Today's edition of quick hits:* Afghanistan: "Two Americans -- a service member and a civilian -- were killed Wednesday in an attack near a coalition base in the Afghan capital, Kabul, the U.S. military said. Senior defense officials said a gunman opened fire at a checkpoint near a military ammunition supply point, killing the two Americans. The gunman was later killed."* This is why pre-combat announcements are made: "More than 900 civilians have fled the Iraqi city of Mosul across the border into Syria, the United Nations said Wednesday as U.S.-backed Iraqi forces continued to advance on the ISIS stronghold."* Korean Peninsula: "The United States vowed on Wednesday to do 'whatever is necessary' to defend itself, South Korea and other allies against the "grave" threat posed by North Korea, which has conducted two nuclear tests and a series of missile launches this year."* Georgia: "A federal judge has denied a request for a second extension of the voter registration deadline for Georgia counties stricken by Hurricane Matthew."* Maryland: "A Maryland police officer was suspended Tuesday after a woman snapped a photograph of a hat promoting the Oath Keepers militia group displayed on the rear deck of his police cruiser."* ACA projections: "Obama administration officials are predicting that the number of Americans with private health insurance through the Affordable Care Act will grow by about 1 million in 2017, an upbeat final forecast for the president's signature domestic achievement before he leaves office."* The broader, multi-year trend has moved in an encouraging direction: "The number of law enforcement officers killed by suspects declined last year, falling to the second-lowest number of such deaths during the Obama administration, according to FBI data released Tuesday."
* I suppose this is what we'd expect to hear from someone involved in a conspiracy: "The head of Goldman Sachs said Wednesday that despite what Donald Trump says, he is not part of an international conspiracy to undermine the United States. Lloyd Blankfein, the chairman and CEO of the Wall Street giant, dismissed Trump's recent conspiracy-heavy rhetoric as a 'waste of time.' 'If there is some international 'kabbalah' group, once again I'm left out of the party,' he told CNBC."Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.