Good morning. We are talking about Hungary’s hunger for Russian oil, Prince Charles’ visit to Canada and the return of the former King of Spain.
Hungary opposes an oil embargo
Prime Minister Viktor Orban says the EU’s proposed embargo on Russian oil would destroy his country’s economy.
In part it is a financial consideration: Hungary has made huge profits from cheap oil. Keeping the pipelines open will keep energy prices low, a promise Orban made to his constituents.
But the dividends from using Russian fuel also help support Orban’s illiberal agenda and fund the policies that have made Hungary an international beacon for right-wing groups.
Economy: Analysts expect Russia to suffer deep and lasting economic damage, despite President Vladimir Putin’s insistence that it endure sanctions. The US has a long-term goal of crippling Russia’s oil industry, officials say.
Germany: Gerhard Schröder – a former chancellor, Putin’s ally and well-paid Russian energy lobbyist – will be robbed of €400,000 in privileges associated with his former office.
Atrocities: A Times investigation found compelling evidence that Russian troops rounded up and executed Ukrainian men in Bucha, making them directly involved in a likely war crime. And in the first war crimes trial since the invasion, a Russian soldier apologized to the widow of a man he killed.
State of the war:
In other developments:
Prince Charles completes his visit to Canada
As he concluded a three-day tour of Canada, the heir to the British throne — and Canada’s future head of state — was faced with the country’s legacy of discrimination against indigenous peoples.
Prince Charles and his wife Camilla have visited the Yellowknives Dene First Nation, who say the Crown has violated a centuries-old treaty.
They also met survivors of Canada’s now-defunct, and notoriously abusive, residential school system for Indigenous children, for which Dene people hold the Crown partly responsible. Prince Charles said he was “deeply moved” by the visit.
History: This is a time of tension over the role of the monarchy in Britain’s former overseas territories. Barbados formally became a republic in February. And separate tours of the Caribbean this year by Prince Edward, Charles’s brother, and Prince William, a son of the future king, sparked protests against the monarchy and its historic role in the slave trade.
polls: Queen Elizabeth II is popular, but fewer and fewer Canadians want to swear allegiance to another British monarch – especially if it’s Charles.
Politics: British police have closed their investigation into Downing Street parties who have broken Covid rules and raised a cloud over Prime Minister Boris Johnson. He will not receive any further fines.
Disgraced ex-king returns to Spain
Juan Carlos, the former Spanish monarch, is back in Spain for the first time since he left the country nearly two years ago during fraud investigations.
His brief return from Abu Dhabi, where he now lives, comes after prosecutors in Spain and Switzerland dropped fraud cases, most notably over whether he received approximately $100 million in bribes in connection with a high-speed train contract in Saudi Arabia.
The investigations have significantly damaged his reputation and that of the monarchy. One of his daughters was fined for corporate fraud and her husband was jailed. On Wednesday, the royal household stressed in a statement that the capital of the United Arab Emirates is now the residence of Juan Carlos “in a permanent and stable manner”.
Details: The former king had planned to meet his wife, Queen Sofia, and other members of his family at the royal palace on the outskirts of Madrid, and attend a weekend sailing regatta.
History: Juan Carlos, 84, came to the throne in 1975, two days after the death of dictator Francisco Franco. He was a key figure in Spain’s transition to democracy, but his lavish lifestyle, extramarital affairs and business dealings took a hard hit during a financial crisis a decade ago.
THE LAST NEWS
Romania “rewilderts” its wolves and bison, a progressive approach to conservation. Tourists can go on “safaris” and follow the reintroduction of the animals in the Transylvanian Alps.
War between Russia and Ukraine: important developments
You said. The Senate overwhelmingly approved a $40 billion aid package for Ukraine, bringing total US investment in the war to $54 billion in just over two months. The move is the latest evidence of the bipartisan support on Capitol Hill for helping Ukraine fight Russia.
ART AND IDEAS
An age-old saying, still in play
In the 17th century, an English jurist, Lord Matthew Hale, wrote that women were contractually obligated to their husbands. He argued that giving them legally enforceable rights over their own bodies posed a threat to men’s rights and freedom.
Hale’s ruling and his legal philosophy are still great, writes Amanda Taub in The Interpreter, our sister newsletter. “For example, we no longer hold witch trials,” she writes. “But his views on rape, marriage and abortion, anchored in legal advice, became part of the British legal system, then that of its colonies.”
Just two weeks ago, Hale was quoted eight times in a leaked draft advisory that would quash Roe v. Wade, the historic US abortion case. Last Wednesday, the Delhi Supreme Court, in a divided verdict, refused to criminalize marital rape in India, upholding a legal exception that Hale had laid down in a 17th-century treatise.
Both cases show that colonial-era misogyny can continue, Amanda writes, even in the face of apparent progress. Hale’s legal logic, which treats the family as a private sphere with the husband as sovereign, has become a shield against male violence, including domestic violence and marital rape. That has serious political implications for women’s rights and for laws governing their health.
PLAY, WATCH, EAT, LISTEN
What to cook?
These sweet plantain fries are crunchy, tender and caramelized at the same time.
what to watch
An absurdist epic about 20th-century China, A New Old Play is both a film and a play, tragedy as well as farce.
What to listen to?
Porridge Radio, an English indie rock band, today releases its emotional third album, “Waterslide, Diving Board, Ladder to the Sky.”
Now time to play
Here’s today’s mini crossword and a clue: do or die (four letters).
And here’s today’s Wordle and Spelling Bee.
Here you will find all our puzzles.
That was it for today’s briefing. Thank you for participating. — Amelia
PS By order, Times reporters often introduce themselves with different versions of the same line: Hi, I’m a journalist. Can we talk?
The latest episode of “The Daily” deals with immigration along the US-Mexico border.
You can reach Amelia and the team at: briefing.†