Weekend open thread and quick links

News you can use:

—- General Petraeus wrote a letter to the troops, which is likely a preview of what we’ll see from him on Monday when he gives his surge report to House and Senate committees.

—- Big news out of Nebraska: The Omaha World-Herald reports that Senator Chuck Hagel will announce Monday that he will not run for reelection, nor president. The Politico has the details on Republicans and Democrats who are are potential contenders for Hagel’s Senate seat.

—- Dem hopeful for president Bill Richardson writes a piece printed in the Washington Post titled “Why We Should Exit Iraq Now” – I’m really surprised that with Richardson’s consistent calls for us to cut and run from Iraq he’s not getting more traction in Dem polls, since that issue is Priority One to the far left.

—- Related to that, Dan Riehl blogs about news from the Daily Kos on Hillary’s call for an “immediate redeployment” of troops from Iraq. Apparently she’s decided that she’d be ok with the genocide in Iraq happening before the next president (which she obviously hopes will be her) takes office.

—- Tom Maguire tackles a recent Paul Krugman opinion piece and finds it lacking.

—- This story is sure to get a lot of talk in the conservative blogosphere: In an interview Friday with radio-talk show host Glenn Beck, Rudy argued with Beck on whether or not illegal immigration was a crime, and whether or not it should be a crime. The complete interview can be read here.

—- Fred Thompson is taking heat from some GOP presidential candidates on his claim that Osama Bin Laden is a “symbolic” figure more than anything else. Romney and McCain were the two quoted as being critical of Thompson’s comments.

—- Speaking of Thompson, Ryan Sager at the NY Sun’s “Latest Politics” blog wasn’t impressed with Thompson’s first official campaign event. Hotline On Call gave it mixed reviews.

—- Read more thoughts on Fred, via Jonah Goldberg.

—- Disgraced former DA Mike Nifong reported to jail yesterday for to serve his one day sentence for lying to a judge (one day??). The Smoking Gun has a picture of his mug shot.

—- Meanwhile, the three Duke lacrosse players whose lives were ruined by Nifong’s overzealousness are seeking a $30 million settlement, or they will file a civil suit against the city of Durham next month.

— Subtropical Storm Gabrielle, with winds of 45 mph, is headed for the Carolinas. Here’s here latest projected path.

—- Dumb criminal news: Dealer Calls Cops After Pot Stash Stolen.

I’ll be away for most of the day. Will check back in tomorrow. Hope you all have a great Saturday … and don’t forget to stock up on hot wings and other assorted good treats for tomorrow’s the first full day of the NFL 2007 football season :)

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