Tuesday’s Mini-Report, 12.2.14

Today’s edition of quick hits:
 
* A huge deal in Iraq: “In a far-reaching deal that helps reunite Iraq in the face of a bitter war with Islamic extremists, the central government agreed on Tuesday to a long-term pact with the autonomous Kurdish region to share the country’s oil wealth and military resources.”
 
* Israeli elections on the way: “In a decisive move after days of intense political bickering, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel fired his centrist finance and justice ministers on Tuesday and called for the dissolution of Parliament and early elections.”
 
* Missouri: “The Missouri National Guard will begin scaling back its operations in the St. Louis area, Gov. Jay Nixon said Tuesday, as the protests in the streets have quieted in the week since a grand jury decided not to indict a Ferguson police officer in the fatal shooting of an unarmed black teenager.”
 
* Deadly gun violence: “A man suspected in the shooting deaths of four people in West Virginia was found dead Monday night, police said. A manhunt had been underway in northern West Virginia near Morgantown after four people were fatally shot in three attacks Monday morning.”
 
* Detroit: “Power crews were scrambling Tuesday afternoon to turn the lights back on in downtown Detroit after a widespread outage swept schools, government buildings and offices for several hours. Courts halted trials. Confused drivers jammed intersections without working traffic lights. And thousands of people filed out of darkened buildings as emergency crews responded to reports of people trapped in elevators.”
 
* Unexpected: “Lebanon’s military has detained a wife and child of the Islamic State leader, security officials said Tuesday, handing authorities possible bargaining chips for the release of hostages held by the militant group. The detentions – which also included a spouse of another senior Islamic State commander – could offer insights into the movements and activities of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and his inner circle.”
 
* Seems pretty straightforward: “House and Senate negotiators have reached agreement on a $585 billion defense policy bill that provides funds to expand the U.S. mission in Iraq to counter Islamic State militants and gives the military the authority to train moderate Syrian forces.”
 
* Justice: “The Air Force is court-martialing a nuclear missile launch officer on drug charges stemming from a criminal investigation that led to the separate disclosure of an exam-cheating scandal that implicated nearly 100 nuclear officers.”
 
* Related news: “The Air Force’s top official predicted Tuesday that Chuck Hagel’s surprise resignation as Pentagon chief will not steal momentum from his plan, announced only 18 days ago, to make top-to-bottom changes in how the nuclear Air Force is operated and managed.”
 
* Confirmations: “The Senate confirmed the nominations of two former Obama campaign fundraisers on Tuesday, despite objections. The Senate voted 50-43 to confirm Noah Mamet’s nomination to be U.S. ambassador to Argentina and voted 52-42 to confirm Colleen Bradley Bell to be U.S. ambassador to Hungary.”
 
* Well said: “Unhappy with the economic recovery in the United States? Could be worse. Specifically, we could be literally any other country in the world that also just went through a major financial crisis.”
 
* Fired for getting pregnant? “Just how the law protects women like Wolfe – whose discrimination lawsuit is pending in a federal appeals court – will be before the Supreme Court on Wednesday. In Young v. UPS, the Supreme Court will consider whether the 1978 Pregnancy Discrimination Act requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations to pregnant workers.”
 
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.
 

Tuesday's Mini-Report, 12.2.14