Kelly McEvers http://wkar.org en Hoping To Slim POW-MIA Bureaucracy, Hagel Makes One Out Of Two http://wkar.org/post/hoping-slim-pow-mia-bureaucracy-hagel-makes-one-out-two Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel announced the creation of a new defense agency charged with merging the multiple divisions currently responsible for finding and identifying the more than 80,000 members missing from past conflicts. A five-month investigation by NPR and the independent news agency ProPublica had found the U.S. recovery effort to be slow, inefficient and stymied by outdated methods. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2014 NPR. Mon, 31 Mar 2014 20:37:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 51475 at http://wkar.org Dwindling Middle Class Has Repercussions For Small Towns http://wkar.org/post/reinventing-dwindling-middle-class-may-take-revolution My parents moved away from Lincoln, Ill., two decades ago, when I was in college. I hardly ever get back there. But my mom still works in Lincoln, and it was to Lincoln I headed to meet her this fall, after returning to the U.S. from the Middle East.<p>I got off the train from Chicago and immediately saw that the old depot building — where we used to go for fancy dinners before prom — was shuttered. A little monument commemorating the day Abraham Lincoln named the town in 1853 was faded and peeling. There was a man asleep on a bench at the train stop. Tue, 12 Nov 2013 08:04:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 45148 at http://wkar.org Dwindling Middle Class Has Repercussions For Small Towns In Iraq, Laying Claim To The Kebab http://wkar.org/post/iraq-laying-claim-kebab When you hear the word "kebab" in America, you might think of skewers with chunks of chicken or beef and vegetables, marinated and grilled on coals or gas. But say "kebab" in the Middle East, and it means a lot of things — chunks of lamb or liver on skewers, or the more popular version of grilled ground meat logs found in Turkey, Iran and much of the Arab world.<p>If you spend enough time in the Middle East, you learn it can be hard to pinpoint the origins of things. Everybody claims to have invented hummus, flatbread and even yogurt. Tue, 13 Aug 2013 22:16:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 40735 at http://wkar.org In Iraq, Laying Claim To The Kebab Al-Jazeera Under Fire For Its Coverage Of Egypt http://wkar.org/post/al-jazeera-under-fire-its-coverage-egypt <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=indIpXbtOUU</p> Thu, 18 Jul 2013 07:19:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 39317 at http://wkar.org Al-Jazeera Under Fire For Its Coverage Of Egypt Ramadan Takes Political Tinge In Egypt http://wkar.org/post/ramadan-takes-political-tinge-egypt Transcript <p>SCOTT SIMON, HOST: <p>It's the holy month of Ramadan, usually a time of reflection, prayer and solidarity with fellow Muslims. But this Ramadan, Egypt is divided. The ouster of former president, Mohamed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood earlier this month and his current detention by Egyptian security forces, has polarized the country. Sat, 13 Jul 2013 11:16:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 39085 at http://wkar.org Syrian Conflict Continues Violent Spillover Into Lebanon http://wkar.org/post/syrian-conflict-continues-violent-spillover-lebanon Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>A bomb placed in a parked car caused a massive explosion in Beirut today that injured dozens of people. Later, a Syrian rebel group claimed responsibility for the blast.<p>NPR's Kelly McEvers was at the scene of the attack. She sent this report on how the Syrian conflict is spilling over into Lebanon.<p>KELLY MCEVERS, BYLINE: The group that claimed responsibility for the blast is a branch of the Free Syrian Army that calls itself Division 313. Tue, 09 Jul 2013 20:54:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 38861 at http://wkar.org War Correspondent's Unflinching 'Diary Of A Bad Year' http://wkar.org/post/war-correspondents-unflinching-diary-very-bad-year <em>NPR's Kelly McEvers struggled with intense, unexpected emotions during the Arab Spring, when friends were being kidnapped and worse. It made her wonder, why do otherwise intelligent people risk their lives to report on conflicts?</em><p>In early 2011, I started seeing things in slow motion. I cried unpredictably. It was the time of the Arab uprisings. Colleagues and friends were getting kidnapped. Some were getting killed.<p>But still, I went toward the story. The next year, 2012 was one of the deadliest years on record for journalists. Sat, 29 Jun 2013 13:05:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 38379 at http://wkar.org War Correspondent's Unflinching 'Diary Of A Bad Year' Dozens Dead After Clashes With Radical Cleric In Lebanon http://wkar.org/post/dozens-dead-after-clashes-radical-cleric-lebanon Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>You're listening to ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News.