NPR News

The Two-Way
3:37 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Obama Declares Emergency As Huge Fires Burn In Washington State

A burned-out car sits in front of a ruined house in this photo taken Sunday near Pateros, Wash. Large fires have destroyed hundreds of homes in the state this month.
Stephen Brashear Getty Images

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 3:57 pm

Fires are still raging in Washington state, where officials hope rain might help them contain the large fires — but there's also a chance that heavy rainfall could trigger flooding and mudslides.

Fire crews have been battling several major fires in central and eastern Washington for the past two weeks. The blazes have destroyed hundreds of homes and caused wide power outages.

Read more
It's All Politics
3:35 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Insurance For Fake Identities The Latest Skirmish Over Obamacare

Investigators were able to fraudulently sign up for coverage through HealthCare.gov, sparking criticism from Republican lawmakers.
J. David Ake AP

House Republicans went on the attack Wednesday over what they say is the latest bungling of the Affordable Care Act: fake identities used to get insurance.

Undercover investigators were able to get taxpayer-subsidized health insurance from the government's website 11 out of the 18 times they tried, according to a preliminary report from the Government Accountability Office.

Republicans on the Oversight Subcommittee of the House Ways and Means Committee say fraud and abuse will be rampant and may already be.

Democrats question all the fuss.

Read more
The Salt
3:17 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Summer Program For Hungry Kids Gets Creative With Food Delivery

Logan Kovach, 6, Matthew Kovach, 2, and Allyson Kovach, 5, eat a lunch distributed by the YMCA in Hopkins County, Kentucky.
Pam Fessler NPR

More than 21 million children get free or reduced priced meals during the school year. But in the summer, that number drops to only three million.

The big question is what happens to all the other children. Do they get enough, and the right food, to eat?

Read more
Parallels
3:14 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Common Ground Between Iraq's Rebels May Be Crumbling

People walk by a damaged police station in Mosul on July 15. The militants of the Islamic State are in control of the key city and have acted against former members of Saddam Hussein's regime who helped them drive out the Iraqi army last month.
AP

Abu Wissam speaks to us by phone from the northern Iraqi city of Mosul. He asks us to use his nickname to protect him, his family and his missing father before he recounts his father's kidnapping.

The men came on evening of July 3, just before Abu Wissam's family was preparing to break their day-long fast during the holy month of Ramadan.

"There were seven of them and before I knew it they were in our kitchen," he says.

Read more
Shots - Health News
2:52 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Federal Health Exchange Stays Busy After Open Enrollment Ends

Even after the open enrollment deadline, HealthCare.gov remained a popular destination.
J. David Ake AP

For months, journalists and politicians fixated on the number of people signing up for health insurance through the federal exchange created as part of the Affordable Care Act. It turned out that more than 5 million people signed up using HealthCare.gov by April 19.

But perhaps more surprising is that, according to federal data released Wednesday to ProPublica, there have been nearly 1 million transactions on the exchange since then. People are allowed to sign up and switch plans after certain life events, such as job changes, moves, the birth of a baby, marriages and divorces.

Read more
Music
2:44 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Finding The Anthropology In Latin Dance Music

Jorge Drexler's new album, Bailar en la Cueva, ventures into new territory for him: dance rhythms.
Thomas Canet Courtesy of the artist

Jorge Drexler's songs have been called introspective and literate. He's been compared to Paul Simon. But a couple years ago, the Uruguayan musician began to wonder what it would take to write dance-oriented music. That's the assignment he gave himself on his latest album, Bailar en la Cueva, or "dancing in the cave."

Read more
From Our Listeners
2:23 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Confusion With A Chance Of Clarity: Your Weather Questions, Answered

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 3:34 pm

Many listeners and readers felt a concise explanation of "a 20 percent chance of rain" was missing from this story about weather forecasts and probability, so we followed up with two meteorologists.

From meterologist Eli Jacks, of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Weather Service:

Read more
Goats and Soda
2:18 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

A Doctor Leading The Fight Against Ebola Has Caught The Virus

Dr. Sheik Umar Khan, 39, who has treated more than 100 Ebola patients in Sierra Leone, has now been infected with the deadly virus.
Umaru Fofana Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 3:13 pm

In the past several months, Dr. Sheik Umar Khan has been a leader in the fight against the deadliest and largest Ebola outbreak in history.

