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Russia Increases Pressure on West as Ukraine Gains Ground – The Denver Post

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Russia Increases Pressure On West As Ukraine Gains Ground - The Denver Post
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By JON GAMBRELL

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — The Kremlin said Tuesday there was no prospect of a negotiated end to the war in Ukraine and gave its blessing to efforts to quickly bring already captured areas under full control of the Russia. Such a move could set the stage for Moscow to escalate the conflict if Ukrainian forces attempt to retake the areas.

A close ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, former President Dmitry Medvedev, has said integrating the breakaway regions of Lugansk and Donetsk in eastern Ukraine into Russia itself would make their redrawn borders “irreversible.” and would allow Moscow to use “all means” to defend them.

Pressure within Russia and Moscow-backed leaders in Luhansk and Donetsk for regional votes that would pave the way to a complete Russia has increased following a Ukrainian counteroffensive – bolstered by weapons supplied by the West – which recovers large areas Territory occupied by Russia.

Moscow-backed leaders in the Russian-occupied Kherson region of southern Ukraine and pro-Russian activists in the partially occupied Zaporizhzhia region joined calls from separatist authorities in Luhansk on Tuesday and Donetsk for quick referendums on joining Russia.

Such votes would almost certainly go Moscow’s way. The succession of calls and Medvedev’s support for them suggested a strengthening of the Kremlin’s resolve to push back against further territorial gains by Ukraine.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Tuesday there was no prospect of a diplomatic settlement. Medvedev, the deputy head of Russia’s Security Council chaired by Putin, said on his messaging app channel that votes in breakaway regions are important to protect their people and “restore historic justice” and would “completely change” the future trajectory of Russia.

“After their detention and the integration of the new territories into the fold of Russia, a geopolitical transformation of the world will become irreversible,” said Medvedev, who also served as Russia’s president from 2008 to 2012.

“Encroachment on Russian territory is a crime that would justify any means of self-defense,” he said, adding that Russia would enshrine the new territories in its constitution so that no future Russian leader could return them. .

“That’s why they fear these referendums so much in Kyiv and in the West,” Medvedev said. “That’s why they must be held.”

The reconquest of large areas of territory previously occupied by Russia, notably in the northeastern region of Kharkiv, has reinforced Ukraine’s arguments that its troops could inflict greater defeats on Russia with deliveries of additional armament.

More heavy weapons are on the way, with Slovenia this week pledging 28 tanks and Germany pledging four more self-propelled howitzers. Additional help is also expected from Britain, already one of Ukraine’s biggest military backers after the United States. British Prime Minister Liz Truss is expected to promise that in 2023 her government will “match or exceed” the 2.3 billion pounds ($2.7 billion) in military aid given to Ukraine this year.

The speed of the Ukrainian counteroffensive also saw Russian forces abandon armored vehicles and other weapons as they retreated hastily. Ukrainian forces recycle weapons captured in battle. A Washington-based think tank, the Institute for the Study of Warfare, said on Tuesday that abandoned Russian T-72 tanks are being used by Ukrainian forces seeking to advance into Russian-occupied Luhansk.

In the wake of the counteroffensive, Ukrainian officials found hundreds of graves near the once-occupied town of Izium. Yevhenii Yenin, deputy minister of Ukraine’s Ministry of Internal Affairs, told a national television broadcast that officials had found many bodies “bearing signs of violent death”.

“They are broken ribs and broken heads, men with bound hands, broken jaws and severed genitals,” he said.

Ukrainian officials have also alleged that Russian forces tortured people in occupied areas, including shocking them with Soviet-era radiotelephones. Russia has repeatedly denied abusing or killing prisoners, although Ukrainian officials found mass graves around the town of Bucha after blunting a Russian offensive targeting the capital, Kyiv, early in the war.

Meanwhile, a Ukrainian push continues in the south of the country. Ukraine’s Southern Military Command said Tuesday morning that its troops sank a Russian barge carrying troops and weapons on the Dnipro River near the Russian-occupied town of Nova Kakhovka. He did not provide any further details about the sinking of the barge in the Russian-occupied Kherson region, which was a major target of the Ukrainian counteroffensive.

