TIME Food & Drink

Thanks to KFC’s New Hot Dog Wrapped in Fried Chicken, Gluttony Has Never Been So Easy

We're all doomed

KFC’s Double Down Dog is as real as it is terrifying.

The hot dog wrapped in a fried chicken patty is currently a special promotion that’s only offered in the Philippines.

To help build buzz, KFC provides only 50 Double Down Dogs Monday to smiling — still breathing — customers at select stores:

Lucky number 9 goes to Daisy! She's all smiles while enjoying the #NewKFCDoubleDown at Fort Triangle.

A photo posted by KFC Philippines (@kfcphilippines) on

Even though the over-the-top snack is already a source of Internet derision, it’s just the latest in a line of gluttonous fast-food trends.

KFC Korea offers a Zinger Double Down that puts a bacon cheeseburger between two pieces of fried chicken:

And other forms of the Double Down sandwich have existed in the U.S.

There are hot-dog-stuffed pizza crusts, waffle-wrapped tacos, macaroni and shrimp burgers.

The world is doomed.

TIME Greece

Meet the New Prime Minister of Greece Who Has Shaken Brussels and Berlin

Leader of Syriza party Alexis Tsipras, during his victory speech in Athens, Jan. 25, 2015.
Nikos Pilos—laif/Redux Leader of Syriza party Alexis Tsipras, during his victory speech in Athens, Jan. 25, 2015.

Alexis Tsipras told voters he will re-negotiate Greece's crippling debt repayments

Following the victory of the radical left-wing Syriza party in Greece’s general election, 40-year-old Alexis Tsipras was sworn in Monday as Greece’s youngest prime minister in 150 years. Having rejected E.U. austerity policies and bailouts as “null and void”, European leaders are watching to see if Tsipras’ diplomacy is as fiery as his pre-election oratory.

Tsipras was born in Athens to a middle-class family in 1974, four days after the fall of the Greek military dictatorship which had ruled the country for seven years. His father ran a small construction company and voted for the social democratic Pasok party, which his son has just kicked out of office. Though he grew up in a highly politicized period, Tsipras was more interested in sport than politics. He lived near the Panathinaikos soccer stadium and he still attends every home game.

But at high school in the 1980s, Tsipras joined the Young Communists Society. When the government proposed education privatization in 1990, 16-year-old Tsipras led an occupation of his high school to oppose the reforms. Interviewed on national television at the time, Tsipras said: “We would like it to be our right to decide if, at some point, we want to skip class.”

Tsipras remained active in student politics while training as a civil engineer in Athens but it was his run for election as mayor of Athens in 2006 that raised his national profile. Though Tsipras was fighting his first major election and representing a new party — the Syriza coalition had been formed two years earlier from an alliance of left-wing groups such as the Greens and the Maoists — he managed third place.

Tsipras was elected as the leader of the Syriza party two years later, making him Greece’s youngest political leader at the age of 34. He flourished in the wake of Greece’s economic crisis. “Greece has been a European and international experiment, and the Greek people have been the guinea pigs,” Tsipras told TIME in a 2012 interview, just before the elections in which Syriza become the second-biggest party in parliament. The party won 3.3% of the vote in the 2004 elections and nearly 27% in 2012.

Two and a half years later, more than 50% of under-25s in Greece are unemployed and many of them have been encouraged by Tsipras’ campaign slogan of “Hope is coming!”

Tsipras has already made his mark in his first day as prime minister. He is Greece’s first unmarried prime minister and the first to take a secular oath of office. He has a family — he has been with his longtime partner Peristera (Betty) Batziana since high school — and they have two sons, the youngest of whom is named after Argentinian Marxist revolutionary, Ernesto “Che” Guevara.

But Tsipras appears to have softened his politics since his youth and he and his party have worked hard to broaden his appeal and prepare him for power. He has met with high-profile figures like the European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi and talked with church leaders (including meeting with Pope Francis) to calm fears about his own lack of religious faith.

At the presidential palace on Monday, Tsipras and his Syriza colleagues stood out in their uniform of suits and open-necked shirts. After his inauguration, the new prime minister left the palace to visit the National Resistance Museum to honour Greeks killed by Germany and her allies in the Second World War. Tsipras has persuaded the Greek electorate to back him. Now he has just over two weeks before he has to put Greece’s case to his European counterparts on Feb. 12 in the Latvian capital, Riga.

TIME India

See President Obama Attend India’s Republic Day Parade

President Barack Obama joined Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at his country's Republic Day Parade in New Delhi. Obama is the first U.S. President to be a guest of honor at the annual festivity.

