Thu June 23, 2011

As Rivals Unveil Hybrids, Toyota Boosts Prius

The Prius, Toyota's flagship green vehicle, is facing some stiff competition from other automakers launching their own hybrids, so Toyota is responding by making the Prius its own brand.

Lauren Squires, a resident of Ann Arbor, Mich., has heard all the stereotypes about Prius owners, and she's not a bit defensive about it.

"I don't own Birkenstocks anymore," she says, though she used to. "I do make my own granola."

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Thu June 23, 2011

Gray Wolf In Cross Hairs Again After Delisting

Originally published on Thu January 24, 2013 3:49 pm

In central Idaho, local hostility to wolves expresses itself on signs along the highway. Many residents don't like the wolves because the animals kill elk, livestock and pets.
Martin Kaste NPR

Conservation groups howled when Congress removed the Rocky Mountain gray wolf from the federal endangered species list. The "delisting" in most of the Northwest was attached to the budget deal in April between the White House and Congress.

The head of one environmental organization likened it to Congress throwing the wolf off Noah's Ark. But now that states like Idaho have full authority over the wolf's fate, they're eager to use it.

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Thu June 23, 2011
Middle East

In West Bank, Palestinian Accord Faces Challenges

A voter casts his ballot to elect the board of the largest private medical association in the West Bank city of Hebron. Out of 14 people running, seven are backed by Fatah. There isn't a single candidate running under the Hamas banner.
Jonathan Levinson For NPR

A newly minted peace deal between rival Palestinian factions is already fraying. Fatah, which rules the West Bank, and the militant group Hamas, which holds sway in Gaza, have been at odds since a civil war broke out in Gaza in 2007.

Last month, the groups signed a reconciliation agreement. The two factions were supposed to announce the composition of a unity government in Cairo this week, but the meeting was postponed following disagreements over who should assume the post of prime minister.

A Microcosmic Election?

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Thu June 23, 2011

GOP Hopefuls Divided Over Anti-Abortion Pledge

Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney in Aurora, Colorado on June 20. Romney is one of two presidential hopefuls who has not signed a hard-line anti-abortion pledge.
John Moore Getty Images

For the first time in memory, every Republican candidate running for president in 2012 proclaims him or herself to be anti-abortion. But just how anti-abortion are they?

Marjorie Dannenfelser wanted to find out. So Dannenfelser, the head of the Susan B. Anthony List — a group founded to elect anti-abortion candidates — created "The Pro-Life Presidential Leadership Pledge," and asked every Republican presidential candidate to sign it.

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Wed June 22, 2011

Analysis Of President Obama's Remarks

Michele Norris talks to NPR's Scott Horsley and other experts for their take on the president's plans to bring the 33,000 "surge" troops home by the summer of 2012.


Wed June 22, 2011
The Two-Way

Live-Blog: The President Lays Out His Plan For Afghanistan

Darryl St. George, a Navy Corpsman with Weapons Co. 2/8 Marines, during a foot patrol this month in Helmand Province, Afghanistan.
David Gilkey NPR

President Obama is telling the nation tonight how fast and how soon the U.S. will start drawing down the number of troops it has in Afghanistan. He's going to talk specifically about the 33,000 or so military personnel who were added to the campaign there in the "surge" he announced in December 2009, and in broader terms about the length and size of the U.S. mission.

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Wed June 22, 2011
The Two-Way

A Normally Ubiquitous Hugo Chavez Has Gone Quiet

Ailing Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez Frias chatting with Cuban former President Fidel Castro (L) and his brother and current President of Cuba, Raul Castro (R), on June 17, 2011. This photo was released by the Cuban government.
AFP/Getty Images

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez isn't shy. He's known for his marathon speeches and his media savvy, but Chavez hasn't made a public appearance — not even a Twitter update — for nearly two weeks.

The leader has rarely been heard from since he went to Cuba to treat a "pelvic abscess."

His absence has Venezuelan's talking, reports the AFP:

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Wed June 22, 2011
Around the Nation

Man Linked To 2010 D.C.-Area Shootings

Federal sources say ballistics evidence ties a man arrested at Arlington National Cemetery last week to a series of mysterious shootings in the Washington, D.C., area.

Yonathan Melaku, 22, a member of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves, has been in custody since police found him wandering last week after the cemetery had closed. He was carrying a backpack he said was full of explosives. The FBI later determined the material in the backpack was inert.

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Wed June 22, 2011
Shots - Health Blog

Food Industry And Health Experts Face Off Over Food Package Labeling

The small print in the bar at the top of the Corn Pops box is an example of industry's voluntary approach to enhanced nutrition information.
Marina Dominguez/NPR

For some of us, the regular trudge to the grocery store is a trial all by itself. But consumers trying to make healthier choices are often left scratching their heads in wonder at the sheer volume of food products with claims about less fat and more whole grain.

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Wed June 22, 2011
Conflict In Libya

Egyptian Workers Who Fled Libya Struggle At Home

Originally published on Wed June 22, 2011 7:40 pm

Egyptians who fled fighting in Libya carry their belongings at the Egyptian-Libyan border in Salloum, Egypt. The International Organization for Migration estimates that more than 105,000 Egyptians have returned from Libya.
Hussein Malla AP

For the Egyptian youth who spearheaded the protests that led to the ouster of autocrat Hosni Mubarak in February, the revolution was an exhilarating, crowning moment.

But for young Egyptian laborers caught in the violent backwash of the region's revolts, the Arab spring has proved financially and psychologically crippling.

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