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[Weekly Review]

Weekly Review

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Donald Trump’s campaign said that those who compare his rhetoric to that of fascist dictators would be “crushed.”

Following nearly seven weeks of Israeli incursions into Gaza which, according to Volker Türk, the U.N. High Commissioner for human rights, have killed or injured 1 out of every 57 Palestinians living in Gaza, it was reported that Israel and Hamas agreed to a deal to free 50 or more women and children who were taken hostage on October 7 in exchange for at least a four-day pause in the fighting.1 2 3 4 Ismail Thawabta, the director of the Gaza Government Media office, said that of more than 30,000 injured people, 75 percent were women and children, and that Israeli forces had killed at least 200 doctors, nurses, and paramedics, at least 51 journalists and media representatives, and at least 22 rescue workers and had destroyed or severely damaged over 95,000 government buildings, roughly 250 medical facilities, and at least 55 ambulances, 222 mosques, and three churches.5 Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced that two fuel trucks per day would be let into Gaza, 3.5 percent of the amount of fuel allowed to enter before the war. Members of Netanyahu’s right flank called the announcement “a grave mistake” that “broadcast[s] weakness.” Israeli officials argued that the decision was necessary to avoid the collapse of Gaza’s sewage and water systems and to prevent the spread of disease. “If plague were to break out, we’d have to stop the war,” said the chairman of the Israeli National Security Council.6 Israeli troops, accompanied by tanks and bulldozers, attacked Al-Shifa hospital, which held 650 patients, between 5,000 and 7,000 displaced civilians, and more than 1,000 staff, and arrested the facility’s only electric generator mechanic and oxygen station technician, stripped and blindfolded 30 of the people inside, and exhumed bodies from a mass grave that had been dug in the hospital yard.7 8 The army, which has claimed that the site hides a Hamas command center, displayed footage of what it claimed was a tunnel shaft, as well as guns, grenades, protective vests, and Hamas uniforms that it said were found in the hospital’s MRI unit, which Hamas dismissed as “a weak and ridiculous narration.”9 10 11 12

The World Health Organization launched an international commission on loneliness, and it was reported that the organization had paid $250 each to Congolese women who were sexually abused by its staffers during an Ebola outbreak.13 14 A French senator was accused of drugging a fellow lawmaker’s drink with the intent to sexually assault her, and a Russian artist was sentenced to seven years in a penal colony for placing price tags with antiwar messages on items at her local supermarket.15 16 The Colombian government began the sterilization of approximately 170 free-roaming “Cocaine Hippos,” and Donald Trump’s campaign said that those who compare his rhetoric to that of fascist dictators would be “crushed.”17 18 Just over a month after House conservatives ousted Kevin McCarthy from the speakership following his deal with Democrats to fund the government, the newly elected speaker of the House, Mike Johnson, who said that the separation of church and state was a “misnomer,” passed a deal to avert a shutdown with Democratic votes.19 20 21 22 In a tense Oversight Committee hearing, Republican Representative James R. Comer said that a Democratic colleague “look[ed] like a Smurf,” McCarthy was accused of elbowing a Republican who opposed him in the speakership fight, and, during a HELP Committee hearing, Republican Senator Markwayne Mullin attempted to fight the president of the Teamsters. “By the way, I’m not afraid of biting,” said Mullin. “And I don’t care where I bite.”23 24 25 The man who attacked Nancy Pelosi’s husband with a hammer said that he had planned to interrogate the former speaker of the House while wearing an inflatable unicorn costume, and the Supreme Court adopted a code of ethics with no enforcement mechanism.26 27 Following a report that he had spent campaign money on hotels, designer clothing, gambling, OnlyFans, Botox treatments, and a visit to Adventureland Amusement Park, Representative George Santos announced that he would not run for reelection.28

The board of OpenAI, the company behind ChatGPT, fired their CEO, then reinstated him five days later, and it was reported that thousands of people have been unable to access their A.I. girlfriends since a chatbot company founder was arrested for arson.29 30 A ransomware gang filed a complaint with the SEC after their victims refused to pay, and it was reported that Volkswagen refused to help police GPS-track one of the automaker’s vehicles with a kidnapped child in it until a $150 subscription fee had been paid.31 32 The streaming platform PlutoTV announced an all-car-chase channel.33 In Hungary, actors playing Romeo and Juliet sustained serious injuries after falling over a balcony.34 The Scrabble community debated the merits of a new word list that includes the controversial entries BRUTALER, GRATINEEED, and HORSEFEATHERSES.35 “Your honor, if I can interrupt you, I’m on a mission I have to complete by year’s end,” said a Michigan man on trial for attempting to break into several homes and masturbating on a front porch, and an Iowan was arrested for onanism outside the Kum & Go convenience store.36 37 The U.S. Navy requested an increase from three to five in the number of whales it can strike with vessels before 2026, it was reported that sailors had begun playing heavy metal music to deter orcas from attacking their ships, and former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro was revealed to be under investigation for harassing a humpback whale while riding his Jet Ski.38 39 40Jon Edelman

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