Good morning. Here’s your Daily Situational Awareness for Tuesday, 12 July 2022.
- READ TIME: 3 min 14 seconds
- Russia-NATO INTSUM
- Indo-Pacific INTSUM
- Geopolitical INSTUM
LATVIA REINSTATES SERVICE REQUIREMENT: Latvia reinstated an 11 month service requirement for men between 18 and 27. The Latvian government’s goal is to expand its troop presence from around 7,000 to 40,000. Latvia also wants an international brigade to defend its territory, with a new basing agreement signed with Canada for an unspecified number of troops. – D.M.
RUSSIA’S NEW CITIZENSHIP OFFER TO UKRAINIANS: Russia is widening the eligibility pool for new citizens. Russia previously offered a simplified citizenship process to residents of the Luhansk and Donetsk People’s Republics and is now offering a similar process for all Ukrainians. This public announcement is rooted in an inevitability appeal to demoralize Ukrainian forces. – D.M.
LITHUANIA DOUBLES DOWN ON EMBARGO: Lithuania expanded its trade restrictions with Russia by including concrete, wood, alcohol, alcohol-based industrial chemicals, and ferrous metals. Russia responded by threatening to cut off all trade with the Baltics and other unspecified measures. Food and medicine are still allowed, as is passenger traffic by sea or air. – D.M.
CHINA CALLS FOR SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS TO AVOID U.S. VS. CHINA CHESS GAME: At the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in Jakarta, Indonesia, on Monday, China’s foreign minister Wang Yi urged his Southeast Asian counterparts to avoid being used as “chess pieces in major power rivalries.” Wang was addressing the secretariat when he said, “The future of our region should be in our hands.” Despite heightened tensions driven by Chinese claims on almost the entire South China Sea, claims that are at odds with findings by international tribunals, Wang called for ASEAN members to oppose the “fake regional cooperation that keeps certain countries out” in referring to U.S.-led security and trade agreements that block China from participation due to its illegal claims on smaller nations’ territories. – M.M.
MYANMAR MILITARY RESUMES FIGHT AGAINST ARAKAN ARMY GUERILLAS: The Myanmar Army is resuming operations in Rakhine state, according to a spokesperson for the Rakhine ethnic armed organization earlier today. The Myanmar military had been less active in the Rakhine State since an informal ceasefire in late 2020, but relations soured after the military began moving troops and equipment into the ethnic enclave. This new front in the military junta’s fight against a coalition of pro-democracy and independence movements comes after a visit last week by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi. This was the first visit to Myanmar by a senior Chinese official since the military coup last year deposed the democratically elected government. – M.M.
U.S. SEEKS EXTRADITION OF HAMAS OPERATIVE IN BOMBING THAT KILLED AMERICANS: The U.S. government is seeking the extradition of Hamas operative Ahlam al -Tamimi for her role in the bombing of a Jerusalem pizzeria in 2001. The bombing killed 15 people, including two American citizens. Ahlam al-Tamimi was convicted in Israeli court for the bombing but was later released by Israel in a prisoner exchange with the terror group. Al-Tamimi currently lives in Jordan. In 2017, the US Justice Department charged al-Tamimi with conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction against Americans. She potentially faces the death penalty if extradited and convicted. Her name was also added to the FBI’s list of “Most Wanted Terrorists”. – M.M.
WHITE HOUSE SIGNALS END TO TARIFFS ON CHINESE GOODS: The Biden administration is signaling a repeal of tariffs on Chinese goods that were imposed during the Trump administration. Biden trade advisors are blaming Trump’s tariffs for exacerbating inflationary pressures that are upending the Biden administration’s domestic policies. Over the weekend, U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said the White House would decide shortly on reversing taxes on goods that did nothing to alter China’s behavior when it came to compliance with promises it made to the World Trade Organization on fair trade policies. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has been the loudest official calling for an end to “Trump’s taxes” as a way to reduce inflation. – M.M.
RUSSIA LIKELY TO CUT OFF ALL ENERGY EXPORTS TO EUROPE: France’s Minister of Economy, Finance, and Recovery warned Sunday that Europe should expect a complete halt of Russian natural gas supplies. Le Maire was at the Les Rencontres Economiques economic forum when he made the comments. He urged his European counterparts to immediately seek alternate sources of energy ahead of what he said would be a catastrophic situation in Europe. Le Maire also warned that the war in Ukraine would likely spread, and no one should take Russia’s threats lightly. This week Canada waived sanctions on repairs of Russian equipment needed for the Nord Stream 2 pipeline at the request of Germany. Germany had declared an energy emergency in mid-June after a 60% cut of Russian energy supplies. – M.M.
IN TODAY’S EARLY WARNING: Mike discusses domestic energy production issues and global food shortages, as well as President Biden’s meeting with Mexican President Lopez Obrador You can get access to the daily Early Warning report here: https://forwardobserver.com/subscribe
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