That night, she and her husband slept in their cellar. The commander curled up next to the wounded soldier on the kitchen floor.

When Ms. Kozyr stepped outside the next morning, to check on her calf and pigs, she passed by the kitchen and peered through the window.

The soldier’s hands were curled, his body stiff. He was dead.

She started crying at the memory of it, pulling a small rag out of her pocket and wiping her eyes. But she did not question the counteroffensive.

“It needed to be done,” she said. And then she repeated herself, a little more softly. “It needed to be done.”

Oleksandra Mykolyshyn and Oleksandr Chubko contributed reporting from Mykolaiv, Ukraine, and Thomas Gibbons-Neff from Pokrovsk, Ukraine.

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Typhoon Batters South Korea; Preparations Minimize Casualties

Typhoon Hinnamnor made impact just weeks after heavy rains around Seoul caused flooding that killed at least 14 people.

The most powerful typhoon to hit South Korea in years on Tuesday dumped 3 feet of rain, destroyed roads and felled power lines, but the death toll of three could have been higher if not for proactive evacuations and closures of schools, officials said.

There was also greater public awareness about the storm and its risks. Typhoon Hinnamnor made impact just weeks after heavy rains around the capital Seoul caused flooding that killed at least 14 people.

Government officials had put the nation on high alert for days as Hinnamnor approached, warning of potentially historic destruction and putting in motion life-saving measures.

After grazing the resort island of Jeju and hitting the mainland near the port city of Busan, Hinnamnor weakened as it blew into waters between the Korean Peninsula and Japan.

South Korea’s weather agency said Hinnamnor was over the open sea 173 miles northeast of Ulleung island with winds weakened to 71 miles per hour on Tuesday afternoon. It was expected to be downgraded to a tropical cyclone by night as it moves northeast between Russia and the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido, the agency said.

However, the damage was still severe in the southern city of Pohang, where two people were found dead and at least seven others were missing after the storm submerged roads and buildings, triggered landslides and flooded a shopping mall.

Cars with smashed windows and trunks open lay scattered on roads like garbage. An entire two-story pool villa was uprooted from the ground and swept away in flash floods. Troops were deployed to assist with rescue and restoration efforts, moving in armored vehicles rolling through streets that turned into chocolate-colored rivers.

Firefighters navigated flooded neighborhoods in rubber boats, rescuing people and their pets. Merchants scrambled to salvage furniture and other belongings at the famous Guryongpo outdoor market, where workers deployed excavators to clear huge piles of debris.

The rain and flooding eroded the foundations of bridges and motorways, which were often broken in chunks or blocked by fallen trees and electricity poles. Factory buildings were tilted, while a shipping container blew away and landed above cars in a parking lot.

“I woke up at 5 a.m. because of the explosive rain, and I got really concerned because the water rose right up to my doorway,” Kim Seong-chang, a Pohang resident, said in an interview with JTBC. “The water was still thigh-high at 7 a.m. and those who parked their cars in the streets were in panic because their vehicles were submerged … Other residents were bucketing out water from their homes.”

The storm dumped more than 41 inches of rain in central Jeju since Sunday, where winds peaked at 96 mph. Southern and eastern mainland regions also had damage — knocked off signboards and roofing, toppled trees, traffic signs and destroyed roads.

In Pohang, a woman in her 70s died after being swept away in flash floods, while another woman in her 60s was found dead in a submerged basement parking lot where searches were ongoing for seven people. Rescue workers had failed to respond to another man who called for help before he went missing, presumably swept by flash floods.

In the neighboring city of Gyeongju, a woman in her 80s died after her home was buried in a landslide. In Ulsan, another southern city, a 25-year-old man was unaccounted for after falling into a rain-swollen stream, according to the Ministry of the Interior and Safety.

Also in Pohang, firefighters extinguished flames that damaged at least three facilities at a major steel plant operated by POSCO. A presidential official, who spoke on condition of anonymity during a background briefing, said officials were investigating the cause of the fires.

Local fire officials said the flames destroyed a building housing electricity equipment and damaged a separate office building and a factory before being put out.

The Safety Ministry said about 3,200 among 4,500 people who had been forced to evacuate returned home Tuesday afternoon. More than 80 homes, buildings and factories were flooded or destroyed, and hundreds of roads, bridges and facilities were damaged.

More than 600 schools were closed or converted to online classes. Workers had managed to restore electricity to 78,890 of the 89,180 households that lost power.

