Friday’s Mini-Report

Updated
 

Today’s edition of quick hits:

* Pressuring Syria: “Leaders of more than 60 nations and international organizations called on Syria’s government on Friday to halt its attacks on rebellious cities to allow in humanitarian supplies and asked the United Nations to begin planning for a peacekeeper force, even as some evacuations began from a hard-hit neighborhood in the besieged city of Homs.”

* Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, meanwhile, called Russian and Chinese opposition to action on Syria “despicable.”

* In an unexpected twist, a Hamas leader spoke out against Assad and threw his support behind the opposition.

* Here’s a report from Syria from NBC News’ Richard Engel this afternoon:

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* IAEA reports on Tehran: “Iran has significantly ramped up production of a purer form of enriched uranium, U.N. nuclear officials said in a new report Friday, a finding certain to exacerbate worries about the country’s march toward nuclear-weapons capability.”

* Deadly Afghan protests: “At least nine Afghans were killed Friday during demonstrations that began four days ago, after U.S. military personnel burned a pile of Korans, and spread across the country.”

* Americans’ consumer confidence continues to improve. That’s no small development.

* In the wake of Rick Santorum accusing Dutch officials of routinely killing the elderly to save money, some politicians in the Netherlands are not at all pleased. A leading member of the Dutch Parliament said, “This cannot be allowed to rest.”

* Just a few days after getting into trouble for editing a newspaper editorial endorsement, the Romney campaign edited another newspaper editorial endorsement.

* Legal trouble for Shepard Fairey: “The creator of the Barack Obama “HOPE” poster pleaded guilty Friday to criminal contempt, saying he made a ‘terrible decision’ in 2009 to destroy some documents and fabricate others in a civil lawsuit pertaining to The Associated Press photograph he relied upon to make the poster.”

* Great piece from Jonathan Cohn: “The controversy over the Catholic Church and health care goes beyond birth control.” (It’s a subscriber-only piece, but this link will give you, Maddow Blog readers, complete access to the article.)

* And Jeb Bush is watching the Republican debates, and has noticed that the candidates “are appealing to people’s fears and emotion.” You don’t say.

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.

Friday's Mini-Report

Updated