The World on WLRN

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A one-hour, weekday radio news magazine offering a mix of news, features, interviews, and music from around the globe.

http://www.theworld.org/

The traffic in the tiny German neighborhood of Kolzenburg was mostly cyclists and sparrows when Alternative for Deutschland (AfD) state representative Birgit Bessin drove into town with a blue trailer hitched to her white Mercedes earlier this month.

Bessin isn't facing elections this year, but she says she is criss-crossing her district to get a feel for what voters are thinking.

“We want to speak to persons from the tiny, small, sweet villages who perhaps don’t come to our events in other states,” she says.

It takes a lot of courage to speak up in support of women and women’s rights in a male-dominated country like Afghanistan.

But that’s exactly what Sahar Fetrat did.

At an opening for a new bookstore in Kabul, the 22-year-old documentary filmmaker and women’s rights activist describes how she first got into filmmaking.

California emerges as a leader at climate summit

Sep 14, 2018

When President Donald Trump pulled the US out of the Paris climate change agreement last summer, cities, states and business leaders quickly tried to jump into the leadership void.  

Chief among them was California Gov. Jerry Brown, who announced just weeks later he would gather leaders from around the world for a high-level climate summit in San Francisco.

Kathy Kriger was a born diplomat who made her mark even at a young age. 

“She was voted the wittiest girl in our class,” said Diane Dwyer Rosa, who attended high school with Kriger in Lake Oswego, Oregon. “Always happy and funny and always had something funny to say or do, she was just a happy person.” 

About a decade ago, Rick Desautel, an American descendant of the Sinixt tribe of Canada, decided to challenge a declaration by the Canadian government — that the Sinixt in Canada were officially extinct.

The declaration had come after the last Sinixt member in British Columbia passed away in 1956. As a result, Sinixt descendants like Desautel who regularly crossed the US border into Canada lost their rights to traditional land claims in that country.

There's been a lot of criticism on social media about money being diverted a few weeks ago from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

The amount? About $10 million.

The World fact-checked this and located the congressional document to prove it.

On a muggy August morning, Angel Luis Bonilla and some friends were kibbitzing in a waiting room at 201 Varick Street in downtown Manhattan. The federal office building is where immigrants in detention in or around New York are normally taken for court hearings.

Bonilla and his buddies had come to support their friend Enrique, a 35-year-old undocumented immigrant from Mexico who was arrested in June.

"I’ve known him about five to six years. He's a hard-working man," said Bonilla, a retired worker for the city’s transit system.

Scientists say 25 years left to fight climate change

Sep 13, 2018

You can think of global warming kind of like popping a bag of popcorn in the microwave.

Anthropogenic, or human-caused, warming has been stoked by increasing amounts of heat-trapping pollution since the start of the industrial age more than 200 years ago. But that first hundred years or so was kind of like the first minute for that popcorn — no real sign of much happening.

Resty was desperate. She had fled Uganda and was in Pittsburgh when her toddler, Maria, got sick. They didn’t have insurance, and Resty felt hopeless. Then, while watching the news, she realized there was another option.

“I was seeing it on the news and internet,” says Resty. “And then I was like, ‘If those people can make it to Canada, I can too.’”

PRI is withholding Resty’s last name so she can speak without fear of affecting her chances at asylum.

Twenty-five-year-old Zahra is convinced she is not pretty.

First, it’s her eyes.

“I want to get rid of this extra skin,” she says, pinching the skin above her eyes. “It pains me to even look at it,” she adds, pulling at it with her fingers.

Then, there’s that nose. That “small, flat, unattractive nose,” as Zahra describes it. She wants a bigger one.

A year ago, Hurricane Harvey devastated parts of Houston and other cities in Texas. Thousands of families spent their days salvaging what they could from their homes.

Among them was Silvia and her family, who lost their apartment to the flooding. We met as Silvia spent a hot afternoon trying to save what the waters spared.

“We’re just here taking out, saving what we can,” she said.

It wasn’t much, apart from some shoes and a few chairs.

On a hot August day last year, President Donald Trump held a meeting with a group of his top military advisers at Camp David.

On the agenda was whether the US should increase its troops in Afghanistan. Trump’s position before his presidency was clear: The US should withdraw from Afghanistan.

 

Globally, people are living longer. What are the most compelling ways to ensure a sustainably healthy life? In this live-streamed event, author and speaker Deepak Chopra discussed the important connections between mind, immunity, genes and body.

Most summer days, 14-year-old Manal Taragroum says she would be stuck at home, helping with chores around the house.

But not today. That’s because the energetic teenager is one of 20 young girls who has been selected to participate in a tech camp where they are learning the fundamentals of social media, digital photography and even basic coding.

The last time Jewher Ilham saw her father in person was more than five years ago at the Beijing airport.

She was an 18-year-old college freshman when her dad had secured a position as a visiting scholar at Indiana University. Jewher planned to accompany him on the trip to America. She would visit the US for the first time, stay for a few weeks and then fly back to university in China. 

At least, that was the plan. 

“We got to the airport successfully and we checked our bags,” Ilham recounted. “We got our boarding passes. Everything seemed so smooth.” 

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