Scott Neuman

Scott Neuman works as a Digital News writer and editor, handling breaking news and feature stories for NPR.org. Occasionally he can be heard on-air reporting on stories for Newscasts and has done several radio features since he joined NPR in April 2007, as an editor on the Continuous News Desk.

Neuman brings to NPR years of experience as an editor and reporter at a variety of news organizations and based all over the world. For three years in Bangkok, Thailand, he served as an Associated Press Asia-Pacific desk editor. From 2000-2004, Neuman worked as a Hong Kong-based Asia editor and correspondent for The Wall Street Journal. He spent the previous two years as the international desk editor at the AP, while living in New York.

As the United Press International's New Delhi-based correspondent and bureau chief, Neuman covered South Asia from 1995-1997. He worked for two years before that as a freelance radio reporter in India, filing stories for NPR, PRI and the Canadian Broadcasting System. In 1991, Neuman was a reporter at NPR Member station WILL in Champaign-Urbana, IL. He started his career working for two years as the operations director and classical music host at NPR member station WNIU/WNIJ in DeKalb/Rockford, IL.

Reporting from Pakistan immediately following the September 11, 2001 attacks, Neuman was part of the team that earned the Pulitzer Prize awarded to The Wall Street Journal for overall coverage of 9/11 and the aftermath. Neuman shared in several awards won by AP for coverage of the December 2004 Asian tsunami.

A graduate from Purdue University, Neuman earned a Bachelor's degree in communications and electronic journalism.

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The Two-Way
11:10 am
Fri March 22, 2013

HBO: Programming Could Be Sold Directly Through Internet Providers

HBO chief Richard Plepler speaks in New York at a 2011 screening.
Larry Busacca Getty Images for Time Warner

Originally published on Fri March 22, 2013 12:21 pm

HBO CEO Richard Plepler is saying something a lot of the television network's fans have been waiting to hear — that its content could be offered to customers directly through their Internet service providers instead of a cable company.

Right now, HBO must be purchased through a cable provider. Plepler tells Reuters that HBO Go, an online streaming service launched by the network in 2010 (but still only available as an extra to your cable TV) might also be sold through ISPs.

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The Two-Way
9:39 am
Fri March 22, 2013

Congo Warlord Faces War Crimes After Turning Himself In

Originally published on Fri March 22, 2013 10:42 am

Bosco Ntaganda, a notorious warlord accused of crimes against humanity during Congo's civil war, is headed to an international court after turning himself in at the U.S. Embassy in Rwanda earlier this week.

NPR's Gregory Warner reports that the surrender of Ntaganda, nicknamed "The Terminator," came as a surprise. He's been wanted by the International Criminal Court since 2006 for crimes against humanity, including conscripting child soldiers, murder, rape and sexual slavery allegedly committed in 2002 and 2003 in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

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The Two-Way
7:19 am
Fri March 22, 2013

Moscow First Stop For New Chinese Leader

Chinese President Xi Jinping lays a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Moscow on Friday.
Kirill Kudryavtsev AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri March 22, 2013 10:35 am

Newly installed Chinese President Xi Jinping is following in his predecessor's footsteps by making Russia his first official trip abroad.

The visits by Xi and Hu Jintao before him (in 2003), both meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, reinforce how the Cold War rivals have grown closer as they seek to counter U.S. influence in Asia and Europe.

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The Two-Way
6:19 am
Fri March 22, 2013

Cyprus Gets Cold Shoulder From Russia On Bailout Aid

An employee of Cyprus Laiki (Popular) Bank reacts as he takes part in a protest outside Parliament on Friday in the capital, Nicosia.
Patrick Baz AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri March 22, 2013 11:47 am

As a deadline on Cyprus to come up with a financial bailout plan nears, a possible rescue from Russia looks to have fallen apart, leaving the island nation few options for staving off default.

Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said as far as Moscow was concerned "the talks have ended," but Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev left the door open, saying aid from Moscow would be contingent on Cyprus gaining European Union backing for its other money-raising ideas.

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The Two-Way
12:12 pm
Thu March 21, 2013

John Lennon's Bloodied Glasses Used In Plea On Gun Violence

Yoko Ono

Originally published on Thu March 21, 2013 8:36 pm

Yoko Ono, the widow of slain Beatle John Lennon, has weighed in on the issue of gun control by tweeting a photo of the blood-spattered eyeglasses worn by the legendary musician when he was fatally shot by a deranged fan more than three decades ago.

Her tweet, on the 44th anniversary of the couple's marriage:

"Over 1,057,000 people have been killed by guns in the USA since John Lennon was shot and killed on 8 Dec 1980."

