The Angle

The Angle: The Pen Pal Edition

Slate’s daily newsletter on Turkey, Canada, Hong Kong, and Harold Bloom.

Don’t be a fool: Today the U.S. reached a deal with Turkey on a five-day “pause” in its military operation in northern Syria—which Donald Trump was quick to hail as a victory. “The president is once again ‘solving’ a crisis of his own creation,” writes Joshua Keating. But let’s not forget how we got here: Fred Kaplan has a rundown of Wednesday’s mayhem, from Trump’s baffling leaked letter to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to his meltdown during a meeting with Democrats.

Northern exposure: Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau faces his toughest election yet on Monday, largely because of shady dealings brought to light by his own attorney general, Jody Wilson-Raybould. She was the first indigenous person to hold that position and has “gained a reputation for speaking truth to power.” Brian Barth explores the rise of the “Canadian AOC” who took down Prince Eric.

Battle of cyberspace: Hong Kong’s long-running protests have spread to the digital streets, where savvy Hong Kongers and pro-Chinese users spread disinformation and propaganda to win people in the region and on the mainland to their respective sides. As Nick Frisch writes, “Hong Kong has become a laboratory for China’s efforts to shape cyberspace beyond the Great Firewall.”

“They will surge up and we may be overcome”: As a young poet, Jason Guriel stumbled upon The Best of the Best American Poetry: 1988–1997. The uber anthology was edited by lightning rod professor Harold Bloom, who died this week at 89. For the collection, Bloom refused to consider any poems that had been picked by feminist Adrienne Rich and wrote a searing critique of the “hordes” of “multi-culturalists,” “mock-feminists,” and “gender-and-power freaks” who were coming for him and scholars like him. Guriel describes the electrifying appeal he found in Bloom’s words and passion at the time (even if Bloom inspires only cringes now).

For fun: Iowa man finds basement full of blood.

This is fine,
Vicky