Khan, 39, has treated over 100 Ebola patients in Sierra Leone. He's a "national hero," the country's health minister said Tuesday.

Read more
Middle East
2:16 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

'Tahrir Harassment' Trials End In Sexual Assault Convictions

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 2:45 pm

Sexual assault convictions have been handed down to some Egyptian men, after several women were attacked during celebrations for incoming President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. Audie Cornish speaks with freelance journalist Nadine Marroushi about the verdicts.

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

Around the Nation
2:13 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

N.Y. Man's Death Prompts Police Introspection On Use Of Force

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 2:46 pm

Funeral services are being held for Eric Garner, a New York City man who died in police custody last week in Staten Island. A video of the incident shows one officer using an apparent chokehold on Garner before he died. The incident is prompting the New York Police Department to rethink how it trains all its officers in the use of force.

Middle East
2:08 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Kerry Claims Progress In Gaza Cease-Fire Talks

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

Education
2:08 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Glenn Beck Takes His Campaign Against Common Core To The Big Screen

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

Around the Nation
2:08 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Faced With Undocumented Minors, Iowa Is Wrenched By Stark Divide

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 2:47 pm

Although the governor of Iowa says that unaccompanied minors from Central America should not find shelter in his state, more than 100 are already there. But the mayor of Des Moines, the state's largest city, and many religious leaders are at odds with the governor. They say Iowa should be welcoming and help children in need.

Parallels
1:35 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Palestinian's Death Provokes Israeli Debate On Defining Terrorism

Hussein Abu Khdeir (left), father of slain Palestinian teenager Mohammed Abu Khdeir, holds a photo of his son as he meets with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank earlier this month. Israel has charged three Jewish Israelis with the killing and ruled that it was a terrorist attack. This has drawn criticism from some in Israel.
Mohamad Torokman AP

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 2:29 pm

Shortly before the Israel-Hamas fighting began in Gaza earlier this month, two separate killings ratcheted up tensions.

First, three Israeli teenagers were killed, allegedly by Hamas in the West Bank. Israel has arrested many Palestinians, but says it is still searching for the main suspects in the deaths of Naftali Frenkel, 16, Gilad Shaar, 16, and Eyal Yifrach, 19.

Read more
NPR Story
12:49 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Netherlands Mourns As Crash Victims' Bodies Arrive

A convoy of funeral hearses carrying coffins containing the remains of victims of the downed Malaysia Airlines flight MH17, drives from the Eindhoven Airbase to Hilversum on July 23, 2014. (Jerry Lampen/AFP/Getty Images)

The Dutch Safety Board says it has taken charge of the investigation into the shooting down of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 over Eastern Ukraine. The two black boxes from the airliner are reported to have arrived in Britain.

In the Netherlands, it’s a National Day of Mourning. Church bells in towns and villages across the country rang for five minutes today, just before two transport planes arrived at Eindhoven airbase, carrying the first coffins of the crash victims.

Read more
NPR Story
12:49 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Commonwealth Games Begin

An athlete trains at Hampden Park, venue for the track and field athletics ahead of the Commonwealth Games on July 23, 2014 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

Only A Game‘s Doug Tribou is in Scotland for start of the Commonwealth Games, an event that takes place every four years.

About 4,500 athletes from 71 nations and territories will fiercely compete for medals in 17 sports. The competition seeks to unify the Commonwealth countries through sport, and runs through August 3rd.

Tribou joins Here & Now’s Meghna Chakrabarti with a preview of the games being held in Glasgow.

Read more
Shots - Health News
12:32 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Does Your Dog Feel Jealous, Or Is That A Purely Human Flaw?

Oh, I don't wanna share you with nothing else, I gotta have you to myself.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 3:44 pm

When you kiss your husband, does your dog try to get your attention? And does that mean that your dog feels jealous? Threatened? Or are we just imagining that?

Many if not all dog owners are sure that their pets have feelings. And we've known for a while that animals exhibit behaviors that look like jealousy, guilt and shame. But it's hard to find out what animals are really feeling. And researchers say that understanding that could give us valuable insights into human emotions, too.

