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Ukrainian tanks and APCs move towards the de-facto border with Crimea. Aleksandr Shulman / AP

The Pentagon and State Department have developed plans to arm Ukraine in its fight against Russia-backed separatists, the Wall St Journal reports.

  • U.S. officials told the Journal the weapons are defensive and "meant to deter aggressive actions by Moscow." The U.S. has long accused Russia of arming and supporting the separatist fighters.
  • President Trump has not been briefed on the plans, which are in preliminary stages, "and his position isn't known," the Journal reports. U.S. allies are split on how to handle the situation, with France and Germany concerned providing arms will make an already dangerous situation worse. It could be months before a decision is made.
  • The move would enrage Vladimir Putin and likely further inflame tensions with Russia. On Friday, in response to sanctions passed by Congress, Putin ordered the U.S. to cut its embassy staff by 755, one of the largest such expulsions in modern history. Trump has not commented on that move.

Go deeper

Federal Reserve expands lending program for small businesses

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell at a news conference in 2019. Photo: Eric Baradat/AFP via Getty Images

The Federal Reserve said on Friday it would again lower the minimum loan size for its pandemic-era small business program.

Details: Businesses and nonprofits will be able to borrow a minimum of $100,000 from the facility, down from $250,000 — a move that might attract smaller businesses that don't need as hefty of a loan. Since the program launched earlier this year, the minimum loan size has been reduced twice.

2 hours ago - Economy & Business

How Trump and Biden would steer the future of transportation

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden would likely steer automotive policy in different directions over the next four years, potentially changing the industry's road map to the future.

Why it matters: The auto industry is on the cusp of historic technological changes and the next president — as well as the next Congress — could have an extraordinary influence on how the future of transportation plays out.