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Asia
8:38 am
Sun April 29, 2012

Chinese Activist's Escape Quickens A Quiet Diplomacy

Chinese activist Chen Guangchen is believed to be under U.S. protection, possibly at the U.S. embassy in Beijing.
Ed Jones AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 30, 2012 11:31 am

A senior U.S. official, Kurt Campbell, has arrived on an unscheduled trip to Beijing, apparently to negotiate over Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng, believed to be under U.S. protection. The fate of the activist puts both China and the U.S. in a tricky diplomatic bind, with no easy answers.

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The Two-Way
7:18 am
Sun April 29, 2012

Canceling Out The 'Background Noise' On Egypt-Israel Relations

Bedouins watch flames rise in July 2011 after masked gunmen blew up a terminal of the Egyptian natural gas pipeline to Israel and Jordan. It was one of many attacks on the pipeline since the popular uprising that ousted longtime Egyptian leader Hosni Mubarak last year.
AP

Originally published on Sun May 6, 2012 8:05 am

By ending a historic gas contract with Israel, is Egypt laying the groundwork for a fundamental shift in relations? Not quite, says Rob Malley of the International Crisis Group.

Malley, program director for the Middle East and North Africa, talks to NPR's David Greene on Weekend Edition about last week's announcement, which raised questions of political rifts. Malley says:

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Reporter's Notebook
7:18 am
Sun April 29, 2012

The L.A. Riots, As A Neighbor Remembers It

Smoke covers Los Angeles Thursday, April 30, 1992, as fires from the riots burn out of control.
Paul Sakuma AP

Originally published on Mon April 30, 2012 11:31 am

Twenty years ago Sunday, Los Angeles erupted into destructive riots after the verdict in the Rodney King trial. The violence lasted six days and left more than 50 dead and over $1 billion in damage. NPR's Karen Grigsby Bates remembers; she lived in the one of the neighborhoods that went up in flames.

Several years ago, I interviewed Karl Fleming for the 40th anniversary of the Watts riots. He was a veteran journalist who'd covered the civil rights movement in the in the 1960s for Newsweek.

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Middle East
7:18 am
Sun April 29, 2012

For Israel And Egypt, A Relationship Under Strain

A mural in Cairo depicts the split faces of Egyptian military ruler Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi, left, and ousted president Hosni Mubarak accompanied by Arabic that reads, "who assigned you did not die, No for gas export to Israel, the revolution continues."
Nasser Nasser AP

Originally published on Sun May 6, 2012 8:04 am

Ever since Egypt's revolution last year, many Israelis have wondered what it might mean for the peace treaty that the two countries signed in 1979 – the first such agreement between Israel and an Arab state.

Israel's embassy in Egypt was attacked last September and badly damaged. Islamist parties sharply critical of Israel have proved popular, including the Muslim Brotherhood, which won Egypt's parliamentary elections.

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Monkey See
6:38 am
Sun April 29, 2012

Chris Colfer Goes From 'Glee' Singer To 'Struck' Screenwriter

Chris Colfer, writer and star of Struck By Lightning, at the Tribeca Film Festival, where the film is playing.
Larry Busacca Getty Images

Originally published on Mon April 30, 2012 10:39 am

Chris Colfer, one of the stars of the hit TV show Glee, is known for his portrayal of Kurt, a confident and openly gay high school student (who also possesses pipes like a diva). In the new film Struck By Lightning, which Colfer wrote, he plays a very different character: Carson Phillips, an ambitious high school student who starts a literary magazine in order to get into Northwestern University. The character is arrogant and not exactly well-liked, so how does he collect submissions? By blackmailing the popular kids, of course.

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Europe
5:27 am
Sun April 29, 2012

In Spain, The Church Offers More Than Salvation

A priest prays before a Mass celebrated by Pope Benedict XVI at the Cuatro Vientos air base outside Madrid during World Youth Day festivities in August 2011. The Catholic Church is hoping to provide an attractive option for young job seekers in Spain, which is suffering from unprecedented unemployment.
Jorge Guerrero AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sun May 6, 2012 10:38 am

Spain has Europe's highest unemployment rate, with nearly 1 in 4 people out of work. The country has dipped back into recession, and layoffs are on the rise.

