So, what is Vladimir Putin thankful for?

World leaders sit around the Thanksgiving table

Not everyone celebrates the US holiday of Thanksgiving, but we've all got something to be grateful for in this awful year, right? So as Americans gather around the table — or the Zoom — to give thanks on Thursday, here's what a few world leaders are grateful for at the moment.

Donald Trump, US President

Very strongly grateful that although my legal appeals are MELTING faster than my attorney's hair dye, tens of millions of people still believe my claims of election fraud. That will be very useful to me in my next reality TV project — stay tuned! BIG RATINGS!

Vladimir Putin, President of Russia

I'm grateful that although Trump lost, he has done more to delegitimize American democracy and institutions in the past four years — four weeks even! — than I could manage in a lifetime. Separately, I think Turkey is highly overrated.

Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany

Unfortunately there is not (yet) a German word for "the feeling when you are thankful that although you are retiring next year after 15 years of running Germany you are at least reasonably happy that the transatlantic relationship, troubled as it is, might be on an upswing now that Biden won."

The Coronavirus, Pandemic-in-Chief

Not psyched about all this vaccine news, but "it is what it is," as they say. At the very least I'm thankful that it could still take years to distribute globally. Now, let's sit down to dinner shall we? Come a little closer, can't quite hear what you are saying ...

Xi Jinping, President of China

Thankful to have shared 2020 with my dear friend Donald. If it weren't for him, our COVID coverup, Hong Kong crackdown, Xinjiang repression, and all those faulty PPE products we shipped to Europe would have made me the world's most hated person.

Kamala Harris, VP-elect of the US

Thankful for the chance to put on these Converse All-Stars and walk all over the haters for the next four years.

Abiy Ahmed, PM of Ethiopia

Thankful that the Nobel Committee gave me that peace prize two years before I threatened earlier this week to kill civilians in my deepening conflict with Tigray rebels.

Boris Johnson, PM of the UK

Well it's been a bloody awful year. Brexit, then Covid. Then more COVID — and now COVID and Brexit at the same time. And 2021 doesn't look much better with that sleepy Irish bloke in the White House. At the very least I'm grateful that Americans are obsessed with The Crown.

Jair Bolsonaro, President of Brazil

I'm grateful that no matter how outrageously I behave, 30 percent of Brazilians will always have my back. Is that enough to win again in 2022? We'll see.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, President of Turkey

Ha ha, very funny. President of "Turkey" has to comment, eh? No! By the way, Vladimir, I saw that comment above — you better have been talking about the bird, which is legitimately bland and overrated, like Russia.

Narendra Modi, PM of India

Thankful that we will probably start getting those H1B visas back again. But if Biden goes wobbly on China we will NOT be happy. By the way, agree with Recep on the turkey — why don't you, like, put some decent spices on that?

Benjamin Netanyahu, PM of Israel

Just a word of gratitude for the carte blanche that Trump gave me these past four years — on settlements, on Palestine, on the Golan Heights, on Jerusalem — because let me tell you, without him in the White House, things are about to get a lot harder for me.

Ayatollah Khamenei, Supreme Leader of Iran

Great Satan is Great Satan, no matter how you slice that turkey, but we are pretty thankful that Joe Biden won. At least there is a chance to revive the Iran deal and get rid of some of these sanctions. Still, Death to America! Death!

Alexander Lukashenko, President of Belarus

Thankful to Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro for showing me the way: despite months of protests, sanctions, and general global hate over my blatant theft of the election in August, my security services are sticking with me and I'm not going anywhere.

An abstract image of a brain with high tech neural connections. Get the latest from Microsoft on the most pressing policy issues.

Visit Microsoft on The Issues for a front-row seat to see how Microsoft is thinking about the future of sustainability, accessibility, cybersecurity and more. Check back regularly to watch videos, and read blogs and feature stories to see how Microsoft is approaching the issues that matter most. For the latest, visit Microsoft on the Issues.

The supply chain mess is hitting all of us. Inflation is now the highest it's been in over 30 years.

The costs of food, gas and housing are going through the roof. What's more, almost everything made outside of America is now in short supply — like semiconductors for our cars.

