Things We Lost in the Fire

A selection of stories that got buried in the news of financial turmoil

This week, the financial crisis dominated the headlines, and rightly so—it’s a huge, history-making story. But the myopic financial focus meant that other worthy news items inevitably got lost in the shuffle. Below, a selection of those stories:

— Hugo Chavez and Vladimir Putin are in negotiations for military partnership, including the development of nuclear energy.

— Alberto Gonzales that President Bush personally directed him to John Ashcroft’s hospital room in the infamous wiretap renewal incident—and that in another instance the President asked him to fabricate fictitious notes.

— A new US National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) on Afghanistan, which reportedly describes the situation there as “grim”, will likely be kept classified until after the presidential election.

— Newly released documents revealed that, as The New York Times put it,

Senior White House officials played a central role in deliberations in the spring of 2002 about whether the Central Intelligence Agency could legally use harsh interrogation techniques while questioning an operative of Al Qaeda, Abu Zubaydah, according to newly released documents.

— Todd Palin announced he will ignore the subpoena he received to cooperate in the TrooperGate investigation.

— Sarah Palin will conduct a separate probe in TrooperGate, run, according to the AP, “by people she can fire.”

— Sarah Palin may have her own pastor problem.

— The National Enquirer is claiming that Sarah Palin had an affair with Todd’s business partner, Brad Hanson, while she was mayor of Wasilla. Its sources include “no less than three members of the man’s family including one by sworn affidavit.”

— Freddie Mac, one of the mortgage companies at the heart of the credit crisis, paid $15,000 a month between the end of 2005 and last month to John McCain’s campaign manager, Rick Davis.

— Some of Bush’s intel professionals are now advising Barack Obama.

— Britain may change its rules of royal succession to allow Catholics and—gasp!—girls to take the throne.

— Editors from The New York Times conducted a long sit-down with Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

— This thing called the General Assembly of the United Nations met in New York City.

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Megan Garber is an assistant editor at the Nieman Journalism Lab at Harvard University. She was formerly a CJR staff writer.