Every week, it seems, a new scandal is unearthed by the upstart, online newspaper Mediapart. The most recent bomb was that President Francois Hollande's budget minister was evading taxes when he was supposed to be cracking down on tax cheats. After vehemently denying the allegations, in the face of overwhelming evidence, Jerome Cahuzac was forced to resign.
From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.
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Our book reviewer Alan Cheuse is excited to introduce the work of Rabee Jaber. He lives in Lebanon, and his novel "The Mehlis Report" takes place there. In Beirut, the characters await the real Mehlis report, which analyzed the watershed moment in Lebanon, the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.
We've been talking occasionally with inventors about what inspired their creations. Today, a computer scientist in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Fifty-one years ago, one of the first digital video games was born out of his imagination.
Mozart's The Magic Flute, the last opera he lived to complete, has some of his most sublime and sublimely comic music. Technically, it's more of a musical comedy, what in German is called a Singspiel, a play with songs and spoken dialogue. I was excited to learn that it was filmed by Kenneth Branagh, whose Shakespeare movies I really admire. Mozart's mixture of fairy tale and high morality presents a great opportunity for a filmmaker; in 1975, Ingmar Bergman released a version for Swedish television that has become a beloved classic.
Earlier this year, we told you about some parents in the San Diego area who were suing the Encinitas Union School District to stop yoga classes because they believed the ancient Indian practice had religious overtones. Well, today we have a decision in that case: A judge ruled that the school district was not teaching religion when it offered elementary school students yoga classes.
Today marks the 50th anniversary of the Zone Improvement Plan, the network of ZIP codes we use for everything from mail delivery to credit card security.
The U.S. Postal Service began using the five-digit codes on July 1, 1963, hoping they would improve the efficiency and speed of mail sorting. Since then, the codes have assumed a role in the identities of many Americans, helping to define where they live or work.
Two top officials of the Vatican bank resigned Monday just days following the arrest of a senior cleric with ties to the institution after police caught him with the equivalent of about $26 million in cash that they say he was trying to bring into Italy from Switzerland.
A Texas teen faces up to eight years in prison after making a comment on Facebook about shooting up "a school full of kids." Deputies in Comal County, Texas, charged then-18-year-old Justin Carter with making "terroristic threats" — a third-degree felony — in March. According to the Comal County Jail, he's been behind bars since March 27, unable to make his $500,000 bail. Austin-based KVUE-TV reports:
Qatar's capital, Doha, is a post-modern city rising like a mirage out of the hot sands of the Arabian Desert. The ever-growing skyscrapers are stunning, and in some cases, head-scratching works of architecture and engineering. Standing in the city, you almost expect to see the Jetsons fly by.
Qatar is also doing something unusual when it comes to leadership. The 61-year-old emir, Sheik Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, stepped down last week and handed power to his 33-year-old son, Sheik Tamim.
Children's-book writer Maurice Sendak learned a lot from author and artist Tomi Ungerer. In Far Out Isn't Far Enough, a new documentary about Ungerer, Sendak says, "I learned to be braver than I was. I think that's why [Where The Wild Things Are] was partly Tomi — his energy, his spirit.
As you might have gathered from our blog's title, the Code Switch team is kind of obsessed with the ways we speak to each other. Every Monday in "Word Watch," we'll dig into language that tells us something about the way race is lived in America today. (Interested in contributing? Holler at this form.)
The condition of former South African leader Nelson Mandela is "still critical but stable," according to the office of President Jacob Zuma. Mandela, 94, has been in a Pretoria hospital since June 8 with a lung infection.
In the first official update on Mandela's health since Thursday, the presidency also urged people to prepare for the beloved rights activist's birthday later this month.
One out of every 13 children has a food allergy, but the affliction still regularly stumps doctors. As Kari Nadeau, director of the Stanford Alliance for Food Allergy Research, told Terry Gross in April on Fresh Air, researchers still don't understand what "flips the switch between a food allergen versus a food nutrient in children."
Since Sandwich Monday began, certain sandwiches have been our white whales: the Hippogriff Burger, a Reuben signed by J.D. Salinger, an Actual White Whale sandwich. Also, the mysterious St.Paul sandwich, native to St. Louis: It's an egg foo young patty, with lettuce, pickle and mayo, on white bread. But we finally caught one.
Miles: This is the same sandwich my Model U.N. group made the first time we all got high together.
Getting people on HIV drugs even before they get sick helps them live longer and slows the spread of virus, the World Health Organization said Sunday.
The number of new HIV infections has dropped by 20 percent worldwide since the push to expand HIV treatment worldwide began in 2002. The medications prevented about 4 million deaths from AIDS-related problems in developing countries, the WHO report says.
President Obama kicked off the final leg of his visit to Africa with a stop Monday in Tanzania, saying that he wants the U.S. relationship with the East African nation to be a collaborative one based on development and democracy.
"Tanzania is a close partner, as the president [Jakaya Kikwete] indicated, on almost all our major development initiatives, and this reflects our confidence in the people of Tanzania," Obama said in Dar es Salaam.
Obama and Kikwete were expected to discuss trade with business leaders who are traveling with the president.
It's been a graveyard for top seeds at Wimbledon: Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Maria Sharapova all ousted in the first week of the tournament. On Monday, it was defending champion Serena Williams' turn.
The record-breaking heat that has broiled the Southwest since Friday shows no signs of letting up. According to the National Weather Service, "triple-digit temperatures will be common across the Southwest" through at least Wednesday.
The temperature in Death Valley — where the temperature reached 134 degrees in 1913, the hottest temperature ever recorded on Earth — hit 128 degrees Sunday. That mark set a record high for the month of June in the U.S. The weather service says to expect similar heat today.
I'm Michel Martin, and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Now it's time for a visit to the barbershop, where the guys talk about what's in the news and what's on their minds. We're here in Aspen for the Aspen Ideas Festival, and we couldn't get into the shop, so we brought the shop to us.
We are also hearing your thoughts about education on Twitter at #NPRAspen. I just want to read one more of the tweets that we got, it says treat teacher time and energy as valuable, finite resources, design schools to use them efficiently. That comes from Roxanna Eldin (ph) in Miami. Please stay with us as we continue our special broadcast from the Aspen Ideas Festival, we're broadcasting from the Hotel Jerome. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
Egypt's military has given President Mohammed Morsi and anti-government protesters 48 hours to resolve their differences, failing which it has threatened to put forward "a roadmap" for the country.
It's not clear what that means or whether the generals will take over, which the statement put forth Monday indicated they had no interest in doing. But many Egyptians — for and against the president — are interpreting it to mean that Morsi will be forced to step down like Mubarak was in 2011.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is hearing from European allies who are upset with recent reports that the U.S. has spied on its friends. The European Union's top diplomat asked Kerry about the reports at a security conference Monday. Other officials say the case could derail talks on free trade.
Fugitive former NSA contractor Edward Snowden said in a letter released Monday that he was "unbowed" and thanked his "new friends" for his continued liberty.
The letter is the first time Snowden has broken his silence since he fled to Moscow eight days ago, and it comes on the same day Russian immigration officials say he applied for political asylum in the country.
In what is being called the deadliest U.S. wildfire in at least 30 years, an out-of-control blaze trapped and killed 19 firefighters Sunday in central Arizona. They had been forced to use temporary shelters in an attempt to survive.
All of those killed were part of the Granite Mountain Hotshots, an elite group based in Prescott, Ariz., that uses rigorous training to prepare for fighting wildfires. They are frequently deployed to the front lines of firefighting efforts against such blazes.