Europe Edition: Donald Trump, Stephen Bannon, Xi Jinping: Your Monday Briefing

Ms. Le Pen put forward “Rassemblement National” as a new name for her party, hoping to reverse its electoral setbacks. (The name can be translated as National Rally or National Gathering.)



Credit Kevin Frayer/Getty Images

In China, the rubber-stamp legislature’s vote was almost unanimous: Presidential term limits are gone, as expected, allowing Xi Jinping, 64, to rule for life.

China’s leaders appear to be discarding a lesson that their fathers drew from the upheavals of the Cultural Revolution: the danger of concentrating power in an unassailable leader.

Meanwhile, President Trump’s series of erratic moves — from threats of new tariffs to an impromptu overture to North Korea — has helped cast Mr. Xi as the more stable leader in Asia.



Credit Amer Almohibany/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

• In Syria, government forces intensified their assault on the rebel-held Damascus suburb of eastern Ghouta. Meanwhile, Turkish forces are said to have advanced to the outskirts of the Kurdish-controlled town of Afrin.

As the Kurdish-dominated coalition shifted its fighters to battle the Turkish assault, our correspondent visited the somewhat quiet headquarters of the Syrian Democratic Forces in the town of Ainissa.

There, the uneasy alliance of Kurds and Arabs, helped by U.S. forces and held together by the fight against the Islamic State, risks being tested as the Kurds consolidate their control.



Credit Tom Jamieson for The New York Times

• Educators in Britain, after decades spent in a collective effort to minimize risk for children, are now, cautiously, trying to provide it.

The shift, they say, signals the end of a decades-long drift toward overprotecting children.

For experts, a limited exposure to risks provides experiences that are essential to childhood development and useful in building resilience and grit.



Credit Corey Brickley

• Google is being sued by former employees who say the company is going too far with diversity. At the same time, other lawsuits accuse it of the opposite.

• Saudi Aramco’s I.P.O., easily the biggest-ever, may be delayed until next year. London, New York and Hong Kong are front-runners to capture the overseas listing.

• Ghana, mired in poverty not long ago, has become one of the world’s fast-growing economies, largely thanks to oil and cocoa exports.

• The U.S. private equity industry is rattled by the entry of SoftBank, the Japanese conglomerate.

Here’s a snapshot of global markets and a look at what could move them this week.

In the News


Credit Tasneem Alsultan for The New York Times

• In Saudi Arabia, insiders shared with us insights into the murky operation, marked by torture and coercion, that helped transfer billions of dollars in private wealth to the control of Crown Prince Mohammed. [The New York Times]

• Slovakia’s prime minister, Robert Fico, faces a deadline today to ditch his closest ally or risk breaking apart his coalition government. Friday’s protests were the largest since 1989. [Reuters]

• In Germany, the designated interior minister vowed to speed up deportations of rejected asylum seekers. The cabinet is set to be sworn in on Wednesday. [Associated Press]

• A Turkish court sentenced 24 additional journalists to prison. [The New York Times]

British investigators looking at the poisoning of a former Russian spy and his daughter asked people who might have been near them to wash their clothes. [The New York Times]

• The European Parliament scheduled a debate today on the abrupt promotion of Martin Selmayr, the chief of staff of the European Commission’s president. [The New York Times]

• Belgium’s national soccer association cut ties with the rapper Damso after protests that his lyrics were sexist. [The New York Times]

• Bono apologized and said he was “furious” after accusations of bullying hit a charity he co-founded. [The New York Times]

Smarter Living

Tips, both new and old, for a more fulfilling life.


Credit Craig Lee for The New York Times

• Recipe of the day: Start the week off simply with homemade mushroom soup.

• Go green and save by skipping hotel housekeeping.

• Want an easier way to buy art? There’s an app for that.



Credit Erin Tripp/University of Colorado

• Three undergraduate students and their professor worked out how a flower shoots tiny seeds more than six meters through the air. “It’s like throwing confetti.”

• Faviken, a restaurant in Are, Sweden, has become a global foodie destination.

• The phone booth, or at least a variation, is making a modest comeback.

• In Japan, our colleague spent years following a girl who turned to her Buddhist faith to help rebuild her village temple, destroyed in the tsunami seven years ago.

• Tiger Woods could have walked away from golf, but he kept pushing and is, once again, thriving.

• Finally, here’s a preview of “Caliphate,” a coming audio series that follows our reporter Rukmini Callimachi as she continues her groundbreaking work on the Islamic State.

Back Story


Credit Stephen Crowley/The New York Times

The headlines from Washington are often controversial, but one of the U.S. capital’s most-celebrated springtime traditions begins next weekend: Its famed cherry trees are predicted to be in peak bloom.

More than 3,000 of the trees were presented as a gift by the city of Tokyo in 1912. The gesture of international good will has a rich history, but one of its more contentious episodes occurred 80 years ago: the Cherry Tree Rebellion.

The trees had already become a favorite of Washingtonians by 1938, when construction was set to begin on the Jefferson Memorial. The site for the monument was along the Tidal Basin, where many of the trees had been planted.

The planned removal of the trees was opposed by parts of Washington society, in particular by the city’s newspapers. A group of women even briefly chained themselves to a tree on the site in an effort to stop construction.

An exasperated President Franklin D. Roosevelt dismissed the controversy — which died down soon after the memorial’s groundbreaking — as a “flimflam game” designed to sell newspapers.

“If anybody wants to chain herself to the tree and the tree is in the way, we will move the tree and the lady and the chains, and transplant them to some other place,” he said.

Chris Stanford contributed reporting.


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