tl;dr

  • Terrorist attack in Saudi Arabia
  • Nigel Farage resigns from UKIP, Brexit stuff
  • NASA’s Juno probe reaches Jupiter
  • Two men shot by police, sparking nationwide protests
  • Police in Dallas killed by a sniper
  • FBI not recommending charges for Hillary Clinton over emails
  • Pokemon Go released

July 4th was also Independence Day for the United States of America.

Saudi Arabia

Terrorists struck multiple cities in a coordinated attack. Few casualties were reported and ISIS is suspected to be responsible. Eid al-Fitr, the holiday marking the end of Ramadan, took place the Wednesday after the attack.

ISIS is thought to be weakening. “[Recent attacks around the world] have distracted attention from the group’s failures in Iraq and Syria, leading some to predict that the attacks will increase…. The group’s strategy is not as reactionary as it may seem. IS has been dispatching volunteers to the West for years.” (The Economist)

United Kingdom

For news further related to the recent Brexit vote, the leader of UKIP resigned. He stated that his “political ambition has been achieved” and that the UK Independence Party would continue on without him. Varying opinions on the Brexit are still furiously buzzing around social media and news outlets. An online petition asking the UK government to consider a second vote failed to make traction.

nasa and jupiter

NASA reached Jupiter with the solar-powered Juno spacecraft. Probes have sailed past Jupiter before, and this mission is to get close and personal. Scientists are hoping to get some insight into what’s beneath Jupiter’s thick atmosphere. NASA mentioned “Juno will be the first solar-powered spacecraft designed by NASA to operate at such a great distance from the sun” in a short article about some of its technical specifications.

#BlackLivesMatter

Two black men died in altercations with police: Alton Sterling (Louisiana, July 5th) and Philando Castile (Minnesota, July 6th). This has sparked protests all over the USA, often organized by the Black Lives Matter group.

A gunman fired on police officers in Dallas during a Black Lives Matter protest (July 9th). It was noted as “the deadliest day for U.S. law enforcement” since September 11th, 2001. A dozen officers were killed or wounded, along with two civilians. The shooter was dispatched by a bomb-carrying robot. Before his death he claimed to be working alone, although initial reports were unclear.

US Politics and the FBI

As always, there are countless articles about the presidential race, mostly involving Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Bernie Sanders gets occasional footnotes but most people believe he won’t be the Democrat candidate for president. We’ll find out for sure later this month after the National Convention. There’s more speculation on picks for vice president, although nothing aside from speculation.

The FBI made a controversial decision on Hillary Clinton’s “careless” use of a personal email server. While it seems clear she violated procedures, and possibly even some laws, the FBI declined to recommend charges against her. Attorney General Loretta Lynch accepted their decision as she said she would, but further controversy surrounds that too. Bill Clinton met with Lynch privately before the FBI’s decision and the details of the meeting are not public knowledge. While Hillary fans breathed a muted sigh of relief at the semi-exoneration, detractors of the decision made accusations that “the law is dead.” The matter may appear to be settled, but it isn’t, at least in the court of public opinion.

Pokemon

And on a positive note: Pokemon Go, the highly anticipated augmented-reality game for mobile devices, was released. People are out exercising and traveling, looking for Pokemon in real life, and organizing meetups. It’s one of the most community-oriented games around. In the few days since its release, it’s on its way to eclipsing Twitter in the number of active users.