NPR Story
1:54 pm
Thu February 20, 2014

Death Toll Mounts In Ukraine

Medics and volunteers arrange a field hospital an hotel hall near Independence square in Kiev on February 20, 2014. (Genya Savilov/AFP/Getty Images)

The top medic for the protesters occupying central Kiev says at least 70 protesters have been killed in clashes with police in the Ukrainian capital.

The coordinator for the protesters’ medical team also says the number killed Thursday could well go even higher.

There was no way to independently confirm his statement. An AP reporter earlier in the day saw at least 21 bodies in Kiev’s central square.

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The Edge
12:49 pm
Thu February 20, 2014

USA Women Lose Gold To Canada In A Hockey Classic

The Canadian team celebrates Marie-Philip Poulin's winning overtime goal as American players try to recover from a game that seemed to be within their grasp in Sochi Thursday.
Doug Pensinger Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 21, 2014 4:25 am

With a 2-0 lead late in the game, it seemed like Team USA would finally overcome archrival Canada on hockey's largest stage Thursday, winning an Olympic gold medal that has eluded it for 16 years. But the gold medal went to Canada after a spirited comeback forced overtime.

The Canadians scored on a five-on-three power play, after a sequence of penalties on both teams, including a checking call on Team USA's Hilary Knight. Forward Marie-Philip Poulin scored on an assist from Laura Fortino. Under Olympic rules, the "golden goal" ended the game with a score of 3-2.

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Politics & Government
12:30 pm
Thu February 20, 2014

Oregon Won't Defend State's Ban On Gay Marriage

Originally published on Thu February 20, 2014 1:17 pm

Saying the state's ban on gay marriage could not withstand a federal constitutional challenge, Oregon's attorney general said they will no longer defend the ban in court.

The Oregonian reports that Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum made the announcement in a brief filed in U.S. District Court in Eugene, where the voter-approved 2004 amendment is being challenged.

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Movie Interviews
12:17 pm
Thu February 20, 2014

At Last, David O. Russell Is Making The Films He Was Meant To Make

A '70s con artist (Christian Bale, right) is forced to team up with an FBI agent (Bradley Cooper, left) in American Hustle, inspired by a real-life sting targeting corrupt politicians.
Francois Duhamel Columbia Pictures

Originally published on Tue February 25, 2014 2:25 pm

Filmmaker David O. Russell first talked with Fresh Air's Terry Gross back in 1994, and two decades later, he tells her: "It's taken me 20 years since I first spoke to you to really make the films that I think I was meant to make, and to be at the level of filmmaking and storytelling and writing that I think I had ever aspired to."

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The Two-Way
11:18 am
Thu February 20, 2014

Automated Landing System, Crew Fatigue, Eyed In UPS Plane Crash

A field north of the Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport where UPS flight 1354 crashed on August 16, 2013.
Joe Songer AL.COM/Landov

The crew of a United Parcel Service Airbus A300 freighter that crashed during an early morning landing at Birmingham, Ala. were forced to make a "non-precision approach" when a computerized landing system became overloaded, investigators told the NTSB on Thursday.

The plane crashed short of Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport in Birmingham, Ala., killing both the pilot and co-pilot.

The New York Times says:

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The Two-Way
10:57 am
Thu February 20, 2014

These Reindeer Really Do Shine, And It's For Their Own Good

His antlers are so bright.
Reindeer Herders' Association (of Finland)

Originally published on Tue February 25, 2014 7:23 am

Feeli the Finnish reindeer,

Had some very shiny horns ...

OK, we'll stop there.

Here's the news:

"Herders in Lapland are spraying their reindeer with reflective paint to help drivers see them in the dark," the BBC writes.

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The Two-Way
10:52 am
Thu February 20, 2014

5 Things To Know About Venezuela's Protest Leader

Leopoldo López, an ardent opponent of Venezuela's socialist government facing an arrest warrant after President Nicolas Maduro ordered his arrest on charges of homicide and inciting violence, kisses his wife Lilian Tintori, before turning himself in to authorities on Tuesday.
Leo Ramirez AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri February 21, 2014 3:07 am

If you've been following the crisis in Venezuela only peripherally, the name Leopoldo López must've come as a surprise.

During a major protest on Tuesday, he turned himself in to authorities in dramatic fashion. This picture of him saying goodbye to his wife cemented his place as the face of the opposition to the government of Nicolas Maduro:

It meant that López has, for now, replaced Henrique Capriles, who ran against Hugo Chávez and Maduro in presidential elections, as the symbolic head of the opposition.

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Europe
10:33 am
Thu February 20, 2014

Sochi Was Once A Vacation Spot Fit For A Dictator

A wax sculpture of Stalin sits behind the desk he used at the dacha. From the time he first began to visit the villa, Stalin was signing death warrants for his rivals — and living in fear of retribution.
Natalia Kolesnikova AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu February 20, 2014 5:02 pm

Long before it became an Olympic host city, Sochi was a favorite getaway for one of history's most ruthless dictators: Josef Stalin.

The Soviet leader had a villa built in the hills overlooking the Black Sea, and he visited it during some of the most tumultuous years of his reign.

The villa, known as Stalin's dacha, or summer house, was built in 1934, and he used it until the end of World War II in 1945. No Soviet or Russian leader after Stalin is known to have visited it.

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Shots - Health News
10:26 am
Thu February 20, 2014

Flu Strikes Younger Adults Hard This Year

Fredy DeLeon gets a flu shot at a Walgreens pharmacy in Concord, Calif., in January.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Thu February 20, 2014 11:42 am

This year's flu season is hitting younger and middle-aged adults unusually hard, federal health officials say.

More than 60 percent of flu patients who ended up in the hospital this year have been between the ages of 18 and 64. The proportion of young people among the hospitalized is much higher than usual, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Only about 35 percent of flu patients who were hospitalized in the previous three years fell into that age group, the CDC says.

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Jefferson Exchange | February 20, 2014 | 8:00
10:10 am
Thu February 20, 2014

Trying To Turn Bee Concern Into Legislation

Credit pdphoto.org

Aimee Code of Xerces Society talks about efforts to reform pesticide use that will help bees.

The killing of tens of thousands of bees in the Portland area last year sparked widespread concern about the use of pesticides. 

And the concern translated to regulation, but so far, no legislation.  A bill to toughen up some pesticide laws just got watered down in the Oregon legislature.

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