10 things you need to know today: August 6, 2018

Trump admits his son met with Russians hoping to get dirt on Clinton, an earthquake kills dozens in Indonesia, and more

1. Trump admits meeting with Kremlin-linked lawyer was to get Clinton dirt

President Trump acknowledged on Sunday that top campaign aides, including Donald Trump Jr., met at Trump Tower in 2016 with a Kremlin-linked Russian lawyer hoping to "get information on an opponent." The comment, made via Twitter, amounted to an admission that Trump had dictated a misleading statement released by his son last year saying the discussion focused on the adoption of Russian children, not dirt on Hillary Clinton, as was widely reported. Trump said the meeting was "totally legal," and something that was "done all the time in politics." Special Counsel Robert Mueller's team is reviewing Trump's tweets on this and other subjects to determine whether the president had tried to mislead investigators looking into Russian election meddling and possible collusion by Trump associates.

The New York Times

2. Quake kills dozens on Indonesia's Lombok island

A 7.0-magnitude earthquake hit the Indonesian resort island of Lombok on Sunday, killing at least 91 people. The quake, which also was felt on the neighboring island of Bali, sent thousands of residents and tourists fleeing to emergency shelters in open spaces. The quake came a week after a 6.4-magnitude tremor hit the island, leaving 14 people dead and 162 injured. Thousands of houses were damaged, the National Disaster Mitigation Agency said. The agency also said nightfall and disrupted communication lines were hampering rescue operations as aftershocks continued to rattle the area. Officials expected the death toll to rise as efforts to search hard-hit areas continued.

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3. Venezuela detains 6 'terrorists' after apparent drone attack

The Venezuelan government said Sunday that it had detained six "terrorists" in connection with an alleged assassination attempt against President Nicolas Maduro using drones carrying explosives. Interior Minister Néstor Luis Reverol said investigators had identified all of the "material and intellectual authors inside and outside of the country." Maduro was not harmed in the alleged attack, which occurred while he was giving a speech. Maduro blamed "far right extremists" linked to Colombian and Venezuelan dissidents. The incident raised already sky-high tensions in the crisis-plagued South American nation, and raised fears of a wider crackdown on government opponents.

The Washington Post

4. Mendocino Complex fire quickly becomes 4th largest ever in California

The Mendocino Complex fire, made up of the Ranch and River fires, exploded on Sunday to scorch more than 266,000 acres, making it the fourth largest California wildfire on record measured by the area burned. It was rapidly catching up to the state's biggest fire ever, last December's Thomas fire in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, which consumed nearly 282,000 acres. The Mendocino Complex fires are threatening 9,300 structures and have forced evacuations in rural areas in three Northern California counties. Firefighters have been making progress, but shifting winds are complicating the effort to contain the flames. "We can't predict this one," Ventura County Fire Department Capt. Steve Kaufman said. Farther north, the Carr fire has been blamed for seven deaths.

Los Angeles Times

5. Vintage plane crashes in Swiss mountains, killing 20

A vintage propeller plane crashed into a Swiss mountain, killing all 20 people onboard, Swiss officials said Sunday. The plane was traveling at high speed when it hit the ground nearly vertically on the western flank of the Piz Segnas mountain at an elevation of about 8,300 feet around 5 p.m. Saturday. Police said the dead included 17 tourists, 14 Swiss nationals, and three members of an Austrian family. There also were three Swiss crew members on board. The passengers were all between the ages of 42 and 84. The plane, a 1939 Junkers Ju 52, was flying back from the resort town of Locarno in southern Switzerland. A record heat wave in Europe might have contributed to the crash. "High temperatures can affect the performance of an aircraft," Daniel Knecht from the Swiss safety investigation agency said.

USA Today

6. Saudi Arabia halts new trade with Canada in clash over arrests

Saudi Arabia will halt new trade and investment with Canada after the latter called for the release of arrested civil rights activists in the oil-rich kingdom, according to a statement released Sunday in the official Saudi Press Agency. Riyadh also gave the Canadian ambassador 24 hours to leave the country and recalled its ambassador from Canada. On Friday, Canada said it was "gravely concerned" about the arrests of activists and women's rights advocates, including Samar Badawi and Nassima al-Sadah. Badawi is the sister of jailed dissident blogger Raif Badawi, whose wife Ensaf Haidar lives in Canada and recently became a citizen there. On Friday, Canada said it was "gravely concerned" and urged Saudi Arabia to "immediately release them and all other peaceful human rights activists."


7. Hurricane Hector strengthens to Category 4 as it approaches Hawaii

Hurricane Hector strengthened into a powerful Category 4 hurricane on Sunday as it churned toward Hawaiian waters, with top sustained winds of 140 miles per hour. The storm was located just over 1,000 miles east-southeast of South Point on Hawaii island, heading west at about 13 miles per hour. The storm was expected to weaken from Monday night through Wednesday. The five-day forecast showed the center of Hector, Hawaii's first storm of the season, passing south of the Big Island, with some predictions putting it on a virtual collision course with the Kilauea Volcano, which has been spewing lava for months on the southern part of the island.

Honolulu Star-Advertiser

8. Small plane crashes into California parking lot

A small plane crashed into a Southern California strip-mall parking lot on Sunday, killing all five people on board. The plane was headed to nearby John Wayne Airport when the pilot declared an emergency. Witnesses said the plane was flying low, then banked sharply and went into a dive. It hit in a parking lot for a Staples store, a CVS pharmacy, and other retailers. "You just felt the ground move," said a worker at a Buffalo Wild Wings restaurant in the strip mall. Authorities did not immediately release the identities of the victims. The plane hit a parked car, but nobody on the ground was hurt. The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating.

The New York Times

9. Disney's Christopher Robin can't beat Mission: Impossible

Walt Disney Co.'s Christopher Robin was unable to knock Mission: Impossible — Fallout out of the top spot at the box office over the weekend. The live-action Winnie the Pooh film, starring Ewan McGregor, brought in $25 million domestically in its debut weekend, while Mission: Impossible added $35 million to give it a two-week domestic total of $124.5 million. Christopher Robin's take was the lowest for Disney since The BFG and Pete's Dragon in 2016, and it marked just the second time this year that a Disney film failed to launch at No. 1. The Lionsgate action-comedy The Spy Who Dumped Me, starring Mila Kunis and Kate McKinnon, came in at No. 3 with a $12.4 million debut.


10. Facts of Life star Charlotte Rae dies at 92

Charlotte Rae, the Tony and Emmy-nominated actress best known for playing Mrs. Garrett on The Facts of Life and Sylvia Schnauser on Car 54, Where Are You?, died Sunday at her home in Los Angeles. She was 92. In April 2017, Rae announced that she had been diagnosed with bone cancer, seven years after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Born in Milwaukee, Rae got her start in theater and radio, and earned Tony nominations for her performances in Pickwick and Morning Noon and Night, and an Emmy nomination for Queen of the Stardust Ballroom. She first played the role of Edna Garrett on Diff'rent Strokes, but due to the character's popularity, she pitched a spin-off, which led to The Facts of Life.

Entertainment Weekly

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Harold Maass

Harold Maass is a contributing editor at TheWeek.com. He has been writing for The Week since the 2001 launch of the U.S. print edition. Harold has worked for a variety of news outlets, including The Miami Herald, Fox News, and ABC News. For several years, he wrote a daily round-up of financial news for The Week and Yahoo Finance. He lives in North Carolina with his wife and two sons.