The U.S. and Russia are also supposed to be cooperating on Iran. Russia's played an important role in attempting to negotiate restrictions on Iran's nuclear program. But Russia's deputy foreign minister recently suggested that Moscow might change it's position on those talks because of the disagreement over Crimea and Ukraine. NPR's Peter Kenyon joins us from Istanbul. Peter, thanks for being with us.
What will Mr. Putin do next? A lot of people want to know but the question is especially urgent and personal for those living in a country that shares a border with Ukraine and that have a long and bitter history of being invaded, occupied and dominated: Poland. We're joined now by Konstanty Gebert. He's a columnist for Gazeta Wyborcza, one of the leading newspapers in Poland. He joins us from his home in Warsaw. Mr. Gebert, thanks very much for being with us.
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. Russian forces have taken a major air force base in the Crimea. Belbek airbase was one of the few military facilities in the Crimean Peninsula that was still controlled by Ukraine after the annexation of the peninsula by Russian forces. NPR's Gregory Warner is in Crimea's capital of Simferopol. Gregory, thanks for being with us.
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. Time for sports.
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SIMON: And the upsets keep coming in the NCAA tournament. Do they call it March Madness because Coach K at Duke, probably a little mad at the way his Blue Devils played. ESPN.com's Howard Bryant joins us. Howard, thanks so much for being with us.
Springtime is just about to bloom. So how do you attract a few good-looking birds? To the gardener balcony, that is. We're joined now by Malcie Smith, the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds. He joins us from the studios of the BBC in the Shetland Islands of Scotland. Thanks very much for being with us.
MALCIE SMITH: Hi, Scott. You're welcome.
SIMON: What kind of food do you put out this time of year?
SMITH: Just a wide range of nuts and seeds would be quite good. Sunflower seeds particularly are very good.
Originally published on Sat March 22, 2014 4:05 pm
Update at 11:15 a.m. ET. "The Object Was Not Sighted" Today Australian Authorities Say:
Aircraft searching the Indian Ocean on Saturday for any sign of a Malaysia Airlines jet that's been missing for two weeks did not spot the large object seen in a newly analyzed satellite image, Australia's Maritime Safety Authority reports.
There are budget earmarks from powerful congressmen, earmarks from not-so-powerful congressmen and, as it turns out for an old mining town in Pennsylvania's Appalachians, there's even an earmark from a long-dead congressman.
In the 1960s and 70s, powerful Democrat Daniel Flood worked to find a federal government buyer for the anthracite coal mined in his district. He succeeded: Some five decades later, the heat coming off the radiators at the U.S. military's installation at Kaiserslautern, Germany, is still generated by burning Pennsylvania anthracite.
Originally published on Sat March 22, 2014 11:19 am
Two weeks ago this animal was frozen solid. If you found one in the woods, packed in the topsoil, hiding under a leaf, you could pull it from the ground and it would feel like an ashtray. You could bang it (lightly) on a table — it would go, "Konk!" like a rock. It doesn't seem to be breathing. It reacts to nothing. It's so dead. Or seems to be. And then, this (I want to call it a miracle) happens ...
Originally published on Fri March 21, 2014 7:26 pm
Rather than letting people keep their old health plans that don't comply with the new requirements of the Affordable Care Act, the head of the group that represents the nation's health insurance companies is floating an alternative: weakening the requirements.
In what has likely come as a rude shock to some Russians, Visa and MasterCard have stopped processing payments at several of the country's banks as part of U.S. sanctions aimed at punishing Moscow's annexation of Crimea.
The BBC reports that four banks have been affected, "all of which have links to Russians blacklisted by the U.S."
E-cigarettes aren't yet federally regulated as tobacco products, but many cities and some states are already moving to include the devices in their smoking bans. Such bans are raising a debate about whether e-cigarettes should be permitted to be used in smoke-free workplaces.
Gary Nolan was a two-pack-a-day cigarette smoker until he switched to e-cigs. Now Nolan, who hosts a libertarian talk show based in Columbia, Mo., freely puffs — or vapes, as it's come to be called — at work.