Read more
Goats and Soda
12:30 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

This Aspiring Astronaut Might Be The World's Most Amazing Teen

It took 101 takes to get the right shot for Gideon Gidori's Kickstarter video. He hopes supporters will fund his flight school tuition in exchange for a secret potato salad recipe.
via Kickstarter

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 1:22 pm

At age 7, Gideon Gidori knew exactly what he wanted to be: a rocket ship pilot.

The only thing was, he was living in a tiny Tanzanian village where schools only went through grade six and books about space (or, for that matter, any books) were scarce.

But that didn't stop him. Now 15, Gidori is determined to become Tanzania's very first astronaut.

Read more
NPR Story
12:30 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

New California Football Law Tackles Brain Injuries Head-On

Central Catholic's Reggie Bland (24) in action in a California Interscholastic Federation Division 4 high school football championship game in Carson, Calif., Friday, Dec. 20, 2013. (Ringo H.W. Chiu/AP)

In a few weeks, high school football players across the country will begin training for the season to come. In California, come January 1st, those practices will be different.

Governor Jerry Brown this week signed a new law that limits full-contact drills for all teams in public and private middle and high schools. The legislation comes amid concerns about concussions and brain injuries in football.

Read more
The Two-Way
12:15 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Plane Crash In Taiwan Kills Dozens, Leaving Some Survivors

Rescue crews work on the wreckage of TransAsia Airways Flight GE222, which crashed while attempting to land in stormy weather on the Taiwanese island of Penghu, late Wednesday.
Wong Yao-wen AP

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 1:53 pm

A domestic flight in Taiwan that was attempting to land in bad weather brought on by a strong typhoon Wednesday night crashed near the runway, killing as many as 47 of the 58 people aboard, according to multiple media outlets.

About a dozen survivors have reportedly been taken to local hospitals; the plane reportedly had 54 passengers and a crew of four.

From Kuala Lumpur, NPR's Anthony Kuhn reports:

Read more
The Two-Way
11:58 am
Wed July 23, 2014

Nazi War Crimes Suspect Dies In U.S. One Day Before Extradition Order

The main gate of the Nazi concentration camp Auschwitz I in Poland, where Johann "Hans" Breyer served as a guard.
AP

A judge in Philadelphia issued an order today granting a request for a former Nazi camp guard to be extradited to Germany, but 89-year-old Johann "Hans" Breyer, who, according to his lawyer, had heart disease and dementia, died Tuesday, his lawyer told The Associated Press.

Attorney Dennis Boyle told the news agency that Breyer died Tuesday night at a Philadelphia hospital.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Thomas R. Rice said in his ruling: "There is probable cause to believe that Breyer ... is the same person sought for aiding and abetting murder in Germany."

Read more
Goats and Soda
10:36 am
Wed July 23, 2014

Legalizing Prostitution Would Protect Sex Workers From HIV

Masked Indian sex workers protest alleged police atrocities in Bangalore last year.
Manjunath Kiran AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 12:20 pm

If prostitution were legal around the world, the transmission of HIV among female sex workers would go down by at least a third, according to a paper presented at the International AIDS Conference in Melbourne, Australia.

That would be a huge step forward. "[Female] sex workers face a disproportionately large burden of HIV," the paper notes. They are 54 times more likely to be infected with HIV in their lifetime than women in the general population.

Read more
The Salt
10:16 am
Wed July 23, 2014

The Epic 2,200-Mile Tour De France Is Also A Test Of Epic Eating

Spain's Alberto Contador eats a banana in as he rides in the pack during the sixth stage of the Tour de France on July 10, 2014. The cyclists aim to eat up to 350 calories an hour as they ride, and up to 9,000 calories a day.
Laurent Cipriani AP

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 2:33 pm

The famously grueling cycling race involves about 2,200 miles of furious pedaling, huge mountain climbs and downhill sprints at 50-plus miles per hour. But the Tour de France, now in its final days, is also an epic marathon of eating.

The cyclists now competing in the 101st rendition of the race are burning an average of 700 calories per hour while riding and, to keep their weight up and maintain their health through the three-week event, they must eat 6,000 to 9,000 calories every day.