In other developments:

– Moscow has likely moved its Kilo-class submarines from their Crimean peninsula station to southern Russia over fears they could be hit by long-range Ukrainian fire, the British military said on Tuesday. In a daily intelligence briefing, Britain’s Ministry of Defense said those submarines had “almost certainly” been moved to Krasnodar Krai in mainland Russia, instead of a naval base in Sevastopol on the Crimean peninsula.

– McDonald’s restaurants in Kyiv were due to start serving again on Tuesday for the first time since the invasion of Russia in February. Three restaurants planned to offer a delivery service only initially, marking a sort of return to the life Ukrainians knew before the war, which enters its seventh month later this week.

___

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Ravens are field-goal favorites over visiting Bengals in ‘Sunday Night Football’ matchup

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Ravens Are Field-Goal Favorites Over Visiting Bengals In ‘Sunday Night Football’ Matchup
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The Ravens are field-goal favorites over the Cincinnati Bengals ahead of their “Sunday Night Football” matchup at M&T Bank Stadium, according to Las Vegas sportsbooks.

Despite a 23-20 loss Sunday to the Buffalo Bills, their second straight second-half collapse at home, the Ravens (2-2) are favored by three points in their AFC North opener. The Bengals (2-2) are coming off a 27-15 home win over the previously undefeated Miami Dolphins and will have had three extra days of rest.

Cincinnati has won four of its past eight games in Baltimore and is 4-1 against the spread in its past five games against the host Ravens, according to CBS Sports. The Ravens, meanwhile, haven’t covered the spread in either of their two home games this season, though Sunday’s loss to Buffalo was a push.

The Ravens lead the all-time series 27-25 but were swept last season for the first time since 2015. The Bengals pulled away in Baltimore for a comfortable 41-17 win in Week 7 and later routed a depleted Ravens team in Week 16, 41-21.

The over-under for Sunday’s game is 48 1/2 points.

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Voting Rights Act at risk of further dismantling in Supreme Court: NPR

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Voting Rights Act At Risk Of Further Dismantling In Supreme Court: Npr
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The Supreme Court Of The United States

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The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments on Tuesday in a case that could put another nail in the coffin of the historic Voting Rights Act, first passed in 1965 and aimed at eliminating racial discrimination against voters. minorities.

Since 2013, the Supreme Court has twice struck down or neutralized significant parts of the law. Now, once again, the law is on the chopping block — this time on the question of how state legislatures can draw constituency lines in Congress when state voters are racially polarized.

At issue is Alabama’s congressional redistricting plan passed by the state’s Republican legislature after the 2020 census. More than a quarter of the state’s population is African American, but in only 1 of 7 districts, minority voters have a realistic chance of electing the candidate of their choice. Black voters are either concentrated in this district, so that they form a supermajority there, or are spread across the remaining six districts, so that their voting power is diluted. This is a practice known as packing and cracking.

“Voting in Alabama is racially polarized, which means that black voters and white voters consistently vote for different candidates, especially when black candidates are on the ballot,” says election law expert Richard Pildes. And that, he says, “triggers the Voting Rights Act.”

How the lower courts ruled

The triggering of the Voting Rights Act is a big deal, with particular irony in this context. That’s because this case involves a provision that Congress amended in 1982 to correct what it saw as the Supreme Court’s misinterpretation of the law.

After the Supreme Court ruled in 1980 that suffrage advocates must prove intentional discrimination in order to invalidate an electoral system, Congress amended the law to specify that minority voters need only prove a result discrimination – a much easier thing to do than to prove intentional discrimination. The discriminatory outcome has been the norm ever since, upheld by the Supreme Court and applied by lower courts.

In January, a three-judge Federal Court panel unanimously ruled that Alabama could and should have created two compact congressional districts with a majority, or near a majority, of black voters: two districts instead of just one. Two of the judges on the panel were Trump appointees, the third a Clinton appointee.

