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  • CNN Anchor Anderson Cooper Loses It, Curses In Anger During Rod Blagojevich Interview

    CNN anchor Anderson Cooper lost his cool during a Friday night interview with newly released former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich. In a contentious interview, Cooper finally boiled over after hearing Blagojevich's defense of his gubernatorial record and his criminal case. Blagojevich was convicted of trying to sell or trade the Illinois Senate seat that Barack […]

  • Hilary Duff Confronts Paparazzo Taking Photos of Children

    "I'm asking you human-to-human - as a mother - if you don't know anyone here, can you please stop taking pictures of our children playing football this morning?"

  • Coronavirus Explodes in Italy, Threatening Europe. Can It Be Contained?

    ROME-The word quarantine comes from 17th-century Venetian dialect for 40 days, which was the amount of time ships had to wait in isolation before entering certain Italian ports during the pandemic known as the Black Death. Now the word is being used again in Italy, applied to the  government’s draconian reaction as the coronavirus and the disease known as COVID-19 appear to be hitting the country with a vengeance. More than 50,000 Italians living in 10 communities are literally locked down, facing jail sentences and fines if they leave their homes, thanks to the largest outbreak outside Asia. Our Experts Answer the Coronavirus Questions You’re Afraid to AskThe towns, all in the north of the country, are cut off from the rest of Italy now, not even the trains stop when they roll through. The church services are cancelled and dipping one’s hand in holy water is strictly prohibited. Three major Serie A soccer games in the area have been postponed, and schools have all been closed for the foreseeable future. Anyone defying the restrictions faces three months in jail and a fine of around $250. But all across the country, paranoia is spreading faster than the virus. Giorgio Armani tweeted that he will now hold his Fall 2020 show behind closed doors in Milan this week, livestreaming the runway from an empty theater. The mayor of Milan, a city of more than 1.3 million people, announced Sunday that all schools and universities will be closed for at least a week even though the city is not locked down under the current quarantine.In Rome, nervous taxi drivers outside Fiumicino Airport were hesitant to pick up Asian passengers and a Chinese woman in Turin reported being assaulted for simply being Chinese.Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte announced that all scholastic trips into and out of the country are suspended, including one involving this reporter’s son who was pulled from a flight to Budapest along with 30 other students early Sunday morning. Matteo Salvini, the leader of the far-right League party wants to close the frontier, though countries that border Italy are likely thinking the same thing from their side. An outbreak this extensive and virulent is likely to impact all of Western Europe very quickly, if not with the disease itself, then with precautions taken to try to stop it.Since Friday, Italian authorities have confirmed more than 150 new cases, including three fatalities, in the north of the country. Three people, including two Chinese tourists, who were confirmed positive in Rome last month have since recovered and are no longer believed to be contagious. Coronavirus Spread by a Second Coming ‘Cult’ Has Put South Korea on ‘Maximum Alert’A Chinese tourist died in France earlier this month, but the deaths in Italy are the first Europeans killed by the virus. Both of the Italian victims were in their 70s. The first was a man who died in hospital, and who also suffered from other respiratory problems. The second was a woman found dead in her home on Saturday morning, clearly unaware she even had the virus. It is unknown how many people may have been in contact with her.The quick spread of the disease in this outbreak and the uncertainty about how it came to Italy is especially troubling. In the northern town of Codogno, near Milan, the 39 people who initially tested positive are all tied to the local hospital and a so-called “Patient Zero” who was thought to have brought it back from Shanghai. The problem is that “Patient Zero” never tested positive for the virus. Authorities think he may have been a silent carrier, infecting a friend referred to as “Patient One” whose only tie to China was being a friend of “Patient Zero.” Authorities at first thought “Patient Zero” had the virus and recovered, but they concede that, in fact, there may be another source. Clearly, this is not a perfect science.On Sunday morning, the regional governor of Lombardy, Attilo Fontana, confirmed that 89 people have now tested positive for the virus and a much larger but unspecified number are referred to as suspect cases.The second hotspot is in the Veneto region, near Venice, which is celebrating Carnevale to somewhat diminished crowds. Twelve people in the region have tested positive even though none of them has ever been to mainland China or, as far as is known at this point, been in contact with any obvious vectors.  Eight Chinese residents, two of whom came back from Wuhan through via Germany, are under quarantine-but they have not tested positive. It is yet unclear if that cluster will grow. Other cases in Turin and Milan confirmed Sunday morning have spread the panic even further. Closing down such major metropolitan hubs would be a logistical and economic disaster.Prime Minister Conte says the situation is “fluid” and will be evaluated as the situation warrants. Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.

