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Israel-Gaza, Spa shootings, Obesity drugs: Your Tuesday Evening Briefing

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Good evening. Here’s the latest.

1. Some of the worst fighting between Israelis and Palestinians in years showed no signs of subsiding.

Israeli airstrikes left neighborhoods in Gaza trembling and rockets fired by Palestinian militants rained on cities in Israel, including Tel Aviv. By Tuesday night 30 Palestinians had been killed, including 10 children, and 203 others were wounded by airstrikes over the past two days, according to health officials in Gaza. At least three people in Israel were killed in strikes by Hamas, and at least 100 wounded.

Shortly after 9 p.m. in Tel Aviv, militants fired another barrage. One rocket hit an empty bus south of the city, wounding at least three people, including a 5-year-old girl. Above, rockets launched from Gaza toward Tel Aviv.

Palestinian militants said the barrage was revenge for an airstrike that hit a tower housing the offices of several Hamas officials, as well as an apartment owned by a Hamas leader.

The conflict escalated rapidly after confrontations at the Aqsa compound, known to Jews as the Temple Mount, a chronic flash point.

2. The suspect in the Atlanta spa shootings may face the death penalty.

Fani Willis, the district attorney in Fulton County, said that the man accused of killing eight people at spas in and around Atlanta had targeted some of the victims — six of whom were women of Asian descent — because of their race, and said that she was planning to seek the death penalty. Above, a memorial to the victims at Gold Spa in Atlanta.

Willis filed a notice in court that she would seek hate crime penalties if the suspect, 22-year-old Robert Aaron Long, was convicted of murder.

Long was formally indicted on murder charges for the four killings at two massage businesses in Atlanta.


3. Covid is pummeling Southeast Asia.

The virus is receding in wealthy nations with robust vaccination campaigns, but threatening to swamp Southeast Asian countries like Cambodia and Thailand that had until now largely fended it off. Above, Buddhist monks taking a Covid test in Bangkok on Monday.

Desperation is spreading in India as deaths and health care breakdowns that began in big cities a few weeks ago rapidly advance into rural areas with fewer resources.

Scientists warn that if the virus is allowed to spread unchecked in parts of the world with lower vaccine coverage, dangerous variants will continue to evolve. It presents a complex calculus for the Biden administration.

4. Democrats’ voting rights expansion is expected to face another hurdle.

The Senate Rules Committee, divided evenly between Democrats and Republicans, is expected to deadlock on a final vote on a bill considered a top legislative priority for some Senate liberals. That outcome would deny its outright approval and complicate a steep path forward.

If enacted, the bill would effectively override Republican-drafted laws emerging in states like Georgia and Florida that raise barriers to vote. Above, a voting-rights protest in Atlanta in March.


5. China’s “long-term time bomb” is ticking.

Only 12 million babies were born last year in a nation of 1.41 billion, according to the latest census. It’s the fewest since 1961, and a fresh sign of a looming demographic crisis. Above, grandparents picking up children from a school in Shanghai.

China grew by 72 million people in a decade, in percentage terms the smallest increase since the Chinese government conducted its first census in 1953. “This is a long-term time bomb,” a demography expert said.

The new figures could compel President Xi Jinping to address the failings of the Communist Party’s family planning policy, and of an economic model that has long relied on a a growing pool of workers. Here are key takeaways from the census.

6. The Biden administration approved the nation’s first major offshore wind farm.

The Vineyard Wind project calls for up to 84 turbines to be installed in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard, Mass. Together, they could generate about 800 megawatts of electricity, enough to power about 400,000 homes. Above, turbines near Block Island, R.I.

The administration has pledged to build 30,000 megawatts of offshore wind in the U.S. by 2030. Vineyard Wind is viewed as a test of its ability to speed up permits for wind projects. A dozen other offshore wind projects are under federal review.

As the Biden administration tries to create jobs with green energy projects, it is facing tension between the goals of industrial workers and environmentalists.

7. New drugs may help treat obesity — and end its stigma.

Incretins appear to elicit significant weight loss in most patients, approaching that of bariatric surgery. But experts hope the drugs also do something else. Above, Marleen Greenleaf of Fort Washington, Md., a participant in a 68-week study of incretins.

If obesity is treated like a chronic disease with medications, doctors, patients and the public might understand that it is truly a medical condition.

Meanwhile, diet companies are seeing a rise in business as Americans try to drop pandemic pounds. Our 10-day wellness challenge can help you get started on many post-pandemic goals.


8. The Golden Globes were long a laughingstock. But money bestowed an aura anyway.

For years, Hollywood viewed the awards as meaningless at best and corrupt at worst. In the late 1960s, the F.C.C. booted the Globes from the airwaves for misleading the public. CBS dropped it in 1982 after Pia Zadora’s husband essentially bought her an award.

But when NBC was struggling in the mid-1990s, it took on the broadcast to compete with the Grammys on CBS and the Oscars on ABC. Above, Ron Kovic, Oliver Stone and Tom Cruise at the 1990 Golden Globe Awards. Cruise gave back his three Golden Globe awards on Monday.

It became a powerful marketing platform — especially for Harvey Weinstein, who used it to set the tone for the year’s awards season.


9. A viral moment of tourism terror in China.

A man who ventured out on a glass-bottom bridge at Piyan Mountain in northeast China was left clinging to the side for dear life after gale-force winds blew away some floor panels. After about 35 minutes, he crawled to safety and was transferred to a hospital for a psychiatric evaluation.

The construction of such bridges has boomed in China, as part of a rush for hair-raising attractions. One has a built-in swaying effect; another is designed so that it seems as if it is cracking. A photo of what state media said was the moment of terror went viral. Above, a glass-bottom bridge in northeast China.

10. And finally, the warm embrace of Asian supermarkets.

H Mart began as Han Ah Reum, Korean for “an armful,” in Woodside, Queens. In 2020, its 105 locations sold $1.5 billion worth of kimchi, banchan and other familiar offerings. Above, fresh fruit at H Mart.

Along with competitors like Mitsuwa Marketplace and 99 Ranch Market, the international supermarket sector makes up a growing percentage of the $653 billion American grocery industry, by catering to a variety of Asian-American groups and welcoming non-Asian cooks.

H Mart is “a beautiful, holy place,” writes the musician Michelle Zauner in her new memoir, “Crying in H Mart.” “We’re all searching for a piece of home, or a piece of ourselves.”

Have a comforting evening.


Your Evening Briefing is posted at 6 p.m. Eastern.

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