An explosives-rigged RV detonated at 6:30 AM on Christmas Day on 2nd Avenue in Nashville after playing repeated, eerie evacuation warnings. Locals reported hearing gun shots before the evacuation warning began. There have been widespread communications failures in the area secondary to the blast as it occurred next to an AT&T building.
The bombing is reminiscent of the kinds of organized attacks carried out by the IRA during the Troubles. A warning before detonation is a show of force to government, and a seeming gesture of care to civilians. But one of the key points of those kinds of bombings is organizational attribution—attackers want people to know which power is responsible. So far, little has been revealed about who is responsible, why it was done, why this time and location was selected, and whether more are expected. To add to the mystery, authorities say it may have been a suicide bombing. A person on interest has been identified, but we still don’t know much.
A quarter of a million servers, including over 85,000 MySQL servers all over the globe, have been hit by a massive ransomware-attack. Terabytes of data have been stolen and are being ransomed and/or sold on the dark web.
Britain and the EU have reached a Brexit deal:
Brexit Trade Deal Reached Between Britain and the E.U. — British exports will still be subjected to some border checks, adding costs for companies and causing potential delays at ports https://t.co/HxpLz1avpE
— Alfons López Tena (@alfonslopeztena) December 24, 2020
The world has over 80.6 million cases. The world has added over 5.4 million cases since Thursday of last week. There have been over 1.7 million deaths in total. The US has nearly 17.6 19.4 million cases. The US has added almost 1.8 million cases in nine days. Over 339,000 Americans have died. The US is gaining roughly 200,000 new cases per day. The US still leads the world in case growth.
One of the features of a new mutant strain of COVID is that the spike protein binds more strongly to ACE2 receptors. We don’t yet know what the fallout will be. We’ve seen increased transmissibility from new strains, but we’re hoping that increased virulence is not also involved:
WORRISOME: there's evidence that the South African #coronavirus variant not only spreads more easily, but it may be causing more severe #COVID19 disease in young people and otherwise healthy people.https://t.co/u1OgGTgPM8
— Dena Grayson, MD, PhD (@DrDenaGrayson) December 23, 2020
Mutated strains are spreading quickly, and travel bans continue. Showing proof of a negative test before flying is also increasingly common–we can anticipate that proof of immunization before flying is probably imminent:
— delthia ricks 🔬 (@DelthiaRicks) December 23, 2020
We’re still relatively confident that the mRNA vaccines will work well even on mutant strains:
— Alicia Smith (@Alicia_Smith19) December 24, 2020
Vaccination programs are moving more slowly than we had hoped in the US. Some of this is logistics log jam, some is a lack of federal direction and communication, and some is from a weary populace. Over nine million doses of the mRNA vaccines have been distributed to states. In good news, the Administration has agreed to purchase 100 million more doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine. The extra doses are expected to be delivered by mid-2021. The overall goal of the vaccine program in the US is to hit one million vaccinations per day.
Speaking of a weary populace, let’s keep adverse reactions in perspective:
>1M people vaccinated
Less than have had 10 allergic reactions
So, <1 in 100K
Remember about 1 in 2,000 courses of penicillin leads to allergic reaction
1 in 200 folks have had anaphylaxis to meds at some point
Yes lets sort out cause of vaccine rxns
But perspective helpful https://t.co/1FtrZUnOk6
— Ashish K. Jha, MD, MPH (@ashishkjha) December 26, 2020