Squiz Today / 04 February 2022

Squiz Today – Friday, 4 February

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Squiz Today Podcast

Good prep for some 5-star news chat. 

Today’s listen time: 9 minutes

17 / 25
13 / 25
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10 / 20
24 / 30
9 / 20

Squiz Sayings

“Apparently, the answer to ‘Why did the chicken cross the road?’ is to get to the Pentagon.”

Quipped animal welfare officials in Virginia who took a chicken into custody after she was found wandering around the top-secret headquarters. Henny Penny won’t be caged for espionage – she’s been adopted by a staff member. How eggs-cellent…

Ship fight leaves Endeavour claims high and dry

According to Australian officials, a wreck in Newport Harbour, Rhode Island is the Endeavour. The announcement that the ship that carried Captain James Cook and botanist Joseph Banks on their famous Pacific voyage of 1768-71 has been found was made to great fanfare yesterday morning by Australian National Maritime Museum boss Kevin Sumption. “I am satisfied that this is the final resting place of one of the most important and contentious vessels in Australia’s maritime history,” he said. But less than an hour later, Dr Kathy Abbass of the Rhode Island Marine Archaeology Project (RIMAP) took the wind out of Australia’s sails saying our officials had gone overboard…

The Aussies and Americans involved in the 22-year-long search project based on the northeast coast of the US are at loggerheads. Abbass said Sumption’s declaration is “premature”, and in a shot across his bow, she says what happened yesterday is “a breach of contract”. On whether it’s the Endeavour, Abbass said it might be her, but “there has been no indisputable data to prove the site is that iconic vessel”. RIMAP gets the interest given “the connection between Australian citizens of British descent and the Endeavour”, but Abbas says they “will be driven by proper scientific process and not Australian emotions or politics.” Shiver me timbers, it was a first-rate dressing down… For the Maritime Museum’s part, it says Abbass is entitled to her opinion, but it’s convinced the Endeavour has been found. Next up: “further discussion of the evidence over the coming months”.

Good question. The Endeavour was well travelled for a lady for the 1700s… Commissioned in 1764, she was purchased by the British Navy in 1768 for the Pacific trip when Cook became the first recorded European to land on Australia’s east coast, and Banks went nuts in Botany Bay. She was then sold to private owners in 1775, but was leased back by the Navy to carry troops to fight in America’s War of Independence. And in 1778, she met her end when she was sunk by the British along with others in the fleet to block Newport Harbour as the French came to support the locals. Tracking her down has been one of the greatest maritime mysteries of all time – and of intense interest to the US, UK, New Zealand and Australia. And with 15% of the vessel remaining (if it is her…), a plan to share the remnants is a discussion for another day.

Australian News

Squiz the Rest

Leader of Islamic State killed in US raid

Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi has been “removed a major terrorist threat to the world,” US President Joe Biden said overnight. US special forces have conducted a raid in northwest Syria, and the leader of the terrorist group detonated a bomb that killed himself and his family as they closed in. He was found in the town of Atmeh in Syria’s Idlib province, a region that is considered a hotbed for jihadist groups. After IS’s rise and fall, the veteran Iraqi militant was living in a home in the town and officials say he never ventured outside. “While we are still assessing the results of this operation, this appears to be the same cowardly terrorist tactic we saw in the 2019 operation that eliminated al-Baghdadi,” US officials said overnight. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was Qurayshi’s predecessor – he killed himself and his children by detonating an explosive vest during a similar American raid.

World News

Meta misses the mark

The share price of Meta (aka Facebook) has fallen 25% after it reported a decline in profit, fall in user numbers, and it said it’s unsure about when things will be on the improve. That’s wiped about US$220 billion from its valuation since late yesterday. Reporting a profit of US$10.3 billion (down 8%) in the October-December quarter, the company says ad-tracking changes introduced by Apple and recent challenges to its reputation will continue to be a drag on earnings. Looking ahead, CEO Mark Zuckerberg says developing the metaverse – a kind of virtual reality world – is Meta’s key focus, but “it seems that our path ahead is not quite perfectly defined.” The uncertainty has rattled investors and puts the profit rocket into new/uncomfortable territory. Another critic is Aussie mining magnate Andrew ‘Twiggy’ Forrest. In what’s thought to be a world-first move, the rich-lister has launched criminal and civil proceedings against Meta for failing to take down cryptocurrency scams using his image.


