5:07am

Sun June 9, 2013
Around the Nation

Lessons From Cicadas: A New Jersey Community's Experience

Originally published on Sun June 9, 2013 12:58 pm

A member of Brood II alights on a New Jersey shrub.
Fred Mogul NPR

Ten-year-old Markus Gokan has mixed feelings about the cicadas scattered around the yards and sidewalks of Summit, N.J.

"There's tons of them just squashed, just these flat, pancake cicadas that don't look very appetizing," Gokan says.

Yet he's not afraid to touch and handle un-squashed cicadas — to serve a higher purpose.

"I did pick up a few, and I threw them at some people I don't like," he explains.

They screamed, he says, so for him his mission was successful.

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5:05am

Sun June 9, 2013
Parallels

'Arab Idol' Finalist Delivers Sweet Music, Palestinian Pride

Originally published on Sun June 16, 2013 8:18 am

Palestinian performer Mohammad Assaf is a finalist on Arab Idol, which is filmed in the Lebanese city of Jounieh north of the capital Beirut.
Anwar Amro AFP/Getty Images

In Palestinian territory, Mohammad Assaf's face is easy to find. Big posters of the dark-haired 23-year-old dreamboat smile at you along boulevards in Ramallah. And in Gaza, a giant banner of Assaf billows outside his family home.

Assaf's dad, Jabar Assaf, is bursting with pride.

"I'm very, very, very proud of my son. Besides singing so well, he is very polite, and he is studying at the university," Jabar Assaf says. "He's no street kid. I'm very proud."

So are many other Palestinians — including 16-year-old Abeer Ali.

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5:05am

Sun June 9, 2013
Around the Nation

A Year Later, Few Residents Have Rebuilt After Colorado Fire

Originally published on Sun June 9, 2013 12:58 pm

The High Park wildfire swept through the rural area northwest of Fort Colins, Colo., last June, leaving one person dead.
Ed Andrieski AP

Sunday marks the one-year anniversary of the High Park fire northwest of Fort Collins, Colo. The blaze consumed 259 homes in the rural area, but so far only 10 households have finished rebuilding a year later.

As Gary and Martha Lemert sort through photographs from the High Park fire, it takes just one before and after shot to convey the complete devastation of their 10-acre property.

All they had left after the fire was a green roof that looked like it had been melted on top of gray rubble. All told, the Lemerts lost eight buildings, including a garage and a guest house.

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7:36pm

Sat June 8, 2013
The Two-Way

Construction Worker In Custody For Phila. Building Collapse

Sean Benschop, 42, is facing charges in connection with a fatal building collapse in Philadelphia on Wednesday.
Philadelphia Police Department

A construction worker has turned himself in to police in connection with Wednesday's building collapse in Philadelphia. The incident killed six people and wounded more than a dozen.

"Sean Benschop was demolishing a four-story building next to a Salvation Army thrift store, when part of the structure collapsed onto the store," WHYY's Elizabeth Fiedler tells our Newscast Desk.

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6:03pm

Sat June 8, 2013
Science

Aquarium Sculptors Create Coral For Conservation Awareness

Originally published on Sat June 8, 2013 10:42 pm

Projected image of the complete Blacktip Reef exhibit.
Courtesy of the National Aquarium

Most aquarium visitors are there to see sharks, sea turtles, fish and other marine life. But at the National Aquarium in Baltimore, there's another star attraction: Coral.

The Aquarium's Blacktip Reef exhibit will open later this summer, and give visitors a look at an Indo-Pacific coral reef. But curators can't just carve a chunk out of a wild reef to put in the vast tank, that would destroy the very ecosystem for which they hope to raise conservation awareness. And corals take hundreds of years to develop into a reef, so the aquarium can't grow its own in-house.

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5:40pm

Sat June 8, 2013
Movies I've Seen A Million Times

The Movie Nick Offerman Has 'Seen A Million Times'

Originally published on Sun June 9, 2013 2:38 pm

Actors John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara in John Ford's The Quiet Man.
Getty Images Getty Images

The weekends on All Things Considered series Movies I've Seen A Million Times features filmmakers, actors, writers and directors talking about the movies that they never get tired of watching.

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5:19pm

Sat June 8, 2013
NPR Story

Signs Point To Destructive Wildfire Season Ahead

Originally published on Sat June 8, 2013 6:03 pm

Transcript

TESS VIGELAND, HOST:

Authorities are still searching for a motive in yesterday's shooting rampage in Santa Monica, California. Santa Monica Police Chief Jacqueline Seabrooks said the alleged shooter had weapons with the capacity to fire 1,300 rounds of ammunition.

Meanwhile, north of Los Angeles, fire officials say the so-called powerhouse fire in the Angeles National Forest is 90 percent contained. Twenty-four homes were destroyed, and state officials say the blaze cost some $16 million to knock down.

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5:19pm

Sat June 8, 2013
NPR Story

Week In News: Spying Suspicions Come To Light

Originally published on Sat June 8, 2013 6:03 pm

Revelations this week that the National Security Agency has been running an extensive domestic surveillance program involving companies like Google, Facebook and Apple has caused many Americans to ask what's left of their privacy. Guest host Tess Vigeland speaks with James Fallows, national correspondent with The Atlantic.

5:19pm

Sat June 8, 2013
Law

'Not Fighting For Just Sarah': Rating Transplant Priorities

Originally published on Sun June 9, 2013 12:10 pm

Sarah Murnaghan, center, on May 30 as she and her parents marked the 100th day of her stay in Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Her father, Fran, is at left. Her mother, Janet, is at right.
Murnaghan family AP

Sarah Murnaghan's spirit can be summed up by her personalized Monopoly character: a three-legged silver pig that can stand on its own.

"Everybody sort of expects her to decline here, and she does, but she fights back every time," says her mother, Janet.

Sarah, who has cystic fibrosis, has a reason to keep fighting: She's another step closer to getting a lung transplant. Sarah has been waiting for a year and a half, and doctors say she could die soon without a transplant.

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5:19pm

Sat June 8, 2013
The Two-Way

DNI Calls Reporting On Government Surveillance 'Reckless'

Originally published on Sat June 8, 2013 9:08 pm

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper testifying before the Senate Armed Services Committee in April.
Win McNamee Getty Images

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper on Saturday said media reporting this week about government surveillance activities amounted to "reckless disclosures" that could hand terrorists a playbook to foil detection.

He said the surveillance measures are legal and said the reporting lacked full context:

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