This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. Gunfire broke out today inside the Interior Ministry in Kabul, Afghanistan. Two high-ranking U.S. military officers have been killed. The incident came on the fifth day of protests across the nation, sparked by the burning of Qurans at a U.S. base. NPR's Quil Lawrence joins us from Kabul. Quil, thanks for being with us.
The northeastern Greek town of Soufli flourished in the 19th century because of its vibrant silk trade. Silk farming declined in the 20th century with the invention of synthetic silk, but a few families have hung on. Despite the economic crisis, one of those families opened a silk museum in the hopes of drawing tourists and life back to a forgotten Greek town.
Events as disparate as the cruel, escalating violence in Syria and the congested, unnerving conditions where Apple's iPads and iPhones are made at the Foxconn assembly plants in China raise a recurring question:
When do a country's internal affairs become the business of the world? And when do we make that our personal business?
You can take that question back through atrocities, crimes and outrages of recent history.
During the summer of 1972, five men were arrested in the middle of the night for breaking into the Democratic Party headquarters at the Watergate office building in Washington, D.C.
The breach went to the very top. Watergate toppled the Nixon administration and became an iconic (and exhaustively studied) American political scandal. In his new novel, Watergate, Thomas Mallon gives the story a fresh twist, retelling it from the perspectives of the involved parties — from seven different points of view.
Golden Gate National Recreation Area in California's Bay Area is expanding, quite literally, up next to some people's backyards. And while you might think neighbors would be thrilled to see this scenic landscape preserved, the relationship between the National Park Service and locals is off to a rocky start.
A Coptic Christian man holds a cross made of flowers during a clash between Christians and Muslims in Cairo in November. Relations are becoming more strained between the two communities, and there has been periodic violence.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks during a press conference at a conference on Syria in Tunis, Tunisia, on Friday. The participants were united in their calls for a ceasefire and for Syrian President Bashar Assad to allow humanitarian aid into his country.
Syrians are looking to the world in their hour of need and "we cannot let them down," U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Friday at an international conference on Syria held in Tunisia.
The dozens of countries represented at the conference, Clinton said, are united in their demands: Syrian President Bashar Assad must allow much-needed aid to his people and silence his guns or face more isolation and pressure.
But debate continues over what other steps countries in the region could take.
With a bit of reverence, librarians carefully wind an antique library clock near the circulation desk in a temple of learning called the Providence Athenaeum.
This is one of the oldest libraries in the United States, a 19th-century library with the soul of a 21st-century rave party. In fact, the Rhode Island institution has been called a national model for civic engagement.
The entire public school system in Kansas City, Mo., has flunked.
The state board of education revoked its accreditation on Jan. 1. Public schools met just three of the 14 standards set by the board for basic proficiency. They received failing grades for attendance, graduation rates, plus math and reading and writing scores.
"I don't know why the traffic is like this," he said. "It's Friday just before prayers; where are all these people going?"
My friend Emad and I had been driving around the perimeter of Bab al-Azizia, Gadhafi's notorious compound just outside downtown Tripoli. It was here that NATO concentrated many of its bombing runs, as did President Reagan in the 1980s. Now the outer walls are a crumbling mess, covered with anti-Gadhafi graffiti.
Ever since Sept. 11, the New York Police Department has been aggressively gathering intelligence to help prevent another terrorist attack.
Now, those tactics are provoking new controversy in New Jersey after The Associated Press published a confidential, 60-page NYPD report from 2007 containing detailed information on dozens of mosques and Muslim-owned businesses in nearby Newark.
Like flying cars and time travel, eye glasses with computing power have long been sci-fi fantasy, relegated to Terminator movies and the like. Now it appears that Google may be a few months from selling a version of their own.
Google glasses — which may be released as a "beta" product — could put smartphone capabilities such as GPS maps, weather, time, Web streaming and more inches from your eyeball.
Seattle has one of the country's few working movie theater organs. Jim Riggs plays the theater's Wurlitzer organ while silent movies are screened. Recently he performed during a screening of 1927's Wings, the only silent film to win the Academy Award for Best Picture.
We are getting more details about that preliminary agreement to settle an "Agent Orange" related class-action lawsuit filed against the Monsanto Company. We reported yesterday that Monsanto agreed to settle a case over pollution claims made on behalf of current and former residents of the small town of Nitro, West Virginia.
It's a simple enough idea: Know how many calories are in those fast food meals, and you'll make a better choice between them.
But when students at the Columbia University School of Nursing tried to nail down the calories on 70 menus at 12 eateries in New York's Harlem neighborhood, they found it pretty much impossible, even with a calculator.
One big problem: Many items are listed with a calorie range, but with no clues as to how those ranges are determined. For example:
GOP presidential candidate Fred Karger hopes Michigan's primary rules will allow him to pick up a few delegates to the national convention. He's focusing on just one congressional district in the center of the state.
Credit Rick Pluta for NPR
Karger has spent a lot of time at Michigan State University, where he's trying to appeal to supporters of President Obama. Any registered voter can cast a ballot in Michigan's GOP primary.
A new report by the United Nations' nuclear agency claims that Iran has ramped up production of a purer form of enriched uranium over the past few months. The report by the International Atomic Energy Agency was obtained by The Associated Press and other news outlets and it's likely to further suspicions from Western countries that Iran might be working on a nuclear weapon.
U.S. Brig. Gen. Kevin Bergner speaks in Baghdad in July 2007 near a poster of Ali Musa Daqduq. Daqduq was captured in Iraq in March 2007, and is accused of orchestrating the killings of five U.S. soldiers. The U.S. left Daqduq in Iraqi custody when U.S. troops formally withdrew in December. But the Obama administration is seeking to try him before a military commission.
Originally published on Fri February 24, 2012 4:18 pm
The Obama administration is seeking to try a Lebanese man linked to Hezbollah in a military commission, expanding the reach of the military tribunal beyond al-Qaida and Taliban suspects for the first time.
The man at the center of the case is Ali Musa Daqduq. He was the last detainee held by American forces in Iraq and had been turned over to Iraqi custody when U.S. forces formally withdrew from Iraq in December.