The Wider World

Putin bans Facebook, Twitter

RUSSIAN PRESIDENT Vladimir Putin (Shutterstock).

Reacting to criticism about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine from within and without, President Vladimir Putin blocked Facebook and Twitter from his country and signed a bill into law imposing a 15-year prison sentence on media outlets and others spreading “fake news.”

According to the Associated Press, also blocked are the British Broadcasting Company, Voice of America (funded by the U.S, government) and others.

The ban on critical reporting could affect American journalists working inside Russia.

In related developments:

  • Russian forces that shelled a nuclear power plant in Ukraine have reportedly taken control of the facility. So far, there is no evidence of radiation leakage.
  • Former Vice President Mike Pence indirectly criticized former President Donald Trump and his supporters for their support of Russian president Putin. “There is no room in this party for apologists for Putin,” said Pence at an event in New Orleans. He did not mention Trump by name, but the former president has repeatedly praised Putin, and recently called his actions “genius.”

Sports: “Old” USFL vs. “new” USFL

A hearing will be held on March 16 on a motion for a preliminary injunction to prevent the “new” United States Football League from opening play in April.

The litigants? Owners of the “old” USFL that operated from 1983-85 as a spring/summer alternative to the NFL. The complaint is that the new league is using the trademarks, team names and logos without obtaining the rights to that intellectual property.

Attorneys for the “new” USFL dismissed the allegations as “without merit,” according to NBC Sports.

Weather: Hold on to your hats

A gale warning is in place for the West Orange County area on Saturday with winds from the west/southwest are forecast to reach 18 miles an hour. The weather should be partly cloudy with a daytime high of 60 (overnight low of 41). Sunday should be a bit warmer at 63 (44) under sunny skies.

Business: Sanctions isolating Russian economy

The sanctions imposed on Russia in the wake of its invasion of Ukraine were unexpected in their ferocity and are isolating Vladimir Putin’s nation economy.

According to the Washington Post, those sanctions, led by the U.S. and NATO allies but soon joined by others, are reversing years of attempts to integrate Russia into the world economy.

The end result could be to force that nation into a “devastating” financial implosion there similar to the effects of The Great Depression” of the 1930s.

Leave a Reply