Monday Briefing: Israel Weighs a Response to Iran - The World News

Monday Briefing: Israel Weighs a Response to Iran

Calm mostly prevailed in Israel yesterday after Iran fired more than 300 missiles and drones at the country overnight. Nearly all were intercepted, Israeli military officials said, and those that made an impact caused only minor damage.

Here are the latest updates, and here is a summary of what we know.

Iran’s expected response to Israel’s recent strike on the Iranian Embassy complex in Syria — which killed several of Iran’s top commanders — was its first direct attack on Israel after decades of shadow warfare.

Iran seems to want to de-escalate. It targeted only military sites and advertised the attack in advance — which analysts described as an effort to avoid casualties. Iran has also signaled that it would not strike further unless attacked.

Now, the focus is on Israel. The strikes shook its assumptions about Iran, undermining its long-held calculation that its foe would be best deterred by greater Israeli aggression. Yesterday, the Israeli war cabinet met to discuss possible responses, and the defense minister, Yoav Gallant, said that the country’s confrontation with Iran was “not over yet.”

Two Israeli officials said some war cabinet members had urged a retaliatory strike, but that was called off after the Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, spoke by phone with President Biden.

Details: The U.S. said it had shot down dozens of the Iran-launched drones and missiles. So did Britain and Jordan, which said it acted in self-defense. One person, a 7-year-old girl, was seriously wounded by missile fragments.

On the ground: Explosions illuminated the night sky as Iran’s missiles were intercepted. See a video.

The police said the assailant had a history of mental illness. At an upscale suburban mall near the famous Bondi Beach, he stabbed nearly 20 people, including a 9-month-old girl. The girl’s mother was one of the victims.

The attack has left many questioning how a tragedy of this magnitude could occur in Australia, a country known for its relative safety. The rampage was the deadliest act of mass violence in the country since 2017.

All but one of the victims were women, creating what a police official said would be an “obvious” line of inquiry: “I think anyone seeing that footage can see that for themselves,” she said.

The attacker: The police said that his family, who were not in regular communication with him, contacted the authorities after recognizing him on television broadcasts.

The jury selection for Donald Trump’s first criminal trial begins today in New York. To win an acquittal, the former president may testify to personally persuade the jurors of his innocence.

Prosecutors say that Trump falsified records to cover up a sex scandal, and are armed with insider witnesses and a jury pool drawn from one of the country’s most liberal counties. Trump and his lawyers know that his chances in the courtroom are dicey — they have privately conceded that a jury is unlikely to outright acquit him, my colleagues report.

Still, he will aim to spin any outcome to his benefit and, if convicted, to become the first felon to win the White House. Trump and the Republican Party have made the trial a staple of his campaign fund-raising, and he will essentially bring his campaign to the courthouse.

For more: Sign up for Trump on Trial, our newsletter tracking his trials in New York, Florida, Georgia and Washington, D.C.

A decade ago, the terrorist group Boko Haram kidnapped nearly 300 schoolgirls in Nigeria. Many are still missing, and kidnappings in the West African country have only proliferated.

Saratu Dauda was captured in 2014 at age 16, and spent nine years in captivity. Read her story.

The Australia Letter: The University of Melbourne is trying to facilitate conversations between Indigenous authors and the publishing industry.

Habitat degradation, invasive species, infectious diseases and climate change have given Australia one of the worst rates of species loss in the world. In some cases, scientists say, the threats are so intractable that the only way to protect Australia’s unique animals is to change them.

It is an audacious concept, and one that challenges a fundamental impulse to preserve wild creatures as they are. Using techniques such as crossbreeding and gene editing, scientists are altering the genomes of vulnerable animals, hoping to arm them with the traits they need to survive.

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *