NPR News

Middle East
5:35 am
Sun September 16, 2012

In Wake Of Violence, Pope Addresses Middle East

Pope Benedict XVI waves to Lebanese faithful upon his arrival to hold a mass on the waterfront in downtown Beirut on Sunday.
Hussein Malla AP

Originally published on Sun September 16, 2012 6:52 am

Pope Benedict XVI said Mass in Lebanon Sunday during his first visit to the Middle East, which is seeing dwindling Christian numbers and where Christians fear Islamists will gain power now that secular dictators have fallen.

Lebanon has the region's second-largest Christian population, after Egypt. The pope spent his three-day visit promoting peace and religious tolerance.

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Africa
5:35 am
Sun September 16, 2012

Consulate Attack Preplanned, Libya's President Says

A Libyan military guard stands in front of one of the U.S. Consulate's burnt-out buildings in Benghazi Sept. 14 during the visit of President Mohammed el-Megarif.
Mohammad Hannon AP

Originally published on Sun September 16, 2012 6:36 am

Libya's president says he believes al-Qaida is behind a deadly attack in eastern Libya that killed U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other U.S. staffers.

In an exclusive interview with NPR in Benghazi, President Mohammed el-Megarif says foreigners infiltrated Libya over the past few months, planned the attack and used Libyans to carry it out.

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It's All Politics
4:58 am
Sun September 16, 2012

Presidential Debates Can Be Great Theater, But How Much Do They Matter?

In a 1988 debate against George H.W. Bush, Michael Dukakis's answer to a question about whether he would support the death penalty if his wife were raped and murdered is considered a huge stumble.
LENNOX MCLENDON ASSOCIATED PRESS

Originally published on Mon September 17, 2012 6:52 am

Even before the final balloons fell on the Republican and Democratic conventions, pundits were talking up the next big American political viewing experience — the presidential debates.

These match-ups, in which candidates actually share a stage after months of bruising one another from far range, can lead to moments of rhetorical brilliance, or the opposite — getting caught off-guard and making a gaffe.

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Around the Nation
4:41 am
Sun September 16, 2012

Still Home Sweet Home More Than A Century Later

Lee and Shirley Wohler in the kitchen of their farmhouse south of Waterville, Kan.
Becky Sullivan NPR

Originally published on Sun September 16, 2012 6:36 am

This year, the Homestead Act of 1862 turned 150. That landmark piece of legislation opened up the Western territories to settlement. Almost anybody could receive up to 160 acres for free if they built a house and "improved" the land over the course of five years. Millions took part, and eventually, more than 10 percent of all U.S. land was given away.

A German peasant named Frederick Wohler was one of those early homesteaders. Wohler received the deed to 80 acres of farmland in north-central Kansas 138 years ago this weekend. And today, the Wohlers are still there.

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Around the Nation
4:23 am
Sun September 16, 2012

Many Texans Bereaved Over 'Dead' Voter Purge

Originally published on Sun September 16, 2012 6:36 am

Quite a few Texas voters are seeing dead people in the mirror these days when they go to brush their teeth in the morning.

In Houston, high school nurse Terry Collins got a letter informing her that after 34 years of voting she was off the Harris County rolls. Sorry.

"Friday of last week, I got a letter saying that my voting registration would be revoked because I'm deceased, I'm dead. I was like, 'Oh, no I'm not!' " Collins says.

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Politics
4:21 am
Sun September 16, 2012

Congress Bets On Post-Election Edge, Delaying Action

Originally published on Sun September 16, 2012 6:36 am

Congress roared into town last week after a five-week break. Lawmakers will be heading back home just as quickly this week. They're expected to complete exactly one big item before pulling the plug on this briefest of sessions: a stopgap spending measure that keeps the government from shutting down during the next six months.

Members of both parties prefer tackling the mountain of unfinished business they leave behind only after the November election.

