Since the Arab oil embargoes of the 1960s and 70s, it's been conventional wisdom to talk about American dependence on oil from the Persian Gulf. But the global oil market has changed dramatically since then.
Today, the U.S. actually gets most of its imported oil from Canada and Latin America.
And many Americans might be surprised to learn that the U.S. now imports roughly the same amount of oil from Africa as it does from the Persian Gulf. African imports were a bit higher in 2010, while Persian Gulf oil accounted for a bit more last year.
The agency says there were 380,000 such applications, up from 367,000 (a number that has been revised upward; previously, the agency had estimated there were 357,000 claims in the week ended March 31).
Claims had been running at the lowest pace since March and April 2008. At 380,000, the pace is the lowest since June 2008.
The man accused of masterminding the bombing of the USS Cole in Yemen in 2000, Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, won a key battle at Guantanamo on Wednesday — a judge said he could meet with his lawyers without having to wear restraints.
The early word from Syria is that "flashpoints of the 13-month uprising against President Bashar Assad were quiet Thursday ... suggesting a U.N.-brokered truce was starting to take hold and the regime was keeping a pledge to halt its assault on opposition strongholds," The Associated Press reports.
Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne with the catch of the day. Officials from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources captured, tagged and released a sturgeon weighing over 240 pounds. That makes this fish, a female, the largest on record for the state. One scientist estimates she's 125 years old. The sturgeon is old enough to have been around when Grover Cleveland was president, but a few years too young to remember a first edition of "Moby Dick." It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.
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The man who authorities said could not be charged with a crime will now face charges.
MONTAGNE: George Zimmerman is expected in court today in Sanford, Florida. Special prosecutor Angela Corey says she plans to charge him with second-degree murder for shooting an unarmed high school student.
The publishing business is still trying to absorb the news that the Justice Department is suing Apple and publishers for price fixing in the e-book market. Three publishers - Simon and Shuster, Harper Collins and Hachette - decided to settle the suit. But Apple, along with the companies Macmillan and Penguin, plan to fight the allegations. Here's NPR's Lynn Neary.
After months of relentless shelling and gunfire, activists in Syria reported a quieter daybreak Thursday, as a ceasefire arranged by U.N. special envoy Kofi Annan appeared to be largely holding.
Opposition figures said rebel fighters inside Syria would abide by the truce as long as the Syrian military does, while the government says its forces will return fire if attacked. Annan is hoping to progress from the cease-fire to getting humanitarian assistance into the country, and eventually to political negotiations.
Some other news: Tax day is rapidly approaching, and it turns out that day can hazardous to your heath.
As NPR's Wendy Kaufman reports, researchers found a rise in fatal auto accidents on the day taxes are due.
WENDY KAUFMAN, BYLINE: Back in 1789, Ben Franklin wrote: Nothing can be said to be certain except death and taxes. He couldn't possibly have foreseen the linkage reported in this week's Journal of the American Medical Association: 6 percent more people than usual are killed on the roads on tax day.
If you want a mani-pedi - that's a manicure and pedicure to the uninitiated - you don't have to walk very far here in California. There are about 48,000 nail salons throughout the state. A new study by the state government now says some products used in those salons contain toxic substances, even though the products are billed as nontoxic. That sounds scary for salon owners and workers and clients, but representatives of the nail care industry say the study is nonsense. NPR's Ted Robbins reports.
NPR's business news starts with a big fine for Johnson & Johnson.
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INSKEEP: So much for no more tears. A judge in Arkansas ordered the company most famous for its baby shampoo to by more than a billion dollars in fines yesterday over its marketing for a very different product. That would be an antipsychotic drug, Risperdal.
As the Titanic was sinking and women and children climbed into lifeboats, the cellist and violinist from the ship's band stood and played. They died when the ship went down. Men stood on the deck and smoked cigars. They died, too.
This behavior is puzzling to economists, who like to believe that people tend to act in their own self interest.
"There was no pushing and shoving," says David Savage, an economist at Queensland University in Australia who has studied testimony from the survivors. It was "very, very orderly behavior."
Peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians are at a standstill and have been for almost two years. The stated aim of those negotiations is what is known as the "two-state solution," which means the establishment of a viable, independent Palestinian state existing in peace alongside Israel.
But as hopes for an agreement diminish, Palestinians — and even some Israelis — are now talking about other solutions to the conflict. Among them, the so-called "one-state solution."
Mike Huckabee fell short four years ago in his quest to become the Republican presidential nominee. As of this week, the former Arkansas governor has a new job: national radio talk show host.
The Mike Huckabee Show started Monday with an anticipatory flourish.
"Welcome to the community of conversation. You've just made a right turn, and you've arrived at the corner of conservatism and common sense," he said. "In this show, we're going to be confronting the issues — not the listeners."
Colombia was once associated with cocaine trafficking and powerful drug lords, but today's reality is different: It's stable, a magnet for foreign investment and diplomatically engaged — and this weekend hosts the Summit of the Americas. Increasingly, Colombia is seen as South America's rising star.
Mitt Romney was on the attack Wednesday, using a specific statistic to back up his claim that women, especially, have suffered economically under President Obama.
"Over 92 percent of the jobs lost under this president were lost by women," Romney said on Fox News. "His policies have been really a war on women."
The Romney campaign claims that 92.3 percent of those who have lost jobs during the Obama administration are women. It's a claim the campaign has made in speeches, on Twitter and on the Romney website.
George Zimmerman has been charged with second-degree murder in the shooting of Florida teen Trayvon Martin. Audie Cornish speaks with former federal prosecutor Brett Meltzer about the legal aspects of the case going forward.
The phenomenon that is TEDMED has rolled into the nation's capital. And I'm camped out at the Kennedy Center for the nerdfest.
What's the big deal? I'm still trying to figure that out as the meeting is well into its second day. It's an event, that's for sure, and it's supposed to be a way for people who care a lot about health care to get together and make some headway on thorny problems.
George Zimmerman, who says he killed unarmed Florida teenager Trayvon Martin in self-defense, has been arrested and will face a charge of second-degree murder, says State Attorney Angela Corey, the special prosecutor investigating Martin's death.
Corey said that Zimmerman turned himself in to the authorities Wednesday.
Two U.S. Marines have been killed and two others injured when the V-22 Osprey they were in crashed Wednesday during a training exercise in Morocco.
NPR's Larry Abramson is reporting that the reservists were part of a Marine unit participating in the annual African Lion exercise with the Moroccan military. The two severely injured Marines are being treated in country.
More information about those killed and wounded will be released after the notification of next of kin.
The cause of the crash is still being investigated, but NPR's Abramson notes: