This is Ben’s best weekly outline yet! Print it out and engage intelligently in any conversation. With short clips.




– 404: Russians are advancing along entire eastern front – Syrsky ( official TG )

– 404: Frontline troops in Ukraine feel bite of Polish truckers’ protest ( NYT )

– 404: CDC reports alarming rise in drug-resistant germs in Ukraine ( CBS )

– 404: Ukraine‘s demographic drain puts post-war recovery at risk – 30% lost since 1991 ( El País )

– 404: Kyiv is running out of options to fund the fight against Russia – devalue, print money ( Bloomberg )

– 404: Ukrainians question Elensky‘s ‘rose tinted’ speeches ( FT )


– Elensky stops in Cabo Verde on his way to Milei inauguration in Argentina ( his X )

– Elensky hugs Milei after inauguration, receives hug, Menorah as gift ( photos )

– Elensky invited President of Brazil to meet, Lula refused ( O Globo )

– Elensky has animated conversation with Vikor Orbán on sidelines, no content ( video )

– Elensky to make last ditch trip to DC, meet Biden, push Congress for aid ( Politico )

– Elensky met with US defense company leaders ( official X )

– Elensky announces peace talks in Switzerland – common Peace Formula at sidelines of WEF ( X )


– USC: Ukraine can seize initiative on battlefield in 2025 – if it holds out next year ( WSJ )

– USC: Troubled by a resurgent Russia and bickering allies, Ukraine hunkers down ( WSJ )

– USC: Ukrainian govt shifts blame to foreign media as dissent grows ( Globe & Mail CA )

– USC: Ukraine was supposed to increase ammo production since 2014 – Ben Hodges ( VOA )

– USC: Ukraine money likely to be delayed until January – Senate Republican says ( The Hill )

– USC: White house: Another aid package for Ukraine to be announce before year’s end ( Kyiv independent )

– USC: What happens if Ukraine aid runs out? A real break in US support likely ( Resp. Statecraft )

– USC: IMF board approves $900 million in funds for Ukraine as IMF chief Georgieva meets Elensky ( SCMP )

– USC: US and Ukraine search for new strategy after failed counteroffensive ( NYT )

Context: Elensky arrives in Washington at critical moment, Lt. Gen. Antonio Aguto will be sent to Kiev to wargame


– EUK: Alarm Grows Over Weakened Militaries and Empty Arsenals in Europe ( WSJ )

– EUK: Russia closes in on devastating victory, Europe’s foundations trembling – Suez moment ( Telegraph )

– EUK: Poland’s PM Tusk demands ‘full mobilization of the free, Western world to help Ukraine’ ( Rzeczpospolita )

– EUK: US will ‘lose face before the world’ if it abandons Kyiv – Ukr. ex-pres Kuchma ( Guardian )

– EUK: Putin‘s war economy is existential threat to Europe – arm Ukr + EU ( Telegraph )

– EUK: Laura KuenssbergUkraine in ‘mortal danger’ without aid – Olena Zelenska ( BBC )

– EUK: Europe must defend itself with US support in doubt, UK’Grant Shapps says ( Politico )

– EUK: Germany warns of ‘warmonger Putin pushing propaganda at Paris Olympics ( Politico )

– EUK: Latvia will boycott Olympic Games if Russian athletes are allowed to compete ( Reuters )


– EUK: Republicans to meet allies of Hungary’s Orbán on ending Ukraine aid ( Guardian )

– EUK: Exclusive: European lawmakers send plea ( joint letter ) to Congress on Ukraine aid ( Reuters )

– EUK: EU seeks to raise €15bn for Ukraine from Russia’s frozen assets ( FT )

– EUK: EU explores emergency Ukraine funding outside bloc’s shared budget ( FT )

– EUK: Channel Churchill and reclaim UK’s role in leading support for UkraineSunak urged ( Telegraph )

