Russia must be seen to lose its war against Ukraine, so that history — that of her family and her country — is not repeated elsewhere. ............ “Peace can’t be the ultimate goal,” she said. “We had peace after the Second World War, but the atrocities for our people started or continued then,” she said, citing mass deportations, killings of the elite and “trying to erase our culture and our language.” .......... NATO was engaged in a massive military exercise in Estonia called “Hedgehog,” involving some 15,000 troops from 14 countries, including participation by the U.S. Navy. It is part of a series of large NATO exercises this month in Central Europe. ........... Russia’s invasion of Ukraine marks a turning point in European history and must be defeated at all costs, and without compromise. ......... early support for Ukraine, and more support per capita, from this small nation of 1.3 million people, than any other country in the world. ........... She has been a sharp critic of continuing efforts by other leaders, like Emmanuel Macron, the president of France, to keep contacts with Mr. Putin while Ukraine is fighting for its sovereignty and its existence as an independent state. ....... only the Ukrainian government and its president, Volodymyr Zelensky, should be negotiating with Mr. Putin, whom she considers a war criminal. .......... “The conversation has to happen between Zelensky and Putin, because they are part of the war and their skin is in the game,” she said. The Ukrainians “are the only ones who can say what is their room for maneuver,” she said, “because it’s their people who suffer.” ........... There are some in Europe, including important business executives, who want the war in Ukraine over as quickly as possible, given the sharp increases in the price of energy, grain, cooking oil and countless other items leading to record inflation, in part caused by Europe’s harsh sanctions on Russia. .............. only Ukrainians are doing the fighting for what she considers the values and security of the entire trans-Atlantic alliance. ...........
so far, she said, Mr. Putin has refused to talk to Mr. Zelensky......... A partial settlement that allows Russia to renew its offensive later is not sustainable, she said. “I only see a solution as a military victory that could end this once and for all, and also punishing the aggressor for what he has done.” Otherwise, she said, “we go back to where we started — you will have a pause of one year, two years, and then everything will continue.” ......... That has been the mistake of the West with Mr. Putin for years now, she said, citing the Georgian war in 2008, the annexation of Crimea and the war in the Donbas that has been ongoing since 2015. .......... Mr. Zelensky “is in a very difficult position.” On one hand, “you’re the leader of the country, and you see the suffering of your people, you want this to stop.” But on the other, “you have public opinion saying that Ukraine is winning this war, and we shouldn’t give any territory to Russia.” .......... Finding the balance will be hard, she said, but it is up to Mr. Zelensky to find it. “It is up to Ukraine to decide where their limits are,” no one else, she said. .......... It is important that the European Union and NATO keep the door open to Ukraine, she said, given the already remarkable sacrifices it has made to protect Western values and interests. The Ukrainians have earned the right to prove that they can qualify, she said, and the West “should not be intimidated by anything Russia is saying or threatening.” .........
“Europe is not a geography — it’s a set of values and principles.”
The two heroes/heroines of the #Ukrainewar @ZelenskyyUa and @kajakallas https://t.co/5XncEbZkKc #jointNobelPeacePrize after victory— Paramendra Kumar Bhagat (@paramendra) May 19, 2022
We Must Make Sure Russia Finishes This War in a Worse Position Than Before Foreign Secretary Liz Truss of Britain said that her country would seek “to push Russia out of the whole of Ukraine.” ....... Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, declared that “we want Ukraine to win this war.” ........ A peace that for the second time since 2014 rewards a Russian invasion with Ukrainian territory would have severe consequences for Ukraine’s future, Western security and credibility, and the norms of sovereignty and nonintervention that underpin the international order. ......... At a minimum, Western policy should ensure that Russia gains no new Ukrainian territory and continues to face severe sanctions until it fundamentally changes its policy toward Ukraine. ...... Further sanctions would be inconvenient for Europe — but disastrous for Russia. The West must prevail in this contest of resolve. ...... unambiguously committing to both the restoration of Ukraine’s territory and the reconstruction of its war-torn economy. ........ Fear of Russian escalation should not constrain the West from taking these steps. Russia’s reckless nuclear talk is designed to play on the West’s fears. But Russia’s saber-rattling reflects its dearth of other options. Since the war has exposed Russia’s weakness in other domains — conventional military force, informational warfare, cyberpower and economic resilience —
weapons of mass destruction are now its only claim to geopolitical greatness. ........... The argument that “Russia will use nuclear weapons unless it is allowed to gain from the war” does not deter Ukraine from fighting. It should not deter the West from giving it the means to do so.
