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9:55 AM ET, December 29, 2008

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
New York Times:
Obama Defers to Bush, for Now, on Gaza Crisis  —  WASHINGTON — When President-elect Barack Obama went to Israel in July — to the very town, in fact, whose repeated shelling culminated in this weekend's new fighting in Gaza — he all but endorsed the punishing Israeli attacks now unfolding.
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Ethan Bronner / New York Times:
With Strikes, Israel Reminds Foes It Has Teeth  —  JERUSALEM — Israel's military operation in Gaza is aimed primarily at forcing Hamas to end its rocket barrages and military buildup.  But it has another goal as well: to expunge the ghost of its flawed 2006 war against Hezbollah in Lebanon and re-establish Israeli deterrence.
New York Times:
Israeli Aircraft Continue Raids on Gaza; Arab Anger Rises  —  The Israeli army said some areas around Gaza had been declared a “closed military zone,” a move which some analysts depicted as a potential precursor to a ground offensive.  Above, tanks near the Gaza border.  More Photos >
Michael B. Oren / The New Republic:
A Crisis And An Opportunity  —  The fighting in Gaza finally provides Israel with a chance to embark on a lucid and realizable policy there.  —  CNN International's coverage of yesterday's fighting in Gaza concluded at midnight with a rush of images: mangled civilians writhing in the rubble …
CNN:   Israeli airstrikes in Gaza enter third day
David Ignatius / Washington Post:   Lebanon Enjoys a Respite
Peter Yarrow / The Huffington Post:
My Response to the Mean-Spirited “Barack the Magic Negro”  —  The sending of a Christmas greeting by Chip Saltsman to the members of the Republican National Committee that includes a recording of the so-called parody, “Barack the Magic Negro” is not only offensive, it is shocking and saddening in the extreme.
Discussion: JammieWearingFool and TMZ.com
RELATED:
Rob Stein / Washington Post:
Study: ‘Virginity pledges’ are ineffective  —  Youths who promise abstinence are also less likely to use protection  —  Teenagers who pledge to remain virgins until marriage are just as likely to have premarital sex as those who do not promise abstinence and are significantly less likely …
William Kristol / New York Times:
George, Abe, Rick & Barack  —  I'm leaving the country the day of Barack Obama's inauguration.  —  It's nothing personal.  Nor, I hasten to add — lest some people get too excited — is it anything permanent.  It's just that I happen to have a speech to give in Canada.
Paul Krugman / New York Times:
Fifty Herbert Hoovers  —  No modern American president would repeat the fiscal mistake of 1932, in which the federal government tried to balance its budget in the face of a severe recession.  The Obama administration will put deficit concerns on hold while it fights the economic crisis.
Tim Craig / Washington Post:
McAuliffe's Prowess As Fundraiser Grabs Spotlight in Va. Race  —  RICHMOND — With his booming voice, quick wit and gregarious nature, Terry McAuliffe established a reputation as one of the world's best political fundraisers, soaking up hundreds of millions of dollars for Democratic causes and candidates.
Associated Press:
Robert Graham, a Sculptor of Monuments in Bronze, Dies at 70  —  SANTA MONICA, Calif. — The sculptor Robert Graham, whose massive bronze works are seen on civic monuments across the United States, including the Franklin D. Roosevelt Memorial in Washington and the Duke Ellington Memorial in New York, died here on Saturday.
Discussion: The Moderate Voice
New York Times:
Lessons for Other Smokers in Obama's Efforts to Quit  —  Will one of President-elect Barack Obama's New Year's resolutions be to quit smoking once and for all?  —  His good-humored waffling in various interviews about smoking made it plain that Mr. Obama, like many who have vowed to quit at this time of year, had not truly done so.
Discussion: TIME.com and Don Surber
Nicholas Confessore / New York Times:
Stimulus Could Help Shrink N.Y.'s Budget Gap  —  In what would be a major boost to Gov. David A. Paterson's efforts to close the largest deficit in state history, New York could gain as much as $5 billion in extra Medicaid financing as part of the stimulus package being drawn up by Congressional leaders …
Discussion: TIME.com and cab drollery
Yigal Schleifer / Christian Science Monitor:
Shoes flung at Bush flying from shelves  —  An Istanbul cobbler capitalizes on the ‘shoe mania’ sparked by the tossing of his work.  —  ISTANBUL, TURKEY -  —  For the past 10 years, model 271 has been the bestseller of Ramazan Baydan's Ducati line of shoes.
CBS News:
Condoleezza Rice: “I'm Not A Type A”  —  Outgoing Secretary Of State Shares Thoughts With Sunday Morning … She's been called the administration's “warrior princess,” the true believer who's visited scores of countries, traveling a million miles to implement, explain, and defend, president George W. Bush's foreign policy.
RELATED:
CNN:   Rice: People will soon thank Bush for what he's done
 
 
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 More Items: 
Deborah Howell / Washington Post:
A Farewell Hope for The Post's Future
Discussion: Power Line
Amira Hass / Haaretz:
‘Little Baghdad’ in Gaza - bombs, fear and rage
Discussion: Mondoweiss
Sarah Baxter / Times of London:
George W Bush's $300m library in danger of becoming white elephant
Discussion: Think Progress and Booman Tribune
Bloomberg:
Cracks in U.S.-China Relations Are Widening Again in Crisis
CNN:
Afghan car bomb kills 14 children
Discussion: Gateway Pundit
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blogs:
The banality of vacation  —  Just got my fifth pool report of the day …
Discussion: The Opinionator
 Earlier Items: 
The Raw Story:
Laura Bush: Shoe-throwing ‘was an assault’
Discussion: Pam's House Blend
John / Power Line:
THE GREENING OF EARTH'S ECONOMY
Hillel Italie / Associated Press:
Anger, sadness over fabricated Holocaust story
Discussion: The Other McCain and Vox Popoli
Thomas L. Friedman / New York Times:
Win, Win, Win, Win, Win ...  How many times do we have to see this play …
Discussion: The Agonist and EconLog
New York Times:
An Emissions Plan Conservatives Could Warm To
Dave Barry / Washington Post:
The Year in Review  —  How weird a year was it?  Here's how weird:
Discussion: Extreme Mortman
NY Daily News:
Bernie's funda-mental defense