In North Korea, state media reported “all-out efforts” to minimize damage from flooding and landslides. The Korean Central News Agency reported leader Kim Jong-un during government meetings had issued unspecified “detailed tasks” to improve the country’s disaster response capacity but it didn’t elaborate on the plans.

North Korea sustained serious damage from heavy rains and floods in 2020 that destroyed buildings, roads and crops, shocking the country’s already-crippled economy.

Additional reporting by the Associated Press.

Source: newsy.com

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Flights Grounded In South Korea As Typhoon Approaches

By Associated Press
September 5, 2022

Around 370 domestic flights and 100 ferry services were grounded as the region braces for Typhoon Hinnamnor.

Hundreds of flights were grounded and more than 200 people were evacuated in South Korea on Monday as Typhoon Hinnamnor approached the southern region with heavy rains and winds of up to 105 miles per hour, putting the nation on alert for its worst storm in decades.

South Korea’s weather agency said the country will start to feel the full force of Hinnamnor, the strongest global storm this year, by early Tuesday when it is forecast to graze the southern resort island of Jeju before making landfall near the mainland city of Busan.

Government officials raised concern about potentially huge damage from flooding, landslides and tidal waves triggered by the typhoon, which comes just weeks after capital Seoul and nearby regions were hit with heavy rainfall that unleashed flash floods and killed at least 14 people.

Officials say Hinnamnor could bring more powerful winds than 2003 Typhoon Maemi, which left 117 people dead and was the strongest storm to make landfall in the country since the start of record keeping in 1904.

As of Monday evening, Hinnamnor was over the open sea 112 miles southwest of Jeju. It has dumped more than 24 inches of rain in the central part of Jeju since Sunday, where winds were blowing at a maximum speed of 77 mph and were picking up.

South Korea’s Ministry of the Interior and Safety said there were no immediate reports of casualties. At least 11 homes and buildings were flooded in Jeju while more than 270 people were forced to evacuate in Busan and nearby cities because of safety concerns.

Around 370 domestic flights and 100 ferry services were grounded and hundreds of roads and bridges were closed nationwide as of Monday evening while more than 66,000 fishing boats returned to port.

Kindergartens and elementary schools in Seoul and all schools in Busan and nearby southern regions are scheduled to be closed or shift to online classes Tuesday, officials said.

North Korea was also bracing for Hinnamnor as it reported increasingly heavy rain in all parts of the country except for its border region with China. Agricultural workers across the country were engaged in “all-out efforts” to minimize damage to crops while officials were encouraged to take “double and triple emergency measures” to protect buildings and equipment from flooding and landslides, the North’s state media said.

South Korea’s military said North Korea also discharged water from a dam near its border with the South in an apparent preventive step without notifying its rival. South Korea’s Unification Ministry, which handles inter-Korean affairs, said the North has so far ignored Seoul’s request to give notification before it releases water from the Hwanggang Dam.

Cities in eastern China suspended ferry services and classes and more than 100 flights were canceled in Japan on Sunday as Hinnamnor passed through the region. The typhoon is on track to move closer to eastern China later in the week.

Additional reporting by The Associated Press.

Source: newsy.com

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Biden Defends FBI, Pushes Assault-Style Weapons Ban

The speech Tuesday continued President Joe Biden’s aggressive rhetoric against the GOP ahead of the midterms in November.

President Joe Biden on Tuesday railed against the “MAGA Republicans in Congress” who have refused to condemn the Jan. 6, 2021, assault on the U.S. Capitol and now are targeting the FBI as he tried to portray Democrats as the true pro-law enforcement party ahead of the November midterms.

In remarks initially billed as a crime-prevention speech, President Biden seized on comments from allies of former President Donald Trump who have called for stripping funding from the FBI since it executed a search warrant at Trump’s Florida residence. President Biden’s remarks were the first substantive defense he has made of the FBI since the Aug. 8 search at Mar-a-Lago, which triggered not just withering criticism of the agency but threats of violence against its employees.

“It’s sickening to see the new attacks on the FBI, threatening the life of law enforcement and their families, for simply carrying out the law and doing their job,” President Biden said before a crowd of more than 500 at Wilkes University in Pennsylvania. “I’m opposed to defunding the police; I’m also opposed to defunding the FBI.”

It was a notably different tack for President Biden, who has steered clear of extensively commenting on any element of the Justice Department’s investigation since federal agents conducted the search at Trump’s estate. President Biden also appeared to call out — without naming him — recent comments from Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham, who warned of “riots in the streets” should Trump ultimately face prosecution.

