August 30, 2023


Listen to this issue.

UKRAINE | Today is day 552 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Here are your updates:

  • Russian defense officials say the largest Ukrainian drone attack on Russian territory since the war began took place overnight, with attempted drone strikes in Russia’s Pskov, Oryol, Bryansk, Ryazan, and Kaluga regions, as well in the area surround the capital Moscow. [more]
  • The U.S. announced a new $250 million military aid package for Ukraine yesterday, which will include mine-clearing equipment, artillery and rocket rounds, ambulances, medical equipment, air defense missiles, and small arms ammunition drawn from existing U.S. stockpiles. [more]

HURRICANE IDALIA | Hurricane Idalia made landfall as a Category 3 storm this morning at Keaton Beach in the Big Bend region of Florida’s Gulf coast. States of emergency have been declared in most of the region, and authorities continue to warn of potentially catastrophic wind and storm surge damage. [more]

JANUARY 6 | Enrique Tarrio, former national leader of the far-right Proud Boys group, is scheduled to be sentenced today in a Washington, DC, federal court for his role in the January 6, 2021, attacks on the U.S. Capitol. Tarrio, for whom prosecutors have suggested a 33-year prison sentence, was convicted of seditious conspiracy and other charges in May. [more]

U.S. ECONOMY | Economists at the Conference Board business research group say their measures of both current and future consumer confidence fell in August, signaling increased anxiety over price increases and spending on non-essential goods. [more]

MORE U.S. ECONOMY | The Labor Department’s latest jobs report shows that job vacancies in the U.S. fell to 8.8 million in July — down from 9.2 million in June and the lowest level since March 2021. [more]

NORTH CAROLINA | Authorities in North Carolina say 34-year-old graduate student Tailei Qi has been charged with first-degree murder in connection with Monday’s killing of University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill faculty member Zijie Yan. Qi, for whom Yan served as an advisor, was arrested hours after the shooting. [more]

U.S. EDUCATION | According to a recent analysis, the rate of chronic absenteeism among U.S. public-school students grew by 13.5%  between the 2018-19 and 2021-22 school years, suggesting the presence of significant barriers to academic attendance recovery in the post-COVID period. [more]

TENNESEE | A special legislative session called by Tennessee Governor Bill Lee to consider state gun safety laws in the wake of the mass shooting in March at Nashville’s Covenant School ended yesterday with no new gun safely measures enacted. Reports note that lawmakers did set aside extra funds for existing gun safety programs during the special session. [more]

NEW YORK CITY | Under new guidelines announced by New York City Mayor Eric Adams yesterday, mosques in the city will no longer be required to have a special permit to publicly broadcast the Muslim call to prayer on Fridays and during the holy month of Ramadan. According to the guidelines, the broadcasts will be permitted at up to 10 decibels over the ambient sound level. [more]

CYBERCRIME | U.S. and European authorities yesterday announced the dismantling of a major global malware network said to have been used to extort some $58 million from corporate ransomware victims over a period of about 18 months. The Qakbot malware is thought to have infected up to 700,000 computers worldwide. [more]

GABON | Soldiers Gabon said today that they have seized power from President Ali Bongo Ondimba, whose family has held power in the Central African country for 55 years. Reports say the coup participants are currently holding Ondimba under house arrest. [more]

U.K. AND CHINA | The first visit to China in more than five years by a U.K. foreign secretary is taking place today as James Cleverly, Britain’s top diplomat, meets with top Chinese officials today in Beijing with the aim of stabilizing relations between the two countries. [more]

RUSSIA | While saying that the recent crash of the private jet carrying Wagner mercenary group leader Yevgeny Prigozhin will not be probed under international rules, Russian authorities acknowledged the possibility today that the plane was downed on purpose. The Kremlin continues to deny any role in the incident, which killed Prigozhin exactly two months after he led a Wagner uprising against Russian military leadership. [more]

AUSTRALIA | Prime Minister Anthony Albanese announced today that October 14 has been set as  the date for a national referendum in which voters will be asked whether they support a change to the country’s constitution establishing an official “Voice to Parliament” Indigenous committee to advise parliament on matters affecting the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island peoples. [more]

TODAY IN HISTORY | On this date in 2021, following a chaotic withdrawal, the last U.S. troops left Afghanistan, some seven years after Operation Enduring Freedom, the initial phase of the war in Afghanistan, had officially ended.  [more history]

Support independent information for independent minds.

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