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NPR News Investigations
5:25 am
Tue June 23, 2015

The VA's Broken Promise To Thousands Of Vets Exposed To Mustard Gas

Three test subjects enter a gas chamber, which will fill with mustard gas, as part of the military's secret chemical warfare testing in March 1945.
Courtesy of Edgewood Arsenal

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 11:39 am

In secret chemical weapons experiments conducted during World War II, the U.S. military exposed thousands of American troops to mustard gas.

When those experiments were formally declassified in the 1990s, the Department of Veterans Affairs made two promises: to locate about 4,000 men who were used in the most extreme tests, and to compensate those who had permanent injuries.

But the VA didn't uphold those promises, an NPR investigation has found.

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NPR Story
5:02 am
Tue June 23, 2015

Church Tragedy Inspires Many To Learn More About Charleston's History

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 8:10 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR Story
5:02 am
Tue June 23, 2015

Musicians Deny Requests To Allow Their Music To Be Streamed

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 8:10 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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NPR Story
5:02 am
Tue June 23, 2015

Authorities Find Items Linked To New York Prison Escapees

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 8:10 am

Copyright 2015 North Country Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.northcountrypublicradio.org/.

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

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History
5:02 am
Tue June 23, 2015

School Scrambles To Preserve Newly Discovered Chalkboards From 1917

An untouched chalkboard from 1917 was found behind a classroom wall at Emerson High School in Oklahoma City.
Jacob McCleland KGOU

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 8:10 am

Math teacher Sherry Read's classroom is a total mess. The students are gone for the summer, and light fixtures dangle from the ceiling. The floor has a layer of dust. Down the hallway, workers make a racket while they renovate the school, which dates back to the 1890s. They're working in what has become an archaeological site.

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Shots - Health News
5:02 am
Tue June 23, 2015

Take A Hike To Do Your Heart And Spirit Good

Katherine Streeter for NPR

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 8:26 am

Fryman Canyon is one of those special places in the city of Los Angeles — a bit of country and canyon nestled just off the crest of Mulholland Drive, with gorgeous views of the valley and mountains.

It's favored by the canine set — my two dogs love it here — and on any given morning I'm sure to run into fellow canyon lovers, like Stacy Maes and her energetic weimaraner, Astrid.

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Parallels
5:02 am
Tue June 23, 2015

China's Island-Building Has Neighbors On Edge, But Tensions May Be Easing

Sun Jianguo, left, from the Chinese People's Liberation Army Navy, chats with U.S. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter in May during the ministerial luncheon at the 14th Asia Security Summit in Singapore. Each country has grown increasingly wary of the other's actions an interests in the South China Sea.
Roslan Rahman AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 9:27 am

Chinese and American officials are deep into their annual meeting this week in Washington, hashing out the nations' complex relationship. In addition to many economic and strategic issues, they'll discuss China's remarkable island-building in the South China Sea.

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U.S.
5:02 am
Tue June 23, 2015

How Fracking Is Fueling A Power Shift From Coal To Gas

Bill Pentak of Panda Power Funds (left), Plant Manager John Martin (center) and Construction Manager Rob Risher (right) stand in front of the construction site for the new Panda Liberty gas power plant in Towanda, Penn. The plant, expected to come online in early 2016, was deliberately sited on top of the Marcellus Shale to take advantage of the cheap, abundant gas.
Marie Cusick WITF

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 8:10 am

When you flip on a light switch, odds are, you're burning coal. But as the fracking boom continues to unleash huge quantities of natural gas, the nation's electric grid is changing. Power plants are increasingly turning to this low-cost, cleaner-burning fossil fuel.

Bill Pentak stands in the middle of a construction site, looking up at his company's latest project towering overhead — a new natural gas power plant.

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Shots - Health News
12:03 am
Tue June 23, 2015

Fraud Still Plagues Medicare's Prescription Drug Program

iStockphoto

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 11:39 am

Fraud and abuse continue to dog Medicare's popular prescription drug program, despite a bevy of initiatives launched to prevent them, according to two new reports by the inspector general of Health and Human Services.

Their release follows the arrests of 44 pharmacy owners, doctors and others, who last week were accused of bilking the program, known as Part D.

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The Salt
7:19 pm
Mon June 22, 2015

Local Food Is Still A Niche. Can It Grow Beyond That?

Elk Grove, Calif., is a suburb of Sacramento, about 15 miles from the city center. This 14-square mile view of the city was photographed on Apr. 23, 2015.
Courtesy of Planet Labs

Originally published on Tue June 23, 2015 10:40 am

Local food enthusiasts have been trying to make the case that buying food from farmers nearby supports local economies, boosts food security and is better for the environment.

But so far, "local" food still makes up a pretty small fraction of what Americans eat. And given that most agriculture in the U.S. is geared toward producing food crops — from corn to soybeans to almonds — for the global market, it doesn't seem likely that will change.

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