Part of the job of a cable news analyst is to have instant, strong opinions about breaking news stories. After the three explosions that killed at least 26 people at an airport and metro station in Brussels, Belgium, on Tuesday morning, Fox News regular Judge Andrew Napolitano quickly linked the terrorist attacks not just to Belgium's capture on Friday of suspected Paris attack coordinator Salah Abdeslam — a common supposition — but also to the activities of the French and Belgian magistrates interrogating him. They have been "revealing to the world what he is saying," Napolitano said. "That is a dog whistle, so to speak, to the other plotters as yet unarrested in Belgium. I believe, from people that we've spoken to already, that this explosion is a diversion to allow those people to escape."
— FOX & Friends (@foxandfriends) March 22, 2016
If American interrogators had publicly shared information they were eliciting, "they'd be fired at best and prosecuted at worst for obstruction of justice," Napolitano said. Peter Weber
The three suicide bombers who detonated in Istanbul's Ataturk Airport on Tuesday, killing 44, had aimed to take dozens hostage, according to Turkey's Sabah paper.
"The coats they were wearing to disguise their suicide vests, despite the hot weather, drew the attention of citizens and a police officer," Sabah wrote. As a result of attracting unwanted attention, the bombers abandoned their plan to take hostages and began the devastating attack.
A one-armed militant, Akhmet Chatayev, has been named as the mastermind behind the attacks; several Turkish papers identified him as being the leader of the Islamic State's cell in Istanbul. The three airport bombers were identified as a Russian, Uzbek, and Kyrgyz national, although it is unclear if Chatayev was involved in the bombing or is currently on the run. Jeva Lange
On Friday, Austria's Constitutional Court annulled the results of May's presidential runoff election, in which independent Green Party–backed candidate Alexander Van der Bellen defeated far-right nationalist Freedom Party candidate Norbert Hofer by less than 1 percentage point. The ruling, which cited allegedly improper handling of the mail-in ballots that tipped the election to Van der Bellen, ordered a new election, giving Hofer another shot to become the European Union's first far-right head of state. Hofer and his Freedom Party campaigned against immigration and economic hardship of the working classes.
Until the next election, probably in September or October, BBC News reports, President Heinz Fischer will be replaced by a triumvirate made up of Hofer and two other parliamentary officials. Peter Weber
"Every day I check the news, but every day our two presidential candidates are still Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump," Stephen Colbert said on Thursday's Late Show. Not everyone is excited about those choices, Colbert said, highlighting a poll from Public Policy Polling that found Clinton leading with 43 percent, Trump coming in second with 38 percent, and polling at 13 percent, "Giant Meteor hitting the earth." Colbert did the math: "38 percent for Trump, 13 percent for meteor — that adds up to 51 percent of the people okay with the world coming to an end. Yes, two giant destructive orange balls." You can watch his shrugging acceptance of global annihilation, and his bullish response to Chris Christie's possible selection as Trump's running mate, below. Peter Weber
Leave it to Boris Johnson to do the unthinkable and make British politics even crazier and more dramatic than America's 2016 presidential race. Johnson, a Conservative former London mayor, was the frontrunner to replace Prime Minister David Cameron, who announced his resignation after losing the Brexit vote — thanks in no small part to Johnson, a former ally turned leading Brexit proponent. On Thursday morning, a few hours before Johnson was to announce his candidacy, close pro-Brexit ally Michael Gove jumped into the race, saying "Boris cannot provide the leadership or build the team for the task ahead." Johnson dropped out of the race, quoting Julius Caesar, Shakespeare's masterwork on betrayal.