– EUK: Dutch PM Rutte presses EU to reach €50B Ukraine finance deal ( Politico )

– EUK: Austria says no to European Commission’s call for EU budget top-up – Nehammer ( Reuters )

Context : Also opposes Ukraine accession talks. Nay-sayers so far: Orbán, Fico, Nehammer



– ISR: Innocents in Gaza? Don’t be naive – all support ‘terror group’ ( Times of Israel )

– ISR: Israel fires US-supplied white phosphorous in Lebanon, possible war crime ( Telegraph )

– ISR: Israeli security officials estimate 10-15% of detainees affiliated with Hamas ( Haaretz )

– ISR: Israeli official denies divide with US over war, says support is ‘public and private’ ( Times of Israel )

– ISR: Over 10k infants and children killed in Gaza – trapped under debris ( Euro-Med Monitor )

– ISR: Civilians 61% of Gaza deaths by airstrike, higher than all 20th century conflicts ( Haaretz )

– ISR: ‘Buying quiet’: Inside the Israeli ( +Qatari ) plan that propped up Hamas ( NYT )

Context: having two strong rivals would lessen pressure to negotiate toward Palestinian state


– WEA: Ansarullah to attack all ships traveling to Israel via Bab Al-Mandab ( statement ).

– WEA: Houthi missile hits Norwegian tanker in Red Sea; reportedly en route to Israel ( Times of Israel )

– WEA: Saudi Crown Prince postponed UK trip before welcoming Putin – Report ( FT)

– WEA: Military attachments from 22 countries ( incl. CN-RU ) visit Iran Army exhibition ( IRNA )

– WEA: Iran will force US aircraft carrier out of region – Navy Commander ( IRNA )

– WEA: Only thing IranIsrael share is opposition to two-state solution – FM Abdollahian ( Cradle )

– WEA: Iraqi resistance will fight until last US soldier is expelled – statement ( Cradle )

– WEA: Egypt’s president al-Sisi seeks third term

– WEA: The road to Nuclear Proliferation in the Middle East ( National Interest )

Context : US attempts to ‘punish’ Saudi Arabia could push it to create its own nuclear program


– UN: UN Security Council’s authority, credibility severely undermined – Guterres ( Andalou )

– UN: Netanyahu chides Putin for ‘anti-Israel’ posture, ‘annoyed’, 50m call ( readouts > Cradle )

– UN: US vetoes UAE immediate ceasefire resolution at UN, UK abstains ( UN News )

Context: 13 against, including G7. Resolution had almost 100 co-sponsors

Criticism: Erdogan, Raisi, Zhang Yun, Diaz-Canal, Guterres ( so far )


 USC: Who’s a ‘Colonizer’? How an Old Word Became a New Weapon ( NYT )

– USC: Is it time to retire the term ‘Genocide’? ( WSJ, last week )

– USC: How a deeply controversial White House adviser – Brett McGruk – runs the agenda On Gaza ( HuffPost )

– USC: Palestine Authority and US work up postwar plan for Gaza, incl. Hamas ( FT )

– USC: Israel has just a few weeks left to destroy Hamas – US pressure ( Economist )

– USC: US must press its advantages over Iran or war will spread ( Japan Times )

– USC: US bases in IraqSyria attacked 85 times in two months ( CBS, Fox )

– USC: US highlights ‘gap’ in Israel’s commitment to protect civilians in Gaza ( Guardian )

– USC: Israel is losing this war – despite violence, failing to achieve political goals ( The Nation )

– EUK: Italy, France, Germany call for ad-hoc EU sanctions on Hamas – send strong signal ( Reuters )

– EUK: Senior EU official warns of huge security risk in Europe over Xmas re:Israel-Hamas ( AP )



– USC: Why Biden just gave Trump his winning card – cost of living ( Telegraph )

– USC: Hillary Clinton steps out as key player in Biden‘s re-election effort ( NBC )

