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Joe Biden, welcome to the world stage.

The president is halfway through his first international trip, an eight-day swing across Europe, that will “give him a chance to shore up frayed alliances with U.S. allies,” writes USA TODAY’s Michael Collins.

We want to keep you updated on the latest, time zone differences aside:

Meanwhile, Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu is exiting the world stage — for now. In a historic vote Sunday, the parliament approved a new government (and leader). Who is Naftali Bennett, the nation’s next prime minister?

I’m Alex, and this is Your Week. Every Monday, I’ll spotlight reporting you can’t miss. Your subscription powers our journalism both in the USA and abroad. Thank you.

First, our best stories from last week

What makes a city safe?

Mayor Tishaura Jones wants to reimagine policing in St. Louis.

She’s among the newly elected leaders coming into power in the wake of national protests in 2020, where millions of demonstrators called on officials to cut police budgets in favor of funding social services. With rising crime and a push to “defund,” can she do it?

STORY EXCERPT | Jones faces myriad challenges as she works to reform her home city: an entrenched political establishment, from St. Louis City Hall to the Missouri legislature and police union, that remains skeptical of her vision; an alarming homicide rate that could derail reform efforts among key constituencies; and a cadre of restless activists who have been in the trenches for years demanding radical change instead of small reforms.

FROM JONES | “This will not happen overnight, and I need grace and space and opportunity to get things done. I tried to level set coming out the gate what the expectations are. I think for the most part, people realize that. They realize that St. Louis didn’t get here overnight.”

LISTEN | “So the question we have is, will we see fruit? Will we see a blossom of Tishaura Jones’ vision? That will take some time to figure out. She’s asking for that patience,” said reporter Phillip M. Bailey on USA TODAY’s 5 Things podcast. Listen to the full podcast here.

Stories we can’t get enough of

STYLE | Time to dust off the Crocs in your closet. Yes, the notoriously colorful, foam footwear is cool again. Why? “There’s definitely a comfort factor,” one stylist said. “Once the pandemic hit, I think we really just jumped into comfort zone.” In fact, the company is anticipating a year-over-year revenue growth of 40% to 50% for 2021. Here’s how Crocs went from embarrassingly uncool to totally trendy.

MARKETS | Will the stock market take a breather? Here’s what the second half of 2021 could look like for your retirement investments. Spolier: The U.S. economy is poised to benefit from a summer spending boom as businesses reopen. The current bull market has more room to run and could further add to the value of Americans’ 401(k) plans, if history is any indication.

BOOKS | The world watched as Amanda Kloots documented the emotional recovery, and eventual death, of her husband Nick Cordero on Instagram last year. Cordero, a Tony-nominated actor, had faced severe COVID-19 complications, including a leg amputation, lung infections and the insertion of a temporary pacemaker. Now, she’s telling their full story, including details too difficult to share publicly at the time, with “Live Your Life: My Story of Loving and Losing Nick Cordero.”

OLYMPICS | After a scandal at the Rio Olympics in 2016, swimmer Ryan Lochte was ready to move on from the sport. Now, with a new perspective on life, he’s training harder than ever to make his fifth U.S. Olympic team and compete at the Tokyo Games. It’s a daunting task considering his performances at meets are as worse than ever. Beginning to lose hope, Lochte said, he reached out to Michael Phelps — a longtime rival in the pool.

Coming soon

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