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Up First Briefing: 1 month since Hamas attacked Israel; Supreme Court gun control case

Daniel Hertzberg

Good morning. You're reading the Up First newsletter. Subscribe here to get it delivered to your inbox, and listen to the Up First podcast for all the news you need to start your day.

Today's top news

One month ago today, Hamas militants attacked southern Israeli communities, killing more than 1,400 people and taking about 240 hostages. In Gaza, more than 10,000 people have been killed since Israeli airstrikes began, according to the Health Ministry there. While the U.S. seeks a pause in the fighting to facilitate hostage releases, many Israelis support a prisoner swap.

Family of hostage Liri Albag protest outside the Ministry of Defense on Nov. 4, in Tel Aviv, Israel. Albag, 18, is a surveillance soldier at the Nahal Oz army base, and was taken captive by Hamas militants on Oct. 7.
Maya Levin / Maya Levin for NPR
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Maya Levin for NPR
Family of hostage Liri Albag protest outside the Ministry of Defense on Nov. 4, in Tel Aviv, Israel. Albag, 18, is a surveillance soldier at the Nahal Oz army base, and was taken captive by Hamas militants on Oct. 7.

  • The violence has displaced more than 250,000 Israelis from their homes, NPR's Daniel Estrin says on Up First. And in Gaza, he says, Palestinians are "really in survival mode." Although the Rafah crossing between Gaza and Egypt is open, very few Palestinians have been allowed to leave.
  • U.S. citizen Qassem Ali is among the few who made it out. The 65-year-old describes life in Gaza in an interview with All Things Considered. He talks about his reluctance to leave his sister and mother, as well as his decision to go home to his daughter. 


Check out npr.org/mideastupdates for more coverage, differing views and analysis of this conflict.

The Supreme Court hears arguments today on whether a federal law banning firearms for people under domestic violence restraining orders is constitutional. If the high court overturns the measure, similar state laws would face the same fate. The court ruled last year that in order to be constitutional, a gun law must be analogous to a law that existed at the nation's founding in the late 1700s.

  • NPR's Nina Totenberg spoke with former deputy solicitor general Michael Dreeben, who argued for a "more nuanced analog to the 1700s" because domestic violence was not considered a serious problem when the U.S. was founded. 

  • Today is the last day for Ohioans to vote on a ballot measure that would protect the state's constitutional right to abortion. If it passes, Ohio will join six other states that have voted to protect abortion rights after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last year.  
  • Polls show that nearly 60% of Ohioans support some abortion rights, and there is little support for the six-week abortion ban that was paused in the state earlier this year, according to Ohio Public Radio's Jo Ingles.


WeWork, the co-working startup once valued at $47 billion, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The company's stock is down 99.2% from the beginning of the year, and dozens of locations are expected to close.

Body electric

Body Electric is a six-part investigation and interactive project with TED Radio Hour host Manoush Zomorodi exploring the relationship between our technology and our bodies... and how we can improve it.

For the past few weeks, Zomorodi has explored several ways technology can affect our bodies — from our eyesight to our mental health. During this time, more than 20,000 listeners joined an NPR/Columbia study to try and incorporate regular movement breaks into their day.

Hear one listener's experience with the study, learn what the study results reveal and find out where we can go from here to change our health.

Life advice

/ Kaz Fantone/NPR
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Kaz Fantone/NPR

Book lovers can be kind to their pocketbooks by borrowing from the library. But libraries have a lot more to offer. Here are a few ways libraries can help you save money:

  • Loan out video games, musical instruments, board games and even bakeware.
  • Offer free or discounted tickets to museums and local attractions.
  • Provide free tutoring services, standardized test prep courses and fitness classes.
  • Offer a wide range of social services like tax filing help and legal advice. 

3 things to know before you go

The Buffalo Bills' Damar Hamlin took 10 Cincinnati medical workers out for dinner — and told them he's setting up scholarships in their names. He's seen here before the Bills' game against the Cincinnati Bengals.
Zach Bolinger / AP
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AP
The Buffalo Bills' Damar Hamlin took 10 Cincinnati medical workers out for dinner — and told them he's setting up scholarships in their names. He's seen here before the Bills' game against the Cincinnati Bengals.

  1. Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin revealed he's funded 10 scholarships named after each medical staffer who helped save his life when he suffered a cardiac arrest in January. 
  2. The FDA has expanded its recall of apple-cinnamon fruit puree pouches due to high levels of lead.
  3. In 2003, Jennifer Reinhart fell 10 feet from her loft while she was sleepwalking. She remembers her nurse and unsung hero who held her in his arms and hummed during an especially painful night at the hospital. 

This newsletter was edited by Olivia Hampton.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.