World

Book Reviews
7:03 am
Thu September 26, 2013

Julian Barnes 'Levels' With Us On Love, Loss And Ballooning

General Photographic Agency Getty Images

"Every love story is a potential grief story," Julian Barnes writes in Levels of Life, a quirky but ultimately powerful meditation on things that uplift us — literally, as in hot air balloons, and emotionally, as in love — and things that bring us crashing to earth: to wit, that great leveler, the death of a loved one.

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Sports
5:06 am
Thu September 26, 2013

Doping Scandals Cast Pall Over Cycling Group's Election

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 6:17 am

Cycling's international governing body, the UCI, will hold a presidential election in Florence, Italy, on Friday. It comes at a time when cycling is still trying to recover from the admissions of Lance Armstrong and the ever-present cloud of doping.

Africa
5:06 am
Thu September 26, 2013

What Caused Floors To Collapse During Mall Siege In Kenya?

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 5:27 am

The recovery operation will be a long thorough process at the Nairobi shopping mall that was attacked over the weekend. More information is emerging about the number of people who were killed, injured or are still missing.

Middle East
5:06 am
Thu September 26, 2013

Albright: U.N. Needs To Show Its Relevance On Syrian Issue

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 5:25 am

Steve Inskeep talks to Madeleine Albright about the role the United Nations can play in dealing with international crises, like Syria's civil war. Albright was secretary of State when the U.S. took military action despite the absence of a U.N. resolution in Kosovo.

Animals
5:06 am
Thu September 26, 2013

Ancient Fish Fossil Sheds Light On Modern Jaws

A newly discovered fossil of a fish in China changes what scientists know about the origins of jaws. It turns out, human jaws are remarkably similar to the jaw of this 419-million-year-old fish. That suggests jaws evolved much earlier than previously thought.

World
3:43 am
Thu September 26, 2013

Syrian Rebels: U.S. Distracted By Focus On Chemical Weapons

Smoke from heavy shelling rises above buildings in Dara'a, Syria, on Aug. 28.
Ugarit News AP

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 5:06 am

A satellite cellphone rings for rebel commander Bashar al-Zawi, at home with his family in the Jordanian city of Irbid. It's a rare domestic break for this wealthy businessman turned rebel commander. But he is anxious to get back to his battalion of 5,000 fighters in southern Syria.

They are taking part in a rebel offensive that is squeezing the Syrian army around the city of Dera'a. Military analysts say the fight is one of the most strategically important battles in Syria's civil war, because Dera'a, close to Damascus, is President Bashar Assad's stronghold in the southwest.

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Sports
3:38 am
Thu September 26, 2013

NBA Rookie Wants To Bring Hope To Greece, And To Milwaukee

Milwaukee Bucks first-round draft pick Giannis Antetokounmpo speaks at a news conference in Milwaukee on June 28.
Morry Gash AP

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 6:48 pm

Just a few months ago, most Greeks had never heard of a teenager named Giannis Antetokounmpo.

At 6-foot-9, the baby-faced athlete was the towering star of a minor-league basketball team in an Athens suburb. Born in Greece to a Nigerian soccer player and a high-jumper, he was raised and educated in Athens. He only received his citizenship this May.

And then, on June 27 in New York, NBA commissioner David Stern announced that the Milwaukee Bucks had used the 15th pick in the first round of the NBA draft to select Antetokounmpo, who recently turned 19.

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Music Interviews
2:01 am
Thu September 26, 2013

'You Can Always Come Home': Alan Jackson On Family And Bluegrass

Alan Jackson's The Bluegrass Album combines new originals with some staples of the genre.
Russ Harrington Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 11:06 am

Alan Jackson has achieved huge success in country music, but he's not above trashing his own industry. The platinum-selling star once voiced his frustration with the narrow range of country music that receives radio play by writing a spot-on parody — "Three Minute Positive Not Too Country Up-Tempo Love Song" — that hit all the mainstream marks on the nose.

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The Two-Way
7:48 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

'Birdie Africa,' Child Icon Of 1985 Philly MOVE Bombing, Dies

Michael Moses Ward speaks to reporters outside the federal courthouse in Philadelphia.
H. Rumph Jr. AP

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 8:28 pm

Michael Ward, one of only two survivors of the MOVE bombing in Philadelphia, died on Friday.

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It's All Politics
6:30 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Countdown To Shutdown: The Ted Cruz Show Comes To A Close

Democratic Sens. Harry Reid of Nevada and Debbie Stabenow of Michigan visited with mothers and babies at a Capitol Hill Obamacare event Wednesday.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 7:08 pm

Wednesday's Highlights

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz ended his marathon Senate floor speech at noon when his appointed time ran out.

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The Two-Way
6:14 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

iPhone Map Leads To The Tarmac At Fairbanks Airport

You might think twice about using your iPhone's map app if you're trying to reach the Fairbanks International Airport, unless you want to end up on the runway.

