• Rumors abound that Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak spent last Sunday and Monday in Jordan secretly meeting with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. His aides say he was on “vacation” (presumably not hiking the Appalachian Trail). [JPost]
• Film director Roman Polanski asked a judge to sentence him in absentia for having sex with a minor. A hearing on this request is scheduled for later this month. [LAT]
• A Hamas-organized protest in southern Gaza led to a rare armed skirmish with Egyptian border guards. An Egyptian soldier died, and several on both sides suffered injuries. [NYT]
• Richard Elkinson, 76, was arrested for allegedly conducting a $29 million Ponzi scheme that specifically targeted elderly Massachusetts Jews. [JTA]
• Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.), currently touring the Middle East, will attempt to cut U.S. aid to the Palestinians until they return to peace talks with Israel. [The New York Jewish Week]
Marc Tracy is a staff writer at The New Republic, and was previously a staff writer at Tablet. He tweets @marcatracy.