  • Health officials worry as untraceable virus clusters emerge

    In South Korea, Singapore and Iran, clusters of infections are leading to a jump in cases of the new viral illness outside China. But it’s not the numbers that are worrying experts: It's that increasingly they can't trace where the clusters started.World Health Organization officials said China's crackdown on parts of the country bought time for the rest of the world to prepare for the new virus. But as hot spots emerge around the globe, trouble finding each source - the first patient who sparks every new cluster - might signal the disease has begun spreading too widely for tried-and-true public health steps to stamp it out.“A number of spot fires, occurring around the world is a sign that things are ticking along, and what we are going to have here is probably a pandemic,” said Ian Mackay, who studies viruses at Australia's University of Queensland.That worst-case isn't here yet, the WHO insists. It isn't convinced that countries outside China need more draconian measures, but it pointed to spikes in cases in Iran and South Korea to warn that time may be running out to contain the virus.“What we see is a very different phase of this outbreak depending where you look,” said WHO's Dr. Sylvie Briand. “We see different patterns of transmission in different places.”The World Health Organization defines a “global pandemic” as a disease spreading on two continents, though some public health experts would call an outbreak a pandemic if the spread is over a wide area or across many international borders.The newest red flag: Iran has reported 28 cases, including five deaths, in just days. The cluster began in the city of Qom, a popular religious destination, but it's not clear how. Worse, infected travellers from Iran already have been discovered in Lebanon and Canada.In South Korea, most of the hundreds of new cases detected since Wednesday are linked to a church in the city of Daegu and a nearby hospital. But health authorities have not yet found the “index case,” the person among the church’s 9,000 followers who set off the chain of infections.There also have been several cases in the capital, Seoul, where the infection routes have not yet been traced. In Europe, Italy saw cases of the new virus more than quadruple in a day as it grapples with infections in a northern region that apparently have spread through a hospital and a cafe.A cluster of cases isn't inherently worrying - in fact, it's expected as an infection that's easy to spread is carried around the world by travellers. The first line of defence: Isolate the sick to treat them and prevent further spread, and quarantine people who came in contact with them until the incubation period is over.But as the virus becomes more widespread, trying to trace every contact would be futile, Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong acknowledged earlier this month.“If we still hospitalize and isolate every suspect case, our hospitals will be overwhelmed,” he said. So far, the city-state has identified five clusters of transmission, including two churches. But there remain eight locally transmitted cases with no links to earlier cases, or to China.Viruses vary in how they infect. The new coronavirus - unlike its cousins SARS, or severe acute respiratory syndrome, and MERS, or Middle East respiratory syndrome - spreads as easily as a common cold.And it's almost certainly being spread by people who show such mild symptoms that no one can tell, said Dr. Amesh Adalja of the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security.“If that's the case, all of these containment methods are not going to work,” Adalja said. “It's likely mixed in the cold and flu season all over the place, in multiple countries” and gone unnoticed until someone gets severely ill.These milder symptoms are good news “in terms of not as many people dying,” said Mackay, of Australia. “But it’s really bad news if you are trying to stop a pandemic,” he added.When Hong Kong reported it first death from the virus earlier this month, it also confirmed three locally transmitted cases with no known link to any previous cases or any travel history to China. Chuang Shuk-kwan of the Center for Health Protection warned then that "there could be invisible chains of infection happening within communities."Officials in both South Korea and Japan have signalled in the past week that the spread is entering a new phase in their countries.On Friday, South Korean Prime Minister Chung Se-kyun said the government would have to shift its focus from quarantine and border control to slowing the spread of the virus. Schools and churches were closed and some mass gatherings banned.Takaji Wakita, head of Japan's National Institute of Infectious Diseases, earlier urged people to work at home or in shifts to avoid being in a crowd, and refrain from holding non-essential and non-urgent meetings.But Adalja cautioned that far-reaching measures like China instituted in the outbreak's epicenter of Wuhan - where citizens have been ordered to stay in their homes for weeks - can backfire. While it remains to be seen if the new virus is waning, that kind of lockdown makes it hard for people to get other critically important care, like fast treatment for a heart attack.There's no way to predict if the recent clusters will burn out or trigger widespread transmission.For now, health officials should try and contain the infection for as long as possible while preparing for a change in strategy by preparing hospitals, readying protective equipment and bolstering laboratory capacity, said Gagandeep Kang, a microbiologist who leads India’s Translational Health Science and Technology Institute.“Although the window of opportunity is narrowing to contain the outbreak, we still have a chance to contain it," said WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. “But while doing that, we have to prepare at the same time for any eventualities, because this outbreak could go any direction - it could even be messy.”___Ghosal reported from New Delhi. Neergaard reported from Washington, D.C. Associated Press writers Eileen Ng in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Kim Tong-hyung in Seoul, South Korea, and Mari Yamaguchi in Tokyo contributed to this story.___The Associated Press Health and Science Department receives support from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Department of Science Education. The AP is solely responsible for all content.Aniruddha Ghosal And Lauran Neergaard, The Associated Press

