Sanctions Start To Bite In Moscow

INSIDE: Climate Change ... Capitol Fencing ... Joe Arpaio
Russian President Vladimir Putin arrives at Belfast International airport in Belfast, Northern Ireland, on June 17, 2013, to attend the G8 summit at the Lough Erne resort. US President Barack Obama was to meet Putin for potentially vexatious talks, as both leaders now offer open military backing to rival sides in Syria's civil war. AFP PHOTO/ PETER MUHLY
BELFAST, UNITED KINGDOM - JUNE 17: Russian President Vladimir Putin arrives at Belfast International Airport on June 17, 2013 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. The two-day G8 summit, hosted by UK Prime Minister David Ca... BELFAST, UNITED KINGDOM - JUNE 17: Russian President Vladimir Putin arrives at Belfast International Airport on June 17, 2013 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. The two-day G8 summit, hosted by UK Prime Minister David Cameron, is being held in Northern Ireland for the first time. Leaders from the G8 nations have gathered to discuss numerous topics with the situation in Syria expected to dominate the talks. (Photo by Peter Muhly - WPA Pool/Getty Images) MORE LESS
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A lot of things happened. Here are some of the things. This is TPM’s Morning Memo.

Feeling It Where It Hurts

Russia was scrambling Monday to deal with the financial and economic fallout from Russian leader Vladimir Putin’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine.

  • NYT: “The ruble crashes, the stock market closes and Russia’s economy staggers under sanctions”
  • Wall Street Journal: “Powerful Western sanctions rocked Russia’s financial system and triggered a spiral in the ruble, drawing the central bank into an emergency doubling of interest rates
  • Bloomberg: “U.S. Bans Transactions With Russian Central Bank”
  • CNBC: “Russian ruble plunges nearly 30% against the dollar amid sanctions over Ukraine invasion”

The Latest On The Ground

The U.K. Ministry of Defence‘s latest assessment:

These maps by the Washington Post and the New York Times are good resources for tracking the military clashes in Ukraine.

Climate Change Outpacing Prevention Efforts, UN Warns

The new IPCC report out this morning sounds the alarm on how humans are lagging behind rapidly accelerating climate change, and the fact that the damage caused by climate change is on the edge of becoming irreversible.

SCOTUS Hears Biggest Environmental Case In Years

The majority-conservative U.S. Supreme Court is slated to hear on Monday a key climate change case on with potentially far-ranging legal consequences beyond the environment.

Daily Beast Reporters Shot In Ukraine

Stefan Weichert and Emil Filtenborg, two Danish war correspondents who work for the Daily Beast, were both shot on Saturday when someone opened fire on their car as they were driving in northeastern Ukraine.

  • One of the reporters got struck by three bullets, while the other was hit in the shoulder. They were both wearing bulletproof equipment.
  • The reporters still made it to the hospital, however, and both are in stable condition.

Capitol Fencing Up Again For SOTU

The U.S. Capitol Police have reinstalled the protective fencing around the Capitol building ahead of Biden’s State of the Union address on Tuesday, which far-right trucker convoys traveling to D.C. may threaten to disrupt.

Critical Space Theory

Rep. Clay Higgins (R-LA) posted a brain-melting rant on Sunday about something called a “woke sky,” and someone should probably make sure he isn’t smelling toast:

“You millennial leftists who never lived one day under nuclear threat can now reflect upon your woke sky. You made quite a non-binary fuss to save the world from intercontinental ballistic tweets.”

The dictionary’s having trouble making sense of it too:

Arpaio Unaware Why He Was Invited To White Nationalist Jamboree

As he was giving a keynote speech at the America First Political Action Conference (AFPAC) on Saturday, disgraced ex-Maricopa County, Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpiao was surprised to discover that the attendants at the racism festival really like the fact that he’s been recognized as a huge racist.

  • “What are you clapping for?” he asked the cheering crowd after he brought up his reputation as “the biggest racist in the country.” “I’m not!”
  • It got even better a minute later when Arpiao admitted that “maybe I did racially profile” when he was a sheriff, which had the audience bursting into applause once again. “Now wait a minute. Hold on-” Arpaio stammered.

Ukrainian Cat Cafe Owners Refuse To Abandon Their Cats

CNN correspondent Erin Burnett, reporting from Lviv in Ukraine, discovered that the only food establishment nearby that was still open amid all the conflict was a cat cafe that hosts 20 cats. The cafe owners told Burnett they’re never leaving Ukraine and forcing their pets to fend for themselves.

The story reminds me of Mohammad Alaa al-Jaleel, aka the Cat Man of Aleppo, who ran a cat sanctuary–and rebuilt it when it got bombed–in the middle of the Syrian Civil War where people fleeing the besieged city could entrust him with their beloved pets.

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