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It was a violent Sunday in Iraq, as attacks of all stripes killed dozens and the U.S. death toll crossed 4,000. A day of suicide bombings, shootings and rocket and mortar attacks has cast yet another shadow over the "surge."

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A year after its president was forced to resign because of a controversial remark about gender, Harvard University is about to appoint its first woman president. The promotion of Drew Gilpin Faust, a historian, will end a 371-year-long drought of female leadership at one of the nation's oldest institutions.

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Nancy Pelosi's new job as the first woman speaker of the House has been something of a footnote to the Democrats' success in the midterm elections, but her truly historic ascension has inspired women and men alike -- even Republicans. Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas, took his four daughters to the swearing-in: "It's a good role model for all women, and my daughters can see that they can get to the highest levels of government."

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