Good morning. Here’s your Daily Situational Awareness for Monday, 21 November 2022.
U.S. NAVY SAILS THROUGH TAIWAN STRAIT AGAIN: The Navy just announced the USS Benfold (DDG-65) conducted Freedom of Navigation Operations (FONOPS) through the Taiwan Strait earlier this month. These operations are used to ensure important waterways and shipping lanes remain open for trade but can be taken as aggression by foreign powers. This is the fourth FONOPS conducted in the Strait since July. China has not made a public statement.
RUSSIA CRIPPLES UKRAINE’S ENERGY INFRASTRUCTURE, RISKS SHUTDOWN OF KYIV GRID: Speaking at a joint press conference with the vice president of the European Commission, Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said the latest rounds of Russian attacks on Ukraine’s Civilian infrastructure had disabled “almost half” of the country’s energy system. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said as many as 10 million people are without power. Kyiv’s City Administration head Mykola Povoroznyk said the city was preparing for various scenarios, including a “complete shutdown” of its grid as engineers race to repair power infrastructure during the first snow of the winter.
PRO-BOLSONARO PROTESTERS BLOCK HIGHWAYS THREATEN STRIKE IN RENEWED UNREST: Brazilian federal highway police issued a bulletin indicating protestors had blocked six highways after President Jair Bolsonaro posted a cryptic video of himself driving a truck, bus, and tractor to social media. The video references the agricultural, transport, and public service industries that form Bolsonaro’s support base and has been viewed as encouraging ongoing protests by supporters. Following the video’s release, Brazilian truck drivers issued a call for general strikes alleging they would not be paid after their employer’s accounts were frozen for funding prior pro-Bolsonaro protests. Bolsonaro’s supporters have increasingly gathered outside military facilities to plead for assistance from the army, calling for a return to military dictatorship amid claims of widespread voter fraud. Bolsonaro has yet to concede to Lula’s victory in the elections but has largely remained out of public view and refrained from public comment.
NORTH KOREA TESTS ICBM CAPABLE OF HITTING U.S. MAINLAND: North Korea launched a long-range intercontinental ballistic missile in the second operational test this month. South Korean military officials reported the missile traveled 1,000km and reached an altitude of 6,100 km before landing in the Japanese economic exclusive zone. Japanese Defense Yasukazu Hamada warned that the missile could have an operational range of up to 15,000km, giving it sufficient range to “cover the entire mainland United States.” Hamada issued a warning to Pyongyang, saying Japan “absolutely cannot tolerate such actions.” The missile test came hours before joint military exercises over the Sea of Japan, aimed at strengthening “the deterrence and response capabilities of the Japan-US Alliance.”
In today’s Early Warning, the team covers down on potential decisions by the Chinese government toward Taiwan following the U.S. midterm elections. For this, plus coverage on the latest domestic and geopolitical indicators, you can get the full report by subscribing at https://forwardobserver.com/subscribe