But there's one organization there that's still hiring: the Catholic Church. A group of bishops has launched a savvy campaign on YouTube to recruit new priests from the swelling ranks of Spain's unemployed.

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Around the Nation
5:27 am
Sun April 29, 2012

After L.A. Riots, An Effort To Rebuild A Broken City

A fire burns out of control at the corner of 67th St. and West Blvd. in South Central Los Angeles on April 30, 1992. Hundreds of buildings burned when riots erupted after the verdicts in the Rodney King case were announced.
Paul Sakuma AP

Originally published on Mon April 30, 2012 11:33 am

The Los Angeles riots began 20 years ago Sunday, when a jury acquitted four police officers in the beating of black motorist Rodney King in 1992.

While the ashes were still smoldering, then-Mayor Tom Bradley announced a new organization that would repair the shattered city, Rebuild L.A. Its mission was to spend five years harnessing the power of the private sector to replace and improve on what was lost. While it created a lot of hope, it created even more disappointment.

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Home Front: Soldiers Learn To Live After War
5:25 am
Sun April 29, 2012

National Guard Members' Next Battle: The Job Hunt

The National Guard's 182nd Infantry Regiment returned home in March from a year in Afghanistan. One in three said they were unemployed or looking for work.
Becky Lettenberger NPR

Originally published on Mon April 30, 2012 11:31 am

Before the soldiers of the 182nd Regiment of the Army National Guard came home, they were asked how many were unemployed or looking for work. The answer: about one in three.

As more soldiers return to civilian life, a civilian job may not be there waiting. Service members with the National Guard have the extra challenge of convincing employers to hire them when they may be called to active duty for a year or more. There are laws designed to protect vets from losing their jobs or promotions because of their service, but it's hard to prove when it happens.

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Education
4:35 pm
Sat April 28, 2012

Help For The Economy? Not From Debt-Bound Grads

Gan Golan of Los Angeles, dressed as the "Master of Degrees," holds a ball and chain representing his college loan debt during Occupy D.C. activities in Washington. Average in-state tuition and fees at four-year public colleges rose an additional $631 this fall, or 8.3 percent, compared with a year ago.
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Originally published on Mon April 30, 2012 7:39 am

In a little more than 10 years, the total amount of student loan debt in this country has doubled to more than $1 trillion. In the not too-distant-future, student loan debt will eclipse the amount of money Americans owe on their cars and credit cards.

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History
4:17 pm
Sat April 28, 2012

Operation Tiger: D-Day's Disastrous Rehearsal

A disastrous rehearsal for D-Day took place on Slapton Sands in southwestern England.
Terry Smith Time & Life Pictures/Getty Image

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 5:12 pm

Sixty-eight years ago today, the Allies launched a massive dress rehearsal for the invasion of Normandy — the famous D-Day landings that would happen five weeks later. But that rehearsal turned into one of the war's biggest fiascos.

It took place on Slapton Sands, a beach in southwestern England. British historian Giles Milton wrote about the rehearsal on his blog last week.

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Asia
4:15 pm
Sat April 28, 2012

Seeking Refuge, Blind Chinese Activist Flees

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 5:07 pm

Transcript

GUY RAZ, HOST:

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

It's been more than a day now since news broke of a blind Chinese dissident's dramatic escape from house arrest. It's now thought that Chen Guangcheng secretly traveled 300 miles to the capital, Beijing, and is being sheltered on the grounds of the U.S. embassy there.

NPR's Beijing bureau chief is Louisa Lim, and she joins me now from there. Louisa, first off, is it clear that he is actually on embassy grounds?

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National Security
3:34 pm
Sat April 28, 2012

Profiled By The TSA? There's An App For That

The FlyRights mobile app, created by The Sikh Coalition, will be available for download on Androids and iPhones starting Monday, April 30.
Courtesy of The Sikh Coalition

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 5:07 pm

More than a decade after 9/11, heightened security at U.S. airports has become routine, yet some religious and minority groups say they're unfairly singled out for even more screening. Well, now there's an app for that.

The mobile app is called FlyRights. Travelers who suspect they have been profiled take out their smartphone, tap a finger on the app and answer about a dozen questions. Then they hit "submit" and an official complaint is filed immediately with the Transportation Security Administration.

