December 7, 2023


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ISRAEL-HAMAS WAR | Updates from day 62 of the conflict:

  • In a letter to the U.N. Security Council yesterday regarding the Israel-Hamas conflict, U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres invoked Article 99 of the U.N. Charter, which gives him the authority to inform the Council of any matter which in his opinion may threaten the maintenance of international peace and security. Guterres warned of an impending “humanitarian catastrophe” in Gaza and urged Council members to demand an immediate humanitarian cease-fire. [more]
  • Houthi rebel militants in Yemen released a statement yesterday claiming responsibility for launching several recent ballistic missile attacks at military posts in southern Israel. The statement said the missile launches were “in support of the oppressed Palestinian people” [more]

UKRAINE | Today is day 651 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Here are your updates:

  • Amidst ongoing Congressional reluctance, mainly from Republican lawmakers, to approve additional tens of billions of dollars in military and economic aid for Ukraine, U.S. President Joe Biden warned Congress yesterday that failure to approve new aid would be a “gift” to Russian President Vladimir Putin. Also yesterday, the Pentagon, under previously authorized authority, announced a new $175 million package of military aid to Kyiv, which officials suggested could be the last such aid from the U.S. without supplemental funding approval. [more]
  • Both Ukrainian and Russian media reports cite sources as saying that Ukrainian operatives were responsible for at least two recent bomb attacks on Russian trains and rail lines in Siberia thought to have been used to transport North Korean military equipment and munitions to Russian front lines in Ukraine. [more]

U.S. GUN VIOLENCE | Three people were killed, and another critically wounded, yesterday when a gunman opened fire in a building on the campus of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas yesterday. Reports say the gunman, who was killed in a shootout with police, was a former East Carolina University professor who had unsuccessfully sought a job at the Nevada school recently. [more]

U.S. SECURITY AND PRIVACY | FBI Director Christopher Wray urged a Senate panel this week to renew government warrantless surveillance powers outside the U.S. that are set to expire at the end of this month. Wray said Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which has been criticized over the possibility of data on U.S. citizens being obtained as part of surveillance of foreign targets, is critical to law enforcement's ability to counter cyber and terrorism threats. [more]

U.S. POLITICS | Former Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, who was removed from his leadership position by vote of the House in October, announced yesterday that he is resigning and that he intends to leave Congress by the end of this year. [more]

VENEZUELA AND GUYANA | Reports say a Guyanan military helicopter carrying seven people vanished yesterday near Guyana’s border with Venezuela. Authorities say there is no indication at this time that the incident is related to recently heightened border tensions with Venezuela over the disputed Essequibo region. [more]

RUSSIA | The Federation Council, Russia’s upper house of parliament, voted yesterday to set March 17 as the date for Russia’s 2024 presidential election in which President Vladimir Putin is expected to seek a new term in office, though he has not made an official announcement on doing so. [more]

MORE RUSSIA | Russian state news agency RIA Novosti reports that a schoolgirl in the Russian city of Bryansk shot several of her classmates today, killing one person and wounding at least five others before killing herself. The investigation into the shooting is ongoing. [more]

JAPAN | Japanese media reports that Tokyo prosecutors intend to investigate several dozen lawmakers from the ruling Liberal Democratic Party in connection with more than 100 million yen ($680,000) of fundraising proceeds that are reportedly not accounted for in the party’s official records. [more]

GREECE AND TURKEY | Amidst longstanding and ongoing tensions between Greece and Turkey over defense, economic, migration, territorial, and other issues, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan arrived in Athens today ahead of the fifth Greece-Turkey High-level Cooperation Council summit, where, according to reports, a primary focus will be a "rebooting" of relations between the two countries. [more]

PERU | Peru’s Constitutional Court ordered the humanitarian release from prison yesterday of former President Alberto Fujimori, who was serving a 25-year sentence in connection with the slayings of 25 Peruvians by death squads in the 1990s. [more]

GLOBAL OIL | Following a meeting in Riyadh yesterday, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman urged all members of the OPEC+ oil alliance to join an agreement on oil production cuts, saying the move “serves the interests of producers and consumers and supports the growth of the global economy.” [more]

IRAN | Iran’s official IRNA news agency cites government officials as saying the Middle East country successfully launched a capsule capable of carrying animals into orbit yesterday as part of preparations for planned human space missions in the coming years. [more]

R.I.P. Television producer Norman Lear, best known for creating 1970s sitcoms, including “All in the Family,” “The Jeffersons,” and “Maude,” died Tuesday at the age of 101. Leer is widely credited with introducing topics of political and social change into the television sitcom genre. [more]

TODAY IN HISTORY | On this date in 1941, Japanese bombers launched a surprise aerial attack on the U.S. naval base at Pearl Harbor on the island of Oahu, Hawaii, precipitating the entry of the United States into World War II. [related news] [more history]

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