Read more
Krulwich Wonders...
10:03 am
Wed July 23, 2014

An Animal Makes A $10,000 Deposit, But Not At The Bank

Courtesy of I.M. Chait

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 12:05 pm

It's a highly specialized category to be sure: "Longest." But that's what the auctioneer is selling. According to the catalog of I.M. Chait Gallery, in Beverly Hills, "This truly spectacular specimen is possibly the longest example of coprolite ever to be offered at auction."

Read more
The Two-Way
10:00 am
Wed July 23, 2014

Ukraine Says 2 Military Jets Shot Down Over Rebel-Held Area

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 11:41 am

Less than a week after a commercial jetliner was shot down, Ukraine says two of its military planes were downed over a rebel-held area in the eastern part of the country.

Bloomberg reports:

Read more
Shots - Health News
9:44 am
Wed July 23, 2014

States Help New Mothers Get Birth Control Through Medicaid

Intrauterine devices can be used immediately after a woman has given birth to prevent future pregnancies.
iStockphoto

A woman is about to give birth. It will be her second child, and she's not looking to have a third anytime soon. She doesn't want to take birth control pills while she's breast-feeding. And condoms aren't as error-proof as she'd like.

There are a couple of alternatives that are safe, effective and could work for years: an IUD or an implant. She'll need a doctor to get those.

Read more
The Two-Way
9:01 am
Wed July 23, 2014

WATCH: Wreckage Of Costa Concordia Begins Its Final Voyage

The harbor of the Italian island of Giglio, after the wreck of the Costa Concordia was towed away. Italy's once-luxurious cruise liner embarked on its last voyage on Wednesday.
Andreas Solaro AFP/Getty Images

More than two years after the luxury liner Costa Concordia wrecked off the Italian island of Giglio, killing 32 people, its wreckage has finally begun its voyage to a salvage yard in the port of Genoa.

Read more
The Two-Way
7:01 am
Wed July 23, 2014

White House Adviser: Cease-Fire Should Include Demilitarization Of Gaza

Palestinians walk through the rubble of houses in Gaza City minutes after they were hit in an Israeli strike on Wednesday.
Khalil Hamra AP

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 11:06 am

A top White House adviser says any cease-fire agreement between Israel and Palestinians must include the demilitarization of Gaza.

In an interview with NPR's Steve Inskeep, Deputy National Security Adviser Tony Blinken said "that needs to be the end result."

"There has to be some way forward that does not involve Hamas having the ability to continue to rain down rockets on Israeli civilians," Blinken said.

Asked if this means the U.S. has endorsed Israel's demand that Hamas give up its weapons, Blinken said:

Read more
The Two-Way
6:00 am
Wed July 23, 2014

Dutch Day Of Mourning, As Remains Of Some MH17 Victims Come Home

Flowers lay on the tarmac as a ground Hercules transport aircraft of the Royal Netherlands Air Force, carrying bodies from downed Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17, prepared to take off Wednesday in Kharkiv, Ukraine.
Sergey Bobok AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 9:17 am

(This post was last updated at 10:37 a.m.)

In its first national day of mourning in more than half a century, the Netherlands came to a standstill Wednesday as the remains of some of the victims who died when Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 was downed over eastern Ukraine came home.

Two military planes landed in Eindhoven. King Willem Alexander, Queen Maxima and Prime Minister Mark Rutte, along with some family members of the dead, waited on the tarmac on a bright, clear day.

Read more
Shots - Health News
5:58 am
Wed July 23, 2014

Many Kids Who Are Obese Or Overweight Don't Know It

Fun hikes offer health benefits for kids of every shape and size.
Annette Birkenfeld annedde/iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed July 23, 2014 9:07 am

Kids can be cruel, especially about weight. So you might think overweight or obese children know all too well that they're heavy — thanks to playground politics. But that's not necessarily so, according to government data covering about 6,100 kids and teens ages 8-15.

About 30 percent "misperceived" their weight status (underweight, normal weight, overweight or obese), according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics. (The CDC bases those categories on body mass index, adjusted for gender and age.)

Read more

Pages