5 things to know for December 2: London stabbing, impeachment, winter weather, immigration

Oh, you thought Black Friday was dead? Think again. Americans spent a record-breaking $7.4 billion in online purchases on Black Friday alone, and another $4.2 billion on Thanksgiving Day.

Here’s what else you need to know to Get Up to Speed and Out the Door. (You can also get “5 Things You Need to Know Today” delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here.)

1. London Bridge terror attack

London has had a weekend to process Friday’s stabbing attack that ended with two people dead, three others injured and a city on edge. The suspect, Usman Khan, was shot dead by police after attacking a crowd of people gathered for a Cambridge University event at Fishmonger’s Hall on the north side of London Bridge. Khan, 28, had a history of terrorist activity. In 2010, he and eight others were arrested in London as part of a major counterterrorism operation, and authorities said he once planned to start a “terrorist military training facility.” The attack raises concerning questions about what to do with convicted terrorists once they have served their sentences. Khan had been out of jail for a year at the time of the attack. How can law enforcement and intelligence communities know who is at risk to re-offend, and how effective are deradicalization programs at preventing further violence?

2. Impeachment investigation

The House Judiciary Committee will hold its first impeachment hearing on Wednesday, but President Trump and his attorneys will not attend. The White House made the announcement last night, saying they weren’t given enough information about who will be there and can’t be sure the President will be subject to a “fair process.” While the White House hasn’t ruled out future appearances at these hearings, the decision is in line with the Republican’s tight-lipped impeachment strategy: Key players like former national security adviser John Bolton and acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney have refused to testify, despite some Republicans claiming their testimony could actually help the President. Now the House Intelligence Committee will kick off a lightning-fast sprint to get a House impeachment vote on the books by Christmas. Members are expected to review the committee’s impeachment report today ahead of a vote to approve it on Tuesday.

3. Winter weather 

All of those severe storms we warned you about last week made for an absolutely hellish travel weekend, and many parts of the country are bracing for more. Yesterday, icy conditions caused a plane to slip off the runway upon landing at Buffalo Niagara International Airport. Severe fog and storms were blamed for a 25-vehicle pileup on Garrett County, Maryland. On Saturday, nine people were killed when a plane crashed in Chamberlain, South Dakota, during blizzard-like conditions. As of this morning, more than 7,500 flights have been delayed within the past day, and delays will continue through today. About 50 million Americans are under some sort of winter weather alert, whether it’s blizzard-like conditions in the Great Lakes region, heavy snow in the Midwest, snow and flooding on the West Coast, or your garden variety winter ugliness in the Northeast. If we’ve said it once, we’ve said it a million times: Be careful out there!

4. Immigration 

Horror stories of kidnapping and other dangers are coming out of camps in Mexican border towns where thousands of migrants are being kept while awaiting word from the US on their bids for asylum. Letters obtained by CNN from some of the camps reveal a near-constant threat of violence, sexual assault and kidnapping from Mexican cartels who target newly-arrived migrants form Central America. One asylum-seeker said the cartels can tell who has just been returned from the US by their lace-less shoes and the telltale manila case folders and documents they carry. About 60,000 migrants have been returned to Mexico under the Trump Administration’s “Remain in Mexico” policy, which requires asylum seekers to wait outside of US borders while their cases are processed.

5. Malta

Malta’s Prime Minister Joseph Muscat has announced he will resign in January due to an ongoing investigation into the death of a prominent Maltese journalist and activist two years ago. Daphne Caruana Galizia, 53, was killed by a car bomb in 2017. Her family says she was assassinated for her work in uncovering alleged corruption in the Maltese government, and that Muscat had sought to protect members of his inner circle as the investigation into her death deepened. Many think Muscat faces a conflict of interest in the case, since he is both leading the investigation and tied to the victim at the center of it. In a statement, Muscat said the political and legal pressures of the case led to his decision to resign.


Cell phone detection cameras, which can tell when a driver is using their phone, are being rolled out in Australia. 

Don’t. Text. And. Drive. Even. When. Cameras. Aren’t. Watching!

The Indian Navy has welcomed its first woman pilot 

And your child just found their newest role model.

A man created Tesla’s Cybertruck out of mashed potatoes on Thanksgiving

The medium is the message.

A Florida high school is the first in the world to provide synthetic frogs for dissection 

Ahh, but now kids won’t be able to get nostalgic for that queasy formaldehyde smell.


“I think human culture is in a really interesting and fertile place right now, in terms of how we tell stories that actually reflect the truth of our humanity. And fashion is not exempt from that.”

Actress Tracee Ellis Ross, who hosts the Fashion Awards in London tonight. The event recognizes designers and brands for their contributions to the industry.


1 million years

That’s how long Germany has to keep the radioactive waste from all of its nuclear power plants buried for it to be safe. The country recently closed all of its nuclear power plants and is looking for a way — and a place — to make the million-year commitment.



Who’s up for a sleigh ride? 

‘Tis the season for holiday music! You probably recognize this tune. It’s the “Troika” movement from Sergei Prokofiev’s score of the 1934 Soviet film “Lieutenant Kije.” This recording, performed by the London Symphony Orchestra and conducted by the legendary Andre Previn, is a particularly energetic rendition. (Click here to view)