Russian officials give conflicting orders to evacuate near suspected nuclear accident
Russia urges villagers to leave nuclear fallout area and then tells them to come back.
- Residents of Northwestern Russian villages were told to evacuate after a nuclear-powered engine exploded.
- Russian authorities originally stated they saw radiation levels spike to 16 times above normal.
- Other reports from officials stated there was no spike and also no need to evacuate, creating confusion for villagers and international reporters.
Earlier this week, Russian authorities initially ordered the evacuation of a village nearby the nuclear accident in northern Russia, fueling international fears that the explosion was more dangerous than previously thought.
At least five nuclear specialists were killed (possibly seven), with a significant amount of radiation spreading. Apparently, a small nuclear reactor exploded during a test of a new kind of missile. There has been a great deal of contradictory messages being released from Russian officials and scientists involved with the work.
First, the incident was reported as the result of a fire from a liquid-fueled rocket engine, before Russian officials conceded only a few days later that a nuclear reactor was leaking on an offshore platform in the White Sea.
The reports have only become more convoluted as Russian authorities now seem to have called off the evacuation of the village of Nyonoksa.
Downplaying the nuclear incident
Russia is no stranger to nuclear catastrophe nor are they averse to outright denying claims of gross misconduct.
Russian state news agency TASS recently reported that the evacuations were just called off. Valery Mashenkov, head of administrative department for the village of Nyonoksa, told TASS that villagers wouldn't be required to leave their homes anymore.
The only official response so far from the Kremlin was a simple "accidents happen." Spokesman Dmitry Peskov declined to say whether or not the nuclear accident was related to the nuclear-powered cruise missile known as Burevestnik or Skyfall.
Ignoring the potential crisis at hand, Peskov instead remarked that this accident didn't hamper their development of further advanced weaponry.
"Accidents, unfortunately, happen. They are tragedies. But in this particular case, it is important for us to remember those heroes who lost their lives in this accident."
Peskov reinforced President Vladimir Putin's assertion that in their efforts to advance nuclear technologies, they are "considerably far ahead of the level other countries have managed to achieve."
Suspected site of the nuclear explosion
Nyonoksa is a small village 30 miles west of the port of Severodvinsk on the White Sea. News of the official, planned evacuation became public on Tuesday, August 13th, before it was reneged.
Rosgidromet, the Russian meteorological agency, initially reported that radiation levels were anywhere from four to 16 times higher than regular levels in the vicinity. The Russian military at that time told state new agencies that the radiation levels were normal.
The deputy head of Severodvinsk, Irina Sakharova, told TASS that "Everything is calm at Nyonoksa, life goes on."
Conflicting reports from Russia
Some speculate that the nuclear reactor fell into the water. Aleksandr K. Nikitin, a researcher from the Norwegian environmental group Bellona, thinks that might be the case. But he was quick to remark, "There are mostly questions without clear answers."
Officials are still claiming that radiation levels are not elevated and there is no need for a displacement of the village.
The governor of the Arkhangelsk region, Igor Orlov, echoed these sentiments and stated to the Interfax news agency, "There is no evacuation. That is complete nonsense."
Residents from Nyonoksa were told they'd be leaving on a special train to evacuate their village. Russia's official reason was for unspecified "planned" activities at a nearby military testing range. But supposedly, this didn't go through, as a later announcement from Severodvinsk city officials stated, "Yes, indeed, they informed us that the military had canceled tomorrow's activities."
While we can only speculate, it seems that the "military activities" were a cover for the nuclear accident. Under the auspice of this ruse, villagers and others affected by the radiation fallout would have been evacuated. But as far as we can tell now, those plans have been halted.
Russian authorities wouldn't reveal what type of weapon was related to the nuclear accident. But they have at least officially acknowledged that some radioactive materials and a nuclear reactor were involved in the incident.
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Whether or not women think beards are sexy has to do with "moral disgust"
- A new study found that women perceive men with facial hair to be more attractive as well as physically and socially dominant.
- Women tend to associate more masculine faces with physical strength, social assertiveness, and formidability.
