Translate | Traducir

divendres, 13 de maig de 2016

Curar el miedo con una sola pastilla

Descubren una forma radical para tratar nuestros recuerdos más traumáticos

NEW REPUBLIC.-Karin Klaver woke in the darkness and searched the nightstand for her iPhone. It was 2 a.m. Her husband slept quietly beside her. They had arrived in Johannesburg early that morning on the red-eye from Amsterdam and spent the day window shopping and people watching in the city. “This is nice,” Klaver had thought to herself as she and her husband relaxed on the outdoor terrace of a shopping mall.

That evening, they retired to a bed-and-breakfast with garden rooms and enthusiastic online reviews. The couple were on their way to Port Elizabeth, where they own a house and spend several weeks each year. But this was the first time they had stayed overnight in South Africa’s biggest city.

In the blackness of the room, Klaver sensed a presence at her bedside. A man was standing there with a gun in his hand, and he raised it to her head. Terrified, Klaver rolled onto her stomach. If she was to be shot, she thought to herself, better to be shot in the back. Her movement woke her husband, and the intruder demanded their cash and valuables. Then he slipped away into the night, leaving them unharmed but shaken.

Back in Holland, Klaver, 56, struggled to resume her normal life. What had once been comfortable and familiar now felt like an iron maiden. “Everything would remind me of what happened in Johannesburg,” she said. She was nervous around unfamiliar men, and her house became a racket of threatening noises. The wind rustling in the curtains could keep her awake for hours. Nothing could dispel the dread that had overwhelmed her in that hotel room, when she was sure that she would die. “It was always there,” she recalled recently. “It felt like a balloon inside.”

Klaver found it difficult to talk about her anxiety, even with her husband. Thinking back to the robbery left her feeling even more isolated and vulnerable. “The first seconds, you feel so very, very lonely,” she said. She resisted the idea of psychotherapy, with its long sessions devoted to reliving and processing the trauma.

A year and a half later, in 2013, Klaver read an item in the newspaper about Merel Kindt, a professor of clinical psychology at the University of Amsterdam. Kindt had developed a revolutionary treatment that could “neutralize” fear memories with a single pill. This treatment was a scientific breakthrough, building on decades of psychological research. It was also deceptively simple. “It was quick and dirty, and that’s what I like,” Klaver said. She wrote an email to Kindt introducing herself, and Kindt invited her to the university for a screening.

In the lab, one of Kindt’s assistants asked Klaver a series of questions. What did she remember about the robbery? How did she feel when she remembered it? Kindt reviewed Klaver’s answers and recognized the intrusive memories, avoidance behaviors, and other hallmarks of post-traumatic stress disorder. Klaver would indeed be a good candidate for the treatment, Kindt decided.

Three weeks later, Kindt, a striking woman with sharp features, crisp blue eyes, and stylishly tousled blonde hair, ushered Klaver into a small, plain room with a table and two chairs. Klaver, who has shoulder-length silver hair, wore black to the session. Normally, a patient who had suffered a traumatic experience might expect a therapist to proceed slowly and gently, offering comfort and support. Instead, Kindt dived straight in, pushing Klaver to relive the night of the robbery and focus on the source of her fear. “There is no escape,” Kindt told her, as Klaver wept into her hands. “Nobody can help you.” After 15 minutes, Klaver seemed shattered by her memories, and Kindt abruptly stopped the interrogation. She gave Klaver a round, white pill, which she swallowed with a sip of water. “I was totally broken,” Klaver said.

Klaver went to bed early that night and slept for twelve hours. When she woke the next morning, she found that her memory was transformed. She recalled the details of what had happened in that bedroom in Johannesburg: She could still see the man’s dirty cap, oversized jeans, and cheap plastic shoes. Yet she was able for the first time to think about the experience without anxiety or panic. “It felt like there was not that much weight on my shoulders,” she said.

When she returned to see Kindt a week later, she wore white, as though to telegraph her mood reversal. “It’s really gone,” Klaver said. “It is quite special, isn’t it?” Kindt smiled and leaned forward in her chair. “Yes,” she agreed. “Very special.”
Leer el artículo completo de Ben Crair, aquí


EEUU activa el escudo europeo de defensa antimisiles

REUTERS.- The United States switched on an $800 million missile shield in Romania on Thursday that it sees as vital to defend itself and Europe from so-called rogue states but the Kremlin says is aimed at blunting its own nuclear arsenal.

To the music of military bands at the remote Deveselu air base, senior U.S. and NATO officials declared operational the ballistic missile defense site, which is capable of shooting down rockets from countries such as Iran that Washington says could one day reach major European cities.


When complete, the defensive umbrella will stretch from Greenland to the Azores. On Friday, the United States will break ground on a final site in Poland due to be ready by late 2018, completing the defense line first proposed almost a decade ago.

The full shield also includes ships and radars across Europe. It will be handed over to NATO in July, with command and control run from a U.S. air base in Germany.

Podemos-IU atrae al voto de mediana edad del PSOE

EL PAÍS.- Un estudio de Metroscopia demuestra que la alianza de izquierdas ya ha conquistado a los electores jóvenes y que el partido socialista mantiene un dominio incontestable entre los mayores de 55 años. La batalla del 26-J, en consecuencia, se disputará entre los votantes de mediana edad.

