12:01am

Thu October 20, 2011
Afghanistan

Afghan Civilians Allegedly Forced Onto Mined Roads

Afghanistan's Panjwai district, southwest of Kandahar city, was a Taliban stronghold until the U.S. troop surge in 2010 began to displace the insurgents.

Allauddin Khan AP

Villagers from a violent part of southern Afghanistan say that Afghan troops, along with several American mentors, forced civilians to march ahead of soldiers on roads where the Taliban were believed to have planted bombs and landmines.

No one was hurt. But if the allegations are true, the act would appear to violate the Geneva Conventions governing the treatment of civilians. The episode also raises questions about how civilians are caught between the two sides in the war.

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12:01am

Thu October 20, 2011
Economy

Frustration Over Jobs Unites 'Occupiers' In Boston

Occupy Boston protesters congregate across the street from the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.

Chris Arnold NPR

The U.S. hasn't had unemployment this high for this long since the Great Depression. That's weighing heavily on a lot of Americans and seems to be a key part of the frustration and anger that's being directed at Wall Street and the big banks. For many people, it's not so much about high finance as it is about a weekly paycheck.

"I'm unemployed, and I'm down here because I'm unemployed," says Bob Norkus, a protester in downtown Boston.

Walking around, it doesn't take long to figure out that many people here have the same problem.

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12:01am

Thu October 20, 2011
Monkey See

Amy Poehler: Playing Politics, But Only On Television

Amy Poehler, seen here with Aubrey Plaza as April Ludgate and Chris Pratt as Andy Dwyer, plays idealistic bureaucrat Leslie Knope on NBC's Parks And Recreation.

Ron Tom NBC

Amy Poehler joined Saturday Night Live in 2001 — a time, she says, when no one was really sure comedy was going to ever be okay again. She left in 2008 after playing Hillary Clinton during the show's coverage of an election cycle when, she tells Ari Shapiro on Thursday's Morning Edition, "the country was really paying attention to politics."

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Tom Huizenga is a music producer, reporter and blogger for NPR Music. He hosts NPR's classical music blog Deceptive Cadence.

A regular contributor of stories about classical music on NPR's news programs, Huizenga regularly introduces intriguing new classical CDs to listeners on the weekend version of All Things Considered. He contributes to NPR Music's "Song of the Day."

6:53pm

Wed October 19, 2011
Shots - Health Blog

To Curb Abortions, Opponents Focus On The 'Supply-Side'

States enacted a record number of abortion restrictions in the first half of 2011, many of them requiring 24-hour waiting periods, ultrasounds or parental permission to deter women from obtaining abortions. But these types of "demand-side policies" have not had much of an impact in the past on national abortion rates, according to an article in the most recent edition of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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6:43pm

Wed October 19, 2011
Deceptive Cadence

Joseph Calleja: The Young Tenor With The Old-School Sound

Originally published on Tue November 5, 2013 11:48 am

Joseph Calleja's voice reminds many of the golden-age tenors of the past.

Johannes Ifkovitz Decca

Opera fanatics often trot out the tired old complaint about how "they don't make 'em like they used to" while pining for the great singers of the past. But as an unabashed opera nerd, I can tell you that the sound of the "golden age" is alive in the voice of tenor Joseph Calleja. He's a young singer with an old-school sensibility, and he's just released his third album for Decca Records.

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6:37pm

Wed October 19, 2011
The Two-Way

Mass. High Court Throws Sales Of Some Foreclosed Homes Into Limbo

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court has thrown into doubt the ownership of some foreclosed homes, when it decided that buyers of a house that was improperly foreclosed are not the legal owners of the property.

The Boston Globe reports:

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5:47pm

Wed October 19, 2011
The Two-Way

Watch Out! More Space Debris Coming Our Way

The X-ray satellite ROSAT was shutdown in 1999 and will re-enter the Earth's atmosphere this weekend.

German Aerospace Center

It's happening again: This time instead of a NASA satellite, it's a German satellite that will burn through the Earth's atmosphere and crash somewhere unknown. If you remember, in September a decommissioned weather satellite fell into the South Pacific.

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5:41pm

Wed October 19, 2011
NPR Story

Amish Reel From Bizarre Beard-Cutting Attacks

Originally published on Wed October 19, 2011 6:56 pm

Sam Mullet, father of two of the three men arrested for allegedly going into the home of other Amish and cutting their hair and beards, is seen outside his home in Bergholz, Ohio. Some who have left Mullet's community have accused him of abuse.

Amy Sancetta AP

On the night of Oct. 4, Myron and Arlene Miller were asleep in their home in Mechanicstown, Ohio, when they heard a knock on the door. According to their friend Bob Comer, when Myron came downstairs, he found five men standing on his doorstep.

"They pulled him out in the front yard, and they have scissors and a battery-powered shaver and everything," Comer says. "They're trying to hold him down and cut his beard off and cut his hair off."

Miller yelled at his wife to call 911. Then the men let him go and ran back to the trailer and had the driver take off, Comer says.

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5:00pm

Wed October 19, 2011
Shots - Health Blog

Heart Failure Lands Fewer Seniors In Hospital

Clayton Hansen iStockphoto.com

Which illness puts more elderly people in the hospital than any other? Heart failure, a serious impairment of blood-pumping power.

But, as some Yale researchers have found, the rate of hospitalization for heart failure has gone down a lot, according to Medicare data for the decade ending in 2008.

The analysis is pretty complicated, and makes adjustments for a bunch of risk factors, but the upshot is clear: The rate of heart failure admissions in 2008 was 29.5 percent lower than in 1998. It's the first study to show a national decline.

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