NPR News

A bipartisan group of members of Congress led by Rep. Mike Honda, D-Calif., has called on Defense Secretary Ash Carter to apologize to American veterans who were used in race-based chemical weapons experiments.

The Department of Defense says that the Army's Dugway Proving Ground in Utah failed to completely kill samples of anthrax in May before it shipped them to dozens of other labs around the world.

NPR's Geoff Brumfiel reports that the samples of anthrax the Pentagon thought were dead, were still alive:

The argument over genetically modified food has been dominated, in recent years, by a debate over food labels — specifically, whether those labels should reveal the presence of GMOs.

The battle, until now, has gone state by state. California refused to pass a labeling initiative, but Maine, Connecticut and Vermont have now passed laws in favor of GMO labeling.

Releasing details — and photographs — from the autopsy of Sandra Bland, officials in Waller County, Texas, say that the cause of death for Bland, a black woman who died in the county's jail, was suicide by hanging. Officials also say she had marijuana in her system.

The case has drawn national scrutiny as Bland, who had driven to Texas from Illinois, died in police custody three days after she was pulled over by a state trooper for allegedly failing to signal a lane change. She was 28.

The Justice Department's top watchdog said Thursday a newly released legal opinion undermines his independence and makes it more difficult to do his job.

Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz said the memo will delay access to grand jury, wiretap and other documents he needs to investigate problems at the Justice Department, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the FBI and elsewhere.

Updated at 11:30 p.m. ET

Turkey has agreed to allow anti-ISIS coalition warplanes to begin using the air base at Incirlik in the country's east to carry out airstrikes against the extremist group in neighboring Syria, NPR has confirmed.

The Army is not happy about armed civilians who have been appearing at recruiting stations in several states in the wake of the Chattanooga shootings, ostensibly to help guard against such attacks.

Police officers have to make complicated, split-second decisions every day — and whether or not to chase a fleeing suspect is no exception. And they often have to make this decision while driving a car at very high speeds.

Kansas City area police chief Steve Beamer says they don't make it lightly. "We have to continually balance the need to apprehend that individual who chooses to flee against the safety of the public that may be at risk because of the pursuit," Beamer says.

It's true that being overweight or obese is a leading risk factor for developing Type 2 diabetes.

But attention, skinny and normal-weight people: You may be vulnerable, too.

Lots of lifestyle choices influence the risk of diabetes: everything from whether you smoke to how much you exercise (or don't). It turns out, what you choose to drink is also a risk factor.

When Jackline Mumbua decided to go solar, she knew the cost would be steep. The 35-year-old housewife in Machakos, Kenya, can barely cover the expenses of raising three school-age children on the little money her husband earns driving a motorcycle taxi. They have no savings. It took her family nearly two years to pay, in monthly installments, the $55 for a small rooftop solar panel.

She dressed up in her mother's lace blouse and wore her jewels. She and her two sisters were going to get her picture taken at a studio in Benin, Nigeria. She struck a pose. The year was 1950 and she was 16 years old.

Flash forward 65 years. Stella Osarhiere Gbinigie is in Washington, D.C., this month. She is now 80. And she comes face-to-face with her youthful portrait, hanging on the walls of the Smithsonian's National Museum of African Art. She had never seen the original hand-colored portrait until just this past Tuesday.

President Obama leaves Thursday night on a trip that will take him back to his father's homeland, while at the same time making him the first sitting president to visit two key East African nations: Kenya and Ethiopia.

The president's first stop is Kenya. He will not visit his father's ancestral village, administration officials say, citing security and logistical reasons. But he will meet privately with relatives, who may well include his father's second wife; Obama's step-grandmother, known as Mama Sarah; and his half-sister Auma Obama.

If you have a disability in the U.S., you're twice as likely to be poor as someone without a disability. You're also far more likely to be unemployed. And that gap has widened in the 25 years since the landmark Americans with Disabilities Act was enacted.

"Every man, woman and child with a disability can now pass through once-closed doors into a bright new era of equality, independence and freedom," President George H.W. Bush said when he signed the bill into law on July 26, 1990.

A Colorado jury cleared the way for the second phase of the sentencing process for James Holmes, who was found guilty of killing 12 people and injuring 70 more in a shooting rampage at an Aurora, Colo., movie theater. One week after convicting Holmes, the jury confirmed in a unanimous finding Thursday that he's eligible for the death penalty.

The jury said that when Holmes opened fire in a crowded theater in 2012, he acted in "extreme indifference to the value of human life generally."

There's a battle brewing behind the scenes to keep health plans affordable for consumers. The Obama administration weighed in this week, sending letters to insurance regulators in every state and Washington, D.C., that ask them to take a closer look at rate requests before granting them.

Under the Affordable Care Act, state agencies largely retain the right to regulate premiums. So far only a handful have finalized premiums for the coming year, for which enrollment begins in November.

Long before Benjamin Carson was a Republican presidential candidate, he was a hero and a role model.