In a series of follow-up tweets:

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The Two-Way
11:11 am
Thu March 21, 2013

Cosmos Might Be A Few Million Years Older Than Advertised

Planck's view of the Cosmic Microwave Background.
European Space Agency

Originally published on Thu March 21, 2013 12:08 pm

The universe is a bit older than we thought, according to a group of European scientists who say they've snapped the most detailed image to date of the afterglow of the Big Bang.

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The Two-Way
9:36 am
Thu March 21, 2013

Europe's Central Bank Issues Cyprus Ultimatum

People line up at an ATM in Nicosia to withdraw cash on Thursday.
Patrick Baz AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu March 21, 2013 12:42 pm

The clock is ticking on Cyprus' fiscal cliff.

The European Central Bank has given the Mediterranean country just four days to come up with its own bailout plan, or a eurozone lifeline to its struggling banks will be severed.

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The Two-Way
7:31 am
Thu March 21, 2013

CIA Drone Operations Could Be Handed To Pentagon

A Predator drone taxis in after a sortie over Iraq in 2004.
U.S. Air Force Getty Images

The responsibility for counterterrorism operations involving unmanned drones could soon begin shifting from the CIA to the Pentagon as part of Obama administration efforts to mollify critics who say the program lacks transparency, says NPR's Tom Gjelten.

A senior U.S. official tells NPR that while no decision has been made, the change is a "distinct possibility." The Daily Beast broke the story on Wednesday.

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The Two-Way
12:25 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

When It Comes To Cyberwarfare, North Korea Is No Newbie

Members of the Korea Internet Security Agency (KISA) check on cyberattacks Wednesday.
Jung Yeon-je AFP/Getty Images

Who or what caused a takedown of computer systems at banks and broadcasters in South Korea on Wednesday is still a matter of speculation, but suspicion immediately and unsurprisingly fell on Seoul's archenemy to the north.

If true, it wouldn't be the first time that North Korea, often regarded as technologically backward, has successfully wielded the computer as weapon.

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The Two-Way
8:44 am
Wed March 20, 2013

Chinese Solar Panel Maker Suntech Goes Bankrupt

Workers at a Suntech plant in Wuxi last month.
Peter Parks AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 20, 2013 12:25 pm

The future doesn't look so bright for China-based Suntech, one of the world's largest makers of solar panels: On Wednesday, it was forced into bankruptcy after missing a $541 million payment to bondholders.

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The Two-Way
6:40 am
Wed March 20, 2013

South Korea Eyes Pyongyang After Possible Cyber Attack

Members of the Korea Internet Security Agency check on cyberattacks at a briefing room Wednesday.
Jung Yeon-Je AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 20, 2013 8:40 am

Computer networks at South Korea's three main broadcasters and major banks crashed simultaneously Wednesday, leading to speculation that it was caused by a North Korean cyberattack.

According to South Korea's Yonhap news agency:

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The Two-Way
6:14 am
Wed March 20, 2013

Cyprus Scrambles For 'Plan B' Bailout

German Chancellor Angela Merkel gestures as she leaves a parliamentary session on Wednesday in Berlin.
Johannes Eisele AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 20, 2013 6:48 am

Cypriot politicians are busy trying to come up with an alternative plan to raise the cash needed to stave off a collapse of its banking sector after they unanimously rejected an international bailout package that would have imposed a levy on the nation's savings accounts.

Here's a quick look at some of Wednesday's developments:

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The Two-Way
11:33 am
Tue March 19, 2013

Flush With Oil, Abu Dhabi Opens World's Largest Solar Plant

Rows of parabolic mirrors at the Shams 1 plant in Abu Dhabi.
Marwan Naamani AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 19, 2013 12:34 pm

Abu Dhabi, the most oil-rich of the United Arab Emirates, is now home to the world's single-largest concentrated solar power plant.

The 100-megawatt Shams 1 plant cost an estimated $750 million and is expected to provide electricity to 20,000 homes, according to the BBC.

Why, you might ask?

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The Two-Way
6:57 am
Tue March 19, 2013

Cyprus Lawmakers Reject Unpopular Bailout Plan

A Cypriot woman holds a sign during a protest against an EU bailout deal outside the Parliament in Nicosia on Monday.
Patrick Baz AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 19, 2013 1:55 pm

Update at 2:25 p.m. ET: Deal Turned Down:

Cyprus lawmakers have rejected the bank tax bill, with zero votes in favor, 36 against and 19 abstentions, after a two-hour debate, The Associated Press and Reuters news agencies report. The bill's rejection throws into doubt the $13 billion international bailout package needed to forestall a default.

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The Two-Way
11:55 am
Mon March 18, 2013

Indonesian Zoo Breeds Rare Komodo Dragons

Four of seven baby Komodos born at the Surabaya Zoo in Indonesia last week.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 12:26 pm

A zoo in Indonesia is now home to seven bouncing baby Komodo dragons. Before you recoil in disgust, have a look at this video from the BBC — "cute" may not be the operative word, but the hatchlings do exude a certain endearing quality.

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The Two-Way
9:50 am
Mon March 18, 2013

Hillary Clinton Announces Her Support Of Gay Marriage

Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 10:57 am

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has announced that she supports same-sex marriage, saying gays and lesbians are "full and equal citizens and deserve the rights of citizenship."

"That includes marriage," Clinton says in an online video released Monday by the gay rights advocacy group Human Rights Campaign. Clinton adds that she backs gay marriage both "personally and as a matter of policy and law."

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The Two-Way
8:11 am
Mon March 18, 2013

China Edges Out U.K. As World's Fifth-Largest Arms Supplier

More than 200 companies attended an International Defense Exhibition in Karachi, Pakistan, in November, most from the U.S., China and Europe.
Asif Hassan AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 8:46 am

The U.S. still leads the world in one area — arms sales. But even there, China is closing the gap.

Made-in-China weapons have moved into the No. 5 slot, displacing U.K.-manufactured arms, but the Asian giant still trails far behind the U.S. and Russia, whose weapons account for 30 percent and 26 percent of the market, respectively, according to a new report released by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute on Monday.

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The Two-Way
7:25 am
Mon March 18, 2013

Cyprus Bailout To Hit Depositors, Sends Shivers Through Markets

Take the money and run: An ATM in the Cypriot capital Nicosia on Sunday.
Hasan Mroue AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon March 18, 2013 4:08 pm

A vote in Cyprus on whether to approve a controversial bailout plan has been postponed after the prospect of the deal caused bank customers to rush to withdraw their savings and drew the ire of overseas depositors.

As NPR's Krishnadev Calamur wrote in a post over the weekend: "The money [is] needed because Cyprus' banks lost 4.5 billion euros on their Greek bond holdings, which were written down last year after Greece's second bailout."

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The Two-Way
11:06 am
Fri March 15, 2013

A Peek Into Exoplanet's Atmosphere Offers Clues To How It Was Formed

The 10-meter Keck II (right), a twin of the world's largest optical telescope, was used to study the atmosphere of HR 8799c.
Richard Wainscoat AP

Originally published on Fri March 15, 2013 1:06 pm

Scientists peering into the atmosphere of a giant planet 130 light years away believe their findings bolster one theory of how solar systems form.

The planet, orbiting the star HR 8799, is part of a solar system containing at least three other "super-Jupiters" weighing in at between five and 10 times the mass of our own Jupiter. The nearby system features a brash, young 30-million-year-old star (by contrast, our Sun is in midlife at about 4.5 billion years old).

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The Two-Way
8:11 am
Fri March 15, 2013

New Pope Praises Benedict, Asks Cardinals To Evangelize

Pope Francis as he visits the papal residence at the Vatican on Thursday.
Vatican AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri March 15, 2013 10:43 am

Pope Francis, in his first audience with the cardinals since becoming head of the world's 1.2 billion Roman Catholics, praised his predecessor, Benedict XVI, and urged the evangelization of the church's message.

Francis said of Benedict, who served as pontiff for eight years before his historic resignation last month, that he "lit a flame in the depths of our hearts that will continue to burn because it is fueled by his prayers."

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The Two-Way
6:37 am
Fri March 15, 2013

More Problems Aboard Carnival Cruise Ships

The Carnival Dream docked in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, in December 2010.
Andy Newman AP

Originally published on Fri March 15, 2013 11:53 am

For the past month, management at Carnival Cruise Lines has been in a nearly constant state of damage control.

In the past week alone, three of the cruise line's giant floating playgrounds have experienced embarrassing malfunctions that have at least inconvenienced, if not angered, many passengers.

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The Two-Way
11:09 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Jesuits Have Played Central Role In History Of The Church

Jesuit Mission in Santa Catalina in Cordoba in Argentina.
Luis Davilla Getty Images

Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio's ascendency to Pope Francis has suddenly placed his Jesuit order in the spotlight.

Francis' papacy is the first for a member of the Society of Jesus, which was founded in 1540 by the Spaniard St. Ignatius of Loyola and has grown to become the single-largest Catholic order, playing a central and occasionally controversial role within the church.

Today, some 20,000 Jesuits, about three-quarters of them priests, work in more than 100 countries and are best known for the schools and institutions of higher learning they administer.

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The Two-Way
10:33 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Monarch Butterfy Population Falls To Record Low, Mexican Scientists Say

Monarch butterflies in December 2008 at the Sierra del Chincua sanctuary in Angangueo, in the Mexican state of Michoacan.
Mario Vazquez AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu March 14, 2013 12:47 pm

Monarch butterflies that once covered 50 square acres of forest during their summer layover in central Mexico now occupy fewer than 3 acres, according to the latest census.

The numbers of the orange-and-black butterflies have crashed in the two decades since scientists began making a rough count of them, according to Mexico's National Commission of Natural Protected Areas.

