NPR News

The Two-Way
9:49 am
Sat August 1, 2015

After Devastating Injury, Austrian Pole Vaulter Is Breathing On Her Own

Kira Grunberg, seen here competing last summer, was severely injured in a training accident this week. Doctors say she is now a paraplegic.
Ian Walton Getty Images

Kira Grunberg, Austria's top women's pole vaulter who suffered a horrible injury during training Thursday, is breathing on her own and could soon leave intensive care. The 21-year-old underwent emergency surgery after fracturing at least one of her cervical vertebrae.

Doctors say the fall has left Grunberg a paraplegic — a development that shocked the sporting world in Europe and brought offers of emotional and financial support for the young athlete who holds Austria's record for the women's pole vault.

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The Two-Way
8:26 am
Sat August 1, 2015

Sailing Federation Will Test Waters For Viruses In Brazil's Olympics Venues

Concerns about pollution in the waters around Rio have prompted the world sailing federation to take action ahead of next year's Olympic Games. Here, garbage is seen Bica Beach, on the banks of the Guanabara Bay, with the Sugar Loaf mountain in background, earlier this year.
RICARDO MORAES Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 8:47 am

Saying that recent stories about raw sewage in Brazilian waterways that will serve as Olympics venues in 2016 helped "wake us up again and put this back on the agenda," the head of sailing's world governing body says his group will test for viruses and bacteria in the water.

The International Sailing Federation's chief executive, Peter Sowrey, tells the AP that the move is prompted by concerns over athletes' health and safety.

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The Two-Way
7:26 am
Sat August 1, 2015

MH370 Update: Recovered Jet Section Arrives At French Lab For Testing

Debris from an airplane that was found on the Indian Ocean island of Reunion has been transported to France, where technicians will try to determine whether it is from a missing airliner, Flight MH370.
Raymond Wae Tion Maxppp /Landov

The piece of a jet that's believed to be from a Boeing 777 — the same model of a Malaysia Airlines plane that went missing last year — is now in France, where it will be examined in a government laboratory near Toulose.

After the large piece of debris was discovered on the French island of Reunion in the Indian Ocean this week, Malaysia Airlines said it "is almost certainly part of a Boeing 777."

The airline also says that MH370 "is believed to be the only 777 to have crashed south of the equator since the jet came into service 20 years ago."

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Parallels
6:35 am
Sat August 1, 2015

In Germany, Asylum-Seekers Could Fill A Chronic Workforce Need

Refugees line up to apply for asylum at a reception center in Berlin, Germany. Figures released last week showed that about 180,000 asylum applications were filed in the first six months of 2015, more than twice as many as in the same period last year.
Markus Schreiber AP

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 9:31 am

For pharmacists in ever-diverse Berlin, communicating with customers requires a variety of languages.

Just ask German pharmacist Julia al-Erian, who tries in English to engage a young Arab man who is trying to buy acne cream. He gives her a blank stare, so she tries explaining in German how the medicated lotion works.

He looks perplexed, says "hold on" in German, then turns to a friend and speaks Arabic.

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It's All Politics
6:03 am
Sat August 1, 2015

Empire Strikes PAC And Other Punny SuperPAC Names

B.E.A.R.D. PAC is a nonpartisan superPAC that supports bearded candidates nationwide.
Courtesy of B.E.A.R.D. PAC

Because superPACs aren't legally allowed to donate money directly to or coordinate with a political campaign, founders often give them patriotic but purposefully-vague names. There's Keep the Promise (supporting Ted Cruz), Opportunity and Freedom (Perry), Priorities USA Action (Clinton), and Pursuing America's Greatness (Huckabee).

SuperPACs can raise unlimited sums of money from corporations, individuals, and other associations and can spend freely to support or oppose a given candidate.

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Middle East
5:44 am
Sat August 1, 2015

Kurdish Militias Appear To Be Sidelined By U.S.-Turkey Military Deal

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 8:16 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Around the Nation
5:44 am
Sat August 1, 2015

Police-Community Collaboration Has Helped Kept Peace In Cincinnati

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 9:31 am

Copyright 2015 WXXI Public Broadcasting. To see more, visit http://www.wxxi.org/.

Europe
5:44 am
Sat August 1, 2015

France Refuses To Sell Two Warships To Russia

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 9:31 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Africa
5:44 am
Sat August 1, 2015

Zimbabwe May Give Land Back To Some White Farmers

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 9:31 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Politics
5:44 am
Sat August 1, 2015

SuperPac Filings, Candidates' Forums: The Week In Politics

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 9:31 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Asia
5:44 am
Sat August 1, 2015

Some Kazakhs Celebrate The Loss Of The 2022 Winter Olympics

Boosters of Kazakhstan's bid for the 2022 Winter Olympics rally in Almaty as they wait for word of whether their city won. It didn't, forcing Kazakhstan back to the drawing board for ways to achieve international recognition.
Corey Flintoff NPR

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 9:34 am

There was a moment of drama in global sports on Friday, when the International Olympic Committee chose Beijing to host the 2022 Winter Games.

