Ukraine Reports 300 Dead in Airstrike on Mariupol Theater, Mr. Putin, “PLEASE STOP THE WAR IN UKRAINE!!!”
Ukraine reports 300 dead in airstrike on Mariupol theater
By NEBI QENA and ANDREA ROSAtoday
KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — About 300 people were killed in the Russian airstrike last week on a Mariupol theater that was being used as a shelter, Ukrainian authorities said Friday in what would make it the war’s deadliest known attack on civilians yet.
Flames and smoke rise from a fire following a Russian attack in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
People line up for food in a subway station being used as a bomb shelter, as Russian attacks continue in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana
Nastya Kuzyk, 20, is comforted by her mother Svitlana ,50, while recovering in a hospital from the injuries caused after a Russian attack in her city Chernihiv, downtown in Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
A man walks behind a crater created by a bomb and in front of damaged houses following a Russian bombing earlier this week, outskirts Mykolaiv, Ukraine, Friday, 25, 2022.(AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)
People try to extinguish a fire in a market after a Russian attack in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
A member of the Ukraine territorial defense unit prepares to go to the front line in Yasnohorodka, on the outskirts of Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/ (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
In this image from video provided by the Ukrainian Presidential Press Office, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy speaks to the leaders of the European Council during their summit in Brussels from Kyiv, Ukraine, Thursday, March 24, 2022. (Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP
A photograph hangs on a wall inside a house destroyed by fighting between Russian and Ukrainian forces in the village of Yasnohorodka, on the outskirts of Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, March 25, 2022. With stunning speed, Russia’s war in Ukraine is driving Western Europe into the outstretched arms of the United States again, and the embrace was especially apparent when President Joe Biden offered a major expansion of natural gas shipments to his European Union counterpart Friday. (AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)
People sit inside a subway car, parked in a station being used as a bomb shelter, as Russian attacks continue in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
A Ukrainian soldier lays on the operating table before surgery after being injured as the Russian attack continues in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
A man recovers items from a burning shop following a Russian attack in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana
A woman sweeps in front of her house, fragments of a Russian rocket in the foreground, following a Russian attack in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky)
Volunteers help an elderly woman to go downstairs to a bomb shelter in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky)
Firefighters battle a blaze following a Russian attack in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)A man rides a bicycle as black smoke rises from a fuel storage of the Ukrainian army following a Russian attack, on the outskirts of Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/ (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
Damage is seen inside a Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Yasnohorodka, a rural town where the Ukrainian army stopped the advance of the Russian army, on the outskirts of Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/ (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
A banner with the image known as “Saint Javelin” depicting a saint holding a Javelin, an American-made portable anti-tank missile system, is displayed in a check point in Kyiv, Ukraine, Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/ (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)
A child walks with a toy in a refugee center in Nadarzyn, near Warsaw, Poland, on Friday, March 25, 2022. U.S. President Joe Biden heads to Poland on Friday for the final leg of his four-day trip as he tries to maintain unity among allies and support Ukraine’s defence. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek)
The lifeless body of a resident lies next to a shop after being killed by a Russian attack in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Thursday, March 24, 2022. (AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky)
A man looks up as he sits in his apartment in a multistory house destroyed by a Russian attack in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Thursday, March 24, 2022. (AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky)
Residents wait in line to receive aid from the Ukrainian Red Cross in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Thursday, March 24, 2022. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)Russian forces have repeatedly attacked Ukrainian medical facilities, with at least 34 assaults independently documented by The Associated Press — part of an effort by the AP and Frontline to track evidence of potential war crimes (March 25)
How would those accused of Ukraine war crimes be prosecuted?
FILE – Jean-Paul Akayesu listens to the court before being pronounced guilty of genocide, crimes against humanity , murder, torture and rape at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda in Arusha, Tanzania, Wednesday Sept.2, 1998. Less than a month after Vladimir Putin’s order to drop the first bombs on his neighbor, the United States declared that Russian forces were committing war crimes in Ukraine. But it remains far from clear who will be held accountable and how. (AP Photo/Jean-Marc Bouju, File)
FILE – Former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic enters the court room of the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals in The Hague, Netherlands, Wednesday, March 20, 2019. Less than a month after Vladimir Putin’s order to drop the first bombs on his neighbor, the United States declared that Russian forces were committing war crimes in Ukraine. But it remains far from clear who will be held accountable and how.(AP Photo/Peter Dejong, Pool, File)
LVIV, Ukraine (AP) — Each day searing stories pour out of Ukraine: A maternity hospital bombed in Mariupol. A mother and her children killed as they fled Irpin in a humanitarian corridor. Burning apartment blocks. Mass graves. A child dead of dehydration in a city under siege, denied humanitarian aid.
Such images have contributed to a growing global consensus that Russia should be held accountable for war crimes in Ukraine.
“The world’s strongmen are watching like crocodiles … We have to show tyrants around the world that rule of law is stronger than rule of gun,” said David Crane, a veteran of numerous international war crime investigations.
Even as the conflict rages, a vast apparatus is being built to gather and preserve evidence of potential violations of international laws of war that were written after World War II. Less than a month after Vladimir Putin’s order to drop the first bombs on his neighbor, the United States declared that Russian forces were committing war crimes in Ukraine. But it remains far from clear who will be held accountable and how.
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One month into Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the loss and destruction is hard to put into words. Traumatized soldiers have returned to the front lines; ordinary citizens have taken up arms for the first time. Millions of women and children have boarded trains west, bidding painful goodbyes; others have taken shelter in underground subway stations. There are no definitive counts of the dead or wounded, no official tally of what has been destroyed, but the pain of war is on the faces of the people from this embattled nation, their resilience etched into their brows. Washington Post photographers have been on the ground from the very beginning — here’s some of their most powerful work.
Heidi Levine, in Kyiv, Ukraine
When I first arrived in Ukraine, just four days before Russia invaded, it felt as though everyone was still trying to desperately hold on to a fragile thread of hope that this horrific war could somehow not happen.
Within the very first days of the war, I witnessed and documented the largest exodus of refugees fleeing to bordering countries for safety since World War II. It felt as though people were running from a tidal wave crashing down on their lives, most leaving their sons, fathers, husbands and even grandfathers behind to fight for their country.
In the city of Irpin, people carried their children, their elderly, their disabled and whatever belongings they could take with them. Some often collapsed from the journey against the sounds of war and crackle of gunfire. Even their pets showed fear in their eyes as their owners tried to keep their balance while crossing the shaking planks of wood over the icy Irpin river. During one snowstorm, the images I made of an elderly woman covered in snow as her family struggled to push her in a supermarket cart made me wish to caption my photos with a single sentence: “What if this was your grandmother?”
In Irpin lay the bodies of three Russian soldiers as civilians carrying a white flag walked in their journey to escape to elsewhere in Europe. On the destroyed bridge, among the deserted cars, lay the body of a young man shot by a sniper. Beside the body were his cellphone and bicycle.
It is difficult to estimate how many more lives will be lost in bloodshed as the war continues. And yet, despite it all, Ukrainians are united in a way that words cannot describe. They display a level of immeasurable resilience that can never be shattered.
Ukrainian forces carry an elderly man as thousands flee the city of Irpin on the outskirts of Kyiv, Ukraine on March 7,2022. (Photo by Heidi Levine for The Washington Post).
