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The Two-Way
11:33 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Weekly Jobless Claims Fall To Lowest Level In Months

The number of first-time claims for unemployment insurance dropped by 24,000 last week, the Employment and Training Administration says. At 334,000, the number is at a 10-week low.

The Associated Press reports that the drop may be due to seasonal factors. The wire service adds:

"Still, the broader trend has been favorable. The four-week average, which smooths out fluctuations, fell 5,250 to 346,000.

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The Two-Way
11:09 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Panama Charges North Korean Ship's Crew

View of what seems to be weapon parts aboard a North Korean-flagged ship on Tuesday.
Rodrigo Arangua AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 11:57 am

The crew of a North Korean ship carrying a clandestine cargo of Cold War-era weapons from Cuba has been charged with endangering public security by Panamanian authorities, who seized the vessel earlier this week.

The North Korean vessel en route from Cuba was seized as it attempted to transit the Panama Canal.

According to the BBC:

"[Panamanian] Prosecutor Javier Caraballo accused the 35 crew members of endangering public security by illegally transporting war material.

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The Two-Way
10:37 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Russian Court Convicts Opposition Activist

Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny and his wife, Yulia, look at a mobile phone Thursday during his trial in Kirov, Russia. A Russian judge found Navalny guilty of embezzlement.
Dmitry Lovetsky AP

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 12:02 pm

We have news this morning from Russia that opposition leader and Moscow mayoral candidate Alexei Navalny was convicted of embezzlement and sentenced to five years in prison.

"The judge found Navalny and his business partner guilty of embezzling nearly a half-million dollars' worth of timber from a state-owned company in 2009," NPR's Corey Flintoff tells our Newscast unit. "The case was previously dismissed for lack of evidence but later reinstated after Navalny published embarrassing revelations about the foreign assets owned by the head of Russia's investigative committee."

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Shots - Health News
10:37 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Tuberculosis Takes Lasting Toll In The Former Soviet Union

A Doctors Without Borders support counselor waits for MDR-TB patients at a clinic in Nukus, Uzbekistan.
Courtesy of Misha Friedman

Originally published on Mon July 29, 2013 10:22 am

Misha Friedman began training his lens on tuberculosis patients in the former Soviet Union in 2007, when he worked in logistics for the nonprofit Doctors Without Borders.

At first he took photos in his spare time, whiling away his off days by documenting the patients and hospital workers he met on the job. But this hobby quickly turned into more than that when he won a photo competition judged by renowned photojournalist Gary Knight, founder of the VII photo agency.

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The Two-Way
10:31 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Judge Won't Drop 'Aiding The Enemy' Charge Against Manning

Army Pfc. Bradley Manning (right) is escorted out of a courthouse in Fort Meade, Md., on June 25, 2012. His attorney announced that Manning, who is accused of leaking classified information to WikiLeaks, had agreed to plead guilty to lesser charges.
Patrick Semansky AP

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 2:15 pm

The military judge presiding over the court-martial of leaker Bradley Manning has declined to drop the most serious charge against him.

The Associated Press reports that the judge, Col. Denise Lind, said she would allow the government to proceed with a case accusing Manning of aiding the enemy, a charge punishable by life in prison. Lind found the government had enough evidence to support the charges, the AP says.

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Literature
9:22 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Theoretical Physicist Seeks Concrete Answers In 'Genius'

Originally published on Wed July 17, 2013 7:03 am

Ted is a theoretical physicist facing a slew of resolutely concrete problems. His son is racing headlong into puberty. His daughter's prodigious intellect causes her to stand out at school — the very last thing the girl wants. His elderly father-in-law isn't remembering much, these days, save for the fact that he hates Ted's guts. His wife is sick and getting sicker, just as his employer, a prominent think tank, threatens to fire him for lack of productivity. To keep his job, and its health care coverage, Ted needs an idea.

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Arts + Life
9:20 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Cheers To That! A Photo Exhibit All About Drinking

Patron #1
Henry Horenstein Courtesy of Sasha Wolf Gallery

Originally published on Tue July 16, 2013 5:40 pm

It's exactly what it sounds like.

"I wish I could tell you there was some really profound reasoning," says curator Sasha Wolf, owner of the eponymous gallery.

But, as good ideas often do, this one came over a glass of bourbon, as Wolf was brainstorming summer show ideas.

Oftentimes in the quiet summer months, she explains, galleries will curate group shows on a seasonal topic — like flowers or beaches. But Wolf wanted to do something "a little bit more quirky."