The state appealed to the Supreme Court, which by a 5-4 vote blocked the lower court’s decision, which ordered a new map for the 2022 election, then nine months away. It was too much for Chief Justice John Roberts, a longtime critic of the Voting Rights Act, but who this time dissented with the three court liberals. He said he could find “no apparent error” in the lower court’s application of existing precedents.

The Alabama Argument

What he didn’t say was whether the court should revisit some of those precedents. And on Tuesday, the court hears arguments about whether to do just that. The question is whether to overturn or change previous decisions that have governed the law for more than 30 years. Existing precedents impose an “affirmative duty” on racially polarized voting to “give minority voters an equal opportunity to elect the candidates they prefer,” says Pildes, a professor at the University of New York’s law school. York.

He notes that Alabama’s arguments range from narrow arguments about how to interpret the 1982 Voting Rights Act amendments to more extreme arguments.

An extreme argument, Pildes says, is that the Voting Rights Act does not apply to legislative redistricting plans at all, even though the court has historically applied the law to such plans. “Or,” he said, “even more dramatically, that if [the Voting Rights Act] applies as the lower court held here, then the law is unconstitutional.”

Unconstitutional because it is based on the affirmative creation of a race-based compact second district. As Alabama put it in its briefs, by requiring a “race-based” redistricting map, the lower court indulged in “the harmful idea that redistricting begins and ends with racial considerations.” .

Against this argument, black voters argue that the state’s argument boils down to a backwards and forwards proposition: that any effort to eradicate racial discrimination is unconstitutional because it must emphasize on racial considerations.

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China seeks to ‘normalize’ military drills near island: Taiwan

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China says its armed forces have the right to operate around Taiwan. (Case)

Taipei:

China is seeking to “normalize” its military activities near Taiwan, including crossing the center line of the Taiwan Strait, which poses an unprecedented challenge, Taiwan’s Defense Ministry said on Tuesday.

China, which considers the democratically-ruled island its own territory, waged war games including missile fire over Taipei in early August in response to a visit to Taiwan by the US House Speaker. United, Nancy Pelosi.

China’s military activities near Taiwan have continued at a much reduced level, although Chinese military aircraft still regularly cross the middle line of the Taiwan Strait, which previously served as an unofficial barrier between the two.

“In the future, the activities of Chinese Communist military aircraft and ships entering our air defense identification zone, crossing the median line and approaching sea areas near the island will gradually become more normalized,” he said. said the ministry.

“The national army faces an unprecedented challenge,” the ministry said in a report to parliament before Defense Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng answered lawmaker questions on Wednesday, a copy of which was reviewed by Reuters. .

China says its armed forces have the right to operate around Taiwan because it is Chinese territory.

The Taiwanese government has denounced Beijing’s threats and rejected China’s sovereignty claims, saying only the island’s 23 million people have the right to decide their future.

Taiwan will respond to China’s military threats by “appropriately” increasing its level of combat readiness and remaining on high alert, the ministry said.

As the world is distracted by the war in Ukraine, China is upgrading its armed forces and increasing pressure on Taiwan, the ministry said.

In its report seeking parliamentary approval for next year’s defense budget, the ministry also said it hoped to prioritize spending on ammunition and arms parts to respond to “the state of urgent combat readiness”.

The government has proposed $19 billion in defense spending for next year, a double-digit increase from 2022 that includes funds for new fighter jets.

(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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Chicago Bears QB rewind: Is Luke Getsy doing enough to turn Justin Fields loose in the passing attack?

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Chicago Bears Qb Rewind: Is Luke Getsy Doing Enough To Turn Justin Fields Loose In The Passing Attack?
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Chicago Bears offensive coordinator Luke Getsy isn’t scheduled to speak with reporters until Thursday at Halas Hall.

That leaves a couple more days for Getsy’s harshest critics — and Justin Fields’ staunchest defenders — to continue catapulting tomatoes at will, firing on Getsy’s play-calling and an offensive approach that some have deemed too conservative to unlock the Bears’ bottom-tier attack.

