LITMUS TEST: Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff spelled out three broad conditions
that he said would be required to secure Liberal support for next
week's federal budget. Ignatieff was primarily concerned with the
budget taking measures to protect the most vulnerable, protect jobs, and
create new ones going forward, while finance critic Scott Brison
insisted that the Conservatives avoid a "long-term structural deficit."

A secret internal probe into the leak of a 2007 fiscal update turned up nothing, prompting questions from critics about how the government handles investigations of unauthorized disclosures.

TARGETING DOMESTIC ABUSE: Quebec launched a campaign against domestic violence with a series of advertisements that officials said were designed to shock.
One Internet spot allows users to save a woman who is drowning as she
blames herself for being a victim of abuse. The ads are meant to encourage action from
people who are witness to incidents of domestic abuse.


An urgent call from relatives led RCMP officers to an Alberta woman allegedly kidnapped by her estranged husband. The pair were found in a hotel room in Radium, B.C.

KHADR'S SAGA: More than six years after arriving at the notorious U.S. prison in Guantanamo Bay as a teenager, Omar Khadr's future is still very much in question
even as the promised closure of the prison looms. Khadr is due to appear
before a much maligned military tribunal Monday, where he is expected
to once again be arraigned for war crimes.

DOES THIS SPARK YOUR INTEREST?: The Bank of Canada is expected to once again slash the country's key lending rate
in an effort to give the battered economy a jolt. However, many experts
are predicting that it will serve as another example of the very real
limits of monetary policy as major banks balk at obediently following
the central bank's lead.

TAKING A BREATHER: A shaky week-long ceasefire began in Gaza as Israel pulled its troops from the war zone and Hamas militants lay down their arms,
with neither side having achied their stated objectives. With hostilities
cooling, Palestinians were given a chance to survey the extensive
damage wreaked on Gaza, as well as digging the bodies of friends and relatives out from under the rubble. Hundreds of Canadian Israel supporters celebrated the truce during a boisterous Toronto rally, however significant skepticism over the efficacy of the ceasefire remained.

details emerged from the dramatic crash-landing of a US Airways flight
into the Hudson River. The National Transportation Safety Board said
that the both of the airliner's engines failed at the same time after the plane struck a flock of birds. The flight's pilot, Chesley B. "Sully" Sullenberger, narrowly avoided disaster at several points
as he guided the stricken airliner over New York City, a feat that has
turned the former air force pilot into a national hero and earned him a personal invite to this week's inauguration of president-elect Barack Obama.

MALLRATS: Some of the biggest muscial acts in the world took to the steps of Washington D.C.'s Lincoln Memorial and hundreds of thousands crammed the Washington Mall to celebrate Obama's upcoming inauguration.
However, the biggest star by far was Obama himself, who moved many to
tears with a speech that referenced Abraham Lincoln and
Martin Luther King Jr., whose birthday falls on the day before Obama is
sworn in. Obama dominated what is known as "King Sunday," an annual celebration of King's life that is honoured in black churches all across America on the third Sunday of January. Rev. Jeremiah Wright -- the president-elect's controversial former pastor -- remarked that Obama's rise is evidence that African-Americans should not limit themselves, or allow others to do it to them.

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