Congress is one tiny step closer to funding America's highways, as the Senate decided Wednesday night to open debate on their transportation bill as the July 31 deadline looms. The Highway Trust Fund has been in dire straits the last few years, spending more than it's taking in. Because it gets its money from the federal gas tax, the trust fund has suffered as cars have grown more fuel-efficient and some Americans have cut back on their driving.

As a subway train left the L'Enfant Plaza station in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday, a man on board realized he had just missed his stop.

Instead of doing what most of us would do — ride to the next stop and get on the next train going in the opposite direction — he decided to pull the emergency release.

Along with that version events, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority released a video that shows the man pry the doors open and then, with his child in tow, run away from the train.

NASA's planet-hunting Kepler Telescope has spotted the first roughly Earth-sized world orbiting in the "Goldilocks zone" of another star – offering perhaps the best bet so far for life elsewhere in the universe.

A year on Kepler-452b, which is about 1,400 light years from us in the constellation Cygnus, is 385 days, meaning its orbit is just a bit farther away from its star than the Earth is from the sun. That places it squarely within what planetary scientists call the habitable zone, or "Goldilocks" zone — not too cold and not too hot.

Anyone who's fought cancer knows that it's not just scary, but pricey, too.

"A lot of my patients cry — they're frustrated," says Dr. Ayalew Tefferi, a hematologist at the Mayo Clinic. "Many of them spend their life savings on cancer drugs and end up being bankrupt."

The average U.S. family makes $52,000 annually. Cancer drugs can easily cost a $120,000 a year. Out-of-pocket expenses for the insured can run $25,000 to $30,000 — more than half of a typical family's income.

In a development that comes after a German firm was reportedly close to reaching a deal to buy the Financial Times Group from the Pearson publishing company, the Financial Times will instead be bought by Japanese media company Nikkei, for 844 million pounds ($1.3 billion) in cash.

Earlier Thursday, the Financial Times itself had reported that the newspaper's publisher was on the verge of being sold to German media group Alex Springer. Other reports had suggested that Bloomberg or Thomson Reuters were potential buyers.

A lot of people seem to want to bite Donald Trump's head off these days. For those riled up by the Republican presidential candidate's incendiary comments of late, artist Lauren Garfinkel offers up this food for thought:

Yep, that's the Donald's likeness carved into a circus peanut — those marshmallow candies shaped like the legume. The orange hue, Garfinkel says, reminded her of Trump's signature tan.

Secretary of State John Kerry and Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz defended a deal reached with Iran over its nuclear program before skeptical lawmakers during a hearing of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Thursday.

Sen. Bob Corker, the committee chairman, opened the hearing by firing some shots.

Amnesty International has identified what it says is an "unprecedented spike" in executions in Iran in recent months, writing in a new report that at least 743 people may have been put to death in 2014 and nearly 700 more since the beginning of the year.

An interesting immigration case is winding its way through a federal court in Austin, Texas: A group of mothers has filed suit against the chief of the state's Department of State Health Services Vital Statistics Unit, because it has refused to give their U.S.-born children birth certificates.

The issue here is not whether or not these children are U.S. citizens. They are and that's made plain by the 14th Amendment of the Constitution, which says anyone born in the U.S. is automatically a citizen.

Greek lawmakers have approved a set of overhauls that were the last obstacles standing between Athens and a desperately needed 86 billion euro line of credit, which is being fronted by creditors along with a demand for domestic reforms.

The latest measures include a restructuring of the banking and judicial systems, passed easily (230-63 with five abstentions) despite thousands of anti-austerity protesters demonstrating loudly outside the Parliament building.

Medical residents are the tweeners of health care.

They've got their medical degrees but still haven't finished the training they need to go forth and practice their chosen specialties.

Talking to residents is one way to get a bead on where medicine may be headed. Medscape, an online news source for health professionals, just released a survey of more than 1,700 medical residents that asked a slew of questions about their hopes, everyday experience on the job and finances.

Sultan Mahmud's pink shorts revealed his new prosthetic leg made of plastic and metal. The boyish 20-year-old gripped a railing and stepped forward with feet in blue sneakers. The sweltering spring afternoon marked the first time Mahmud walked without crutches since his motorbike accident in 2013. His crushed left leg was amputated above the knee, and he remained bedridden in a hospital most of last year.

Fast-moving wildfires in Montana and California have scorched thousands of acres and triggered evacuations.

NBC News has a bit more on the fire at Montana's Glacier National Park:

"The Reynolds Creek Wildland Fire was first reported about 6 p.m. ET on the east side of Glacier National Park, according to a news release by the National Parks Service.

I can remember the weeks before starting school at Skidmore College, furiously trying to finish Gregory Howard Williams' memoir, Life on the Color Line. The book had been assigned as our freshman reading assignment — part of the First-Year Experience at the liberal arts school in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.

Four years later, Williams spoke at our graduation.

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