TIME Nigeria

Stable Elections in Nigeria Threatened by Boko Haram’s Latest Attacks

US Secretary of State John Kerry (L) meets with Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan to discuss peaceful elections at the State House in Lagos, Nigeria on Jan. 25, 2015.
Akintunde Akinleye—AFP/Getty Images US Secretary of State John Kerry (L) meets with Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan to discuss peaceful elections at the State House in Lagos, Nigeria on Jan. 25, 2015.

Nigerian militants laid siege to military bases in the northern capital of Maiduguri on Sunday, raising questions about the army’s ability to combat the insurgency

As campaign season ramps up ahead of Nigerian general elections on February 14th, President Goodluck Jonathan has sought to downplay an insurgency in the country’s northeast that has been raging almost as long as he has been in power. The rise of Boko Haram, a Nigeria-based militant Islamist group best known for vicious attacks on military targets and its penchant for kidnapping women and girls and conscripting men and boys, has stymied Jonathan’s government since the former vice-president ascended to the presidency in 2010.

The insurgency has killed an estimated 11,000, according to the Council on Foreign Relation’s Nigeria Security Tracker. Unable to defeat it, the Jonathan campaign has chosen to all but ignore it as the president asks his people for an additional four-year term. But that strategy backfired on Saturday night, as militants swept into the strategic northern capital of Maiduguri just hours after Jonathan stumped for support from city residents.

The militants, who reportedly infiltrated the city of two million disguised as travelers on local buses, laid siege to key military installations and battled into Sunday. The Nigerian army eventually beat them back, but the fact that they were able to penetrate the city undetected raises questions about the military’s ability to defeat the movement, and, as the country’s Commander-in-Chief, Jonathan’s commitment to the fight.

Even as the insurgents retreated in Maiduguri, others looted, killed and abducted residents in a string of attacks on unguarded villages about 200 kilometers away, according to local authorities. As with previous attacks, such as an assault on a military base and several nearby villages that started Jan. 3 and killed scores, the government response has been muted.

Amnesty International, which has been closely documenting Boko Haram’s expansion, warned of a looming humanitarian crisis in a statement released Sunday, noting that the capital had already seen a massive influx of rural residents fleeing the violence over the past several months. “These ongoing attacks by Boko Haram are significant and grim news. We believe hundreds of thousands of civilians are now at grave risk,” said Africa Director Netsanet Belay. “People in and around Maiduguri need immediate protection. If the military doesn’t succeed in stopping Boko Haram’s advance they may be trapped with nowhere else to turn. The government’s failure to protect residents of Maiduguri at this time could lead to a disastrous humanitarian crisis.”

Boko Haram’s increasing boldness comes at a delicate time for Nigeria, which is just three weeks away from an election that promises to be the closest in the country’s short democratic history. Jonathan is up against former military dictator Muhammadu Buhari, who has made security the main issue in his campaign platform. Elections in Nigeria are invariably accompanied by violence — the 2011 elections saw some 800 killed in post-polling fighting when Buhari lost to Jonathan — and fears are rife that Boko Haram could take advantage of the instability to sow further discord, or advance while the security services are distracted.

The United States has expressed concerns that the elections could usher in a new wave of violence, particularly if allegations of rigging by either side are widespread. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry was in Lagos on Sunday to reiterate the U.S.’s desire to see clean elections. “This will be the largest democratic election on the continent,” Kerry said at a press conference following meetings with the two main candidates. “Given the stakes, it’s absolutely critical that these elections be conducted peacefully — that they are credible, transparent and accountable.” But obstacles are rife: some 25 million registered voters have yet to receive their biometric voter identity cards. There is not yet a system in place for an estimated one million internally displaced to cast their votes. And the ongoing violence in the northeast could prevent voters in what is traditionally a Buhari stronghold from coming to the polls.

On Jan. 22, Jonathan’s national security adviser Sambo Dasuki suggested at a meeting of the Royal Institute of International Affairs at London’s Chatham House that the elections be postponed, but such a delay risks prolonging the instability and prevents a unified response against Boko Haram. On the same day, government spokesman Mike Omeri announced that Nigeria was considering bringing home some 3,000 soldiers deployed in international peacekeeping missions elsewhere in Africa to help secure the elections and combat the insurgency. But the military’s inability to combat Boko Haram has less to do with numbers than a longstanding history of alleged corruption within the leadership ranks, a lack of adequate weaponry and logistical supplies, unpaid salaries and poor training, according to several military analysts and frustrated soldiers. Dasuki, in his Jan. 22 Chatham House comments, defended the military leadership and instead blamed cowardice among the troops for Boko Haram’s advance. “We have people who use every excuse in this world not to fight. We’ve had a lot of people who we believe joined because they wanted a job, not because they wanted a career in the military. And it’s most of them who are running away and telling stories,” he said.

