Afghanistan
4:00 pm
Tue May 8, 2012

For Afghan Soldiers, A Battle For Respect

Manullah Ahmadzai, 27, lost the sight in his right eye while serving as a front-line soldier in the Afghan military. Ahmadzai is one of many soldiers who have been severely injured and say promised government benefits don't always arrive.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Wed May 9, 2012 7:07 pm

Last month, the Taliban carried out their largest coordinated attack across Afghanistan, including three sites inside the capital Kabul. It took an 18-hour gunfight to end the assault.

But even as they took cover, Kabul residents saw something new: their own soldiers taking the lead, with limited help from NATO. Television footage showed Afghan soldiers moving confidently into the building where the militants were holed up, avoiding reckless gunfire that might have endangered civilians in the crowded city.

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Shots - Health Blog
4:00 pm
Tue May 8, 2012

These Health Law Bets Are No Figure Of Speech

How much would you wager on the constitutionality of the sweeping federal health law?
Images_of_Money Flickr

Originally published on Thu June 28, 2012 9:43 am

The stakes are high in the U.S. Supreme Court's consideration of the 2010 health law, as countless commentators have observed. In some circles, however, the gambling metaphor has been pushed to its logical conclusion.

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Afghanistan
3:47 pm
Tue May 8, 2012

As The Clock Ticks, Americans Train Afghan Troops

U.S. troops are training Afghan soldiers to take more responsibility in the war against the Taliban. But the Afghans still depend heavily on the Americans. Here, an Afghan solider fills up gas cans with diesel fuel from a U.S. Army tanker in southern Afghanistan.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Wed May 9, 2012 7:07 pm

Just outside Kandahar, the main city in southern Afghanistan, the U.S. military is starting a new program it hopes will wean Afghan troops off American assistance.

A dozen or so American soldiers make up one of the Security Force Assistance Teams, and the goal is to help the Afghan army plan for operations and supply itself in the field.

But the mission is still a work in progress.

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The Two-Way
3:22 pm
Tue May 8, 2012

GOP Senators Block Democrats' Student Loan Bill

Senate Republicans gave a thumbs down to a Democratic plan that would have frozen interest rates for 7.4 million students taking out new federally subsidized Stafford loans.

The vote was 52-45. Sixty votes were needed to avoid a certain Republican filibuster and to move the bill toward debate.

From the Republican perspective, it wasn't the idea of keeping the rate at 3.4 percent rather than letting it double starting in July. The impasse was over how to fund the one-year rate freeze, which would cost the government $6 billion, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

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It's All Politics
3:22 pm
Tue May 8, 2012

Romney Praises Bill Clinton As New Democrat, Bashes Obama As Old One

Mitt Romney praised Bill Clinton as an enlightened centrist Democrat for reforming welfare and other polices and attacked President Obama as a big-government liberal.
Bill Pugliano Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 8, 2012 3:25 pm

As if further proof were needed that the Republican primaries are essentially dead and buried, here's another piece of firm evidence: Mitt Romney praised former President Bill Clinton in a speech in Michigan Tuesday, and not once but twice.

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Race
2:13 pm
Tue May 8, 2012

Why Does Diversity In Banking Matter?

Stuart Ishimaru heads the Office of Women and Minority Inclusion, at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
AP

Originally published on Tue May 8, 2012 10:14 pm

May is Asian-American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, and all month long, Tell Me More will be speaking with game changers who trace their heritage to that part of the world. They're people who have made a difference in politics, culture, science and sports.

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Shots - Health Blog
1:40 pm
Tue May 8, 2012

When Religious Rules And Women's Health Collide

Hospital rules can affect a woman's options for care.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue May 8, 2012 4:18 pm

When you go to the hospital these days, chances are good that it will be affiliated with a religious organization. And while that may might just mean the chaplain will be of a specific denomination or some foods will be off limits, there may also be rules about the kind of care allowed.

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The Picture Show
1:07 pm
Tue May 8, 2012

The Visual South, Part II: Photography Is Like Chicken

"Letter Never Sent" is Hamrick's most recent hand-bound series. "The viewer has an intimate relationship with the book by holding it, feeling its textures and turning its pages, instead of just standing across the room staring at it," he says.
Frank Hamrick

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 10:48 am

The current issue of Oxford American magazine, known as "the Southern magazine of good writing," is nicknamed the "Visual South Issue." In its 100 under 100 list, the magazine identifies "the most talented and thrilling up-and-coming artists in the South." This week, we'll take a look at five of the photographers on that list.

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The Two-Way
12:24 pm
Tue May 8, 2012

Albanian Who Tried To Help Bring Down Mobster Gets Asylum In U.S.

An Albanian man who more than a decade ago agreed to help the U.S. Justice build a case against a mobster accused of human smuggling has finally won his long-sought quest for asylum in the U.S.

Edmond Demiraj, his wife and adult son have been granted full asylum, NPR's Carrie Johnson reports.

As Carrie reported last year:

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The Two-Way
12:05 pm
Tue May 8, 2012

What's Your Favorite Sendak Memory?

'Where the Wild Things Are' by Maurice Sendak.
NPR

Originally published on Tue May 8, 2012 12:30 pm

The death of children's author Maurice Sendak has brought back many memories for many of us.

This blogger remembers nephew Ben reading Where the Wild Things Are back in the late '60s and being fascinated by what seemed to be a very different, much more interesting, kind of book than I'd been used to as a kid just a few years before.

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