‘S.N.L.’ Takes on the Trial of Johnny Depp and Amber Heard In an episode hosted by Selena Gomez, “Saturday Night Live” tried to distract itself from a dire news week with a celebrity lawsuit and whoopee cushions. ......... After rattling off other headlines — “political fallout from the recent Jan. 6 subpoenas, updates on the Russian helicopter taken down by Ukraine, plus a nationwide shortage of baby formula” — McKinnon explained to viewers that her network would instead be covering the celebrity trial. ........ “On one hand, I believe Mr. Depp’s story. But on the other hand, your constant little smirk lets me know that this is not the first woman you’ve made so mad that she pooped in your bed.” ......... Is it me or does every story this week sound like the opening voice-over in a “Mad Max” movie? The year is 2022. A virus rages across the planet. Digital money has collapsed. Infants have nothing to eat. Women are forced to breed. Men are ready to die for gasoline. And we suffer under the leadership of the one known only as Joe.......... Cryptocurrency crashed this week with Bitcoin losing nearly half its value. And now it has to legally change its name to Bit O’ Coin. In fact, the entire crypto market has lost over $1 trillion, but you can make that money back fast as long as you’ve been hoarding baby formula.
A Ruling Family on the Run as Sri Lanka Plunges Into Economic Ruin Once empowered by triumphant ethnic nationalism after a brutal civil war, the Rajapaksa dynasty has been undone by what its own allies call incompetence and denial........ The president, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, and his brother Mahinda, the prime minister, had come on board with the measure after a year of discussion. But another member of the family — Basil, the finance minister, one of five Rajapaksas in the cabinet — had other ideas. ........... Sri Lanka lies in economic ruin, with basic food items scarce, hospitals out of medicine and lines for fuel stretching for blocks as the country’s foreign reserves all but run out. The wave of anger now gripping the country is as much about the family dynasty ruling Sri Lanka as it is about the economic disaster. Once empowered by a triumphant Buddhist Sinhalese nationalism after a brutal civil war, the Rajapaksas have been undone by what their own allies call incompetence and denial. ........... with most of the family in hiding at a military base and only the president clinging to power ........... “Basil was not willing to accept the fact that this financial crisis will lead to an economic crisis, and unless we are going to solve it, that will lead to a political crisis” ........... “He controlled everything,” Mr. Gammanpila added, a sentiment repeated by other officials and diplomats, “and he knew nothing.” ........ Over a period of decades, the small island nation of 22 million people had built a bloated state sector, robust social welfare programs that exceeded the country’s means, a large military and an elaborate series of postwar construction projects. As economic growth slowed, it kept borrowing to pay. ............. Then came a disastrous ban on chemical fertilizers, as the Rajapaksa government pushed organic farming at a time when climate change was already threatening harvests and food security. ........ As it became clearer that the government needed help from financial bodies like the International Monetary Fund, the Rajapaksas dragged their feet. Used to easy loans from allies like China, they were daunted by the strict expectations that come with such packages ........... Many have described the root of the crisis as the impunity that the political and military elite enjoyed after a civil war rife with accusations of crimes against Sri Lanka’s minority Tamils. The war’s end initiated a majoritarian triumphalism, exploited by the Rajapaksas, that concealed the deeper economic troubles and bypassed reconciliation. ............ the Rajapaksas, buoyed by war and ethnic nationalism, felt an entitlement that was all the more glaring in the face of their weak governance. .......... Mahinda Rajapaksa’s supporters, bused to his residence, walked out and attacked peaceful protesters who had camped there for weeks through heat and monsoon downpours. .......... Mr. Godahewa, whose home was also burned down, said he remained at the president’s residence for much of the night as anarchy took hold. At Temple Trees, the old colonial compound where the prime minister lives, protesters broke the gates and forced their way in. ......... the military had calculated its own interests, and that the economic crisis was too widespread, also affecting the families of those in the military, for officers to blindly support the president despite the public anger.
There Are Two Endgames in Ukraine. Both Carry Big Risks. The significant date of May 9, the celebration of the Soviet Union’s victory over Hitler’s Germany, came and went with no change of Russian strategy. .......... More of the same, then, seems to be the Russian plan — meaning a continuation of the grinding war in Ukraine’s south and east, with the goal of regime change essentially abandoned in favor of the goal of holding territory that might eventually be integrated into the Russian Federation. .......... The risk that a proxy war would encourage Moscow to climb the ladder toward a larger conflict has been manifest in the constant saber-rattling on Russian state TV — but not, thus far, in the actual choices of the Kremlin. Putin obviously doesn’t like our armaments flowing into Ukraine, but he appears willing to fight the war on these terms rather than gambling at more existential stakes. ......... Two scenarios loom for the next six months of war. In the first, Russia and Ukraine trade territory in small increments, and the war gradually cools into a “frozen conflict” in a style familiar from other wars in Russia’s near abroad. .......... And already, the pro-Ukraine united front in the United States is fracturing a little over the sheer scale of what we’re sending. So it’s not clear that either the Biden administration or the Zelensky government would be wise to invest in a long-term strategy for a frozen conflict that requires sustained bipartisan support — and perhaps soon enough the backing of a Donald Trump or Ron DeSantis administration. ........ the stalemate breaks in Ukraine’s favor. This is the future that the Ukrainian military claims is within reach — where with sufficient military aid and hardware they are able to turn their modest counteroffensives into major ones and push the Russians back not just to prewar lines but potentially out of Ukrainian territory entirely........... Clearly, this is the future America should want — except for the extremely important caveat that it’s also the future where Russian nuclear escalation suddenly becomes much more likely than it is right now. ........... We know that Russian military doctrine envisions using tactical nuclear weapons defensively, to turn the tide in a losing war. We should assume that Putin and his circle regard total defeat in Ukraine as a regime-threatening scenario. Combine those realities with a world where the Russians are suddenly being routed, their territorial gains evaporating, and you have the most nuclear-shadowed military situation since our naval blockade of Cuba in 1962. .......... what our posture should be in the event that rapid Ukrainian advances are met with a Russian tactical nuclear strike. ........ since we are arming the Ukrainians on a scale that seems intended to make a counteroffensive possible, I sincerely hope a version of the Colby-Heinrichs back-and-forth is happening at the highest reaches of our government — before an issue that matters now on academic panels becomes the most important question in the world.
