The Wider World

Ukraine pleads for airplanes

UKRAINE is asking for help in its aerial battle with Russia while the war on the ground grinds on (Shutterstock).

Ukrainian President Volydymyr Zelensky pleaded for help from the United States on Saturday, asking for military air support for his beleaguered nation as it tries to fight off Russian invaders.

According to the Associated Press, he wants one of two things. First is the establishment of a no-fly zone enforced by NATO, or more planes to help his nation’s air force combat Russian jets.

The first request is a non-starter, as it would likely involve aerial combat between U.S. and NATO planes against Russian planes. The second is possible but complicated. It would mean America sending airplanes to European allies for their air forces, and have those nations sending their aircraft to the Ukraine to be flown by Ukrainian pilots.

In related news:

  • The nuclear power plant damaged and captured in Ukraine is now partially “up and running,” according to The New York Times.
  • Russian President Vladimir Putin is threatening that if Ukrainians continue to resist, “they risk the future of Ukrainian statehood.” That could mean that a Russian victory might result in Ukraine being absorbed into the Russian Federation instead of simply becoming a “client state” of Moscow, controlled by a pro-Russian government.

Sports: Coach K’s finale upsetting

The finale to the farewell tour of Duke men’s basketball coach Mike Kryzewski ended up rather disappointing for Blue Devil fans Saturday night.  North Carolina avenged an earlier upset with a 94-81 win that concluded the home season for Duke.

But the season isn’t really over, because now there’s a conference tournament in which Kryzewski’s final season will go on a bit longer.

“Coach K” has won over 1,170 games, five national college titles and three Olympic gold medals. He’s 74 years old.

Weather: Less windy, more sunny

A warming trend will begin to take hold in West Orange County on Sunday, with winds abating to 9 miles an hour and the daytime high rising to 64 (44 overnight) under sunny skies. Things will get warmer on Monday with a high of 73 (47) and more sun. After that, temps will go up and down all week from 68 to 77.

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