He did his best. The Nobel committee awarded the coveted prize to Juan Manuel Santos for his work negotiating a peace deal between Colombia’s government and FARC rebels after 52 years of war. On Sunday, Colombia’s voters rejected the hard-fought agreement by a tiny margin, plunging the South American nation into uncertainty about next steps. But in awarding the prize, the Nobel committee said they believed voters were still committed to the idea of peace and that they hoped the accolade would energize Santos to keep struggling for non-violence.
The Presidential Daily Brief
Next stop, Florida. The massive storm is already smashing into the Bahamas after killing at least 283 and displacing thousands in Haiti, which had to postpone its weekend presidential election. Now Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina — all in Matthew’s path — have declared states of emergency. Gov. Rick Scott said it might be Florida’s biggest evacuation in history, as residents either leave or stockpile canned goods to wait out the storm. With Matthew expected to make landfall in the U.S. late today or early tomorrow, the storm’s been upgraded to Category 4.
They were changing the guard. At least 25 people, mostly Syrian rebels, were reportedly killed in an explosion on the Syrian side of a border crossing near Aleppo, a key area for Turkish-supported rebels who need to travel to fighting areas or evacuate their wounded. It’s not clear whether the attack involved a suicide bomb or a remote detonation, but ISIS has claimed responsibility for the killings. Rebels in the area are not only fighting ISIS, but also the Syrian government, which has stepped up its efforts to retake Aleppo.
Move over, Edward Snowden. The FBI arrested Harold Thomas Martin in August, and officials say he’s now been charged with stealing classified documents — possibly computer codes used to spy on foreign governments. Martin, like Snowden, was an employee of consultants Booz Allen Hamilton, which saw shares drop at the news. Officials say it’s not clear if the thousands of documents found at Martin’s home were passed on, or if he’s simply a “hoarder,” but his arrest has called into question the widespread use of contractors to deal with top secret information.
Call it a split decision. As the election snowballs into its final weeks, most recent polls show Hillary Clinton leading Donald Trump in pivotal states, including Ohio, Florida and Pennsylvania — but they also show GOP senators pulling ahead in those same states. Meanwhile, Democrats are hoping to capitalize on Trump’s slump to win races downticket. Polls point to a Democratic president facing a Republican Congress for at least another two years, says OZY’s Nick Fouriezos from the swing state of Colorado.
Know This: Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, 81, has been hospitalized and is undergoing a heart test. More than 750 call center workers have been arrested in India over an American IRS phone scam. At least six people died during an attack in Kenya that’s being blamed on al-Shabab. And Polish lawmakers have walked back a full abortion ban after 100,000 women went on strike.
Look at This: Norway’s prime minister was caught on camera playing Pokemon Go — during a debate in parliament.
Read This: A new paper published in Nature lays out the case that it’ll be tough to push human lifespans past 115.
Talk about a vacation on the edge. A sprawling concrete complex on an island in the Baltic Sea, the Prora resort is one of the biggest surviving architectural legacies of the Third Reich. Built in the 1930s as a getaway for working-class Nazi families, it never opened to the public, but has now been converted into a luxury condominium complex and hotel. Some are wary of Nazi history turning a profit, though — especially as the historical museum on the site is being evicted to make way for new tenants.
Better hope your identical twin isn’t a criminal mastermind. A new biometric identification program from MasterCard is officially “facial recognition,” but in practice it means users can manage their online banking by taking a selfie (or using a fingerprint, but that’s boring) instead of tapping out a password on their phone. To ensure thieves can’t just use someone’s Facebook photo, users will have to blink or shake their heads to snap the picture. The service rolled out in 12 European countries this week and should be worldwide by early 2017.
There’s something in the air. If the U.S. health system were a country, it would be 13th in the world in greenhouse gas emissions, according to a recent PLOS ONE paper. It’s a hidden cost for a country that spends over $3 trillion annually on medical care, and one that reverses some of the system’s own health gains — to the tune of 470,000 disability-adjusted life years lost. Researchers don’t suggest tearing down hospitals but want to start a conversation about how energy efficiency can be another kind of lifesaver.
The criticism was yuge. Yesterday Jesse Watters tweeted his regret “if anyone found offense” with his segment on Monday’s O’Reilly Factor, when he visited New York’s Chinatown in the wake of Donald Trump’s China-bashing debate. Asian-American groups slammed Watters for mocking interviewees who didn’t speak English and for deploying a staggering number of stereotypes, asking about karate and stolen watches. Watters courted controversy before with a similar ”tongue-in-cheek” segment in Harlem, and now some are lamenting his “missed opportunity” to actually cover the Asian-American electorate.
He’s an October ace. Madison Bumgarner tossed a complete game shutout in the wild-card playoff as the Giants eliminated the Mets 3-0. New York’s Noah Syndergaard nearly matched MadBum, stretching a no-hitter through six innings, but left in the seventh, leaving closer Jeurys Familia to give up a three-run homer in the ninth to unlikely hero Conor Gillaspie. Bumgarner’s postseason dominance, with 23 straight scoreless innings in elimination games, gives San Francisco an edge as they advance to the NLDS on Friday in Chicago.