But the knee-jerk outrage in the wake of Sunday’s 20-12 road loss to the New York Giants might not have ample supporting evidence, even after the Bears settled for four field goals in 12 possessions.

The truth is accountability must be spread all around as the Bears seek stimulants to enliven their 32nd-ranked passing offense. Fields isn’t playing well by any stretch of the imagination. His ordinary and depleted receiving corps hasn’t stepped up. The offensive line has been inconsistent at best in pass protection and now figures to be without guard Cody Whitehair for the rest of October.

And, yes, Getsy also should be held responsible for his role in overseeing an offense that has an NFL-low five touchdowns through four games and ranks 26th in third-down efficiency (34%).

A deeper dive into Sunday’s video, however, revealed an overwhelming number of execution errors that proved far more detrimental to the Bears’ stumbles than play-calling.

On 60 offensive snaps, the Bears ran 34 pass plays. Eleven resulted in completions. Eleven were incomplete. Six went down as quarterback scrambles for positive yards. Another six resulted in sacks, including a poorly blocked second-quarter play that ended with Fields losing a fumble.

Folded into the game video is evidence that the Bears had plenty of opportunities to make plays in the passing game and had shrewd calls to help that cause. They just faltered. Then they lost, touching a city’s raw nerve.

You can bet the upbeat rhetoric from inside Halas Hall won’t land quite right this week.

“I love the way (Justin) was throwing the ball down the field,” Bears coach Matt Eberflus said immediately after the game. “That’s going to open up more things for us.”

Fields did finish with season highs in completions and passing yards. It’s all relative, but statistically, that’s progress, right? Eberflus saw it as such.

Still, when an 11-completion, 174-yard performance without a touchdown pass registers as a step forward worthy of a fist pump, the problems remain sizable.

Here’s your comprehensive Week 4 QB rewind.

Defining moment

On third-and-10 from the Giants 35-yard line late in the first half, Fields missed his biggest opportunity to break his three-week slump without a touchdown pass. Getsy sent in a “four verticals” concept against a Cover-2 look, giving Fields a well-timed chance to take a shot.

“That’s a very basic play,” Eberflus said.

Yet the Bears couldn’t pull it off.

Receiver Darnell Mooney made a mental error in the huddle, confusing the call with a like-named play from Matt Nagy’s 2021 library and mixing up the details of his route. Even so, the way things developed, Fields had a grooved fastball hanging over the plate and a chance to swing for the fences like he did on the team field trip to Wrigley Field over the summer.

A bit of a coverage bust by the Giants left Mooney streaking uncovered up the seam toward the end zone. And while, by his own admission, Mooney was supposed to bend his route toward the right hash instead of running straight upfield, there’s no excuse for Fields not seeing that big play waiting or pulling the trigger to capitalize.

“He certainly had time on that,” Eberflus said. “He certainly had time and could’ve rode the pocket a little bit more.”

Against a four-man rush, the Bears protection held up. It was the cleanest pocket Fields had all day. Yet for some reason, the moment he hit the top of his five-step drop, he tucked the football, dropped his eyes and scrambled forward through the pocket.

Eberflus theorized Monday that Fields was responding to a coaching point to either look for his check-down or run on that play against that coverage. Thus he gained 12 yards to convert on third-and-long and move the Bears inside the Giants 25.

But here’s why, at this stage of Fields’ development, it’s critical to separate play results from processes and decision-making.

Fields did too much wrong during that sequence, perhaps indicating that bad habits are starting to form amid the offense’s struggles. Or at the very least, good habits haven’t solidified. For one thing, while Fields might not have seen what he expected to see, he had to recognize the big break that presented itself.

“There’s no doubt,” Eberflus said Monday. “Get your eyes downfield and see what you see and take what they give you. You certainly have to do that. For sure.”

While Mooney acknowledged running the wrong route, he was reminded that the route he did run would have gone for a touchdown had Fields shown proper recognition.

“True,” he said. “True. And then we’re not talking about this as well. But I just have to be in the right spot.”

