Morning Edition

Weekdays at 6am
Steve Inskeep and Renee Montagne

Produced by NPR in Washington, D.C., Morning Edition draws on reporting from correspondents based in 13 countries around the world, and producers and reporters in 19 locations in the U.S. Their reporting is supplemented by NPR member station reporters across the country and a strong corps of independent producers and reporters in the public radio system.

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4:59am

Wed August 1, 2012
Africa

As Islamists Gain, Mali's Tradition Under Threat

Originally published on Thu August 2, 2012 7:31 am

A soldier wears a button bearing the image of coup leader Capt. Amadou Haya Sanogo with the words 'President, CNRDRE,' the French acronym of the ruling junta, as he stands guard at junta headquarters in Kati, outside Bamako, Mali.
Rebecca Blackwell AP

Hard-line Islamists in northern Mali stoned a reportedly unmarried couple to death for adultery last Sunday. Analysts worry this is growing evidence of the rebel fighters' avowed intention to impose strict Islamic law in the vast territory under their control.

Another version of the story put about by an al-Qaida-linked militant group is that the couple was married but engaging in extramarital affairs.

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4:56am

Wed August 1, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Under Health Law, 'No-Cost' Birth Control Starts Today

Originally published on Thu August 2, 2012 7:31 am

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius joins Democratic senators at a news conference on Capitol Hill on Tuesday to announce new preventive health coverage for women that takes effect Wednesday.
Win McNamee Getty Images

Beginning today, most new and renewing health insurance plans must begin offering a broad array of women's preventive health services, most notably coverage of birth control, at no upfront cost.

But even as they take effect, the new rules remain the subject of legal challenges.

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4:38am

Wed August 1, 2012
Remembrances

Gore Vidal, American Writer And Cultural Critic, Dies

Originally published on Thu August 2, 2012 7:31 am

Author Gore Vidal in 1986. Vidal, whose prolific writing career spanned six decades, died Tuesday at age 86.
AP

Gore Vidal came from a generation of novelists whose fiction gave them a political platform. Norman Mailer ran for mayor of New York City; Kurt Vonnegut became an anti-war spokesman. And Vidal was an all-around critic. His novels sometimes infuriated readers with unflattering portraits of American history.

He also wrote essays and screenplays, and his play The Best Man currently has a revival on Broadway.

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12:43am

Wed August 1, 2012
Poetry Games

'Once More,' Passing The Torch To One And All

Originally published on Mon August 13, 2012 10:14 am

Ron Tanovitz

Representing Europe in NPR's Poetry Games is Slovenian poet Ales Steger. Steger's first work translated into English, The Book of Things, won last year's Best Translated Book Award for Poetry. The translator was poet Brian Henry, who also translated Steger's Olympic poem, "Once More."

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8:04am

Tue July 31, 2012
Strange News

Police Use Their Heads To Hem In Runaway Hamster

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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7:56am

Tue July 31, 2012
Strange News

Olympic Volunteers Cash In On Ceremony Souvenirs

The Telegraph reports that props from the Olympics opening ceremony are appearing on eBay — everything from an "Industrial Revolution" costume, to pieces of confetti that erupted as Great Britain's team entered the stadium. Some of the performers are calling it "crass." But a seller pointed out it is in the spirit of the games — because it could "help me achieve my own ambitions."

5:49am

Tue July 31, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Medical Technician Might Have Exposed Hundreds To Hepatitis C

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 3:24 pm

After five years of crisscrossing the country as a traveling medical technician, David Kwiatkowski landed at New Hampshire's Exeter Hospital in the spring of 2011. A full-time job in the hospital's cardiac unit soon followed.

It was at Exeter that federal prosecutors say the 33-year-old began to divert syringes of the drug Fentanyl. They say Kwiatkowski, who was arrested July 19, would inject himself with the painkiller, and then refill syringes with a saline solution. He is hepatitis C-positive, meaning those tainted needles might have spread the liver-damaging virus.

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5:07am

Tue July 31, 2012
Dead Stop

Rediscovered Headstones Hold Clues To Earthquake

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 8:55 am

The Gilliam Cemetery, near Sebastopol, Calif., received its first grave in 1852. Many of its older headstones have disappeared over the years.
Cindy Carpien NPR

The Gilliam Cemetery, which lies 60 miles north of San Francisco, appears to be gaining residents lately. But it's not only because new people have been interred there. Instead, headstones that wound up being buried a century ago have been found and resurrected.

