Today’s edition of quick hits:
* Today’s big surprise: “President Donald Trump made a surprise visit to American troops in Iraq on Wednesday, his first journey to an active combat zone since he took office.”
* Another tragedy involving the death of a migrant child: “An 8-year-old Guatemalan boy died of unknown causes in the custody of U.S. Customs and Border Protection minutes before midnight on Christmas Eve in New Mexico, the agency said in a statement Tuesday.”
* The latest death toll from Indonesia: “A tsunami apparently caused by the eruption of an island volcano killed at least 222 people around Indonesia’s Sunda Strait during a busy holiday weekend, sending water crashing ashore and sweeping away hotels, hundreds of houses and people attending a beach concert.”
* A welcome turnaround after Monday’s closing numbers: “In the first day of trading since Monday’s record decline, the Dow Jones Industrial Average on Wednesday soared by over 1,000 points, erasing its historic Christmas Eve losses to set a new record: Most points gained in one day.”
* RBG: “Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was released from the hospital Wednesday after undergoing surgery to have cancerous growths removed from her lung, according to the Supreme Court press office.”
* We’re still learning more about how Donald Trump dodged the draft, and the latest revelations are not flattering.
* Israeli elections: “Israel’s ruling coalition moved to dissolve the country’s parliament after its members disagreed over a bill to draft ultra-Orthodox men into the military, forcing early elections in which Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu faces security and economic challenges and corruption charges.”
* Maybe she’s positioning herself for 2024? “As Nikki Haley finishes her tenure this month, the woman who has spent the last two years representing the U.S. at the United Nations has a question for the American public: Should the U.S. remain a member? ‘The American people need to decide if it’s worth it,’ she said in an interview with a small group of journalists [last] week.”
* It’s admittedly a small thing, but I’m glad the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will still be called the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
* And yes, as it turns out, it is possible for Trump to screw up a phone call with a 7-year-old on Christmas Eve.
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.