|Newsletter Apr 22, 2021|
The war of words with Russia struck a threatening tone when heavy-handed leader Vladimir Putin put the U.S. and his own citizens on notice
Putin his foot down: Russian President Vladimir Putin had some harsh words for his domestic enemies and even harsher words for foreign rivals in the West about the ongoing upheaval in his country.Responding to thousand of protesters in the streets and strict U.S.-led sanctions against Russia, Putin told citizens to stay home and outsiders to mind their own business or face dire consequences.”The organisers of any provocations threatening the fundamental interests of our security will regret their deeds, more than they have regretted anything in a long time,” Putin declared on Wednesday. ” … I hope that no one will think of crossing the red line in relation to Russia. And where it will be — we will determine that ourselves.”Protesters are calling for medical treatment for detained dissident Alexei Navalny, Putin’s biggest domestic challenger, who is reportedly dying from a hunger strike he began three weeks ago. Navalny’s lawyers are pleading for their client to receive immediate medical attention at a hospital, but their requests are being ignored.The same can’t be said for the U.S., which is involved in conflict with Russia on a variety of fronts, including the Kremlin’s troop buildups on the Ukrainian border. Biden is trying to walk the thin line of punishing Russia for election meddling, computer hacking and other violations while also leaving the door open to diplomatic dialogue. FIND OUT EXACTLY WHERE PUTIN IS DRAWING A ‘RED LINE’
Missed goal: For soccer fans around the world, there was a much bigger international crisis this week than any political conflicts.Enthusiasts of the world’s most popular sport were blindsided by the announcement that the newly formed Super League would end the traditional club system. The plan was to cherry-pick the top programs from Europe’s elite leagues and form a competing organization that would leave the national-league system and UEFA in shambles.But one thing soccer fans know how to do is make some noise, and protests throughout Europe erupted in protest. Pressured by fans and clubs, the Super League was forced to call it quits just three days after its announcement after 10 of the 12 clubs dropped out.”We got it wrong,” Manchester United co-chairman Joel Glazer said. “… It goes without saying but should be said, the project put forward was never going to stand without the support of the fans.”FIND OUT HOW FANS ARE REACTING TO THE REVERSAL
Moon pie in the sky?: President Joe Biden has spent much of his first three months in office dismantling virtually every initiative under the sun taken by his predecessor — but not one involving the moon.Biden’s nominee to head NASA recommitted to a lunar-landing program approved by the Trump administration Wednesday, saying that crossing into space should not cross into the realm of politics.“These projects are not one administration, they’re many. Like building an aircraft carrier, you start it and it’ll take you years down the road,” said former Rep. Bill Nelson, who commanded the Columbia space shuttle missions . “It has to be continued regardless of who’s in the majority, regardless of who’s in the presidency.”While Nelson and the moon mission have broad bipartisan support, the aggressive timeline of 2024 has become a point of contention. Many doubt the program can pulled off in such a short time period.