10 things you need to know today: November 14, 2023

Crisis worsens at Gaza City's largest hospital, the Supreme Court issues its first code of conduct, and more

U.S. Supreme Court
U.S. Supreme Court sits for a photo before new ethics guildelines released
(Image credit: Jabin Botsford / The Washington Post via Getty Images)

1. Gaza's largest hospital surrounded, failing amid shortages

Israeli tanks arrived Monday at the gates of Al-Shifa hospital, Gaza City's largest medical facility. The health ministry in Hamas-run Gaza said 32 patients, including three newborn babies, had died at the hospital in the last three days as fighting between Israel and Hamas intensified outside. Doctors warn the situation at the hospital is catastrophic, with no fuel for generators. The lack of electricity needed to run incubators and dialysis machines puts dozens of premature babies and kidney patients at risk, according to Shifa staff. Israel says Hamas is operating a command center in bunkers beneath the hospital, using people inside as human shields, a claim Hamas denies. Reuters, The New York Times

2. Supreme Court issues first-ever ethics code

The Supreme Court on Monday issued its first code of conduct after months of scrutiny of the ethical standards applying to the court's nine justices. The 15-page document said the justices informally followed most of the practices already, but the lack of formal policies "has led in recent years to the misunderstanding that the justices of this court, unlike all other jurists in this country, regard themselves as unrestricted by any ethics rules." The high court has faced mounting criticism since ProPublica and other news outlets reported that wealthy conservative benefactors had treated Justice Clarence Thomas to luxury vacations and other perks not recorded in his annual disclosure forms. The Wall Street Journal, NBC News

3. Biden and Xi to talk trade in high-stakes San Francisco summit

President Biden is scheduled to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday to discuss trade, Taiwan and frayed U.S.-China relations, the White House said Monday. The leaders will meet on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in San Francisco. White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Biden and Xi would talk about the "continued importance of maintaining open lines of communication" between the world's two biggest economies so they "can continue to responsibly manage competition and work together where our interests align, particularly on transnational challenges that affect the international community." The Associated Press

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4. UK's David Cameron explains joining Sunak government

Former British Prime Minister David Cameron said Monday he agreed to join Prime Minister Rishi Sunak's government after a seven-year absence from politics to support him through "daunting challenges," including the wars in the Middle East and Ukraine, BBC News reported. Sunak named Cameron foreign secretary and moved James Cleverly from that job to replace hardliner Suella Braverman as home secretary in a Cabinet reshuffle. Braverman's criticism of police and pro-Palestinian protesters had caused a rift in the government. Braverman's allies in the right wing of the ruling Conservative Party called her firing a "mistake" and told Sunak to "prepare for war," according to the Independent. BBC News, Independent

5. Maryanne Trump Barry, Trump's sister, dies at 86

Retired federal judge and prosecutor Maryanne Trump Barry, former President Donald Trump's eldest sister, has died, multiple news organizations reported Monday. She was 86. President Ronald Reagan picked Barry to serve as a federal judge 40 years ago. President Bill Clinton nominated her to the U.S. 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals in 1999. She retired in 2019 after The New York Times reported that the Trump siblings had used tax schemes to increase their inheritances. An investigation into whether Barry had violated judicial conduct rules was closed when she retired. Barry was a Donald Trump confidant but the relationship suffered when audio recordings emerged in which she criticized him in a conversation with her niece, Mary Trump. CNN

6. Donald Trump Jr.: Dad's 'an artist with real estate'

Donald Trump Jr. returned to the witness stand in his father's civil fraud case in New York on Monday. Former President Donald Trump's eldest son praised his father's signature properties, describing Trump Tower in Manhattan as "genius" and Mar-a-Lago in Florida as "one of the few American castles." Trump Jr. also described his father as a "visionary" and "an artist with real estate." His testimony came as the defense started its rebuttal of New York Attorney General Letitia James' $250 million lawsuit accusing the Trump Organization of fraudulently inflating the value of its properties to secure favorable loans. The New York Times

7. Secret Service agent on Biden granddaughter's detail fires shots during car break-in

A Secret Service agent assigned to protect Naomi Biden, President Biden's granddaughter, fired several shots Sunday after three people tried to break into a Secret Service SUV, the agency confirmed to USA Today on Monday. Nobody was injured in the incident. Several agents were in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington, D.C., around midnight when the alleged break-in attempt occurred There was nobody in the vehicle at the time. The Metropolitan Police Department and the Secret Service are investigating the incident. The suspects fled immediately, and "there was no threat to any protectees," the Secret Service said. USA Today, CBS News

8. Former Trump attorneys provided new details in plea-deal videos

One of the attorneys who pushed former President Donald Trump's debunked election fraud claims told Georgia prosecutors that a close Trump aide said weeks before the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol attack that "the boss" was not going to leave office "under any circumstances," The Washington Post and ABC News reported Monday night, with video from her preliminary testimony. Jenna Ellis, a former Trump lawyer who pleaded guilty to reduced charges in exchange for cooperation in Georgia's election interference case, recounted her exchange with Dan Scavino, then a Trump deputy chief of staff, in a videotaped meeting with prosecutors. Ellis, like three other defendants who accepted plea deals, was required to detail what she knew about the case before the deal was finalized. The Washington Post, ABC News

9. Iceland evacuees dash home as volcanic eruption looms

Authorities in Iceland on Monday let residents of a fishing town threatened by an expected volcanic eruption return to their homes for five minutes to gather pets and valuables before swiftly leaving again. The 3,400 people of the town, Grindavik, had to leave Saturday after seismologists warned that a nine-mile river of underground lava was passing under the town toward nearby Fagradalsfjall volcano. As of Monday, 30,000 earthquakes had been detected in the past three weeks. The tremors sparked an aviation alert indicating a rising risk of eruption, reviving memories of the 2010 eruption of the Eyjafjallajokull volcano that sent ash high into the atmosphere, forcing the cancellation of 100,000 trans-Atlantic flights. The Wall Street Journal

10. King Charles visits charities to mark 75th birthday

Britain's King Charles III is marking his 75th birthday on Tuesday with a series of events highlighting charities he has supported. Charles and Queen Camilla plan to visit a project that feeds needy people by redistributing food that might otherwise be thrown away. Later, they will host 400 nurses and midwives at a party celebrating another 75th birthday — that of the National Health Service. The busy schedule is typical for Charles as he rushes to demonstrate that the British monarchy is still relevant in modern society after the seven-decade reign of his late mother, Queen Elizabeth II, according to The Associated Press. The Associated Press

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