NPR News

U.S.
3:37 am
Fri August 1, 2014

Assessing Obama's Foreign Policy After A Week Of Crises

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Strange News
3:30 am
Fri August 1, 2014

Syracuse Researchers Melt Rock, Grill A Steak Over Magma

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

National Security
3:03 am
Fri August 1, 2014

Inquiry Shows CIA Spied On Senate Panel That Was Investigating The Agency

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Movie Interviews
3:00 am
Fri August 1, 2014

'Guardians' Director: This Movie Needed Me!

A raccoon and an anthropomorphic tree are among the unlikely band of galactic guardians that Marvel hopes will make its next big franchise.
Marvel

Marvel's cinematic universe of superheroes has become one of the most successful movie franchises ever. So it's easy to forget that less than a decade ago, Iron Man and Captain America weren't even on the radar of many filmgoers.

Now, Marvel's pinning its summer blockbuster hopes on an outer-space misadventure that features heroes from one of its more obscure comic book titles: Guardians of the Galaxy. They're hoping to create a Star Wars-scale epic — with a director who's never directed anything this big: James Gunn.

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Business
3:00 am
Fri August 1, 2014

Tensions Stir At EPA Hearings On New Emission Rules

Some 5,000 union members, led by the United Mine Workers of America, march outside the William S. Moorhead Federal Building on Thursday, during the first of two days of public hearings being held by the Environmental Protection Agency in Pittsburgh to discuss stricter pollution rules for coal-burning power plants proposed by the EPA.
Gene J. Puskar AP

The coal industry made its presence known in Pittsburgh this week for public hearings on President Obama's controversial plan to address climate change. A key element is rules the Environmental Protection Agency proposed in June. They would cut greenhouse gas emissions — chiefly carbon dioxide — from existing power plants. The national goal is 30 percent by 2030, based on 2005 levels.

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Iraq
3:00 am
Fri August 1, 2014

Using Water As A Weapon In The Fight To Control Iraq

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The Two-Way
6:34 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Ebola Patient Will Be Treated In Atlanta Hospital

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 7:31 pm

An isolation unit at Emory University's hospital in Atlanta will be used in the coming days to house and treat a patient infected with Ebola, the virus that has killed more than 700 people in a recent outbreak in West Africa.

Announcing the pending transfer of the patient Thursday, Emory, which like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is based in Atlanta, issued a statement saying it will use "a specially built isolation unit set up in collaboration with the CDC to treat patients who are exposed to certain serious infectious diseases."

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The Two-Way
5:07 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Most Of California Reported To Be In 'Extreme Drought'

A dried-out lawn is seen in the city of Glendora, east of Los Angeles, this week. About 58 percent of California is now under the most extreme drought conditions, a new report says.
Frederic J. Brown AFP/Getty Images

The latest Drought Monitor report from U.S. agriculture and weather experts finds 58 percent of California in the worst of its four drought levels, in conditions normally seen only once every 50-100 years.

For our Newscast unit, Nathan Rott reports:

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The Two-Way
4:20 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Israel And Hamas Agree To 3-Day Cease-Fire, U.N. Says

Flares light up the night sky over Gaza City early Friday, Aug. 1. Leaders of Hamas and Israel have agreed to begin a cease-fire Friday at 8 a.m. local time, the U.N. says.
Dusan Vranic AP

Originally published on Fri August 1, 2014 12:05 am

A temporary peace will begin Friday morning in Gaza, as Israel and Hamas agree to an "unconditional humanitarian ceasefire," according to a statement by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Secretary of State John Kerry.

The truce is set to begin at 8 a.m. local time Friday and last for 72 hours. U.N. Special Coordinator Robert Serry says he's been assured by officials from both Israel and Hamas that they will abide by the truce. The envoys will also travel to Cairo to negotiate a possible longer peace deal, in talks hosted by Egypt.

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Goats and Soda
4:19 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

As Ebola Surges, CDC Sends Aid And Warns Against Travel

Red Cross volunteers prepare to bury the body of an Ebola victim in Pendembu, Sierra Leone, early this month.
Tommy Trenchard for NPR

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 4:44 pm

For the second time this week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has raised the travel alert for three West African countries, as the death toll in the Ebola outbreak increased at an alarming rate.

"The bottom line is that the multiple outbreaks in West Africa are worsening right now," CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden told NPR on Thursday. "This is the biggest, most complex and the most difficult outbreak of Ebola that we've had to deal with."

