In the 1980s, this dome from the 13th century was stolen out of the church of St. Evphemianos in Lysi in the Turkish occupied section of Cyprus. The fresco portrays Christ in heaven, surrounded by 12 angels. The Archangels Michael and Gabriel flank the Virgin Mary and John the Baptist as a medallion illustrates the throne that's been prepared for the Lord.
A set of 13th-century Byzantine frescoes — plundered after Turkey invaded Cyprus and on display in Houston for the last 15 years — is headed home at last. It's the closing chapter in what turns out to be a remarkable odyssey.
It all started in the summer of 1974, when the Turkish army invaded Cyprus and nearly 200,000 Greek Cypriots became refugees fleeing south.
"And so all the churches and homes and art was left behind," says Josef Helfenstein, director of the Menil Collection in Houston. "And after years, some of these churches began to be looted."
A single number can help show how beneficial, or not, a treatment is.
While reading over an analysis of decades-old studies of LSD as a treatment for alcoholism last week, I found that the so-called number needed to treat was 6 to prevent alcohol misuse. In other words, treat six people and one would benefit.
Imelda May began her affair with rockabilly early on in life — by the time she was 9, she'd already begun to emulate Elmore James and Billie Holiday. In 2007, after years of singing in clubs, May stole the spotlight with Love Tattoo. The 12-track collection shot to the #1 spot in Ireland, stealing the hearts of audiences and contemporaries the world over.
A day before he begins serving his prison sentence, former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich will give one final press conference. As The Chicago Tribune puts it, talking into a microphone was, after all, one of his favorite things to do as governor.
From NPR news, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.
ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:
I'm Robert Siegel.
One last day of freedom, one last time before cameras and microphones. Former Illinois Governor Rob Blagojevich reports to a federal prison tomorrow to begin serving a 14-year sentence for corruption. But before leaving, he stepped outside his Chicago home today to make a public statement.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.
MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:
And I'm Melissa Block. In South Africa last week, tens of thousands of people took to the streets. It was a one-day workers' strike, one of the largest protests since the end of Apartheid. The strike, organized by South African unions, included 32 cities that caused large sectors of the economy to shut down.
As Anders Kelto reports, protesters were demanding the government do more to help South Africa's poor and working class.
I think everyone can agree that the Republican Party's search for its presidential nominee has been a long, strange trip. For me, one of the strangest things about it is that, after all this time, I barely know who's running Mitt Romney's, Rick Santorum's and Newt Gingrich's campaigns. You see, over the past 30 years, political strategists have gone from being shadowy figures to being celebrities in their own right.
The cacophony of hoots being directed at Mitt Romney Wednesday for his poor performances in Alabama and Mississippi primaries is somewhat curious, especially since it was the conventional wisdom as recently as last week that the Deep South was likely to be very tough going for him.
The Afghan response to Sunday's shooting deaths of 16 Afghan civilians has been limited compared with the recent outrage over the burning of Qurans. In one of the few protests, demonstrators chanted anti-U.S. slogans in the eastern city of Jalalabad on Tuesday.
Credit Rahmat Gul / AP
After U.S. troops burned Qurans last month, Afghans staged protests throughout the country. Here a demonstrator holds a Quran in the eastern city of Jalalabad on Feb. 22.
After U.S. troops inadvertently burned Qurans in Afghanistan last month, Afghans staged nationwide riots that left 40 dead and hundreds injured in unrest that lasted days.
In the days since 16 Afghan civilians were shot dead on Sunday, apparently by a lone U.S. soldier, the Afghan reaction has been relatively restrained so far.
Why such different responses? It can seem especially confounding to Americans, who consider the shooting a far graver offense than the Quran burnings.
Credit Chris Ware / Keystone Features/Getty Images
Politeness seems to be falling by the wayside these days, with phrases like "you're welcome" replaced by the more casual "you bet" or "no problem." Good manners were more the norm in 1960, when these kids at a junior theatrical school learned how to curtsy and bow.
Words such as "yes," "please" and no thanks" are vanishing from many of our conversations.
Listen to the conversations around you — colleagues at the office, customers in the coffeehouse line, those who serve you, those you serve, the people you meet each day. "Give me a tall latte." "Hand me that hammer." "Have a good one."
Notice anything missing? The traditional magic words "please" and "thank you" that many people learn as children appear to be disappearing.
Originally published on Wed March 14, 2012 4:31 pm
Credit Scott Olson / Getty Images
U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, center, is greeted by Col. John Shafer, left, with RTC 6 Wednesday at Foward Operating Base Shukvani, Afghanistan. As Panetta was landing at another base, an Afghan drove a truck onto the airfield until it crashed and exploded.
The Pentagon says an Afghan drove a stolen truck onto the airfield of a British base in southern Afghanistan at high speeds until it crashed into a ditch and exploded into flames.
The incident at Camp Bastion happened around the same time that U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta landed in the country.
"At no point was the Secretary or anyone on the aircraft in any danger from this incident," the International Security Assistance Force said in a statement.
Cooling a person's hands while exercising can make for a better workout, especially for people who hate to exercise because it makes them all hot and sweaty.
This might help the many, many people who have a hard time keeping up with exercise because it's just plain uncomfortable.
Researchers tested the idea with obese women in their 30s and 40s who worked out on a treadmill. The women whose palms were cooled with a device that circulated ice water were able to exercise longer than the women whose palms were exposed to room temperature water.
Dallas Seavey holds his leaders, Diesel, left, and Guiness, after he arrived at the finish line to claim victory in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race in Nome, Alaska, on Tuesday, March 13, 2012.
There's a new record in the Iditarod: A 25 year old has become the youngest musher to win the approximately thousand-mile trans-Alaskan sled dog race.
Dallas Seavey slid into Nome, Alaska, at 7:29 p.m. yesterday with nine dogs, finishing the race in nine days, four hours, 29 minutes and 26 seconds.
"We went into this race with a dog team that I knew had the ability to win the Iditarod," Seavey said in a post-race press conference in Nome. "We spent most of the race building a monster – a dog team that couldn't be stopped."
Campaigners from the international advocacy group Avaaz protest Russian arms sales to the Syrian government during a demonstration in front of the Russian Embassy in Berlin on Nov. 2.
Credit Reuters TV / Reuters /Landov
British photographer Paul Conroy lies on a stretcher as he is treated by a doctor in Homs on Feb. 22. Avaaz coordinated Conroy's rescue from the embattled city, an operation that left 13 Syrian activists dead.
A year into the Syrian uprising, with the world community reluctant to intervene, one international group has taken a direct and risky role in Syria — even taking part in the high-profile rescue of Western journalists from the besieged city of Homs.
Avaaz, a global online pressure group based in New York, has given crucial support to the uprising and the Syrian activist networks that aim to topple the regime of President Bashar Assad.
Chef Manish Mehrotra, an Indian contestant on Foodistan.
When it comes to reality TV — and competitive cooking shows in particular — there are many reliable ways to create drama: menacing judges, preternaturally ticking clocks, the threat of elimination, and, of course, clever editing.
President Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron were courtside in Dayton, Ohio, Tuesday at the "play in" game between Western Kentucky and Mississippi Valley State. Western Kentucky won, 59-58.
After two years of going with the wrong team to win it all, President Obama is counting on North Carolina — the team he correctly picked to win the 2009 NCAA men's basketball championship — to end up No. 1 this year.