A look ahead at the key events leading the news agenda next week, from the team at Foresight News. Delivered to your inbox on Fridays.
Leading the week
While most Americans are relaxing on Independence Day on Tuesday (July 4), for elite competitive eaters July the Fourth is anything but a holiday as they gather in Coney Island for the Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog-Eating Contest, the Super Bowl of the Major League Eating circuit.
In the men’s contest, the clear favorite is once again Joey ‘Jaws’ Chestnut, a dog-and-bun guzzling phenomenon and 15-time Mustard Belt champ, who currently holds the world record for downing 76 hot dogs in 10 minutes, a feat he achieved in 2021. Somewhat disappointingly, Chestnut’s total last year was a mere 63 dogs – some ways off theoretical human limit of 83 estimated in a 2020 study on the matter [Ed note: apologies to eagle-eyed Advance readers who may notice this factoid has been regurgitated from our story last year] – though in Chestnut’s defense he was carrying an injury coming into the contest and was involved in a mid-competition scuffle with an animal rights protester.
In the women’s competition, there’s another clear favorite in the form of eight-time champion Miki Sudo, who set the record of 48.5 hot dogs back in 2020 and returned from maternity leave last year to reclaim the title with more-than-respectable 40-wiener-performance.
Donald Trump aide Walt Nauta is scheduled to appear in a Florida courtroom on Thursday (July 6) to be arraigned on six counts in connection with the case against Trump over his handling of highly classified records from his time in office. While Nauta appeared alongside Trump at the initial hearing on June 13, unlike Trump he has yet to enter a plea amid struggles to find local counsel. His arraignment was rescheduled from this week after he was unable to catch a flight from New Jersey. The charges against Nauta include assisting in Trump’s alleged efforts to hide documents from federal authorities and lying to investigators, and he faces up to 20 years in prison if found guilty. The trial is still penciled in for August, though it is all but certain to be postponed given the legal complexities involved. The next hearing is scheduled for July 14.
Emmanuel Macron pays a state visit to Germany on Monday and Tuesday (July 3-4) as the two countries continue to mend relations following disagreements last year, notably over energy and defense issues, that led to a delay in their annual joint cabinet meeting. While differences remain (notably over China), the visit will focus on the strong ties between the EU’s most powerful members. The program starts in Stuttgart, where the French president and his wife Brigitte are welcomed with military honors by German president Frank-Walter Steinmeier before the pair take part in a discussion on artificial intelligence. Macron then heads to Berlin, where he holds a joint press conference with Steinmeier before taking a boat trip with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz on the Spree and visiting Brandenburg Gate. A state banquet takes place that evening.
On Tuesday, Macron heads to Dresden, where his schedule includes what is likely to be the key moment of his visit, an address on the Neumarkt in front of the Frauenkirche. Macron’s visit follows three days of widespread protests in France after a police officer shot and killed a 17-year-old during a traffic stop, and questions about the ongoing violence – and whether Macron should be out of the country at all – may overshadow the trip, which is still due to go ahead at time of writing.
With the NATO summit in Vilnius just around the corner, a critical meeting takes place between Sweden and Turkey in Brussels on Thursday (July 6) as efforts continue to secure ratification of Sweden’s NATO membership before the gathering. Despite a renewed drive following Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s re-election, a breakthrough has proved elusive – the decision this week to allow a (one-man) Quran book-burning protest in Stockholm timed to coincide with Eid al-Adha has reignited tensions amid the ongoing dispute rooted in Sweden’s large Kurdish community, which Turkey says includes PKK terrorists.
Ultimately, though, the near-term fate of Sweden’s bid may end up being decided in another European capital; alongside Turkey, Hungary has also held off on ratifying Sweden’s application, though for different reasons, and earlier this week the country’s parliament reportedly delayed a planned vote until the fall. Barring a last-minute change, then, Sweden hopes of becoming NATO’s 32nd member in time for the summit could be dashed regardless of whether its dispute with Turkey is resolved.