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Winter Olympics, Valentine’s Day, Benjamin Netanyahu: Your Wednesday Briefing

(Above, U.S. Special Forces at a frontline outpost in Syria.)

Meanwhile, President Emmanuel Macron of France threatened the Syrian government with military action over chemical assaults on civilians.



Lawrence Jackson for The New York Times

• In Washington, most sensible U.S. safety officers sounded the alarm over Russian efforts to sway the midterm elections within the fall.

Hackers are already the usage of bot armies to promote partisan causes on social media, they mentioned. (Islamist militants and cyberattacks ranked among other top threats.)

Separately, Trump management officers revised earlier claims that White House staff members had been unaware of F.B.I. warnings about issues within the background test of Rob Porter, the president’s group of workers secretary. Mr. Porter resigned in shame closing week.

Mr. Porter by no means were given a permanent security clearance, however he’s now not by myself. The president’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, may be running on an intervening time standing that provides him get entry to to categorized subject material.



Pool photograph by means of Sebastian Scheiner

Can Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu keep in place of business?

That used to be the query after the Israeli police mentioned that that they had amassed sufficient proof for bribery and fraud charges. The attorney general must now decide whether or not to indict Mr. Netanyahu, a procedure that might take months.

The damning summary of their findings referred to a gradual waft of cigars and red champagne in Mr. Netanyahu’s Jerusalem place of abode in amounts enough to inventory a small cocktail front room.



John Gaps III/Associated Press

• Germans have had explanation why to mirror at the state in their union: Since closing week, the Berlin Wall has been down longer than it stood.

The West continues to be richer, and has extra immigrants. But they’re considered as extra of an issue within the East and, crucially, Easterners an increasing number of keep watch over the political discourse of a national shift to the extremes, our Berlin bureau chief writes.

(Above, a person hitting the wall with a sledgehammer in November 1989)

Separately, Martin Schulz, the chief of the Social Democrats, stepped down amid discord over how he negotiated the birthday party’s coalition maintain Chancellor Angela Merkel.



The Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens

For Valentine’s Day, our reporter mined a California library’s number of about 12,000 paper valentines from throughout 3 centuries.

Above, a cobweb valentine, most definitely British, circa 1830-60. (A string lifts up the fortress to expose a mouse in a lure.)

And people aren’t the one ones with love at the mind. Songbirds, which shape lifelong mating pairs, have brain systems perfectly tuned to fit together.



Laura Morton for The New York Times

• We (or quite our intrepid tech creator) examined an autonomous selfie drone, a 13-eyed flying gadget that follows you so long as its batteries closing. Expect its generation to quickly change into ubiquitous.

Our economic system columnist argues that inflated inventory costs within the U.S. could discourage work and capital investments and get ready the bottom for much more inequality.

• Cafe and eating place operators are scrambling for a way to maintain the rising collection of far off employees: Cultivate those customers or unplug the Wi-Fi.

Uber is inching toward profitability, serving to the corporate in its plans to listing as early as subsequent 12 months.

Here’s a snapshot of global markets.

In the News


Pool photograph by means of Wu Hong

South Africa’s energy battle: The leaders of the African National Congress have brazenly known as for President Jacob Zuma’s resignation. Notably, the reasoning isn’t moral problems, however that Mr. Zuma is harming the governing birthday party’s political potentialities. [The New York Times]

The Trump management, outmaneuvered in South Korea, seems open to retaining initial talks with North Korea. [The New York Times]

• At a carefully watched fund-raising convention, Iraq requested prosperous allies led by means of the United States for $88 billion to rebuild. The resolution, in brief: no. [The New York Times]

• In the Netherlands, the Senate narrowly voted in want of a regulation that makes all Dutch adults doable organ donors until they choose out. [Associated Press]

In a case that has rocked English football, a former early life skill scout for a number of well known groups has been convicted of sexually abusing gamers after they have been youngsters. [The New York Times]

“Everybody has meth round right here — everyone.” The drug, professionals say, hasn’t ever been purer, less expensive or extra deadly. [The New York Times]

A thorough proposal for tackling smog: Germany is alleged to be bearing in mind a plan to make public transportation unfastened in some towns to scale back visitors and emissions. [The Guardian]

Prince Henrik of Denmark, the husband of Queen Margrethe, died at 83. (We not too long ago wrote about his needs for a change in burial plans.) [Politiken]

Smarter Living

Tips, each new and previous, for a extra enjoyable lifestyles.


Karsten Moran for The New York Times

• Roman egg drop soup is a simple recipe for midweek.

• Here’s how to order room service the correct means.

• Sex shouldn’t be painful. Here is some advice from a gynecologist.



Cody O’Loughlin for The New York Times

The papers of Angela Davis, simply obtained by means of Harvard, hint her evolution from difficult to understand philosophy professor to black feminist icon and to prophetic voice on mass incarceration.

An Iranian photographer’s work offers an alternative narrative of the rustic’s revolution in 1979 and its aftermath.

Forget the Olympics: Flynn, a light-footed bichon frisé who seemed like a cloud, won the Westminster Dog Show.

• Today within the Champions League, Real Madrid will face Paris St. Germain. Some of the Spanish football membership’s socios told our correspondent that they were worried in regards to the conceivable finish of an generation. (Here are Tuesday’s results.)

The Swedish pop celebrity Fever Ray explores the kinky aspect of her persona in her newest album. We met her ahead of her European tour, which starts subsequent week.

Back Story


Kim Won-Jin/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Valentine’s Day is widely thought to mark a wine-fueled festival for relationship in historic Rome.

But in North Korea, it indicates a special more or less affection. On nowadays in 2012, Kim Jong-il, who led the rustic from 1994 till his loss of life in 2011, used to be posthumously named a “generalissimo.”

The announcement got here two days earlier than what would had been Mr. Kim’s 70th birthday, which continues to be celebrated within the nation as “The Day of the Shining Star.”

The best different North Korean generalissimo is Mr. Kim’s father, Kim Il-sung, who started ruling in 1945 and won the identify in 1992, two years earlier than his loss of life. The time period is a transparent reduce above the “marshal” identify held by means of North Korea’s 3rd and present chief, Kim Jong-un.

The more youthful Mr. Kim would possibly keep in energy for many years, although, and he already has a number of titles: “Dear respected comrade,” for one, in addition to “supreme commander” of the Korean People’s Army.

Mike Ives contributed reporting.


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