“The idea you turn on a television and see senior senators and congressmen saying, ‘If such and such happens there’ll be blood on the street’?” President Biden said. “Where the hell are we?”

The speech Tuesday continued President Biden’s aggressive rhetoric against the GOP ahead of the midterms, as Democrats enjoy a slightly brighter political environment buoyed by significant legislative accomplishments and a presidential approval rating that has trended slightly upward. During a political rally in the Washington suburbs last week, President Biden likened Republican ideology to “semi-fascism.” He is set to deliver a democracy-focused speech on Thursday in Philadelphia that the White House has said “will make clear” who is fighting for democratic values.

As he has done before, President Biden on Tuesday criticized GOP officials who have refused to denounce the pro-Trump rioters who breached the U.S. Capitol nearly 20 months ago. Referencing Trump’s “Make America Great Again” slogan, President Biden said, “Let me say this to my MAGA Republican friends in Congress: Don’t tell me you support the law enforcement if you won’t condemn what happened on the 6th.”

The campaign-style speech near President Biden’s birthplace was the first of three visits by the president in less than a week to the state that is home to a competitive governor’s race and a U.S. Senate contest that could help determine whether Democrats will keep their majority in the chamber. Trump is hosting his own rally in Pennsylvania on Saturday.

Democrats believe Pennsylvania is their strongest opportunity to flip a Senate seat currently held by Republicans. Meanwhile, the open race for governor will give the winner power over how 2024’s presidential election is run in a battleground state that is still buffeted by Trump’s baseless claims that Democrats fraudulently stole the 2020 election from him.

President Biden’s comments on the FBI come as his son Hunter faces a federal investigation for tax evasion. He has not faced any charges, and he’s previously denied wrongdoing.

The president also used his remarks Tuesday to promote his administration’s crime-prevention efforts and to continue to pressure Congress to revive a long-expired federal ban on assault-style weapons. Democrats and Republicans worked together in a rare effort to pass gun safety legislation earlier this year after massacres in Buffalo, New York, and Uvalde, Texas. They were the first significant firearm restrictions approved by Congress in nearly three decades, but President Biden has repeatedly said more needs to be done.

“We beat the NRA. We took them on and beat the NRA straight up. You have no idea how intimidating they are to elected officials,” an animated President Biden said. “We’re not stopping here. I’m determined to ban assault weapons in this country! Determined. I did it once before. And I’ll do it again.”

As a U.S. senator, President Biden played a leading role in temporarily banning assault-style weapons, including firearms similar to the AR-15 that have exploded in popularity in recent years, and he wants to put the law back into place. President Biden argued that there was no rationale for such weapons “outside of a war zone” and noted that parents of the young victims at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde had to supply DNA because the weapon used in the massacre rendered the bodies unidentifiable.

“DNA, to say that’s my baby!” President Biden said. “What the hell is the matter with us?”

Democrats are trying to blunt Republican efforts to use concern about crime to their advantage in the midterms. It’s a particularly fraught issue in Pennsylvania, a key swing state.

The Republican candidate for governor, Doug Mastriano, accuses Democrat Josh Shapiro of being soft on crime as the state’s twice-elected attorney general, saying Shapiro “stands aside” as homicides rise across Pennsylvania.

Homicides have been increasing in Pennsylvania, but overall crime seems to have fallen over the last year, according to state statistics.

“The real heroes here are the people who put on the uniform every single day,” said Shapiro, who spoke shortly before President Biden’s remarks at Wilkes University. “We know that policing is a noble profession, and we know that we need to stand with law enforcement.”

In the U.S. Senate race, heart surgeon turned television celebrity Dr. Mehmet Oz, the Republican nominee, has tried to portray the Democratic candidate, Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, as extreme and reckless on crime policy.

Fetterman has endorsed recommendations that more geriatric and rehabilitated prisoners can be released from state prisons without harming public safety. Oz and Republicans have distorted that into the claim that Fetterman wants to release “dangerous criminals” from prisons or that he’s in favor of “emptying prisons.”

Fetterman’s campaign on Tuesday released a new 30-second ad emphasizing that Fetterman — as mayor of the tiny, impoverished western Pennsylvania steel town of Braddock from 2006 through 2018 — has dealt with street-level crime, and Oz hasn’t. In the ad, Fetterman said he ran for mayor “to stop the violence” after two of his students in an after-school program were murdered and “I worked side by side with police.”

Fetterman was not in Wilkes-Barre with President Biden on Tuesday, but he’s expected to march in Pittsburgh’s Labor Day parade when the president visits Sept. 5. President Biden also will be in Pennsylvania on Thursday for a prime-time speech that the White House said will address “the continued battle for the soul of the nation” and defending democracy.