– USC: Why Xi wants Trump to win – China to cement grip on developing world ( Atlantic )

– USC: Democrats try to strip candidates from the ballot, in the name of democracy ( The Hill )

– USC: Fears of a NATO Withdrawal Rise as Trump Seeks a Return to Power ( NYT )


– USC: The Experience of Being a Consumer in America Is Getting Worse ( NYT )

– USC: ‘Retirement isn’t that easy’: 3 people on working into their 90s and 100s ( CNBC )

– USC: Warren Buffett selling $28.7B in Stock rings alarm bell over Economy ( Newsweek )

– USC: US must dominate in space to win future wars, Marine Corps’ Glavy says ( Yahoo, Sputnik )

– USC: Ammo prices set to rise – global shortage of gunpowder anticipated ( Newsweek )

– USC: The US can afford a bigger military. We just can’t build it. ( WSJ )

– USC: Raimondo Vows ‘Strongest Possible’ Action on Huawei’s Chip Breakthrough ( Bloomberg )

– USC: There’s no stopping the Newspaper death spiral – WaPo walkout, dark future ( Politico )

– USC: Climate Change is breaking insurance. Here’s how tech could save it ( WSJ )

– USC: The Math for Buying a Home No Longer Works ( WSJ )

– USC: Luxury stores are bursting with unsold stuff ( WSJ )

– USC: Greens erupt as fossil fuel ‘phaseout’ is dropped from proposed climate deal ( Politico )


– EUK: Britain’s debt time bomb about to explode – leaders are too timid to defuse it ( Telegraph )

– EUK: UK wants closer relationship with EU, more important than US ( Guardian )

– EUK: Sellafield nuclear site leaks ( since 2019! ) that could pose risk to UK public ( Guardian )

– EUK: UK could slip back into ‘Victorian age’ gap between rich and poor – report ( Sky )

– EUK: EU considers restarting WTO case against US over steel tariffs ( Bloomberg, Reuters )

– EUK: Finland considers reopening border with Russia after immigrant row ( Politico EU )

– EUK: Germany second from bottom ( above Bulgaria ) in European happiness ranking ( Eurostat > Times )

– EUK: German companies seek millions in compensation for loss of Russia income from govt. ( Insider )

– EUK: Bosch to invest $1B in China EV production, reducing jobs at two plants in Germany ( AP )

– EUK: Polish parliament on Monday passed no-confidence vote against PM Morawieczki ( RT )

– EUK: AustriaGewessler‘s promise crumbles: now 90% gas from Russia – Climate Action minister ( Express )

– EUK: Moldovan PM Maia Sandu to freeze funding for towns where opposition leads ( video, presser )

– EUK: Lithuanian Foreign Minister Landsbergis accuses Hungary of being ‘against Europe’ ( RT )

– EUK: Netherlands resumed purchase of LNG from Russia after 3-month pause ( BNN )


– LAT: Javier Milei is sworn in as President ( various ) gives huge hug to Elensky ( video )

– LAT: Javier Milei warns economic shock unavoidable in maiden speech – austerity ( Reuters )

– LAT: Javier Milei eliminates 9 of 18 Ministries on first day ( TeleSur )

– LAT: Javier Milei about-turns as he commits to Paris climate agreement ( Telegraph )

– LAT: Argentina won’t join BRICS Bloc under Milei, Adviser says ( Bloomberg )

– LAT: Venezuela and Guyana agree to meeting in St Vincent and Grenadines, Dec 14 ( CNN )

– LAT: Barbados PM demands $4.9 trillion from slave owning countries ( RT, Brit media silent )



– RUC: The West‘s 500-year dominance is coming to an end – Lavrov, Doha ( RT )

– RUC: PutinRussia becoming ‘new global growth center’ as West ‘rests on laurels’ ( Retuers )

– RUC: Putin inaugurates two fourth generation nuclear submarines ( RT )

– RUC: Putin officially announces reelection bid ( RT )

