NPR Blogs

13.7: Cosmos And Culture
1:09 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

Chest Hair, Breast Milk And Human Disgust

Commissioned by Wing-Co. for an ad campaign, the maker of this coat says it contains over one million strands of male chest hair.
Wing-Co.

Would you wear a coat made entirely of male chest hair?

As part of an advertising campaign to cast a new chocolate milk drink as a "manly" beverage, the British branch of an international dairy company commissioned the "Man-Fur Coat," created from chest hair donated by 300 male volunteers.

Read more
The Two-Way
12:43 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

Jim Kelly, Actor In 'Enter The Dragon,' Dies

This 1973 photo released by Warner Bros. Entertainment shows Jim Kelly as Williams in a scene from Enter the Dragon. Kelly, who played a glib American martial artist in the movie, died Saturday of cancer at his home in San Diego. He was 67.
AP

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 12:57 pm

Jim Kelly, who rose to fame in the Bruce Lee classic Enter the Dragon and went on to star in several blaxploitation films, has died. He was 67.

NPR's Hansi Lo Wang reported on Kelly's death for our Newscast unit. Here's what he said:

"Black Belt Jones, Three the Hard Way and Black Samurai — all starring Jim Kelly as an African-American martial arts master — busy looking good in a funky Afro.

"Kelly's break-out role was in the Bruce Lee classic Enter the Dragon.

Read more
The Two-Way
11:55 am
Mon July 1, 2013

Heat Wave Will Bake Southwest For Most Of This Week

The National Weather Service predicts triple-digit temperatures in the Southwest until at least Wednesday. The temperature in Death Valley hit 128 degrees Sunday, a record high for June in the United States.
NOAA

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 2:53 pm

The record-breaking heat that has broiled the Southwest since Friday shows no signs of letting up. According to the National Weather Service, "triple-digit temperatures will be common across the Southwest" through at least Wednesday.

The temperature in Death Valley — where the temperature reached 134 degrees in 1913, the hottest temperature ever recorded on Earth — hit 128 degrees Sunday. That mark set a record high for the month of June in the U.S. The weather service says to expect similar heat today.

Read more
The Two-Way
11:50 am
Mon July 1, 2013

Obama Calls For Collaborative Ties With Tanzania

President Obama and Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete take questions at a joint news conference Monday in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
Evan Vucci AP

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 12:40 pm

President Obama kicked off the final leg of his visit to Africa with a stop Monday in Tanzania, saying that he wants the U.S. relationship with the East African nation to be a collaborative one based on development and democracy.

"Tanzania is a close partner, as the president [Jakaya Kikwete] indicated, on almost all our major development initiatives, and this reflects our confidence in the people of Tanzania," Obama said in Dar es Salaam.

Obama and Kikwete were expected to discuss trade with business leaders who are traveling with the president.

Read more
The Two-Way
11:10 am
Mon July 1, 2013

Serena Williams Stunned At Wimbledon By Unheralded Lisicki

Defending champion Serena Williams lost to Sabine Lisicki of Germany 6-2 1-6 6-4 in the fourth round of the Wimbledon Championships.
Andy Rain EPA /Landov

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 12:24 pm

It's been a graveyard for top seeds at Wimbledon: Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Maria Sharapova all ousted in the first week of the tournament. On Monday, it was defending champion Serena Williams' turn.

Reuters reports:

Read more
The Two-Way
10:12 am
Mon July 1, 2013

Egypt Unrest Grows As Protesters Storm Ruling Party Office

An Egyptian protester looks at the damaged Muslim Brotherhood headquarters in Cairo. Protesters stormed and ransacked the headquarters early Monday, in an attack that could spark more violence as demonstrators gear up for a second day of mass rallies.
Khalil Hamra AP

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 8:51 pm

(This post was updated at 2:05 p.m.)

Egypt's military has given President Mohammed Morsi and anti-government protesters 48 hours to resolve their differences, failing which it has threatened to put forward "a roadmap" for the country.

It's not clear what that means or whether the generals will take over, which the statement put forth Monday indicated they had no interest in doing. But many Egyptians — for and against the president — are interpreting it to mean that Morsi will be forced to step down like Mubarak was in 2011.

Read more
The Two-Way
9:34 am
Mon July 1, 2013

EU Officials Question Kerry On 'Unacceptable' Spying Claims

European Union officials spoke to Secretary of State John Kerry about claims that the U.S. spied on EU offices in America. Kerry is in Brunei for a security conference.
Roslan Rahman AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 11:18 am

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is hearing from European allies who are upset with recent reports that the U.S. has spied on its friends. The European Union's top diplomat asked Kerry about the reports at a security conference Monday. Other officials say the case could derail talks on free trade.

