Animals
5:24 am
Sun August 26, 2012

A Pachyderm's Ditty Prompts An Elephantine Debate

Shanthi explores her yard at the Smithsonian National Zoo in Washington, D.C., in 2010. The 36-year-old Asian elephant loves blowing into a harmonica.
Mehgan Murphy Smithsonian Institution

Originally published on Thu August 30, 2012 7:06 pm

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Africa
5:24 am
Sun August 26, 2012

Ugandan Gold Medalist Returns To Fame And Fortune

Uganda's Stephen Kiprotich wins the gold medal in the men's marathon at the 2012 London Olympics. As the impoverished country's second gold medalist in 40 years, Kiprotich became an instant national hero.
Kyodo/Landov

Originally published on Sun August 26, 2012 5:02 pm

On the last day of the London Olympics, a Ugandan runner seemingly came from nowhere during the marathon to pass the favored Kenyan and Ethiopian athletes and win gold.

Stephen Kiprotich is the first gold medalist from Uganda since John Akii-Bua won the 400-meter hurdles at the 1972 Munich Olympics. In the last two weeks, Kiprotich has become an unlikely national hero in a struggling country that rarely has much to cheer about.

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World
5:24 am
Sun August 26, 2012

Hong Kong Keeping Syria Online

Originally published on Sun August 26, 2012 11:32 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

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Around the Nation
5:24 am
Sun August 26, 2012

Snakes, And The Snake Wranglers Who Love Them

Matt and Paula Wilson (in background) clear rattlesnakes from a field in Pennsylvania. They work as snake wranglers, clearing areas for natural gas company employees.
Scott Detrow WITF

Originally published on Sun August 26, 2012 11:32 am

Jobs on natural gas drilling sites can have funny-sounding names: There are roustabouts, mud men, doodlebuggers and snake wranglers. That last one — snake wrangler — is exactly what it sounds like.

Everyone hates snakes, right?

Even Indiana Jones hates snakes.

But — not everybody.

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Americandy: Sweet Land Of Liberty
5:24 am
Sun August 26, 2012

Maine's Needhams: A Sweet Treat Of Earthy Potatoes

A traditional sweet treat from Maine, needhams are made with coconut, chocolate and real Maine potatoes.
Courtesy of Jones Franzel

Originally published on Sun August 26, 2012 11:32 am

If you're from Maine, odds are you've heard of needhams — a traditional sweet with a surprising ingredient.

While Maine is famous for its sweet blueberries and maple syrup, it has another, more earthy, local crop: potatoes.

Jon Courtney, a friend who lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, first stumbled on needhams a few years ago. Now, he's hooked.

"Basically it's coconut and sugar dipped in chocolate," Courtney says. "So if you were to pick one up, you'd be like, 'Oh! This is a homemade Mounds bar.' "

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Presidential Race
4:27 am
Sun August 26, 2012

Despite Delay, Republican Stage Is Set In Tampa

Workers prepare for the Republican National Convention inside the Tampa Bay Times Forum in Tampa, Fla., on Saturday.
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Originally published on Tue August 28, 2012 8:32 am

After a year and a half of preparations, Tampa, Fla., is ready host the Republican National Convention.

Some 70,000 delegates, support personnel, media and protestors are gathering for the party's nominating event. Originally scheduled to start on Monday, the convention was pushed back because of Tropical Storm Isaac.

Inside the Tampa Bay Times Forum — a hockey arena that's been transformed into a high-tech political stage — it's a vision in red, white and blue. There's a nod to tradition, placards marking the sections reserved for each state's delegation.

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Remembrances
4:21 am
Sun August 26, 2012

In Just 'One Small Step' Armstrong Became An Icon

Armstrong stepped into history July 20, 1969, leaving the first human footprint on the surface of the moon.
NASA Getty Images

Originally published on Sun August 26, 2012 11:32 am

It was the kind of history that ignites the imagination of humanity.

On July 20, 1969, hundreds of millions of people around the world watched or listened as the lunar module Eagle carried astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin to the surface of the moon. Armstrong got on the radio to let them know "the Eagle has landed."

Almost seven hours later, Armstrong stepped off the ladder in his bulky white space suitand said those famous words: "That's one small step for [a] man, one giant leap for mankind"

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Middle East
4:21 am
Sun August 26, 2012

Palestinians Flood Into Israel, If Only Briefly

A mother and son wait to enter Israel through the Qalandia checkpoint, which separates the West Bank and Jerusalem. Most of the year, Israel permits relatively few Palestinians to visit, but over the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, 1.2 million Palestinians were allowed in.
Daniel Estrin for NPR

Originally published on Sun September 2, 2012 10:27 am

As Palestinian Muslims in the West Bank celebrated the end of Ramadan this past week, many traveled to a place that's usually off limits: Israel.

At the main Israeli checkpoint between the West Bank and Jerusalem, you could hear the taxi drivers offering to take Palestinians to the beach in Tel Aviv.

The drive is no more than an hour from the West Bank boundary to Israel's Mediterranean coast. Yet many Palestinians have not taken a dip in years, if ever.

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Megafires: The New Normal In The Southwest
4:20 am
Sun August 26, 2012

'Torture Lab' Kills Trees To Learn How To Save Them

Powers walks along plastic gutters designed to keep rain away from tree roots to simulate drought. Scientists here are studying the effects of sustained drought conditions on the tree species of the Southwest.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Sun August 26, 2012 5:03 pm

Last of a five-part series

The droughts that have parched big regions of the country are killing forests.

In the arid Southwest, the body count is especially high. Besides trying to keep wildfires from burning up these desiccated forests, there's not much anyone can do. In fact, scientists are only now figuring out how drought affects trees.

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13.7: Cosmos And Culture
12:12 am
Sun August 26, 2012

Making Peace With Our Cyborg Nature

Lance Armstrong competes in the Ironman Panama 70.3. triathlon in Panama City, Panama.
Arnulfo Franco AP

Originally published on Mon August 27, 2012 7:51 am

I loved the TV show The Six-Million Dollar man growing up. For me, Steve Austin (played by Lee Majors) wasn't less cool because he had bionic implants that enabled him to perform superhuman feats. He was more cool.

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