May 13, 2024 - 6:50pm

→ New Yorker publishes article challenging Lucy Letby verdict

The New Yorker has today published a 13,000-word article challenging the verdict against Lucy Letby, the nurse who last year was sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of seven infants and a further six attempted murders. The piece, written by staff writer Rachel Aviv, is available to US readers but is blocked on the UK version of the site for legal reasons. It is still available to British users of the New Yorker app and subscribers to the print magazine.

Letby’s trial lasted almost a year, from October 2022 to August 2023. During that time, she was accused of injecting babies with air and physically abusing them with medical instruments. Having pled not guilty to the 18 charges brought against her, she faces a retrial next month on a single charge for which the jury was unable to reach a verdict last year. After kickstarting an investigation into Zac Brettler’s death, the American magazine is once again providing important journalism on legal cases.

→ German government calls ‘From the river to the sea’ a Hamas slogan

The pro-Palestinian chant “From the river to the sea” was banned in Germany last autumn, and the position of the country’s government evidently hasn’t softened since then. A tweet today from the German Ministry of Justice refers to the phrase as a “Hamas slogan”, and claims that “depending on the circumstances of the individual case, the use of the slogan may […] be a use of propaganda from a banned organization.” It adds, ominously: “This is punishable.”

Even in countries with robust free speech protections, the phrase has been interpreted as a call to genocide for Israelis, inspiring government pressure on private institutions to crack down on the phrase. In chanters’ defence, they don’t always know which river and sea they’re referring to…

→ Metro deletes X account after Doctor Who backlash

Editors want pieces to “break the internet”, but destroying the outlet’s online account is a different matter entirely. An article published in the Metro opinion section at the weekend, titled “Sorry straight white men, Doctor Who was never made for you [sic]” caused such an angry response among Whovians and telly-watchers that the newspaper deleted its main X page on Sunday night. A full day later, the account remains down.

Metro did have the good grace to tweak its headline. The piece is now titled: “Sorry straight white men, Doctor Who was never made just for you [italics added]”. The article’s author argues that “while the haters continue shouting into the void about the identity of a fictional alien, I’ll be switching on every Saturday night to see the human race celebrated in all its glory”, adding, “if someone has a problem with that, they know where the door is.” After you.