* Israel: Iran could have nukes by '09 With Iran racing forward with its nuclear program, Israel now believes the Islamic Republic will master centrifuge technology and be able to begin enriching uranium on a military scale this year.
* Medvedev becomes Russia's leader Dmitry Medvedev has promised to extend Russia's civil and economic freedoms after being sworn in as new president.
* Some Kadima MKs slam Olmert, seek new leader After another day of rampant rumors concerning the latest criminal investigation into Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, members of the prime minister's own party openly criticized Kadima's top man.
* Iraq prepares for Baghdad exodus The authorities in Baghdad say they are preparing for an exodus of thousands of people from eastern parts of the city.
* PA official: No Israeli partner in light of latest Olmert probe A senior Palestinian official told Haaretz on Tuesday that "as of now there is no Israeli partner for talks on a final status agreements."
* Birthing pains Arieh Handler participated in Israel's birth on two separate occasions. The lesser event, in his view, was on May 14, 1948.
* Livni Getting Set to Replace Olmert Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni is making preparations for replacing Prime Minister Ehud Olmert if and when the latest bribery scandal forces him to resign.
* EU: Int'l policy on Hamas has failed The international community's efforts at trying to weaken Hamas have failed and should be reevaluated.
* Sarkozy 'non' to Blair presidency Nicolas Sarkozy has withdrawn his backing of Tony Blair to become the first president of the European Union.* Israel's population stands at 7,282,000 On the eve of Israel's 60th Independence Day, the country's population stands at 7,282,000.