‘This is not a step we take lightly’
That was Representative Jerrold Nadler, the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, as Democrats took a major step toward holding Attorney General William Barr in contempt of Congress for defying a subpoena for the unredacted Mueller report.
The vote, along party lines, came hours after President Trump asserted executive privilege, the first of his term, over the same material. The Justice Department called the vote an unnecessary and overwrought reaction.
Separately, Donald Trump Jr., the president’s eldest son, was subpoenaed by a Republican-led Senate panel to testify about a meeting he had with Russians after he was promised political dirt on Hillary Clinton.
Iran plans to quit parts of nuclear deal
President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday that his country would stop complying with two of its commitments under the 2015 agreement, and the Trump administration responded with a new round of sanctions against Tehran, reviving a crisis that had been contained for the past four years.
His announcement came exactly one year after President Trump withdrew the U.S. entirely from the agreement, although the administration has continued to demand that Iran fulfill its commitments.
What’s next: Mr. Rouhani said Iran would begin to build up stockpiles of nuclear material and could resume construction of a reactor if European nations don’t begin trading oil, in violation of U.S. sanctions.
Closer look: As the divide widens between Iran and the U.S., the European Union finds itself trapped between them, with no easy or quick way to respond to its dilemma.
Netherlands pushes tourists to smaller cities
Dutch tourism in some cities like Amsterdam has become so overwhelming that officials are trying to pivot travelers to lesser-known destinations in the country.
By 2030, the Netherlands — a country of 17 million — could see up to 42 million tourists, a report by the Dutch tourism board predicted. A spokeswoman for the board said marketing campaigns would now focus on places not as well known abroad.
Previously, marketing campaigns worked almost too well.
Problems: Amsterdam, for example, receives an asphyxiating 19 million tourists per year. The city brought in measures to limit bad behavior, like banning tours of the red-light district and taxing other tours in the capital. The tourism board is also worried for the famous tulip fields, where visitors trample flowers to get the perfect photo.
Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor will be known as Master Archie.
Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, introduced their two-day-old son at Windsor Castle. The newborn slept through his first interview before meeting the queen, his great-grandmother. His parents chose not to give him a royal title.
On their Instagram account, they later shared a photograph of the queen peering smilingly into the baby’s face while his beaming mother held him.
If you have 10 minutes, this is worth it
What should be done with the women and the children of ISIS?
Tens of thousands of ISIS followers and their families are stuck in Iraq and Syria. Women are dying of malnutrition and sickness, and children are too exhausted to speak.
Local militias running the camps said that they cannot detain other countries’ citizens forever. But few countries have intervened to bring back some of their citizens, and the debate has only become more pressing.
Here’s what else is happening
Venezuela: The vice president of Venezuela’s opposition-controlled National Assembly was detained by intelligence officers in the capital on Wednesday night, the latest sign of a crackdown after a failed uprising.
Huawei: The U.S. secretary of state warned Britain that its cooperation with the Chinese tech giant could put American intelligence sharing at risk.
FIFA: Sepp Blatter, the former FIFA president whose term ended in scandal, wants his watches back. Specifically, dozens of luxury watches he said he left at headquarters after he was forced out in 2015.
Champions League: Tottenham Hotspur advanced to the Champions League final, where they will compete against Liverpool. Our soccer columnist wrote about an unforgettable moment from the game.
London Marathon: A British nurse who was denied a Guinness World Record because she ran the race in scrubs instead of a dress has been granted her title after an outcry over what many called outdated and sexist criteria.
What we’re reading: This article from Quartz. Vanessa Friedman, our fashion critic, writes: “This is one of the clearest analyses I’ve read about why ‘sustainable fast fashion’ is an oxymoron — and why the only way to make it otherwise is to address the industry’s underlying premises and business model.”
Now, a break from the news
Smarter Living: The Times introduces NYT Parenting, offering guidance to parents and people thinking about having children. We’ll have new guides every day over the next few months, along with news and essays to help you conceive and raise thriving children.
One thing we won’t do: use the term “natural childbirth.” Here’s why.
And now for the Back Story on …
The commercialization of lithium-ion batteries in the 1990s helped make possible smartphones, electric vehicles and more. It gave us power storage that was light, cost-effective, high energy density and low maintenance.
As the battery industry gathers this week in Stuttgart, Germany, for the annual European Battery Show, we wondered when we’ll see another big battery breakthrough.
By most accounts, it looks as though it will be 2025 or so. Then we’ll start seeing mass production of the next big thing: “solid-state” batteries, or ones that use materials like ceramics, instead of liquid, for the electrolyte.
That’s the mainstream breakthrough on the horizon. But plenty of companies are researching batteries that are thin, stretchable and bendable for applications like wearable devices, skin patches and smart packaging.
That’s it for this briefing. See you next time.
To Mark Josephson, Eleanor Stanford and Kenneth R. Rosen for the break from the news. Victoria Shannon, who helped create the briefings, wrote today’s Back Story. You can reach the team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
• We’re listening to “The Daily.” The latest episode is about our investigation of Donald Trump’s taxes.
• Here’s today’s Mini Crossword puzzle, and a clue: Double-reeded instruments (5 letters). You can find all our puzzles here.
• Steve Duenes, the leader of visual storytelling teams at The New York Times, is being promoted to deputy managing editor.