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National Security
2:25 am
Tue June 12, 2012

As Drone Strikes Increase, So Do Concerns Over Use

An unmanned U.S. Predator drone flies over Kandahar Air Field in southern Afghanistan on Jan. 31, 2010. Drones have become the U.S. weapon of choice in the fight against terrorism. But as the technology of this new form of warfare improves, so do concerns about how others will use it in the future.
Kirsty Wigglesworth AP

Originally published on Tue June 12, 2012 9:28 am

Without question, drones have become the U.S. weapon of choice in the fight against terrorism. Counterterrorism officials say they've come to rely on the pilotless aircraft for their surveillance capability and what officials say is precision targeting. That reliance has led to greater use in the past couple of years, especially in Pakistan and Yemen.

John Bellinger, a State Department legal adviser during the George W. Bush administration, says there are increasing concerns about the frequency of drone attacks.

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Author Interviews
1:50 am
Tue June 12, 2012

What Animals Can Teach Humans About Healing

When wildfires swept across Australia in February 2009, this photo of a firefighter sharing his water with an injured koala captured hearts around the world. The koala later died — not of fire-related injuries, but of chlamydia. Koalas in Australia are suffering from an epidemic of chlamydia, says Dr. Barbara Natterson-Horowitz. "There's no such thing as safe sex in the wild."
Mark Pardew AP

Originally published on Tue June 12, 2012 7:18 am

When Dr. Barbara Natterson-Horowitz was asked to treat an exotic little monkey with heart failure at the Los Angeles Zoo, she learned that monkeys can suffer heart attacks from extreme stress — just like humans. That's when the cardiologist realized she'd never thought to look beyond her own species for insights into disease.

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The Record
11:23 pm
Mon June 11, 2012

Egypt's Underground Wakes Up

Noor Noor performs with his band El-Zabaleen, which makes many of its instruments out of recycled materials.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 6:42 pm

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Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me!
6:05 pm
Mon June 11, 2012

Sandwich Monday: The Pritomus

Finishing touches.
NPR

We believe the children are the future. And here at Sandwich Monday, we try to foster the next generation of eaters through our after-school programs and subliminal EAT BACON messages. That's why we were so happy to see Peter's daughter Willa had invented her own sandwich: The Pritomus. It's hummus, Fritos and pickles served open-faced on an English muffin.

Peter: Into our mouths from babes.

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Planet Money
5:52 pm
Mon June 11, 2012

A Lost Decade For American Families

NPR

Originally published on Mon June 11, 2012 7:17 pm

American families got poorer in the first decade of the 21st century.

The wealth of the median U.S. household — the family at the middle of the middle class — fell from $106,000 in 2001 to $77,000 in 2010.

The fall was driven, not surprisingly, by the housing bust. Homes are the single largest asset for many families, and they represent a particularly large share of wealth for the middle class.

What's more, homes tend to be highly leveraged. People borrow lots of money to buy them. That means huge gains when prices rise — and massive losses when they fall.

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