Five Things You Need to Read Today

I’m experimenting today with a return to an older format: aggregating a few particularly interesting news stories that I want to recommend to you today. For a long time, I moved away from “news aggregation” because I was doing that kind of work for RealClearPolitics. Alas, I’m not doing that any more, so it makes sense to return to it here.

Here are five items you should probably read today:

1. Was ISIS in Vegas?

The first item I want to recommend is a Twitter thread—yes, sometimes they are useful—from Rukmini Callimachi. She’s a New York Times reporter on the ISIS beat and a pretty credible source, and the interesting thing is that she’s taking seriously their claim that Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock was a recent Muslim convert who carried out the massacre on their behalf. Her argument is that it’s actually pretty rare for ISIS to claim responsibility for an attack they weren’t involved in.

I hasten to add that I’m still not leaping to any conclusions about this. While the 72-Hour Rule is no longer in effect, we are still in the early days of the investigation. If the ISIS claim is true, and it’s a big “if,” it has important implications both for the investigation (which would suddenly involve national security and overseas intelligence operations) as well as huge political implications. I expect investigators to take a long time to either confirm it or definitively debunk it, and I have no problem waiting on that.

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