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2:45 PM ET, February 14, 2007


 Top Items: 
Bush: U.S. aims to protect troops, not wage war with Iran … WASHINGTON (CNN) — President Bush said Wednesday he did not know if Iranian leaders sent weapons used to kill U.S. troops in Iraq but Iranian-made bombs were having a deadly effect and the United States had to respond.
Discussion: protein wisdom and Decision '08
Boston Globe:
Doubts raised on linking of Iran to US deaths in Iraq  —  WASHINGTON — Security analysts and critics of the Bush administration are questioning the quality of intelligence presented by three unidentified US officials in Baghdad on Sunday to demonstrate the Iranian government's ties …
Bill Gertz / Washington Times:
Bolton hits agreement as 'bad signal' to Iran
Discussion: New York Times
White House:
Press Briefing by Tony Snow
Discussion: First Draft and Washington Post
Qassim Abdul-Zahra / Associated Press:
Officials linked to al-Sadr deny he fled  —  BAGHDAD, Iraq - Supporters of Muqtada al-Sadr said Wednesday that the radical Shiite cleric was still in Iraq, denying a report that he fled to Iran ahead of a security crackdown targeting his militia.  —  An Iraqi government official said al-Sadr …
Juan / Informed Comment:
On the Mystery of Muqtada al-Sadr's Disappearance
Discussion: Political Animal
Mark Mazzetti / New York Times:
U.S. Says Powerful Iraqi Cleric Is Living in Iran
John Bresnahan / The Politico:
House Democrats' New Strategy: Force Slow End to War  —  Led by Rep. John P. Murtha, D-Pa., and supported by several well-funded anti-war groups, the coalition's goal is to limit or sharply reduce the number of U.S. troops available for the Iraq conflict, rather than to openly cut off funding for the war itself.
Matt Stoller / MyDD:
Grace Time is Over  —  It's pretty obvious at this point …
Discussion: Redstate and Outside The Beltway
Bryan / Hot Air:
Murtha and the Democrats: A new low
Gateway Pundit:
Explosion in Iran Kills Busload of Al Quds Members!!  —  An explosion today killed a reported 18 Al Quds members traveling in a bus in southeastern Iran.  —  Fars News is carrying this picture of one of those arrested after the blast earlier today  —  A car bomb exploded killing 18 Al Quds members today in Zahedan, Iran:
Betsy Rothstein / The Hill:
Rep. Ellison calls the cops to snuff Tancredo's cigar  —  Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) believes it is his right as a Muslim to be sworn into Congress with the Quran.  But apparently, the freshman lawmaker doesn't believe it's Rep. Tom Tancredo's (R-Colo.) right to smoke a cigar in his congressional office.
Glenn Greenwald / Salon:
Neoconservatives hate liberty as much as they love war  —  Frank Gaffney, one of the country's most influential and well-connected neoconservatives, has a column in today's Washington Times in which he argues that the debate taking place in Congress over the war in Iraq constitutes treason.
Baltimore Sun:
America's view of Republicans crumbles in Iraq  —  According to the latest Gallup survey, Republican self-identification has declined nationally and in almost every American state.  Why?  The short answer is that President Bush's war of choice in Iraq has destroyed the partisan brand Republicans spent the past four decades building.
Discussion: Firedoglake and Eschaton
Dana Milbank / Washington Post:
For the GOP, Taking the War Out of the War Debate  —  Rep. Adam Putnam of Florida, the man in charge of Republican strategy in this week's great debate on Iraq, was a study in nervous energy as he waited to speak on the House floor yesterday.  —  He paced behind the back row.
New York Times:
Libby and Cheney Won't Testify, Says the Defense  —  Lawyers defending I. Lewis Libby Jr. against perjury charges surprised the courtroom on Tuesday by saying that they would rest their case this week and do so without putting on the stand either Mr. Libby or Vice President Dick Cheney.
Anne Applebaum / Telegraph:
War with Iran is in no one's interests  —  'War in Iraq, war in Iran?  " That's a headline I saw in Britain earlier this week.  In Washington, the headlines read more like "Tentative nuclear deal reached with North Korea" and "Obama must show more than potential", but never mind …
Howard Kurtz / Washington Post:
In 1993 Memo, Giuliani Staff Gave Harsh Assessment of Flaws  —  Sometimes in politics, the most damaging accusations come from your own staff.  —  Rudolph W. Giuliani learned that lesson again yesterday when a "vulnerability study," including warnings about his "weirdness factor" …
Discussion: Captain's Quarters
Deseret News:
6 minutes of horror … In just six minutes, 18-year-old Sulejman Talovic left a tragic path of destruction that forever changed the lives of dozens of people.  —  "His intent was to shoot as many people as he possibly could," said Salt Lake City Police Chief Chris Burbank.
Terence Hunt / ABCNEWS:
Bush: Iran Supplying Weapons in Iraq  —  Bush Insists Iran Is Supplying Deadly Weapons to Fighters in Iraq  —  President Bush said Wednesday he's certain the Iranian government is supplying deadly weapons used by fighters in Iraq against U.S. troops, even if he can't prove that the orders came from top Iranian leaders.
USA Today:
Poll shows Clinton, Giuliani pull ahead ias campaigns kick off  —  WASHINGTON — New York Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani have widened leads over their rivals in recent weeks as they began to openly campaign for the Democratic and Republican presidential nominations …
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 More Items: 
Chris Cillizza / The Fix:
Parsing the Polls: Answering the Mormon Question
Amy Schatz / Wall Street Journal:
Candidates Find A New Stump In the Blogosphere
Discussion: DonkeyRising
Liberalamerican / My Left Wing:
Rick, Amanda and Melissa: Defending Free Speech
Payson / Think Progress:
Rep. Westmoreland Warns That Iraqis Won't Just 'Go Back to Tending …
Effective interrogation without torture 101 from retired Army …
Associated Press:
Discussion: Dean's World and QandO
Nico / Think Progress:
CNN Propagates False Iran Claim That Even White House Rejects
Discussion: Nitpicker
Robert VerBruggen / Washington Times:
 Earlier Items: 
Dr. Steven Taylor / PoliBlog (TM):
Colliding Wars: Drugs and Terror (and the Utter Folly of US Policy)
Associated Press:
Newspaper: Questions in death of ground zero worker
Harold Meyerson / Washington Post:
A New Hampshire Ghost  —  A specter was haunting Hillary Clinton …
UK is accused of failing children
Walter Olson / Reason:
Dangerous When in Power  —  Does government protect us …
Douglas J. Feith / Washington Post:
Tough Questions We Were Right to Ask