Skip to content
The Dispatch Commemorates Memorial Day
Go to my account
The Morning Dispatch

The Dispatch Commemorates Memorial Day

Plus: Today’s top stories.

Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C. (via Getty Images)

Happy Monday! We hope that you take some time today to remember those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our continued freedom and safety. 

Quick Hits: Today’s Top Stories

  • Humanitarian aid from Egypt began flowing into Gaza on Sunday via a southern Israel border crossing, the result of a new agreement between Israel and Egypt. The deal—which comes at the urging of President Joe Biden—provides an alternative route for the aid after Israel took control of the Gazan side of the Rafah crossing earlier this month to cut off weapons smuggling. Egypt has closed its side of the Rafah crossing, saying it will remain closed until Israel cedes control of the Gaza side back to Palestinians. The crossing point for the aid from Egypt, Israel’s Kerem Shalom crossing, is just two miles from the Rafah crossing and has been the site of rocket fire in recent weeks. Meanwhile, the U.S.-built floating pier off Gaza—meant to receive international aid—was damaged over the weekend by rough seas, when four boats stabilizing the structure detached. U.S. officials also revealed for the first time Thursday that three U.S. soldiers have been injured in “noncombatant incidents” related to the pier, including one who was critically injured on Thursday and evacuated to Israel for treatment. 
  • The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) announced on Friday they had recovered the bodies of three hostages held by Hamas in Gaza who, according to IDF spokesman Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari, were all killed on October 7. The bodies were recovered in a Hamas tunnel in northern Gaza’s Jabalia refugee camp on Thursday, an operation which came a week after the IDF found the bodies of three other hostages. An estimated 125 hostages, living and dead, still remain in the enclave.
  • The U.N.’s International Court of Justice (ICJ) issued a ruling on Friday directing Israel to suspend—or at least significantly curtail—its ongoing campaign in Rafah, the southernmost city in Gaza and a Hamas stronghold. The somewhat ambiguous ICJ order directed the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) to cease operations “which may inflict on the Palestinian group in Gaza conditions of life that could bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part.” The ICJ has no power to enforce its rulings, and the IDF’s operation continued apace over the weekend, including an airstrike on Rafah, which the IDF said killed two Hamas leaders. Meanwhile, Hamas fired rockets on Sunday targeting cities across central Israel, including Tel Aviv—the first such attack on the region in months—though they were intercepted by Israel’s air defenses. 
  • A Russian bombing attack on a home improvement superstore in Kharkiv, Ukraine, on Saturday killed at least 12 people and injured 43 more, Ukrainian officials said. “The attack targeted the shopping center, where there were many people,” said Kharkiv Mayor Ihor Terekhov. “This is clearly terrorism.” The attack—followed later in the day by a strike that killed eight in downtown Kharkiv, according to the mayor—was carried out using glide bombs that can be launched from within Russian territory, reinforcing calls for the U.S. to lift its restrictions on the use of American weapons systems to strike targets inside Russia. In an interview with The Economist last week, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg those limits need to be reevaluated. “The time has come for allies to consider whether they should lift some of the restrictions they have imposed on weapons donated to Ukraine,” he said. “Ukraine has a right to defend themselves, and that also includes striking targets on Russian territory.” 
  • China concluded two days of wargames around Taiwan on Friday after it encircled the island it claims as its own in a test of its ability to “jointly seize power, launch joint attacks and occupy key areas over the island,” the People’s Liberation Army said. State Department spokesman Matthew Miller said Saturday that the U.S. was “deeply concerned” about the large and aggressive military exercises, which came on the heels of the inauguration of Taiwan’s new president, Lai Ching-te, last Monday
  • Two American missionaries and one local pastor were killed in the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince on Thursday night when at least two groups of gang members attacked their nonprofit’s compound, assaulting staff and stealing the group’s vehicles. The two Americans killed were David Lloyd, 23, the son of the organization’s founder, and his wife, Natalie Lloyd, 21, the daughter of a Missouri state representative. “This serves as a reminder that the security situation in Haiti cannot wait—too many innocent lives are being lost,” State Department spokesman Matthew Miller said, urging the rapid deployment of a U.S.-backed Kenyan peacekeeping force to the Caribbean country. The Kenyan police contingent was originally expected to arrive last week, but is now scheduled to land in Haiti in three weeks, Kenyan President President William Ruto confirmed.
  • Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin underwent a non-surgical medical procedure on Friday to treat a bladder issue that arose from surgery to treat his prostate cancer earlier this year. Austin temporarily transferred his duties to Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks, but resumed his post on Friday night after the procedure. “White House and congressional notifications have occurred,” Pentagon spokesman Maj. Gen. Pat Ryder said Friday when announcing the temporary transfer. Austin faced scrutiny earlier this year after it was revealed that he had undergone treatment for prostate cancer in December and informed neither the White House nor Congress until weeks after his treatment, when complications arose in January requiring additional care.  
  • The Justice Department last week filed an antitrust lawsuit against Live Nation, the parent company of Ticketmaster, for allegedly monopolizing the live ticket sales market, of which Ticketmaster makes up a 70 percent share. Live Nation—which merged with Ticketmaster in 2010—allegedly “thwarts competition in markets across the live entertainment industry,” the Justice Department said in a statement. If successful, the suit—which Live Nation called “absurd” in a statement given its “lack of market power”—could potentially lead to the breakup of the company. 
  • Federal prosecutors in former President Donald Trump’s classified documents case—led by special counsel Jack Smith—asked the judge overseeing the trial Friday to issue a gag order that would limit the president’s ability to talk about the 2022 FBI raid on his Mar-a-Lago property, which Trump and his supporters have falsely claimed was part of an assassination attempt by federal law enforcement. “Those deceptive and inflammatory assertions irresponsibly put a target on the backs of the FBI agents involved in this case, as Trump well knows,” the prosecution wrote in its court filing. 
  • Longtime Disney songwriter Richard Sherman—who composed the musical numbers in the movie Mary Poppins and the song “It’s a Small World (After All)” with his brother, Robert—passed away on Saturday at the age of 95. “You don’t get songs like ‘A Spoonful of Sugar’ without a genuine love of life, which Richard passed on to everyone lucky enough to be around him,” said Pixar Animated Studios chief creative officer Pete Docter. “Even in his 90s he had more energy and enthusiasm than anyone, and I always left renewed by Richard’s infectious joy for life.”

