NPR News

NPR Story
11:26 am
Mon May 25, 2015

Dr. Beach Reveals His Top 10 U.S. Beaches For 2015

Waimanalo Bay Beach Park on the Hawaiian island of Oahu won the #1 spot on Dr. Beach's top 10 beaches list for 2015. (Ryan Ozawa/Flickr)

Memorial Day weekend is upon us, which for many people marks the first real beach weekend of the year. Just in time, a new list of the top 10 public beaches in the U.S. is out, ranked by a man who goes by the name “Dr. Beach.” Taking this year’s top honor: Waimanalo Beach in Oahu, Hawaii.

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NPR Story
11:26 am
Mon May 25, 2015

Oregon Looks To Raise Wages For People With Intellectual Disabilities

Workers with All Seasons Grounds Care at the City of McMinnville Water Reclamation Facility. (Chris Lehman/Northwest News Network)

As the national debate on whether to raise the minimum wage continues, some adults in Oregon with developmental disabilities are still paid as little as 25 cents an hour.

Now, a group of Oregon lawmakers is trying to change that. From the Here & Now Contributors Network, Chris Lehman reports.

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NPR Story
11:26 am
Mon May 25, 2015

ISIS Gains Ground In Iraq And Syria

A view of the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra one day after the self-proclaimed Islamic State fired rockets into the city on May 17, 2015. (STR/AFP/Getty Images)

ISIS is expanding its control of territory in Iraq and Syria. The militants have now seized the last Syrian-controlled border crossing between Syria and Iraq.

There are also reports that ISIS has overrun another town in Iraq’s western Anbar province, less than a week after taking control of Ramadi, the provincial capital.

Concerns are mounting about the famous archaeological site at Palmyra in Syria, which ISIS seized a couple of days ago.

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Interviews
11:25 am
Mon May 25, 2015

Philip Glass On Legacy: 'The Future ... It's All Around Us'

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

Transcript

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

This is FRESH AIR. I'm Terry Gross. I hope you’ve been having a good Memorial Day weekend. Today, we’re going to hear my recently-recorded interview with composer Philip Glass.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED BROADCAST)

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The Two-Way
9:38 am
Mon May 25, 2015

Iraq, Iran Push Back Against Defense Secretary's Comments On Iraqi Forces

Originally published on Tue May 26, 2015 9:19 am

Updated at 1:04 p.m. ET

Iraq and Iran are refuting U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter's assertion that Iraqi forces lacked the "will to fight" the self-declared Islamic State, resulting in the loss last week of Anbar Province and its capital, Ramadi.

Saad al-Hadithi, a spokesman for Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, told The Associated Press that Ramadi's loss was due to mismanagement and poor planning by some senior military commanders.

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The Two-Way
7:53 am
Mon May 25, 2015

Police: Malaysia Uncovers 139 Mass Graves Believed To Hold Migrants

A Malaysian forensic team personnel handles bags of human remains found at abandoned camps used by human traffickers on the Malaysia-Thailand border in Wang Kelian on Monday.
Joshua Paul AP

Police in Malaysia say they have uncovered more evidence of human smuggling, with the discovery of at least 139 graves along the country's border with Thailand.

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The Two-Way
7:28 am
Mon May 25, 2015

Ex-Israeli Leader Ehud Olmert Sentenced To 8 Months In Corruption Trial

Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was sentenced Monday to eight months in prison for accepting illegal payments from a U.S. businessman.
Heidi Levine Reuters/Landov

Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, who as recently as 2009 led his country, was sentenced Monday by a Jerusalem court to eight months in prison for unlawfully accepting money from a U.S. supporter.

As we reported in March when Olmert was convicted in the case:

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The Two-Way
6:52 am
Mon May 25, 2015

Texas Governor Calls Flood Damage 'Devastating'

San Marcos, Texas, resident Keith Varela checks out the damage done to his wife's truck in the San Marcos Mobile Home Park on Sunday.
Jerry Lara EPA /Landov

Originally published on Tue May 26, 2015 9:16 am

Updated at 4:41 p.m. ET

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is calling the flood damage in the central part of his state "absolutely devastating."

