Politics

Brazilian Pabllo Vittar is the world’s next big drag queen
Politics

Brazilian Pabllo Vittar is the world’s next big drag queen

This month, Sao Paulo’s main street was packed with thousands of people dressed in the yellow and green of the Brazilian flag, drawn by a towering figure on a trailer equipped with loudspeakers. From above, it might have looked like any other political rallies held by former President Jair Bolsonaro, who famously declared that he could never love a gay son. (Although the huge rainbow flag might have been a clue.) In fact, it was one of the largest Pride parades in the world, and the person in the van with the sound was Phabullo Rodrigues da Silva, 30, the gay son of a working-class single mother from northern Brazil. But everyone knew him as Pabllo Vittar, a six-foot-tall drag queen in a shiny Brazilian soccer jersey and ripped denim shorts: one of the biggest pop stars in this nation of ...
Beryl heads for Jamaica after devastating the Eastern Caribbean
Politics

Beryl heads for Jamaica after devastating the Eastern Caribbean

Hurricane Beryl is headed toward Jamaica as a Category 4 storm, after wreaking havoc across the southeastern Caribbean and killing at least four people. Beryl intensified to a Category 5 storm with winds of at least 155 mph, but was downgraded to a Category 4 late Tuesday afternoon, with sustained winds near 165 mph, according to the U.S. National Hurricane Center. No Atlantic storm has reached Category 5 strength this early in the season, noted Philip Klotzbach, a meteorologist at Colorado State University. Major Atlantic hurricanes have sustained winds of 111 mph or more. Kingston, Jamaica’s capital, is in turmoil as people rush to gather supplies. Prime Minister Andrew Holness has ordered all non-essential government offices to close and told residents of low-lying areas to evacuate. J...
Russian Court Convicts Playwright, Director for ‘Justifying Terrorism’
Politics

Russian Court Convicts Playwright, Director for ‘Justifying Terrorism’

A Russian military court has sentenced playwright Svetlana Petriychuk and theater director Yevgenia Berkovich to six years in prison, accusing them of “justifying terrorism.” Critics say the case exemplifies the crackdown on free speech since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. Petriychuk, 44, and Berkovich, 39, have been in custody since May 2023. In addition to their prison sentences, both are banned from operating websites for three years after release. The work at the center of the controversy, "Finist the Brave Falcon," written by Petriychuk and directed by Berkovich, adapts a classic fairy tale by integrating narratives of women deceived online into joining the Islamic State. It reflects the true stories of several women from Russia and the former Soviet Union recruited b...
Russia’s Withdrawal from Ukraine: Prospects and Reality
Politics

Russia’s Withdrawal from Ukraine: Prospects and Reality

Russia is unlikely to make significant territorial gains in Ukraine in the coming months, U.S. officials say, given its poorly trained troops and Ukraine’s robust defenses, now bolstered by Western munitions. During the spring and early summer, Russian troops attempted to advance out of the city of Kharkiv and renew their offensive in eastern Ukraine, capitalizing on the capture of Avdiivka. However, these efforts resulted in thousands of Russian casualties and very little territorial gains. This shift represents a significant change in the dynamics of the war, which had recently favored Moscow. While Russian forces continue to inflict damage, their progress has been slowed by strengthened Ukrainian defense lines. The coming months will not be easy for Ukraine, but allied leaders gathered...
a new era in transatlantic relations?
Politics

a new era in transatlantic relations?

The meeting between a middle power and a great power was a high-risk, meticulously planned diplomatic operation. “You are now connected to Air Force One,” a White House operator said as British Prime Minister Keir Starmer leaned into a speakerphone in a short video released from 10 Downing Street on Saturday. “Congratulations, Mr. Prime Minister,” President Biden exclaimed on his way to a campaign rally in Wisconsin. “What an incredible victory!” The two leaders spoke warmly about the importance of the “special relationship” between the UK and the US, their shared commitment to defending Ukraine and an upcoming meeting: Starmer will travel to Washington on Tuesday, where Biden will host a NATO summit. Since Barack Obama took office, the White House and Downing Street have not been simulta...