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The 10-Point: My Guide to the Day's Top News

The Wall Street Journal
Good morning,
Call of Duty
President Trump chose Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster as his new national security adviser on Monday, bringing one of the U.S. military’s best-known strategists into the White House and adding to his team another warrior-scholar in the mold of Defense Secretary Jim Mattis. The new NSC chief is a seasoned soldier who helped turn around U.S. fortunes in the Iraq war through a strategy of counterinsurgency that relied on working cooperatively with local communities. He has also contributed significantly to the scholarship of war with a doctoral thesis on U.S. failures in Vietnam—later published under the title “Dereliction of Duty”—that lambasted American military leadership for its failure to stand up to politicians. Gen. McMaster is the first active-duty U.S. military officer to take the job since Colin Powell and John Poindexter held it under President Ronald Reagan. He steps in to lead a National Security Council that has been in some disarray, with many career staffers uncertain about their roles. Mr. Trump’s decision came one week after he asked his first national security adviser, Mike Flynn, to resign for misleading Vice President Mike Pence about the nature of his conversations with Russia’s ambassador to the U.S. Meanwhile, we report that Mr. Mattis appears to be at odds with Mr. Trump on Russia and other key issues, but seems to have had unique success in leading Mr. Trump away from some of his positions.

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A Dead Deal
Deal talks between Kraft Heinz and Unileverare dead, but both consumer-goods giants now find themselves under heightened pressure to make bold moves to accelerate growth. Unilever shares fell 6.6% in London on Monday after Kraft Heinz dropped its $143 billion bid for its rival—partly reversing a 13% jump on Friday, when the offer became public. Unilever made clear it didn’t want to pursue a tie-up, but investors in recent years have encouraged the company to sell underperforming businesses or do a large acquisition to boost its lagging shareholder returns. Kraft Heinz, meanwhile, has significantly improved its profitability since the 2015 deal that created the company, driven by the aggressive cost-cutting methods of Brazilian private-equity firm 3G Capital, its biggest shareholder. But it is now running out of costs to cut, leaving investors hungry for another deal.
Heir Grievances
When Lee Jae-yong took Samsung’s reins from his ailing father in 2014, he vowed to reshape the South Korean conglomerate along Silicon Valley lines, promising an era of transparency and accountability in an institution known for its opaque corporate culture—in a country whose modern history has seen a succession of business and political leaders engulfed in corruption scandals. On Friday, the 48-year-old Mr. Lee was arrested in connection with a wide-ranging scandal that includes the impeachment of South Korea’s president. Mr. Lee, vice chairman of Samsung Electronics, stands accused of bribery, embezzlement and perjury in connection with roughly $37 million in payments Samsung made to entities allegedly linked to a friend of President Park Geun-hye’s. Prosecutors allege the payments were in exchange for government backing of a contentious merger of two Samsung affiliates.
Calorie Deceit
What if you could trick your body into thinking it was fasting, receive the health benefits associated with calorie restriction, but never actually stop eating? New research finds that reducing caloric intake for five days a month, but not fully stopping eating, can improve metabolic markers associated with aging and diseases, such as cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular illness. The “fasting-mimicking diet” studied by researchers at the University of Southern California is high in unsaturated fats and low in sugars and protein, consisting of mostly soups and vegetables. And in fitness news, we look at what it takes to join the 100-Ton Club at a San Antonio military base: members must lift 100 tons in a single day.
TODAY'S VIDEO
Knead Slime?
That Was Painless
Adolescent entrepreneurs are cooking up glutinous goop that their classmates love to squeeze, fold and poke. First ingredient: Elmer’s glue.
TOP STORIES
U.S.

Trump Administration Considers Change in Calculating U.S. Trade Deficit

With Their Elevated Homicide Rates, Four Cities Stand Out
WORLD

Kim Jong Nam Killing Caught on Video

Even K-Pop, Korean Bidets Aren’t Safe in Missile Shield Dispute
BUSINESS

Wall Street Starts to Contemplate GE After Jeff Immelt

For Generation Z, ‘Live Chilling’ Replaces Hanging Out in Person
MARKETS

Risk Hungry? Meet Barclays’s New Investment Bank Boss

Freeport-McMoRan Heads Toward Showdown With Indonesia
NUMBER OF THE DAY
30%
The approximate surge in copper in the past year. Some of the world’s biggest mining companies, which have giant copper portfolios, are now poised to reap the rewards, with Anglo American, BHP Billiton and Glencore reporting full- or half-year earnings this week.
QUOTE OF THE DAY
[It’s] an epidemic issue for this country.
Michael LaRocco, chief executive of State Auto Financial, on more and more American drivers using their smartphones to talk, text and access the internet while on the road. Auto-insurance rates are rising as insurers struggle to keep up.
TODAY'S QUESTION
Have you noticed an increase in drivers using their smartphones? Send your comments, which we may edit before publication, to 10point@wsj.com. Please include your name and location.
—Compiled by Margaret Rawson
READER RESPONSE
Responding to Friday’s question on Mr. Trump’s freewheeling press conference last Thursday, Ken Faust of Alabama wrote: “It remains to be seen how successful Mr. Trump’s presidency is, but it is refreshing to watch and listen to his candid remarks. You have the feeling of witnessing exactly how he feels as opposed to past presidents whose every word was carefully scripted and often irritatingly noncommittal.” Mary Thompson of New Mexico commented: “It was sort of like a high-wire act without a net—it was scary but you couldn’t look away. I appreciated his standing up for his administration but I hope he got this out of his system for a couple of weeks and will get back to the job at hand. I’m a Trump voter and want to see him succeed ‘big league.’” Bill Braswell of Virginia weighed in: “Full of sound and fury—signifying nothing.” And Adam Schutzman from New York said: “Mr. Trump’s press conference shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. When questioned on Russia, anti-Semitism, and staff shake-ups, he shifts the blame to the media. He has made the media Public Enemy No. 1 for his supporters.”

This daily briefing is named "The 10-Point" after the nickname conferred by the editors of The Wall Street Journal on the lead column of the legendary "What's News" digest of top stories. Technically, "10-point" referred to the size of the typeface. The type is smaller now but the name lives on.

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