PICKS are stories from many sources, selected by our editors or recommended by our readers because they are important, surprising, troubling, enlightening, inspiring, or amusing. They appear on our site and in our daily newsletter. Please send suggested articles, videos, podcasts, etc. to picks@whowhatwhy.org.

Climate-Resilient Coral Species Offer Hope for the World’s Reefs (Maria)

The author writes, “Two of the world’s most ubiquitous species of reef-building corals seem surprisingly able to survive and even cope well with climate change, according to a new study — at least so long as global warming is kept below 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit), the target set by the Paris Agreement. ‘We found hope,’ says Rowan McLachlan, a coral expert at Oregon State University and lead author of the study published today in Nature Scientific Reports.”

What Keeps China From Stopping Russia’s War (Russ)

The author writes, “The war in Ukraine has prompted renewed appeals for China to get involved in an international crisis, with commentators discussing how the country is well-placed to negotiate an end to the fighting. Politicians have taken up the call too: the Ukrainian foreign minister reportedly asked China to get involved, while on Tuesday European leaders video-called Chinese leader Xi Jinping in an effort to keep him in the loop. These ideas all make good sense — but are likely to fail. That’s because China, far from being able to act decisively on the world stage, suffers from a chronic leadership void that leaves it paralyzed to act in the face of global crises.”

Finland Reports GPS Disturbances in Aircrafts Flying Over Russia’s Kaliningrad (Mili)

The author writes, “Aircraft flying near the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad and near Finland’s eastern border with Russia have noticed interference with their GPS signals, according to Finnish authorities. The interference began soon after Finland’s President Sauli Niinistö met Joe Biden in Washington on Saturday to discuss deepening defense ties between Finland and Nato due to Russia’s attack on Ukraine.”

It Is Time to Officially Recognize Ukraine as a Candidate State to the European Union (Aline)

From Le Monde: “Eight years ago, the then Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych was deposed by his parliament and fled to Russia. His departure came after more than a hundred demonstrators were killed when he gave the order to evacuate by force the Independence Square in Kyiv. These demonstrators had been gathering for 3 months following the Ukrainian government’s decision not to sign an association agreement with the European Union and to favor a rapprochement with Russia. These young people died, some with the European flag in their hands, because they wanted to be free to choose the future of their country. They felt European and sovereign. This was their only crime. Today, as Russia is attacking the entire territory of Ukraine, it is, once again, for this crime that Ukrainians are and will be killed.”

Ex-Trump National Security Advisor John Bolton Says ‘Putin Saw Trump Doing a Lot of His Work for Him’ (Reader Jim)

The author writes, “John Bolton, who served as President Donald Trump’s national security advisor, on Wednesday said that Russian President Vladimir Putin didn’t invade Ukraine while Trump was in office because ‘Putin saw Trump doing a lot of his work for him.’ Bolton pointed to Trump’s outspoken criticism of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the military and diplomatic alliance established in the wake of World War II.” 

Rep. Madison Cawthorn Just Got Caught Breaking the Law Again (Sean)

The author writes, “Republicans still trying to win votes by portraying themselves as staunch supporters of ‘law and order’ are finding it hard to maintain their credibility given the number of GOP lawmakers who find themselves in trouble with the law. Congressman Madison Cawthorn (R-NC) is just the latest right-wing Republican to be charged with committing a crime that he should have well known was against the law and a danger to public safety. The Asheville Citizen-Times is reporting today Rep. Cawthorne was pulled over in Shelby, North Carolina, about an hour and a half south of Asheville, and charged with driving with a revoked license.”

A Pod of Beluga Whales Adopted a Stray Narwhal. Could Mating Produce a Baby ‘Narluga’? (Dana)

The author writes, “The St. Lawrence River has welcomed an unusual group of visitors in recent years: a pod of beluga whales that appears to have adopted a lost young narwhal. Now, with the male narwhal reaching sexual maturity, researchers are watching to see whether he might mate with a beluga to produce an even more unusual sight: a baby ‘narluga.’ ‘We know that hybridization is possible … it did happen a few times,’ said researcher Robert Michaud, pointing to a 2019 Danish analysis that confirmed a successful cross breeding.”