Army Capt. Matt Zeller had been told that his Afghan comrades would make a big show of hospitality. He'd read that the Afghan code of honor would mean protecting his life with their own. Sure enough, that's what his interpreter, Janis Shinwari, pledged to him when they met in April of 2008.
"I expected him to say it. I didn't think he'd make good on his promise within two weeks of my arrival," Zeller says. "Literally pick up a weapon and ... save my life," says Zeller.
President Obama's health care law has so far survived challenges in Congress and the courts. But its biggest test could begin next week. That's when the online marketplaces offering health care coverage to the uninsured are set to start signing people up. The question is, will they come?
Originally published on Wed September 25, 2013 1:17 pm
Update at noon ET. It's Over:
Saying that "it's fitting that this debate concludes with a prayer" because he believes Americans are pleading with Congress to defund President Obama's health care law, Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas just wrapped up his marathon protest on the Senate floor.
Cruz began speaking just after 2:40 p.m. ET Tuesday and abided by Senate rules when he finished at noon today.
"The pleas from the American people," he said of what he sees as the public's opposition to Obamacare, "are deafening."
Premiums in the health insurance exchanges set to open next week will be lower than anticipated, the Obama administration announced Wednesday.
According to a report released by the Department of Health and Human Services, "premiums nationwide will ... be around 16 percent lower than originally expected," and 95 percent of uninsured people live in a state with average premiums that are lower than expected.
With just six days to go before the federal government is due to run out of money, it's becoming increasingly clear that Republican Sen. Ted Cruz's fellow GOP colleagues aren't following his lead in the anti-Obamacare fight.
That fact alone raises the odds of avoiding a government shutdown next week. It doesn't mean a shutdown won't happen, but it largely removes one of the major stumbling blocks — at least in the Senate.
One of the strongest new sitcoms on TV this season has the worst name, but its title, Trophy Wife, was intended to be ironic. The show's creators, Sarah Haskins and Emily Halpern, are self-professed feminists who wanted to take on a type generally scorned in popular culture.
The show's eponymous character, Kate, is a reformed party girl trying to find her place in a family that includes a much older husband, Pete, his two ex-wives and three kids. When Kate inadvertently breaks Pete's nose, the situation is expertly handled by ex No. 1, an intimidating surgeon.
It's the middle of the afternoon when we arrive at the tiny family apartment in a working-class neighborhood of Tunis. Um Ahmed cracks open the door when we arrive, ushers us in and quickly slams the door shut. She then closes a second steel gate, which she had installed after her son, Ahmed, was arrested.
I don't know what I'd do if my child suffered a life-threatening illness, but I'm guessing my response would involve music. That was a big part of how Boston musician Alastair Moock reacted when one of his twin 5-year-old daughters, Clio, was diagnosed with leukemia last summer. He sang traditional songs and made up new ones with Clio, which the two of them sang together in her hospital room.
In a break with his often times caustic predecessor, Iranian President Hasan Rouhani delivered a kind of ode to moderation during his first address at the United Nations General Assembly.
"Prudent moderation will ensure a bright future for the world," Rouhani said, adding that the "recent election in Iran represents a clear living example of the wise choice of hope, rationality and moderation."