The MAGA Formula Is Getting Darker and Darker The chilling amalgam of Christian nationalism, white replacement theory and conspiratorial zeal — from QAnon to the “stolen” 2020 election — has attracted a substantial constituency in the United States, thanks in large part to the efforts of Donald Trump and his advisers. By some estimates, adherents of these overlapping movements make up
as much as a quarter or even a third of the electorate. Whatever the scale, they are determined to restore what they see as the original racial and religious foundation of America. .......... “Donald Trump wove them together and brought them out into the open. Indeed, the MAGA formula — the stoking of anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim sentiment while making nativist appeals to the Christian right — could accurately be described as a white Christian nationalist strategy from the beginning.” ......... “There is definitely a wing of the Christian nationalist movement that overlaps with the great replacement theory and demographic paranoia in general.” ........... Christian nationalism is making significant inroads among some Latino communities, for example, and there the argument is not that a preferred racial group is being replaced but that a preferred religious and cultural value system (with supposed economic implications) is under threat.” ........... a reactionary, authoritarian ideology that centers its grievances on a narrative of lost national greatness and believes in the indispensability of the “right” religion in recovering that lost greatness. This mind-set always involves a narrative of unjust persecution at the hands of alien or “un-American” groups. The specific targets may shift. Some focus their fears on the “homosexual agenda”; others target Americans of color or nonwhite immigrant groups; still others identify the menace with religious minorities such as Muslims, Jews and secular “elites” or perceived threats against gender hierarchy and sexual order. And of course, many take an all-of-the-above approach. ........... We can see how the great replacement theory overlaps with Christian nationalism. Both view some specific population as “real” Americans, whether that is defined explicitly as white Christians or in the more vague and coded language of “real” or “native born” or “legacy” Americans. And both frame demographic change as threats to both that population and to the country’s essential character. Finally, although not all flavors of Christian nationalism include a conspiratorial element, some versions share with replacement theory an imagined cabal of nefarious elites — often Jews, communists/socialists or globalists — who are intentionally promoting racial and/or religious diversity in order to diminish white Christian power. ........... “white Christian nationalism” and the other “colorblind Judeo-Christian nationalism.” ......... “explicitly fuses whiteness, Christianity and Americanness,” leading to the conclusion that “white Christians alone embody the values on which a healthy democracy rests and, as such, white Christians alone are suited to hold positions of social influence and political power.” ............
Why have Christian nationalism and replacement theory moved so quickly to center stage?......... it was “twin shocks to the system” delivered during the first two decades of this century: “the election and re-election of our first Black president and the sea change of no longer being a majority-white Christian nation.” ........... White Christians went from 54 percent to 47 percent in that period, down to 44 percent today. This set the stage for Trump and the emergence of full-throated white Christian nationalism.
Trump exchanged the dog whistle for the megaphone........ 29 percent believe that immigrants are invading our country; among Republicans, it’s 60 percent; among Democrats, 11 percent; among QAnon believers, 65 percent; among white evangelicals, 50 percent; and among white noncollege voters, as pollsters put it, 43 percent. .......... White Americans who agree that “God has granted America a special role in human history” (a softer measure of Christian nationalism) are more than twice as likely as those who disagree with that statement to believe that “true American patriots may have to resort to violence in order to save our country” (28 percent vs. 11 percent). And white Americans who agree that “God intended America to be a promised land for European Christians” (a harder measure of Christian nationalism) are four times as likely as those who disagree with that statement to believe that “true American patriots may have to resort to violence in order to save our country” (43 percent vs. 10 percent). And white Americans who believe that “Immigrants are invading our country and replacing our cultural and ethnic values” are more than five times as likely as those who disagree with that statement to believe that “true American patriots may have to resort to violence in order to save our country” (45 percent vs. 8 percent). ........... “Religious ideologies like Christian nationalism should be associated with support for violence, conditional on several individual characteristics that can be inflamed by elite cues.” Those characteristics are “perceived victimhood, reinforcing racial and religious identities and support for conspiratorial information sources.” ......... “It’s a toxic blend of extremist orientations, such as Christian nationalism, racism, some expressions of populism and conspiracism, for example, that edges individuals closer to supporting violence.” ............
