AT&T, Chicago Cubs and Mosul: Your Weekend Briefing

AT&T, Chicago Cubs and Mosul: Your Weekend Briefing

Here are the week’s top stories, and a look ahead.


Credit Larry W. Smith/European Pressphoto Agency

1. Get ready for “Game of Thrones,” brought to you by AT&T.

The telecommunications giant has agreed to purchase Time Warner, the owner of HBO and CNN, for around $85 billion.

If the deal passes regulatory scrutiny — no sure thing, with both presidential candidates promising to crack down on corporate megapowers — it would create a media colossus.

“We’ll have the world’s best premium content with the networks to deliver it to every screen,” said AT&T’s chief executive.



Credit Ruth Fremson/The New York Times

2. The presidential candidates are headed into the homestretch, with just over two weeks to go to Election Day.

Hillary Clinton, who holds a strong lead in most national polls, visited Ohio on Friday to start a multiday tour of swing states.

Gender issues have taken on a surprisingly powerful significance. At the candidates’ third and final debate, Mrs. Clinton spoke about Donald J. Trump’s criticisms of women who have accused him of sexual assault and harassment.

“He goes after their dignity, their self-worth,” Mrs. Clinton said. “And I don’t think there is a woman anywhere who doesn’t know what that feels like.”



Credit Damon Winter/The New York Times

3. Mr. Trump toured the Gettysburg battlefield in Pennsylvania on Saturday and said that he hoped to “heal the divisions” of the country.

The Republican nominee tried to soothe a rattled political establishment, softening his position in the debate that he might not accept the result of the general election. He said that he would accept “a clear election result.”

Mr. Trump has raised concerns that the election might be “rigged,” but experts say that very little voter fraud has been documented in recent decades.



Credit Nathaniel Brooks for The New York Times

4. Twitter, Netflix, Airbnb and other websites (including our own) were inaccessible to many people on Friday after an attack on Dyn, a company that manages crucial parts of the internet’s infrastructure.

The assault, which flooded Dyn’s servers with traffic, appears to have relied on hundreds of thousands of internet-connected devices like cameras, baby monitors and home routers that had been infected with malware.

Election officials are concerned that similar attacks could affect voting. Thirty-one states and the District of Columbia permit internet voting for overseas military and civilians, and Alaska allows any citizen to vote online.



Credit Jon Durr/USA Today Sports, via Reuters

5. Chicago’s baseball curse has been broken.

The Cubs will play in their first World Series since 1945, facing the Cleveland Indians. The series begins on Tuesday.

Chicago captured the National League pennant on Saturday with a 5-0 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers before a euphoric throng at Chicago’s Wrigley Field. (We mistakenly said earlier that Cleveland captured the National League pennant.)



Credit Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

6. Sports fans, rejoice: This is the one week of the year when teams from all four major leagues will compete.

The N.B.A. begins its season on Tuesday with a game between the New York Knicks and the Cleveland Cavaliers, the league’s reigning champion. But the sport’s most closely watched player will be Kevin Durant, the all-star who now plays for the Golden State Warriors. The team may have the most talent-laden roster in N.B.A. history.

“I took a leap,” Durant said in July about his decision to leave Oklahoma City and head west.



Credit Nicole Tung for The New York Times

7. Syrian refugees who settled in Canada, and the citizens sponsoring them, are facing a wrenching question: What can be done about the relatives left behind?

Mouhamad al-Hajj, his wife and their four children are slowly adapting to life in Toronto. But in Lebanon, Mr. Hajj’s brother Ali remains a stranded refugee, living with his family in a 6-by-10-foot shed.

As Canadians work to help their new arrivals move forward, they and the immigrants who migrated are haunted by messages and pleas from those still caught in crisis.



Credit Bulent Kilic/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

8. Iraqi and Kurdish forces have begun a campaign to retake Mosul, the Islamic State’s last major stronghold in Iraq.

The million or more civilians left in the city face a bleak choice: stay, and risk being taken hostage or caught up in the combat; go, and risk sniper attacks, roadside bombs and life in hardscrabble aid camps.

Militants have been entrenched in Mosul for more than two years, and the Pentagon hopes to capture a trove of intelligence data as Iraqi forces advance into the city in the coming weeks.



Credit Brendan Bannon for The New York Times

9. A landmark global deal to cut the use of a chemical found in air-conditioners and refrigerators could have a profound effect in slowing climate change.

Secretary of State John Kerry called it “the biggest thing we can do in one giant swoop.”

Chemical companies, betting that they can create and profit from environmentally friendly options, were among the deal’s most ardent backers. But one leading alternative, a refrigerant called HFO-1234yf that is becoming standard in many new cars, has some significant drawbacks. It is expensive — and flammable.



Credit Caitlin Ochs for The New York Times

10. Finally, subway savvy. An affinity for kale. Endless practicing and cramming: for school tests, theater auditions, gospel concerts, photography workshops and sports team tryouts.

What makes a New York City teenager a New York kid? About a dozen of them gave us a glimpse of their world, through videos, photos and stories about the urban world they inhabit.

“I like the noise; it helps me sleep at night,” said Sonia Smith, 11, who lives in the Bronx. “I feel like I know the city is still awake and protecting me.”


Your Weekend Briefing is published Sundays at 6 a.m. Eastern.

And don’t miss Your Morning Briefing, weekdays at 6 a.m. Eastern, and Your Evening Briefing, weeknights at 6 p.m. Eastern.

Want to look back? Here’s Friday’s Evening Briefing.

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