Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Online Offensive

The Israeli Defense Force has launched its own YouTube channel to bolster its case for the air assault against Hamas. It includes footage of Hamas terrorists loading rockets into a truck in a residential neighborhood. There are also clips of attacks on Hamas weapons sites and tunnels used for smuggling.

But some videos were removed after Hamas sympathizers flagged them as "inappropriate." YouTube has a feature which allows users to label videos unsuitable, causing them to be deleted.

While some clips were later reinstated, the IDF said in a statement on its YouTube page: "We are saddened that YouTube has taken down some of our exclusive footage... it is imperative that we in the IDF show the world the inhumanity directed against us and our efforts to stop it."

Meanwhile, Israel is developing an independent blog where the videos can be viewed without any issues.

Stop the Presses!

An Iranian newspaper has been shut down for publishing an article that authorities deemed sympathetic to Israel. Mohammad Parvizi, an official at the Culture and Islamic Guidance Ministry, says the Kargozaran newspaper was closed because "it sanitized the Zionist regime's crimes in Gaza."

The official said the article suggested Hamas officials were terrorists and brought on civilian deaths by hiding in schools and hospitals. It is not clear when the ban will take effect — the paper did appear on newsstands on Friday.

Dripping With Irony

A government employee in Ohio who is tasked with preventing discrimination has been allowed to keep his job after sending e-mails deemed racist, sexist and discriminatory — from his government account.

Robert Habern's duties with the Ohio Transportation Department include ensuring that non-government vendors comply with anti-discrimination laws. But investigators say Habern e-mailed jokes about a woman's private parts, men kissing and a negative racial caricature of Barack Obama.

Habern was suspended 10 days without pay in October.

In 2007, Habern was verbally reprimanded after he sent e-mails about women's breasts and in 2004 he was suspended without pay for viewing sexually explicit Web sites at work. Despite the repeat offenses, department officials call Habern's latest suspension "pretty harsh."

Legal Review

While it is the end of another year, that does not mean you can close the book on some of the nation's most bizarre laws.

For instance, in West Virginia it is still illegal to taunt someone who decides not to participate in a duel.

In Alabama you may not alter the appearance of a horse's or a mule's teeth to make the animal appear younger than it actually is — a practice common enough apparently to require a law against it.

In Kentucky it is illegal to sell, exchange, or possess living baby chicks, ducklings, other fowl or rabbits that have been dyed or colored. Those animals must be sold in batches of six if they are younger than two months old.

And in Billings, Montana, it is against the law to sell, harbor or give away rats as pets or toys unless the rats are used to feed birds of prey or snakes. So, if you live in Billings and you got a rat for a Christmas present — call the sheriff.

— FOX News Channel's Zachary Kenworthy contributed to this report.