Today’s edition of quick hits:
* Putin won’t be happy with this: “President Obama plans to substantially increase the deployment of heavy weapons, armored vehicles and other equipment to NATO countries in Central and Eastern Europe, a move that administration officials said was aimed at deterring Russia from further aggression in the region.”
* Good call: “President Barack Obama will ask for more than $1 billion in the new budget to fight drug abuse and overdoses, which are at record highs in the U.S., the White House said Tuesday. Obama’s budget request to Congress aims to expand treatment for people who get hooked on prescription opioid painkillers such as Oxycontin, as well as people who use the cheaper street drug heroin.”
* Selective Service System: “The Army and Marine Corps’ top uniformed leaders both backed making women register for the draft as all combat roles are opened to them in coming months, a sweeping social change that could complicate the military’s gender integration plans.”
* Somebody obviously wants attention again: “In a new dare to the United States and its allies, North Korea has notified the United Nations agency responsible for navigation safety that it is planning to launch a long-range rocket this month to put a satellite into orbit.”
* Iraq “on Tuesday awarded an Italian company a contract to overhaul and maintain the Mosul dam in the country’s north, days after a U.S. general warned of its possible collapse.”
* An amazing story out of Missouri: “Days after BuzzFeed News revealed that the state of Missouri has paid $250,000 in cash payments to those who help the state carry out the death penalty, the head of the department of corrections defended the practice before a state budget committee.”
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.