Abbott flew over parts of the Blanco River Monday, a day after storms triggered flooding. The hardest-hit communities were Wimberley and San Marcos. Abbott added 24 counties to the disaster declaration he issued earlier this month to help communities overwhelmed with heavy rains and tornado damage.

The high water forced Peggy Wilborn — and her neighbors — from their homes in Wimberley.

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NPR Ed
6:10 am
Mon May 25, 2015

Colleges To Students: Don't Trash Those Dorm Castoffs! Donate!

Families peruse the belongings left behind by DePauw students.
Stan Jastrzebski

Originally published on Tue May 26, 2015 11:49 am

The goat barn at the Putnam County fairgrounds in Greencastle, Ind., will soon be full of, well, goats. But right now it's full of folding tables stacked with clothes, books and housewares — including an anatomically correct coffee mug in the shape of a woman.

At the tables are families, lots of them. Some waited in line for more than an hour to get first dibs on the larger items, like furniture and appliances. Carrie Ardito was first in that line and ran to the back to claim a clothes dryer.

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Around the Nation
5:17 am
Mon May 25, 2015

Fake Killer Whale To Ward Off Sea Lions

Originally published on Mon May 25, 2015 6:08 am

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

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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Europe
5:01 am
Mon May 25, 2015

Italian Bakery Confuses Birthday Cake Order

Originally published on Mon May 25, 2015 6:08 am

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

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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NPR Story
3:03 am
Mon May 25, 2015

Anne Meara, Half Of Husband-Wife Comedy Team, Dies At 85

Originally published on Mon May 25, 2015 10:43 am

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

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The actress and comedian Anne Meara has died at the age of 85. She became famous as one half of the comedy team Stiller and Meara. Here's NPR's Bob Mondello.

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Europe
3:03 am
Mon May 25, 2015

From 'Occupying' A Spanish Bank To City Hall: Barcelona's New Mayor

Ada Colau (center), leader of the Barcelona en Comú party, celebrates in Barcelona during a press conference following the results in Spain's municipal and regional elections on May 24. She is the first member of Spain's indignados protest movement to win public office.
Quique Garcia AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 25, 2015 7:55 am

One of the most-tweeted photos in Spain these days shows riot police hauling away Ada Colau. The image is from July 2013, when the anti-poverty protester was trying to "occupy" a Barcelona bank that was foreclosing on homes.

The caption added by Twitter users: "Welcome, new mayor."

Colau is the first of the indignados, or angry ones — Spain's Occupy movement — to win office. She narrowly defeated Barcelona Mayor Xavier Trias in local elections Sunday.

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NPR Story
3:03 am
Mon May 25, 2015

Trial In Iran Nears For 'Washington Post' Reporter Jason Rezaian

Originally published on Mon May 25, 2015 6:08 am

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

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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Asia
3:03 am
Mon May 25, 2015

Malaysian Police Discover 139 Graves; May Contain Migrants' Remains

Originally published on Mon May 25, 2015 6:08 am

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

Parallels
2:29 am
Mon May 25, 2015

An Island Wonders: Why Are The Sharks Attacking So Often?

Surfer Alexis Gazzo (left) is helping train specialized lifeguards who will survey the waters around popular beaches in Reunion for sharks. Shark attacks have gone up sharply along the coast of the Indian Ocean island, with seven people killed in recent years.
Emma Jacobs for NPR

Originally published on Mon May 25, 2015 12:56 pm

The 850,000 people who live on the island of Reunion, which lies east of Madagascar, depend on the Indian Ocean that surrounds them. Many homes are near the sea. The beaches attract tourists.

But the ocean has also become a source of dread for this French island. Since 2011, sharks have attacked 16 people, killing seven of them. It's a sharp jump from previous years and has left islanders at a loss as to why.

Bishop Talon, 22, was attacked off a beach called Étang-Sale in February. She died a few hours later from her injuries.

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Back At Base
1:39 am
Mon May 25, 2015

On Memorial Day, Learning The Story Behind The Markers

A memorial honors Staff Sgt. John Henry McCarthy on the corner of Commonwealth Avenue and Colborne Road in Boston.
Jesse Costa WBUR

Originally published on Mon May 25, 2015 6:08 am

NPR — along with seven public radio stations around the country — is chronicling the lives of America's troops where they live. We're calling the project "Back at Base."

