Today’s edition of quick hits:
* Ukrainian crisis: “President Obama called on Russia on Friday to pull back tens of thousands of troops massed along its border with Ukraine, as U.S. officials said they have grown increasingly concerned that the size and makeup of the force could portend a new Russian attempt to annex swaths of its neighbor.”
* Afghanistan: “The Taliban attacked the offices of a U.S.-based charity Friday, a complex assault that comes just over a week before the country’s presidential election. The attack, involving a car bomb and three gunmen, was directed at the Roots of Peace facility in the Kart-e-Char neighborhood of southwestern Kabul, the organization’s founder and chief executive, Heidi Kuhn, confirmed in an e-mail.”
* Washington mudslide: “The strongest rains of the week are expected to soak the mudslide zone today. ‘The biggest challenges that they are facing right now with the heavy water is, first off, the crews are extremely wet. It’s cold there. It’s windy up there. There’s no shelter’ said Tom Cooper, deputy chief of the Arlington Fire Department during a morning briefing in Darrington, east of the slide.”
* Asked about his bridge scandal, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) told reporters today, “I don’t know if we’ll ever know what the motive is.” Seriously?
* Climate crisis: “The Obama administration on Friday announced a strategy to start slashing emissions of methane, a powerful greenhouse gas released by landfills, cattle and leaks from oil and natural gas production. The methane strategy is the latest step in a series of White House actions aimed at addressing climate change without legislation from Congress.”
* Diplomacy: “President Obama met with King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia on Friday evening in a bid to improve relations that have been seriously strained over the civil war in Syria, negotiations with Iran, and Saudi fears that the United States is pulling back from the region.”
* Asked about his pro-torture policies, former Vice President Dick Cheney said today, “If I would have to do it all over again, I would. The results speak for themselves.”
* Ordinarily when far-right lawmakers like Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) complain about the “outrageous” decisions of their own party’s leadership, it’s best to roll one’s eyes and move on. But yesterday, believe it or not, they actually had a legitimate complaint.
* I sometimes wonder if Ron Fournier makes disappointing observations on purpose, as part of some odd attempt at humor. What a shame.
* Oh my: “Brian Kilmeade is still making sexist comments about women. The ‘Fox & Friends’ co-host argued on ‘The Five’ that women who have a ‘great body’ and who ‘work out’ should use that to their advantage in the courtroom.”
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.