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Good morning.

We’re masking Huge Tech executives on the defensive, Vietnam’s mysterious surge in instances and a troubling pattern in Latin American democracies.

Tech executives for the primary time appeared collectively at an antitrust hearing into the U.S. tech industry on Wednesday that has been in comparison with U.S. efforts to attenuate the ability of tobacco firms.

The chief executives of Google, Apple, Fb and Amazon testified on whether or not their dominance has harmed the economy, stifled rivals and left consumers with few selections. All denied these claims.

Jeff Bezos of Amazon, Tim Prepare dinner of Apple, Mark Zuckerberg of Fb and Sundar Pichai of Google spoke by videoconference as members of Congress met in particular person on Capitol Hill.

There have been catchphrases, emotional speeches and technical points. It was the end result of a yearlong investigation into the businesses by a committee of lawmakers. Many federal and state antitrust officers are additionally investigating the tech giants.

We have now live updates, and you’ll sign up for our On Tech newsletter for extra insights.

Go deeper: Jeff Bezos, the Amazon chief government, has been cast in a role he never wanted: his company’s defender in Washington. He has taken an unusually hands-off strategy with policymakers within the nation’s capital, our reporters write.

What they stated: We tallied how often the C.E.O.s repeated certain arguments and catchphrases, like “We’re not that massive” and “We’re good for America.”

It’s a well-known story in Asia: Vietnam appeared like a miracle, the place months glided by and not using a single coronavirus demise and even native transmission.

The financial system reopened, journey restarted and residents started leaving their masks at house. However over the weekend, the country announced that the virus was lurking after all — and spreading. Specialists have no idea the supply.

It adopted a sample in locations that appeared to have completed every thing proper: Japan, China, Australia and South Korea all recorded spikes on Wednesday. And the thriller is worrying medical consultants and residents alike.

Particulars: Shortly after a 57-year-old man from Danang examined optimistic, clusters emerged in 5 hospitals. By Wednesday, the virus had unfold north to Hanoi, south to Ho Chi Minh Metropolis, to 2 provinces within the nation’s middle and even the distant Central Highlands.

Quotable: “For my part, this outbreak is extra harmful than the earlier one as a result of it’s taking place on the identical time in lots of locations,” stated the dean of public well being at Quang Trung College.

Listed below are the latest updates and maps of the pandemic.

In different developments:

  • The U.S. virus death toll reached 150,000, by far the best on this planet, in accordance with a New York Occasions database, as the speed of fatalities continued to rise in lots of areas.

  • Hong Kong recorded 118 new instances on Wednesday, bringing the entire tally previous 3,000. Carrie Lam, the town’s chief, warned {that a} sharp rise in infections may result in a “collapse” of the hospital system.

  • Perrance Shiri has died of the coronavirus. The agriculture minister of Zimbabwe led a army unit that massacred hundreds of civilians throughout civil strife within the 1980s and helped plot the coup that overthrew Robert Mugabe, the longtime chief. Mr. Shiri was 55.

  • Australia’s authorities stated it will ship a specialist medical workforce normally deployed to catastrophe zones to assist handle an outbreak within the state of Victoria.


The fallout of the worldwide pandemic has pulled the territory’s economy further into decline over the past three months, in accordance with new knowledge, which confirmed a 9 % contraction.

The brand new numbers confirmed a slight easing from January when the federal government reported the most important drop in financial progress in 4 many years. Nonetheless, it was the fourth quarter of decline for the worldwide monetary hub.

It comes after overlapping crises that dealt a number of blows to Hong Kong’s financial system: a U.S.-China commerce battle, anti-government protests and a nationwide safety regulation imposed by Beijing, on high of the pandemic that battered spending, tourism and commerce.

Associated: Second-quarter financial output for the U.S., to be launched Thursday morning, is expected to be bad, our correspondent writes.

Postponed elections. Sidelined courts. A persecuted opposition. Raids on the houses of journalists.