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As the conflict grinds into its second month, the UN today said 1,081 civilian deaths have been confirmed, although the true figure is probably far higher. (Subscribe: https://bit.ly/C4_News_Subscribe) Today, officials in the southern city of Mariupol said that as many as 300 people were killed when the theatre they were sheltering in was hit on 16 March. Moscow signalled that it is scaling back its military ambitions in Ukraine to focus on the Donbass region, territory claimed by Russian-backed separatists. Lying on the edge of that region, the strategically important city of Izyum has seen intense fighting. With officials there telling us Russians have taken control of land north of the river. Warning: This report contains images some viewers might find distressing. ———————– Follow us on Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/Channel4News
President Biden travels to Poland to survey humanitarian crisis, exclusive look inside besieged Mariupol, and 14-year-old dies after fall from Orlando amusement park ride. 00:00 Intro 01:48 Biden in Poland as Ukraine fighting rages 04:59 Ukraine cities under siege from Russia 07:31 Inside brutal siege on Mariupol 09:30 2 million Ukrainians flee to Poland 12:21 Refugees living in limbo in Poland 15:03 Justice’s wife pushed to overturn election 17:38 Teen killed in amusement park fall 19:21 Lester reflects on support for Ukraine » Subscribe to NBC News: http://nbcnews.to/SubscribeToNBC » Watch more NBC video: http://bit.ly/MoreNBCNews NBC News Digital is a collection of innovative and powerful news brands that deliver compelling, diverse and engaging news stories. NBC News Digital features NBCNews.com, MSNBC.com, TODAY.com, Nightly News, Meet the Press, Dateline, and the existing apps and digital extensions of these respective properties. We deliver the best in breaking news, live video coverage, original journalism and segments from your favorite NBC News Shows. Connect with NBC News Online! NBC News App: https://smart.link/5d0cd9df61b80 Breaking News Alerts: https://link.nbcnews.com/join/5cj/bre… Visit NBCNews.Com: http://nbcnews.to/ReadNBC Find NBC News on Facebook: http://nbcnews.to/LikeNBC Follow NBC News on Twitter: http://nbcnews.to/FollowNBC#NBCNews#Biden#Ukraine
Images have emerged from inside the Ukrainian theater that was bombed as women and children sheltered inside, texts from the wife of Justice Clarence Thomas show she urged the White House to overturn the 2020 election and newly released body camera video shows the moments after a man was mauled by a tiger at a Florida wildlife attraction. » Subscribe to NBC News: http://nbcnews.to/SubscribeToNBC » Watch more NBC video: http://bit.ly/MoreNBCNews NBC News Digital is a collection of innovative and powerful news brands that deliver compelling, diverse and engaging news stories. NBC News Digital features NBCNews.com, MSNBC.com, TODAY.com, Nightly News, Meet the Press, Dateline, and the existing apps and digital extensions of these respective properties. We deliver the best in breaking news, live video coverage, original journalism and segments from your favorite NBC News Shows. Connect with NBC News Online! NBC News App: https://smart.link/5d0cd9df61b80 Breaking News Alerts: https://link.nbcnews.com/join/5cj/bre… Visit NBCNews.Com: http://nbcnews.to/ReadNBC Find NBC News on Facebook: http://nbcnews.to/LikeNBC Follow NBC News on Twitter: http://nbcnews.to/FollowNBC#NBCNews#Ukraine#ClarenceThomas
Putin Reportedly Suspects Betrayal From Within His Inner Circle
Andrei Soldatov, an investigative journalist with expertise in the Russian state intelligence apparatus, talks about reporting that Vladimir Putin is looking for who leaked the secret intelligence about the invasion of Ukraine that the U.S. made public in the lead up to the war. » Subscribe to MSNBC: http://on.msnbc.com/SubscribeTomsnbc About: MSNBC is the premier destination for in-depth analysis of daily headlines, insightful political commentary and informed perspectives. Reaching more than 95 million households worldwide, MSNBC offers a full schedule of live news coverage, political opinions and award-winning documentary programming — 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Connect with MSNBC Online Visit msnbc.com: http://on.msnbc.com/Readmsnbc Subscribe to MSNBC Newsletter: MSNBC.com/NewslettersYouTube Find MSNBC on Facebook: http://on.msnbc.com/Likemsnbc Follow MSNBC on Twitter: http://on.msnbc.com/Followmsnbc Follow MSNBC on Instagram: http://on.msnbc.com/Instamsnbc#MSNBC#Putin#Russia
Ukraine War: Civilians shelled fleeing northern Ukraine, as escape routes are sealed
It was a genocide that Russia continues to cover up to this day Subscribe and turn on notifications ? so you don’t miss any videos: http://goo.gl/0bsAjO In Ukraine, it’s become known as “the Holodomor,” meaning “death by starvation.” It was a genocide carried out by a dictator who wanted to keep Ukraine under his control and who would do anything to keep it covered up for decades. In the 1930s, Soviet leaders under Joseph Stalin engineered a famine that killed millions as they sought to consolidate agricultural power. In Ukraine, they used additional force as they sought to clamp down on a burgeoning Ukrainian national identity. There, at least 4 million died. As hunger spread among residents, Stalin spearheaded a disinformation campaign to hide the truth from other Soviet citizens and the world. So many Ukrainians died that officials had to send people to resettle the area, setting off demographic shifts that last to this day. Have an idea for a story we should investigate for Missing Chapter? Tell us! http://bit.ly/2RhjxMy Sign up for the Missing Chapter newsletter to stay up to date with the series: https://vox.com/missing-chapter Explore the full Missing Chapter playlist, including episodes, a creator Q&A, and more! https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list… Check out the Holodomor Research and Education Consortium for more information and resources: https://holodomor.ca/ We used the Harvard Great Famine Project’s maps and data for our video: https://gis.huri.harvard.edu/great-fa… The English translation of Ukrainian historian Stanislav Kulchytsky’s “The Famine of 1932-1933 in Ukraine: An Anatomy of the Holodomor” was crucial for context for this piece. https://holodomor.ca/the-famine-of-19… Anne Applebaum’s book, “Red Famine,” was a great resource for understanding this history: https://bookshop.org/books/red-famine… We used photos from Alexander Wienerberger, which are maintained by his great-granddaughter Samara Pearce: https://samarajadea3bb.myportfolio.com/ We also used photos from James Abbe. More info on the photographer can be found here: https://www.jamesabbe.com/ “Ukraine: Histories of Dispossession and Resilience” by Olga Biochak: https://www.megconley.com/hidden-brea… Make sure you never miss behind the scenes content in the Vox Video newsletter, sign up here: http://vox.com/video-newsletter Vox.com is a news website that helps you cut through the noise and understand what’s really driving the events in the headlines. Check out http://www.vox.com Support Vox’s reporting with a one-time or recurring contribution: http://vox.com/contribute-now Shop the Vox merch store: vox.com/store Watch our full video catalog: http://goo.gl/IZONyE Follow Vox on Facebook: http://facebook.com/vox Follow Vox on Twitter: http://twitter.com/voxdotcom Follow Vox on TikTok: http://tiktok.com/@voxdotcom
A child refugee fleeing the war from neighboring Ukraine with her family reacts as she sits in a bus after crossing the border by ferry at the Isaccea-Orlivka border crossing, in Romania, Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)
Nadia kisses her 10-year-old granddaughter Zlata Moiseinko, suffering from a chronic heart condition, as she receives treatment at a schoolhouse that has been converted into a field hospital in Mostyska, western Ukraine, Thursday, March 24, 2022. (AP Photo/Nariman El-Mofty
Children sit in a refugee center in Nadarzyn, near Warsaw, Poland, on Friday, March 25, 2022. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek)
A refugee fleeing the war from neighboring Ukraine with his family looks out of a tent after crossing the border by ferry at the Isaccea-Orlivka border crossing in Romania, Thursday, March 24, 2022. (AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)
A man and his child look at a photographer as they wait to get a food and drinking water at a supermarket on the territory which is under the Government of the Donetsk People’s Republic control, on the outskirts of Mariupol, Ukraine, Thursday, March 24, 2022. (AP Photo/Alexei Alexandrov)
An elderly man plays the accordion to amuse children in a city subway that people have used as a bomb shelter for over three weeks in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Thursday, March 24, 2022. Kharkiv is Ukraine’s second biggest city 30 kilometers of the Russian border. (AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky)
Mr. Putin, “PLEASE STOP THE WAR IN UKRAINE!!!” May Peace, Love & Kindness be in your Heart always
A woman arrives at the border crossing in Medyka, Poland. Photo: Visar Kryeziu/AP
Are this lady and baby doing any harm to you?
You destroyed her home, her community and her country
You killed her family, her friends, and her beloved country, Ukraine.
“PLEASE STOP THE WAR!!!”
Your young Russian men, are only teenagers, just starting their lives, were killed in thousands.
“PLEASE STOP THE WAR!!!”
Millions of Ukrainians are homeless, with no place to stay, no food to eat.
Once you told people that your mother had no food to eat and she fainted, people thought that she was dead.
But now you put the Ukrainian people in a worse situation than your mother.
“PLEASE STOP THE WAR!!!”
If you want your Ukraine brothers to be with you, you have to give them Peace, Love and Kindness
You said that Ukraine is the brother of Russia. You should not kill your brother, but that is what you are doing.
“PLEASE STOP THE WAR!!!”
You will never conquer Ukraine or the world. If you use nuclear weapons, it will be suicide, because you and all your Russia people will also die.
“PLEASE STOP THE WAR!!!”
If you want the world to respect and honor you, you need to use kindness and love, which in turn will bring peace.
Imagine that you stand proudly at the highest podium, with love, kindness and open arms, offering Peace to the world. This you can do though your wealth and power.
You will be honored as a man of Peace, Love and Kindness. For this you will be remembered and recorded in history forever.
“PLEASE STOP THE WAR IN UKRAINE!!!”
“What does Peace mean to you?”
