Daily Bread for 1.14.23: After Russia Kills, It Steals

Good morning.

Saturday in Whitewater will be increasingly sunny with a high of 35. Sunrise is 7:22 AM and sunset 4:45 PM for 9h 22m 59s of daytime. The moon is a waning gibbous with 55.6% of its visible disk illuminated.

 On this day in 1952, NBC‘s long-running morning news program Today debuts, with host Dave Garroway.

Jeffrey Gettleman and Oleksandra Mykolyshyn report As Russians Steal Ukraine’s Art, They Attack Its Identity, Too (‘Russian forces have looted tens of thousands of pieces, including avant-garde oil paintings and Scythian gold. Experts say it is the biggest art heist since the Nazis in World War II, intended to strip Ukraine of its cultural heritage’):

KHERSON, Ukraine — One morning in late October, Russian forces blocked off a street in downtown Kherson and surrounded a graceful old building with dozens of soldiers.

Five large trucks pulled up. So did a line of military vehicles, ferrying Russian agents who filed in through several doors. It was a carefully planned, highly organized, military-style assault — on an art museum.

Over the next four days, the Kherson Regional Art Museum was cleaned out, witnesses said, with Russian forces “bustling about like insects,” porters wheeling out thousands of paintings, soldiers hastily wrapping them in sheets, art experts barking out orders and packing material flying everywhere.

“They were loading such masterpieces, which there are no more in the world, as if they were garbage,” said the museum’s longtime director, Alina Dotsenko, who recently returned from exile, recounting what employees and witnesses had told her.

When she came back to the museum in early November and grasped how much had been stolen, she said, “I almost lost my mind.”

Kherson. Mariupol. Melitopol. Kakhovsky. Museums of art, history and antiquities.

As Russia has ravaged Ukraine with deadly missile strikes and brutal atrocities on civilians, it has also looted the nation’s cultural institutions of some of the most important and intensely protected contributions of Ukraine and its forebears going back thousands of years.

International art experts say the plundering may be the single biggest collective art heist since the Nazis pillaged Europe in World War II.

The Russian army and her mercenaries: invaders, killers, war criminals, thieves. 

While a libertarian would prefer peaceful trade with all the world, he or she cannot countenance savagery in its place. We are right to arm the Ukrainians so that they can defend themselves. Russian weapons and tactics are inferior to our own; those in our country before the war who claimed otherwise are now evident fools.

Americans who apologize for Putin, or craft lies against Ukraine, debase themselves by becoming fellow travelers or (occasionally) fifth columnists of the Russian dictatorship. 

Deadly tornado rips through Alabama leaving damage in its wake:

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