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Italy, Hillary Clinton, Leslie Jones: Your Thursday Briefing

August 25, 2016 10:19 AM
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The death toll from the 6.2-magnitude earthquake in central Italy has risen significantly, to at least 247 people. Amatrice appears to have been the town hardest hit. Rescuers continue to search for the missing.

A 6.2-magnitude earthquake nearly 100 miles northeast of Rome has left hundreds dead and many more injured. The mayor of one town, Amatrice, said at least half of his town was destroyed.

Centuries-old, unreinforced buildings and an intense, shallow quake made for extensive damage, comparable to a 2009 temblor near the town of L’Aquila that killed nearly 300 people.

Donald J. Trump will hold a rally today in New Hampshire, while Hillary Clinton is expected to deliver a speech in Nevada accusing the Trump campaign of embracing extremist movements.

Even as Mr. Trump tries to alter his message, he continues to be dogged by suggestions that he’s running a racist campaign. African-American voters have expressed anger over his recent remarks painting a bleak picture of black life.

A sentence of two years’ probation for a Massachusetts high school athlete who was charged with sexually assaulting two sleeping women is the latest chapter in a debate about white privilege in the justice system.

Our columnist looks ahead to the Supreme Court’s next term, and to a death penalty case involving a legal standard derived from the book “Of Mice and Men.”

The Colombian government and the country’s largest rebel group have reached a deal to end their 52-year conflict, which has killed 220,000 people and displaced more than five million.

U.N. officials are bracing for a new refugee crisis in the coming months, warning that 1.2 million Iraqis could be uprooted once the battle to retake the Iraqi city of Mosul from Islamic State militants begins. The U.S. military’s failure to track weapons it gave to allies after Saddam Hussein’s ouster has helped to prolong the violence in Iraq.

Scenes of French police officers ordering Muslim women to remove their full-body bathing suits are drawing widespread criticism of the country, which views itself as a beacon of Western values.

• The uproar over EpiPens’ cost increase is shedding light on the drug industry’s practice of sharply raising prices just before a generic competitor enters the market.

• Gawker may be dead, but its legacy endures, our tech columnist writes: The news and gossip website’s business model and work flow “have colonized just about every other media company.”

• Our review of Amazon’s “Subscribe & Save” program finds that the second part of that name isn’t always accurate.

• U.S. stocks finished down on Wednesday. Here’s a snapshot of global markets.

The actress’s personal website was hacked, with her online attackers posting what appeared to be explicit photos of her, as well as pictures of her driver’s license and passport.

The attack on the “Ghostbusters” star, who has been the victim of online harassment in recent weeks, made use of a meme about a gorilla killed this year at the Cincinnati Zoo, which is being deployed to revive racist stereotypes.

Hope Solo may have played her last game for the U.S. women’s soccer team. The national soccer federation suspended the goalkeeper for six months and terminated her contract for calling Sweden’s players “a bunch of cowards” after they eliminated the U.S. at the Olympics.

A new planet where liquid water could exist at the surface — meaning there’s a possibility it can support life — is orbiting next door to our solar system, astronomers said.

And a new study finds that genetic tests can help determine which breast cancer patients can skip painful chemotherapy treatments.

Herbed tomatoes are a great way to use up the last of your summer produce. And here’s a look at how Tucson became one of America’s best food cities.

It’s hard to change a reputation. But that hasn’t stopped Russia from trying to make Ivan IV less “terrible.”

Born into royalty on this day in 1530, Ivan did much for Russia during a 37-year reign as its first official czar. He captured huge stretches of territory; reformed the government by pushing for more organization and representation; and is credited with aiding Russia’s cultural development by encouraging printing.

But two decades of futile wars aimed at expanding Russia’s empire turned Ivan angry and paranoid. He began executing people accused of treason, and he led the Massacre of Novgorod, which targeted an entire city in 1570. Near the end of his life, Ivan even murdered his presumed heir.

Yet Russia has recently claimed that Ivan became known as Terrible because of Western propaganda. The culture minister has maintained that the unflattering name was a mistranslation of his Russian moniker — Ivan Grozny — which he says is closer to “Ivan the Strict.” Last year, he organized a large museum exhibition near the Kremlin that cast Ivan in a positive light. A Russian governor is also pushing for a statue in the czar’s honor.

The modified reputation has yet to stick. Historians were highly critical of the exhibit, and the public is rallying against the monument.


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