Good morning — and happy Nelson Mandela Day! Here are some of the stories we’re reading on a troubling news day…
A tragic “new chapter” –> A Malaysian airliner with 295 people on board was shot down in an apparent missile strike on Thursday. TNR’s Julia Ioffe writes that “if it was the rebels who brought it down, all kinds of ugly things follow.” ALSO: Officials in Ukraine say a Russian fighter entered the country’s airspace and shot down a Ukrainian plane the previous evening, and BBC’s Daniel Sanford writes that if the allegation is true, it represents a “significant escalation” of the crisis. AND: Hayes Brown writes about how we got to this point for ThinkProgress.
Non-stop shelling –> Agence France Presse reports that the death toll from Israel’s 11-day assault on Gaza rose to 265 on Thursday, including three more children, as the Israeli military pushed ground troops into the territory. Two Israeli soldiers have been killed in the incursion. AND: Allison Deger reports for Mondoweiss that Israeli forces destroyed a rehabilitation hospital as medical personnel rushed to evacuate patients. The hospital had been hit by missiles earlier in the campaign. ALSO: At The Intercept, Glenn Greenwald wonders why NBC News pulled out its star correspondent a day after his story about witnessing four Palestinian boys being killed on a beach made headlines around the world.
Free the Net –> AlterNet’s Steve Rosenfeld writes that Net neutrality isn’t just about about protecting consumers — it’s also about maintaining an even playing field for online commerce.
“And we didn’t just send them packing” –> At MoJo, Tasneem Raja writes that unaccompanied children fleeing violence or privation have arrived at our shores throughout our history.
Great reaction to bigotry –> Glenn Beck urged his fans to call members of Salem, Massachussetts’ city government and blast them for severing ties with a college that insists it has a religious right to discriminate against LGBT people. After getting swamped, the mayor announced that the city would donate $5 for each angry call to a shelter for gay and lesbian youth. David Ferguson reports for The Raw Story.
Ongoing disaster –> Dahr Jamail has a searing analysis of how US policies “sealed Iraq’s fate” for Truthout and TomDispatch.
Un-American –> David Cay Johnston writes at AJA that inversions — the practice of US multinationals becoming corporate “citizens” of low-tax countries — “will spread” if lawmakers don’t do something about it.
LIZ!!! –> Slate’s John Dickerson writes: “Whether you agree with [Elizabeth] Warren’s ideas or whether she would even make a good president is immaterial to the benefits of her candidacy” for the national political debate in 2016.
Landing with a thud –> MSNBC’s Steve Benen writes that some Republicans are distancing themselves from John Boehner’s lawsuit against the White House, which alleges a lot less lawlessness than one would have thought given the hype that has surrounded it.
A workaround? –> In These Times’s David Moburg writes that a “recent experiment by AFSCME may point the way to how unions can reduce the harmful effects” of the Supreme Court’s ruling in Harrison v. Quinn, which created new barriers for organizing public employees.
“It’s tough love, or a very soft hate” –> Stephen Colbert mocks Fox News for professing to have compassion for the refugee children whom its hosts want to run out of the country on a rail. Watch the clip: