As we witnessed scenes of killing and rioting in the Arabic and Islamic world this weekend over the burning of a Quran in Florida, it's easy to paint entire nations as extremist. Twenty-two people are dead, including seven United Nations workers and Afghan children.
It's worth revisiting this Robert Reichop-ed from two days ago in light of today's jobs numbers. Reich points out that while job growth has grown slowly though not at the rate needed for recovery, consumer confidence is at it's lowest since the Great Depression, largely because of the rise in fuel and commodity prices.
Pressure around the issue of deportation of undocumented immigrants appears to be coming to a boil, the Associated Press reports. The anger comes from a statement by President Obama at a Univision town hall that he couldn't use executive orders as president. Obama had said that using executive orders "would not conform with my appropriate role as president."
As reports come in that CIA operatives are aiding Libyan rebels and Western leaders are considering arming them, the question of who Libya's revolutionary force actually is -- is worth answering. Juan Cole at Informed Comment makes the argument that the fears that the Libyan rebels are either al-Qaeda members, Hezbollah members, or other revolutionary ne'erdowells is likely false. However, that doesn't mean we shouldn't establish a sense of who and what the rebels represent.
When I first joined NBC in 2005, I had a dream of going to Iraq and becoming a rising star. It was a formula that had made many other journalists before me leading commentators on world events including Richard Engel and Lara Logan. At that time, young journalists had flocked to the country and were reporting, writing stories, and sharing beers at the end of the day in a camaraderie that I've only seen mirrored in disaster areas and on the campaign trail. And then it got violent, and I still wanted to go, and voiced all my thoughts to a senior correspondent at NBC who was a veteran war reporter and back for Christmas from Iraq. He encouraged me, and I let his words kindle my hope for dreams of adventure and journalistic glory even more.