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The Two-Way
8:50 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Direct Talks With The U.S.? No Way, Says Iranian Leader

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
Office of the Supreme Leader (Iran) AP

Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has shut down any possibility of direct negotiation with the U.S. over its nuclear program. In comments on his Facebook page, Khamenei said his country wouldn't accept an offer under pressure.

"Having relationships and negotiating with countries who had no deceit against us is in our national interest....Given the history and current facts, our nation won't negotiate under pressure or (with) those threatening us."

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The Salt
8:42 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Why Lebanese Love Their Raw Kibbeh

Kibbeh nayeh, a dish that combines raw meat, bulgur and onion, is "the definitive Lebanese festive food," says Kamal Mouzawak, founder of Beirut's first organic farmers market.
Maureen Abood

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 8:57 am

Growing up, I never knew I was eating raw meat. Or maybe it was just that I didn't think "raw" was something worth noting. I simply knew that kibbeh nayeh was incredibly good.

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Monkey See
8:15 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Remembering Central Park Birder Starr Saphir: 'Time Has A Different Meaning'

Starr Saphir, seen here at an HBO event in 2012, died on Tuesday.
Michael Loccisano Getty Images/HBO

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Shots - Health News
8:06 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Despite Rocky Economy, Money For Global Health Remains Solid

After going through a huge growth spurt, money for global health has plateaued recently. The U.S. government remains the biggest donor, but private charities like the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation have boosted donations.
Courtesy of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation

Given the world's economic troubles, you'd probably expect money to fight HIV and other illnesses around the world to have plummeted in the past few years.

But foreign aid for global health held steady in 2011 and 2012, hovering right around $28 billion a year, a report published Wednesday finds.

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The Two-Way
8:02 am
Thu February 7, 2013

At Prayer Breakfast, Obama Urges 'Humility'

President Obama speaking at the National Prayer Breakfast in Washington, D.C., on Thursday.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Speaking at his fifth National Prayer Breakfast since taking office, President Obama said Thursday morning that the annual gatherings are always "wonderful." But he worries, Obama told the lawmakers and clergy gathered in Washington, D.C., that "as soon as we leave the prayer breakfast, everything we've been talking about the whole time at the prayer breakfast is forgotten ... on the same day as the prayer breakfast."

"It's like we didn't pray," he added.

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The Two-Way
7:44 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Funny Excuses: I Was Late Because My Wife Froze My Truck Keys

Kike Calvo AP

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 8:08 am

That well-worn excuse — "The dog ate my homework" — lasts well into adulthood, according to a new survey by online job website, Careerbuilder.com. The survey asked hiring officials and workers why employees were tardy, and found a little more than 25% of workers are late to work at least once a month. Most explanations were straightforward, such as heavy traffic, inclement weather or problems with daycare.

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The Two-Way
7:32 am
Thu February 7, 2013

'Massive Manhunt' In Los Angeles For Ex-Cop Suspected In Killings

Christopher Jordan Dorner. He's the suspect in two murders and the shooting of three police officers, one of whom has died. A manhunt is under way in and around Los Angeles.
Irving Calif. Police Department

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 5:03 pm

A former Los Angeles police officer is the focus of a "massive manhunt" under way in that city because he's a suspect in a double murder last weekend and the shooting of three police officers early Thursday.

One of those officers has died.

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The Two-Way
6:57 am
Thu February 7, 2013

366,000 New Claims For Jobless Benefits, Down Only Slightly

There were 366,000 first-time clams for unemployment insurance last week, down just 5,000 from the week before, the Employment and Training Administration reports.

Of note: that number from the previous week — 371,000 — is an upward revision. A week ago, the agency estimated there had been 368,000 claims over that period.

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The Two-Way
6:42 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Minnesota's Moose Mystery: What's Killing Them?

On an April 2010 canoe trip to Knife Lake, Minn., Steve Piragis of Ely, Minn. was greeted by this bull moose. (Indentations on the moose's head indicated that he had shed his antlers.)
Sam Cook Courtesy of Duluth News Tribune

Originally published on Mon February 11, 2013 3:22 pm

In northeastern Minnesota, moose are dying at an alarming rate and state officials are having difficulty determining why.

And though hunters are not part of the problem, the state announced Wednesday that there will be no moose hunting season this coming fall.

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The Two-Way
6:22 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Top Stories: New England Blizzard; CIA Nominee Faces Drone Questions

Good morning, here is our top story:

'Real Nightmare' Headed For New England; Blizzard On Track For Friday.

And here are more early headlines:

CIA Nominee Brennan To Face Senate Questions On U.S. Drone Policy. (CBS)

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The Two-Way
5:56 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Book News: Anne Of Green Gables Gets A Bad Makeover

The cover photo of an edition of Anne of Green Gables.
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 6:59 am

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

  • Anne of Green Gables, who is described in Lucy Maud Montgomery's best-selling books as red-headed, freckled and — at least when the Anne series begins — prepubescent, gets a horribly wrong makeover on the cover of this three-book set published in November.
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Asia
5:30 am
Thu February 7, 2013

What Cellphone Brand Does North Korean Leader Use?

