Newsletter: Today: Beyond the handshake at the DMZ

President Trump talks with Kim Jong Un on Sunday after crossing the Military Demarcation Line into North Korea

President Trump hailed his latest visit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un as “very legendary.” But when it comes to denuclearization, little has changed.


Beyond the Handshake at the DMZ

He came. He saw. He sauntered. At the demilitarized zone that has divided the Korean peninsula for 66 years, President Trump walked up to the border, shook hands with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and, in a first for a sitting U.S. president, took 18 steps into North Korea before stopping and turning back. Trump and Kim’s 53-minute get-together was more than that “handshake” moment and ended with an agreement to resume nuclear talks — in effect a return to where negotiations stood 15 months ago. While bashing the media for not giving him credit, Trump called the encounter “historic” and “very legendary.” But some foreign policy analysts are more concerned than impressed. “North Korea under Trump is a normalized, nuclear power,” said Samantha Vinograd, who served on the national security council under President Obama.


President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un shakes hands at the demilitarized zone.
(Brendan Smialowski / AFP / Getty Images)

Busing and Berkeley

Few issues were as divisive in the 1970s as school desegregation and busing. They came back into the spotlight at the Democratic presidential debate last week, when Sen. Kamala Harris chastised former Vice President Joe Biden for being part of the fight against forced busing by the federal government — and referenced her personal history in Berkeley. Unlike other large cities at the time, Berkeley undertook its busing program voluntarily and required both white and black families to travel into unfamiliar neighborhoods.

More Politics


— The Supreme Court has agreed to decide whether Trump may end Obama-era protections for the young immigrants known as “Dreamers.” After months of delay, the justices announced they would hear arguments in the fall.

— Whether the U.S. fails or succeeds in Syria, some tough choices lie ahead.

In Need of a Booster Shot?

California already has one of the strictest vaccination laws in the country, preventing children from skipping their shots unless a doctor says they have a medical reason to be exempt. But data analyzed by The Times show the kindergarten vaccination rate dropped in the most recent school year. At the same time, more parents sought permission from doctors to not immunize their children. The information comes as state lawmakers are looking to clamp down on fraudulent exemptions, which has touched off protests from some parents.

The Secrets of Chernobyl

A little over 33 years ago, an explosion at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant sent plumes of radioactivity into the air. Today, HBO’s recent “Chernobyl” miniseries has revived interest in the accident, the Soviet Union’s reaction to it and the stories of those who survived and died. Lt. Col. Viktor Chershnev was one of those who experienced the government’s disregard for human life firsthand. “Here I am on a pension with a monthly Chernobyl health compensation of about $11 a month,” he says. “It is not even enough to buy a bottle of decent vodka, let alone medicines.”

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— In response to a California law undoing the secrecy surrounding police internal affairs files, some law enforcement organizations are charging high fees for records, destroying documents and even ignoring court orders to produce the files.

Meth addiction is an epidemic, and it’s complicating the homeless relief effort. Columnist Steve Lopez reports.

— Busloads of Chinese tourists used to visit L.A. luxury stores. Not anymore. Here’s why.

— How Jony Ive, Apple’s design guru, planned his own obsolescence.

— Should we resurrect the American chestnut tree with genetic engineering?

— With Andy Ruiz Jr.’s underdog win in the boxing ring, the Imperial Valley gets its “Rocky.”

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— The state has finally ended the long, costly process of housing inmates in out-of-state prisons. The total population across 34 California facilities now stands at just under 126,000.

— Figures for the just-completed rainfall season show it was above normal, but not in the top 20% of wettest seasons.

— Maj. Gen. Laura Yeager has made history as the first woman to lead a U.S. Army division. She assumed command of the U.S. Army’s 40th Infantry Division during a ceremony at the Joint Forces Training Base in Los Alamitos.

— The operator of a San Francisco art gallery has stepped forward to defend himself after being accused of dousing a homeless woman with a bucket of water.


— Meet Jonathan Majors, who has a breakout role in the film “The Last Black Man in San Francisco.”

— Some of the stars of “The Hills” are back on MTV with a new reality series, “New Beginnings.” But does anyone still care? We explore in this podcast.

— How did the new Cayton Children’s Museum in Santa Monica do with our young reviewer? A sticky thumbs up.

Taylor Swift is expressing her frustration over the news that her master recordings were acquired by music manager Scooter Braun: ”All I could think about was the incessant, manipulative bullying I’ve received at his hands for years.”


— Ten people were killed when a small airplane crashed into a hangar as it was taking off from a Dallas-area airport, said a spokeswoman for the town of Addison, Texas.

— Some migrant families this weekend contemplated crossing the swirling Rio Grande from Mexico to seek asylum in the U.S. despite several recent drowning deaths. “We’re so desperate here, I think about going to the river,” one said.

— A Salt Lake City man has been arrested on suspicion of killing University of Utah student Mackenzie Lueck. Her death has brought an outpouring of grief from her sorority sisters in Utah as well as her family in California.

— Crowds gathered outside New York’s historic Stonewall Inn to celebrate five decades of LGBTQ pride, marking the 50th anniversary of the police raid that sparked the modern-day gay rights movement.

— Protesters marched as Hong Kong marked its 1997 handover from British to Chinese rule.


— Elon Musk’s quest for a Tesla deliveries record could be a double-edged sword.

— Ready to retire? If you’ve saved eight times your salary by age 60, maybe.


Anthony Davis won’t officially become a Laker until Saturday, but in this exclusive interview, he says he’s already getting comfortable in L.A. and spending time with new teammate LeBron James. Meanwhile, the Lakers have reached out to superstar free agent Kawhi Leonard.

— At the Women’s World Cup, England is looking to defy history with a victory over the U.S. on Tuesday.


— The new Bill of Rights: Trump gives originalism an update, as illustrated by Steve Brodner.

James Ellis, the outgoing dean of the Marshall School of Business at USC, wants to set the record straight about his departure.


— A look at Ivanka Trump’s unusual presence during the president’s Group of 20 and North Korean visits. (CNN)

— Fifty years after the Apollo 11 landing, a new moon race is on. (National Geographic)


Imagine a property in beautiful Bel-Air, with a motivated seller and a 40% price cut. That’s Senderos Canyon, a roughly 258-acre tract, which came on the market in 2013 with an asking price of $125 million. It’s back, now offered at $75 million. So, for a wealthy prospective buyer, what’s not to love? Read on.

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