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A local resident gestures as he holds an empty water hose during an attempt to extinguish forest fires approaching the village of Pefki on Evia (Euboea) island on Aug. 8. Photo: Angelos Tzortzinis/AFP via Getty Images

Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) penned a letter to Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin urging the Pentagon to provide additional support to Greece as the country battles devastating wildfires.

State of play: Dozens of wildfires broke out in Greece last week after the country suffered its worst heatwave in decades. They have continued to rage unabated and forced hundreds to evacuate.

  • Greece has deployed its army to fight the fires and has received international assistance from Cyprus, France and Israel. Germany also said it would send firefighters and vehicles.
  • Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis called the situation a "nightmarish summer," adding the government's priority "has been, first and foremost, to protect human lives."
  • Extreme heat waves are also among the clearest manifestations of human-caused global warming, studies show.

The big picture: Menendez said he applauded a decision by the Department of Defense to deploy a P8 aircraft to Greece to help monitor for "threats to infrastructure and residential areas."

  • "These efforts have saved lives and I urge the Department to fulfill additional requests for assistance, including the deployment of CH-47 helicopters," Menendez wrote.
  • "Greece is a close and valued NATO ally. I urge the Administration to take all measures necessary to support the people of Greece in their time of need," he added.

Go deeper

Aug 20, 2021 - Health

Study: Extreme heat is becoming an unignorable global health issue

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

More than 356,000 people died from extreme heat-related causes in just nine countries in 2019, a death toll not only preventable but expected to grow as temperatures increase worldwide, a pair of studies published Thursday in The Lancet shows.

Why it matters: Though it's known heat stress can lead to stroke, organ and brain damage, the studies out of the University of Washington found it also causes a slew of specific morbidities including several types of heart disease, diabetes, chronic kidney and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Trump says he plans to launch new social media network in 2022

Photo: Chris Delmas/AFP via Getty Images

Former President Trump on Wednesday announced plans to launch a social media network called "Truth Social," and that it would go public via a SPAC.

Why it matters: Most ex-presidents are focused on their legacies, by creating presidential libraries or engaging in philanthropic endeavors. Trump, however, remains consumed by social media.

Beauty giant Coty Cosmetics looking to sell its own branded products

Coty Cosmetics CEO Sue Nabi. Photo: Axios on HBO

Coty Cosmetics CEO Sue Nabi tells Axios the beauty giant will “probably” introduce Coty-branded products one day.

Why it matters: Coty produces some of the world’s most popular fragrances, skin care products and color cosmetics on behalf of other well-known brands, but has shied away from producing its own branded products.