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  • EU deal on Russia oil embargo possible this week: France JakartaPost

  • Oil production recovering in Russian, with new customers buying Russian crude RT

“The situation is stable. Production has increased compared to April. We expect that the figures will partially recover in May and will be better,” Novak told journalists.

  • Meat from cows kept in cruel conditions to be imported from Australia under UK trade deal Bilaterals

  • EU Set To Roll Out Permits For Renewables Projects At Faster Pace OilPrice

  • Europe May Face LNG Crisis This Winter OilPrice

  • In Ukraine, gas shortages further complicate daily life WaPo

  • Greece, UAE agree joint investments in energy, other sectors Reuters

  • Locust swarms destroy crops in Sardinia’s latest infestation Guardian

Asia and Oceania

  • China Imports More Crude As Shipments From Russia Rise OilPrice

  • Tesla halts most production in Shanghai over supply problems Guardian

  • India’s inflation likely accelerated to an 18-month high in April WHTC

  • Desperate for Coal, India’s Metal Makers Hunt for Fuel Overseas Bloomberg

  • An extreme heatwave is triggering blackouts across India — and it’s buying Russian natural gas to alleviate its energy crisis BusinessInsider

  • Laos Fuel Crisis Nears Breaking Point as Vientiane Capital Runs Dry LaotianTimes

  • Gasoline price in Vietnam is forecasted to increase sharply, surpassing 30,000 VND/liter VietnamInsider

  • Thai consumer mood at 8-month low on living costs, Ukraine war BangkokPost

  • Indonesian president plans to meet Elon Musk over nickel Reuters

  • Increasing import prices cost Indonesian manufacturing dearly AsiaNews

Middle East

  • Foreign food delivery drivers go on strike in Dubai AlJazeera

  • Iran’s president says oil exports have doubled since August Yahoo

  • The Middle East won’t rescue Europe if it turns off Russian oil CNN


  • Nigeria: Fuel Queues - Don’t Panic, We Have Enough Petrol, NNPC Assures Nigerians AllAfrica

  • Angolan diamond mine says Russia sanctions could hurt operations AlJazeera

North America

  • Canada–Ukraine free trade agreement to be expanded in near future Bilaterals

  • U.S. Natural Gas Prices Get Caught Up In Perfect Storm OilPrice

  • U.S. to Lift Tariffs on Ukrainian Steel NYT

  • There’s a nationwide baby formula shortage and desperate parents are stockpiling whatever they can find Fortune

  • White House: FDA’s Working On Baby Formula Shortage, But There’s No ‘National Stockpile’ HuffPost

  • U.S. Gas Prices Again Approach Record High, Near $6 a Gallon in California Newsweek

  • Why Wall Street Can’t Escape the Culture Wars Bloomberg

  • In Cuba, cryptocurrency gains momentum NBC

South America

  • Venezuela begins imports of Iranian heavy oil for refining Reuters


  • Oil drops as economic worries, strong dollar weigh Reuters

  • EU will allow EU vessels to transport Russian oil to third countries TASS

Diplomatically and Politically

Involving Ukraine or Russia

  • Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister: EU living by ‘law of the jungle’ RT

Seizing the foreign-exchange reserves of the Russian state would be an act of “complete lawlessness" and would undermine the very basis of international relations.

  • Russia not planning to close embassies in Europe Reuters

  • Kherson’s administration head said that there are no plans to unite the Kherson region with Crimea. TASS

  • Zelenskyy calls for international help to end Odesa blockade AlJazeera. Also: Ukraine calls for moves to unblock ports and prevent global food crisis Reuters

  • Docs Found Show Ukraine’s Plans To Attack Russia TeleSUR

Dmitry Polyanskiy, Russia’s deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, commented Monday on the documents discovered by Russian troops during the special military operation conducted in Ukrainian territory. He said that the records show concrete Ukraine’s plans to carry out strikes against Russia.


  • Brussels is reportedly considering a €15 billion bond emission to finance Ukrainian government operations RT

The plan could be unveiled as early as May 18 and at least three countries – including Austria, Germany, and Greece – have asked for alternative options, according to the outlet. They are reportedly hoping non-EU countries like Japan, Norway, and the UK would “chip in” as well, leaving the EU with less of a debt burden. France has also proposed that heads of EU states discuss the problem in a summit meeting at the end of May.

