Month: May 2021

Day X, Part 1: Shadow Army?

This episode contains strong language.  The mysterious story of a German soldier, a faked Syrian identity and a loaded gun in an airport bathroom cracks the door open to a network of far-right extremists inside the German military and the police. They are preparing for the day democracy collapses — a day they call Day…

The Saga of Ryanair Flight 4978

Last week, when the pilots on a commercial flight headed for Lithuania told passengers they were about to make an unexpected landing in the Belarusian capital of Minsk many were confused — except Roman Protasevich. The 26-year-old dissident journalist and one Belarus’s biggest enemies sensed what was about to happen. How and why did Belarus…

Why Hamas Keeps Fighting, and Losing

After 11 days of fighting over the skies of Israel and Gaza, a cease-fire between Hamas and Israel was announced last week. The conflict wrought devastation in Gaza. Yet Hamas’s leaders took to television and declared victory. We look at where the organization comes from and their objectives to understand why it has, for decades,…

A Cheerleader, a Snapchat Post and the Supreme Court

When Brandi Levy was 14, she posted an expletive-filled video to Snapchat, expressing her dismay at not making the varsity cheerleading squad. It got her suspended from cheerleading entirely for a year. Can a public school deal with off-campus speech in this way without infringing the First Amendment? The Supreme Court will decide. Guest: Adam…

The Crumbling of the N.R.A.

It had long appeared that the National Rifle Association was impervious to anything or anyone. Now, an investigation into financial misconduct accusations led by the New York attorney general’s office imperils the very existence of America’s most powerful gun rights group. We look at how a plan to circumvent this investigation through a bankruptcy filing…

The Sunday Read: ‘Neanderthals Were People, Too’

In the summer of 1856, workers quarrying limestone in a valley outside Düsseldorf, Germany, found an odd looking skull. It was elongated and almost chinless. William King, a British geologist, suspected that this was not merely the remains of an atypical human, but belonged to a typical member of an alternate humanity. He named the…

Presenting This American Life: “The Daily”

When our friends at This American Life made an episode called … wait for it! … “The Daily,” we knew we wanted to share it with you. It’s about life’s daily practices, and what you learn from doing a thing every day. Wait for the end. There’s a little surprise.  And if you want to…

Two Soldiers, Ten Years

This episode contains strong language and scenes of war that some may find distressing.  In 2010, James Dao, then a military affairs reporter for The New York Times, began following a battalion of U.S. soldiers headed for Afghanistan. Two soldiers caught his attention: Adrian Bonenberger, a single, 32-year-old captain, and Tamara Sullivan, a 30-year-old sergeant…

Netanyahu and Biden: A History

It has been more than a week since the latest escalation between Israel and Hamas, and President Biden has been taking a cautious approach. The president has stressed Israel’s right to defend itself, but he seems reluctant to place too much pressure on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel. Mr. Biden has known Mr. Netanyahu…

Nine Days in Gaza

“You never get used to the sound of bombings,” Rahf Hallaq tells us on today’s episode. Ms. Hallaq, an English language and literature student, lives in the northwestern area of Gaza City, where she shares a home with her parents and five siblings. She turns 22 next month. We talk with Ms. Hallaq about her…