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Wednesday's Mini-Report, 8.18.21

Today's edition of quick hits.

Today's edition of quick hits:

* Afghanistan: "Images of the Taliban cracking down on a protest and bloodied women and children beaten by fighters are contradicting the more moderate image the militant group has been trying to project as it tries to consolidate power in Afghanistan."

* Boosters: "Top U.S. health officials announced Wednesday that the country has developed a plan to start offering Covid-19 booster shots to all Americans beginning the third week of September, citing evidence that protection is waning not only against hospitalization and death, but also mild and moderate infections, as the highly contagious delta variant continues to spread."

* An important change: "President Joe Biden is expected to announce Wednesday that all nursing homes will have to require all staff be vaccinated against Covid to keep receiving Medicare and Medicaid funding."

* In related news: "The Biden administration, escalating its fight with Republican governors who are blocking local school districts from requiring masks to protect against the coronavirus, will use the Department of Education's civil rights enforcement authority to deter states from banning universal masking in classrooms, Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona said Wednesday."

* Heartbreaking totals: "The death toll from Haiti's devastating 7.2-magnitude earthquake has climbed to 1,941, the country's civil protection agency said Tuesday. More than 9,900 people were injured in the earthquake, which struck Saturday morning."

* A rapidly expanding wildfire: "The Caldor Fire, which ignited Saturday evening in the Omo Ranch area, about 60 miles east of Sacramento, exploded Tuesday morning from 6,500 acres to 53,772 acres in less than 24 hours by Wednesday morning, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, or Cal Fire."

* Targeting the Taliban's wallet: "The Biden administration on Sunday froze Afghan government reserves held in U.S. bank accounts, blocking the Taliban from accessing billions of dollars held in U.S. institutions, according to two people familiar with the matter."

* So much avoidable suffering: "Jimmy DeYoung, a Christian radio broadcaster who questioned the COVID-19 vaccines, died Sunday following a short battle with the virus."

* On a related note, the Washington Post ran a report today on a mother and father of four -- who refused vaccines -- both dying of COVID. Shortly before passing, the mother told her sister, "Please make sure my kids get vaccinated."

See you tomorrow.