Additional reporting by The Associated Press.

Source: newsy.com

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Rescue boat celebrates as stranded migrants given ok to disembark in Italy

ABOARD THE OPEN ARMS UNO, off Sicily, Aug 26 (Reuters) – Migrants aboard the Open Arms Uno rescue boat cheered, hugged crew members, and danced with joy on Friday as they were told they would be allowed to disembark at the Italian port of Messina after spending at least 10 days at sea.

“I’m very happy because finally I can see my brother. It’s just awesome,” 23-year-old Salah, one of 99 migrants onboard, told Reuters.

Spanish charity Open Arms on Aug. 17 rescued 101 migrants, mostly Egyptian men, in a rickety wooden boat off the Tunisian coast that had been adrift for at least a day.

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One man in need of urgent medical attention had been allowed to disembark in Italy with his companion, but the rest were told to remain onboard the rescue vessel while it sought permission to disembark.

It formally requested a port from Italian authorities a week ago and its search and rescue coordinator David Llado said on Thursday the long wait had led to tensions as the migrants’ despair grew.

Open Arms, which is mainly funded by small private contributions, has rescued thousands of migrants at sea since it began operating in 2015.

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Reporting by Juan Medina, writing by Christina Thykjaer, editing by Andrei Khalip and Rosalba O’Brien

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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F.T.C. Sues to Block Meta’s Virtual Reality Deal as It Confronts Big Tech

WASHINGTON — The Federal Trade Commission on Wednesday filed for an injunction to block Meta, the company formerly known as Facebook, from buying a virtual reality company called Within, potentially limiting the company’s push into the so-called metaverse and signaling a shift in how the agency is approaching tech deals.

The antitrust lawsuit is the first under Lina Khan, the commission’s chair and a leading progressive critic of corporate concentration, against one of the tech giants. Ms. Khan has argued that regulators must stop competition and consumer protection violations when it comes to the bleeding edge of technology, including virtual and augmented reality, and not just in areas where the companies have already become behemoths.

The F.T.C.’s request for an injunction puts Ms. Khan on a collision course with Mark Zuckerberg, Meta’s chief executive, who is also named as a defendant in the request. He has poured billions of dollars into building products for virtual and augmented reality, betting that the immersive world of the metaverse is the next technology frontier. The lawsuit could crimp those ambitions.

in its lawsuit, which was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. “Instead, it chose to buy” a top company in what the government called a “vitally important” category.

attack on innovation and that the agency was “sending a chilling message to anyone who wishes to innovate in V.R.”

Meta had said it would acquire Within, which produces the highly popular fitness app called Supernatural, last year for an undisclosed sum. The company has promoted its virtual reality headsets for fitness and health purposes.

The F.T.C.’s lawsuit is highly unusual and pushes the boundaries of antitrust law. Regulators mostly focus on deals between large companies in large markets, rather than their acquisitions of small start-ups in nascent tech areas. Courts have also been skeptical applying antitrust law to block mergers based on the hypothetical that the two companies involved would later become competitors if the deal was blocked.

Instagram, the photo-sharing app that has since grown to more than one billion regular users. Instagram has helped Meta dominate the market on social photo sharing, though other start-ups have sprung up since.

lawsuit against Facebook that argued the company shut down nascent competition through acquisitions. The Justice Department has also sued Google over whether the company abused a monopoly over online search.

More cases could be coming. The F.T.C. is investigating whether Amazon has violated antitrust laws, and the Justice Department has inquiries into Google’s dominance over advertising technology and into Apple’s App Store policies.

For Mr. Zuckerberg, the F.T.C. lawsuit is a setback. He has been pushing Meta away from its roots in social networking as its apps, like Facebook and Instagram, face more competition amid stumbles in privacy and content moderation. Instead, he has bet on the metaverse.

Mr. Zuckerberg has reassigned employees and put a top lieutenant in charge of metaverse efforts. He has also authorized executives to pursue some of the most popular games in the V.R. space. In 2019, Facebook purchased Beat Games, makers of the hit title Beat Saber, one of the top V.R. games on the Oculus platform. He has also authorized the purchase of roughly half a dozen other virtual reality or gaming studios over the past three years.