While in Lagos, Kerry reiterated the U.S.’s continued backing for Nigeria’s fight against Boko Haram. But that support comes with caveats: the Nigerian government must ensure that the upcoming elections will be fair and transparent. “Bottom line, we want to do more,” he said. “But our ability to do more will depend to some degree on the full measure of credibility, accountability, transparency, and peacefulness of this election.” But doing more won’t help if Nigeria’s current leadership, both miltary and civilian, don’t want to do more to help themselves.

TIME Aviation

Airlines Cancel Thousands of Flights Due to East Coast Blizzard

APTOPIX Winter Weather Flights
Seth Wenig—AP A plane is de-iced at LaGuardia Airport in New York City on Jan. 26, 2015.

Nearly all of the major U.S. carriers have waived the change fee for customers

Major airlines are preemptively canceling thousands of flights scheduled to come into and out of the East Coast of the United States as a potentially historic blizzard is expected to dump as much as three feet of snow and snarl transportation for tens of millions of people.

Flight-tracking website FlightAware.com noted Monday morning that around 4,000 flights have been cancelled for Monday and Tuesday. The post also said that almost all New York City flights will be cancelled Tuesday.

Delta Air Lines said on Sunday it will cancel 600 flights because of the blizzard warning, while United Airlines said it will cancel all Tuesday flights at airports in New York, Boston and Philadelphia. Beginning on Monday night, the carrier will limit operations at Newark, LaGuardia and John F. Kennedy airports in the New York area, a spokeswoman said.

Southwest Airlines said Sunday evening it would cancel more than 130 of 3,410 flights scheduled for Monday due to the storm, an increase from its earlier plan to cancel about 20 flights.

American Airlines said cancellation plans would not be finalized until Monday morning, but that the airline expected “quite a few” flights to be affected. Flightaware.com showed 637 flights canceled for Monday as of Sunday evening.

Nearly all of the major U.S. carriers have waived the change fee for customers flying from affected cities during the storm, reported USA Today.

Information from Reuters contributed to this report. This article originally appeared on Fortune.com.

TIME Security

Hackers Hit Malaysia Airlines Website

The airline says no customer data at risk

Malaysia Airlines said Monday that its website had been “compromised,” though it denied reports that hackers had actually infiltrated the site itself and said no customer information was at risk.

Beginning late Sunday night, users going on the airline’s website were directed to a page touting messages from a group claiming to be aligned with Islamist extremism. The browser window, reading “ISIS WILL PREVAIL,” stood over a page displaying the image of an aircraft along with the message “404- Plane Not Found.” Malaysia Airlines is still suffering from the fallout of two downed planes in the last year, one of which was shot down over Ukraine and the other that has yet to be recovered.

Others were shown similar messaging over the image of a reptile donning a monocle and top hat.

A hacker group called Lizard Squad, also going by Cyber Caliphate, has taken credit and boasted about the alleged hack on Twitter.

Malaysia Airlines released a public statement on its Facebook page assuring customers that although its site “has been compromised where users are re-directed to a hacker website… Malaysia Airlines assures customers and clients that its website was not hacked and this temporary glitch does not affect their bookings and that user data remains secured.”

Although Malaysiaairlines.com was down Monday morning, the company had created a separate site where customers could check into their flights.

Lizard Squad still claimed that data has been compromised.

 

TIME India

India Pulls Out All the Stops for Obama at Republic Day Parade

Indian soldiers march in formation down the ceremonial boulevard Rajpath during the Indian Republic Day parade in New Delhi on Jan. 26, 2015.
Prakash Singh—AFP/Getty Images Soldiers march in formation down the ceremonial boulevard Rajpath during the Republic Day parade in New Delhi on Jan. 26, 2015.

One of the South Asian nation's biggest occasions was made even more momentous by the choice of chief guest

Gloomy skies and a steady downpour were not enough to dampen New Delhi’s spirits on Monday, as thousands turned up to watch U.S. President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle and a sizable American delegation witness a display of India’s military might, economic achievements and diversity at the country’s 66th Republic Day parade.

Obama became the first U.S. President ever to attend the annual event, an invite for which is considered one of the greatest honors India bestows on foreign dignitaries. The President rolled up to the viewing platform in his armored limousine, known as The Beast, eschewing the tradition of riding in the Indian president’s vehicle over security concerns. He then took his place between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, with whom he announced a “breakthrough” on a civil nuclear deal Sunday evening, and Indian President Pranab Mukherjee (whose choice of headgear caused a bit of a flutter on social media).

While the U.S. has become India’s biggest military supplier in recent times, the South Asian nation’s armed forces have traditionally been equipped with Soviet hardware, a fact Obama was reminded of as Russian-made T-90 and T-72 tanks rolled down the main stretch, along with a mobile launcher for the BrahMos missile jointly developed by India and Russia.

