03:40 - Source: CNN
US formally accuses Russian forces of crimes against humanity
CNN  — 

Would you get rid of a brand-new car after driving it just 16 times? Of course not. Nevertheless, a brand-new Boeing 747 configured as a private VIP jet is being scrapped after having spent just 30 hours in service over 16 flights.

Here’s what else you need to know to Start Your Week Smart.

The weekend that was

• The US government has determined that Russia has committed crimes against humanity during its war in Ukraine, Vice President Kamala Harris announced Saturday in Germany. 

• The US has recently begun seeing “disturbing” trendlines in China’s support for Russia’s military and there are signs that Beijing wants to “creep up to the line” of providing lethal military aid to Russia without getting caught, US officials familiar with the intelligence told CNN.

• The Biden administration said it has deployed federal medical experts to help assess what dangers remain at an Ohio village where a train carrying hazardous materials derailed this month as anxious residents point to signs of adverse effects.  

• Former President Jimmy Carter will begin receiving hospice care, according to a statement from The Carter Center on Saturday. Carter, who turned 98 last year, became the oldest living US president in history after the passing of George H.W. Bush, who died in 2018 at 94.

• The body of Ghanaian soccer star Christian Atsu was found under rubble on Saturday, according to his agent, almost two weeks after the earthquake that devastated Turkey and Syria.

The week ahead


February 20 is a federal holiday that, depending on where you live, is known as Presidents Day, President’s Day or Presidents’ Day (note the placement of the apostrophes). Which one is correct? Well, according to the federal government, none of them. It’s Washington’s Birthday. 


The Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in the first of two cases regarding a little-known law that shields platforms like Google, Twitter and YouTube from lawsuits over third-party content posted on their sites. The final outcome of the case could have far-reaching repercussions for digital speech and content moderation.

And it’s not just any Tuesday, particularly if you’re in New Orleans. Mardi Gras, aka Fat Tuesday, is the culmination of Carnival season and the last big blowout before Lent begins.


The gunman accused of killing five people in a mass shooting at an LGBTQ nightclub in Colorado Springs, Colorado, last November is due in court for a preliminary hearing. The suspect is facing a total of 317 counts, including charges of first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder, assault and bias-motivated crimes causing bodily injury.

It’s also Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent.


Disgraced former movie producer Harvey Weinstein is set to be sentenced following his conviction in Los Angeles on rape and sexual assault charges. Weinstein faces a possible sentence of 24 years in prison, according to the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office. He is already serving a 23-year sentence for a 2020 New York rape conviction.


Actor and producer Alec Baldwin, who was criminally charged last month in connection with the 2021 fatal shooting on the set of the movie “Rust,” is scheduled to appear remotely at a hearing in New Mexico. The charges against Baldwin and the set’s armorer, Hannah Gutierrez Reed, include two counts of involuntary manslaughter. Attorneys for both defendants previously insisted their respective clients are innocent.

February 24 also marks one year since Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine – attacking the nation by land, air and sea.


Nigeria will hold presidential and parliamentary elections amid the backdrop of the botched introduction of new banknotes earlier this month that sparked violent protests.

One Thing: Dr. Sanjay Gupta on screens & teens

In this week’s “One Thing” podcast, CNN chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta takes us inside the new season of his podcast “Chasing Life,” where he’s exploring the impact of screens and social media on young kids. He shares personal conversations that he’s had with his own daughters about screen time and has tips we can all use to have better relationships with our smartphones. Listen here for more.

