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The Two-Way
2:55 pm
Mon February 27, 2012

Colombia's FARC Says It Will Halt Kidnappings

Miriam Lasso, sister of police sergeant Cesar Augusto Lasso who was kidnapped by the FARC in Nov. of 1998, holds a candle next to pictures of several police and military hostages of the FARC, in January in Cali.
AFP AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon February 27, 2012 3:05 pm

The rebel group that has made kidnapping a central part of its operating procedure in Colombia says it is halting the practice and releasing 10 security force members it has held for as long as 14 years.

"From this day on we are halting the practice in our revolutionary activity," the leftist Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) said in a statement released on its website.

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos issued a cautious message on Twitter.

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National Security
2:42 pm
Mon February 27, 2012

U.S., Iran Eye Each Other Warily In Persian Gulf

An Iraqi jet fired missiles that hit the USS Stark in the Persian Gulf in 1987, killing 37 U.S. sailors. Iraq and Iran were at war at the time, and the U.S. wanted to keep open the regiion's vital oil shipping lanes. The current friction between the U.S. and Iran has again raised tension in the Gulf.
U.S Navy AP

History never repeats itself exactly. But the current escalation in tension and rhetoric between the United States and Iran has revived memories of the Persian Gulf tanker war of the 1980s.

As an offshoot of the war taking place back then between Iran and Iraq, the U.S. offered protection to Kuwaiti ships carrying oil through the Straits of Hormuz. This led to attacks on multiple military and civilian ships. In addition, the U.S. Navy in 1988 shot down an Iranian airliner that was mistaken for a jet fighter.

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Shots - Health Blog
2:29 pm
Mon February 27, 2012

Active Video Games Don't Keep Kids Moving

Just because it's an "active" video game, doesn't mean the kid stays active.
Jeff Gentner AP

Active video games like the Wii seem just the thing to lure children into getting more exercise. But in real life, giving a child active video games doesn't get them off the couch and moving.

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The Salt
1:31 pm
Mon February 27, 2012

Judge Dismisses Organic Farmers' Case Against Monsanto

Farmer Alan Madison fills a seed hopper with Monsanto hybrid seed corn near Arlington, Illinois, U.S. A group of organic and other growers say they're concerned they'll be sued by Monsanto if pollen from seeds like these drift onto their fields.
Daniel Acker Landov

Originally published on Tue February 28, 2012 11:37 am

A New York federal court today dismissed a lawsuit against agribusiness giant Monsanto brought by thousands of certified organic farmers. The farmers hoped the suit would protect them against infringing on the company's crop patents in the future.

The Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association and several other growers and organizations do not use Monsanto seeds. But they were betting that the judge would agree that Monsanto should not be allowed to sue them if pollen from the company's patented crops happened to drift into their fields.

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The Two-Way
1:18 pm
Mon February 27, 2012

TransCanada To Begin Work On One Portion Of Keystone Pipeline

After a proposal to build an oil pipeline from Canada to Texas was denied by the Obama administration, TransCanada says it will start building the Oklahoma-to-Texas portion of the Keystone XL pipeline.

If you remember back in January, the administration told TransCanada to reapply for a permit on the 1,700 mile pipeline when it had plans to avoid the environmentally sensitive Sandhills of Nebraska.

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The Two-Way
12:28 pm
Mon February 27, 2012

Costa Allegra, Concordia's Sister Ship, Adrift In Indian Ocean

After an engine room fire, the Costa Allegra is adrift in the Indian ocean. The Allegra is owned by Costa Concordia, the same company that owns the cruise ship that ran aground off the coast of Italy and killed 25 people and left seven missing.

The AP reports the Costa Allegra is adrift in the area of the Indian Ocean where Somali pirates have been active.

The Guardian reports:

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The Two-Way
12:20 pm
Mon February 27, 2012

Gay Marine's Homecoming Kiss Is Lighting Up The Web

The kiss. That's Sgt. Brandon Morgan on the right. Dalan Wells on the left.
Gay Marines on Facebook

Since the Gay Marines Facebook page posted it on Saturday, a photo of Sgt. Brandon Morgan and his partner Dalan Wells sharing a welcome home kiss in Hawaii has been getting quite a bit of attention:

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The Two-Way
11:00 am
Mon February 27, 2012

Chechens Allegedly Planned To Attack Putin's Motorcade With Mines

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.
Alexey Nikolsky AFP/Getty Images

Chechens who allegedly were hoping to kill Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin planned to hide landmines along a route his motorcade often uses in Moscow, according to Russian TV, the BBC reports.

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The Two-Way
9:20 am
Mon February 27, 2012

Developing: Shooting At High School In Chardon, Ohio

Originally published on Mon February 27, 2012 2:14 pm

The latest on today's shooting at a high school in Chardon, Ohio, where five students were shot; at least one fatally:

Update at 2:15 p.m. ET. Student Who Died Identified:

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It's All Politics
9:11 am
Mon February 27, 2012

Monday's Political Grab Bag: Romney, Santorum Tied In Michigan?

On the eve of Tuesday primaries in Michigan and Arizona, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum appeared to be tied in the Great Lakes state though the former Massachusetts governor likely had the momentum and looked to be significantly ahead in the southwestern border state.

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The Two-Way
8:50 am
Mon February 27, 2012

Santorum Defends Saying JFK Speech On Religion Makes Him Sick

Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum, center, and supporters as they prayed earlier this month in McKinney, Texas.
Tom Pennington Getty Images

There was no shift over the weekend by Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum when he was asked about his comment last year that then-presidential candidate John Kennedy's famous 1960 speech about religion and the separation of church and state makes him want to throw up.

