Ten years after the Iraq War began, NPR is catching up with people we encountered during the conflict. Back in 2008, NPR's armored car was targeted with a so-called sticky bomb in Baghdad. Ali Hamdani, an Iraqi who worked for NPR as a translator and producer, narrowly escaped. Shortly afterward, he left Iraq for the Unites States as a refugee.
Ten years ago, the United States invaded Iraq and began what the Bush administration said would be a short war.
But it wasn't until December 2011 that the United States officially ended its military mission there.
In addition to the tens of thousands of Iraqis who died, the war cost the lives of nearly 4,500 American service members, and wounded more than 32,200 men and women in America's military. Many of the wounded vets have faced — or are still facing — long waits for their disability and other benefits to begin.
I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, the president of Xavier University of Louisiana has been on the job for 45 years now and he's guided the school through many storms, including Hurricane Katrina. Norman Francis will be with us in just a few minutes to share his wisdom about higher education and other issues. But first, a hot button issue we've been following had its day in the Supreme Court yesterday.
Xavier University of Louisiana has a number of distinctions. It is the country's only historically black, Catholic University. Plus, it's one of the leading universities when it comes to sending African-American students on to medical school. And at 45 years, no other university's president has served longer than Xavier's Norman Francis.
Most people are aware of the positive effects of breast-feeding. But in many areas of the country, breast-feeding is not the cultural norm, and there's little support available for mothers. Host Michel Martin talks with Kimberly Seals Allers, the co-author of a new report on so-called "first food deserts," and a nursing mother, Areti Gourzis.
"It could have been a very bad day for everyone here."
That's University of Central Florida Police Chief Richard Beary's conclusion after seeing the evidence that a former student at the school "drafted plans to kill others in his dormitory but changed his mind early Monday and took only his own life," The Orlando Sentinel writes.
At least seven Marines are dead and another seven are injured after an accident Monday night in Nevada in which a mortar round exploded inside an artillery tube, military officials tell NPR's Tom Bowman.
The Marines were taking part in a live-fire exercise, those officials say. "Shell fragments, I'm told, killed almost three [Marines] immediately," Tom says. The others died before they could be evacuated to a hospital.
The Morris Missionary Baptist Church is nestled down a red dirt road, in Morris, Ga., set among pine trees near the Alabama state line. Next to the small white church lies its most recent grave site: that of Charles Foster Jr.
While the mass killings in Newtown, Conn., and Aurora, Colo., garnered a frenzy of news coverage, statistically, they are not the norm. Each year, thousands of gun homicides in the U.S. — 11,000 in 2010 alone — attract little or no media attention.