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This summer, scientists in California are releasing 20 million mosquitoes in an effort to shrink the population of mosquitoes that can carry diseases.

It sounds counterintuitive. But the plan is to release millions of sterile male mosquitoes, which will then mate with wild female mosquitoes. The eggs the females lay won't hatch, researchers say.

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The many people moved by the cancer diagnosis of Senator John McCain include one of his former colleagues. He's former Senator and Vice President Al Gore.

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A brain cancer diagnosis for Senator John McCain is sadly familiar news for one of his friends. Former Secretary of State John Kerry is close to McCain. Kerry was also a Massachusetts colleague of Senator Ted Kennedy, who died of cancer.

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Two things seem pretty certain about Republican Senator Mitch McConnell's health care push at this point. There is going to be a vote next week, and there's going to be a lot of vocal opposition to it.

(SOUNDBITE OF PROTEST)

Why We Should Be Wary Of Moon Tourism

Jul 21, 2017

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Forty-eight years ago today, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin packed up the moon rocks they had gathered and blasted off of the moon for their trip back to Earth.

(SOUNDBITE OF ROCKET BLASTOFF)

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Chester Bennington, the singer from the rock band Linkin Park, died yesterday at 41 years old. Authorities say they are investigating his death as a possible suicide.

When it comes to U.S. sanctions against Moscow, the Cold War has never really ended.

President Gerald Ford signed off on trade restrictions against the Soviet Union and other communist countries in a 1974 measure known as the Jackson-Vanik amendment, for its congressional sponsors.

The message to Moscow: If you deny basic human rights — in this case, the right of certain people, especially Jews, to emigrate from the Soviet Union — you can't conduct normal business with the United States.

Harry Obst, who worked as a German interpreter for seven U.S. presidents through Bill Clinton, says he can only remember one who ever dispensed with an interpreter during discussions with a foreign leader: Richard Nixon.

It was a bad idea for lots of reasons, the author of White House Interpreter: The Art of Interpretation tells NPR.

Less than two months ago, U.K. Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn was way behind in the polls when he took the stage at a music festival in Liverpool.

With his shirt untucked, Corbyn, 68, introduced the indy rock band the Libertines and delivered an impassioned defense of public funding for the arts before a crowd of some 20,000, most of them youngsters.

He urged them to demand "a government that cares about sport, culture and the arts — and gives you the space to play and rehearse your music!"

Asma Jama was out to dinner with her family at an Applebee's in Coon Rapids, Minn., in October 2015, when a woman seated nearby starting getting angry. Why? Jama, who is Somali-American and Muslim, was speaking Swahili and wearing a hijab.

The woman, Jodie Bruchard-Risch, demanded that Jama speak English — and then smashed Jama in the face with a glass beer mug.

"I could see it from the doctor's face that it was really bad," says Jama, who is 39. "I had lacerations across my chest, all over my hands, and 17 total stitches."

Kenneth Jay Lane turned designing "fake" jewelry into a global business. He didn't take himself too seriously — joking that his costume jewelry wasn't fake or junk. Instead, he would pronounce it "faque" and "junque."

Lane died in his sleep at his home in Manhattan, according to Chris Sheppard, executive vice president of Lane's company, who says it has not been determined whether he died Wednesday night or Thursday morning. Lane was 85.

The radicalization of a surfer dude

Jul 20, 2017
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Mike Blake/Reuters

The subculture of southern California surfers has long fascinated novelist Laleh Khadivi. 

She calls those who ride the waves there a "tribe unto themselves."

"These surfers have found their God, it is the ocean, and they will come every day and pay homage to it," she says. 

If you've checked your retirement account lately or read the business headlines you probably know the stock market is riding high. The major U.S. stock indexes are in record territory. So what's lifting the market? Despite all the turmoil in Washington, is it still the Trump rally?

