Your Monday Briefing – The New York Times
Hello. We cover the latest information on the US effort to evacuate Afghans in Kabul, the extended confinement in Australia and the rapidly growing Asian population in the United States.
US orders airlines to help evacuate Afghans
The Pentagon has ordered six commercial airlines to provide passenger jets to aid the growing US military operation to evacuate US and Afghan allies fleeing the Taliban takeover of Kabul.
Eighteen planes will carry the passengers, who are sheltering at bases in the Middle East after their evacuation from Kabul, to Europe and then to the United States. Follow our live updates.
Speaking at the White House on Sunday, President Biden insisted the operation was progressing, saying nearly 28,000 people had been evacuated since August 14 on U.S. and coalition planes, including civilian charters.
“The evacuation of thousands of people from Kabul is going to be difficult and painful, no matter when it started, when we started,” Biden said. “There is no way to evacuate so many people without pain or loss and the heartbreaking images you see on television.”
At Kabul airport, growing crowds trampled people to death, including a toddler. U.S. officials have also warned of the possibility of an attack by ISIS’s rivals from the Taliban.
Some performers and journalists, after terrifying attempts to fight armed Taliban and unruly mobs to catch planes, have given up trying to escape. “I lost hope,” said one man. “I have lost faith in the US government, which keeps saying, ‘We are going to evacuate our allies.’ “
Failure: Biden had promised an orderly withdrawal. Interviews with key participants in the final days of the war show a series of miscalculations and miscalculations that led to chaos.
And after: The leaders of the Group of 7 countries will hold a virtual meeting on Tuesday to discuss the situation in Afghanistan. One topic that will most likely be discussed is the final destination of thousands of Afghans in need of new homes.
Longer confinement in Australia
As the Delta variant continues to spread across the country, authorities have extended the Sydney lockdown until September 30. It was due to be up later this month.
On Saturday, the Prime Minister of Victoria, which includes Melbourne, extended the city lockdown statewide after new cases of the coronavirus were detected. Containment of the city has been in place since early August.
Later that day, more than 4,000 people demonstrated against the Covid restrictions, and there were clashes with police. Police said it was the first time that officers had used “a range of non-lethal options”, including pellets and pepper spray, to disperse protesters in Melbourne.
Numbers: Sydney has now recorded more than 10,000 infections since the outbreak began in mid-June. Last week, the number of daily cases increased from 400 to 600.
Vaccines: Last week, the federal government opened up vaccination to all Australians aged 16 and over. According to Times data, 23% of the population is fully vaccinated.
Perspective: Our Sydney office manager, Damien Cave, wrote about his stay in remote quarantine, where hundreds of domestic and international travelers are forced to wait long enough to prove they are Covid-free.
Seoul counts with Vietnam
On February 12, 1968, a South Korean navy unit killed dozens of people in Phong Nhi and Phong Nhut, villages in central Vietnam. Today, survivors of the massacres seek redress in Seoul in the first such trial underway in a South Korean court.
Rumors have long persisted that South Korean troops fighting alongside American troops have committed massacres of Vietnamese civilians. But under the past military dictatorship, discussions on the subject were taboo.
Even though South Korea maintains it has found no evidence of civilian killings in its wartime records, some South Korean lawmakers and civic groups are pushing for a special law to investigate the allegations.
They pointed to declassified US military records after the rampage, in which US investigators concluded that “there was some likelihood that a war crime had been committed.”
Testimony: Nguyen Thi Thanh, 61, was injured in the massacre and lost five relatives, including her mother, sister and brother. “But the South Korean government never visited our village once and never asked us what had happened.”
For decades, Abdallah El Gourd’s home in Tangier, Morocco, has been the global center of Gnawa music, an art form born out of West African slaves. Now he is fighting to save the historic house, which was abandoned earlier this year because it was in danger of collapsing.
Understanding the Taliban takeover in Afghanistan
Who are the Taliban? The Taliban emerged in 1994 amid the unrest following the withdrawal of Soviet forces from Afghanistan in 1989. They used brutal public punishments, including flogging, amputations and mass executions, to enforce their rules. Here’s more on their origin story and their record as leaders.
Lives lived: Don Everly, the eldest of the Everly Brothers, the revolutionary duo and most successful rock band to emerge from Nashville in the 1950s, competing with Elvis Presley for radio waves, has passed away. He was 84 years old.
ARTS AND IDEAS
The growing Asian population in the United States
The number of people who identify as Asians in the United States has nearly tripled over the past three decades, from 6.6 million in 1990 to nearly 20 million in 2020. Asians are now the most dynamic of the four plus major racial and ethnic groups in the country, according to recently released census figures.
Over these three decades, the population has also become more geographically diverse, ranging from a few pockets in coastal towns to southern suburbs and more rural areas of the Midwest, according to a Times analysis of census data.
“When people think of Asians in America, they think of California, Hawaii,” said Neil Ruiz, associate director of race and ethnicity research at the Pew Research Center. “But this population is not a West Coast phenomenon. It is now an American phenomenon.
Economically, the incomes of Asian households exceed those of the general American population. The level of education is also higher. But among the groups, there is quite a large variation, especially when it is related to citizenship status.
Take, for example, Korean households. Those headed by someone born in the United States have a median income of $ 95,000. For households headed by non-citizens, it’s only $ 54,000. The gap is even greater for people of Chinese or Taiwanese descent.
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