after the pivotal moment in U.S. history. Some questions were also asked on polls conducted in 2013 and 2015.

Americans were relatively united around the idea that the government did a good job protecting many basic rights a decade after the terrorist attacks, which produced a massive overhaul of the country’s intelligence services and the creation of agencies such as the Department of Homeland Security. Along with those changes came a creeping concern about government overreach, although Americans as a whole remained fairly positive.

Learn the why behind the headlines.

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  • World News Desk
  • AFRICA

Nigeria is seeing one of its worst cholera outbreaks in years, with more than 2,300 people dying from suspected cases as Africa’s most populous country struggles to deal with multiple disease outbreaks.

This year’s cholera outbreak, with a higher case fatality rate than the previous four years, is worsened by what many consider to be a bigger priority for state governments: the COVID-19 pandemic. Nigeria faces a resurgence of cases driven by the Delta variant, and less than 1 percent of the population has been fully vaccinated.

At least 69,925 suspected cholera cases were recorded as of September 5 in 25 of Nigeria’s 36 states and in the capital, Abuja, according to the Nigeria Center for Disease Control. Children between 5 and 14 are the most affected age group and the overall case fatality rate is 3.3 percent, more than double that of COVID-19’s 1.3 percent case fatality rate in Nigeria.

  • Articles
  • SOCIETY & LIFESTYLES
Somehow, it has been 20 years. Two decades since terrorists hijacked planes and crashed them into U.S. symbols of military power and commerce. Yet those events are seared into the consciousness of everyone who lived through them…
  • World News Desk
  • ASIA

An avalanche of changes launched by China’s ruling Communist Party has jolted everyone from tech billionaires to school kids. Behind them: President Xi Jinping’s vision of making a more powerful, prosperous country by reviving revolutionary ideals, with more economic equality and tighter party control over society and entrepreneurs.

Since taking power in 2012, Mr. Xi has called for the party to return to its “original mission” as China’s economic, social and cultural leader and carry out the “rejuvenation of the great Chinese nation.”

The party has spent the decade since then silencing dissent and tightening political control. Now, after 40 years of growth that transformed China into the world’s factory but left a gulf between a wealthy elite and the poor majority, the party is promising to spread prosperity more evenly and is pressing private companies to pay for social welfare and back Beijing’s ambition to become a global technology competitor.

  • World News Desk
  • POLITICS

The Taliban on Tuesday announced an interim government for Afghanistan stacked with veterans of their hard-line rule from the 1990s and the 20-year battle against the U.S.-led coalition, a move that seems unlikely to win the international support the new leaders desperately need to avoid an economic meltdown.

Appointed to the key post of interior minister was Sirajuddin Haqqani, who is on the FBI’s most-wanted list with a $5 million bounty on his head and is believed to still be holding at least one American hostage. He headed the feared Haqqani network that is blamed for many deadly attacks and kidnappings.

The announcement came hours after Taliban fired their guns into the air to disperse protesters in the capital of Kabul and arrested several journalists, the second time in less than a week that heavy-handed tactics were used to break up a demonstration.

  • World News Desk
  • ECONOMY & PERSONAL FINANCE

The disconnect is jarring: Across the United States, employers who are desperate to fill jobs have posted a record-high number of job openings. They are raising pay, too, and dangling bonuses to people who accept job offers or recruit their friends.

And yet millions more Americans are unemployed compared with the number who were jobless just before the viral pandemic flattened the economy a year and a half ago.

The puzzling mismatch is a reflection of an unsettled economy—one that all but shut down at the height of the pandemic, then bounced back with unexpected speed and strength thanks to the rollout of vaccines and vast infusions of government spending. And now the economic outlook has been clouded yet again by a resurgence of COVID-19 cases linked to the highly contagious delta variant.

  • World News Desk
  • WEATHER & ENVIRONMENT

The U.S. Coast Guard said on Monday it was investigating nearly 350 reports of oil spills in and along the U.S. Gulf of Mexico in the wake of Hurricane Ida.

Ida’s up to 150 mile-per-hour winds wreaked havoc on offshore oil production platforms and onshore oil and gas processing plants. About 88 percent of the region’s offshore oil production remains shut and more than 100 platforms unoccupied after the storm made landfall on August 29.

The Coast Guard has been conducting flyovers off the coast of Louisiana looking for spills. It is providing information to federal, state and local authorities responsible for cleaning the sites.

  • World News Desk
  • WEATHER & ENVIRONMENT

Despite a few high-profile conservation success stories—like the dramatic comeback of bald eagle populations in North America—birds of prey are in decline worldwide.

A new analysis of data from the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and BirdLife International found that 30 percent of 557 raptor species worldwide are considered near threatened, vulnerable or endangered or critically endangered. Eighteen species are critically endangered, including the Philippine eagle, the hooded vulture and the Annobon scops owl, the researchers found.

Other species are in danger of becoming locally extinct in specific regions, meaning they may no longer play critical roles as top predators in those ecosystems, said Gerardo Ceballos, a bird scientist at the National Autonomous University of Mexico and co-author of the study published Monday in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

  • Articles
  • SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
For the scientific community, there is only one explanation. A giant explosion occurred nearly 14 billion years ago, eventually leading to all the galaxies, stars and planets in the known universe. The Earth formed about 4.5 billion years ago, and for millions of years life steadily evolved into larger and more complex forms.
  • World News Desk
  • SOCIETY & LIFESTYLES

New data shows a sustained increase in U.S. traffic deaths that regulators ascribe to impaired driving, speeding, a failure to wear seats beats and other unsafe behavior since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) on Thursday estimated 8,730 people died in car crashes in the first three months of 2021, compared with 7,900 deaths during the same period last year.

That is a year-on-year increase of 10.5 percent despite a 2.1 percent drop in the number of miles driven, the preliminary data shows.

  • World News Desk
  • ASIA

Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said in a surprise move on Friday he would step down, setting the stage for a new premier after a one-year tenure marred by an unpopular COVID-19 response and sinking public support.

Mr. Suga, who took over after Shinzo Abe resigned last September citing ill health, has seen his approval ratings drop below 30 percent as the nation struggles with its worst wave of COVID-19 infections ahead of a general election this year.

Mr. Suga did not capitalize on his last major achievement—hosting the Olympics, which were postponed months before he took office as coronavirus cases surged.

  • World News Desk
  • TERRORISM & SECURITY

The Islamic State offshoot that Americans blame for a deadly suicide attack outside the Kabul airport coalesced in eastern Afghanistan six years ago, and rapidly grew into one of the more dangerous terror threats globally.

Despite years of military targeting by the U.S.-led coalition, the group known as Islamic State Khorasan has survived to launch a massive new assault as the United States and other NATO partners withdrew from Afghanistan, and as the Taliban returned to power.

President Joe Biden cited the threat of Islamic State attacks in sticking with a Tuesday deadline for pulling U.S. forces out of Afghanistan. Biden blamed the group for last Thursday’s attack, which included a suicide bomber who slipped into the crowds of Afghans outside airport gates controlled by U.S. service members.

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