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LOS ANGELES TIMES, NEW YORK TIMES

Worldcrunch

News spread over the Christmas holiday that the acting trade had lost two of its most ordinarily recognizable faces, Jack Klugman and Charles Durning.

Klugman, who died at the age of 90 on Monday, broke through with supporting movie roles in Hollywood, but was mostly remembered for his television work. The Los Angeles Times called Klugman's a "slightly mournful face," highlighting his two marquee TV roles, as the sloppy roommate in the Odd Couple, and the passionate medical examiner in Quincy.

Durning, who the New York Times noted shared with Klugman a “perfectly ordinary” persona, died late Monday, though the announcement was made on Christmas Day. He was 89, and had memorable appearances in a range of Hollywood blockbusters, from a corrupt police officer in The Sting to a gruff New Yorker smitten by a cross-dressing Dustin Hoffman in Tootsie.

Here's some classic Klugman...

...and some durable Durning

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President Vladimir Putin will sign an agreement on the annexation of 18% of Ukrainian territories

Cameron Manley, Chloe Touchard, Sophia Constantino, and Emma Albright

Russian President Vladimir Putin will sign the annexation Friday of four occupied regions of Ukraine to become part of Russia, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov announced this morning.

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The Kremlin will host a ceremony on Friday where agreements will be signed on the annexation of Luhansk, Donetsk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia. Peskov said the ceremony would take place on Friday at 3 p.m. local time. Taken together the regions in the east and south make up 18% of Ukraine’s territory. The move follows the 2014 annexation of Crimea, which many consider the less violent pre-cursor to Russia's all-out invasion of Ukraine.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

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