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Afghanistan's defense minister and its army chief of staff stepped down in the wake of a Taliban-claimed attack Friday in which at least 100 Afghan soldiers died. It was one of the deadliest attacks in Afghanistan since 2001.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani announced the high-level resignations Monday, on the same day that U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis arrived in the country on an unannounced visit, as the Trump administration reviews its Afghanistan policy.

Updated 11:40 p.m. ET

Arkansas executed two inmates on Monday night, the first double execution in the U.S. since 2000.

The second inmate put to death was Marcel Williams. He and the prisoner executed just before him, Jack Jones Jr. — both convicted murderers — had filed last-minute appeals that were rejected by the U.S. Supreme Court.

The road trip might be a rite of passage. But, as a rule, it requires a driver's license.

In Australia, home of the apocalyptic Mad Max franchise, a 12-year-old boy was on a coast-to-coast trip, from his home in Kendall in New South Wales all the way to Perth on the continent's western side. He managed about 800 miles, or about a third of the way, of the 2,500-mile trip before police caught him.

He was pulled over and arrested near the remote town of Broken Hill on Saturday because the car's bumper was dragging on the ground.

Nearly 15 years after her first space launch, NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson has now spent more time off-planet than any other American, at more than 534 days. Whitson, 57, is a biochemist who has twice commanded the International Space Station.

North Korea could reduce a U.S. strike force to a sea wreck if it's provoked, the country's propaganda outlets said Monday, adding to tensions on the Korean Peninsula. With the threat of a nuclear test in North Korea looming and another U.S. citizen reportedly detained there, China's President Xi Jinping is urging President Trump to avoid escalating the situation.

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And now let's turn to NPR's Scott Detrow, who's covering this and many other stories.

Hi, Scott.

SCOTT DETROW, BYLINE: Morning, Steve.

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Photographers Name New Night Sky Lights

Apr 24, 2017

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Good morning. I'm Rachel Martin. Some Canadian photographers have discovered a new kind of northern light. They describe it as a ribbon of purple light in the night sky. And what did they choose to name this marvel of the natural world? Steve.

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In forcing out its top-rated star, Bill O'Reilly, the Fox News Channel sought to contain the damage inflicted by a spreading sexual harassment scandal less than a year after the network's chairman was ousted in the face of similar accusations.

Congress returns Tuesday from its spring recess, facing yet another down-to-the-wire spate of deal-making — and a White House anxious to claim its first major legislative win.

On Friday night, the funding measure lawmakers approved last year to keep the federal government running will expire. The timing leaves members of the House and Senate just four days to reach a new agreement to fund the government, or risk a partial shutdown of federal agencies on Saturday — the 100th day of Donald Trump's presidency.

If confirmed Monday agriculture secretary nominee Sonny Perdue confronts an industry in search of stability.

The farm economy is declining, trade with vital global markets is in disarray and immigration policy is in flux. In his initial budget, Trump suggested a 21 percent cut to USDA's discretionary spending, so Perdue would want to jump into Washington policy discussions quickly.

Perdue would find a desk at USDA piled high with priorities and will be one of the last members of President Donald Trump's cabinet to be seated.

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President Trump marks his 100th day in office this coming Saturday. And ahead of that, we will be examining the administration's progress on a whole host of issues, starting today with the economy.

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And I'm Steve Inskeep with a guide to this day's news. Rachel, what's up first?

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In a time of high drama over executions in Arkansas, the U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments Monday in a case that could determine the fate of two of the condemned men in the Razorback state, as well as others on death row elsewhere.

At issue is whether an indigent defendant whose sanity is a significant factor in his trial, is entitled to assistance from a mental health expert witness who is independent of the prosecutors.

As the Florida summer heats up, President Donald Trump is expected to decamp from his weekend retreat at the Mar-a-Lago Club in West Palm Beach to spend more time at one of his golf clubs in New Jersey.

Now the sleepy town of Bedminster is bracing for the attention — and the security bills — that may follow.

Four out of five older Americans with hearing loss just ignore it, in part because a hearing aid is an unwelcome sign of aging. But what if hearing aids looked like stylish fashion accessories and could be bought at your local pharmacy like reading glasses?

That's the vision of Kristen "KR" Liu, who's the director of accessibility and advocacy for Doppler Labs, a company marketing one of these devices. She thinks a hearing aid could be "something that's hip and cool and people have multiple pairs and it's fashionable."

The body of Associate Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam, the first African-American woman to be appointed to New York's Court of Appeals, was found dead in the Hudson River on April 12.

At first, clues led authorities to believe she had committed suicide: There appeared to be no signs of trauma on her body, she was fully clothed and there were no obvious signs that a crime had taken place.

Growing up the son of a coal miner in southern West Virginia, David Wiley saw the downside of the profession up close. His father had been injured in the mines, lost several fingers and damaged his knees and back. "He was just really beat up," Wiley says.

So when it came to find his own line of work, Wiley says he had no desire to work in the coal mines. For a couple of years after high school, Wiley tried his hand at manufacturing and welding jobs in the neighboring state of North Carolina.

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A couple of years ago, Kiev business journalist Yuliya Savostina decided to try an experiment: to spend a year living off food and other goods produced exclusively in Ukraine.

Inspired by the local food movement in the United States, Savostina started a blog to document her experience. She didn't expect it to last very long.

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