June 13, 2021

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Israeli-Palestinian fighting, Preakness strife, Shauvot: 5 things to know this weekend – USA TODAY

3 min read

Israel unleashes its deadliest strike in this latest eruption of fighting as unrest spreads 

An Israeli air raid in Gaza City killed at least 10 Palestinians, mostly children, early Saturday in the deadliest single strike since the battle with Gaza’s militant Hamas rulers erupted earlier this week. Both sides pressed for an advantage as cease-fire efforts gathered strength. The latest outburst of violence began in Jerusalem and has spread across the region, with Jewish-Arab clashes and rioting in mixed cities of Israel. There were also Palestinian protests Friday in the occupied West Bank, where Israeli forces killed 11 people. Palestinians were set to mark Nakba day Saturday, when they commemorate the estimated 700,000 people who fled or were driven from their homes in what is now Israel during the 1948 war surrounding its creation, raising the possibility of more unrest. U.S. diplomat Hady Amr is in the region as part of Washington’s efforts to de-escalate the conflict and the U.N. Security Council is scheduled to meet Sunday.

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Amidst controversy, Kentucky Derby winner favored in Preakness 

The 145th Preakness Stakes will be run Saturday from Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore with an added dose of controversy. Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit tested positive for a substance that is not allowed to be used on race day after winning the Run for the Roses two weeks ago, putting his victory in doubt and leading to plenty of criticism of trainer Bob Baffert (and a lawsuit). If a second test comes back positive, the horse could be stripped of his Derby win. It stands for now, and Medina Spirit will open as the favorite and break from the No. 3 spot in the gate. Post time for the race, which will be broadcast by NBC, is 6:50 p.m. ET.

Jewish people celebrate Shavuot 

When you think of Jewish holidays, a few may come to mind. Hanukkah, Passover, Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, maybe. But what about Shavuot? The holiday – which means “weeks” in Hebrew, and is referred to as the “Feast of Weeks” – celebrates the Jews receiving the Torah (the Jewish bible) from God on Mount Sinai. It is the end of a seven-week count called the Omer that starts during Passover, the holiday where Jews partake in seders and remember how they were freed from Egyptian slavery. This year, it begins Sunday evening and lasts until Tuesday evening.

Basketball Hall of Fame to induct possibly its greatest class ever

The late Kobe Bryant will headline the class of 2020 when it is finally inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Mass. Michael Jordan will present Bryant, and his widow Vanessa Bryant is expected to speak on his behalf. The enshrinement ceremony, which was postponed from last summer by the COVID-19 pandemic, honors arguably the greatest class in the Hall of Fame’s history. Also being inducted this weekend: Tim Duncan, the quiet, unassuming superstar who led the San Antonio Spurs to five NBA championships; Kevin Garnett, the ultra-intense defensive stalwart who helped lead the Boston Celtics to the 2008 title; and Tamika Catchings, the WNBA legend who also won four Olympic gold medals.

The ‘MTV Movie & TV Awards’ are back

The “MTV Movie & TV Awards” show that fans know and love is returning this weekend with a big event unfolding over two nights. As the country was mired deep in the pandemic last year, fans of the pop culture awards show had to settle for the memory-filled “MTV Movie & TV Awards: Greatest of All Time” edition. But in 2021, the always raucous, live awards show is back doling out Golden Popcorn trophies for awards such as Best Kiss, Breakthrough Performance and Best Show. Sunday’s two-hour show will be hosted by former “Saturday Night Live” star Leslie Jones and it airs on MTV (9 p.m. ET/PT). It’s also available for streaming on Paramount+ and other streaming services that offer TV options. On Monday, comedian Nikki Glaser will host “MTV Movie & TV Awards: Unscripted.”

Contributing: The Associated Press

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