Design a site like this with
Get started

The Week bringing things you need to know for the 3rd week of August 2022

August 15

Saudi Arabia’s Kingdom Holding unveils bet on Russian energy firms
Saudi Arabia’s Kingdom Holding said via Twitter on Sunday that it invested in Russian energy giants Gazprom, Rosneft, and Lukoil between Feb. 22 and March 22, a period straddling the launch of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The United States and other Western nations imposed sanctions on Russian energy companies over the invasion, which started Feb. 24. Kingdom Holding, which is mostly owned by Saudi Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal, said it invested a total of a little more than $500 million in the three Russian energy firms. Saudi Arabia and Russia lead the OPEC+ alliance of oil producers. [Reuters]
Anne Heche taken off life support
Anne Heche was “peacefully taken off life support” and died Sunday, the 53-year-old actor’s representative confirmed to People magazine. The stage, TV, and film star, whose films included Donnie Brasco, Psycho, and Six Days Seven Nights, was declared brain dead Friday but her body was kept on life support so her organs could be donated. Heche suffered severe burns and brain damage when she crashed her car into a house in Los Angeles’ Mar Vista neighborhood. Police confirmed Thursday that a blood test found narcotics in her system. Heche, who made her TV debut in 1987 on the soap opera Another World, revealed in her 2001 memoir that she struggled with mental illness after being abused by her father. [People, Los Angeles Times]

August 16

Trump calls for calm but repeats attack on FBI over search 
Former President Donald Trump on Monday said the “temperature has to be brought down” surrounding last week‘s FBI search of his Mar-a-Lago residence and club in Palm Beach, Florida. The FBI has faced increasing threats since agents recovered boxes of classified and top-secret documents Trump appeared to have taken with him when he left office. An armed Trump supporter who was apparently in Washington, D.C., when a pro-Trump mob stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, allegedly tried to breach the FBI’s Cincinnati field office last week. Police shot and killed him after he fled. Despite Trump’s call for calm, he also repeated his attacks on the FBI over the search, saying Americans aren’t “going to stand for another scam.” [Axios]
Russia reports explosions at Crimea ammunition depot
Russian authorities reported explosions at an ammunition depot in Crimea on Tuesday in the latest setback for Russian forces in the Ukrainian peninsula, which Moscow seized and annexed in 2014. The news came a week after mysterious blasts appearently destroyed several warplanes at a Russian air base on Crimea’s western coast. Ukraine has not officially claimed responsibility for the explosions, but its leaders have celebrated them. Ukrainian media and officials shared videos on social media showing a fire and plumes of smoke coming from the temporary ammunition dump at a former farm in northern Crimea. The Crimean peninsula is the base of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet. [The Wall Street Journal, Reuters]
Report: ‘Extreme heat belt’ to develop in central U.S.
An “extreme heat belt” stretching from Texas and Louisiana north to the Great Lakes could expose 100 million residents to heat index temperatures above 125 degrees Fahrenheit at least one day a year by 2053, according to a report released Monday by the nonprofit research group First Street Foundation. The projections, part of a new, peer-reviewed study, show that most of the country will experience highs above 100 degrees in the heat index — so-called “feels like” temperatures — due to climate change over the next three decades. “Everybody is affected by increasing heat, whether it be absolute increases in dangerous days or it’s just a local hot day,” said First Street Foundation’s chief research officer, City University of New York professor Jeremy Porter. [NBC News]
William Ruto declared winner in Kenya presidential election
Deputy President William Ruto on Monday was declared the winner of Kenya’s presidential election to succeed President Uhuru Kenyatta after his two-term limit. The announcement of Ruto’s victory over veteran opposition leader Raila Odinga was immediately thrust into controversy when four of the seven national electoral commissioners said they would not stand by the results, citing the “opaque nature” of the electoral process. Ruto, 55, won 50.5 percent of the vote, and Odinga had 48.9 percent, according to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission. Tensions were high as the East African nation awaited the results of the balloting, which took place nearly a week ago. Past elections have been marred by deadly violence. [The Washington Post]

August 17

Biden signs Democrats’ sweeping health and climate law
President Biden on Tuesday signed the Inflation Reduction Act, a landmark climate change and health care bill representing the “final piece” of his trimmed-down domestic agenda. The law, which passed with no Republican support, includes about $375 billion to fight climate change, the biggest investment the federal government has ever made to address what Biden has described as a key priority for his administration. The legislation will also extend expanded health insurance subsidies offered since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, and cap out-of-pocket prescription drug costs at $2,000 per year for Medicare recipients. The law will fund itself and raise money for deficit reduction through new taxes on large companies and tougher tax enforcement by the Internal Revenue Service on wealthy taxpayers. [The Associated Press]
Arizona, Nevada, Mexico face emergency water cuts 
The federal government announced Tuesday that it is declaring a Tier 2 water shortage on the Colorado River starting in January, which will impose further reductions in use of the river by Arizona, Nevada, and Mexico. Arizona will face the deepest cuts, about 21 percent of its annual allotment. California will not yet get hit with the mandatory cuts under the first-ever Tier 2 shortage. The West’s historic drought and water overuse are drying up the Colorado River and draining Lake Mead and Lake Powell, the nation’s largest reservoirs. Lake Mead’s water level is expected to fall below the Tier 2 cutoff of 1,050 feet above sea level by early 2023. The Colorado River provides drinking water to 40 million people, irrigates farms, and powers electric grids. [CNN]

