Today's edition of quick hits:
* An important hearing: "The nation's top military brass came under withering criticism Tuesday from high-profile female senators who slammed the military's handling of allegations of sexual assault."
* Massive: "The tornado that struck El Reno, Okla., on Friday night is believed to be the widest on record in the United States at 2.6 miles across, the National Weather Service reported on Tuesday."
* Syria: "Reporting 'new levels of brutality' in Syria's more than two-year-old conflict, United Nations investigators said on Tuesday that they believed that chemical weapons and more indiscriminate bombing had been used in recent weeks and urged world powers to cut off supplies of weapons that could only result in more civilian casualties."
* Fort Hood: "Maj. Nidal Hasan said Tuesday his defense will explain that he killed 13 people in the 2009 shooting rampage because soldiers were about to deploy to Afghanistan. He says he was trying to prevent the imminent death of Taliban fighters."
* Keep an eye on this one: "The Obama administration on Monday threatened to veto any spending bills for the coming fiscal year unless Republicans and Democrats reach agreement on a broader budget plan that 'supports our recovery and enables sufficient investments' in White House priorities."
* Remember in 2010, when congressional Republicans convinced the media establishment that "deem and pass" was outrageous and scandalous? Well, never mind.
* A good start: "The White House announced a set of executive actions on Tuesday to crack down on abusive patent infringement lawsuits. The steps will rein in firms, described by detractors as 'patent trolls,' which acquire portfolios of patents and make money by suing other companies."
* Aurora: "A Colorado judge allowed Aurora massacre suspect James Holmes to change his plea to not guilty by reason of insanity on Tuesday and ordered an independent mental health evaluation."
* Ohio State University President E. Gordon Gee, one of the nation's highest-paid university leaders, announced his retirement today. It comes on the heels of an AP report that quoted Gee saying of Roman Catholic priests in December, "The fathers are holy on Sunday, and they're holy hell the rest of the week. You just can't trust those damn Catholics on a Thursday or a Friday, and so, literally, I can say that."
Anything to add? Consider this an open thread.