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Middle East
7:38 am
Wed June 4, 2014

U.S. Policy In Syria Could No Longer Be Defended, Ex-Ambassador Says

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 8:32 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm David Greene.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And I'm Steve Inskeep. President Obama's former point man on Syria resigned because he can no longer defend U.S. policy there. Ambassador Robert Ford was once known for dramatic gestures supporting Syria's opposition. But Ford says, as the uprising became a civil war he was frustrated by limited U.S. support for rebels. And even now, Ford told the "PBS NewsHour" he is not sure the Obama administration is doing enough.

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The Two-Way
7:33 am
Wed June 4, 2014

Taliban Release Video Of Handoff That Freed Bergdahl

An image taken from a video obtained from the Voice of Jihad website shows Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl (right) with a Taliban fighter just before he was released to U.S. forces in eastern Afghanistan.
AP

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 12:20 pm

A Black Hawk helicopter swoops in to pick up Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl in a valley in Afghanistan, in a video of the handover of the American prisoner of war that was posted online early Wednesday. The Pentagon says it's reviewing the video; a spokesman says there's no reason to question its authenticity.

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Around the Nation
7:10 am
Wed June 4, 2014

Cesar Chavez Is Running For Congress In Arizona

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 8:32 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep. The old joke says Chicago is the place where the dead can vote. Arizona is where the dead can run. Cesar Chavez is running for Congress. Yes, the legendary labor activist died more than 20 years ago, but in a heavily Latino district, a long-shot candidate in the Democratic primary sought to improve his chances by changing his name to Cesar Chavez. He hopes to do better than in a previous run when his name was Scott Fistler. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Krulwich Wonders...
7:03 am
Wed June 4, 2014

How Chocolate Might Save The Planet

Robert Krulwich NPR

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 12:11 pm

When you unwrap it, break off a piece and stick it in your mouth, it doesn't remind you of the pyramids, a suspension bridge or a skyscraper; but chocolate, says materials scientist Mark Miodownik, "is one of our greatest engineering creations."

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Around the Nation
5:28 am
Wed June 4, 2014

RoboCop Throws Out First Pitch At Tiger's Game

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 8:32 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

All Tech Considered
5:11 am
Wed June 4, 2014

Into The Virtual Reality Lab With Pioneering Researchers

Peter Mason tries the Oculus virtual reality headset at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco earlier this year. Some see Facebook's acquisition of the company as a turning point.
Jeff Chiu AP

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 11:41 pm

When Facebook paid $2 billion to buy Oculus VR, the company that makes the virtual reality goggles, it turned heads. Oculus doesn't even make a profit, but many enthusiasts believe this may be a turning point for a technology that's been around for decades.

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Sports
5:11 am
Wed June 4, 2014

No Americans Are Left In French Open

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 8:32 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Tennis's French Open has reached quarterfinal stage with plenty of big names advancing. None of them, though, are American, we should point out. The U.S. men and women have all been shut-out in singles action.

For the hometown crowd at the Roland Garros Tennis Complex today, though, they get to cheer on one of their own countrymen - and here to tell us more - Sports Illustrated, Jon Wertheim, in Paris. Jon, welcome back to the program.

JON WERTHEIM: Oh, thanks, David.

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NPR Story
5:11 am
Wed June 4, 2014

Record Crowd Expected For Hong Kong's Tiananmen Memorial

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 8:32 am

Tens of thousands of people are expected to gather in Hong Kong's Victoria Park to remember the victims of the Tiananmen Square Massacre. Steve Inskeep talks to Chris Buckley of "The New York Times," who's in Hong Kong.

Asia
5:11 am
Wed June 4, 2014

25 Years Later, Tiananmen Square Is A Forbidden Subject In China

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 8:32 am

Immediately following the crackdown, the government began a long-term campaign of suppression. Even today, many believe the government's goal is to erase the historic event from the nation's memory.

