October 18, 2022


Listen to this issue.

UKRAINE | Today is day 236 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Here are your updates:

  • Reports say the Russian campaign of targeting Ukrainian infrastructure sites continued overnight, with electrical and water facilities being struck by Russian missiles in the cities of Kyiv, Zhytomyr, Mykolaiv, and Kharkiv. [more]
  • The European Union approved a plan yesterday to launch military training programs in Europe for Ukrainian troops and to provide a new 500 million euro round of military aid to Ukraine. The training programs will take place largely in Poland and Germany, with an initial goal of training some 15,000 Ukrainian troops. [more]
  • A book of wartime speeches by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky will be published in December. Proceeds from “A Message from Ukraine” will reportedly go the United24 initiative for charitable donations to Ukraine. [more]

STUDENT LOANS | President Joe Biden yesterday announced the launch of the student loan debt relief program online application at studentaid.gov. Biden noted that more than 8 million people had already applied for loan relief during the application website’s soft launch over this past weekend. [more]

U.S. ENERGY | Reuters cites unnamed sources as saying the Biden administration plans to announce this week the sale of some 14 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve drawdown of 180 million barrels that began in May. [more]

NATO | Fourteen NATO member countries are taking part in the alliance’s long-planned annual nuclear exercises, which began in Europe yesterday. The Steadfast Noon exercises involve warplanes capable of carrying nuclear weapons, but do not involve any live armaments. [more]

AFGHANISTAN | A report released today by the Center for Information Resilience’s Afghan Witness project says Taliban forces captured and executed 27 men last month in Afghanistan’s Panjshir Valley while conducting anti-resistance operations in the area. [full report] [more]

RUSSIA | Reports say several people died yesterday when a Russian warplane crashed into a residential area of the southern Russia city of Yeysk after suffering an engine failure shortly after taking off for a training mission. There are varying reports of the death toll from the crash, ranging from three to 13. [more]

HAITI | The United States and Mexico yesterday signaled their support for an international security mission to Haiti to help restore order and provide humanitarian relief amidst large-scale social and economic crises caused by armed gangs in the Caribbean country. U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres proposed sending a “rapid-action force” to Haiti earlier this month. [more]

U.K. POLITICS | British Prime Minister Liz Truss yesterday apologized for her rapid budget actions after taking office that led to turmoil in the U.K. economy. In a BBC interview, Truss said she accepted responsibility for the turmoil and that she went “too far and too fast” with her budget plans. A reversal of a majority of Truss’ budget measures was announced yesterday by newly appointed finance minister Jeremy Hunt. [more]

AUSTRALIA | Australian Federal Emergency Management Minister Murray Watt said yesterday that up to 34,000 homes in the state of Victoria could be inundated or isolated by floodwaters in the coming days as heavy rains continue in the region. [more]

FRANCE | Only about half of regional train traffic in France is operating today, according to reports, as several rail unions take part in a nationwide strike over pay and energy cost issues. [more]

AUSTRALIA AND ISRAEL | Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong announced today that Australia has reversed a decision by its previous government to recognize West Jerusalem as Israel's capital, and that it will maintain its embassy in Tel Aviv. [more]

E-COMMERCE | Citing the U.S. Constitution’s prohibition on state interference with interstate commerce, a Maryland judge yesterday struck down a first-of-its-kind state law that would have taxed revenue from digital advertisements shown in Maryland for companies with more than $100 million in global gross annual revenue. [more]

LITERATURE | Sri Lankan writer Shehan Karunatilaka was named the winner of the 2022 Booker Prize for fiction yesterday for his novel “The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida.” [more]

NCAA BASKETBALL | The Associated Press released its first pre-season AP Top 25 rankings for the upcoming NCAA basketball season yesterday. North Carolina is ranked No. 1 in the poll, followed by Gonzaga, Houston, Kentucky, and, tied at No. 5, Kansas and Baylor. [full Top 25] [more]

R.I.P. | Former NASA astronaut James McDivitt, who commanded the Apollo 9 and Gemini 4 space missions and later served as the NASA program manager for five Apollo missions died last week in Arizona at the age of 93, according to a NASA statement released yesterday. [more]

TODAY IN HISTORY | On this date in 1898, Puerto Rico was turned over to the United States following the Spanish-American War. [more history]

Support independent information for independent minds.

Sign up for a free or supporting membership to further our mission.