As The Alaska Dispatch reports:

"[The] directions take you on a turn-by-turn route to Taxiway Bravo. From there, it's a direct shot across the main runway to the terminal.

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Middle East
6:03 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Despite Iran's Charm Offensive, Is Containment The Best Policy?

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Are there real prospects for a new relationship with Iran? The Iranian President Hasan Rouhani addressed the U.N. General Assembly yesterday. He's made an appearance on CNN. But what has to happen next to address and conceivably resolve the contentious issues between Washington and Tehran? Well, Kenneth Pollack, a former intelligence analyst, argues in a new book in favor of a policy of containing Iran.

He's in Portland, Oregon today and he joins us from there. Welcome to the program once again.

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Africa
6:03 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Investigation Continues After Nairobi Mall Siege

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel. A day after the four-day siege at the Nairobi mall, Kenyans are counting their losses. A premiere mall, a symbol of Kenya's rising economy, is in shambles. The death toll stands at 71, but it's feared to be far higher than that. And there are also worries that terrorists who escaped from this siege are planning another attack.

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Code Switch
5:46 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Ancient Jewish Tradition Meets Contemporary Design

Sukkah City finalists spread out across New York City's Union Square Park in 2010.
Babak Bryan BanG Studio

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 6:07 pm

At Georgetown University this week, an outdoor religious display looks more like a public art installation than a commandment from the Torah, Judaism's holy book.

First, the basics: It's called a sukkah, a temporary dwelling — translated from Hebrew as a "booth" — where observant Jews traditionally eat and sleep during the weeklong harvest holiday of Sukkot.

The holiday, which began the night of Sept. 18, also pays homage to the 40 years during which the Israelites wandered in the desert, living in temporary structures.

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The Two-Way
5:34 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

State Department Renews Global Terrorism Alert

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 6:55 pm

The U.S. State Department has renewed its global terror alert, following the attack in Nairobi, Kenya, by a group claiming to be part of the Somalia-based al-Shabab.

Because of the "continuing threat of terrorist actions and violence" toward Americans, the State Department said, U.S. citizens should "maintain a high level of vigilance."

The department adds:

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Asia
5:30 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Concerns Growing Over North Korea's Nuclear Program

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 6:03 pm

Robert Siegel talks to Joshua Pollack, a consultant to the US government, about concerns that North Korea has or could soon have the tools to make the centrifuges to enrich the uranium to make the atomic weapons without having to import key elements in the process. Pollack studies arms control, proliferation, deterrence, intelligence, and regional security affairs. He also writes for the blog Arms Control Wonk.

It's All Politics
5:11 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

A Tale Of Two Talks: Ted Cruz Outlasts Rand Paul By 8 Hours

Republican Sen. Ted Cruz speaks to the media Wednesday after delivering a marathon Senate floor speech.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 6:23 pm

OK, so it wasn't a real filibuster, as no Senate action was actually blocked or delayed. But Texas Republican Ted Cruz's talk-fest did succeed in one key measure: duration.

At 21 hours and 19 minutes, Cruz held the Senate floor 8 hours and 27 minutes longer than Kentucky Republican Rand Paul did in March when he staged an actual filibuster over the country's drone policy.

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Music
4:55 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Rokia Traoré On Taking Up Music, And Mali's 'Iron Women'

Rokia Traoré's latest album is titled Beautiful Africa.
Mathieu Zazzo Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 7:40 pm

When war broke out in the West African nation of Mali last year, one of the targets was that country's ancient music tradition. As Islamist rebels occupied northern Mali, they banned music and shut down clubs and record shops.

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The Two-Way
4:52 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Oracle Team USA Defeats New Zealand, Keeps The America's Cup

Oracle Team USA skippered by James Spithill celebrates after defending the cup as they beat Emirates Team New Zealand in the final race on Wednesday.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 10:13 am

Oracle Team USA has successfully defended the America's Cup, leaving challenger New Zealand in its wake off San Francisco after clawing back from a seven-race deficit in one of the most spectacular comebacks in yachting history.

A week ago, it looked to be all over for the U.S., with the Kiwis having built a seemingly unassailable lead and poised at one race away from taking the Auld Mug back to New Zealand.

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Live At The Village Vanguard
4:44 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Ravi Coltrane Quartet: Live At The Village Vanguard

Ravi Coltrane.
John Rogers for NPR johnrogersnyc.com

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 10:10 am

After releasing his latest album, last year's Spirit Fiction, saxophonist Ravi Coltrane put his decade-old quartet on hiatus, and has now assembled a new group. Had John Coltrane lived to see his son grow up, he might have told Ravi about how his own "classic quartet" broke up; he'd begun to incorporate new voices (including Ravi's mother Alice Coltrane) by the time his new band recorded live at the Village Vanguard in 1966.

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