When Barack Obama became president and offered his hand to Iran, that country's elites reacted skeptically. Many said he was a new face, but still represented Iran's great enemy. Now, Iran will have a new face, winner of last week's presidential election, Hassan Rohani. He says he wants better relations with the outside world, so it's America's turn to wonder just how much Rohani could really change in Iran's confrontation with the U.S. NPR's Michele Kelemen reports on the evidence so far.
Against all Vatican expectations, the pope's Twitter account in Latin has gained more than 100,000 followers in six months and continues to grow.
Followers are not exclusively Roman Catholics or Latin scholars, but represent a wide variety of professions and religions from all over the world. Some go so far as to claim that the language of the ancient Romans is perfectly suited to 21st-century social media.
Faced with the threat of mutiny for what seems like the umpteenth time during his speakership, John Boehner moved to mollify fellow Republicans on Tuesday, saying immigration legislation would need the support of a majority of the House GOP before it could be brought to a floor vote.
After emerging from a meeting with House Republicans, following days of warnings by conservatives that the Ohio Republican had better not try to pass an immigration bill with mostly Democratic votes, Boehner sought to calm the roiling Republican waters.
You have to wonder if President Obama ever thought, when he first ran for the White House, that he would need to defend himself from accusations his presidency would be a mere extension of his Republican predecessor.
But there he was with journalist Charlie Rose having to explain why his approach to national security wasn't really like that of President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney.
In the past decade, Mexico's tech industry has flourished, growing three times faster than the global average. Most of that growth has been fueled by demand from the United States. But as Mexico's startups strive to make it in foreign markets, they say they need more engineers and ways to finance their growth.
The United States and Europe stepped up cooperation on security issues after Sept. 11, 2001. But that doesn't mean they agree on everything. The latest point of friction: What are the rules when it comes to privacy rights?
The revelations about the National Security Agency's surveillance programs not only touched off a ferocious debate in the U.S. but also struck a nerve in Europe.
This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm John Donvan in Washington. Neal Conan is away. Of course somebody needed to mark the occasion today by setting off a bomb. It was Afghanistan, where what is hoped will be a turning point was reached today when a ceremony was held in which the Afghan government officially took control of the nation's security, meaning that the U.S., which still has nearly 70,000 troops there, swaps into what is called a support role. Same for some of the 30,000 troops from other NATO nations.
Originally published on Tue June 18, 2013 11:40 am
They are young, they are angry and they have drawn inspiration from protest movements a world away in places like Turkey and the Middle East.
Tens of thousands of Brazilians took to the streets across the country Monday night, and more demonstrations are slated for the coming week. Brazil doesn't have a history of this kind of mass dissent, but it seems to be catching on very quickly.
This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. Coming up, data mining and privacy issues are in the news. But we want to talk about some data that could affect your life in ways you might not have considered. We're talking about your credit reports and we'll talk about how errors can appear and cost you plenty, and what to do about that. That's coming up later in the program.
At a ceremony in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Tuesday, NATO officially handed over security of Afghanistan to the country's forces. It marked the first time the whole nation has been under Afghan control since the coalition invaded to oust the Taliban in 2001.
From Brussels, Teri Schultz filed this report for our Newscast unit:
"Afghan forces are now leading security operations all over the country, as NATO-led forces gradually drop back into a supporting role in the remaining, most difficult, districts.
Just because a government is democratically elected does not mean it is immune to protest. We've been watching demonstrations and the government response in Turkey. And now the demonstrations we're about to hear about took place in Brazil.
This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene.
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And I'm Steve Inskeep. It's easy for us to overlook, given the violence elsewhere in the Middle East, but violence in Iraq has risen sharply. Since the start of April, more than 2,000 people have been killed in car bombings and other attacks. Iraq has not seen that level of killing since the worst of the sectarian war back in 2006 and 2007. NPR's Kelly McEvers reports.
In his speech in Belfast, President Obama talked at length about the transformation of that city from conflict zone to a city bustling with normal healthy daily life. He got the biggest burst of applause when he tossed in a bit of Irish vernacular.
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Students lounge at cafes asking each other, what's the crack?
BLOCK: What's the crack? Translation, how you doin'? Are you having fun?
OBAMA: So to paraphrase Seamus Hayden(ph), it's the manifestation of sheer bloody genius. This island is now chic.
This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.
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And I'm Melissa Block.
Today, the new president of Iran vowed to follow the path of moderation and justice, not extremism. Hasan Rowhani talked of enhancing mutual trust between Iran and other countries. That marks a stark change in rhetoric from that of outgoing President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Rowhani campaigned as a reformist. He's also a cleric and Iran's former chief nuclear negotiator, who became known as the Diplomat Sheikh.
In Pakistan, a new government started work this month. It faces a country awash in conflict. To get a sense of just how complicated it is to govern Pakistan, NPR's Philip Reeves focused on one 48-hour period. He chose this past weekend.
PHILIP REEVES, BYLINE: For many Pakistanis, this was supposed to be a fun weekend. Their national cricket team was playing the old enemy, India.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.
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And I'm Robert Siegel. We begin this hour with the annual Group of 8 summit in Northern Ireland. Today, President Obama and the other G8 leaders huddled at a resort there. Among the many topics, the bloody civil war in Syria. President Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin sat down to talk about Syria, acknowledging that they have, as Mr. Obama said, differing perspectives.
Ever since Iran's 1979 Islamic Revolution, the U.S. has been in search of moderate Iranian leaders who could steer the country away from its hostile standoff with America.
To cite one famous example, President Ronald Reagan's administration secretly sold weapons to Iran in the mid-1980s in the belief it could work with the country's "moderate" elements even as Iran remained under the control of revolutionary leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.
In Tehran today, the first news conference of Iran's president-elect ended abruptly when a man in the audience jumped up to protest the absence of the man many believe was elected president four years ago, Mir-Hossein Mousavi has been held under house arrest since 2011. And after the interruption, President-elect Hasan Rouhani left the stage and state television pulled the plug on the live broadcast.
Few citizens are more honored than military veterans, and there's particular reverence for those who defeated the Nazis in World War II. Like any war, however, World War II was complicated and traumatic for those on the ground, and not a few deserted from the front lines.
Originally published on Mon June 17, 2013 10:13 am
If economists were cheerleaders, their favorite shout-out might be: "What do we want? Growth! When do we want it? Now!"
They won't actually shout those words, but they may be thinking them as global leaders meet this week for a G-8 summit. Economists are hoping that at the gathering in Northern Ireland, leaders of eight major economies will discuss expanding global trade and investment to spur job creation.
This is Morning Edition from NPR News. Good morning. I'm David Greene. After weeks of protest, security forces in Turkey carried out a violent crackdown yesterday, arresting hundreds of people in Istanbul and other cities around the country. Riot police tear gassed protesters who were trying to return to Istanbul's Taksim Square Sunday.
And let's stay in this part of the world. Over the weekend, Iran overwhelmingly elected a new president, a man seen by many as a reformer. More than half the voters in that country opted for this change.
The relatively moderate cleric, Hassan Rouhani, replaces Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who's been in power since 2005. Rouhani campaigned on a message of ending Iran's international isolation.
For reaction from Tehran, we're joined by The New York Times bureau chief there, Thomas Erdbrink.