The F.T.C. filed suit on Wednesday hours before Meta reported its first decline in quarterly revenue since it went public in 2012. The company has recently trimmed employee perks and reined in spending amid uncertain economic conditions. John Newman, the deputy director of the F.T.C.’s Bureau of Competition, said the agency acted on the Within deal because Meta was “trying to buy its way to the top.” The company already owned a best-selling virtual reality fitness app, he said, but then chose to acquire Within’s Supernatural app “to buy market position.” He said the deal was “an illegal acquisition, and we will pursue all appropriate relief.”

The F.T.C.’s vote to authorize the filing was split 3 to 2. Christine Wilson, a Republican commissioner at the agency, said she was one of the two votes against the lawsuit. She declined to comment on her reasoning.

The F.T.C. said in its request that asking for an injunction was sometimes a prelude to filing a complaint against a merger, which could embroil Meta and the agency in a lengthy trial and appeals process. A F.T.C. spokeswoman said the agency had not filed such a complaint and declined to comment further on the agency’s strategy.

Ms. Khan, 33, who was appointed by President Biden last year to acclaim from the left, has tried to make good on expansive promises to rein in corporate power. She became prominent after she wrote an article in law school in 2017 criticizing Amazon. As F.T.C. chair, she has called for regulators to vigorously enforce antitrust laws and has said she may craft sweeping online privacy rules that would implicate Silicon Valley companies.

The lawsuit drew praise from Ms. Khan’s allies. Sandeep Vaheesan, the legal director of the Open Markets Institute, a liberal think tank, said in a statement that the lawsuit was a “step toward making building, not buying, the norm for Facebook.”

But tech industry allies assailed Ms. Khan’s actions. Adam Kovacevich, the chief executive of Chamber of Progress, an industry group funded partly by Meta, said that with the new lawsuit, “the agency is more focused on getting headlines than results.” He said Meta “isn’t any closer than pickleball or synchronized swimming are to locking up the fitness market.”

Meta said in a blog post that the F.T.C. would fail to prove that the Within deal would “substantially lessen competition,” which is the bar that is typically set to block a deal under federal antitrust law.

In its lawsuit, the F.T.C. said that if Meta bought Within’s Supernatural, it would no longer have an incentive to improve Beat Saber, the virtual reality fitness game it already owns. But Nikhil Shanbhag, an associate general counsel for Meta, said in the blog post that the games weren’t competitors.

“Beat Saber is a game people play to have fun and it has many competitors,” he said. “Supernatural couldn’t be more different.”

Seamus Hughes contributed research.

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Cyclists Cross Iowa In The 49th Annual RAGBRAI Experience

The annual bike ride across Iowa known as RAGBRAI is kicking off its 49th tour.

They say one can sum up the RAGBRAI experience in two words: Iowa nice.

It’s the open air, the corn fields and above all the small communities and their uniquely midwestern hospitality along the way.

For roughly 20,000 participants, it’s an epic 450-mile adventure stretching for eight days, from one side of Iowa to the other. 

This year is the ride’s 49th edition, and it starts in Sergeant Bluff. 

Teams of riders often come with a truck so a designated driver can transport the gear from one overnight town to the next.  

Tom Kurth is a 77-year-old RAGBRAI veteran.

“You got to have a system to this,” Kurth said. “This is the 36th in a row. Every day, every mile, every hill.” 

The route changes ever year, so nearly all of Iowa has participated.

“My son made this up, and it shows every route that I’ve been on, 35 of them,” Kurth said.

RAGBRAI is steeped in tradition. For some, that includes playing drinking games along the way. 

“I like to drink the beers, and I like to enjoy my friends,” Tyrone Nichols said. “I know so many people from Iowa now since I’ve been here so many times.”

For 15 years, Nichols has been coming to RAGBRAI from Tulsa, Oklahoma. This year he brought in his girlfriend, a rookie.   

“He’s promised to change all my flat tires,” Nancy Fairchild said.

One stop, called a meeting town, is located right in the middle of the route. Anthon, Iowa — with a population of 545 — has been preparing for months to host one of the largest crowds it’s ever seen as a selected RAGBRAI meeting town. It’s where 20,000 people are regrouping and enjoying food and drinks from local vendors.

Anthon city clerk Jeni Umbach is in charge of the day’s events. 

“We want people to see what our little town can do, even though we’re few but mighty,” Umbach said.

She has been working day and night to set everything up, including a display of her town’s ultimate pride. Anthon was once home to the world’s tallest man and the man with the longest hiccups.

“When you look around and see everybody laughing, holding a beverage, eating a sandwich, you know, not leaving,” RAGBRAI director Matt Phippen said. “You know you’ve done it right.” 

Each year in January, RAGBRAI selects a few overnight towns from a pool of applicants.  

