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Election 2012
3:00 am
Tue March 13, 2012

In South, GOP Voters Balance Faith, Defeating Obama

Supporters and volunteers of the Alabama Republican Party gather outside before a forum at the Alabama Theater in Birmingham, Ala., on March 12.
Marvin Gentry Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue March 13, 2012 9:23 am

It's election day Tuesday — this time in the Deep South as voters in Alabama and Mississippi head to the polls. GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney spent some time campaigning in the two states while Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich blanketed the region. And Santorum and Gingrich met at a forum Monday night in Birmingham in a last-minute effort to woo undecided voters.

The setting couldn't have been more picturesque: the stately Alabama Theater in downtown Birmingham. About 2,000 Republican faithful turned out for the presidential forum, which began with a prayer.

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Business
3:00 am
Tue March 13, 2012

Business News

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with trade moves against China.

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Business
3:00 am
Tue March 13, 2012

Treasury Raises $32 Billion In Bond Auction

What is remarkable is that those who bought bonds will get a tiny rate of return. Renee Montagne talks to David Wessel, economics editor of The Wall Street Journal, about what the results mean, who's buying Treasuries and how the borrowed funds are being spent.

Afghanistan
3:00 am
Tue March 13, 2012

Shooting Adds To Afghans' Anti-American Feelings

U.S. officials have not released the name of the U.S. soldier accused of killing some 16 Afghan civilians in southern Afghanistan over the weekend. The shootings come as anti-Americanism already is boiling over in Afghanistan after U.S. troops burned Qurans last month.

Politics
3:00 am
Tue March 13, 2012

Why Compromise Is A Bad Word In Politics

Originally published on Tue March 13, 2012 5:23 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Here's one thing that many people mean when they say Washington is broken. They may mean that politicians from different parties seem unable or totally unwilling to compromise, and many voters hate that. And yet many voters also hate it if politicians from their own party should compromise with the other side. That could be considered giving in. NPR's science correspondent Shankar Vedantam joins us regularly to talk about social science research, and he's found some that relates to this political problem. Hi, Shankar.

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Asia
3:00 am
Tue March 13, 2012

Beijing Bling: Wealth On Display In China's Congress

Yang Lan, TV host and delegate to the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, carries a Marc Jacobs handbag outside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on March 3. Nicknamed "the Oprah Winfrey of China," Yang has also been seen wearing a Giorgio Armani jacket during the legislative session.
Wang Zhou/Imaginechina AP

Originally published on Tue March 13, 2012 2:14 pm

A leather belt from Hermes priced at almost $1,000 — nearly a year's salary for the average Chinese farmer. A bright pink, $2,000 trouser suit from Emilio Pucci. A red snakeskin Celine handbag that costs $4,500.

These weren't items at a fashion show, but luxury goods spotted on delegates hurrying to China's annual legislative assembly sessions.

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Business
3:00 am
Tue March 13, 2012

The Last Word In business

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And today's last word in business is 50-50.

Those are the odds you'll ever see your lost cell phone again. That's according to a study by a security firm, the people behind the Norton AntiVirus software. The company set up an experiment where they purposely lost smartphones in public areas, you know, elevators, shopping centers, airports, places you may have left your phone at some point.

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Around the Nation
3:00 am
Tue March 13, 2012

Lewis-McChord Soldiers Generate Disturbing Headlines

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

The American soldier who allegedly shot and killed 16 men, women and children in two Afghan villages was from an Army base outside Tacoma, Washington. The Army/Air Force installation, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, is one of the biggest in the military.

It's also, as NPR's Martin Kaste reports, one of the most troubled.

(SOUNDBITE OF AIRCRAFT)

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Afghanistan
3:00 am
Tue March 13, 2012

Shooting In Kandahar Further Alienates Afghans

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

When an American soldier reportedly walked through two villages in southern Afghanistan and methodically killed 16 civilians, including children, it caused an uproar from Kabul to Washington, D.C. Now, let's get a view from where the killings happened - Kandahar. I first met Ehsan Ullah two years ago when I reported on a Canadian-funded girls' school that he runs in that city.

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Afghanistan
3:00 am
Tue March 13, 2012

How Will Kandahar Shooting Affect Afghan Policy?

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

And I'm Renee Montagne.

One analyst calls last weekend's massacre in Afghanistan an enormous gift to the Taliban. It is the latest of several incidents that amount to lost battles in a political war.

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Middle East
3:00 am
Tue March 13, 2012

Syrian Government Accused Of Reprisal Attacks

Originally published on Tue March 13, 2012 5:59 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

We're following news this morning of more killings in the Syrian city of Homs. That's the city where rebel neighborhoods came under artillery fire for weeks and where two Western journalists were killed. Rebels later retreated, but residents and activists say pro-government militias have massacred dozens of civilians, mainly women and children. NPR's Kelly McEvers is following this story from Beirut.

And, Kelly, what evidence you have?

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Looking Up: Pockets of Economic Strength
11:01 pm
Mon March 12, 2012

Record-High Food Prices Boost Farmers' Bottom Lines

An Illinois farmer checks the blades on his combine while harvesting corn last October. The value of the 2011 U.S. corn crop was more than $76 billion.
Seth Perlman AP

Part of a series

Thanks to high commodity prices and surging productivity, U.S. farmers earned a net income of nearly $98 billion last year — a record, according to the Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute.

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Shots - Health Blog
11:01 pm
Mon March 12, 2012

As Cholera Season Bears Down On Haiti, Vaccination Program Stalls

Thousands of doses of cholera vaccine sit in a refrigerated trailer in a United Nations compound in Saint-Marc, Haiti. Vaccination was supposed to begin last week, but bureaucratic problems have delayed the start. April is the beginning of Haiti's rainy season, which will likely intensify Haiti's cholera outbreak.
John Poole NPR

Originally published on Wed March 14, 2012 1:07 pm

The vaccine — $417,000 worth of it — is stacked high in refrigerated containers to protect it from the Haitian heat.

Hundreds of health workers are trained and ready to give the vaccine. They're armed with programmed smartphones and tablet computers to keep track of who has been vaccinated and who needs a second dose.

And 100,000 eager Haitians, from the teeming slums of Port-au-Prince to tiny hamlets in Haiti's rice bowl, have signed up to get the vaccine.

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Money & Politics
11:01 pm
Mon March 12, 2012

Low-Profile SuperPAC Targets Powerful Incumbents

The superPAC Campaign for Primary Accountability is taking aim at Alabama Republican Rep. Spencer Bachus and other congressional incumbents.
YouTube

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Afghanistan
11:01 pm
Mon March 12, 2012

Killings A Blow To U.S. Strategy In Afghanistan

A U.S. soldier, part of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force, stands outside a military base in Panjwai, Kandahar province, south of Kabul, on Sunday.
Allauddin Khan AP

Originally published on Tue March 13, 2012 7:25 am

The killings of some 16 civilians in Afghanistan on Sunday allegedly by a U.S. soldier are raising new questions about U.S. military strategy: whether the surge of American troops worked, and whether the U.S. troops have won over the Afghan people or alienated them.

The place where the killings happened was a "no-go zone" for American and even Afghan troops as recently as two years ago — it was Taliban country.

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