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Your Thursday NY Times Evening Briefing

 

The New York Times

Thursday, December 22, 2016

By KAREN ZRAICK AND SANDRA STEVENSON
Good evening. Here’s the latest.

Rina Castelnuovo for The New York Times

1. President-elect Donald Trump added more turbulence to U.S. foreign policy, tweeting that the country should greatly “expand its nuclear capability” after comments by the Russian president.
And he pressured President Obama to veto a U.N. resolution condemning the construction and expansion of Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, above.
The Obama administration is dismantling a dormant national registry program for some foreign visitors amid worries that the new administration would revive it. Mr. Trump has suggested that the attack on a Christmas market in Berlin validated his proposal to bar Muslims from U.S. entry.
His transition team is asking employees at the State Department to provide details of gender-equality programs, fanning fears of a rollback.
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Stephen Crowley/The New York Times

2. Kellyanne Conway, the campaign manager known as “the Trump whisperer,” will be appointed counselor to the president, becoming the highest-ranking woman in the White House.
She is a tenacious strategist who has clashed with Mr. Trump’s most senior advisers.
Sean Spicer, the longtime spokesman for the Republican National Committee known for being combative with reporters, was named press secretary.
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Youssef Karwashan/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

3. President Bashar al-Assad of Syria regained full control of Aleppo, his country’s industrial capital.
The final evacuations — busloads of civilians trundling through heavy snow — spell a major turning point in the six-year war.
Many of the evacuees went north to rebel-held areas of Idlib Province, which aid groups and the U.N. are warning could be the government’s next target.
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Michael Kappeler/European Pressphoto Agency

4. In Berlin, the authorities found fingerprints of the lone suspect in the truck used in Monday’s attack on a Christmas market, Germany’s worst terror attack in decades.
Anis Amri, a Tunisian who had been denied asylum and turned 24 today, is still on the loose.
Public frustration grew as the authorities divulged they had been monitoring him since March because of signs he was a potential security threat, and had nearly deported him from Germany.
Berliners, shaken but undaunted, returned to their city’s Christmas markets.
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Michael Zamora/Corpus Christi Caller-Times, via Associated Press

5. New census figures set the U.S. population at just over 323 million — just 0.7 percent more than last year, the smallest annual expansion in 80 years. Demographers say growth will likely be slow for years.
The states with the fastest-growing populations are in the West and South, in part because older people from the Northeast and Midwest retire there. West Virginia’s population shrank the most.
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Ruddy Roye for The New York Times

6. Most of Chicago’s 3,451 shootings this year were gang related. The Times spent weeks with gang members to understand what being in one means.
That’s become fuzzy over the last 25 years, as the large, well-organized operations built around drug dealing have splintered. They’re now little more than cliques or sets.
“If we’re sitting here bored, getting high and we got guns around, it ain’t nothing else to do,” one gang member said.
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Jim Wilson/The New York Times

7. We took a close look at the Dec. 2 fire that killed 36 people in a building known as the Ghost Ship in Oakland, Calif.
Dozens of interviews and a review of documents show that the fire was a disaster waiting to happen, a deadly mix of a flawed safety inspection system and a shortage of affordable housing that led tenants to live in a building that was never intended to be a residence.
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Hopper Stone/Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation

8. The new movie “Hidden Figures” tells the true story of three black women who played crucial roles in the American space program in the ‘60s, and the prejudice they faced.
Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monáe (above from left) star, and Kevin Costner and Kirsten Dunst play their NASA colleagues.
Our critic says the film fills you “with outrage at the persistence of injustice and gratitude toward those who had the grit to stand up against it.” Opening at select theaters Christmas Day.
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Emily Berl for The New York Times

9. Among our most-read stories today is an intimate look at the family history of Steve Kerr, the N.B.A. champion and Golden State Warriors coach.
He was 18 when his father was assassinated while serving as president of the American University of Beirut in 1984.
Now 51, he has an educated and evenhanded approach that echoes his father’s, and has found his voice on gun control, national anthem protests, presidential politics and Middle East policy.
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Nicole Bengiveno/The New York Times

10. Finally, economic and cultural upheavals made this a tumultuous year. Here’s a look at the pictures that defined 2016.
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