The World on WLRN

Weekdays at 3:00pm

A one-hour, weekday radio news magazine offering a mix of news, features, interviews, and music from around the globe.

http://www.theworld.org/

In Syria, all girls want is safety and school

12 hours ago
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Zohra Bensemra/Reuters

Syria was once home to a highly-educated middle class.  

Books were an important part of the culture, and literacy was highly prized, for girls as well as boys. 

But the Syria's grinding six-year war has endangered all that — especially for young women. 

Many girls that might have received a rigorous education are now being married off at a young age. 

That's what journalist Gayle Tzemach Lemmon found out recently when she visited the Syrian town of Tabqa — outside of Raqqa.

"All voices are welcome in this world, you know. All experiments. I can't criticize anyone's voice, 'cuz people's voices are their soul. So how can you criticize one's soul?" 

That's what French singer Camille has to say about the unique voice of Yoko Ono. And you could say the same thing to describe Camille's. Hers is a subdued voice that can soon break out into a guttural cry, especially in the song "Twix." And yes, the song is about the candy bar. 

Flying insect populations dropped by more than 75 percent during the last three decades in dozens of protected areas across Germany, researchers have found.

A club of mostly amateur entomologists used traps to capture insects and measure their biomass at 63 nature protection areas in Germany since 1989.

The Czech Republic's Trump is in the lead for Prime Minister

14 hours ago
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David W Cerny/Reuters

Dubbed the "Czech version of Trump" by Forbes, the wiry, grey-haired, Slovak-born farming, media and chemicals mogul is the Czech Republic's second-richest man.

Andrej Babis set up the populist ANO (Yes) party in 2011 as a political outsider determined to lure voters with promises of clean politics in the EU country of 10.6 million ranked more corrupt than Botswana by Transparency International.

ANO entered parliament two years later, but Babis himself has since been dogged by allegations of wrongdoing, something he flatly denies.

The first wave of university students displaced by Hurricane Maria has arrived to study in the mainland US, taking advantage of tuition discounts offered to Puerto Rican students whose home institutions remain shuttered.

“Coming here was a big relief,” says Rosamari Palerm, 23. She was the first student from Puerto Rico to arrive at St. Thomas University, a private Catholic school in Miami Gardens, Florida with over 5,000 students.

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Erik De Castro/Reuters

Mohammad Othman watched through a hole in the wall as the last ISIS fighters filed out of the Syrian city of Raqqa in a convoy of trucks and cars.

Exhausted, beaten and bedraggled, like the city itself, their departure marked a symbolic end to the self-declared caliphate — the fall of ISIS’ de facto capital was complete.

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Darrin Zammit Lupi/Reuters

A Maltese journalist once described as a “one-woman WikiLeaks” was killed in a car bomb this week.

Daphne Caruana Galizia was perhaps the most famous journalist in Malta, known for her fearless reporting on crime and corruption that reached into the upper echelons of the government.

Refugees to be assessed on ability to 'assimilate'

Oct 18, 2017

Immigration experts are trying to get clarification of a new presidential directive on refugees. One issue of concern is language buried deep in the document about the need for refugees to be “assimilated.”

Barbara Dane just can't recall any good fascist songs

Oct 18, 2017

"Can you recall any good fascist songs?" Barbara Dane, the founder of Paredon Records, asks.

Unlike fascist music, Dane recalls protest and struggle songs as having a rallying effect. Songs like "Deutschlandlied," which was chosen as Germany's national anthem in 1922 (today only the third stanza is used in the national anthem), can be pointed out as nationally successful. But fascist songs just don't seem to bring people together the way that protest music from folk culture does. 

Two US judges order a freeze on Trump's third travel ban

Oct 18, 2017
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James Lawler/Reuters

US federal judges ordered a freeze on President Donald Trump's newest travel ban this week, saying it was essentially targeted at Muslims in violation of the US Constitution.

Maryland District Judge Theodore Chuang said Wednesday the ban on travelers from over half a dozen countries essentially had not changed from the first two versions, which were shot down in lower courts as discriminating against a single religion.

Usually, when we talk about Japanese prison camps during World War II, the story centers around Japanese Americans. But there was actually another group whose story intertwines with the Japanese Americans' during the war.

Ron Moore knows this firsthand.

At the age of 11, he moved with his family to Poston, Arizona in 1949.  “We moved into one of the barracks,” he says.  

Those barracks were at the Colorado River Relocation Center, which is known as the Poston internment camp.

It was exactly one year ago today when Kurdish Peshmerga forces launched an offensive against ISIS in villages in the outlying areas of Mosul to pave the way for the Iraqi army to enter the city. I was there.

The night before the offensive, I was trying to catch some sleep but despite two coats and a sleeping bag, the cold made me shiver all night. Part of the reason for the sleeplessness was wondering what would happen next, now that the Kurdish army had joined the Iraqi army in a joint operation.

Deadly wildfires ravage Portugal and Spain

Oct 17, 2017
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Miguel Vidal/Reuters

On Sunday night, Rafael Kotcherha Campora posted a series of alarming status updates on Facebook:

 

Kotcherha Campora was staying at his partner's farm in Galicia, Spain, when he spotted a fire on the horizon. Soon, the winds began to whip up, "and the smoke started tunneling down in all directions," he recalls. "The smoke was so dense that we literally couldn't breathe anymore."

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US Air Force/Courtesy of Blaine Harden 

The shelling started on Sunday morning, before sunrise. It was June 25, 1950. A couple of hours later, dozens of Soviet-made, state-of-the-art battle tanks from the Korean People’s Army — along with about 90,000 troops — began moving across the 38th parallel to attack South Korea. 

Suddenly, the Cold War had turned into a full-blown shooting war. 

A day later, from his base in Tokyo, General Douglas MacArthur sent a bleak assessment of the situation in Korea back to Washington. 

“Complete collapse is imminent,” MacArthur told the Joint Chiefs of Staff. 

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Erik De Castro/Reuters

As they surrendered the city of Raqqa today, ISIS militants climbed onto 30 buses and 10 trucks for the ride out of town. 

Some fighters even stopped to snap a couple of parting photos.

Then the extremists abandoned the city they'd considered the capital of their so-called caliphate. US-backed Kurdish and Arab militias now say they're "fully in control."

"There were big celebrations in the center of Raqqa where ISIS used to carry out executions," says The World's Rich Hall from his base in Beirut. "It's a very symbolic defeat for ISIS."

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