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The question Spicer was asked: "What makes you think that, at this point, [Putin] is going to pull back his support for President Assad and the Syrian government" after years of remaining allies?

His response: "We didn't use chemical weapons in World War II... Hitler didn't even sink to using chemical weapons."

  • Clarification 1 (live): "I think when you come to sarin gas... he was not using the gas on his own people the same way that Assad is doing... He brought them into the Holocaust centers, I understand that. What I was saying was in the way that Assad used them, where he went into towns, dropped them down... the use of it."
  • Clarification 2 (statement): "In no way was I trying to lessen the horrendous nature of the Holocaust; however, I was trying to draw a contrast of the tactic of using airplane to drop chemical weapons on innocent people."
  • Clarification 3 (statement): "In no way was I trying to lessen the horrendous nature of the Holocaust; however, I was trying to draw a contrast of the tactic of using airplane to drop chemical weapons on population centers."
  • Clarification 4 (statement): "In no way was I trying to lessen the horrendous nature of the Holocaust; however, I was trying to draw a contrast of the tactic of using airplane to drop chemical weapons on population centers. Any attack on innocent people is reprehensible and inexcusable."

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Google's parent shuts down effort to deliver internet via balloons

Image: Loon

Alphabet is shutting down Loon, one of its "moonshots," which aimed to deliver internet service via high-altitude balloons.

Why it matters: The effort was one of several approaches designed to get high-speed connectivity to some of the world's most remote spots and proved useful in the aftermath of disasters that shut down traditional infrastructure.

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Photo Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

President Biden swiftly recommitted the U.S. to the Paris climate pact and the World Health Organization, but America's broader foreign policy is in a state of flux between the Trump and Biden eras.

Driving the news: One of the most striking moves from the Biden administration thus far was a show of continuity — concurring with the Trump administration's last-minute determination that China had committed "genocide" against Uyghur Muslims.

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

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  4. World: Biden will order U.S. to rejoin World Health OrganizationBiden to bring U.S. into global COVAX initiative for equitable vaccine access.