Wednesday Briefing: Hunter Biden Found Guilty on Gun Charges

Hunter Biden, the president’s son, was found guilty on three felony counts of lying on a federal firearms application. The verdict is a personal blow to President Biden as he enters the final months of his re-election campaign.

The maximum possible sentence could be up to 25 years in prison and $750,000 in fines. But sentencing guidelines call for a fraction of that penalty, and first-time offenders who did not use their weapons to commit a violent crime typically receive no jail time. No sentencing date was set. Here’s some background on the charges.

Biden’s gun case is widely regarded as the least serious of the two federal indictments brought against him last year. He still faces serious tax charges stemming from his yearslong crack, alcohol and spending binge.

Context: The trial made public Biden’s crack cocaine addiction, reckless behavior and ruinous spending — narrated by three former romantic partners, including the widow of his brother, Beau Biden.

The president’s reaction: Biden said he and the first lady, Jill Biden, were proud to see Hunter Biden be “so strong and resilient in recovery.” The president has said that he will not grant a pardon to his son.

A day after the U.N. Security Council endorsed a U.S.-backed cease-fire plan for Gaza, it remained unclear whether Israel and Hamas would formally embrace it. Here’s how it would work.

An Israeli official said that the proposal “enables Israel to achieve” its war goals, including destroying Hamas’s capabilities and freeing all the hostages in Gaza, but stopped short of saying whether Israel would accept the agreement. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has repeatedly declined to take a firm stand on the plan.

A senior Hamas official said the group had “dealt positively” with the proposal. Earlier yesterday, the U.S. secretary of state, Antony Blinken, said that the fate of the deal rested with Hamas’s top leader in Gaza, Yahya Sinwar, who has not said whether he supports it.

Hostage rescue: Israel’s military said that when a truck carrying some of the hostages broke down and was surrounded by militants, Israel ordered an airstrike that killed many Palestinians. Read the full story of the raid.

Rafah: The Israeli military said four of its soldiers were killed and several more were wounded after militants blew up a building where the troops were operating.

Millions in Nigeria are struggling to buy food, fuel and medicine as the country faces its worst economic crisis in a generation. It’s a sharp fall: Two years ago, Nigeria was Africa’s biggest economy, and this year, it is set to fall to fourth place.

The crisis is believed to be rooted in the removal of some fuel subsidies and the devaluation of the currency — two changes set down by a president elected 15 months ago. Punishing inflation means poverty rates are expected to rise still further.

Tenjen Lama Sherpa, one of Nepal’s most storied mountain guides of his generation, was killed by an avalanche last year while trying to help an American climber set a record. An elder brother also died last year, on a Mount Everest rescue expedition.

Their last brother wants to quit mountaineering. But he will go again this season, to make a living and to try to recover Lama’s body.

Young Ukrainians are trying to rebuild their identity free of Russian influence. Often, that means re-examining Russia’s history in Ukraine and highlighting its colonial imprint.

Mariam Naiem, a researcher and podcaster, has emerged as a leading voice in those efforts. Calling Russia a colonial empire challenges decades of scholarship, but Naiem and others point to Russia’s long efforts to impose its language on Ukraine, occupy its territory and rewrite its history.

She said it took the war for Ukrainians to begin to “decolonize” themselves, pointing to those who switched from speaking Russian to Ukrainian. “This is exactly a decolonial act,” she said.

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