Today's Headlines and Commentary

Today’s Headlines and Commentary

By Benjamin Pollard
Wednesday, June 29, 2022, 2:43 PM

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Finland and Sweden were invited to join NATO, reports Reuters. The invitation was extended to the two countries at the alliance’s summit in Madrid, signaling a major geopolitical shift as the two countries move away from neutrality amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. At the summit, NATO also formally acknowledged Russia as the “most significant threat to the allies’ security.” The ratification of Finland and Sweden’s memberships is expected to take approximately one year.

Turkey is calling for the extradition of Kurdish militants from Finland and Sweden in exchange for the country’s support for their applications to NATO, writes the BBC. Turkish Minister of Justice Bekir Bozdag said the country wants Finland to extradite six members from the Gulen movement and six members of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK). They also are calling on Sweden to hand over 10 Gulenists and 11 PKK members.

President Biden announced that the United States will increase its military presence in Europe, according to NPR. Biden committed to establishing a permanent U.S. 5th Army Corps headquarters in Poland, increasing naval destroyers stationed in Spain, and the positioning of two F-35 fighter jet squadrons in the U.K. Other NATO members are also expected to announce increases in their military expenditures in Europe amid the ongoing war in Ukraine. NATO’s secretary general said the alliance would increase the number of troops on high alert to over 300,000, reports Reuters.

The G7 countries agreed to direct $4.5 billion toward global food security to ameliorate food shortages caused by the war in Ukraine, writes the New York Times. According to White House officials, the United States will direct $2.7 billion in funding from the $40 billion Ukraine aid legislation that Congress passed last month toward the food security initiative.

144 Russian and Russian-backed proxy soldiers and 144 Ukrainians were evenly exchanged in the largest prisoner of war exchange between Russian and Ukraine since the invasion started, reports the New York Times. Among the Ukrainian prisoners exchanged are dozens of soldiers who were captured while fighting in Mariupol. Their  surrender was negotiated between Russia and Ukraine in May. According to the Ukrainian government, many of the exchanged soldiers have sustained serious injuries including burns, amputated limbs, and fractures.

A boat carrying migrants en route to Europe capsized near the coast of Senegal, killing at least 13 people, according to AP News. Forty migrants reported to be on the boat before it capsized remain missing.. Local news reports said that the capsize occurred after a fire started on board. Government officials are investigating the incident as the search for survivors continues.

Police in northwest India have suspended internet services and prohibited public gatherings after two Muslims claimed responsibility for the death of a Hindu man, according to Reuters. The move is reportedly an attempt to limit potential outbreaks of religious violence. Federal investigators have taken over the investigation of the killing and have two suspects in custody.

ICYMI: Yesterday on Lawfare

Jen Patja Howell shared an episode of the Lawfare Podcast in which Stephanie Pell sat down with Andrea Matwyshyn to discuss the Justice Department’s new policy concerning how it will charge cases under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.

Gabriel Schonfeld reviewed Francis Fukayama’s “Liberalism and Its Discontents” (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2022).

Pablo Chavez argued that digital sovereignty offers a path toward technological self-determination for democratic, rule-bound governments.

Stewart Baker shared an episode of the Cyberlaw Podcast in which he sat down with Justin Hurwitz, Jamil Jaffer, and David Kriss to discuss the current bipartisan tech initiatives in Congress, among other topics.

Benjamin Pollard shared a livestream of day six of the Jan. 6 select committee hearings.

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