History

4:45am

Sun October 14, 2012
History

Lessons From The Cuban Missile Crisis

Originally published on Sun October 14, 2012 12:14 pm

Fifty years ago, a United States Air Force U-2 spyplane captured photographic proof that the Soviet Union was installing offensive nuclear missile sites in Cuba, and a diplomatic standoff ensued. Weekend Edition host Rachel Martin talks with Graham Allison, director of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and professor at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government about the lessons learned from the Cuban Missile Crisis.

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4:46pm

Sat October 13, 2012
U.S.

Family Fights For Honor Of 'Rogue' Vietnam General

Originally published on Sun October 14, 2012 10:42 am

Gen. John D. Lavelle was accused of authorizing illegal bombing raids in North Vietnam. Stripped of two stars, he was forced into retirement in 1972.
AP

Gen. John D. Lavelle commanded the Seventh Air Force during the Vietnam War. He served five steps down the chain of command from President Nixon. In his oral history — recorded by an Air Force history officer in 1978 — he explained how, six years earlier, his life changed forever.

It started with a meeting with a Thai general, Dawee Chullasapya, who had charged Lavelle with overseeing an operation to destroy anti-aircraft guns in North Vietnam. It was a mission necessary to keep Thailand in the war.

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1:17pm

Sat October 13, 2012
Author Interviews

How Lincoln's Fiercest Rival Became His Close Ally

Originally published on Sun October 14, 2012 9:07 am

President Lincoln appointed William Henry Seward secretary of state in 1861. He served until 1869.
Henry Guttmann Getty Images

The race for the Republican nomination of 1860 was one of the great political contests of American history. It was Abraham Lincoln versus Salmon Chase, versus William Seward.

Author Walter Stahr spoke with Weekends All Things Considered host Guy Raz about his new biography, Seward: Lincoln's Indispensable Man. He describes how a man who was Lincoln's fiercest and most critical opponent eventually became his most loyal and trusted adviser.


Interview Highlights

On Seward losing the election

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11:44am

Fri October 12, 2012
Science

Prehistoric 'Kennewick Man' Was All Beefcake

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 5:41 pm

Forensic artists think this is what Kennewick Man looked like.
Brittney Tatchell Courtesy of Doug Owsley

For nearly a decade, scientists and Northwest tribes in Washington state fought bitterly over whether to bury or study the 9,500-year-old bones known as Kennewick Man. Scientists won the battle, and now, after years of careful examination, they're releasing some of their findings.

For starters, Kennewick Man was buff. I mean, really beefcake. So says Doug Owsley, head of physical anthropology at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History, and the man who led the study of the ancient remains.

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1:16pm

Thu October 4, 2012
Planet Money

The Accountant Who Changed The World

Originally published on Fri October 5, 2012 2:04 pm

A page from Pacioli's math encyclopedia, Summa de Arithmetica, Geometria, Proportioni et Proportionalita.
via Jane Gleeson-White

The story of the birth of accounting begins with numbers. In the 1400s, much of Europe was still using Roman numerals, and finding it really hard to easily add or subtract. (Try adding MCVI to XCIV.)

But fortunately, Arabic numerals (1, 2, 3, 4, etc.) started catching on, and with those numbers, merchants in Venice developed a revolutionary system we now call "double-entry" bookkeeping. This is how it works:

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