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The Islamic State forced the world to take notice when the extremist group overran Mosul, the second largest city in Iraq, in June 2014.

Just months earlier, President Obama had described ISIS as "the JV team." But by August 2014, the U.S. was bombing ISIS in Iraq, and early Monday, the U.S. teamed up with the Iraqi army and other allies in a major offensive to recapture the northern Iraqi city.

An experimental lander from the European Space Agency is making its final descent toward Mars, preparing for a controlled landing on Wednesday.

The Schiaparelli probe detached from its mothership, the Trace Gas Orbiter, on Sunday.

There was a moment of alarm when, after separating from the ship, Schiaparelli didn't send the expected signals back to scientists on earth. It did send back a "carrier signal" to show it was operational, but didn't communicate any telemetry data about its status or location.

Politics In The News: Debate Prep

Oct 17, 2016
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Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton will face off again this week in their third and last presidential debate. This time it will be in Las Vegas on Wednesday. Over the weekend, Donald Trump again raised the idea that this election is being rigged against him.

Luke Perry Makes The Cover Of AARP

Oct 17, 2016
Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit


Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit


Model airplanes have come a long way from the days when you stood in your backyard and the little buzzing plane whirled around on a string. These days, remote-controlled model airplanes are often lovingly crafted historic recreations worth thousands — and even tens of thousands of dollars — that soar high in the sky.

Jerry Willette, with the Champlain Valley Flyers model airplane club in northern New York, built a replica of a World War II twin-engine fighter-bomber called a P-38. It has a wing span of nearly 10 feet.

Yana Shapiro is a partner at a Philadelphia law firm with an exhausting travel schedule and two boys, ages 9 and 4. When she feels run-down from juggling everything and feels a cold coming on, she books an appointment for an intravenous infusion of water, vitamins and minerals.

"Anything to avoid antibiotics or being out of commission," the 37-year-old says.

Sex with someone new has always made me nervous. Now, TV is making it even worse.

I keep seeing scary ads featuring young people asking their parents why they didn't get the vaccine to protect against the human papillomavirus — HPV. If you're unfamiliar with HPV, it's a sexually transmitted infection that has been linked to various cancers, including cervical cancer in women.

I didn't get vaccinated. So lately I've been wondering: Now that I'm 29, is it too late for me to get the vaccine?

Parents and teachers are worried.

They believe that today's kids are growing up in an unkind world and that learning to be kind is even more important than getting good grades. But, when it comes to defining "kind," parents and teachers don't always agree.

That's according to a new survey of some 2,000 parents and 500 teachers from the educational nonprofit behind Sesame Street, Sesame Workshop.

Laura Passoni, a 34-year-old mother of two small boys, grew up in a Catholic family in the Belgian town of Charleroi. She converted to Islam at the age of 16 because she says she liked the religion and her best friend was Muslim.

Passoni married a Muslim man and they had a son. Everything was fine, she says — until her marriage collapsed. "My husband met another woman and left me and abandoned his little boy," she says. "And I went into a deep depression."

The Clinton Foundation and the Trump Foundation have similar-sounding names. And they've both become political targets in this election cycle. Beyond that, charities experts say, they have remarkably little in common. But the differences between them might reveal something about Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

Iraq's military has launched an offensive aimed at wresting control of Mosul from Islamic State militants, according to the country's prime minister, Haider al-Abadi. In a televised speech, Abadi said he would keep an earlier promise to defeat ISIS by 2016 — and declared that soon the Iraqi flag would be raised in Mosul.

Neither at war nor fully at peace, Marxist rebels in southern Colombia who want to lay down their weapons are instead killing time and contemplating whether they will be called back into combat.

It's a surreal state of affairs, brought on by a stalemate over an agreement to end Colombia's 52-year-old guerrilla war. The accord was signed last month but then rejected by Colombian voters in a binding referendum on Oct. 2. Now, the entire peace process is on hold, leaving thousands of guerrillas in limbo.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit