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Photo: Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images

During his annual national address Wednesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that his country will be forced to target the U.S. with new weaponry should a deployment of land-based missiles among NATO allies in Europe take place, per the Washington Post.

The backdrop: Russia and the U.S. both said they planned to withdraw from the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty earlier this month, prompting Russia's announcement that it would begin designing new intermediate-range weapons. There is currently a 6-month negotiating period before the withdrawal is finalized, but increasingly hawkish rhetoric from both sides could make such a deal difficult.

Go deeper: U.S. exit from INF Treaty frees Russia from key nuclear constraints

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Coronavirus cases rose 10% in the week before Thanksgiving.
  2. Politics: Supreme Court backs religious groups on New York coronavirus restrictions.
  3. World: Expert says COVID vaccine likely won't be available in Africa until Q2 of 2021 — Europeans extend lockdowns.
  4. Economy: The winners and losers of the COVID holiday season.
  5. Education: National standardized tests delayed until 2022.
3 hours ago - Health

Standardized testing becomes another pandemic victim

Photo: Edmund D. Fountain for The Washington Post via Getty

National standardized reading and math tests have been pushed from next year to 2022, the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) announced Wednesday.

Why it matters: There’s mounting national evidence that students are suffering major setbacks this year, with a surge in the number of failing grades.

4 hours ago - World

European countries extend lockdowns

A medical worker takes a COVID-19 throat swab sample at the Berlin-Brandenburg Airport. Photo by Maja Hitij via Getty

Recent spikes in COVID-19 infections across Europe have led authorities to extend restrictions ahead of the holiday season.

Why it matters: "Relaxing too fast and too much is a risk for a third wave after Christmas," said European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.

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