Today is Thursday, Sept. 16, 2021. Let’s get caught up.
Here are today’s top stories, celebrity birthdays and a look back at this date in history:
SpaceX launches 4 amateurs on private Earth-circling trip
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — SpaceX’s first private flight streaked into orbit Wednesday night with two contest winners, a health care worker and their rich sponsor, the most ambitious leap yet in space tourism.
It was the first time a spacecraft circled Earth with an all-amateur crew and no professional astronauts.
“Punch it, SpaceX!” the flight’s billionaire leader, Jared Isaacman, urged moments before liftoff.
The Dragon capsule’s two men and two women are looking to spend three days going round and round the planet.
Milley defends calls to Chinese as effort to avoid conflict
WASHINGTON (AP) — The top U.S. military officer on Wednesday defended the phone calls he made to his Chinese counterpart in the turbulent final months of Donald Trump’s presidency, saying the conversations were intended to convey “reassurance” to the Chinese military and were in line with his responsibilities as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.