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Morning Update: Don't Ever Mess With The Knitters

Calling off the Iran strike, LGBTQ rights in Iraq, the world's ugliest dog. Your BuzzFeed News newsletter, June 24.

Posted on June 24, 2019, at 7:51 a.m. ET

Trump has unexpectedly postponed the nationwide ICE raids targeting immigrant families

In the pre-dawn hours of Sunday morning, US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was set to begin an operation targeting undocumented immigrant families. President Donald Trump suddenly canceled the planned action.

The operation details, which had been reported by multiple outlets, set off an unprecedented level of preparation among immigration advocates.

Trump said he “delayed” the plan at the request of Democrats to try to solve border issues together.

However, two senior administration officials told us that within the administration, there is a belief that acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan, or his staff, leaked details and that is what ultimately put the ICE operation in jeopardy.

One expert told us the operation was being used as a negotiation tactic to secure changes to immigration laws and that “might not sit very well with the agents.”

Wondering why Trump changed his mind on bombing Iran? You are not alone.

Last week, Trump approved then abruptly canceled a military strike on Iran. Since then, the press, analysts, and even government officials have struggled to articulate exactly what made the president change his mind.

The strikes were meant as a response to Iran shooting down a US surveillance drone earlier this week. According to the New York Times, the mission was called off when “planes were in the air and ships were in position, but no missiles had been fired.”

So what happened? No fewer than five different explanations have emerged for why the strike was called off. We explain the possibilities here.

SNAPSHOTS

Donald Trump has been accused of raping an advice columnist in a department store dressing room. In her book, writer E. Jean Carroll said Trump attacked her and “thrust his penis” in her in a Bergdorf Goodman dressing room around 23 years ago.

Mayor Pete was heckled by protesters after police killed a man in his hometown. The candidate canceled high-profile events to spend time with his constituents in South Bend, Indiana, after a white police officer shot and killed Eric Logan, a 54-year-old black man. At an event in South Bend, members of the crowd lashed out at him for not doing enough to help the black community.

A popular knitting website banned posts supporting Donald Trump, accusing him of “open white supremacy.” Ravelry, a community website for knitters, crocheters, and other textile fans, described the move as a stand against white supremacy. The site is the most popular online forum for knitting fans and counts millions of users.

The US government just approved a controversial second sex drug for women. The drug — sold under the name Vyleesi by Amag Pharmaceuticals — was approved by the FDA. It’s supposed to increase women's libido, and is injected with a pen about 45 minutes ahead of time.

Antoni Porowski from Queer Eye revealed how extra Taylor Swift was in keeping her new video secret. Porowski explained in a Yahoo interview that none of the people in the video even heard the song — they could only hear a snippet through an earpiece.

This year’s winner of the World’s Ugliest Dog contest is a good boy named Scamp the Tramp. Though we all know that all dogs are beautiful, some of them are ugly in a beautiful way. Here’s the ugly (beautiful) dog that won this year.

Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

How a housepainter and an army wife led the secret fight to save LGBT people from ISIS

The first time Majid and Ahlam saved a gay person’s life In Iraq, they didn’t know what LGBT stood for. They just knew three men were about to be executed — so they tricked their captors and freed the hostages.

Majid is a housepainter. Ahlam is an army widow. Majid was told “LGBT people” needed rescuing — but thought LGBT was a political party.

“What kind of political movement is this?” he asked after the rescue. “These guys are kissing each other!”

That was in 2011, when they worked for a feminist group helping women escape violence. They realized LGBT people were fleeing the same religious fundamentalists.

When ISIS came, the pair recorded stories of 87 people who were tortured or executed for homosexuality, documenting the ISIS violence. Their records may help bring ISIS to justice.

Read about their extraordinary story.

A woman named Marijuana Pepsi, who refused to change her name, earned her PhD with a dissertation on uncommon names

Marijuana Pepsi Vandyck just got her PhD in higher education leadership from Wisconsin’s Cardinal Stritch University.

Her dissertation was titled “Black names in white classrooms: Teacher behaviors and student perceptions.”

Vandyck told reporters her mom gave her this name because “it would take her around the world.” Now, her name and story have gone viral.

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