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We could do the entire newsletter on the twists and turns of the White House-Russia controversy. Let's recap developments from yesterday alone:
-- Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn apparently has a "story to tell," but he wants immunity before he spills the beans
to feds. Flynn, who was forced to resign
as one of President Trump's closest advisers over his communications with the Russian ambassador to the US, said last year, "When you are given immunity, that means you probably committed a crime
." It didn't take long for Democrats to pounce
-- It wasn't just the Dems that the Russians targeted with cybermeddling during the election. They also took aim at all Republican opponents of Trump
-- and the meddling didn't stop after the election, a cybersecurity expert told a Senate panel.
-- So, did Russia do it? Here's President Putin's response: "Read my lips: No.
-- The cast of characters in this drama can be confusing. Here's our explainer.
2. Interstate collapse
Traffic is always hellish in Atlanta. And it's only going to get worse after a section of the city's busy Interstate 85 collapsed during a fire that broke out under an elevated part of the roadway. Thankfully no one was hurt
, but the interstate could be closed there for months. It isn't just a problem for Atlanta. I-85 is a major north-south artery
in the Southeast, so drivers passing through the area -- including hordes of spring breakers this weekend -- will need to find alternate routes.
3. Bathroom bill
North Carolina's controversial bathroom law is officially history. It was repealed after a year of turmoil
that featured protests, demonstrations and a boycott by sports leagues and entertainers that hit the state's economy and its reputation. But is the repeal enough to calm things down
? LGBTQ groups are still ticked off; they say the new law stills allows for discrimination
against transgender people because it forbids cities from granting them extra protections until 2020, by which time the Supreme Court likely would have weighed in
. And it's not clear yet if leagues like the NCAA or the NBA will start bringing events back to the state.
Despite a request from the White House to hold off, Israel has approved plans for new settlements in the West Bank. These would be the first new settlements in Palestinian territory in more than 20 years
. The UN immediately criticized the decision; it has declared such construction in the West Bank and East Jerusalem illegal
because those are territories where Palestinians plan to create their future state. The United States and most other nations consider Israeli settlements in those areas
an obstacle to a two-state solution.
The Trump administration says its priority in Syria is fighting ISIS and not so much getting rid of President Bashar al-Assad
. The Syrian people will decide Assad's future, says Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. And US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley says sure, Assad's a hindrance, but "are we going to sit there and focus on getting him out? No." At the same time, though, Haley called Assad, whose nation is now in its sixth year of bloody civil conflict
, a "war criminal." If the US does definitively abandon the get-rid-of-Assad-policy, that would put it closer in line with Russia and at odds with allies in Europe.
People are talking about these. Read up. Join in.
A 2-year-old girl has no last name right now
because the state of Georgia won't let her parents give her the one they want: Allah.
Don't let that electronics ban on some flights get you down. Qatar Airlines wants to lend you a laptop
A statue of Beyonce carved out of cheese
named Brie-Oncé? Is nothing sacred anymore?
Yes, the new Samsung Galaxy S8 has a lot of cool features
, like a virtual assistant. But mostly everyone just wants a battery that won't explode.
A college professor tweeted he wanted to "vomit"
after someone gave up their seat for a soldier. Last year, he tweeted, "All I want for Christmas is White Genocide
AND FINALLY ...
Need for speed
An inventor uses a sports bike engine to create the world's fastest bumper car because, well, why not?