5 things for May 15: Melania Trump, royal wedding, Gaza protests

5 things for May 15: Melania Trump, royal wedding, Gaza protests

(CNN) – Heavy rain in your area? How about record heat? You’re not alone — there’s all kinds of weird weather and geological happenings going on around the country right now. Here’s what else you need to know to Get Up to Speed and Out the Door. (You can also get “5 Things You Need to Know Today” delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here.)

Melania Trump is recovering in the hospital after undergoing kidney surgery. She is “in good spirits,” according to a tweet from the President, but people have a lot of questions about the procedure the first lady went through and how serious it was. According to a White House statement, she “underwent an embolization procedure to treat a benign kidney condition.” CNN’s Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta says embolization, which purposefully cuts off blood supply to part of the body, is sometimes used to treat benign tumors. A urologist told CNN it could be a benign, fatty growth that doesn’t usually pose a danger, but can be painful. Trump is the first US first lady to undergo such a serious medical procedure while in the White House since Nancy Reagan had a mastectomy in October 1987.

The royal wedding is just days away, but an unfortunate episode of family drama has threatened to take the attention away from the pomp and circumstance. Meghan Markle’s father, Thomas Markle, told TMZ this week that he is not going to attend his daughter’s wedding after it was revealed he worked with paparazzi to stage positive photos of himself preparing for the event. He said he will skip the wedding — and the opportunity to walk his daughter down the aisle — in order to avoid the risk of embarrassing the royal family or his daughter. Markle and her family, who are all American, have been the subject of intense scrutiny by British tabloid media, and intense criticism by the British public in general.

The decision to open a US Embassy in Jerusalem has been met with deadly clashes along the Israeli-Gaza border. At least 58 Palestinians were killed in protests and confrontations on Monday as the new embassy was officially opened. Global leaders condemned Israel for using lethal force against protesters, but there could be even more bloodshed to come. Today, Palestinians are observing what they call “Nakba,” or Catastrophe, in memory of the more than 700,000 Palestinians who were either driven from or fled their homes during the war that accompanied the creation of the state of Israel. Some political experts say the embassy move marks the functional end of the two-state solution for Israeli-Palestinian peace talks and greatly reduces the possibility for peace in the entire region.

It’s no secret that the Trump White House has a problem with leaks, and the President took his opinions on the subject to a new level yesterday. In a tweet, he called the unknown leakers “traitors and cowards” and vowed to sniff them out. Trump actually rarely uses the word “traitor” — which makes sense, because it is an extremely serious allegation. He has, however, used it to describe Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden, who both leaked sensitive government secrets during the Obama administration. In an interview with Fox News, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said she expects personnel changes as a result of leaks among the White House staff.

A gruesome mystery that has confounded British Columbia for more than a decade just got a new chapter. This weekend, a severed foot washed up on a beach in the Canadian province. It is the 14th such foot to appear in the area in 11 years. Nine of the 14 feet have been identified, and officials have ruled out foul play in all of the cases. Still, no one has any idea why the feet keep appearing. The most common theories are that the feet detach from the bodies of people who have committed suicide or accidentally drowned. 

“People espouse a lot about God and living with values, and when you say things like that, it’s what you’re going to have to live with at this point.”

— Meghan McCain, on people who are defending White House aide Kelly Sadler, who joked that McCain’s father Sen. John McCain was “dying anyway.” Sen. McCain has brain cancer. 

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Kidder played Lois Lane in the “Superman” films of the ’70s and ’80s.

Great, another way to lose money! 

The twist? The tiger was actually invited — no, really.

Royals, they’re just like us! 

The average starting salary for the Class of 2018, according to a new survey.

And there’s a reason the second kind has to wait for their treat! (Click to view)

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