The cemetery's story begins in 1850, when a wagon train of pioneers left Missouri and settled near what is now Sebastopol, Calif. The Gilliam Cemetery was started in 1852, when Polly Gilliam Sullivan and her husband, Isaac, needed a place to bury their stillborn son.

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5:07am

Tue July 31, 2012
Crisis In The Housing Market

Is Housing Recovery Real? Not Everyone Is Convinced

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 5:08 pm

A construction worker carries lumber while working on new homes in San Mateo, Calif., in March. Homebuilding is at its highest level in nearly four years.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Housing, the sector that led us into the recession, now looks to be one of the brighter spots in the economy. Homebuilding is at its highest level in nearly four years. More homes are selling, and at higher prices.

The question, of course, is whether this is a solid enough foundation to sustain a full housing recovery.

Lawrence Yun, the chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, says housing woes are largely behind us.

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5:06am

Tue July 31, 2012
Politics

Romney Goes After Obama On Alleged Leaking Of Secrets

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 8:25 am

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney meets with members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars after his speech at the VFW National Convention in Reno, Nev., on July 24.
Rich Pedroncelli AP

The latest national security issue to figure in the presidential campaign has little to do with Iran, Afghanistan or other foreign policy challenges. Mitt Romney is instead focusing on what he and other Republicans allege is the Obama administration's record of leaking classified information for political purposes.

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6:25pm

Mon July 30, 2012
Poetry Games

'Olimpicamente': In Praise Of Feistiness And Big Feet

Originally published on Mon August 13, 2012 10:14 am

Ron Tanovitz

A poet and editor of BOMB magazine living in Brooklyn, Monica de la Torre was born in Mexico City. Her poem "Olimpicamente" is told in the voice of the Mexican taekwondo champion Maria del Rosario Espinoza, who was born in the village of La Brecha, in the state of Sinaloa, where her father was a fisherman. Though of limited means, her parents supported her passion for taekwondo, and in 2008 Espinoza fought her way to a gold medal in the Beijing Olympics. "I am," says the poet, "dumbfounded and positively moved by Maria del Rosario's improbable story."

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7:35am

Mon July 30, 2012
Europe

Traffic In London Not So Jammed

Originally published on Mon July 30, 2012 8:24 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Linda Wertheimer. Time now for traffic on the 30. London's moving well despite fears the games would clog the city. The M1 highway is busy, but somewhere between normal and nice. And the AP reports inside London no problems at all. The commute to the Houses of Parliament five minutes shorter than normal and bike riders are loving roads cleared of cars for the Olympic races. Wish we were there. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.

7:35am

Mon July 30, 2012
Strange News

Japan Plucks Sweden's Ukelele World Record

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 12:25 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.

Japan has edged out Sweden for a world record. No, not the Olympics but the Guinness Record for largest ukulele ensemble. More than 2,000 people in Yokohama went to the street to strum their tiny Hawaiian instruments. Trying to top the record is becoming a sport in its own right. Earlier this month in Cairns, Australia, people took on the Swedish record, but they missed the mark by a 150 strummers.

It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.

7:05am

Mon July 30, 2012
London 2012: The Summer Olympics

Olympic Swimming Records Smashed, Hopes Dashed

Originally published on Mon July 30, 2012 5:16 pm

American Dana Vollmer celebrates after her gold medal win Sunday in the women's 100-meter butterfly swimming final at the Aquatics Centre in the Olympic Park.
Matt Slocum AP

The opening weekend of the Summer Olympics was marked by highs and lows, of course, and the swimming pool had its share of both. World records, a stunning loss and a medal for the home team — and that was all in just one afternoon.

Before American Dana Vollmer answers how a 55.98-second 100-meter butterfly — the fastest time ever, and worth a gold medal — feels, consider this: Vollmer was diagnosed as a teenager with two life-threatening heart conditions that prompted her mom to carry a defibrillator to Dana's races.

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5:04am

Mon July 30, 2012
Technology

Samsung Fight Among Many In Apple's Patent War

Originally published on Mon July 30, 2012 9:01 am

Samsung Electronics' Galaxy S (left) and Apple's iPhone 4 are displayed at the headquarters of South Korean mobile carrier KT. Apple claims some of Samsung's designs violate its patents.
Ahn Young-joon AP

An epic battle between the two biggest smartphone makers begins Monday in a federal district court in San Jose, Calif., where computing giant Apple is asking for more than $2.5 billion from rival phone maker Samsung for patent violations.

The suit would be the most expensive patent violation in history, and it's just one front in Apple's war against phones running Google's Android operating system.

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