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NORAD Tracking Santa

Associated Press
NORAD Deputy Commander Lt. General Alain Parent, center, of the Royal Canadian Air Force, who is the top ranking Canadian military officer stationed in the United States, takes phone calls from children asking where Santa is and when he will deliver presents to their house, during the annual NORAD Tracks Santa Operation, at the North American Aerospace Defense Command, or NORAD, at Peterson Air Force Base, in Colorado Springs, Colo., Monday Dec. 24, 2012. Also fielding calls are U.S. Navy Capt. Jeff Davis, left, and U.S. Air Force Maj. Chris Bendig. Over a thousand volunteers at NORAD handle more than 100,000 thousand phone calls from children around the world every Christmas Eve, with NORAD continually projecting Santa Claus' purported position delivering presents.  (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)

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The U.S. and Canadian military will entertain millions of kids again this Christmas Eve with second-by-second updates on Santa's global whereabouts. But there's something new this year: public criticism.

A children's advocacy group says an animated video on the NORAD Tracks Santa website injects militarism into Christmas by showing fighter jets escorting Santa's sleigh. It's a rare swipe at the popular program, which last year attracted a record 22.3 million unique visitors from around the world to its website. (AP)

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