Read more
The Two-Way
8:23 am
Mon July 1, 2013

Ecuador Backs Off NSA Leaker Snowden, Citing Asylum Rules

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 6:25 pm

(This post was updated at 6:17 p.m.)

Fugitive former NSA contractor Edward Snowden said in a letter released Monday that he was "unbowed" and thanked his "new friends" for his continued liberty.

The letter is the first time Snowden has broken his silence since he fled to Moscow eight days ago, and it comes on the same day Russian immigration officials say he applied for political asylum in the country.

Read more
The Two-Way
8:07 am
Mon July 1, 2013

Book News: Penguin, Random House Complete Publishing Mega-Merger

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

Read more
The Two-Way
7:22 am
Mon July 1, 2013

Arizona Wildfire Kills 19 Firefighters, Deadliest In Decades

The Granite Mountain Interagency Hotshot Crew is shown in this undated handout photo provided by the city of Prescott, Ariz. The elite team of 19 firemen were killed on Sunday in one of the deadliest U.S. firefighting disasters in decades.
City of Prescott Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 3:17 pm

In what is being called the deadliest U.S. wildfire in at least 30 years, an out-of-control blaze trapped and killed 19 firefighters Sunday in central Arizona. They had been forced to use temporary shelters in an attempt to survive.

All of those killed were part of the Granite Mountain Hotshots, an elite group based in Prescott, Ariz., that uses rigorous training to prepare for fighting wildfires. They are frequently deployed to the front lines of firefighting efforts against such blazes.

Update at 6:04 p.m. ET: Firefighters Identified

Read more
Shots - Health News
3:04 am
Mon July 1, 2013

You Ask, We Answer: Demystifying The Affordable Care Act

Families soon will be able to sign up for new health insurance options through the Affordable Care Act. In Washington, D.C., Dr. Cheryl Focht of Mary's Center performs a checkup of Jayson Gonzalez, 16, while his mother, Elizabeth Lopez, looks on.
Heather Rousseau NPR

Originally published on Tue July 2, 2013 10:25 am

The biggest changes in health insurance coverage under the Affordable Care Act are set to begin less than three months from now. Oct. 1 is when people can start signing up for coverage in new state health exchanges. The policies would kick in on Jan. 1, 2014.

It can all be a little confusing, we agree. So two weeks ago, we asked what you wanted to know about the health law.

Read more
The Two-Way
4:01 pm
Sun June 30, 2013

LOOKING BACK: RFK's 'Ripple Of Hope' Speech In South Africa

A Meeting Of Great Minds: During his 1966 visit to South Africa, Sen. Robert F. Kennedy met with anti-apartheid activist Chief Luthuli and later spoke publicly about their meeting. Because of a government ban on media coverage of Luthuli, it was the first news many had of their leader in more than five years.
Shoreline Productions

Originally published on Sun June 30, 2013 4:02 pm

At South Africa's University of Cape Town on Sunday, President Obama noted that he was speaking at the same place where, in 1966, then-Sen. Robert Kennedy, D-N.Y., delivered what some historians believe was the best speech of his life.

Obama was discussing about how, as a young man, he had come to believe that "I could be part of something bigger than myself; that my own salvation was bound up with those of others."

Then the president brought up the late senator:

Read more
The Two-Way
2:35 pm
Sun June 30, 2013

Snowden Is 'A Hero,' WikiLeaks' Assange Says

From one secrets leaker to another:

Edward Snowden "is a hero," WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange said Sunday on ABC-TV's This Week with George Stephanopoulos. "He has told the people of the world and the United States that there is mass unlawful interception of their communications, far beyond anything that happened under Nixon."

Read more
The Two-Way
1:39 pm
Sun June 30, 2013

Justice Kennedy Denies Request To Halt Same-Sex Marriages

Lining up to be married: Adam Chandler, 33, left, and Ivan Chandler, 38, both of Citrus Heights, were among those waiting in line Saturday to get married at San Francisco City Hall.
Doug Duran/Bay Area News Group MCT/Landov

Originally published on Sun June 30, 2013 6:36 pm

(Most recent update: 4:30 p.m. ET.)

Supporters of California's Proposition 8 ban on same-sex marriages lost another argument Sunday when Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy turned down their request to at least temporarily bar such marriages in the state.

The Associated Press and Reuters report that Kennedy denied the petition "with no additional comment."

Read more
The Two-Way
12:52 pm
Sun June 30, 2013

Jennifer Lopez Sorry She Sang For Turkmenistan's Dictator

Jennifer Lopez on stage Saturday in Avaza, Turkmenistan.
Igor Sasin AFP/Getty Images

Here's how the State Department's latest human rights report about the Central Asian nation of Turkmenistan begins:

"Although the constitution declares Turkmenistan to be a secular democracy and a presidential republic, the country has an authoritarian government controlled by the president, Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov."

Read more

Pages