Bay Area United Against War Newsletter, June 28, 2024


2:00 P.M., New York City



Washington, D.C.



Leonard Peltier self portrait

Free Leonard Peltier This Week

The U.S. Parole Commission is considering his parole right now.

He is the longest-held political prisoner in the United States, unjustly kept behind bars for decades.


Click here to email the parole commission:





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This is our message:


I write to you today in support of parole for Leonard Peltier, who is almost 80 years old and uses a walker to move about within the walls of a maximum-security prison.

He is imprisoned for his alleged role in the deaths of two FBI agents during a shootout on the Pine Ridge Indian reservation in South Dakota in 1975. Imprisoned at the age of 31, Mr. Peltier was sentenced for aiding and abetting in a case where his co-defendants, principally charged with the murders, were found not guilty on grounds of self-defense. In fact, the prosecutors have admitted they do not know who killed the agents and could not prove Mr. Peltier committed a crime that day. 

A former FBI agent familiar with his case has called publicly for Peltier’s release. A former federal prosecutor who oversaw Peltier’s post-trial sentencing and appeals has also called for his release, saying: “I have realized that the prosecution and continued incarceration of Mr. Peltier was and is unjust. We were not able to prove that Mr. Peltier personally committed any offense on the Pine Ridge Reservation.”

Please grant Leonard Peltier his freedom after nearly a half century of incarceration.


Click here to send it:



Sign here:



After doing this action, please use the tools on the next webpage to share it with your friends.


This work is only possible with your financial support. Please chip in $5 now:




Thank you!


—The RootsAction.org team




                          9:00 A.M. 

Location: MECA office, 1101 8th St, Berkeley, CA 94710

Join us Sunday, July 21 for our Third Annual Ride for Palestine, a day of solidarity along the 14-mile scenic San Francisco Bay. The ride is designed to be enjoyable for cyclists of all skill levels and the post-Ride event, Gather for Gaza will include delicious Palestinian food, music, dancing, and more.


All funds raised this year will support MECA’s emergency work in Gaza–where the situation is dire and your support is more important than ever. Thanks to the efforts of our community, MECA’s 2022 and 2023 Rides for Palestine were a huge success, together raising more than $125,000 in support of our ongoing work in Palestine.


Help us reach our 2024 Ride for Palestine goal of $150,000 by registering today:



With your support, we can deliver food and other necessities and send a powerful message of solidarity to Gaza.


Ride for Palestinian children. Ride for solidarity. Ride for Gaza.


If you're not in the Bay Area or are not available July 21 but would like to participate you can register at a discounted rate as a Virtual Participant and ride, walk, swim, or even bake cookies for Palestine–you can decide what your fundraising activity looks like. Check out our Ride from Anywhere page to learn more.


Ride from anywhere:



Get involved in this year’s event at RideforPalestine.com and feel free to reach out to the MECA team by emailing us at info@rideforpalestine.com. 


#GatherforGaza #RideforPalestine #MECAforPeace



Greetings to U.S. students from Gaza: "Thank you students in Solidarity with Gaza, your message has reached.” May 1, 2024 (Screenshot)

‘Operation al-Aqsa Flood’ Day 265:


The total number of Palestinians killed by Israel is now over 37,765, with 86,429 wounded. Among the killed, 27,706 have been fully identified. These include 7,779 children, 5466 women, and 2418 elderly. In addition, around 10,000 more are estimated to be under the rubble.*  

More than 553 Palestinians have been killed and 4,600 wounded by Israel in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem. These include 135 children.**  

—Israel lowers its estimated October 7 death toll from 1,400 to 1,140—666 Israeli soldiers killed since ground invasion, 3,860 wounded***

Gaza’s Ministry of Health confirmed this figure on its Telegram channel on June 23, 2024. Some rights groups estimate the death toll to be much higher when accounting for those presumed dead.

** The death toll in West Bank and Jerusalem is not updated regularly. According to PA’s Ministry of Health on June 23, 2024—this is the latest figure.

*** These figures are released by the Israeli military, showing the soldiers whose names “were allowed to be published.” The number of Israeli soldiers wounded, according to declarations by the head of the Israeli army’s wounded association to Israel’s Channel 12, exceeds 20,000, including at least 8,663 permanently handicapped as of June 18.

Source: mondoweiss.net






Beneath The Mountain: An Anti-Prison Reader (City Lights, 2024) is a collection of revolutionary essays, written by those who have been detained inside prison walls. Composed by the most structurally dispossessed people on earth, the prisoner class, these words illuminate the steps towards freedom. 


Beneath the Mountain documents the struggle — beginning with slavery, genocide, and colonization up to our present day — and imagines a collective, anti-carceral future. These essays were handwritten first on scraps of paper, magazine covers, envelopes, toilet paper, or pages of bibles, scratched down with contraband pencils or the stubby cartridge of a ball-point pen; kites, careworn, copied and shared across tiers and now preserved in this collection for this and future generations. If they were dropped in the prison-controlled mail they were cloaked in prayers, navigating censorship and dustbins. They were very often smuggled out. These words mark resistance, fierce clarity, and speak to the hope of building the world we all deserve to live in.  

"Beneath the Mountain reminds us that ancestors and rebels have resisted conquest and enslavement, building marronage against colonialism and genocide."

—Joy James, author of New Bones Abolition: Captive Maternal Agency


Who stands beneath the mountain but prisoners of war? Mumia Abu-Jamal and Jennifer Black have assembled a book of fire, each voice a flame in captivity...Whether writing from a place of fugivity, the prison camp, the city jail, the modern gulag or death row, these are our revolutionary thinkers, our critics and dreamers, our people. The people who move mountains. —Robin D.G. Kelley, author of Freedom Dreams: The Black Radical Imagination


Filled with insight and energy, this extraordinary book gifts us the opportunity to encounter people’s understanding of the fight for freedom from the inside out.  —Ruth Wilson Gilmore, author of Golden Gulag and Abolition Geography


These are the words each writer dreamed as they sought freedom and they need to be studied by people inside and read in every control unit/hole in every prison in America. We can send this book for you to anyone who you know who is currently living, struggling, and fighting 


Who better to tell these stories than those who have lived them? Don’t be surprised with what you find within these pages: hope, solidarity, full faith towards the future, and most importantly, love. 


Excerpt from the book:

"Revolutionary love speaks to the ways we protect, respect, and empower each other while standing up to state terror. Its presence is affirmed through these texts as a necessary component to help chase away fear and to encourage the solidarity and unity essential for organizing in dangerous times and places. Its absence portends tragedy. Revolutionary love does not stop the state from wanting to kill us, nor is it effective without strategy and tactics, but it is the might that fuels us to stand shoulder to shoulder with others regardless. Perhaps it can move mountains."  —Jennifer Black & Mumia Abu-Jamal from the introduction to Beneath The Mountain: An Anti Prison Reader


Get the book at:




Boris Kagarlitsky is in Prison!

On February 13, the court overturned the previous decision on release and sent Boris Kagarlitsky to prison for five years.

Petition in Support of Boris Kagarlitsky

We, the undersigned, were deeply shocked to learn that on February 13 the leading Russian socialist intellectual and antiwar activist Dr. Boris Kagarlitsky (65) was sentenced to five years in prison.

Dr. Kagarlitsky was arrested on the absurd charge of 'justifying terrorism' in July last year. After a global campaign reflecting his worldwide reputation as a writer and critic of capitalism and imperialism, his trial ended on December 12 with a guilty verdict and a fine of 609,000 roubles.

The prosecution then appealed against the fine as 'unjust due to its excessive leniency' and claimed falsely that Dr. Kagarlitsky was unable to pay the fine and had failed to cooperate with the court. In fact, he had paid the fine in full and provided the court with everything it requested.

On February 13 a military court of appeal sent him to prison for five years and banned him from running a website for two years after his release.

The reversal of the original court decision is a deliberate insult to the many thousands of activists, academics, and artists around the world who respect Dr. Kagarlitsky and took part in the global campaign for his release. The section of Russian law used against Dr. Kagarlitsky effectively prohibits free expression. The decision to replace the fine with imprisonment was made under a completely trumped-up pretext. Undoubtedly, the court's action represents an attempt to silence criticism in the Russian Federation of the government's war in Ukraine, which is turning the country into a prison.

The sham trial of Dr. Kagarlitsky is the latest in a wave of brutal repression against the left-wing movements in Russia. Organizations that have consistently criticized imperialism, Western and otherwise, are now under direct attack, many of them banned. Dozens of activists are already serving long terms simply because they disagree with the policies of the Russian government and have the courage to speak up. Many of them are tortured and subjected to life-threatening conditions in Russian penal colonies, deprived of basic medical care. Left-wing politicians are forced to flee Russia, facing criminal charges. International trade unions such as IndustriALL and the International Transport Federation are banned and any contact with them will result in long prison sentences.

There is a clear reason for this crackdown on the Russian left. The heavy toll of the war gives rise to growing discontent among the mass of working people. The poor pay for this massacre with their lives and wellbeing, and opposition to war is consistently highest among the poorest. The left has the message and resolve to expose the connection between imperialist war and human suffering.

Dr. Kagarlitsky has responded to the court's outrageous decision with calm and dignity: “We just need to live a little longer and survive this dark period for our country,” he said. Russia is nearing a period of radical change and upheaval, and freedom for Dr. Kagarlitsky and other activists is a condition for these changes to take a progressive course.

We demand that Boris Kagarlitsky and all other antiwar prisoners be released immediately and unconditionally.

We also call on the authorities of the Russian Federation to reverse their growing repression of dissent and respect their citizens' freedom of speech and right to protest.

Sign to Demand the Release of Boris Kagarlitsky


The petition is also available on Change.org



*Major Announcement*

Claudia De la Cruz wins

Peace and Freedom Party primary in California!

We have an exciting announcement. The votes are still being counted in California, but the Claudia-Karina “Vote Socialist” campaign has achieved a clear and irreversible lead in the Peace and Freedom Party primary. Based on the current count, Claudia has 46% of the vote compared to 40% for Cornel West. A significant majority of PFP’s newly elected Central Committee, which will formally choose the nominee at its August convention, have also pledged their support to the Claudia-Karina campaign.


We are excited to campaign in California now and expect Claudia De la Cruz to be the candidate on the ballot of the Peace and Freedom Party in November.


We achieved another big accomplishment this week - we’re officially on the ballot in Hawai’i! This comes after also petitioning to successfully gain ballot access in Utah. We are already petitioning in many other states. Each of these achievements is powered by the tremendous effort of our volunteers and grassroots organizers across the country. When we’re organized, people power can move mountains!


We need your help to keep the momentum going. Building a campaign like this takes time, energy, and money. We know that our class enemies — the billionaires, bankers, and CEO’s — put huge sums toward loyal politicians and other henchmen who defend their interests. They will use all the money and power at their disposal to stop movements like ours. As an independent, socialist party, our campaign is relying on contributions from the working class and people like you.


We call on each and every one of our supporters to set up a monthly or one-time donation to support this campaign to help it keep growing and reaching more people. A new socialist movement, independent of the Democrats and Republicans, is being built but it will only happen when we all pitch in.


The Claudia-Karina campaign calls to end all U.S. aid to Israel. End this government’s endless wars. We want jobs for all, with union representation and wages that let us live with dignity. Housing, healthcare, and education for all - without the lifelong debt. End the ruthless attacks on women, Black people, immigrants, and LGBTQ people. These are just some of the demands that are resonating across the country. Help us take the next step: 


Volunteer: https://votesocialist2024.com/volunteer


Donate: https://votesocialist2024.com/donate


See you in the streets,


Claudia & Karina


Don't Forget! Join our telegram channel for regular updates: https://t.me/+KtYBAKgX51JhNjMx




Mumia Abu-Jamal is Innocent!


Write to Mumia at:

Smart Communications/PADOC

Mumia Abu-Jamal #AM-8335

SCI Mahanoy

P.O. Box 33028

St. Petersburg, FL 33733

Join the Fight for Mumia's Life

Since September, Mumia Abu-Jamal's health has been declining at a concerning rate. He has lost weight, is anemic, has high blood pressure and an extreme flair up of his psoriasis, and his hair has fallen out. In April 2021 Mumia underwent open heart surgery. Since then, he has been denied cardiac rehabilitation care including a healthy diet and exercise.

Donate to Mumia Abu-Jamal's Emergency Legal and Medical Defense Fund, Official 2024

Mumia has instructed PrisonRadio to set up this fund. Gifts donated here are designated for the Mumia Abu-Jamal Medical and Legal Defense Fund. If you are writing a check or making a donation in another way, note this in the memo line.

Send to:

 Mumia Medical and Legal Fund c/o Prison Radio

P.O. Box 411074, San Francisco, CA 94103

Prison Radio is a project of the Redwood Justice Fund (RJF), which is a California 501c3 (Tax ID no. 680334309) not-for-profit foundation dedicated to the defense of the environment and of civil and human rights secured by law.  Prison Radio/Redwood Justice Fund PO Box 411074, San Francisco, CA 94141



Leonard Peltier “Why?” (Henry CrowDog)

Write to:

Leonard Peltier 89637-132

USP Coleman 1

P.O. Box 1033

Coleman, FL 33521

Note: Letters, address and return address must be in writing—no stickers—and on plain white paper.

