Welcome to my day: 13 December 2021 – hey, I just met you and this is crazy…

Gosh, is it Monday already? Apparently so, although the weekend seems to have passed me by. Here in Creeting St Peter, the Christmas social calendar has fallen foul of people’s not entirely unreasonable preference that Christmas isn’t put at risk, with Saturday’s coffee morning cancelled and Friday’s pub night likewise.

Once again, you get a definite sense that the Government is several steps behind public opinion but then, given that they’re currently struggling with the definition of a party, or truth for that matter, and with Liz Truss evidently on manoeuvres for a potential leadership contest, it would be impressive if they could metaphorically walk and chew gum at the same time.

On this day in 1577, Sir Francis Drake set out to circumnavigate the globe, making himself wealthy in the process and rather upsetting the Spanish. This day in 1864 saw Paraguay declare war on Brazil, setting off the War of the Triple Alliance. With Paraguay eventually facing off against Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay, it didn’t end well, with estimates suggesting that Paraguay lost up to 70% of its population through battle casualties, disease and starvation. And, on a more optimistic note, 13 December 1920 saw the establishment of the International Court of Justice in The Hague.

Christian de Vartavan offers us his thoughts on Vladimir Putin’s ambitions to expand Russia’s borders – it’s not just Ukraine at risk. There will probably be more news from North Shropshire as we go through the day, and I’ll be reporting back from the ALDE Party Council meeting in Rome, which took place on Friday and Saturday.

By the way, if you’ve been trying to contact the Editorial Team seemingly without success, we’re been experiencing a few difficulties with incoming messages going directly to spam folders, so do bear with us whilst we try to get to the bottom of the problem.

And so, without further ado, let’s get on with things…

* Mark Valladares is the Monday Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice.

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