Remembering the Fallen Heroes of the ‘Long Wars’

Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C. (via Getty Images)
Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C. (via Getty Images)

Editor’s note: Today is Memorial Day, when a grateful nation honors those who gave “the last full measure of devotion.” Doug Ollivant is a retired lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army who served in Iraq and Afghanistan during America’s “long wars” there, and on the site today, he reflects on his yearly pilgrimage to Arlington National Cemetery—the final resting place of many of the men and women we lost in those conflicts.

Section 60 can be described as an accidental memorial. It is not as if someone planned a place where the hallowed dead of the “long wars” in Iraq and Afghanistan would be laid to rest. This was just bureaucratic inertia—Section 60 happened to be the place that, bluntly, had vacancies. As the number of war dead increased, Section 60 became the area in which such graves claimed a majority stake, “occupied by force,” in military terms. Other honored servicemembers are sprinkled throughout—passed from accident, disease, or age but entitled by service to placement in Arlington—but the war dead claimed primacy of place by raw numbers.

A decade or so ago, Section 60 looked like a pilgrimage site and trended distinctly younger. The past few years, the crowds have been smaller. We are aging, memory is fading, arguably wounds have healed as much as they ever will.


Interestingly, the visitors to Section 60 are, in my experience, almost evenly divided between men and women, despite the fact that the fallen are overwhelmingly male. While the public consciousness absorbs the stories of the women more deeply—Shannon Kent, Laura Walker, Ashley White—the hard numbers tell another story. More than 97.5 percent of the Iraq and Afghanistan war fatalities have been men. Of course, for every fallen male soldier there is a mother and often a wife or fiancé or girlfriend, just as for the women there are husbands and fathers. So while the parity makes sense, it is still notable, the brothers of the fallen mixing with the women who mourn them.

I go to Arlington only on Memorial Day, so I’m not certain what the “traffic” looks like on other days. And frankly, I’m not sure my friends there would still want me visiting at all anymore—I removed my “memorial bracelet” years ago on similar suspicions. It has been years, after all. Decades, in a growing number of cases. Would they want me to continue making this observance? Would they tell me I should be moving on and not be haunted by their deaths? I’ll assume they wouldn’t begrudge me a short drop-by on the holiday.

Barring illness, I’ll again be on that minor pilgrimage to Section 60 again. Perhaps at some point the murmurings that it’s been long enough will grow loud enough for me to listen. To leave the dead to their own quiet whispers … as they wait for us—we gathered observants on this day—to one day join them.

But not this year. 

