The Angle

The Angle: Mixed Signals Edition

Slate’s daily newsletter on the Middle East, abortion, Australia, and cybersecurity.

What is happening?: That’s not a joke. What the U.S. appears to be doing regarding Iran involves a bunch of mixed signals and Trump posturing, and it’s all just very confusing. As Josh Keating writes, the U.S. appears to be ramping up for a new war in the Middle East—but we’re not done with the last one yet.

We were always the problem: Lili Loofbourow pulls no punches here: Republicans have been building toward the pinnacle of anti-abortion law for years, and just about everyone who will be affected let it happen without raising too much fuss. “Kemp won—technically, but technical wins are all you need—and that yearslong series of cheats has empowered him now to sign a bill that would authorize punishing women for exercising their constitutional right to an abortion.”

Unpopularity contest: There’s an election afoot in Australia, where after the past six years of ricocheting back and forth between prime ministers, voters are looking for some stability. They think they’ve found it in Bill Shorten, the current front-runner for Saturday’s election. The catch? No one likes really likes him. Rachel Withers explains what’s going on Down Under.

Everything’s hacked: Maybe you heard about the Intel chip vulnerability. Or was it the WhatsApp hack? The Cisco router bug? Bad cybersecurity things happened in threes this week (so far), and Aaron Mak has the breakdown.

For fun: Game of Thrones, 19 years later.

It’s not the weirdest fic consumed this week,