Video at:


Sign our petition urging President Biden to grant clemency to Leonard Peltier:




Email: contact@whoisleonardpeltier.info

Address: 116 W. Osborne Ave. Tampa, Florida 33603



Updates From Kevin Cooper 

A Never-ending Constitutional Violation

A summary of the current status of Kevin Cooper’s case by the Kevin Cooper Defense Committee


      On October 26, 2023, the law firm of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, LLP wrote a rebuttal in response to the Special Counsel's January 13, 2023 report upholding the conviction of their client Kevin Cooper. A focus of the rebuttal was that all law enforcement files were not turned over to the Special Counsel during their investigation, despite a request for them to the San Bernardino County District Attorney's office.

      On October 29, 2023, Law Professors Lara Bazelon and Charlie Nelson Keever, who run the six member panel that reviews wrongful convictions for the San Francisco County District Attorney's office, published an OpEd in the San Francisco Chronicle calling the "Innocence Investigation” done by the Special Counsel in the Cooper case a “Sham Investigation” largely because Cooper has unsuccessfully fought for years to obtain the police and prosecutor files in his case. This is a Brady claim, named for the U.S. Supreme court’s 1963 case establishing the Constitutional rule that defendants are entitled to any information in police and prosecutor's possession that could weaken the state's case or point to innocence. Brady violations are a leading cause of wrongful convictions. The Special Counsel's report faults Cooper for not offering up evidence of his own despite the fact that the best evidence to prove or disprove Brady violations or other misconduct claims are in those files that the San Bernardino County District Attorney's office will not turn over to the Special Counsel or to Cooper's attorneys.

      On December 14, 2023, the president of the American Bar Association (ABA), Mary Smith, sent Governor Gavin Newsom a three page letter on behalf of the ABA stating in part that Mr.Cooper's counsel objected to the state's failure to provide Special Counsel all documents in their possession relating to Mr.Cooper's conviction, and that concerns about missing information are not new. For nearly 40 years Mr.Cooper's attorneys have sought this same information from the state.

      On December 19, 2023, Bob Egelko, a journalist for the San Francisco Chronicle wrote an article about the ABA letter to the Governor that the prosecutors apparently withheld evidence from the Governor's legal team in the Cooper case.

      These are just a few recent examples concerning the ongoing failure of the San Bernardino County District Attorney to turn over to Cooper's attorney's the files that have been requested, even though under the law and especially the U.S. Constitution, the District Attorney of San Bernardino county is required to turn over to the defendant any and all material and or exculpatory evidence that they have in their files. Apparently, they must have something in their files because they refuse to turn them over to anyone.

      The last time Cooper's attorney's received files from the state, in 2004, it wasn't from the D.A. but a Deputy Attorney General named Holly Wilkens in Judge Huff's courtroom. Cooper's attorneys discovered a never before revealed police report showing that a shirt was discovered that had blood on it and was connected to the murders for which Cooper was convicted, and that the shirt had disappeared. It had never been tested for blood. It was never turned over to Cooper's trial attorney, and no one knows where it is or what happened to it. Cooper's attorneys located the woman who found that shirt on the side of the road and reported it to the Sheriff's Department. She was called to Judge Huff's court to testify about finding and reporting that shirt to law enforcement. That shirt was the second shirt found that had blood on it that was not the victims’ blood. This was in 2004, 19 years after Cooper's conviction.

      It appears that this ongoing constitutional violation that everyone—from the Special Counsel to the Governor's legal team to the Governor himself—seems to know about, but won't do anything about, is acceptable in order to uphold Cooper's conviction.

But this type of thing is supposed to be unacceptable in the United States of America where the Constitution is supposed to stand for something other than a piece of paper with writing on it. How can a Governor, his legal team, people who support and believe in him ignore a United States citizen’s Constitutional Rights being violated for 40 years in order to uphold a conviction?

      This silence is betrayal of the Constitution. This permission and complicity by the Governor and his team is against everything that he and they claim to stand for as progressive politicians. They have accepted the Special Counsel's report even though the Special Counsel did not receive the files from the district attorney that may not only prove that Cooper is innocent, but that he was indeed framed by the Sheriff’s Department; and that evidence was purposely destroyed and tampered with, that certain witnesses were tampered with, or ignored if they had information that would have helped Cooper at trial, that evidence that the missing shirt was withheld from Cooper's trial attorney, and so much more.

      Is the Governor going to get away with turning a blind eye to this injustice under his watch?

      Are progressive people going to stay silent and turn their eyes blind in order to hopefully get him to end the death penalty for some while using Cooper as a sacrificial lamb?

An immediate act of solidarity we can all do right now is to write to Kevin and assure him of our continuing support in his fight for justice. Here’s his address:

Kevin Cooper #C65304
Cell 107, Unit E1C
California Health Care Facility, Stockton (CHCF)
P.O. Box 213040
Stockton, CA 95213




Call California Governor Newsom:

1-(916) 445-2841

Press 1 for English or 2 for Spanish, 

press 6 to speak with a representative and

wait for someone to answer 

(Monday-Friday, 9:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. PST—12:00 P.M. to 8:00 P.M. EST)




The writers' organization PEN America is circulating this petition on behalf of Jason Renard Walker, a Texas prisoner whose life is being threatened because of his exposés of the Texas prison system. 

See his book, Reports from within the Belly of the Beast; available on Amazon at:


Petition: https://actionnetwork.org/petitions/protect-whistleblowers-in-carceral-settings



Daniel Hale UPDATE:  


In February Drone Whistleblower Daniel Hale was transferred from the oppressive maximum-security prison in Marion, Illinois to house confinement.  We celebrate his release from Marion.  He is laying low right now, recovering from nearly 3 years in prison.  Thank goodness he is now being held under much more humane conditions and expected to complete his sentence in July of this year.     www.StandWithDaniel Hale.org


More Info about Daniel:


“Drone Whistleblower Subjected To Harsh Confinement Finally Released From Prison” 



“I was punished under the Espionage Act. Why wasn’t Joe Biden?”  by Daniel Hale




Resources for Resisting Federal Repression



Since June of 2020, activists have been subjected to an increasingly aggressive crackdown on protests by federal law enforcement. The federal response to the movement for Black Lives has included federal criminal charges for activists, door knocks by federal law enforcement agents, and increased use of federal troops to violently police protests. 


The NLG National Office is releasing this resource page for activists who are resisting federal repression. It includes a link to our emergency hotline numbers, as well as our library of Know-Your-Rights materials, our recent federal repression webinar, and a list of some of our recommended resources for activists. We will continue to update this page. 


Please visit the NLG Mass Defense Program page for general protest-related legal support hotlines run by NLG chapters.


Emergency Hotlines

If you are contacted by federal law enforcement, you should exercise all of your rights. It is always advisable to speak to an attorney before responding to federal authorities. 


State and Local Hotlines

If you have been contacted by the FBI or other federal law enforcement, in one of the following areas, you may be able to get help or information from one of these local NLG hotlines for: 


Portland, Oregon: (833) 680-1312

San Francisco, California: (415) 285-1041 or fbi_hotline@nlgsf.org

Seattle, Washington: (206) 658-7963

National Hotline

If you are located in an area with no hotline, you can call the following number:


National NLG Federal Defense Hotline: (212) 679-2811






1) Assange Agrees to Plead Guilty in Exchange for Release, Ending Standoff With U.S.

Barring last-minute snags, the deal would bring to an end a prolonged battle that began after the WikiLeaks founder became alternately celebrated and reviled for revealing state secrets in the 2010s.

By Glenn Thrush and Megan Specia—Glenn Thrush reported from Washington, and Megan Specia from London, Published June 24, 2024. Updated June 25, 2024


Julian Assange boarding a plane.

A still image from a video posted by WikiLeaks showed Julian Assange boarding a plane at London Stansted Airport on Monday. Credit...WikiLeaks, via Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, agreed to plead guilty on Monday to a single felony count of illegally obtaining and disclosing national security material in exchange for his release from a British prison, ending his long and bitter standoff with the United States.


Mr. Assange, 52, was granted his request to appear before a federal judge at one of the more remote outposts of the federal judiciary, the courthouse in Saipan, the capital of the Northern Mariana Islands, according to a brief court filing made public late Monday. He is expected to be sentenced to about five years, the equivalent of the time he has already served in Britain, according to a law enforcement official familiar with the terms of the agreement.


It was a fitting final twist in the case against Mr. Assange, who doggedly opposed extradition to the U.S. mainland. The islands are a United States commonwealth in the middle of the Pacific Ocean — and much closer to Mr. Assange’s native Australia, where he is a citizen, than courts in the continental United States or Hawaii.


Mr. Assange is scheduled to appear in Saipan at 9 a.m. local time on Wednesday and is expected to fly back to Australia “at the conclusion of the proceedings,” Matthew J. McKenzie, an official in the Justice Department’s counterterrorism division, wrote in a letter to the judge in the case.


Shortly after the deal was disclosed, his wife, Stella Assange, posted a video of her husband signing paperwork and boarding a plane. Later, she posted flight tracking information that showed the private twin-jet plane had left London Stansted Airport Monday evening, had stopped over in Bangkok on Tuesday evening and was en route to Saipan, where it was expected to land at 6 a.m. local time Wednesday.


The prime minister of Australia, Anthony Albanese, appeared to welcome the developments.


“The Australian government has consistently said that Mr. Assange’s case has dragged on for too long, and that there is nothing to be gained by his continued incarceration,” Mr. Albanese wrote on X. “We want him brought home to Australia.”


Barring last-minute snags, the deal would bring to an end a prolonged battle that began after Mr. Assange became alternately celebrated and reviled for revealing state secrets in the 2010s.


Those included material about American military activity in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as confidential cables shared among diplomats. During the 2016 campaign, WikiLeaks released thousands of emails stolen from the Democratic National Committee, leading to revelations that embarrassed the party and Hillary Clinton’s campaign.


In 2019, a federal grand jury indicted Mr. Assange on 18 counts related to WikiLeaks’ dissemination of a broad array of national security documents. Those included a trove of materials sent to the organization by Chelsea Manning, a former U.S. Army intelligence analyst who handed over information about military planning and operations nearly a decade earlier.


If convicted, Mr. Assange could have faced a maximum of 170 years in a federal prison. Until Monday evening, Mr. Assange had been held in Belmarsh, one of Britain’s highest-security prisons, in southeast London.


Mr. Assange was confined to a cell for 23 hours a day, eating his meals off a tray alone, surrounded by 232 books and allowed only an hour a day for exercise in a prison yard, according to an account published in The Nation this year.


When asked about his pallor, Mr. Assange — who has not been able to walk outside unsupervised for more than a decade — joked, “They call it prison pale.”


His release was not unexpected. Earlier this year, Mr. Albanese suggested that U.S. prosecutors needed to conclude the case, and President Biden signaled that he was open to a rapid resolution. Top officials at the Justice Department accepted an agreement with no additional prison time because Mr. Assange had already served longer than most people charged with a similar offense — in this case, over five years in prison in Britain.


Soon after the charges were unsealed in 2019, the London Metropolitan Police entered Ecuador’s embassy, where Mr. Assange had sought sanctuary years earlier to avoid extradition to Sweden, where he faced accusations of sexual assault. He has been held in custody ever since, as his legal team has fought the Justice Department’s efforts to extradite him.


After weeks of negotiations, Mr. Assange is pleading guilty to one of the charges in the indictment — conspiracy to disseminate national defense information — which carries a sentence of up to 10 years in prison.


Mr. Assange and his supporters have long argued that his efforts to obtain and publicly release sensitive national security information was in the public interest, and deserved the same First Amendment protections afforded to investigative journalists.


Many supporters renewed those concerns even as they expressed relief that he would be released.


“The United States has now, for the first time in the more than 100-year history of the Espionage Act, obtained an Espionage Act conviction for basic journalistic acts,” said David Greene, head of civil liberties at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a nonprofit focused on First Amendment issues.


“These charges should never have been brought,” he said.


In 2021, a coalition of civil-liberties and human-rights groups urged the Biden administration to drop its efforts to extradite him from Britain and prosecute him, calling the case “a grave threat” to press freedom.


Much of the conduct he is accused of is what “journalists engage in routinely,” the group contended. “News organizations frequently and necessarily publish classified information in order to inform the public of matters of profound public significance.”


But U.S. officials argued that Mr. Assange’s actions went far beyond news gathering, putting at risk national security. The material furnished by Ms. Manning, prosecutors claimed, endangered the lives of service members and Iraqis who worked with the military, and made it harder for the country to counter external threats.


Mr. Assange has remained in Belmarsh as he has repeatedly challenged the order for his removal. Last month, Mr. Assange won a bid to appeal the extradition order.


Afterward, Ms. Assange told supporters gathered outside the central London court that the case should be abandoned.


“The Biden administration should distance itself from this shameful prosecution,” said Ms. Assange, who secretly began a relationship with Mr. Assange after joining his legal team fighting extradition efforts to Sweden. The pair have two young sons.


