The World

Monday through Friday from 7pm to 8pm
  • Hosted by Marco Werman

The World is a one-hour, weekday radio news magazine offering a mix of news, features, interviews, and music from around the globe, hosted by Marco Werman.

Andalusia Knoll Soloff

This week, Austin hosted its annual South by Southwest conference — a gathering of film, music and media festivals that takes over the city. In between the hundreds of panels and concerts and screenings, attendees network and connect. And this year, that connection extended between two groups of kids hundreds of miles apart.

Several Austin elementary schoolers strain against a thick black rope. They pull with everything they have.

“I got this!” one of them shouts. “Pull!” cries another.

Eric Gaillard/Reuters

As news erupted about a shooting at the Alexis de Tocqueville High School in Grasse on Thursday, there was an expectation among much of the French public that the attacker had an ideological motive. This had to be an act of terror, right?

A reporter at the scene early on asked students whether the gunman had shouted anything before firing his weapons, injuring several people. A claim of allegiance, perhaps. Witnesses said they hadn’t heard anything. 

Jasmine Garsd/PRI

When she was 10, Safia Mahjebin started skipping school. She used to ride the New York City subways, aimlessly. "I just love riding the train," she says. "You ride from one end to the other, and then you go back. And then you get out at a few stops and just explore ... some stations are really beautiful.”

Feed homebound seniors, or build a wall?

Mar 17, 2017
Courtesy of KCS

About 2.4 million homebound seniors in the US get food delivered to their doors by the Meals on Wheels program. But President Donald Trump has proposed slashing federal funds for the program, as part of his new budget plan, released this week.

The president's plan includes increases for the departments of defense, veterans affairs, and homeland security — which would also cover the cost of his proposed wall on the US border with Mexico.

Aaron P. Bernstein/Reuters

Imagine you're the parent of a small child, living in a home where explosions have shattered the windows. 

Then imagine that you have to leave that child each day, because you're one of the few physicians left at your hospital and countless patients rely on you during a military siege. 

That was the dilemma facing two Syrian doctors last year, as they struggled to parent their 8-year-old daughter while also pulling late-night shifts in the overwhelmed operating rooms of eastern Aleppo.

The curious origins of the ‘Irish slaves’ myth

Mar 17, 2017
<a href="http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/ncl2004002613/PP/">Lewis Wickes Hine/Library of Congress</a>

Irish Americans were slaves once too — or so a historically inaccurate and dangerously misleading internet meme would have you believe.

The meme comes in many varieties but the basic formula is this: old photos, paintings and engravings from all over the world are combined with text suggesting they are historic images of forgotten “Irish slaves.”

The myth underlying the meme holds that the Irish — not Africans — were the first American slaves. It rests on the idea that 17th century American indentured servitude was essentially an extension of the transatlantic slave trade.

President Donald Trump’s proposed budget marks a sweeping shift in domestic environmental policy and a decisive sign that US international leadership on climate change has ended.

The first draft of a 2018 budget, released by the White House on Thursday, would cancel funding for climate change research and United Nations climate programs. It would also chop funds for enforcing the Clean Power Plan, a rule that would have cut emissions from the electricity sector.

Lucy Nicholson/Reuters

Unlike President Donald Trump’s refugee and travel ban, which is now stalled in the courts, the crackdown on undocumented immigrants in the US is ramping up.

That could mean we'll see more people being sent to detention centers. For some companies, more detained immigrants mean more business. 

Sitara Sadaat

Across Women's Lives reaches out to women on the ground to include their voice in our global coverage. Afghanistan is one of the world's hardest places to be a woman in public. Here, our Afghan correspondent tells us about her sanctuary — a restaurant by and for women 

Afghanistan is not a safe place for women. Domestic and other kinds of violence and discrimination are endemic, and justice is not enforced fairly. 

Conservative Iowa Congressman Steve King took aim at immigrants over the weekend when he tweeted, "We can't restore our civilization with somebody else's babies." But a reporter for Mother Jones magazine says his grandfather was one of those babies.

Six years after the Fukushima Daiichi meltdown, officials are still seeking ways to deal with the huge amount of hazardous waste being generated at the nuclear power plant.

Tokyo-based journalist James Simms has been covering the Fukushima cleanup since shortly after the effort was crippled by a tsunami in March 2011.

He told The World that six years on, there has been some progress toward decommissioning the plant, “but many unforeseen issues may mean that the cleanup and dismantling and decontamination will take longer than previously expected.”

Steven Davy

Every March in Austin, Texas, an explosion of technology entrepreneurs show off their latest ideas and hobnob at parties, tweeting, snapping and gramming epic stories about who they met and what they saw.

South by Southwest — referred to as SXSW — is known for the music and films that premiere here. But the weekend before the music is SXSW Interactive. It’s full of energy and deal-making.

A popular Arab satirist takes on the rise of nationalism

Mar 14, 2017
Dylan Martinez/Reuters

A lot of people scoffed at Samuel Huntington in 1992 when he argued that the world faced a “clash of civilizations.”

In a lecture, the political scientist put forward a hypothesis that cultural and religious identity would be the primary source of conflict in a world just emerging from the ideological struggles of the Cold War.

Deepa Fernandes

When Cuban American Osmel Hernández recently arrived back in Havana after years living in Los Angeles, he was struck by the lack of commercialization. “Everything is virgin here,” he said, referring to the lack of big-box chain stores and fast-food outlets.

“You can tell that today in this country [where] you don’t see a McDonald’s [on] the corner, it’s a virgin country,” Hernández said.

In his new book "How May I Help You? An Immigrant's Journey from MBA to Minimum Wage," Deepak Singh writes about what it was like to arrive in a new country he did not fully understand.

