Defense Secretary Orders Six Commercial Airlines to Help Ferry Afghan Refugees

Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III has ordered six commercial airlines to provide passenger jets to help with the growing U.S. military operation evacuating Americans and Afghan allies from Kabul, the Afghan capital, the Pentagon said on Sunday.

Mr. Austin activated Stage 1 of the Civil Reserve Air Fleet, created in 1952 after the Berlin airlift, to provide 18 airliners to help ferry passengers arriving at bases in the Middle East from Afghanistan, John F. Kirby, the Pentagon spokesman, said in a statement.

The current activation is for 18 planes: four from United Airlines; three each from American Airlines, Atlas

A Rush of News: Behind The New York Times’s Live Coverage

Times Insider explains who we are and what we do, and delivers behind-the-scenes insights into how our journalism comes together.

When the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan began accelerating with stunning speed, The New York Times quickly shifted into live coverage mode: Reporters and editors posted developments as they happened on the collapse of Kandahar, the disintegration of the Afghan military, the global response to the U.S. government’s actions and more, all packaged together.

The live coverage format, which allows journalists to share the news as they learn it, has become a familiar one at The Times for reporting big events.

Jesse Jackson and His Wife Are Hospitalized With Covid-19

The Rev. Jesse Jackson and his wife, Jacqueline, have been hospitalized after testing positive for Covid-19, Mr. Jackson’s Rainbow PUSH Coalition said on Saturday in a statement.

Both were being treated at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, The Associated Press reported.

“Doctors are currently monitoring the condition of both,” the statement read. No further details were available about their condition. Mr. Jackson is 79, and Jacqueline Jackson is 77.

Mr. Jackson got vaccinated in January. He has been campaigning to convince more Black Americans to get inoculated.

“Vaccination is imperative to save lives, particularly for African Americans, disproportionately the greatest