At a news conference Wednesday, the commission said the count was down 59 percent from December 2011 levels, when the insects filled 7.14 acres of fir trees in central Mexico.

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Asia
8:18 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Why North Korea Makes Everyone Nervous ... Except Dennis Rodman

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un rides on a boat near the sea border with South Korea in this March 11 photo released by the Korean Central News Agency. Bellicose rhetoric from North Korea has put other countries in the region on edge.
KCNA AP

Originally published on Thu March 14, 2013 11:58 am

North Korea's nuclear chest-beating has achieved the seemingly impossible by aligning the concerns of South Korea, Japan and even China, three Asian neighbors that have a long history of strained ties.

While all those countries have separate aims and interests, they share with the United States a mutual interest in containing the North Korean regime, restraining its rhetoric and keeping Pyongyang's nuclear option in a box, says Richard Bush III, the director of the Center for Northeast Asian Policy Studies at the Brookings Institution.

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The Two-Way
2:13 pm
Wed March 13, 2013

Who Is Pope Francis I?

Argentine Archbishop Jorge Bergoglio during a mass for Ash Wednesday, opening Lent on February 13, 2013 at the Metropolitan Cathedral in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Juan Mabromata AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 13, 2013 7:41 pm

The new pope, 76-year-old Jorge Bergoglio, the archbishop of Buenos Aires, is the first pontiff from Latin America and the first Jesuit, but he appears to hold views very much in line with his predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI.

Bergoglio has chosen the papal name Francis, becoming the 266th to hold the title of spiritual leader of the Catholic Church.

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The Two-Way
6:46 am
Tue March 12, 2013

Senate Committee Takes Up Expanded Gun Measures

Gun show in Chantilly, Va., last December.
AFP AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 12, 2013 11:14 am

Update at 11:15 a.m. ET: Senate Passes Measure:

The Associated Press reports that the committee cast a 10-8 party-line vote, with all Republicans opposed, on the measure to expand a requirement of background checks for gun sales between private parties.

The Associated Press reports:

"The bill's sponsor, New York Democrat Sen. Charles Schumer, said the measure will reduce gun crimes, and said he hopes he can strike a compromise on the measure with Republicans, which would enhance the measure's chances of passing in the full Senate.

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The Two-Way
10:21 am
Mon March 11, 2013

International Convention Moves To Limit Shark 'Finning' Trade

Indonesian fishermen unload their catch, including sharks and baby sharks, in Lampulo fish market in Banda Aceh last week.
AFP AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon March 11, 2013 12:33 pm

Delegates to an international species conservation conference in Bangkok, Thailand, this week have agreed to limit the trade of shark fins and meat.

NPR's Christopher Joyce reports that government representatives to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, or CITES, have agreed to put the porbeagle, oceanic whitetip, three kinds of hammerhead shark and two kinds of manta ray on its Appendix II list, which places restrictions on fishing but still allows limited trade.

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The Two-Way
8:01 am
Mon March 11, 2013

Pakistan Begins Construction of Pipeline Link With Iran

Iranians work on a section of the pipeline on Monday.
Atta Kenare AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon March 11, 2013 11:57 am

Iran and Pakistan are moving closer to completion of a nearly 1,000-mile natural gas pipeline linking the two countries, despite U.S. objections that it could become a source of hard currency for Tehran in defiance of international sanctions.

Monday marks the beginning of construction on Pakistan's part of the pipeline, which will consist of a 485-mile run. Iran has already completed most of its 760 miles of the link, which will stretch from Assaluyeh along Iran's Persian Gulf coast to Nawabshah in Pakistan's Sindh province.

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The Two-Way
6:24 am
Mon March 11, 2013

Thousands of Dead Pigs Clog Shanghai's Main Water Source

Dead pigs collected by sanitation workers from Shanghai's main waterway on Monday.
Peter Parks AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon March 11, 2013 11:52 am

Authorities have pulled more than 2,800 dead pigs out of Shanghai's main source of tap water — the Huangpu River. And they're still counting, according to reports on Monday.

The discovery has raised fears of drinking water contamination in China's most populous city, although state media reports that officials have run tests and determined that so far there's nothing to fear.

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Asia
3:39 am
Sat March 9, 2013

How Credible Are North Korea's Threats?

North Korea's rhetoric has been particularly aggressive recently, but analysts say it remains difficult to gauge the country's intentions and its military capabilities.
Pedro Ugarte AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed March 13, 2013 6:18 am

When it comes to talking a big game, no one does it better than the North Koreans.

Just this week, Pyongyang vowed to turn Seoul, the capital of archrival South Korea, into a "sea of fire," promised to launch a "pre-emptive strike on the headquarters of the aggressors" (read: the United States) and called on its army to "annihilate the enemy."

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