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Music
3:37 pm
Sat September 15, 2012

In South Korea, K-Pop Gets New King

Korean rapper PSY is responsible for the song Gangam Style, whose flashy and humorous video has brought K-pop to new ears.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 10:24 am

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Pop Culture
2:58 pm
Sat September 15, 2012

Meet 'The Most Interesting Man In The World'

Jonathan Goldsmith plays "The Most Interesting Man in the World" in beer company Dos Equis' ad campaign. The audition, he says, "was a cattle call."
Courtesy of Anderson Group Public Relations

Originally published on Sun September 16, 2012 1:50 am

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Middle East
2:58 pm
Sat September 15, 2012

Does Middle East Unrest Go Beyond Film?

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 3:48 pm

Transcript

GUY RAZ, HOST:

It's WEEKENDS on ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Guy Raz.

Nearly two years ago, mass demonstrations against autocrats in Arab countries captivated the world. The Arab Spring would bring democracy, and in many countries, a form of it has come. So, too, has the freedom of assembly and protests, something previous rulers could quash. No longer, and much of that anger is directed towards the United States. Here's Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Friday.

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Politics
2:03 pm
Sat September 15, 2012

Obama Polishes His 'Regular Guy' Image With Beer

President Obama toasts others at the Dubliner Restaurant and Pub in Washington, D.C., on March 17.
Joshua Roberts Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 3:48 pm

There's an old shorthand for likeability in politics: "Which candidate would you rather have a beer with?"

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Africa
7:08 am
Sat September 15, 2012

South African Police Crack Down On Striking Miners

Police firing rubber bullets and tear gas sent men, women and children scattering as they herded them into their shacks in a crackdown on striking miners at a platinum mine.

Saturday's show of force follows a South African government vow to halt illegal protests and disarm strikers who have stopped work at one gold and six platinum mines northwest of Johannesburg. The strikes have destabilized South Africa's critical mining sector.

It was the first police action since officers killed 34 miners Aug. 16 in state violence that shocked the nation.

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Fresh Air Weekend
7:03 am
Sat September 15, 2012

Fresh Air Weekend: W. Kamau Bell, Michael Lewis

W. Kamau Bell's new FX weekly series Totally Biased mixes standup, sketches and interviews.
Matthias Clamer

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 10:19 am

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors, and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

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Kee Facts: A Few Things You Didn't Know
6:14 am
Sat September 15, 2012

Antietam 'Death Studies' Changed How We Saw War

Alexander Gardner's original caption for this image: "A Lone Grave, on Battle-field of Antietam."
Alexander Gardner Library Of Congress

Originally published on Sun October 21, 2012 1:08 pm

In mid-September 1862, the Civil War was only a year and a half old, and many Americans in the North and the South still clung to the view that this war was a noble, glorious, even romantic undertaking. That notion was shattered forever when Alexander Gardner and his assistant James Gibson, working for photographer Mathew Brady's firm, came to Antietam Creek near Sharpsburg, Md.

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Politics
5:52 am
Sat September 15, 2012

Foreign Policy Pulls Political Focus

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 8:55 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Joined now by Ron Elving, NPR's senior Washington editor in our studios. Ron, thanks very much for being with us.

RON ELVING, BYLINE: Good to be with you, Scott.

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Around the Nation
5:52 am
Sat September 15, 2012

Chicago Teachers Rally With Deal In The Works

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 8:55 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. The Chicago Teachers Union and city school officials have reportedly reached what they call a framework for an agreement that would end a five-day teacher strike. The walkout has shut down school for 350,000 students this week. They could be back in class as early as Monday.

We're joined now by NPR education correspondent Claudio Sanchez. Claudio, thanks for being with us.

CLAUDIO SANCHEZ, BYLINE: Good to be here.

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Sports
5:52 am
Sat September 15, 2012

Sports: Chances In Baseball And NFL Midwest Battle

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 8:55 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is Weekend Edition from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. Time for sports.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

SIMON: Baseball's pennant races are in full swing. Will the words Baltimore, October, and baseball be heard in the same sentence for the first time since Cal Ripken Jr. was in short pants? But times are more trying for the Pittsburgh Pirates. And the battle in the American League Central between the surging Tigers and some nimble pale hose. For more, we're joined by Howard Bryant of ESPN.com and ESPN the Magazine.

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NPR Story
5:34 am
Sat September 15, 2012

Would You Like A Calorie Count With That?