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Music Interviews
2:49 pm
Sat April 28, 2012

Carrie Underwood: Country's 'Good Girl' Goes Dark

Carrie Underwood's new album is Blown Away.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 5:07 pm

Since winning American Idol in 2005, Carrie Underwood has become one of the most popular country artists in the business. At the age of 29, she is tied with country legend Reba McEntire as the Female Country Artist with the most number one hits on the Billboard charts. Not bad for a girl from Checotah, Okla.

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Religion
1:13 pm
Sat April 28, 2012

Pastor Joel Osteen: An Everyday Message, Magnified

Joel Osteen's television program is seen in more than 100 nations and reaches more than 10 million U.S. households each week. He has four No. 1 New York Times bestselling books, a top-ten weekly podcast and sells out stadium-sized worship events across the U.S. and abroad.
Joel Osteen Ministries

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 5:07 pm

Joel Osteen is one of the most influential religious figures in the world.

He's a New York Times best-selling author. His television program reaches more than 10 million households in the U.S. and is seen in more than 100 nations across the globe. On Sunday night, he's hosting America's Night of Hope at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C.

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Asia
8:53 am
Sat April 28, 2012

Blind Chinese Activist Reported Under U.S. Protection

A blind legal activist who fled house arrest in his Chinese village is under the protection of American officials, overseas activists said Saturday, putting the U.S. in a difficult position days ahead of a visit by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Chen Guangcheng, who has exposed forced abortions and sterilizations in villages as a result of China's one-child policy, escaped a week ago from his guarded home in Shandong province in eastern China. Chinese-based activists say he was driven away by supporters and then handed over to others who brought him to Beijing.

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Europe
7:03 am
Sat April 28, 2012

Europe's Crisis May Put Politicians Out Of Work

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 11:22 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon.

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From Our Listeners
7:03 am
Sat April 28, 2012

Your Letters: Veterans And Record Nostalgia

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 11:22 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Time now for Your Letters.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

SIMON: Many of you were moved by our story about the Soldier Ride, a four-day cycling event organized by the Wounded Warriors Project. Iraq War veteran Sergeant Michael Owens spoke about why he rides.

SERGEANT MICHAEL SULLIVAN: I think it's really important for warriors and veterans like myself to be able to know that we can still do the same things we did before, or new things that we never tried before.

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Sports
7:02 am
Sat April 28, 2012

Sports: NBA Playoffs About To Begin

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 11:22 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon, and time for sports.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

SIMON: The NBA playoffs are about to begin. Will LeBron James and the Miami Trio live up to their promise? Will Metta World Peace ever live up to his name? And will Albert Pujols ever live up to his salary?

NPR's Tom Goldman joins us. Morning, Tom.

TOM BOWMAN, BYLINE: Happy opening day of the playoffs day to you, Scott.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

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Europe
7:01 am
Sat April 28, 2012

Immigrant Sweeps In Greece Spark Protests

Originally published on Wed January 30, 2013 1:33 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

The economy is still the biggest issue for Greeks in next weekend's early parliament elections. But polls show that immigration is also high on the list. Politicians are responding by cracking down on undocumented migrants.

Joanna Kakissis has the story from Athens.

(SOUNDBITE OF PROTESTERS SPEAKING THROUGH MEGAPHONES)

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Politics
7:01 am
Sat April 28, 2012

'What Good' Does Congress Do? Don't Ask

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 11:22 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

The U.S. Congress doesn't win any popularity contests. Approval ratings for the legislative branch run the gamut from dismal to embarrassing. Nine percent at their lowest, and all the chaos and discord in the 112th Congress have distressed a lot of its members too. Democratic representative Emanuel Cleaver of Missouri called the last-minute deal to raise the debt ceiling, quote, "a sugar-coated Satan sandwich. If you lift the bun, you will not like what you see."

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NPR Story
6:50 am
Sat April 28, 2012

The Woes Washington Baseball Fans

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 11:22 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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NPR Story
6:50 am
Sat April 28, 2012

Hollywood's Garry Marshall Shares His 'Happy Days'

Host Scott Simon talks to actor, director, writer and producer Garry Marshall about his new memoir My Happy Days In Hollywood and his long and successful career.

