Ukraine Claims 31,000 KIAs Amid Calls for More Support - The Monday AM Quickie 2/26/24

The AM Quickie team and the city of New York mourn the loss of Flaco, the beloved owl who died over the weekend. -Jacob

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Ukraine Claims 31,000 Soldiers Killed in Russia's Invasion

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said yesterday that Ukraine had lost 31,000 soldiers in combat since Russia invaded the country almost exactly two years ago. He accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of lying and inflating Ukrainian casualties. Last August, as Reuters notes, the New York Times reported that about 70,000 Ukrainian soldiers had died. The numbers don't include wounded or missing soldiers. Russian casualties have been far higher, but so is Russia's overall manpower, which has proven key to this brutal war of attrition.

Zelenskyy urged allies to supply his country with more artillery and weapons to counter Russia's drones and aerial bombers. A multi-billion-dollar military aid package remains tied up in Congress, a casualty of competing Republican factions who disagree on whether to continue funding Ukraine's military. Startingly, Zelenskyy also revealed that the Russian government had obtained Ukraine's counter-offensive plans well before Ukraine launched the operation, which was largely seen as a bloody failure in a period when Ukraine needed to push back Russian forces and retake territory.

Russia officially invaded Ukraine two years ago, but it hived off Crimea and parts of eastern Ukraine years ago. What might be called the grey or shadow war between Russia and Ukraine is at least a decade old. Over that period, the CIA, with close cooperation from MI6,] has developed a tight-knit relationship with Ukraine's intelligence agencies and top officials. Even if this latest aid package isn't passed, America's clandestine participation in this war should continue.

More Fallout From Alabama IVF Decision

The Alabama State Supreme Court's Biblically inspired decision to attribute personhood to frozen embryos has jeopardized the ability of doctors to conduct invitro fertilization treatments for patients attempting to conceive. The state attorney general has promised not to prosecute IVF patients and doctors (reassuring!) while the state legislature seems to be working on a bill that could "clarify" the legal status of IVF in Alabama. Some clinics in Alabama have stopped IVF treatments. The ruling may potentially affect many cancer patients who froze embryos while they fought off the disease. Meanwhile, Republicans have scrambled to respond to the brusque reality of their own extreme beliefs being enacted as policy while a disapproving public looks on, wondering how far all of this will go.

Trump Wins A Primary in Haley's Home State

Donald Trump won the South Carolina Republican presidential primary, receiving almost 60 percent of votes against former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley in her home state. Haley, who hasn't come close to winning any primaries or caucuses so far but has the dubious advantage of being the last challenger standing, says she is staying in the race. Over the weekend, a Koch-funded political operation decided to stop donating to Haley's campaign. More rich donors may soon turn off the money spigot.


  • Russian Authorities Release Navalny's Body The Russian government turned over the body of dissident politician Alexei Navalny to his mother on Saturday. Navalny's widow Yulia Navalnaya has accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of murdering her husband and has vowed to carry on his work. via Reuters.
  • Air Force Officer Immolates Himself In Front of Israeli Embassy An active-duty airman set himself on fire in an apparent protest outside the Israeli embassy in Washington, D.C. The man reportedly announced his Air Force affiliation, said he wouldn't be complicit in genocide, and then lit himself on fire as he yelled "Free Palestine." He later died of his injuries. via Washington Post and Talia Jane/X.
  • Democratic Party Turns Its Eyes to Whitmer Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, one of the most popular and electorally successful Democratic politicians in the country, is trying to steer Michigan toward Joe Biden. But Biden's support for Israel's war in Gaza risks losing him the state's large Arab-American population. via New York Times.
  • Gazans Afflicted by Hunger The devastating Israeli military campaign in Gaza, which has included a formal siege as well as right-wing Israeli activists preventing aid trucks from entering the area, is contributing to widespread hunger and malnutrition in Gaza. Reports have emerged of children, including babies, starving to death. via BBC News.



That's how much interest Donald Trump is accruing each day on his $355 million judgment in his civil fraud case in New York. Trump also owes $83.3 million to E. Jean Carroll and untold amounts to his lawyers. The combined financial toll may require him to borrow – at potentially uxorious terms – from overseas lenders, as U.S. banks are unlikely to do business with him. There are lot of rickety moving parts in Trump's business empire, but the growing financial pressure may cause the whole rotten machine to come to a halt.


2/26: Happy Monday! Sam is BACK from vacation! He and Emma speak with Ganesh Sitaraman, law professor at Vanderbilt University, to discuss his recent book Why Flying Is Miserable: And How To Fix It.


Why Union Workers Abandoned the Democratic Party

Lainey Newman talks about her recent book "Rust Belt Union Blues: Why Working Class Voters Are Turning Away from the Democratic Party."

Republicans Panicking They Went Too Far

Krystal Ball joins Emma to examine the downside of our theocratic judiciary.


"Some groups will still have water, but most of the people won’t."

-- Fabiola Sosa-Rodríguez, head of economic growth and environment at the Metropolitan Autonomous University, speaking to CNN about Mexico City's severe water crisis. A combination of climate change, leaky and inefficient infrastructure, droughts, deforestation, and other factors have left Mexico City staring at the possibility that large parts of the city may run out of water within months. The long-term outlook is bleak, as it is for other parched mega-cities like Cape Town.

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