conspiracy-minded individuals, like the accused Buffalo shooter, can find connections between anything.......... conspiracy theories, of which great replacement theory is an example, are oftentimes undergirded by antisocial personality traits, such as the dark triad (narcissism, Machiavellianism, psychopathy) and a predisposition toward conflict. If you combine all of these dispositions and traits and dial them up to 10, that’s when you’re most likely to find support for violence, which is correlated with (but not determinative of) behavioral violence. ........ “between 25 to 32 percent of white Americans support some Christian nationalist ideas. .......... of “the major predictors of support for violence — perceived victimhood, attachment to one’s whiteness, racial animus toward Blacks, support for authoritarianism, support for populism and past or current military service — all, save for military service, are present in the accused Buffalo shooter’s written statement.” ........... 6 percent of whites, 11.5 percent of white evangelicals and 17.7 percent of white weekly churchgoers fall into the joint top quartile of justification of violence, Christian nationalist beliefs, perceived victimhood, white identity and support for QAnon.
That would represent millions of individuals. It also represents a far greater share of the white American population than surveys find when testing Muslim American support for terrorism............... Christian nationalism, white replacement theory and conspiracy preoccupation overlap, although each has unique characteristics. ........ Belief in replacement theory is much higher among OANN/Newsmax viewers (45 percent) and Fox News viewers (31 percent) than it is among CNN (13 percent) or MSNBC viewers (11 percent). ..........
They are also very concerned with low birthrates.......... I can only report that without an overhaul of the law and the allocation of resources, millions of illegal immigrants will continue flooding to this great land from around the world. Many of them have no marketable skills. They are illiterate and unhealthy. Some are violent criminals. Their numbers will soon overwhelm the culture as we have known it, and it could bankrupt the nation. America has been a wonderfully generous and caring country since its founding. That is our Christian nature. But in this instance, we have met a worldwide wave of poverty that will take us down if we don’t deal with it. And it won’t take long for the inevitable consequences to happen. ................ Christian nationalism’s numeric decline and cultural resurgence are, ironically, directly connected.
With or Without Trump, the MAGA Movement Is the Future of the Republican Party The fissures in the Democratic Party are on display for all to see, since it is the party in power, but the divisions in the Republican Party and the conservative movement are deeper, wider and far more threatening. ........ In 2011, the Department of Education declared that Title IX required universities to investigate charges of sexual harassment with few due-process protections for the accused — to the dismay of many conservatives (and plenty of liberals). In 2012, the Department of Health and Human Services mandated that Obamacare cover the costs of contraception and abortifacients. In 2016, the Department of Education advised schools to allow transgender students to use the bathroom of their choice. .......... Kennedy’s “decision nullified bans on gay marriage in 31 states. Social conservatives were apoplectic.” ............. “At the top of society,” Continetti writes, “a self-perpetuating elite lived inside a bubble of affluent neighborhoods and postal codes Murray called ‘Super-Zips,’ while mass suffering played out below. Most Americans, Murray pointed out, did not enjoy the benefits of intact families, vibrant communities and church membership.” Addiction levels, Continetti continued, were staggering. “Opioid and heroin abuse caused a spike in deaths, in some years killing as many Americans as died in Vietnam.” ........... “All this happened under the noses of most conservative and Republican elites. They lived in the wealthy Virginia and Maryland suburbs surrounding Washington, D.C. They enjoyed life in the Super-Zips,” Continetti writes. The elite of the right “were separated from growing numbers of their own party by background, education, income and lifestyle.” ......... The stage was set for a political explosion, and it came in the form of Donald Trump. ..... George Will said that he deserved to lose 50 states. Charles Krauthammer called him a “rodeo clown.” ......... “Not one iota of Trump was politically correct. He played by no rules of civility. He genuflected to no one. He despised the media with the same intensity as the conservative grass roots.” ........... Here’s what’s the terrifying thing on the right that can be a career- and reputation-ending allegation: “You’re weak. You’re a coward.” So the transformation,
this flipping upside down of morality, turning bullying into strength, turning restraint into vice, all of that, what has then happened is it enables the Trumpists and the Trumpist world. They’re wielding this sword that is very sharp culturally in red spaces, this accusation of weakness and cowardice, as a weapon to keep people in line, because they’ve defined support for this movement as evidence of your strength. .............. But for conservatives — I mean those who champion some version of the difficult balance of traditionalism in the moral arena, market mechanisms for addressing our economic challenges, and American strength in a dangerous world — all bound by a limited-government constitutionalism — this sorry year’s lessons have one overarching implication: We can no longer treat the G.O.P. simply as our own. ......... faults the conservative movement for clinging to “an agenda almost frozen in amber, locking in place a 1980s-style policy program even as the nation changed around us.” ........... “Trump blew it all up,” Levin wrote. “It’s not that he had a rival policy prescription; his campaign largely amounts to a frantic venting of frustrations punctuated by demagogic chest-thumping. But his approach clearly appealed to a significant portion of Republican voters.” .......... Trump did have one crystal-clear policy objective: to drastically reduce immigration, legal and illegal. ........... Without the assent of Congress, President Trump has remade almost every major facet of America’s immigration system over the past three-plus years, slashing levels of legal and illegal arrivals; refugees and asylum seekers; Muslim and Christian migrants. He has sought to strip citizenship from naturalized Americans and subject “dreamers” raised in this country to deportation. He tried to deter illegal border crossings by sundering families, thereby traumatizing migrant teens, tweens and toddlers. ............. Mr. Trump has largely succeeded in delivering on the anti-immigration message that drove his 2016 victory and continues to animate much of his base. Only a small fraction of his border wall has been built, and Mexico has paid for none of it, but the thrust of his nativist vision has taken root in hundreds of rule changes and policy shifts that have slammed shut America’s doors. ............ Every so often the right has embraced a demagogic leader who pulls it toward the political fringe. From Tom Watson to Henry Ford, Father Coughlin to Charles Lindbergh, Joseph McCarthy to George Wallace, Ross Perot to Pat Buchanan, Ron Paul to Donald Trump, these tribunes of discontent have succumbed to conspiracy theories, racism and anti-Semitism. They have flirted with violence. They have played footsie with autocracy. .............. the substantial intellectual infrastructure that has buoyed the Trumpist right, its willingness to rupture moral codes and to discard traditional norms — an infrastructure that includes the Claremont Institute, Hillsdale College, First Things magazine and the American Mind website. ............ Social institutions dependent upon the old morality have become intellectually indefensible. In terms of contemporary social and political thought, it is the good understood as the old that is no longer defensible, and its political defense has therefore become untenable. This alone makes the defense of reasonable conservatism — and constitutionalism itself — something akin to the defense of a dream that masquerades itself as reality in the minds of its votaries. ............ Progressives understand that culture war means discrediting their opponents and weakening or destroying their institutions. Conservatives should approach the culture war with a similar realism. Civility and decency are secondary values. They regulate compliance with an established order and orthodoxy. ................ Our norms are now hopelessly corrupt and need to be destroyed. It has been like this for a while — and the MAGA voters knew it, while most of the policy wonks and magazine scribblers did not … and still don’t. In almost every case, the political practices, institutions, and even rhetoric governing the United States have become hostile to both
liberty and virtue. .............. The current tensions and arguments on the right aren’t anything new — there’s been a multi-front struggle within conservatism as long as modern conservatism has existed. What’s new is that the populist tendency has usually been subordinate to the classic liberal element, and now, with the advent of Trump, populism has the upper hand. ............ the right has rejected the lazy business-oriented consensus on immigration and China that held sway for too long. We won’t see a so-called comprehensive immigration reform again for a long time — and good riddance. ............ “any impetus to pursue entitlement reform has completely disappeared.” ............ the unanimous belief in the effectiveness and political gain to be made by the current Republican assault on “woke” corporations supporting transgender rights and on corporations requiring employees to undergo diversity training using principles of “critical race theory” — an assault led by Ron DeSantis, the governor of Florida. .............. Yet Trump earned neither a majority of votes overall nor majorities in the key primary states of New Hampshire, South Carolina and Florida. He benefited from divisions and flaws among his many rivals as well as his canny political instincts that allowed him to seize on the issue of immigration and connect it to worries over international terrorism. .......... Trump became president because he had the good fortune of running against the second-most-unpopular general election candidate in the history of the Gallup poll (Trump is number one). ............. opposition to illegal immigration, resistance to international trade, a general dislike of permanent alliances and overseas intervention, he also combined these modifications with the Reaganite agenda of tax cuts, deregulation, increased defense spending, conservative judicial appointments and support for Israel. ............
Trump has “a contempt for the ‘niceties of liberal democracy’ and an admiration for nationalist strongmen who use state power to diminish the cultural power of the progressive left,”Continetti added that “Trump’s inability to accept defeat was behind his ‘Stop the Steal’ movement that, in a horrific illustration of what happens when one abandons the ‘niceties of liberal democracy,’ culminated in the Capitol riot on Jan. 6, 2021.” ............ whether the Republican Party had become the party of Patrick J. Buchanan, the fire-breathing populist conservative who ran unsuccessfully for president in 1992. .......... “If it indeed became anti-immigrant, anti-trade and America First in foreign policy, it would indeed mirror Pat Buchanan’s insurgency. But I think the party is still fighting over these policies. The response of party leaders to Ukraine shows that the older Republican internationalist wing of the party is still alive and strong.” .......... Trump has absolutely ruined the discourse among conservative intellectuals, elites, think tankers, pundits, etc. We were all basically on the same side, then Trump won the nomination, and it seemed like everybody turned on everybody, depending on the shades or nuances of your views.” .............. Trump’s flagrantly aberrant moral compass ............ As the Republican Party evolves from a party focused on individual liberty and limits on government power to a party that more fully embraces government control of the economy and morality, it is reversing many of its previous stances on free speech in public universities, in public education, and in private corporations. ............ The primal forces unleashed by Trump have not lost momentum. Whoever ends up as the Republican Party nominee in 2024 — whether it is Trump himself or one of the other contenders — will be under pressure to continue the abandonment of principle. ....... Whether Trumpism is more powerful with Trump or without him is still an open question, but the MAGA movement shows no real sign of abating.
