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Quartz Daily Brief—Europe Edition—Syrian maneuvers, China’s uncouth tourists, Tiffany’s sparkle

Published This article is more than 2 years old.

What to watch for today

Germany and France team up on jobs. The two countries will present a joint blueprint for tackling unemployment, particularly among young people, which has placed a significant drag on European growth and is expected to rise to 12.2% this year in the euro zone.

A Russian, an American and an Italian walk into a space capsule… A Soyuz rocket blasts off from Kazakhstan with a new crew of three bound for the International Space Station. Will any of them become as famous as Canada’s Chris Hadfield?

Tim Cook talks. Apple’s CEO is interviewed live on-stage at the D11 tech conference. Apple fanboys and annoyed US senators will be paying particular attention.

Will Tiffany keep its sparkle? The jeweler reports first-quarter earnings. Its shares hit a yearly high last week but it’s been trailing competitors (paywall).

A volcano is threatening to erupt on the Chile/Argentina border, prompting authorities to order the evacuation of a 16-mile area.

While you were sleeping

France and Britain scuppered an EU arms embargo against Syria. They want to supply weapons to Syrian rebels, or at least be able to threaten to do so. Meanwhile, US Senator John McCain surreptitiously visited Syria to meet rebel commanders and put pressure on the Obama administration.

US defense contractors got hacked by China. Designs for more than two dozen critical weapons systems were compromised.

oppose a plan to slap tariffs on panel imports, on the grounds that it would damage business and anger the Chinese.

Sub-prime mortgages are back in fashion. The bonds that triggered the financial crisis haven’t gone away. Bailed-out Lloyds Banking Group is auctioning $8.7 billion of mortgage debt to plug a capital shortfall—what could go wrong?

Yahoo made a safe, boring and brilliant bid. After its risky, exciting and questionable buy-out of Tumblr, the internet giant is reportedly offering up to $800 million for video-streaming site Hulu, which might just be a great move.

M&A optics. Valeant bought eye-care company Bausch & Lomb for $8.7 billion, the latest in a string of 60 debt-fueled acquisitions over five years by Canada’s biggest pharmaceutical firm.

obsession interlude

Gwynn Guilford on how Chinese tourists are becoming an embarrassment to China’s government. “Uncouth visitors have caused particular strife in Hong Kong, where 70% of the 48 million tourists a year come from the Chinese mainland. But grievances are reported everywhere. Chinese travelers are ignoring dressing customs in Thai Buddhist templesoverrunning the campus of South Korea’s Ewha Women’s University, launching drunken singsongs in Bali and generally being loud in Singapore.” Read more here.

Matters of debate

Dish Networks is living in a glass house as it throws national security stones at SoftBank.

The game’s almost up for consoles. Apps and multiple functions are now the in thing.

Iraq is heading toward civil war. Sectarian violence is returning to levels not seen since 2006.

Shut up about the “flood” of e-waste from the US. It’s not actually a crisis.

Surprising discoveries

Not feeding the world’s poorest actually costs money. $125 billion by 2030, according to Save the Children.

Glaciers kept ancient plants on ice. Some are 400 years old and still alive.

noise-canceling headphones.

Please be seated for a word for our sponsor. Microsoft’s motion-sensing technology rewards TV watchers who who sit through ads.

Indian boy born in jail frees his mother, 19 years later. It took him that long to save up the $180 bail.

Our best wishes for a productive day. Please send any news, comments, John McCain action figures and ways to fool Microsoft’s sensors to You can follow us on Twitter here for updates during the day.

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