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Airline Security

Homeland Security chief Janet Napolitano conceded today the the aviation security system failed when a young Nigerian man, who was on a watch list and who had a powerful explosive hidden on his body, was allowed to board a flight from Amsterdam to Detroit. We'll speak with Eric Lipton of the New York Times.

'Promised Virgins'

Jeffrey Fleishman draws on his own experiences as a war correspondent in his first book, "Promised Virgins: A Novel of Jihad." Fleishman, now Cairo bureau chief for the Los Angeles Times, covered the war in Kosovo in the 1990s and the main character in his book is a reporter covering that same war. We spoke to Jeffrey about the book earlier this year and we are revisiting that conversation today.

A Russian Human Rights Group Works Through Setbacks

This fall the Russian human rights group known as 'Memorial', won the European Union's Sakharov Prize for defending human rights.  The BBC's Daniel Fisher reports from Moscow that the group has endured office raidings and the killing of workers to speak out about cases of alleged kidnapping, torture and killings by Russian forces.

Unrest in Iran

Iranian mourners attend a ceremony commemorating Shiites' holy day of Ashoura, in Tehran, Iran, Sunday, Dec. 27, 2009, marking the death of Imam Hussein, a grandson of Islam's prophet Mohammed, who was killed in a 680 A.D.in a battle at Karbala in Iraq.  Mourners burned a green tent, as a symbol of Imam Hussein's tent. (AP)
Iranian mourners attend a ceremony commemorating Shiites' holy day of Ashoura, in Tehran, Iran, Sunday, Dec. 27, 2009, marking the death of Imam Hussein, a grandson of Islam's prophet Mohammed, who was killed in a 680 A.D.in a battle at Karbala in Iraq. Mourners burned a green tent, as a symbol of Imam Hussein's tent. (AP)

The Life of Louisa May Alcott

Though she was most famous for her novel "Little Women", Louisa May Alcott's life was a great deal more than just that book. We speak with Harriet Reisen, author of "Louisa May Alcott: The Woman Behind Little Women." Alcott is also the topic of the PBS program, American Masters.

Music from the show

  • Air, "Mike Mills"
  • Ahmad Jamal, "Patterns"
  • Paul Simon, "50 Ways to Leave Your Lover"
  • Radiohead, "There, There"
  • Fred Hirsch, "Desafinado"
  • The Lickets, "Serial East"
  • Freddie Hubbard, "Little Sunflower"
  • Phil Cunningham “Eternal Friendship” performed by Natalie MacMaster

This program aired on December 28, 2009.

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