Squiz Today / 22 July 2022

Squiz Today – Friday, 22 July

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Squiz Today Podcast

Helping you get the week done. 

Today’s listen time: 9 minutes

12 / 17
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Squiz Sayings

“Now my family calls me ‘Subway girl’” 

Said Aussie Jessica Lee after she was slapped with a $2,664 fine for failing to declare a half-eaten foot-long sandwich from Subway that she’d brought onto a flight home. It was an expensive mistake, but the ending was sweeter than their bread – Subway have given her the equivalent amount in vouchers…

Russia kicks on in Ukraine

Russia’s focus is no longer “only” the east of Ukraine, according to its Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. He says “the geography is different now” following the West’s supply of increasingly powerful, long-range weapons for Ukraine to use in its defence against the invading forces. “We cannot allow the part of Ukraine controlled by [Ukrainian President Volodymyr] Zelensky to possess weapons that would pose a direct threat to our territory,” he said. Using those weapons, Ukraine says it has taken out 30 Russian logistics and ammunition hubs. Lavrov’s statement hasn’t bothered the US or Ukraine much – America is sending 4 more incredibly precise rocket launchers to Ukraine as part of the ​​16th package of equipment from their military stockpiles.

Insert shrugging lady emoji… So to recap: Russia invaded Ukraine in February, claiming falsely that Russian speakers in Ukraine’s eastern Donbas region needed to be liberated. Almost 5 months on, Russia has control of parts of Ukraine’s east and south, but it failed in its original aim of capturing the capital Kyiv. Since then, Russian officials have claimed the main game was taking control of the Donbas. Yesterday, CIA Director William Burns said Russian President Vladimir Putin is “convinced that his destiny as Russia’s leader is to restore Russia as a great power. He believes the key to doing that is to recreate a sphere of influence in Russia’s neighbourhood, and he cannot do that without controlling Ukraine.” As a side note, Burns also poo-pooed speculation Putin is unstable or in bad health – America’s top intelligence official said “he’s entirely too healthy”…

Russian forces continue to grind through the Donbas – in total, they occupy around a 5th of the country. Strikes also continue to be targeted at cities beyond that eastern region, hitting apartment buildings and key pieces of infrastructure like bridges and manufacturing plants. That’s come at a high cost to Russia – the US estimates their casualties in Ukraine have reached around 15,000 killed and 45,000 wounded. “And, the Ukrainians have suffered as well – probably a little less than that,” Burns said. Ukraine’s first lady Olena Zelenska yesterday became the first wife of a foreign leader to address the US Congress. She spoke about the increasingly dire security, economic and humanitarian conditions, calling Russia’s actions the “Hunger Games”. “Russia is destroying our people,” she said.

World News

Squiz the Rest

PNG’s difficult election comes to a close

The polls in Papua New Guinea’s national election will close today after more than 2 weeks of staggered voting, but the electoral process was nearly upended by violence in the country. More than 200 people died during the last poll in 2017, so Australia sent 130 troops to assist with the process. It’s been a bumpy ride so far – multiple voting delays have riled people up, one million voters were missing from the electoral roll, and there have been allegations of ballot box fixing and vote-buying. In early July, it was estimated that 30 people had died during the campaign – some in violent clashes, others in road accidents travelling to and from events. As for the result – the 2 most likely candidates to come out on top are current PM James Marape and former PM Peter O’Neill. Australia is PNG’s biggest supporter, and PM Anthony Albanese is expected to visit soon after the new government is formed.

World News

Italy’s PM set to step down

Mario Draghi has resigned, and Italian President Sergio Mattarella has dissolved the parliament after 3 parties in the 7-strong governing coalition boycotted a confidence vote yesterday. The former European Central Bank chief – who became Italy’s latest unelected technocratic leader early last year – offered to step down after the populist Five Star Movement (M5S) boycotted a vote on a controversial €26 billion cost of living package last week. That offer was rejected by Italy’s President Sergio Mattarella to avoid the collapse of the nation’s 3rd government in as many years. And despite best efforts, the coalition – a heady mix of right, left, and centrist-leaning parties – has unravelled further over the week. Draghi had called for unity to tackle challenges like soaring inflation and pandemic recovery, and while he won yesterday’s confidence vote, the absence of the 3 key coalition allies shows the writing on the wall for the government’s ongoing survival. A new election has to be held by the end of September.