Sweetness And Light
3:39 am
Wed June 4, 2014

Will A Triple Crown Win Save Horse Racing? Don't Bet On It

Even if California Chrome wins Saturday's Belmont Stakes, most Americans are too disconnected from horses to flock to the race track, says commentator Frank Deford.
Al Bello Getty Images

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 8:32 am

At the start of a movie these days, how often do you read: "Based on a true story?" But if a movie was made about California Chrome, whether or not the horse wins the Belmont Stakes on Saturday, it would read: "Based on a dream."

Because the colt — of the most undistinguished heritage, bred by neophytes and trained by a kindly septuagenarian –– well, the whole thing is a ridiculous reverie.

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Education
3:37 am
Wed June 4, 2014

As Banks Open In Schools, A Chance For Students To Learn To Save

At a student-run Union Bank branch located inside Lincoln High School in Los Angeles, Calif., students can build credit and learn about finances with their real money.
Alexandra Schmidt NPR

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 11:20 am

Wearing a red Union Bank polo shirt, high school senior Jerry Liu politely helps a peer with a bank deposit. With a waiting area and even a decorative plant on the table, this could be any bank branch — but right outside this island of adulthood are the hallways of Lincoln High School in Los Angeles.

This is one of three student-run Union Bank branches in California. They're all located in low-income, immigrant-heavy neighborhoods. You can only bank here if you're a student, teacher or parent, but these are real accounts handling real money.

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Parallels
3:26 am
Wed June 4, 2014

As Myanmar Modernizes, Architectural Gems Are Endangered

At the center of Yangon, the city's colonial heritage, Buddhist faith and emerging modern face are visible in a single block.
Frank Langfitt NPR

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 11:08 am

Decades of socialism and military rule kept Myanmar — or Burma, as it was known — poor and isolated.

There was one upside, though. The economy was so lousy, there was no drive to demolish the big British colonial buildings in Yangon, Myanmar's largest city, and replace them with the glass and steel towers that now define much of the skylines in East Asia.

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It's All Politics
7:13 pm
Tue June 3, 2014

Move Over Benghazi; Here Comes Bergdahl

Bob and Jani Bergdahl, the parents of freed American soldier Bowe Bergdahl, with President Obama at the White House on Saturday. The controversy over Bergdahl's release could cast a long shadow over the administration.
Carolyn Kaster AP

Originally published on Tue June 3, 2014 7:42 pm

Just when it seemed like the outrage on the political right over Benghazi had subsided to the point where only the announcement of House hearings put it back in the headlines, the exchange of captive U.S. soldier Bowe Bergdahl for five senior Taliban fighters at Guantanamo Bay came along.

Now President Obama finds himself amid another foreign policy and national security controversy with fresh legs that even features Susan Rice — the White House official who played a prominent early role in the Benghazi controversy — making an encore.

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Sports
6:22 pm
Tue June 3, 2014

Why Is It So Hard For A Horse To Win The Triple Crown?

Birdstone (right), ridden by Edgar Prado, upsets horse Smarty Jones to win the Belmont Stakes in 2004. Smarty Jones was one of a dozen horses since 1978 to win the first two legs of the Triple Crown, only to lose at the Belmont.
Matthew Stockman Getty Images

Originally published on Wed June 4, 2014 10:38 am

Only one more race stands between California Chrome and horse racing's Triple Crown, but it could be his toughest challenge yet.

Since 1978, a dozen horses — Sunday Silence, War Emblem and Smarty Jones among them — have won the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness, only to stumble before the finish line at the Belmont Stakes.

No one can say exactly why there's been a 36-year drought since the last Triple Crown winner, but there are several theories.

An Endurance Test

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The Salt
6:04 pm
Tue June 3, 2014

Norovirus: Far More Likely To Come From Restaurant Than Cruise Ship

Originally published on Tue June 3, 2014 11:49 pm

If you follow the news on nasty, contagious norovirus, you might assume that the place you're most likely to get it is on a cruise ship. For one, there was that outbreak earlier this year when a group of passengers got sick with severe vomiting and diarrhea on a Royal Caribbean boat.

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