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 8:55 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Next week, McDonald's will become the largest fast-food chain in the country to display calorie counts on its menu boards. Won't that make you think twice when asked: You want fries with that?

NPR's Allison Aubrey has been reporting on McDonald's announcement this week. She joins us in our studios. Allison, thanks for being with us.

ALLISON AUBREY, BYLINE: Hi, Scott. Glad to be here.

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NPR Story
5:34 am
Sat September 15, 2012

Libya Hit With Turbulent Week

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 8:55 am

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. There have been unexpectedly violent protests across much of the Arab world this week. The first was in Cairo. Then, of course, in Benghazi, Libya, protesters attacked and killed four U.S. embassy staff there.

Since then, protests have broken out across the region, again in Egypt, in Tunisia and in Yemen. NPR's correspondent in Benghazi is Leila Fadel. She joins us now. Leila, thanks for being with us.

LEILA FADEL, BYLINE: Thanks for having me.

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NPR Story
5:34 am
Sat September 15, 2012

Egypt Explores Limits Of Tolerance For Free Speech

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 8:55 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

We turn now to Egypt where, as we mentioned earlier, the protest started this week. More than 250 people have been reported injured in clashes there that began when protesters scaled the embassy wall in Cairo and tore down an American flag. Many of them are demonstrating against a film, which portrayed the prophet Muhammad as a womanizer and a religious fraud.

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Middle East
4:05 am
Sat September 15, 2012

U.S., Israel Divided Over 'Red Line' For Iran

President Obama talks with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the White House in March. Netanyahu and the Obama administration clashed openly this week over the issue of Iran's nuclear program.
Amos Ben Gershom GPO via Getty Images

Originally published on Sun September 16, 2012 6:27 am

The Obama administration often talks about its strong bonds with Israel, but relations between the two leaders don't look that way at all.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Obama administration openly clashed over Iran this week. The White House also announced that President Obama would not have time to meet Netanyahu when the Israeli prime minister is in the U.S. later this month.

The two men did have a lengthy phone conversation, but some say what they really need is a marriage counselor.

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World
4:03 am
Sat September 15, 2012

Former Diplomat: Doing A Good Job Invites Risk

A portrait of Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens is placed along with a condolence book at the U.S. Capitol on Friday. Stevens and three other Americans were killed in an attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, on Tuesday.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 8:55 am

When former U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker heard about his colleague's death in Libya, his first reaction was disbelief. He had known Christopher Stevens for two decades.

"I ... just felt that punch in the stomach. He was a good friend. We're a pretty small tribe," he tells Weekend Edition host Scott Simon.

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Europe
4:03 am
Sat September 15, 2012

For Young Greeks, A Communal Escape From Woes

Apostolos Sianos, 31, quit his Web designer job in Athens to help establish the Telaithrion eco-commune. Here he mixes food for the commune's dogs.
Joanna Kakissis NPR

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 8:55 am

Facing their country's worst recession in a half-century, many young Greeks are leaving for jobs abroad. But Apostolos Sianos, a 31-year-old Athenian, decided to buck the trend.

Two years ago, Sianos quit his lucrative job designing websites in Athens to help establish an eco-commune, called the Telaithrion Project, in Aghios, his family's ancestral village on the island of Evia. The idea was to teach people to be self-sufficient at a time when both money and opportunities are drying up.

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Politics
4:01 am
Sat September 15, 2012

Paul Ryan A Star Attraction For Values Voters

Paul Ryan addresses the Family Research Council Action Values Voter Summit in Washington, D.C., on Friday.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 8:55 am

In this election, Christian conservatives seem to be more against President Obama than they are for Mitt Romney. But they do like GOP vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan, who used a speech Friday to vouch for Romney.

At the annual gathering of religious conservatives in Washington, D.C., there was also talk of this week's violence in the Middle East.

The Values Voter Summit got under way first thing Friday morning, with a speech from Tony Perkins, whose Family Research Council organizes this event.

