Afghanistan
10:29 am
Wed October 5, 2011

Afghan Officials Say Plot To Kill Karzai Foiled

Afghan officials said Wednesday that they have foiled a plot to assassinate President Hamid Karzai and arrested six people, including one of Karzai's bodyguards.

The bodyguard was recruited by a network of al-Qaida sympathizers at Kabul Medical University that is linked to the Pakistan-based Haqqani militant network, according to Afghan intelligence officials.

Intelligence service spokesman Latifullah Mashal said three college students and a university professor were also among those arrested in Kabul.

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Author Interviews
10:28 am
Wed October 5, 2011

'Terrorists In Love': The Psychology Of Extremism

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Ahmed Al Shayea left Saudi Arabia in November 2004 to join the insurgents in Iraq. He was misled into driving a butane-gas delivery truck, which was detonated by remote control in an attack that killed eight people and left him disfigured. Today, he wants would-be insurgents to listen to his advice: "There is no jihad. We are just instruments of death."

Donna Abu Nasr AP

Originally published on Mon October 10, 2011 5:49 am

Ahmad Al Shayea grew up in Saudi Arabia in a middle-class family and dropped out of high school to join a local gang. Abdullah Al-Gilani fell in love with a girl who eventually married someone else. Zeddy was an old colleague of Osama bin Laden's.

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The Two-Way
10:12 am
Wed October 5, 2011

National Cathedral Will Reopen In November; Repairs Will Cost Millions

Repairs are under way at the National Cathedral, which sustained millions of dollars' worth of damage in an August earthquake.

Bill Chappell NPR

The National Cathedral, closed since sustaining extensive damage from the August earthquake that shook Washington, D.C., and the surrounding area, will reopen on Nov. 12, according to officials.

The cathedral is also trying to raise money to pay for repairs, estimated to run into the tens of millions of dollars. A statement on the landmark's website says organizers are seeking "at least $25 million" to cover its expenses through the end of 2012.

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It's All Politics
10:00 am
Wed October 5, 2011

Rick Perry Raised $17 Million In Partial 3rd Qtr After Entering GOP Race Late

Texas Gov. Rick Perry's poll number may be sagging, but his campaign is flush with cash. Perry's campaign says it raised more than $17 million in the third quarter.

Perry entered the Republican presidential primary race in mid August with just 49 days left before the quarterly filing deadline. But in that short time he's shot to the top of the money race.

His $17 million haul likely outdoes front-runner Mitt Romney's efforts over the summer. Meanwhile, Perry's campaign says it's kept spending so low that it has $15 million cash on hand.

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Shots - Health Blog
9:26 am
Wed October 5, 2011

My Smartphone Is A Microscope. What Can Yours Do?

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed October 12, 2011 8:02 am

I lied. My smartphone isn't a microscope — yet. But there are some smart physicists who want to make that transformation possible very soon, if not for you and me at first, then for doctors who don't have easy access to laboratories.

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Television
9:23 am
Wed October 5, 2011

'Breaking Bad,' 'Horror' Leave Viewers Wanting More

Over the past few seasons, Walter White (Bryan Cranston) has changed from meek hero to forceful villain. TV critic David Bianculli says he isn't just breaking bad anymore...he's entirely broken.

Gregory Peters AMC

Originally published on Tue October 11, 2011 8:05 am

If you don't want to hear details, especially about last night's season finale of Breaking Bad, turn away from this website now. But I consider it fair game to talk in detail about TV shows once they've been televised — especially if they're doing interesting enough work to be saluted for it.

[Note: If the previous paragraph didn't convince you, maybe this will: There are many, many spoilers for Breaking Bad ahead. Proceed at your own risk.]

I was blown away by the season ender of Breaking Bad.

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The Two-Way
9:20 am
Wed October 5, 2011

Kenneth Dahlberg, Who Didn't Lie About Watergate, Has Died

The scene of the crime that brought down a president.

Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Wed October 5, 2011 9:53 am

"There aren't a lot of people in the world who have been war heroes, created a high-flying business, and uttered the words that would bring down a presidency," our Minnesota Public Radio colleague Bob Collins writes today.

"Ken Dahlberg was one of them."

Now, Dahlberg has died at the age of 94.

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It's All Politics
9:00 am
Wed October 5, 2011

W. VA Democratic Guv's Narrow Win May Be Ominous Sign For Party

Democrats are surely relieved to have held onto the W. Virginia governorship, with Tuesday's special election victory by acting Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin over Republican Bill Maloney.

But it was a narrow 50 percent to 47 percent win that could portend trouble when Tomblin once again stands for election in 14 months.

Democrats have dominated W. Virginia politics for decades, controlling local and state offices though in presidential elections President Bill Clinton was the last Democrat to win the state in 1996.

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The Salt
8:59 am
Wed October 5, 2011

Thin Moms And Dads Pass On 'Skinny Genes'

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"Skinny genes": Maybe Gwyneth Paltrow can thank her mom, actress Blythe Danner, for her trimness? Parental weight strongly influences thinness in children, researchers say.

Gary Gershoff Getty Images

We inherit the darndest traits from our parents. My mom bequeathed to me that funny leg-shake she does when she's sitting. She also seems to have passed along a quick (but ... hmm ... endearing?) temper. And in the "thanks-for-that" column? Well, I'm on the skinny side. And so is she.

Our mother-daughter likeness isn't so unusual. Turns out, the "inter-generational transmission of thinness" is real. Thin parents appear to pass on "skinny genes."

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Shots - Health Blog
8:52 am
Wed October 5, 2011

Tainted Cantaloupes Claim 18 Lives, Sicken 100

The warnings from public health officials that the deaths and illnesses from listeria-tainted cantaloupes could drag on for a while are proving true.

The death toll from cantaloupes grown by Jensen Farms has hit 18, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's latest report on the outbreak. A hundred people have been sickened in 20 states, with Colorado and New Mexico the hardest hit.

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