Five Things to Know, May 8, 2023
(Seth Robson/Stars and Stripes)

Five Things to Know, May 8, 2023

1.   The U.S. Army’s top general, during meetings Monday with Japan’s top military officials, pointed to the war in Ukraine as a warning about the dangers of regional conflicts. Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville spoke to Minister of Defense Yasukazu Hamada and the chief of the Japan Self-Defense Forces Joint Staff, Gen. Yasunori Morishita, at the ministry in Tokyo.

2.   House Armed Services Committee leaders will unveil the first outlines of their annual defense authorization bill this week, providing hints at their plans for defense spending and military training changes in fiscal 2024. The defense policy bill is one of the few reliable pieces of legislation to advance through Congress annually, passing into law for more than six consecutive decades. It sets the parameters for military spending priorities, renews a host of pay and benefits authorizations, and includes hundreds of new program parameters and personnel rules.

3.   Ukraine air defenses shot down 35 Iranian-made drones over Kyiv in Russia’s latest nighttime assault, as attacks across Ukraine by the Kremlin’s forces killed four civilians, officials said Monday. The bombardments came as Moscow enforced tight security on the eve of traditional Red Square commemorations marking the defeat of Nazi Germany in World War II.

4.   Anxiety about the safety of Europe's largest nuclear power plant grew Sunday after the Moscow-installed governor of the Ukrainian region where it is located ordered civilian evacuations, including from the city where most plant workers live. International Atomic Energy Agency Director General Rafael Grossi has spent months trying to persuade Russian and Ukrainian officials to establish a security zone around the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant to prevent the war from causing a radiation leak.

5.   French President Emmanuel Macron led the traditional ceremony on Paris’ Champs-Elysees Monday commemorating the day that marked the end of World War II in Europe in 1945. Flanked by Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne, Macron laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier under the Arc de Triomphe monument. A brass band played the Marseillaise.