Ing-On Vibulbhan-Watts, Sunday, March 13, 2022, 3:38 PM
ING PEACE PROJECT
Finished “Peace” artwork 14
Shadow of peace comments on “What does Peace mean to you?” organized by Marissa Blodnik and Greg Walker on Saturday, November 15th, 2014 at Paul Robson Center, Rutgers University, Newark, New Jersey. Finished artwork, after the written comments by Ing-On Vibulbhan-Watts
Links to Ing’s Peace Project Finished Artwork of Essex County 4-H Peace Comments page:
Good morning … It’s March Madness Selection Sunday. Smart Brevity™ count: 1,150 words … 4½ mins. Edited by Fadel Allassan.
Bulletin:National security adviser Jake Sullivan, warning Russia could be preparing to use chemical weapons in Ukraine, told Margaret Brennan on CBS’ “Face the Nation”
“[T]here is an escalating level of rhetoric on the Russian side trying to accuse the Ukrainians and the United States of potentially using chemical or biological weapons. And that’s …. an indicator that in fact, the Russians are getting ready to do it and try and pin the blame elsewhere.”
2. U.S. journalist killed in Ukraine
An elderly resident hides in a basement with no electricity, water or food, in the center of the Irpin, northwest of Kyiv, on Friday. Photo: Efrem Lukatsky/AP
A freelancer who formerly worked on New York Times projects was killed covering the war in Ukraine, The Times said today.
“We are deeply saddened to hear of Brent Renaud’s death. Brent was a talented filmmaker who had contributedto The New York Times over the years,” The Times said in a statement emailed to Axios.
“Though he had contributed to The Times in the past (most recently in 2015), he was not on assignment for any desk at The Times in Ukraine. Early reports that he worked for Times circulated because he was wearing a Times press badge that had been issued for an assignment many years ago.”
Renaud, 50, was a writer, filmmaker, and photojournalist from Little Rock, according to his Nieman bio.
NATO’s doorstep: Waves of Russian missiles pounded a military training base near Ukraine’s western border with NATO member Poland, killing 35 people, Ukrainian authorities told AP.
More than 30 Russian cruise missiles targetedthe sprawling facility, less than 15 miles from the closest border point with Poland, according to the governor of Ukraine’s western Lviv region.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky accused Russia of using blackmail and bribery in an attempt to force local officials in the southern Kherson region to form a “pseudo-republic.”
Breaking: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky warned of “a new stage of terror” in a video posted to Telegram last night, referring to the abduction of the mayor of Melitopol by Russian forces.
Zelensky accused Russiaof “a war of annihilation” as devastation intensified across Ukraine, including in Kyiv, The New York Times reported.
Russian forces pounding the port city of Mariupol shelled a mosque sheltering 80+ people, including children, the Ukrainian government said. Get the latest.
1 big thing: Dems ask Americans to sacrifice
Speaker Pelosi and House Democratic leaders at their issues conference in Philadelphia yesterday. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Facing a bleak midterm outlook, Democrats see a potential reset with voters based on President Biden’s handling of the Ukraine crisis, Axios’ Sophia Cai reports from Philadelphia:
Why it matters:S. sanctions on Russia are worsening inflation and increasing gas prices — adding misery for Democrats, who are bracing for the possible loss of the House and even the Senate in November.
At a conference for House Democrats in Philadelphia this week, lawmakers made the case for Americans’ shared sacrifice — including paying more for gas.
House Foreign Affairs Chairman Gregory Meeks(D-N.Y.) said: “I’m asking the people of the United States to also make that kind of sacrifice because in the long run, democracy is at stake.”
Between the lines: The war is giving Biden a chance to showcase attributes that appealed to Americans who backed him for president —foreign-policy experience, empathy and respect for institutions.
Reality check: Some House Dems tell Axios they’re skeptical voters will embrace surging gas prices — and reward or forgive Biden and Democrats just because they find Vladimir Putin repugnant, or value democracy over oppression.
“It’s not enough for us to say, ‘It’s a tough time and it’s because of the war in Russia,'” Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) told Axios. He and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) introduced legislation to tax the largest oil companies, and assist individuals earning less than $75,000 or couples earning less than $150,000.
“We’ve got to figure out something to reduce prices, and we need to be getting more money into the hands of working families.”
What we’re watching: A Wall Street Journal poll out yesterday (subscription) found that “57% of voters remained unhappy with Biden’s job performance, “despite favorable marks for the president’s response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine and a recent State of the Union speech.”
Democratic advantagesover Republicans narrowed on education, COVID response and protecting middle-class families, the poll found.
What they’re hoping: DCCC Chair Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-N.Y.) advised Biden: “Be the man you saw on Tuesday night — who crushed it at the State of the Union, who right now is leading the world standing up to Russian aggression.”
“The next chapteris going to be where the American people rediscover they elected a strong, decent man who is fighting for very important things.”
Go deeper: See Wall Street Journal poll results (not paywalled).
A Ukrainian serviceman photographs a damaged church yesterday, after shelling hit a residential district in Mariupol, Ukraine. Photo: Evgeniy Maloletka/AP
The White House is sounding the alarm over a new Russian propaganda campaign that officials fear is a pretext for an appalling new phase of the war:
The use of biological or chemical weapons, Axios’ Zachary Basu reports.
Why it matters: Vladimir Putin has a history of deploying illegal nerve agents against enemies, including opposition leader Alexei Navalny and former double agent Sergei Skripal. In Syria, Russia helped Bashar al-Assad cover up the use of chemical weapons against his own people.
What’s happening: Kremlin propagandists have been frenetically spreading baseless claims that the Pentagon is funding dangerous bioweapons labs in Ukraine.
Chinese diplomats and state-controlled media have joined in on the conspiracy theories, raising fears about a level of coordination between the two powers not seen during the conflict thus far.
Reality check: The U.S. and Ukraine have vigorously denied the presence of any U.S.-backed bioweapons program, saying the only labs the U.S. supports in Ukraine are standard research facilities that focus on “diagnostics, therapeutics, treatment, prevention and vaccines.”
The Biden administration has issued statements calling the Russian claims “preposterous” and “total nonsense,” and urging the world to “be on the lookout” for Russia to use chemical weapons itself or attempt a “false flag” operation in Ukraine.
“Allegedly, we are preparing a chemical attack,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said in a new video address. “This makes me really worried because we’ve been repeatedly convinced: if you want to know Russia’s plans, look at what Russia accuses others of.”
Between the lines: The U.S. has repeatedly sought to debunk Russia’s narratives about Ukraine by declassifying intelligence about Putin’s plans ahead of time, a novel approach that undermines his element of surprise.
War intensifies the impulse to share powerful images, but leaves users with uncomfortable choices and pitfalls in the social media wilderness, Axios’ Ina Fried writes in her weekly “Signal Boost” tech column.
Why it matters: Platform moderators face complex ethical and legal calls over photos of dead soldiers, images of teens taking up arms and videos of prisoners of war criticizing the conflict.
A video went viral of a Russian soldier denouncing the invasion after being captured in Ukraine.
It wasn’t long before observers pointed outthat such footage, if produced by a government, might well violate the Geneva Conventions.
Detainees“must be treated with dignity, and not exposed to public curiosity — like circulating images on social media,” the International Red Cross said as part of a Twitter thread explaining those rules.
Spotted yesterday on Manchester Boulevard in Inglewood, near LAX
Banks reveal billions in potential Russia losses
Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios
With Russia’s economy collapsing, its stock market cryogenically frozen and its bonds near default, global investors are set to endure major losses, Axios Markets co-author Matt Phillips reports.
Why it matters: For decades, Russian investments were a cornerstone of “emerging market” investing — the financial world’s marketing rubric encouraging the free-flowing global investments that helped define the post-Cold War era.
Russia was a star of the “BRICS” — a rubric coined by Goldman Sachs analysts that stood for the fast-growing emerging market economies that were investor favorites over the last two decades.
BRICS = Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa.
What we’re watching: Russia is considering seizing and potentially nationalizing assets of companies that quit the country.
A woman outside a maternity hospital that was shelled yesterday in Mariupol, Ukraine. Photo: Evgeniy Maloletka/AP
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and his Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba met in Turkey this morning for the highest-level peace talks since the war began, Axios’ Zachary Basu reports.
The two sides discussed the possibilityof a meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, but otherwise failed to come to any agreement on a ceasefire.
The big picture: As Putin’s frustration builds, Russian forces have increasingly turned to targeting civilians with indiscriminate shelling. (Photo above.)
The meeting came just one day after Russia bombed a maternity ward and children’s hospital in the besieged city of Mariupol, killing three people in an attack that Zelensky calledproof of genocide.
Lavrov falsely claimedat his press conference in Turkey that Ukraine was the aggressor, at one point telling reporters: “We are not planning to attack other countries. We didn’t attack Ukraine in the first place.”
Breaking: The U.K. this morning froze the assets of seven Russian oligarchs, including Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich — who was in the midst of attempting to sell the storied London soccer team.
Protesters form a human peace sign in Heroes’ Square in Budapest, Hungary, yesterday.