The loser was Almaty, Kazakhstan, a major city in an oil-rich central Asian nation that's trying to raise its profile on the international scene.

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History
5:44 am
Sat August 1, 2015

Edison's 'Little Monsters' Restored To Their Original Freakishness

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 9:31 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Middle East
5:44 am
Sat August 1, 2015

Kerry Aims To Repair Relations With Egypt

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 8:46 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Shots - Health News
5:03 am
Sat August 1, 2015

No Shame, No Euphemism: Suicide Isn't A Natural Cause Of Death

Keith Negley for NPR

Beware the mention of natural causes, as in my mother's obituary:

"Norita Wyse Berman, a writer, stockbroker and artist ... died at home Friday of natural causes. She was 60."

Sixty-year-olds don't die of natural causes anymore. The truth was too hard to admit.

Fifteen years on, I'm ashamed of my family's shame. Those attending her funeral and paying shiva calls knew the truth anyway. People talk.

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NPR Ed
3:35 am
Sat August 1, 2015

Coding Camp to Baltimore Schools: Bring Us Your Bored!

Middle-school boys participate in the Minority Male Makers summer program at Morgan State University in Baltimore.
Elissa Nadworny NPR

On the second floor of Morgan State University's engineering building, Jacob Walker, 12, is putting the finishing touches on a ruler he's just created.

Not yet an actual ruler. One he's designing on the computer. He just needs to add his initials — then it's time to produce it on a 3-D printer.

Jacob starts seventh grade in the fall and has big dreams. Building this ruler is all part of the plan.

"When I was a child," he says, "I loved to play with Legos, and it inspired me to be an engineer when I get older."

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The Two-Way
2:03 am
Sat August 1, 2015

Israeli Officials Promise To Find Arsonists Who Killed Palestinian Child

Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah inspects a home that was badly damaged from a suspected attack by Jewish extremists in the West Bank village of Douma. An 18-month-old child was killed and other family members seriously seriously injured.
PRIME MINISTER OFFICE \ APAIMAGES APA /Landov

Israeli leaders vowed to find the suspected Israeli extremists behind an arson attack that killed a Palestinian toddler early Friday.

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The Two-Way
9:54 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

Pacific Trade Pact In Limbo As Talks End Without A Deal

In a setback for the Obama administration, talks aimed at setting up a major free-trade zone among 12 Pacific Rim countries — the so-called Trans-Pacific Partnership — have ended without success.

Although U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman said "significant progress" had been made at this week's talks in Maui, Hawaii, and officials promised to reconvene at some future date, big differences remain among the participating countries.

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The Two-Way
9:49 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

Watch: 164 Skydivers Fall Into Formation, Breaking World Record

164 people formed this flower as they jumped from a height of nearly 20,000 feet.
Jason Peters AP

A new skydiving record was set Friday in Ottawa, Ill., at speeds up to 240 mph.

164 people jumped from airplanes, falling into a flower formation and holding hands for a few minutes before continuing to drop to earth. The previous skydiving record was set by 138 people in 2012, according to The Associated Press. It took the new record-holding team 13 attempts to beat that mark.

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The Two-Way
9:37 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

Chimps In Habeas Corpus Case Will No Longer Be Used For Research

Leo and Hercules are the two research chimpanzees who were front and center in a recent habeas corpus case. While the organization that argued for their release lost their case, the chimps will be retired.

Stony Brook University, where they were used for physiological research, announced on Friday that the project had concluded, writes Reuters.

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The Two-Way
7:58 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

Professional Wrestling World Mourns Longtime Star 'Rowdy' Roddy Piper

"Rowdy" Roddy Piper, clad in his trademark kilt, speaks in 2009 at the WrestleMania 25th anniversary press conference at Hard Rock Cafe in New York City. Piper fought in the main bout at the first WrestleMania in 1985, losing a tag-team match to Hulk Hogan and Mr. T.
Andrew H. Walker Getty Images

Originally published on Fri July 31, 2015 9:51 pm

"Rowdy" Roddy Piper, a premier wrestler in the now-WWE during the 1980s and 1990s who fought Hulk Hogan and Mr. T in the main event at the first WrestleMania in 1985, has died, the company reports. He was 61.

