Today's edition of quick hits:* Russia: "Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said he told Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday that relations between the two countries are at 'a low point' as clear divides remain over Syria, Moscow's alleged meddling in U.S. elections and a host of other major issues."* United Nations: "Russia blocked a Western effort at the U.N. Security Council on Wednesday to condemn last week's deadly gas attack in Syria and push Moscow's ally President Bashar al-Assad to cooperate with international inquiries into the incident."* This policy didn't last long: "The Trump administration on Wednesday will lift the hiring freeze that it had imposed on the federal work force, even as it directs agencies to submit plans for personnel cuts and other restructuring moves to fit the budget blueprint released by President Trump last month."* Donald Trump spoke last night to Xi Jinping, the Chinese president. The White House's description of their call was quite different from Beijing's.* The facts matter: "After a review of the same intelligence reports brought to light by House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes, both Republican and Democratic lawmakers and aides have so far found no evidence that Obama administration officials did anything unusual or illegal, multiple sources in both parties tell CNN."* Keep an eye on this: "The Trump administration is quickly identifying ways to assemble the nationwide deportation force that President Trump promised on the campaign trail as he railed against the [supposed] dangers posed by illegal immigration."* Trump administration incompetence: "After just three weeks, the Trump administration has stopped publishing a weekly report designed to publicly shame 'sanctuary cities' that fail to cooperate with federal immigration enforcement efforts after local police agencies complained the reports were filled with errors."* Good for him: "Former U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar, who personifies the measured approach to U.S. foreign policy, on Tuesday offered his first comprehensive critique of President Donald Trump's forays into world affairs. It wasn't pretty."Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.