Because the pandemic tears by Latin America and the Caribbean, killing greater than 180,000 and destroying livelihoods, it is also undermining democracy. Leaders are taking actions that underneath totally different circumstances can be described as authoritarian and antidemocratic however that now are being characterised as lifesaving measures to curb the unfold of the coronavirus. Above, downtown Caracas, Venezuela, throughout lockdown.

Turkey: Lawmakers handed laws on Wednesday that would give the government sweeping new powers to regulate social media content, elevating considerations that it could be used to stifle dissent on-line.

U.S. drawdown in Germany: The USA is cutting nearly 12,000 troops in Germany and shifting some across the continent, together with relocating some items to Belgium and Italy, Protection Secretary Mark Esper introduced. About 6,400 troops will return to the U.S.

Notre Dame: A whole lot of tons of lead that burned within the April 2019 hearth that almost destroyed the cathedral in Paris landed in parks, buildings and playgrounds, and now a few of it has made its way to the honey produced by urban beehives, researchers say.

Snapshot: Above, a truck filled with sheep crossing the border into Senegal from Mali. Forward of the most important vacation of the yr, the Senegalese model of Eid al-Adha, they are in short supply amid coronavirus.

What we’re listening to: This episode of “This American Life,” on determining learn how to be aside. “We’re all studying learn how to be alone through the pandemic, and the one factor we will take consolation in is that everybody is in that very same boat,” writes Remy Tumin, a journalist on the Briefings workforce. She listened to this episode whereas on a solo stroll round her neighborhood.

Prepare dinner: These beef short rib rice bowls, impressed by galbi, the Korean barbecued quick ribs, take a pointy flip away from the normal candy, fruity remedy and as an alternative skew savory, with heat spices like cumin, coriander and turmeric.

Learn: Tana French has written seven novels, with an eighth due in October. All set in Eire, the novels pull you means down rabbit holes and are haunting diversions, writes our literary critic, who has put collectively a information for learn how to learn her.

Watch: Regardless that they have been made earlier than the pandemic, three new bold and chilling horror movies, all directed by girls, have a type of topical resonance now, with plots that take care of contagion and isolation.

At Home has our full collection of ideas on what to learn, cook dinner, watch, and do.

Ralph Blumenthal and Leslie Kean have been a part of a Occasions reporting workforce that broke the story of the Superior Aerospace Menace Identification Program, a secret unit of the Pentagon investigating unidentified flying objects, and so they’ve been following this system ever since. Right here’s an excerpt from what they wrote about covering U.F.O.s.

We’re usually requested by well-meaning associates and readers, “Do you consider in U.F.O.s?” The query units us aback as being inappropriately private. However on this case we have now no downside responding, “No, we don’t consider in U.F.O.s.”

And to be clear: U.F.O.s don’t imply aliens. Unidentified means we don’t know what they’re, solely that they display capabilities that don’t seem like doable by at present accessible know-how.

Our earlier tales have been comparatively simple to doc with Division of Protection movies of U.F.O.s and pilot eyewitness accounts backed up by Navy hazard reviews of shut encounters with small rushing objects.

However our newest article supplied a extra daunting set of challenges, since we handled the doable existence of retrieved supplies from U.F.O.s. We have been supplied a sequence of unclassified slides displaying that this system took this severely sufficient to incorporate it in quite a few briefings. One slide says one of many program’s duties was to “prepare for entry to knowledge/reviews/supplies from crash retrievals of A.A.V.’s,” or superior aerospace autos.

Our sources instructed us that “A.A.V.” doesn’t confer with autos made in any nation — not Russian or Chinese language — however is used to imply know-how within the realm of the really unexplained.


That’s it for this briefing. See you subsequent time.

— Melina


Thanks
Carole Landry helped write this briefing. Theodore Kim and Jahaan Singh supplied the break from the information. You’ll be able to attain the workforce at briefing@nytimes.com.

P.S.
• We’re listening to “The Daily.” Our newest episode is in regards to the Trump administration’s confrontation with China.
• Right here’s our Mini Crossword, and a clue: ___ x gravity x top = potential power (4 letters). You can find all our puzzles here.
• Farah Stockman strikes from the newsroom to the Opinion facet as a writer covering foreign policy and national affairs.

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