The Boston Globe writes that on Sunday:

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Your Money
8:49 am
Mon February 27, 2012

Warm Winter Is Helping Consumers Cope

A woman takes in the sunshine while reading in Central Park on Feb. 1 in New York City, where temperatures topped 60 degrees.
Mario Tama Getty Images

Originally published on Mon February 27, 2012 2:14 pm

The rapidly rising price of gasoline has not stalled the economic recovery — at least not yet. And one reason for that may be found in fields of daffodils.

This year's unusually warm winter has held down heating costs, helping consumers spend less on their monthly utility bills.

"Weather plays a big role" in determining what's left in your checking account as winter wraps up, said Jonathan Cogan, a spokesman for the Energy Information Administration.

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The Two-Way
8:00 am
Mon February 27, 2012

WikiLeaks Starts Posting Millions Of Security Firm Stratfor's Emails

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is driven away in a taxi after leaving his hearing at the Supreme Court in London, Thursday, Feb. 2, 2012.
Matt Dunham AP

Originally published on Mon February 27, 2012 8:46 am

"The anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks began publishing on Monday more than five million emails from a U.S.-based global security analysis company that has been likened to a shadow CIA," Reuters writes.

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The Two-Way
7:30 am
Mon February 27, 2012

Will Killings Over Quran Burnings Lead To Faster Pullout From Afghanistan?

In Herat, Afghanistan, on Friday: Demonstrators shouted anti-American slogans.
Aref Karimi AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon February 27, 2012 7:43 am

  • NPR's Quil Lawrence on 'Morning Edition'

The news from Afghanistan remains grim as protests and attacks continue over the recent burning of some Qurans and other Islamic materials at an airbase controlled by international forces. The violence and unrest has also, The Washington Post writes, "exposed a crippling weakness in the American strategy to wind down the war."

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Around the Nation
7:19 am
Mon February 27, 2012

TSA Screeners Leave Metal Detector Unattended

Travelers in Sacramento, Calif., got a surprise when they approached airport security and no one was at the metal detector. Five passengers went on through without any screening. Finally, officials noticed the unattended metal detector and shut down the terminal until the passengers were found and screened.

Around the Nation
7:14 am
Mon February 27, 2012

Man Fends Off Bugler With Coffee Mug

A man in Washington, Pa., was at home when a burglar broke in. The Observer-Reporter newspaper says the thief pulled a knife. So the homeowner pulled out a ceramic coffee mug and smacked him on the head.

Movies
6:52 am
Mon February 27, 2012

Silence Is Golden For 'The Artist'

The Artist became the first silent film to triumph at Hollywood's highest honors since the original Oscar ceremony 83 years ago. The film's lead actor, Jean Dujardin, also took home an Academy award for best actor while Michel Hazanavicius, the film's director, also won.

Election 2012
6:45 am
Mon February 27, 2012

Paul Campaign Could Gain Traction In Michigan

As Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum battle for first place in the Michigan GOP presidential primary, rival Ron Paul is not expected to come in first or second. Paul doesn't really stand a chance at winning the nomination, but he can impact the party's platform

Election 2012
6:40 am
Mon February 27, 2012

Romney, Santorum Battle For Michigan Votes

Along with Arizona, Michigan holds its Republican presidential primary Tuesday. If Rick Santorum beats native son Mitt Romney in Michigan, it could throw the race into turmoil.

Africa
6:37 am
Mon February 27, 2012

Senegal's Early Vote Tally Indicates Runoff Ahead

Originally published on Mon February 27, 2012 7:21 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

People in Senegal voted over the weekend, an election overshadowed by protests and violence. People managed to keep the actual voting mostly peaceful. Now, it looks like they'll have to vote again. A run-off seems likely in the election that features an 85-year-old president who changed the law in order to seek a third term. NPR's Ofeibea Quist-Arcton reports.

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Law
6:28 am
Mon February 27, 2012

Montana Defies Citizens United Case

In the Citizens United Case in 2010, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled corporations and unions have a constitutional right to spend unlimited money on political ads. State courts are expected to follow that principle. But in December, Montana's high court refused to go along. It argued Montana's history and demography make it different enough to deserve an exemption from the federal ruling.

Analysis
6:27 am
Mon February 27, 2012

Michigan, Arizona Prepare For Tuesday's Primaries

The Republican presidential candidates face two important primaries Tuesday with high stakes for former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney. Polls for contests in Arizona and Michigan showed the once-designated front-runner falling behind former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum until recently when Romney has pulled even or slightly ahead.

Middle East
5:02 am
Mon February 27, 2012

Clinton: How Do We Help Syrians Defend Themselves?

Originally published on Mon February 27, 2012 8:17 pm

Just a few days ago, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was in Tunis, Tunisia, meeting her counterparts from dozens of countries and issuing an ultimatum to Syrian President Bashar Assad to silence his guns and allow in humanitarian aid.

While in Morocco, before flying home to Washington, D.C., Clinton talked to NPR's Michele Kelemen.

Syrian tanks continue to batter homes, and no aid is getting in. So what are allies of the Syrian people to do?

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NPR Story
4:00 am
Mon February 27, 2012

Afghan Violence Continues Over Quran Burning

Originally published on Mon February 27, 2012 7:02 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

And let's go next to Afghanistan, where a car bomb exploded outside a U.S. air base today. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack which killed nine people. This latest wave of violence follows reports of American soldiers burning several copies of the Muslim holy book, the Quran.

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