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

* Afghanistan: “Fighting has slowed in the battle for Marja, with Taliban fighters still engaging in fierce resistance but with less consistency, a spokesman for the international forces said Tuesday.”

* Speaking in Saudi Arabia, HRC sends Iran another message: “The confrontation with Iran over its nuclear program appeared to deepen Tuesday as Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton escalated her verbal assault during a Persian Gulf visit and Russia joined the United States and France in bluntly questioning Iran’s ultimate intentions in enriching uranium.”

* The other nukes: “President Obama told an enthusiastic audience of union officials on Tuesday that the Energy Department had approved a loan guarantee intended to underwrite construction of two nuclear reactors in Georgia, with taxpayers picking up much of the financial risk. If the project goes forward, it would be the first nuclear reactor built in the United States since the 1970s.”

* Upbeat earnings reports made Wall Street happy.

* John Murtha is laid to rest at a funeral service in Johnstown, Pa.

* Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) was hospitalized overnight after a fall in his home. He was diagnosed with a bleeding ulcer and is expected to make a full recovery.

* I still find it hard to believe the Washington Post hired Marc Thiessen.

* No, really. I still find it hard to believe the Washington Post hired Marc Thiessen.

* The story of SUNY Binghamton and its desire to compete in Division I athletics is a striking and cautionary tale.

* There’s all kinds of talk about possible vacancies on the Supreme Court, but I’d be surprised if there’s more than one.

* Nice to see Will Bunch join the Media Matters team.

* The Heritage Foundation isn’t a very good think tank.

* And on Fox News this morning, Steve Doocy suggested that potential airline terrorists all “pretty much look alike.” I don’t know if Doocy has ever seen pictures of Richard Reid and Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, but if he thinks the two look similar, he has a real problem.

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.

Steve Benen

Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. 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.