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 1:07 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Steve Inskeep with a case of product placement. Corporations pay millions to have their products turn up in the hands of famous people but somehow, they were not thrilled when a photo showed a smartphone on a table next to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. This set off fevered speculation about which brand it was.

The Two-Way
5:27 am
Thu February 7, 2013

'Real Nightmare' Headed For New England; Blizzard On Track For Friday

The National Weather Service's latest forecast of the snow totals across New England. Most places can expect 18-24 inches of new snow. It will start falling Friday and the storm is expected to last through Saturday.
Weather.gov

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 2:29 pm

4:30 p.m. ET — Latest from the National Weather Service:

"A major winter storm is expected to impact the Northeast and New England Friday into Saturday. As much as one to two feet of snow is forecast from the New York City metro area to Maine, with localized heavier amounts possible. This, in addition to wind gusts as high as 60-75 mph will create significant impacts to transportation and power. Coastal flooding is also possible from Boston northward."

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Asia
5:22 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Millions Of Chinese To Travel For Chinese New Year

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 1:07 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm David Greene.

We've heard that necessity breeds invention. Well, so does discomfort. This weekend, 200 million Chinese are traveling home for the Chinese New Year. And for some this means entire days on standing room only trains.

One gadget being sold to travelers is a padded metal pole. It's to lean your head on so you don't fall over when you doze off. Or how about a luggage cart that doubles as a seat, with cup holders? Many people, though, are going old school with a simple upside down bucket.

Politics
4:39 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Obama Picks REI Ceo Jewell To Head Interior

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 1:07 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene.

Let's meet the woman who may be the nation's next Secretary of the Interior. President Barack Obama has named Sally Jewell to the post. She still needs to be confirmed by the Senate. Jewell does not have a background in government or politics. She's CEO of the outdoor gear company REI. Supporters say her love of the outdoors goes much deeper than that. And they say she has a savvy social conscience.

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Politics
4:39 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Pentagon To Off Some Benefits to Gay Spouses

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 1:07 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

On a Thursday, it's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And I'm David Greene. As soon as today, the Pentagon could announce it is extending some benefits to spouses of gay and lesbian service members. The move comes two years after the repeal of the policy known as "don't ask, don't tell." Since nine states and Washington, D.C. allow same-sex marriage, the Pentagon has struggled with whether and how to recognize these spouses. NPR's Ari Shapiro reports.

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Around the Nation
4:39 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Postal Service To End Saturday Mail Delivery

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 1:07 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

The U.S. Postal Service likes to talk about how reliable it is, and they are determined to keep that reputation, even after the change announced yesterday. The Postal Service plans to end Saturday delivery of regular mail. They will continue delivering packages on Saturdays. The decision will save some $2 billion a year, but it's getting mixed reviews, as NPR's Brian Naylor reports.

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Middle East
4:39 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Criticism Against Egypt's Opposition Coalition Grows

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 1:07 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Now, you can't really have a democracy unless the people in power also have an opposition. In Egypt, the Muslim Brotherhood holds the power.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

There is a main opposition coalition, the National Salvation Front, but its critics say it is slowly becoming a national joke.

INSKEEP: In fact, protesters in Cairo's Tahrir Square say the opposition leadership is trying to manipulate popular anger in order to gain power.

NPR's Leila Fadel in Cairo sent us this report.

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NPR Story
4:00 am
Thu February 7, 2013

African Peacekeepers Used To Battling Insurgents

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 1:07 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Let's get a glimpse of the troops now fighting Islamist insurgents in Somalia. Forces from multiple African nations have been battling a group called al-Shabaab for years. They're being closely watched now because the international community is considering how to intervene in future months and years against an insurgency in Mali. NPR's Gregory Warner is traveling with a force in Somalia. Gregory, welcome back to the program.

GREGORY WARNER, BYLINE: Thanks, Steve.

INSKEEP: So where are you, and what have you been doing?

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NPR Story
4:00 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Business News

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 1:07 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with Boeing's battery problem.

Boeing's new fleet of Dreamliner 787 aircraft is grounded. But there is one in the air right now. The FAA cleared the plane's flight this morning from Fort Worth, Texas to Seattle. Engineers at the Boeing factory there will study the plane's lithium ion batteries and look for ways to reduce fire risk. Regulators around the world grounded the Dreamliner last month after batteries overheated on two planes. Only crew are aboard the 787 currently on its way to Seattle.

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NPR Story
4:00 am
Thu February 7, 2013

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 1:07 pm

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

And we have news of another fire sale. Our last word in business today is the buy of a lifetime.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

That's what some are calling the sale of a 20-acre estate outside Cedar Falls, Iowa, which sold for a winning bid of around $600,000. The precise amount was not disclosed. One expert says to build something like that estate today would cost $1.5 million.