Fear in Europe: Who’s next?
Photo: Richard B. Levine/Sipa USA via Reuters
Some European countries, watching Russia’s brutal war in Ukraine, fear they could be next, AP reports.
Why it matters: Vladimir Putin “has said right from the start that this is not only about Ukraine,” said Michal Baranowski, director of the German Marshall Fund’s Warsaw office, but also “about the eastern flank of NATO and the rest of Eastern Europe.”
Western officials say the most vulnerable could be those who aren’t members of NATO or the European Union, and thus alone and unprotected — including Ukraine’s neighbor Moldova and Russia’s neighbor Georgia, both of them formerly part of the Soviet Union — along with the Balkan states of Bosnia and Kosovo.
Analysts warn that even NATO members could be at risk, including Estonia, Latviaand Lithuania on Russia’s doorstep, as well as Montenegro, either from Moscow’s direct military intervention or attempts at political destabilization.
Aftermath of Mariupol Hospital after a Russian attack severely damaged the children’s hospital and maternity ward. Photo: Mariupol City Council via AP
Russian shelling in the Ukrainian port city of Mariupolhas killed at least 1,170 people and destroyed a children’s hospital that also housed a maternity ward, Deputy Mayor Sergiy Orlov said today. Go deeper.
The Chernobyl nuclear power plantthat’s now controlled by Russian forces no longer has electricity, threatening efforts to safely store radioactive material, the Ukrainian government warned. Go deeper.
A grand jury indicted Colorado election official Tina Peters on seven felony counts as part of an investigation into tampering with the results of the 2020 election. Peters is a Republican candidate for secretary of state. Go deeper.
Breaking: Congressional leaders reached a bipartisan deal early today to provide $13.6 billion to help Ukraine, as part of a $1.5 trillion measure funding the government. Party leaders hoped to whip the 2,741-page measure through the House today and the Senate (perhaps) by week’s end. —AP
1 big thing: Putin’s failure
A charred Russian tank is seen Monday in Ukraine’s Sumy region. Photo: Irina Rybakova for the press service of the Ukrainian Ground Forces via Reuters
Vladimir Putin’s plan to seize Ukraine’s capital in the first two days of Russia’s invasion has been a complete failure, Axios’ Zachary Basu writes.
It’s been thrown off courseby a fierce Ukrainian resistance, poor planning and a series of profound miscalculations, top U.S. intelligence officials say.
Why it matters: An isolated and angry Putin is expected to double down on his brutality as the war in Ukraine drags on for weeks, months or even years. It could be his undoing.
Reality check: A devastating punch that levels Ukrainian cities is more likely than ever. It’ll be less targeted … more indiscriminate.
State of play: CIA Director Bill Burns testified at a House hearing yesterday that Putin “has no sustainable political end game in the face of what’s going to continue to be fierce resistance from the Ukrainians.”
Even if Russia eventually captures Kyiv, the U.S. intelligence community doesn’t see a way that a pro-Russian puppet regime can stay in power given the Ukrainian people’s absolute refusal to capitulate.
Ukraine’s Armed Forces say this is a downed Russian jet crashing in Kharkiv, Ukraine, on Sunday. Image from video released by Ukrainian Ground Forces via Reuters
The U.S. estimates between 2,000 and 4,000 Russian troops have already been killed, “far in excess” of what Putin anticipated or has admitted, Burns said.
Putin was readyfor sanctions, but not the speed and unity with which the Western world brought the hammer down — especially private companies. McDonald’s, Starbucks and Coca-Cola all halted Russian sales yesterday.
What we’re watching: Despite the setbacks, Putin is “unlikely to be deterred,” Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines testified.
The people who will suffer most are Ukrainian civilians, who are already beginning to see the vicious tactics Putin adopted to achieve his military aims in Syria and Chechnya.
The upside is that what Putin “might be willing to accept as a victory may change over time, given the significant costs he is incurring,” Haines predicted.
Data: UNHCR; Map: Jared Whalen and Will Chase/Axios
Stunning stat: At the end of 2021, before the invasion of Ukraine, 1 in 29 people worldwide needed humanitarian assistance, according to the U.N.
After a pandemic, multiple food shortages, the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan — and now an exodus of Ukrainians fleeing the Russian military — global aid groups tell Axios’ Stef Kight they can barely keep up.
Why it matters: “The world’s humanitarian funding machine just doesn’t have enough money to face all of the people in need this year,” Bob Kitchen, the International Rescue Committee’s director of emergencies, tells Axios.
What’s happening: Aid groups are scrambling to help Ukraine, as well as the surrounding nations welcoming 2 million+ refugees — the world’s fastest population movement since at least World War II, experts say.
Many of the same agencies sprang into action as refugees poured out of Afghanistan last year.
At the same time, West Africa is headed toward devastating drought and food insecurity: Over 38 million people will likely experience a severe food emergency this summer.
Separately, the Horn of Africa is facing what could be the worst food crisis in 30 years .
Conflict and other disasterscontinue in Yemen, Syria, Myanmar and elsewhere.
“I would love to know the top 3 or 5 ways that I can help Ukraine besides donating money to charity,” Stephanie Worthington, a Finish Line reader and tech marketer in Shingle Springs, California, emailed last night.
“I’ve given to charity, but there must be more ways to help that I just don’t know about.”
Here ya go:
Give critical supplies: Meest, a Ukrainian logistics company with warehouses in several states, is accepting humanitarian aid packages for Ukraine. The urgent needis for medical and tactical supplies, including backpacks, Tylenol and bandages. Here’s how to drop off or ship packages to a Meest warehouse.
Give your time: You can sign upto volunteer with Nova Ukraine, and help organize fundraisers and spread awareness.
Attend a peaceful protest: Here’s a live logof upcoming demonstrations, including events all over the U.S. (h/t The Guardian)
Support on-the-ground journalism: The Kyiv Independent, an English language news site that has been reporting the facts in real time, is raising money via GoFundMe.
The Chinese government is scrubbing the country’s internet of sympathetic or accurate coverage of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and systematically amplifying pro-Putin talking points, Axios China author Bethany Allen-Ebrahimian writes.
· Why it matters: China’s use of its propaganda and censorship muscle helps insulate Beijing from domestic backlash against its support for Putin — and leaves its citizens with an airbrushed, false version of events, similar to what’s seen in Putin’s state-controlled Russia.
What’s happening: Chinese media outlets were told to avoid posting “anything unfavorable to Russia or pro-Western” on their social media accounts, and to only use hashtags started by Chinese state media outlets, according to a leaked censorship directive.
· Online comments expressing sympathy for Ukraine have been deleted — even the anti-war speech given by the Paralympic Committee president during the opening ceremony was censored on Chinese TV.
· Pro-Putin social media posts on Chinese social media were allowed to proliferate, as were posts blaming the U.S. and NATO for the conflict.
· Chinese state media have widely aggregated content from Russian outlets.
Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyposted a video of himself in his presidential office in Kyiv last night, declaring in the face of multiple alleged assassination attempts: “I’m not hiding. And I’m not afraid of anyone.”
Why it matters: Zelensky’s nightly addresses, in which he details Russian attacks and honors fallen heroes, have become appointment viewing for news and inspiration, Axios’ Zachary Basu writes.
“You know, we used to say: Monday is a hard day,” Zelensky said as he filmed out his window on Bankova Street on the 12th day of the invasion.
“Now there is a war in the country, so every day is Monday.”
Zelensky entered selfie-style, then sat at his desk. Photo from Ukrainian Presidency video
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is threatening the global food supply.
The big picture: The two countries combine for nearly 1/3 of global wheat and barley exports, AP reports. Ukraine is a major exporter of corn.
Lebanon, Egypt and Syria are among the countries most dependent on affordable wheat. “Any [price] hikes will be catastrophic not only for me, but for the majority of the people,” Ahmed Salah, an Egyptian father of seven, told AP.
Supplies were already tight because of droughts hitting the wheat belts of North America, NPR notes.
European livestock farmers are heavily reliant on Ukraine for corn and other grain additives for animal feed.
Between the lines: This also threatens efforts to help famine-stricken countries like Afghanistan, Yemen and Ethiopia, the Financial Times reports (paywall).
The bottom line: Ukraine and Russia “account for about 12% of the calories the world trades,” NPR reports.
Go deeper:Tomorrow’s Axios Markets will dive into what the war means for global wheat markets.
Russia “nearly 100%” deployed
A woman arrives at the border crossing in Medyka, Poland. Photo: Visar Kryeziu/AP
Russia has now deployed “nearly 100%” of the combat power that it had massed on Ukraine’s borders, a senior U.S. defense official told reporters today.
The World Health Organization confirmed at least 14 attacks on Ukrainian health facilities since the start of Russia’s invasion, reports Axios’ Oriana Gonzalez.
