The Presidential Daily Brief


  1. Freddie Gray Protests Expand Across U.S.

    Unrest is spreading. Demonstrations were held across America yesterday in solidarity with Baltimore residents protesting the death of a young black man in police custody. From New York City to Seattle to Houston, people marched to demand an end to police brutality. Most demonstrated peacefully, but 60 were arrested in the Big Apple for disrupting traffic. An internal report of how Gray died is expected on Friday. One witness allegedly saw Gray trying to injure himself, but the report will remain sealed and be handed over to state investigators, which may further rile those seeking answers.

    LA Times, BBC, Washington Post

  2. APA Charged With Helping Justify Torture

    It was more than a Freudian slip. A group of dissident psychologists and human rights activists accused the American Psychological Association of secretly coordinating with the White House, CIA, and Department of Defense, helping the U.S. government bolster legal and ethical justifications of harsh interrogation techniques, including torture, even after damaging evidence from Abu Ghraib emerged in 2004. The APA denied collaborating with the Bush administration and said they would not comment further on the allegations until an independent review of the organization that’s currently underway completes its work.


  3. Ten Jailed for Attempted Malala Killing

    They were hoping to silence here. Some of the men who conspired to shoot teenage Malala Yousafzai in the head in 2012 — she’s now recovering in England, unable to return to Pakistan because of the death threats — have been sentenced to life in prison by a court in Swat. Yousafzai won the Nobel Peace Prize last year. Officials are still trying to apprehend four other people involved in the crime, including a Taliban leader thought to be the ringleader.

    BBC, WSJ (sub)

  4. Airbus Suing Over Alleged German Spying

    It was more than a casual glance. The aerospace manufacturing giant says it has evidence that the German BND and U.S. National Security Agency have collaborated on efforts to spy on them and other European companies since 2008. A leaked BND document claims the NSA requested the intelligence gathering to determine if Airbus was violating trade embargos. Germany’s Interior Minister denied charges of a cover-up, but Airbus has requested more information from the government as part of its criminal complaint, meaning that more spying revelations could be forthcoming.

    BBC, AFP

  5. Two Found Alive, Weather Slows Efforts in Nepal

    Survivors cheered today as two survivors were pulled from the rubble, five days after the quake that killed 5,500. But many are fed up with the lack of aid, even as the U.N. campaigns for $415 million in emergency relief. Efforts to provide food, water and medicine to stricken communities are being stymied by bad weather. The earthquake left mountain roads cracked and vulnerable to landslides, and authorities, citing heavy rains, are warning that it could be days before they can reach some areas.

    BBC, DW, Al Jazeera

  6. Bernie Sanders Is Running for President

    He’s going for it. The progressive Vermont senator announced today that he’s joining Hillary Clinton in a bid for the Democratic presidential nomination. Sanders wasn’t flashy, simply telling supporters that he intends to run and laying out his goals, which include tackling income inequality and the power of money in Washington. The 73-year-old has defeated both Democrats and Republicans to serve in the U.S. Senate as an independent, which is why he says “people should not underestimate” him in battles against big-money candidates.

    Washington Post, NYT

  7. Brazil’s Interest Rates at Six-Year High

    They don’t want to talk about it. The Brazilian central bank issued a very brief statement about raising rates to their highest level since 2009, simply citing “the macroeconomic outlook.” But the move reflects Brasilia’s need to curb inflation that is surging above 4.5 percent. It also signals a move toward more conservative economic policies — the bank was criticized before for pushing rates too low — under increasingly unpopular President Dilma Rousseff in a bid to woo back investors and jump-start the economy.

    FT (sub)


  1. Council: Demolished Pub Will Rise Again

    It went down like a ton of bricks. Residents in a London neighborhood lashed out after a developer illegally destroyed their beloved 1920s pub, which notably had survived the Blitz, a couple weeks ago. They complained to the Westminster City Council, which is set to order the Tel Aviv-based developers to rebuild Carlton Tavern. The company had hoped to build apartments there, but will instead make history … as the first to be ordered by a council to recreate a demolished building from the ground up.

    Daily Mail, BuzzFeed

  2. Rubella Becomes a Thing of the Past

    Pregnant moms in the Americas can breathe a bit easier now that Rubella, also known as German measles, has been eradicated all the way from Canada to Chile, going the way of smallpox and polio. The incurable disease, preventable by MMR vaccine, usually just brings a rash, aches and a fever, but it can cause birth defects and be deadly for unborn fetuses. The illness continues to plague other regions, so health authorities will focus on maintaining its elimination while turning to the next target: Measles.

    Tech Times, The Verge

  3. Secret Shuts Down After 16 Months

    It has confirmed the rumors. The anonymous sharing app that lets people post gossip and updates is going silent. The San Francisco-based startup raised $35 million, but its founder has decided to shut down amid falling user numbers, employee departures and increased competition from similar apps, saying it’s no longer “the vision [he] had when starting the company.” Secret will return the remaining money to investors, and gossip hounds can flock to Whisper or Yik Yak to continue saying rude things.

    BuzzFeed, Wired, TechCrunch

  4. Ruffalo Calls for Black Widow Toys

    They riled the Hulk. Of all the Avengers: Age of Ultron cast, Black Widow, the only major female character, has been sorely neglected by toy-makers and marketers, causing outcry from fans — and Mark Ruffalo, aka Bruce Banner. “We need more #BlackWidow merchandise for my daughters and nieces,” the star tweeted to Marvel. In response, Disney pointed to its existing merchandise and promised more before Halloween. But some fans want even more and are calling for the heroine’s very own film.

    EW, Mashable

  5. Grizzlies Advance, Hawks Eye Round Two

    Bears like to snooze. After dropping one game to the Trail Blazers and blowing a chance for an early rest, Memphis closed out the series 99-93 last night, with Marc Gasol netting 26 points. This gives the team a bit of downtime ahead of a second-round matchup against the red-hot Golden State Warriors, starting Sunday. Top-seeded Atlanta, meanwhile, went up 3-2 against the Nets in their series with a 107-97 win and hope to clinch it in Game 6 on Friday.

    ESPN, USA Today

  6. First Photo of Affleck’s Batman Debuts

    It comes in shades of gray. Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice is still nearly a year from its release, but fans get their first clear look at Ben Affleck picking up the titular cap and cowl. The new costume is a departure from the practical, “technicool” aesthetic of Christopher Nolan’s trilogy. Instead, director Zach Snyder has said the new Batman wears his comic origins on his sleeves, heavily influenced from the graphic novel, The Dark Knight Returns, in which an aging caped crusader spars with the Man of Steel.

    IGN, Jposters, Slashfilm