Ari Shapiro

Ari Shapiro is an NPR international correspondent based in London. An award-winning journalist, his reporting covers a wide range of topics and can be heard on all of NPR's national news programs, including Morning Edition and All Things Considered.

Prior to his current post, Shapiro reported from the NPR Washington Desk as White House Correspondent during President Barack Obama's first and second terms, as Justice Correspondent during the George W. Bush administration and as a regular guest host on NPR's newsmagazines. He is also a frequent analyst on CNN, PBS, NBC and other television news outlets.

Shapiro's reporting has consistently won national accolades. The Columbia Journalism Review recognized him with a laurel for his investigation into disability benefits for injured American veterans. The American Bar Association awarded him the Silver Gavel for exposing the failures of Louisiana's detention system after Hurricane Katrina. He was the first recipient of the American Judges' Association American gavel Award, recognizing a body of work on U.S. courts and the American justice system. And at age 25, Shapiro won the Daniel Schorr Journalism Prize for an investigation of methamphetamine use and HIV transmission.

An occasional singer, Shapiro makes guest appearances with the "little orchestra" Pink Martini, whose recent albums feature several of his contributions. Since his debut at the Hollywood Bowl in 2009, Shapiro has performed live at many of the world's most storied venues, including Carnegie Hall in New York, L'Olympia in Paris, and Mount Lycabettus in Athens.

Shapiro graduated from Yale University magna cum laude and began his journalism career in the office of NPR Legal Affairs Correspondent Nina Totenberg.

Pages

All Tech Considered
4:15 pm
Sat July 19, 2014

The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, Remixed And Retweeted

A Hamas supporter holds her mobile phone during a public rally in Gaza City in March.
Said Khatib AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 21, 2014 10:13 am

The deadly war in the Gaza Strip and Israel is being fought with rockets and guns. It's also being fought with tweets and viral videos.

Read more
Middle East
3:40 pm
Fri July 18, 2014

Israeli Forces Move Into Gaza, 'Terrorist Tunnels' In Cross Hairs

Originally published on Fri July 18, 2014 6:54 pm

NPR's Ari Shapiro reports on the latest news from the Gaza Strip, where Israel has undertaken a ground invasion against Hamas operatives. It's the first time in five years that the Israeli military has conducted a ground operation.

Middle East
3:19 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

On Two Sides, Two Funerals — While Death Toll Mounts In Gaza

Originally published on Wed July 16, 2014 7:02 pm

As the violence between Hamas and Israel continues, so too do the funerals that come in its wake. NPR correspondents Ari Shapiro and Emily Harris attended two such funerals today, in Tel Aviv and Gaza respectively, and they tell of what they learned there.

Middle East
3:21 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

A Brief Lull Shatters In Gaza, As Cease-Fire Falls Apart

Originally published on Tue July 15, 2014 6:23 pm

An attempt at a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas has broken down. Hamas rejected the terms of the cease-fire, and Israel renewed its campaign of air strikes on the Gaza Strip.

Parallels
2:40 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Israeli-Gaza Conflict Squeezes Palestinian Leader On All Sides

Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas has accused Israel of committing "genocide" against Palestinians, and he has also criticized Hamas for firing rockets on Israel.
Abbas Momani AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 15, 2014 8:28 am

While the Israel-Gaza conflict pits Israelis against Palestinians, it has also increased stress within the Palestinian leadership.

The Gaza Strip is run by Hamas, which the U.S. considers a terrorist group and favors a strategy of resistance. The West Bank is run by Fatah, which is more moderate and favors an olive-branch approach.

Read more
Middle East
3:15 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Between Hamas And Israel, What Might An Endgame Look Like?

Israeli army flares fall into Gaza on Monday, the seventh day of the current fighting between Israel and Palestinians.
Jack Guez AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 14, 2014 7:17 pm

The last time Israel and Hamas fought each other was 2012. Back then, the conflict lasted eight days.

Tuesday marks the eighth day of the current conflict between Israel and Hamas, which raises the question: What might it take to bring this fight to a close?

Both Israel and Hamas say they are unwilling to sign on to a straightforward, put-down-your-weapons, bare-bones ceasefire. They say quiet for quiet, calm for calm, is not enough.

They want more.

Read more
Middle East
3:11 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Among Israelis, Pressure Swells To Commence Ground War In Gaza

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 7:21 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

As we mentioned, no Israelis have been killed by rocket fire, but one strike today did cause severe injuries and damage. Around 8:30 in the morning local time, a rocket struck a gas station in Ashdod. One man was sent to the hospital seriously wounded. NPR's Ari Shapiro reports this increases the internal pressure on Israel to stage a ground invasion.

ARI SHAPIRO, BYLINE: A taxi driver Avram Ayash, comes to this gas station every day. This morning he watched the place go up in flames.

Read more
Parallels
4:19 pm
Wed July 9, 2014

On Opposite Sides Of Israeli-Gaza Border, Feeling The Same Fears

Several families share this one-room underground shelter in Ashkelon, Israel, not far from the border with Gaza. The children say they're afraid to go outside.
Ari Shapiro NPR

Originally published on Wed July 9, 2014 9:39 pm

More than 50 Palestinians have been killed and 450 wounded in Israeli airstrikes on the Gaza Strip. Meanwhile, rockets continue to fly toward Israel from Gaza, but so far, no Israelis have been reported killed.