Musk tweeted a few days ago he is just fine going to hell where much of humanity will be anyway. I think he is an atheist. But ask.— Paramendra Kumar Bhagat (@paramendra) May 19, 2022
Nice try, Mr. Musk. https://t.co/I3pCsH6ody— The Daily Beast (@thedailybeast) May 19, 2022
Ask friends, get referrals, talk to their portfolio & finally research online before sending a pitch deck to a VC.— Mehta Sanjay (@mehtasanjay) May 19, 2022
Do not broadcast your pitch & make it stale!
VCs who invest exclusively in tracked and credentialed founders convey an underlying fear of failure.— Eric Stromberg (@ericstromberg) May 19, 2022
Increasingly…in this market…the strategy will have the opposite of its intended effect.
Any outsider understands the rules better than any insider because they had to learn the game from scratch, so it’s a massive missed opportunity to broaden conversational perspectives esp at a conference— Paul Griffiths .eth (@paul_griffiths) May 18, 2022
A few founders I’ve talked to are worried about the market and want to raise more cash on top of a recent round.— Gale Wilkinson @Vitalize (@galeforceVC) May 18, 2022
My advice: raise only what you need to get to your next raise. Lots of dry powder still in the hands of GPs so all will be well for companies that hit milestones!
Elon Musk is spiraling out of control faster than Tesla stock.— Mayo 🇺🇦🌻 (@MayoIsSpicyy) May 18, 2022
A clear case of wacktivism— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 19, 2022
All Masters who have walked the Earth have revealed, in their own way, that love is the answer to all the problems on the planet. If you fully embrace unconditional love, fear, and all its derivatives, like hate, anger, and greed, will...— Garnet Schulhauser (@GSchulhauser) May 18, 2022
Don’t manage change. Lead a transformation. https://t.co/v6sJ0qV5SF#alderkoten #executivesearch— Jose J. Ruiz (@josejorgeruiz) May 19, 2022
And the U.S…. https://t.co/bPqKpJzUDK— New Consensus (@newconsensus) May 19, 2022
Elon Musk is Kim Kardashian for men— Dr. Parik Patel, BA, CFA, ACCA Esq. (drpatel.eth) (@ParikPatelCFA) May 18, 2022
In a global bear market, there is no place to hide, but there is one place to stand. #Bitcoin— Michael Saylor⚡️ (@saylor) May 19, 2022
Silence from Kyiv as Russia claims more than 1,700 surrender in Mariupol https://t.co/bVq0POyO4A— The Irish Times (@IrishTimes) May 19, 2022
#cheaperversion Eat Sleep Exercise https://t.co/gPnEbsPNlt— Paramendra Kumar Bhagat (@paramendra) May 19, 2022
How to eat, sleep and exercise to be happy, and live a long, productive life, and make the most of one's abilities.
Here's your chance to recoup. Russia's Democracy Movement will be tokenized. https://t.co/YaBK8rHUwV #russia #ukraine #UkraineRussiaWar #Russian #PutinWarCriminal #Navalny #alexeinavalny #UkraineRussia Please take a listen. This is my pitch.— Paramendra Kumar Bhagat (@paramendra) May 19, 2022
Just so we don't get in a back and forth on who is right, here's what the BBC wrote about Musk's waiver of due diligence: "Twitter has defended its figures, adding that Mr Musk waived rights to "due diligence" to clinch the deal." https://t.co/z9OB75WtZ3— Andy Walsh (@WalshADR) May 19, 2022
Growing evidence of a military disaster on the Donets pierces a pro-Russian bubble. The destruction wreaked on a Russian battalion as it tried to cross a river in northeastern Ukraine last week is emerging as among the deadliest engagements of the war, with estimates based on publicly available evidence now suggesting that well over 400 Russian soldiers were killed or wounded. ...... as the scale of what happened comes into sharper focus, the disaster appears to be breaking through the Kremlin’s tightly controlled information bubble. ....... “The commentary by these widely read milbloggers may fuel burgeoning doubts in Russia about Russia’s prospects in this war and the competence of Russia’s military leaders” ........ On May 11, the Russian command reportedly sent about 550 troops of the 74th Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 41st Combined Arms Army to cross the Donets River at Bilohorivka, in the eastern Luhansk region, in a bid to encircle Ukrainian forces near Rubizhne. ....... Satellite images reveal that Ukrainian artillery destroyed several Russian pontoon bridges and laid waste to a tight concentration of Russian troops and equipment around the river. .......
I own 9% and want a board seat!— Joey P (@joeypmerc) May 13, 2022
Sure thing Mr. Musk. We just need a background check and you’re in.
A what? Shit… Never mind… Fuck it… I’ll buy the whole thing!!!
OK. US$44B please.
