The Army is investigating allegations that members of a platoon at Fort Wainwright, Alaska, used racial slurs against one another during what they called "Racial Thursdays," the Army Times is reporting.
President Obama is using a Nowruz message to tell Iranians that "we have the best opportunity in decades to pursue a different future between our countries."
"The days and weeks ahead will be critical. Our negotiations have made progress, but gaps remain. And there are people, in both our countries and beyond, who oppose a diplomatic resolution," Obama says in the message to mark the Persian new year. "My message to you — the people of Iran — is that, together, we have to speak up for the future we seek."
Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 8:03 pm
New York City medical examiners have identified the remains of another of the victims of the attacks on the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001. He is Matthew David Yarnell of New Jersey, a 26-year-old vice president of technology of the Fiduciary Trust Co.
NPR's Hansi Lo Wang tells our Newscast unit that Yarnell worked on the 97th floor of the World Trade Center's south tower. His remains were identified through DNA testing.
A Chanel handbag is classic, designed to withstand upheavals in fashion and taste. But not price. The Paris-based fashion house has announced that the prices will go up in Europe, and down in Asia.
The move will affect the 11.12, the 2.55, and the Boy Bag models.
At the moment, there's a significant difference in cost between the two regions. Hana Ben-Shabat, a retail and consumer goods specialist at A.T. Kearney, tells NPR that a bag that costs $3,500 in Europe can run up to $6,000 in China.
Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 7:50 pm
In a new paper published in the journal Primates, authorWilliam C. McGrew, a former professor of evolutionary primatology at the University of Cambridge, reports a high rate of venomous snake encounters by his team of primatologists seeking to observe unhabituated wild chimpanzees in Mount Assirik, Senegal, West Africa.
Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 6:05 pm
A New York state judge has refused to release grand jury testimony about the death last year of Eric Garner on Staten Island.
Garner, 43, died in July after being placed in a chokehold as he was being arrested for selling loose cigarettes on the sidewalk. A grand jury decided in December not to indict the police officer involved in the death.
Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 5:44 pm
More than 5 million Americans have dementia, and that number is only climbing. Each case leaves some people wondering what's left in a friendship when the bond between confidants becomes literally unthinkable, when language and thinking fail. But a good friend can sometimes help in ways that a spouse, a child or a paid professional can't.
Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 5:21 pm
Updated at 5:15 p.m. ET.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, fresh from victory in parliamentary elections this week, says he wants to clarify remarks he made on the campaign trail that appeared to write off any possibility of a Palestinian state on his watch.
"What I said was that under the present circumstances, today, it is unachievable," Netanyahu says in an interview with Morning Edition host Steve Inskeep to be aired Friday. "I said that the conditions have to change."
Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 4:44 pm
President Obama signed an executive order at the White House on Thursday directing the federal government to cut its emissions of greenhouse gases by 40 percent from 2008 levels within the next decade and to increase its use of renewable energy sources to 30 percent of total consumption.
Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 4:39 pm
Responding to an incident that has sparked street protests in Charlottesville, Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe has ordered a state investigation into the arrest of a black University of Virginia student. Martese Johnson, 20, was left with blood streaming down his face after being arrested by Alcoholic Beverage Control agents.
The case created an uproar after photos emerged showing Johnson, a member of U.Va.'s Honor Committee, lying on the sidewalk with uniformed ABC agents crouching over him. Portions of the concrete, as well as Johnson's head and shirt, are bloody.
Hospitals are one of the worst places to try to get a good night's sleep, just when you need it the most. And though many have tried to muffle the noise of beeping monitors and clattering carts, the noise remains a big problem for many patients.
But what if we looked at a night in the hospital as a long overseas flight? As you settle in, they hand out eye masks and earplugs. And you cleverly brought along melatonin, the sleep-regulating hormone sold at drugstores everywhere.
Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 3:57 pm
For the past two years, at an undisclosed location in the Upper Midwest, a large commercial egg farm has been probed with every tool of modern science. Researchers have collected data on feed consumed, eggs produced, rates of chicken death and injury, levels of dust in the air, microbial contamination and dollars spent. Graduate students have been assigned to watch hours of video of the hens in an effort to rate the animals' well-being.
Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 2:57 pm
NPR has named Michael Oreskes, a top Associated Press executive and former New York Times editor who has led newsrooms in such global centers as New York, Washington and Paris, to run its news division.
Officially, Oreskes will be the network's senior vice president for news and editorial director, a slightly refashioned title. Oreskes is currently vice president and senior managing editor at the AP, where he oversees the giant international news wire's daily report.
Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 12:06 pm
China and Japan have agreed to set up a "maritime communications hotline" as a means of defusing tense naval standoffs as vessels from both sides patrol in waters near a disputed island chain in the East China Sea.
The issue is part of a broader security meeting – the first between Beijing and Tokyo since 2011. It comes as relations between the two countries — still marred by Japanese aggression in World War II – slowly improve, according to officials.
Empire closed out its remarkable first season on Wednesday night with a two-hour finale that proved once again one of the fundamental lessons brought to you by this show: whether this is your cup of tea or not, the people who make Empire reallyknow what they're doing.
In the finale (and if this needs saying, we're about to talk about the finale, so don't claim you weren't warned), we finally got the answers to some of the questions asked in the pilot, while at the same time, it was only entirely clear what was going on about half the time.
Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 1:52 pm
One day after a shocking attack in Tunis killed at least 20 foreign tourists and rattled Tunisians, authorities are looking for anyone involved in the gunmen's brazen assault of the National Bardo Museum. Tunisia's president says his country is "in a merciless war against terrorism."
Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 8:34 pm
Roars of disapproval rang out in Australia's Parliament on Thursday, after Prime Minister Tony Abbott called Labor leader Bill Shorten "the Dr. Goebbels of economic policy." In the ruckus that ensued, three lawmakers were ejected and another walked out.
Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 4:12 pm
Dr. Jeremy Greene sees a lot of patients with diabetes that's out of control.
In fact, he says, sometimes their blood sugar is "so high that you can't even record the number on their glucometer."
Greene, a professor of medicine and history of medicine at Johns Hopkins University, started asking patients at his clinic in Baltimore why they had so much trouble keeping their blood sugar stable. He was shocked by their answer: the high cost of insulin.
Originally published on Thu March 19, 2015 9:41 am
Clippy will soon get a roommate in Microsoft heaven or hell, depending on your perspective. This week, Microsoft announced that it will phase out Internet Explorer, its much-maligned Web browser, beginning with Windows 10.
California tax authorities have stripped Blue Shield of California, the state's third largest insurer, of its tax-exempt status in California and ordered the firm to file returns dating to 2013, potentially costing the company tens of millions of dollars.
At issue in the unusual case is whether the company is doing anything different from its for-profit competitors to warrant its tax break. As a nonprofit company, Blue Shield is expected to work for the public good in exchange for the exemption from state taxes.
Originally published on Wed March 18, 2015 7:23 pm
How long does it take to detonate 20,000 pounds of fireworks? The answer, courtesy of the Midland, Texas, Police Department, is 3 1/2 days.
A court ordered the destruction of the illegal fireworks. The department's bomb squad, along with those from Odessa, Lubbock and Amarillo, assisted the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in the controlled detonation.
And what does that controlled detonation look like? Here's the answer — in the form of a 48-second video from the department's Facebook page:
Originally published on Wed March 18, 2015 6:27 pm
On a recent snowy afternoon on a farm in central Illinois, Dan Byers parked his pickup at the end of a dirt road and looked over some of his fertile land. A few years ago, high grain prices earned farmers here about $400 per acre for their corn and soybean crops. This year, it's possible that every acre Byers farms will cost him $50.
"It just takes a certain amount of fixed money to put a crop in and raise it," says Byers. "At today's prices, not much of anything works right now until there's a rebound."
The Royal Mint in the U.K. has unveiled a new 1-pound coin that it says will be the world's most counterfeit-proof coin.
The 12-sided coin, which is set to be released by 2017, will still feature a likeness of Queen Elizabeth II on one side. But the "tails side" will have a new design representing the four symbols of the U.K.: an English rose, a leek for Wales, a Scottish thistle and shamrock for Northern Ireland. They emerge from a single stem within a crown.