Week in Review (18th-24th March)

Week in Review (18th-24th March)


London hit by terrorist attack

After Paris, Brussels and Berlin, London faced terror as four people died and forty were injured in a series of events happening on Wednesday afternoon in one of the city’s most important areas for politics and tourism. A car deliberately hit people on the famous Westminster Bridge, killing at least two pedestrians and injuring many more. It then crashed into railings outside the Houses of Parliament, after which the armed attacker left the car and attempted to enter the building, where the police confronted him. The assailant stabbed and killed an officer before he was shot dead. Following the incidents, the House of Commons was put on lockdown and Prime Minister Theresa May, who was also present at the site for a weekly event, was rushed out of the building and driven to a safe location. Westminster Bridge and its tube station have been closed for a thorough investigation of the area.

©AP / Matt Dunham

to face (feɪs) sth = sich etw gegenübersehen

deliberately (dɪˈlɪbərətli) = absichtlich

pedestrian (pəˈdestriən) = Fußgänger

railings (ˈreɪlɪŋz) = Zaun

armed (ɑːmd) = bewaffnet

to attempt (əˈtempt) = versuchen

assailant (əˈseɪlənt) = Angreifer

to stab (stæb) = niederstechen

lockdown (ˈlɒkdaʊn) = Abriegelung

to rush sb out (rʌʃ aʊt) = jdn aus dem Gebäude schaffen

thorough (ˈθʌrə) = gründlich

The happiest places on Earth have been revealed

Since 2012, an organisation commissioned by the United Nations has been conducting annual surveys on happiness levels in more than 150 countries. The information collected in this way is then used to establish rankings and publish reports taking into account several social, political and economic factors. In the 2017 edition, Norway topped the happiness list for the first time, after it displaced the once dominant Denmark, number one last year and on two other occasions. Norway leaped from 4th in 2016 and 2015 to 1st, closely followed by 2 other Nordic states, Denmark and Iceland. The top ten was completed by Switzerland, Finland, the Netherlands, Canada, New Zealand, Australia and Sweden, while the bottom five countries were Rwanda, Syria, Tanzania, Burundi and the Central African Republic. This year, Germany ranked 16th.

The participants were asked to rate their level of satisfaction with their lives on a scale from 0 to 10. The range started at the CAR’s 2.693 and went all the way to Norway’s 7.537. After the list was compiled, the results were analysed according to five criteria: economic strength (measured in GDP per capita), social support, life expectancy, freedom of choice, generosity, and perceived corruption.

The full report can be downloaded at http://worldhappiness.report/

to commission (kəˈmɪʃn) = beauftragen

to conduct (kənˈdʌkt) = durchführen

annual (ˈænjuəl) = jährlich

survey (ˈsɜːveɪ) = Umfrage

to collect (kəˈlekt) = sammeln

to establish (ɪˈstæblɪʃ) = aufstellen

ranking (ˈræŋkɪŋ) = Rangordnung

to take sth into account = etw beachten

to displace (dɪsˈpleɪs) = ersetzen

to leap (liːp) = springen

range (reɪndʒ) = Spannbreite

to compile (kəmˈpaɪl) = zusammenstellen

GDP / gross domestic product (ˌdʒiː diː ˈpiː) = BIP / Bruttoinlandsprodukt

life expectancy (laɪf ɪkˈspektənsi) = Lebenserwartung

to perceive (pəˈsiːv) = wahrnehmen


Stephen Hawking will travel to space

In an interview he gave on the programme Good Morning Britain last Monday, the renowned cosmologist and physicist Stephen Hawking declared that he had been offered a seat on a commercial space flight by Richard Branson, the founder of the private space company Virgin Galactic. Branson has been aiming at sending tourists to space for more than a decade now, but frequent technical issues and a fatal accident on a test mission have been delaying the start of the commercial suborbital flights. Although the end of the year had been previously announced as a possible deadline for the first Virgin Galactic touristic space journey, it is not known when Stephen Hawking’s flight will be launched.

In his interview on Good Morning Britain, Professor Hawking was very enthusiastic about being given the chance to fly to space, saying: “I can tell you what will make me happy, to travel in space […] I said yes immediately.” This would not be the scientist’s first encounter with weightlessness. Despite the severe condition which has been confining him to a wheelchair since his youth, in 2007 Professor Hawking joined a parabolic fight creating a temporary zero-gravity environment.

©The Huffington Post

renowned  (rɪˈnaʊnd) = renommiert

to aim at doing sth = anstreben, etw zu tun

frequent (ˈfriːkwənt) = häufig

issue (ˈɪʃuː) = Problem

to delay (dɪˈleɪ) = verschieben

weightlessness (ˈweɪtləsnəs) = Schwerelosigkeit

condition (kənˈdɪʃn) = Krankheit

confined to a wheelchair = an den Rollstuhl gefesselt


Podolski retires from international football, Schweinsteiger moves to the US and Özil likely to leave Arsenal

©Julian Finney/Getty Images South America

This week has seen the announcement of major moves in the careers of a few Die Mannschaft footballers. After 129 games played for Germany, 48 goals and a world champion title, striker Lukas Podolski, currently at Galatasaray Istanbul, made public his retirement from the national team. His exit from the international football scene was crowned by a superb goal, the only of the match, scored in a friendly against England on Wednesday. Furthermore, after a not very rewarding time at Manchester United, midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger has announced his transfer to the Major League Soccer club Chicago Fire, while another 2014 world champion with the German team, Mesut Özil, is rumoured to soon leave Arsenal, after a season in which he suffered a significant drop in form.

striker (ˈstraɪkə(r)) = Stürmer

retirement (rɪˈtaɪəmənt) = Ausscheiden

to crown (kraʊn) = krönen

to score (skɔː(r)) = schießen

friendly (ˈfrendli) = Testspiel

rewarding (rɪˈwɔːdɪŋ) = belohnend

midfielder (ˌmɪdˈfiːldə(r)) = Mittelfeldspieler

is rumoured (ˈruːməd) to do sth = soll Gerüchten zufolge etw tun

drop (drɒp) = Fall