Christian Science Monitor (73)

Transgender soldier: 'This is the only job I ever wanted'

Active-duty transgender Americans say that President Trump's Wednesday tweets vowing to ban them from the military have sown confusion. But most of those interviewed say serving their country comes first.

Iran rocket test: space program boon or nuclear handwringer?

Iran's successful test of a satellite-carrying rocket is a symbol of the country's maturing space program, but may spite adversaries who complain that the launch violates the spirit of a 2015 nuclear peacekeeping deal.

Behind Trump's transgender ban, a political calculus

While Trump has satisfied some hard-line social conservatives with his outright ban on transgender service, he has also sparked pushback from many Republicans on Capitol Hill.

Libyan request for troops may be 'turning point' in Italian migrant situation

Divided lawmakers will consider sending Italian naval units to Libya to help curb the migrant traffic.

Documentary 'Rumble' explores Native Americans' influence on music

The alchemy of American music as it relates to Native Americans is such a voluminous subject that, inevitably, the fascinating Rumble' can't do it justice.

When Congress wields a tool of peace

Lawmakers are strongly bipartisan in support of new sanctions on Iran, Russia, and North Korea. The mixed record on sanctions requires Congress to be vigilant in tracking their impact.

Amid persistent drought, a nation of herders plots a new course

In Somaliland, part of famine prevention means keeping people at home, rather than wandering for help. It also means laying the ground for a major shift to lessen dependence on livestock, the backbone of Somalis' survival for centuries. Part 4 of our series on famine resilience.

Virtual watercooler: how employees tap into workplace culture from afar

With more remote workers, managers are adopting strategies such as yearly meetups and chatty online journals to help employees feel connected.

In drought-stricken Somaliland, age-old challenges meet WhatsApp

Six months ago, a handful of people in this self-declared republic had a novel idea: create a WhatsApp group to quickly connect donors with relatives' communities enduring drought. Now other sub-clans are using it as a model.

Sessions tackles root of illegal immigration in El Salvador

Attorney General Jeff Sessions fulfills a promise to work on eradicating a violent street gang in Central America despite doubts over his future role within the Trump administration.

Australia to tourists: come drive your electric car along the Great Barrier Reef

Australia unveils plans to build a superhighway that supports electric cars and will stretch 1,118 miles alongside the endangered natural wonder.

'American Ulysses' writer Ronald C. White explains why Grant is so often misunderstood

White, also the author of the bestselling 'A. Lincoln,' is receiving the Civil War Forum of New York's 2017 award for Excellence in Civil War biography.

10 best books of July: the Monitor's picks

From the shores of Walden Pond to the steppes of Siberia, and from Jane Austen's parlor to the fields of an Amish farmer, here are the 10 July titles that most appealed to the Monitor's book critics.

GOP senators look to 'skinny repeal' of 'Obamacare'

After the repeal measure was defeated in the Senate Wednesday, the GOP moved to a pared down version that would simply remove some of the most unpopular parts of the Affordable Care Act.

'When the English Fall' envisions the Amish as society's post-apocalyptic saviors

A gentle concern imbues this contemplative novel which imagines the rest of the society turning to the Amish when the power grid fails.

Michigan FGM case could test bounds of religious liberty

For the first time, the US is pursuing a case of female genital mutilation. In the case, the courts will weigh a religious minority's rights against the federal government's interest in protecting children.

Seattle's $15 minimum wage debate catches small businesses in the middle

In the deeply liberal city, small business owners acknowledge the benefits of paying workers well. But they worry that their own enterprises won't survive. Meanwhile, workers are still struggling with rising living costs.

'The Netanyahu Years' portrays a divisive, oddly compelling world leader

This is the kind of caustic and extremely topical biography that readers would expect to come from a working journalist rather than a professional historian.

Light that uncovers crime

A Christian Science perspective: The light of divine Truth is here to break through the darkness of malice, injustice, and fear.

'Collusion' and its playful roots

A look at the surprising etymology of this dark word in the news.

Why split with Sessions may pit Trump agenda against Trump himself

As the first Republican senator to endorse Trump, Attorney General Jeff Sessions is seen as the standard-bearer of the kind of conservative nationalism that carried the billionaire to the White House.

McCain to Senate: Focus less on winning, more on problem-solving

It's not the first time a senator has denounced one-sided lawmaking. But the GOP's approach to health care, at least so far, points to an acute case of winning-itis.

The prodigal Greeks return to financial markets

A bond sale shows how much Greece has reformed after it nearly went bankrupt and threatened the eurozone.

Syria pivot? Why anti-Assad rebels, dropped by CIA, could land with jihadists.

Suspension of a CIA program that armed and trained the rebels leaves them with few options. Some may join the US-backed anti-ISIS campaign, but others may join jihadists to pursue their campaign against Assad. Some already have.

Trump announces ban on transgender troops in US military

President Trump's tweet Wednesday morning did not address what would happen to the estimated 2,500 to 7,000 transgender troops currently serving in the armed forces.

