Emmanuel Macron, Chile, California: Your Wednesday Briefing

Emmanuel Macron, Chile, California: Your Wednesday Briefing

Above, a memorial outside his home in Mitrovica.



Pool photo by Denis Charlet

• “Under no circumstances will we allow the Jungle to come back.”

That was President Emmanuel Macron of France speaking in Calais in reference to a migrant settlement there that was dismantled in 2016. Mr. Macron visited the port city to defend his immigration policies against critics who have accused him of inhumanity.

Meanwhile, the number of new asylum seekers arriving in Germany continues to fall sharply.



Alessandro Bianchi/Reuters

• In Chile, Pope Francis said he was “pained and ashamed” over the “irreparable damage” priests had inflicted on minors, as he offered an apology during his first visit to their country as pontiff.

The speech was interrupted by bursts of applause, but he later drew criticism for celebrating Mass alongside a bishop who has been accused of protecting an abusive priest.

Meanwhile in Ireland, the last of the infamous church-run Magdalene Laundries for “fallen women” could soon be razed. Some want to save the Dublin building to serve as a memorial to those who suffered.



Tom Brenner/The New York Times

• Stephen Bannon, President Trump’s former chief strategist, has been called to testify before a grand jury — the latest twist in the investigation into Russian meddling in the U.S. presidential election.

Separately, Mr. Trump’s overall health was “excellent,” the White House physician said. But the president’s weight is 108 kilograms and, according to the doctor, he does not get enough exercise.

“I’ve found no reason whatsoever to think the president has any issues whatsoever with his thought processes,” the physician said.


Have you, or any of your family members, been a patient with Britain’s National Health Service?

We’d like to know about your experience.



The New York Times

Oil briefly passed $70 a barrel, and there is no shortage of reasons for prices to climb higher.

• Start-ups are building processors for artificial intelligence, and at least five have raised more than $100 million.

• Cryptocurrencies could help fix the internet’s structural problems. (There was a significant sell-off overnight.)

Here’s a snapshot of global markets.

In the News


Ministry of Transport of China, via Associated Press

• An oil spill from the Iranian tanker that sank in the East China Sea is rapidly spreading and could be the worst environmental disaster of its kind since 1991. [The New York Times]

• The California home where 13 emaciated siblings were found was registered as a school, but inside, the authorities found signs of torture, not teaching. [The New York Times]

• The Czech Parliament rejected the minority government of Prime Minister Andrej Babis in a no-confidence vote. Expect weeks of political wrangling. [The New York Times]

• A former C.I.A. agent was arrested in the U.S. He is suspected of compromising informants in China, some of whom were killed or imprisoned. [The New York Times]

• A draft U.S. military strategy awaiting President Trump’s approval would permit the use of nuclear weapons to respond to cyberattacks. [The New York Times]

• The Danish inventor Peter Madsen was indicted on charges of homicide in connection with the death of a Swedish journalist in August. [The New York Times]

The resignation of Romania’s prime minister meant that the visiting prime minister of Japan, on a tour of Eastern Europe, had no counterpart to meet. [Euronews]

• In an Op-Ed, a writer reflects on being French and Jewish. “For many, the situation has started feeling untenable again,” he writes. [The New York Times]

The dominant feature of Morocco’s bid to stage soccer’s World Cup in 2026 appears to be that no one talks about it. [The New York Times]

Smarter Living

Tips, both new and old, for a more fulfilling life.



• So you’ve been asked to be a bridesmaid. Now what?

• Observing “dry January”? Here are six alcohol-free cocktails to try.

• Recipe of the day: Wild rice and mushroom casserole will feed a big family in style.



Victor Dlamini

• In memoriam: Keorapetse Kgositsile, the South African poet who addressed themes of solidarity and displacement, died at 79.

• More on the passing of Dolores O’Riordan: The singer’s success meant something special in Ireland.

• President Trump is “the evil sum of his deficiencies,” Philip Roth, the retired novelist, wrote in an extended interview via email. (He also shared what he’s been reading.)

• The Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam announced the discovery of a previously unknown drawing by the Dutch artist.

• At the Australian Open, only one of 128 singles contests ended with a midmatch injury. A new rule on prize money might be a reason.

• Tales of two restaurants: We visited a Berlin eatery that captures the city’s kooky spirit (think popcorn soup) and talked to a Danish chef who hand-makes soaps to complement the aromas of his food.

Back Story


Eye Ubiquitous/UIG, via Getty Images

“Color,” said Louis Comfort Tiffany, “is to the eye what music is to the ear.”

Tiffany, who died on this day 85 years ago, was the son of the founder of Tiffany & Co., the famous jeweler. But the younger Tiffany found his own success as an artist and designer, most famous for his work with stained glass.

In 1881, he helped redesign the interior of a house in Hartford, Conn., owned by Mark Twain, who was making his name after the publication of “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.”

The work was followed a year later by a commission with a much higher profile: redecorating the White House.

Chester Arthur had been thrust into office after the assassination of President James Garfield in 1881. He hired Tiffany to remodel the Executive Mansion to suit his refined tastes.

Tiffany redecorated several rooms, and he also installed a large stained-glass screen in the Entrance Hall.

But his mark on the White House did not last. Twenty years later, in 1902, President Theodore Roosevelt ordered a major renovation that swept away the building’s Victorian touches — including Tiffany’s screen.

(Above, a Tiffany glass window in Mexico City.)

Chris Stanford contributed reporting.


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