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The Rundown - April 8

Afternoon Update


# The rial took another dip after failed nuclear talks
# "Helping Iran Make TRR Fuel" - Mark Hibbs, "Arms Control Wonk"

# "How Russia and Azerbaijan Weaken Europe’s Values" - Judy Dempsey, Carnegie Endowment
# Moving photos (and some of cute dogs) from St. Petersburg

# "How A Female Photographer Sees Her Afghanistan" - Marie McGrory, "NPR"

Of Interest
# Wikileaks has released diplomatic cables from the 1970s (here)
# PHOTOS: Syria in ruins
# Time to take a dive beneath Europa's ice sheets

Morning Edition


# Kazakhstan was the perfect place for a diplomatic disagreement...
# ...more from Scott Peterson...
# Talks "can't go on forever"
# The shifting of Iran's economy
# "The Pain of Following Iran in U.S. Media" - Rami Khouri, "The Daily Star"

# "Russia's Digital Underground" - Soldatov & Borogan, "Foreign Policy"
The new wave of creativity and culture in Russia
# "The Kremlin's World" - Ariel Cohen, "The New York Times"

# An airstrike killed a senior Taliban commander but also claimed the lives of several women and children
# Some in the Taliban ranks are sick of fighting
# The Afghan army went in to the Tengi Valley alone last week
# Some rural construction projects are better than others
# Helmand's most senior police woman has a real gem of a brother

RFE/RL Target Region
# Watch our Google Hangout with Raffi Hovannisian
# Some of Yulia Tymoshenko's political allies were released from jail
# "Culture War in Belarus" - Simon Lewis, "Open Democracy"

Of Interest
# A new film on 38 Jews who lived in a cave in Ukraine to excape the Holocaust
# Why dictators don't like jokes
# The rise and rise of Vice media

Science & Technology
# Fusion rockets could making getting to Mars a lot easier
# This is really not a human, it's a robot
# Brain games aren't making you any smarter
# You will be hired by a robot

U.S. Politics/Foreign Policy
# "A Secret Deal on Drones, Sealed in Blood" - Mark Mazzetti, "The New York Times"
# Remembering U.S. diplomat Anne Smedinghoff
# Immigration reform legislation may be introduced this week
# The "PBS Newshour" analysis of Shields and Brooks