August 18


Pence calls for Republicans to stop lashing out at FBI 
Former Vice President Mike Pence on Wednesday said it is fine for Republicans to question the Justice Department over the search of former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home in Palm Beach, Florida, but “attacks on the FBI must stop.” Pence also said he would give “due consideration” to any request to testify before the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riot, although “it would be unprecedented in history for a vice president to be summoned to testify on Capitol Hill.” In June, the committee described in a public hearing how Trump tried to pressure Pence into rejecting the certification of his election loss. [The Associated Press, CNN]
Retail sales flat as falling fuel prices hit gas stations
U.S. retail sales unexpectedly remained flat in July as falling fuel prices cut into receipts at gas stations, the Commerce Department reported Wednesday. Total receipts excluding autos increased 0.4 percent, beating expectations of a 0.1 percent increase from analysts surveyed by Dow Jones. Falling gas prices gave consumers more to spend on non-essential goods like furniture and appliances. The solid position of retailers, along with strong wage gains and savings, boosted expectations that the Federal Reserve will be able to keep raising interest rates to fight inflation without triggering a recession. “The combination of the strong labor market and sturdy consumer spending looks to keep the economy out of recession territory,” said Kathy Bostjancic, chief U.S. economist at Oxford Economics in New York. [Reuters]
Minutes show Fed officials committed but cautious on rate hikes
Federal Reserve officials agreed at their July meeting they will have to continue raising interest rates to cool the economy enough to bring down inflation, according to minutes of the meeting released Wednesday. Fed leaders raised their benchmark short-term interest rate by 0.75 basis points at the meeting, following a similar hike in June. The increases were the central bank’s largest since 1994. Several Fed policy makers have said since the July meeting that they would be in favor of lifting rates at least a half-point in September. The minutes indicate that officials were concerned about the risk of failing to raise rates enough to contain inflation, and also of raising them too much and hurting the economy. [The Wall Street Journal]
Message in a bottle launched 33 years ago connects family with late son
Billy Mitchell is a salvage diver, and while on the water he keeps an eye out for interesting artifacts. Recently, a green bottle caught his attention, and when he pulled it from the Yazoo River, Mitchell found it contained a message. Mitchell and his boss, Brad Babb, got the tattered paper out of the bottle, and began reconstructing the message, written in a child’s scrawl. They figured out a few words, including “1989,” “Dahl,” “Oxford, MS,” “please,” and “thank you.” Mitchell and Babb made it their mission to find the writer, and got a lead when they posted a photo on Facebook. By connecting with Eric Dahl, they learned the message had been written by his son Brian when he was a sixth-grader in Oxford, Mississippi. Brian, a cancer survivor, died in an accident at his home when he was 29. His sixth-grade teacher, Martha Burnett, told USA Today Brian and his classmates dropped their bottles in the Tallahatchie River during a field trip. Brian’s traveled 200 miles to Vicksburg, which stunned Burnett. “Who would ever have imagined this would happen?” she said. “I think it brings him back to life in a way.” Eric, his wife Melanie, and son Chris went to Vicksburg to meet Mitchell and Babb, and he said it feels like they are all now family. Brian “was victorious in his life because of the relationships he established, the bonds with other people,” Eric told USA Today. “And he continues to inspire connections.” [USA Today]