  • Felix Auger-Aliassime loses to Stefanos Tsitsipas in Open 13 Provence final

    MARSEILLE, France - Canada's Felix Auger-Aliassime has dropped an ATP Tour final for the second week in a row.The No. 7 seed from Montreal lost 6-3, 6-4 to No. 2 seed and defending champion Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece in the Open 13 Provence tennis tournament final Sunday.The 19-year-old Auger-Aliassime also lost in a tournament final last week in Rotterdam, Netherlands. He is now 0-5 in finals in his career."I feel disappointed," the Canadian said. "You never like losing finals, but now it has been five so it is in my mind."It is tough, but I think it is just going to make me a better player. It is going to build my character and I am going to overcome this challenge one day. I'll keep working towards that goal. I am working to win bigger tournaments and to achieve even better things, so I am not going to stop here.”The 21-year-old Tsitsipas how has five ATP singles titles on his resume.Auger-Aliassime has now lost two in a row against Tsitsipas after winning his first five matches against the Greek player (two in the pro ranks, three as juniors).Tsitsipas saved four of five break points and won 78 per cent of points when he got his first serve in, 11 per cent better than Auger-Aliassime.Meanwhile, Vancouver's Vasek Pospisil captured his seventh career ATP doubles title. Pospisil and Nicolas Mahut of France beat No. 2 seeds Wesley Koolhof of the Netherlands and Nikola Mektic of Croatia 6-4, 6-4 on Sunday.It was the second title in three events for Pospisil and Mahut but their first appearance since winning the 2016 ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament."It was an incredible week," Pospisil said. "Honestly, I thought we played really clean the whole way through from the first round."We played really solid. Served well, returned well all week and we had a great energy on the court. That's obviously very important in doubles."Pospisil and Mahut have won eight straight matches together, their lone defeat coming in 2015 in their doubles debut in Rotterdam. They didn't drop a set in this event.This marked Mahut’s third title at Marseille. He won with Edouard Roger-Vasselin in 2012 and Julien Benneteau in 2017."It is always special to win a tournament at home." said Mahut. "When you have the chance to play with a good partner like Vasek, it is a great opportunity."I am really happy about this win."This is Pospisil's first ATP Tour doubles title since claiming the Rotterdam trophy with Mahut in 2016."It's a pleasure playing with Nico, I think he’s the best doubles player in the world, in my opinion," said Pospisil. "(He has) the best volleys and he's also a really good guy."I think we just have a great time on the court and we are a great team." This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 23, 2020The Canadian Press