Gaza Crisis Worsens as Israeli Strikes Continue - The Monday AM Quickie 11/6/23

Hi, everyone! This is my first day writing AM Quickie, but I plan to do my best Corey Pein impression and give you some good reading. -Jacob

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Israel Pounds Gaza While Palestinian Food and Fuel Supplies Dwindle

Israel's aerial bombing of northern Gaza – described by residents as some of the most intense they've experienced – continued as the IDF expanded its ground invasion. More than 10,000 Palestinians have been killed and thousands more injured. Bombs have struck hospitals, churches, water facilities, and even fishing boats. At least 36 journalists have been killed, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists, while others have had their homes bombed, killing their families. A far-right Israeli minister said there were no innocent people in Gaza and said nuking the besieged enclave was an option. Israel once again cut off telecommunications access for Gazans.

The Washington Post examined Israeli targeting practices and asked whether the IDF has loosened its rules of engagement:

The consequences of those calculations are spread across the floors of Gaza’s hospitals and morgues. Entire families have been killed; infants are buried with their parents in mass graves. Strikes have hit water towers and bakeries, schools and ambulances. Human rights groups have flagged a growing number of strikes as potential war crimes and urged an international investigation.

While more liberal members of Congress, like Rep. Maxine Waters, have called for a ceasefire, the Biden administration has embraced the more euphemistic "humanitarian pause" while continuing to arm and assist the IDF. Appearing on CNN, Senator Bernie Sanders denounced the killing of innocent civilians but stopped short of calling for a ceasefire. "I don’t know how you could have a permanent ceasefire with an organization like Hamas which is dedicated to destroying the state of Israel … and has got to go," Sanders said.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken visited with Middle Eastern leaders in an attempt to contain the situation, but according to the BBC, he's occupying an untenable position: "Every stop posed its own challenges and gave reason to be pessimistic that much progress is being made. The central challenge facing the US secretary of state is that he is trying to find a middle ground where none, at the moment, exists." Meanwhile, CIA director Nicholas Burns arrived in Israel over the weekend. He's also expected to visit with Jordan's King Abdullah II, according to The New York Times.

In Washington, D.C. on Saturday, tens of thousands of protesters marched calling for a ceasefire and for Palestinian rights. Large protests also took place in Milan, Paris, Berlin, and a number of Middle Eastern cities.

In the occupied West Bank, settler violence has increased. Several Palestinian communities, facing threats of more settler attacks, have been depopulated, with two hundred residents leaving one village on foot, reports AFP.

SAG-AFTRA Considers Studios' "Last, Best, and Final Offer"

Hollywood actors continued their nearly four-month-long strike, planning to picket studios in New York and Los Angeles on Monday. The union's negotiating committee is digesting the AMPTP's latest offer, although the two sides have no plans to meet this week. The use of artificial intelligence, which SAG-AFTRA called an "existential" issue for actors, remains one area of disagreement. Actor Zachary Quinto announced his full-throated support for guild president Fran Drescher and accused studios of using "classic language of intimidation" in presenting their supposed last offer. "The surest power we have is to hold our ground," said Quinto. "We cannot accept a deal that does not protect us moving forward. We cannot do it. We have got to hold strong. That's what a union is about."

Trump to Testify: Big Day for Lies and Bluster

Former president Donald Trump will take the stand today in his civil fraud trial in New York. His sons Don Jr. and Eric testified last week, with both denying that they had any involvement in producing fraudulent financial statements. Ivanka, who unlike her brothers and father is not a defendant in the case, is expected to testify later in the week. Judge Arthur Engoron, who is deciding the case, has issued gag orders against Trump and two of his lawyers for repeatedly making derogatory comments about one of his clerks, including posting a photo of her on Truth Social. Trump has been fined twice for breaking the order. Judge Engoron already ruled that Trump and his sons were guilty of fraud; what remains to be determined is the extent of liability. New York Attorney General Letitia James has asked for a $250 million fine and the revocation of the Trump Organization's business licenses.

Elections Roundup: New Polls Give Trump an Edge

  • Times/Siena Poll Shows Trump In the Lead A new poll from the New York Times has shaken election watchers with the news that Donald Trump is leading President Joe Biden in five important swing states. via New York Times
  • American Voters Don't Like What They See Seventy-six percent of Americans think the country is headed in the wrong direction, and the top presidential candidates aren't exciting supporters. via ABC News
  • Trump Apparently Won Every State in 2020 In a speech at the Freedom Summit in Florida, Donald Trump, who's facing four criminal indictments and a civil fraud trial, claimed he won all 50 states in the 2020 presidential election that he lost to Joe Biden. via ABC Australia
  • Iowa Gov. Will Endorse DeSantis Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds plans to announce her endorsement of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who's polling a distant second among Iowa Republican voters, for the Republican presidential nomination. via Des Moines Register


  • Zelenskiy Disagrees With His Generals Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy challenged comments by his top general that the war with Russia was in a stalemate. via The Guardian and Reuters
  • US Officials Begin Talking About Peace Negotiations in Ukraine As the war in eastern Ukraine grinds on, US and European officials have finally started talking to their Ukrainian counterparts about pursuing negotiations with Russia. via NBC News
  • House Speaker Mike Johnson Has No Bank Account Rep. Mike Johnson, the newly installed Speaker of the House, appears to have no bank account, despite the fact that he and his wife make more than $200,000 per year. via The Daily Beast
  • Driverless Cars Not So Driverless Cruise, an autonomous vehicle company which recently suspended testing after its unpredictable cars caused havoc in San Francisco, is facing regulatory investigations, lawsuits, bad press, and the revelation that its cars require frequent human intervention. via The New York Times



That's how many shells were fired by some US artillery batteries during the war against ISIS in Syria, according to the New York Times. In past conflicts, US artillery gunners have fired only a few hundred shells. A Times investigation found that the explosive force from firing so many rounds afflicted some Marines and soldiers with traumatic brain injuries, akin to a football player who repeatedly takes small hits to the head. Some veterans developed hallucinations, headaches, and heart problems, and a number of them have committed suicide or inflicted violence on others. The military has failed to acknowledge the problem, even discharging some affected soldiers for behavioral issues, which has limited their access to healthcare and veterans services.


11/6: Happy Monday! Sam and Emma speak with Robert P. Jones, President and Founder of the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI), to discuss his recent book The Hidden Roots of White Supremacy: and the Path to a Shared American Future.


"Anti-War" Crusader Tulsi Gabbard Goes Full Mask Off In Hate Filled Rant

The Lt. Colonel from Hawaii wants to reboot the war against "radical Islam" – and maybe a job on Fox News.

Mike Johnson Gives The Game Away In Bonkers Speech

The new Speaker of the House has no bank account, some weird personal habits, and very extreme theocratic beliefs.


“We cannot not fight after having heard and seen Taylor give everything so that the right doesn’t win in her country. As Taylor says, we have to be on the right side of history.”

-- A statement from a group of Taylor Swift fans opposing ultra-libertarian Argentine presidential candidate Javier Milei. According to the New York Times, Swiftes have been joined by superfans of K-pop juggernaut BTS in a campaign against the strangely coiffed, Bitcoin-loving economist, who stands a decent shot at becoming Argentina's next president.

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