On 'Morning Edition': Diplomat Ryan Crocker on his meetings with Iranian officials
One of the United States' most experienced diplomats says he's come away from behind-the-scenes conversations with Iranian officials this week thinking "it is possible to come to accommodations" with new President Hassan Rouhani and his aides on key issues such as Iran's nuclear ambitions.
Originally published on Tue October 8, 2013 7:57 am
Authorities in western China apparently wanted to make an example of 16-year-old Yang Hui.
He was the first person in China to be arrested under a new rule against "rumor mongers," defined as people who intentionally post a rumor that is reposted 500 times or more, or viewed 5,000 times or more.
A Toronto Blue Jays' fan ran onto the field earlier this season, and now we have his arrest report. It suggests the police are bit frustrated with the Blue Jays, who are in the midst of a losing season. The official report says the Blue Jays were, quote, "surprisingly winning" at the time of the incident. The fan's transgression, quote, "can only be described as an attempt to inject some kind of spark into the Blue Jays, and relieve fans from their season-long agony."
Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 3:25 am
Steve Inskeep talks to Madeleine Albright about the role the United Nations can play in dealing with international crises, like Syria's civil war. Albright was secretary of State when the U.S. took military action despite the absence of a U.N. resolution in Kosovo.
Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 4:17 am
Cycling's international governing body, the UCI, will hold a presidential election in Florence, Italy, on Friday. It comes at a time when cycling is still trying to recover from the admissions of Lance Armstrong and the ever-present cloud of doping.
Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 3:27 am
The recovery operation will be a long thorough process at the Nairobi shopping mall that was attacked over the weekend. More information is emerging about the number of people who were killed, injured or are still missing.
Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 3:28 am
Oracle Team USA completed a remarkable comeback to win the America's Cup regatta, winning eight straight races. The American team, backed by Silicon Valley billionaire Larry Ellison, beat Emirates Team New Zealand. Just a few days ago, the American team trailed the Kiwis, and were on the brink of being eliminated from the competition.
A satellite cellphone rings for rebel commander Bashar al-Zawi, at home with his family in the Jordanian city of Irbid. It's a rare domestic break for this wealthy businessman turned rebel commander. But he is anxious to get back to his battalion of 5,000 fighters in southern Syria.
They are taking part in a rebel offensive that is squeezing the Syrian army around the city of Dera'a. Military analysts say the fight is one of the most strategically important battles in Syria's civil war, because Dera'a, close to Damascus, is President Bashar Assad's stronghold in the southwest.
Are there real prospects for a new relationship with Iran? The Iranian President Hasan Rouhani addressed the U.N. General Assembly yesterday. He's made an appearance on CNN. But what has to happen next to address and conceivably resolve the contentious issues between Washington and Tehran? Well, Kenneth Pollack, a former intelligence analyst, argues in a new book in favor of a policy of containing Iran.
He's in Portland, Oregon today and he joins us from there. Welcome to the program once again.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.
ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:
And I'm Robert Siegel. A day after the four-day siege at the Nairobi mall, Kenyans are counting their losses. A premiere mall, a symbol of Kenya's rising economy, is in shambles. The death toll stands at 71, but it's feared to be far higher than that. And there are also worries that terrorists who escaped from this siege are planning another attack.
Robert Siegel talks to Joshua Pollack, a consultant to the US government, about concerns that North Korea has or could soon have the tools to make the centrifuges to enrich the uranium to make the atomic weapons without having to import key elements in the process. Pollack studies arms control, proliferation, deterrence, intelligence, and regional security affairs. He also writes for the blog Arms Control Wonk.
Originally published on Thu September 26, 2013 8:13 am
Oracle Team USA has successfully defended the America's Cup, leaving challenger New Zealand in its wake off San Francisco after clawing back from a seven-race deficit in one of the most spectacular comebacks in yachting history.
A week ago, it looked to be all over for the U.S., with the Kiwis having built a seemingly unassailable lead and poised at one race away from taking the Auld Mug back to New Zealand.
Perhaps the most important military commander in Syria's civil war is not Syrian at all. He's Iranian Maj. Gen. Qassem Suleimani, and he's the subject of an article by Dexter Filkins in the current edition of The New Yorker.
Originally published on Tue October 8, 2013 7:59 am
In keeping with his image as a moderate, Iranian President Hasan Rouhani brought his charm offensive to the United Nations this week and held out the possibility of improved relations with the U.S. after more than three decades of hostility.
"Prudent moderation will ensure a bright future for the world," Rouhani told world leaders Tuesday in New York.
The global governing body of soccer, or football as the rest of the world calls it, has a big decision to make next week. Some in that group, known as FIFA, are rethinking their plan to hold the 2022 World Cup in the desert nation of Qatar in the middle of summer.
NPR's Mike Pesca reports on what he calls the Confluence of Football and Fahrenheit.
The attack at Nairobi's Westgate mall is over. Kenya's president said more than 60 civilians died in the four-day assault, but that more bodies could be pulled from the rubble. The attack was claimed by the militant group al-Shabab as retribution for Kenya's troops in Somalia.
Africa has increasingly become a focus of anti-terror efforts. The U.S. is providing training and intelligence assistance to a number of countries, and is particularly concerned about the arc of countries in northern Africa, stretching from Mali to Somalia.
Army Capt. Matt Zeller had been told that his Afghan comrades would make a big show of hospitality. He'd read that the Afghan code of honor would mean protecting his life with their own. Sure enough, that's what his interpreter, Janis Shinwari, pledged to him when they met in April of 2008.
"I expected him to say it. I didn't think he'd make good on his promise within two weeks of my arrival," Zeller says. "Literally pick up a weapon and ... save my life," says Zeller.
President Dilma Rousseff of Brazil was so angry about reports that the National Security Agency was spying on her and others in her country that she recently called off a high-profile visit to the U.S.
The Brazilian leader was still in a fighting mood Tuesday as she used her speech at the United Nations General Assembly to deliver a broadside against U.S. spying. She also called for civilian oversight of the Web to ensure the protection of data.
Originally published on Wed October 9, 2013 3:35 pm
Kenya has long been an African success story, a place that's been relatively stable, peaceful and prosperous despite being in a neighborhood rocked by major disasters for decades.
There's been endless civil war in Somalia, genocide in Rwanda and famine in Ethiopia. Yet these calamities have, by and large, not spilled over to Kenya, which has been the crossroads of East Africa, serving as a business, transportation and tourist hub.
Originally published on Tue September 24, 2013 11:14 am
(This post last updated at 1:00 p.m. ET)
A strong, 7.7-magnitude earthquake in southern Pakistan on Tuesday has killed at least 45 people, according to Reuters. The U.S. Geological Survey says the initial temblor was followed by several aftershocks — one of them a 5.9-magnitude.
The affected area is reportedly about 145 miles southeast of Dalbandin in Pakistan's western province of Baluchistan.
On 'Morning Edition': NPR's Ari Shapiro on what President Obama will tell the U.N.
Update at 3:07 p.m. ET. Leaders Will Not Meet:
After intense speculation that the United States and Iran were on the verge of making history today by coordinating a meeting between President Obama and new Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, there came word this afternoon that the two would not meet during the ceremonies surrounding the opening session of the U.N. General Assembly.