<p>Calm has been restored in southern Lebanon for now. Clashes between the army and followers of a radical Sunni cleric have left dozens dead over the past two days. It's been called the most violent spillover from the conflict in Syria to a neighboring country. Tue, 25 Jun 2013 22:05:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 38182 at http://wkar.org Syrian Rebels Want Enough Help To Turn The Tide http://wkar.org/post/syrian-rebels-want-enough-help-turn-tide Audie Cornish talks to Kelly McEvers about her reporting out of Syria and what people there are saying about U.S. intervention. Fri, 26 Apr 2013 20:47:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 34931 at http://wkar.org A Close-Up Of Syria's Alawites, Loyalists Of A Troubled Regime http://wkar.org/post/close-syrias-alawites-loyalists-troubled-regime The film on Syria's Alawite community isn't finished yet, but filmmaker Nidal Hassan's favorite scenes are beginning to take shape.<p>It opens with fireworks on New Year's Eve in Tartous, Syria. "May God preserve the president for us," one young man yells in a reference to Syrian leader Bashar Assad.<p>Situated on the Mediterranean coast, Tartous is a resort town, with a port and a Russian naval base. Roughly three-quarters of the people in Tartous are Alawites, like Assad and his late father, who have run the country for more than 40 years. Mon, 08 Apr 2013 19:20:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 33952 at http://wkar.org A Close-Up Of Syria's Alawites, Loyalists Of A Troubled Regime Members Of Assad's Sect Break Ranks With Syrian Regime http://wkar.org/post/syria-some-ruling-minority-alawites-take-risky-stand-against-regime The Alawites of Syria were a poor, little-known Shiite minority until longtime dictator Hafez Assad, a member of the sect, rose to power in 1970. His son, President Bashar Assad, is now fighting to maintain that power in a country that has risen up against him. Now, even some Syrian Alawites say they are willing to denounce the regime, despite the risks.<p>A recent gathering in Cairo was much like other conferences hosted by the Syrian opposition — a flurry of activity in the hotel lobby, late-night conversations and lots of cigarettes.<p>But this one was different. Tue, 02 Apr 2013 21:03:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 33689 at http://wkar.org Members Of Assad's Sect Break Ranks With Syrian Regime Revisiting Iraq: A Sister On The Edge http://wkar.org/post/revisiting-iraq-sister-edge <em>It's been 10 years since the U.S. invaded Iraq. This week we're taking a look back, revisiting voices you first heard on NPR in 2007. We brought you the story of two sisters who had lost their parents. The older sister wore conservative clothes and recited poetry. The younger sister, just 13 at the time, appeared on the verge of becoming a prostitute.</em><p>Like so many stories in Iraq, especially sensitive ones involving shame and sex, this story has to be peeled away in layers, like an onion.<p>It starts with the older sister, Shahad. Fri, 22 Mar 2013 06:58:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 33096 at http://wkar.org Face-To-Face With Death In Iraq http://wkar.org/post/face-face-death-iraq <em>On the 10th anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, NPR is catching up with some of the people we encountered during the war. In 2006, at the height of the violence, we brought you the story of </em><a href="http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5358641">a woman who performed the Muslim ritual of washing and preparing the dead for burial</a>. Thu, 21 Mar 2013 21:07:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 33076 at http://wkar.org Face-To-Face With Death In Iraq 1 Decade Since The War, Where Iraq Stands Now http://wkar.org/post/1-decade-war-where-iraq-stands-now <em>Ten years after the U.S.-led war in Iraq, NPR is looking at where the country stands now. NPR's Kelly McEvers recently visited Baghdad and offered this take on how the Iraqi capital feels today. </em><p>I think the single word that would best describe Baghdad these days is traffic. It can take hours just to get from one place to another. And I guess that's both good and bad.<p>Good because it means people are out, going to work, leading normal lives. They feel safe enough to be in the streets, to be in their cars. On the weekends, the parks are full of families picnicking. Tue, 19 Mar 2013 08:43:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 32896 at http://wkar.org 1 Decade Since The War, Where Iraq Stands Now Letters To My Dead Father http://wkar.org/post/letters-my-dead-father <em>Ten years after the U.S. invaded Iraq, NPR is taking a look back, revisiting people and places first encountered during the war. In 2006, NPR aired a <a href="http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6043673">story</a> about a 9-year-old girl who loved her father so much, she wrote him letters to take to work with him. Sat, 16 Mar 2013 09:14:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 32797 at http://wkar.org Letters To My Dead Father A Chat With A Radical Fighter In Syria http://wkar.org/post/chat-radical-fighter-syria The Islamist rebel group Jabhat al-Nusra has been secretive, keeping to itself and refusing to meet Western journalists. The group has been designated a terrorist organization by the Obama administration and was thought to be made up mostly of foreign fighters, working alongside Syrian rebels.