The Presidential Daily Brief


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    Democrats Push for Speedy Impeachment

    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced yesterday that Democratic lawmakers will draw up articles of impeachment, saying President Donald Trump left them “no choice” because of his ongoing efforts to undermine the 2020 election. A vote could take place before Christmas, though a precise timeline is still up in the air. "Do it now," Trump dared, so that the U.S. "can get back to business” following a Senate trial.

    Are Democrats united? It's still unclear if they'll focus their case on Trump's pressure campaign against Ukraine — or add obstruction charges related to his alleged attempt to derail the special counsel's Russia probe.

  2. Uber Reports Thousands of Sexual Assaults in 2018

    In its first detailed safety report, the ride-sharing service revealed Thursday that it registered more than 3,000 cases of sexual assault in the U.S. alone last year. Of those, 235 were reported rapes in which the driver was the perpetrator 92 percent of the time. "Confronting sexual violence requires honesty," said the company's chief legal adviser.

    How will Uber boost safety? It says it's hiring 300 new employees to tackle the issue while also strengthening drivers' background checks and improving in-app reporting mechanisms.

    Check out OZY's feature about the rise of ride-share spinoffs.

  3. Indian Police Kill Gang Rape Suspects

    The four men accused of raping and murdering a 27-year-old veterinarian in Hyderabad last week were shot dead by police early Friday. Authorities said the suspects, who had been taken to the crime scene, attempted to grab officers' weapons and flee. Their deaths sparked celebrations in Hyderabad and on social media — as well as a response from the victim's mother that "justice has been done." The woman's murder had prompted widespread protests in cities across India.

    Is the official story under dispute? One police reformer called the suspects' deaths "entirely avoidable" but added that it was too early to tell whether they amounted to extrajudicial killings.

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    Saudi Aramco Makes History as Biggest IPO Ever

    Although it fell short of the $2 trillion valuation sought by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the state oil company raised $25.6 billion Thursday, pushing it beyond Alibaba's record 2014 initial public offering. Valued at $1.7 trillion, Saudi Aramco said Thursday it would sell 3 billion shares — a 1.5 percent stake in the company — for $8.53 apiece. Critics say it's still overvalued, and also worry about government influence over the company.

    What's next? The oil business could become even more profitable as OPEC appears poised to cut production, which would boost prices and make Aramco shares more attractive.

  5. Also Important...

    Nationwide labor protests in France turned violent yesterday as police fired tear gas while demonstrators burned a truck trailer. North Korea is opening itself up for medical tourism in hope of targeting Chinese patients seeking therapy for serious diseases. And Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi is planning to return to Europe next week to defend Myanmar against accusations of genocide, mass murder and rape.

    Try This: Feeling presidential after a week of briefings? Prove it with the PDB Quiz.

    OZY is hiring! We’re looking for an analytical and globally minded tech reporter to sniff out today’s most important stories in science, technology and health. Check out our jobs page and read the description here.


  1. Can Tourism Save Zimbabwe's Tattered Economy?

    As it battles a 300 percent inflation rate, Zimbabwe is looking toward visitors to boost its long-crippled economy, OZY reports. The famed Victoria Falls — where a new $150 million international airport could easily become a regional hub — recorded its best ever year for tourism in 2018, while Lonely Planet named the country a must-see destination for 2019. Tourist visas, meanwhile, are becoming easier to get.

    Is the economy improving? While major challenges remain, trickle-down effects like higher employment and better infrastructure have already been observed in western Zimbabwe.

  2. Lebanon's Journalists Are Protesting Too

    More than a dozen employees of The Daily Star, the country's only English-language newspaper, walked off work Thursday to protest months of unpaid salaries. The strike, which comes as Lebanon has been rattled by widespread protests over official mismanagement, was collectively organized by the staff. Employees are also angry about the dismissal of American journalist Benjamin Redd, who says he was fired for encouraging the walkout.

    Why can't the newspaper pay up? Its editor blames the financial struggles facing publications worldwide — though critics point out the paper is owned by the wealthy family of Prime Minister Saad Hariri.

  3. Deadly Landslides Ravage East Africa

    Authorities said at least 28 people have died in landslides in northwestern Burundi — a death toll that could increase as rescue workers continue searching for survivors. A barrage of rainstorms and floods have affected an estimated 2.8 million people across East Africa, leaving 280 dead and tens of thousands displaced in the past two months.

    Is more deadly weather expected? Somalia is girding for a tropical storm that could destroy crops and unleash waterborne diseases.

    Don't miss OZY's original series, Climate Change Frontiers.

  4. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met yesterday with President Trump and NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg. Source: Getty

    Filmmakers Sue US Government Over Visa Rules

    Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf are facing a lawsuit by Doc Society and the International Documentary Association over rules that force foreign nationals applying for U.S. visas to provide their social media handles. Refusal to disclose any profiles used in the past five years on 20 platforms could lead to rejection. The suit argues the "arbitrary and capricious" rule prevents people from speaking freely for fear of retribution.

    Why are filmmakers taking this on? The groups say they often work with foreign documentary makers whose safety could be jeopardized by exposing their online identities or social media posts.

  5. Report: Army Football Ditched White Supremacist Slogan

    West Point's football squad reportedly abandoned its slogan in September after learning about its link to white supremacist gangs. According to ESPN, coach Jeff Monken was "mortified" after learning the origin of the phrase "God Forgives, Brothers Don't" — which the team adopted in the 1990s through the acronym GFBD — and said he'd use it as a "teaching moment" for his players. It's been completely removed from the team's flag and memorabilia following an internal investigation.

    Is this a unique incident? Navy football also ditched its "Load the Clip" slogan in August amid concerns about insensitivity over gun violence.