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Around the Nation
4:03 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Three Years On, Utah's Immigrant Guest Worker Law Still Stalled

This statue is located in Utah's Capitol building, beneath a mural of Brigham Young and the first Mormon pioneers traveling out west. "Utah is a place that understands the value of immigration," says Utah's speaker of the House, Becky Lockhart.
Kirk Siegler NPR

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 6:28 pm

At the Utah State Capitol, a mural of Brigham Young and the first Mormon pioneers brings some color to the building's spartan rotunda. Beneath it is a more modern sculpture — a woman walking forward with her son, who's holding a globe.

Underneath the statue are the words "Immigration and Settlement." The symbolism isn't lost on state House Speaker Becky Lockhart.

"Utah is a place that understands the value of immigration, the value of peoples coming to find a better life," she says, pointing up at the sculpture.

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The Salt
3:45 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

When China Spurns GMO Corn Imports, American Farmers Lose Billions

A corn purchaser writes on his account in northwest China in 2012. In November 2013, officials began rejecting imports of U.S. corn when they detected traces of a new gene not yet approved in China.
Peng Zhaozhi Xinhua/Landov

For a while there, China was the American farmer's best friend. The world's most populous nation had so many pigs and chickens to feed, it became one of the top importers of U.S. corn and soybeans almost overnight.

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Global Health
3:03 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Sierra Leone Declares Quarantine, As Ebola Outbreak Worsens

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 6:07 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Music News
3:03 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Making The Label Matter: A Record Company's Return From Obscurity

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 6:07 pm

Today, there's so much music being released that it can be hard to know what to check out, let alone buy. Mark Rye says that when he worked at a record label in the 1970s, the process was easier — in part because you could often guess what a record would sound like if you knew who released it.

"At that time, it was very much an identifier for the kind of music," he says. "So you would go into a record shop and you would look for what the new releases on certain labels were because those records were probably the kind of music that you would like."

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NPR Story
2:30 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Wisconsin's Collective Bargaining Limits Survive Legal Challenges

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 6:07 pm

Wisconsin's Supreme Court has upheld Governor Scott Walker's signature law restricting public employee union bargaining rights. The law has already been upheld twice in federal court, but, as Wisconsin Public Radio's Shawn Johnson reports, the new decision in state court effectively ends legal challenges to the law.

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Middle East
2:26 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

On Either Side Of Gaza, Leaders' Gain Support — But Blame Game Awaits

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 7:19 pm

Nearly a month into the war in Gaza, pollsters have been taking a look at how attitudes in the region have changed among Israelis and Palestinians. For more on the changes to public opinion, Ari Shapiro speaks with Camil Fuchs of Tel Aviv University and Khalil Shikaki of the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research in Ramallah.

Shots - Health News
2:20 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Amid Smoking Decline, Look Who's Still Lighting Up

Tobacco giant Reynolds American is buying Lorillard and acquiring Newport, a popular menthol cigarette. In a shrinking market, Newport is one of the few U.S. brands gaining market share. It is particularly popular among African-American smokers.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 6:07 pm

Robin Koval is making a career of her changed tobacco habit.

"I'm a child of a smoker — my father was a heavy smoker," Koval says. "Really typical to the way the story goes, I started smoking when I was 15."

Now she is president and CEO of Legacy, a foundation devoted to preventing tobacco use.

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Politics
2:15 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

With Prosecutors Circling, Ethics Questions Get Serious For N.Y. Governor

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is surrounded by the media in Freeport, N.Y., on Wednesday, Cuomo was on Long Island to announce a new program to help victims of Superstorm Sandy but ended up fielding questions about the Moreland Commission.
Frank Eltman AP

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 6:07 pm

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo swept into office promising to clean up a state government so corrupt he once described it as "a joke." But now Cuomo himself has become the punch line, facing scrutiny over reports that his administration interfered with its own anti-corruption commission.

"Basically, Cuomo formed a commission promising you could even look at me. And then when they looked at him, he said, you looking at me?" joked Jon Stewart, summing up the scandal for The Daily Show.

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Economy
2:15 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

In Debt Duel, It Was Argentina V. Paul Singer

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 6:07 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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U.S.
2:15 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

In Obama's Foreign Policy, Some See Patience; Some See Passivity

President Obama announced new economic sanctions against Russia at the White House on Tuesday.
Manuel Balce Ceneta AP

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 6:07 pm

A new Washington Post-ABC poll shows fewer than half of Americans approve of the way President Obama is handling international affairs.

But the president's grade on foreign policy has actually improved slightly since the beginning of summer, even as crises around the globe have multiplied. And Obama says he's confident in his strategic approach, even as he cautions that there are no quick fixes.

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National Security
2:15 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

CIA Director Apologizes For Meddling In Senate Computers

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 6:07 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Politics
2:15 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Facing Conservative Opposition, House Republicans Nix Border Bill Vote

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 6:07 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Ari Shapiro.

