10:30am

Wed December 28, 2011
The Two-Way

'Dead By Morning' Facebook Post Leads To Woman's Rescue, Man's Arrest

Facebook.com

National media are catching up on a harrowing story from Utah, where police say a woman who had been kidnapped, raped and beaten for days was able to post a Christmas Eve message for help on Facebook that led to the rescue of her and her 17-month-old son, and the arrest of a man now being held on $1 million bail.

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10:20am

Wed December 28, 2011
World

Israelis Protest Strict Code Of Ultra-Orthodox Jews

An ultra-Orthodox Jewish man (l) and a secular man argue during a protest against the strict religious codes favored by the ultra-Orthodox in the Israeli city of Beit Shemesh.
STRINGER Reuters/Landov

According to Israel's President Shimon Peres, a fight is underway, for "the soul of the nation and the essence of the state." But the threat isn't coming from outside of Israel. It's over differing interpretations of Judaism.

Recently, a bespectacled eight year-old girl was filmed by a local TV station being harassed by ultra-Orthodox, or Haredi Jews, for, in their view, not dressing modestly enough. The episode took place in Beit Shemesh, a city between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem that has become a symbol of this growing battle in Israel.

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9:00am

Wed December 28, 2011
The Two-Way

VIDEO: Monks Brawl With Brooms In Bethlehem's Church Of The Nativity

There was a brawl today inside Bethlehem's Church of the Nativity.

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9:00am

Wed December 28, 2011
It's All Politics

Wavering In Iowa: Portraits Of Undecided Voters

Originally published on Wed December 28, 2011 9:09 am

Patrick Brehm
Becky Lettenberger NPR

As NPR's Becky Lettenberger and I take to the road in Iowa this week, we are collecting the words and images of Iowa Republicans still uncertain who they will vote for in next Tuesday's state GOP presidential caucuses.

Here's the first look at what we saw and heard Tuesday in two cities that hug the Mississippi River on the state's eastern border, Dubuque and Davenport.

We spoke with voters after a Newt Gingrich appearance in Dubuque during a Rotary Club meeting at a local country club.

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8:54am

Wed December 28, 2011
It's All Politics

Under Attack, Gingrich Struggles To Regain His Stride In Iowa

Originally published on Fri December 30, 2011 5:10 pm

Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich complained about negative ads against him during a campaign stop at the National Toy Farm Museum on Dec. 27 in Dyersville, Iowa.
Scott Olson Getty Images

If you're in Iowa this week, you'll need to watch out for campaign buses. Several Republican candidates are on bus tours of the state — including former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

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8:20am

Wed December 28, 2011
The Two-Way

Bird-Watchers Are All Aflutter: Asian Crane Shows Up In Tennessee

Originally published on Wed December 28, 2011 10:35 am

The surprise visitor: An Asian hooded crane that has shown up at the Hiwassee Refuge in Tennessee.
John Kuehnel Tennessee Sandhill Crane Festival

7:13am

Wed December 28, 2011
It's All Politics

In The Hunt For Votes, Romney Heads East To 2008 Iowa Stronghold

Originally published on Wed December 28, 2011 8:18 am

Mitt Romney speaks during a campaign stop Wednesday at Elly's Tea and Coffee in Muscatine, Iowa.
Chris Carlson Associated Press

On Wednesday morning, Mitt Romney was getting an early start to campaigning in eastern Iowa, meeting and greeting voters having breakfast or just getting a caffeine boost at Elly's Tea and Coffee in Muscatine.

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7:05am

Wed December 28, 2011
The Two-Way

Top Stories: Funeral For Kim Jong Il, Syria Releases Some Prisoners

Originally published on Wed December 28, 2011 7:47 am

6:55am

Wed December 28, 2011
It's All Politics

Immigration Emerges As Key Issue For Some Iowa Voters

Originally published on Wed December 28, 2011 8:33 am

Texas Gov. Rick Perry speaks at a campaign event at Clark Electric Co-op on Dec. 27 in Osceola, Iowa. Perry's stance on immigration has troubled some Iowa voters.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Campaign buses loaded with Republican presidential hopefuls and their entourages are rolling across Iowa as the candidates hope some face time with GOP voters will help boost their chances in the Jan. 3 caucuses.

The main issue for many Iowa voters is the economy. But there's a sleeper issue emerging: immigration reform.

Iowa's Hispanic population is surging and Republican candidates are struggling with how best to deal with voter concerns.

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6:54am

Wed December 28, 2011
Middle East

Iran Again Warns It Can Cut Off Strategic Oil Route

The chief of Iran's navy warned Wednesday that his country can easily close the strategic Strait of Hormuz, the Persian Gulf channel where a sixth of the world's oil flows.

It was the second such warning in two days — and a Saudi official said Gulf Arab nations are ready to step in and offset any potential loss of Iranian crude in the world markets.

On Tuesday, Iran's vice president, Mohamed Reza Rahimi, threatened to close the strait, cutting off oil exports, if the West imposes sanctions on Iran's oil shipments.

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