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Food
9:15 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Baking A Little Invention Into Savory Cakes

Claire Adas for NPR

Originally published on Wed July 17, 2013 2:29 pm

I'm a mad scientist in the kitchen. My inventions for new culinary techniques that will revolutionize the way we eat usually happen in the middle of the night during a bout of insomnia. I stumble downstairs the next morning in a sleep-deprived daze, and a quick Internet search reveals that I'm far from the first person to have invented the cookery method, and hundreds of recipes already exist.

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Business
9:01 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Reports: Deal Reached To Lower Rates On Student Loans

Mario Tama Getty Images

Originally published on Wed July 17, 2013 8:19 pm

"Senators have reached a bipartisan deal to restore lower interest rates on student borrowers," The Associated Press reports, citing "Republican and Democratic aides who insist on anonymity because they are not authorized to discuss the ongoing negotiations by name."

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The Two-Way
9:00 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Trayvon Martin's Mom: Jury Should Have Blamed 'Responsible Adult'

Sybrina Fulton, the mother of Trayvon Martin, appears for an interview with NPR's Michel Martin at Tell Me More.
Doriane Raiman NPR

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 11:09 am

"How can you let the killer of an unarmed teen go free? What would your verdict ... have been had it been your child?"

That's what Trayvon Martin's father said when asked by Matt Lauer to address the jury that acquitted George Zimmerman in the shooting death of their 17-year-old son.

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Economy
8:29 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Part-Time Workers Say Schedules Are Getting More Erratic

Part-time jobs have been proliferating this year as employers hold back on hiring.
iStockphoto.com

In the 1980s, a popular fast-food commercial touted chicken-breast sandwiches — and mocked chicken nuggets sold by competitors.

In the ad, a competitor's doofus clerk explains nuggets. "All the parts are crammed into one big part," he said. "And parts is parts."

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The Two-Way
7:33 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Book News: Globe Theatre Taking 'Hamlet' To Every Nation On Earth

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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The Two-Way
7:32 am
Thu July 18, 2013

WATCH: South Africa Celebrates Mandela's 95th Birthday

Schoolchildren sing 'Happy Birthday' to former South African President Nelson Mandela at Phefeni High School, opposite Mandela's former home in Soweto Township on Thursday in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Christopher Furlong Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 10:58 am

It's a bittersweet day in South Africa today: Nelson Mandela, the anti-apartheid icon who many consider the country's father, is celebrating his 95th birthday. But he is doing so from a hospital bed in Pretoria.

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Around the Nation
7:00 am
Thu July 18, 2013

96-Year-Old Store Owner Wins Standoff With Robber

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 7:45 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm David Greene. Magaretta Wolf has owned a grocery store in Marshfield, Wisconsin for more than 50 years. So when a masked robber recently demanded she hand over the store's cash, she refused, saying you can have all the Tootsie Rolls you want but I am not opening that cash register. By the way, Wolf is 96.

The Two-Way
6:43 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Thousands Flee Calif. Wildfire Moving Toward Populated Area

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 10:46 am

About 6,000 people in California have been ordered out of their homes by authorities worried that a wildfire is quickly moving toward a more populous area southeast of Los Angeles.

The Los Angeles Times reports:

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Around the Nation
6:14 am
Thu July 18, 2013

PayPal Glitch Makes Pa. Man Very Rich

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 7:45 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne.

For a moment, Chris Reynolds was the world's richest man. The Pennsylvania resident checked his PayPal account, expecting a zero balance. Instead he found a credit of more than $92 quadrillion. That 17-digit figure did revert back to zero when PayPal corrected the glitch. Still, a guy can dream. As to how he would have spent the money, Reynolds said: Payoff the national debt, then maybe buy the Phillies.

It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Asia
5:03 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Police In India Probe Poisoning Of School Children

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 7:45 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

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Politics
5:03 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Congress Takes Renewed Aim At Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 7:45 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

For the first time since the housing crash, lawmakers are getting serious about dismantling the mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. They were rescued with $190 million bailout. Two prominent senators - a Democrat and a Republican - have a bill that's attracting some bipartisan support. A separate Republican bill is being introduced in the House today and a third may soon come from Democrats. NPR's Chris Arnold reports.

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World
5:03 am
Thu July 18, 2013

Panama Searches Impounded North Korean Cargo Ship

Originally published on Thu July 18, 2013 7:45 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm David Greene.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

As of this morning, Panama still doesn't know quite what to do with that North Korean cargo ship its impounded. The ship was going through the Panama Canal on its way from Cuba to North Korea. And when Panamanian authorities looked inside under thousands of bags of Cuban sugar, they found parts for missiles, jets and radar systems.

Here to help sort out this discovery is NPR's Tom Gjelten. Good morning.

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