Um… hang on… this is so embarrassing… I seem to… um… I left my wallet in the car.
as many as 485 Russian soldiers killed or wounded and more than 80 pieces of equipment destroyed.......... some Russian bloggers did not appear to hold back in their criticism of what they said was incompetent leadership. “I’ve been keeping quiet for a long time,” Yuri Podolyaka, a war blogger with 2.1 million followers on Telegram, said in a video posted on Friday, saying that he had avoided criticizing the Russian military until now. ......... “The last straw that overwhelmed my patience was the events around Bilohorivka, where due to stupidity — I emphasize, because of the stupidity of the Russian command — at least one battalion tactical group was burned, possibly two.” ......... the Russian Army was short of functional unmanned drones, night-vision equipment and other kit “that is catastrophically lacking on the front.” ........ “But when the same problems go on for three months, and nothing seems to be changing, then I personally and in fact millions of citizens of the Russian Federation start to have questions for these leaders of the military operation.” ......... the fact that commanders left so much of their force exposed amounted to “not idiocy, but direct sabotage.” ........ Russia’s eastern offensive was moving slowly not just because of a lack of surveillance drones but also “these generals” and their tactics. ....... “Until we get the last name of the military genius who laid down a B.T.G. by the river and he answers for it publicly, we won’t have had any military reforms” ......... the attempted crossing demonstrated a stunning lack of tactical sense. ........ They have speculated that Russian commanders, desperate to make progress, rushed the operation. Some also suggested that it was a reflection of disorder in the Russian ranks. ......... If the estimates that hundreds of soldiers were killed or injured prove accurate, it would be one of the deadliest known engagements of the war. ...... There were more than 500 sailors aboard the Russian Black Sea flagship Moskva when it was struck by a Ukrainian missile in April. The Kremlin at first insisted that all the sailors were rescued, later saying one was killed. But even as the families of missing sailors have publicly demanded answers, the Kremlin has largely kept up an official silence on the fate of the crew, part of a larger campaign to suppress bad news.
Finland and Sweden Move Toward NATO Membership. But What About Ukraine? Why not allow Ukraine — the flawed, corrupt but also heroic democracy at the heart of the current conflict — to join as well, enshrining the West’s commitment to its security? ....... Moscow would take “retaliatory steps,” including a “military-technical” response, which many experts interpreted as a threat to deploy tactical nuclear weapons near the Russian-Finnish border. ....... The two Nordic states are model democracies and modern militaries that the United States and other NATO nations regularly conduct exercises with, working together to track Russian subs, protect undersea communications cables and run air patrols across the Baltic Sea. ........ “We have stayed out of NATO for 30 years — we could have joined in the early ’90s,” Mikko Hautala, the Finnish ambassador to the United States, said on Thursday as he was walking the halls of the U.S. Senate, drumming up support for his country’s sudden change of course. Trying to avoid provoking Mr. Putin, he said, “hasn’t changed Russia’s actions at all.” ........ while it altered its Constitution three years ago to make NATO membership a national objective, it has been considered too full of corruption and too devoid of democratic institutions to make membership likely for years, if not decades, to come. ........ In late March, a month after the Russian invasion and a point when there still seemed some prospect of a diplomatic solution, he made clear that if it would bring about a permanent end to the war, he was prepared to declare Ukraine a “neutral” state. ........ Mr. Biden declined to send MIG fighters to Ukraine that could be used to bomb Moscow. He rejected a no-fly zone over Ukraine because of the risk that American pilots could get into dogfights with Russian pilots. ......... George F. Kennan, the architect of the post-World War II “containment” strategy to isolate the Soviet Union, called the expansion “the most fateful error of American policy in the entire post-Cold War era.” ........ many believe Mr. Putin will lean on Hungary and its prime minister, Viktor Orban, to reject the applications. ....... Ukraine had forced the Finns to think differently about their security. ...... “You caused this,” Mr. Niinisto said of Mr. Putin. “Look at the mirror.”