?The U.S. is deploying another 500 troops to Europe in response to the invasion, a senior defense official said today, “pushing the total number of American forces in the region to 100,000.” — The Wall Street Journal
AXIOS AM: Mar 7, 2022
Mike Allen <firstname.lastname@example.org>
15 Running for their lives
Photo: Carlos Barria/Reuters
Above, residents flee the town of Irpin, outside Kyiv, after heavy shelling landed on the only escape route used by locals, with Russian troops advancing towards the capital.
At least four civilians killed: The top of the front page of today’s New York Times includes a photo of a family lying on the ground in Irpin after being hit by a Russian mortar shell. Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky said they were killed.
“When the family — a mother, her teenage son and a daughter who appeared to be about 8 — was spotted sprawled on the ground, soldiers rushed to help, but could do little for them or a man described as a family friend who had been helping them escape,” Addario reports.
A factory and a store burn after being bombarded in Irpin.
AXIOS AM: Mar 6, 2022
Mike Allen <email@example.com>
1 big thing: Blinken sees evidence of war crimes
Secretary of State Tony Blinkentold CNN’s Jake Tapper on “State of the Union” from Moldova this morning: “[W]e’ve seen very credible reports of deliberate attacks on civilians, which would constitute a war crime.”
“And what we’re doingright now is documenting all of this, putting it all together, looking at it, and making sure that as people and the appropriate organizations and institutions investigate whether war crimes have been or are being committed, that we can support whatever they’re doing,” Blinken added.
“They’re very credible. And we’re documenting everything.”
Breaking:The Ukraine exodus is the fastest-growing refugee crisis in Europe since World War II, topping 1.5 million in 10 days, the UN refugee agency said today.
“In the coming days,millions more lives will be uprooted, unless there is an immediate end to this senseless conflict,” the UNHCR said. Go deeper.
Pope Francis said today in his weekly address to crowds gathered in St. Peter’s Square: “In Ukraine, rivers of blood and tears are flowing. This is not just a military operation [as Putin described it], but a war which sows death, destruction and misery.” (Reuters)
Ukrainians crowd under a bridge destroyed by a Russian airstrike, as they wait to flee across the Irpin River on the outskirts of Kyiv yesterday.
Photo: Emilio Morenatti/AP
Assisted by Ukrainian soldiers, they lugged pets, infants, purses and flimsy bags stuffed with minimal possessions, AP reports.
Photo: Vadim Ghirda/AP
Some of the weak and elderly were carried along the makeshift path in blankets, carts — and even a wheelbarrow.
AXIOS AM: Mar 5, 2022
Mike Allen <firstname.lastname@example.org>
1 big thing: Zelensky’s Zoom plea
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios
Ukraine leaders appreciate the worldwide solidarity, but are frustrated by how far the talk exceeds the action, Axios’ Sophia Cai writes.
Why it matters:The survival of some cities could come down to hours or days. While missiles are arriving in Ukraine and crushing sanctions are being felt in Moscow, neither is stopping the invasion.
This morning, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said after senators held a Zoom call with President Volodymyr Zelensky that the Ukrainian leader “made a desperate plea for Eastern European countries to provide Russian-made planes to Ukraine.”
“These planesare very much needed,” Schumer said. “I will do all I can to help the administration to facilitate their transfer.”
Andriy Yermak, a longtime top aide to Zelensky, wrote in a New York Times op-ed under the headline, “I’m Writing From a Bunker With President Zelensky Beside Me. We Will Fight to the Last Breath”:
We need more — and, please, stop telling us military aid is on the way. … We need antitank and antiaircraft weapons and other ammunition delivered to our brave soldiers right now.
Many countries promised aid to Ukraine to help repel the invasion. But the strongest declarations from the West and elsewhere haven’t fully materialized.
The UN General Assemblyvoted 141-5 to demand Vladimir Putin withdraw forces, but there’s no mechanism for enforcement.
The European Union promised to send fighter jets. But that never happened, after three nations with Russian-made aircraft refused.
About 20 countries— mostly NATO and EU members — pledged to send weapons. But the arms have been slow to reach Ukraine, and it’s unclear whether they’ll arrive in time to make a difference.
TIME’s new coverfeatures President Zelensky’s words to the European Parliament on March 1: “Life will win over death, and light will win over darkness.” Cover stor
The U.S. has also been heavy on symbolism over substance:
First lady Jill Bidenhosted Ukraine’s ambassador to the U.S. at the State of the Union address. Many senators and representatives wore Ukrainian blue and yellow.
Congress left for the weekend,though, without passing a multibillion-dollar aid package.
Schumer told Zelensky today, according to a source on the call: “Senator McConnell and I — along with the other members on this Zoom — are working very hard in a bipartisan fashion to get all the assistance the administration has requested for the Ukrainian people. Together we will get that assistance of over $10 billion in economic, humanitarian, and security assistance to the Ukrainian people quickly.”
Alexander Vindman, the Ukraine-born, retired Army officer and former National Security Council director for Europe, called for $35 billion in reconstruction aid — what’s been dubbed a “Marshall Plan for Ukraine.”
Go deeper … Axios explains: Why Ukraine isn’t getting a no-fly zone.
White House open to cutting Russian oil
Cecilia Rouse, chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, joins Jen Psaki’s briefing yesterday. Photo: Evelyn Hockstein/Reuters
The White House signaled openness yesterday to reducing imports of Russian oil — without saying exactly how, Axios’ Hans Nichols reports.
Why it matters:A ban could translate to higher prices at the pump in parts of the U.S. and increase inflation, a key concern for Biden.
Michael McFaul, U.S. ambassador to Russia under President Barack Obama, said yesterday that he expects the practice of importing Russian oil to “change soon.”
“The United States should not be importing Russian oil. Period,” McFaul said during an onlinepanel discussion about the Russian invasion of Ukraine moderated by Axios’ Jonathan Swan.
“I understand inflation.I understand the arguments. But there’s no ethical or moral reason that we should be doing that, and I expect that to change soon.”
The context: Oil from Russia accounted for roughly 3% of U.S. crude imports in 2021.
It’s mostly importedin Hawaii and the coasts, where refiners don’t have access to the pipelines connecting the big domestic oil fields in places like the Southwest’s Permian Basin.
Energy analysts and economists disagree about how much of a price spike an import ban would generate.
State of play: Cecilia Rouse, chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisers, told reporters yesterday: “[W]e are looking at options that we can take right now if we were to cut the U.S. consumption of Russian energy. But what’s really most important is we — that we maintain a steady supply of global energy.”
Between the lines: That appears to be a shift from the White House’s initial dismissal of the congressional effort to effectively impose an embargo on Russian oil for U.S. refiners.
Speaker Pelositold reporters on Thursday about a ban: “I’m all for that. Ban it. … Ban the oil coming from Russia. Yeah.”
New efforts by the Kremlin to bully the press and silence dissent are forcing independent media and social networks out of the country, Axios’ Sara Fischer writes:
The BBC and Bloomberg said they’re suspending operationsin Russia, and CNN will stop broadcasting there, following a new law threatening to imprison journalists for up to 15 years if they publish what Moscow deems to be “fake” information about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
ABC and CBS saidthey’ll temporarily stop broadcasting from Russia.
Russia’s communications regulator Roskomnadzor (Russian) yesterday blocked the websites of several outlets, including U.S. government-funded VOA and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, for spreading what it called fake news on the “special operation in Ukraine.”
High-quality Russian independent news agenciesare being yanked off the air, forcing journalists to flee the country.
Russia alsoblockedFacebook entirely yesterday, after partially restricting the social network last week.
Zoom out: Putin’s propaganda push has intensified as protests erupt at home. The Kremlin is relying on state media to sell the war as a success domestically.
This image, made from a video released by the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, shows a bright, flaring object landing at the plant in Enerhodar, Ukraine, today. Photo via AP
As the Ukraine invasion enters Week 2, Russian shelling ignited a fire at Europe’s biggest nuclear plant. That led to global alarm about a meltdown, as the world watched ghostly nighttime video of the complex.
But the fire is out.Russian forces took control of the site.
Why it matters: Ukraine’s state nuclear regulator said losing the ability to cool nuclear fuel at the plant could lead to an accident even worse than the 1986 Chernobyl accident — the world’s worst nuclear disaster — or the 2011 Fukushima meltdowns in Japan, AP reports.
The assault led to a phone call between President Biden and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. The U.S. Energy Department activated its nuclear incident response team as a precaution.
Ukraine saidno changes in radiation levels have been recorded.
In an emotional speech in the middle of the night, Zelensky accused Russia of “nuclear terrorism” and said he feared an explosion that would be “the end for everyone. The end for Europe. The evacuation of Europe.”
Photo: Maksim Levin/Reuters
This is a drone’s-eye view of a residential building destroyed by shelling, in the settlement of Borodyanka, about 35 miles outside
Photo: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images
A family of Ukrainian refugees in Lonya, Hungary, yesterday after walking across the border. Long queues are forming at border crossings.
Vladimir Putin chairs a Security Council meeting yesterday at his Novo-Ogaryovo residence outside Moscow. Photo: Andrei Gorshkov/Sputnik/Kremlin Pool Photo via AP
Thousands of Russians are rushing to flee the country ahead of this weekend, as rumors swirl that Vladimir Putin could soon declare martial law, close the borders and crack down even harder on domestic dissent, Axios’ Zachary Basu reports.
Why it matters: For as devastating as the humanitarian situation in Ukraine has become, widespread suffering is rapidly arriving at Russia’s own doorstep.
More than 8,000 people have already been detained at anti-war protests since Feb. 24, according to the independent monitor OVD-Info.
Russia’s Duma has passeda law making the spread of “fake news” about the Russian military punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
The last pillarsof Russia’s already-limited independent press were forced to close under pressure from the Kremlin this week.
Russia’s state communications watchdog blocked the websitesof the BBC, Voice of America, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Deutsche Welle and other foreign media outlets for spreading “fake” information.
What to watch: Russia’s second-largest airline announced it will cease all international flights from tomorrow, as Russia’s upper house of parliament meets for an emergency session that many fear could mark the descent of a new Iron Curtain.
Invasion’s economic dominoes
Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios
Ripping Russia, the world’s 11th largest economy, out of the global financial system is already causing collateral damage around the world, Axios Markets author Emily Peck writes.
Oil and gas prices have skyrocketed, even though energy was purposefully carved out of sanctions.
Internal conflicts could erupt elsewhere due to food insecurity.
Catch up quick: Since Russia invaded Ukraine last week, the U.S. and its European allies moved fast to levy some of the harshest sanctions ever imposed.
The strikes were targeted. The West tried to keep the energy sector — a massive part of the Russian economy — out of the most severe penalties, so European countries could continue to buy oil and gas.
Reality check: Russia will start to operate in different ways, carving out an alternate financial system — much like Iran has done after being cut off from SWIFT by the Trump administration.
Axios explains: Why Ukraine isn’t getting a no-fly zone
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios
Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky has repeatedly urged Western leaders to impose a “no-fly zone” over Ukraine. But establishing one appears unlikely any time soon, Axios’ Laurin-Whitney Gottbrath writes.
Why it matters:Imposing a no-fly zone (NFZ) would mark a significant escalation in the war — potentially bringing NATO directly into a conventional conflict with a nuclear power.
A no-fly zone is airspace where certain aircraft aren’t allowed to enter.
In a war, no-fly zones must be enforced militarily — which can include shooting down banned aircraft.
The U.S. and other major powers have so far ruled out establishing a NFZ over Ukraine.
Giant global businesses in every sector are abandoning Russia following the invasion of Ukraine.
Why it matters:In addition to condemning the invasion, the companies see an impossible environment — from worker safety … to the logistics of getting supplies … financial and sales disruption … and the complexity of complying with sanctions, Axios’ Hope King writes.
State of play: Financial sanctions have isolated Russia from the rest of the world. Businesses operating in Russia have an increasingly limited ability to collect revenue or pay workers and suppliers.
Economic sanctions, including export controls, have curtailed imports.
Some workers are being moved out of Russia.
Restricted airspace and travelare preventing companies from getting the equipment they need to continue to operate.
Between the lines: Some companies that have very little physical presence in Russia — including many in tech, retail and media — are limiting how products are used in the country or have pulled them.
Flashback: Since the Soviet Union’s collapse three decades ago, Russia had been seen as an emerging market with long-term growth potential.
In the seven days since the invasion began:
Boeingsuspended major operations in Moscow, as well as maintenance and technical support for Russian airlines.
Shellwill sever ties with Russian gas giant Gazprom and end its roughly $1 billion financing of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline.
Exxon Mobil saysit will exit Russia oil and gas operations valued at more than $4 billion and cease new investment.
GM, which sells only about 3,000 cars a year in Russia, saysit will suspend exporting vehicles.
Only four countries — Belarus, North Korea, Eritrea and Syria — joined Russia today in voting against a non-binding UN resolution that condemned the invasion of Ukraine.
Another 35 abstained, including India and China, Axios’ Ivana Saric and Zachary Basu report.
Between the lines:India has military ties with Russia from the Soviet era, causing headaches for the U.S. as it seeks to integrate India into an alliance to counter China in the Indo-Pacific.
141 countries voted in favor of the resolution.
AXIOS AM: Mar 2, 2022
Mike Allen <email@example.com>
1 big thing: Ukraine splinters internet
Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios
Moves to restrict Kremlin disinformation after the Ukraine invasion are further splintering the global internet.
Why it matters:A universal internet — where everyone can access the same messages and services — is slipping out of reach as democracies falter and governments limit usage, Axios’ Ashley Gold writes.
Zoom out: Social media execs have warned against the dangers of a Balkanized internet for years as many nations — including Russia, China, India, Kazakhstan, Belarus, Ethiopia and Turkey — limited access.
In China, American apps like Facebook and Twitter are blocked.
Between the lines: Cutting countries off can help dictators win.
In democracies, including the U.S., it’s easy to focus on the harms of Big Tech and look to the government for answers, Kate Klonick, an assistant law professor at St. John’s University, told Axios.
But “what we’re seeing with Russia and Ukraine is a return to some of the formative ideas around the power that the internet brings to individuals.”
Reality check: Authoritarian countries plow ahead with their own visions for the internet as the U.S. and Europe search for alignment on privacy, AI, competition, content moderation and cybersecurity regulations.
Biden: “I get it”
What President Biden sees. Photo: Shawn Thew/EPA/Pool via AP
President Biden said in his State of the Union address that getting inflation under control is his “top priority,” while warning Russia’s invasion of Ukraine could lead to higher costs for American consumers.
Why it matters:The White House knows the country is frustrated with price hikes. But officials also want credit for strong GDP growth, job creation and low unemployment, Axios’ Hans Nichols writes.
“With all the bright spots in our economy, record job growth and higher wages, too many families are struggling to keep up with the bills,” the president said.
“Inflation is robbing themof the gains they might otherwise feel. I get it.”
Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images
Above: An old-fashioned scrum greets President Biden after the speech.
Secretary of State Tony Blinkentalked with House Armed Services Committee Chairman Adam Smith (D-Wash.).
Go deeper: Read Biden’s vow to seize yachts and jets of Russian oligarchs, from the Axios AM Thought Bubble that dropped in your inbox late last night ET.
Zelensky: “The best people on Earth”
Cover: The Times of London
Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky posted a video on Facebook today in which he praised Ukrainians as “a symbol of invincibility,” as the Russian invasion entered a seventh day.
“Another night of Russia’s full-scale war against us, against the people, has passed,” Zelensky said. “We’ve hardly slept for seven nights.”
Zelensky said invading forces “know nothing about our capital,” Kyiv, or Ukrainian history: “But they have an order to erase our history … Erase our country. Erase us all.”
“Today you,Ukrainians, are the symbol of invincibility, a symbol that people in any country can become the best people on Earth at any moment.”
A member of the Ukrainian Emergency Service beholds Kharkiv City Hall following shelling yesterday. Photo: Pavel Dorogoy/AP
Explosions rang out in Kyiv and Kharkiv as Russian forces intensified their bombing campaign on Ukraine today.
Kharkiv has been the scene of some of the worst shelling by Russian troops since the invasion began.
Zelenskyhas called a strike on Kharkiv’s central square yesterday an act of state terrorism.
A Russian missile hit the Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial site in Kyiv today, killing at least five people, Ukrainian officials said.
President Volodymyr Zelensky tweeted:“[W]hat is the point of saying ‘never again’ for 80 years, if the world stays silent when a bomb drops on the same site of Babyn Yar?”
“Between 1941 and 1943,the Nazis shot between 70,000 and 100,000 people at Babyn Yar, including almost the entire Jewish population of Kyiv,” according to the Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Center.
The Russians were targetingthe nearby Kyiv TV tower, saying it was among the infrastructure used for “information attacks” from Ukraine’s security services.
A blast is seen in the TV tower, amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, in Kyiv, today. Photo: Carlos Barria/Reuters
The bottom line: A senior U.S. defense official told reporters that Russia’s advance on Kyiv had stalled and that there were signs of flagging Russian morale, Axios’ Zachary Basu and Dave Lawler report.
State of the Union spoiler
The House chamber yesterday. Photo: J. Scott Applewhite/AP
Look for President Biden to be very tough on Vladimir Putin in tonight’s State of the Union address (9 p.m. ET).
Why it matters: The White House has scrambled to be sure he meets the moment.
The president will point to the U.S. role in protecting democracy, before moving on to Americans’ pocketbooks — how to grow the economy from the “bottom up and the middle out,” as he puts it.
The speech is built around four buckets:
World stage:Biden will say “democracy will prevail” in Ukraine.
Economy:He’ll call for lowering costs for working families.
COVID:He’ll stress the U.S. is “in a new moment” of the pandemic and has the tools to contain the virus.
The future of America:He’ll point to Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, his nominee for the Supreme Court, and vow to make inroads on immigration and climate.
Catch up quick
Photo: Emilio Morenatti/AP
Above: Animal keeper Kirilo Trantin comforts an elephant at the Kyiv Zoo.
“Europe’s largest refugee crisis this century”:About 677,000 Ukrainian refugees have arrived in neighboring countries. Go deeper.
The U.S. will release 30 million barrelsfrom the Strategic Petroleum Reserve as part of international plans to release 60 million barrels. Go deeper.
The ACLU is suing to block aTexas directive that would have a state agency investigate parents for child abuse if they seek gender-affirming care for their children. Go deeper.
Exclusive: A small group of Latino U.S. House members recently expressed “extreme concern” about a plan to potentially dispatch robot dogs along the U.S.-Mexico border, Axios’ Russell Contreras reports.
President Biden set his sights on Russian oligarchs, COVID fraudsters, social media platforms and even defund-the-police efforts tonight — populist targets in a broader speech about national and global unity.
Biden’s anti-Russia,pro-Ukraine passages inspired the only real partisan unity in the chamber:
The U.S. Department of Justice is assembling a dedicated task force to go after the crimes of Russian oligarchs.
We are joining with our European allies to find and seize your yachts, your luxury apartments, your private jets. We are coming for your ill-begotten gains.
On Vladimir Putin, Biden ad-libbed: “He has no idea what’s coming.”
Ukrainian Ambassador Oksana Markarova is applauded by first lady Jill Biden. Photo: ABC News
Twitter erupted when Biden accidentally said Putin would never gain the hearts and souls of the “Iranian” people, instead of Ukrainian.
Biden’s other targets:
He announced that the Justice Department will appoint a chief prosecutor to go after pandemic fraud.
He bluntly distanced himselffrom the defund-the-police movement: “The answer is not to defund the police. The answer is to fund the police with the resources and training they need to protect our communities.”
With Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen in the audience, Biden framed social media as part of a larger mental health crisis and urged Congress to “strengthen privacy protections” and ban targeted advertising to children.
Reality check:Privacy legislation has been stalled for years, notes Axios managing editor Scott Rosenberg.
Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) sat with Republican senators. Photo: J. Scott Applewhite/AP
What we were watching, from Axios’ Sophia Cai, in the House chamber:
Fellow Supreme Court justicesstanding to applaud retiring Stephen Breyer — but careful to avoid politics by sitting when Biden mentioned his nominee to replace Breyer, Ketanji Brown Jackson.
Joe Manchin(D-W.Va.) sitting with Republicans — but rising for most of the Democrats’ applause lines.
Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) shouting “13 of them!” as Biden spoke, referring to Americans killed at Kabul airport during the frantic evacuation from Afghanistan. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) shouted: “Stay out of women’s sports!”
Axios.com has the latest reaction, including the Republican response.
1 big thing — Biden’s dilemma: Putin off-ramp
Vladimir Putin chairs a meeting on economic issues at the Kremlin yesterday. Photo: Alexey Nikolsky/Sputnik/AFP via Getty Images
With Ukraine holding Russia off longer than many U.S. officials had expected, President Biden now faces a great unanswered question — how to give Vladimir Putin an off-ramp to avoid even greater calamity.
Why it matters: A cornered, humiliated Putin could unleash untold pain on the world, from cyberattacks to nuclear threats. After enacting brutal sanctions, the White House now must consider how the invasion can end without a new catastrophe, Axios’ Jonathan Swan and Zachary Basu report.
Between the lines: Nobody knows what Putin would accept.
Many officials fear that we are heading into a very dangerous period — the punishing Western sanctions pushing an autocrat into a corner.
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), vice chair of the Senate intelligence committee, has hinted Putin could be addled.
“This is the most dangerous moment in 60 years,” Rubio tweetedSunday night. Putin, he said, “is facing a humiliating military fiasco & he has triggered extraordinary consequences on #Russia’s economy & people that will not be easy to reverse … And his only options to reset this imbalance are catastrophic ones.”
A European diplomat told reporters at a briefing yesterday: “It’s like the Sun Tzu thing of giving someone a golden bridge to retreat across. How do you get him to go in a different direction?”
“I think the door to diplomacy remains open,” the diplomat continued. “Putin … doesn’t normally back down. But he also controls the information environment in his own country to such an extent that if he does, he can cover his tracks. … So I think there is room for him to de-escalate — and that’s certainly what we’re pressing for.”
The diplomat pointed to yesterday’s Russia-Ukraine peace talks in Belarus as the most viable off-ramp in a sea of bad options, noting that negotiations lasted for four hours and appear headed for a second round.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskysaid before the talks that he was willing to discuss “neutral status” for Ukraine — one of Putin’s three demands.
But the other two— demilitarization and “denazification” of Ukraine, and recognition of Russia’s claim to Crimea — suggest Putin will never accept a deal in which Zelensky remains in power.
The bottom line: The West’s response to Putin — for so long, uncertain and halting — has moved at astonishing speed and ferocity over the past week. How Putin will respond — and whether de-escalation is even possible — is keeping national-security leaders up at night.
The West is ratcheting up economic pressure on Russia’s oligarchs — known for splashy yachts and piles of dark money squirreled away around the globe, Axios Markets co-author Emily Peck writes.
· Why it matters: Some of these wealthy Russians may have a measure of influence over Vladimir Putin. The U.S. and Europe are hoping that if they squeeze the oligarchs, the oligarchs may pressure Putin. In the longer term, going after hidden Russian wealth could curtail the power of Putin and his circle.
The EU yesterday banned travel and froze assets of 26 businessmen, government officials and even journalists with longstanding ties to Putin, the Financial Times first reported (subscription).
· On the list: Igor Sechin, CEO of Rosneft, Russia’s state oil company, “considered to be one of the most powerful members of the Russian Political elite,” the EU said in its statement.
· Nikolay Tokarev, CEO of Transneft, a major oil and gas company, is also among the West’s specific targets. He served with Putin in the KGB in the 1980s and is one of the oligarchs who took control of state assets in the 2000s, the EU said.
Reality check: There’s a lot of Russian money hidden around the globe, including in the U.S. and U.K. — and it’s not always clear where it is.
· Recent laws passed in the U.S. and EU are intensifying efforts to untangle this dark web, but they’re just at the start.
Maxar Technologies says the Russian convoy converging on Kyiv stretches 40 miles — up from the 17 miles we told you about in Axios PM.
The tanks, self-propelled artillery and armored vehiclesare spaced fairly far apart in some stretches. In others, the military equipment is traveling two or three vehicles abreast, Maxar says.
“The Russian advance on Kyiv has made little progress over the past 24 hours probably as a result of continuing logistical difficulties,” the British defense ministry said in a military intelligence update quoted by Reuters.
But the war entered a new, uglier phase:70 Ukrainian servicemen were killed by a Russian rocket attack, and dozens of civilians have died in “barbaric” shelling, Ukrainian officials said.
On this edition for Sunday, March 13, Russian forces attack a military training center in western Ukraine. American journalist and documentarian Brent Renaud, who reported for PBS in the past, is killed outside of Kyiv. And in our signature segment, the challenges of tackling drug smuggling in Antwerp, Belgium, a key entry point into Europe. Hari Sreenivasan anchors from New York. Stream your PBS favorites with the PBS app: https://to.pbs.org/2Jb8twG Find more from PBS NewsHour at https://www.pbs.org/newshour Subscribe to our YouTube channel: https://bit.ly/2HfsCD6
Ukraine Russia conflict: Russia threatens Western weapons supplies as missiles hit near Nato border
It’s day 18 of the war in Ukraine and there has been no let up in the fighting. (Subscribe: https://bit.ly/C4_News_Subscribe) Russian forces have continued their operation all over the country. There was more heavy shelling of Chernihiv and an American journalist was shot dead near Irpin. The attack on the Yavoriv base near the Polish border is the furthest west the Russians have attacked since the invasion started. Ukrainians have also been protesting against the Russian occupation in Kherson. But there have been hopeful messages from both sides over negotiations, although it is too early to tell whether that will lead to anything. ——- Watch more of our explainer series here – https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list… Get more news at our site – https://www.channel4.com/news/ Follow us: Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/Channel4News/ Twitter – https://twitter.com/Channel4News
Ukraine, Artist Polina Rayko, farmer, Painted House in Tsurupinsk, Versus Putin, President of Russia who has Invaded Ukraine
Ukraine. Artist Polina Rayko, farmer, she started paint in old age, her painted house is in Tsurupinsk near Kherson. 1928-2004This is Ukraine. Artist Polina Rayko, farmer, she started paint in old age, her painted house is in Tsurupinsk near Kherson. 1928-2004.
