Good read: E.J. Dionne Jr. on Bush's midterm test.
BAGnewsNotes on the Iraqi forces.
BBC interactive guide to the West Bank wall.
* The parents of a fallen soldier talk about their loss, and what they've encountered since.
* Bolton's scheme to restructure the UN - and how it'll benefit Russia and China.
* Eugene Robinson jumps ahead and names the top ten news stories of 2006.
* DHS to revamp how they hand out money, to something more, well, sane.
* How safe are our nation's dams?
* Ted Rall on why our government is spying on Americans.
* Cheerleading-related injuries on the rise.
* Predicting trends for the new year.
How the religious right abandons the poor. (Courtesy rackletang.)
This I Believe: Alan Lightman on the power of mysteries.
*Two years later,* and the Mars rovers are still truckin'!