Fields’ lack of pocket awareness combined with his eagerness to take off running proved disappointing. To top it all off, his run was far from careful as he missed an opportunity to bounce outside and get out of bounds after picking up the first down and instead ran into a significant hit from linebacker Tae Crowder.

Again, the Bears picked up a first down on the play. But they left a potential game-changing touchdown on the table.

Uh-oh

The second quarter was full of examples where the Bears had chances to produce in the passing game but failed during an ugly four-possession stretch in which the offense again made even the basics of football look difficult.

A sampling from that menu:

  • On a first-down play-action pass near midfield, Fields rolled right for a seemingly easy completion to rookie running back Trestan Ebner. Yet confronted with moderate pressure from outside linebacker Tomon Fox, Fields threw high and missed Ebner badly. Incomplete.
  • Five plays later, after converting on third-and-20 with a beautifully executed screen pass to Khalil Herbert for 24 yards, the Bears were in field-goal range with a first down at the Giants 27. Getsy sent in a pick play in which tight end Cole Kmet helped to free Equanimeous St. Brown coming across the middle, right to left, for what Fields was certain would be a big gain. But center Sam Mustipher was beaten up the middle by defensive tackle Dexter Lawrence, and left tackle Braxton Jones was beaten worse by defensive end Azeez Olujari. Ojulari’s helmet hit Fields’ right triceps as he threw, and the ball popped up for an unorthodox fumble the Giants recovered.
  • On the next possession, Fields bit off a big chunk with a play-action completion to Mooney: 21 yards up the left sideline on an out route. The pocket wasn’t entirely clean on that play, but it was more than friendly enough and Fields didn’t get enough mustard on his pass. It was about a foot and a half short and short-hopped the turf as Mooney dived to grab it. The big gain was overturned on a Giants challenge. Instead of a first down at midfield, the Bears had third-and-6 at their 29 and Fields took a 9-yard sack on the next snap when Lawrence pushed Lucas Patrick backward.
  • The Bears forced a turnover on the subsequent punt. But a second-down slant pass to Dante Pettis was knocked down when defensive lineman Nick Williams detached from Mustipher’s block to get his left hand in the passing lane. Then came the missed home run pitch with Mooney all alone deep.
  • Finally, with an aggressive attempt to squeeze points out of their final first-half possession, the Bears ran three pass plays in the final 36 seconds before halftime. But that resulted in a pair of 2-yard Fields scrambles and a half-ending sack.

And that was just a one-quarter sampling of the constant malfunctioning.

Four games into the season, Bears fans find themselves in a familiar place. Their starting quarterback is struggling. His supporting cast isn’t doing much supporting. The offensive coordinator is under fire. And the defense and special teams are making enough mistakes to get them beat.

With 13 games remaining, the debate is intensifying as to who deserves how much blame for all that’s going wrong, particularly with the passing offense.

Fields’ surface-level diagnosis?

“We’ve just got to be more consistent,” he said. “Whether it’s me, whether it’s O-line, whether it’s the receivers. On some plays we’re all on the same page and we’re all executing great. And then (on) some plays we aren’t.”

Back to the grind.

On the bright side

Fields’ deep ball to Mooney on the first play of the Bears’ second possession was a thing of a beauty, a 56-yard connection that required a strong throw on a gusty New Jersey afternoon and a pretty catch by Fields’ favorite receiver.

In all, Mooney had a season-high 94 yards and was on the receiving end of Fields’ best three throws. In addition to that first-quarter deep ball, he added a pair of 18-yard receptions.

The first, on the Bears’ second offensive snap, came on play action with Fields’ footwork and timing crisp. In the third quarter, Mooney worked out of the left slot and settled into a window in the Giants zone. Fields calmly dropped a pretty touch pass into his hands for a big gain.

The only other shot the Bears hit down the field was a play-action rollout dart to tight end Trevon Wesco for a gain of 23.

Yet Eberflus seemed almost giddy that a passing attack that averaged 78.3 net yards in September showed even the smallest signs of life.

“We got the ball down the field in the passing game,” Eberflus emphasized Monday. “So that was a good thing to see. That’s a good start for us. (There’s) some good confidence to be built from that.”