From there, other towns along the way, like Anthon, are added to the route. 

It all started in 1973 with two Des Moines-registered journalists who decided to bike across the state and invite readers along. 

It’s now a massive event. But Phippen says the focus remains the same: the people of Iowa.  

That includes state troopers, like Sergeant Alex Dinkla, who help guide the riders  and turn up the beat. 

Dinkla says it’s the same troopers who follow RAGBRAI for eight days, so they feel like part of the community. 

“We see different people that we’ve met year after year. They recognize us. They come up and hang out with us under our tents, talk to us for a while. And so that that means a lot and it makes our day go by much faster,” Dinkla said.  

After 53 miles on the road and many glorious stops, riders finally reached day one’s final destination: Ida Grove. 

Now here in Ida Grove, you get the ultimate RAGBRAI experience. It’s one of eight overnight towns where locals and riders come together for one giant open air party.   

When the party is over, riders can sleep at a nearby campground or in residents’ homes and backyards. 

Karen Maricle and Dan Knop welcome 70 riders into their home, garage and yard — and they’re cooking for everyone. 

“We decided we’d open up our backyards and let whoever needed a spot,” Knop said.  

In typical midwestern fashion, they also keep it humble. 

“They’re the ones paddling, and we don’t have to do anything,” Knop said.  

Tomorrow morning the riders will be gone and back on the road.  

They’ll create so many memories over eight days, they’ll lose count. 

But one thing they’ll never forget: the people of Iowa and their boundless hospitality. 

Source: newsy.com

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Global Central Banks Ramp Up Inflation Fight

Central bankers around the world are lifting interest rates at an aggressive clip as rapid inflation persists and seeps into a broad array of goods and services, setting the global economy up for a lurch toward more expensive credit, lower stock and bond values and — potentially — a sharp pullback in economic activity.

It’s a moment unlike anything the international community has experienced in decades, as countries around the world try to bring rapid price increases under control before they become a more lasting part of the economy.

Inflation has surged across many advanced and developing economies since early 2021 as strong demand for goods collided with shortages brought on by the pandemic. Central banks spent months hoping that economies would reopen and shipping routes would unclog, easing supply constraints, and that consumer spending would return to normal. That hasn’t happened, and the war in Ukraine has only intensified the situation by disrupting oil and food supplies, pushing prices even higher.

is expected to make its first rate increase since 2011, one that officials have signaled will most likely be only a quarter point but will probably be followed by a larger move in September.

Other central banks have begun moving more aggressively already, with officials from Canada to the Philippines picking up the pace of rate increases in recent weeks amid fears that consumers and investors are beginning to expect steadily higher prices — a shift that could make inflation a more permanent feature of the economic backdrop. Federal Reserve officials have also hastened their response. They lifted borrowing costs in June by the most since 1994 and suggested that an even bigger move is possible, though several in recent days have suggested that speeding up again is not their preferred plan for the upcoming July meeting and that a second three-quarter-point increase is most likely.

As interest rates jump around the world, making money that has been cheap for years more expensive to borrow, they are stoking fears among investors that the global economy could slow sharply — and that some countries could find themselves plunged into painful recessions. Commodity prices, some of which can serve as a barometer of expected consumer demand and global economic health, have dropped as investors grow jittery. International economic officials have warned that the path ahead could prove bumpy as central banks adjust policy and as the war in Ukraine heightens uncertainty.

blog post on Wednesday. Ms. Georgieva argued that central banks need to react to inflation, saying that “acting now will hurt less than acting later.”

rising consumer prices and declining spending, the American economy is showing clear signs of slowing down, fueling concerns about a potential recession. Here are other eight measures signaling trouble ahead:

In recent years, emerging markets have often raised interest rates in anticipation of the Fed’s slow and steady moves to avoid big swings in their currency values, which depend partly on interest rate differences across borders. But this set of rate increases is different: Inflation is running at its fastest pace in decades in many places, and a range of developed-economy central banks, including the European Central Bank, the Swiss National Bank, the Bank of Canada and the Reserve Bank of Australia, are joining — or may join — the Fed in pushing rates quickly higher.

“It’s not something we’ve seen in the last few decades,” said Bruce Kasman, chief economist and head of global economic research at JPMorgan Chase.

The last time so many major nations abruptly raised rates in tandem to fight such rapid inflation was in the 1980s, when the contours of global central banking were different: The 19-country euro currency bloc that the E.C.B. sets policy for did not exist yet, and global financial markets were less developed.