Photos of the week

Jake May/AP
Michigan State University students gather at The Rock, a popular campus landmark, as they pay their respects to the victims of the campus shooting that took place on Monday, February 13.
Brynn Anderson/AP
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes holds the Vince Lombardi Trophy after the Chiefs won Super Bowl LVII on Sunday, February 12. Mahomes was named Super Bowl MVP as the Chiefs defeated the Philadelphia Eagles 38-35.
Carlos Barria/Reuters
Sunlight hits the Horsetail Fall at California's Yosemite National Park on Wednesday, February 15. The light from the annual phenomenon makes it look as though lava is flowing over the cliff instead of water.
Emrah Gurel/AP
People bury earthquake victims in Adiyaman, Turkey, on Friday, February 10. Tens of thousands of people have died after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake rocked Turkey and Syria on February 6.
Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call/AP
Former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley appears in Charleston, South Carolina, on Wednesday, February 15, a day after announcing that she would be running for president in 2024. Haley served in Donald Trump's administration as US ambassador to the United Nations.
Emilio Morenatti/AP
Svitlana is joined by her son Kyrylo at her husband's funeral in the Ukrainian village of Tarasivka on Wednesday, February 15. Serhii Havryliuk, 48, died in April while defending the Azovstal steel plant against the Russians. He was finally being buried after DNA tests confirmed his identity.
Ian West/Press Association/AP
Singer Sam Smith walks the red carpet in an inflatable latex jumpsuit before the Brit Awards in London on Saturday, February 11.
Gary Hershorn/Corbis News/Getty Images
The sun rises near New York's Empire State Building on Tuesday, February 14.
Lionel Bonaventure/AFP/Getty Images
Slovakia's Martin Hyska, left, falls next to France's Alban Elezi Cannaferina as they competed in a parallel event at the Alpine Skiing World Championships on Tuesday, February 14.
Matt Slocum/AP
Rihanna performs during the Super Bowl halftime show on Sunday, February 12. She opened the show by hanging high above the field on a platform.
Susan Walsh/AP
US President Joe Biden speaks at a gathering of the National Association of Counties on Tuesday, February 14. During the event, which took place a day after the mass shooting at Michigan State University, Biden called on lawmakers to take steps to address gun violence.
Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images
Seher, 15, is carried to an ambulance on Tuesday, February 14, after spending more than eight days under earthquake rubble in Hatay, Turkey. While the death toll has climbed over the past week, there have been many rescues made from fallen buildings. Teams have been working around the clock to save as many people as they can.
Andrew Kelly/Reuters
A model sits backstage after having makeup applied for a fashion show in New York on Monday, February 13.
Abbie Parr/AP
Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts scores a two-point conversion to tie the score in the fourth quarter of Super Bowl LVII on Sunday, February 12. Hurts finished the game with three rushing touchdowns and one passing touchdown.
Javier Torres/AFP/Getty Images
Fire damage is seen in Santa Juana, Chile, on Thursday, February 9. Forest fires have been widespread this month in south-central Chile.
William Edwards/AFP/Getty Images
Someone takes a photo of a new Banksy mural in Margate, England, on Tuesday, February 14. The artwork, "Valentine's day mascara," shows a 1950s housewife with a swollen eye apparently pushing a man into an abandoned chest freezer. The appliance was later removed on the grounds of safety and temporarily replaced with a trash can. The subject of the mural and its timing appear to highlight the issue of violence against women.
Brian Snyder/Reuters
Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce, left, embraces his brother, Philadelphia Eagles center Jason Kelce, after Super Bowl LVII on Sunday, February 12. This was the first Super Bowl in history where two brothers played on opposite teams.
Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe/Getty Images
The sun illuminates a window speckled with ice at the top of New Hampshire's Mount Washington on Thursday, February 9. At just over 6,000 feet, the Mount Washington Observatory is situated in the perfect location for extreme winds and brutal cold.
Al Bello/Getty Images
Norwegian ski jumper Marius Lindvik competes on the large hill during a World Cup event in Lake Placid, New York, on Saturday, February 11.
Reed Hoffmann/AP
A couple of young Kansas City Chiefs fans have fun while waiting for the Chiefs' Super Bowl parade on Wednesday, February 15.
Ozan Kose/AFP/Getty Images
People wait near a collapsed building in Kahramanmaras, Turkey, hoping for news of their missing relatives on Tuesday, February 14.
Charles Krupa/AP
Boston Celtics center Luke Kornet slams the ball over Detroit's James Wiseman during an NBA basketball game on Wednesday, February 15.
Yasuyoshi Chiba/AFP/Getty Images
A Ukrainian serviceman in Kramatorsk walks with flowers and a balloon he bought for Valentine's Day on Tuesday, February 14.
Charly Triballeau/AFP/Getty Images
Starlings fly near the Saint-Pierre Bridge in Toulouse, France, at sunset on Saturday, February 11.
Omar Haj Kadour/AFP/Getty Images
A medical worker cares for Arslan, a 3-year-old boy, at a hospital in Sarmada, Syria, on Monday, February 13. Arslan was the only person in his immediate family to survive the massive earthquake earlier this month.
Geoff Robins/AFP/Getty Images
Canadian figure skaters Deanna Stellato-Dudek and Maxime Deschamps take part in the exhibition gala at the Four Continents Figure Skating Championships on Sunday, February 12.
Chandan Khanna/AFP/Getty Images
People in Parkland, Florida, attend a spiritual service Tuesday, February 15, for the fifth anniversary of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Seventeen people were killed in the shooting, which took place on Valentine's Day in 2018.
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images
Whistling ducks move through the Wakodahatchee Wetlands in Delray Beach, Florida, on Sunday, February 12.
Sarah Stier/Getty Images
A pass soars over the head of Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster late in the fourth quarter of Super Bowl LVII on Sunday, February 12. Philadelphia cornerback James Bradberry was called for holding on the play, allowing the Chiefs to run the clock and kick a game-winning field goal with just seconds remaining.
Naomi Baker/Getty Images for England Netball
Netball players from the Saracens Mavericks and the Severn Stars compete in the Superleague season opener in Nottingham, England, on Saturday, February 11.
Derek Gee/The Buffalo News/Pool/AP
Wayne Jones, the son of mass shooting victim Celestine Chaney, pauses to collect himself Wednesday, February 15, as he makes a statement to the court during the sentencing hearing of Payton Gendron in Buffalo, New York. Gendron was sentenced to life in prison for killing Chaney and nine other people last year at a grocery store in Buffalo.
Yasin Akgul/AFP/Getty Images
People sit by a bonfire, waiting for news of their relatives near the rubble of collapsed buildings in Hatay, Turkey, on Tuesday, February 14. See last week in 33 photos.

