TIME Morning Must Reads

Morning Must Reads: August 12

Capitol
The early morning sun rises behind the US Capitol Building in Washington, DC. Mark Wilson—Getty Images

The Comic Who Was Hamlet

Robin Williams, who died on Monday at 63, “spoke in tongues,” writes TIME’s Richard Corliss. “Any language or accent, any human or mammal or alien, geysering nonstop shtick of the highest order, leaving viewers astonished, thrilled and wearied”

A Supreme Court Vacancy?

President Barack Obama explicitly suggested for the first time the possibility of a Supreme Court vacancy during his final two years in office

Politics Adds to Chaos in Iraq

Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki is adding fuel to the fire in Iraq by refusing to make way for Haidar al-Abadi, nominated this week as his successor

Police, Protesters Clash After Missouri Teen’s Death

Officers in Ferguson, Mo., outside of St. Louis, used tear gas and fired “beanbag rounds” on Monday night in a bid to disperse a crowd that had gathered over mounting discontent following the fatal shooting by police of unarmed teenager Michael Brown

Fear and Rumors Are Fueling Ebola’s Spread

The epidemic shows no sign of stabilizing as the death toll passes 1,000 in the afflicted countries, where health professionals fighting the disease say unsubstantiated rumors, “cures” and confusing messages are making progress more difficult

Same-Sex Marriage Ban Survives Challenge in Tennessee

Tennessee’s same-sex marriage ban has survived a constitutional challenge in court. A judge ruled that “neither the Federal Government nor another state should be allowed to dictate to Tennessee what has traditionally been a state’s responsibility”

GOP Presidential Hopefuls Flood Iowa

The next presidential election is more than two years away, but seven big name Republicans and would-be candidates, like Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, have already visited the state this month to road-test their messages

Rights Group: Likely Crimes Against Humanity in Egypt

A year-long probe into the “brutal” crackdown that followed the ouster of President Mohamed Morsi in 2013, leaving at least 1,150 people dead, has Human Rights Watch calling for an inquiry into a number of top military and security officials

Department Stores Aren’t Dead Yet

It’s easy to pick on department stores, with their passé business model and aging customer base, but ones like Macy’s and J.C. Penney have staged a comeback that has made them and others vital to big-name brands who rely on shopper traffic

Lyft Accuses Uber of Canceling More Than 5,000 Rides

Ride-sharing company Lyft has accused its main competitor Uber of ordering and canceling 5,560 rides since October. Uber vehemently denies the allegations and says that those making the calls must have been regular passengers and not Uber employees

Russian Intervention in Ukraine Likely, Says NATO Chief

NATO’s Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen warned that a humanitarian-aid convoy dispatched on Tuesday from Moscow to the separatist-held city of Luhansk, in eastern Ukraine, could be a cover for military support to besieged rebels

Ed Harris to Play ‘Distillation of Pure Villainy’ on HBO

The Oscar-nominated actor joins an all-star cast including Anthony Hopkins, Jeffrey Wright, Evan Rachel Wood, James Marsden, Shannon Woodward and others, in the sci-fi-western thriller Westworld, based on the 1973 film by Michael Crichton

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