Kremlin lashes out at Time over person of the year; Putin admits war is taking longer than expected: Live Ukraine Updates

Kremlin says there is “no talk” of seizing additional territories beyond the four Ukraine regions Russia claims to have annexed in recent months.

     

http://rssfeeds.usatoday.com/~/721471264/0/usatoday-newstopstories~Kremlin-lashes-out-at-Time-over-person-of-the-year-Putin-admits-war-is-taking-longer-than-expected-Live-Ukraine-Updates/

Wardrobe malfunction interrupts surprise Mariah Carey performance

Whose wardrobe malfunction was worse … Mariah’s Carey’s or Rudy Giuliani’s? CNN’s Jeanne Moos compares.

https://www.cnn.com/videos/media/2022/12/08/mariah-carey-wardrobe-malfunction-moos-cprog-orig-bdk.cnn

Iran protesters say unrest ‘to get worse’ after execution

Iran has executed a prisoner convicted for a crime allegedly committed during the ongoing nationwide protests. Students vow to continue demonstrations and demand change.

https://www.dw.com/en/iran-protesters-say-unrest-to-get-worse-after-execution/a-64034978?maca=en-rss-en-all-1573-rdf

Full List of 169 Republicans Who Voted Against Protecting Same-Sex Marriage

The Respect for Marriage Act seeks to protect same-sex and interracial marriage. 169 Republicans voted against.

https://newrepublic.com/post/169392/full-list-republicans-vote-against-same-sex-marriage

‘Brittney or no one’: WH pressed on why Americans left to rot in Russia

Basketball star Brittney Griner was released by Russia, but fellow Americans Paul Whelan and Marc Fogel were left behind.

https://nypost.com/2022/12/08/brittney-or-no-one-wh-defends-russia-prisoner-swap-without-whelan-fogel/

What we know: 4 major questions about Griner’s exchange, explained

WNBA star Brittney Griner on Thursday was freed from Russian detention after a prisoner exchange for convicted arms dealer Viktor Bout.

https://www.cnn.com/2022/12/08/politics/russian-prisoner-swap-brittney-griner-explainer/index.html

Gen. Petraeus on Griner release: Hate to ‘reward’ Russia for swap, Viktor Bout has ‘blood on his hands’

EXCLUSIVE: Former CIA Director Gen. David Petraeus said while a prisoner swap is not “unreasonable” in order to bring Americans back home, it is not ideal for the United States to “reward” Russia by returning a dangerous Russian arms dealer with the “blood of many people on his hands.”

President Biden announced Thursday that WNBA star Brittney Griner had been released from Russian custody roughly 10 months after being arrested for bringing vape cartridges containing hashish oil through a Moscow airport. She was turned over in exchange for the release of convicted arms dealer Viktor Bout, who was once nicknamed “the Merchant of Death.”

During an interview with Fox News Digital at the Aspen Security Forum in Washington, D.C., Petraeus said it is an “understandable imperative” for countries to engage in prisoner swaps in order to safely deliver their citizens home. However, he also recognized that Bout’s bloody history complicates the matter, calling him a “very reprehensible individual.”

WHO IS VIKTOR BOUT, RUSSIA’S ‘MERCHANT OF DEATH’ FREED IN PRISONER SWAP FOR BRITTNEY GRINER?

“I don’t think that this is at all unreasonable. You know, every country wants to get back its citizens. Ukraine and Russia are doing this again,” explained Petraeus.

“You hate, in a sense, to reward what Russia does, in certain cases, if you’re talking about the case of the female professional basketball player. One hates to reward Russia for doing something like that.”

BRITTNEY GRINER RELEASED FROM RUSSIAN PRISON IN SWAP FOR CONVICTED ARMS DEALER

“But on the other hand, I think it’s an understandable imperative to get our citizens home, and sometimes that requires us to take actions that, you know, we’d rather not take, because, again, the individual ready to go back is a very, very reprehensible individual with the blood of many people on his hands,” the general continued.

“But that’s the reality of the world, and we have done this, both administrations have done this repeatedly over the years and I suspect that will continue.”

Paul Whelan, a U.S. Marine veteran, was not involved in the exchange. Whelan was sentenced to 16 years in 2018 for espionage charges.

“After months of being unjustly detained in Russia, held under intolerable circumstances, Brittney will soon be back in the arms of her loved ones and she should have been there all along,” Biden said Thursday at the White House.

The prisoner swap comes as the war started by Russia against Ukraine is approaching its one-year mark.

Petraeus told Fox News Digital that he thinks the Russians are losing the war, but it doesn’t mean the conflict will end in the near-term.

“The Russians are losing this war. That doesn’t mean that it’s going to come to an end any time soon. It’s impossible to predict whether it will be once, or a year, or years before a really crucial calculation is reached in the Kremlin, which is that this war is unsustainable for Russia,” he said.

“I think that right now Vladimir Putin still thinks that the Russians can will suffer under the Ukrainians and the Americans, just the way the Russians have suffered the Nazis and World War II and Napoleon’s army a couple of centuries prior.”

“And we have to convince them that that is not the case,” he said.

https://www.foxnews.com/politics/gen-petraeus-griner-release-hate-reward-russia-swap-viktor-bout-blood-hands

The exchange of a US basketball star for a Russian arms dealer is a win for Putin, but one that comes at a cost

It is the most uneven of swaps at the most unlikely of times, but perhaps the intense pressure of this moment is why the exchange of a US basketball star for a Russian arms dealer ended up happening now.

https://www.cnn.com/2022/12/08/europe/viktor-bout-putin-importance-analysis-intl/index.html

Westbound lanes on 91 Freeway in Corona to close this weekend

Drivers can expect a closure of westbound Freeway 91 from Interstate 15 to Lincoln Avenue in Corona starting Friday, part of a project on the corridor.

https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2022-12-08/westbound-lanes-of-91-freeway-in-corona-to-close-this-weekend

Dems want details on Jared Kushner’s Mideast role over Qatar ties

The Senate Finance and House Oversight committees are seeking information about whether Jared Kushner was influenced by the bailout of a building he owned in Manhattan.

https://nypost.com/2022/12/08/dems-seek-information-about-kushners-role-in-middle-east-policy/