US & World

World War II veteran Charles Cavell — a test subject in the military's secret mustard gas experiments — at his home in Virginia.

Ariel Zambelich/NPR

WWII veteran who fought to expose secret mustard gas experiments, dies

Charles Cavell spent decades fighting for VA compensation, even after he and others — who had been sworn to secrecy by the U.S. military — helped bring the testing program to light. He was 89.

memorial day, veterans

After 48 years, MIA airman's wife wants answers

As the nation commemorates Memorial Day, more than 1,600 service members remain unaccounted for from the Vietnam War. For the families of some of them, the search for answers has become a lifelong pursuit.


Why are there so many flags at gravestones on Memorial Day?

At cemeteries this weekend, you might notice row after row of small American flags fluttering amid the gravestones. The history of that tradition dates back to the post-Civil War era.

Lifting the arms embargo means more U.S. military visits to Vietnam

Vietnam can now buy American ships and surveillance equipment, a response to China's moves in the South China Sea. The country can also host regular visits by U.S. military units.

A survivor's tale: How Hiroshima shaped a Japanese-American family

Kikue Takagi narrowly survived the atomic bomb that killed her classmates. Soon after she moved to California, where she worked for many years at Disneyland. Now in her 80s, she's back in Hiroshima.

A portrait of veterans healing from PTSD

Nearly one in three veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan face post-traumatic stress from their military service, according to the Department of Veterans Affairs.

11 states sue over Obama's school transgender directive

The lawsuit announced Wednesday includes Oklahoma, Alabama, Wisconsin, West Virginia, Tennessee, Maine, Arizona, Louisiana, Utah and Georgia.

Women leaders no longer a rarity in today's Navy

Having women command Navy warships is routine, but it wasn't always that way. And now the last restrictions keeping them from direct combat have been dropped.

Mirrors spark fire at world's largest solar-thermal plant

Firefighters had to climb about 300 feet up a boiler tower at the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System after the fire was reported on an upper level around 9:30 a.m. Thursday.

Mexican president proposes legalizing gay marriage

Enrique Pena Nieto said he signed initiatives that would seek to add same-sex marriage provisions to Mexico's constitution and the national civil code.

Supreme Court avoids major ruling in birth control dispute

The Supreme Court rid itself of a dispute between faith-based groups and the Obama administration over birth control, asking lower courts to take another look.

When a transgender person uses a public restroom, who is at risk?

Supporters of North Carolina's "bathroom law" say it blocks sexual predators' access to victims. There's little evidence backing that, while research suggests transgender people face greater threats.

California Amtrak train slams into pickup, killing 3 men

The collision happened in Madera County north of Fresno surrounded by vineyards. The unidentified men were in their late 20s or early 30s.

Black tar's dangerous rise: from Mexico's heroin fields to the streets of LA

A potent form of heroin, known as black tar, is flooding the market in Southern California and could signal an alarming trend in the opioid epidemic in the country.

How could Brazil's political crisis affect the rest of Latin America?

Latin America's largest economy and most populous country reached a new level in its political crisis – and it comes at a critical time, just month's before playing host to the Olympics.

You're getting your news from Facebook, and someone's controlling that feed

More people are getting their news on Facebook and other sites. But they might not know humans control what they see.