Monday’s Mini-Report

MONDAY’S MINI-REPORT…. Today’s edition of quick hits:

* With 10 days left in July, this month is already the deadliest for U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

* New warnings from Ayatollah Ali Khamenei against Iranian dissidents.

* Three weeks after having gone missing, Pfc. Bowe Bergdahl appeared on a Taliban video over the weekend.

* In a rather shocking display, conservative media figure Ralph Peters appeared on Fox News yesterday and, without proof, called Bergdahl “an apparent deserter.” Peters added that the Taliban can “save us a lot of legal hassles and legal bills” by killing the American serviceman.

* Israel has not been swayed by Americans requests and will continue with its plans for a planned housing project in east Jerusalem.

* The new U.S. policy on targeting drug trafficking networks in Afghanistan gets a personnel boost.

* Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s trip to India appears to be off to a good start.

* Joe Lieberman told MSNBC today he thinks it’s “impossible” to get health care reform through the Senate before the August recess. He neglected to mention that he’s one of the reasons the deadline is likely out of reach.

* Defense Secretary Robert Gates plans to increase the size of the Army by 22,000.

* For the House Republican Conference to promote Rep. Todd Tiahrt’s (R-Kan.) bizarre anti-abortion speech from last week is pretty ridiculous.

* Violent crime has fallen considerably in most major cities. No one’s sure why.

* Lou Dobbs continues to embarrass himself and his employer.

* Audra Shay’s election to head the Young Republicans National Federation is so wrong, it’s even drawing fire from Joe Scarborough.

* On a related note, the list of conservative officials busted for sending racist emails keeps growing.

* The Apollo 11 crew gets a warm welcome at the White House.

* Remember Fox News’ Brian Kilmeade’s recent argument, lamenting the lack of racial purity in the United States? He apologized this morning.

* And I’d be remiss if I neglected to mention the passing of legendary journalist Walter Cronkite, who died late Friday at his home in New York. He was 92.

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.

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Steve Benen

Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.