• British astrophysicist Stephen Hawking’s withdrawal from a conference in Israel prompted widely reported claims that he was joining an academic boycott of Israel. According to his spokesman, Hawking is withdrawing for health reasons. Others claim he did join the boycott. [WaPo]

• The conservative government in Japan, led by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, will not revise the country’s apologies for crimes committed during World War II. It had been suggested that Abe might amend statements made by the Japanese government in the 1990s. [NYT]

• An initiative to name a Washington, D.C. street after Dimitar Peshev, a Bulgarian politician who is credited with saving the lives of countless Jews during World War II, has rankled some who believe the honor would gloss over Bulgaria’s troubling World War II record. [AP]

• A four-day workshop at Parsons, the New School of Design in New York City, that was set to feature disgraced fashion designer John Galliano has been canceled. [AP]

• Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew is re-signing…his name to the dollar bill because his original signature looks terrible. [NPR]