Johnson's father, Stanley Johnson, was reading from the same script. "'Et tu, Brute' is my comment on that," he told BBC News when asked about Gove, who, like Johnson, has been close with Cameron since their days at Oxford. Gove had been tipped to be Johnson's campaign manager. The Washington Post compared the Tory leadership grudge match to "a binge-watching session of House of Cards," and Tory MP Nigel Evans told the BBC "it makes the House of Cards look like Teletubbies." At The New York Times, the Tory turmoil "seems derived from Game of Thrones, itself drawn from centuries of English history." The newspaper Metro agreed about the Westeros connection:
— BBC News (UK) (@BBCNews) July 1, 2016
Other British newspaper front pages, as rounded up by the BBC, say that Johnson was "Brexecuted" in the "Tory bloodbath" (The Sun), called his derailing "the most spectacular political assassination in a generation (The Daily Telegraph) and the "Westminster revolution" (The Times), and declared, "Et Tu, Gove?" (i). On the other hand, the Daily Mirror declared of Johnson's downfall: "Justice! The shaming of Boris, the man who betrayed Britain." Gove, the 48-year-old justice secretary who had frequently said he was unsuited and unqualified to be prime minister, is expected to lose out to Home Secretary Theresa May, 59, though who knows what bloody betrayals lie ahead. (George R.R. Martin, perhaps?) Peter Weber
Late Thursday night, U.S. District Judge Carlton Reeves blocked a Mississippi law set to take effect Friday that would have carved out religious exemptions for people and businesses opposed to same-sex marriage, homosexuality, and transgender people. "The state has put its thumb on the scale to favor some religious beliefs over others," Reeves wrote, calling the bill "the state's attempt to put LGBT citizens back in their place" after the Supreme Court's ruling that same-sex couples have the right to get married. On Monday, Reeves had struck down the part of HB 1523 that would have let the state's circuit clerks refuse to issue same-sex marriage certificates due to religious objections. The law also sought to offer protection to businesses that refuse to serve LGBT people and would have affected adoption and foster care as well as bathroom policies at schools and businesses.
After he signed the law in April, Gov. Phil Bryant (R) told the Family Research Council that the "secular, progressive world had decided they were going to pour their anger and their frustration" at him because of the legislation. Reeves said that Mississippi was the entity acting out of frustration, stomping on religious freedoms in the process. "HB 1523 favors Southern Baptist over Unitarian doctrine, Catholic over Episcopalian doctrine, and Orthodox Judaism over Reform Judaism doctrine, to list just a few examples," he wrote. "In physics, every action has its equal and opposite reaction. In politics, every action has its predictable overreaction." Peter Weber
Donald Trump isn't really advertising in battleground states. Hillary Clinton is buying ad time in Nebraska.
On Thursday, Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign added Nebraska to the list of states where it is running ads, including the traditional swing states of Ohio, Virginia, Florida, Iowa, and Colorado, plus North Carolina. The ad buy is aimed not at the entire heavily Republican state but at the one congressional district President Obama won in 2008 — Nebraska awards two of its five electoral votes to the statewide winner and one each to the winner of its three congressional districts. Donald Trump, says The Washington Post's John Wagner, "has not started a concerted TV ad campaign in any battleground states."
In another sign that Clinton, buoyed by Trump missteps and sliding poll numbers, is working to expand the electoral map, she moved the site of her first joint campaign appearance with Obama from Wisconsin to Charlotte, North Carolina. Pro-Clinton super PAC Priorities USA Action is also advertising in North Carolina, which Obama lost in 2012 but won four years earlier. Currently, Politico notes, North Carolina is the only swing state where Trump leads in a RealClearPolitics polling average, and he's up by only 1 percentage point. Peter Weber
Police in Bangladesh say a Hindu temple worker was hacked to death on Friday by three assailants on a motorcycle.
— AJE News (@AJENews) July 1, 2016
Shaymanonda Das was getting ready for morning prayers in the district of Jhenaidah when he was hacked on the neck with machetes, the BBC reports. Police say the motive isn't clear, but a similar attack took place in the same district last month, with the victim a 70-year-old Hindu priest hacked to death in a rice paddy field.
Since February 2013, more than 40 people in Bangladesh, including academics, secular bloggers, and gay rights activists, have been killed in similar attacks pinned on Islamic militants. The Islamic State has claimed credit for some of the deaths, but the government says ISIS does not have a presence in the country, and local militant groups are responsible, the BBC reports. To combat such terrorist organizations, the government says it has arrested thousands of people. Catherine Garcia