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11:45 am
Fri December 27, 2013

Two Years After War's End, US Sends Arms To Iraq

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki meets with U.S. President Barack Obama on November 1, 2013 in Washington, DC. Al-Maliki requested additional U.S. assistance in battling a rising wave of violence in Iraq. The U.S. subsequently sent arms and surveillance equipment to Iraq. (Olivier Douliery/Getty Images)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 2:15 pm

To help the Iraqi government fight the current insurgency, which is at levels not seen since the worst days of the war, the Obama administration is sending missiles and surveillance drones to the country.

The New York Times broke the story and reports that the move follows Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s request when he came to Washington last month.

Al-Maliki said Iraq needs help to fight al-Qaeda-backed militants who are gaining territory in Iraq and also in neighboring Syria.

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NPR Story
11:45 am
Fri December 27, 2013

Will Holiday Shipping Disaster Change Shopping Habits?

A UPS worker delivers packages on December 26, 2013 in Chicago, Illinois. Bad weather and a higher than expected demand from online sales caused FedEx and UPS to miss many Christmas delivery deadlines. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Originally published on Tue January 14, 2014 2:15 pm

More than a few Christmas shoppers were disappointed when their UPS and FedEx were unable to deliver their packages in time for Christmas.

Bloomberg’s Marty Schenker joins Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson says the failure of the two shipping giants might show that American shopping habits, including a desire to wait until the last minute for the best possible deal, are quickly becoming unsustainable.

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The Two-Way
11:14 am
Fri December 27, 2013

Egypt Launches Renewed Crackdown On Muslim Brotherhood

Egyptian riot police run after Muslim Brotherhood members after a demonstration in Cairo's eastern Nasr City district on Friday.
Khaled Desouki AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri December 27, 2013 11:30 am

Egyptian security forces carried out widespread arrests of Muslim Brotherhood members just days after the government labeled the group, which supports ousted President Mohammed Morsi, a terrorist organization.

Three people were reported killed in Muslim Brotherhood-led protests and some 265 people were arrested as part of the nationwide crackdown, which came as the political group renewed calls for massive anti-government rallies.

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The Two-Way
10:57 am
Fri December 27, 2013

Stories Merge As 'Duck Dynasty' Fans Plan 'Chick-Phil-A' Day

One of Chick-Phil-A-Day's promotional images.
Facebook.com/chickphiladay

Originally published on Fri December 27, 2013 2:43 pm

Update at 5:40 p.m. ET. A&E Lifts Phil Robertson's Suspension:

A&E announced Friday afternoon that it was reversing its decision to suspend Duck Dynasty patriarch Phil Robertson from the show.

A statement from the cable channel says the decision was made after discussions with the Robertson family and "numerous advocacy groups."

Here's our original post ...

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Interviews
10:19 am
Fri December 27, 2013

'Inside Amy Schumer': It's Not Just Sex Stuff

Amy Schumer isn't afraid to talk sexting, dirty talk or even the fine line between rape and deeply troubling sex in her comedy.
Peter Yang Comedy Central

This interview was originally broadcast on June 25, 2013.

One of Amy Schumer's comedy routines begins with the declaration, "I'm a little sluttier than the average bear. I really am."

Degrees of sluttiness may be hard to define, but Schumer does talk frankly about many subjects — including sex — that can be uncomfortable for people, both in her stand-up act and on her Comedy Central series, Inside Amy Schumer, which was recently renewed for a second season.

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Shots - Health News
10:00 am
Fri December 27, 2013

Concussions May Increase Alzheimer's Risk, But Only For Some

Researchers have only recently been able to use brain scans to detect Alzheimer's risk factors in living people.
iStockphoto

Doctors have long suspected that head trauma boosts the risk of getting Alzheimer's disease later on, but the evidence on that has been mixed.

But it looks like people who have memory problems and a history of concussion are more likely to have a buildup of plaques in the brain that are a risk factor for Alzheimer's, according to researchers at the Mayo Clinic.

