Robert Siegel talks with Alan Boswell, Africa Correspondent for McClatchy Newspapers, about the fight in Mali between French forces and Islamist militants. Boswell calls Mali the new front line in the war on terror.
The turmoil in Algeria, as well as in Mali, is a reminder of the complicated relationship that still exists between France and many of its former African colonies. Howard French has spent many years thinking and writing about that relationship. He's an associate professor at the Columbia University graduate school of journalism and a former long time foreign correspondent for the New York Times. Mr. French, welcome to the program.
The U.S. formally recognized the Somali government for the first time in 20 years on Thursday when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met with Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mahamud at the State Department. Hassan is the first permanent Somali president since 1991 and faces a daunting task of rebuilding a nation torn by conflict and Islamist insurgencies.
Algerian forces attacked the oil and gas facility being held by Islamist militants in the eastern part of Algeria on Thursday. Reports indicated that some hostages were freed, some were killed and some were still in the compound with their captors. Before the Algerian forces attacked, militants said they held about 40 hostages from a variety of countries. Reports say that some militants were also killed in the military operation.
Originally published on Thu January 17, 2013 4:27 pm
As part of our "Sense of Place" tour of Memphis, we're on to Royal Studio, where Al Green, Ann Peebles and others made some of the 1970s' most important soul music for Hi Records.
Most of that music was produced by the late Willie Mitchell. Here, we've dug up a 2005 interview with Al Green wherein he tells the story of how Mitchell helped him find his voice. We also talk with Mitchell's son, Boo, who grew up at Royal. His dad told him, "Don't turn Royal into a museum when I die." Don't worry; he hasn't.
Originally published on Mon April 22, 2013 11:26 am
Correction: The audio of this segment mentions a February performance by the Mingus Jazz Orchestra. There will be no Mingus Jazz Orchestra concert this year. The audio and text of this segment also misidentified the dates of the 2013 Mingus High School Competition. The competition is Feb. 15-18.
Originally published on Thu January 17, 2013 4:04 pm
Hours after French troops launched a ground offensive in Mali to quash an Islamist rebellion, militants retaliated by seizing dozens of hostages, reportedly including Americans, in neighboring Algeria — an attack that underscores Western fears of a deteriorating security situation in northwestern Africa.
In an ongoing crisis in North Africa, the Algerian military has reportedly launched an operation in response to the dozens of hostages taken by extremist groups at a gas field near the Libyan border. NPR's Neal Conan talks with University of Cambridge lecturer George Joffe about the evolving situation.
Writer Kevin Smokler spent a good majority of 2012 rereading the books he was assigned back in his high school English classes. He called up some of his former teachers and put together a list of books to revisit.
He looks back at his 15-year-old self and sees a "pretentious," somewhat "idiotic" teenager who was able to pass his classes, but who really missed the themes at the heart of most of the books.
Lance Armstrong, right, faces several court cases tied to evidence that he cheated. One of the suits was filed by his former U.S. Postal Service teammate Floyd Landis. Here, the pair ride during the 2003 Tour de France.
Originally published on Thu January 17, 2013 9:14 pm
Disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong's confession to doping isn't just a matter of passing interest to sports fans, it has the potential to be pivotal new evidence in a raft of legal matters that have swirled around the cycling star for years.
Armstrong already has lost his battle with the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, which detailed "the most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program" in sports when it announced a lifetime ban of the cyclist last October.
Originally published on Thu January 17, 2013 3:06 pm
When The Salt posted Wednesday that Whole Foods CEO John Mackey told Morning Edition that President Obama's health care overhaul isn't socialism, it's "fascism," there was quite a response. The post has more than 500 comments, so far.