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Daily Briefing

Deep buzz for the content-deprived

Every weekday, while you get showered and dressed, we pluck these dewy- fresh, breaking stories from the info-clogged byways of the datasphere. Pour yourself a cup of coffee and stoke up on everything you need to know, or at least enough to fake it.

Gadhafi Strikes Rebels As Diplomats Mull Action
Ryan Lucas and Hadeel al-Shalchi, Associated Press | Gadhafi Strikes Rebels As Diplomats Mull Action | March 19, 2011

Moammar Gadhafi took advantage of international indecision to attack the heart of the 5-week-old uprising on Saturday, sending troops, tanks and warplanes to swarm the first city seized by the rebels. Crashing shells shook buildings, and the sounds of battle drew closer to Benghazi's center. "Where is France, where is NATO?" cried a 50-year-old woman in Benghazi, where a doctor said 27 people were killed Saturday. "It's too late...

NPR Woes Escalate As House Votes To Strip Its Federal Funding
Gloria Goodale, The Christian Science Monitor | NPR Woes Escalate As House Votes To Strip Its Federal Funding | March 18, 2011

Congress dealt a setback to public broadcasting Thursday, approving in two separate votes funding cuts that conservatives, in particular, have long sought. The House voted Thursday to eliminate NPR's federal funding – and to prohibit public radio stations from using taxpayer money to pay NPR dues or to buy NPR programs. At the same time, the Senate approved a three-week budget resolution that includes a $50 million cut to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, parent of NPR and PBS...

UN Security Council Resolution On Libya: Key Points
Press Association, Guardian.co.uk | UN Security Council Resolution on Libya: Key Points | March 18, 2011

The main details of UN Resolution 1973 authorising action to protect Libyan civilians from Muammar Gaddafi...

Libya Calls Cease-Fire After Britain and France Vow Action 'Soon'
David D. Kirkpatrick and Alan Cowell, The New York Times | Libya Calls Cease-Fire After Britain and France Vow Action 'Soon' | March 18, 2011

Hours after the United Nations Security Council voted to authorize military action and a no-fly zone, Libya executed a remarkable about-face on Friday, saying it would call an “immediate cease-fire and the stoppage of all military operations” against rebels seeking the ouster of Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi...

High Radiation Severely Hinders Emergency Work to Cool Japanese Plant
Norimitsu Onishi, David e. Sanger and Matthew L. Wald, The New York Times | High Radiation Severely Hinders Emergency Work to Cool Japanese Plant | March 17, 2011

Amid widening alarm in the United States and elsewhere about Japan’s nuclear crisis, military fire trucks began spraying cooling water on spent fuel rods at the country’s stricken nuclear power station late Thursday after earlier efforts to cool the rods failed, Japanese officials said...

NCAA Tipoff:In-Depth Breakdown Of All 16 Games

USA TODAY takes an in-depth look at every NCAA tournament game on Thursday's schedule, broken down by region...

Rare Survivors In Japanese Village That Was Mostly Sucked Out To Sea
Mark Magnier, Los Angeles times | Rare Survivors In Japanese Village That Was Mostly Sucked Out To Sea | March 16, 2011

Looking back, Emiko Chiba has no idea how long her silver Suzuki rode the waves of a giant tsunami or even whether she had trouble breathing inside of it. What's clear is that she ranks among the very lucky in what may be Japan's most unfortunate town...

Radiation Thwarts Helicopter Plan
Yuka Hayashi and Andrew Morse, The Wall Street Journal | Radiation Thwarts Helicopter Plan | March 16, 2011

Efforts to extinguish smoldering spent fuel were thwarted Wednesday, after high radiation levels above forced the cancellation of a plan to dump water from a helicopter on the power plant at the center of Japan's escalating nuclear crisis. And suggesting the spreading of problems at the reactor, officials said the waste fuel kept at a storage pool at one of the reactors appeared to be heating up...

Battle of the Brontes
Jennie Yabroff, The Daily Beast | Battle of the Brontes | March 16, 2011

With a new film version of Jane Eyre now in theaters and an adaptation of Wuthering Heights coming later this year, fans of authors Charlotte and Emily Bronte are choosing sides. Jennie Yabroff examines which sister was the better author...

Bahrain Declares State of Emergency; Saudi Soldier in Bahrain Reportedly Shot
Michael Birnbaum and Karen DeYoung, The Washington Post | Bahrai nDeclares State of Emergency | March 15, 2011

The king of Bahrain declared a state of emergency Tuesday afternoon, a day after Saudi troops entered the country to help prop up the tiny nation’s Sunni monarchy. The state of emergency, which is one level below martial law, was announced by the Bahrain Information Affairs Authority and broadcast on state TV. It will last three months, according to the state television channel, the Associated Press reported. The government did not explain what the state of emergency entailed...