Happy Monday! On Friday morning, 53-year-old Bob Salem became the fourth person to push a peanut to the top of Pikes Peak with his nose. It took seven days—mostly at night to avoid distracting questions and requests for selfies from passersby—and the peanut in question was actually about a dozen peanuts, as he lost and ate a few along the way.
There’s a lot we could say about this, but our first question is: fourth!?
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President Joe Biden’s Middle East trip ended this weekend with several announcements: Saudi Arabia will open its airspace to civilian flights from Israel, a group of Arab financial development institutions will spend $10 billion to relieve regional food insecurity alongside a $1 billion commitment from the U.S., and the U.S. will withdraw peacekeeping forces from a Red Sea island it’s occupied for decades—allowing Saudi Arabia to develop the land. Saudi Arabia also agreed to support extending the ceasefire in Yemen. And after meeting with Israeli and Palestinian leaders, Biden announced $100 million in aid for Palestinian hospitals and stated his support for a two-state solution with agreed-upon land swaps, returning the U.S. to an Obama-era stance.
But Biden did not secure a concrete commitment from the Saudis to increase oil production, a major goal of the trip. And he garnered criticism for his meeting—and awkward fist bump—with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, whom the U.S. holds responsible for human rights violations including the 2018 dismemberment of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi. Biden said he raised Khashoggi’s killing to the prince, but he had promised on the campaign trail to make Saudi Arabia a “pariah.”