  • Russian ambassador doused in red paint during the Victory Day parade in Poland. RT

  • Jacobin: I’m a Socialist, and I Just Beat the Labour Party in London’s Poorest Borough

  • Macron floats European ‘community’ open to Ukraine and UK Politico

  • UK Labour leader says he’ll quit if fined for office beer SeattleTimes

  • Russia must return stolen airplanes, demands MEPs EUReporter

  • Anti-US And Anti-NATO Protests In Verona, Italy PopularResistance

Asia and Oceania

  • A substack article on China’s coronavirus response, vs America’s. HereComesChina

  • Shanghai disinfects homes, closes all subways in COVID fight SeattleTimes

  • How China Supplies Russia’s Military TheDiplomat

  • In the China-US Competition, Xi Jinping’s Loss Is Biden’s Gain TheDiplomat

  • Protests break out as Philippines election returns a Marcos to presidency Reuters

  • South Korea new President calls on North to trade nukes for aid JakartaPost

  • Vietnam, Thailand look to increase ties VietnamNews

  • Military rescues Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister in pre-dawn operation as violent clashes leave seven dead CNN

  • Sri Lanka deploys troops to enforce curfew after day of deadly unrest France24

  • Sri Lanka: Protesters torch leaders' homes in night of unrest BBC

  • Australia Has a China Problem and a Chinese Problem Bloomberg

As Australians head to the polls this month, China’s role in domestic politics is becoming increasingly important. Yet many politicians, journalists and voters seem to be unable to distinguish between China the nation, the Communist Party that governs it, and people of Chinese ancestry. This is stoking fear, while also derailing attempts to make Parliament as diverse as its citizenry.

  • Russian, Chinese diplomats participate in Immortal Regiment march in Pyongyang TASS

North America

  • TSA Covid Infections Have Jumped 50% Since The Mask Mandate Was Lifted Forbes

  • States receive billions in extra federal Medicaid funds to cover more Americans during the pandemic CNN

States are expected to receive a total of more than $100 billion in extra federal Medicaid funds to help them get through the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation analysis released Tuesday.

  • One million died. It didn’t have to happen — and it must not again. WaPo

  • Elon Musk warns he could die ‘under mysterious circumstances’ RT


General News

  • U.S. Congress plans nearly $40 bln more for Ukraine, COVID aid to wait Reuters

  • Biden Signs Bill To Accelerate Military Aid To Ukraine Using WWII-Era Lend-Lease Program Forbes

  • The deputy speaker of Russian parliament Pyotr Tolstoy (the great great grandson of Leo Tolstoy) says that he thinks Russia will only stop once they reach the border with Poland.

  • Ukraine continues to lose a week’s supply of weapons every day. Simple mathematics concludes that to supply a month’s worth of supplies to Ukraine is equivalent to 7 months, and to supply a year, as some western analyists are claiming the war will last as least as long as, it will drain the West of the equivalent of 7 years of fighting. Russia has time on its side, an extremely valuable resource. “Le cauldron” not being established in a month of Phase 2 is meaningless if Russia continues to win a war of attrition against an enemy that has both more men and weaponry than it.

Eastern Ukraine

  • LPR announces total capture of Popasna TASS- a serious crack in the Ukrainian front line - after Ukrainian retreat. Reasonable to expect cascading failures in the front line approaching in the coming weeks as the weeks of artillery bombardment begin to show serious results. Artillery and slow, grinding pushes is Russia’s biggest strength.

Southern Ukraine

  • Ukraine’s Attempt to Seize Snake Island Fails - Russian MoD TeleSUR

  • No more hostages in the Azovstal plant, confirmed by Ukraine.

  • Ukrainian commanders lash out at Kyiv over Mariupol resistance FT

The commanders of the Ukrainian forces holding out against Russian troops in the Azovstal plant in Mariupol lashed out at the government in Kyiv for not doing enough to help them defend the city.

“Our government failed in the defence of Mariupol, failed in the preparation of the defence of Mariupol,” said Ilya Somoilenko, a lieutenant in the Azov regiment, the military unit that has been leading Ukraine’s resistance from a last redoubt at the vast steel works on the edge of the city.

The “authorities have been sabotaging the defence of Ukraine for eight years”, he added.

  • Russian Occupiers March Through Destroyed Mariupol to Mark Victory Day Newsweek

Dipshittery and Cope

Alright, let’s see the media’s reaction to Putin’s Victory Day speech. For the record, I went and searched through the MSM for mentions of Popasna, and found very little. I think Reuters and a couple others reported on it but nobody else.

These are all basically the same article, so I’m gonna group them all together.

