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A patriot missile Raytheon MIN-104 is seen during the Battle Griffin 2005 excersise in Bodo, Norway. Photo: Andreas Freude/Bundeswehr via Getty Images

In a major show of force to Russia, Poland has signed the biggest weapons deal in its history with the U.S., reports Reuters. The deal, signed Wednesday, ratifies the purchase of a Raytheon air and missile defense system for $4.75 billion.

Why it matters: The purchase comes on the heels of the U.S. and two dozen other countries, including Poland, taking coordinated action on Monday by expelling Russian diplomats over Russia's alleged nerve agent attack on a former Russian spy in the U.K..

The details: The Patriot system will reportedly be out for delivery to Poland by 2022. It will give Poland the ability to locate, identify and track incoming targets. Poland is now the 15th nation with the Patriot system.

  • The Polish Minister of Defense announced, and Raytheon confirmed to Axios, that the U.S.-based company will deliver two Polish-configured batteries of the medium air and missile defense system in an IBCS-enabled Patriot Configuration 3+. This consists of four AN/MPQ-65 radar sets, 16 M903 launching stations and PAC-3 MSE missiles.

What they're saying: Wes Kremer, President of Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems said, "[t]his is the most capable integrated air and missile defense system in the world, will give them an integrated operating capability with other NATO countries and provide enhanced security for not only Poland but for the NATO alliance."

  • General Leszek Surawski, the Polish military’s chief of staff, told reporters after the signing per Reuters, “[w]e are getting to the front row of countries which will be able not only to cooperate and jointly carry out tasks with the United States and NATO, but will be also perceived on (NATO’s) eastern flank as...stronger than others.”

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Naomi Osaka lights the Olympic cauldron. Photo: Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

After a year-long delay, the Tokyo Olympics are finally underway. But this year's largely spectator-less opening ceremony is a "sobering" event focused primarily on the athletes.

The latest: The cauldron in Tokyo has been lit, formally kicking off the Olympic Games. Tennis star Naomi Osaka had the honor of carrying the Olympic torch to light the cauldron.

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Cleveland Indians change name to "Guardians"

The Cleveland Indians baseball team announced Friday that it will change its nickname to the "Guardians," following years of activism and protests against a moniker considered offensive by many Native Americans.

Why it matters: It's the first time the team will change its name since 1915, a move that comes in the wake of the nationwide racial reckoning that began with the murder of George Floyd.

Alabama governor: "It’s time to start blaming the unvaccinated folks"

Photo: Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

A frustrated Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey (R) told reporters Thursday that "it's time to start blaming the unvaccinated folks, not the regular folks" for the state's continued surge in new COVID-19 cases.

Why it matters: Alabama has reported nearly 8,000 new cases of COVID-19 over the past week. It's one of the few states in the country with fewer than 40% of residents fully vaccinated against COVID-19.