Since the U.S. election, the S&P 500 is up 16 percent and the Dow is up 18 percent, even though President Trump has yet to deliver on most of his pro-growth policies, including tax cuts and a big infrastructure plan.

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Film still from “Finding Samuel Lowe”

At the Asian American ComicCon last weekend, speakers on one of the panels — Asian American women who work in the entertainment industry — were asked how they deal with the stereotype that they are “hot” and “exotic.”

Paula Williams Madison, who is of black and Chinese descent, wanted to share a story from her seat in the audience. Madison worked as a TV executive at NBC for decades before retiring in 2011.

The Trump Organization is asking the federal government for special visas to hire scores of foreign workers for two of President Trump's private clubs in Florida — the Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach and the Trump National Golf Club in Jupiter.

Exxon Mobil says it has filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Treasury's Office of Foreign Asset Control, after the office said the oil and gas giant must pay a $2 million penalty for allegedly violating sanctions on Russia.

The alleged violations took place in May 2014, when Exxon Mobil signed a series of deals with Igor Sechin, the CEO of Russian oil company Rosneft.

On Thursday, the Senate unleashed yet another iteration of its effort to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, and with it came another analysis from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office. If your head is spinning, you've got plenty of company, us here at Shots included.

Here are the key versions of repeal and/or replace legislation so far this year:

I met Christa Schmidt over dinner with the Daas family, refugees from Palmyra, Syria, who are now living in Traunreut, Germany.

The Daases have been in Traunreut for almost six months, but the 76-year-old German tutor is the only German person in town whom they feel a personal connection with. With short-cropped gray hair, bright blue eyes and a slim build, Schmidt twinkles with the energy of a much younger woman.

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Alaa Al-Faqir/Reuters

The Central Intelligence Agency is shutting down its program to support rebels fighting against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, The Washington Post reported.

Citing unnamed US officials, the Post said the four-year-old covert operation has had limited impact, especially since Russian forces stepped in to support Assad in 2015.

Russian, American and French ballet dancers are gathering Thursday night for a bit of cultural diplomacy at New York City's Lincoln Center. They're celebrating the 50th anniversary of George Balanchine's masterpiece Jewels, considered the first full-length, nonnarrative ballet.

The first international robotics competition for high schoolers made headlines before it even started — and after the event was over as well.

First there was the story of the all-girl Afghanistan team, which was denied visas to attend for unknown reasons.

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Abby Seif

Night has fallen inky black and cold over Amar Basti village, but Kalpana Thapa and her neighbors are loath to drift off to bed. They punch at their phones, pull shawls tighter and coo at the children careening around. A light bulb, powered by a shared electricity line, illuminates the concrete platform that serves as Thapa’s dining room.

None of this — not the concrete, lights, smartphones or even the women chatting amicably with strangers — would have been imaginable 20 years ago.

It's pink and fleshy, it's a giant mass of tentacles and it's just crash-landed in Mexico from outer space. What should humankind do with such a marvel?

How about The Nasty?

Among the four stars of Girls Trip — the third and funniest summer comedy about hard-partying women in trouble, following Snatched and Rough Night — Tiffany Haddish is the least well-known, having bounced around in minor roles on film and television before landing a spot as a series regular on The Carmichael Show. All that stands to change overnight. As Dina, a pleasure-seeker of unapologetic, bull-in-a-china-shop relentlessness, Haddish is so incandescently filthy that a new ratings system should be developed to accommodate her.

Dunkirk, Christopher Nolan's enveloping and prismatic World War II movie, is the prequel — historically speaking — to Battle of Britain. That film, a jolly, G-rated celebration of British pluck from 1969, features an all-star cast, some of whom still show up in Nolan movies to this day. It made the deadliest conflict in human history seem about as scary as a V-E Day Parade.

Although Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets is visually overstuffed and sometimes cloaked in darkness, one thing is easy to see: how its principal setting, the sprawling space-station Alpha, parallels writer-director Luc Besson's utopian filmmaking vision.

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