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Vox Sentences: Guess who’s coming to dinner? (Not Trump’s translator.)

Vox Sentences is your daily digest for what's happening in the world, curated by Ella Nilsen. Sign up for the Vox Sentences newsletter, delivered straight to your inbox Monday through Friday, or view the Vox Sentences archive for past editions.

Trump and Putin had a second, undisclosed meeting; an Australian woman was shot in her pajamas by police in Minnesota; Netanyahu trashed the EU before realizing his microphone was on.

Lost in translation

Steffen Kugler /BPA via Getty Images
  • At last week’s G20 summit, President Trump met with his Russian counterpart for an official meeting that lasted more than two hours. We now know the two men also had a second, undisclosed meeting. [Associated Press / Jill Colvin and Vivian Salama]
  • While it’s not uncommon for world leaders to have spontaneous conversations at summits, the hour-long second chat between the two presidents is raising eyebrows. [BuzzFeed / Alberto Nardelli]
  • The conversation happened after a G20 summit dinner in full view of other world leaders. Trump reportedly approached Putin alone to sit and talk, with Putin’s translator the only person who was privy to the conversation. [NYT / Julie Hirschfeld Davis]
  • The fact that there are no notes and no American staff were present is troubling. Generally, note taking during these conversations can be helpful for presidents in crafting future policy. [Washington Post / James Goldgeier]
  • And if Putin is the only one with a record of the conversation, the Russians could easily use it to their own political advantage. [Vox / Alex Ward]
  • Though it’s impossible to tell what was a topic of conversation at the meeting, there are already signs that Trump is capitulating to Russia on key issues. Today the Washington Post reported Trump will end a CIA program propping up moderate Syrian rebels who fight dictator Bashar Al-Assad, himself a key Putin ally. [Washington Post / Greg Jaffe and Adam Entous]

America’s latest police shooting is shrouded in mystery

Stephen Maturen/AFP/Getty Images
  • The latest police shooting in America making national headlines is a mysterious case.
  • The victim is 40-year-old Justine Damond, an Australian yoga and meditation instructor who was living in Minneapolis. [Mark Berman / Washington Post]
  • Facts of the case are still pretty hazy, but here’s what we know so far: Damond called the police on Saturday night to report a possible assault happening outside of her home. When officers arrived, they reported being startled by a loud noise near the house. [Minneapolis Star-Tribune / Andy Mannix]
  • When Damond approached the squad car from the driver’s side, she was reportedly shot by officer Mohamed Noor, who was sitting in the passenger’s seat. But unlike with many other recent police shootings, there’s no body camera footage to confirm what happened. [Minneapolis Star-Tribune / Andy Mannix]
  • The case is also stirring up outrage in Damond’s home country of Australia, where attitudes about guns are very different. Australia has very strict gun laws that were put in place after a 1996 mass shooting there. [NPR / Colin Dwyer]
  • There are also far fewer mass shooting in Australia, as police are trained to use nonlethal weapons before discharging a gun. More than 500 people were fatally shot by US police this year; in contrast, Australia had 105 people killed by police from 1989 through 2011. [NYT / Damien Cave and Isabella Kwai]
  • Gun laws in the United States give police officers wide latitude to discharge their weapons, even if they only perceive a threat. That makes it especially difficult to actually convict an officer for a police shooting, even when there is video footage. [Vox / German Lopez]

Netanyahu has a hot mic problem

John van Hasselt/Corbis via Getty Images
  • Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu landed himself in hot water Wednesday as he bashed the European Union at a conference for Eastern European leaders without realizing he was speaking into a live microphone. [Vox / Sarah Wildman]
  • The conservative leader called the EU’s policies of putting economic pressure on his country to encourage it to concede territory in the West Bank “crazy,” and encouraged Eastern European leaders to put pressure on their Western counterparts to stop. [Haaretz / Barack Ravid]
  • In recent years, Netanyahu has often found himself at odds with Western European leaders over Israeli settlements and peace negotiations with Palestinian leaders. [Associated Press / Pablo Gorondi and Ilan Ben Zion]
  • The EU also doesn’t recognize Israeli sovereignty over disputed territories including Jerusalem and the West Bank, which Israel fears undermines its position in the region. [Jerusalem Post / Tovah Lazaroff]
  • Netanyahu is also facing criticism over a recent visit to Hungary, whose president, Viktor Orbán, has been accused of subtly encouraging anti-Semitism through his rhetoric and praise of a past Hungarian statesman who was a Nazi. [The Guardian / Peter Beaumont]
  • Some in Israel say Netanyahu’s latest outburst and appeals to nationalist leaders in Eastern Europe are making him appear more in the mold of Donald Trump and Steve Bannon. [Haaretz / Chemi Shalev]


  • A Muslim woman is running for Senate in Arizona in a bid to unseat Jeff Flake. After writing a post about keeping church and state separate, she got a barrage of hateful comments. [Arizona Republic / Laurie Roberts]
  • Mentally ill inmates are often banished to solitary confinement for long periods of time, which experts worry will just worsen their conditions. [The Marshall Project / Justin George]
  • Here’s a bunch of stories about people eating cheese on their apple pie, because America! And summer! [Atlas Obscura / Michael Waters]
  • Chris Christie had a no good, very bad day at the ballpark when he got trolled by a baseball announcer at a Mets game, caught a fly ball and gave it to a kid, and still got booed by everyone. [Dan McLaughlin to New Jersey Star-Ledger / Abbey Mastraco]
  • Today in “how could anyone ever let that happen?!?!” news, I present: the woman who had 27 contact lenses removed from her eye. [Gizmodo / George Dvorsky]


  • “I frequently see men bike-commuting in suits, which is just one of those dumb men-things that is not worth anyone’s energy to dissect.” [Danya Evans / The Cut]
  • “I’ve had two years of absolute violation of my right to peace and quiet. I think it’s against the Geneva Conventions to have this much noise.” [Richard T. McIntosh to NYT / Winnie Hu]
  • “We are sabotaging an entire generation of our people because of sugar. We’ve got to end the slavery that’s happening at the dinner table, every day at the plate. We gotta end it, y’all.” [Pastor Delman Coates to WAMU / Armando Trull]
  • “More than anything, it’s the fucking boldness of a fanny pack that impresses me so much.” [Man Repeller / Stella von Senger]
  • "If sea spiders had a creation myth, it would go something like this. An inebriated deity stumbles home after a hard day’s creating, finds a bunch of leftover legs, glues them together, and zaps them to life before passing out and forgetting to add anything else. The resulting creature — all leg and little else — scuttles away to conquer the oceans.” [The Atlantic / Ed Yong]

Watch this: The high cost of free parking

Hidden parking rules hurt our cities. Will Chilton and Paul Mackie of Mobility Lab explain. [YouTube / Will Chilton, Paul Mackie, and Mobility Lab]

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