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U.S. Marine artillerymen are now in place on Syrian soil, north of the last stronghold of the Islamic State. A force of local Kurdish and Arab fighters is moving south, continuing to isolate the city of Raqqa.

They're in the opening stages of a major military operation that officials say could last into the fall.

What comes next is expected to have huge implications not only for the fate of ISIS but also for the relationship between Turkey and Russia, as well as the geographic outlines of the future Syrian state.

It will be very complicated.

Refugee resettlement agencies receive funding based on the number of people they anticipate resettling, so the uncertainty around President Trump’s travel ban has serious fiscal consequences.

Jeff Thielman is the CEO of the International Institute of New England, a resettlement agency working in Massachusetts and New Hampshire. His agency expects eight refugees to arrive by March 28.

For the first time in decades, the length of the U.S. ski season is shrinking. And as climate change curtails winter’s length, an industry transformation is under way: one expert says most ski mountains in southern New England could be out of business in 25 years unless they diversify their offerings. But ski areas in northern New England could benefit.

In less than eight hours last June, Yale New Haven’s emergency department treated 12 patients who had overdosed on opioids. Three died; nine were saved.

The number of people detained in New Hampshire by federal immigration authorities since Donald Trump took office was greater than the number detained any of the previous six months. 

Monday is the vernal equinox: that’s the beginning of spring, according to astronomers. For ecologists, spring isn’t just a matter of the earth’s rotation around the sun.  

Summer resorts around the nation are bracing for a tough season — not because the tourists won’t come, but because the workers might not. The reinstatement of a cap on visas for temporary workers has some in the hospitality industry predicting catastrophe.

It all started in the shower. Tucker Lane looked down, and there they were.

"Two ticks, on my right hip, directly next to each other," he says.

At the time, Lane didn't think much about it. He grew up on Cape Cod. Ticks are everywhere there in the summer. "Just another tick bite. Not a big deal," he thought.

That was June. In September, everything changed.

"I was working outside, and I just had a pounding headache," says Lane, 24, who works as a plumber and at a pizza restaurant.

Like many school districts across the country, Providence, Rhode Island Public Schools have a rapidly growing population of English language learners and programs to help them learn their new language. The problem is the state doesn’t have enough teachers certified to teach these students.

Volunteer lawyers in Boston are standing by Monday in anticipation of the impact of President Donald Trump's revised executive order halting travel for immigrants from six Muslim-majority nations. The president's existing order was put on hold by federal courts. The new order was signed on Monday, and goes into effect on March 16.

The number of refugees, asylum seekers and other foreign-born people who settled in Maine last year was the largest in recent years.

Last summer Felicia Keesing returned from a long trip and found that her home in upstate New York had been subjected to an invasion.

"There was evidence of mice everywhere. They had completely taken over," says Keesing, an ecologist at Bard College.

It was a plague of mice. And it had landed right in Keesing's kitchen.

Nearly five years ago, a veteran in New Hampshire’s North Country died while waiting for an appointment through the VA Medical Center in White River Junction, Vermont. The hospital says “no significant delay” contributed to his death, but the man’s widow disagrees, and questions remain about the process the hospital used to hold itself accountable.

Updated at 11:43 p.m. ET

President Trump took a hard-line stance on illegal immigration during his first address to a joint session of Congress Tuesday, restating his promise to build a wall along the Southern border and speaking of the government's ongoing deportation efforts, saying that "as we speak, we are removing gang members, drug dealers, and criminals who threaten our communities."

President Trump's joint address to Congress on Tuesday night is expected to strike an optimistic tone as he outlines how he plans to begin a "renewal of the American spirit" with his economic goals and priorities.

As immigration officials ramp up deportation of new classes of unauthorized immigrants, more residents and visitors without documents fear run-ins with police.

On New Hampshire's diverse Southern border, a traffic stop in one town could lead to very different consequences than the same kind of stop one town over.

Muslims in America are the subject of heated political debate. But they account for a very small number of elected politicians in New England.

One nonprofit, based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, is encouraging American-Muslims across the U.S. to run for political office. The group, called Jetpac, will train potential candidates regardless of party affiliation with the goal of increasing civic engagement within Muslim communities.

Many small towns in New England are eager to welcome refugees from the war in Syria, but that doesn’t seem likely under President Donald Trump’s shifting immigration policy.

St. Johnsbury Academy in Vermont has found a way around that -- they’re offering scholarships to refugees already living in the U.S.

Twenty-first century technology has made its way onto a 19th-century building in Hamden. WNPR recently visited the headquarters of the Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation, which just installed solar panels on its office.

A report analyzing nearly 1,000 fatal police shootings that happened in 2015 claims evidence of racial bias. Researchers hope the study will strengthen a call for a national database on police use of force.

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