Walk through a town square this Memorial Day and you might just see a marker or monument commemorating sacrifice in war. On it: The name of an American who died in combat.

In some parts of the city of Boston, there are markers on nearly every corner.

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U.S.
6:28 pm
Sun May 24, 2015

Death Toll Rises After Storms Barrel Through Plains, Midwest

Originally published on Mon May 25, 2015 1:25 am

Record rainfall wreaked havoc across a swath of the Plains and Midwest on Sunday, causing flash floods in normally dry riverbeds, spawning tornadoes and forcing at least 2,000 people in Texas from their homes.

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Arts & Life
5:58 pm
Sun May 24, 2015

Long-Time Actress And Comedian Anne Meara Dies

In this Nov. 6, 2003, file photo, Jerry Stiller and his wife Anne Meara pose on the set of The King of Queens, at Sony Studio in Culver City, Calif. Meara, whose comic work with Stiller helped launch a 60-year career in film and TV, has died. She was 85. Jerry Stiller and son Ben Stiller say Meara died Saturday, May 23, 2015.
Stefano Paltera Associated Press

Originally published on Sun May 24, 2015 10:54 pm

Anne Meara, the loopy, lovable comedian who launched a standup career with husband Jerry Stiller in the 1950s and found success as an actress in films, on TV and the stage, has died.

Jerry Stiller and son Ben Stiller say Meara died Saturday. No other details were provided.

The Stiller family released a statement to The Associated Press on Sunday describing Jerry Stiller as Meara's "husband and partner in life."

"The two were married for 61 years and worked together almost as long," the statement said.

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History
4:54 pm
Sun May 24, 2015

In New England, Recognizing A Little-Known History Of Slavery

The new African Burying Ground Memorial Park was dedicated on Saturday in Portsmouth, N.H.
Emily Corwin NHPR

Originally published on Mon May 25, 2015 5:27 am

Two men are sliding nine pine coffins into a vault in the ground on Chestnut Street in downtown Portsmouth, N.H. The remains were disinterred in 2003, part of a long-forgotten burial ground for African slaves discovered during routine road work. Now, they are being reburied among 200 other long forgotten men and women as part of Portsmouth's new African Burying Ground Memorial Park.

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Environment
4:03 pm
Sun May 24, 2015

A Home Air Quality Monitor That Can Be Checked Out From The Library

The Speck air quality monitor costs $200, but is available to all through Pittsburgh's public library system.
Carnegie Mellon University CREATE Lab

Originally published on Sun May 24, 2015 4:54 pm

Air pollution comes from many sources — power plants, industrial production and fires, to name a few. In Pittsburgh, the most polluted city east of California, according the American Lung Association, avoiding dirty air while outdoors can be difficult, if not impossible. But a new device, available through the public library system, helps people identify and reduce bad air quality inside their homes.

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Remembrances
3:18 pm
Sun May 24, 2015

Remembering Nobel Prize-Winning Mathematician John Nash

Originally published on Sun May 24, 2015 4:54 pm

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

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

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Interviews
3:18 pm
Sun May 24, 2015

'It's For You To Know That You Forgive,' Says Holocaust Survivor

Auschwitz survivor Eva Kor sits in a courtroom in Lueneburg, northern Germany, on April 21, 2015. She testified at the trial of 93-year-old former Auschwitz guard Oskar Groening.
Julian Stratenschulte AP

Originally published on Sun May 24, 2015 4:54 pm

Around this time 70 years ago, following the liberation of Nazi concentration camps in Europe, the world was coming to grips with the scale of the holocaust, and how to deal with crimes so horrendous, they're almost incomprehensible.

That process is still ongoing.

Right now in Germany, a 93-year-old former Nazi who served at Auschwitz is on trial. Holocaust survivor Eva Kor flew to Germany to testify about her experience in the camp.

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Food
3:18 pm
Sun May 24, 2015

How Dangerous Is Powdered Alcohol?