It was the latest evidence that the Bears still are making — and celebrating — baby steps in the evolution of their passing game.

Odds and ends

  • Eberflus said Sunday he would have to look at the game video to see what went wrong with the Bears’ lackluster effort in trying to recover Fields’ second-quarter fumble. By Monday afternoon, he had a full report. St. Brown, Cody Whitehair, Teven Jenkins and Larry Borom were docked for “loafs” for their lack of urgency in getting after the football. Eberflus made it clear he wouldn’t condone that kind of focus lapse. He did, though, offer some sympathy because the loose ball came from behind those players and outside their vision when it popped free. “It’s like, ‘Hey, I’m in pass pro and then all of a sudden this thing drops from the sky over my head and then it’s (right) there,’” Eberflus said. “So I think Cody was caught off guard. As all the linemen were. You’ve got to be ready for it and jump on it and have some reaction there.”
  • The Bears’ ability to convert on third-and-20 and beat a blitz with a well-timed and sharply executed screen pass to Herbert was impressive. The Giants sent a five-man rush, but the Bears were synced up nicely and, with key blocking out in front from Mustipher, Whitehair and Jenkins, Herbert took Fields’ pass 2 yards behind the line of scrimmage and rumbled 4 yards beyond the line to gain. For those who sat through four seasons of clunky screen attempts in the Nagy era, that 24-yard pickup was refreshing.
  • The Bears went 0-for-3 inside the red zone and have converted only 50% of their red-zone trips into touchdowns this season. That’s tied for 24th in the league. With nine plays inside the red zone against the Giants, the Bears called four pass plays and five runs. Ultimately they settled for three Michael Badgley field goals. Getsy is taking heat from fans for not being more aggressive and calling a higher volume of passing plays inside the red zone, particularly on third-and-3 from the Giants 5 in the first quarter. But the running game has been the Bears’ offensive strength through four games. Leaning on a strength in a scoring opportunity seemed logical, especially given the consistent execution breakdowns on passing plays.
  • On the Bears’ second red-zone trip, Fields took a sack on first down from the Giants 12 when it appeared he had Kmet open in his line of vision for what would have been a short gain to the left. Fields instead scurried into a loss and was taken down by defensive end Jihad Ward. Fields indicated after the game he had anticipated Ward would follow Kmet. Given a chance for a redo, he insinuated he would have thrown to Kmet. Mooney expanded on that sequence Monday, noting he contributed to the play’s sloppiness with a misinterpretation of his responsibilities based on the formation he heard called for in the huddle. Mooney said he was supposed to run a corner route but mistakenly stayed in to chip in pass protection based on the huddle call. That eliminated one of Fields’ primary targets. “I thought I heard something else (called) and some guys heard something else as well,” Mooney said.
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GM adds former Lyft and Tesla executive Jon McNeill to board

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Gm Adds Former Lyft And Tesla Executive Jon Mcneill To Board
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A General Motors sign is seen during an event on January 25, 2022 in Lansing, Michigan. – General Motors will create 4,000 new jobs and retain 1,000, and significantly increase manufacturing capacity for battery cells and electric trucks.

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DETROIT — General Motors announced Tuesday that it is adding Jon McNeill, a former Lyft and Tesla executive, to its board of directors.

McNeill, 55, is currently CEO of DVx Ventures, a venture capital firm he co-founded in 2020 that focuses on investing and growing start-up companies. Prior to that, he was chief operating officer at Lyft and president of global sales, delivery and service at Tesla.

GM CEO and President Mary Barra in a statement cited McNeill’s experiences as “a tremendous asset to GM as we accelerate toward an all-electric future.”

McNeill’s appointment is notable, as the Detroit automaker has set a goal to outsell Tesla in electric vehicles by the middle of the decade and then offer electric vehicles exclusively by 2035.

Jon McNeill, poses for a photo as Tesla opens a service center at Kong Nam Industrial Building, 603 – 609 Castle Peak Road, Tsuen Wan.

