TIME The Brief

#TheBrief: The Air Bag Recall That’s Affecting Millions of Cars

Exploding air bags made by Takata Corporation

Exploding air bags have led to one of the biggest auto recalls in history, one that’s five times larger than GM’s ignition-switch fiasco. How did this happen?

Several large automakers including BMW and Honda have used the air bags, made by Japanese company Takata Corporation, the largest supplier of air bags parts in the world. Now they have had to recall millions of cars after the defective driver’s-side air bags have been blamed for at least five deaths and more than 100 injuries in the past decade.

Watch #TheBrief to find out more about the recall.

TIME The Brief

#TheBrief: How Ebola and Fungus May Speed Up the Chocolate Shortage

China's growing demand for chocolate may also be contributing

A recent chocolate shortage has seen cocoa farmers unable to keep up with the public’s insatiable appetite for the treat–and the world’s largest chocolate producers, drought, Ebola and a fungal disease may all be to blame.

Meanwhile, China’s demand for chocolatey goodness has more than doubled in the past ten years, and the country is the fastest growing sector for confectionery products in the world.

Watch #TheBrief to find out what’s being done to save chocolate and what the consequences of this shortage might be for you.

TIME The Brief

#TheBrief: The Battle for Control of the Internet

Explaining what 'net neutrality' really means to you — and the future of the Internet

President Obama took to the White House YouTube channel Monday to call for broadband internet providers to be regulated as a utility — a move that signals his support for the concept of “net neutrality“.

What’s net neutrality? It’s the idea that Internet service providers (ISPs) like Comcast or Verizon should treat all content equally. It might not sound like an inspirational cause, but the question of who has rights to control the Internet affects almost everyone.

Cable companies are clamoring for the right to give faster speeds to certain clients, while many content providers are in favor of keeping all data on the Internet on equal footing.

Watch #TheBrief to find out what’s at stake.

TIME The Brief

#TheBrief: Why Even Red States Want a Higher Minimum Wage

The first minimum wage was $0.25. Today, that’s $4.22

San Francisco and Oakland voted Tuesday to increase their minimum wages, and so did four states that roundly backed Republicans. Rising standards of living and inflation may be what triggered this increase, but is paying workers more the one issue we can all agree on?

Watch #TheBrief to find out what’s driving the push to pay their workers more.

TIME The Brief

#TheBrief: Why Is the Military So Strict With Quarantines?

These are three reasons the U.S. military is being quarantined

President Barack Obama thinks states like New York, New Jersey and Illinois are too harsh with their quarantine or isolation protocols for health workers returning from Ebola-affected countries in West Africa, yet the military he commands is similarly strict.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel announced a mandatory 21-day quarantine this week for all returning service members, meaning all military personnel can’t return home until after the outer limit of their holding period passes.

Watch #TheBrief to understand the three reasons why the military has such strict Ebola quarantine regulations.

TIME #TheBrief

#TheBrief: Ebola Quarantines Get Political

While the federal government works to contain Ebola in the U.S., states are taking matters into their own hands—and butting heads with the White House and the CDC in the process.

The attempt to contain the spread of Ebola in the United States is becoming political, with governors imposing varying, stringent, and sometimes unclear quarantine rules that are hard to enforce across state lines.

President Barack Obama spoke out against these policies Wednesday, saying, “We don’t want to discourage our health care workers from going to the front lines. They are doing God’s work over there, and they are doing it to keep us safe.”

Here’s your brief on the science and politics of Ebola.

TIME The Brief

When Fatal Arrests Are Caught on Camera

Eric Garner's death is the latest in a long line of violent police incidents filmed by amateurs.

After Eric Garner was killed on Staten Island while being arrested July 22, the footage of the incident quickly turned into a national debate over the use of force by police.

From Rodney King in the early 1990′s to Oscar Grant in 2009, examples of excessive force by officers caught on tape may have fallen by the wayside, were it not for their being captured on video.

The world of iPhones and Twitter have furthered the exposure of such incidents, which often call police behavior into question.

TIME The Brief

Israeli-Gaza Cease-Fire Talks at a Stalemate

Successful ceasefire negotiations in the Middle East seem unlikely

Attempts to achieve peace between Israel and Gaza remain at a stalemate, with no progress made on a potential ceasefire. The fact that the nations who are trying to broker the peace — Egypt, Qatar, and Turkey — have their own unsettled disputes after the Arab Spring has been slowing negotiations down.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is in Cairo this week in attempt to encourage cease-fire agreements, but the Israeli military confirming a solider has gone missing in Gaza virtually eliminates the hope of a quick truce.

 

TIME The Brief

Kerry Aims for Gaza Cease-Fire

Welcome to #theBrief, the four stories to know about right now—from the editors of TIME

Here are the stories TIME is following on Monday, July 21:

After allegations of pro-Russian separatists tampering with the MH17 crash site evidence, Secretary of State John Kerry demands the U.S. send investigators to debunk “wild conspiracies.”

Kerry also wants to broker a ceasefire in Gaza, after the deadliest day of fighting in 2 weeks killed at least 78 people.

Edward Snowden says that the NSA shared intercepted explicit photographs around the office.

And finally, just act like nothing happened. A Red Sox ballgirl accidentally caught a ball in play and tried to act casual to cover her mistake.

The Brief is published daily on weekdays.

TIME The Brief

Malaysia Airlines Ukraine Crash: Who Shot Down Flight MH17?

MH17 was shot out of the air, but who pulled the trigger?

The White House has confirmed that Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was shot down over the Ukraine Thursday, but who launched the missile remains a mystery.

Ukrainian officials believe Russian separatists fired a ground-to-air BUK missile that downed the plane, but in an interview with TIME, separatists leaders claimed they had nothing to do with the incident.

Vladimir Putin tiptoed around the subject, not openly blaming Ukraine for shooting the plane down, but saying they are responsible for creating a climate of political unrest.

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