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Trump Gets Double Boost; Hero Chinese Doctor Dies: Weekend Reads

Karl Maier

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U.S. President Donald Trump emerged as a two-time winner this week, with his acquittal by the Senate on impeachment charges and the Democrats’ shambolic handling of the vote count in the Iowa caucuses.

In China, meanwhile, the death of Li Wenliang, a doctor who was sanctioned by local authorities after blowing the whistle on the coronavirus last month, unleashed a wave of public anger.

Dig into these and other topics with the latest edition of Weekend Reads. 

Inside the Epic Iowa Meltdown That Paralyzed 2020 DemocratsThe debacle over the vote count in the Democratic caucuses in Iowa prompted questions about the integrity of the state’s system and the technological competence of the Democratic Party, particularly in light of the Russian hacking and disinformation campaign directed at it in 2016, Tyler Pager explains. Sanders Builds California Primary Machine to Land Knockout BlowAs Democratic presidential nominating race heads for make-or-break Super Tuesday primaries, Jeffrey Taylor reports on how Bernie Sanders has built an operation aimed at winning the night’s biggest prize: California. Trump’s Plea to Black Voters Shows Find-a-Few StrategyTrump has spent the last week showcasing policies he believes should win the support of black voters who will help sway outcomes in key battleground states from Florida to Wisconsin in the November election, Mario Parker reports.

Death of a Hero Doctor Sparks Crisis of Confidence in Xi’s ChinaFor all the work that Chinese President Xi Jinping’s government has done to channel public anxiety over the new coronavirus into patriotic fervor, the death of a 34-year-old doctor has unleashed a wave of fury that is sparking a rare crisis of confidence in the Communist Party. China Sacrifices a Province to Save the World From CoronavirusScenes of chaos and despair are emerging daily from China’s Hubei province, the landlocked region of 60 million people where the new coronavirus dubbed 2019-nCoV was first identified in December, and where it has since cut a wide, deadly swathe.

Germany’s Far Right Puts First Crack in Establishment’s DefensesA state leader from Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats threw in his lot with the far-right Alternative for Germany this week, shaking the establishment. Chris Reiter explains how the drama unfolded.

Where a Brexit Trade Deal Matters Most to Boris JohnsonPrime Minister Boris Johnson’s tough stance in the opening round of the post-Brexit trade talks could be costly, Joe Mayes and Sam Dodge write, because voters in the districts that backed him rely overwhelmingly on the manufacturing jobs that would be at risk if Britain fails to secure a deal. 

Arabs Out, Settlers In: Trump Peace Plan Re-Engineers IsraelArabs have long complained that they’re second-class citizens of Israel. As Gwen Ackerman and Amy Teibel explain, if the Trump administration’s peace plan comes to life, some might not even be that.

Maduro Embraces Capitalism and Venezuelan Emigres Are ReturningAfter leading his country’s economy over a cliff, President Nicolas Maduro has brought Venezuela a certain measure of stability. As Patricia Laya and Alex Vasquez write, emigration is slowing and some people are returning.

And finally … An amnesty for fighters in Nigeria who once threatened to cripple Africa’s biggest oil industry has largely brought peace to the Niger River delta by providing opportunities in business and politics to militant leaders. But it remains fragile, and as one commander known as Boyloaf told William Clowes, “anyone who wants to close the program will have to face the repercussions.” 


To contact the author of this story: Karl Maier in Rome at kmaier2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Kathleen Hunter at khunter9@bloomberg.net

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