CBS wants to remind us that non-Christmas-related news occurring abroad actually exists. Its choices, however, did not depart from predictable beats. Mandy Clark was in Kunar Province in Afghanistan, embedded with a patrol from the 101st Airborne Division, trying to clear roads of rival checkpoints operated by Taliban guerrillas. Mark Phillips was in London where he explained Britain's "red carpet" privacy rule that protects celebrities from paparazzi. Having his cake and eating it too, the celebrity-to-be Phillips was worried about will be a princess next spring. So he subjected Kate Middleton to yet more publicity by filing a story about her looming lack of privacy.
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