Russia Desk: Prigozhin’s Predictable End
According to The Guardian journalists Andrew Roth and Pjotr Sauer, many “Russia insiders” are not surprised by the demise of Yevgeny Prigozhin, the former head of the Wagner Group. The real question for these insiders is how he managed to defy Putin and survive for so long. Prigozhin’s refusal to subjugate his mercenaries to the military resulted in a June mutiny and drew the Kremlin’s attention. It is clear that the Kremlin wanted to send a message, and they certainly did not opt for a discreet assassination. While there may not be a significant backlash in Russia, the question remains whether Wagner fighters will switch their allegiance. Prigozhin dared to mount the most significant challenge to the Russian state since the 1993 constitutional crisis when Boris Yeltsin ordered tanks to fire on Moscow’s White House.
Libertarian: The Washington Post’s Delusions about “Disinfo”
Jacob Sullum from Reason criticizes a Washington Post news story that condemns Donald Trump’s return to a platform like X (formerly Twitter). Sullum highlights the confusion, obfuscation, and hypocrisy prevalent in mainstream press coverage of so-called “misinformation.” The reporters fail to address what exactly constitutes misinformation, a category that is highly disputed. They also sidestep the issue of content moderation and how to handle politicians who make statements that are arguably or demonstrably false but of public interest. The most striking omission is the complete absence of any mention of the First Amendment, which is vital for the press’s protection and should be of concern for the health of our democracy. The article seems to advocate for suppressing the views of GOP voters who believe that Joe Biden’s victory in 2020 was not legitimate, rather than allowing them to express their opinion on social media. It masquerades as straight news reporting when it is, in fact, pure advocacy.
Eye on 2024: Trump’s Risk of Skipping the Debate
According to Politico’s Steven Shepard, Donald Trump’s decision to skip the first GOP presidential debate may have been a move to suffocate his competitors, but this strategy may not be effective in the long run. With presidential primaries becoming more national in scope, debates have emerged as the critical factor in the lead-up to the early states. Candidates either sink or swim based on their debate performances. The debates attract significantly larger audiences than any other campaign event, making them an unparalleled opportunity for lesser-known participants and a peril for heavily hyped candidates. Although Trump currently enjoys a massive lead in national polling, he runs the risk of being overshadowed by other candidates.
Conservative: Nikki Haley Emerges Victorious in Round One
Hugo Gurdon from the Washington Examiner declares former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley as the winner of the first Republican presidential debate. Gurdon points out that Haley demonstrated strength, seriousness, and assertiveness during the debate, surpassing her usual demeanor. One of her standout moments was dismissing Vivek Ramaswamy by highlighting his lack of foreign policy experience. To elevate her position in the polls, Haley needs to maintain this newfound confidence and dynamism.
Education Beat: Making History Engaging
Jonathan Den Hartog at Real Clear History highlights the danger of making American history and civics dull amidst debates over school history standards. There is a prevalent perception of history teachers and the subjects they cover as boring, which undermines the educational experience. Relying solely on textbooks deprives students of the excitement that history has to offer. History is not merely a collection of names, dates, and facts; it is a dramatic narrative. To foster an appreciation for the drama of American history, educators should employ innovative techniques such as encouraging students to imagine themselves in historical situations, analyzing primary sources, and witnessing historical debates. By embracing the inherent excitement of the past, students can develop a genuine interest in American history.
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