<p>But lately, members are starting to open up as more Syrians join the group and they make more gains on the ground in the fight against the Syrian government.<p>In the northwest Syrian town of Kafr Nabel we met a 21-year-old fighter from the group. Sat, 09 Mar 2013 17:19:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 32435 at http://wkar.org A Chat With A Radical Fighter In Syria Displaced Syrians Bring Life To Ancient 'Dead Cities' http://wkar.org/post/displaced-syrians-find-shelter-ancient-dead-cities Parts of the northern Syrian province of Idlib are a U.N. World Heritage site, known for its ancient archaeological wonders. Walking along muddy, rocky ground covered in new grass and wild daffodils, we start to see remnants of Roman structures — the columns and doorways of dwellings, temples and churches that date back to the 1st century.<p>They're known as the Dead Cities, and they trace the transition from ancient pagan Rome to Christian Byzantium. Fri, 08 Mar 2013 09:39:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 32360 at http://wkar.org Displaced Syrians Bring Life To Ancient 'Dead Cities' 'Conscience' of Syrian Revolution Faces Challenge from Islamists http://wkar.org/post/conscience-syrian-revolution-faces-challenge-islamists Kafr Nabl is surrounded by rocky hills covered with olive and fig trees. Located in northwest Syria near the Turkish border, it used to be a sleepy town of about 30,000 people. Then it rose up against the government in early 2011. More than a year later, the town was "liberated" by anti-government rebels who forced out soldiers and police who worked for the government. <br /> Mon, 04 Mar 2013 21:43:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 32116 at http://wkar.org 'Conscience' of Syrian Revolution Faces Challenge from Islamists Conflict Transforms Syrian English Teacher Into War Photographer http://wkar.org/post/conflict-transforms-syrian-english-teacher-war-photographer Syria's war has thrown ordinary citizens into situations they never could have imagined and changed them in ways they never would have dreamed. It's turned carpenters, engineers and doctors into armed rebels. And in Aleppo, it has turned a young female teacher into a war photographer.<p>We first met Nour Kelze back in October, on our first trip to Aleppo. We asked her to work with us as an interpreter. Fri, 15 Feb 2013 19:46:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 31229 at http://wkar.org Conflict Transforms Syrian English Teacher Into War Photographer Syrian Opposition Leader Holds Talks With Russia, Iran http://wkar.org/post/syrian-opposition-leader-holds-talks-russia-iran Transcript <p>RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: <p>This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.<p>DAVID GREENE, HOST: <p>And I'm David Greene.<p>Let's begin this morning with Syria. There has been a little bit of movement on the diplomatic front. Over the weekend, one of the main Syrian opposition leaders held informal talks with the government's main backers - Russia and Iran. These talks were held on the sidelines of a security conference in Germany. Mon, 04 Feb 2013 10:19:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 30544 at http://wkar.org Jihadi Fighters Win Hearts And Minds By Easing Syria's Bread Crisis http://wkar.org/post/syrian-rebels-reopen-bakeries-bread-crisis-starts-ease In Syria, the staple of most meals is a thin, round, flat bread that we would probably call pita.<p>Back in November, as fierce fighting raged across Syria, people started to run out of this bread. Government forces were attacking bakeries in rebel-held areas and cutting off electricity so mills couldn't grind flour. Wed, 16 Jan 2013 23:09:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 29715 at http://wkar.org Jihadi Fighters Win Hearts And Minds By Easing Syria's Bread Crisis For Those Still In Syria, A Daily Struggle http://wkar.org/post/those-still-syria-daily-struggle <em>The situation for Syrian refugees is getting dire. Much has been reported about the worsening conditions for hundreds of thousands of Syrians taking up shelter just outside the country's borders, but inside Syria, the numbers are even higher. The United Nations says some 2 million people have been displaced from their homes in Syria, and most of them end up squatting in mosques and schools. Wed, 16 Jan 2013 07:04:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 29664 at http://wkar.org For Those Still In Syria, A Daily Struggle In War-Torn Aleppo, Old Doors That Reflect A Grand Tradition http://wkar.org/post/war-torn-aleppo-old-doors-reflect-grand-tradition Aleppo's storied old city, which dates to the 12th century, has suffered much in the fighting between Syrian government forces and rebels over the past few months. But parts of the city remain intact, as I saw on a recent walk through the winding, stone alleys on the way to the front line.