Even in times of shared, senseless tragedy, an uplifting moment sometimes emerges.
On Saturday, shocked and saddened Londoners dealing with the return of terrorism to their streets after a two-year hiatus found solace in the way bystanders fought to subdue the London Bridge attacker, keeping the death count lower than it would have been if they had fled.
Particularly striking were the weapons they used to confront the killer: a fire extinguisher and — incredibly enough — a 5-foot (1.5-meter) narwhal tusk apparently taken from the wall of Fishmongers' Hall when the attack began.
Remarkable video from the scene Friday shows one man spraying the fire extinguisher at the knife-wielding attacker and trying to hit him with the blunt instrument, while another uses the whale tusk to try to pin the man down.
Others ganged up on the man, wrestling him to the ground and stripping away his weapons.
Additional footage shows another man — said by some media outlets to be a plainclothes policeman — calmly walking away from the scene with one of the attacker's knives, making sure it could not be used to kill again.
The attacker, later identified as 28-year-old convicted terrorist Usman Khan, was restrained until police arrived and — after he flashed what looked like a suicide vest — shot him dead. Two people were killed and three wounded in his attack.
The Londoners' valor — and ingenuity — did not go unnoticed. They were praised to the skies not only by Queen Elizabeth II and Prime Minister Boris Johnson but also — perhaps more importantly — by ordinary people on Twitter.
"We'll never know how many lives are being saved in this moment. Heroes is an overused word, but entirely correct here," wrote one man after viewing the video.
"Unbelievable Bravery. truly humbling," a woman wrote.
The brief video had been viewed more than 2 million times on Twitter by Saturday afternoon.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan said the bystanders who brought down the attacker could have followed advice and run away for their own safety but decided to run toward danger instead.
"We saw Londoners, ordinary citizens, acting in an extraordinary way," he said.
Some of those who challenged the attacker were former prisoners attending a conference on rehabilitation along with the assailant at Fishmongers' Hall, where the attack apparently began. The group included a murderer who had reformed, British press reports said.
Steve Hurst, who was in a car driving by, got out to join the group trying to restrain the attacker. He told BBC he tried to kick Khan's foot so he would drop the knife.
"We were trying to do as much as we could to dislodge the knife from his hand so he couldn't harm anyone else," he said.
The spontaneous decision of the civilians to fight back was part of a trend that seems to have gathered pace since the 9/11 attacks in 2001, when passengers on United Airlines Flight 93 challenged the hijackers, in effect crashing the plane in rural Pennsylvania before it could reach an intended strategic target in Washington.
Plane passengers also played an important role subduing "shoe bomber" Robert Reid before he could light a fuse sticking out from one of his sneakers on an American Airlines flight from Paris to Miami in December 2001. Their intervention is credited with saving roughly 200 lives.
In 2013, a woman may have prevented further carnage after the murder and mutilation of British soldier Lee Rigby at the hands of two extremists. She spoke calmly to one of the killers, keeping him engaged while he gripped a bloody meat cleaver, before police arrived.
China accused the U.N. high commissioner for human rights of emboldening "radical violence" in Hong Kong by suggesting the city's leader conduct an investigation into reports of excessive use of force by police.
The U.N. commissioner, Michelle Bachelet, wrote in an opinion piece Saturday in the South China Morning Post that Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam's government must prioritize "meaningful, inclusive" dialogue to resolve the crisis.
She urged Lam to hold an "independent and impartial judge-led investigation" into police conduct of protests. It has been one of key demands of pro-democracy demonstrations that have roiled the territory since June.
China's U.N. mission in Geneva said that Bachelet's article interferes in the internal affairs of China and exerts pressure on the city's government and police, which "will only embolden the rioters to conduct more severe radical violence."
It said Bachelet made "inappropriate comments" on the situation in Hong Kong and that the Chinese side had lodged a strong protest in response.
Since the unrest broke, protesters have disrupted traffic, smashed public facilities and pro-China shops, and hurled gasoline bombs in pitched battles with riot police who have responded with volleys of tear gas and water cannons.
