Space porn: These images are (quite literally) out of this world
At least 24 protesters have been killed by Libyan security forces during the anti-government protests in the past four days, Human Rights Watch reports.
Inspired by recent revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt, anti-government demonstrations have engulfed five major Libyan cities. Yesterday, protesters instigated a nationwide “Day of Rage,” a reference to an infamous day of protest that took place at the beginning of the Egyptian Revolution. Security forces shot into the crowds of peaceful protesters in an effort to disperse them, and then denied medical supplies to hospitals.
Protests have been particularly fierce in the eastern cities of Benghazi and Al-Bayda. This afternoon, Reuters reported that anti-government protesters have seized control of the city of Al-Bayda, after they were joined by members of the local police.
Prisons have been stormed by the families of inmates, and there have been multiple reports of mass breakouts, and of guards shooting inmates.
Despite increasing unrest throughout the nation, Libya’s capital, Tripoli, has remained comparatively quiet. Gaddafi himself made an appearance in Tripoli’s Green Square today, to help lead a pro-government demonstration in support of himself.
Muammar Gaddafi has ruled Libya for 40 years, and has successfully barred any opposition to his regime from public life. In contrast to Egypt and Tunisia, Libya’s army is divided along tribal lines, and some experts believe that it is unlikely that it will rise in support of the protesters. Social media sites are also more controlled in Libya than in neighboring countries.
In spite of these factors, Libya’s pro-democracy protests show no sign of stopping. According to the New York Times, Libyan activists claimed today that they had won control of several additional towns.
Teresa Cotsirilos is an editorial fellow at Salon.More Teresa Cotsirilos.
NASA astronaut Mike Hopkins
On December 28, 2013, Expedition 38 crew member Mike Hopkins participating in the second of two space walks to replace a degraded pump module on the International Space Station. (NASA astronaut Rick Mastracchio is reflected in his helmet!)
The Soyuz TMA-10M
The Soyuz TMA-10M headed towards the International Space Station with crew members from Expedition 37 onboard.
40 years ago the Apollo 8 mission flew up to the moon, orbited it ten times and then returned to Earth. This picture was taken from that flight and shows the Earth as it seemingly rises in similar fashion to a sunrise.
Sunrise from Expedition 36
NASA Flight Engineer Karen L. Nyberg of Expedition 36 took this photo of the sun rising -- a sight they saw nearly 16 times per day due to the speed of the International Space Station's orbit around the earth.
A pair of NanoRacks CubeSats -- nanosattelite spacecrafts carrying experiments -- were launched by Expedition 38.