A NATO ally with close ties to the West, Turkey's economy has grown significantly, and the government of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has taken active roles in several international crises. But reporter Dexter Filkins paints a complicated picture of Erdogan under threats of coup and paranoia.
Nearly a month after 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was shot and killed in Florida, the widespread shock and outrage has grown into a nationwide movement calling for justice. This week, the Justice Department announced it would conduct a federal investigation of the incident.
But the Trayvon Martin story has also turned into a dialogue about race in America, a conversation that NPR's Michele Norris has been engaged in for over a year with her Race Card Project.
If Ben Petrick's career had gone the way the scouts expected, he'd still be in his prime — a star baseball player, maybe even a megastar. He came up to the majors as a catcher for the Colorado Rockies in 2000 with speed, power, a fine arm and maybe a better head for the game.
But the year before, at just 22-years-old, he learned that he had early-onset Parkinson's. He struggled to hide the symptoms, but, frustrated by his shaking and growing lack of mobility, he retired in 2004. Petrick has since focused on coaching, parenting and giving motivational speeches.
"I'm very sorry about Tyler," Dharun Ravi, the former Rutgers student convicted of a crime for spying on his roommate, tells The New Jersey Star-Ledger this morning. "I have parents and a little brother, and I can only try to imagine how they feel. But I want the Clementis to know I had no problem with their son. I didn't hate Tyler and I knew he was okay with me. I wanted to talk to his parents, but I was afraid. I didn't know what to say."
A couple of really rich guys have decided to give even more money to health causes they care about deeply.
New York Mayor, media magnate and public health zealot Michael Bloomberg said he will give $220 million to fight smoking in the developing world. Bloomberg's charitable foundation has targeted tobacco use.
And the latest chunk of money, which is part of a four-year commitment, will bring Bloomberg Philanthropies' support of anti-smoking efforts around the globe to more than $600 million.
Things were not quiet again in Clintonville, Wis., early today.
As we reported Wednesday, folks there have been hearing booms and feeling vibrations this week and no one has yet been able to explain what's causing them. One of the latest theories is that unusually warm temperatures are causing underground ice to crack. A few homeowners think they've suffered some damages (cracked floors, for example).
Next week, the Supreme Court will hear challenges to the Affordable Care Act. In the first of a series of conversations about the case, host Michel Martin sits down with Michael Cannon of the Cato Institute. Cannon opposes the law and his group has filed four briefs with the high court, arguing that key parts of the measure are unconstitutional.
Suzanne Collins' novel The Hunger Games and its two sequels are smashingly well written and morally problematic. They're set in the future, in which a country — presumably the former United States — is divided into 12 fenced-off districts many miles apart.
Each year, to remind people of its limitless power, a totalitarian government holds a lottery, selecting two children per district to participate in a killing ritual — the Hunger Games of the title — that will be televised to the masses, complete with opening ceremonies and beauty-pageant-style interviews.
At 54, Don Verrilli Jr. stands tall and calm in the Supreme Court chamber, his salt and pepper mustache the only thing about him that bristles. His deep, baritone voice suggests to the justices that he is the essence of reasonableness. There are no histrionics. Indeed, if he gets backed into a corner, his voice just gets deeper. Only the occasional, needless throat-clearing betrays any nerves at all.
A Bedouin guide makes his way down from Mount Sinai to the Greek Orthodox monastery of St. Catherine in Egypt's Sinai Peninsula. The Bedouins depend on tourism, but have been kidnapping visitors in recent months in an attempt to pressure Egypt's government.
Credit Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson / NPR
Sheik Ahmed Hashem, 37, who heads the Revolutionary Movement of Sinai, led a group of some 150 protesters that detained two busloads of Western tourists earlier this year for five hours at a monastery in Wadi Feiran in South Sinai.
Credit Asmaa Waguuih / Reuters/Landov
A Bedouin man takes a visitor on a tour of Mount Catherine in South Sinai. Bedouin tribesmen in the region say they have been kidnapping Western tourists to pressure the Egyptian government to meet their basic needs and release jailed Bedouins.
Credit Khaled Elfiqi / EPA/Landov
Tourists visit the desert near the Red Sea resort town of Sharm El-Sheikh, in Egypt's Sinai Peninsula, in February.
Bedouin tribesmen on Egypt's Sinai Peninsula rely on tourists for their livelihood — taking them on safaris, selling them trinkets, renting them huts at no-frills resorts on the Red Sea.
But these days, some Bedouins are using tourists for something completely different: as hostages in their political battle with the Egyptian government. In one recent incident, the tribesmen kidnapped two Brazilian tourists to secure the release of imprisoned relatives. The kidnappers released the women unharmed a few hours later.
A New Hampshire man who claimed last year that for a fee of $135 he would arrange to have your dog walked if the Rapture did indeed begin last May 21 and you got taken up to heaven, is now saying that his business venture was a hoax.
Allegations of phone hacking and bribery brought down Rupert Murdoch's tabloid News of the World. Criminal and parliamentary investigations are now under way in the U.K., and dozens of journalists and top executives from Murdoch's paper have been arrested.
Scotland Yard has been investigating the scandal, but several police officials from that iconic institution have also been implicated; they're accused of accepting bribes from reporters at Murdoch's papers.
Vanderbilt administrators and faculty field questions at a January 2012 town hall meeting on the school's controversial "all comers" rule. Many campus religious groups say aspects of the policy are discriminatory.
Credit Neil Brake / Courtesy of Vanderbilt
Vanderbilt University's Kirkland Hall. A controversial nondiscrimination policy has roiled the campus.
Administrators at Vanderbilt University are beginning to enforce a long-held nondiscrimination policy for student groups. The policy is forcing a dilemma for faith-based organizations: Either drop requirements that their leaders hold certain beliefs, or forfeit school funding and move off campus.
Members of Christian student groups say Vanderbilt's nondiscrimination policy has them feeling more like victims of discrimination. They include the school's star quarterback, junior Jordan Rogers.
When he was killed on Feb. 26, Trayvon Martin was said to be wearing a hooded sweatshirt. In New York City on Wednesday, hundreds of people gathered for a "Million Hoodies" march to call attention to his death.