Check out more images from the week that was, curated by CNN Photos.

What’s happening in entertainment

What would you title a movie about a wild bear that goes on a cocaine-fueled killing spree? Exactly … “Cocaine Bear,” which is “inspired by true events,” appears to be just what you’d expect from a film about an apex predator that finds a stash of drugs that literally (not figuratively) fell from the sky. Much carnage and campiness ensues. “Cocaine Bear” features the late Ray Liotta in his last role, as well as actors Keri Russell, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Christian Convery-Jennings, Alden Ehrenreich and Jesse Tyler Ferguson. It opens in theaters on Friday.

What’s happening in sports

If you are a sports fan, today is a good day to get comfortable on the couch – just make sure there are fresh batteries in the remote.

First up is the final round of the Genesis Invitational golf tournament at the Riviera Country Club in Los Angeles, hosted by Tiger Woods. Jon Rahm leads the pack at 15 under par, followed by Max Homa at 12 under par. Tiger Woods, who narrowly made the cut to play the weekend, begins the day in a tie for 26th place. This is the first official tournament start for the 47-year-old Woods since the Open Championship last July, where he failed to make the cut. Woods was severely injured in a car accident following the 2021 Genesis Invitational.

Later in the day is the 65th annual Daytona 500, the season-opener of the NASCAR Cup Series. The race gets underway at 2:30 p.m. ET.

And it’s the NBA’s All-Star weekend, culminating with Team LeBron facing Team Giannis in the 72nd All-Star Game at 8:30 p.m. ET from Salt Lake City.

And remember, for more sports, head over to Bleacher Report, which – like CNN – is owned by Warner Bros. Discovery.

Quiz time!

Looking for a challenge? Take CNN’s weekly news quiz here to see how much you remember from the week that was! So far, 52% of fellow quiz fans have gotten eight or more questions right. How will you fare?

Play me off

‘When The Saints Go Marching In’

Can’t make it to New Orleans for Mardi Gras? Let us bring a little New Orleans to you … (Click here to view)