Russia’s economy is hurting from its war effort….
Interest rate in Russia is now at 12%….
The Ukraine and Poland mass troops on the Belarus border……
Drone war continues….
Ukraine offense making gains….
And American Conservative group is pushing House GOPer’s to continue supporting the Ukraine with funding….
China military leader fronts ooperation with Russia while his countries leadership says he wants peace between the Ukraine and Russia….
The country’s central bank raised interest rates 3.5 percentage points to stem rising prices and a weakening ruble. The move came after the national currency briefly fell below a key level with the U.S. dollar.
Here’s what we’re covering:
Russia raises interest rates sharply to halt the ruble’s fall.
‘Stop machine!’ A video shows Russian naval officers halting a cargo ship on the Black Sea.
New ads push the G.O.P. to support Ukraine ahead of critical vote in Congress.
Ukraine plans to fortify defenses along its northeastern borders with Russia and Belarus.
Poland, ahead of elections, flexes its military might on a holiday.
In Kherson, Ukrainian forces step up raids on Russian-held territory across the Dnipro River.
Russia heightens its messaging to non-Western nations, including China…..
Here’s the latest on the war and its ripple effects across the globe.
Russia attacked the region of Lviv with cruise missiles in the early-morning hours, according to regional governor Maksym Kozytskyy. Air defenses stopped only one of the missiles, while six reached their intended targets, Kozytskyy said. Nineteen people were injured, he said. In the city of Lviv, 20 houses were destroyed and several buildings were damaged, including a kindergarten, he said. The Washington Post could not independently verify the reports.
Three people were killed and three more were injured in the strikes on Lutsk, Mayor Ihor Polishchuk said on Telegram. Emergency service crews were on-site at the industrial plant, Polishchuk added.
Russia’s Central Bank attributed the interest rate hike to “inflationary pressure” caused by “steady growth in domestic demand surpassing the capacity to expand output.” In a statement, the bank did not mention the drop in the value of the ruble. The currency has lost ground amid Western sanctions that have harmed Russia’s trade balance and military spending that has soared because of the war in Ukraine.
A conservative group has launched a campaign to convince congressional Republicans to continue backing U.S. aid to Ukraine. The $2 million campaign, called “Republicans for Ukraine,” launched Tuesday.
A Moscow court on Tuesday convicted a pro-war, retired Russian colonel of discrediting the military, as the Kremlin seeks to bring nationalist pro-war critics to heel. Vladimir Kvachkov, a 74-year-old retired military intelligence officer who has called for a tougher approach in the war against Ukraine, told the court that President Vladimir Putin and Russian defense leaders were discrediting the military, before Judge Alesya Orekhova sharply cut him off, Russian independent media outlet Mediazona reported from the court. He was fined 40,000 rubles ($408) in the case, reinforcing the message that Russian authorities will no longer tolerate criticism of the military’s conduct of the war, even from pro-war nationalist retired military officers.
A Chechen battalion continues to take part in the fighting around Orhikiv, in northern part of the Zaporizhzhia region, as a recent post by Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov illustrates, the British Defense Ministry said in a daily intelligence update. On Aug. 10, Kadyrov “acknowledged the efforts of the Chechen Vostok Akhmat Battalion in the heavily contested Orhikiv sector” in Zaporizhzhia, one of four Ukrainian regions that Russia illegally claimed to annex last year. While “Chechen forces comprise a relatively small but high-profile component of Russian forces in Ukraine,” the ministry said, “Kadyrov likely heavily promotes his units’ roles partially to burnish his credentials as a Putin loyalist.”
China’s defense minister, in Moscow, called his country’s ties with Russia a “model for cooperation,” according to Bloomberg News. Li Shangfu was speaking Tuesday at the Moscow Conference on International Security, as part of a trip to Russia and Belarus. In his address, Li said the relationship between Beijing and Moscow was one of “non-confrontation” and did “not target any third party,” Bloomberg reported. Beijing and Moscow have deepened their partnership in recent years, though China has refrained from taking sides publicly in the war in Ukraine. Li is also expected to meet with Russian defense officials. In Minsk, he is scheduled to hold talks with Belarusian state and military leaders, as well as visiting Belarusian military institutions.
The U.S. ambassador to Russia, Lynne Tracy, met with jailed Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich on Monday at Lefortovo Prison in Moscow, the newspaper reported. Gershkovichappeared to be in good health and remains strong, the U.S. Embassy in Moscow told the Journal after the meeting — the third since his arrest in March on espionage charges that he, his employer, rights groups and the U.S. government have rejected as spurious.
Conservative group launches campaign to push for GOP support for Ukraine: Amid decreasing Republican support for Ukraine, a conservative group will spend $2 million convincing Republicans in Congress to continue backing the U.S. ally, writes The Washington Post’s Mariana Alfaro. The campaign, named “Republicans for Ukraine,” was launched Tuesday by Defending Democracy Together, an organization led by Republican strategist Sarah Longwell and conservative political commentator Bill Kristol. The launch comes ahead of what is likely to be a lengthy appropriations fight for further U.S. funding for Ukraine when Congress returns next month…..