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

* The nuclear crisis in Japan is constantly intensifying: “Japan’s struggle to contain the crisis at a stricken nuclear power plant worsened early Tuesday morning, as emergency operations to pump seawater into one crippled reactor temporarily failed, increasing the risk of a wider release of radioactive material, officials said.”

* With thousands of victims reaching the shore, the death toll seems likely to soar well past 10,000: “What the sea so violently ripped away, it has now begun to return. Hundreds of bodies are washing up along some shores in northeastern Japan, making clearer the extraordinary toll of the earthquake and tsunami that struck last week and adding to the burdens of relief workers as they ferry aid and search for survivors.” [edited for clarity]

* Afghanistan: “A Taliban suicide bomber posing as an army recruit blew himself up in the midst of a crowd outside an Afghan military recruiting center on Monday in the northern city of Kunduz, killing 36 people, including five children, the authorities there said.”

* Iraq: “A suicide bomber detonated a car packed with explosives outside a military headquarters on Monday in the city of Kanan, about 40 miles northeast of Baghdad, killing 11 soldiers and wounding dozens, according to local security officials.”

* Bahrain: “A military force from Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states entered Bahrain Monday in an attempt to restore order in the tiny island nation as anti-government demonstrations escalate.”

* Credit where credit is due: “Faced with a situation they don’t really know anything about (i.e. nuclear meltdowns) all the cable nets are doing a pretty good job of packing their lineups with nuclear physicists, engineers and others who know how to explain it.”

* Remember that nutty Republican in the New Hampshire legislature who said the mentally disabled should be sent to Siberia? He resigned. Good move.

* In the wake of Tucson shootings, Fox News’ Roger Ailes encouraged Sarah Palin to stay quiet. Instead she started talking about “blood libel.”

* Speaking of the massacre, President Obama has begun carefully initiating a conversation about gun policy.

* A hoax story circulated over the weekend about an Islamic council in Pakistan protesting the use of padded bras. Fox News, which doesn’t check such matters, ran the story as fact.

* For years, families in Georgia have relied on HOPE scholarships that guaranteed essentially free tuition to in-state high school students with a B-average who stayed in Georgia for college. Republican policymakers have decided to take some of that hope away.

* CNBC’s Larry Kudlow made a startling observation on the air the other day, reflecting on the tragedy in Japan: “The human toll here looks to be much worse than the economic toll and we can be grateful for that.” He later apologized.

* I always love it when you guys get quoted for being cleverer than I am.

Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.

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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.