He came to the US from India to join his new wife, an American grad student in Charlottesville, Virginia. Singh arrived armed with an MBA from India, but he couldn’t find a job in his field in the US. He ended up working a minimum-wage job at a mall electronics store. 

Why far-right populism hasn't caught on in Spain

Mar 14, 2017
Jon Nazca/Reuters

Europe’s far-right is on the rise. The trend is nationalist and anti-immigrant. Extremist parties are poised to make gains in elections across the continent, from France to Holland to Germany. 

But in Spain, no such movement has gained traction. And you’d think it would, given years of recession, high unemployment and an influx of foreigners.

Joshua Roberts/Reuters

With US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson headed out on his first trip to Asia, you'd be excused for wondering who will mind the shop at Foggy Bottom while he's away. 

Both deputy-level jobs at the State Department remain unfilled. So do six undersecretary slots and 22 assistant secretary positions.

The vacancies don't appear to be an oversight. Last month, President Donald Trump told Fox & Friends that he had no intention of filling many vacant government slots.

In Canada, the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network has been telling stories about Native Canadians for nearly 20 years. Now, its owners want to expand into the United States. If they succeed, they promise to bring some innovative programs to US airwaves.

Why an Italian band heading for SXSW got deported

Mar 13, 2017
Screengrab/<a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MCXKRlWfD-A">YouTube</a>

It’s not easy being a foreign musician with an opportunity to play in the United States.

Artists have to know how to navigate a maze of immigration laws and regulations to be able to come here and perform legally. President Donald Trump's executive orders and heated public debate over immigration have in some ways made things even more challenging for many artists.

Kelvin Brown/BBC

The place where the first Soviet atomic bomb was dropped looks like a small natural pond.

The bumpy roads that lead to it course through stark, but picturesque, countryside. The river Irtysh, which flows down from China and on to Russia, divides this northeastern part of Kazakhstan into steppes to the south and forests to the north. 

The beauty hides an ugly history.  

The older people here grew up watching huge clouds mushroom in the sky overhead. Man-made earthquakes regularly shook the ground under their feet.

Courtesy of Laurel Park Yearbook

After the presidential election, posts on Twitter by Gizmodo reporter Rae Paoletta caught my attention. Through her tweets, she was actively documenting hateful acts happening across the country, many committed in Donald Trump's name.

One evening last March, infectious disease specialist Dr. Carlos Brito picked up his phone and sent a message to a group of his colleagues. He’d been seeing patients with a rash, swollen joints and a slight fever — symptoms that were similar to the dengue outbreak he had recently been treating, but different enough that further investigation might be merited, he wrote.

Germana Soares doesn't want pity.

When I met her last week at a small rehabilitation clinic in Recife, Brazil, she was bouncing her three-month-old son Guilherme on her lap and pinching the cheeks of any baby within arm's reach.

I expected Guilherme to show the classic symptom of microcephaly — a disproportionately small head. Other babies at the physical therapy session that day certainly did. But he looked healthy and happy. Nothing out of the ordinary, except his extreme cuteness.

Anne Bailey

Across Women's Lives photographer Anne Bailey spent time last week at the Fundação Altino Ventura rehabilitation clinic in Recife, Brazil, where she took portraits of the parents of babies with microcephaly while their children waited to be seen by a physical therapist.

You can see additional portraits of the strong women and men from this series on the Across Women's Lives Instagram @womenslives and the Instagram feed of our partners at @frontlinepbs.

This country doesn't want women to get pregnant until 2018

Mar 13, 2017
Jose Cabezas/Reuters

A number of countries in Latin America and the Caribbean are racing to respond to the rapid spread of the Zika virus. But El Salvador has gone further than its neighbors by advising women across the country to not get pregnant until 2018.

Carolyn Beeler

Cheryll Sumner grew up along the water in Norfolk, Virginia. About 15 years ago she moved back to her childhood home to raise her kids.

“It was wonderful that my kids were able to have the same upbringing that I had,” Sumner said, standing in front of her stately brick home in the Chesterfield Heights neighborhood.

Rising seas series

Carolyn Beeler

Cheryll Sumner grew up along the water in Norfolk, Virginia. About 15 years ago she moved back to her childhood home to raise her kids.

“It was wonderful that my kids were able to have the same upbringing that I had,” Sumner said, standing in front of her stately brick home in the Chesterfield Heights neighborhood.

Rising seas series

Jason Margolis

America is literally falling apart. The most authoritative report of the country’s infrastructure, released Thursday, gave America's crumbling roads, bridges, dams, schools and other essential underpinnings an overall D+ grade. Not a single element of America’s framework received an A.

You have to hear the music of Chicano Batman

Mar 10, 2017

Chicano Batman! It's a fun thing to say, isn't it?

It's also the name of a four-piece alt-rock band from Los Angeles that is pretty great to listen to.

But where does the name come from?

We asked Bardo Martinez, Chicano Batman's frontman and lead singer. 

"We all need a superhero in our lives. We all need something to look up to. We happen to put the names together and it creates this weird juxtaposition. It just keeps you wondering what does that name — what does that mean? So obviously it makes for a good band name."

Courtesy&nbsp;Israel Association of Baseball

They have been dubbed the "Jamaican bobsled team" of this year's World Baseball Classic.

Team Israel is ranked 41st in the world. But this week, they beat the Netherlands, South Korea and Chinese Taipei, all of which are ranked significantly higher.

Danielle Barta, who lives in Jerusalem and works as the regional director of the Isreal Association of Baseball, has been rapt, watching it all. 

As much as she can, that is.

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