Mr. Assange has rarely been seen in public as his case has wound its way through the courts, citing health issues. In 2021, Mr. Assange had a small stroke while in prison. He did not attend the hearing in May because of undisclosed health reasons.


Ms. Assange, in another video posted to social media that had been recorded outside of Belmarsh Prison last week, said that developments had unfolded very quickly.


“This period of our lives, I am confident now, has come to an end,” she said. She added, “What starts now, with Julian’s freedom, is a new chapter.”



2) Israel’s Supreme Court Rules the Military Must Draft Ultra-Orthodox Jews

The court ruled there was no basis to exempt the ultra-Orthodox from service, a decision that threatened to split Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government amid the war in Gaza.

By Aaron Boxerman, reporting from Jerusalem, June 25, 2024


Ultra-Orthodox men at a protest. One holds a sign that reads “The Israeli authorities are persecuting Torah scholars!”

A protest against the recruitment of the ultra-Orthodox into the Israeli military in Jerusalem in April. Credit...Ohad Zwigenberg/Associated Press

Israel’s Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled that the military must begin drafting ultra-Orthodox Jewish men, a decision that threatened to split Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s coalition government amid the war in Gaza.


In a unanimous decision, nine judges held that there was no legal basis for the longstanding military exemption given to many ultra-Orthodox religious students. Given the absence of a law distinguishing between seminarians and other men of draft age, the court ruled, the country’s compulsory service laws must similarly apply to the ultra-Orthodox minority.


In a country where military service is compulsory for most Jewish men and women, the exemption for the ultra-Orthodox has long been a source of contention for secular Israelis. But anger over the group’s special treatment has grown as the war in Gaza has stretched into its ninth month, requiring tens of thousands of reservists to serve multiple tours and costing the lives of hundreds of soldiers.


“These days, in the midst of a difficult war, the burden of that inequality is more acute than ever — and requires the advancement of a sustainable solution to this issue,” the Supreme Court judges wrote in their ruling.


The court’s ruling pits secular Jews against the ultra-Orthodox, who say their study of scripture is as essential as the military to defending Israel. It also exposes the fault lines in Mr. Netanyahu’s coalition, which depends on the support of two ultra-Orthodox parties amid the country’s deadliest war in decades.


Mr. Netanyahu has called for legislation that would generally maintain the exemption for the religious students. But if he moves ahead with the plan, other members of his government might break ranks amid rising public anger over the government’s strategy for the war in Gaza.


Ultra-Orthodox Jews have been exempt from military service since the founding of Israel in 1948, when the country’s leadership promised them autonomy in exchange for their support in creating a largely secular state. Along with being exempted from the draft, the ultra-Orthodox, known in Hebrew as Haredim, are allowed to run their own education system.


The Supreme Court took aim at that system as well in its ruling, stating that the government could no longer transfer subsidies to religious schools, or yeshivas, that registered draft-age students whose exemptions were no longer legal.


The decision immediately sparked outrage among ultra-Orthodox politicians, who vowed to oppose it.


“The State of Israel was established in order to be a home for the Jewish people, for whom Torah is the bedrock of their existence. The Holy Torah will prevail,” Yitzhak Goldknopf, an ultra-Orthodox minister, said in a statement on Monday.


Roughly 1,000 Haredi men currently serve voluntarily in the military — less than 1 percent of all soldiers — but the Oct. 7 Hamas-led attack has appeared to prompt a greater sense of shared destiny with mainstream Israelis among some segments of the Haredi public. More than 2,000 Haredim sought to join the military in the first 10 weeks of the war, according to military statistics.


Gabby Sobelman and Myra Noveck contributed reporting.



3) Half a Million in Gaza Face Starvation, Report Says

By Matthew Mpoke Bigg, June 25, 2024


A thin girl curled up on a cot.

A malnourished Palestinian girl at the International Medical Corps field hospital in Deir al Balah in southern Gaza on Saturday. Credit...Mohammed Salem/Reuters

Gaza is at high risk of famine and almost half a million people there face starvation because of a catastrophic lack of food, a group of global experts said on Tuesday, though it stopped short of saying that a famine had begun in the enclave as a result of Israel’s war against Hamas.


The experts said that the amount of food reaching northern Gaza had increased in recent months. Israel, under intense pressure from global governments and aid organizations, recently opened border crossings for aid in the north.


The analysis by the group, called the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification, or I.P.C., carries considerable weight. The group is a partnership of U.N. bodies and major relief agencies, and global leaders look to it to gauge the severity of hunger crises and allocate humanitarian aid.


After Hamas led a deadly attack on Israel on Oct. 7, Israeli officials declared a siege of Gaza, and they have severely restricted the entry of humanitarian aid, saying they do not want it to help Hamas. From October to early May, the daily number of aid trucks entering the territory through the two main crossing points in southern Gaza dropped by around 75 percent, according to U.N. data, and reports of hunger and malnourishment have been widespread.


Israeli officials have said for months that there is no limit on the amount of food and other aid that can enter Gaza. In recent weeks, Israel has increased the number of commercial vehicles carrying food and other goods across the border.


While acknowledging the hunger in Gaza, Israeli officials have accused Hamas of stealing or diverting aid. Ismael Thawabteh, deputy head of the Hamas government media office in Gaza, said last month that those allegations were “absolutely false and incorrect.” He added that, while there had been some looting of relief supplies, it had been done by a small number of people who had been forced into desperation by Israel.


Some Gazans have also accused Hamas of benefiting from looted aid.


The I.P.C. report said that almost all of Gaza’s population of around 2.2 million faced high levels of acute food insecurity, and it put Gaza at Phase 4, the “emergency” phase, on its five-level classification scale. But it also said that 495,000 people faced “catastrophic levels of acute food insecurity,” which is Phase 5 on the scale.


“In this phase, households experience an extreme lack of food, starvation, and exhaustion of coping capacities,” the report said.


In March, the I.P.C. predicted that famine would likely occur in northern Gaza by the end of May. But on Tuesday, it said that the amount of food and other nutrition delivered there had increased in March and April.


Those increases “appear to have temporarily alleviated conditions” in the north, the report said, adding, “In this context, the available evidence does not indicate that famine is currently occurring.”


In early May, Israel’s military sent ground troops into the southern Gazan city of Rafah, and more than a million people, many of whom had previously been displaced from their homes, fled to a coastal area that lacks basic infrastructure, making them acutely vulnerable.


The military operation closed the Rafah border crossing from Egypt and disrupted aid deliveries at the Kerem Shalom crossing with Israel. The situation in the south has since deteriorated, the report said.


The I.P.C. said that to be able to buy food, more than half of households in Gaza “had to exchange their clothes for money, and one-third resorted to picking up trash to sell.” It added that more than half of households often did not have any food to eat and that more than 20 percent went full days and nights without eating.


The I.P.C. identifies a famine when at least 20 percent of households in an area face an extreme lack of food, at least 30 percent of children suffer from acute malnutrition and at least two adults or four children for every 10,000 people die each day from starvation or disease linked to malnutrition. Since the I.P.C. was established in 2004, its approach has been used to identify only two famines: in Somalia in 2011, and in South Sudan in 2017.


After the group’s warning in March that Gaza was at risk of imminent famine, South Africa asked the U.N.’s highest court, the International Court of Justice, to issue emergency orders for Israel to stop what it called the “genocidal starvation” of the Palestinian people. The request was part of South Africa’s broader case that accuses Israel of genocide in Gaza, a charge that Israel rejects.


A month ago, the court, which is based in The Hague, ordered Israel to “immediately” halt its military offensive in Rafah, and it emphasized the need for open land crossings as part of its request for “the unhindered provision” of humanitarian aid. The Rafah offensive continues, but the order increased global pressure on Israel to scale back its attacks and limit civilian casualties.



4) A strike in Gaza kills a sister of Hamas’s political leader and her family.

By Hiba Yazbek reporting from Jerusalem, June 25, 2024

"Mahmoud Basal, a spokesman for the Palestinian Civil Defense, said that emergency rescue crews had removed the bodies of Mr. Haniyeh’s sister, her husband and their eight children from their home in the Shati neighborhood in northern Gaza, which was demolished in the strike."


People near a pile of rubble in an alleyway.

Searching through the rubble of a destroyed home in Shati in the northern Gaza Strip on Tuesday. Credit...Omar Al-Qattaa/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

A strike in the northern Gaza Strip killed a sister of Ismail Haniyeh, the political leader of Hamas, and her family on Tuesday, the armed group and a Gazan rescue official said.


Hamas confirmed the death of Mr. Haniyeh’s sister, Zaher Haniyeh, in a statement. The Israeli military said it was aware of the reports but could not “currently confirm” that it had struck the Haniyeh family home.


Mr. Haniyeh, who heads the Hamas political bureau from exile in Qatar, is a longstanding political leader of the group that governs the Gaza Strip and that launched the deadly Oct. 7 attack on Israel.


Mahmoud Basal, a spokesman for the Palestinian Civil Defense, said that emergency rescue crews had removed the bodies of Mr. Haniyeh’s sister, her husband and their eight children from their home in the Shati neighborhood in northern Gaza, which was demolished in the strike.


An Israeli airstrike in April killed three of Mr. Haniyeh’s sons and three of his grandchildren while they were traveling in a car in Gaza. The Israeli military confirmed the strike and said the sons were active in Hamas’s military operations.


At the time, Mr. Haniyeh did not specify his sons’ roles in the group but called them martyrs. He said that 60 members of his extended family had been killed by Israel over time.



5) After a Weather Disaster, a Surprise: Some Ornery Monkeys Got Nicer

Macaques, reeling from a hurricane, learned by necessity to get along, a study found. It’s one of the first to suggest that animals can adapt to environmental upheaval with social changes.

By Rachel Nuwer, Published June 20, 2024, Updated June 24, 2024


Dozens of brown monkeys gathered on a rocky shoreline under bright sunlight.

Rhesus macaques on Cayo Santiago, P.R., in October 2017, just weeks after Hurricane Maria swept through. Credit...Ramon Espinosa/Associated Press

Hurricane Maria caused widespread devastation in the Caribbean, not only for people but also for wildlife. Five years after the storm, some of the effects still linger.


Cayo Santiago, a small island off the southeastern coast of Puerto Rico, is a prime example. It transformed almost overnight from a lush jungle oasis to a desert-like spit of sand with mostly skeletal trees.


This posed a big problem for the island’s resident macaques. The monkeys depend on shade to keep cool in tropical daytime heat, but, by wiping out the trees, the storm had rendered that resource in very short supply.


Rhesus macaques are known for being some of the most quarrelsome primates on the planet, with strict social hierarchies maintained through aggression and competition. So it would follow that a simian battle royale would break out over the island’s few remaining patches of shade.


Yet that’s not what happened. Instead, the macaques did something seemingly inexplicable: They started getting along.


“This was really not what we expected,” said Camille Testard, a behavioral ecologist and neuroscientist at Harvard University. “Instead of becoming more competitive, individuals widened their social network and became less aggressive.”


A paper by Dr. Testard and her colleagues, published on Thursday in the journal Science, offers an explanation for this unexpected development. Monkeys who learned to share shade after the storm, they found, had a better chance of survival than those that remained quarrelsome.


Scientists have documented numerous cases of species responding to environmental pressure with physiological or morphological adaptations. But the new study is one of the first to suggest that animals can also respond with persistent changes to their social behavior, Dr. Testard said.


She and her colleagues took advantage of around 12 years of data collected at the Cayo Santiago Field Station, the world’s longest-running primatology field site. Researchers introduced rhesus macaques to the 38-acre island in 1938 and have been studying them ever since.


The approximately 1,000 macaques that live on the island are free-ranging but are fed by the field station staff members. “Access to food is not the main point of contention,” Dr. Testard said. “Shade to avoid heat stress is.”


Daytime temperatures on Cayo Santiago often soar above 100 degrees Fahrenheit, or about 38 Celsius, which can be deadly for monkeys stranded in the sun.


After Hurricane Maria took out most of the island’s trees, Dr. Testard and her colleagues expected that macaques might invest more in building close alliances so they could join forces to secure shade. But the “complete opposite” happened, she said. Monkeys instead invested in looser partnerships with a larger number of animals, and they became more tolerant of each other overall.


Dr. Testard said she suspected that this was because fighting is an energy-intensive activity that generates more body heat and poses more danger to individuals than “just caring less if another monkey is next to me or not.”


During the most sweltering hours of the afternoon, the researchers observed macaques crowded together in thin strips of shade. But even when temperatures were less stifling, the animals gathered in larger groups compared with their habits before the storm, Dr. Testard said.


Not all the monkeys jumped on the peace train, but those who adhered to aggression were more likely to pay a steep price. The macaque population’s overall death rate did not change after the hurricane. But monkeys that had more friendly relations experienced a 42 percent decrease in their odds of mortality because they were less likely to suffer heat stress.


“Who dies and for what reason is what has changed,” Dr. Testard said.


Noa Pinter-Wollman, a behavioral ecologist at the University of California, Los Angeles, who was not involved in the research, said that the “fascinating” findings were “a wonderful example of how being social can buffer negative effects of environmental change.”


