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The Two-Way
7:01 am
Tue February 12, 2013

Report: Obama To Announce Withdrawal Of 34K Troops From Afghanistan

Soldiers with Charlie Company, 36th Infantry Regiment, 1st Armored Division, in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan, earlier in February.
Andrew Burton Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Tue February 12, 2013 7:04 am

What will likely be a day-long drip of leaks about tonight's State of the Union address begins with this:

"President Barack Obama will announce in his State of the Union address that 34,000 U.S. troops will be home from Afghanistan within a year, two people familiar with his remarks said Tuesday." (From The Associated Press)

The wire service adds: "That's about half the U.S. forces currently serving there, and marks the next phase in the administration's plans to formally finish the war by the end of 2014."

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School Safety
6:23 am
Tue February 12, 2013

Washington Senate Passes Funding For School Security

Originally published on Mon February 11, 2013 4:39 pm

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Washington lawmakers are moving ahead with their first education-spending bill of the year. The state Senate voted Monday to approve a $500 million in school construction bonds. Ten million of that would go to equip every school with a panic alarm by 2014, among other security measures.

Democratic Sen. Sharon Nelson said this was a step toward increasing gun safety. She says her next goal is to create more background checks for gun buyers.

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The Two-Way
6:22 am
Tue February 12, 2013

Doing The Cardinal Math: Numbers Point To Another European Pope

Pope Benedict XVI (left) and Cardinal Angelo Scola of Milan in 2011. Scola is among those seen as a likely successor to Benedict.
Vincenzo Pinto AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue February 12, 2013 7:07 am

  • From 'Morning Edition': Sylvia Poggioli reports

On this morning after the surprise announcement that Pope Benedict XVI is resigning at the end of the month, NPR's Sylvia Poggioli looks at the numbers and concludes it's more than likely the next pope will be a European, just like nearly all the others.

Why?

As Sylvia told Morning Edition guest host Linda Wertheimer:

-- 117 cardinals are eligible to vote at the upcoming conclave (only those under the age of 80 can take part).

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It's All Politics
5:52 am
Tue February 12, 2013

4 Things To Expect In Obama's State Of The Union Address

President Obama delivers his State of the Union address last year. On Tuesday night, he will be back at the Capitol for another address to a joint session of Congress.
Getty Images

Originally published on Tue February 12, 2013 6:32 am

President Obama's second inaugural address was widely perceived as a throwing down of the gauntlet in how it framed his progressive faith in government and challenged his Republican political opponents in any number of ways.

Given that, expect to see more glove-throwing Tuesday as the president delivers the first State of the Union speech of his second term.

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The Salt
5:37 am
Tue February 12, 2013

Why Russia Is Saying 'Nyet' To U.S. Meat Imports

A man buys meat at a butcher's stand in Moscow's Dorogomilovsky market in 2011. On Monday, Russia began blocking U.S. meat imports until those imports are ractopamine-free.
Natalia Kolesnikova AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu February 14, 2013 10:36 am

Chances are, you've never heard of ractopamine. But as of Monday, U.S. meat exports to Russia — worth $500 million dollars a year — have been suspended, all because of this obscure chemical.

Russian officials say American meat products won't be allowed into their country unless the meat is certified free of ractopamine.

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The Two-Way
5:23 am
Tue February 12, 2013

Book News: Anger Over 'Superman' Author Who Condemns Homosexuality

An image from the cover of the first issue of Superman.
DC Comics AP

Originally published on Tue February 12, 2013 7:06 am

  • Former POW John Borling talks with Renee Montagne

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

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Asia
4:29 am
Tue February 12, 2013

Haute Tokyo Restaurant Serves Up: Dirt

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Linda Wertheimer. For Valentine's Day dinner, consider Ne Quittez Pas. The haute Tokyo restaurant has patrons digging deep in their wallets for an apparently chic ingredient - dirt. For $110 each you can dine in four courses of favorites like the soil surprise, a dirt-dusted potato ball with a truffle center. Or if you're feeling gritty, try the soil sorbet. I say go for the fish soup. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

The Two-Way
4:27 am
Tue February 12, 2013

North Korean Nuke Test Seems Timed To Upstage Obama's State Of The Union

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.
Kyodo /Landov

Originally published on Tue February 12, 2013 7:06 am

Not only might North Korea's third underground explosion of an atomic device be a sign that it is closer to having a weapon that's light enough to be put on a missile, it seems to be a not-so-subtle message aimed at the U.S.

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Around the Nation
4:17 am
Tue February 12, 2013

Montana TV Station Warns Of Attacking Zombies

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne.

KRTV viewers in Great Falls, Montana were interrupted by a bizarre emergency message yesterday: Zombies On The Attack.

(SOUNDBITE OF EMERGENCY MESSAGE)

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: The bodies of the dead are rising from their graves and attacking the living...

Politics
1:47 am
Tue February 12, 2013

Obama Speech To Set Second Term's Tone

Originally published on Tue February 12, 2013 2:00 am

Transcript

LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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