Articles from abroad

A disturbing new exclusive from CNN reveals gruesome Syria photos that may prove torture by the Assad regime. "Assad's people starve and torture prisoners, then photograph every one of the corpses. And the photographer defected," came the succinct explanation from Wall Street Journal's Tom Gara. "Eyes gouged out, electrocuted, strangled: photos smuggled out of Syria show evidence of Assad's torture on huge scale," The Guardian's Sunny Hundal shared. "Tells us what we already know," was Mother Jones reporter Asawin Suebsaeng's retort to the headline.

Meanwhile, an exposé by the New York Times discloses that Ukraine is tracking protestors through their cellphonesDaily Beast's Justin Miller tweeted this incredible detail: "Ukraine police text protesters: 'Dear subscriber, you are registered as a participant in a mass disturbance.'" A riveting read you'll want to dive right into, if you haven't already.

Also, remember that infamous fake sunset photo from China that was allegedly being used to compensate for smoggy conditions? Turns out that story wasn't really true: the sunrise is just a short clip from a tourism ad, not some sort of manufactured light in lieu of a blotted-out sun. But Quartz points out that Westerners are so convinced China is a "dystopian hellscape," they’ll share anything that confirms it. "Shock. A story that plays on horrible stereotypes originated in the Daily Mail. Shame on any outlet that ran this," admonished Patricia Sauthoffwith Mediagazer. Freelancer Clay Dillow boiled it down to this: "Point: China is a 'dystopian hellscape.' Counterpoint: Nah, it's not, at least not in the way you want it to be."

Finally, Barry Petchesky at Deadspin jokes that visitors are going to make so many new friends in Sochi, Russia, during the Olympics -- thanks to these toilets. "This photo, in the men's room at the Olympic Biathlon Center in Sochi, was snapped by the BBC's Steve Rosenberg. You might just want to hold it. Russians are apparently having a grand old time with this photo, holding it up has a symbol of corruption, waste, or just plain incompetence," Petchesky writes. This "symbol" would be two side-by-side toilet seats, with no privacy division between them. "A new meaning for the buddy system," ESPN's Wayne Drehs observed. RedEye Chicago's Mick Swasko quipped, "Turds with friends?"

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