NPR Story
6:50 am
Sat April 28, 2012

Political Tensions Mount Between Sudans

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 11:22 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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Election 2012
6:18 am
Sat April 28, 2012

Rubio's 'Dream Act Light' Jumbles Immigration Issue

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., the son of Cuban immigrants, has urged his fellow conservatives to soften their rhetoric on illegal immigration. Above, he makes a campaign stop with Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney on Monday in Aston, Pa.
Jessica Kourkounis Getty Images

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio spent the week in the spotlight as the latest potential running mate for presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney. The Hispanic lawmaker, anointed as the party's best hope for appealing to more Latino voters, came loaded for bear — rolling out an alternative to the Democrats' Dream Act.

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Movies
5:13 am
Sat April 28, 2012

A Creative Collaboration With A 'Darling Companion'

Beth (Diane Keaton) and her daughter (Elisabeth Moss) rescue an injured dog from the side of the highway. Beth's husband (Kevin Kline) later loses the beloved pet, an event co-writer Meg Kasdan says is inspired by a real-life incident.
Wilson Webb Sony Pictures Classics

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 11:22 am

Lawrence Kasdan became famous for writing the blockbusters The Empire Strikes Back and Raiders of the Lost Ark, but he went on to a successful directing career with high-profile films like Body Heat, The Big Chill and Grand Canyon.

His latest film, and his first in nine years, is Darling Companion, which Kasdan wrote with his wife, Meg. The film was her idea.

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Author Interviews
5:04 am
Sat April 28, 2012

'The Art Of The Sale': Life's A Pitch

iStockphoto

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 11:22 am

Salesmen are rarely heroic figures in American culture. They're often shown as slick, unscrupulous charlatans like Ricky Roma in David Mamet's play Glengarry Glen Ross. And then there are sad, defeated characters like Willy Loman in Death Of A Salesman, who shortly before taking his life says, "After all the highways, and the trains, and the appointments, and the years, you end up worth more dead than alive."

Yet sales drive the economy. The cleverest invention or product will disappear — creating no income, no employment — unless someone can sell it.

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Movie Interviews
5:04 am
Sat April 28, 2012

Michelle Yeoh: Portraying An Icon In 'The Lady'

Michelle Yeoh plays pro-democracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi in The Lady. Yeoh says it was important that the film portrayed Suu Kyi's struggles realistically, including how her 15-year house arrest kept her from her husband and sons.
Cohen Media Group

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 11:22 am

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told reporters at a recent film premiere that she'd told Aung San Suu Kyi that she was moving from being an icon to being a politician.

The film Clinton saw is The Lady, starring Michelle Yeoh as the pro-democracy activist who spent 15 years under house arrest in Myanmar (also known as Burma), and who won the Nobel Peace Prize before being freed in 2010.

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Africa
5:03 am
Sat April 28, 2012

In His Own Country, Charles Taylor Still Has Support

Former Liberian President Charles Taylor takes notes during his trial Thursday. He was found guilty of aiding war crimes in Sierra Leone.
AFP Getty Images

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 11:22 am

The guilty verdict against former Liberian President Charles Taylor, who was convicted of aiding and abetting war crimes in Sierra Leone this week, is sinking in across West Africa. The historic judgment of the first African president to be prosecuted in an international court leaves Taylor facing a lengthy sentence in a British prison.

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The Picture Show
5:03 am
Sat April 28, 2012

Taking Photo Exhibits To The Streets

Pedestrians in Philadelphia cross a street in view of a billboard with a photo by Zoe Strauss. Only a dozen years after first picking up a camera to chronicle her beloved hometown's overlooked people and places, Strauss was honored with a solo show at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Matt Slocum AP

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 9:50 am

Zoe Strauss is not really a photographer. She sees herself primarily as an installation artist. About 12 years ago, someone gave her a camera for her birthday, and she used it for a project called Under I-95.

She would take photos in her South Philadelphia neighborhood and display them there, too — on concrete columns supporting an interstate overpass. She wanted her images to be outside, in an urban setting, at home.

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Fresh Air Weekend
4:48 am
Sat April 28, 2012

Fresh Air Weekend: Jack Black, Hugh Laurie

Hugh Laurie has received two Golden Globe awards and two Screen Actors Guild awards for his portrayal of Dr. Gregory House.
Fox

Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 11:18 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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