Madagascar fights the subtler side of hunger: chronic malnutrition

Droughts and famines tend to afflict countries in cyclical fashion. But where chronic malnutrition is endemic, such as in Madagascar, they strike harder. Health education is a start, aid groups say – but adjusting priorities is important, too. Part 3 of our series on famine resilience.

Replacing Obamacare with sweeping changes faces uphill climb

In a dramatic vote Tuesday, senators agreed to open debate on a modified health care bill. Later that evening, the Senate blocked the proposal – a signal that a new approach must be taken if any revised health care legislation is to pass.

Britain to ban gasoline and diesel car sales by 2040

Britain goes a step farther than other major urban centers across Europe that have announced plans ban diesel vehicles from city limits by ending the production line altogether.

US investigators search to shut down channels that led to human smuggling tragedy in Texas

A truck driver responsible for the death of 10 illegal immigrants is part of a major immigrant smuggling operation, US officials say.

Urban farming 2.0: From plow beams to Leafy Green Machines

A new generation of urban farmers is leaving dirt behind and turning shipping containers into tech-driven vertical farms.

NCAA prohibits collision-heavy, two-a-day football practices, impelling coaches to adapt

The NCAA approved a new rule restricting teams to one practice with full contact per day, following a trend already present in most college football programs.

New York to test a 'textalyzer' to curb cellphone related traffic accidents

New York considers a new technology that would allow law enforcement to determine whether drivers in crashes were texting.

Amid harassment, Muslims also find greater support from fellow Americans, survey finds

American Muslims report they have felt greater compassion from non-Muslims and continue to believe that hard work could lead to a successful life in the United States, according to a new Pew Research Center report.

'Refuge' is the story of an Iranian family in search of home

Dina Nayeri's sophomore novel, 'Refuge,' tells a tale of migration and dislocation.

A ladder out of anxiety

A Christian Science perspective: Anyone can find peace through understanding his or her true nature.

What I saw, and what she knows

Until you've actually taken pictures in a place, you don't know how people will respond.

What US response to Jerusalem crisis says about Trump-era Mideast diplomacy

Once again, the US has intervened to try to quell Israeli-Palestinian violence. But that hasn't stopped experts from questioning the prospects of Trump's goal of an 'ultimate deal' on Mideast peace.

A tipping point for Washington's investigative culture?

Congress has been investigating since George Washington's day. But there's something about the Russia probes – anywhere from three to nine, depending on how you count them – that seems different.

What restores peace for Jerusalem's Old City

Ending violence over the control of Islam's third-holiest site rests on a mutual appreciation by Jews and Muslims of the promise of peace in each other's religion.

Bestselling books the week of 7/27/17, according to IndieBound

What's selling best in independent bookstores across America.

Boomer parents: 'One day, this will all be yours.' Grown children: 'Noooo!'

As baby boomers begin to downsize, they are discovering their grown children do not want their stuff. In fact, they recoil in something close to horror at the thought of trying to find room for collections of Hummels and Thomas Kinkade paintings.

Madagascar skirted famine – barely. Now, it's boosting resilience before drought returns.

Where persistent drought is the new normal, communities will have to adapt – a challenge across eastern Africa. But Madagascar's success, and the lessons that it learned from its brush with disaster, point to how crises might be averted elsewhere. Part 2 of our series on famine resilience.

Sweeping free trade deal poised to benefit companies at the expense of small-scale farmers

A free trade deal that would spur economic growth in the eyes of government officials could also force farmers from traditional livelihoods and disproportionately harm women, say Asian advocacy groups.

South Korea strives for more labor-friendly growth and financial equality

President Moon aims for a 'complete paradigm shift' calling for more transparency, support for small businesses, and broader social safety nets for the unemployed.

In drought stricken Kenya, Nairobi residents recycle polluted dam water

In an effort to preserve drinking water, residents of Kibera, Nairobi's largest slum, have started to clean up the polluted city dam to prepare its water for industrial uses.

In drought stricken Kenya, Nairobi residents clean polluted dam for factory use

In an effort to preserve drinking water, residents of Kibera, Nairobi's largest slum, have started to clean up the polluted city dam to prepare its water for industrial uses.

After public rebuke from Trump, Sessions seeks to mend relationship

President Trump has spoken privately about the consequences of firing Attorney General Jeff Sessions after he recused himself from the Russia probe.

President Erdogan says 'era of a submissive Turkey' is over

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan prepares for a meeting with top European Union officials in the midst of an intensifying diplomatic row with Germany.

In a conciliatory move, Israeli officials take down metal detectors from shared shrine

Although the tensions are not yet resolved, the compromise reveals a prevailing interest between Jews and Muslims to protect their diplomatic ties in Jerusalem.

'The Unwomanly Face of War' records Russian women fighting in WWII

Svetlana Alexievich, whose oral histories of Soviet and Russian lives earned her the Nobel Prize for Literature, collected the stories of hundreds of Soviet women World War II vets.