When news emerged last week that Yevgeny Prigozhin was among the passengers on an aircraft that had ‘mysteriously’ crashed in Russia, later confirmed as having succumbed to an explosion, this occurring two months after he had aborted a prospective mutiny against the Russian leader, Vladimir Putin, I think it is safe to say that many people had a similar view as to what might have happened. As the US president, Joe Biden, put it: “There’s not much that happens in Russia that Putin’s not behind.”

Across the Atlantic, you will likely have noticed that Donald Trump has got himself embroiled in a whole load of lawsuits – to do with the alleged payment of hush-money to the porn actress, Stormy Daniels; for illegally retaining official government and classified documents at his Florida resort; for inciting the violence that occurred at the Capitol on January 6, 2021; and for using threats to try to overturn the outcome of the last presidential election in the state of Georgia. (The mug shot of which he seems so proud and which he has already extravagantly monetised is shown on the home page.) All the while, he relentlessly persists in perpetuating the lie that the result of the 2020 election was stolen from him.

In friendlier times…also at a time when Yevgeny Prigozhin was alive and therefore able to serve wine to Vladimir Putin

Trump is the clear Republican front-runner ahead of the November 2024 election and, abundant lawsuits notwithstanding, it seems certain he will again be Biden’s political opponent in the re-match no one else seems to want. Among the interested (and very much concerned)) observers of all this are the people of Ukraine. The most recent issue of Private Eye carried a ‘Postcard from Kyiv’. It concluded: “What perhaps cannot be worked out is the consequences should Donald Trump win the US presidential election next year. Short of a nuclear strike, that’s our nightmare scenario.” Given Trump’s bromance of sorts with Putin, as previously characterised more than once in this particular blog, one can see why that might be the case.

On a (very much) lighter note, there was a tweet posted on Elon Musk’s X earlier this week which brought a smile. Rick Reilly, a renowned American sportswriter who published a book called Commander in Cheat about Trump’s propensity to play outside the rules while enjoying his favourite sport, golf, wrote: “The ’67’ Trump says he shot to ‘win’ the Bedminster [a golf club he owns] club championship was more like an 86, a person inside the club tells me. ‘The caddies threw his ball 80 yards down fairways + took it out of bunkers. Partners swatted all his putts away once on the green. Members are pissed.’

I guess that’s just Trump’s version of fantasy golf. If he becomes president again in 2025, however, the world may have something more to worry about than him improving his lies on the golf course. (I think it would be impossible for him to improve on his lies away from the golf course.)