5 things for April 20: Comey memos, North Korea, Arizona teachers, YouTube, Berlin

Students at 2,500-schools will walk out today-to protest gun violence. Meet-the teen behind the event. Here's what el...

Posted: Apr 20, 2018 12:31 PM
Updated: Apr 20, 2018 12:31 PM

Students at 2,500-schools will walk out today-to protest gun violence. Meet-the teen behind the event. Here's what else you need to know to Get Up to Speed and Out the Door. (You can also get "5 Things You Need to Know Today" delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here.)

1. The Comey memos

We got a look at 15 pages of just-released memos that James Comey wrote documenting his conversations with President Trump in the early days of the administration. There's no bombshell, but the records -- released to Congress, then leaked -- make for some interesting reading. The ex-FBI director wrote about Trump's "serious reservations" about then-national security adviser Michael Flynn, his concerns about leaks and his recollection of Russian President Vladimir Putin telling him Russia had the "most beautiful hookers in the world." Um, OK.

House Republicans pressured the Justice Department to release the memos because they wanted to show Comey is not credible. But CNN's Stephen Collinson says the GOP didn't do the President any favors. He called the memos stunning said they present a "deeply unflattering view of a President throwing his weight around in his first days in the White House -- that at the very least seems highly inappropriate." Trump tweeted about the memos, saying they showed there was "NO COLLUSION and NO OBSTRUCTION."

Meantime, ex-NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani is joining Trump's personal legal team. He'll deal with special counsel Robert Mueller, hoping to give "a little push" to close the Russia probe. Giuliani and Mueller have known each other for years.

2. North Korea

A big stumbling block to getting nukes off the Korean Peninsula has been North Korea's insistence that the US pull its 28,000 troops out of South Korea. Now, it seems that hurdle is gone. South Korean President Moon Jae-in says the North is dropping that demand as a precondition for talks on denuclearization. Moon and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un meet next week for a historic summit, with Kim and President Trump planning to meet sometime in May or June.

3. Arizona teacher walkout

Teachers in the Grand Canyon State will walk off the job next week, after 78% of school employees in the Arizona Education Association voted to strike. It's-part of a wave of teacher actions in states including West Virginia, Oklahoma, Kentucky and Colorado.-The Arizona walkout -- reportedly a first in that state -- starts next Thursday, so parents get time to prepare. The state's governor offered teachers a 20% pay raise by 2020, but they rejected it because it didn't address other education funding issues.

4. YouTube

Ads from more than 300 companies and organizations -- including tech giants, major retailers, newspapers and government agencies -- ran on YouTube channels that promote white nationalists, Nazis, pedophilia, conspiracy theories and North Korean propaganda, a CNN investigation has found. Many of the companies said they didn't know their ads were on these channels and are trying to figure out how they got there.

This raises a couple of questions: Can YouTube safeguard ads and brands' integrity? And does relying on an automated system mean advertisers will always be at risk for such ad placements? YouTube says it will make "significant changes."

5. Berlin

If you're in central Berlin this morning, you might have some trouble getting around. That's because authorities will attempt to dispose of an unexploded World War II-era bomb found during construction work near the city's central train station. Buildings will be evacuated, and bus and train routes will be affected as police work to defuse the 1,100-pound bomb. The discovery of bombs from World War II is not uncommon in Germany.



The value of checks Southwest Airlines has given to-at least some passengers who were on Flight 1380, which had to make an emergency landing this week after a deadly engine failure incident


"The phases of healing don't always feel like healing."

Columbine High School teacher Paula Reed, answering a Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student's question about when things will get better for the survivors of the Parkland, Florida school shooting. Sixty Parkland students traveled to Colorado and met with Columbine survivors. Today is the 19th anniversary of that massacre.


Baby on board

Illinois Sen. Tammy Duckworth made history by casting a vote on the Senate floor with her newborn baby at her side.

Marketing magic

What's the best place to launch a new product? How about the witness stand. That's where AT&T's CEO talked about a new streaming service.

Let the sunshine in

Blackouts are a part of everyday life in some parts of Puerto Rico, but not for one man, who built his own solar power system.

The robots are coming

Watch (and weep) as a robot builds an IKEA chair in just 20 minutes. It takes us humans that long just to decipher the instructions.

Banks behaving badly

The top bank in Australia is in hot water after it admitted to charging fees to customers it knew were already dead.


Quiz time

Saudi Arabia ended a 35-year ban on movie theaters with the screening of what film?

A. "A Quiet Place"

B. "Black Panther"

C. "Rampage"

D. "Blockers"

Play "Total Recall," CNN's weekly news quiz, to see if you're right.


$1 billion

That's the fine federal regulators will hit Well Fargo with for charging mortgage borrowers unfair fees and-forcing customers into car insurance.


Soul jam

Postmodern Jukebox is back, this time with a soulful cover of the Cranberries' "Zombie." (Click to view.)

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