FROM Charles Seife
Separating Truth from Fiction in Science Last year, headlines all over the world claimed that eating dark chocolate would help people lose weight. The London tabloid, Daily Star proclaimed, "Eating Chocolate Can Help You Lose Weight;" the June issue of Shape magazine told readers, "Why You Must Eat Chocolate Daily." The story behind the hype was based on science. In fact, it was a ruse — designed to demonstrate how easy it is to circulate conclusions drawn from poorly designed studies that don't really prove what they claim to – and the bad science was passed along by reporters and editors who failed to check out the facts. How does the public know what to believe? It's a question as old as journalism, but harder than ever to answer in the age of the Internet. We hear how junk science finds its way into what look like reliable places that aren't what they seem.
The longest US war: Will Trump send more troops to Afghanistan? The Trump White House is divided over the Pentagon's request for more troops in Afghanistan—where the US has been fighting for the past 16 years. Is there a formula -- either for "victory" or a political settlement? Is there an end in sight for America's longest war?
What is Trump's plan for Middle East peace? On his first foreign tour, President Trump has promised "peace" between Israel and the Palestinians. Are there any details for re-starting talks that have been stalled for the past three years?
Will the Senate write a healthcare bill in secret? While Democrats and Republicans argue White House relations with Russia, another question is being decided behind closed doors: who gets help buying health insurance and who doesn't? We hear how the pros and cons are being shrouded in secrecy.
Is the threat from Russia missing from the Russia meddling probe? There's much being made about the Trump administration's possible ties with Russia. But the bottom line is Russia's effort to influence American democracy. Do the President and his aides care enough to take action before voters go back to the polls?