Monday briefing: US to push Israel to cut spending

Monday briefing: US to push Israel to cut spending

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has vowed to “fight to the end” in Gaza as anguish continues to spread following the killing of three hostages last week. The hostages were accidentally shot by the Israeli army while waving a white flag, and their deaths have raised new questions about how Netanyahu’s government is prosecuting the war.

Here’s the last one.

Netanyahu began a government meeting yesterday by reading a letter he said came from the families of Israeli soldiers killed in the fighting in Gaza. “You have a mandate to fight; you do not have a mandate to stop in the middle,” Netanyahu read, according to a statement from his office.

The letter appears to contradict the message coming from relatives of hostages still held in Gaza, many of whom have taken to the streets to demand a ceasefire so their loved ones can return home.

American efforts: Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin is traveling to the Middle East this week, visiting Israel and three Persian Gulf countries, as Biden administration officials push Israel to end its large-scale ground and air campaign of here for a few weeks and move on to a more focused phase.

Austin is expected to discuss with Israeli leaders the use of small groups of elite forces, which would carry out more specific missions to find and kill Hamas leaders, rescue hostages and destroy tunnels, according to U.S. officials.

International: Germany and Britain have called for a “lasting ceasefire”, in an apparent shift from their previous full support for Israel.

Gaza: The death toll announced by the Gaza Health Ministry is approaching 20,000, including more than 100 people in a single family.

Temperatures plunged across China and parts of the country were reeling after wintry conditions and heavy rain caused widespread disruptions, including a collision on the Beijing subway that hospitalized more than 500 commuters.

The average high temperature in the capital dropped to around 15 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 9 degrees Celsius) on Saturday after hovering around 50 degrees last week.

Meteorologists issued warnings of low temperatures and strong winds on Saturday, saying a “strong cold snap” was spreading icy winds across the country and was expected to continue this week. In some areas of China, temperatures could drop to historic lows, and colder than average conditions are expected in northern China through the end of the year.

Six million people have died and more than six million have been displaced after decades of fighting in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Corruption is endemic, massacres and rapes are commonplace, and the upcoming presidential election only adds to the chaos.

More than 100 armed groups and several armies vie for supremacy. Foreign powers covet the country’s gold, oil and coltan, a mineral used in making cell phones and electric vehicles. Humanitarian groups have struggled to draw attention to the suffering – even when the number of people affected dwarfs those of other recent crises.

“Our children were born during the war. We are experiencing war,” Jean Bahati said as he and his wife fled artillery fire. “We’re so fed up.”

Still image from a video of men singing and dancing in a small market in Rasht, Iran.Credit…N / A

It all started when a 70-year-old fish market stall owner in Rasht, Iran, nicknamed “Booghy,” danced in public, an illegal act in the country. The Islamic regime repressed him and those who joined him. As news of the arrests spread like wildfire, so did the groove, going viral in a new collective act of civil disobedience.

“It’s a way of protesting and demanding our freedom and happiness,” said Mohammad Aghapour, 32, a DJ.

Lives lived: Merle Goldman, a prominent China expert with a gift for connecting with non-academic readers, has died at age 92.

Want to raise a child with the business acumen of industrial tycoon Ratan Tata or the powers of concentration of spiritual guru Swami Vivekananda?

For centuries, Indian mothers have practiced garbh sanskar, in which the upbringing of a child and the creation of an environment conducive to the inculcation of a Hindu value system begins in the womb. Today, there is an app for that. In fact, there are many. They combine traditional prenatal and postnatal counseling with scientific research, incorporating wellness practices, diet plans, yoga, meditation, art, story reading and lullabies.

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Eric D. Eilerman

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