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10:25 AM ET, February 19, 2008


 Top Items: 
James C. McKinley Jr / New York Times:
Fidel Castro Resigns as Cuba's President  —  MEXICO CITY — Fidel Castro stepped down Tuesday morning as the president of Cuba after a long illness, ending one of the longest tenures as one of the most all-powerful communist heads of state in the world, according to Granma, the official publication of the Cuban Communist Party.
Michelle Malkin:
Breaking: Castro to resign; “This is not my farewell to you”  —  Don't ask me why I'm up, but I am.  And the AP has just put out a news alert that many have been awaiting for years: Fidel Castro has announced he will be resigning.  —  Just a single line so far: “HAVANA (AP) …
Manuel Roig-Franzia / Washington Post:
Fidel Castro Stepping Down as Cuba's President  —  Fidel Castro announced early Tuesday morning that he is stepping down as Cuba's president, ending his half-century rule of the island nation.  —  “I am saying that I will neither aspire to nor accept, I repeat, I will neither aspire …
Anthony Boadle / Reuters:
Fidel Castro retires
Steve Clemons / The Washington Note:
Fidel Castro Not Returning to the Presidency
Val Prieto / Babalu Blog:   Just Another Snip  —  The news trucks have already lined …
Roger Simon / The Politico:
Clinton targets pledged delegates  —  Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign intends to go after delegates whom Barack Obama has already won in the caucuses and primaries if she needs them to win the nomination.  —  This strategy was confirmed to me by a high-ranking Clinton official on Monday.
Kevin Drum / Washington Monthly:
THE OBAMA BUBBLE....Paul Krugman this morning: … Right on cue, here's David Brooks tonight: … A “backlash” from a conservative like Brooks is hardly a surprise.  Still, I think Krugman is right: bubbles always burst, and Obama has been riding a major league bubble for months now.
Discussion: NY Daily News
David Brooks / New York Times:
When the Magic Fades  —  At first it seemed like a few random cases of lassitude among Mary Chapin Carpenter devotees in Berkeley, Cambridge and Chapel Hill.  But then psychotherapists began to realize patients across the country were complaining of the same distress.
Mike Tackett / The Swamp:
Clinton continues war over words  —  MADISON, Wis.—As her campaign plane began rolling on the tarmac last night, Hillary Clinton made it clear she thinks there might be some tarnish to the accusation that rival Barack Obama borrowed some oratorical riffs from his friend, Gov. Deval Patrick of Massachusetts.
Discussion: The Hill
Ed Morrissey / Captain's Quarters:
Feels Like The First Time  —  Does a hostility about one's own country provide a good basis for a campaign?  John Podhoretz notes the very strange assertion from Michelle Obama as she campaigned for her husband in Wisconsin.  It comes as a piece with her exhortation at UCLA two weeks ago …
Ann Althouse / Althouse:
Why I'm voting for Obama in the Wisconsin primary.  —  I said I was going to write this post, so I'd better do it.  As I said, I want to do an archaeology of the archive and trace my response to Barack Obama as I did to John Kerry in an old 2004 post called “How Kerry lost me.”
Ed Morrissey / Captain's Quarters:
Musharraf Wins By Losing, Islamists Just Lose Big  —  The Pakistanis have rejected both Pervez Musharraf and the Islamists in their national and provincial elections yesterday, preliminary results show.  Supporters of slain national leader Benazir Bhutto and returned exile Nawaz Sharif …
Discussion: Ali Eteraz and The Daily Dish
Raja Asghar /   Musharraf allies face voters' wrath: …
Ed Morrissey / Captain's Quarters:
It Depends On How One Views Death  —  E.J. Dionne wonders whether John McCain may have his priorities askew in the upcoming election.  By focusing on terrorism as the “transcendent challenge”, McCain may misunderstand the concerns of ordinary Americans in 2008 and make himself irrelevant, Dionne argues:
E. J. Dionne Jr / Washington Post:
A ‘Challenge’ Worth Challenging
Discussion: THE LIBERAL JOURNAL and The Ruckus
Jerusalem Post:
‘Bomb, slaughter Danes due to republication of Muhammad caricatures’  —  Muslims worldwide should bomb Denmark's embassies and kill it diplomats following last week's republication of caricatures of Muslim prophet Muhammad, a spokesman for the Popular Resistance Committees in the Gaza Strip said on Monday.
Discussion: small dead animals
Associated Press:
Iraqi Deaths Pain Sharon Stone … CAIRO, Egypt (AP) - Sharon Stone believes the Sept. 11 attacks should not have been used as a pretext for the United States to launch wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, according to her comments published Monday in a pan-Arab newspaper.
Discussion: Sister Toldjah and Weasel Zippers
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 More Items: 
Ed Morrissey / Captain's Quarters:
Shame On The LA Times
Discussion: Los Angeles Times
Star Bulletin:
D-Day for caucus  —  The importance of tonight's vote is expected …
Yuri Kageyama / Associated Press:
Toshiba Quits HD DVD Business
Washington Wire:
Wisconsin Maneuvers  —  Jackie Calmes and Amy Schatz report on the presidential campaign.
Washington Post:
Clinton Steps Up Attacks on Obama
Greg J. Borowski / JSOnline:
Decision goes to voters today
Discussion: New York Times
Wall Street Journal:
Pelosi's Wiretap Offensive
Gallup Daily: Tracking Election 2008
 Earlier Items: 
Adam Liptak / New York Times:
Impressions of Terrorism, Drawn From Court Files
Mark Daniels / The Moderate Voice:
You Can't Blame Clinton Campaign for This
Robin Koerner / The Moderate Voice:
Obama is Not a Lightweight  —  A number of articles around …
Marc Kaufman / Washington Post:
FDA Says It Approved The Wrong Drug Plant
Discussion: The Glittering Eye and D-Day
Justin Webb / BBC NEWS:
Al-Qaeda's choice  —  Bedd Gelert and Vagueofgodalming may well be right about Rees Mogg.
Trish / Pensito Review:
Total Drag: Bush Judge Appointee Resigns After DUI Arrest While Cross Dressing
Michael Park / Fox News:
Journalist Who Exposes U.N. Corruption Disappears From Google
Discussion: Moonbattery
USA Today:
A McCain cabinet could bear shades of Teddy Roosevelt