Why is this happening? A lot of it has to do with the pandemic. Asian factories had to shut down or thought there would be less demand for their stuff. So did shipping companies. But then online shopping surged, and now there's a lot of pent-up demand to spend all the cash we saved during COVID.

More Show less

The economic consequences of high inflation are already bad enough.

But for Larry Summers, sometimes the psychological trauma that comes with it can do even more damage to a society.

"A society where inflation is accelerating is a society that feels out of control."

More Show less
Should you believe the hype(rsonic)?

Over the past few months, US officials have become increasingly alarmed about a new type of killing machines called "hypersonic weapons."

The top US General, Mark Milley, said that China's successful test of an advanced hypersonic weapon earlier this year was "very close" to a "Sputnik moment" – referring to the Soviet Union's surprise launch of the world's first artificial satellite in 1957, which raised fears that the US was lagging behind a formidable technological rival.

More Show less

Marietje Schaake, International Policy Director at Stanford's Cyber Policy Center, Eurasia Group senior advisor and former MEP, discusses trends in big tech, privacy protection and cyberspace:

What is Facebook planning with the metaverse?

Well, my sense is that Facebook mostly prefers a virtual reality over the actual situation the company is in, with overwhelming criticism about the many harms to people it is causing all over the world. The metaverse at launch would be added to a number of services and experiences online in a more virtual and augmented reality setting. Think about what the gaming sector has done, but now, also, other big tech firms are jumping on the bandwagon. The thing to remember is that the user experience would be more immersive.

More Show less

Jon Lieber, head of Eurasia Group's coverage of political and policy developments in Washington, shares insights on US politics:

Why did President Biden renominate Jay Powell to be the chairman of the Fed, and who's his No.2, Lael Brainard?

Well, Powell by all accounts has done a pretty good job of managing the Fed through the coronavirus pandemic. He dusted off the playbook, first pioneered by Chairman Bernanke during the financial crisis, and he's largely continued the relatively easy monetary policy of his predecessor at the Fed, now Treasury Secretary, Janet Yellen. With inflation growing the way it has over the last several months, Biden now owns the policies of the Fed and is essentially endorsing what Powell has been doing and giving Powell the political cover to continue to keep rates low for longer, or as many people expect, raise them slightly over the next 12 months in order to fight inflation.

More Show less

When Kyle Rittenhouse was acquitted on all counts, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones, who created the "1619 Project" tweeted: "In this country, you can even kill white people and get away with it if those white people are fighting for Black lives. This is the legacy of 1619." In an upcoming interview with Ian Bremmer, she explains why she saw the verdict as a consequence of this country's long history of double standards when it comes to racial justice. "The fact that we own more guns in this country than any other country is certainly a legacy of 1619" Hannah-Jones says. "This idea that white Americans can patrol, that they have the right to open carry, this is not something that Black Americans can engage in, in the same way." Watch her full conversation with Ian Bremmer in an upcoming episode of GZERO World.

Ian Bremmer shares his insights on global politics this week with a look at Peng Shuai's public appearance, El Salvador's "Bitcoin City," and Americans' Thanksgiving celebrations.

Why has China silenced its famous tennis player, Peng Shuai?

Well, they haven't completely silenced her in the sense that the head of the IOC, the International Olympic Committee with Beijing Olympics coming up, basically told the Chinese government, "hey, what is the absolute minimum that you can do so that we can get Beijing Olympics back on track?" And they did the absolute minimum, which was a half an hour phone call with her that felt like kind of a hostage phone call. But nonetheless, she says that she is fine and is private and doesn't want to talk about the fact that she had accused the former Vice Premier of sexually assaulting her. That is a fairly heady charge. It was clear, going to get a lot of headlines in the run-up to the Olympics. And she wasn't heard from after that. So big problem for the Chinese in the run-up to the Olympics.

More Show less

Subscribe to GZERO Media's newsletter, Signal


Subscribe to GZERO Media's newsletter: Signal

How did we get to today's supply chain mess?

GZERO World Clips


Subscribe to GZERO Media's newsletter: Signal