Originally published on Sun May 24, 2015 4:54 pm

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

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

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The Two-Way
1:45 pm
Sun May 24, 2015

Defense Secretary Carter: Iraqi Forces Lack 'Will To Fight' ISIS

Defense Secretary Ash Carter testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington earlier this month. In an interview on CNN Sunday, Carter complained that Iraqi forces lacked "the will to fight" the self-declared Islamic State.
Manuel Balce Ceneta AP

Originally published on Tue May 26, 2015 9:04 am

Defense Secretary Ash Carter says that Iraqi forces lack the "will to fight" the self-declared Islamic State and that they lost western Anbar province to the extremist group despite outnumbering their opponents.

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The Two-Way
11:43 am
Sun May 24, 2015

Malaysia Finds Gravesites In Camps Used By People Smugglers

Malaysian authorities say they've discovered numerous gravesites in at least 17 abandoned camps used by human smugglers along the Thai-Malay border. The dozens or possibly hundreds of bodies are thought to be migrants from Myanmar and Bangladesh.

Voice of America quotes Malaysia's Home Minister Zahid Hamidi as telling reporters today that the graves had been found near villages used by people traffickers.

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The Two-Way
8:58 am
Sun May 24, 2015

'Beautiful Mind' Mathematician John Nash Jr. Dies In New Jersey Car Crash

Princeton University professor John Nash speaks during a news conference at the university in Oct. 1994 after being named the winner of the Nobel Prize for economics.
Charles Rex Arbogast AP

Originally published on Tue May 26, 2015 9:00 am

Updated at 12:01 p.m. ET

John Forbes Nash Jr., the Nobel laureate known for his groundbreaking work on game theory and differential equations, was killed along with his wife in a taxi crash on the New Jersey Turnpike, police say. He was 86.

His death was first reported by NJ.com citing a police official. NPR has confirmed the report through longtime colleague Louis Nirenberg. The couple were killed on Saturday.

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The Two-Way
7:13 am
Sun May 24, 2015

Greece Warns That It Will Probably Miss Next Month's Debt Payment

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras (center) gestures next to Deputy Prime Minister Yannis Dragasakis (left) and Interior and Administrative Reconstruction Minister Nikos Voutsis. Voutsis says Greece may miss its next debt payment.
Alkis Konstantinidis Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Sun May 24, 2015 8:17 am

Greece is warning that unless it can reach a deal with its creditors, it will be unable to make a debt payment to the International Monetary Fund next month.

Interior Minister Nikos Voutsis, speaking on Greek television, said bluntly that four installments totaling 1.6 billion euros ($1.76 billion) "will not be given and is not there to be given."

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The Two-Way
6:39 am
Sun May 24, 2015

Nepali Villagers Flee After Landslide Cuts Off Major River

Vehicles pass by a landslide area after the earthquake in Gorkha district last week. A fresh landslide in the same area has cut off a major river, threatening villages downstream.
Navesh Chitrakar Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue May 26, 2015 8:48 am

Hundreds of villagers in Nepal have fled to higher ground after a landslide Sunday cut off the flow of a major river, creating a dam that could burst at any time, inundating towns downstream.

NPR's Julie McCarthy, reporting from New Delhi, reports that authorities are warning residents that the blockage of the Kali Gandaki River could burst and that torrents of water could sweep away villages for miles downstream.

"We have asked villagers along the river side in these districts to move to safer places," Interior Ministry official Laxmi Prasad Dhakal told Reuters.

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Latin America
6:38 am
Sun May 24, 2015

Accusations Pile Up Against Panama's Former President

Panama's former President Ricardo Martinelli answers questions during an interview at a hotel in Guatemala City in January.
Moises Castillo AP

Originally published on Tue May 26, 2015 8:40 am

Former Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli wasn't always rich.

One of Central America's richest and most eccentric former politicians, Martinelli started off as a credit officer at Citibank in Panama. He bought one business, then another. Among his holdings is the country's largest supermarket chain, Super 99, known for bargain prices and catchy jingles.

But while his jingles may get Panamanian's hips moving, Martinelli's alleged pilfering and profiteering make their blood boil.

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