Worth Your Time

  • It’s never easy to grieve the loss of a loved one. But in the military, it can often be hard to find the time to grieve. “The unique demands of military service mean that soldiers experience loss differently from the vast majority of civilians,” our old friend David French wrote in the New York Times. “In the civilian world, death interrupts our lives—we drop everything to rush to the side of a dying relative or friend. … In war, death interrupts nothing. Time doesn’t stop; it seems to accelerate. And that’s deeply unnatural,” he wrote. “When I came home, all the grief that I had pushed away came flooding back. … To fully grieve—and to even begin to heal—I had to be with my brothers. … So, in the summer of 2011, we traveled together to Avon Lake, Ohio, to remember Mike Medders. He was the last of us to fall, and his death shattered us. … We were gathered at his sister’s house, swapping stories and toasting Mike, when we heard the sound of bagpipes. One of Mike’s neighbors was standing by himself, shrouded in darkness at the end of the driveway. He played ‘Amazing Grace’ and everyone fell silent. We raised our glasses in quiet tribute. Then, just as suddenly, the bagpipes stopped. The song was over, and the neighbor walked back home without saying a word.”

Presented Without Comment

CNN: Trump Loudly Booed at Libertarian Convention When He Asks Attendees to ‘Nominate Me or at Least Vote for Me’

Also Presented Without Comment

New York Times: Hillary Clinton Has Some Tough Words for Democrats, and for Women

“The people, the voters who left me, were women,” [Clinton] said. “They left me because they just couldn’t take a risk on me, because as a woman, I’m supposed to be perfect. They were willing to take a risk on Trump—who had a long list of, let’s call them flaws, to illustrate his imperfection because he was a man, and they could envision a man as president and commander in chief.”

Also Also Presented Without Comment

NBC News: ‘Sedition Panda’ Convicted of Assaulting Officer on Jan. 6 After Judge Calls Defense Argument ‘Absurd’ 

In the Zeitgeist 

We think it’s “stoopid with two Os” that we have to wait until next year for the third installment in Rian Johnson’s whodunnit series starring Daniel Craig as the inimitable detective, Benoit Blanc, but at least we know what it’s called now: 

Toeing the Company Line

  • TMD’s own Grayson Logue answered member questions in this month’s Mailbag (🔒)! To learn about his dog Lola, his favorite cocktails, his time studying history, and how he approaches TMD, be sure to click here.
  • In the newsletters: The Dispatch Politics crew reported on the double standard reactions in Congress to the Alito flag-gate, Mike and Sarah examined the evidence in Trump’s New York criminal trial now that both sides have rested their cases, Jonah reflected on moral panics on the left and right, Jonah wrote about competing moral panics on the left and right, Nick dove into (🔒) the flag flap and the importance of ambivalence, and Chris introduced (🔒) a new presidential polling average breakdown for each week between now and election day. 
  • On the podcasts: Jonah ruminated on the gap between left-wing media and average American values, Justice Samuel Alito’s flag-gate, President Biden’s speech at Morehouse College, and more on The Remnant
  • On the site over the weekend: Reilly Stephens argued against ceding historically patriotic symbols—like the “Appeal to Heaven” flag—to bad actors, and Thomas Koenig explored the leadership lessons offered by James Longstreet, a Confederate general who turned on the South. 

Let Us Know

Who are you thinking of this Memorial Day?

Mary Trimble is the editor of The Morning Dispatch and is based in Washington, D.C. Prior to joining the company in 2023, she interned at The Dispatch, in the political archives at the Paris Institute of Political Studies (Sciences Po), and at Voice of America, where she produced content for their French-language service to Africa. When not helping write The Morning Dispatch, she is probably watching classic movies, going on weekend road trips, or enjoying live music with friends.

Grayson Logue is the deputy editor of The Morning Dispatch and is based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Prior to joining the company in 2023, he worked in political risk consulting, helping advise Fortune 50 companies. He was also an assistant editor at Providence Magazine and is a graduate student at the University of Edinburgh, pursuing a Master’s degree in history. When Grayson is not helping write The Morning Dispatch, he is probably working hard to reduce the number of balls he loses on the golf course.

Peter Gattuso is a reporter for The Morning Dispatch, based in Washington, D.C. Prior to joining the company in 2024, he interned at The Dispatch, National Review, the Cato Institute, and the Competitive Enterprise Institute. When Peter is not helping write TMD, he is probably watching baseball, listening to music on vinyl records, or discussing the Jones Act.