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The Week Magazine

The Week Magazine August 21, 2020

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The Week makes sense of the news by curating the best of the U.S. and international media into a succinct, lively digest.

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United States
The Week Publications, Inc.
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48 Edities

in deze editie

2 min.
editor’s letter

When a B-29 bomber dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima 75 years ago this month, my father, then 20, was waiting on a troop ship in the Philippines for the order to invade Japan. The Bomb, he always said, probably saved his life. The soldiers of his 86th Infantry Division, who’d already fought their way from France to Germany, had been told that 70 percent of the U.S. invasion force might die as Japanese fighters fiercely defended their homeland. In the war stories he told me, my dad made it clear he was proud of his service, but that he had seen terrible things and that he had killed many Nazi soldiers with his mortar. Only toward the end of his life did he speak of any feelings of guilt. Of…

4 min.
federal aid lapses as negotiations break down

What happened Tens of millions of unemployed Americans were left in limbo this week, after negotiations over a congressional relief bill collapsed and several aid-focused executive actions by President Trump faced possible legal challenges and other obstacles. Trump signed the orders after two weeks of talks between Democratic leaders and administration officials sputtered out with no agreement on a bill to extend federal unemployment supplements that lapsed July 31. “Our differences are vast,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, after she and Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer reached an impasse with White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. The Democrats’ starting point was a $3.4 trillion package that extended the $600 weekly supplements to the unemployed for six months; the administration backed a $1 trillion bill that…

3 min.
biden makes history with harris vp pick

What happened Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden this week selected California Sen. Kamala Harris as his running mate, a historic decision that makes Harris the first woman of color to run for vice president on a major-party ticket. A former San Francisco prosecutor and California attorney general, Harris battled Biden for the center lane during the Democratic primary, scoring a viral breakout in the first televised debate when she sharply criticized Biden for his opposition to mandatory busing in the 1970s. After leaving the presidential race in December, the 55-year-old Harris soon made up with Biden, 77, and began acting as a campaign surrogate for the former vice president. Biden said he partly decided to pick Harris as his running mate because of her close friendship with his late son…

2 min.
schools wrestle with reopening as covid cases mount

What happened Teachers threatened walkouts and school districts scrambled to rewrite Covid-19 safety rules this week after hundreds of students and staff were potentially exposed to coronavirus and told to quarantine just days into the new school year. About 15 percent of American children restart school in early August, sparking ferocious debate about the danger to students on the heels of a report that 97,000 U.S. kids tested positive in the last two weeks of July alone. Georgia’s back-to-school bullishness highlighted the risk of outbreaks: In Cherokee County, 925 students and staff were ordered to quarantine, and after a student in Dallas, Ga., posted a photo of her crowded, mostly unmasked high school, six students and three staffers tested positive. As the U.S. passed 5 million cases and 161,000 coronavirus deaths, schools…

3 min.
election interference: a ‘politicized’ warning?

After nearly four years of Donald Trump, Americans are “suffering from scandal fatigue,” said Max Boot in The Washington Post. But if we care at all about our democracy, Trump’s persistent refusal to defend our elections from Russian interference should be deeply alarming. Under pressure from Democrats, William Evanina, Trump’s director of the National Counterintelligence and Security Center, last week grudgingly admitted that Russia is again using an unspecified “range of measures” to get Trump re-elected. Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal, who’s been briefed on the intelligence, said Evanina’s vague warning omitted “chilling” details of Russia’s “sophisticated tactics and techniques” that apparently make its 2016 interference in Trump’s behalf “look like child’s play.” To appease Trump, Evanina also stated that China and Iran want Biden to win, said Samantha Vinograd in…

1 min.
good week/bad week

Good week for: Buying a generator, after the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association warned the U.S. is facing “one of the most active hurricane seasons on record.” NOAA said there may be as many as 25 named storms and 11 hurricanes, including six that could be “major.” Life in exile, after Prince Harry and Meghan Markle and baby Archie moved into an $8 million home in exclusive Santa Barbara, Calif., that they bought with help from Harry’s dad, Prince Charles. Their neighbors include Ellen DeGeneres and Oprah Winfrey. Female solidarity, after former Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin posted congratulations and advice to Democrat Kamala Harris, including “trust no one new,” “ignore deceptive ‘handlers’ trying to change you,” and “have fun!” Bad week for: Romance, after a British man lit hundreds of tea-light candles in…