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The DSR Daily Brief Newsletter – Tuesday, May 17, 2022

The Ukraine Daily Brief is now ‘The DSR Daily Brief.’ Please be sure to rate and review. (We know that many of you are receiving the podcast in our member feed, but reviews help with discoverability.) Some notable links referenced in today’s podcast can be viewed here. We invite you to help shape our evolving coverage at


The soldiers trapped in the Azovstal steel plant are now prisoners of war. After Zelensky declared an end to combat operations in order to ‘save the lives of our guys,’ Russian buses were seen transporting the soldiers to Russian-controlled Novoazovsk.

Putin is a tactical micromanager in Eastern Ukraine, for better or worse.

The Americas

Greece renewed the Mutual Defense Cooperation Agreement (MDCA) with the US ahead of yesterday’s White House visit by conservative Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis. Greece would also like some F-35s. Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu will be in DC today, in part to seal an F-16 deal. By the way, there is still no love lost between Greece and Turkey.

Europe and Central Asia

Greek shipping interests successfully opposed the EU proposal to ban transporting Russian oil to third parties. 

Estonia’s prime minister threw a little shade Macron’s way for his repeated phone calls with Putin. Compare Estonia and France’s aid to Ukraine here, on absolute and GDP-relative terms.

Lastly, the tourism industry in annexed Crimea is expecting a downturn, in case you were wondering. We hope the dark tourism industry doesn’t fill the void.

The Indo-Pacific

China wants the US to drop Trump-era tariffs, but Biden is in a political pickle.

Japan floats a $100 million loan to Ukraine.

The Middle East and Africa

Biden is redeploying troops to war-ravaged Somalia, reversing Trump’s earlier ‘irrational’ isolationist moves. Germany is sending peacekeeping troops to Mali after France withdrew theirs. 

Hezbollah officially lost its majority in the Lebanese parliament. We hope the transition is smoother than in Libya, where a two-month stalemate in the transition of power ended in renewed clashes.

DSR Exclusives

For in-depth analysis, check out our sister podcasts on the DSR Network and stay tuned to the DSR Daily podcast for new and evolving stories from around the world. 

The DSR Network Team (Chris Cotnoir, Grant Haver, and Katherine Hill)

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