  • Putin is trapped in a quagmire and doesn’t know how to get out [WaPo=(]; White House: Putin’s speech was revisionist history Inquirer; Biden says he is worried Putin does not have a way out of Ukraine war Inquirer; In Speech, Putin Shows Reluctance in Demanding Too Much of Russians NYT; Putin’s Victory Day speech passionate but empty Yahoo; Putin’s Victory Day speech far from triumphant AlJazeera; Putin’s Victory Day speech made no mention of wins in Ukraine because ‘he has no victory to celebrate,’ US ambassador to UN says BusinessInsider; What we learned from Putin’s ‘no Victory’ Day speech CNN; Putin’s Parades Can’t Hide a Missing Victory WaPo; Putin Offers Few Clues About His Plans for Ukraine in Victory Day Speech Newsweek

Putin was defiant but subdued, trying to portray Russia’s unprovoked attack on Ukraine as a preemptive response to a looming Ukrainian invasion of Russia. It was ludicrous and pathetic — but also strangely reassuring. There has been much discussion about whether Putin is rational, because attacking Ukraine with such a small army was an act of lunacy. The evidence suggests that, while Putin is isolated and prone to miscalculation, he is not insane.

Speaking to reporters, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Putin’s speech was “revisionist history that took the form of disinformation.”

U.S. President Joe Biden said on Monday he is worried that Russian President Vladimir Putin does not have a way out of the Ukraine war, and Biden said he was trying to figure out what to do about that.

He made no claim of victory or “mission accomplished” and no promise that the fight in Ukraine could end soon. But as President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia spoke in Moscow’s Red Square on Monday, he also made no call for new sacrifice or mobilization, no threat of a nuclear strike, no stark pronouncement about an existential war with the West.

Instead Mr. Putin, speaking on Russia’s most important secular holiday, delivered a message for the broader Russian public: that they could keep on living their lives. The military would keep fighting to rid Ukraine, in his false telling, of “torturers, death squads and Nazis,” but Mr. Putin did not make any new attempt to prepare his people for a wider conflict.

Vladimir Putin had no victories in Ukraine to proclaim on Victory Day. Nor did his speech at the Red Square military parade offer any clear pictures of when a victory may come or how it would be achieved. Instead, the Russian president’s address Monday seemed to suggest that the war that many expected would be brief and decisive could be a long and brutal grind.

But the president’s address to 11,000 servicemen in Red Square on Monday did not mention the word “Ukraine” once. “He avoids the word because it is associated with trouble, defeat, thwarted hopes and expectations,” Volodymyr Fesenko, of the Kyiv-based Penta think-tank, told Al Jazeera.

Uhhh, one pinocchio, he does mention Ukrainian cities.

Russian President Vladimir Putin was widely expected to make a major announcement about the Ukraine war in his Victory Day speech on Monday, but he ultimately offered no signs of a shift in strategy and primarily stuck to pushing the same baseless propaganda on the conflict that the Kremlin has disseminated for months.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has marked the traditional May 9 Victory Day celebrations with no victory to celebrate. His plans to conquer Ukraine, perhaps replace its government with a Russia-friendly one, have been thwarted. With no significant achievement on the battlefield, Putin was reduced on Monday to twisting history, claiming victimhood and fabricating yet another conspiracy theory in order to justify Russia’s unprovoked invasion of a neighboring country and the mounting cost it is inflicting on his own people.

The strain on the word “significant” there is positively eye-watering.

Even for a country that has weaponized the memory of World War II to the point where there is a word for hyperbolic celebrations of Victory Day — pobedobesie, or victory frenzy — this year marked a new high. With its military bogged down in Ukraine, the domestic propaganda machine latched onto past successes instead, going into overdrive ahead of Monday’s commemorations. The fevered pitch, in turn, fueled overseas speculation that President Vladimir Putin would use the moment to mark a dramatic new stage in his two-month war.

That he did not — he used a brief speech on Red Square instead to evoke Soviet heroism and repeat assertions that Moscow was provoked into action, without once mentioning Ukraine by name — says plenty about the heightened expectations of foreign observers, mismatched with reality in a conflict that will grind on for some time. But it was also a reminder of the limits of Putin’s power. Even autocrats cannot mobilize a nation for war, having called it a “special military operation,” without unwanted costs. Nor can they easily spin defeat as national success.

In describing the war as a fight against Western powers, Putin “makes Russian defeat much easier to excuse, of course, and accept, and it really mobilizes Russian nationalism behind the campaign,” Lieven added. “But also I think it’s profoundly stupid as a strategy because it implies that the U.S. is at war, which it isn’t.”

