Originally published on Tue July 16, 2013 10:01 am
It's not exactly the birth the whole world is waiting for. But something pretty spectacular — and surprising — happened at Zoo Atlanta last night: Lun Lun, a 15-year-old giant panda, gave birth to twins.
As the zoo reports, "the cubs are the first giant pandas to be born in the U.S. in 2013 and the first twins to be born in the U.S. since 1987."
Former CIA Director Gen. David Petraeus has decided to take a huge pay cut. The former commander of the allied forces in Iraq and Afghanistan will now make $1 to teach a course at City University of New York's honors college.
Edward Snowden, the former NSA contractor who leaked a cache of classified documents about U.S. surveillance programs, officially filed for temporary asylum in Russia on Tuesday, a human rights lawyer and WikiLeaks say.
Since 1990, Zack Hample has been snagging baseballs from the stands — nearly 7,000 at 50 different Major League stadiums. This past weekend in Massachusetts, a ball dropped from a helicopter 1,200 feet in the air. From that height, a very fast ball, so Hample was decked out in catchers gear.
The singer was stuck on Saturday when his bike suffered a flat tire. But he made it to the show in Hershey, Pa., on time when a couple who were headed to the concert recognized the cellphone-less star. They were rewarded with great seats, dinner backstage and a good story.
After what had been a week of calm, violence returned to the streets of Cairo late Monday into early Tuesday.
NPR's Leila Fadel reports that Egypt's health ministry said seven people were killed and more than 200 were injured as supporters of ousted President Mohammed Morsi clashed with police. From Cairo, Leila filed this report for our Newscast unit:
It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.
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And I'm David Greene. Good morning.
One of the most brutal and vicious cartel leaders in Mexico has been arrested. Early yesterday morning, Mexican marines, caught the leader of the notorious Zeta gang organization. The country has killed or captured dozens of kingpins in recent years without managing to bring an end to the high murder rates in many areas.
The best players in major league baseball take the field tonight in New York. Fans voted for their favorites in the American and National Leagues. The All-Star game is an exhibition - or mostly an exhibition - and there is a real prize. The winner gets home-field advantage during the World Series. The game also offers a chance to check on how teams are doing midway through the season.
RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:
Here to talk all things baseball is NPR's Mike Pesca. Good morning.
Companies that make medical equipment operate largely on a supply-and-demand model. Hospitals buy their multimillion- dollar machines, use them for a few years, and then go shopping again. In some cases, manufacturers have designed entire medical systems within a hospital.
Now, in what appears to be a first-of-its-kind partnership in the United States, a tech giant - Royal Philips - and a hospital system in Georgia are sharing financial risk and reward. Jim Burress reports from WABE in Atlanta.
There's been a frenzy of excitement since last year when Disney bought Lucasfilm, creator of the Star Wars franchise, and announced it would make more Star Wars movies. Fans are eagerly awaiting hints of what might happen next in the story, and one way the franchise keeps fans interested is through a pantheon of Star Wars books, the latest of which is Troy Denning's Star Wars: Crucible.
Tyrannosaurus rex is perhaps one of the most famous animals to have ever roamed the Earth. This huge, fierce meat-eater has graced Hollywood films as the perpetual villain, and it has played a notorious role in the science community that studies it, too.
The World Health Organization has issued revised guidelines saying that people with HIV should be put on antiviral drugs far earlier than was previously recommended. The hope is that most patients would get started on treatment before they begin to get extremely sick.
It's a move that could have huge implications for African nations where millions of people are infected with HIV. In South Africa roughly 5.5 million people are living with HIV — more than any other country in the world. South Africa also has more people in treatment than anywhere else.
It's the fourth most popular sport in the United States and more than 30 million people play it in the United States and Canada. Around 13 percent of Americans played it in 2012. There are hundreds of variations across multiple sports, but football is by far the most popular.
The 33-year-old frontman of Robert Randolph & The Family Band has strong roots in gospel music. As a kid, he grew up attending the House of God church in Orange, N.J. That's where he first played the "sacred steel" guitar, a driving force behind the band's soulful new album, Lickety Split.
In the 1920s, African-American Pentecostal churches began using the steel guitar in place of an organ. From there, it became an instrument that helped usher in a new gospel style.
Sen. Harry Reid may sound a tad hypocritical to some for saying he now supports changing Senate rules in order to end the one that says 60 senators must approve before presidential nominations can get up or down votes. This comes only several years after he indicated he opposed changing the requirement to a simple 51-vote majority.
Attorney General Eric Holder looked out over a sea of women in red on Monday and invoked his wife, a member of the influential African-American sorority Delta Sigma Theta. Holder was addressing the sorority's national convention in its centennial year.
It's a detective story — about a detective story. The book in question is The Cuckoo's Calling, a debut novel released earlier this year by a former British military man named Robert Galbraith.
The reviews were excellent — especially for a first novel. There was just one hitch: The Cuckoo's Calling wasn't a debut at all. Nor was it by Robert Galbraith. As The Sunday Times revealed this weekend, Galbraith is a pseudonym for one of the best-known writers working today: Harry Potter creator J.K. Rowling.
Chances are you have had contact with Scholastic Publishing at some point in your life: You might have read their magazines in school, or bought a book at one of their book fairs, or perhaps you've read Harry Potter or The Hunger Games? From its humble beginning as publisher of a magazine for high schoolers, Scholastic has become a $2 billion business and one of the biggest children's book publishers in the world.
George Zimmerman's defense team didn't invoke Florida's "stand your ground" defense in winning his acquittal of murder in last year's shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.
But the specter of the 2005 law loomed, inescapably, over the proceedings.
It was inevitable that the racially fraught trial would again catapult Florida's law — which extends protections for the use of deadly force far beyond the traditional bounds of one's home — as well as those in 21-plus states with similar self-defense measures into the nation's consciousness.
Tucked between Russia and Turkey, the Republic of Georgia is renowned for great food: cheese dishes, pickles, breads and stews. This is a cuisine that you should not miss.
And on summer evenings in the capital, Tbilisi, the air is fragrant with the smells of one of Georgian cookery's highlights: grilled meat, or shashlik.
You can find good shashlik at restaurants with white tablecloths, but the very best in all Tbilisi is said to be at a roadside stop called Mtsvadi Tsalamze. It's an unassuming place with rows of wooden picnic tables in an open yard.
They have assembled in front of the hospital by the dozens: church groups, families, even a motorcycle club, their engines revving at full throttle. Mothers encouraged their shy children to squeeze through the crowd and place a bouquet of flowers at the base of a makeshift shrine. A member of the crowd conducted an impromptu choir, inviting others to join in and sing a hymn together.
For more than a month now, throngs of well-wishers have gathered outside the Mediclinic Heart Hospital in Pretoria, South Africa, praying for the health of former President Nelson Mandela.