The occupation of several universities by protesters earlier this month after fiery clashes with police capped one of the most violent chapters in the turmoil, which has contributed to the city's first recession in a decade.
Lam appealed for the current calm to continue but has refused to bow to protesters' demands, which include free elections for her post and the legislature as well as an independent probe into police conduct.
Hong Kong police have arrested 5,890 people as a result of the protests.
On Saturday, hundreds of silver-haired activists joined young protesters for a unity rally, vowing that their movement will not fade away until there is greater democracy.
The rally at a park downtown was among several peaceful gatherings by protesters this week to keep up pressure on the government following a local election victory by the pro-democracy bloc and the gaining of U.S. support for their cause.
"The government is still stubborn. Every one of us, young and old, must contribute in our own way. The movement will not stop," said a 63-year-old woman who identified herself as Mrs. Tam.
Some protesters returned to the streets Saturday night, using metal fences, cartons and bricks to block traffic in the Mong Kok area in Kowloon. Dozens had gathered there to mark three months since police stormed a subway car in the area and hit passengers with batons and pepper spray. Most left after police reportedly fired pepper balls and issued warnings.
More rallies are planned Sunday, including an anti-tear gas protest and a gratitude march to the U.S. Consulate.
Usman Khan was convicted on terrorism charges but let out of prison early. He attended a "Learning Together" conference for ex-offenders, and used the event to launch a bloody attack, stabbing two people to death and wounding three others.
Police shot him dead after he flashed what seemed to be a suicide vest. Khan is gone, but the questions remain: Why was he let out early? Did authorities believe he no longer believed in radical Islam? Why didn't the conditions imposed on his release prevent the carnage?
Britons looked for answers Saturday as national politicians sought to pin the blame elsewhere for what was obviously a breakdown in the security system, which had kept London largely free of extremist violence for more than two years.
Police said Khan was convicted in 2012 of terrorism offenses and released in December 2018 "on license," which means he had to meet certain conditions or face recall to prison. Several British media outlets reported that he was wearing an electronic ankle bracelet that allowed police to track his movements at the time of the attack.
Authorities seemed quick to blame "the system" rather than any one component.
The Parole Board said it had played no role in Khan's early release. It said the convict "appears to have been released automatically on license (as required by law), without ever being referred to the board."
Neil Basu, the Metropolitan Police counterterrorism police, said Saturday afternoon that the conditions of Khan's release had been complied with. He didn't spell out what those conditions were or why they failed to prevent him from killing two people.
The automatic release program apparently means no agency was given the task of determining if Khan still believed in radical views he had embraced when he was first imprisoned for plotting to attack a number of sites and individuals in London.
It is not yet known whether he took part in any of the "de-radicalization" programs used by British authorities to try and reform known jihadis.
The former head of Britain's National Counter Terrorism Security Office, Chris Phillips, said it is unreasonable to ask police and security services to keep the country safe while at the same time letting people out of prison when they are still a threat.
"We're playing Russian roulette with people's lives, letting convicted, known, radicalized jihadi criminals walk about our streets," he said.
Khan had been convicted as part of an al-Qaida linked group that was accused of plotting to target major sites including Parliament, the U.S. Embassy and individuals including Prime Minister Boris Johnson, then the mayor of London, the dean of St. Paul's Cathedral in London and two rabbis.
Khan admitted to a lesser charge of engaging in conduct for the preparation of acts of terrorism. He had been secretly taped plotting attacks and talking about martyrdom as a possibility.
Khan and his accomplices had links to radical preacher Anjem Choudary, one of the highest-profile faces of radical Islam in Britain. A mobile phone seized at the time contained material related to a banned group that Choudary founded. The preacher was released from prison in 2018 but is under heavy surveillance and a curfew.
Several people who attended Choudary's rallies when he was under no controls have been convicted of attacks, including the two al-Qaida-inspired killers who ran over British soldier Lee Rigby and stabbed him to death in 2013.
The two chief contenders in the Dec. 12 election — Johnson and Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn — condemned the system Saturday.