- Women who display higher levels of "moral disgust," or feelings of repugnance toward taboo behaviors, are more likely to prefer hairy faces.
Beards and perceptions of masculinity<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMjU5OTg0MC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTY0NzkxMjM3N30.cH-GqNwP5GVqvstgJWAhBPn1B_lYpVEAI0I7iax7EQw/img.jpg?width=1245&coordinates=0%2C1900%2C0%2C849&height=700" id="caae6" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="cb0a355a4e8e1899789bc45f3f7aef56" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" />
Photo Credit: Wikimedia<p>The study used 919 American (mostly white) women ages 18-70 who rated 30 pictures of men they were shown with various stages of facial hair growth. The photographs depicted men with faces that had been digitally altered to look more feminine or more masculine, with a beard and without a beard. The women rated the men according to perceived attractiveness for long-term and short-term relationships. The study found that the more facial hair the men had, the higher the men were rated on their attractiveness, particularly for their suitability for a long-term relationship.</p><p>Part of this might be attributed to facial masculinity — i.e. protruding brow ridge, wide cheekbones, thick jawline, and deeply set narrow eyes — which conveys information to a woman about a man's underlying health and formidability. Women tend to associate more masculine faces with physical strength and social assertiveness. It can also indicate a man with a superior immune response. The researchers suggested that their findings favoring bearded men could be due to the fact that facial hair enhances the masculine facial features on a man's face, like creating the illusion of a thicker jaw line. This could communicate direct benefits to women like resources and protection that would enhance survival among mothers and their infants. In other words, while a beard doesn't mean superior genetics in and of itself, it might be a primitive, ornamental way of saying, "Hey girl, I'm a testosterone-fueled lean, mean, pathogen fighting machine." <br></p><p>It could also be that a beard becomes its own destiny. The researchers in this study cite prior research that found that by growing a beard, men felt more masculine and had higher levels of serum testosterone, which was linked to a higher level of social dominance. They also tended to subscribe to more old-school beliefs about gender roles in their relationships with women as compared to men with clean-shaven faces.<span></span><br></p>
What does disgust have to do with beard preference?<p>Obviously, not all women dig beards. The researchers were particularly interested in what traits make a women prefer bearded men over clean-shaven faces. They looked into several factors including a woman's disgust levels on various concepts, her desire to become pregnant, and her exposure to facial hair in her personal life. </p><p>According to the study, women who were not into facial hair were turned-off by potential parasites or other critters they imagined could be in the hair or skin. Women ranking high on this "ectoparasite disgust" scale might have viewed beards as a sign of poor grooming habits. However, women who ranked higher in levels of "pathogen" did find the bearded men to be desirable, possibly because they perceived beards as a signal of good health and immune function. An intriguing discovery in the study was links to morality. Women who displayed higher levels of "moral disgust," or feelings of repugnance toward taboo behaviors, were more likely to prefer hairy faces. The authors opined that this could reflect a link between beardedness, politically conservative outlooks, and traditional views regarding performances of masculinity in heterosexual relationships.</p>
Additional findings<img type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yMjU5OTg1My9vcmlnaW4uZ2lmIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYyNDI1NjUyOX0.P9B8WbmJR0q4nfzYZKbuNSA-2SAigVWJgrQE-_Gxlds/img.gif?width=980" id="49143" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="2ed3b1d6f20fc170bf2974646e565e8d" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" />Giphy<p>The correlations that existed between married and single women's rating on the attractiveness of beards were not particularly clear, although the researchers noted that single and married women who wanted children tended to find beards more attractive than the women who didn't want children. They also found that women with bearded husbands found beards to be more attractive, which might indicate that social exposure to beards influences how desirable they are perceived of as being. Or it could be that men with wives who like beards grow beards.</p><p>It's important to note that culture plays a huge role in how attractive women perceive certain male characteristics as being. This study looked at a small, culturally specific group of American women, so no big, universal claims should be made about masculinity, facial hair, and male desirability to women. However, research like this is important in highlighting how human grooming decisions are driven by much more than fashion trends. Sociobiological, economic, and ecological factors all play a part in the way we choose to present ourselves.</p>
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