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Israel’s ties to the Jewish American community are about to be put to the test, with Israel’s emerging far-right government on a collision course with Jews in the United States. Major Jewish American organizations that have traditionally been a bedrock of support for Israel have expressed alarm over the presumptive government’s far-right character. The vast majority of American Jews have liberal political views and lean toward the Democratic Party. Misgivings over the expected government led by conservative Israeli leader Benjamin Netanyahu could have a ripple effect in Washington and further widen what has become a partisan divide over support for Israel.

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Microsoft has agreed to make the hit video game Call of Duty available on Nintendo for 10 years should its $69 billion purchase of game maker Activision Blizzard go through. The announcement Wednesday is an apparent attempt to fend off objections from rival Sony. The blockbuster merger is facing close scrutiny from global regulators. Microsoft, maker of the Xbox game console, faces resistance from Sony, which makes the competing PlayStation console. Sony has raised concerns with antitrust watchdogs about losing access to what it describes as a “must-have” game title. Microsoft President Brad Smith tweeted his thanks to Nintendo, which makes the Switch game console. He said the same deal was also available for Sony.

Friction has been simmering within the global Anglican Communion for many years over its 42 provinces’ sharp differences on whether to recognize same-sex marriage and ordain LGBTQ clergy. This year, the divisions have widened, as conservative bishops – notably from Africa and Asia – have affirmed their opposition to LGBTQ inclusion. They are demanding “repentance” by the provinces with inclusive policies — such as the Episcopal Church in the United States. Caught in the middle of the fray is the archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, the top bishop of the Church of England and ceremonial leader of the Anglican Communion. He has acknowledged deep disagreement among the provinces and is urging them not to split apart.

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China has rolled back rules on isolating people with COVID-19 and dropped virus test requirements for some public places. That is a dramatic change to a strategy that confined millions of people to their homes and sparked protests and demands for President Xi Jinping to resign. The move adds to earlier easing that fueled hopes Beijing was scrapping its “zero COVID” strategy. Experts warn that restrictions can’t be lifted completely until at least mid-2023 because millions of elderly people still must be vaccinated and the health care system strengthened. China is the last major country still trying to stamp out transmission of the virus while many nations switch to trying to live with it.


A person familiar with the deal says that Aaron Judge has agreed to return to the New York Yankees on a $360 million, nine-year contract. The person spoke to The Associated Press on Wednesday because the deal had not been announced. Judge will earn $40 million per season, the highest average annual payout for a position player. The contract trails only Mike Trout’s $426.5 million deal with the Los Angeles Angels and Mookie Betts’ $365 million pact with the Los Angeles Dodgers for biggest in baseball history.