1. As Obama inauguration nears, pressure on Israel to enter into truce intensifies and Tony Blair says agreement is close. Hamas wants 1 year truce with removal of Israeli blockade of Gaza, balks at promise to halt rocket fire. Israel wants rocket halt and increased Egyptian security presence at tunnels used for smuggling. Hizballah regenerated and recovered fully in first year of enforced ceasefire in Lebanon.
2. At an emergency Arab summit on Gaza in Qatar, attendees include terrorist leaders from Hamas, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (GC) and Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
3. New Gates-Petraeus strategy for Afghanistan is meeting stiff resistance from outside Washington, and the UN is pleading with President-elect Obama not to change the current strategy, one which has been roundly criticized in the past for being ineffective.
4. British Defense Secretary John Hutton slammed NATO allies for "freeloading on the back of U.S. military security," and said while each allied contribution is valuable, Europe must do more.
5. Abu Sayyaf terrorists suspected of abduction of two Red Cross aid workers in the Philippines.
NATO Nations Scolded by Brit SecDef for Shirking Duties In Afghanistan - Washington Post
UN to Obama: Don't change Afghan strategy - AP
Resistance to U.S. Plan for Afghanistan - Washington Post
Top Afghan general dies in helicopter crash - Los Angeles Times
Separate Incident: US: Helicopter crashed in Afghanistan, all survive - AP
Palestinian sources: 'Iranian unit' of Hamas has been destroyed' - Ha'aretz
Israeli rockets strike UN compound - Chicago Tribune
Fatah, Hamas split widens amid Gaza war - CS Monitor
Latest Gaza Proposal Calls for Yearlong Cease-Fire - FOX News
Israel still divided on Egypt offer for Gaza truce - Ha'aretz
Grenade blast in Aceh capital - AKI
Pakistan cracks down on Jamaat ud-Dawa in Mumbai probe? - Los Angeles Times
Pakistan crackdown on eve of UK Foreign Minister's visit - The Independent (UK)
India Warns Pakistan Dossier Dispute May Harm Ties - Bloomberg
Pakistan says militants killed in Swat valley - AP
Yesterday: Desperate moves on to secure Swat -- the lost valley - DAWN (Pak)
NATO supply route in SW Pakistan reopens after blockade - AFP
U.S. strikes more precise on al-Qaeda, fewer civilians hit - Washington Times
Soldiers seek 3 abducted workers, Abu Sayyaf suspected - Washington Times
Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad and PFLP-GC terror leaders in Qatar for Arab Gaza Summit - Reuters
Iran's Ahmadinejad joins Hamas at Gaza emergency summit - International Herald Tribune
Russia-Ukraine Gas Dispute Enters 10th Day - NY Times
British FM David Miliband criticizes 'George Bush's war on terror' while in Pakistan - Telegraph
Opponents of Mugabe Tell Court of Torture - NY Times