Johnson, who visited the scene Saturday, said he had "long argued" that it was a "mistake to allow serious and violent criminals to come out of prison early." He said the criminal justice system "simply isn't working."
Johnson spoke Saturday with U.S. President Donald Trump, who offered his condolences following the attack, according to White House spokesman Judd Deere.
Corbyn said it is not clear if the Probation Office was involved at all and questioned whether the Parole Board should have been given a role.
"We have to ensure that the public are safe," he said. "That means supervision of prisoners in prison but it also means supervision of ex-prisoners when they are released ahead of the completion of their sentence, to have tough supervision of them to make sure this kind of danger is not played out on the public in the future."
He stopped short of blaming Johnson, who was not in office when Khan was set free.
Police said 28-year-old Khan was attending a program that works to educate prisoners when he launched Friday's attack just yards from the site of a deadly 2017 van and knife rampage.
Basu, the top counterterrorism police officer, said the suspect appeared to be wearing a bomb vest but it turned out to be "a hoax explosive device." He said police believe Khan was acting alone.
The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attack, saying Khan was one of its fighters. The group's statement, however, didn't provide any evidence.
One of the victims was named in British media reports as Jack Merritt, a graduate of Cambridge University who was helping organize the conference where the attack began. His father David Merritt tweeted that his son had been killed and had a "beautiful spirit."
Basu said he could not name the victims until they had been formally identified by the coroner. He asked the public for help with video, photos and information about the attack.
Health officials said two of the wounded were stable and the third had less serious injuries. A victim who had been in critical condition has improved and is now listed as stable, officials said.
Police on Saturday were searching an apartment block in Stafford, 150 miles (240 kilometers) northwest of London, for clues. Khan was believed to have lived in the area after his release from prison. Police also conducted searches in Stoke-on-Trent.
Learning Together, a Cambridge University-backed prison education program, was holding a conference at the hall when the attack started.
Footage from the attack showed several passers-by — including one armed with a narwhal tusk apparently taken from the hall and another with a fire extinguisher — fighting with the suspect before police arrived.
Queen Elizabeth II said in a statement that she and her husband, Prince Philip, were sending their thoughts to everyone affected by the "terrible violence." She thanked police and emergency services "as well as the brave individuals who put their own lives at risk to selflessly help and protect others."
Wintry weather bedeviled Thanksgiving weekend travelers across the United States Saturday as a powerful and dangerous storm moved eastward, dumping heavy snow from parts of California to the northern Midwest and inundating other areas with rain.
Authorities found the bodies of two young children, including a 5-year-old boy, and a third child was missing in central Arizona after a vehicle was swept away while attempting to cross a runoff-swollen creek. A storm-related death also was reported in South Dakota.
The National Weather Service said the storm was expected to drop 6 to 12 inches (15-30 centimeters) of snow from the northern Plains states into Minnesota, Wisconsin and Upper Michigan.
Blizzard conditions early Saturday were already buffeting the High Plains. The city of Duluth, Minnesota, issued a "no travel advisory" beginning at noon Saturday because of a major snow storm it termed "historic."
Duluth officials asked the public to be patient as plows clear roadways and recommended that drivers stay off the roads to prevent accidents and let officers respond more quickly to emergencies.
Farther south, rain and thunderstorms were forecast along and ahead of the cold front, with heavy rainfall possible Saturday in parts of the Tennessee and Ohio Valleys.
Forecasters said a new storm is expected to bring California several feet of mountain snow, rain and gusty winds through the weekend. Another system is forecast to develop in the mid-Atlantic Sunday, moving as a nor'easter into Monday.
Airlines at O'Hare International and Midway International in Chicago reported average delays of 15 minutes as a winter storm headed toward the Midwest with heavy snow and ice and gusty winds.
The companies said they had canceled 27 flights at O'Hare and two at Midway as people scramble to get home on the year's busiest travel weekend.
At Denver International Airport, there were 100 flights canceled Saturday because of high winds.
"Tomorrow, the airlines anticipate to be the busiest travel day of the Thanksgiving period at both O'Hare and Midway," said Karen Pride, a spokeswoman for the Chicago Department of Aviation. "Everybody thinks the day before Thanksgiving is the busiest; it is not."
