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Chatter: Historic Arab League summit opens in Baghdad

Baghdad is on lockdown as the Iraqi capital hosts its first international summit in decades. Will it bring a breakthrough for Syria?
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Graphic. (Antler Agency/GlobalPost)

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Need to know:  
An historic Arab League summit begins in Baghdad today. It is the first international gathering to be hosted in Iraq in decades, and the capital is on lockdown.

The day has already seen some diplomatic breakthroughs: the Kuwaiti emir arrived this morning and was greeted with a kiss by the Iraqi prime minister, marking the first time a Kuwaiti leader has visited Iraq since the Gulf War in 1990.

The rest of the meeting is expected to be dominated by discussions on a peace plan for Syria.

Want to know:
A newly released police video has cast doubt on the shooter's account of the death of Trayvon Martin

The man who shot Martin dead, George Zimmerman, has claimed that he acted in self-defense, describing a violent fight with Martin in which the teenager apparently broke Zimmerman's nose. 

Now, however, CCTV footage of Zimmerman arriving at a Florida police station in handcuffs on the night in question appears to show no trace of the head injuries he reported. A lawyer for Martin's family described the video as "the icing on the cake."

Dull but important:
Former president George H.W. Bush is due formally to endorse GOP frontrunner Mitt Romney for president later today. 

The nation's 41st president has scheduled an appearance with Romney in Houston. Bush Elder has already described Romney as "the best choice for us," while his wife Barbara and son Jeb have also made public their support. 

Will his official endorsement hurry things along at all? Not if, as it seems, the other candidates are determined to stay in the race simply to make Romney's life harder.

Just because:
When Fidel met Benedict
... It was conclusive proof that Communism and Catholicism needn't get in the way of two ordinary old guys, making some old guy jokes. 

According to reports, Pope Benedict, 84, told Fidel Castro, 85: "Yes, I'm old, but I can still do my job." Quick as an, er, 85-year-old, Cuba's revolutionary leader came back:  "What does a pope do?"

Well, Fidel, he travels the world giving Mass and calling for things like "freedom" and "truth." In Cuba's case, he recommended "change," "reconciliation" and a little "fraternity," which is apparently unusually blunt pope-speak for "Castro, cut your people some slack and hey Americans, why don't you ease off those sanctions while he's at it."

Strange but true:
If you work your way through our tips for winning the Mega Millions jackpot and are STILL none the richer, don't despair. There may be an easier way to become a millionaire, and it involves a long wait on a remote highway in Canada.

For on just such a highway yesterday, an armored truck carrying between $3 million and $5 million of Canadian coins crashed into a rock face and spilled its haul all over the road. "We are going to be using magnets and other less sophisticated means of collecting the cargo," said the local police chief, who meant, specifically, shovels.

We'd like to point out that this is the second highway windfall in a week, which leads us to conclude that your chances of getting rich quick definitely higher hanging around roadside than buying a lottery ticket.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/chatter/chatter-historic-arab-league-summit-opens-baghdad

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