Morning Brief, Friday, December 15

Iraq and Middle East Hamas seized control of the Gaza border in fighting with Fatah after the Hamas leader was stopped with $35 million in cash, possibly from Iran. U.S. Senators urged the Iraqi Prime Minister to break with Moqtada al-Sadr. Condi Rice nixes U.S. negotiations with Iran and Syria. David Ignatius reports that Syria ...

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605497_hamas_small5.jpg

Iraq and Middle East

Hamas seized control of the Gaza border in fighting with Fatah after the Hamas leader was stopped with $35 million in cash, possibly from Iran.

U.S. Senators urged the Iraqi Prime Minister to break with Moqtada al-Sadr.

Iraq and Middle East

Hamas seized control of the Gaza border in fighting with Fatah after the Hamas leader was stopped with $35 million in cash, possibly from Iran.

U.S. Senators urged the Iraqi Prime Minister to break with Moqtada al-Sadr.

Condi Rice nixes U.S. negotiations with Iran and Syria. David Ignatius reports that Syria is eager to talk. And Ahmad Chalabi is back (again), and he’s hoping to become America’s back-channel to Damascus.

The U.S. believes that the United Arab Emirates is diverting “sensitive military technology” to Iran and Syria.

Arab attitudes toward U.S. policy in the region are growing angrier, according to a new Zogby poll

Washington

William Safire and Natan Sharansky will receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom for 2006, along with B.B. King.

The F.B.I. warns that the death of the ailing “blind sheikh” may set off al-Qaeda reprisal attacks.

Europe

European leaders will put the brakes on Turkey’s accession to the E.U., at least for now.

Elsewhere

U.S. Director of National Intelligence John Negroponte says that Pakistan will soon have to “reckon” with tribal leaders who broke their promise to rein in Taliban attacks in Afghanistan.

Negroponte also says that Castro is almost dead, according to U.S. intelligence. He will live “months, not years.” 

Ethiopia now says it is “at war” with the Islamic Courts movement in Somalia.

Russia withdraws its last military personnel from Georgia. 

Indian investors are paying slum-dwellers to move into free apartments, and then developing the land they leave behind.

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