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Cramm for 5/11/21
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THE HIGHLIGHTS

Yesterday saw a series of rocket attacks and air strikes in Israel and Gaza. 

 

THE BACKGROUND.

Back in 1948, the country of Israel was established. The initial idea was to divide the land into two countries, one for Jewish Israelis and one for Palestinians. But the following decades brought a series of wars waged with neighboring Middle Eastern countries - and by the end of these wars, Israel had claimed-slashed-occupied more and more land, including all of Jerusalem and Gaza. FYI, for the most part, those claims aren’t internationally recognized. 

 

THE HAPPENINGS. 

Over the past few days, there have been rising tensions and violence in Sheikh Jarrah and the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem as police have responded to protests and stone-throwing with rubber bullets and stun grenades. Around 700 Palestinians have been injured. Then, yesterday, Hamas - internationally classified as a terrorist organization - began firing hundreds of rockets into Israel, killing at least 2 Israelis. 

 

THE HAPPENINGS PT 2. 

Israel immediately carried out air strikes in Gaza. As of now, 26 Palestinians have been killed, including civilians and 9 children. And right-wing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu looks to be pledging more air strikes - plus 5,000 Israeli troops to the Gaza border. An Egyptian official has confirmed that the country is trying to broker a truce between Israel and Palestinian officials, but added that Israeli actions in Jerusalem have complicated those efforts. 

 

THE TAKE. 

This is a struggle that’s decades old. TBD on if and when this latest round of rocket attacks and air strikes comes to an end. 


THE ACTION

HEALTH: The World Health Organization is warning everyone that the coronavirus variant originating in India is of “global concern.” More specifically, early data shows the variant spreads more easily than other variants. You read that right. In some good news: the US Food and Drug Admin just gave the thumbs-up to the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for use in people ages 12 to 15. Now, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is expected to meet to discuss how the vaccine should be used for that age group. Also making headlines in the US: the Biden team just brought back Obama-era protections for transgender people in healthcare. This comes after Trump trashed those protections. 

 

WORLD: Recently, a gunman opened fire on a school in the Russian city of Kazan. At least 7 students and one teacher were killed. 21 others were injured. The suspect is a 19 year old former student who’s officially registered as a gun owner and announced his plans to carry out the attack via social media. The tragedy comes as a rare mass shooting in Russia. Meanwhile, a US coast guard ship just fired about 30 warning shots after a group of 13 Iranian speedboats maneuvered toward US navy vessels in the strait of Hormuz. It’s the second time in the last month that US military ships have fired warning shots due to the actions of Iranian boats. And in other news, it looks like China just experienced its slowest population growth in decades. 

 

MEDIA: ICYMI, a couple months ago, Myanmar’s military took control of the country in a coup. Cue tons of protests and general unrest. Some people have even fled to other countries. Case in point: three prominent reporters escaped Myanmar and went to Thailand...where they were just arrested. Now, some journalist groups worry that they’ll “face certain arrest and persecution” if they’re sent back to Myanmar. Stay tuned. In other news, NBC just declared it won’t be airing the Golden Globes next year. Yes, really. Quick refresher: the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, which runs the awards, has been under a lot of fire lately for a total lack of diversity (not one of its 87 members is Black) and potentially corrupt practices. 


WHAT TO KNOW

Gwyneth Paltrow:” who says she went ‘totally off the rails’ during the pandemic, making pasta and eating bread. Rich people problems, pt 1. 


SAY WHAT?

“Jeff Bezos’ superyacht is so big it needs its own yacht” - an actual headline. Rich people problems, pt 2. 

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