The parade-ending flyovers by the Indian Air Force did have American P-8 Poseidon naval planes, and although these too were flanked by Russian MIG-29 and SU-30 fighter jets, officials on both sides expressed hope and confidence in the 10-year bilateral defense agreement that Obama and Modi renewed on Sunday.

“None of these things should be considered small in terms of just what it means for working together as two defense industrial bases and what we can share with each other,” Phillip Reiner, Obama’s top South Asia advisor, told the New York Times.

“It’s a huge step forward,” Indian lawmaker Baijayant Panda agreed, even though other analysts remained skeptical but hopeful.

Between the displays of military might came a series of marches — including multiple all-female contingents and even a camel troop — followed by floats and dance performances representing various Indian states, as well as government initiatives like Modi’s “Make in India” and “Swacch Bharat” (Clean India) campaigns.

Finally, there were the motorcycles of the Border Security Force. Known as “Janbaz,” or Dare Devils, they showcased feats of amazing balance, focus and agility — all while tapping on laptops and dressed as peacocks and lotuses.

Judging by Obama’s reaction, one of his most animated during the course of the parade, they got the White House seal of approval.

TIME United Kingdom

A Prank Caller Got Through to British Prime Minister David Cameron

100 days to go to general election
Peter Byrne—PA Wire/Press Association Images/AP 100 days to go to general election. File photo dated 08/01/15 of Prime Minister David Cameron as the countdown begins on Tuesday of the final 100 days to a general election which is shaping up to be unlike any other in recent history

But a government spokeswoman says no sensitive information was disclosed

A prank caller managed to get through to British Prime Minister David Cameron on Sunday, prompting a security review at 10 Downing Street.

The caller claimed to be Robert Hannigan, the director of the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), a U.K. intelligence agency, according to the Guardian.

Another hoax was reported on Sunday when a caller managed to reach GCHQ and obtain the phone number of Hannigan.

A government spokeswoman said “Following two hoax calls to government departments today, a notice has gone out to all departments to be on the alert for such calls.”

The spokeswoman added that the phone call was “quite brief” and no sensitive information was disclosed.

Mr. Cameron has been duped before. In 2013 he tweeted at a spoof account for work and pensions minister, Iain Duncan Smith, without apparently realizing the account was a fraud.

[The Guardian]

TIME Qatar

Qatar Has Asked a U.S. Family if They Want Their Daughter’s Alleged Killer Executed

Prince Charles Visits Qatar - Day 2
Chris Jackson—Getty Images A general view of the skyline in Doha, Qatar, on Feb. 20, 2014

They also have the option to pardon him or get financial compensation

A Pennsylvania family is being asked to decide on whether the alleged killer of their daughter should be put to death in the Gulf Arab state of Qatar.

A Kenyan security guard reportedly confessed to murdering English teacher Jennifer Brown, 40, who was found dead in her company apartment in November 2012, Agence France-Presse says.

Qatari authorities have now asked Brown’s family whether they want to pardon the guard, get financial compensation from him, or have him executed.

Brown’s case has languished in Qatar’s courts because of slow witness testimony, eliciting disappointment from her family. An announcement of their decision is expected on March 8.

[AFP]

TIME Australia

The Aussies Just Made the Queen’s Husband a Knight

The First World War exhibition open - London
Eddie Mulholland—The Telegraph/PA Wire/AP Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, attends the opening of "First World War in the Air" exhibition at the RAF Museum in Hendon, England, on Dec. 2, 2014

That's like "giving a Beyoncé CD to Jay-Z" says Aussie comic Adam Hills

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott spent Monday morning mired in controversy after his office kicked off Australia Day celebrations by making Britain’s Prince Philip a Knight of the Order of Australia.

Australians have long been acquainted with the 93-year-old royal, who is notorious for uttering headline-worthy gaffes. During a trip to the Lucky Country in 2002, the Duke of Edinburgh, as he is officially titled, asked an Aboriginal man: “Do you still throw spears at each other?”

Nevertheless, Abbott praised Prince Philip’s “long life of service” during a flag-raising ceremony in the Australian capital, Canberra, on Monday morning.

“This honor recognizes the contribution of the Duke of Edinburgh to Australia throughout the Queen’s 62-year reign,” read a statement released by Abbott’s office. “For three quarters of a century, Prince Philip has served the Crown, and the wider Commonwealth.”

Following the announcement, Australians took to social media to slam the decision to give the nation’s top honor to the Prince rather than an Australian.

Abbott attempted to defend the decision during an Australia Day function in Canberra.

“Social media is kind of like electronic graffiti and I think that in the media, you make a big mistake to pay too much attention to social media,” he told reporters, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

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