Egyptian novelist Alaa Al Aswany was already a cultural force when he stepped onto a TV talk show soon after Egypt's revolution. Aswany appeared on a panel with Egypt's recently appointed prime minister, and told off the politician so forcefully for his connections to the old regime that the next morning the prime minister resigned. Aswany talks with Morning Edition's Steve Inskeep about his country's future, and a constitutional referendum expected this weekend.
In Bahrain, military troops and security forces moved against thousands of anti-government protesters occupying a landmark square in the capital. A day before, the king imposed emergency rule in the violence-wracked Gulf kingdom.
The nuclear crisis in Japan has evoked memories of the 1986 Chernobyl disaster. Robert Baker, a biologist at Texas Tech, who co-directs the Chernobyl Project, has been studying mammals in Chernobyl for two decades. Baker tells Linda Wertheimer his group has found next to no signs of radiation poisoning or cancer in subsequent animal generations there.
Shock among survivors of Japan's earthquake and tsunami turned to anger Wednesday as nearly a half-million people displaced by the disaster and resulting nuclear crisis remained crammed in makeshift evacuation centers, many with few basic necessities and even less information.
The governor of northeastern Fukushima prefecture, the site of a badly damaged nuclear power plant, fumed over what he saw as poor government communication and coordination.
Riot police stormed the main square in Bahrain's capital at dawn Wednesday, driving out hundreds of anti-government protesters and setting the protesters' tents ablaze. At least six people were killed, witnesses and officials said.
"A whole line of armored personnel carriers and even some tanks pulled in here a little after dawn...and maybe 400-500 police marched down to the traffic circle and confronted protesters," said NPR's Frank Langfitt, reporting for Morning Edition from the capital of Manama.