Julia Fischer, a behavioral biologist at the German Primate Center in Göttingen, who also was not involved in the work, added that the “extremely well-done study” highlighted the importance of behavioral plasticity in helping animals survive when their habitat is upended. “In light of climate change, this is extremely important,” she said.


Whether other animals can also respond to environmental upheaval by adjusting their social norms “is going to be very species- and context-dependent,” Dr. Testard said. Humans probably fall into that category, though. People often band together, for example, after natural and human-caused disasters.


However, Dr. Testard added, there are limits. If resources become too scarce, then humans could descend into a Mad Max-like dystopia of violent competition. “There is hope that we would band together to make things work rather than fight,” she said. “But that’s a big speculation.”



6) Universal Human Emancipation is an All-Or-Nothing Endeavor

By Bonnie Weinstein, July/August Socialist Viewpoint, Vol. 24, No. 4


On June 10, 2024, when a new pro-Palestinian encampment formed, UCLA officials called for a full police response far quicker than they did in late April.

In four seemingly unrelated events in U.S. news recently, the true nature of U.S. capitalism reveals itself as a violent, terrorist dictatorship—not just abroad—but right here at home.


The U.S. is the leading combatant in the capitalist war against the poor—a war designed to keep the working class in its place of service to them, or face death.


On the homefront

At 12:01 A.M. on June 5, 2024, President Biden carried out his order to shut down the U.S. border with Mexico to nearly all migrants seeking asylum in the United States.1 According to a June 3, 2024, New York Times article by Hamed Aleaziz and Zolan Kanno-Youngs titled, “Biden Expected to Sign Executive Order Restricting Asylum,” Biden’s order essentially criminalized the most vulnerable people—victims of imperialist aggression whose homelands are wrecked by crimes of desperation and poverty who are seeking safety somewhere, anywhere else.:


“…The order would represent the single most restrictive border policy instituted by Mr. Biden, or any modern Democrat, and echoes a 2018 effort by President Donald J. Trump to block migration that was assailed by Democrats and blocked by federal courts. …The order would allow border officials to prevent migrants from claiming asylum and rapidly turn them away once border crossings exceed a certain threshold [to turn away all migrants attempting to cross the border after reaching a limit of 2500 crossings.] …On Sunday [June 2, 2024], border agents made more than 3,500 apprehensions of migrants crossing the border without authorization, according to a person with knowledge of the data.”


Under Biden’s orders, U.S. border agents are using force and violence to keep these desperate people from our border leaving them utterly destitute—without food, water or shelter.


A June 11, 2024, New York Times article by Brian Howey and Nate Rosenfield titled, “Torture Accusations Could Lead to Civil Rights Case in Mississippi,” exposes the brutal crimes of a Police Force “Goon Squad” operating in Mississippi:


“Rankin County came to national attention last year after deputies, some from a unit that called itself the Goon Squad, tortured two Black men in their home and shot one of them in the face, nearly killing him. Six officers pleaded guilty and were sentenced to federal prison in March. An investigation by The New York Times and Mississippi Today last fall revealed that nearly two dozen residents experienced similar brutality when Rankin deputies burst into their homes looking for illegal drugs. … In a statement to The Times and Mississippi Today two weeks ago, the Rankin County sheriff’s department said it had conducted an internal review of its deputies. The review came after the news organizations reported that, for a generation, Rankin County deputies had terrorized local residents accused of drug possession. More than 20 people said deputies had beaten, strangled, waterboarded or burned them during home raids and traffic stops. …The department conducted another review in late May after The Times and Mississippi Today unearthed a private text thread where deputies discussed beating criminal suspects, traded memes about rape and posted pictures of rotting human corpses they had found on the job.”


The Rankin County sheriff’s department—armed to the teeth—are routinely brutalizing innocent residents using drugs as a reason to illegally stop and search them.


In a June 11, 2024, New York Times article by Jonathan Wolfe and Jill Cowan, titled “At U.C.L.A., Police Arrest More Than 20 Pro-Palestinian Protesters,” the authors reported that:


“Pro-Palestinian demonstrators at the University of California, Los Angeles, clashed with law enforcement officers on Monday [June 10, 2024], sometimes physically, as they attempted to occupy outdoor areas and re-establish a protest encampment in the last days of the spring quarter. … The demonstration began earlier Monday in the form of a funeral procession, winding its way through campus as protesters read the names of Palestinians killed during the Israel-Hamas war. …The university has experienced a tumultuous spring. Violent attacks by supporters of Israel began on the night of April 30, followed about a day later by the dismantlement of a pro-Palestinian encampment, involving hundreds of arrests. Administrators had allowed that encampment to stand for days, but on Monday, scores of police officers and private security guards moved in swiftly.”


Even on college campuses, menacing police presence and violence against peaceful student protests are the routine measures college administrators are taking against student-resistance to genocide.


The world

Biden’s solution to the U.S./Israel genocide in Gaza is a sadistic “peace deal” that completely leaves out the voice of the Palestinian people.


In a June 5, 2024, New York Times article by Matthew Mpoke Bigg, titled, “Here’s a Closer Look at What is Standing in the Way of a Cease-Fire Deal” details of Biden’s three-phase program for a new and broader occupation of Palestine are explained:


“The proposal would unfold in three phases. In phase one, among other things, Israel would withdraw from population centers in Gaza during a six-week cease-fire, and dozens of women and elderly hostages held in Gaza by Hamas and its allies would be exchanged for hundreds of Palestinian detainees in Israeli prisons. During that time, talks over a permanent cease-fire would continue, and if successful, the deal would enter phase two, with the full withdrawal of Israel’s military from the enclave. All hostages and more Palestinian prisoners would be freed. Under phase three, Hamas would return the bodies of hostages who had died, and a three- to five-year reconstruction period, backed by the United States, European countries and international institutions, would begin.”


So, in Biden’s new plan for peace—really a piece of Palestinian land—Israel will not stand alone any longer in the occupation of Palestinian territory from the river to the sea. The United States, Europe and other “friends” will join Israel’s occupation of the people of Palestine—officially.


Biden’s peace plan is blackmail. It outlines the fundamental laws of capital for the working class, i.e., “if you agree to be ruled by us, to work for us, to be policed by us, and obey us without question, we will not bomb you into oblivion. And, in good faith, we will allow more products on the market for you to buy with the pay you earn for the privilege of working for us.”


Capitalists around the world know that Gaza could be an extremely profitable gateway to trade and travel throughout the region and are chomping at the bit for a chance to get a piece of Gaza to call their own.


This is no peace plan. It’s an ultimatum to the people of Palestine—surrender, or the genocide will continue until you are all dead or gone.


This ultimatum does not only apply to the people of Palestine. It applies to the migrants at the U.S./Mexico border, to the brutalized residents of Rankin County, Mississippi, and to the pro-Palestine student protesters at U.S.L.A., and to workers everywhere who choose democracy, social and economic equality, peace and a healthy environment and an end to war here and now.


The only choice capitalism allows the working class to make is to submit to their authority and work for them under their rules, or die.


What can we do about it?

The world’s working class is learning two huge and vital lessons, perhaps not consciously yet. But it is sinking in. One, that capitalism cannot be reformed enough to save the planet. And two, that real democracy comes from the power of masses of humanity acting on our own behalf and in our own interests—interests that are diametrically opposed to the interests of capital.


This is the essential part of our collective quest for a peaceful world. It is the only way to achieve the ultimate goal of a fully democratic, majority rule by, of and for, the working class, with control over the means of production to provide for the equal distribution of goods and services to all.


We must show through our actions how working together democratically, acting in unity and solidarity with each other, we are stronger than the bosses. We must work together to convince the masses of workers that replacing capitalism with socialism is the only way to bring peace to the world.


The power of unity and solidarity

Currently, the “left” is hopelessly sectarian. Even the best, are offering only their own organizations as the “answer.” This is a fear of democracy, which is the antithesis of revolutionary socialism. This is a clear expression of lack of faith in the working class. And it’s defeatist. Somehow, we have to free ourselves from this mindset.


Working people are beginning to see that what’s happening in Gaza is related to what’s happening at the Mexican/American border, in our inner cities, on our campuses and in countries all over the world—the poorest people are trying to defend their lives against the most powerful and sophisticated military forces in the world.


This is the reality of the world’s working class. Yet we are trapped into functioning in the world as if there is no way out of this hold capitalism has over us.


Our own organizations outside of the socialist left—the unions, community groups and organizations fighting for housing, healthcare, education, childcare, for a living wage, etc. offer only one solution—they urge us to vote for the capitalist politicians that give the best lip-service in support of our causes—knowing full well, that they have no intention whatsoever of carrying them out.


They count on workers’ belief in the myth of “lesser evilism.” This is the full extent of American democracy under capitalism. They give workers only one choice at election time—to vote for capitalist politicians—essentially surrendering our independence to those who have, and will continue to betray us.


We must make war on capital—not people

The power to change society is in the hands of the working class—unity and solidarity to defeat capitalism’s economic and military slaughter of the working class is achievable.


Capitalism is slavery of a different kind. It binds humanity to a system of economic slavery. Under capitalism workers are the producers of the wealth and plenty that only the ruling capitalist class can enjoy.


But we can turn things right side up! We can take the ownership of the means of production and the resources of the world out of the hands of the capitalist minority and put them and into our hands—we, the overwhelming majority of humanity—the working class.


All those who understand that capitalism offers no future to humanity and all life on our planet must put aside our petty differences and show that we can come together—to discuss and resolve our differences democratically—and begin to organize our workplaces and communities to fulfill the needs of all of us.


We, on the left, who understand that capitalism is the cause of all suffering in the world must act now to lead the way to building an independent, democratically functioning, revolutionary socialist political party of the working class to defeat capitalism and build socialism—it’s a necessary endeavor.


1 “Biden Shut the Border to Asylum Seekers. The Question Is Whether the Order Can Be Enforced.”





7) Foreign Police Officers Land on the Ground in Haiti

The first wave of a 2,500-member international force sent to restore order in the gang-plagued Caribbean nation has arrived, but critics worry the plan will fail.

By Frances Robles and Abdi Latif Dahir, Reporting from Florida and Nairobi, Kenya, June 25, 2024


Men in camouflage uniforms and helmets and carrying rifles walk down steps from a commercial aircraft.

Members of a Kenyan police force, part of a new security mission, after landing on Tuesday in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Credit...Ralph Tedy Erol/Reuters

Foreign law enforcement officers began arriving in Haiti on Tuesday, more than a year and a half after the prime minister there issued a plea to other countries for help to stop the rampant gang violence that has upended the Caribbean nation.


Since that appeal went out in October 2022, more than 7,500 people have been killed by violence — more than 2,500 people so far this year alone, the United Nations said.


With the presidency vacant and a weakened national government, dozens of gangs took over much of the capital, Port-au-Prince, putting up roadblocks, kidnapping and killing civilians and attacking entire neighborhoods. About 200,000 people were forced out of their homes between March and May, according to the U.N.


Now an initial group of 400 Kenyan police officers are arriving in Haiti to take on the gangs, an effort largely organized by the Biden administration. The Kenyans are the first to deploy of an expected 2,500-member force of international police officers and soldiers from eight countries.


“You are undertaking a vital mission that transcends borders and cultures,” President William Ruto of Kenya told the officers on Monday. “Your presence in Haiti will bring hope and relief to communities torn apart by violence and ravaged by disorder.”


The Kenyan officers are expected to tackle a long list of priorities, among them retaking control of the country’s main port, as well as freeing major highways from criminal groups that demand drivers for money.


“Gang checkpoints on these roads are also a major source of their income generated by extorting money from everyone passing through and by kidnapping and holding people for hefty ransoms,” said William O’Neill, the U.N.’s human rights expert on Haiti.


“While much delayed, the arrival of the Kenyans comes at a good time,” particularly since a new police chief and prime minister have been named in recent weeks, he said.


A small assessment team from Kenya arrived in May to begin preparations but found the equipment lacking. That left the United States, the main supplier for the mission, rushing to find armored vehicles and other equipment.


“The Kenyans do not want to be one of these missions that show up on the ground and, for a month, they never leave their base,” Dennis B. Hankins, the U.S. ambassador to Haiti, said in an interview. “They want to be able to see quickly that they are making an impact.’’


Officially called the Multinational Security Support Mission, the deployment is expected to last at least a year, according to the U.S. government. Sanctioned by the U.N. and mostly financed by the United States, its goal is to support the Haitian police and establish enough stability so the transitional government can set up elections to choose a new president, as well as a National Assembly.


The U.S. military has flown more than 90 flights into Haiti to prepare for the mission, carrying more than 2,600 tons of supplies. Civilian contractors have been building sleeping quarters for the Kenyan officers at Toussaint Louverture Airport in Port-au-Prince.


In May, Haitian government officials began clearing the airport perimeter of hundreds of houses, which had made it easier for gangs to hide and fire at aircraft, forcing the airfield to close.


The airport has reopened to commercial flights. But gang leaders have said that they will fight the Kenyans, who they consider invaders.


“As soon as we got the airport open and functional and we started seeing military flights, that had a real significant psychological impact on the population,” Mr. Hankins said.


Many experts are guarded in their assessment of the international force, mainly because aside from tackling the insecurity there is no comprehensive plan to address the root causes of Haiti’s many governance problems.


