4:45pm

Tue December 13, 2011
The Two-Way

Biden: Iraq Will Be A Partner; History Will Judge If War Was Worth It

Originally published on Tue December 13, 2011 7:49 pm

Vice President Joe Biden is interviewed by NPR's Robert Siegel in the Secretary of War Suite of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, Dec. 13.
David Lienemann The White House

Saying that the U.S. is not looking for Iraq to be an ally, Vice President Biden told NPR's Robert Siegel this afternoon that the U.S. now views that country as a partner.

"We're looking for a stable, democratic government that is not beholden to anyone in the region and is able to be secure within its own borders and have its own policy ," he said during an interview in Washington's Eisenhower Executive Office Building, adjacent to the White House.

Read more

4:39pm

Tue December 13, 2011
Iraq

U.S. Troops (But Not Their TVs) Prepare To Leave Iraq

Originally published on Thu December 15, 2011 9:34 am

A day after leaving Iraq last week, U.S. Army soldiers from the 1st Cavalry Division lined up their armored vehicles near Kuwait City, Kuwait. Armored equipment will not stay behind after troops leave Iraq, but other property may.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

The final American troops are set to leave Iraq in a matter of days. Just a few thousand remain, and they will be heading south toward Kuwait β€” the starting point for a war that began nearly nine years ago.

The last American military unit out of Iraq will be part of the 1st Cavalry Division from Fort Hood, Texas. The division fought in some of the war's toughest battles and suffered nearly 300 killed.

Read more

4:22pm

Tue December 13, 2011
Music

Schubert's 'Winterreise' Paints Bleak Landscape For Bill T. Jones

Originally published on Tue January 21, 2014 7:55 pm

Choreographer Bill T. Jones at an appearance earlier this year.
Frederick M. Brown Getty Images

As snowstorms hit the country today, All Things Considered revisits a vivid story that choreographer and dancer Bill T. Jones shared about one winter song. It originally aired Dec. 13, 2011.

Read more

4:20pm

Tue December 13, 2011
Afghanistan

For U.S. Troops, Fighting Starts At Afghan Border

Originally published on Tue December 13, 2011 11:37 pm

Staff Sgt. Joshua White (center), Command Sgt. Maj. John Troxell (left) and Brigade Sgt. Maj. Mike Boom (right) observe a joint patrol of U.S. Army and Afghan National Army soldiers and Afghan police in Paktika province, Afghanistan, on Oct. 3. The mountainous border between Afghanistan and Pakistan has become a new front line in the Afghan war.
Matt Ford AP

The mountains along the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan would be cruel enough without the war raging on below β€” cliffs drop from 8,000-foot peaks that are spotted with only a few trees among the rocks.

But Afghanistan's eastern border has become the focus of the conflict as militants plot their attacks inside Pakistan, then slip across the rugged frontier to carry them out.

In Afghanistan's southeast Paktika province, Forward Operating Base Tillman looks across toward Pakistan over craggy peaks that American troops have nicknamed "Big Ugly" and "Big Nasty."

Read more

4:04pm

Tue December 13, 2011
The Two-Way

Billionaire Dreamer, Aviation Pioneer Aim For Orbit

Originally published on Tue December 13, 2011 4:26 pm

A computer-generated image provided by Stratolaunch shows the planned carrier aircraft, with a rocket attached on its centerline and six jet engines suspended beneath its wings.
Stratolaunch Systems

Remember when the space shuttle β€” aka "space truck" β€” was going to make make trips into Earth orbit a routine thing? It really didn't turn out the way people had hoped. Now there's a new pretender to throne, another team ready to try and make bring flights into space a little closer to an everyday reality.

Read more

4:03pm

Tue December 13, 2011
Education

School Chief calls Evolution Theory, Not Fact

Hart County's school superintendent is arguing that a new test that Kentucky high school students will take for the first time next spring will treat evolution as fact, not theory, and will require schools to teach that way. Superintendent Ricky D. Line raised the issue in recent letters and email messages to state Education Commissioner Terry Holliday and Kentucky Board of Education members. Line wants them to reconsider the "Blueprint" for Kentucky's new end-of-course test in biology.

Read more

4:03pm

Tue December 13, 2011
Around the Nation

How Alabama Banned Holiday Gifts For Teachers

A new ethics law in Alabama bans all government workers β€” including teachers β€” from receiving gifts.
Lisa Thornberg iStockphoto.com

This time of year, you might be thinking about what sort of gift or tip you'd like to offer your child's teacher for Christmas.

In Alabama, they won't let you get away with that kind of illegal behavior.

Alabama's new ethics law, which took effect in March, bans nearly all gifts to government workers β€” not just elected officials, but all state, county and municipal employees. That includes schoolteachers, as a lengthy opinion from the state ethics commission makes clear.

Read more

3:59pm

Tue December 13, 2011
The Commonwealth

Danville Police Chief Quits

Danville City Commission accepted the resignation of Police Chief Jay Newell on Monday. Newell, who served as chief of the department for four years, was granted voluntary reassignment to his previous position as a patrol officer. He cited personal health concerns as the primary reason for the decision.

Read more

3:55pm

Tue December 13, 2011
Education

State Shortfall means Fewer Funds for Schools

Local school officials around Kentucky will soon find out how much money they stand to lose in a $57.5 million shortfall to state education funding.Β Education Commissioner Terry Holliday told superintendents in an email Friday that the Kentucky Department of Education would announce mid-year cuts later this month.

Read more

3:55pm

Tue December 13, 2011
Europe

Europe Gets Austerity, But With Few Signs Of Growth

Originally published on Tue December 13, 2011 8:20 pm

A French man holds a flare during a protest against the government's austerity measures on Tuesday in Lille, northern France. European governments are proposing austerity measures, but critics say there should also be a plan for economic growth.
Philippe Huguen AFP/Getty Images

The plan European leaders agreed on last week to save the euro doesn't seem to have reassured the markets.

Two ratings agencies said the plan worked out in Brussels, which calls for greater fiscal integration, failed to address the immediate crisis of rising debts and the crushing costs of borrowing.

And some economists worry that the EU leaders are wrong to put so much emphasis on austerity without any real plans to stimulate economic growth.

For example, Portugal's growth rate last year was anemic, and the economies of Greece and Ireland shrank.

Read more

Pages