Thursday Briefing – The New York Times

Secretary of State Antony Blinken suggested yesterday that the Biden administration could be open to tolerating strikes by the Ukrainian military inside Russia using American-made weapons. He said that the U.S., which has so far opposed such attacks, would “adapt and adjust” its stance based on battlefield conditions.

Several European leaders — including Jens Stoltenberg, the secretary general of NATO, and Emmanuel Macron, the president of France — have called on President Biden to remove these limits on Ukraine.

Blinken made his remarks in Chisinau, the capital of Moldova, the first stop in a trip aimed at showing U.S. support for nations facing a hostile Russia.

In the U.S., a plant still under construction in Texas will soon turn out 30,000 artillery shells each month for the 155-millimeter howitzers that have become crucial to Kyiv’s war effort, roughly doubling current U.S. output. Here’s a look inside.

It was 52.3 degrees Celsius, or 126 degrees Fahrenheit, in India’s capital yesterday, amid a heat wave that has kept temperatures in several Indian states well above 43 degrees Celsius (about 110 degrees Fahrenheit) for weeks.

The previous record for the highest temperature, of about 48 degrees Celsius, was repeatedly crossed in recent days. Officials feared that the electricity grid was being overwhelmed. Hospitals have been reporting an uptick in cases of heatstroke.

“Ninety percent of Indians work in the informal sector, many of whom have to be outdoors,” Somini Sengupta, The Times’s international climate reporter, told me. “They can’t work at the same pace in these punishing temperatures. The Delhi government today said they’d pay construction workers for lost wages when temperatures reach a certain threshold, though exactly how that’s going to be administered remains unclear.”

Israel’s national security adviser, Tzachi Hanegbi, said yesterday that he expected “another seven months of combat” in Gaza, casting doubt on the idea that the war could come to an end after the offensive against Hamas in Rafah.

Israel has faced increased international pressure since its bombardment sparked a fire that killed at least 45 people in an area in Rafah where displaced Palestinians were sheltering. A Times visual investigation found that the U.S. made the bombs used in the strike.

The Olympic athlete dining hall in Paris this summer, a 700-foot-long former electrical power plant that will serve 45,000 meals a day, is being called the biggest restaurant in the world. But it won’t serve French fries or foie gras, in an attempt to refresh the global image of French cuisine.

The TV show “Extremely Inappropriate!” features a foulmouthed, crotchety physical education teacher who boards a public bus in 1986 Japan and finds himself whisked to 2024. He leaves an era when it was perfectly acceptable to spank students with baseball bats, and arrives in one where managers obsessively monitor employees for harassment.

A surprise hit, the comedic drama was made by 50-something Generation X-ers nostalgic for the more freewheeling bubble years of their youth, and features characters who occasionally break into madcap musical numbers.

Such portrayals strike a chord in Japan, where there have been complaints that “political correctness” is being used as a “club” to restrict expression or to water down television programs or films. While critics have called the series retrograde, some younger viewers say that the show has made them question social norms they once took for granted.

That’s it for today’s briefing. Thank you for spending part of your morning with us, and see you tomorrow. — Justin

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