Authorities in the western states were still grappling Saturday with the aftermath of heavy rains and snow over the busiest travel weekend of the year.
In Arizona, officials initially the found body of the 5-year-old about 3 miles (4.8 kilometers) downstream from where the vehicle they were riding in was swept away Friday, said Gila County sheriff's Lt. Virgil Dodd. The second of the three children turned up later Saturday. The sheriff's office didn't provide the age and gender of the second child or the third child who was still missing late Saturday afternoon.
The agency said Saturday two other children and two adults who were in the vehicle were rescued from a small island and the bank of the creek in Tonto National Forest northeast of Phoenix. Sheriff's officials initially had said six people, including four children, were rescued Friday at locations along the creek.
Families in California took advantage of the early season snow in the Grapevine area, sledding down slopes in Frazier Park, California. Traffic was heavy, but Interstate 5 was open in both directions as holiday travelers headed home.
High winds and ice were making travel almost impossible in some other places, however.
A 100-mile (160.93-kilometer) section of Interstate 80 in Nebraska and Wyoming closed Saturday morning because of high winds and blowing snow. Several other roads and highways also were closed.
Back-to-back snowstorms and strong winds combined to seriously complicate travel by land across much of the rest of Wyoming, where roads were closed in the eastern and southern parts of the state because of whiteout conditions.
The National Weather Service in Wyoming reported 4 inches (10 centimeters) of snow fell in Cheyenne from 7 p.m. Friday through 10 a.m. Saturday "that has been blown all over kingdom come by our winds," said meteorologist Andrew Lyons.
That was added to a foot (30 centimeters) of snow that fell before Thanksgiving.
Wind gusts up to 50 mph (80 kph) created ground blizzards and below-zero wind chill temperatures in some areas. A wind gust of 77 mph (124 kph) was reported in the mountains between Cheyenne and Laramie, Lyons said.
All roads in and out of Casper were closed Saturday morning, including the entire 300-mile stretch (483-kilometer) of Interstate 25 in Wyoming.
Travel was also difficult in Colorado Saturday as winds blew around snow that fell in previous days.
Northeastern Colorado roads were closed due to strong winds, blowing and drifting snow and poor visibility.
In northern Montana, more than a foot of fresh snow and strong wind gusts are expected to combine to create ground blizzard conditions along the Rocky Mountain front.
Meteorologist Christian Cassel told the Great Falls Tribune people could be stuck in their homes for at least a day due to the near zero visibility.
For more than 30 years and under five presidents, Republican Rep. Fred Upton easily won reelection to his southwest Michigan House seat by promoting "common-sense values" and bipartisan accomplishments.
Republicans and even many Democrats have appreciated his moderate views and the way he hustled around the district on his days back home, meeting people at schools and senior homes and doing weekly radio interviews.
But then came the hyperpolarized politics of the Donald Trump era. Now no one, including Upton, really knows what the future holds for him heading into the 2020 election.
For officeholders who were proud of holding the middle ground and working with the opposing party, big questions loom about whether being a moderate is still a viable political position, or whether the impeachment storm sweeping U.S. politics will force everyone to accept a new identity — pro-Trump or anti-Trump — and await voters' judgment on it.
What happens to this ever-shrinking group of politicians — a dozen or so left after a rash of retirements or midterm losses — could make a big difference in which party emerges on top when the televised hearings have ended and the votes are counted next November. Some of the seats are in key swing states like Michigan, typically in suburban or fast-growing areas like Upton's. His largely white district stretches from tourist destinations along Lake Michigan and across rural, Republican communities to more diverse Kalamazoo, home to Western Michigan University.
"There's no joy in Mudville," Upton said in a September statement about the inquiry.
Upton walked a careful line in that statement and others since, calling developments around Trump's dealings with Ukraine disconcerting but saying the proceedings are preventing progress on other issues. He joined other Republicans last month in voting against holding impeachment hearings.