  • Russia’s Economy Facing Worst Contraction Since 1994. Bloomberg

Russia is facing the deepest economic contraction in nearly three decades, with gross domestic product likely to shrink as much as 12% this year under pressure from sanctions imposed by the U.S. and its allies over the invasion of Ukraine, according to an internal forecast by the Finance Ministry.

Wow, and Russia already only has a GDP the size of Italy, which obviously means it has equivalent economic strength to it! How on earth will they manage this?

  • A Journalist Just Spotted Russia’s ‘Admiral Makarov’ Frigate, Intact And At Sea Forbes

Sutton’s analysis of new commercial satellite imagery seems to confirm that last week’s rumors about a successful Ukrainian attack on Admiral Makarov were just that—rumors. The frigate survives.

But it’s worth noting where Sutton found Admiral Makarov on or before Monday: sailing near Sevastopol in the Russian-occupied Crimean Peninsula. In other words, close to home.

An oopsy woopsy by Ukraine, just a simple little fucky wucky, not misinformation, just rumours.

  • UK weighs in on Ukraine’s chances against Russia RT

Britain’s defense secretary has expressed belief that Ukraine, which is being supplied with weapons by the UK and other Western nations, is capable of achieving military victory in its conflict with Russia.

“It is very possible that Ukraine will break the Russian army to the extent that they either have to go back to pre-February or they have to effectively fold in on itself,” Ben Wallace said during a speech at the National Army Museum in London on Monday.

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin “must come to terms with how he’s lost in the long run, and he’s absolutely lost. Russia is not what it was,” he added.

  • Tunisia is sliding back into authoritarianism. Here’s what the U.S. should do. Oh god. WaPo

The United States has spent too much time hoping that private entreaties for Saied to do the right thing might be persuasive. But urging autocrats to do the right thing for their countries — or for democracy — is nearly always guaranteed to fail. Saied, like other autocrats, does not believe in representative democracy, claiming in 2019 that it “has gone bankrupt and its era is over.” Dialogue and persuasion were never going to be enough to change his mind.

Belatedly, the Biden administration is slowly realizing that rhetorical pressure without any teeth is not working. In late March, the State Department proposed to slash both military and economic assistance to Tunisia roughly in half. Secretary of State Antony Blinken also made clear that the aid would not be restored unless Saied pursues a “transparent, inclusive — to include political parties, labor and civil society — reform process.”

Of course, using U.S. leverage in this way is as risky as it is bold. But, as we have seen over the past year, not using U.S. leverage is also risky. In fact, it risks condemning Tunisians to a full return to the old days of dictatorship. If Americans believe democracy is good, then they should believe that it is good for Tunisians, too. Otherwise Biden’s commendable rhetoric will remain just that — an ideal that we speak about but ignore even in the very cases where it matters most.

  • China’s Covid Policy Will “Exact A Very High Cost On The Economy” Forbes

China’s “zero-Covid” policy response to the spread of the Omicron variant in the country this year will “exact a very high cost on the economy,” a former long-time American diplomat in Greater China said in an interview today.

Jarrett has a solid on-the-ground view: He has been locked down in hard-hit Shanghai for the past 39 days. “Internationally, people are scratching their heads trying to understand how a city with a strong reputation for competent management could be in such a state of crisis, including having people short of food,” he said.

“The Chinese government throughout the Covid period has pointed to its success compared to almost every country in the world. Most of the time that was true, but we have the irony now that China is suddenly the odd man out,” Jarrett said. “Their role is now reversed, in part because they haven’t been able to make the transition to dealing with the more contagious Omicron variant,” he said via Zoom and in a follow-on email exchange. Jarrett also commented briefly on China’s recent calls for U.S. cuts in tariffs imposed during the Trump administration and on the country’s compliance with U.S. sanctions imposed on Russia follow its invasion of the Ukraine. Excerpts follow.

Wait, wait, hang on - he just said that China’s success relative to the rest of the world was “true”. What happened to all the articles about how if you extrapolate China’s death rate using the peepee poopoo variables then actually there’s a billion dead?


  • Mexico’s oil gets even dirtier as flaring continues to soar ClimateChangeNews

  • Avoid using gas as ‘transition’ fuel in move to clean energy, study urges Guardian

  • ‘It’s just not good.’ Experts describe the dire situation in Texas as they battle record-breaking temperatures and raging fires CNN

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