De 'el Estado soy yo' a la 'Democracia somos nosotros'

Madrid, New York, Paris: des rebelles très conformistes
Ces événements révèlent, me semble-t-il, non pas une crise dans la démocratie comme on nous le raconte, mais le refus des minorités activistes de gauche d’accepter les règles de la démocratie : ce qui n’est pas nouveau mais qui s’aggrave à mesure que l’idéologie gauchiste s’éloigne de la société réelle. Je constate à cet égard une différence essentielle entre Nuit debout, avant tout une critique de la société libérale, et Mai 68 à Paris : les “événements” de Mai 68 ne coïncidèrent pas avec des idéologies anciennes mais exprimaient un refus collectif du principe d’autorité dans la société en général. Mai 68 fut d’essence libertaire et, bien que ces manifestations furent brèves, elles ont conduit à une libéralisation générale dans la société française, dans les Universités, les entreprises, les familles, les églises, la vie politique. Ce fut comme un ballon d’oxygène, ce que n’est pas Nuit debout. Pour ceux qui espéraient, naïvement, qu’à Madrid, New York et Paris, émergent de ces manifestations quelques idées fraîches et stimulantes à l’usage du monde d’aujourd’hui, on ne peut être qu’affreusement déçu. On n’a guère entendu que de très vieilles chansons sur les horreurs du capitalisme qui datent de bientôt deux siècles, remontant au “socialisme utopique” à la française, antérieur au marxisme qui, selon Marx, était “scientifique”. Devrait-on s’étonner de la persistance de ces idéologies ? Leur pérennité vient de ce qu’elles offrent à ceux qui les profèrent une explication du monde clés en main et un sentiment d’intelligence à défaut d’être soi-même intelligent et informé. Le socialisme utopique, le marxisme archaïque, le trotskisme pseudo romantique, l’écologisme profond sont des “prêts à penser” qui évitent de penser par soi-même comme il existe dans la mode des prêts à porter. | GUY SORMAN
Leer artículo completo, aquí

Cómo escapó de los servicios secretos de 10 países

Abdelhamid Abaaoud, el ideólogo de los atentado de París

Durante 2015, Abdelhamid Abaaoud , belga y marroquí, de 28 años, fue identificada como una de las principales amenazas para Europa. En Raqqa, en Siria, y en París, la vigilancia de este jefe operativo del Estado Islámico movilizó a los servicios secretos de una docena de países europeos, con el apoyo de la CIA estadounidense y, ocasionalmente, del Mossad israelí. El miedo a la capacidad mortífera de Abaaoud llevó a François Hollande a cambiar la estrategia militar francesa. En septiembre, la fuerza aérea bombardeó su escondite en Deir ez-Zor, en Siria, en nombre de la "autodefensa". Sin embargo, el terrorista estaba determinado a volver a Europa hasta el punto de lanzarse a un río en Bulgaria o de contratar los servicios de una prostituta belga para mezclarse con la masa de turistas. El 13 de noviembre, contra todo pronóstico, Abaaoud estaba en París a la cabeza de varios comandos de asesinos. A pesar de los medios empleados, se perdió esta batalla clandestina. El terrorista se perdió, poco después, en Atenas. Pero ¿cómo escapó Abaaoud de los servicios secretos de 10 países?

Exclusif : comment Abaaoud a échappé aux... por leparisien

El documental que Hillary Clinton no quiere ver

El aborto disminuye pero crece la brecha entre el mundo desarrollado y en desarrollo

50 de los 56 millones de abortos anuales se producen en países en desarrollo

THE ECONOMIST.- The authors (who also produced the last study four years ago) estimate that the global rate fell slightly from 40 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15-44 in 1990, to 35 in 2014. But this masks a wide variation by income and by region. In the developed world, rates declined dramatically from 46 to 27 as better family planning and education became available to women to prevent unintended pregnancies. The steepest drop was seen in eastern Europe following the break-up of the Soviet Union, as women gained access to family planning and modern contraception. By contrast, the abortion rate has stayed relatively unchanged in developing regions and the share of pregnancies ending in abortion has nudged up from 21% to 24%. This matters: 50m of the 56m abortions every year are in developing countries.

Artículo original en The Lancet, aquí

Noticias de mi pueblo

'Italia debe elegir entre el euro y su propia supervivencia económica'

TELEGRAPH.-"Italy is enormously vulnerable. It has gone through a whole global recovery with no growth," said Simon Tilford from the Centre for European Reform. "Core inflation is at dangerously low levels. The government has almost no policy ammunition to fight recession."

Italy needs root-and-branch reform but that is by nature contractionary in the short-run. It is viable only with a blast of investment to cushion the shock, says Mr Tilford, but no such New Deal is on the horizon.

Legally, the EU Fiscal Compact obliges Italy to do the exact opposite: to run budget surpluses large enough to cut its debt ratio by 3.6pc of GDP every year for twenty years. Do you laugh or cry?

"There is a very real risk that Matteo Renzi will come to the conclusion that his only way to hold on to power is to go into the next election on an openly anti-euro platform. People are being very complacent about the political risks," said Mr Tilford. | Ambrose Evans-Pritchard
Seguir leyendo...