11.20.2023

 

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Good morning. It's Monday, Nov. 20, and we're covering a potential deal for Hamas to release some hostages, the passing of a former US first lady, and much more. First time reading? Sign up here.

 

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Need To Know
 

Hostage Negotiations 

Israel and Hamas appear to be nearing an international-brokered deal for the release of some of the roughly 240 hostages the militant group captured from Israel and hid in Gaza after an Oct. 7 surprise attack.

 

According to reports, under the latest proposal—led by Egypt, Qatar, and the US—Hamas would release a number of women and children hostages in exchange for the release of roughly the same number of Palestinian women and children held in Israeli prisons. A short pause in fighting is expected to be part of the deal, though the length of the potential pause is reportedly a sticking point in negotiations. 

 

Meanwhile, at least 31 premature babies and 2,500 civilians, patients, and staff were evacuated from northern Gaza's al-Shifa hospital, which Israeli forces raided last week and said they discovered the presence of a Hamas command center inside (see previous write-up). 

 

Separately, Yemen's Iran-backed Houthi rebels (see overview) seized an Israeli-linked cargo ship in the Red Sea, taking 25 crew members hostage. The militant group warned it will continue to target Israeli-linked ships until the Israel-Hamas war ends.

 

See updates on the war here.

 

Rosalynn Carter Dies

Former US first lady Rosalynn Carter died Sunday at the age of 96 at her home in Plains, Georgia, due to complications from dementia. Her husband, former President Jimmy Carter, survives Rosalynn at the age of 99.

 

The Georgia-born future first lady ran the office of her husband's family peanut business before actively assisting him with campaigns for state senate, governor, and president. As first lady, Carter championed women's rights and became the first to establish a policy office in the West Wing. Amid her broad advocacy, Carter took a special focus on mental health (see efforts) and later established the philanthropic Carter Center alongside her husband. In 1999, she received the Presidential Medal of Freedom and was inducted into the National Women's Hall of Fame in 2001.

 

She became the second-longest living former first lady after Bess Truman (97), but the two Carters hold the record for the longest presidential marriage in US history. See her life in photos here

 

Starship Makes Progress

SpaceX's second test flight of its massive 400-feet-tall Starship vehicle hit new milestones Saturday before ending in a pair of unscheduled explosions after launching from Boca Chica Beach in South Texas. Starship, designed to carry NASA astronauts to the moon and Mars, is the world's tallest and most powerful launch system. The uncrewed vehicle crashed into the Gulf of Mexico. See the video here.

 

The test flight was considered a success by SpaceX as the vehicle traveled farther than and exhibited improvements from an initial attempt in April, which also ended in an explosion. The latest attempt lasted roughly eight minutes rather than four minutes. Unlike in the first flight, all of the 33 methane-fueled Raptor engines on the Super Heavy first-stage booster ignited, and the spacecraft successfully separated from the booster, achieving a goal for the second attempt and reaching an altitude of 92 miles.

 

SpaceX said the booster and spacecraft likely self-destructed due to a midflight issue and it hopes to use data for future improvements. The Federal Aviation Administration will conduct a review before SpaceX can proceed with another launch. See a Starship overview here.

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In The Know
 

Sports, Entertainment, & Culture

> Australia tops India to win a record sixth Cricket World Cup (More) | Max Verstappen wins 18th Formula One race of the season at Las Vegas Grand Prix (More)

> Suzanne Shepherd, actress known for roles in "The Sopranos" and "Goodfellas," dies at 89 (More) | Taylor Swift postpones concert in Brazil one day after a 23-year-old fan dies at Swift's Friday performance (More

> Miss Nicaragua Sheynnis Palacios crowned 2023 Miss Universe; Miss Thailand Anntonia Porsild named runner-up (More)

 

Science & Technology

> Scientists 3D print robotic hand for the first time with human-like bones, ligaments, and tendons made with elastic properties using new laser scanning technique (More)

> MIT researchers design wearable ultrasound monitor that can image organs within the body; study shows monitor accurately images the bladder and determines how full it is, potentially aiding patients with bladder or kidney issues (More

> White House taps Vanderbilt oncologist W. Kimryn Rathmell to become the National Cancer Institute's next director (More

 

Business & Markets

In partnership with The Ascent

> US stock markets close up Friday (S&P 500 +0.1%, Dow +0.0%, Nasdaq +0.1%); S&P 500, Dow clinch first three-week win streak since July (More) | Short seller Jim Chanos, known for betting against Enron before its 2001 bankruptcy, shutting down hedge fund after 38 years (More)

> Apple, Disney, IBM among major advertisers suspending ads from X (formerly Twitter) after owner Elon Musk backs an antisemitic post on the platform (More)  

> OpenAI investors reportedly planning for Sam Altman's possible return after the board ousted him as CEO Friday, citing a lack of confidence in his leadership (More)  

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Politics & World Affairs

> Argentina's Libertarian candidate Javier Milei edges Peronist economic minister Sergio Massa in presidential runoff Sunday (More) | See background on Milei (More

> House Republicans begin publicly releasing security footage from Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol storming (More) | See videos (More) | Colorado judge rules the 14th Amendment does not disqualify former President Donald Trump from running for office (More

> Kaitlin Armstrong, 35-year-old Texas woman convicted of May 2022 murder of pro cyclist Moriah Wilson, sentenced to 90 years in prison Friday (More) | Read deep dive on incident (More) | Police release images of person of interest in Los Angeles' I-10 arson fire; road expected to open today (More

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Etcetera
 

The best global destinations in 2024.  

 

Cambridge Dictionary makes "hallucinate" its word of the year

 

Where millennials are moving

 

Navigate the Nile with this fun interactive

 

Airlines prepare for record travel this week

 

Comparing "The Crown" actors with the real-life royals

 

Alaskan skaters glide across rare "ice window." (w/video)

 

Napoleon's hat auctioned for $2.1M

 

Clickbait: When all you need is a temporary cat

 

Historybook: Bobby Kennedy born (1925); President Joe Biden born (1942); Nuremberg trials against 24 Nazi war criminals begins (1945); Actress Bo Derek born (1956); Microsoft Windows 1.0 released (1985).

"Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly."

- Bobby Kennedy

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