World News

The BBC says sorry

Following a probe that found BBC journalist Martin Bashir used fake documents to win Princess Diana’s trust, the broadcaster has agreed to pay substantial damages to the former royal nanny Tiggy Legge-Bourke. She cared for Princes William and Harry as little kids and found herself in the middle of their parents’ divorce when Bashir raised false allegations that she had an affair with Prince Charles which resulted in a pregnancy that was aborted. Royal watchers say that built on Diana’s insecurities about how close Legge-Bourke was to the boys, and Bashir used it to secure the infamous 1995 Panorama interview. Legge-Bourke suffered the “serious personal consequences”, and yesterday the BBC said it was “extremely sorry for the serious and prolonged harm”. Her lawyer said she’s “relieved that the BBC accepts that the allegations are completely untrue and without any foundation whatsoever”. The BBC also said it will never show the programme again and won’t license it in whole or part to other broadcasters.

World News

Stuff just got real…

First, the inflation gods came for our fruit and veg prices, and we did not speak out because who cares about fresh food anyway. Then they came for petrol prices, and we did not speak out because we could catch the bus. But then they came for coffee prices – and we had to say far out that’s rough… Milk prices are rising thanks to the rocketing of dairy farmers’ input costs – cafe owners say get ready for a 50-80c/cup increase. Last week, Coles and Woolworths confirmed increases to their own brand milk, blaming higher supply chain costs, including payments to farmers. The cow milkers say it’s a long time coming, and we can’t begrudge them that… We’ll be fine as long as the inflation gods leave potatoes unscathed. Oh no hang on

Australian News Business & Finance

Au revoir to the Tour de France

After a 3-week ride, the Tour de France will finish in Paris in the early hours of Monday morning, so to get you ready for the closing stages, here’s the lowdown… It’s been a good run for the Aussies – veteran Simon Clarke won his first ever stage of his 20-year career, followed by Michael Matthews earlier this week. Slovenian Tadej Pogačar claimed a win in the 17th stage of the race yesterday morning, but after he lost a handful of his teammates to COVID, it’s Dane Jonas Vingegaard who is the favourite to win this year’s tour. He came in 2nd to Pogačar last year. COVID and injuries aside, it’s been tricky for riders as they battle the heatwave that’s gripped Western Europe. Trucks have been deployed ahead of the cyclists to pour water onto the roads to stop tyres from melting, and the must-have item is an inflatable ice bath. What a time…


Friday Lites – Three things we liked this week

We’re low-drama people, but that doesn’t mean we don’t enjoy juicy neighbourhood goss. And if you’re a regular visitor to a dog park, you’ll know it can have a certain vibe. So behold the saga gripping the French bulldog community of the Upper East Side of New York…

We’re late to this, but in our eternal search for easy-watching TV shows that preferably come in around the 30min mark, we stumbled on Minx this week. It’s a lot of fun and stars our favourite character from New Girl Jake Johnson- just mind the man bits… It’s on Stan.

We had a lovely grilled salmon and roasted veg dinner at a mate’s place recently – what made it special was a chilli oil they’d bought from the local market that day. We’ve made our own, and it’s the bomb – we’re using it all the time. Great for gifts too.

Friday Lites

Do the Squiz Quiz

Reckon you know which Aussie sweet treat celebrated its national day this week? Have a crack at the Squiz Quiz.

Squiz the Day

12.30pm (AEST) – Former NSA chief Admiral Michael Rogers addresses the National Press Club – Canberra

Federal, state and territory ministers meet to discuss policy priorities for women and women’s safety

United States ambassador to Australia, Caroline Kennedy, arrives in Oz

ABS Data Release- National Study of Mental Health and Wellbeing, 2020-21 financial year

AIHW Release – Australia’s mothers and babies 2020

World Brain Day

International Boxing Day

National Pyjama Day

Birthdays for actor Willem Dafoe (1955), singer Selena Gomez (1992) and Prince George of Cambridge (2013)

Anniversary of:
• Dick Smith making the first solo helicopter flight around the world (1983)
• attacks in Norway carried out by far-right extremist Anders Breivik that killed 77 people (2011)

Squiz the Day

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