The U.S. and the international community have pledged $16 billion to support Afghan security forces after NATO troops complete their drawdown at the end of 2014. That money covers the cost of troops and equipment.
But just what equipment will be provided? Afghan military officials want big-ticket planes, tanks and other conventional weapons.
The U.S., however, says the Afghans need to get their strategic priorities in order, and focus less on prestige hardware and more on weaponry and equipment suitable for counterinsurgency warfare.
A Tunisian protester jumps amid smoke after police fired tear gas during a rally outside the Interior ministry to protest after Tunisian opposition leader and outspoken government critic Chokri Belaid was shot dead.
Originally published on Wed February 6, 2013 2:29 pm
Update at 2:25 p.m. ET. It's Official:
Praising Sally Jewell as an executive who turned outdoors equipment retailer REI into one of the nation's most successful and environmentally conscious companies, President Obama just said he is nominating her to be his next interior secretary.
Noting that Jewell, who in a previous job worked as an engineer for Mobil, has also climbed mountains in Antarctica, the president joked about that being "just not something I think of doing."
fifteen-year-old Malala Yousefzai relaxes. The Pakistani girl shot by the Taliban on Oct. 9 2012 has made her first video statement since she was nearly killed, released Monday, saying she is recovering.
Credit Courtesy of Malala Yousefzai / AP
Essie Mae Washington-Williams is the biracial daughter of the late Sen. Strom Thurmond, R-S.C. She passed away February 4, 2013.
Finally today I want to talk about - and I want you to hear - the voices of two women: one who is really at the beginning of her life, one whose life has just come to its end. One I had the privilege to meet. One I have not — at least not yet. But they are both women who stand for something.
Originally published on Wed February 6, 2013 1:30 pm
Business leaders involved in homebuilding, oil drilling or automaking are happy about the way 2013 has kicked off. Lower- and middle-income consumers, on the other hand, are feeling like the year has kicked them in the head.
"Consumers have not rebounded with the arrival of the new year," says Ed Farrell, director of consumer insight at the Consumer Reports National Research Center. "Middle-income Americans were particularly hard hit this month and appear to be losing ground."
Originally published on Fri February 8, 2013 8:41 pm
Joy can blindside you in the smallest, most unexpected moments. That's what happened when I watched this new video from Delaware's Spinto Band, for the song "What I Love." As a miniature paper cut-out of a gymnast dances and tumbles across a colorful breakfast table, I found myself filled with pure bliss.
A spiky, upright piano and bouncing rhythms from The Spinto Band propel the tiny dancer through her routine. Suddenly, something as mundane as drinking coffee and eating cereal seem like cause for celebration.
Singer-songwriter John Fullbright makes his first appearance on Mountain Stage here, recorded live in Bristol, Tenn./Va. Though barely 25, Fullbright is frequently compared to a fellow native of his Oklahoma hometown of Okemah: Woody Guthrie. And, though Fullbright is a veteran of countless festivals, fairs and conferences, he's only recently recorded his first full-length studio album, From the Ground Up.
Originally published on Wed February 6, 2013 2:42 pm
Author and teacher Essie Mae Washington-Williams died in Columbia, S.C. according to her family attorney, Frank Wheaton. Washington-Williams, who was African-American, came to attention in 2003, when she publicly disclosed her father's name: the late Sen. Strom Thurmond, (R-S.C.), a one-time devoted segregationist.
You're in the car, cruising along the highway and thinking about that great Morning Edition piece you heard today, when you wonder, "Was that the NPR logo on that billboard?" If you are in San Diego, Dallas/Ft. Worth, Indianapolis, or Orlando – it just might have been.
Between January and April, NPR and Member Stations KPBS, KERA, WFYI, and WMFE are testing out a new visibility campaign that may eventually go nationwide.
Monopoly players, your game will never be the same. Hasbro, which has been making the for some 80 years, is retiring a game piece. The iron will no longer be passing Go or stopping at Park Place. The company ran a Save Your Token campaign, and only eight percent of respondents fought for the iron. The winner? That little Scottie dog, who may prefer the old iron to the token replacing it - a cat - though players using the cat may get nine chances to win.
A Tunisian politician received death threats in recent days. Chokri Belaid was in a high-profile position. He was among the leaders of a group of politicians urging Tunisia to remain a secular state. That brought him into conflict with religious parties. Despite the death threats, his family says Belaid refused to limit his activities, and as he left home this morning someone shot and killed him.
From Swift to Orwell, political satire has played a major role in the history of European fiction. Much of it takes on an allegorical cast, but not all. The Fall of the Stone City, an incisive, biting work by Ismail Kadare — one of Europe's reigning fiction masters — refines our understanding of satire's nature. Kadare's instructive and delightful book takes us from the 1943 Nazi occupation of a provincial Albanian town, the ancient stone city of Gjirokaster, to the consolidation of communist rule there a decade later.
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.
STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:
And I'm Steve Inskeep. It's still hard to believe that Japan and China could ever go to war over a few specks of land in the East China Sea, but here's a reminder of how easily war could come. Japan has disclosed that one of its navy ships was recently targeted by the radar off a Chinese navy ship. That form of radar is used for targeting weapons.
Investigators in Ireland have been pursuing an excruciating question: It is how women came to be stuck in a modern day workhouse. That's a kind of forced labor camp we associate with some earlier age, yet these Irish facilities persisted almost until the end of the 20th century.
NPR's Philip Reeves reports on what an investigative panel calls secrecy, silence and shame.