One of the Bloodiest Days Yet in the Syrian Government’s Crackdown

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The exact number of dead remains unconfirmed, but President Bashar al-Assad's forces killed at least 70 in pre-Ramadan raids on several cities. Rebels have said they'll step up protests during the holy days; the government has decided to respond by stepping up massacres. Happy holidays. President Obama called the day's events "horrifying," but the American government has not yet formally asked Assad to step down. [NYT]