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A suicide bomber struck Moscow’s Domodedovo airport, killing as many as 34 people and leaving at least 168 injured. “From the preliminary information we have, it was a terror attack,” said Russian president Dmitry Medvedev in a televised briefing. Former Department of Homeland Security official Stephen A. Baker noted, “Theyâ??d like to be bombing planes and they canâ??t, so theyâ??re bombing airports.” Artyom Zhilenkov, a taxi driver, claimed he was about 10 yards from the bomber, a short, dark man carrying a suitcase. “How did I manage to save myself? I donâ??t know,” he said. “The people behind me on my left and right were blown apart. Maybe because of that.”NYTimesNPRNYTimesFor the first time in five years, Chinese premier Hu Jintao visited the United States: he received a 21-gun salute, attended a gala dinner, and participated in a live news conference. He also hugged a small child. NYTimesNYTimesNYTimeswashington postJean-Claude “Baby Doc” Duvalier attempted to return to Haiti after a 25-year absence, only to be detained and charged with stealing millions during his 15-year rule. “I donâ??t think,” said Duvalier’s lawyer, “this was a very successful trip.”NYTimesA police trade union was upset that Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi’s “bunga bunga” parties, held at his villa near Milan, featured women wearing sexy policewomen’s outfits. guardianSenator Joe Lieberman announced plans for his retirement, Keith Olbermann abruptly left his cable-news show, “Countdown,” Regis Philbin announced that after 28 years as a co-host he would be leaving “Live with Regis and Kelly,” and Steve Jobs took indefinite medical leave from Apple.bbcdailybeastnewsfeedNYTimesThe word “App” was chosen as word of the year by the American Dialect society.mediabistro
Several bombs were set off in Iraq, including one that killed at least 60 people waiting to apply for police jobs in the northern city of Tikrit. “It was like the eruption of a volcano, the fires of hell,” said Omar Farouq al-Samarraie, who was injured in the attack.washington postA sweep ranging across the northeast United States picked up more than a hundred alleged mob members, including Meatball, Baby Shanks, Tony Bagels, Jimmy Gooch, Jello, Vinnie Carwash, and Jack the Whack.bbcAlabama Republican governor Robert Bentley apologized for saying on Martin Luther King Day that non-Christians were not his “brothers and sisters.” “If you’re not a person who can say you are sorry,” said Bentley, “you’re not a very good leader.”fox memphisJennifer Aniston revealed that she has always hated her signature haircut, “The Rachel.”AllureAn Atlanta-based survey reported that 27 percent of Americans use their mobile devices to check Facebook while in the bathroom, and in Tokyo a number of men’s rooms were outfitted with Sega “Toylets,” devices that turn urination into target games, among them Manneken Pis, Splashing Battle, and the North Wind and the Sun and Me. ad ageguardianA new, larger variety of jalepeĂ±o peppers has been engineered to allow for larger jalapeĂ±o poppers.boing boing
Taj, America’s oldest elephant, died at the age of 70.AwlGerman police detained an owl that had gotten drunk on schnapps, andDer Spiegel a cat was summoned for jury duty in Boston despite its owners’ repeated insistence that it was “unable to speak and understand English.”OrangeA California couple was arrested after allegedly filming their 23-month-old son smoking marijuana, a man in Connecticut stabbed four people at a party who were criticizing him for farting, and Hartford CourantKTLAGerman reality-TV star Carolin “Sexy Cora” Berger died at the age of 23 after undergoing her sixth breast enlargement, reportedly suffering cardiac arrest while trying to go from 34F to 34G. bbcA French couple, members of Ramtha’s School of Enlightenment, died in a shootout in South Africa after killing a policeman who tried to evict them. “They said God is the sun and we are all rainbows,” said an acquaintance. “They were so respectful of life they would not even kill a snake.”guardian
More from J Gabriel Boylan:
Damages sought, in a defamation suit, by a Chicago landlord from a tenant who complained about mold via Twitter:
The British House of Lords voted to limit the right of parents to spank their children.
The Mall of America hired its first black Santa, a real estate company valued Mr. and Mrs. Clausâ€™s North Pole home at $656,957, and it was reported that the price of the gifts from â€śTwelve Days of Christmasâ€ť went up by more than $200 in 2016, to $34,363.49.
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"It is an interesting and somewhat macabre parlor game to play at a large gathering of oneâ€™s acquaintances: to speculate who in a showdown would go Nazi. By now, I think I know. I have gone through the experience many timesâ€”in Germany, in Austria, and in France. I have come to know the types: the born Nazis, the Nazis whom democracy itself has created, the certain-to-be fellow-travelers. And I also know those who never, under any conceivable circumstances, would become Nazis."