An intense campaign is underway for the future of the United Kingdom. On Sept. 18, the people of Scotland will vote on whether to become an independent country. Here are answers to a few key questions about the issue.
1. Why would Scotland want to leave the U.K.?
There are some reasons grounded in logic and others based in emotion.
Steve Inskeep has begun a journey along the U.S.-Mexico border — from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean. NPR reporters are also pursuing stories of people, goods and culture crossing the border. Over the next two weeks, the team will be sharing impressions at NPR's On The Road blog as it prepares stories to broadcast on Morning Edition and other NPR programs in late March.
Iran is starting to see a re-launch of activist groups following the election last year of President Hassan Rouhani. Social movements were scarce after the government crushed public protests known as the Green Movement following the 2009 elections. After the decisive vote for Rouhani, a surge of hope in Iran has attracted activists back to the political arena. Iranian women, in particular, are seizing the opportunity.
And joining us to talk about Putin's intentions in Ukraine and beyond is the editor of the New Yorker, David Remnick. He's a former Moscow correspondent and is recently back from Sochi. His latest New Yorker column is titled "Putin Goes To War." David, welcome back to the program.
DAVID REMNICK: It's good to talk to you, even though the subject is so grim.
BLOCK: Well, let's talk about that. I was wondering if you heard a very familiar Vladimir Putin world view reflected in those comments at the news conference today.
Secretary of State John Kerry made a high profile visit to Kiev today, showing political support for Ukraine's new government. He promised a billion dollars in loan guarantees. With lesser due, a team from the International Monetary Fund arrived. They're there to assess the state of Ukraine's finances.