That so many central banks are now facing off against rapid inflation — and trying to control it by slowing their economies — increases the chance for market turmoil as an era of very low rates ends and as nations and companies try to adjust to changing capital flows. Those changing flows can influence whether countries and businesses are able to sell debt and other securities to raise money.

“Financial conditions have tightened due to rising, broad-based inflationary pressures, geopolitical uncertainty brought on by Russia’s war against Ukraine, and a slowdown in global growth,” Janet L. Yellen, the U.S. Treasury secretary, said in speech last week. “Now, portfolio investment is beginning to flow out of emerging markets.”

fastest pace since 1983. In the United Kingdom, it is similarly at a 40-year-high.

kick off rate increases back in December and has been steadily raising rates since. Policymakers are increasingly worried about inflation creating a cost-of-living crisis in Britain and worry that higher rates could compound economic pain. At the same time, they have signaled that they could act more forcefully, taking their cue from their global peers. There is a “willingness — should circumstances require — to adopt a faster pace of tightening,” Huw Pill, the chief economist of the Bank of England, said this month.

“Many central banks are looking at this as a sort of existential question about getting inflation and inflation expectations down,” said Matthew Luzzetti, chief U.S. economist at Deutsche Bank.

The Fed raised rates by a quarter point in March, half a point in May, and three-quarters of a percentage point in June. While its officials have predicted that they will maintain that pace in July, they have also been clear that an even bigger rate increase is possible.

“Inflation has to be our focus, every meeting and every day,” Christopher Waller, a Fed governor, said during a speech last week. “The spending and pricing decisions people and businesses make every day depend on their expectations of future inflation, which in turn depend on whether they believe the Fed is sufficiently committed to its inflation target.”

The Bank of Canada has already gone for a full percentage point move, surprising investors last week with its largest move since 1998, while warning of more to come.

said in a statement.

of other central banks have made big moves. More action is coming. Central banks around the world have been clear that they expect to keep moving borrowing costs higher into the autumn.

“I wouldn’t say we’re at peak tightening quite yet,” said Brendan McKenna, an economist at Wells Fargo. “We could go even more aggressive from here.”

A key question is what that will mean for the global economy. The World Bank in June projected in a report that global growth would slow sharply this year but remain positive. Still, there is “considerable” risk of a situation in which growth stagnates and inflation remains high, David Malpass, head of the World Bank, wrote.

If inflation does become entrenched, or even show signs of shifting expectations, central banks may have to respond even more aggressively than they are now, intentionally crushing growth.

Mr. Kasman said the open question, when it comes to the Fed, is: “How far have they gone toward the conclusion that they need to kick us in the teeth, here?”

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Retail Workers Increasingly Fear for Their Safety

Assaults at stores have been increasing at a faster pace than the national average. Some workers are tired of fearing for their safety.


There was the customer who stomped on the face of a private security guard. Then the one who lit herself on fire inside a store. The person who drank gasoline and the one who brandished an ax. An intoxicated shopper who pelted a worker with soup cans. A shoplifter who punched a night manager twice in the head and then shot him in the chest.

And there was the shooting that killed 10 people, including three workers, at the King Soopers supermarket in Boulder, Colo., in March 2021. Another shooting left 10 more people dead at a Buffalo grocery store last month.

In her 37 years in the grocery industry, said Kim Cordova, a union president in Colorado, she had never experienced the level of violence that her members face today.

F.B.I. said, more than half the so-called active shooter attacks — in which an individual with a gun is killing or trying to kill people in a busy area — occurred in places of commerce, including stores.

“Violence in and around retail settings is definitely increasing, and it is a concern,” said Jason Straczewski, a vice president of government relations and political affairs at the National Retail Federation.

Tracking retail theft is more difficult because many prosecutors and retailers rarely press charges. Still, some politicians have seized on viral videos of brazen shoplifting to portray left-leaning city leaders as soft on crime. Others have accused the industry of grossly exaggerating losses and warned that the thefts were being used as a pretext to roll back criminal justice reforms.

“These crimes deserve to be taken seriously, but they are also being weaponized ahead of the midterm elections,” said Jonathan Simon, a professor of criminal justice at the University of California, Berkeley, Law School.

While the political debate swirls about the extent of the crime and its causes, many of the people staffing the stores say retailers have been too permissive of crime, particularly theft. Some employees want more armed security guards who can take an active role in stopping theft, and they want more stores to permanently bar rowdy or violent customers, just as airlines have been taking a hard line with unruly passengers.

Kroger, which owns Fred Meyer, did not respond to requests for comment.