– RUC: Ekaterina Duntsova – liberal journalist – announces presidential campaign ( official TG )

– RUC: China tests second Hyperbola-2 reusable launch vehicle, successful landing ( GT + video )

– RUC: People’s Bank of China and National Bank of Serbia sign MoU on Yuan clearing house ( GT )

– RUC: Huawei phone shows China is replacing US suppliers of 5G tech ( Bloomberg )

– RUC: Truck sales in Russia on course for all-time record ( RT )

Context: 1. Kamaz-RU, 2. Sitrak-CN, 3. Shacman-CN, 4. FAW-CN


– EUK: Russian mum takes on ousting Putin from power in the Kremlin ( Metro )

– EUK: Putin will match Stalin with run for fifth term in Kremlin ( Times )

– EUK: The Russian mother-of-three ‘plotting Putin‘s downfall’ as she stands against dictator ( Express )

– EUK: Vladimir Putin is running Russia‘s economy dangerously hot ( Economist )

– USC: Putin extends authoritarian hold on Russia with presidential run ( ABC )

– USC: Chinese garlic is a national security risk, says US senator ( letter > BBC )

– USC: China‘s Xi goes full Stalin with purge ( Politico )


– ASO: Japan‘S GDP falls faster than estimates as consumption sags ( reuters )

– ASO: Japan‘s deepest contraction ( -2.9% ) since pandemic clouds path for BOJ ( Bloomberg )

– ASO: Mystery: Thousands of tons of dead fish wash up on Japan‘s beach ( USA today )

– ASO: Thousands of dead fish mysteriously was up on Japanese beach ( BBC )

– ASO: President Xi Jinping and wife Peng Liyuan arrive in HanoiVietnam for state visit ( photos )

– ASO: Xi makes first Vietnam visit in six years to counter US clout ( Bloomberg )

Context: Chinese investment in Vietnam : $27 billion. US investment ( early Dec ): $500m letter of interest.


– USC: USSouth Korea, Japan agree to deepen security cooperation ( Bloomberg )

– USC: Japan is destined to have Nuclear Weapons ( National Interest )

– USC: Covert Indian operation seeks to discredit Modi’s critics in the US ( WaPo exclusive )

– USC: Biden unlikely to visit India for Republic Day ( January ) QUAD summit postponed ( Times of India )

– USC: How India tamed Twitter and set a global standard for online censorship ( WaPo )


– AFR: ECOWAS to resume talks with Niger‘s new government ( African Examiner )


“The sum of strategic mistakes we have made since 1991 will go down in the history books as the greatest folly in human history”

Former Ukrainian presidential advisor Arestovich, video interview

“We want Russia to be faced with a decision by the end of 2024: either they have to sit down at the negotiating table on terms acceptable to Ukraine -means sovereignty and territorial integrity for all of Ukraine – or they will face a stronger Ukraine, backed by defense industrial base of the US and Europe”

US Deputy NatSec Advisor Jon Feiner, Aspen Security Forum

“The West sought to sideline Russia, to weaken it. And at the end of the day, to crush it. They will not succeed. Ever.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin

“UNSC is paralyzed by geopolitical divisions, its credibility undermined by the inability to pass a resolution”

UN General Secretary Guterres, Doha Forum

“I told Scholz and Biden: If you do not act against the Houthis, we will act militarily”

Israeli PM Netanyahu, Israeli Channel 12

APPENDIX : Short Cips

The US vetoes UAE ceasefire at UN

Scholz says Russia stopped gas:

Orbán meets Zelensky in Buenos Aires:

Wonderful Elensky deepfake:

Kamala speaks in Warsaw ( not fake ) :


USC = United States + Canada

EUK = Europe + United Kingdom | 404 = Ukraine

WEA = West Asia, formerly Middle East | ISR = Israel

ASO = Asia + Oceania

AFR = Africa

LAT = Latin America

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *