Russian forces are advancing on Ukrainian cities.
Ukrainians have been fending off Russian President Vladimir Putin’s army for over a week. But attacks have intensified on cities throughout the country — including in Mariupol, Kharkiv, and the capital, Kyiv. Now, following days of fighting that left dozens dead, Russian forces have made key advances on Kherson — a strategic Black Sea port in southern Ukraine.
Russia is gaining ground. Troops rolled in with the reported goal of setting up a military gov. The city’s mayor told its 300,000 residents the city is surrounded. If captured, it would be the first major Ukrainian city to fall. Kherson’s mayor has appealed to Russian troops to allow for the entry of humanitarian aid and civilian movement. But despite Russia’s claims it has captured the city, the mayor maintains “the flag above us is Ukrainian.”
A Russian convoy stretching 40-miles-long is stalled right outside of Kyiv, which is currently being rocked by explosions. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has called for additional support from the EU. A second round of talks between the two countries reportedly begins today.
Russian President Putin has escalated his invasion in Ukraine — and is now attacking on all fronts. Meanwhile, the toll on civilians is mounting — with Ukrainian officials saying more than 2,000 civilians could be dead as more than 1 million refugees have fled.
The January 6th panel. Yesterday, the House committee investigating last year’s Capitol attack laid out its first theory of a criminal case against former President Trump. The Dem-controlled panel said in a court filing that Trump and some allies may be liable for fraud and obstruction. Obstruction: for allegedly trying to obstruct a congressional proceeding — the certification of election results. And fraud for allegedly working to defraud the American people, including through repeated lies surrounding the election. The committee — which has interviewed hundreds of people as part of its investigation — largely seemed to rely on publicly known info. But it does not have the power to bring criminal charges. That’s up to the Justice Department, which is conducting its own investigation — and has so far not indicated charges. A final report from the panel could come later this year.
The UN. Yesterday, 175 nations agreed to create the world’s first plastic pollution treaty. The goal: improve recycling, clean up the world’s plastic waste, and restrict plastics production. About time, considering the effect billions of pounds of plastic waste has on Mother Nature every year — wildlife included. A UN official called it an “epidemic” but said the resolution puts us “on track for a cure.” But it’s not good news for everyone. Plastic production restriction could affect oil and chemical companies and even the economies of major plastic-producing countries like China and the US. Do you ever feel like a plastic bag…
A hike. Yesterday, the Federal Reserve said it’s hiking up interest rates later this month — likely by a quarter-point. It marks the first interest rate hike since the pandemic. The goal: to take a crack at bringing down inflation. But for those who are still house hunting, this could make your dream home more expensive.
PS: Here's more on how Fed rate hikes impact your wallet. And how to plan around it.
The New York Times could have used another pair of eyes. Earlier this week, it ran a piece on Serena Williams...but used a photo of her sister instead. The piece was on Williams' $111 million venture fund, working to invest in founders with diverse viewpoints. Now, Williams is serving the NYT a lesson, saying 'here's another example of why diversity is necessary.' The New York Times' response: ‘our bad.’
Skimm’d by Rashaan Ayesh, Kate Gilhool, Julie Shain, and Mariza Smajlaj
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