There’s a new show in town. Donald Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner will serve as a senior adviser to the president, transition officials have confirmed. 35-year-old Kushner is expected to stand down as CEO of his family’s real estate conglomerate. His appointment comes with unanswered questions: Trump’s choice could violate anti-nepotism laws, and Kushner’s business dealings give him many potential conflicts of interest. This announcement comes as Trump’s nominees to lead the departments of State, Justice, Education, Homeland Security, Commerce, Labor and the CIA go before hearings.
The Presidential Daily Brief
The killer was targeting soldiers. On Sunday, a 28-year-old Palestinian drove a truck into a group of soldiers in Jerusalem, killing four and wounding 17 before being shot dead by another soldier. Later, authorities raided the attacker’s neighborhood and arrested nine people, most of them members of his family. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu blamed the incident, which echoes recent deadly truck assaults in Germany and France, on ISIS — and though it’d be the first such strike in Israel, ISIS has threatened the country before in propaganda videos.
They’re giving peace another chance. Leaders of the ethnically split island are set to begin a week of peace talks today in Geneva, hoping to end a division stretching back decades. Following an unsuccessful round of talks in November, the Greek Cypriot leader and his Turkish Cypriot counterpart will once again meet under U.N. sponsorship in the hopes of reuniting the Mediterranean island after 42 years of division. New Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, who will attend the conference later this week, has described the latest round of peace talks as a “historic opportunity.”
Better mend that special relationship. U.K. Foreign Minister Boris Johnson is stateside for his first in-person meetings with the president-elect’s team. Before the election, Johnson derided Trump’s “stupefying ignorance” — remarks that could haunt him, especially since the first British politician Trump liaised with was ultranationalist Nigel Farage. Meanwhile, sterling dropped as Prime Minister Theresa May again signaled that she’d prefer a hard Brexit — leaving the EU’s single market rather than ceding any immigration controls — which could cost Britain its privileged trading relationships.
Know This: French police have arrested 16 people over the armed robbery of Kim Kardashian in October. Online nationalism is an ongoing problem for Chinese authorities, especially as the China-U.S. relationship enters unknown territory. And the suspect in the Fort Lauderdale airport shooting reportedly had a complex mental health history.
Read This: Albert Woodfox spent more than 40 years in solitary confinement — and now he has to adjust to life on the outside again.
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The rematch was worth the wait. Deshaun Watson hit Hunter Renfrow for the game-winning touchdown with one second left on the clock for a 35-31 CFP victory, shocking previously undefeated Alabama and denying coach Nick Saban a record-tying fifth championship ring. The Crimson Tide took the lead with only two minutes remaining, hoping to repeat last year’s performance. But Watson and his fleet of sure-handed receivers forced a thrilling final drive, earning the Tigers their second title in school history and first since 1981.
She didn’t mince words. Accepting a lifetime achievement award, the peerless actress delivered an impassioned ode to the diversity of Hollywood and criticized — without mentioning Donald Trump by name — the president-elect’s mocking imitation of a disabled reporter, producing a predictable social media divide. Meanwhile, host Jimmy Fallon joked that Vladimir Putin might have hacked the award show votes. Moonlight took home best film drama, while the night’s biggest winner was musical La La Land, which reeled in a record seven Golden Globes.
It’s all in the cards. From tarot readers to witches, Italians and their neighbors are increasingly consulting the occult to battle dire financial circumstances. Along with wine, fashion and the Mafia, the dark arts — with an estimated $10.6 million in annual profits — are thriving in Italy while much of the economy is in decay. Many people will pay fortune tellers and amulet readers for help with the lottery, investment advice or simply to ward off bad spirits, and the occult industry continues to thrive despite police crackdowns against fraud.
It’s a new way of keeping the roads safe. After Grande Prairie, a city in Alberta, Canada, refused to run an anti-abortion group’s ads on public buses, the group appealed. But in a landmark ruling, a judge has decided that the graphic “abortion kills children” ads could cause psychological harm to women who have terminated pregnancies, as well as to children who may not understand what they mean. Critics say the ruling violates free speech, but many have applauded the decision to keep this issue off public streets.
They’ve cracked the code. The burger giant ditched its Dollar Menu in 2013, citing low profits. But Taco Bell’s stuck with its own $1 menu, focusing on new or wacky food choices like the Double Stacked Taco and successfully using the low price tag to get customers to try weirder options. Prices for fast food have gone up over the years, making dollar menus all the more appealing for low-income customers. With fast food chains fearing a restaurant recession, Taco Bell’s model may be a crucial leg up.
There was little doubt. The NFL’s wild-card weekend had the biggest combined margin of victory since 1981 thanks to four lopsided home wins. Aaron Rodgers hit a halftime Hail Mary as he led Green Bay to a 38-13 victory over New York, advancing to face top-seeded Dallas next weekend. Pittsburgh smothered Miami 30-12, but Steelers fans got a scare when Ben Roethlisberger injured his ankle late in the game — though the quarterback reassured them that he’ll play at Kansas City on Sunday for the quarterfinals.