The miraculous history of our species is peppered with dark stories of oppression, tyranny, bloody wars, savagery, murder and genocide. When looking back, we are often baffled and ask: Why weren’t the horrors halted earlier? How could people have lived with them? The full picture is immensely complicated. But a significant part of it points […]

In the latest escalation against U.S. forces in the Middle East, Iranian-backed militias launched a barrage of ballistic missiles and rockets at Al-Assad airbase in western Iraq on Saturday that left several U.S. personnel being evaluated for traumatic brain injuries, according to a statement from U.S. Central Command. Most of . . .

After a 40-year-old Army Reservist named Robert Card went on a shooting spree in Lewiston, Maine, in October, his community grasped for answers. Eighteen people were killed. Neighborhoods were locked down for days as the police hunted for Mr. Card. Then, after he was found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, his family and fellow […]

Traumatic memories had their own neural mechanism, brain scans showed, which may help explain their vivid and intrusive nature. From a report: At the root of post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD, is a memory that cannot be controlled. It may intrude on everyday activity, thrusting a person into the middle of a horrifying event, or […]

A blast shattered the stillness of a meadow in the Ozark Mountains on an autumn afternoon. Then another, and another, and another, until the whole meadow was in flames. Special Operations troops were training with rocket launchers again. Each operator held a launch tube on his shoulder, a few inches from his head, then took […]

Deeply entrenched conflicts are dividing the world – and many people’s social circles. The violence in Israel and Gaza is triggering often overheated discussions among friends, family and strangers. This comes on top of other, increasingly sharp, rifts in the U.S., including fights over gun control, policing, abortion and other social and political issues. Scientists […]

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: A neurosurgeon in Australia pulled a wriggling 3-inch roundworm from the brain of a 64-year-old woman last year — which was quite the surprise to the woman’s team of doctors and infectious disease experts, who had spent over a year trying to identify the cause of […]

An anonymous reader quotes a report from the New York Times: Scientists have trained a computer to analyze the brain activity of someone listening to music and, based only on those neuronal patterns, recreate the song. The research, published on Tuesday, produced a recognizable, if muffled version of Pink Floyd’s 1979 song, “Another Brick in […]

Many of us know the Smithsonian for its museums and vast educational exhibits. But the institution has a grisly collection that’s long been hidden from public view. Since the early 20th century, the Smithsonian has held a collection of human brains. There are more than 200 brains in total, and the majority were taken from […]

The Washington Post spent a year examining the Smithsonian’s collection of human remains, including 255 brains. Reporters reviewed thousands of documents, including studies, field notes and personal correspondence, and interviewed experts, Smithsonian officials, and descendants and members of communities whose remains were targeted for collection. The Post also obtained from the National Museum of Natural [...]

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