They finally found it. Malaysia’s Prime Minister says that the pieces of plane discovered on Réunion Island recently are in fact wreckage from Malaysia Airlines flight 370, which disappeared in March of last year. A wing part is currently being examined by French researchers to determine its provenance — they’re still refusing to confirm until their analysis is complete, which should be tomorrow. Malaysia has been notoriously secretive about its criminal investigation into the plane’s disappearance — perhaps now grieving family members will get some answers about the plane’s fate.
The Presidential Daily Brief
Call it a tragedy deterred if not entirely avoided. A 51-year-old male allegedly used pepper spray on three movie patrons, injuring one with a hatchet during the afternoon attack before opening fire. Witnesses alerted two nearby police officers who were working a nearby traffic stop. Officials say the gunman then opened fire on one of the officers who returned fire and reportedly brought the suspect down. All three victims were treated for superficial injuries but the chaos appeared all too similar to a theater shooting in Louisiana just two weeks ago.
He wants everyone to see the bigger picture. Beginning with an address at American University today, the U.S. president is embarking on a series of public speeches in a bid to shore up his administration’s nuclear deal with Iran. The agreement seeks to gradually lift sanctions in exchange for Tehran’s curbed ability to develop nukes. But the White House is up against well-funded opposition, and the deal — which Obama believes would make the world safer — faces an uphill climb for congressional approval, with legislators expected to vote by mid-September.
There’s not enough room for them all to take the stage. The network hosting the first Republican debate tomorrow night in Cleveland could only welcome 10 of the 17 candidates, with the also-rans shunted to an earlier debate. Those who didn’t make the cut include 2012 runner-up Rick Santorum, whose team called the system “preposterous,” and former Texas Gov. Rick Perry. Unprecedented viewership numbers are anticipated for Thursday’s show, with the spotlight burning brightest on real estate mogul Donald Trump, alongside questions over whether he can remain the front-runner.
If you haven’t got it, build it. That seems to be Beijing’s approach with its construction of artificial islands. It’s adding to reefs and installing military outposts amid some of the world’s most important commercial sea routes. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, on hand for a regional security forum in Malaysia, is calling on Chinese leaders to knock it off. But Beijing refuses to stop — or even discuss — construction, adding more fuel to a decades-long fight over ownership of the South China Sea.
They’re keeping an eye on the home front. Anjem Choudary, a prominent Muslim cleric whose most serious conviction to date is for organizing an unlawful demonstration, has been charged under the U.K.’s Terrorism Act with supporting ISIS through lectures and YouTube videos. The U.K. has taken a new stance on terror of late, promising to crack down on “peddlers of hatred” as well as those who actually commit violence. When Choudary appears in court later, it’ll be a test of how the U.K. plans to balance its new hardline policies with a commitment to free speech.
Profits are also making a run for the border. Thousands of asylum seekers have been storming the Channel Tunnel terminal in near-nightly bids to reach Britain, causing miles of freight backups on the other side. It’s costing British transport a whopping $1.2 million a day, with firms facing shipping delays, as well as massive fines when drivers unwittingly give rides to migrants hiding in their trucks. The Brits are trying to beef up security, but business owners fear that a long-term solution has — and will continue to — escape national leaders.
Migrant ship capsizes off Libya. (BBC)
Flooding derails train in central India, killing 21. (Reuters)
Japan seeks spying investigation after Wikileaks disclosure. (WSJ) sub
FBI investigates security of Clinton email. (Washington Post)
UK police link Bardo Museum killings to Tunisia beach massacre. (BBC)
Champion free diver is missing, presumed dead. (Time)
They never saw it coming. Officials say an amateur drone flew into the Mansfield Correctional Institution’s prison yard in Ohio last Wednesday, smuggling in 144.5 grams of tobacco, 65.4 grams of marijuana and 6.6 grams of heroin. While the drop was a success, the contents set off an inmate brawl that drew guards’ attention. The package was thrown over a yard fence before being located, nine prisoners are in solitary confinement — and authorities are working on a system to spot the next drone before it has a chance to make a delivery.
This gives them time to binge watch … and change diapers. Hours after its stock hit an all-time high, the streaming content giant announced a new policy allowing new parents to take as much paid time off as they need for a year after a child’s birth or adoption. The new perk — allowing new moms and dads to set their own work schedules, return on a full- or part-time basis and take leave as needed — is a bold attempt to keep valuable staff tuned in as they start families.
Millions could soon have something to talk about. Precision-based medicine — diagnostics for tailor-made treatments — is revolutionizing the medical field, and it holds great promise for speech therapy. Scientists are working to identify DNA sequences and other biomarkers associated with speech problems like stuttering, in hopes that genetic testing could soon predict which babies are susceptible to developing them. This would enable early intervention and brain stimulation while avoiding painstaking therapy. While diagnostic tests are still too expensive for most, moves are afoot to bring this into the mainstream.
Does every great love story eventually croak? Ahead of the fall premiere of ABC’s reboot of The Muppets, star characters Miss Piggy and Kermit the Frog have announced that they’re going their separate ways romantically. While promising professionalism, Kermit admitted that working with one’s ex can be tricky, “especially if your ex is a pig.” The duo head back to work for the Sept. 22 debut of the series that follows the Muppets, mockumentary style, behind the scenes of fictional talk show Up Late With Miss Piggy.
He still says they’re blowing hot air. The NFL Players Commission has released testimony from the four-time Super Bowl champ’s questioning by league Commissioner Roger Goodell. In it, the 38-year-old QB denies any wrongdoing, and investigator Ted Wells admits he never threatened Brady with punishment for refusing to hand over evidence. Brady says he asked equipment assistants about the balls and was told, “We didn’t do anything.” The Patriots’ captain has been suspended for four games, but a judge has urged both sides to reach a compromise before a settlement conference next week.