The nightmare of giving birth in Gaza
The streets were empty. The ambulance couldn’t come for more than half an hour, and the hospital’s maternity ward no longer functioned. The only sounds were the noises of planes and shelling.
For Wajiha al-Abyad, who had fled her home weeks earlier, giving birth in Gaza last month was “something like a horror film,” she said.
Women, children and newborns in Gaza are disproportionately bearing the burden of the war, both as casualties and in reduced access to health care services. The U.N. estimates that there are around 50,000 pregnant women in Gaza and that more than 160 babies are delivered every day.
The bombardment, huge levels of displacement, collapsing water and electricity supplies and limited access to food and medicine are severely disrupting maternal, newborn and child health care. None of Gaza’s 36 hospitals are functional enough to treat critical trauma cases or perform surgery, the W.H.O. said.
Related: At least 12 people were killed and dozens were wounded in an attack on the Indonesian Hospital, where thousands of displaced people were sheltering, according to hospital personnel and the Gazan health ministry.
In other news from the war:
The Houthi militia in Yemen released a video showing its forces hijacking a ship, the Galaxy Leader, in the Red Sea, a day after it said it had seized the vessel to show support for “the oppressed Palestinian people.
Hamas has provided no information about the fate of the nearly 240 people believed to be held hostage in Gaza, causing anguish to their loved ones.
In a conflict marked by complete incomprehension on both sides, the ability of Palestinians and Israelis to see each other as human has been lost, Roger Cohen writes in this analysis.
Threats loom of an OpenAI staff exodus
More than 700 of OpenAI’s 770 employees signed a letter saying they might leave the company for Microsoft if the ousted chief executive, Sam Altman, is not reinstalled. The upheaval leaves the future of OpenAI, an artificial intelligence start-up that is one of the fastest-growing companies in Silicon Valley history, in doubt.
The members of OpenAI’s four-person board shocked the tech industry on Friday when it removed Altman, saying they could no longer trust him. One board member has since reversed course, demanding that he be reinstated. The decision by the board set off a frantic weekend of unexpected corporate jockeying that ended with Altman joining Microsoft to start a new A.I. project.
Analysis: Kevin Roose, a technology columnist for The Times, described the personnel changes as “probably the most shocking tech story of the year, and maybe in several years,” and said the most obvious loser so far was OpenAI itself.
For more: The Times spoke to Altman just two days before he was ousted by his company’s board in a surprise coup. To him, the future seemed bright.
Russian’s Ukrainian offensive continues
Ukraine is facing continual eastern assaults from Russian forces at a bloody cost for both sides, even as the lines on the map barely move.
Russian forces have been staging fierce assaults around Avdiivka for more than a month and have recently launched simultaneous offensives across eastern Ukraine. Ukrainian forces have mostly thwarted Russia’s attacks, using drones and cluster munitions to inflict some of the heaviest Russian losses of the war. But experts said the balance on the battlefield could easily be tipped in either direction.
In other news:
Lloyd Austin, the U.S. defense secretary, visited Kyiv at a time when U.S. military aid and progress in the war against Russia have both stalled.
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Gift wrapping without waste
Centuries ago, Japan elevated the practice of wrapping gifts with fabric, known as furoshiki, into an art form. After the gift is unveiled, the fabric can be reused for other gifts, for wrapping cushions or for display in a frame.
Speaking to The Times, Kensuke Kawamura and Ayano Hasui, both of the furoshiki manufacturer Yamada Sen-i, shared their tips for wrapping, reusing and gifting furoshiki.
“If you want to show your consideration, choose seasonal patterns or patterns that a person would like,” Kawamura said. “For example, if I want to give something to my father, maybe I choose a pine pattern because it has a meaning of long life.”