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1:45 PM ET, July 25, 2006


 Top Items: 
New York Times:
Nations Reluctant to Commit Troops to Lebanon  —  PARIS, July 24 — Support is building quickly for an international military force to be placed in southern Lebanon, but there remains a small problem: where will the troops come from?  —  The United States has ruled out its soldiers participating …
Edward Wong / New York Times:
Top Iraqi's White House Visit Shows Gaps With U.S.  —  Iraqis buried their dead Monday from another suicide bombing.  Prime Minister Maliki has tried without success to end such violence.  —  BAGHDAD, Iraq, July 24 — When Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki visits the White House on Tuesday …
Avi Issacharoff / Haaretz:
Gaza groups ready to deal on cease-fire, release of Shalit  —  All groups in Gaza, including Hamas, would now accept a cease-fire deal with Israel which would include releasing Gilad Shalit, according to the Palestinian Agriculture Minister, who also heads the coordinating committee of Palestinian organizations there.
Associated Press:
UN official accuses Hezbollah of 'cowardly blending' among civilians  —  LARNACA, Cyprus - The UN humanitarian chief accused Hezbollah late Monday of "cowardly blending" among Lebanese civilians and causing the deaths of hundreds during two weeks of cross-border violence with Israel.
Discussion: AbbaGav and The Big Pharaoh
Yaakov Katz / Jerusalem Post:
Troops hurt in Maroun al-Ras clashes
New York Post:
Discussion: Argghhh!
PM Olmert: Israel determined to continue fight against Hezbollah
Discussion: The Moderate Voice
Dan Balz / Washington Post:
Democrats' Plan Focuses on Middle Class  —  Sen. Clinton Presents Domestic Agenda Featuring Tax Breaks and Tuition Help  —  DENVER, July 24 — Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) accused Republicans under President Bush of economic mismanagement and favoring the rich here on Monday …
Anne E. Kornblut / New York Times:
Clinton Releases Proposals to Help the Middle Class  —  DENVER, July 24 — With divisions in the Democratic Party on full display nationwide, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton sought to stake out the center here on Monday, issuing a broad policy platform geared toward helping middle-class voters …
Chris Bowers / MyDD:
Why People Don't Think Democrats Believe What They Say
Discussion: Dean's World and Riehl World View
Joseph Carroll / Gallup:   Bill Clinton's Image Now More Positive Than Hillary Clinton's
Mark Murray / MSNBC:   Optimistic Democrats hone a centrist message
Liz Sidoti / Associated Press:
Democrats offer new economic policy plan
Discussion: Say Anything and Hartford Courant
Eugene Robinson / Washington Post:
It's Disproportionate. . .  Just my luck.  I go away on vacation and it happens to be the week when George W. Bush's strategic view of the current world situation is revealed: Russia big.  China big, too.  World leaders boring.  Lady world leaders need neck rub.  Terrorism bad.
Richard Cohen / Real Clear Politics:
A Proportionate Response is Madness  —  If by chance you have the search engine LexisNexis and you punch in the words "Israel'' and "disproportionate,'' you run the risk of blowing up your computer or darkening your entire neighborhood.  Just limiting the search to newspapers and magazines …
Dana Milbank / Washington Post:
For One Senate Candidate, the 'R' Is a 'Scarlet Letter'  —  The candidate, immersed in one of the most competitive Senate races in the country, sat down to lunch yesterday with reporters at a Capitol Hill steakhouse and shared his views about this year's political currents.
Laurie Kellman / Associated Press:
Specter Prepping Bill to Sue Bush  —  WASHINGTON (AP) - A powerful Republican committee chairman who has led the fight against President Bush's signing statements said Monday he would have a bill ready by the end of the week allowing Congress to sue him in federal court.
Jeff Douglas / Associated Press:
Massive blackout continues in St. Louis  —  AP — _ ST. LOUIS (AP) _ Nearly a quarter-million homes and businesses still had no electricity Monday as the city struggled to recover from last week's devastating thunderstorms.  —  The blackout has kept air conditioners from cooling homes since Wednesday …
Nicholas Wade / New York Times:
Nice Rats, Nasty Rats: Maybe It's All in the Genes  —  On an animal-breeding farm in Siberia are cages housing two colonies of rats.  In one colony, the rats have been bred for tameness in the hope of mimicking the mysterious process by which Neolithic farmers first domesticated an animal still kept today.
Joseph Carroll / Gallup:
Bush Job Approval at 37%  —  Similar to 37% average rating for all of June  —  PRINCETON, NJ — A new USA Today/Gallup poll finds 37% of Americans approving of the way Bush is handling his job as president and 59% disapproving.  Despite many extraordinary events dominating the news over the past weeks …
Discussion: PSoTD and Think Progress
Joby Warrick / Washington Post:
U.S. Says It Knew of Pakistani Reactor Plan  —  Congress Learned of Nation's Nuclear Expansion From Independent Analysts  —  The Bush administration acknowledged yesterday that it had long known about Pakistan's plans to build a large plutonium-production reactor, but it said the White House …
Judd / Think Progress:
Cliff May: National Review Bloggers Are 'Fighting a War' That Is 'Equally Consequential' To U.S. Troops in Combat  —  On Friday, the National Review's Katherine Jean Lopez wrote a rather innocuous review of the new Oliver Stone movie, World Trade Center.  Lopez wrote the movie was "about why we fight."
Discussion: Once Upon a Time and Unfogged
Jennifer Harper / Washington Times:
50 percent of U.S. says Iraq had WMDs  —  Half of Americans now say Iraq had weapons of mass destruction when the United States invaded the country in 2003 — up from 36 percent last year, a Harris poll finds.  Pollsters deemed the increase both "substantial" and "surprising" …
Discussion: Blogs for Bush and Right Wing News
Michiko Kakutani / New York Times:
From Planning to Warfare to Occupation, How Iraq Went Wrong  —  The title of this devastating new book about the American war in Iraq says it all: "Fiasco."  That is the judgment that Thomas E. Ricks, senior Pentagon correspondent for The Washington Post, passes on the Bush administration's decision …
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 More Items: 
Wall Street Journal:
Iraqi Leader, Bush to Discuss Security
Jake Tapper / ABCNEWS:
Inside the Mind of the World's Most Powerful Liberal Blogger
Beth Harris / Associated Press:
Fox News Calls Olbermann 'Over the Line'
Discussion: Ed
The Hill:
50 Most Beautiful People on Capitol Hill
Stand up to US, voters tell Blair
Shankar Vedantam / Washington Post:
Two Views of the Same News Find Opposite Biases
 Earlier Items: 
Iran threatens response if Syria attacked
Alexander Bolton / The Hill:
Rep. Hefley defends Mollohan
James Wensits / South Bend Tribune:
Poll: Donnelly, Chocola in tight race
Andrew Norfolk / Times of London:
Despair as forced marriages stay legal