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The Two-Way
9:59 am
Fri December 27, 2013

Target: Encrypted Data Were Taken, But Not The Key To Unlock

The scene outside a Target store in Brooklyn on Black Friday, Nov. 29.
Eric Thayer Reuters /Landov

Though hackers did obtain "strongly encrypted PIN data" when they got into Target's information systems, the retailer said Friday that sensitive information from customers' debit cards should not be at risk.

Target posted this explanation:

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The Two-Way
9:42 am
Fri December 27, 2013

Judge Rules That NSA Collection Of Phone Data Is Lawful

Originally published on Fri December 27, 2013 10:51 am

A federal judge has ruled that the National Security Agency's bulk gathering of the telephone records of millions of Americans is legal — less than two weeks after another federal judge ruled that the program violated the Constitution.

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Interviews
9:03 am
Fri December 27, 2013

Mel Brooks: 'I'm An EGOT; I Don't Need Any More'

Once vehemently opposed to the idea of being the subject of a documentary, Brooks had a change of heart. The result is an American Masters episode, Mel Brooks: Make a Noise.
WNET/American Masters

Originally published on Fri December 27, 2013 10:19 am

This interview was originally broadcast on May 20, 2013.

Over the 60 years that Mel Brooks has been in the entertainment business, his name has become synonymous with comedy. He is the man who broke Broadway records for most Tony Award wins with The Producers (an adaptation of his own movie); who satirized Westerns and racism in Blazing Saddles; and who poked fun at monster movies with Young Frankenstein.

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The Two-Way
8:37 am
Fri December 27, 2013

PHOTO: Saturn's Holiday Closeup

Saturn, looking something like a hand-painted ornament, in a newly released image from NASA.
NASA.gov

Originally published on Fri December 27, 2013 10:00 am

Just before Christmas, NASA released a photo of Saturn that we can't resist posting.

Here's how the space agency describes the image:

"The globe of Saturn, seen here in natural color, is reminiscent of a holiday ornament in this wide-angle view from NASA's Cassini spacecraft. The characteristic hexagonal shape of Saturn's northern jet stream, somewhat yellow here, is visible. At the pole lies a Saturnian version of a high-speed hurricane, eye and all. ...

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The Two-Way
8:10 am
Fri December 27, 2013

The Price Is Wrong And You Know It: Do You Buy That Ticket?

Delta made a mistake, but says it will stand by some cut-rate fares.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Headlines such as this come along every few months:

"Delta To Honor Extremely Cheap Mistake Fares."

The news, says The Associated Press, is that:

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The Two-Way
8:02 am
Fri December 27, 2013

Indian Nationalist Leader Says Violence Shook Him To The Core

Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, who is the prime ministerial candidate of the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party, arrives at the party conference in New Delhi on Tuesday. Modi said Friday that the violence in Gujarat in 2002 shook him to the core.
AP

Originally published on Fri December 27, 2013 9:23 am

The chief minister of the Indian state of Gujarat is often spoken of as the country's next prime minister. But his critics accuse Narendra Modi of being responsible for a wave of anti-Muslim violence in his state in 2002. The accusation has stuck despite Modi being cleared of wrongdoing in the violence and despite his record as an efficient administrator.

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The Salt
7:57 am
Fri December 27, 2013

2013 Was The Year Bills To Criminalize Animal Cruelty Videos Failed

A Humane Society investigation of a Wyoming pig breeding facility to the introduction of an ag-gag bill in Wyoming, which eventually failed.
Courtesy of Humane Society of the U.S.

Originally published on Fri December 27, 2013 12:07 pm

The past year was a busy one for the animal welfare activists who've turned their hidden cameras on confinement facilities where huge numbers of food animals are raised.

Livestock producers — and the policymakers they influence — were just as busy trying to make it illegal for activists to enter these facilities undercover.