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Goats and Soda
4:37 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

Ebola Vaccine Hailed As 'Game Changer' In Fight Against The Virus

A woman receives the rVSV-ZEBOV Ebola vaccine at a clinical trial in Conakry, Guinea. The vaccine appears effective after only one shot.
Cellou Binani AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri July 31, 2015 5:53 pm

Doctors Without Borders is calling it a "champagne moment." The World Health Organization says it's a "game changer."

In a small trial, an experimental vaccine protected 100 percent of participants who were at high risk for the virus. Although the results are preliminary, they offer new hope of finally stamping out the virus in West Africa — and preventing the next epidemic.

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Law
4:37 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

Juvenile Justice System Failing Native Americans, Studies Show

Sgt. Barbara Johnson and Corrections Lt. Robbin Preston run the Tuba City Juvenile Detention Center on the Navajo Nation.
Laurel Morales NPR

Originally published on Fri July 31, 2015 5:53 pm

State courts are twice as likely to incarcerate Native teens for minor crimes such as truancy and alcohol use than any other racial and ethnic group, according to the Tribal Law and Policy Institute. And juvenile detention facilities around the country have a disproportionately high number of Native American youth, according to an Indian Law and Order Commission report.

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The Two-Way
3:48 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

Zimbabwe Official Calls For Extradition Of American Lion Hunter Walter Palmer

Zimbabwe is seeking the extradition of Walter Palmer, the American dentist who killed a famous lion named Cecil, which was being tracked in a university study.

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The Two-Way
3:47 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

Decades Of Limbo Ends For Some Indians, Bangladeshis Along Border

At the stroke of midnight, tens of thousands of Indians and Bangladeshis living near the border between the two countries got their own country for the first time in 70 years.

As part of an agreement between the two nations, the fate of just under 15,000 people living in 51 Bangladeshi enclaves inside India and more than 37,000 in 111 Indian enclaves in Bangladesh has finally been determined. Most will stay where they are, but change their nationality. Some are moving, and some of them are leaving behind family members.

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It's All Politics
3:26 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

Hillary Clinton Releases 8 Years Of Tax Returns

Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton at a campaign event in Iowa earlier this week.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Fri July 31, 2015 5:16 pm

This post was updated at 6:45 p.m. ET

Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton released eight years worth of tax returns Friday, showing that she and her husband Bill Clinton earned $139 million since 2007. They paid nearly $44 million in federal taxes during that period. The couple's effective federal tax rate ranged from 25 percent in 2007 to 36 percent last year.

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Music Interviews
3:24 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

What Does It Mean To Be A Child Prodigy In Jazz?

Joey Alexander, 12, recently released his debut album.
Rebecca Meek Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Fri July 31, 2015 5:53 pm

What do Mozart, Herbie Hancock and Michael Jackson have in common? For one, their musical talent was discovered early — they were all considered child prodigies.

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NPR Ed
2:42 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

The Plan To Give Pell Grants To Prisoners

Education Secretary Arne Duncan (second from left) speaks with inmate Terrell Johnson, a participant in the Goucher College Prison Education Partnership.
Patrick Semansky AP

Originally published on Fri July 31, 2015 5:53 pm

Education Secretary Arne Duncan and Attorney General Loretta Lynch made a rare joint appearance on Friday — in prison.

They visited a state-run facility in Jessup, Md., to announce a new plan meant to help some of the 700,000 inmates who are released each year.

It's a pilot program to give prisoners access to federal Pell Grants that would pay for college classes behind bars.

"The cost-benefit of this does not take a math genius to figure out," Duncan said. "We lock folks up here, $35-40,000 every single year. A Pell Grant is less than $6,000 each year."

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Europe
2:36 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

As Migrants Attempt Trip To The U.K., Many Who Make It Are Minors

Originally published on Fri July 31, 2015 5:53 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

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Law
2:28 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

Justice Report Accuses St. Louis County Family Court Of Racial Bias

Originally published on Fri July 31, 2015 5:53 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

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The Two-Way
1:55 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

U.K. Officials Instructed To Grant Ai Weiwei's Original U.K. Visa Request

Ai Weiwei's original application for a six-month business visa was denied.
Miguel Villagran Getty Images

Originally published on Fri July 31, 2015 3:20 pm

Dissident Chinese artist Ai Weiwei, who was originally granted only a 20-day visa to visit Britain, will now receive the six-month visa he applied for. A spokesperson for the U.K. Home Office explains that the head of the department, Theresa May, was not consulted over the staff's decision to allow only a shorter stay.

"She has reviewed the case and has now instructed Home Office officials to issue a full six-month visa," the spokesperson says. "We have written to Mr. Ai apologizing for the inconvenience caused."

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