Nature: There is widespread agreement that inhaling from an e-cigarette, where a heating element vapourizes a liquid containing nicotine, is not as harmful as smoking a conventional cigarette, and proponents say that the products could save millions of lives. But some researchers and tobacco-control activists fear that the devices could make tobacco use seem socially acceptable again and may not assist people in actually reducing their addiction. "Advertising suggesting that e-cigarettes are effective for smoking cessation should be prohibited until such claims are supported by scientific evidence," said Pamela Ling, a tobacco researcher at the University of California, San Francisco.
Mehdi Hasan, New Statesman: Is there a better case study in brazen hypocrisy than the ongoing crisis in Crimea? ... "For the powerful," as Noam Chomsky once remarked, "crimes are those that others commit." For instance: it is "illegal and illegitimate" for Russia to try to detach Crimea from Ukraine by means of a dodgy referendum, Hague says. Indeed, it is. But was it any less illegal or illegitimate for the west to detach Kosovo from Serbia in 1999 with a 78-day Nato bombing campaign? Territorial integrity matters -- until it doesn't.
Natalia Antelava, The New Yorker: At first, Rustem Kadyrov could barely make out the mark outside his house, in the Crimean town of Bakhchysarai, but it filled him with terror. It was an X, cut deep into the gray metal of the gate ... When I walked up Chiisty Istochniki Street from the Memetovas' house, I saw similar marks on four other houses, all of them residences of Crimean Tatars, Kadyrov said. The houses of their Russian neighbors, however, had not been touched. Similar markings have been reported in other parts of Bakhchysarai, and in some areas of the regional capital, Simferopol. Kadyrov told me that he called the police, who came out see his gate, but they refused to register a case. He was not surprised. "The police will not help us," he said. "They told me Crimean Tatars are not a priority for them. Of course not -- they are punishing us because we do not want Putin here."