Earlier this week the Japanese government announced plans to spend $500 million on a new effort to build a frozen wall to stabilize the Fukishima Daiichi nuclear plant, the site of the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl. Arjun Makhijani, an engineer specializing in nuclear fission and the president of the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research, explains how that frozen wall would work.
Physician Hadi Yaziji was born and raised in Syria. He now lives in Miami, Florida where he’s been following the news in Syria through the press and through conversations with friends and family still living there. As heart-breaking as the humanitarian crisis is, he feels strongly that a U.S. intervention in Syria would be disastrous. He explains why.
Steve Fainaru, senior writer for ESPN has been covering the NFL's battle over concussions extensively. He’s the co-author of the forthcoming book “League of Denial.” He breaks down the implications of the leagues $765 million settlement with players.
Ahmed Daoud, a Takeaway listener in Minneapolis, experienced U.S. intervention firsthand during the Gulf War. That experience has shaped his idea of what U.S. intervention can accomplish. The Iraq and Afghanistan Wars, however, have changed his perspective.
As Congress contemplates another potential conflict in the Middle East, the next few days will be a moment for you to hear from your elected representatives. Senator John McCain (R-AZ) speaks with Takeaway Washington correspondent Todd Zwillich. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) discusses his perspective on potential U.S. involvement in Syria. Congressman Charles Rangel (D-NY) also weighs in on the Syrian conflict, and calls for an international response to the country's civil war.
Bill Keller, former executive editor of The New York Times reflects on the similarities between Iraq and Syria. UPDATE: Secretary of State John Kerry addressed the world on Friday afternoon, saying that the United States has "high confidence" that the regime of Bashar al-Assad carried out a chemical attack last week outside of the Syrian capital of Damascus. Kerry said that the U.S. government now knows that at least 1,429 Syrians were killed in the attack, including at least 426 children.
Army psychiatrist Major Nidal Hasan was sentenced to death for the 2009 the Ft. Hood shooting rampage that killed 13 people. If Hasan is put to death, he would become the first military service member to be executed since 1961. Geoffrey S. Corn, a former Army prosecutor and defense lawyer, looks at why there have been no military executions in the last 50 years—and whether Hasan's case could change history.
In response to reports that the Obama administration was considering military strikes on Syria, Iranian officials issued a stark warning against U.S. involvement in the region, saying any military strike on Syria would lead to Iran launching a retaliatory attack on Israel fanned by “the flames of outrage.” Afshon Ostovar, Iran analyst with CNA, a not-for-profit research and analysis organization, explains what's behind this rhetoric.
What exactly would a U.S. response in Syria entail remains unclear. Ambassador Kurt Volker, former United States Permanent Representative to NATO, and Phyllis E. Oakley, former U.S. Assistant Secretary of State and adjunct lecturer at Johns Hopkins School, consider likely possible U.S. responses.
A complaint filed with the Federal Trade Commission last week claims that many mobile apps claiming to be educational are not. Dr. Melissa Morgenlander is an educational consultant and curriculum developer. She founded the blog IQ Journals, where she shares her experiences using technology with her own children. She joins us to discuss the evolution of children's media and what actually constitutes an educational app.
Earlier this week President Obama announced his intent to drastically overhaul Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Congress is now considering bills that would phase out Fannie and Freddie over the next five years and shrink the government’s role in guaranteeing mortgage securities. Representative Michael Capuano (D-MA), ranking member on the House Financial Services subcommittee on housing and insurance, and Brett Barry, associate broker with HomeSmart in Phoenix, Arizona, explain.
Years after the Vietnam War, PTSD is now a household term. Mary McGriff is a retired Captain in the United States Air Force. She served at Balad Air Force base in Iraq in 2004. Douglas Howell was a Marine Corpsman in Vietnam in 1966 and 1967. These are two veterans of two very different wars, and they are separated by nearly 30 years. Today they share their experience with PTSD.
On Tuesday, the State Department advised all Americans in Yemen to leave the country because of "the continued potential for terrorist attacks." Yalda Hakim, a BBC World News correspondent, has done extensive reporting in Yemen for BBC World News. Gregory Johnsen is author of “The Last Refuge: Yemen, Al Qaeda, and America's War in Arabia.” Johnsen and Hakim join The Takeaway to provide an update on combating the war on terror in Yemen.
It's thought that Albert Einsten once said, “If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?” Well, Einstein’s endorsement of the cluttered desk now has the backing of a team of researchers at the University of Minnesota. Ryan Rahinel is the author of a new study on orderliness, decision-making and creativity. He joins The Takeaway to discuss his findings about messy desks and the research behind it.
Four years ago this November, Major Nidal Malik Hasan opened fire on soldiers at the Fort Hood Army Base in Killeen, Texas, killing 13 people and injuring many more. Today, Major Hasan’s trial begins. The Army has already spent more than $5 million on the case. But there are other reasons why this case is unprecedented. Geoffrey S. Corn, a former Army prosecutor and defense lawyer and a professor at the South Texas College of Law, explains.
Christine Montross, assistant professor of psychiatry at Brown University, is a practicing psychiatrist who focuses on the most severe cases. Her patients ingest knives, nails and light-bulbs, and suffer from seizures and hallucinations and experience psychosis. She’s the author of “Falling into the Fire: A Psychiatrist’s Encounters with the Mind in Crisis.” She joins The Takeaway to discuss mental illness over the last 100 years and the strides that still need to be made.
Congress has stuck by its promise not to bail out Detroit in the wake of its bankruptcy filing. It’s a position that has Dan Kildee, a Democratic Congressman from Flint, Michigan, infuriated. The federal government has spent more than $700 billion bailing out banks and the auto industry. So, he asks, why can’t it bail out Detroit?
On Wednesday, Congress took up a controversial amendment designed to curb the NSA’s powers, but the bill was defeated in the House of Representatives in a vote of 205-to-217. The legislation would have limited the agency's ability to collect details by cutting funding to the program. Republican Congressman David Schweikert, representing Arizona’s 6th District was one of the bill’s supporters. He joins The Takeaway to discuss his support for the legislation and what the possible next steps may be.
Palm oil is an increasingly ubiquitous, yet nearly invisible, substance. Consumers can find it in everything from Crest toothpaste and Gillette shaving cream to Nestle and Kraft food products. Benjamin Skinner, reporter for Bloomberg Businessweek and senior fellow at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism at Brandeis University, says that rising demand for the product has masked the severe human rights abuses behind its harvest.
It's a story that has scandalized India—a free school lunch program for poor children may have resulted in the death of more than 20 young students.The possibility of deliberate contamination, or at best reckless disregard of the safety of children, is being reported. Joining us to discuss this is Shoba Narayan a freelance journalist based in India.