The Two Way

The Two-Way
3:55 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

On Independence Day, A Subdued Syrian Capital

Pro-Assad, flag-painted Hummers are often seen driving throughout Damascus blasting patriotic songs and regime slogans. These two vehicles were photographed at the site of blasts earlier this month near Syria's central bank.
NPR

The writer is a Syrian citizen living in Damascus who is not being further identified out of safety concerns.

On this day in 1946, Syria celebrated the withdrawal of the last French soldier from its soil, and announced itself as an independent, 20th century-style nation-state.

It was a day of hope and jubilation, which over the years my older relatives would periodically recollect from memory.

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The Two-Way
1:52 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

U.S. Calls On Venezuela 'To Respect ... Free Speech' Of Its Citizens

A woman walks past a message painted on a wall in the streets of Caracas reading "Fraud. Maduro Illegitimate."
Raul Arboleda AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu April 18, 2013 8:29 pm

The United States called on the Venezuelan government to be transparent in its effort to "audit the ballots" of the presidential election held this weekend.

If you missed it, the news that Hugo Chavez's hand-picked successor Nicolás Maduro had won by a razor-thin margin unleashed protests in the streets of Caracas.

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The Two-Way
1:13 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Updated: Glitch Delays Antares Rocket Launch

Antares ready for liftoff.
NASA Wallops Flight Facility NASA

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 9:06 pm

Update at 6:21 p.m. ET. Launch Delayed:

Space.com reports that the Antares rocket launch has been delayed for two days, "after an unexpected glitch."

Space.com reports:

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The Two-Way
1:10 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Why Use A Pressure Cooker To Build A Bomb?

This photo, produced by the Joint Terrorism Task Force of Boston, shows the remains of an explosive device at the Boston Marathon bomb scene.
Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 2:19 pm

They are cheap, easy to build and inconspicuous. And as the explosions this week at the Boston Marathon show, pressure cooker bombs can be devastatingly effective weapons.

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The Two-Way
11:36 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Second Suspicious Letter Found; Was Sent To Obama

A Hazardous Materials Response Team (HAZMAT) truck outside the Russell Senate Office Building in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday.
Jim Lo Scalzo EPA/Landov

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 9:04 pm

Update at 8:44 p.m. ET. Authorities Make An Arrest:

Authorities have made an arrest in connection to the suspicious envelopes sent to a senator and President Obama.

The FBI identified the suspect as Paul Kevin Curtis.

The The Clarion Ledger reports:

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The Two-Way
11:01 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Iconic Gospel Singer George Beverly Shea Dies

George Beverly Shea talks at his home in Montreat, N.C. in Jan., 2009.
Chuck Burton AP

Grammy-winning gospel singer George Beverly Shea died in Asheville, North Carolina last night after a brief illness. He was 104.

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The Two-Way
10:08 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Texas Prosecutor Murder: Wife Of Jailed Ex-Justice Arrested

A wreath of flowers in honor of slain District Attorney Mike McClelland at the Kaufman County [Texas] Courthouse in early April.
Richard Rodriguez Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 1:44 pm

"The wife of a former justice of the peace is being held on a capital murder charge in the killings of the Kaufman County District Attorney, his wife and a top prosecutor," The Dallas Morning News reports.

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The Two-Way
10:00 am
Wed April 17, 2013

American: 'Near Normal' Flights After Day Of Delays

American Airlines passengers wait in line for a flight at Miami International Airport on Tuesday.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 11:53 am

American Airlines has promised passengers that Wednesday's flight schedule will be nothing like the day before, when thousands were stranded due to a glitch in the reservations system that forced hundreds of flights to be canceled or delayed.

American Airlines and American Eagle scuttled 970 flights and delayed more than 1,000 others Tuesday, The Associated Press said, citing flight-tracking service FlightAware.com.

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The Two-Way
9:41 am
Wed April 17, 2013

New Zealand Lawmakers Pass Same-Sex Marriage Law

Jills Angus Burney, left, and Deborah Hambly, right, who hope to marry in New Zealand, watch lawmakers ahead of the vote on same-sex marriage on Thursday, April 17, 2013.
Nick Perry AP

By a vote of 77 to 44, lawmakers in New Zealand have passed a new law permitting same-sex marriage. The bill was adopted after its third reading and is to take effect in August, according to the New Zealand Herald.

