Stories to Follow
Florida Navy Base Attack: On December 6, a gunman fatally shot three people and wounded eight others at a Naval Air Station in Pensacola, Florida. Later that day, news outlets reported that the shooter was a second lieutenant in the Royal Saudi Air Force who had been taking aviation classes at the station. The 21-year-old Second Lt., Mohammad Saeed Alshamrani, was killed by a sheriff’s deputy in response to the attack. While investigators have determined that Lieutenant Alshamrani did not have any ties to terrorist groups, the motive of the attack remains unclear. This shooting comes at a time when U.S.-Saudi ties are still being questioned by the American public, and although there is no evidence that the Saudi government was linked to the attack, it will likely intensify conversations about the future of U.S.-Saudi relations.
North Korea Conducts a “Significant” Test at Missile Site: On Sunday, North Korea announced that it had completed a “very important test” at its missile-engine and satellite-launch site. According to the Korean Central News Agency, the test occurred on Saturday at a site near the border with China. While no other information was provided, analysts believe that North Korea was testing an engine for long-range ballistic missiles. This comes after North Korea appears to have closed the possibility of denuclearization talks with the US, a North Korean envoy to the UN stating on Saturday that “we do not need to have lengthy talks with the US now, and denuclearization is already gone out of the negotiating table.”
The United States and the Islamic Republic Complete Prison Swap: On Saturday, Iran freed American graduate student Xiyue Wang in exchange for the freedom of Iranian scientist Masoud Soleimani, who was arrested and convicted in 2018 for violating U.S. sanctions against Iran. The swap symbolizes the potential for future bilateral concessions between the U.S. and Iran. President Trump appears to have thought as much, tweeting on Saturday “Thank you to Iran on a very fair negotiation. See, we can make a deal together!” While many analysts believe the swap was aimed at softening the Islamic Republic’s image after its brutal crackdown on protesters this November, it still provides many with hopes that the U.S. and Iran will continue to engage in diplomacy in the future.
Happening This Week
Petcon NYC, Saturday, December 14 | 10a.m.-5p.m. | Metropolitan Pavilion
Petcon NYC is an opportunity to meet your favorite celebrity pets, discover new pet products, and hang out with adoptable animals in their dog adoption garden. Buy your tickets here!
Winter Village at Bryant Park Rink | November 30 – January 5 |Bryant Park
This Winter Village at Bryant Park is the perfect place to spend time if you want to get into the holiday spirit. The village includes a skating rink (admission is free if you bring your own skates), a bar, a food hall and holiday shops.
yasiin bey at the Brooklyn Museum | November 15 – January 26
The Brooklyn Museum is debuting a listening installation of yassin bey’s latest works. The exhibition also aims to “acknowledge the importance of hip-hop as a fundamental American art form by making the 8-track, 28-minute recording available without the distractions of technology.” Get your tickets here.
In Your Free Time
Ambassador Samatha Power at 92Y, Tuesday, December 10th. Book your tickets to see Ambassador Power discuss her new memoir, The Education of an Idealist, and her vision for a more humane American future with The New York Times’ Nicholas Kristof.
The Uniting Power of Trump’s Immigration Politics: Susanne Schweitzer delves into the ways in which the Trump administration’s immigration policies have unintentionally united Americans in fighting for immigrant rights. Read the piece here.
Avocado Pesto Pasta: A simple, 15-minute dinner by the creator of By Chloe. Recipe can be found here.
This week’s Monday Briefing was brought to you by Kitaneh Fitzpatrick.