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Simultaneous Indian Ocean cyclones Luban and Titli in 2018 Photo: NOAA

Interview: How Climate Change is Bringing Deadly Cyclones to East Africa

Cyclones Idai and Kenneth are a taste of what's to come, warns Sudanese climate expert Abubakr Salih Babiker.

As the remnants of Cyclone Kenneth continue to hammer northern Mozambique with rain, people in the region are wondering if this is the new normal. And they're right to. Kenneth is the first hurricane-strength storm to hit the Mozambican province of Cabo Delgado since record-keeping began and has already impacted hundreds of thousands of people fleeing damage from wind and flooding. But the true scope of its impact won't be known for a long while, as the rain is scheduled to fall through the week.

Kenneth comes on the heels of Cyclone Idai which hit central Mozambique just six weeks earlier, killing more than 600 people and devastating Beira—a city of half a million. To many, the scale of these storms is a clear indication of a global slide toward climate catastrophe—a situation where centuries of industrial-scale polluting by the global north comes back as devastation for people living near the equator.

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Watch Ilhan Omar on Stephen Colbert: 'I'm as American as Everyone Else Is'

The first-term American congresswomen from Minnesota talks about the xenophobic attacks against her

Many knew Ilhan Omar would face unique challenges as a new congresswoman on the national stage. Being a Black, Muslim woman in American politics is a lightning rod for right wing fury and having a progressive platform invites even more plutocratic ire. So the combined response was bound to be grotesque. But the latest baseless attempts by right wing media to try and make her look sympathetic to the 9/11 attackers feels like an increasingly desperate attempt to incite to violence.

In the midst of all this, she appeared on Stephen Colbert to talk politics. See the extended interview above and read some more of our coverage of the Somali-American congresswoman below.

READ: In Defense of the Black Boogeyman: What the disciplining of Ilhan Omar tells us about anti-semitism and black dissent in America

READ: The 'Ilhan Omar Effect': How a Somali-American Muslim Woman Candidate is Mobilizing Millennial Voters in Minnesota

READ: Ilhan Omar is One of OkayAfrica's "100 Women"

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Video still via YouTube.

Kofi Kingston Is the First African-Born Wrestler to Win a WWE Championship

Ghana's own has made history at WrestleMania 35 and people are admitting to crying.

Ghana's own Kofi Kingston has made history becoming the first African-born wrestler to become a WWE champion, Wrestling News reports.

Born Kofi Nahaje Sarkodie-Mensah, the 37-year-old vet defeated Daniel Bryan for the coveted belt at WrestleMania 35.

Over 75,000 fans packed MetLife Stadium in New Jersey for the event—known as the "showcase of the immortals."

ESPN's Sean Coyle describes what made this match rate a 4.75 out of 5:

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The front page of The New York Times on January 16, 2019

Kenyans Are Furious at the New York Times for Posting Photos of Terrorist Victims

After the the deadly attack on Tuesday, many are accusing the American newspaper of having a double standard on which dead bodies they allow into the paper

Is the New York Times guilty of a double standard when it comes to publishing images of dead bodies?

Kenyans, and others fed up with the coverage, took to social media in the hundreds to denounce a Times article that included an image of victims of Tuesday's Nairobi terrorist attack, bloodied from bullets, and lying hunched over their laptops, dead.

It caused enough debate online to where the Times' incoming East Africa Bureau chief Kimiko de Freytas-Tamura felt the need to explain their photo policy, which is to show the dead only if their faces cannot be seen in the image. The photo in question fits the policy as the faces are facing away from the camera. She would later apologize before posting the official policy to her Twitter account. The photo remains up.

The Times' official response, as those tend to do online, has only created more anger. But unlike many unruly Twitter mobs, those responding to the official statement have a rather coherent message—"you wouldn't do this with photos of the American dead."

Some of the responses to the Times' official statement.

In a response to the controversy from the Poynter Institute, a typically astute observer of journalistic practice in the United States, they run through the typical American journalism school approach to publishing photos that might shock or offend. They write:

Should the Times have run the photo?
There is no easy answer.
The first question any news organization must ask when deciding to publish violent images is: WHY show it?
In other words, what is the news value? Does the public need to see such an image to fully grasp what happened? Does the public need to see such a photo to confirm or disprove the official account of the events?
An argument could be made that a writer's words could accurately describe the scene without being as disturbing as the image. In addition, when it comes to an act of terrorism, might publishing such a photo actually advance the cause of the terrorists, showing the damage they caused, thus fueling dread and panic?
Also this: The photo on the Times website came without warning. As a reader, you didn't know you were going to see a photo of dead people until you actually saw it.
Those are arguments to not run such a photo or, at least, warn readers of its graphic content.

While it's a fine analysis of when to show a violent image, it misses the central issue at play for those aggrieved by the Times' posting—that the American news-gaze values certain lives differently. Black, brown, foreign, poor—American journalism organizations, including the New York Times, cannot escape a base ethnocentrism in their coverage. It's so embedded into how these institutions operate, and the gap in understanding is so wide, that to much of the world, the Times' official response is laughably wrong at first glance.

"We take the same approach wherever in the world something like this happens--balancing the need for sensitivity and respect with our mission of showing the reality of these events"

And while there are examples from the Times that complicate this feeling, like these images of the dead in the terrorist attack in Nice, France, it doesn't discount the wider and correct feeling that the white victims of American mass shootings are treated differently than their African counterparts. And while there are complicated and systematic reasons for this which will always make discussing it difficult, to simply deny that different standards exist, does not increase the Times' credibility with Kenyans or the newspaper's growing online audience which will only become more vocal about how they're portrayed.

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