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The Two-Way
9:29 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Pat Summerall Was The 'Voice Of Football,' Says John Madden

Pat Summerall in 1989, when he was broadcasting for CBS Sports.
CBS /Landov

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 2:49 pm

  • From 'Morning Edition': NPR's Richard Gonzales reports on Pat Summerall

Pat Summerall was the "voice of football and always will be," longtime broadcasting partner John Madden said Tuesday.

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The Two-Way
8:32 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Top Stories: Latest In Boston Bombings; Thatcher Funeral

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 11:34 am

Good morning, here are our early stories:

-- Boston Marathon Explosions: Wednesday's Developments.

-- For Thatcher, 'A Great Calm' After A Life Of Controversy.

And here are more early headlines:

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The Two-Way
8:27 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Book News: Pulitzer 'Winner' Takes on A Whole New Meaning

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 1:27 pm

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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The Two-Way
7:32 am
Wed April 17, 2013

For Thatcher, 'A Great Calm' After A Life Of Controversy

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher's funeral was held Wednesday at London's St. Paul's Cathedral.
Christopher Furlong EPA /LANDOV

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 2:52 pm

Margaret Thatcher, the prime minister whose time leading Great Britain in the 1980s brought joy to conservatives and despair to liberals, was remembered Wednesday for "a life lived in the heat of political controversy."

With her death last week at the age of 87, "there is great calm" for the Iron Lady, added the bishop of London, the Right Reverend Richard Chartres, during a funeral service at London's St. Paul's Cathedral.

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The Two-Way
6:55 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Boston Marathon Explosions: Wednesday's Developments

Flowers, flags and balloons at a memorial in Boston near the site of Monday's explosions.
Wang Lei Xinhua /Landov

Originally published on Thu April 18, 2013 7:50 am

(Note at 7:50 a.m. ET, April 18: We've begun a new post to track Thursday's developments.)

Investigators made progress Wednesday, as they tried to determine who planted two bombs near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, leaving three people dead and injuring about 180.

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The Two-Way
7:22 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

Maine Court Sets $25,000 Bail For 'North Pond Hermit'

Christopher Knight, 47, has been charged with stealing food and other items from a camp in Rome, Maine. Knight's years of living in isolation earned him the nickname of the North Pond Hermit.
Kennebec County Sheriff's Office AP

Christopher Knight, whose 27 years of living in near-total isolation in Maine's wilderness made him an object of fascination after he was arrested for stealing food and supplies, appeared by video for a court hearing Tuesday, when a Kennebec County judge set his bail at $25,000 cash.

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The Two-Way
6:41 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

Reports: Envelope Sent To Senator's Office Tests Positive For Ricin Poison

U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MS).
Alex Wong Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 7:45 am

Quoting "congressional and law enforcement sources," CNN is reporting that an envelope sent to a senator's office has tested positive for the poison ricin.

"After the envelope tested positive in a first routine test, it was retested two more times, each time coming up positive, the law enforcement source said," CNN reports. "The package was then sent to a Maryland lab for further testing."

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The Two-Way
4:54 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

American Airlines Grounds All Flights Due To Computer Glitch

American Airlines flights were grounded for two hours on Tuesday due to a glitch in the reservation system, the airline says.
Tom Pennington Getty Images

A computer glitch in the reservations system at American Airlines caused all of the carrier's flights to be grounded for at least two hours on Tuesday.

"American's reservation and booking tool, Sabre is offline," American Airlines spokeswoman Mary Frances Fagan told Reuters in an email. "We're working to resolve the issue as quickly as we can. We apologize to our customers for any inconvenience."

NPR's Wade Goodwyn reports that the outage was announced about 2:30 p.m. Eastern time.

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The Two-Way
3:55 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

Vatican Reaffirms Plan To Scrutinize U.S. Nuns

Nuns worship following a Mass for the election of a new pope at St. Patrick's Cathedral in February.
Mario Tama Getty Images

Pope Francis' doctrinal chief has reaffirmed the Vatican's intention to overhaul the largest organization of U.S. nuns, dashing the hopes of some that the newly installed pontiff would take a more conciliatory approach than his predecessor.

