‘World War III’? / Oh, s__t / Not last night, Chicago

‘World War III’? Ukraine’s President Volodymr Zelenskyy tells NBC News that Russia may have already started it.
Also: “They’ve killed over 100 children. …What else should we wait for?
CNN’s Stephen Collinson says Zelenskyy’s address to Congress was designed “to frame the war not as a confusing and far-off dispute … but as everybody’s war.”
Updating coverage: Russians blasted a Mariupol theater where hundreds of civilians had taken refuge.
President Biden said it for the first time: Russian President Vladimir Putin “is a war criminal.”
Columnist and former U.S. Labor Secretary Robert Reich sees “the thinnest of silver linings”: The Ukraine war may be “bringing America back together.”
NPR’s public radio concedes that a Ukraine joke on Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me! … bombed.

‘What mother wouldn’t?’ Time profiles women who were outside Ukraine as the war began but who now are returning to rescue their children.
Esquire’s Charlie Pierce on the plight of Chernobyl nuclear plant workers working literally at gunpoint: “A single night shift that began on Feb. 23 is now 500 hours long and still going.”

‘We will not walk away from our employees there or hand over these manufacturing facilities to the Russian government.’ The largest privately held U.S. company, Koch Industries, confirms it’ll keep doing business in Russia.
Popular Information: “The implication is that the hundreds of companies that have left Russia are, in fact, empowering the Putin regime.”
You may know Koch best as the parent to Brawny and AngelSoft paper products. Speaking of which …

Oh, shit. Axios Chicago notes that wastewater surveillance gathered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reveals rising levels of COVID-19 in Cook County.
A special meeting of the Chicago City Council called by aldermen pushing to relax the vaccination mandate for municipal workers went down the toilet when not enough aldercreatures showed up.
Poynter’s Al Tompkins: The free COVID tests, medication and monitoring end soon unless Congress does something.
Time offers lessons to be learned from America’s most recent vaccine converts.

Gold-medal grievance. A legal dispute over a Chicago charity’s use of the phrase “Special Olympics” pits an organization founded by a Kennedy against one led by a Daley …
 … partly over events like the city’s celebrated Polar Plunge (March 6 link).

‘There is a seat reserved in hell for those who gloat over the closing of a bookstore.’ But the Tribune’s Christopher Borrelli sees an exception for Chicago’s “dumbest bookstore,” the soon-to-close Amazon Books on Southport.
Amazon’s nailed down its purchase of the storied MGM motion picture studio …
 … but it’s not getting The Wizard of Oz (May 2021 link).

Gas jams. Businessman and perennially unsuccessful political candidate Willie Wilson generated big traffic today—motorists lined up for blocks—with his offer to pay for free gasoline at 10 Chicago stations.
His only regret: He wished he’d donated more.
Just three nonresidential buildings in Illinois—in Lincolnshire, Northbrook and Oak Park—have verified that they create as much energy as they use.
Nationwide, the total’s 150.

Not last night, Chicago. Broadcast technicians’ strike kept a new episode of WTTW-TV’s flagship news show, Chicago Tonight, off the air.
Groundbreaking Chicago broadcaster Merri Dee is dead at 85.
She became an advocate for victims of violent crime after she and a man who’d been a guest on her show, psychic Alan Sandler, were kidnapped at gunpoint by a man who shot them both in the back of the head—killing Sandler and nearly killing Dee.
Nieman Lab spotlights the debut of a new publication bringing information to a Chicago suburb’s news desert.

And now, the end is near … 
Tomorrow brings the final batch of this round of thanks to readers whose support keeps Chicago Public Square coming. If you’d like to join Donna Barrows, Lloyd Sachs, Tony Judge, M. Braun, Mary T. Davison, Deborah J. Wess, Martin Berg, Katherine and Michael Raleigh, Hank and Marge Arnold, Christian Anderson, Kevin Lampe, Molly McDonough, Jane Hirt, John Metz, Christopher Comes, Paula Weinbaum, Ed Nickow, Anne Costello, Robert Toon, Bridget Hatch, Sherry Nordstrom, Molly Besta Allscheid, Judy Hoffman, Owen Youngman, Paul Noble, Kurt Wehrmeister, Mike Cramer, Sharon Halperin, Jennifer McGeary, Ron Castan, Steve Winner, G C Bien, Gil Arias, Ryan Bird, Jennifer Fardy, Denise Mattson, Hank DeZutter, Andrew Nord, Joe Germuska, Sandy Heitzman, Sarah Russe, Jim Grimes, Arthur Golab, Cynde Seegers, Ed McDevitt, Richard Milne, Teresa Powell, Laurie Huget, Jeff Hanneman, Timothy Baffoe, Virginia Mann, Frank Heitzman, Janet Holden, Melissa Leeb, Elan Long, Sara Burrows, MJ Garnier, Mark Mueller, Tim Woods, Maureen Kennedy, Clif Wilson, Andrew Stancioff, Bill Paige, Susan Kumler, Timothy Mennel, Lora Engdahl, Ann Fisher, Robert Izral, Bob Rowley, Deb Humiston, Jeff Currie, Deborah Montgomery, Leslie Sutphen, Alex Riepl Broz, Nancy Hess, Paul Zavagno, Paul Pasulka, Marj Halperin, Theodore Naron, Anna Tarkov, Harlene Ellin and David Mausner in this latest roll call… this is the time to do it, in any amount you choose—one time (awesome) or on a recurring basis (awesomer).
 Mike Braden made this edition better.

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