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Europe
1:39 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Privatization Of Greek Assets Runs Behind Schedule

Employees of Hellenic Postbank protest during a strike against the bank's privatization in Athens, in December.
John Kolesidis Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 1:07 pm

In exchange for multibillion-euro bailouts, Greece was required to sell state-owned assets. But the sweeping privatization process is behind schedule. In addition, European governments are nervous that Chinese, Russian and Arab companies are lining up to take advantage of the Greek fire sale.

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Planet Money
1:34 am
Thu February 7, 2013

'Give Me The Money Or I'll Shoot The Trees'

Pay up, or the bird gets it. (A hoatzin perches on a branch in Yasuni National Park.)
Pablo Cozzaglio AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 1:07 pm

Ecuador's Yasuni National Park is one of the most diverse ecosystems on Earth. But there's a complication: The park sits on top of the equivalent of millions of barrels of oil.

This creates a dilemma.

Ecuador prides itself on being pro-environment. Its constitution gives nature special rights. But Ecuador is a relatively poor country that could desperately use the money from the oil.

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Shots - Health News
1:31 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Silica Rule Changes Delayed While Workers Face Health Risks

A worker makes a cut in the side of a sandstone block at the Cleveland Quarries facility in Vermilion, Ohio, earlier this month. The legal limit on the amount of silica that workers can inhale was set decades ago.
Ty Wright Bloomberg via Getty Images

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 1:07 pm

One of the oldest known workplace dangers is breathing in tiny bits of silica, which is basically sand. Even the ancient Greeks knew that stone cutters got sick from breathing in dust. And today, nearly 2 million American workers are exposed to silica dust in jobs ranging from construction to manufacturing.

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The Record
1:29 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Why Al Walser Got A Grammy Nomination And Justin Bieber Didn't

Justin Bieber on stage in December. Bieber's 2012 album Believe, despite selling over 1,000,000 copies, wasn't nominated for a single Grammy Award.
Michael Kovac Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 8, 2013 2:49 pm

Among the hundreds of musicians vying for Grammy Awards this year is Al Walser, a Los Angeles-based disc jockey and singer whose song "I Can't Live Without You" is nominated in the best dance single category. Walser is not a widely known name — many Grammy nominees aren't — but he's competing in a category against some of pop music's heaviest hitters.

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Puerto Rico: A Disenchanted Island
1:27 am
Thu February 7, 2013

'Don't Give Up On Us': Puerto Ricans Wrestle With High Crime

Luis Romero looks out over the ocean to a view that includes the Coast Guard station where his son, Julian, was in the auxiliary. Romero started the anti-violence organization Basta Ya after Julian was murdered.
Coburn Dukehart NPR

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 6:31 pm

Puerto Rico's population is declining. Faced with a deteriorating economy, increased poverty and a swelling crime rate, many Puerto Ricans are fleeing the island for the U.S. mainland. In a four-part series, Morning Edition explores this phenomenon, and how Puerto Rico's troubles are affecting its people and other Americans in unexpected ways.

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Author Interviews
1:26 am
Thu February 7, 2013

Raising A Glass To The Charms Of The Bar In 'Drinking With Men'

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 1:07 pm

Rosie Schaap is a part-time bartender, and the author the "Drink" column for The New York Times Magazine. But she doesn't hang out in bars just to make a living — or even just to make a drink.

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National Security
8:40 pm
Wed February 6, 2013

Obama's Pick For CIA Chief To Face Senate Scrutiny

John Brennan, the deputy national security adviser for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism, speaks at the White House in January. Brennan is President Obama's choice for CIA director.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Thu February 7, 2013 1:07 pm

John Brennan, President Obama's choice to lead the CIA, can look forward to a grilling Thursday on Capitol Hill. As Obama's chief counterterrorism adviser, he has been associated with some controversial policies, including the use of armed drones. Brennan's nomination comes before the Senate Intelligence Committee, and members from both parties have their questions ready.

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Ask Me Another
4:46 pm
Wed February 6, 2013

David Rees: Sharper Than A Pencil

David Rees.
Meredith Heuer

Originally published on Sat February 9, 2013 11:22 am

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Around the Nation
4:12 pm
Wed February 6, 2013

Questions Sprout Up Over Razed California Wildlife Reserve

The Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve after the land was stripped by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Several advocates, including elected leaders, are protesting the move.
Courtesy of Mathew Tekulsky

Originally published on Wed February 6, 2013 5:23 pm

Just a stone's throw from two of Los Angeles' busiest freeways lies the Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve, a unique spot in an urban jungle.

The northern portion of the reserve is adorned with 30-foot-tall cottonwood trees, spots of coyote bush and other plants. Native plants cover 50 percent of the nature spot, says Kris Ohlenkamp with the San Fernando Valley Audubon Society.

"On the other side it was significantly more than that," he says.

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