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Europe
2:15 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

To Understand Putin's Policy, Dissect The Kremlin's Inner Circles

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 6:07 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Politics
2:15 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Facing A Mass-Mailing Deadline, Lawmakers Get Frank Fast

Members of Congress are racing to take advantage of "franking" privileges, which allow them to replace postage with their signature. They are not allowed to use franking within 90 days of an election.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 6:07 pm

Members of Congress face a deadline next Thursday — 90 days before the election — to put constituent newsletters in the mail. Carefully timing the mailings is just one fillip in the fine art of congressional communications, especially those that might suggest campaign messages.

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Law
2:15 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Star Witness Steps Up To The Stand In McDonnell's Corruption Trial

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 6:07 pm

The corruption trial of former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell continues to unfold in Richmond. The prosecution's feature witness, Star Scientific chief executive Jonnie Williams, testified Thursday against McDonnell and his wife, Maureen. Jeff Schapiro has helped in the Richmond Times-Dispatch coverage of the trial, and he speaks with Ari Shapiro.

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The Two-Way
1:56 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Israel Allowed To Tap U.S. Munitions Cache For Gaza Offensive

An Israeli Merkava tank near the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip border in southern Israel, on Thursday. The Pentagon confirms that Israel tapped a U.S. weapons stockpile for tank rounds.
Debbie Hill UPI/Landov

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 3:52 pm

Updated at 5:20 p.m. ET.

The Pentagon has confirmed that Israel was given permission last week to dip into a little-known U.S. munitions stockpile to draw tank shells and illumination rounds for its ongoing offensive in the Gaza Strip.

NPR's Tom Bowman reports that the billion-dollar U.S. "emergency" stockpile, based on Israeli soil, was established in the 1980s as part of an agreement of expanded cooperation between the two nations.

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The Two-Way
1:21 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

House Cancels Vote On $659 Million Border Security Bill

Texas Parks and Wildlife wardens patrol the Rio Grande on the U.S.-Mexico border in Mission, Texas, earlier this month.
Eric Gay AP

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 6:54 pm

Updated at 8:50 p.m. ET.

House GOP leaders pulled the plug on a $659 million bill to deal with the influx of tens of thousands of unaccompanied minors entering the U.S. from Central America.

The vote on the legislation had been scheduled for this afternoon on the final day before the start of a five-week summer break for Congress.

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Africa
1:13 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Kidnapping Is A Lucrative Business For Al-Qaida, Documents Show

A neighborhood resident walks through a building in Timbuktu, used by al-Qaida-linked jihadi fighters for more than a year. Last year, The Associated Press found al-Qaida documents in the building.
Rukmini Callimachi AP

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 3:39 pm

A recent report by journalist Rukmini Callimachi details al-Qaida's strategy of kidnapping Europeans and demanding large ransoms — and how those ransoms are a key source of funding for al-Qaida operations.

"Europe is funneling these enormous sums of money to al-Qaida," Callimachi, a foreign correspondent with The New York Times, tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "They're reluctantly and unwillingly becoming al-Qaida's main patron."

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The Two-Way
12:50 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Kentucky Buoys Noah's Ark Park With Millions In New Tax Breaks

Mike Zovath, co-founder of Answers in Genesis ministries, poses for photos at the Ark Encounter headquarters, in 2011. Kentucky has granted the project tens of millions in tax incentives.
Dylan Lovan AP

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 3:10 pm

Updated at 4:40 p.m. ET.

Kentucky has approved $18 million in new tax breaks for a controversial Christian theme park that is to feature a 510-foot-long replica of Noah's Ark.

Maryanne Zeleznik of member station WVXU in Cincinnati reports that the Kentucky Tourism Development Finance Board voted unanimously on Tuesday to approve the incentives for the Ark Encounter, to be built in Williamstown. The legislature must still OK the plan.

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NPR Story
12:36 pm
Thu July 31, 2014

Widow Of American Ebola Victim Speaks Out

Decontee Sawyer, wife of Liberian government official Patrick Sawyer, a U.S. citizen who died from Ebola after traveling from Liberia to Nigeria, cradles her 1-year-old daughter Bella at her home in Coon Rapids, Minn., Tuesday, July 29 (Craig Lassig/AP).

Originally published on Thu July 31, 2014 1:08 pm

The Ebola outbreak that’s killed more than 670 people in West Africa has hit too close to home for some Americans.

Decontee Sawyer lives in Minnesota, which is home to Liberia’s largest diaspora community. Her husband, a Liberian government official, recently contracted the virus in Liberia and became the first American to die from Ebola in this outbreak.

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