Seventeen member states of the International Syria Support Group agreed to a “cessation of hostilities” in Syria, and, following the announcement, Syrian president Bashar al-Assad promised to keep fighting, Turkey stepped up its bombing campaign against the Kurds in Syria, and Russia continued flying sorties. Russian prime minister Dmitry Medvedev described Russia’s relationship with the West as “a new Cold War,” and a noted opponent of President Vladimir Putin had cake thrown in his face by a gang of men at a Moscow restaurant. Read more...
Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia died in his sleep after a day of quail hunting at a ranch outside Marfa, Texas, and Republicans in Congress vowed to block any Supreme Court nominees until a new president is elected. “I think there are a lot of people who would be disappointed,” said Senator Mike Lee, “if we didn’t do this.” During the primary election in New Hampshire, a polling place in Pelham was briefly disrupted by the presence of a 600-pound pig, and Ted Cruz pulled a campaign ad after discovering that the lead actress had starred in soft-core pornography films, including Secrets of a Chambermaid and Timegate: Tales of the Saddle Tramps. The FBI reported that the four remaining militants at the Malheur Wildlife Refuge in Oregon did not booby trap the compound before surrendering to authorities. Seventeen member states of the International Syria Support Group agreed to a “cessation of hostilities” in Syria, and, following the announcement, Syrian president Bashar al-Assad promised to keep fighting, Turkey stepped up its bombing campaign against the Kurds in Syria, and Russia continued flying sorties. Russian prime minister Dmitry Medvedev described Russia’s relationship with the West as “a new Cold War,” and a noted opponent of President Vladimir Putin had cake thrown in his face by a gang of men at a Moscow restaurant.
China’s education ministry issued a directive mandating that teachers “guide youthful students to establish and maintain correct views of history,” and the prime minister of the United Arab Emirates published a poem called “Happy Nation.” In Iran, the grandson of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini was barred from running for a position in the Assembly of Experts for not possessing enough Islamic knowledge. It was reported that Kim Jong-un built a $10,000,000 visitor’s center in Sinuiju, North Korea, and Egyptian president Abdel Fattah el-Sisi drove up a 2.5-mile-long red carpet on his way to a speech in which he announced the opening of a public housing complex and promoted austerity measures. Japanese officials drafted new regulations to limit the size of human pyramids to five tiers, the U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee defeated a bill that would have mandated the minimum size of airline seats, and a Kentucky state representative introduced a law requiring men seeking Viagra prescriptions to get a note from their wives. “This,” she said, “is about family values.”
Two pedestrians on San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge were hit with blow darts, and police in northern India declared plans to use slingshots loaded with chili powder against violent protesters. A goat in Chhattisgarh, India, was arrested for grazing in the garden of a local judge. In Wales, a road was temporarily closed after a $274,000 bridge for mice partially collapsed during Storm Imogen, and in Reading a dead mouse was found in a 155-year-old “perpetual mousetrap” at the Museum of English Rural Life. An Australian researcher presented plans to cull the population of koala bears, over half of which are infected with chlamydia. In Florida, a 23-year-old man was charged with aggravated assault after tossing a three-and-a-half-foot alligator into a Wendy’s drive-thru window. A Portland, Oregon, resident filed a complaint against a marijuana dispensary for displaying a mural of a monkey in an astronaut suit smoking marijuana in outer space; the town of Zalec, Slovenia, announced plans to build a $400,000 public beer fountain; and a Wisconsin man arrested for the tenth time for driving under the influence blamed his high blood-alcohol content on eating beer-battered fish. In Spain, it was discovered that the supervisor of a wastewater treatment plant had not attended work for at least six years, but had reportedly spent that time becoming an expert in the works of seventeenth-century Dutch philosopher Baruch Spinoza. 
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