August 19

Ex-Trump Organization CFO pleads guilty to tax fraud
The former chief financial officer of Donald Trump’s family business, Allen Weisselberg, pleaded guilty on Thursday to conspiring with the company on a scheme to avoid paying taxes by compensating executives with under-the-table perks. He didn’t implicate Trump. Under a plea deal, Weisselberg agreed to testify at the Trump Organization’s October trial and admit participating in the scheme, which could make it harder for the real-estate company to defend itself against the charges. If Weisselberg testifies truthfully, he will be sentenced to five months in prison. Otherwise, he could get up to 15 years. He must pay nearly $2 million in taxes, penalties, and interest on unreported perks, including leased Mercedes-Benzes, a rent-free luxury apartment, and private-school tuition for his grandchildren. [The New York Times]
Judge orders DOJ to redact Trump search affidavit for likely release
A federal judge on Thursday said he is inclined to unseal parts of the affidavit used to justify the recent FBI search of former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home in Palm Beach, Florida. U.S. Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart ordered the Justice Department to propose redactions to protect sensitive information in the affidavit, including the identities of cooperating witnesses. Jay Bratt, head of a Justice Department counterintelligence team, argued that the affidavit should not be made public because the department’s investigation into Trump’s handling of classified documents is in its “early stages,” and has “national security overtones.” But Reinhart said it was “very important” for the public to have as much information as possible about the unprecedented search of a former president’s residence. [CNBC, The Washington Post]
U.N. chief calls for demilitarizing area around Ukraine nuclear plant
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Thursday called for demilitarizing the area around Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, which Russia seized early in its invasion of Ukraine, amid warnings of an imminent attack. Ukraine and Russia have accused each other of shelling dangerously close to the plant, stoking concerns of a potential nuclear disaster. “The area needs to be demilitarized, and we must tell it as it is: Any potential damage in Zaporizhzhia is suicide,” Guterres said. The U.N. chief met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to discuss the nuclear plant and possible steps toward peace, but reached no breakthrough. Erdogan is trying to mediate the conflict, and plans to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin. [USA Today, NBC News]
2022 already deadliest year on record for Mexico journalists
This year is the deadliest on record for journalists in Mexico, with 18 killings already in 2022, human rights organization Article 19 said in a report released Thursday. “2022 could be the worst year in a century for the press,” Article 19 regional director Leopoldo Maldonado told Reuters. The group has identified a link between the murders and the journalists’ work in nine of the 18 cases. It has also documented 331 cases of intimidation, harassment, and other attacks against journalists in the first half of the year, a 52 percent increase over the same period of 2018, under former President Enrique Pena Nieto. Four journalists have been forcibly displaced within Mexico, and two have been driven into exile. [Reuters]

August 20

Michigan judge blocks enforcement of pre-Roe abortion ban
A Michigan judge ruled Friday that county prosecutors could not enforce the state’s 1931 abortion ban. “The harm to the body of women and people capable of pregnancy in not issuing the injunction could not be more real, clear, present and dangerous to the court,” said Oakland County Judge Jacob Cunningham. He also described the 1931 law as “chilling and dangerous” and reportedly ridiculed arguments from Republican prosecutors seeking to enforce the ban. An attorney for the anti-abortion prosecutors said they plan to appeal. [Politico, Detroit Free Press]
‘I think he’ll get indicted,’ says lawyer close to Trump’s inner circle
Former President Donald Trump took to Truth Social on Friday to promise a “major motion pertaining to the Fourth Amendment” in response to the raid on Mar-a-Lago earlier this month. But, with Trump facing a criminal probe from the Justice Department as well as separate investigations in Georgia and New York, the walls could be closing in. “He should be worried about all these investigations,” said a lawyer close to Trump’s inner circle. “I think he’s a target of all of them and I think he’ll get indicted.” Separately, senior Biden administration officials have expressed “deep concern” over documents Trump removed from the White House, suggesting they could put the U.S. intelligence community at risk. [Business Insider, CNN]
Finnish prime minister takes drug test amid criticism over partying
Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin said Friday that she had taken a drug test to dispel rumors that she was under the influence of drugs in videos that showed her singing and dancing with friends in what she described as “a boisterous way.” Marin, at 36 the country’s youngest-ever PM, told reporters, “I have taken a drug test today, the results of which will come in about a week,” and described the accusations as both “serious” and “unjust.” Marin said she consumed alcohol on the night in question but was sober enough to step away and attend to her governmental duties if necessary. [NPR, Reuters]

August 21

Somali security forces end hotel siege that left 21 people dead
Somali security forces said Saturday that they had rescued 106 people after putting an end to a 30-hour siege of a Mogadishu hotel that left 21 people dead and 117 injured. Islamist militant group and al-Qaeda affiliate al-Shabab has claimed responsibility for the attack, which began Friday evening when a pair of car bombs were detonated at the front barrier and gate of the Mogadishu Hayat. An al-Shebab website claimed that the militants carried out “random shootings” after breaching the hotel. [BBC, The Wall Street Journal]
Trump is considering launching his 2024 campaign after the midterms, sources say
Former President Donald Trump is reportedly reconsidering his plan to launch his 2024 presidential campaign before the November midterms, according to sources who have spoken to Trump in recent weeks. According to one person close to him, Trump hopes to avoid being blamed if the midterms don’t go as well as Republicans hope. In a Sunday column for The Washington Post, Megan McArdle suggested that Trump deserves plenty of blame already. She blamed Trump for endorsing “weak and inexperienced” candidates in winnable races and argued that the Republican Party’s “Trumpy base, which loves to see the GOP’s more moderate candidates getting what-for, is helping Trump to inadvertently elect Democrats.” [NBC News, The Washington Post]

Published by Guestspeaker

A joint effort of several authors who do find that nobody can keep standing at the side and that “Everyone" must care about what is going on in today’s world. We are a bunch of people who do not mind that somebody has a totally different idea but is willing to share the ideas with others and to be Active and willing to let others understand how "today’s decisions will influence the future”. Therefore we would love to see many others to "Act today".

One thought on “The Week bringing things you need to know for the 3rd week of August 2022

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: