Weekly Review — June 29, 2010, 12:00 am

Weekly Review

[Image: Caught in the Web, 1860]
Caught in the Web, 1860.

June became the deadliest month thus far for coalition forces in the Afghan war, with at least 80 killed, including 46 Americans. General Stanley McChrystal resigned in disgrace after a magazine article quoted him mocking the civilian leadership and revealing that his favorite beer is Bud Light Lime. President Barack Obama nominated General David Petraeus to replace McChrystal; anonymous sources in the Pentagon said that Petraeus would revise McChrystal’s policy of “courageous restraint,” which had been implemented to reduce the killing of Afghan civilians. Anonymous soldiers at one unnamed camp in Afghanistan rejoiced at the news of McChrystal’s departure. “I joined the Army,” explained one junior NCO, “to find and kill the people who blew up our buildings.” TelegraphLATStars and StripesNYTNYTWPA civilian employee of the U.S. Army was arrested in Weiden, Germany, after threatening to kill his neighbors for blowing their vuvuzelas too loudly during the Netherlands??Cameroon World Cup game, and the Detroit Institute of Arts decided to sell an American flag carried by Custer’s troops at his last stand. AP via Stars and StripesDetroit Free Press

Sales of new homes had fallen 33 percent since last month; average 30-year fixed-mortgage rates fell to a record low of 4.69 percent; and it was revealed that 241 prison inmates serving life sentences had claimed and received first-time homebuyer tax credits. WaPoBloombergLATAP via GoogleThe U.S. House and Senate finalized a watered-down, 2,000-page financial-reform bill. The bill will limit investments in hedge funds and certain risky derivatives made by banks, which currently hold derivatives valued at $212.8 trillion. Banks and investors welcomed the bill, which analyst Dean Baker called “a fig leaf,” and the S&P’s 500 Financials Index rose 1.1 percent on the news.WPBloombergWSJCredit-default swaps on Greek government bonds hit a record high, and police arrested over 900 protestors at the G-20 summit in Toronto, after relatively light riots in which four police cars were burned. “This isn’t even a sideshow,” said John Kirton, director of the G20 Research Group at the University of Toronto, of the protests. “This is a Sunday picnic with a few bad elements.” Security arrangements at the summit were the most expensive in Canadian history, requiring a police force roughly five times as large as the one deployed at last year’s G-20 meeting in Pittsburgh. CNNToronto SunReutersDemocracy Now!National PostBloombergNYTNorth Korea claimed that the U.S. owed it $65 trillion, or roughly the value of global GDP, for damages relating to the Korean War, and Kellogg recalled 28 million boxes of cereal (with an “uncharacteristic wax-like off taste and smell”) that could cause diarrhea. AP via Stars and StripesNY Post

Confirmation hearings began for U.S. Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan.WaPoInfamous Jamaican drug lord Dudus Coke was arrested, despite being cunningly disguised in a black afro wig; a pink wig and women’s glasses were also found in his possession. NYTNYTSenator Robert Byrd (D., W.V.), the longest-serving member of Congress in U.S. history, died, as did Manute Bol, who was until 1993 the tallest player ever to play in the NBA. WaPoWaPoESPNAt Wimbledon, John Isner beat Nicolas Mahut in the longest tennis match ever, playing more than 183 games in 11 hours over the course of three days, then quickly lost his next match. “I just didn’t have much in the way of my legs,” said Isner. AP via YahooOscar, a British cat, mowed down last year by a combine harvester while napping, received new bionic feet. BBCGuardianBBCOil from the wellhead of BP’s exploded Deepwater Horizon rig made its first landfall on Mississippi shores, in the form of tar balls and so-called mousse patties, as Tropical Storm Alex threatened to spread oil and delay cleanup. Fresno BeeAlabama Press-RegisterThe House voted 420??1 to give subpoena powers to a presidential commission investigating the spill, with Rep. Ron Paul (R., Tex.) casting the lone “no” vote, and it was revealed that New Orleans federal judge Martin Feldman, who recently struck down the Obama Administration’s moratorium on deep-water drilling, owned shares in at least 17 oil companies as of 2009. WSJLATConnie Everitt of Kitimat, near Vancouver, hit and killed a moose while driving to the hospital to visit her sister Studley, who was seriously injured when she hit and killed a pregnant moose last month. “My first thought was, ‘Are the moose going out [on a] hunting season for my family?’” she said. “So far, we win three because we got three of them dead.”The ProvinceThe poisonous wind on the exoplanet HD209458b continued to blow, according to scientists, at 3,000 to 6,000 miles per hour. BBC

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I first heard the name Barack Obama in the spring of 2004, while visiting my mother in Chicago. As we sat around the kitchen table early one spring morning, I noticed a handsome studio portrait among the pictures, lists, cards, and other totems of family life fastened to the refrigerator door. “Who’s the guy with the ears?” I asked, assuming he was some distant relative or family friend I didn’t know or else had forgotten. “Barack Obama,” she answered with a broad smile. “He’s running for Senate, but he’s going to be the first black president.”

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I first heard the name Barack Obama in the spring of 2004, while visiting my mother in Chicago. As we sat around the kitchen table early one spring morning, I noticed a handsome studio portrait among the pictures, lists, cards, and other totems of family life fastened to the refrigerator door. “Who’s the guy with the ears?” I asked, assuming he was some distant relative or family friend I didn’t know or else had forgotten. “Barack Obama,” she answered with a broad smile. “He’s running for Senate, but he’s going to be the first black president.”

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I first heard the name Barack Obama in the spring of 2004, while visiting my mother in Chicago. As we sat around the kitchen table early one spring morning, I noticed a handsome studio portrait among the pictures, lists, cards, and other totems of family life fastened to the refrigerator door. “Who’s the guy with the ears?” I asked, assuming he was some distant relative or family friend I didn’t know or else had forgotten. “Barack Obama,” she answered with a broad smile. “He’s running for Senate, but he’s going to be the first black president.”

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