These have certainly been dispiriting times for those who admire athletes, who proclaim that sports build character. The horrendous shooting by Oscar Pistorius is of course, in a category mercifully unapproached since the O.J. Simpson case, but the Whole Earth Catalog of recent examples of athletic character-building is certainly noteworthy.
Originally published on Tue January 29, 2013 10:12 am
Egyptian protesters remain in the streets of Port Said and Suez, defying President Mohammed Morsi's declaration Sunday night of states of emergency and night-time curfews. Egyptian army troops are out on the streets but they did not interfere as thousands of people jeered Morsi's call.
Originally published on Tue January 29, 2013 9:46 am
Activists and rebels in the northern Syrian city of Aleppo are reporting today that "the bodies of dozens of young men, all apparently summarily executed" have been found in and around the Quwaiq River, the BBC writes.
The uprisings of the Arab Spring unleashed a new political force in the region — Salafis, ultraconservative Muslims who aspire to a society ruled entirely by a rigid form of Islamic law. Their models are the salaf, or ancestors, referring to the earliest Muslims who lived during the lifetime of the Prophet Muhammad.
Originally published on Thu January 24, 2013 6:45 pm
In a small border town in northern Syria, there are two groups that both oppose President Bashar Assad's regime. But instead of working in tandem, the Syrian rebels and a Kurdish militia have been battling each other in the town of Ras al-Ayn.
Sally Ali, a 26-year-old resident of Ras al-Ayn, told NPR by phone that the streets are completely empty. "It's a ghost town," she says.
She estimates about half of the town's residents fled to nearby villages; the other half are trapped in their homes by the ongoing violence.
JERUSALEM (AP) -- Israelis voted Tuesday in an election likely to keep hard-line Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the helm of government for a third term despite a turbulent record: no peace process with Palestinians, growing diplomatic isolation and signs of economic trouble ahead.
The balloting capped a lackluster three-month campaign that was expected to leave Netanyahu at the helm of a coalition dominated by hard-liners opposed to concessions that could bring Palestinians back to the negotiating table.
Originally published on Wed January 16, 2013 10:00 am
At least two people were killed today in London when a helicopter struck a tall crane, exploded and came crashing to the ground in a ball of fire.
Reporting from London, NPR's Philip Reeves tells our Newscast Desk that "the wreckage landed close to a very busy commuter station at Vauxhall, and not far from a rail line running into Waterloo. ... Several cars caught fire."
Originally published on Wed January 16, 2013 8:57 am
Men wearing bombs strapped to their bodies and traveling in two vehicles carrying more explosives wounded dozens of civilians in Kabul today when they attacked a government security office, NPR's Sean Carberry reports from the scene.
Sean tells the NPR Newscast desk that the Taliban is claiming responsibility and that:
The situation for Syrian refugees is getting dire. Much has been reported about the worsening conditions for hundreds of thousands of Syrians taking up shelter just outside the country's borders, but inside Syria, the numbers are even higher. The United Nations says some 2 million people have been displaced from their homes in Syria, and most of them end up squatting in mosques and schools. NPR's Kelly McEvers spent a night in one of those schools, in Syria's largest city, Aleppo, and sent this report.