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This Week's Must Read
6:17 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

As Summer Winds Down, Wistful Dreams Of A 'Lost Estate'

Originally published on Fri August 22, 2014 8:23 pm

The summer before I went to college my grandfather died. I spent that season clearing out the shelves in his bedroom. And since he was a compulsive rereader, I kept the books that looked the most tattered. I thought he must have loved those the most.

One of them was The Lost Estate (Le Grand Meaulnes), by Henri Alain-Fournier. I couldn't have known when I picked it up that it would be such an appropriate last book for someone just days away from becoming a college student. In the late August heat I sat on my grandmother's balcony and read it in two days.

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Around the Nation
5:51 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

In New York And Ferguson, Two Deaths, Two Different Responses

Eric Garner, an unarmed black man, died on July 17 after being placed in a chokehold by police. His death sparked numerous protests, including a march scheduled for this Saturday. Here, Garner's sister Ellisha Flagg (center) leads demonstrators on a march toward the 120th Precinct on July 22, following a vigil demanding justice for her brother.
John Minchillo AP

Originally published on Fri August 22, 2014 8:46 pm

The deaths of two unarmed black men at the hands of police have shocked the country this summer: Eric Garner, who died after being placed in a chokehold by police in Staten Island, N.Y., and Michael Brown, the 18-year-old who was shot by police in Ferguson, Mo.

Thousands of protesters will march in New York on Saturday to demand justice for Garner, and organizers say Brown's parents will speak at the rally. But while the two cases have some things in common, there are also key differences, including the way police in the local communities reacted.

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Race
5:46 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

Obama's Reaction To Ferguson Raises Questions About President's Role

Attorney General Eric Holder talks with Ferguson, Mo., residents Angela Whitman (left) and Jill Richards on Wednesday at Drake's Place Restaurant about issues surrounding the shooting of Michael Brown.
J.B. Forbes MCT/Landov

Originally published on Fri August 22, 2014 8:09 pm

Ferguson, Mo., has seen nearly two weeks of protests after an unarmed 18-year-old African-American man was shot and killed by Darren Wilson, a white police officer. This week, a black leader stepped in to help defuse tensions. But it wasn't a civil rights spokesman or the first African-American president. It was Attorney General Eric Holder.

Some political observers are asking why Obama can't seem to speak for himself on race. Many observers argue that Holder often talks frankly about race when the president can't or won't.

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NPR Story
5:15 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

For Obama, August Is The Cruelest Month

President Obama plays golf on the island of Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts on Thursday.
Steven Senne AP

Originally published on Fri August 22, 2014 8:09 pm

President Obama returns to Washington this weekend after a two-week family vacation.

It wasn't exactly restful. The break was interrupted several times by events in Iraq and in Ferguson, Mo.

On Wednesday, Obama raised eyebrows by hitting the golf course, minutes after delivering a tough statement on the murder of an American journalist by militants from the Islamic State.

You know it's bad is when even the French are criticizing you for taking too much time off.

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The Salt
5:09 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

A Food Crisis Follows Africa's Ebola Crisis

A street market remains empty in Monrovia's West Point slum as part of quarantine measures to contain the spread of Ebola in Liberia.
Zoom Dosso AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 22, 2014 11:03 pm

In the shadows of West Africa's Ebola outbreak, food shortages are starting to develop.

This time of year is traditionally the lean season in West Africa, when last year's harvest of rice or groundnuts is mostly exhausted. Until recently, people were quite hopeful about the approaching harvest this year.

"The rainfall situation was very good," says Shukri Ahmed, a senior economist with the U.N.'s Food and Agriculture Organization in Rome. "We were actually developing an optimistic forecast for crop production this year."

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Men In America
4:43 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

In Changing America, Gay Masculinity Has 'Many Different Shades'

The Colorado Rush, a gay rugby team in Denver, at practice. "I've always thought of myself as ... the rugby player that happens to be gay," says Skyler Meyer. "I never want to be the gay man who happens to play rugby."
Luke Runyon KUNC

Originally published on Fri August 22, 2014 8:09 pm

Editor's note: This story contains language that may be offensive to some readers.

Life as a gay man in the U.S. has changed in the past decade — the law and cultural attitudes toward homosexuality have shifted. And those greater social and legal freedoms have also changed how some gay men choose to express their masculinity — and their femininity.

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Europe
4:06 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

Russian Convoy Crosses Ukrainian Border, Prompting Outcry From West

Originally published on Fri August 22, 2014 8:09 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED - I'm Audie Cornish.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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Iraq
4:06 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

With Initial U.S. Airstrikes A Success, Will They Expand?

Peshmerga fighters inspect the remains of a car bearing an image of the trademark jihadist flag, after it was targeted by an American airstrike in the village of Baqouba, north of Mosul. The car reportedly belonged to Islamic State militants
Ahmad Al-Rubaye AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Sat August 23, 2014 12:21 pm

Pentagon officials announced still another U.S. airstrike in Iraq on Friday. Fighter and attack aircraft hit Islamic State armored vehicles and machine guns.

That makes nearly 100 U.S. bombing runs in the past few weeks, and Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel said that enabled Iraqi and Kurdish forces to fight the group — also known as ISIL — around two northern Iraqi cities.

"American airstrikes and American arms and assistance helped Iraqi and Kurdish forces blunt ISIL's advances around Irbil and helped the Iraqis retake and hold Mosul Dam," Hagel said.

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Remembrances
4:06 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

Remembering Hashim Khan, A Titan Of The Squash Court

Originally published on Fri August 22, 2014 8:09 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

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Race
5:41 pm
Thu August 21, 2014

Who Are The Protesters Getting Arrested In Ferguson?

Police arrest a demonstrator protesting the killing of teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo.
Scott Olson Getty Images

Originally published on Fri August 22, 2014 8:04 am

There was nobody at the QuikTrip on Thursday — that's the gas station and convenience store that burned down on the first night of violent protests in Ferguson, Mo. It was once a focal point for protesters.

On Thursday, Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon ordered his state's National Guard to start withdrawing, a sign of the calm that has finally descended on the city racked by protests ever since police shot and killed an unarmed 18-year-old African-American man named Michael Brown.

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