8.4.2023

 

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Good morning. It's Friday, Aug. 4, and we're covering a high-profile court appearance in the nation's capital, a competitive World Cup, and much more. First time reading? Sign up here.

 

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Need To Know
 

Trump Arraigned in DC

Former President Donald Trump appeared in a Washington, DC, court yesterday, pleading not guilty to charges that he knowingly attempted to alter the outcome of the 2020 presidential election. 

 

The Tuesday indictment marked the third set of open charges against Trump (see previous write-up)—the other two cases relate to allegations of mishandling of classified documents after leaving office and supposed hush money payments during the 2016 campaign. The primary charge in the current case alleges Trump and allies tried to overturn results from seven states: Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, New Mexico, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. Legal experts have noted the case will require proving Trump was aware the claims being made were false (as opposed to acting on earnest beliefs).

 

Separately, GOP lawmakers released the transcript of a closed-door hearing with Devon Archer, a former business associate of Hunter Biden. Republicans and Democrats have alternately claimed his testimony showed President Joe Biden's involvement in his son's foreign business dealings or that Hunter Biden was selling an "illusion" of access. 

 

Knockout Round Begins

The Women's World Cup moves into the single elimination knockout stage tomorrow, following a handful of surprise eliminations in group play. Two-time champion Germany, who entered ranked No. 2 in international competition, was bounced from the tournament after a 1-1 draw with South Korea. Separately, Brazil failed to advance from group play for the first time since 1995 after a 0-0 draw with Jamaica. 

 

Despite sluggish performances in their last two games, the US national team made it to the next round (dodging a near miss in the final minutes against Portugal). Though the team entered with a number of new faces, the US started as the top-ranked team in the world and the favorites to win their third straight cup. 

 

Oddsmakers peg the Americans as the second-most likely to finish on top, behind England. The US plays its next match early Sunday morning against Sweden (5 am ET, FOX); see a preview here.

 

South Korea Stabbings 

An attack just south of Seoul, South Korea, yesterday left at least 14 people injured after a man rammed a car into pedestrians before launching a stabbing spree. The attack occurred Thursday at 5:55 pm local time in the city of Seongnam near a subway station and a large department store.

 

The suspect, a 23-year-old man, acted alone during the rampage and was arrested at the scene; the police did not provide a motive. Authorities described the attack as "virtually an act of terrorism," as the attack appeared to be done at random. Five individuals were hit by the vehicle, and nine others were stabbed; two were in serious condition as of this writing.

 

The attack is the second mass stabbing in the country this summer, following an attack in the South Korean capital of Seoul in July that killed one person and left three wounded. The country has a relatively low homicide and attempted homicide rate of 1.3 per 100,000 people. For comparison, the US homicide rate is 7.8 per 100,000.

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In The Know
 

Sports, Entertainment, & Culture

> Lollapalooza 2023, headlined by Billie Eilish, Kendrick Lamar, and Red Hot Chili Peppers, kicked off yesterday from Chicago; see full lineup and livestream schedule (More)

> Tom Brady purchases minority stake in English soccer club Birmingham City (More) | Michael Jordan's sale of a majority stake in the Charlotte Hornets finalized at a $3B valuation (More)

> Musical adaptation of "The Notebook" tapped to open on Broadway in March (More) | Actor Jonathan Majors' domestic assault trial, which was set to begin yesterday, to be postponed until September (More)

 

Science & Technology

> James Webb Space Telescope captures most detailed image to date of the Ring Nebula, the glowing aftermath of a star that has collapsed into a white dwarf located roughly 2,200 light-years away (More)

> IBM and NASA partner with AI firm Hugging Face to develop a geospatial model that will be used to build generative AI programs to predict climate change, crop patterns, and more (More)

> New study suggests cancer-fighting immune cells lose effectiveness within hours of encountering cancer cells; findings may lead to new, long-lasting immunotherapies (More)

 

Business & Markets

In partnership with LiquidPiston

> US stock markets close lower (S&P 500 -0.3%, Dow -0.2%, Nasdaq -0.1%) for third consecutive session (More) | Bank of England raises interest rates for 14th consecutive time to 5.25%, highest level since 2008 (More

> Amazon beats expectations on 11% revenue growth, shares up in after-hours trading (More) | Apple beats expectations, but sees revenue fall 1% year-over-year for the company’s third consecutive quarterly revenue decline (More)

> Anheuser-Busch InBev beats earnings expectations; US beer sales fell 10% in the second quarter amid Dylan Mulvaney controversy (More)

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Politics & World Affairs

> Russian missiles damage 18th-century church in Ukrainian city of Kherson; separately, Ukraine announces its pilots will begin training for US-made F-16 fighter jets this month (More) | The US orders partial evacuation of its embassy in Niger following last week's coup (More)

> Islamic State group announces death of its leader Abu Hussein al-Qurashi, claims he was killed during fighting with an al-Qaida-linked group; announcement comes three months after Turkey claimed he died during an intelligence operation (More) | See the difference between ISIS, al-Qaida, and the Taliban (More

> At least 108 people treated for heat-related illnesses in South Korea during outdoor World Scout Jamboree event (More) | South American cities experience record heat during their winter season (More

 

In-Depth

> 'Who Walks Always Beside You?'

Harper's | Benjamin Hale. The chilling story of a 6-year-old girl lost in remote Arkansas and comforted by an imaginary friend, Alecia—the description of whom resembled a 4-year-old girl murdered by a cult in the same area decades before. (Read)

 

> Extending America's Footpath

WashPo | Lizzie Johnson, Lauren Tierney. The legendary Appalachian Trail, running from Georgia to Maine, has called hikers to its 2,000-mile footpath since 1937—and it has changed significantly since. (Read)

> Towns for Sale

CBS | Christina Ruffini. The inventory of small towns for sale in the US is larger than you might think—from a desert circus retreat in Nipton, California, to a 40-acre village in Maine. (Watch)

 

> Ireland's Nicest Bank Robber

Irish Independent | Staff. (Podcast) John O'Hegarty was a thoughtful graduate student in philosophy when he began a series of 16 bank robberies and a stint in jail. (Listen)

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Etcetera
 

A look at the origins of classic carnival rides.

 

Rare pink bird reemerges in Wisconsin after 178 years.

 

The winning photos of favorite roadside attractions.

 

Tony Bennett’s widow reveals the last song he sang.

 

Why being near salt water is good for your health.

 

... and why the Tik-Tok trend of "bed-rotting" is bad for your health

 

Fifty artists reflect on 50 years of hip-hop.

 

Freddie Mercury’s baby grand piano among items to be sold.

 

Clickbait: The rise of fancy kid food.

 

Historybook: Jazz legend Louis Armstrong born (1901); Anne Frank and family are captured after two years hiding from Nazis (1944); Former President Barack Obama born (1961); Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, born (1981); Rwanda peace treaty signed (1993).

"I've learned one thing: you only really get to know a person after a fight. Only then can you judge their true character."

- Anne Frank

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