When the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union last month, the seaside town of Port Talbot in Wales eagerly went along with the move. Brexit was approved by some 57 percent of the town's residents.

Now some of them are wondering if they made the wrong decision.

The June 23 Brexit vote has raised questions about the fate of the troubled Port Talbot Works, Britain's largest surviving steel plant — a huge, steam-belching facility that has long been the town's biggest employer.

Solar Impulse 2 has landed in Cairo, completing the penultimate leg of its attempt to circumnavigate the globe using only the power of the sun.

The trip over the Mediterranean included a breathtaking flyover of the Pyramids. Check it out:

President Obama is challenging Americans to have an honest and open-hearted conversation about race and law enforcement. But even as he sits down at the White House with police and civil rights activists, Obama is mindful of the limits of that approach.

"I've seen how inadequate words can be in bringing about lasting change," the president said Tuesday at a memorial service for five law officers killed last week in Dallas. "I've seen how inadequate my own words have been."

Mice watching Orson Welles movies may help scientists explain human consciousness.

At least that's one premise of the Allen Brain Observatory, which launched Wednesday and lets anyone with an Internet connection study a mouse brain as it responds to visual information.

The FBI says it is giving up on the D.B. Cooper investigation, 45 years after the mysterious hijacker parachuted into the night with $200,000 in a briefcase, becoming an instant folk figure.

"Following one of the longest and most exhaustive investigations in our history," the FBI's Ayn Dietrich-Williams said in a statement, "the FBI redirected resources allocated to the D.B. Cooper case in order to focus on other investigative priorities."

This is the first in a series of essays concerning our collective future. The goal is to bring forth some of the main issues humanity faces today, as we move forward to uncertain times. In an effort to be as thorough as possible, we will consider two kinds of threats: those due to natural disasters and those that are man-made. The idea is to expose some of the dangers and possible mechanisms that have been proposed to deal with these issues. My intention is not to offer a detailed analysis for each threat — but to invite reflection and, hopefully, action.

Alabama authorities say a home burglary suspect has died after police used a stun gun on the man.  Birmingham police say he resisted officers who found him in a house wrapped in what looked like material from the air conditioner duct work.  The Lewisburg Road homeowner called police Tuesday about glass breaking and someone yelling and growling in his basement.  Police reportedly entered the dwelling and used a stun gun several times on a white suspect before handcuffing him.  Investigators say the man was "extremely irritated" throughout and didn't obey verbal commands.

It can be hard to distinguish among the men wearing grey suits and regulation haircuts on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington. But David Margolis always brought a splash of color.

It wasn't his lovably disheveled wardrobe, or his Elvis ring, but something else: the force of his flamboyant personality. Margolis, a graduate of Harvard Law School, didn't want to fit in with the crowd. He wanted to stand out.

Montgomery Education Foundation's Brain Forest Summer Learning Academy was spotlighted Wednesday at Carver High School.  The academic-enrichment program is for rising 4th, 5th, and 6th graders in the Montgomery Public School system.  Community Program Director Dillion Nettles, says the program aims to prevent learning loss during summer months.  To find out how your child can participate in next summer's program visit Montgomery-ed.org

A police officer is free on bond after being arrested following a rash of road-sign thefts in southeast Alabama.  Brantley Police Chief Titus Averett says officer Jeremy Ray Walker of Glenwood is on paid leave following his arrest in Pike County.  The 30-year-old Walker is charged with receiving stolen property.  Lt. Troy Johnson of the Pike County Sheriff's Office says an investigation began after someone reported that Walker was selling road signs from Crenshaw County.  Investigators contacted the county engineer and learned signs had been reported stolen from several roads.


Scandals Muddles Military Recommendations

Nov 14, 2012
Originally published on November 14, 2012 8:06 am



It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.


And I'm Linda Wertheimer. We've steadily been learning more about the people at the center of a military scandal. Retired general - and CIA director - David Petraeus resigned because of an affair.

INSKEEP: The affair was discovered when his mistress confronted another woman.

WERTHEIMER: That woman, Jill Kelley, was a socialite linked to the U.S. military in Tampa. She also proved to have had many communications with General John Allen, the commander in Afghanistan; who has denied having an affair, but is being investigated by the Pentagon.

INSKEEP: All of this, and more, prompts NPR's Tom Gjelten to report on the relations between generals and civilians.

TOM GJELTEN, BYLINE: Officers in Afghanistan are talking about a commander's curse. Commanding generals David McKiernan and Stanley McChrystal both ran into trouble with their civilian superiors. David Petraeus did go on to lead the CIA, but his tenure there lasted just 14 months. And now Petraeus' successor, John Allen, is facing a possible early end to his military career.

As with Petraeus, it's General Allen's connection to a woman, that is under scrutiny. White House spokesman Jay Carney was asked yesterday whether the president is at all worried about an inappropriate culture at the highest levels of the U.S. military.


JAY CARNEY: I really would ask you to not extrapolate broadly. The president has great confidence in the military, great confidence in his commanders; and will continue to have that confidence.

GJELTEN: In the past, U.S. presidents have survived sex scandals. So why the fuss over allegedly inappropriate behavior by generals Petraeus and Allen? Richard Kohn is an expert on civilian-military relations, at the University of North Carolina. He thinks we put military leaders on a pedestal.

RICHARD KOHN: They have to have higher standards because of their need to trust each other, and to lead people in very dangerous circumstances. But it's gotten to the point, I think, of being unreasonable expectations on a lot of these people.

GJELTEN: Kohn says this tendency goes back at least 20 years. David Petraeus was hardly the first general to be seen in heroic terms. There's General Norman Schwarzkopf, in the first Gulf War. General Colin Powell's fans wanted him to run for president. But there's nothing like a sex scandal to remind us that four-star generals are human. Eliot Cohen, of the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, wrote a famous book on the power relations between presidents and generals. He says the David Petraeus and John Allen stories drive home the point, don't demand too much from your generals.

ELIOT COHEN: They may accomplish tremendous things, but nobody should pretend that they are a different order of human being. They are absolutely not. We can still admire them and be grateful for the things that they've accomplished, but also have some perspective on them as being fallible. In the same way one shouldn't fall in love with politicians, one shouldn't fall in love with generals, either.

GJELTEN: That's advice even for presidents, or presidential candidates. When asked what they would do in Afghanistan or Iraq, both President Obama and Governor Mitt Romney, at one time or another, said that they'd listen to what their generals recommended.

In the coming months, the speed of the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, will be a pressing issue for the Obama administration. Eliot Cohen - who advised Governor Romney on national security issues - says presidents, in the end, have to make up their own mind.

COHEN: It's very important to remember, military advice is just that - it's advice. No politician should ever feel compelled to accept it. So by all means, listen to the generals. But that doesn't necessarily mean that you do what they advise you to do.

GJELTEN: It can be awkward for a president to disregard the counsel of military commanders. But on occasion, it can be necessary. Eliot Cohen has said that before, and he says it again now. If the scandals now surrounding David Petraeus, and John Allen, remind Americans that generals are not infallible, he says, that could be a silver lining to what is generally, a sad story.

Tom Gjelten, NPR News, Washington. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.