NPR's Kelly McEvers is in Syria on a tour organized by a youth group aligned with the government of President Bashar Assad. Most foreign journalists are barred from entering the country otherwise. The tour's theme is "Syria Is Fine." Most of the reporters are from countries that have a history of supporting the Syrian regime — Russia and Iran among them. McEvers is the only American reporter in the group, which also includes some European journalists.
Originally published on Mon August 22, 2011 7:05 pm
People love how Facebook lets them comment on and share other people's posts. But the idea of sharing on social media has got drug companies scared. When Facebook told drugmakers that they had to start allowing comments on their Facebook pages, some of those pages started disappearing.
American fans of the Olympics will have to travel abroad for at least another decade if they want to cheer from the stands at one of the world's biggest sporting events. The U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) announced today that there will be no American bid to host the 2020 Summer Olympics.
Actually, the news was Tweeted by USOC spokesman Patrick Sandusky. "I can confirm the US will not be bidding for 2020 Olympic Games," Sandusky wrote to his Twitter followers.
As opposition forces have moved into Tripoli, they've gotten into some of the Iraqi military's weapons depots. But they haven't necessarily secured all the military hardware, leaving some of it vulnerable to those who might try to sell it on the black market.
Melissa Block talks with Jack Farchy of the Financial Times about the challenge of shipping huge amounts of gold overseas. Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez has announced he wants all the country's holdings in gold physically moved to Venezuela. The logistics are tricky — but even trickier is the issue of insurance.
The Manhattan district attorney is expected to recommend dropping the charges against Dominique Strauss-Kahn when the former IMF head appears in court on Tuesday. Lawyers for Strauss-Kahn's accuser are meeting with the D.A. on Monday afternoon in New York. Melissa Block speaks with NPR's Joel Rose.
After easy advance into the Libya capital of Tripoli Sunday, rebels are encountering resistance inside the city, especially around the barracks that are Moammar Gadhafi's official residential compound.
The opening of the Martin Luther King Jr. National Memorial in Washington, D.C., comes at a time when it's hard to tell just how close we are to King's "dream." To help us appraise that, Robert Siegel speaks with Julian Bond, a veteran civil rights activist and former chairman of the NAACP.
Rebel fighters swept into Tripoli over the weekend and said Monday that they control much of the capital. But parts of the city remain in the hands of Moammar Gadhafi's regime, including the streets around the Rixos Hotel, where western journalists have been camped out for weeks, covering the story. Reuters correspondent Missy Ryan, who is at the hotel, talks with David Greene.
The nearly 42-year rule of Moammar Gadhafi seems to be at a tenuous spot. Rebels claim they control most of Tripoli and claim three of Gadhafi's sons have been captured, including Saif al-Islam Gaddafi, who was considered Libya's heir apparent.
The focus of the fiercest fighting, today, is occurring just outside the Gadhafi compound in Tripoli. According to the AP, Rebels were trying to storm the Bab al-Aziziya command center when tanks opened fire, which led to the big question: Where is Moammar Gadhafi? Is he in Bab al-Aziziya or is he even in Libya?
Libyan rebels have claimed control of parts of the capital Tripoli, but big questions remain about the future of the country and the fate its longtime leader Moammar Gadhafi.
The whereabouts of Gadhafi, as of Monday, remained unknown.
David Mack is a former U.S. diplomat who served throughout the Middle East, including a posting in Libya. He says he believes Gadhafi could very well seek asylum for himself and his family in a country like Russia.
The news this summer is teeming with trillions. The national debt is more than $14 trillion. In a recent report, the credit rating agency Moody's says the 1,600-plus U.S.-based companies it rates harbored some $1.2 trillion in cash at the end of 2010. The newly minted congressional supercommittee is charged with finding ways to pare the federal deficit by at least $1.2 trillion in the next decade.
President Bill Clinton signed a historic overhaul of the nation's welfare system into law on Aug. 22, 1996. Now, some states are seeing drops in welfare cases even as the the U.S.' unemployment rate spiked. That's according to a new Urban Institute report. Host Michel Martin explores the past and present state of welfare with activist Barbara Ehrenreich and former RNC Chairman Michael Steele.
We now know exactly how much banks and financial institutions borrowed from the Federal Reserve during 2008 financial crisis — $1.2 trillion. According to Bloomberg, that's enough $1 bills to fill "539 Olympic-size swimming pools."
The biggest borrower, Morgan Stanley, got $107.3 billion, Citigroup and Bank of America followed close behind with $99.5 billion and $91.4 billion respectively.
Today, a memorial to he civil rights leader Martin Luther King opened to the public. The official dedication is on Sunday but visitors to the National Mall in Washington, D.C. can see the 30-foot sculpture today.
The big breaking story of the day, so far, comes from Libya. Opposition fighters have started to take control of Tripoli, and may be closing in on Moammar Gadhafi. As we reported earlier, the sudden shift in momentum appears to have happened because the opposition has gotten better organized and NATO stepped up its air attacks.
Ashley and Seth Cooper celebrated their first anniversary in Alaska. While beachcombing they spied a champagne bottle with a note in it. It had been tossed into the sea by a couple on their honeymoon. When Cooper tracked them down, she discovered they were still happily married.
Tharvin Benitez was standing in a Chicago courtroom in handcuffs and orange prison fatigues. Benitez was before a judge facing 30 years in prison on drug charges. His girlfriend was expecting a baby, and he asked the judge to please officiate the wedding before she delivered.
Most of the Libyan capital Tripoli is controlled by rebels. The rebels, however, are not in control of Moammar Gadhafi's compound. The whereabouts of Gadhafi are unknown. Two of his sons have been arrested.