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It has been a month since more than 130 children were murdered in an attack on a school in Pakistan. The government has responded with draconian measures; this includes victimizing the large number of Afghans living in Pakistan.

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One is a pioneering fighter pilot, another is a decorated intelligence agent and the third is a celebrated film director. Right now, all three are sitting in Russian jails.

The cases are not directly related, but all three are citizens of neighboring countries in conflict with Russia. Two are from Ukraine, arrested after Russia's annexation of Crimea and the war with Russian-backed separatists in Ukraine's eastern provinces. The third is from the Baltic nation of Estonia.

The rate of recent discoveries about the human microbiome has been dizzying. And Rob Knight wants to crank up the pace.

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Almost as soon as the Oscar nominations were announced this week, many people were pointing out an uncomfortable fact. Every director nominated is a white male. All the nominees for lead and supporting actor are white.

The war in Syria has been raging for nearly four years and it's been challenging for diplomats to get warring sides to agree on even temporary truces.

The U.N. envoy is pressing ahead on that front, while Russia tries to play peacemaker. Russia is inviting the parties to Moscow this month, but some opposition groups won't go to a country that has been backing Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Google announced this week they're ending individual sales of the much celebrated, and maligned, Google Glass. And as we reported last week, a recent Fortune study found relatively low interest in wearable gadgets.

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In the border town of Calexico, California, the FBI has launched a federal investigation into the police department. Jill Replogle has been reporting on the investigation for member station KPBS.

Greek authorities have detained four terrorism suspects including a man thought to have links to a foiled terror plot in Belgium.

MTV Pimps Cars, Brazil Pimps Trash Carts

Jan 17, 2015

The carts that garbage pickers wheel down the streets of Sao Paulo often look as if they came from the Museum of Funky Art. Colorful cartoon faces — with bulging eyes, flared nostrils and thick lips — peer from the sides of the metal and wooden carts.

French authorities have approved secret burials for the two brothers who were killed by police following their attack on the offices of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.

Mayors in two French cities "begrudgingly" agreed to secret burials of Said and Cherif Kouachi who carried out a shooting spree at the magazine on Jan. 7 and eluded police for three days in a rampage that killed 17 people, The Associated Press says.

The undersea train tunnel that connects England and France has been closed until further notice after a fire broke out on a truck that was being transported through the Channel Tunnel, triggering an alarm and suspending all passenger and freight service.

There were no reports of injuries.

"Rail passengers are advised to expect significant delays whilst the vehicle is being recovered and fumes are cleared from the tunnels," the police said in an emailed statement reported by Reuters.

According to Reuters:

Fresh Air Weekend highlights some of the best interviews and reviews from past weeks, and new program elements specially paced for weekends. Our weekend show emphasizes interviews with writers, filmmakers, actors, and musicians, and often includes excerpts from live in-studio concerts. This week:

The Magic Of The 'Boyhood' Experiment: Time And Patience: If the story fell apart after 12 years of filming, it would have been a "real drag," says Patricia Arquette, and a "colossal waste of time," says Ethan Hawke. Instead, it won three Golden Globes.

French President Francois Hollande says people protesting the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo do not understand the French attachment to freedom of speech.

His statement comes amid protests over the publication's depiction of the Prophet Muhammad on its latest cover that went to press just days after 10 of its journalists were gunned down in Paris by Muslim extremists. Those protests have turned violent in Algeria, Pakistan and Niger, where at least two Christian churches were set fire.

New rules that went into effect on Friday mark the biggest change in U.S. relations with Cuba in more than 50 years.

While tourism remains off-limits, the Obama administration opened new opportunities in Cuba for banks, airlines, telecommunications companies and regular Americans.

For the first time in decades, under the new rules, Americans who don't have family on the island can travel to Cuba without receiving special permission from the U.S. government.

No Tourists Allowed — Yet

"The right actors win Oscars, but for the wrong roles," Katharine Hepburn once said.

The Motion Picture Academy has a history of rewarding stars for less-than-celestial performances, and this week's Oscar nomination announcements left a lot of people scratching their heads — over the snubs for Selma, for example, and the nomination of Robert Duvall for best supporting actor in The Judge.

"I think most people hadn't even heard of The Judge before that nomination," says Alyssa Rosenberg, culture columnist for The Washington Post.

Americans increasingly see decently fast Internet as more like a functioning sewer line than a luxury.

And a number of cities are trying to get into the Internet provider business, but laws in 19 states hamper those efforts. President Obama announced this week that he wants to lift those restrictions, and supporters of what is known as municipal broadband can't wait.

The United Nations has 193 member states. And United Noshes aims to recreate meals from every last one of them, alphabetically, as a series of dinner parties.

Gunmen in Yemen have abducted President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi's chief of staff from his vehicle in the center of the capital, Sanaa, according to security officials who blame Shiite Houthi rebels for the kidnapping.

Ahmed Awad bin Mubarak and two of his body guards were seized early Saturday, officials say. The Associated Press quotes unnamed officials as saying the three were kidnapped when they stopped their car in the capital. No ransom demand has been made and so far no one has claimed responsibility.

A storm forced Pope Francis to cut short a visit to the Philippine city of Tacloban, where Typhoon Haiyan made a devastating landfall in 2013, killing at least 6,300 people in the predominately Catholic country.

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