Posted by Marina Koldobskava on Facebook, February 25, 2022
Polina Rayko (her original name was Pelaheya Soldatova) was born in April 1928 in the small Ukrainian town of Oleshky. She married Mykola Rayko at the age of 22. Polina at that time had no interest in painting. She led a life typical of a Soviet woman – she worked hard and devoted herself to her family.
The Raykos had few means. They worked at a kolkhoz (a collective farm) and also did work for hire, grew fruits and vegetables in their kitchen garden, and generally tried to do their best. The couple brought up two children, a boy and a girl.
Late in life, Polina met with hard times. In 1994, her daughter Olena died tragically in a road accident and her husband Mykola passed away a year later. Instead of supporting his mother, her son drank heavily and made trouble. Later, he was imprisoned.
To keep from going mad with grief, the woman, to her own surprise, began to paint. She created her first paintings at the age of 69. The walls of her house became her “canvas.” She used the cheapest paints – enamel floor colors. But neither lack of experience nor her use of low-cost art supplies got in the way of her desire to realize herself.
Painting became therapy for Polina Rayko, alleviating her loneliness and allowing her to appreciate herself more. She was sincerely surprised how she found subjects for her frescoes and ways of embodying her thoughts, considering that except for a few times at school, she had never before held a brush in her hands.
She Created Her Own Universe
The self-taught painter made all her frescoes in the same manner, with no free space between them – all her paintings are like one continuous mural. Granny Polina’s subjects are sometimes taken from her own life.
One wall of her living room is covered with life-size portraits of her sisters. All are long-haired with big wings behind their backs. Little angels and white pigeons fly around them in a blossoming magical garden.
On another wall Polina depicts herself in a wedding gown beside her husband. Fantastic flowers and birds of paradise surround the newly married couple.
In a separate portrait of her husband Mykola, he is shown in a boat with a float fishing rod and a bottle of vodka – everything he might need in the other world.
Animals make another vivid subject of her frescoes – her fabulous fish, birds, and butterflies are all over the walls, the ceiling, the stove, the doors.
This self-taught artist learned to render the feeling of movement in her paintings. Entering the house, we seem caught up in a swirl of images flying and circling around us.
Sentiment grows to declare the house of naive painter Polina Rayko a national cultural monument of Ukraine. From Vhoru, a Kherson-based news outlet.
If granny Polina had known that high officials and famous painters would troop through her house to look at her wall paintings, she’d have thought it a dream. It wasn’t for fame when the retired Polina Rayko began to paint on the walls of her house. For over 15 years the painter has been with the saints, but the images she created remain alive and inspire others.
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Mrs. Polina Rayko was a simple working-class person, who went through her life with unfortunate and suffering incidents. But she overcame problems and discovered that artwork could make her free and happier than in her younger years. I can imagine how happy she could be to spent the end of her life for more than 15 years using her imagination, and creating artwork that will last for future generations to enjoy. I admire her work and her ability to share and make others see that one good human being can create a positive atmosphere for the world.
At this moment, Russia has invaded Ukraine, the homeland of Polina Rayko, by the order of one man, Vladimir Putin. He has already created more than one million refugees so far, as they run away from Russian bombs that destroyed their houses and all the possessions of their lives. Vladimir Putin came from the poor family. By any means possible, he has acquired great wealth in the multi-billions of dollars. He climbed from being KGB officer to become the president of Russia for more than 20 years. With all this wealth and power, he can do a lot of good things. Even though he cannot paint like Polina Rayko, he can build museums that cultivate artists to create artwork that Russia and the whole world can admire and enjoy. Aside from this, he could help the world reduce global warming by using science to discover new inventions to reduce global warming. This could help prevent the rise of the sea water that may inundate the coastlines of the entire world. Using his power, he can do many things to make the world better and happier. But he selects to use his power to subjugate others by sending Russian soldiers to kill and be killed by invading Ukraine, a smaller neighboring country with far less weapons and soldiers than Russia. Now Vladimir Putin threatens the whole world with nuclear weapon if any country intervenes with his operation. He is able to make the whole world unhappy and on edge, afraid that we might have a third World War.
Let us look at these two humans’ lives, Mrs. Polina Rayko, versus Mr. Vladimir Putin. Who is more peaceful, and who has more value? The world is troubled by many problems. We need leadership that brings peace and happiness for their own countries and the world. We need peace and togetherness as one humanity to solve the issue of global warming. We all will not survive if global temperature is warmer than now.
Ing-On Vibulbhan-Watts, Sunday, March 6, 2022
For more information on Vladimir Putin, please visit the following link:
Admired by former President Donald Trump and feared by his rivals, Putin: The New Tsar is an enthralling BBC political documentary on BBC Select that reveals the story of Vladimir Putin’s extraordinary rise to power. From a lowly KGB colonel to Russian President Boris Yeltsin’s right-hand man and ultimately his successor, those from his inner circle, both close friends and bitter enemies, describe his often harsh methods. BBC Select is the new home for documentaries. Available in the U.S and Canada. Find out more and start your free trial: https://bit.ly/3kwM3bU Follow us on social media ?? Facebook: https://bit.ly/37UXpBn Twitter: https://bit.ly/3dSUqxc Instagram: https://bit.ly/3uEVieL
In this 2015 documentary, FRONTLINE traces Vladimir Putin’s ascent from unemployed spy to modern-day czar, and investigates the accusations of criminality and corruption that have surrounded his reign in Russia. (Aired 2015) This journalism is made possible by viewers like you. Support your local PBS station here: http://www.pbs.org/donate?. In this 2015 film, a coproduction with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, producer Neil Docherty and correspondent Gillian Findlay traced Putin’s career back two decades to his political start in St. Petersburg, where allegations of corruption began almost immediately. Drawing on firsthand accounts from exiled Russian business tycoons, writers and politicians, as well as the exhaustive research of scholar and best-selling “Putin’s Kleptocracy” author Karen Dawisha, the film examined troubling episodes in Putin’s past, from alleged money-laundering activities and ties to organized crime, to a secret personal fortune said to be in the billions. Love FRONTLINE? Find us on the PBS Video App, where there are more than 300 FRONTLINE documentaries available to watch any time: https://to.pbs.org/FLVideoApp?#Documentary Subscribe on YouTube: http://bit.ly/1BycsJW? Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/frontlinepbs? Twitter: https://twitter.com/frontlinepbs? Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/frontline
Watch New York Times reporter Peter Baker’s candid, full interview on Vladimir Putin and allegations of Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election – all part of “The Putin Files”, FRONTLINE’s media transparency project. Explore Baker’s full interview and interactive transcript here: https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/in… Explore the entire “Putin File” experience here: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/int…
On this edition for Saturday, March 5, Putin says sanctions are ‘akin to declaration of war,’ the number of Ukrainians leaving the country reaches more than 1.3 million and continues to grow rapidly, and in our signature segment how NYC’s guaranteed income program is helping new mothers find their footing. Hari Sreenivasan anchors from New York. Stream your PBS favorites with the PBS app: https://to.pbs.org/2Jb8twG Find more from PBS NewsHour at https://www.pbs.org/newshour Subscribe to our YouTube channel: https://bit.ly/2HfsCD6
Who is the Russian President, and what does he want with Ukraine? Vladimir Putin is the President of Russia, and has been the country’s leader for more than 22 years. He grew up in an area which is now St Petersburg. His political career began when he and his family moved to Moscow in 1996, and he quickly became an important political figure. The BBC’s Ros Atkins looks at Putin’s life and his world view – and how they influence the decision he took this week. Please subscribe HERE http://bit.ly/1rbfUog#Ukraine#Russia#BBCNews
From a basement in the centre of Kyiv, BBC correspondent, James Waterhouse, has been reporting on the seismic developments in Ukraine as the Russian bombardment continues. In this special programme, James speaks with colleagues from BBC News across Ukraine and Russia on the extraordinary impact of seven days that have changed the world. Please subscribe HERE http://bit.ly/1rbfUog#BBCNews
Is Putin’s power ebbing away in Russia’s own back yard? – BBC News
For Russian President Vladimir Putin, it’s not just the coronavirus pandemic that is making 2020 a difficult year. In recent months the Kremlin has faced a whole series of geo-political challenges on its doorstep, including mass protests in Belarus and the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict. So what do these dramatic events mean for Russia’s influence in its own back yard Please subscribe HERE http://bit.ly/1rbfUog