From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.
MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:
And I'm Melissa Block. Time is of the essence. Those words about Syria today from a United Nations spokesman as tanks and armored vehicles launched new attacks on the city of Daraa. Syrian forces are also bombarding the city of Idlib. The U.N. says nearly 8,000 people have been killed so far during the uprising against Syria's President Bashar al-Assad.
The cacophony of hoots being directed at Mitt Romney Wednesday for his poor performances in Alabama and Mississippi primaries is somewhat curious, especially since it was the conventional wisdom as recently as last week that the Deep South was likely to be very tough going for him.
The Afghan response to Sunday's shooting deaths of 16 Afghan civilians has been limited compared with the recent outrage over the burning of Qurans. In one of the few protests, demonstrators chanted anti-U.S. slogans in the eastern city of Jalalabad on Tuesday.
Credit Rahmat Gul / AP
After U.S. troops burned Qurans last month, Afghans staged protests throughout the country. Here a demonstrator holds a Quran in the eastern city of Jalalabad on Feb. 22.
Credit Chris Ware / Keystone Features/Getty Images
Politeness seems to be falling by the wayside these days, with phrases like "you're welcome" replaced by the more casual "you bet" or "no problem." Good manners were more the norm in 1960, when these kids at a junior theatrical school learned how to curtsy and bow.
Words such as "yes," "please" and no thanks" are vanishing from many of our conversations.
Listen to the conversations around you — colleagues at the office, customers in the coffeehouse line, those who serve you, those you serve, the people you meet each day. "Give me a tall latte." "Hand me that hammer." "Have a good one."
Notice anything missing? The traditional magic words "please" and "thank you" that many people learn as children appear to be disappearing.
U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, center, is greeted by Col. John Shafer, left, with RTC 6 Wednesday at Foward Operating Base Shukvani, Afghanistan. As Panetta was landing at another base, an Afghan drove a truck onto the airfield until it crashed and exploded.
Cooling a person's hands while exercising can make for a better workout, especially for people who hate to exercise because it makes them all hot and sweaty.
This might help the many, many people who have a hard time keeping up with exercise because it's just plain uncomfortable.
Researchers tested the idea with obese women in their 30s and 40s who worked out on a treadmill. The women whose palms were cooled with a device that circulated ice water were able to exercise longer than the women whose palms were exposed to room temperature water.
There's a new record in the Iditarod: A 25 year old has become the youngest musher to win the approximately thousand-mile trans-Alaskan sled dog race.
Dallas Seavey slid into Nome, Alaska, at 7:29 p.m. yesterday with nine dogs, finishing the race in nine days, four hours, 29 minutes and 26 seconds.
"We went into this race with a dog team that I knew had the ability to win the Iditarod," Seavey said in a post-race press conference in Nome. "We spent most of the race building a monster – a dog team that couldn't be stopped."
British photographer Paul Conroy lies on a stretcher as he is treated by a doctor in Homs, Feb. 22, 2012, in this still image taken from a Reuters TV video. Avaaz coordinated Conroy's evacuation from Homs, an operation that left 13 Syrian activists dead.
One year into the Syrian uprising, with the world community reluctant to intervene, one international group has taken a direct and risky role in Syria — even taking a part in the high-profile evacuation of Western journalists from the besieged city of Homs.
Avaaz, a global online pressure group based in New York, has given crucial support to the uprising and the Syrian activist networks that aim to topple the regime of President Bashar Assad.