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Cramm for 8/2/22
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THE HIGHLIGHTS

A US drone strike just killed the leader of al-Qaeda. 

 

THE BACKGROUND. 

Al-Qaeda is a terrorist group that was founded by Osama bin Laden - among others - during the Soviet-Afghan War in the late 1980s. Over the years, the terrorist group has carrying out a series of vicious attacks on the US and its allies. That includes 9/11, which resulted in nearly 3,000 deaths. The US responded by launching a “war on terror,” ultimately killing Osama bin Laden in 2011. 

 

THE HAPPENINGS. 

Meet Ayman al-Zawahri. He was a key plotter of the 9/11 terrorist attacks and took over as the leader of al-Qaeda after bin Laden was killed. Earlier this year, US intel reportedly tracked al-Zawahri down in downtown Kabul, Afghanistan, and spent the next few months verifying that it was actually him. Then, yesterday, the US carried out a drone strike and killed him - marking the end to a 21 year manhunt. 

 

THE REACTION. 

In a speech, Prez Joe Biden said “justice has been delivered.” But some people have raised questions about al-Zawahri’s presence in Afghanistan, since the Taliban - which currently runs the country - had pledged to not provide a safe haven for al-Qaeda. And while a US official called al-Zawahri’s presence a “clear violation” of that deal, it’s unclear whether the US will take any action against the Taliban. 

 

THE TAKE. 

After more than two decades, the person most responsible for the deadliest modern attack on the US after Osama bin Laden is dead. 


THE ACTION

WORLD: Ukraine’s ports typically export millions upon millions of tonnes of grain. But since the war began in February, Russia has blocked these ports - reducing the global supply and causing the price of alternatives to rise. Then, last month, Ukraine and Russia struck a deal to allow Ukraine to restart grain exports. Now, it looks like the first grain ship has passed Russia’s blockade, raising hopes that food will soon reach nations suffering from shortages and price hikes. Meanwhile, the United Nations secretary general has warned that humanity is “just one misunderstanding, one misculation away from nuclear annihilation,” especially amid Russia’s war on Ukraine. And in other news, US officials say China could respond to Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s rumored visit to Taiwan with a show of force. Stay tuned. 

 

DISASTERS: Last week, heavy rains across parts of Kentucky triggered “one of the worst, most devastating flooding events” in state history. Now, even more rain is complicating the recovery, with flooded roads making it difficult for emergency workers to search for the hundreds of people who remain missing. This comes as the death toll from last week’s floods rose to 37. Meanwhile, Oregon authorities are investigating 4 additional deaths potentially linked to a scorching heat wave last week that was suspected to have killed at least 10 people. Over in California, the McKinney Fire has now burned more than 55,000 acres. Two people were found dead and thousands of people have been forced from their homes. 

 

USA: Recently, Guy Reffitt - an associate of the far-right Three Percenters militia group who stormed the Capitol on January 6th, 2021 - was sentenced to more than 7 years in prison after being convicted by a jury. It’s the longest prison sentence yet among hundreds of cases related to the Capitol attack. Reffitt, who was armed with a pistol and carried zip-tie handcuffs, reportedly told fellow members of the Three Percenters militia group that he planned to drag Speaker Nancy Pelosi out of the House by her ankles. In other news, Senate Republicans just walked back their support of a bill that would expand certain benefits for veterans due to toxic exposure they experienced while deployed. Because, spending concerns. 


WHAT TO KNOW

Beyoncé:” who’s re-recording a lyric from her new album ‘Renaissance’ after backlash. 


SAY WHAT?

“TikTok Could Be Launching Its Own Music Streaming Service” - a recent headline. To which Spotify said ‘uh oh.’ 




ICYMI, Cramm This Book is OUT NOW! Cramm This Book is a dive into the history that’s shaped the world as it is today, looking at the wars, the movements, the disasters, and more. Get your copy today!
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