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“GM is rapidly evolving to meet global needs for cleaner, safer transportation and is discovering new growth opportunities with every hardware and software innovation it introduces,” McNeill said.

GM’s board, which has been hailed for its gender neutrality in recent years, now has 13 directors, including six women. Twelve of the directors are independent.

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4 things to watch for as the Chicago Bulls open preseason play tonight, including who will start at point guard

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4 Things To Watch For As The Chicago Bulls Open Preseason Play Tonight, Including Who Will Start At Point Guard
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The Chicago Bulls return to the court to gear up for the 2022-23 season with Tuesday’s preseason opener against the New Orleans Pelicans at the United Center (8:30 p.m., TNT, NBCSCH+).

Four exhibition games will offer an early glimpse at this season’s team, which features 13 returning players from last season’s roster.

Here are four key questions for the Bulls heading into preseason action.

1. Who will start at point guard?

Coach Billy Donovan said Lonzo Ball continues to progress after Wednesday’s knee procedure, his second since a meniscus injury sidelined him in January. But Ball is months away from returning to the starting lineup.

In the meantime, the Bulls need to use the preseason to solidify their point guard rotation. They could play around with different rotations — for instance, starting veteran Goran Dragić and closing with Alex Caruso to balance experience and defensive acumen.

Preseason games might not provide a completely clear answer. Dragić still is practicing under restricted minutes after participating in the Eurobasket tournament last month, which could result in a lighter preseason workload than he will play in the regular season. But Dragić said the Bulls will begin to solidify their rotations during the preseason games, which could give hints at the starting point guard.

2. How does a healthy Zach LaVine factor into the offense?

After a season marred by a knee injury, LaVine voiced eagerness about returning at full health in 2022-23.

The Bulls need more availability from their All-Star shooting guard this season after LaVine signed a maximum contract extension in the offseason. The preseason offers the first look at LaVine’s style of play after arthroscopic knee surgery over the summer.

Donovan said he will speak with veterans such as LaVine, Dragić and DeMar DeRozan to determine how many preseason minutes they need to prepare for the regular season without risking fatigue or injury. Although key starters are unlikely to play full rotations, the Bulls would benefit from giving LaVine and DeRozan ample time on the court together.

3. Has Patrick Williams upped his aggression?

Bulls teammates and coaches have been frank about needing more from the power forward in his third season. Williams also was deterred by injury last season, spending most of it on the bench healing torn ligaments in his left wrist.

Williams was notably hesitant after returning late in the season, a trait that also stuck out during his rookie season.

The Bulls have urged Williams to increase his volume of shots as well as his downhill aggression when driving to the basket. If he doesn’t display more confidence during preseason competition, the Bulls might have cause for concern as Williams continues to find his place in the rotation.

4. Is rookie Dalen Terry ready for action?

The Bulls added to their backcourt depth by using the No. 18 pick in the NBA draft on Terry, a defensive-minded guard from Arizona who still is working on his jump shot as he enters his first season.

The Bulls voiced optimism about Terry’s performance in the NBA Summer League, in which he averaged 11.8 points. But is he ready for real NBA minutes?

Donovan said the Bulls plan to bring Terry along slowly, utilizing the G League’s Windy City Bulls as a platform to build up to first-team minutes. But the Bulls said the same of Ayo Dosunmu ahead of his rookie season, which ended with the first-year guard helming the offense in Ball’s absence.

The Bulls already are operating with a diminished depth chart at guard because of Ball’s injury. Terry’s performance the next two weeks will set a gauge for his readiness to begin seeing minutes in the secondary rotation.

Bulls preseason schedule

  • Tuesday, Oct. 4: vs. New Orleans Pelicans, 8:30 p.m., United Center, TNT, NBCSCH+
  • Friday, Oct. 7: vs. Denver Nuggets, 7 p.m., United Center, NBCSCH
  • Sunday, Oct. 9: at Toronto Raptors, 5 p.m., Scotiabank Arena, NBCSCH
  • Tuesday, Oct. 11: vs. Milwaukee Bucks, 7 p.m., United Center, NBCSCH

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