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5:46 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

In Israel, Rabbis Rank Among The Rich And Famous

Rabbi Yaacov Israel Ifargan is known as the 'X-ray' rabbi for what his followers say is his ability to "see right through" a person. According to Forbes in Israel, he is worth about $23 million, which makes him the country's sixth-richest rabbi.
Tsafrir Abayov AP

Originally published on Sun August 5, 2012 2:01 pm

Over the past year, Israelis have taken to the streets to protest the country's high cost of living. They've also directed their anger at a small group of business moguls who have used their close ties to government officials to gain control of large chunks of the Israeli economy.

Now, the Israeli edition of Forbes magazine has shed light on a surprising category of Israelis who have quietly also climbed to the top rung of society: multimillionaire rabbis.

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Music Interviews
5:08 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

Bibi Tanga: 'This Is A Band That Wants To Die'

Bibi Tanga (center) has embarked on a tour of the US with his band, The Selenites. Their new album 40 Degrees of Sunshine came out July 10.
Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 7:42 pm

Bibi Tanga is a true musical globe-trotter. Born in the Central African Republic to a family of diplomats, he spent most of his life following his father around the world. But Tanga says his journey has helped him to incorporate diverse genres into funky, multilingual songs that tackle themes well-hidden behind groovy hooks. Together with his band the Selenites, he is now touring the U.S. in support of his new album 40 Degrees of Sunshine.

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The Record
4:47 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

Feminist Punk Band, Imprisoned For Five Months, Gets Next Gig: Russian Courtroom

Members of the feminist punk band Pussy Riot, Nadezha Tolokonnikova (left), Yekaterina Samutsevich (center) and Maria Alyokhina, at a hearing in Moscow court on Monday.
Andrey Smirnov Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 30, 2012 5:46 pm

After more than five months in prison, some Russian dissidents are getting their day in court. The three young women are accused of being members of Pussy Riot, a feminist punk band that staged a protest against then presidential-candidate Vladimir Putin in February.

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Middle East
4:32 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

Is Assad Carving Out A Haven For Syria's Alawites?

A Syrian man holds a national flag bearing pictures of President Bashar Assad during a pro-regime protest to condemn a deadly attack in the central Midan district of Damascus on April 27.
Louai Beshara AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 30, 2012 9:04 pm

As fighting between the Syrian military and rebel fighters rages, concerns are growing about how the regime of President Bashar Assad might react if it becomes convinced it's about to lose power.

One theory involves the establishment of a breakaway region dominated by Syria's Alawite minority — which includes the Assad family — in the northwestern coastal mountains. Analysts say this would be a disaster both for Assad and the region, but it can't be completely ruled out.

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It's All Politics
4:17 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

Support For Same-Sex Marriage Could Be Official Democratic Stance

Originally published on Tue July 31, 2012 9:45 am

Democrats are on the path to including an endorsement of same-sex marriage for the first time in their official party platform.

NPR's Ari Shapiro reported Monday that the proposal has made it through an important Democratic committee.

The 15 Democrats who serve on the party's platform drafting committee voted unanimously to endorse same-sex marriage in the party's official agenda, says Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., who serves on the committee.

Frank recently married his partner.

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Law
4:14 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

Suspected Aurora Shooter Charged With 142 Offenses

Originally published on Mon July 30, 2012 5:46 pm

The man accused in the Colorado theater shooting faces a total of 142 charges — including 24 counts of first degree murder. James Holmes was in court again on Monday. Colorado Public Radio's Megan Verlee was there and speaks with Audie Cornish.

Law
4:14 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

Lawmakers Tangle Over Renewing Surveillance Law

Originally published on Mon July 30, 2012 5:46 pm

The Justice Department and the intelligence community say reauthorizing the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Amendments Act, which expires at the end of the year, is their top national security priority. But an interesting mix of senators are sounding alarms about whether the government is secretly gathering too much information on innocent Americans, and keeping it for far too long. They cite a newly declassified letter that exposes an incident where even the Obama administration acknowledges it went too far.

Presidential Race
4:14 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

Humor A Key Part Of Presidential Campaign Toolbox

Originally published on Mon July 30, 2012 5:46 pm

Appearances on late night TV have become a go-to campaign tool for presidential candidates looking to soften their image. But the candidate who arguably first turned late-night comedy into an effective platform was Richard Nixon in 1968. Audie Cornish talks with the producer from the comedy classic Laugh In about how the Nixon appearance came to be.

Asia
4:14 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

India's Huge Blackout Leaves Millions Without Power

Originally published on Mon July 30, 2012 5:46 pm

A massive power cut in India left more than 300 million people — about a quarter of the population — without electricity on Monday. The cause of the collapse of the northern Indian power grid is still being investigated, but resulted in blackouts across at least eight Indian states. With no lights or hot water at home, millions of Indians then had to face a long struggle to get to work because trains were stopped and roads were jammed by lack of power for stop lights.

Shots - Health Blog
4:02 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

Legal Battle Erupts Over Whose Plastic Consumers Should Trust

CamelBak-brand water bottles on display at an outdoor supply store in Arcadia, Calif., in 2008. The company removed BPA from the plastic in its bottles.
David McNew Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 30, 2012 5:46 pm

In 2007, Eastman Chemical began marketing a tough new BPA-free plastic called Tritan. Business was good, says Lucian Boldea, a vice president at Eastman.

"We were able to make the statement that our product is not made with BPA and would release data to consumers to support that fact," he says.

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