<p>Centuries ago, it took Muslims from this area months in a caravan to make the pilgrimage, or hajj, to Mecca, the holiest site in Islam, which is now part of Saudi Arabia.<p>The trip was so difficult that pilgrims took burial clothes with them in case they didn't survive. Tue, 15 Jan 2013 16:38:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 29619 at http://wkar.org In War-Torn Aleppo, Old Doors That Reflect A Grand Tradition A Welcoming Way Station For Syrians Fleeing Home http://wkar.org/post/welcoming-way-station-syrians-fleeing-home It's called Beit Qamishlo, or the House of Qamishlo. It's named after a city in northeastern Syria, though the house isn't even in Syria — it's just across the border in southern Turkey.<p>The house is humble, made of concrete blocks, with tile floors. Arabic slogans are taped on the walls: "Beit Qamishlo is a house for everyone," "It's a window to Syria's future," "Under one roof we plant life together and freedom."<p>More than just ideas, Beit Qamishlo is also a hostel, a place for Syrians who've escaped their country to crash until they find more permanent digs. Tue, 08 Jan 2013 22:20:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 29321 at http://wkar.org A Welcoming Way Station For Syrians Fleeing Home As Syrian War Grinds On, A Rebel Keeps Reinventing Himself http://wkar.org/post/syrian-war-grinds-rebel-keeps-reinventing-himself Ibrahim Abazid had no idea he would be part of a nationwide revolt in Syria — or that his role would keep evolving.<p>It was March 2011. Some teenagers in his hometown, Dera'a, got arrested for spray painting anti-government slogans outside a school. Rumors began circulating that the teenagers were being tortured while in detention in the southern town.<p>In the broader region, Arab protesters had been filling the streets for months. Dictators in Tunisia and Egypt had already fallen. Mon, 24 Dec 2012 22:03:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 28724 at http://wkar.org As Syrian War Grinds On, A Rebel Keeps Reinventing Himself Sources: Syrian Rebels Training On Anti-Aircraft Weapons In Jordan http://wkar.org/post/sources-us-jordan-training-syrian-rebels-anti-aircraft-weapons The U.S. has now formally recognized a new Syrian opposition group as the legitimate representative of the Syrian people. But the U.S. has repeatedly declined to provide weapons for rebels fighting President Bashar Assad's army.<p>However, NPR has learned that there are movements behind the scenes. In Jordan, several Syrian sources said that Jordanian authorities, along with their U.S. Wed, 12 Dec 2012 18:34:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 28178 at http://wkar.org Sources: Syrian Rebels Training On Anti-Aircraft Weapons In Jordan A Rebel Fighter Sees Islamic Law In Syria's Future http://wkar.org/post/rebel-fighter-sees-islamic-law-syrias-future It's about 9 o'clock in the morning, and already it's been a long day for Abu Anas. He has lost two men to a sniper serving the Syrian regime. Four more have been injured.<p>But Abu Anas walks with a striking calm through the bombed-out, ruined streets of Aleppo, a city that has been at war for months. He wears a black headband bearing Islam's holy creed: "There is no God but God. Tue, 04 Dec 2012 08:33:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 27787 at http://wkar.org A Rebel Fighter Sees Islamic Law In Syria's Future Syrian Rebels Claim They Shot Down Fighter Jet With A Missile http://wkar.org/post/syrian-rebels-claim-they-shot-down-fighter-jet-missile <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=whGg7IcgQn8</p> Wed, 28 Nov 2012 21:04:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 27555 at http://wkar.org Iraqi Businesses Feel Pinch Of Iran's Economic Woes http://wkar.org/post/iraqi-businesses-feel-pinch-irans-economic-woes Transcript <p>RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: <p>This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.<p>STEVE INSKEEP, HOST: <p>And I'm Steve Inskeep.<p>We've heard about how U.S. and European sanctions on Iran have caused that country's currency to plummet and how Iran is now buying up gold and trying to dump its own currency outside its borders. Well, Iran is part of a regional economy and the falling currency is starting to hurt at least one of Iran's neighbors. Tue, 27 Nov 2012 11:25:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 27459 at http://wkar.org In Syria's Biggest City, A Deadly Stalemate http://wkar.org/post/syrias-biggest-city-deadly-stalemate Before the Syrian uprising, Aleppo was many things: Syria's largest city, its economic hub and cultural capital, one of the oldest, continuously occupied cities in the world.<p>Now, Aleppo has a more ominous distinction: a city that's seen some of the worst destruction, not only in Syria, but of any battleground in many years.<p>It's been more than three months since rebels in Syria launched an offensive to take Aleppo. Mon, 05 Nov 2012 21:40:00 +0000 Kelly McEvers 26455 at http://wkar.org In Syria's Biggest City, A Deadly Stalemate