One year ago, 176 people perished after Ukraine International Airlines Flight 752 was fired upon by Iranian air defence and crashed shortly after takeoff. There were 55 Canadians and 30 permanent residents on board, as well as dozens of Iranian students destined for Canadian university campuses. More than 22 schools lost students, staff or recent graduates.
A year later, institutions are still struggling to come to terms with the loss.
Although Canada and Iran don’t have diplomatic relations and there are tensions between the two over the crash investigation, postsecondary schools continue to work to ensure that links between Canada and Iranian students endure. Some students have been awarded their degrees posthumously, some have had their research presented at conferences as colleagues vowed to honour their work. In some places, physical memorials to the dead have been erected.
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U.S. Capitol riot sparks a Republican reckoning
President Donald Trump has finally acknowledged that his term is soon coming to an end, as some of his loyal Republican allies began abandoning him and Democrats pushed for his removal the day after he incited a mob of his supporters who stormed the U.S. Capitol.
Capitol police faced a reckoning of their own for failing to prevent the rioters from breaching what was supposed to be one of the country’s most secure buildings. Chief Steven Sund and Paul Irving, the House Sergeant-at-Arms, both quit, after pressure from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Mr. Irving’s Senate counterpart, Michael Stenger, handed in his resignation.
- Omar El Akkad: The American narrative has been irreparably fractured
ALSO ON OUR RADAR
Ontario keeps schools closed until Jan. 25: Elementary students in southern Ontario schools will learn remotely for another two weeks, amid rising COVID-19 infection rates.
Premiers push for more COVID-19 vaccines: Provinces including Ontario, Quebec, Manitoba and British Columbia have said the greatest hurdle for COVID-19 immunization will be the number of doses they receive from Ottawa. Assembly of First Nations National Chief Perry Bellegarde has also cited COVID-19 as a matter of grave concern.
Alberta, B.C. extend COVID-19 restrictions: Alberta and B.C. are both extending COVID-19 restrictions after concluding that recent decreases in infections did not do enough to bend the curve or allay fears that holiday gatherings could push infections back up.
New variants prompt genomic surveillance of Ontario hot spots: The province is stepping up genomic surveillance in areas where coronavirus infections are trending upward faster than average out of concern that new variants could be accelerating the spread of COVID-19.
Final days of Ugandan election mired in violence: Robert Kyagulanyi is attempting to unseat President Yoweri Museveni, who has dominated Uganda for 34 years after seizing power in a military rebellion. “My most important mission is to be alive in seven days,” says the young musician who has become the leading opposition candidate in the Jan. 14 vote.
Global shares rallied, with Japan’s Nikkei hitting a three-decade peak, while U.S. Treasuries extended their steepest sell-off in months on Friday as investors looked beyond rising coronavirus cases and political unrest in the United States to focus on hopes for an economic recovery later in the year.
Europe’s Euro STOXX 600 opened up 0.7%, with Frankfurt’s index up 0.8% after German industrial output and exports rose in November.
U.S. S&P 500 e-mini stock futures also pointed to a cheery open, rising 0.51%.
The upbeat mood came after Wall Street hit record highs on Thursday, while bond prices fell as markets bet a new Democratic-controlled U.S. government would lead to heavy spending and borrowing to support the country’s economic recovery.
WHAT EVERYONE’S TALKING ABOUT
Enough with the vaccine blame game. Canadians want results
Konrad Yakabuski: “The last thing Canadians want to hear from politicians are excuses for a vaccination campaign that has not kept pace with those under way in Britain or the United States.”
Canada’s overwhelmed contact-tracing efforts have been a gross failure
Gary Mason: “When the post-mortem into the world’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic is conducted, attention will be focused on the success or failure of the many measures implemented to stop the spread of the virus. One likely to receive particularly poor marks is contact tracing.”
A moral compass will never guide Air Canada’s direction, pandemic or not
Rita Trichur: “Canadians have become inured to bad behaviour by airlines over the years. So news that Air Canada hired social-media influencers to encourage Canadians to ignore government health advice and take dream vacations during a worsening global pandemic should surprise no one – least of all our elected officials.
TODAY’S EDITORIAL CARTOON
First person: SUP, treetop trekking, bungee swing: I’m embracing 80 with new adventures
Anne Dalziel Patton: “Too often, people in my demographic bemoan an approaching birthday as further evidence that we are over the hill. I know I am an annoyingly cheerful optimist, but really? Isn’t each additional year something to celebrate, proof we are still here, still witness to the fascinating drama of existence?”
MOMENT IN TIME: Jan. 8, 2013
Steve Nash records his 10,000th career assist
In basketball, a point guard runs a team’s offence, directs the play, controls the ball and the pace of the game. It’s a demanding job and one that Canadian star Steve Nash was a master of during his stellar 18-season NBA career. Nash, a 6-foot-3, 195-pounder, was noted for his playmaking, dribbling and shooting. On this date in 2013, Nash scored his 10,000th career assist. It was late in the first half in Houston and the Victoria native’s Los Angeles Lakers were playing the Rockets. Nash dished a shot to Antawn Jamison, who scored on a jumper with 29.1 seconds left. It was a classic pick-and-roll (in which one player screens an opponent, allowing the ball-handler to find an open teammate for the shot) and the Lakers took a 62-59 lead into the break. But L.A. lost 125-112 to spoil Nash’s night. “It’s really hard to enjoy it right now,” he said afterward. “I don’t want to discredit it, or not appreciate the company I share in this milestone, but right now it’s the farthest thing from my mind.” Nash, a Hall-of-Famer, eight-time all-star and two-time MVP, retired with 10,335 assists, third-most in league history. He’s now head coach of the Brooklyn Nets. Philip King