Vladimir Putin, Family Man As Western nations place sanctions on people close to the Russian leader, including family members, the strict secrecy surrounding his private life is being punctured....... It was 2008, and the Russian president, then 56 and eight years into his tightening grip on power, stood for a news conference in Sardinia’s lavish Villa Certosa. At his side was his closest ally in Western Europe, Silvio Berlusconi, the media mogul and Italian prime minister of legendarily hedonist appetites with whom he shared a taste for raunchy jokes, over-the-top furnishings and vast wealth. ........ the facade is beginning to crumble, shedding new light on the Russian leader’s private life. ........ he had fallen for Ms. Kabaeva, a famously flexible Olympic gold medalist in rhythmic gymnastics, who, at 24, was about the age of his daughters and had become a public face of his political party. ....... “I have always reacted negatively to those who, with their snotty noses and erotic fantasies, meddle in other people’s lives,” Mr. Putin said, denying the report. Mr. Berlusconi mimed shooting Ms. Melikova with an imaginary machine gun as Mr. Putin, who by then had been accused of murdering several journalists, nodded and smiled. Days later, Moskovsky Korrespondent halted operations for “financial reasons.” ........ A former K.G.B. operative steeped in the agency’s ways of subterfuge, disinformation and the Janus-like ability to present different selves depending on the situation, he has shrouded his personal life in secrecy and wrapped it in rumor. ........ He has two officially recognized daughters from his first marriage, but according to independent Russian news outlets and unverified international news reports, he may have four more children with two other women. Yet even his acknowledged daughters, now approaching middle age, are so hidden as to be unrecognizable on a Moscow street. His former wife, whom some biographers believe he married to improve his chances of entering the bachelor-resistant K.G.B., essentially vanished from view even before they divorced. ......... In the villa-dotted Russian enclaves of Switzerland, a petition began circulating in March demanding the repatriation of his supposed paramour, Ms. Kabaeva, angrily comparing her with Hitler’s mistress, Eva Braun. In Lugano, locals whisper about the green glass building Ms. Kabaeva lived in overlooking the lake and speak with confidence about the hospital where her rumored children were born and the schools they attended. But they have not seen her........ or by supporters to compound the image of Mr. Putin’s wealth, virility and mysteriousness. Or maybe they are simply real ........ was at once both obsessively clandestine and an exhibitionist who fed off the Western depiction of him as a supervillain. ........ The great-granddaughter of Nikita Khrushchev, Ms. Khrushcheva said that Mr. Putin had a byzantine worldview typical of the Kremlin, and like Stalin, he embraced and perpetuated mythology peppered with truth. “You create misinformation,” she said. “You create an atmosphere of something that everybody is guessing and everybody is discussing and everything is secret.” ........ Members of Mr. Putin’s family circle are beneficiaries of a kleptocratic system that Mr. Putin rules over like a mafia don, with oligarch lieutenants paying him tribute in the form of wealth, lucrative jobs or luxurious villas lavished on his family and those in the potential orbit of his affection. ........ and that his invisible and untouchable private world could be seen and reached by the West. ......... “Overall, sanctions that are not approved by the U.N. Security Council are bad, most importantly, they are useless,” said Dmitri S. Peskov, the Kremlin’s spokesman, when asked for comment on the Western sanctions against Mr. Putin’s family members. “Sanctions against families, relatives, acquaintances and journalists are stupid.” Asked whether the Kremlin believed sanctions against Ms. Kabaeva and her relatives were a personal affront against Mr. Putin, Mr. Peskov added, “This is just an absurd decision!” ......... Maria’s parents did not attend her Dutch wedding party. Some Russians did, however, including fit men who watched from the bar as a relative of the bride — a young woman who sang a touching, traditional Russian song — danced emphatically to tango music. ........ in 2010, a Russian news outlet, New Times, reported that Jorrit, then an official at a Russian consultancy firm, received a beating from the bodyguards of Matvey Urin, a top Russian banker who did not know who he was dealing with, after a road rage episode in Moscow. Mr. Urin promptly lost licenses to operate banks and the bodyguards ended up in jail. Russian gossip reporters speculated that the Dutchman was Mr. Putin’s son-in-law, though Jorrit always denied it. ......... From the beginning, Mr. Putin’s personal story seemed filled with the stuff of myth making. He used an official biography — published in 2001, when he first took power as an apparent next-generation democrat — to burnish his image as a tough but heroic family man. In it, he tells the story of personally saving the family, while naked, when a faulty sauna burned down the family dacha. ......... Mr. Putin let slip in a 2011 Russian television interview that Katerina majored in Oriental studies at St. Petersburg University. But as she stepped gingerly into view in 2015, it was as the author of a math textbook and a half-dozen scientific papers, including one on space travel and how the body reacts to zero gravity. Her co-author, the rector of Moscow State University, Viktor Sadovnichy, did not return a request for comment. ......... And by 2014, she helped oversee the $1.7 billion expansion of Moscow State University, working as a liaison to the business sector with the title of vice rector. ......... As she grew professionally, so did her husband’s wealth. Kirill Shamalov acquired from Mr. Timchenko, the Putin-connected oligarch and apparent family fixer, a roughly $3 billion stake in Russia’s leading oil and petrochemical company and became one of its top shareholders. The couple also acquired from Mr. Timchenko, for an undisclosed price, a seaside villa in Biarritz, France. (In March, Russian activists broke into that villa and tried to make it available to Ukrainian refugees.) ......... Elizaveta Vladimirovna Krivonogikh, whose patronymic means she is the daughter of a Vladimir, is a 19-year-old who played up her possible connection to Mr. Putin to gain tens of thousands of followers on her Instagram account ......... In interviews, Luiza, as she is known, admitted that she looked a lot like Mr. Putin and said that if the president stood before her, she would ask him, “Why?” But the war brought angry attention and her account suddenly disappeared. ........ In 2021, the release of the Pandora Papers — millions of leaked documents from offshore financial firms — and an earlier investigation by Proekt, which was subsequently banned in Russia, showed that Svetlana’s worth was estimated to be around 100 million euros, or about $105 million, and included a $3.75 million Monaco apartment. ......... On April 22, Mr. Putin’s supposedly current mistress — and by some accounts, his new wife, Ms. Kabaeva — appeared in Moscow at her annual Alina Festival, a patriotic gymnastics event. An advisory member of the National Media Group, controlled by the powerful oligarch Yuri Kovalchuk, she rallied support for the invasion of Ukraine in front of the “Z” signs that are symbols of Mr. Putin’s war.