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12:25 PM ET, August 28, 2013


 Top Items: 
Noah Shachtman / Reuters:
Exclusive: Intercepted Calls Prove Syrian Army Used Nerve Gas, U.S. Spies Say  —  Last Wednesday, in the hours after a horrific chemical attack east of Damascus, an official at the Syrian Ministry of Defense exchanged panicked phone calls with a leader of a chemical weapons unit …
Max Fisher / WorldViews:
Here's why Obama is giving up the element of surprise in Syria  —  Military thinkers from Sun Tzu to Napoleon Bonaparte have long emphasized the element of surprise.  So it might seem strange that the Obama administration is not just clearly telegraphing that it likely plans to launch limited strikes …
Wall Street Journal:
U.S. leaks tell Assad he can relax.  The bombing will be brief and limited.  —  An American military attack on Syria could begin as early as Thursday and will involve three days of missile strikes, according to “senior U.S. officials” talking to NBC News.  The Washington Post has the bombing at …
Lara Seligman / The Hill:
McCain scolds White House for ‘crazy’ leaks on Syria air strikes  —  Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) on Wednesday expressed outrage over leaks related to possible air strikes on Syria, calling them “crazy.”  —  McCain pointed to reports that say U.S. air strikes on Syria could begin as early as Friday.
Discussion: Politico
Robert Fisk / The Independent:   Does Obama know he's fighting on al-Qa'ida's side?
Ian Hurd / New York Times:
Bomb Syria, Even if It Is Illegal
Washington Post:
U.S. intelligence has established timeline of Syrian chemical attack, officials say
John McWhorter / Wall Street Journal:
A Better Way to Honor Dr. King's Dream  —  The goal of the civil-rights movement was opportunity—not a ‘post-racial’ society.  —  On the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington, we will hear a good deal about how life in this country for black Americans has not changed as much as Martin Luther King Jr. might have wished.
Elizabeth Warren / Boston Herald:
Battenfeld: Outspoken Liz Warren stays silent on Syria  —  U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren has been on the warpath against banks since going to Washington, but when it comes to launch­ing a war against Syria, she and other liberal Massachusetts Democrats suddenly don't have much to say.
Immigration reform's No. 1 enemy: Time
Discussion: New York Times
Emma Dumain / Goppers:
If Obama Bypasses Congress on Syria, Will He Face Consequences?
Solidarity is For Miley Cyrus: The Racial Implications of her VMA Performance  —  As a black woman, I feel like I owe a debt of gratitude to Mikki Kendall, of Solidarity Is For White Women fame for managing to so perfectly encapsulate years of subjugation of black women by white women.
Kaiser Health Tracking Poll: August 2013  —  As outreach efforts for enrollment in the health insurance marketplaces created by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) increase over the summer, the August Kaiser Health Tracking Poll finds that the public's most trusted sources of information on the law …
Josh Schiller / Washington Post:
Why you won't see or hear the ‘I have a dream’ speech  —  Josh Schiller is an associate in the New York offices of Boies Schiller & Flexner who has represented plaintiffs and defendants in copyright infringement lawsuits.  —  Fifty years ago this week, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his famous “I have a dream” speech.
New York Post:
Weiner paid for phony supporters at campaign events, source says  —  Anthony Weiner is having such a hard time generating support for his limp campaign that he has resorted to paying a rent-a-crowd firm to provide “supporters” for his events, The Post has learned.
Exclusive: U.S. delays deadline for finalizing Obamacare health plans  —  (Reuters) - The Obama administration has delayed a step crucial to the launch of the new healthcare law, the signing of final agreements with insurance plans to be sold on federal health insurance exchanges starting October 1.
Alex Weprin / TVNewser:
August 2013 Ratings: MSNBC Down Double Digits  —  MSNBC continued its rough 2013 in the ratings, continuing to lose significant audience from 2012.  The problems were particularly prevalent in primetime, with some shows losing close to -50% of viewers.  —  The ratings for August 2013 (Nielsen Live + Same Day data):
Fox News:
Ben Bradlee's daughter-in-law reveals (almost) all on Facebook  —  Ben Bradlee, one of the great men of American journalism, celebrated his 92nd birthday yesterday, and his daughter-in-law paid tribute by posting a photo of them and saying “it is a dream to be part of his family.”
Erik Wemple:
Pari Bradlee and the brilliance of Fox News's Howard Kurtz
Ben S. Carson / Washington Times:
MLK would be alarmed by black-on-black violence, lack of family values  —  It is hard to believe that 50 years have elapsed since the famous “I have a dream speech” of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on the Mall in Washington.  I was an 11-year-old child in Detroit languishing in the midst of poverty …
Tracy Connor / NBCNews:
Suspect in WWII vet slay: We were buying crack from victim  —  One of the teens charged with beating to death a World War II veteran allegedly claimed he was buying crack cocaine from the 88-year-old and the transaction turned violent — but cops said there is no evidence to support that.
Garance Franke-Ruta / The Atlantic Online:
People Who Need to Retire: Pat Robertson Edition  —  The 700 Club host falsely asserted that gay men in San Francisco use special rings to give AIDS to unsuspecting people who shake their hands.  What year is it?  —  Dear people in public life: When you love your job …
Boston Magazine:
Behind the Scenes of The Hunt for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev  —  All photographs by Massachusetts State Police Sergeant Sean Murphy  —  It was likely the most terrifying manhunt in Boston history.  With the city under lockdown and armored vehicles rolling through Watertown, the alleged Boston …
Associated Press:
NYPD DESIGNATES MOSQUES AS TERRORISM ORGANIZATIONS … NEW YORK (AP) — The New York Police Department has secretly labeled entire mosques as terrorism organizations, a designation that allows police to use informants to record sermons and spy on imams, often without specific evidence of criminal wrongdoing.
Zach Carter / The Huffington Post:
Taxpayer Dollars Paid A Third Of Richest Corporate CEOs: Report  —  WASHINGTON — More than one-third of the nation's highest-paid CEOs from the past two decades led companies that were subsidized by American taxpayers, according to a report released Wednesday by the Institute for Policy Studies, a liberal think tank.
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 More Items: 
Wall Street Journal:
Leaker's Security Check Faulted
Walter Russell Mead / Via Meadia:
Fed-Up Saudis Look to Russia
Discussion: Sense of Events
Fox News:
Obama proceeds in Syria without popular support
Jason Hancock / Kansas City Star:
Missouri chamber is under fire for hosting Texas governor's job hunting visit
New York Times:
Times Site Is Disrupted in Attack by Hackers
Adam Serwer /
Right-wing continues to frame killings as racist
Discussion: NBCNews
Rick Pearson / Chicago Tribune:
Ousted Illinois Republican chairman hired to lobby on gay marriage bill
David M. Drucker / Washington Examiner:
GOP building digital voter ID network to top Obama's
Discussion: Taegan Goddard's …
 Earlier Items: 
Shahien Nasiripour / The Huffington Post:
Federal Reserve Employees Afraid To Speak Put Financial System At Risk
Stevengoddard / Real Science:
Mildest US Summer In A Century
Discussion: Power Line
Herb Keinon / Jerusalem Post:
Norwegian FM to ‘Post’: World will not bankroll Palestinian state-building forever
Discussion: Israel Matzav and Israpundit
Simon Johnson / Bloomberg:
People Don't Fear Climate Change Enough
Greg Tuttle / Billings Gazette:
Former Senior High teacher gets 30 days for rape of student
Discussion: Hot Air, Gawker, The Raw Story and Jezebel