After Prime Minister Ariel Henry resigned in late April, it took several weeks for political parties to agree on who would serve on a new transitional presidential council. It was a full month before a replacement for Mr. Henry took office.


Garry Conille, a former U.N. official, accepted the post in late May. His office and the transitional council declined to comment Monday about the upcoming deployment.


Haitian authorities have difficult decisions ahead, Mr. Hankins said, such as whether wresting control of the central hospital in Port-au-Prince from gangs should take place first, or securing the port so that fuel, food and other commodities can flow consistently.


The gangs, he added, did not fight back while preparations at the airport were made. The Kenyans will “support” the Haitian police, but not replace them, he said, so that when the mission ends their departure doesn’t create “a security vacuum.”


So far, the Bahamas, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belize, Benin, Chad, Jamaica and Kenya have officially offered personnel for the mission.


But the mission has not received much financial commitment.


While Kenyan officials estimate the cost will run up to $600 million, a U.N. fund to pay for it has only $21 million. The United States has pledged more than $300 million to finance the mission.


The Kenyan deployment comes a month after Mr. Ruto of Kenya traveled to the United States at President Biden’s invitation. The four-day trip was the first state visit by a Kenyan president in two decades and the first by an African leader since 2008.


The United States, Canada and France — Haiti’s biggest benefactors and allies — were unwilling to send troops of their own to Haiti.


Kenya was the first nation to publicly offer to do so. Many experts believed the mission would be more welcomed if was led by an African nation.


Experts say that Mr. Ruto, who won the presidency in 2022 after a closely contested election, was using the deployment to further boost his profile on the global stage.


The deployment comes even as Mr. Ruto faces massive protests nationwide against a finance bill that critics say will increase the already high cost of living.


A team of Haitian police commanders recently visited Kenya’s capital, Nairobi, while Mr. Ruto held talks with the Haitian transitional presidential council.


At a police camp in Nairobi, officers who will be part of the deployment made final preparations. They have undergone physical and weapons training and received new helmets and body armor, according to interviews with officers who spoke on the condition of anonymity, because they were not authorized to speak publicly to reporters.


They have also taken intensive French and Creole courses.


Beyond protecting key infrastructure, the officers at some point will be expected to secure the presidential palace, which remains in shambles after a 2010 earthquake but continues to be a symbolic place of power in Haiti.


“The early deployment of this force is going to be very vulnerable,” said Sophie Rutenbar, a visiting scholar at the New York University Center on International Cooperation who has worked in Haiti.


The initial group is likely to “play it safe” at the start, she said, but even as more officers arrive from other countries, their task will be daunting, particularly since they have not worked together before, do not speak the same languages or have a shared “operational framework.”


Eugene Chen, a former U.N. official who follows Haiti closely, said the international mission seemed to emerge out of a desperation to do something. Without finding ways to support Haiti’s political process, the mission could exacerbate the violence, Mr. Chen said.


“It’s not clear,” Mr. Chen added, “that this is the right answer.”


Abdi Latif Dahir contributed reporting from Nairobi, and David C. Adams from Miami.



8) Casualties Reported as Police Fire on Protesters in Kenya

Demonstrators breached the parliament building to protest the passage of a bill that raises taxes. At least four people were shot, one fatally, the independent Kenya Human Rights Commission said.

By Abdi Latif Dahir, Reporting from Nairobi, Kenya, June 25, 2024


People jumping in front of a police vehicle.

Demonstrators try to obstruct a police vehicle during a demonstration against Kenya’s proposed finance bill, in Nairobi on Tuesday. Credit...Simon Maina/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Police fired tear gas and shots rang out Tuesday as thousands of demonstrators flooded the streets around Kenya’s Parliament after lawmakers passed tax increases that critics say will make life onerous for millions.


The independent Kenya Human Rights Commission said that four people had been shot, one of them fatally. That could not be independently confirmed. A video the commission posted to social media showed police firing as protesters marched toward them.


At least part of the main Parliament building’s entrance was briefly on fire and Kenya’s Red Cross said that its vehicles had been attacked and staff members injured.


The debate over the finance bill that includes the tax hikes has shaken Kenya, an East African economic powerhouse of 54 million people that has long been an anchor of stability in a tumultuous region. At least one person was killed and 200 others were injured in protests across the country last week, according to Amnesty International.


The contentious bill was introduced by the government of President William Ruto in May to raise revenue and limit borrowing in an economy facing a heavy debt burden. But Kenyans have widely criticized the legislation, saying it adds punitive new taxes and raises others on a wide range of goods and services that would escalate living costs.


The president now has two weeks to sign the legislation into law or send it back to Parliament for further amendments.


Detractors of the bill have pointed to corruption and mismanagement of funds, and faulted the opulent lifestyle and extravagant spending that they say have characterized the administration of Mr. Ruto, who has been in office since 2022.


Protesters draped in the Kenyan flag blew whistles and trumpets and chanted, “Ruto must go.” There were signs the protests were spreading beyond the capital, as protesters blocked streets with burning tires in Nakuru, a city some 100 miles from Nairobi.


Here’s what else to know:


·      The protests have been guided by younger people who have used social media platforms like TikTok and Instagram to initiate a leaderless movement that has galvanized the nation. Besides organizing protests in almost three dozen counties across Kenya, young people have translated the bill into several local languages and used the artificial intelligence tool ChatGPT to simplify it.


·      The internet watchdog group NetBlocks is reporting a major disruption to internet connectivity in Kenya. Kenya’s communications authority said it had “no intention whatsoever” of shutting down internet traffic.


·      Before Tuesday’s demonstration, several activists who are prominent critics of the bill were abducted, according to the Law Society of Kenya. The abductors’ identities were not publicly known, but some were believed to be intelligence officers, said the Law Society’s president, Faith Odhiambo. Ms. Odhiambo later said that some of those abducted had been released.


·      CNN aired footage of the half-sister of former President Barack Obama, Auma Obama, being tear-gassed as she was interviewed about her opposition to the bill.


·      The protests comes as an initial group of 400 Kenyan police officers was arriving in Haiti for help to stop the rampant gang violence that has upended the Caribbean nation, an effort largely organized by the Biden administration. The Kenyans are the first to deploy of an expected 2,500-member force of international police officers and soldiers from eight countries.



9) Netanyahu’s Coalition Appears Steady After Court Ruling

By Matthew Mpoke Bigg and Gabby Sobelman, June 26, 2024


Men in ultra-Orthodox clothing carrying banners and signs at a protest.

Ultra-Orthodox men protesting army recruitment in Jerusalem in April. Credit...Menahem Kahana/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

A day after Israel’s Supreme Court ruled that the military must begin drafting ultra-Orthodox Jewish men, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s ruling coalition appeared to be holding, though at least one far-right party expressed deep reservations about the court decision.


The ruling had for months been viewed as potentially perilous for Mr. Netanyahu because his six-party coalition depends on ultra-Orthodox parties that are opposed to conscription for their constituents. But so far, there was little sign that the decision would jeopardize the coalition in the short term.


There was no immediate comment on the ruling from one of the most prominent far-right ministers, Bezalel Smotrich. Some politicians connected to the coalition criticized the ruling, but did not say whether it might lead them to pull out of the government.


Military service is compulsory for most Jewish Israelis, both men and women, and the exemption for the ultra-Orthodox has long been a source of resentment. That resentment has grown because of the strain placed on the Israel Defense Forces by the war in Gaza, which has entered its ninth month.


On Tuesday, judges said there was no legal basis for a military exemption given to ultra-Orthodox religious students. Without a law distinguishing between seminarians and other men of draft age, the court ruled, the country’s mandatory draft laws must similarly apply to the ultra-Orthodox minority.


In reaction to the ruling, Rabbi Shlomo Benizri, who had served in previous governments and is an influential member of the Sephardic Shas party, a coalition member that appeals to Israelis from the Middle East and North Africa, said that the military must ensure that provisions are made for yeshiva students who are drafted as a result of the ruling.


These arrangements must “create the appropriate atmosphere and spiritual greenhouse for them, and then they can be drafted,” he said in an interview on Israel’s Kan radio, without elaborating. One resolution could be that his party negotiates with the government on government payments to facilitate Torah study.


Meir Porush, the Jerusalem affairs and heritage minister, reserved his disappointment for the court, rather than the government, saying the decision left ultra-Orthodox Jews legally defenseless.


“We feel today we have no protection in the corridors of the courts,” said Mr. Porush, a member of the United Torah Judaism party, in an opinion piece in the Hameveser newspaper, which is widely read by the ultra-Orthodox. “There is no one who understands how fundamental it is to sit and meditate on the Torah.”


Mr. Smotrich, the settler activist who serves as finance minister in the government, had no immediate comment on the ruling, a spokesman said.


Ultra-Orthodox Jews have been exempt from military service since the founding of Israel in 1948, when the country’s leadership promised them autonomy in exchange for their support in creating a largely secular state. At the time, there were only a few hundred yeshiva students.


There are now more than a million ultra-Orthodox in Israel, roughly 13 percent of the population. They wield considerable political clout and their elected leaders have become kingmakers, featuring in most Israeli coalition governments. But as the power of the ultra-Orthodox grew, so did anger over their lack of participation in the military and their relatively small contribution to the economy.



An Israeli strike kills a Doctors Without Borders staff member, and other news.

·      A physiotherapist who worked with the medical charity Doctors Without Borders was killed in an attack on Tuesday night in Gaza City, the organization said in a statement. Israel said it had killed the man, Fadi al-Wadiya, 33, in a drone attack and claimed that he was a member of the militant group Palestinian Islamic Jihad. He was killed along with five other people, including three children, the charity said, calling the attack “cynical and abhorrent.” It did not immediately respond to the claim that Mr. al-Wadiya was a member of the militant group. The Israeli military called him a “significant terrorist” and said that he had worked on developing the Iran-backed group’s rocket capabilities.


·      President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday of planning to spread the Gaza war to Lebanon “with the consent of the West,” in what he said would be a “grave disaster.” Mr. Netanyahu suggested on Sunday that fighting in Gaza was about to enter a less intense stage and that Israel would be able to move some of its forces north, where cross-border strikes have intensified with the Lebanese militia Hezbollah. But he stopped well short of announcing plans to send troops into Lebanon. U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III has emphasized Israel’s right to defend itself, but warned that a war with Hezbollah could have “terrible consequences for the Middle East.”



10) A U.N. official called on Israel to offer more protection for aid workers.

By Ephrat Livni and Anjana Sankar, June 26, 2024


Members of the military wearing green camouflage are in the foreground. Trucks with aid departing a vessel are in the background.

Members of the U.S. military on a temporary pier, off the coast of Gaza, helping to transport humanitarian aid for the enclave. Credit...Leo Correa/Associated Press

United Nations aid agencies have been demanding that the Israeli authorities do more to protect aid workers in the Gaza Strip and ensure that assistance reaches those who need it, Stéphane Dujarric, a U.N. spokesman, said on Tuesday.


The agencies are struggling to deliver food and other basic necessities. A report from the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification, or I.P.C., a partnership of U.N. bodies and relief agencies, concluded on Tuesday that Gaza was at high risk of famine. It also found that almost 500,000 people there, almost a quarter of the population, faced starvation.


On Monday, a high-ranking U.N. security official contacted the Israeli agency overseeing aid to Gaza to press for more protections for aid workers, Mr. Dujarric said, adding that a letter this month to the agency from the U.N.’s humanitarian coordinator had made similar points.


Israeli authorities have resisted blame. On social media on Tuesday, in a post directed at the U.N.’s World Food Program, the Israeli agency overseeing aid in Gaza displayed a photo of supplies that it said were waiting at an offloading area. “Stop making excuses and start playing your role as a humanitarian food organization and the head of the logistic cluster,” it said.


Monday’s I.P.C. report found that the amount of food reaching northern Gaza had increased in recent months, but it underscored the dire conditions people in the enclave were facing and the need for much more aid to be delivered.


Aid groups say they fear for the safety of their workers. The U.N.’s World Food Program suspended deliveries of assistance from the U.S.-built pier off the coast of Gaza this month after it said that its warehouses had been struck in an Israeli hostage rescue mission that killed scores of Palestinians, including women and children.


Last week the U.N. said that Gaza had become the most dangerous place in the world for aid workers. About 250 aid workers have been killed since the Hamas-led attack on Oct. 7 set off this war, the U.N. said. That figure includes nearly 200 who worked for UNRWA, the main U.N. agency for Palestinians.


That temporary suspension of deliveries from the pier has left aid sitting ever since and prompted concerns that the U.N. might halt other operations.


Mr. Dujarric noted the dangers to aid workers and said that humanitarian operations had repeatedly been targeted, pointing to Israeli strikes on hospitals and other areas that were supposed to be “de-conflicted.” The Israeli military said those locations were being used by Hamas militants.


“The risks, frankly, are becoming increasingly intolerable,” Mr. Dujarric said. He added that the need to support millions of Palestinian civilians dependent on humanitarian aid to survive was a priority and that the U.N. assessed the security situation daily to try to operate safely.


Juliette Touma, a spokeswoman for UNRWA, said that the humanitarian operation in Gaza had become “totally unnecessarily one of the most cumbersome and complex in the world right now.”