Xi and Putin to meet

The tensions over Ukraine continue to escalate (and a refresher on why this is a thing is here)… Yesterday, the US said it is sending 2,000 US troops to Poland and Germany, and 1,000 troops already in Germany will head to Romania. You can imagine how thrilled Russia is about that… Overnight, Moscow said it’s a “destructive” step that heightens tensions and makes a diplomatic solution hard work. For Russia’s part, it’s ​​sent 30,000 troops to Belarus this week (which shares a border with northern Ukraine and eastern Russia) – it’s the biggest deployment to the country since the end of the Cold War. That adds to the 100,000-plus troops on the Russian-Ukraine border. With all of that going on, Russia has an increasingly vocal supporter – China. Foreign affairs experts say its statements supporting Moscow’s actions this week is another example of how China “regularly amplifies Kremlin talking points”. Presidents Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping – and many of the world’s ‘strongmen’ leaders – will snuggle up tonight in Beijing for the Olympic Games opening ceremony.

World News

Winter Olympics get underway in Beijing

If you’ve been wondering what to do with yourself now that the tennis has wrapped up, fear not. The Beijing Winter Olympics are here with hours of snow/ice-inspired action. There have been some hurdles to clear to get to this point… The Omicron strain of COVID and a diplomatic dispute over China’s human rights abuses have been in focus, but from tonight it’s about the athletes. Look out for our flagbearer Laura Peel – she is a contender for an aerial skiing medal after an in-form season leading up to the Games. And Aussies Jakara Anthony (already the top qualifier for the moguls final on Sunday) and Bree Walker (bobsled) are also on fire. How are you going to keep on top of it all? A full schedule of the events is here. The Games will be broadcast by Channel 7 (and it’s free to sign up to get it all). And our Sport Today team’s Beijing Blitz podcast takes to the ice today. For the background, there’s this week’s #SquizShortcut. Simples…


And the nominees are…

First up in music and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nominees for 2022… It’s always a contentious process, but what’s not to like about inducting Pat Benatar, Kate Bush, the Eurythmics, Dolly Parton, Duran Duran, Lionel Richie and Eminem. Pick ’em all, we say… The lucky candidates will be announced in May and inducted later this year. And in sport, tennis legend Ash Barty and Olympic swimmer Emma McKeon have been shortlisted for the prestigious Laureus Sportswoman of the Year prize. An Aussie woman hasn’t claimed the honour since Cathy Freeman’s win in 2001. Olympic swimming champion Ariarne Titmus has been shortlisted for the Breakthrough of the Year award, and newly-retired American football star Tom Brady is the favourite to take out the prize for sportsman of the year. What a way to go out on top…

Entertainment Sport

Friday Lites – Three things we liked this week

There was a time when group chats were our pandemic lifeline to stay connected to those outside our home. Now, it’s hard to muster the enthusiasm – and we’re part of a broader phenomenon. Which relieves the guilt – a bit… 

We were huge Janet Jackson fans in the day – and then there was that Super Bowl incident, and then she disappeared. This new critically-acclaimed doco – with her rare input – gets to the heart of why. 

Thinking about some chicken on the BBQ this weekend? Us too… We tried this recipe a year ago and when it popped up on the Gourmet Traveller website yesterday, gee did we rub our hands together… We did it with tenders, and had plenty of pita bread, halved cherry tomatoes, rocket and tzatziki on hand.

Friday Lites

Do the Squiz Quiz

Reckon you know the name of the new type of face covering that’s designed to fit over your nose so you can wear it while eating or drinking? Have a crack at the Squiz Quiz. 

Squiz the Day

10.30pm (AEDT) – 2022 Winter Olympic Games Opening Ceremony – Beijing

The Reserve Bank of Australia issues a statement on monetary policy

World Cancer Day

A birthday for Facebook (2004)

Anniversary of:
• the first US electoral college choosing George Washington as President and John Adams as Vice-President (1789)
• Sri Lanka (formerly Ceylon) declaring independence from UK (1948)
• the release of Fleetwood Mac’s 11th studio album Rumours (1977)
• the deaths of Liberace (1987) and Betty Friedan (2006)

Squiz the Day

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