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Up First newsletter: Maine shooter at large; support for humanitarian pause in Gaza

Law enforcement officials surround a house on Meadow Road in Bowdoin, Maine.
Nick Song
Main Public
Law enforcement officials surround a house on Meadow Road in Bowdoin, Maine.

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 stories

Residents in Lewiston, Maine, are still locked down as police continue to search for the suspect in two mass shootings. The Wednesday night shootings killed at least 18 and wounded 13. Here's what we know so far about the suspect, Robert Card.

  • The incidents led Maine's Democratic congressman Jared Golden to change his mind about his long-held opposition to many kinds of gun control, NPR's Brian Mann says on Up First. Golden asked the town of Lewiston for "forgiveness and support" following the shooting.
  • Stay updated on the manhunt with NPR's live blog.

Leaders of 27 European nations are calling for a humanitarian pause to Israel's military response to allow for aid to reach Palestinians trapped in Gaza. Israel has been bombarding the Gaza Strip after Hamas's attacks on Israel on Oct. 7 that killed more than 1,400 people in Israel. The Israeli military said more than 200 people were taken hostage. The Gaza-based Ministry of Health released yesterday a list of more than 6,700 names — with ages, genders and ID numbers — of people they describe as Palestinians killed in Gaza. The total toll is 7,028 Palestinians, including 2,913 minors, according to the ministry.

  • NPR's Eleanor Beardsley says because of their countries' varying histories and populations, it wasn't easy for EU leaders to agree on their humanitarian pause proposal. They all agree that Israel has a right to defend itself but must follow international law. Beardsley adds the chance of a humanitarian pause is higher now that EU leaders agree with President Biden, who expressed the same support Wednesday.
  • Israel's intensifying military campaign has raised fears of a broader regional war with Iran-backed troops. Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian tells NPR's Steve Inskeep these groups are prepared to strike if the violence continues.
  • Rami Nashashibi, a Palestinian American community organizer in Chicago, met with Biden yesterday. He was the only Palestinian voice in Biden's meeting with Arab and Muslim leaders. He tells NPR's Leila Fadel he wanted the president to understand that "a community as dynamic as ours also deserves that type of basic human empathy."
  • Biden said Wednesday that a two-state solution — which calls for an independent Palestinian state alongside Israel — is needed for peace. Here's a look at the proposal's history — and whether it's still possible.

Check out for more coverage, differing views and analysis of this conflict.

At least 27 people are dead, and at least four are missing after Hurricane Otis unleashed massive flooding in the Mexican resort city of Acapulco. Otis hit Mexico's southern Pacific coast as a Category 5 hurricane on Wednesday.

  • From an apartment complex's parking lot in Acapulco, NPR's Eyder Peralta says the response so far has seemed inadequate. Aid trucks haven't arrived yet, stores are being looted out of desperation, and some people are drinking juice because they've run out of water.

New York Rep. George Santos is expected to plead not guilty in a New York court today in a second arraignment for a growing list of corruption charges from his 2022 election campaign. Yesterday, fellow Republican Rep. Anthony D'Esposito introduced a resolution to expel him from Congress.

Deep dive

Miami fire and rescue and police officers perform a rescue operation during an active shooter drill at Miami Senior High School in Miami, Fla.
Chandan Khanna / AFP via Getty Images
AFP via Getty Images
Miami fire and rescue and police officers perform a rescue operation during an active shooter drill at Miami Senior High School in Miami, Fla.

Most Americans feel gun violence is one of the top concerns in K-12 education, according to an NPR poll. But opinions differ on how to approach the issue and which safety measures to invest in.

  • Democrats are more inclined to support social and emotional safety measures, like guidance counselors and mental health education.
  • Republicans are more likely to support expanding security measures like metal detectors and bulletproof glass.
  • An overwhelming majority of Americans want active shooter drills. But support drops if the drills are graphically realistic.

Weekend picks

Sondheim had the highest standards for himself, the director of <em>Here We Are</em> said.
/ Emilio Madrid/Here We Are
Emilio Madrid/Here We Are
Sondheim had the highest standards for himself, the director of Here We Are said.

Check out what NPR is watching, reading and listening to this weekend: Movies: Alexander Payne's The Holdovers is a throwback to "a time when thoughtful, character-driven comedies for adults were more of a staple," critic Justin Chang writes.

TV: It's weird, funny and very naked. U.K. dating show Naked Attraction is now streaming on Max and it will be your new reality show guilty pleasure.

Books: Margaret Renkl's love of animals and refusal to give up in the face of human-caused climate change come to life in The Comfort of Crows: A Backyard Year.

Music: Thumping, idiosyncratic Peruvian electronic music, late-night brain music, a Nirvana anniversary and more: Here's the best new music released this week.

Theater: When Stephen Sondheim died in 2021, he left behind an unfinished play. His collaborators, playwright David Ives and director Joe Mantello finished it. You can now see Here We Are at The Shed in New York City.

Quiz: Reader beware: You'll be asked to do a bit of math on this week's news quiz. Prepare your calculators.

3 things to know before you go

Eze Amos/For Swords into Plowshares
/ Eze Amos/For Swords into Plowshares
Eze Amos/For Swords into Plowshares
Eze Amos/For Swords into Plowshares

  1. A massive bronze sculpture of Confederate General Robert E. Lee in Charlottesville, Va., will be melted down and turned into a more inclusive art piece. The statue was at the center of a deadly protest in 2017.
  2. Comic Hasan Minhaj released a 21-minute video fact-checking a recent profile about him in the New Yorker, which accused him of fabricating or exaggerating the racism he's experienced.
  3. Dressing up for Halloween isn't just fun and exciting for children. It allows them to exercise creativity and can help build their empathy. (via KUER)

This newsletter was edited by Majd Al-Waheidi.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit

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