Dec 30, 2011

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Happy New Year, cheezfriends! Here's to 2012 bringing even more memes, LOLs and FAILs to all!
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The Daily Beast


Today: Ron Paul Got a Free Pass from the Press Until His Polls Soared, Syria Kills Protesters, Romney Neck-and-Neck With Paul
The Daily Beast Cheat Sheet: Morning

December 30, 2011
EXCLUSIVE

Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, the captured son of slain Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi, is being held in the remote Libyan town of Zintan. The former heir apparent to his father, now Saif is alleged to know the secrets of Libya's past: his father's dealings with foreign governments and companies, the whereabouts of still-missing prisoners, the details of crimes committed during his father's regime's failed attempt to crush a popular uprising. In his first interview since being captured on Oct. 20, Saif tells Human Rights Watch's Fred Abrahams that he wants a lawyer—and he has not seen one.

MEDIA

With Iowa turning into a two-man race between Ron Paul and Mitt Romney, the media are suddenly paying attention to Paul's racist newsletters and quirky voting record. The media's earlier refusal to acknowledge his past is a grievous mistake, writes The Daily Beast's Howard Kurtz.

UNREST

This probably isn't the best way to make a good impression on the the Arab League peace monitors. Syrian security forces fired on protesters, killing at least 11, as Arab League monitors continued their visit. Four people were killed in Hama shortly after the monitors arrived, and two more were killed at a security checkpoint in Idlib.  Syrian activists say the Assad regime is preventing the monitoring team from speaking with protesters and curtailing their movements. Meanwhile officials say the Obama administration is discussing whether to aid the Syrian opposition directly.

2012

More evidence that Iowa is now a two-man race—and that the Newt Gingrich bubble has definitively burst. Mitt Romney and Ron Paul are neck-and-neck, with Romney getting 23 percent of the likely caucus-goers and Pal getting 21 percent. Rick Santorum follows with 15 percent, Rick Perry with 14 percent, and Gingrich coming in fifth with 13 percent. The leveled field partly comes from a splintering of the Tea Party vote: Santorum gets 20 percent of their vote, Romney and Paul 17 percent, and Gingrich 16 percent.

FIERCE

It was the equivalent of telling the world community to talk to the hand. A day after Kim Jong-un was named Supreme Leader of North Korea, the country's leadership announced there would be no changes in its approach to domestic or international issues. How the younger Kim would rule has been the subject of much debate since his father, Kim Jong-il, died, but it appears as though North Korean officials are coalescing around Kim Jong-un as a leader. The National Defense Commission issued a statement taunting both the United States and South Korea, calling the latter a puppet regime.


TALIBAN
U.S. May Transfer Taliban Prisoner
Making an effort towards peace with Afghanistan.
SCANDAL
Mark Hurd Letter Released
Details sexual advances on contractor.
QUARREL
Judge: SEC Misled Court
Regulators were too easy on Wall Street.
SCARY
Burning Russian Sub Submerged
Crewmembers still inside.
CLOCKS
Samoa Jumps Forward a Day
Moves over dateline.
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