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On Friday, the Rosetta spacecraft will smack into the icy surface of the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko and go silent. Scientists with the historic mission are wondering how they'll feel as the orbiter makes its death-dive toward the comet that's been its traveling companion for more than two years.

Hundreds of people marched through the streets of El Cajon, Calif., on Wednesday night, protesting the police shooting of an unarmed black man on Tuesday.

A 911 caller had reported that her brother was acting erratically and walking into traffic. She told police that he was mentally ill and unarmed, Andrew Bowen of member station KPBS reports.

It took nearly an hour for police to arrive on the scene. About a minute after they arrived, one of them shot Andrew Olango, The Associated Press reports.

Asked to name his favorite foreign leader, or any foreign leader he admires, Libertarian nominee for president Gary Johnson was unable to come up with an answer.

The exchange occurred on an MSNBC town hall hosted by Chris Matthews Wednesday night.

When Johnson hesitated at the initial question, Matthews said, "Go ahead, you gotta do this. Anywhere. Any continent. Canada, Mexico, Europe, over there, Asia, South America, Africa. Name a foreign leader that you respect."

It continued:

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Researchers trying to understand diseases and find new ways to treat them are running into a serious problem in their labs: One of the most commonly used tools often produces spurious results. More than 100 influential scientists met in California this week and agreed on a strategy to address the troubling issue.

Cup Noodles, the dorm-room staple that cooks in three minutes, turns 45 this month. There's no better place to celebrate than its very own museum in Yokohama, Japan.

"This is the museum that really honors the creator of instant ramen and Cup Noodles," says museum manager Yuya Ichikawa, who leads me on a tour.

When the test scores came out, Lucas Siqueira, 27, was really excited. His high mark on the Foreign Service exam earned him a coveted position at Brazil's highly competitive Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

"They hire 30 diplomats a year and thousands of people sign up," he says in fluent English from his home in the capital Brasilia.

It was, he says, a great day.

Siqueira considers himself to be mixed race, known in Brazil as pardo, or brown.

Americans are seeing more homeless camps, especially on the West Coast. A number of cities there have declared emergencies over the problem, and as they struggle to find solutions, an angry debate has broken out about how much tolerance should be shown to illegal camps that crop up in public spaces.

In the summer of 1936, a plain and sturdy farm woman from southern Minnesota traveled to New York to meet the mayor, stay at the Waldorf, dine at the Stork Club and make headlines in every major newspaper.

That woman was Susan Eisele, my grandmother, who Country Home magazine selected — out of 4,000 entrants — as its "Rural Correspondent of the Year."

The award came with a $200 prize and a two-week trip to New York and Washington.

District Court Judge Alisa Hadfield declined Wednesday to drop the second-degree murder charges against two former Albuquerque police officers who shot and killed homeless camper James Boyd in 2014. But she did drop voluntary manslaughter charges, leaving jurors with fewer options for their verdict.

The Day Shimon Peres Returned To His Boyhood Village

11 hours ago

In 1992, just months after the Soviet Union collapsed, Shimon Peres walked through a small town graveyard in Volozhon, overrun by weeds, searching for a tombstone with Hebrew writing on it in the newly independent state of Belarus.

Peres, who died Tuesday, was Israel's foreign minister at the time. He was looking for the graves of his relatives, as well as his boyhood home.

California Gov. Jerry Brown has signed a bill that ends a statute of limitations on prosecuting rape cases.

The bill is widely believed to be inspired by allegations against comedian Bill Cosby, after some of his accusers came forward long after the alleged sexual assaults took place. Cosby has repeatedly denied the allegations.

Soap opera pioneer Agnes Nixon, who created All My Children and One Life to Live, has died at the age of 93. She is known for highlighted challenging and taboo social issues through daytime television.

Her son Bob Nixon told The Associated Press that she died at a physical rehabilitation facility in Haverford, Pa.

California's state treasurer has announced he is suspending major parts of the state's business relationship with Wells Fargo because of a scandal involving unauthorized customer accounts.

In a letter to Wells Fargo, John Chiang asked, "how can I continue to entrust the public's money to an organization which has shown such little regard for the legions of Californians who have placed their well-being in its care?"

Artificial intelligence is one of those tech terms that seems to inevitably conjure up images (and jokes) of computer overlords running sci-fi dystopias — or, more recently, robots taking over human jobs.

But AI is already here: It's powering your voice-activated digital personal assistants and Web searches, guiding automated features on your car and translating foreign texts, detecting your friends in photos you post on social media and filtering your spam.

A new study of violent behavior in more than 1,000 mammal species found the meerkat is the mammal most likely to be murdered by one of its own kind.

The study, led by José María Gómez of the University of Grenada in Spain and published Wednesday in the journal Nature, analyzed more than 4 million deaths among 1,024 mammal species and compared them with findings in 600 studies of violence among humans from ancient times until today.

The findings tell us two things:

U.S Secretary of Defense Ash Carter said the U.S. has agreed to send an additional 600 troops to Iraq, in anticipation of the major upcoming operation to retake the Islamic State-held city of Mosul.

These additional troops "will increase the number of U.S. forces in Iraq to around 5,000," NPR's Tom Bowman told our Newscast unit. American troop levels in Iraq peaked at 170,000 in November 2007.

Life changed as Sadiik Yusuf knew it about two years ago, when the FBI appeared at his front door in Minneapolis to tell him his son Abdullahi had been stopped at the airport, suspected of trying to board a flight that would take him to Syria to fight with ISIS.

It's believed to be a first — and it certainly came as a surprise: Ancient Roman coins have been found in the ruins of a castle in Okinawa, Japan, that dates to the 12th and 15th centuries. The copper coins were found in 2013; X-ray analysis shows that they bear an image of Constantine the Great.

On Tuesday, after a less-than-stellar debate performance, Donald Trump returned to using one of his favorite measurements to mask his missteps on Monday night — the polls.

After nearly seven months of bickering and finger-pointing, Congress on Wednesday agreed to allocate $1.1 billion to help fight the spread and effects of the Zika virus.

The deal is part of a broader agreement to continue to fund the government after the fiscal year ends on Friday and the current budget expires.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit NPR.

This summer one of the largest birds in North America suddenly showed up in Washington state’s Puget Sound.

Squadrons of white pelicans have set area birders atwitter. They’re trying to figure out where the birds came from and what their arrival means.

While this rare sighting has been fun for bird watchers, Katie Campbell from Here & Now contributor Earthfix reports on why it may not be a good thing for the pelicans.

The newest Doritos have little flavor, no flashy color, minimal crunch and dull gray packaging. The kind of snack, essentially, that no one would choose.

And that, according to executives at Frito-Lay, is exactly the point.

The new chips are part of a campaign with Rock the Vote to boost voter registration among college students. Special vending machines placed on college campuses will be asking snackers whether they’ve registered to vote.

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