World roundup: October 18 2023
Stories from Sudan, Russia, Bolivia, and elsewhere
TODAY IN HISTORY
October 18, 1009: Fatimid Caliph al-Hakim destroys the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem.
October 18, 1912: The Italo-Turkish War ends with a decisive Italian victory. The war not only brought Libya under Italian control—though that control initially didn’t extend very far inland—it also demonstrated the Ottoman Empire’s weakness and encouraged Bulgaria, Greece, Montenegro, and Serbia to form an alliance (the Balkan League) and go to war with the empire. The First Balkan War led to a Second Balkan War when the league broke up, and that led (in part) into World War I.
The fallout over the explosion on Tuesday evening at Gaza’s al-Ahli al-Arabi hospital has continued through Wednesday, unfortunately without providing much clarity as to what actually happened after a day in which it was almost impossible to keep track of new developments and new claims because everything happened so quickly. I want to be very careful about discussing this because my aim in writing this newsletter is not ever to mislead anyone intentionally and it becomes considerably harder to hold to that when there’s so much noise circulating. Some of that noise might be accurate information. Much of it is probably misinformation. Some actual information looks as though it’s being censored by our benevolent internet overlords. So with that in mind, let’s try to unpack things as they stand now.
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