1.18.2019

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All your news in a single email. We scour 100+ sources so you don't have to. Culture, science, sports, politics, business, and more - all packaged in a 5-minute read below.
Need To Know.
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Missile Defense Strategy Released.
The Pentagon released its long-awaited Missile Defense Review yesterday, coming alongside a speech by President Trump calling for a space-based missile defense system. While the speech drew comparisons to former President Ronald Reagan's proposed Strategic Defense Initiative - or "Star Wars" program - the report itself lays out a robust plan that includes intercepting incoming missiles, mitigating fallout from an attack, and preventative options (read full report). The strategy emphasized threats from Iran, Russia, China, and North Korea - and was released just an hour before a North Korean envoy's arrival in Washington to discuss a second summit between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
Laquan McDonald.
Three Chicago police officers were found not guilty on charges they covered up details surrounding the shooting of an unarmed black teenager by a white police officer in 2014. Prosecutors alleged the officers ignored witnesses and attempted to create a false narrative by fellow officer Jason Van Dyke, who shot 17-year-old Laquan McDonald 16 times. Van Dyke was arrested three months after the shooting (see timeline), when dash cam video revealed McDonald was moving away from the officer when the shots were fired. Judge Domenica Stephenson said although the officers' account differed from the video - the case was widely seen as an example of the so-called "code of silence" - it did not constitute proof of lying. Van Dyke himself is set to be sentenced today. 

You can see the dash cam video here (please be warned that it may be upsetting for some viewers). 
Missed Connections.
President Trump canceled a congressional delegation led by Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D, CA-9) that was set to visit Afghanistan and Brussels yesterday, citing the ongoing government shutdown. Because the delegation relied on military transportation, the executive branch has the ability to postpone or delay the trip (read Trump's letter to Pelosi). The move followed public calls by Pelosi for Trump to delay his State of the Union address, citing security concerns. The White House also canceled a trip by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, scheduled for next week. 

Editor's note: Monday is a holiday in the US, so we'll see you again on Tuesday. Enjoy the long weekend!
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In The Know.
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Sports, Entertainment & Culture.
> Mary Oliver, Pulitzer Prize-winning poet, dies at 83 (More)
> NFL conference championships this Sunday; see preview of AFC matchup between Patriots and Chiefs (More) | And Rams and Saints in NFC championship game (More)
> Music legend Gladys Knight tapped to sing national anthem at this year's Super Bowl (More) | Grammy Awards announce performance line-up to include Cardi B, Post Malone (More)
Science & Technology.
> One of the largest data breaches known appears on Internet from unknown source; so-called "Collection #1" contains 773M unique emails, 21M unique passwords (More)
> Sequences of non-coded DNA, previously thought to be useless, may control cell growth when energy sources are scarce (More)
> Critical gel-like structure explains the sensitivity of the human ear, which can detect sound vibrations that cause the eardrum to move less than the width of an atom (More)
Business & Markets.
> US Stock markets up ~0.7% on news Treasury Secretary Munchin & US officials are debating lifting some or all Chinese tariffs (More)
> Earnings Season: Netflix increases paid subscriber count to 139M worldwide, but forecasts revenue below Wall Street estimates; shares down 4% in after-hours trading (More)
American Express misses Wall Street expectations, shares down 2.5% in after-hours (More) | Morgan Stanley misses revenue & profit expectations, shares down 4% (More)
Politics & World Affairs.
> March for Life expected to draw tens of thousands today in Washington, DC (More) | Women's March, planned for this Saturday, faces dip in attendance amid controversy over leader Tamika Mallory's association with Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan (More)
> Report alleges President Trump directed former personal lawyer Michael Cohen to mislead Congress about role in Moscow Trump Tower project, citing two anonymous law enforcement officials (More)
> Rep. Tom Marino (R, PA-12) abruptly resigns for undisclosed private sector job, just weeks after swearing in for 5th term (More)
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Weekend Reads.
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What People Actually Say Before They Die.
The Atlantic | Michael Erard. If you listen closely to the last words people say as they pass away, you'll begin to notice a number of patterns and similarities. See why most dying men call for their mothers, and why nearly everyone can only utter one word when their time comes. (Read)
How to Build a Skyscraper Out of Wood.
The Week | Jeff Spross. Wood is often an afterthought when it comes to discussing building materials. But cities like London, Stockholm, and Chicago are seeking to change that with what could be the material of the future. (Read)
 
How a Stroke Turned a 63-Year-Old Into a Rap Legend.
The Atlantic | Jeff Maysh. Stroke victims can sometimes wake up with odd, uncontrollable side effects - like hypersexuality, gambling addictions, and even fake accents. But when Dr. Sherman Hershfield woke from a major stroke, he became a legend in LA's underground hip hop scene. (Read)
 
Do You Remember Pamela Smart? 
The Washington Post | Manuel Roig-Franzia. 29 years ago, Pamela Smart was convicted of using to sex to convince four teens to murder her husband. Now the teens are out, but Smart remains behind bars. (Read, paywall)
Etcetera.
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Get ready for the super blood moon lunar eclipse this Sunday evening.  
Calculating the average effective salary of a stay-at-home mom (spoiler alert - it's a lot). 
The "flexitarian" diet could save the planet while feeding 10 billion people - and you can still eat meat.
The hottest affordable neighborhoods for 2019
Pew Research throws a dart, decides where Millennials end and Generation Z officially begins
Japanese hotel lays off half of its robot workers after they create more work for humans
Rare footage of an endangered eaglet as it grows up and learns to fly.
This elaborate scam is baiting Instagrammers into fake overseas travel.
Clickbait: Mom goes to hospital after son's sippy cup explodes
Historybook: RIP 10th US President John Tyler (1862); HBD actor Cary Grant (1904); WWI Paris Peace Conference begins (1919); RIP author Rudyard Kipling (1936); Willie O’Ree becomes first black player in the National Hockey League (1958).
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