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The Two-Way
6:01 am
Fri December 27, 2013

Okinawa Governor OKs Plan To Relocate U.S. Base

Okinawa Gov. Hirokazu Nakaima speaks Friday at a news conference in Naha, Japan, in which he announced his approval of landfill work for the relocation of the U.S. military's Futenma air base within his prefecture, walking back his pledge to move the base off Okinawa.
Kyodo /Landov

Originally published on Fri December 27, 2013 8:01 am

Okinawa's governor has approved a plan to relocate the U.S. Marine base on the Japanese island.

Gov. Hirokazu Nakaima's decision Friday is a reversal of his pledge to move the base off the Japanese island.

The project would involve land reclamation for a new base that would consolidate the U.S. presence on the island.

"We decided to approve the application for the landfill as we judged it contains all possible steps that could be taken at present to protect the environment," Nakaima said at a news conference in Naha, the prefectural capital.

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The Two-Way
5:59 am
Fri December 27, 2013

Three NATO Personnel Killed By Bombing In Afghanistan

An Afghan security officer runs toward the scene of Friday's bombing in Kabul. Three NATO personnel were killed and at least six Afghan civilians were wounded.
Omar Sobhani Reuters /Landov

A bomb explosion Friday in Kabul killed three members of the NATO coalition serving in Afghanistan and wounded at least six civilians, NPR's Sean Carberry reports from the Afghan capital.

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It's All Politics
5:19 am
Fri December 27, 2013

How Michael Bloomberg Became The Most Influential Mayor Of The Century (So Far)

Outgoing New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg speaks during an August news conference after officially opening the new Hunter's Point South Waterfront Park in Queens.
John Minchillo AP

Originally published on Fri December 27, 2013 6:45 am

Money mattered in Michael Bloomberg's case.

The billionaire's personal fortune (ranked 10th in the nation by Fortune) allowed him to bankroll his three runs for New York City mayor, freeing him to hire people he believed were the best and the brightest, rather than friends of donors.

His philanthropy also backed up the experiments he ran at City Hall — and allowed him to encourage other mayors to take similar tacks.

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The Two-Way
5:08 am
Fri December 27, 2013

Power's Still Out For Many Across North And Into Canada

In Delton, Mich., broken branches and snapped limbs lie on the ground after this week's snow and ice storms. Many in the state are without power.
Chuck Miller MLive.com/Landov

This may make you shiver:

"It could be days before power is restored to swathes of the country after a ice storms plunged homes and businesses from Michigan to Maine and into Canada into darkness, utility officials say." (NBC News)

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The Two-Way
4:32 am
Fri December 27, 2013

VIDEO: Rescuers Are Drawing Near To Ship Stuck In Antarctic

Stuck in the ice: The MV Akademik Shokalskiy.
Chris Turney Australasian Antarctic Expedition

Originally published on Fri December 27, 2013 3:24 pm

Update at 6:15 p.m. ET. Chinese Icebreaker Gets Stuck:

The Chinese icebreaker Snow Dragon became stuck in the ice itself as it tried to reach the stranded vessel MV Akademik Shokalskiy.

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority tweeted:

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Around the Nation
3:47 am
Fri December 27, 2013

Cops Hand Out Lottery Tickets Along with Citations

Originally published on Fri December 27, 2013 5:06 am

Along with the usual traffic citations, police in Melbourne, Fla., gave out scratch-off lottery tickets. The cops themselves paid for them — in the spirit of the season, they said. No word of any big winners, just yet.

Around the Nation
3:47 am
Fri December 27, 2013

Deer Wanders Into Pa. Sporting Goods Store

Originally published on Fri December 27, 2013 5:06 am

Transcript

DON GONYEA, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Don Gonyea.

Sporting goods stores carry gear for hunters but they don't usually supply the game. Yesterday though a deer wandered into Dick's Sporting Goods in Spring Township, Pennsylvania, the hapless creature promptly slipped on the floor. The customers, evidently still in the Christmas spirit, escorted the animal out the door. But it's still hunting season, the deer may not be out of the woods yet. Is this a "Farside" cartoon?

It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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