Zac Efron's body, Trump's insane handshakes, and back channels to Moscow, in Slate's daily newsletter.

Buff Male Stars, Firm Handshakes, and Back Channels to Moscow

Buff Male Stars, Firm Handshakes, and Back Channels to Moscow

Sharp takes on big stories.
May 30 2017 6:10 PM

The Angle: Lines of Communication Edition

Slate’s daily newsletter on buff male stars, firm handshakes, and back channels to Moscow.

JFK also had a secret way to talk to Russia.

Getty Images

FWIW: John F. Kennedy cultivated ways to talk to Russia discreetly, historian Tim Naftali writes.* And many times, he used those channels to avert conflict.

Rebecca Onion Rebecca Onion

Rebecca Onion is a Slate staff writer and the author of Innocent Experiments.

Relatedly: Here is Isaac Chotiner's contentious, hilariously awkward interview with academic Stephen F. Cohen, a historian of Russia and the Soviet Union and now a Putin—and by extension, Trump—defender.


Gringo, go home: Trump's election, along with the resurgence of politician Andrés Manuel López Obrador, has reignited anti-Americanism in Mexico, which is a long tradition with periodic acute flare-ups. Andrew Paxman argues that a trend that can sometimes seem droll and hilarious—Trump piñatas!—is actually quite deep-rooted and serious.

Puff down: The Baywatch remake didn't do well at the box office this past weekend. This probably wasn't because Zac Efron is far too swole, but E. Alex Jung doesn't like it anyway.

For fun: It's the Donald Trump Handshake Challenge! Who will emerge victorious?

Macron forever,


*Correction, May 30: This post originally misspelled Tim Naftali's last name.