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8:00 PM ET, December 31, 2008


 Top Items: 
Alan M. Dershowitz / Christian Science Monitor:
Israel, Hamas, and moral idiocy  —  Much of the world's response is a false moral equivalence that simply encourages the terrorists.  —  Israel's decision to take military action against Hamas rocket attacks targeting its civilian population has been long in coming.
William Sieghart / Times of London:
We must adjust our distorted image of Hamas  —  Gaza is a secular society where people listen to pop music, watch TV and many women walk the streets unveiled  —  Last week I was in Gaza.  While I was there I met a group of 20 or so police officers who were undergoing a course in conflict management.
Megan McArdle:
The problem with Israel-Palestine blogging  —  Everyone engaged in it is interested in proving that one side is righter than the other.  Since no action in the region has occurred without plausible provocation for 4,000 years or so, this requires constantly shifting the metrics by which you measure whichever side you happen to favor.
Discussion: American Power and Israel Matzav
IDF bombs ‘terror mosque’
Blagojevich's pick has résumé chiseled in stone  —  (CNN) — Anyone who doubts Roland Burris' qualifications to serve as the next senator from Illinois may want to head to Chicago's Oak Woods Cemetery.  —  There, Burris, whom embattled Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich appointed …
Discussion: Chicago Tribune
Chicago Breaking News:
Burris goes to court for Senate seat  —  Democrat Roland Burris went to the Illinois Supreme Court today to fight to be seated in the U.S. Senate.  —  Burris, appointed by disgraced Gov. Rod Blagojevich on Tuesday to the seat once held by President-elect Barack Obama, asked the justices …
Discussion: and Progress Illinois
Chicago Sun Times:   Another bad choice by ethically bankrupt gov
Chicago Breaking News:
Bobby Rush warns Democratic senators
Evan Perez / Wall Street Journal:
Gonzales Defends Role in Antiterror Policies  —  WASHINGTON — Alberto Gonzales, who has kept a low profile since resigning as attorney general nearly 16 months ago, said he is writing a book to set the record straight about his controversial tenure as a senior official in the Bush administration.
Jonathan Stein / MoJoBlog:
Alberto Gonzales Is Going to Write an Awfully Short Tell-All  —  Former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, head clown for some of the Bush Administration's wackiest episodes, will write a tell-all book about his experiences at the Department of Justice.  I find this curious.
Paul Steinhauser / CNN:
Poll: Obama viewed as a strong leader  —  CNN Deputy Political Director  —  WASHINGTON (CNN) — A national poll suggests that three-quarters of the public thinks President-elect Barack Obama is a strong and decisive leader, the highest marks for a president-elect on that characteristic in nearly three decades.
Discussion: The Swamp
Barak Ravid / Haaretz:
Arab youths open fire on Israelis working at mall in Denmark  —  A group of Arab youths opened fire Wednesday evening on a number of Israelis working at a mall in the Danish city of Odenza, some 200 kilometers north of Copenhagen.  —  The Israelis, who were operating a stall in the shopping center, were lightly wounded in their legs.
Discussion: Mere Rhetoric and Hot Air
Hana Levi Julian / Arutz Sheva:
PA Arab Terrorists Attack Israelis in Denmark, Two Wounded
Discussion: Israel Matzav and Atlas Shrugs
Sam Youngman / The Hill:
Obama dismisses Bush Pentagon appointees  —  Despite keeping Defense Secretary Robert Gates in the Pentagon, President-elect Obama's transition team informed 90 Bush appointees their services will not be needed after Inauguration Day.  —  Scott Gration, a senior official on Obama's transition team …
Discussion: D-Day and TPMMuckraker
Seth Borenstein / Associated Press:
NASA chief's wife to Obama: Don't fire my husband  —  WASHINGTON - Late on Christmas Eve, one last wish was sent, by e-mail: Please let NASA Administrator Michael Griffin keep his job.  It was from his wife.  —  Rebecca Griffin, who works in marketing, sent her message with the subject line “Campaign for Mike” to friends and family.
Glenn Greenwald / Salon:
Torture prosecutions finally begin in the U.S.  —  (updated below - Update II)  —  While fiercely loyal establishment spokespeople such as The Washington Post's Ruth Marcus continue to insist that prosecutions are only appropriate for common criminals ("someone breaking into your house") …
Ben Smith / Ben Smith's Blogs:
No end in sight  —  More evidence?  A weak case?  Behind-the-scenes negotiations?  —  Anyway, it goes on:
Stephanie Clifford / New York Times:
Village Voice Lays Off Nat Hentoff and 2 Others  —  The troubled Village Voice laid off three employees Tuesday, including Nat Hentoff, the prominent columnist who has worked for the paper since 1958, contributing opinionated columns about jazz, civil liberties and politics.
James Joyner / Outside The Beltway:
Katharine Webb Joyner  —  My wife Kimberly woke me a little before 2 yesterday morning to inform me that her water had broken and that it was time to drive her to the hospital.  After 12 hours of trying naturally, another 14 of trying with the aid of an inducing drug, and two hours of hard labor …
Discussion: Sister Toldjah
Ta-Nehisi Coates:
Bobby Rush on CNN  —  Here's Rush arguing for the importance of a black senator.  To which I respond—Nigga, please!!  —  I don't know if I've shifted politically or what.  But after watching a black man named Barack Obama—who couldn't get into the Democratic convention eight years ago …
Discussion: Ben Smith's Blogs and MoJoBlog
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 More Items: 
John Hawkins / Right Wing News:
Death To All Juice!  —  I'm not sure whether to be more appalled …
Discussion: Hot Air and QandO
Andrew E. Kramer / New York Times:
Gazprom Set to Halt Gas Shipments to Ukraine
Discussion: On Deadline
Adam Horowitz / The Huffington Post:
Jews are Soul-Searching About Madoff — What About Gaza?
Larry Oakes / Minneapolis Star Tribune:
Election judge is dumbfounded her ballot was rejected
Discussion: TPM Election Central
 Earlier Items: 
Agence France Presse:
Iran shuts down leading reformist newspaper
Discussion: Daimnation! and Gateway Pundit
José M. Guardia / Barcepundit:
MORE ON Spain's property bust, in The Economist:
Discussion: PoliGazette and The Moderate Voice
Andy McCarthy / The Corner:
Re: The Sense of Proportion
Discussion: Daled Amos and TigerHawk
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
Nobody Goes There Anymore, It's Too Crowded