A spry 80-year-old cruises through the thick vegetation of western Borneo, or western Kalimantan, as it's known to Indonesians. Dressed in faded pinstripe slacks and a polo shirt, Layan Lujum carries a large knife in his hand. The chief of the island's Sekendal village is making his morning rounds.
Layan is a member of an indigenous ethnic group called the Dayaks, who once had a reputation as fierce headhunters. As on most mornings, his first job on a recent day is to tend to his rubber trees.
The next few days may tell us a lot about the case against Dominique Strauss-Kahn. The former International Monetary Fund chief is due back in court on Tuesday, and prosecutors in New York are weighing whether to go forward in spite of big questions about the credibility of Strauss-Kahn's accuser.
The man who will make that call is Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. It may be the hardest decision he's faced since taking office 20 months ago.
The Obama administration on Thursday said it would review the deportation cases of 300,000 illegal immigrants.
The policy might make a difference to thousands of undocumented immigrants who came to the United States as children because the administration wants to put high priority on removing convicted criminals, and low priority on cases that involve people who pose no security threat.
Heavy two-way gunfire and mortar rounds have been heard in Tripoli, as rebels inch closer to the Libyan capital from the western mountains.
In the west, rebels control the road leading to the border with Tunisia. To the east, they control Misrata and Zlitan. Since taking the city of Gheryan, rebel forces have cut off the road from the south.
"Tripoli is essentially being strangled," says NPR's Lourdes Garcia-Navarro.
Say you own a house in Gainesville, Fla., or St. Paul, Minn. It cost you $172,000 — that's the median sales price of a single family home in the United States. You put 20 percent down when you bought the house, and you're able to make your monthly payments — but just barely. This property is your little slice of the American dream.
Now what if someone tells you the plan is to raise your interest rate, cut your house value and eliminate the tax deduction you get for mortgage interest?
A couple weeks ago, Katie Eastman was asleep at her boyfriend's place in Chicago. She had the night off from her job as a reporter at WOI-ABC 5 in Des Moines, Iowa. She'd been on the job about two months, after graduating from college in the spring.
"I woke up to a barrage of voicemails, text messages, tweets" she says. One message, from a friend across the country, said only, "Katie. I just saw everything. I hope you're all right. Call me."
As she was sleeping, Eastman had just broken into the national spotlight.
Rebels in Libya are tightening their grip on territory they've seized from forces loyal to Moammar Gadhafi. They are fighting battles in coastal cities around the capital of Tripoli, capturing the main square in the strategic western city of Zawiya after more than a week of heavy fighting.
NPR has not independently confirmed wire reports that the rebels control Zawiya, but a victory in that city would be an important boost for the rebels as they try to tighten the noose on Gadhafi's stronghold in Tripoli, just 30 miles to the east.
Dominique Strauss-Kahn is due back in court next Tuesday. The sexual assault case against him has been on shaky ground since prosecutors announced they had serious concerns about the credibility of his accuser. But there's one person who's determined to prosecute: the woman's lawyer, Kenneth Thompson. Ailsa Chang of member station WNYC profiles Thompson, a federal prosecutor turned victim's lawyer. Note: This report contains graphic language.
Texas governor Rick Perry was at the center of the political news cycle this week. He's promising to bring Texas-style prosperity to Washington. D.C. NPR's John Burnett takes us around the candidate's home state to see what Perry's supporters and critics think prosperity looks like.
Financial turmoil in Europe and weak economic data in the U.S. were the backdrop for a week of high-profile politicking by several major candidates for president in 2012. NPR Senior Washington Editor Ron Elving joins guest host Jacki Lyden to recap the week in politics.