Putin’s Crackdown on Anti-War Protesters
Plus. a preview of tonight's J6 hearing from Rep. Adam Kinzinger.
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CHARLIE SYKES: Ready For Prime Time. 🔐
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SHAY KHATIRI: Ukraine Is Winning.
After the Russian military failed to take Kyiv in the opening weeks of their full-scale invasion of Ukraine and refocused, at least for now, on eastern Ukraine, they have made modest gains, while reports of Ukrainian casualties and alleged poor morale proliferated. Some even concluded that the Russians finally had momentum. Ten weeks later, it is again obvious that momentum favors the Ukrainians—and the Russians’ desperate attempts to mitigate the problem will only exacerbate it.
Case in point: British intelligence believes that Russia has lost over 50,000 men, more than a quarter of its original invading force, and the Russian military (or, more precisely, its mercenaries, the Wagner Group) is reportedly enlisting prisoners for reinforcement. This is not an original gambit, which is why the Russian high command should know that it will backfire.
CATHY YOUNG: Putin’s Crackdown on Anti-War Protesters.
After a wave of anti-war protests in dozens of Russian cities following the invasion of Ukraine on February 24, the public expressions of discontent have quieted down. The demonstrations and marches are long gone. Vladimir Putin’s poll ratings have been rising, reaching 83 percent in late March; the percentage of Russians saying that the country is on the right track also seems to be up. Is the Russian population, then, genuinely and overwhelmingly behind the war in Ukraine? Does this mean that most Russians are morally complicit in Putin’s war—and that the Kremlin has carte blanche to conduct the war without having to fear popular discontent?
The real picture is more complicated.
Trump was aware of what was happening in real time on January 6 and the committee is going to prove it. And while Rome burned, he sat there and did nothing in violation of his oath of office. Adam Kinzinger joins Charlie Sykes to preview tonight’s committee hearing.
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THEODORE R. JOHNSON: What Bennie Thompson and Liz Cheney Have in Common.
Bennie Thompson and Liz Cheney may be the most unlikely odd-couple American politics has seen in a generation. Thompson, the chairman of the January 6th Committee, is a Democrat from Mississippi who began his career as a school teacher. Cheney, his co-chair, is a Wyoming Republican born into politics. It is instructive that while they could not be more different, they have worked together to make the committee a serious and important undertaking.
It is also instructive to look at how differently the two members have been treated by their parties.
The Republican party’s ostracization of Cheney is familiar: she was stripped of her leadership role for criticizing Trump; the Wyoming GOP no longer recognizes her as a member; and she is facing a likely defeat in her congressional primary to a challenger backed by the entire Republican establishment. Such is the cost of bucking the party in Republican politics, even when it is done in defense of democracy.
REALLY DON’T CARE, DO U? Too perfect.
A Marylander’s lament… Matt Labash on the primary.
“Guilty verdicts all the way down.” Lock ‘em up.
He’s broke. JD Vance may still win, but his campaign is in trouble. And he owes his manager (checks notes) $20k.
The TN GOP Convention implosion. Is something to behold. (We’re all gonna stay at Charlie’s house.)
Is CRT taught in schools? A deep dive.
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