11) Rogue to Victim: What Australia Sees in Julian Assange

Broad support for his release seems to have grown more out of resentment of his treatment by the U.S. justice system than concerns about press protections.

By Damien Cave who has covered the United States-Australia relationship since 2017, June 26, 2024


Julian Assange, wearing a brown tie, white shirt and black suit, is surrounded by people as he walks on a tropical island. Many people are taking his picture.

Julian Assange arriving at court in Saipan, the Northern Mariana Islands, on Wednesday to enter a guilty plea. Credit...Kim Hong-Ji/Reuters

Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, received a hero’s welcome even before he arrived back in his home country of Australia on Wednesday after pleading guilty to a felony charge of violating the U.S. Espionage Act.


Australian politicians sprinted to publish statements supporting a plea deal that gained him his freedom. Kevin Rudd, the former prime minister who is now Australia’s ambassador to the United States, even joined him in the U.S. courtroom on the Pacific island of Saipan.


That Mr. Assange’s case concluded in a distant outpost — the capital of the Northern Mariana Islands, a commonwealth tied to America through post-World War II imperialism — seemed fitting.


He ended his standoff with the American government far from Washington, 14 years after he published classified military and diplomatic documents, revealing secret details about U.S. spycraft and the killing of civilians during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.


He was a divisive figure then — a brave journalist to some, a reckless anarchist who endangered Americans to others. He became even more polarizing during the 2016 presidential election, when WikiLeaks published thousands of emails from Hillary Clinton’s campaign and from the Democratic National Committee that had been stolen by Russian hackers.


But after five years in a British prison, and marriage and fatherhood, Mr. Assange had turned into a figure more appealing for Australians. Somewhere along the way, he became the underdog forced to endure superpower pique, and in a land settled by convicts, a rebellious bloke who had done his time and deserved to return home.


Prime Minister Anthony Albanese of Australia said the court proceedings that freed Mr. Assange were “a welcome development.”


“This is something that has been considered, patient, worked through in a calibrated way, which is how Australia conducts ourselves internationally,” he said Wednesday.


“Regardless of what your views about Mr. Assange’s activities,” he added, “his case has dragged on for too long.”


Critics saw a lack of introspection in that response. It ignored that Australia’s own espionage laws are some of the toughest in the democratic world, with punishments stretching to 25 years in prison and weak protections for journalism. And it sidestepped the Albanese administration’s continued resistance to granting greater transparency with public records and the failure to strengthen whistle-blower protection laws, despite frustration over several secretive cases.


Johan Lidberg, an associate professor of journalism at Monash University in Melbourne who has worked with the United Nations on global press freedom, said he was surprised by the broad political support for Mr. Assange. He had somehow unified, for a moment, Greens and Labor lawmakers along with conservative leaders. But how?


Mr. Lidberg said sympathy for Mr. Assange started to build in Australia after 2016, when at the urging of President Trump, he was dragged out of the Ecuadorean Embassy and put into Belmarsh, a prison in southeast London.


“His case went from one of hacking, journalism, publishing, advocacy to becoming a humanitarian issue,” he said. “It could be that the Australian myth of ‘the fair go’ played a role. It was seen that he didn’t get a fair go, and was mistreated.”


The desire to protect accountability journalism — a factor for many Americans who worried that a conviction for Mr. Assange would send a threatening message to reporters and sources — was not a major concern in Australia, where there is no constitutional right to free speech.


James Curran, a history professor at the University of Sydney and an international affairs columnist, said Australians do not necessarily share the same kind of reverence as Americans do for “the whole culture of secrecy and classified documents.”


When a bipartisan group of Australian politicians went to Washington to lobby for Mr. Assange in October, they did not stress the need to protect the Fourth Estate.


“They emphasized how China and Russia are using the Assange case as proof of blatant Western hypocrisy when it comes to the handling of political prisoners,” Mr. Curran said. “This did cut through in Washington.”


American law-and-order had already lost some respect. Many Australians now harbor whispered disapproval for the U.S. criminal justice system, which they see as too performative and punitive, with capital punishment in some states and long prison sentences in most.


“It is the high rates of incarceration, the abuse of the plea-bargaining process, even the conduct of U.S. police,” said Hugh White, a former Australian defense official and now a professor of strategic studies at the Australian National University. “I think even quite conservative people doubted that Assange would ‘get a fair go’ at the hands of the D.O.J.”


Last year, when Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken visited Australia for high-level defense talks in Brisbane, he was asked about Mr. Assange’s case — and bristled at the idea that Mr. Assange was a victim of American capriciousness.


Standing at an outdoor lectern, flanked by military veterans, Mr. Blinken said he understood “the concerns and views of Australians” but that it was “very important that our friends here” understood Mr. Assange’s “alleged role in one of the largest compromises of classified information in the history of our country.”


His comments sounded defensive to many Australians, and condescending. Australia and America are still shoulder-to-shoulder allies, having fought together in past wars, and they are now building a framework of collective defense to deter potential Chinese aggression. But Mr. Blinken’s tone helped make Mr. Assange a proxy for another element of the Australian relationship to the United States: An abiding ambivalence about the idea of American exceptionalism.


“In part this is just a reflection of the ambivalence that great powers always engender among their smaller satellites, but it is not just that,” Mr. White said.


Among conservative, Anglo-centric Australians, there is also some resentment about America displacing the British Empire after World War II, he added. Others have felt that the United States has often been too quick to dismiss the concerns of its friends, and by continuing to prosecute Mr. Assange, “the U.S. has looked unreasonably vindictive,” he said.


Getting the United States to back down — and listen with a bit more humility — seems to be what Australian politicians are eager to celebrate. Along with Mr. Albanese, rural conservative lawmakers and Greens party liberals also praised Mr. Assange’s release. Mr. Rudd smiled enough during his own appearance in court to be mistaken for a defense lawyer.


Their mood of victory, however, may yet fade. Will the next round of leaks reveal secrets about Australia? What if Mr. Assange and WikiLeaks choose a side in the U.S. election or war in Ukraine that most Australians do not support?


“The case can be made that WikiLeaks helped Trump and Putin more than anybody else, and put lives at risk,” Mr. Curran said. “This seems not to have really sunk in to the Australian debate.”



12) Israel Orders Evacuations as Strikes Pound Gaza City

By Hiba Yazbek and Ameera Harouda reporting from Jerusalem and Doha, Qatar, June 27, 2024


An injured child lying on a cot in a medical facility.

A wounded Palestinian boy receiving treatment at a hospital in Gaza City on Thursday. Credit...Dawoud Abu Alkas/Reuters

Israel Orders Evacuations as Strikes Pound Gaza City

By Hiba Yazbek and Ameera Harouda reporting from Jerusalem and Doha, Qatar, June 27, 2024



Israel ordered people in part of eastern Gaza City to evacuate on Thursday as Palestinian officials and residents reported heavy strikes and multiple casualties. People in the area described a frantic effort to get out as explosions sounded around them.


The Israeli military said that it could not immediately comment on the strikes, which Palestinian officials said hit the Shajaiye neighborhood, an already heavily damaged area that was the focus of intense fighting early in the war. Kan, Israel’s public broadcaster, reported that the military was conducting a ground operation to root out Hamas based on intelligence that the armed group had begun to restore control in the neighborhood.


A witness with a human rights organization said that there were Israeli tanks on the outskirts of the neighborhood.


The operation, if confirmed, would be the latest instance of Israeli forces returning to parts of Gaza that they had previously left, especially in the north of the enclave, as Hamas regroups amid the anarchy that the nine-month war has unleashed. The fighting has dragged on even as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says the war will soon move to a less intense phase, and as frustration grows within Israel and globally over what critics say is Mr. Netanyahu’s failure to advance a plan for how Gaza should be governed after Hamas.


Gazan health authorities said on Thursday that 15 people had been killed and dozens injured in Shajaiye. Civil Defense, the Palestinian emergency service, said that five homes had been struck in Shajaiye and another neighborhood, and that a search was underway for missing people. The toll could not be independently verified, and Gazan authorities do not distinguish between civilians and combatants when reporting casualty figures.


The witness, Mohammed Qraiqea, a researcher with the Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor advocacy group who was in Shajaiye on Thursday, said that artillery shelling, occasional airstrikes and drone fire were continuing in the afternoon.


“The tanks have advanced in a limited manner so far on the outskirts of the neighborhood,” he said Thursday afternoon. “But by now most people had evacuated,” prompted by the heavy bombardment, he added.


Israeli troops invaded northern Gaza in October after the Hamas-led attack in Israel, taking over territory and pushing south as they took over Hamas strongholds, but they have yet to decisively defeat the armed group. Shajaiye, one of Gaza City’s largest neighborhoods, is home to a battalion that is considered one of the strongest in Hamas’s military wing. It is unclear how big a presence Hamas now has there.


Hamas has taken advantage of the urban areas in Gaza to provide its fighters and weapons infrastructure with an extra layer of protection, running tunnels under neighborhoods, launching rockets near civilian homes and holding hostages in city centers. Ghazi Hamad, a senior Hamas official, has said that the group tries to keep Palestinian civilians out of harm’s way.


Shajaiye was the site of heavy fighting earlier in the war. In December, nine Israeli soldiers were killed there on what the Israeli military reported was one of the deadliest days of the war for its forces.


In recent months, some residents had returned to Shajaiye as Israeli forces turned their focus to southern Gaza. Mohammad al-Bahrawi, 65, who had returned with his family to their home in Shajaiye in March, was forced to flee again on Thursday by the strikes. He said he saw crowds leaving “like a torrent.”


“I couldn’t even believe that this many people were still in Shajaiye,” he added.


Mr. al-Bahrawi said that he was not aware of the Israeli evacuation orders that the military posted on social media on Thursday.


“We got out by God’s mercy,” he said, adding that “we were hearing explosions from every direction.”


When the sounds of the explosions seemed to subside, Mr. al-Bahrawi walked with his wife and children to the courtyard of the Ahli Arab Hospital, seeing wounded people being pulled out from under rubble along the way.


At the hospital, they were “just sitting there until God helps us and we find an apartment to stay in,” he said.


Myra Noveck contributed reporting from Jerusalem.



Syria blames Israel for an airstrike, and other news.

·      The Syrian government said an airstrike targeted a Hezbollah stronghold in the suburbs of the capital, Damascus, a Syrian state news agency, SANA, reported Wednesday. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based group, said three people were killed and more than 10 others were injured. The exact toll could not be independently confirmed. Syria blamed Israel for the strike. Israel’s military did not immediately comment, but it has previously acknowledged carrying out hundreds of assaults on Iran-linked targets in Syria.


·      President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday of planning to spread the war in Gaza to Lebanon “with the consent of the West,” in what he said would be a “grave disaster.” Mr. Netanyahu suggested on Sunday that fighting in Gaza was about to enter a less intense stage and that Israel would be able to move some of its forces north, where cross-border strikes have intensified with the Lebanese militia Hezbollah. But he stopped well short of announcing plans to send troops into Lebanon. The U.N.’s departing humanitarian aid chief, Martin Griffiths, also warned on Wednesday of the dangers posed by a conflict in Lebanon, calling it a “flashpoint beyond all flashpoints.”


·      Israel’s defense minister, Yoav Gallant, met with Jake Sullivan, the U.S. national security adviser, on Wednesday to discuss developments in the war in Gaza, tensions along Israel’s border with Lebanon and other issues. During four days of meetings with U.S. officials in Washington, Mr. Gallant said, “we made significant progress, obstacles were removed and bottlenecks were addressed,” noting that he and Mr. Sullivan spoke specifically about Israel’s weapons needs. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel has recently accused the United States of holding up weapons shipments, a claim that American officials have denied. Mr. Gallant struck a more conciliatory tone on Wednesday, saying, “It is moving to see the great support we receive from the U.S. government and the American public.”



13) Israel’s military says an officer was killed during a raid in the West Bank city of Jenin.

By Matthew Mpoke Bigg, June 27, 2024


A large crater in a dirt road in a rural area.

A crater left by a roadside bomb that targeted an Israeli military jeep in the city of Jenin in the Israeli-occupied West Bank on Thursday. Credit...Mohammad Mansour/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

An Israeli soldier was killed and another was severely wounded overnight during a raid in the city of Jenin in the occupied West Bank, the military said on Thursday. It was the latest in a series of violent Israeli raids in the city.


The soldier who was killed, a sniper team commander, “fell during operational activity,” the Israel Defense Forces said in a brief statement, which gave few details. Wafa, the official Palestinian news agency, reported that one Palestinian man had been wounded in the raid.


Jenin, in the north of the West Bank, houses a refugee camp founded more than 70 years ago for Palestinians displaced in the wars surrounding the creation of the state of Israel. The city and camp are bastions of armed resistance to the occupation. Israel has conducted frequent raids there over the years, but they have become more common since Oct. 7, when Hamas led a deadly attack on Israel that prompted a war in Gaza.


The military detained 28 people during the overnight raid and nine remain in detention, including Jamal Hawail, a member of the Fatah Revolutionary Council, according to a statement from the Commission of Detainees and Ex-Detainees Affairs, which is linked to the Palestinian Authority, and the Palestinian Prisoners’ Club, a nongovernmental organization. The council sets policy for Fatah, the political party that controls the Palestinian Authority. The Israeli statement did not comment on the arrests.


Hundreds of Palestinians have been detained in the raids, which Israeli officials say are part of counterterrorism operations against Hamas and an extension of the war.


The U.N. human rights chief, Volker Türk, said this month that Israeli forces and settlers had killed more than 500 people in the West Bank since Oct. 7. In the same period, 24 Israelis, of whom eight were members of the security forces, were killed in the West Bank and in Israel in clashes or what Israel called attacks by Palestinians from the West Bank, Mr. Türk said.



14) From Hacker to Hunted Figure, the Polarizing Legacy of Julian Assange

The co-founder of WikiLeaks was a heroic crusader for truth to many people for publishing government secrets. To others, he was a reckless leaker endangering lives.

By Mark Landler and Megan Specia, Reporting from London, June 27, 2024


Mr. Assange and his wife, Stella, kiss after his arrival in Australia.

The Assanges kissing in Canberra. Credit...Lisa Maree Williams/Getty Images

In his two-decade odyssey from Australian hacker to new-age media celebrity, hunted figure, perennial prisoner and finally, a free man, Julian Assange has always been easier to caricature than characterize.


The lack of an agreed-upon label for Mr. Assange — is he a heroic crusader for truth or a reckless leaker who endangered lives? — makes any assessment of his legacy ambiguous at best.


Whatever history’s judgment of Mr. Assange, his appearance Wednesday in a courtroom on a remote Pacific island, where he pleaded guilty to a single count of violating the U.S. Espionage Act, was an appropriate coda to a story that has always seemed stranger than fiction.


From the time he established WikiLeaks in 2006, Mr. Assange, 52, was a polarizing figure, using the internet to solicit and publish government secrets. His disclosures, from confidential diplomatic cables to civilian deaths in the American wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, made him courageous to those who believed in his gospel of radical transparency. To others who feared the information he revealed could get people killed, he was destructive, even if there was never proof that lives were lost.


After his sensational leaks incurred the wrath of the White House, Mr. Assange spent 12 years in London fighting extradition, first to Sweden and then to the United States. Holed up in a South American embassy and later languishing in a British prison, he resurfaced in the headlines whenever a court ruled on his latest appeal. He became less a cutting-edge insurgent than a ghostly throwback to another time.


“Julian Assange has for so many years sacrificed for the freedom of speech, freedom of the press,” said Barry Pollack, a lawyer who represented Mr. Assange in his plea negotiations with the American authorities, on Wednesday in Canberra, Australia. “He’s sacrificed his own freedom.”


At its best, WikiLeaks shone a light into dark corners, often working with traditional media organizations to expose abuses like extrajudicial killings in Kenya. Documents posted by WikiLeaks about the excesses of Tunisia’s ruling family presaged the upheaval that swept the region.


Alan Rusbridger, a former editor in chief of The Guardian who worked extensively with Mr. Assange, said WikiLeaks deserved credit for accelerating the political changes of the Arab Spring.


While Mr. Assange indisputably changed history, it is not clear he did so in the way that he and his apostles may have hoped when they first came to global prominence in 2010 by posting video on WikiLeaks of a U.S. helicopter strike in Baghdad that had resulted in the death of a Reuters photographer.


“Think about Julian Assange’s motivation regarding Iraq and Afghanistan,” said P.J. Crowley, who was the State Department’s spokesman when WikiLeaks published 250,000 confidential diplomatic cables in 2010, a project in which the site initially collaborated with The New York Times and others.


“We left Iraq, went back, and are still there,” Mr. Crowley said. “We stayed in Afghanistan for a decade after WikiLeaks. His legacy is collaborating with Russian intelligence, whether wittingly or unwittingly, to help Russia elect Donald Trump.”


Mr. Crowley’s experience with Mr. Assange is acutely personal: He was forced to resign his post after he criticized the Pentagon’s treatment of Chelsea Manning, the U.S. Army intelligence analyst who downloaded thousands of documents, including those cables, from a classified government network and uploaded them to WikiLeaks.


Views of Mr. Assange soured after WikiLeaks, in the heat of the 2016 presidential campaign, published Democratic emails that had been hacked by a Russian intelligence agency. Allies of Hillary Clinton cited it as one of multiple factors that contributed to her defeat by Mr. Trump.


As secretary of state, Mrs. Clinton had to apologize to foreign leaders for embarrassing details in cables sent by American diplomats to the State Department. In one case, the foreign minister of a Persian Gulf nation refused to allow note takers into a meeting with her, for fear that his comments would be leaked.


“Some of this damage to American foreign policy was irreparable,” said Vali R. Nasr, a senior State Department official at the time, who now teaches at Johns Hopkins University. “You can apologize for it, but you can’t undo it.”


But Mr. Nasr said the furor caused by WikiLeaks also revealed something that the United States was later able to use to its advantage: the public relations value of intelligence. Before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, American and British intelligence agencies selectively declassified material about Russia’s activities to warn President Vladimir V. Putin and mobilize Western support.


American officials justified their prosecution of Mr. Assange on espionage charges by saying it would deter other would-be whistle-blowers from leaking classified material. But it also reflected a collective sense of shock that the nation’s most tightly held secrets could be so easily compromised.


“Some of this going after Assange,” Mr. Nasr said, “had to do with compensating for your weakness by shooting the messenger.”


The messenger proved elusive. Mr. Assange’s prolonged exile in Britain, during which he spent seven years in the Ecuadorean embassy and five years in London’s Belmarsh prison, turned him from a swashbuckling media impresario into a haunted, if hardheaded, resistance figure.


Supporters camped outside the embassy, where he had been granted asylum, holding placards and chanting, “Free Assange!” Detractors saw him as an erratic publicity seeker. Claiming to be a victim of political persecution, he violated his bail terms after losing his appeal of a Swedish arrest warrant on charges of sexual assault — charges he described as a “smear campaign” ginned up by the United States.


From his cramped living quarters in a converted embassy office, Mr. Assange gave defiant press interviews. Activists and celebrities came and went: the actress Pamela Anderson became something of a regular.


Mr. Assange began a secret relationship with Stella Moris, a lawyer who represented him and later became his wife. They had two children while he was hiding out in the embassy.


For British authorities, caught in the middle, it was a costly and time-consuming distraction. They had to station police in front of the embassy, while the courts dealt with extradition requests.


Sweden later dropped its case against Mr. Assange, but the United States, under President Donald J. Trump, charged him with espionage. After a change in government in Ecuador, he became an unwelcome guest and was evicted from the embassy in April 2019. As police dragged out a bedraggled, bearded Mr. Assange, he shouted, “U.K. resist — resist this attempt by the Trump administration.”


By that point, Mr. Assange’s saga had become little more than a sideshow. “Journalists didn’t pay enough attention to Assange’s plight,” Mr. Rusbridger said. “People either think he’s the messiah or the devil, and there’s no in between.”


Sentenced to 50 weeks for violating his bail, Mr. Assange would spend five years in Belmarsh, a high-security prison that once housed the convicted terrorist, Abu Hamza al-Masri, and is known as “Hellmarsh” because of its harsh conditions.


As Mr. Assange challenged his removal from Britain, his legal case sometimes felt interminable, lumbering from one court to the next as his lawyers filed appeals to unfavorable rulings.


“Our procedural rules don’t really lend themselves to speedy resolution,” said Nick Vamos, a partner at the British law firm, Peters & Peters, and a former head of extradition for Britain’s Crown Prosecution Service. “If you want to take every point — as was entirely his right to do — then you can buy yourself a lot of time.”


Mr. Assange had his share of victories. Last month, he won a bid to have a full appeal of the extradition order heard after a judge decided that American assurances did not go far enough in addressing concerns about the protection of his rights.


While a plea agreement with the United States may have begun to take shape earlier, Mr. Vamos believes it was this decision “that really brought people to the to the table to discuss a concrete deal.”


As the legal maneuvering came to a head, a few people were able to see Mr. Assange in jail. Among them was Rebecca Vincent, director of campaigns for Reporters Without Borders, a press freedom group that has campaigned for Mr. Assange’s release since 2019. She visited him six times between August 2023 and last month, and said she was often concerned about his health.


“It’s not an easy situation to be in. And of course, we had concerns for his mental health too,” Ms. Vincent said. “But he was still Julian; he was still fighting.”


Based on her discussions with Mr. Assange and his family, Ms. Vincent said she expected his priority now will be spending time with them. His two sons have only known their father through prison visits. She sees his release as a win but said it should have ended with all charges dropped.


Champions of press freedom agree that even with Mr. Assange’s release, the plea deal set a troubling precedent.


Jameel Jaffer, the executive director of the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University, said that while the agreement averted the “worst-case scenario for press freedom,” it also means that Mr. Assange “will have served five years in prison for activities that journalists engage in every day.”


Speaking in Canberra, where an emotional Mr. Assange kissed his wife after arriving home, Mr. Pollack, his lawyer, said, “Hopefully, this is the end, not just of the case against Julian Assange, but the end of the case against journalism.”



15) Israel’s finance minister reportedly agrees in principle to release funds to the Palestinian Authority.

By Aaron Boxerman and Adam Rasgon reporting from Jerusalem, June 28, 2024


Bezalel Smotrich, the Israeli finance minister, in front of microphones at a rally calling for the release of hostages in Gaza. Some people behind him hold photos of hostages.

Israel’s finance minister, Bezalel Smotrich, center, has long sought to cripple the Palestinian Authority. Credit...Menahem Kahana/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

With the Israeli-occupied West Bank facing deepening economic woes, Israeli officials said on Friday that a far-right minister had tentatively agreed  to release some frozen funds to the financially embattled Palestinian Authority in exchange for strengthening Israeli settlements in the territory.


Bezalel Smotrich, the country’s hard-line finance minister, has sought to cripple the Palestinian Authority, which administers some West Bank areas under Israeli military rule, and believes Israel should rule the territory forever. He has withheld hundreds of millions in funding for the Palestinian Authority and threatened to allow a waiver protecting Israeli banks that deal with Palestinian ones to elapse.


To mollify Mr. Smotrich, cabinet ministers agreed in a late-night meeting Thursday to measures including retroactively authorizing five Israeli settlement outposts in the West Bank that had been built illegally, according to Mr. Smotrich’s office and two other Israeli officials who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive cabinet deliberations.


In exchange, Mr. Smotrich would agree to release some funds for the authority and extend the banking waiverֿֿ, the officials said, although he has not yet announced the moves. But even if that temporary reprieve is carried out, Mr. Smotrich could demand still more concessions down the line.


The details and timeline for legalizing the five outposts were not immediately clear. While much of the international community views Israeli settlements in the West Bank as a violation of international law, outposts are illegal under Israeli law; authorizing them allows them to grow and expand legally.


As the Israeli military campaign grinds on in Gaza, an economic crisis is unfolding in parallel in the West Bank, where tens of thousands were rendered jobless by the war, Palestinian civil servants have not been paid in full for months and near-daily Israeli raids have disrupted even basic travel.


Mr. Smotrich has wielded his position to deal blow after blow to the Palestinian Authority, which administers some West Bank areas under Israeli occupation. He has withheld the majority of the Palestinian government’s budget, threatening not to renew a crucial waiver protecting Israeli banks that work with Palestinian counterparts.  


The measures have alarmed the Biden administration, which wants the Palestinian Authority to have a role in running postwar Gaza. U.S. officials also worry that an economic crash in the West Bank could lead to a surge in violence in the territory, which has yet to see a mass uprising despite months of deadly Israeli military operations.


The Palestinian Authority has drifted from crisis to crisis for years, struggling to pay its arrears amid dwindling international aid. Israel has often withheld taxes it collects on the authority’s behalf in an attempt to penalize its leadership. At other times, Israel has sent tens of millions of dollars to keep it afloat.


But many called the West Bank’s current economic predicament the most difficult yet.


After the Hamas-led attack on Oct. 7, tens of thousands of Palestinians who had worked in Israel were no longer allowed to enter, creating mass unemployment overnight. Israeli military raids, road closures and stricter checkpoints have further choked the Palestinian economy.


Before the war, Mahmoud Abu Issa, 53, was earning over $2,000 a month — an enviable salary in the impoverished West Bank — as a construction worker in Israel. He has been unemployed since Israel barred most Palestinian workers, except for irregular stints as a day laborer for around $10 per day.


His son, who worked with him in Israel, had begun building a house before the war began. Since their wages dried up, the house remains unfinished, he said.


“We sit around day and night, hoping for something to change,” Mr. Abu Issa said. “But there’s nothing.”


Under agreements between the two sides, Israel collects and transfers hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenue to the Palestinian Authority. Mr. Smotrich has withheld those funds, which constitute the majority of the Palestinian government’s budget, exacerbating its fiscal crisis.


As a result, the Palestinian leadership constantly struggles to pay its employees, who number at least 140,000, according to Palestinian Authority Finance Ministry officials. Many have only received partial salaries, often at irregular intervals, for years; last month, most received just 50 percent of their wages.


Shadi Abu Afifa, a father of four who lives near Hebron, saw his $930 monthly salary as an officer in the authority’s security forces slashed in half last month. He said his family had stopped buying cooking gas and abandoned other modest luxuries, like internet at home, in an attempt to save money.


“If the economy improves, we might start to feel some hope again,” said Mr. Abu Afifa. “Because right now, we’re in a bad, suffocating situation — the war, the unemployment, everything on top of one another.”


U.S. officials have pressured the Israeli government to release the funds, fearing that further economic hardship could lead to more violence in the West Bank. Jake Sullivan, the national security adviser, called this week for the funds to be released “without further delay.”


Last month, after three European countries announced they would recognize a Palestinian state, Mr. Smotrich announced that he would not renew the waiver — set to expire July 1 — that protects Israeli banks from legal liability for working with Palestinian banks.


Lacking their own currency, Palestinians generally use Israeli shekels. If Palestinian banks want to offer shekel accounts, they must maintain links with Israeli banks and rely on them to process shekel transactions.


Since 2017, Israel’s Finance Ministry has issued the waiver indemnifying the Israeli banks, according to Lilach Weissman, a spokeswoman for the ministry. If the waiver is not renewed, Israeli banks would likely cut ties with their Palestinian counterparts, banking experts said.


“The ramifications would be bad and dangerous for everyone,” said Akram Jerab, the chairman of the board at Quds Bank, which has 31 branches in the West Bank.


At a cabinet meeting late Thursday that went past midnight, Mr. Smotrich agreed to temporarily extend the waiver for four months, said Eytan Fuld, a spokesman for the minister. It was unclear what would happen after that.


If he ultimately follows through with his threat to let the waiver elapse, it could also have economic consequences for Israel, experts said. Palestinian merchants would not be able to use banks to pay Israeli suppliers for imported goods. And there would be no way for Palestinians to pay Israel for essential goods like fuel, water and electricity, said Azzam al-Shawwa, a former top Palestinian banking regulator.


“Israel’s commerce is intertwined with Palestine,” Mr. al-Shawwa said in an interview. “Palestine is one of the biggest traders with Israel. Is Smotrich ready to lose that?”


Rawan Sheikh Ahmad contributed reporting.


Israel launches an operation in Gaza City, and other news.

·      The Israeli military said it had begun an operation in the eastern Gaza City neighborhood of Shajaiye targeting Hamas fighters and infrastructure. In a statement Friday, the military said it had carried out airstrikes and raids by ground troops, eliminating “dozens of terrorists.” Panicked residents described heavy strikes and tank shelling on Thursday as they fled, and Gazan health authorities said at least 15 people had been killed. Hamas has used urban parts of Gaza to provide its fighters with an extra layer of protection, including by launching rockets near homes, although the group’s senior leadership has said it tries to avoid endangering civilians.


·      Canada’s Foreign Ministry announced new sanctions Thursday on seven Israeli settlers and five organizations accused of supporting violence against Palestinian civilians, the latest in a series of international penalties on settler groups after a surge of attacks in the West Bank. Canada imposed an initial round of sanctions in May, and countries including the United States, France and Britain have taken similar measures.



16) Some critically ill children are allowed to leave Gaza for the first time in weeks.

By Aaron Boxerman reporting from Jerusalem, June 28, 2024


A young girl looking out of the window of a vehicle.

A Palestinian girl in a vehicle taking children out of Gaza for medical treatment abroad on Thursday. Credit...Mohammed Salem/Reuters

Israel and Egypt agreed to allow at least 19 sick children, most of them cancer patients, to leave Gaza for medical treatment on Thursday, Israeli and Palestinian officials said, in the first major evacuation of critically ill Gazans since the Rafah border crossing shut down in early May.


The Israeli military said the operation had been carried out in coordination with the United States, Egypt and the international community. In total, 68 people — sick and injured patients and their escorts — were allowed to leave, the military said.


Tania Hary, who directs Gisha, an Israeli nonprofit organization that advocates the free movement of Palestinians, said she was relieved that the children may “have a chance at life and finally receive the care they deserve.” But she emphasized that many more sick and wounded people remained trapped in Gaza, without any obvious mechanism for how they might be evacuated.


“It is a drop in an ocean of suffering, as thousands more wait to reach medical facilities outside the strip,” she said. “It serves as another reminder that the most vulnerable residents of Gaza — its children, sick and elderly — are paying the highest price.”


More than 10,000 sick and wounded people in Gaza require urgent care that is available only outside the enclave, the World Health Organization said this week. They include those wounded in airstrikes, as well as cancer patients, children with life-threatening illnesses and older people who need open-heart surgery.


Even before the war, many Gazans were forced to travel abroad for lifesaving treatments, like chemotherapy, which were almost nonexistent in the Gaza Strip. The enclave’s health sector has struggled for more than 15 years under a crippling Israeli-Egyptian blockade intended to contain Hamas.


But the main conduit through which Gazans could leave — the Rafah crossing with Egypt — shut down after Israeli forces captured it in May during a military offensive. Egypt shuttered its side of the gateway in protest, and the Gazan part was later destroyed in a fire, according to the Israeli military, seemingly dashing hopes that the crossing would be reopened in the near future.


At least two sick Gazans who were scheduled to leave in early May have died while awaiting evacuation, their family members said.


With the Rafah crossing closed, the group of children allowed to leave on Thursday was taken into Israeli territory through another border point, Kerem Shalom, before being brought to Egypt. The move did not appear to immediately herald a new permanent route for the critically ill to safely leave Gaza.


One of the children who made the crossing on Thursday was a 10-month-old girl named Sadeel Hamdan.


For months, her family had looked on with growing dread as Sadeel’s condition deteriorated. Her belly swelled like a balloon because of severe liver failure, and she desperately needed a transplant, her father, Tamer Hamdan, said.


On Thursday morning — after weeks of waiting — Mr. Hamdan and Sadeel were finally permitted to leave the enclave. After entering Israel, they were ferried along with other patients to Nitzana, an Israeli border crossing, where they entered Egyptian territory, he said.


“Thank God,” said Mr. Hamdan, who was reached by phone as he sat in a bus on the Egyptian side of the checkpoint. “We’re so happy that we brought out Sadeel safely. Now we just need to complete her treatment.”


Their departure from Gaza, however, was bittersweet. Mr. Hamdan traveled with his daughter so that he could be a partial liver donor, but his wife and three other children were not permitted to join them. He said he feared for their fate in Gaza.


“We’re all heading into the unknown,” he said.


For each patient who left, there were many others left behind. Muna Abu Holi, a college professor from central Gaza, survived an explosion that killed one of her daughters and left two others seriously wounded.


Both of her surviving daughters had received approval to travel through the Rafah crossing on May 7 for medical treatment, according to documents from the Gaza Health Ministry. But the Israeli offensive led to the border’s shutting down.


“We’re grasping for any possible hope,” Ms. Abu Holi said. “Every piece of news we hear, we cling to.”



17) Why More Older New Yorkers Are Ending Up in Homeless Shelters

The number of people older than 65 who are living in shelters is growing quickly, in an unheralded sign of New York City’s affordable housing crisis.

By Andy Newman, June 28, 2024


A man in glasses poses for a portrait.

Robert Kirk, 74, became homeless after he was evicted. He now lives in a shelter in Brooklyn. Credit...Ahmed Gaber for The New York Times

Robert Kirk, a retired jack of many trades, finds himself homeless at the age of 74 after a chain of events that could happen to almost anyone.


His landlady in Brooklyn died, the building’s new owner raised the rent and later evicted the tenants, and he could not find another apartment he could afford with his Social Security check.


Now his neighbors at a hotel shelter in Brownsville, Brooklyn, include a 69-year-old ambulette driver who lost his job and apartment after a leg injury, a 73-year-old former plasterer from Panama and a 78-year-old retired sushi chef from Japan.


They are among the swelling ranks of older people who are homeless in New York City.


According to a report released on Thursday, the number of single adults ages 65 and older in the city’s main shelter system more than doubled from 2014 to 2022, growing nearly three times as quickly as the number of younger single adults in shelters.


There were about 1,700 people older than 65 in single-adult shelters, which house a vast majority of the older New Yorkers who are homeless, during the fiscal year ending in June 2022, up from about 700 eight years earlier. The share of residents in those shelters who were older than 65 increased to 8 percent from 5 percent.


The nonprofit group that released the report, LiveOn NY, which works to improve conditions for aging people, says the rising numbers point to an affordable housing crisis-within-a-crisis in New York City.


“There are hundreds of thousands of people who just muddle along, and they just muddle until they can’t,” Allison Nickerson, the group’s executive director, said in an interview.


More and more older New Yorkers are just a job loss, an uninsured illness or a real-estate flip away from homelessness, LiveOn NY said. The group studied data from the city departments of homelessness and housing and conducted a survey of property managers to produce its report.


About 315,000 older New Yorkers are on waiting lists for affordable apartments in federally constructed buildings reserved for people 62 and older, up from about 230,000 in 2016, the group said. The typical wait is six years; many buildings have longer waits.


“When you’re on an affordable housing wait-list and you’re living on a couch and you’re 80, you don’t have seven or nine years,” Ms. Nickerson said.


The overall market for affordable housing in New York is the tightest it has been in half a century, with vacancy rates for the lowest-priced apartments below 1 percent.


Slowly but surely, Ms. Nickerson said, older people who are too able-bodied to qualify for nursing homes or assisted living facilities but simply have nowhere to live are “infusing into the homeless system.”


The phenomenon is unrelated to the thousands of migrants who have traveled to New York since the summer of 2022, overwhelming the city’s social service apparatus. Few of the migrants who have entered the shelter system for single adults are older, LiveOn NY said.


The number of older adults in shelters is also growing considerably faster than the broader population of seniors is increasing as baby boomers hit retirement age.


There are about 10 specialized shelters in the city for older adults. From the outside, they tend to look like other shelters housed in low-budget hotels, but for the prevalence of people using walkers going in and out.


In recent interviews, several residents of the senior shelters said they preferred them to mixed-age shelters, where conditions can be rough. In senior shelters, people tend to sleep one to four to a room. Some general-population shelters have dozens of people sleeping in one space.


Mr. Kirk, who worked as an administrator at a yoga foundation and as a cabby instructor, said that at one mixed-age shelter he was assigned to, he complained to the staff that his much younger roommate was blasting the TV in the middle of the night.


“I woke up and he was right next to me and he punched me in the face,” Mr. Kirk said.


His neighbor the ambulette driver, who gave his name only as Barry M., said that their senior shelter, at the Days Inn Crown Heights, was a decent place for him to stay while he applies for a subsidized permanent apartment.


“It’s not the Waldorf Astoria,” Barry said, “but my room is clean.”


While many newly constructed buildings in New York have affordable apartments marketed through the city’s fiercely competitive housing lotteries, including some reserved for people ages 62 and over, there are simply far too few to keep pace with demand, LiveOn NY said.


About 30,000 lottery apartments hit the market from 2020 to 2023, LiveOn NY said, but only about 10 percent were in buildings that included apartments reserved for older people. Households with older adults filed 220,000 applications for lottery apartments during that period, and fewer than 2,000 of the households received apartments, the study said.


LiveOn NY urged the city to strengthen its existing affordable-housing programs for older people, particularly those with the lowest incomes. Older adults who enter housing lotteries tend to have significantly lower incomes than younger adults, the group said. They are also more likely to live on fixed incomes and to have mobility issues, both of which limit their housing options.


The City Department of Social Services said on Thursday that during the 10-month period ending in April, nearly 650 single adults older than 65 moved from shelters to subsidized permanent housing. This was more than in any fiscal year since 2019, the city said.


If there is a silver lining to living in a homeless shelter, it is that it can be a shortcut to finding permanent housing, said Karen Jorgensen, the director of the Valley Lodge shelter on the Upper West Side, a temporary home for about 100 older adults.


Many new apartment buildings contain subsidized units set aside for people who have been homeless, and Ms. Jorgensen said that most Valley Lodge residents find a permanent subsidized apartment within two years.


Earl Boyd, 83, a unicyclist, D.J. and former aquarium cleaner who moved to Valley Lodge in May, said he saw people moving out to permanent housing several times a week.


Valley Lodge’s parent organization, the West Side Federation for Senior and Supportive Housing, also operates an adjoining supportive-housing building — permanent apartments that come with a range of on-site social and medical services — and some Valley Lodge shelter residents wind up there.


Tanya Anderson, a great-grandmother who bounced between streets and shelters for over a decade, has lived in one of the supportive-housing apartments with her son since last year.


“I feel so nice there that I don’t have to live in the street,” said Ms. Anderson, 61.


Another recent arrival is Locket Strowder, 61, a former warehouse worker. Within the space of a couple of years, Mr. Strowder was disabled by tumors in his back, lost his wife to cancer, moved in with a niece in Queens, suffered a reaction to medication and spent three months in a nursing home, fell out with his niece and entered the shelter system, where he was eventually assigned to Valley Lodge.


When a supportive-housing apartment opened in October, he moved in.


“To this day, I’m not where I want to be, not where I used to be,” he said. “But if I can just stay here long enough, I think I’ll be OK. I’ve got people watching over me.”