Flying unannounced into a still-dangerous war zone, President Barack Obama told U.S. troops and Iraqi officials alike Tuesday it is time to phase out America's combat role in a conflict he opposed as a candidate and has vowed to end as commander in chief.
Barack Obama had difficulty pronouncing the name of his Russian counterpart, Dmitry Medvedev, but people forgave him. In fact, they forgave him for almost everything: his aura seemed to glow ever brighter as he made his first foray into global, crisis-busting diplomacy.
First came the housing bust, followed by eroding job security and dwindling retirement accounts. Now, the worst downturn in decades is nibbling away at something so entrenched that people took it for granted: simple, everyday convenience.