Democrats have made Upton one of their top targets for 2020 after he survived his closest election in decades last year. He faces a state lawmaker from Kalamazoo, the district's Democratic base in its most populous county, and activists from outside the state already are coming in to provide reinforcements for local Democrats. Meanwhile, questions swirl about whether Upton, 66, may just opt to retire.
His office said he was unavailable for an Associated Press interview, but he told a local TV station that he has never announced his intentions as early as a year out from Election Day.
So far this cycle, Upton has raised almost $1 million for his campaign fund, roughly the same amount as at this same time two years ago. His top opponent, Democratic state Rep. Jon Hoadley, has raised about $525,000 — double the amount Upton's 2018 opponent had raised at this point in the last cycle.
Mark Miller, a former chairman of the 6th Congressional District Democrats who now serves as a local township clerk, believes Upton has been trying carefully to avoid angering Trump supporters or the independent voters and Democrats who helped give him double-digit victory margins over the years.
"I don't know how long he can keep that high-wire act going," Miller said, particularly as polls show support for impeachment growing among independents as well as Democrats.
"What we've heard year after year from those voters is 'Good old Fred. He's a good guy. He's OK by me,'" Miller said, adding that a vote against impeachment should peel off a number of those independents. "The question is: Will it be enough?"
John Gregory, an Air Force veteran who works in the aerospace industry, said that for most of his career, Upton has been in touch with the district, but that he's seemed to shift toward the right. He said he knows others — veterans and non-veterans — who are concerned about what they're hearing during impeachment proceedings and want Upton to "put his oath of office above party politics."
"He was elected because I think a lot of people here feel he's a good moderate and represents the district, but there are a lot of questions right now," the 57-year-old said.
Republicans argue Upton — described by Vice President Joe Biden last year as "one of the finest guys" he's worked with — has delivered for the district and is a better fit for the area than Hoadley. The National Republican Campaign Committee has called Hoadley an "open socialist" whose support for the Green New Deal would hurt Michigan's auto industry.
Trump and Republicans hope that rather than hurt GOP candidates, the impeachment effort will help rally the president's base. They're targeting vulnerable Democrats with TV and digital ads and holding protests outside their offices.
Democrats running in places like Upton's district, meanwhile, are far more muted on the topic — at least for now.
If voters ask his views, Hoadley says, he tells them the inquiry is both appropriate and necessary.
But the 36-year-old — who likes to mention he was 3 when Upton was first elected to Congress — is more focused on introducing himself to voters he says are "hungry for change."
On the campaign trail, Hoadley says he's talking about climate change, water quality and Upton's role in the Trump administration's attempt to repeal the Affordable Care Act, the Obama-era health law.
Upton helped write an amendment to the GOP's repeal plan that expanded its coverage for preexisting conditions. The measure, which drew some bipartisan support, died in the Senate.
Upton said it was an example of how he's stood up to Trump when he felt it necessary.
Marj Halperin, a leader of the Chicago chapter of Indivisible, a progressive organization, said Democrats' efforts on the ground are focused on issues other than impeachment.
Halperin was among more than a dozen people who traveled to southwest Michigan last Saturday to bolster the push in a key 2020 state. The group knocked on more than 600 doors to identify voters, provide information about Michigan's new law allowing absentee voting for all registered voters, and talk about Hoadley and Democratic statehouse candidates.
"We aren't going to sit back and wait to see how an impeachment hearing works out," Halperin said.
But Upton likely won't be able to avoid the impeachment spotlight for long. Democrats are practically giddy about a photo of Upton with Trump that House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy tweeted last month.
In it, McCarthy, Upton and Rep. Tom Emmer, chairman of the House Republicans' campaign arm, sit at a table with a beaming Trump in the president's Washington hotel, platters of shrimp cocktail before them. McCarthy's tweet read "Great night with the President. Republicans are united!"
The photo, and the timing of it, is likely to be featured prominently in campaign ads next year.
Democrats say it's a reminder that Upton isn't really the moderate he says he is. It's also another sign of the deep political divide, when sharing a table with your party's president could become an election liability.
"That picture really did say 1,000 words," Hoadley said.