Some unions are demanding that retailers make official accommodations for employees who experience anxiety working with the public by finding them store roles where they don’t regularly interact with customers.

it was revealed that the retailers were hounding falsely accused customers.

The industry says it is putting much of its focus on stopping organized rings of thieves who resell stolen items online or on the street. They point to big cases like the recent indictment of dozens of people who are accused of stealing millions of dollars in merchandise from stores like Sephora, Bloomingdale’s and CVS.

But it’s not clear how much of the crime is organized. Matthew Fernandez, 49, who works at a King Soopers in Broomfield, Colo., said he was stunned when he watched a thief walk out with a cart full of makeup, laundry detergent and meat and drive off in a Mercedes-Benz S.U.V.

“The ones you think are going to steal are not the ones doing it,” he said. “From high class to low class, they are all doing it.”

Ms. Barry often gives money to the homeless people who come into her store, so they can buy food. She also knows the financial pressures on people with lower incomes as the cost of living soars.

When people steal, she said, the company can write off the loss. But those losses mean less money for workers.

“That is part of my raise and benefits that is walking out the door,” she said. “That is money we deserve.”

Ella Koeze contributed reporting.

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Ukraine News: As Battle Grows Desperate, U.S. Says It Won’t Push Kyiv Into Talks

Credit…Oleksandr Ratushniak/Associated Press

KYIV, Ukraine — As the eastern city of Sievierodonetsk appears close to falling to Russia, military analysts say that Ukraine’s outgunned and outnumbered forces are trying to draw out the fight to inflict more casualties against Moscow.

Russia has been using its advantage in longer-range artillery to bombard eastern cities from a distance, leveling them and killing or driving out civilians, raising the question of whether it is worth the cost in Ukrainian soldiers’ lives to defend them. President Volodymyr Zelensky has described Sievierodonetsk as a “dead” city.

In Sievierodonetsk, the analysts say, the Ukrainians’ hope is that by drawing Russian forces into street-by-street battles, they can defuse Moscow’s heavy weapons advantage, at least for a time, since close-quarter fighting raises the risk for Russia that artillery strikes would bombard their own soldiers.

“If the Ukrainians succeed in trying to drag them into house-to-house combat, there is a higher chance of inducing casualties on the Russians that they cannot afford,” said Gustav Gressel, a Ukraine expert from the European Council on Foreign Relations.

Still, the Ukrainians are taking a chance by drawing the Russians into street fighting, risking getting trapped in the city — especially as the last bridge that would allow a fast escape has been destroyed. Mr. Zelensky has also acknowledged the cost of close combat “in terms of the number of people killed, the number of losses.”

But with Western weapons slow in coming, the Ukrainians appear to be calculating that it is worth the risk for now.

Although street fighting kills large numbers of Ukrainian soldiers — officials have estimated that Ukraine is losing up to 200 soldiers daily in battle — it also inflicts casualties on the Russians in greater numbers than uneven artillery and tank battles in the open fields.

Before the Russian invasion, the Ukrainian military had studied approaches to fighting an enemy with superior armored vehicle and artillery capabilities, including by drawing lessons from urban combat in cities such as Aleppo in the Syrian war.

In December, military instructors told volunteers preparing to defend Kyiv, the capital, to fight in urban locations at the closest possible engagement ranges, to prevent the Russians from calling in artillery without risking strikes that would hit their own soldiers, too.

These tactics were not needed within Kyiv, because Russian forces were repelled before entering the city. But Ukraine put them to use in urban combat in Mariupol, where Ukrainian fighters facing much larger Russian forces were able to engage the enemy troops for weeks.

Mykhailo Samus, the deputy head of the Center for Army, Conversion and Disarmament Studies, argued that the Ukrainian military’s dogged resistance had also bought its forces time, holding Russia off from advancing farther into eastern Ukraine as they hope that more shipments of Western weapons arrive. The goal, he said, is to “exhaust, or reduce, the enemy’s offensive capabilities.”

It is not clear, however, how long such a strategy can work in Donbas, where the largely flat plains favor Russian artillery, and as longer-range weapons from the United States and other Ukrainian allies are slow to arrive. While Ukrainian casualties mount, Mr. Zelensky has acknowledged that Russia has more troops it can use as “cannon fodder.”

In a speech this week to the American Jewish Committee Global Forum, he repeated his plea for allies to send more arms, more quickly.

“We need powerful weapons for the offensive, without which the war will only drag on and the number of victims will increase,” he said.

Oleksandr Chubko contributed reporting.

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