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Marathon Bombing
3:50 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

Boston Bomb Victim: Krystle Campbell Was 'Caring ... Loving' 'Daddy's Little Girl'

Neighbors sit outside the house of Krystle Campbell's parents in Medford, Mass., on Tuesday. Campbell was killed in the explosions at the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Monday.
Michael Dwyer AP

Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 6:08 pm

Update at 5:35 p.m. ET. 'You Couldn't Ask For A Better Daughter':

Patty Campbell read a tearful statement in front of her home in Medford, Mass., Tuesday afternoon. She said her daughter, Krystle Campbell, 29, was killed during Monday's Boston Marathon bombing.

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The Two-Way
3:28 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

Security Expert: Investigators Seek Bomber's 'Signature'

Boston firefighters talk with FBI agents and a crime scene photographer Tuesday at the scene of the Boston Marathon explosions.
Charles Krupa AP

Originally published on Wed April 17, 2013 6:03 am

As investigators combed through evidence in the deadly Boston Marathon bombings, seeking both motive and perpetrator, we turned Tuesday to a security expert for guidance on how the investigation may be unfolding.

Bryan Cunningham, a former CIA officer, assistant U.S. attorney and deputy legal adviser for the National Security Council, served in both the Clinton and George W. Bush administrations. He is now a senior adviser at the consulting firm the Chertoff Group, co-founded by former Homeland Security Director Michael Chertoff.

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The Two-Way
2:31 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

One Gear, One Goal: Bike Is 'Good To 100 MPH,' Builder Says

A bicycle built by British firm Donhou was created with the goal of hitting high speeds,€” perhaps including 100 mph.
Oli Woodman Bike Radar

Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 5:28 pm

What does it take to ride a bicycle at 100 miles per hour? That's the question being explored by Britain's Donhou Bicycles and frame builder Tom Donhou, who has mounted a mammoth chainring onto a custom bicycle. He says the steel machine has already hit 60 miles per hour on the open road.

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The Two-Way
2:12 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

Bipartisan Group Of Lawmakers Unveil Immigration Bill

A group of eight bipartisan Senators has reached broad compromise on immigration reform.

The Gang of Eight, as they've come to be known, released highlights of the bill this afternoon. ABC News reports the bill would:

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The Two-Way
1:49 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

India Refuses Permission For Country's First Playboy Club

Indian Bollywood film actress Sherlyn Chopra at a media event in August for her appearance in Playboy magazine in Mumbai.
Strdel AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 2:30 pm

Hugh Heffner's empire has run afoul of conservative politicians in India, who have decided to halt plans for the country's first Playboy Club.

PB Lifestyle, the Indian firm with rights to the Playboy brand, had hoped that the club in the southwestern state of Goa would be the first of eight to be constructed over the next three years. They were hoping for as many as 120 such clubs in the coming decade.

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The Two-Way
1:40 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

Runners Dig In Their Heels: 'We Can Endure A Lot'

A runner heads down the banks of the Charles River in Cambridge, Mass., in front of the Boston skyline at dawn, the morning after deadly explosions at the Boston Marathon.
Charles Krupa AP

Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 3:49 pm

Emily Root Schenkel has never run the Boston Marathon, but now she might.

"It makes me want to run another marathon," she says of Monday's bombings near the finish line in Boston. "That's the last thing I wanted to do, but it makes me want to say, 'Screw you, I'm going to run another one.' "

Schenkel's godmother was a flight attendant on Flight 93, the hijacked airliner that passengers forced down in a field in Pennsylvania on Sept. 11, 2001.

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The Two-Way
11:57 am
Tue April 16, 2013

China Gives Breakdown Of Its Military, Criticizes U.S.

The Russian-built "Liaoning", China's first aircraft carrier, is a potent symbol of the country's growing military might.
STR AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue April 16, 2013 3:39 pm

China on Tuesday detailed the structure of its military force in a special national defense report that also took a swipe at the United States for what it described as stoking tensions in the Asia-Pacific region.

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