March 28, 2023


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U.S. GUN VIOLENCE | Three nine-year-old students and three adult staff members were killed yesterday at The Covenant School in Nashville, Tennessee, when a 28-year-old female armed with two AR-15-style assault weapons and a handgun opened fire in the private school. Police say a manifesto and detailed plans for the attack were found during a search of the suspect’s home and that the suspect, who was killed by police responding to the attack, was a former student at the school. This was the 130th shooting in the U.S. in 2023 in which four or more people were injured or killed, according to the Gun Violence Archive.  [more]

UKRAINE | Today is day 397 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Here are your updates:

  • After meeting yesterday with International Atomic Energy Agency head Rafael Grossi, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky accused Russia of holding Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant hostage and described the presence of Russian troops at the plant as “radiation blackmail.” [more]
  • Russian Energy Minister Nikolai Shulginov said today that while a decrease in oil and gas production in Russia is still expected this year, his country has successfully redirected all of its crude oil exports affected by Ukraine-related Western sanctions to “friendly” countries. [more]

SPYWARE | U.S. President Joe Biden issued an executive order yesterday that restricts federal agencies’ use of commercial spyware determined to pose significant counterintelligence or other security risks. The order is seen as attempting to limit commercialization in the U.S. of spyware that has been used against the U.S. or its citizens. [full text of order] [more]

RENEWABLE ENERGY | The U.S. Energy Information Administration said yesterday that electric power generation from renewable sources—wind, solar, hydro, biomass, and geothermal—surpassed coal-fired generation in the U.S. for the first time in 2022. The agency also noted that renewable generation surpassed nuclear generation for the first time in 2021 and continued to provide more electricity than nuclear generation in 2022. [full agency report] [more]

HOUSE SUBPOENA | Reports say House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Mike McCaul intends to subpoena Secretary of State Antony Blinken today for classified cables related to the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan that were made via the State Department’s “dissent channel” — an established communication protocol that allows diplomats to confidentially share warnings or express contrarian views to senior department officials. [more]

NEW JERSEY | State Attorney General Matt Platkin announced yesterday that his office has taken control of the police department in Patterson, New Jersey — the state’s third largest city. Platkin said the move was not taken in response to a single case, but reports note that it came less than a month after police fatally shot a crisis intervention worker during a standoff in the city. [more]

PHILADELPHIA | Health officials in Philadelphia say no evidence of contamination from Friday’s chemical spill in the Delaware River has yet been found in the city’s water supply. Increased levels of water monitoring in the region are expected to continue through the end of the week. [more]

U.S.-CHINA RELATIONS | The U.S. House of Representatives voted 415-0 yesterday to pass the “PRC Is Not a Developing Country Act,” which directs the State Department to pursue stripping China of its status as a developing nation and of any preferential treatment or assistance related to that status in international organizations. [more]

ISRAEL | Amidst widespread mass protests and a general strike over plans to overhaul Israel’s judiciary, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced yesterday that he is delaying the overhaul “to prevent a rift in the nation” and will seek a consensus plan to move forward with judicial reforms during the Israeli parliament’s summer session. [more]

NORTH KOREA | North Korean leader Kim Jong Un today called for increased production of weapons-grade nuclear material in his country. Kim’s call follows claims of advances in the miniaturization of nuclear warheads that could allow the weapons to fit on North Korea’s shorter-range ballistic missile systems. [more]

MEXICO | Mexican authorities say at least 39 people died, and 29 others were injured, yesterday when a fire broke out at an immigration detention center dormitory in Ciudad Juarez near the U.S. border. The cause of the fire is under investigation. [more]

BELGIUM | Belgian authorities announced this morning that eight people were arrested last night in two separate counterterrorism raids and that at least two of those arrested are suspected of planning to carry out a terrorist attack on Belgian soil. [more]

TUNISIA | Reports say Tunisian authorities have begun to cut off drinking water supplies in the capital Tunis and other cities at night as part of efforts to reduce water consumption amidst the North African country’s severe drought. [more]

GREECE | Amidst declining poll numbers for his majority New Democracy party following allegations of wiretapping by state security services and a February train crash that killed 57 people, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis called for a general election to be held on May 21. [more]

TECH RESTRUCTURING | Chinese e-commerce and tech giant Alibaba will reportedly restructure by splitting its businesses into six major units, each of which will be managed separately and be allowed to seek its own funding, including through IPOs. U.S.-listed Alibaba shares rose about 8% following the restructuring news. [more]

DISNEY LAYOFFS | In the first of an expected three rounds of planned layoffs that will cut an estimated total of 7,000 jobs, Disney will reportedly begin notifying employees whose jobs will be cut later this week. [more]

NCAA BASKETBALL | South Carolina and Virginia Tech advanced to the Final Four of the women’s NCAA basketball tournament with wins last night over Maryland and Ohio State, respectively. [more]

NFL | Quarterback Lamar Jackson said in a social media post yesterday that he requested a trade from the Baltimore Ravens earlier this month because the team “has not been interested in meeting my value.” Team management has indicated they are still hopeful of reaching a long-term deal with Jackson. [more]

TODAY IN HISTORY | On this date in 1979, a malfunctioning valve caused a loss of coolant at the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant near Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, leading to the release of radioactive gases and radioactive iodine in the worst accident in U.S. commercial nuclear power plant history. [more history]

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