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Middle East
4:01 am
Sat September 15, 2012

Reporter Hotline: What Awaits Abroad After Election

Afghan soldiers (right) patrol with U.S. troops in the Panjwai district of southern Afghanistan in May. The two armies have been working together for years, but Afghan attacks against U.S. and NATO forces have been rising recently.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Fri October 19, 2012 4:14 pm

As we approach the presidential election in November, Weekend Edition is seeking your questions about issues and candidates in a new segment called Reporter Hotline. This week, we answer inquiries about foreign policy and U.S. involvement in the Middle East and Afghanistan.

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The Two-Way
3:41 am
Sat September 15, 2012

Anti-Japan Protests Erupt In China Over Disputed Islands

Protesters march outside the Japanese Embassy in Beijing on Saturday. Tension escalated, sometimes to violence, in cities across China after Japan bought the disputed islands from a private Japanese owner.
Louisa Lim NPR

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 5:56 am

It has been a day of rage on China's streets. The road outside the Japanese Embassy in Beijing was transformed into a sea of protesters, waving national flags, screaming invective.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:03 am
Sat September 15, 2012

Trouble In The Twin Cities: Two Orchestras In Labor Disputes

The Minnesota Orchestra may go on strike after management proposed to cut musicians' salaries by 28 percent.
Courtesy of the Minnesota Orchestra

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 1:47 pm

For a metro area of only about 3.5 million people, the Twin Cities region is unusual in the way it supports not one, but two world-class orchestras. Now, with looming deficits on the horizon and musicians' contracts at both the Minnesota Orchestra and the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra expiring Sept. 30, the Twin Cities may have two orchestras on strike.

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Music Interviews
12:03 am
Sat September 15, 2012

Calexico: Road Songs For Wandering Souls

John Convertino and Joey Burns have been performing as Calexico since 1996. Their latest album is called Algiers.
Jairo Zavala Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 8:55 am

At 11 a.m. on a weekday, Calexico rehearses for its upcoming tour in a cramped studio on the south side of Tucson, Ariz. The stereotypical musician would just be getting up, but lead singer and songwriter Joey Burns has been up since dawn with his twin baby girls.

Trumpet player Jacob Valenzuela arrives late to the rehearsal — and that's because his washing machine broke and he had to deal with a small flood. Valenzuela grabs his trumpet as the band launches into "Splitter," the first single from Calexico's new album.

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Music Interviews
12:03 am
Sat September 15, 2012

Radiohead's Guitarist Adapts To Life In Widescreen

Jonny Greenwood is responsible for the score of The Master and There Will Be Blood.
S. Katan Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 11:47 am

Reviews of the new film The Master have ranged from acclaim to disdain. Almost all the critics, though, seem to admire the film's music, composed by Jonny Greenwood.

Greenwood's story begins in the early 1990s, when he was playing the viola at Oxford University and not making much of an impression — even on himself.

"I was headed for the back of the viola section in some orchestra," Greenwood says. "If I practiced hard enough."

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The Two-Way
4:11 pm
Fri September 14, 2012

Court Strikes Down Wis. Collective Bargaining Law Championed By Gov. Walker

Originally published on Fri September 14, 2012 5:22 pm

The controversial law that curbed the collective bargaining rights of public employees in Wisconsin has been struck down by Dane County Circuit Judge Juan Colas.

The law, if you remember, was championed by Gov. Scott Walker and it unleashed massive protests and even led to Democratic law makers to flee the state to forestall its passage. After it became law, union activists mobilized and triggered a recall vote, which Walker ultimately defeated.

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Around the Nation
4:09 pm
Fri September 14, 2012

Revisiting 'Life' Magazine's 'Take-Over Generation'

Sept. 14, 1962, issue profiling promising young Americans of the time." href="/post/revisiting-life-magazines-take-over-generation" class="noexit lightbox">
Life magazine cover from the Sept. 14, 1962, issue profiling promising young Americans of the time.
LIFE©1962 Time Inc

Originally published on Sat September 15, 2012 4:19 pm

Note: A shorter version of this story aired on your local member station.

Fifty years ago this month, Life magazine published its take on the 100 most promising young professionals of the midcentury. The special issue, titled "The Take-Over Generation," highlighted some of the "young movers and shakers of the country," Roy Rowan, the magazine's assistant managing editor at the time, tells reporter Richard L. Harris.

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