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In eastern Libya, anti-government rebels say NATO airstrikes helped them push pro-government forces out of a strategic city 100 miles from the rebel stronghold of Benghazi. NATO warplanes also destroyed pro-government tanks shelling the Western city of Misrata.

As the fighting continues, a delegation from the African Union arrived in the Libyan capital Tripoli Sunday in search of a cease-fire agreement.

Outmatched In Terms Of Firepower

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LINDA WERTHEIMER, Host:

Outside the danger zone, people are trying to resume normal lives, but it's not so easy, as NPR's John Burnett reports from the city of Soma.

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LINDA WERTHEIMER, Host:

That has the local community on edge, as NPR's Joel Rose reports.

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LINDA WERTHEIMER, Host:

Mike McGovern, Yale professor and West Africa specialist, remembers Ivory Coast in calmer, more prosperous times, when the country was flush with cocoa profits and the city of Abidjan was at its busy peak. He described it for us this way.

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LINDA WERTHEIMER, Host:

What is your sense about what happened in the vicinity of the Golf Hotel?

Even in a week dominated by news about this year's federal budget, Republican House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan still managed to cause a stir with his budget proposal for next year.

His proposed 2012 budget been called everything from brave to draconian for its willingness to discuss entitlement cuts and, well, its willingness to discuss entitlement cuts.

Reason.com editor Nick Gillespie has added up what he calls the good, bad and ugly of Ryan's plan, and tells NPR's Linda Wertheimer the congressman has set the tone for next year's budget debate.

Director Joe Wright's new film, Hanna, tells the coming-of-age story of a teenage girl raised by a single father in a remote Finnish forest.

Oh, yes, and did we mention — Hanna's father raised her to be a stone-cold assassin.

No standard teen heroine, Hanna — played by the Irish actress Saoirse Ronan — spends most of the film on the run, pursued by CIA agents and swiftly dispatching anyone who gets in her way.

This action-thriller is quite a departure for Wright, who's known for period pieces like Pride and Prejudice and Atonement.

In the spring of 1930, a biologist named Israel Aharoni ventured into Syria on a mission. He was searching for a rare golden mammal.

Its name in Arabic translates roughly as "Mr. Saddlebags." Thanks to Aharoni, the little rodent with the big cheeks can now be found in many grade-school classrooms, running on a little wheel in a little cage.

That's right. Aharoni's big find was the hamster.

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LIANE HANSEN, host:

Michelangelo may be best known as the artist who painted the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel and sculpted the statue of David. He was also a poet - and we didn't even know it.

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Ohio Valley ReSource

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New data from the 2017 National Survey on Drug Use and Health show a rare bright spot amid the opioid crisis. Fewer high schoolers in the region appear to be using opioids.

School officials in the Ohio Valley want to continue that trend with more school-based programs designed to help prevent substance use disorders. But these are not the same drug prevention programs many people remember from their school days.

 

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The federal government released today a report on substance abuse and mental illness across the country. Dr. Elinor McCance-Katz  leads the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. She said there are some positive changes.

“One of the most important findings from this national survey and data set is the very steep decline in new users of heroin from 2016, 170,000 new users of heroin, this dropped by more than half to 81,000 new users in 2017.”

In spite of the good news, the study showed there are still nearly 900,000 heroin users in the United States. 

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William Suan is no stranger to the problems abandoned oil and gas wells can cause.

“It’s just an eyesore,” he said, standing inside a barn on his cattle ranch near Lost Creek, West Virginia. “I had to fence one off because it’s leaking now.”

There are five inactive wells on his land, most installed in the ’60s and ’70s, and the companies that owned the wells have long since gone out of business.

 

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