For people living in and around the Gaza Strip, this conflict has turned daily routines upside down. Life is punctuated by sirens and explosions.

Read more
Crime In The City
2:33 am
Tue July 8, 2014

For One Crime Writer, Peaceful Shetland Is A Perfect Place For Murder

Old stone houses abut the harbor in Lerwick, Shetland's largest town. Outsiders are known here as "soothmoothers," because they arrive on the ferry through the south mouth of the Bressay Sound.
Ari Shapiro NPR

Originally published on Tue July 8, 2014 8:51 am

Crime writer Ann Cleeves puts it best in her novel Dead Water: "Shetland didn't do pretty. It did wild and bleak and dramatic."

The Shetland Islands are a damp and rocky place, with endless miles of green and gray. Humanity seems to cling to the land here like a few tenacious barnacles. "I love the idea of long, low horizons with secrets hidden underneath," Cleeves says.

Read more
Middle East
3:19 pm
Mon July 7, 2014

In Jerusalem, And Caught In A Crossfire Of Thrown Stones

Originally published on Mon July 7, 2014 6:56 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Read more
Parallels
3:34 pm
Wed July 2, 2014

A Scottish Yarn: A Knit In Time Saves The Fabric Of Shetland Life

Ingrid Eunson sits at the spinning wheel in her home in the small town of Brae in Scotland's remote Shetland Islands. She knits yarn that she spins and dyes herself, traditions that her ancestors practiced for generations.
Ari Shapiro NPR

Originally published on Wed July 2, 2014 6:20 pm

Drive around the Shetland Islands in the far north of Scotland, and at least one thing is immediately apparent: It's home to a lot of sheep. They're everywhere — wandering along the roadsides and on beaches.

In fact, there are some 400,000 of them in Shetland, where the ovine inhabitants outnumber the human ones 20 to 1.

So if you're invited to someone's home for dinner, lamb will likely be on the table. And if you're wearing a local scarf or mittens, chances are it was made out of Shetland wool.

Read more
Parallels
2:44 am
Mon June 30, 2014

In Shetland, Oil Shapes Debate Over Scottish Independence

Scotland's offshore oil platforms in the North Sea generate significant wealth for the nation — especially for the Shetland Islands, where oil tanker traffic boosts the local economy.
Andy Buchanan - WPA Pool Getty Images

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 12:32 pm

In September, Scotland will vote on whether to break away from the United Kingdom and declare independence.

So far, the debate has been largely about money: One poll says most voters would switch their vote if it meant an extra 500 pounds, or around $800 dollars.

North Sea oil and gas are central to this economic debate — nowhere more so than in the remote Shetland Islands, many miles from the Scottish mainland, where tankers carrying North Sea oil come ashore. The oil has transformed both the local and national economy.

Read more
Parallels
3:07 pm
Fri June 27, 2014

The Shifting Legacy Of The Man Who Shot Franz Ferdinand

Nineteen-year-old Bosnian Serb Gavrilo Princip fired the shots that killed the heir to the Austro-Hungarian empire, Archduke Franz Ferdinand, and his wife, Sophie, during a visit to Sarajevo on June 28, 1914. Depending on whom you ask, he's either a hero or a terrorist.
Historical Archives Sarajevo AP

Originally published on Fri June 27, 2014 5:33 pm

A hundred years ago Saturday, Gavrilo Princip shot the heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne. That event triggered World War I, charting the course for the 20th century. Today, the legacy of the Bosnian Serb nationalist remains the subject of intense debate — nowhere more than in Sarajevo itself.

Read more
History
2:23 am
Fri June 27, 2014

A Century Ago In Sarajevo: A Plot, A Farce And A Fateful Shot

The Austro-Hungarian archduke and his wife, Sophie, board a car just prior to his assassination in Sarajevo.
AP

Originally published on Fri June 27, 2014 9:57 am

The shot that killed Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary was fired a hundred years ago this weekend.

The assassination in Sarajevo, on June 28, 1914, triggered World War I and changed the course of the 20th century. The consequences of that act were devastating. But the beginning of the story sounds almost like a farce — complete with bad aim, botched poisoning and a wrong turn on the road.

Read more
Europe
3:44 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

A Century From Archduke's Death, Spotlight Turns Back To Bosnia

Originally published on Thu June 26, 2014 6:10 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

People from around the world are in Sarajevo this week to mark 100 years since the gunshot that changed history. On June 28, 1914, a young assassin killed Archduke Franz Ferdinand, triggering the First World War. Bosnia is hosting concerts, conferences and art exhibitions to mark the centenary. NPR's Ari Shapiro reports from Sarajevo on what locals make of the big commemoration.

Read more
Parallels
3:35 am
Sun June 15, 2014

In London, An Underground Home For The World's Mosquitoes

Dr. James Logan, an entomologist, studies mosquitoes from around the world in an effort to make them less dangerous. The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine keeps them in a cavern beneath the streets of London. The bowls contain mosquito larvae in water, while the boxes are where the adults live.
Ari Shapiro NPR

Originally published on Mon June 16, 2014 7:37 am

You can't hear it over the noise of London's traffic. But it's there. That faint, whining hum. Right under my feet, thousands of mosquitoes are dining on human blood.

To visit them, you have to go through a sliding glass door into the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. This school started as a hospital on the Thames River, where doctors treated sailors returning from faraway places with strange parasites.

Read more
Parallels
2:38 pm
Thu June 12, 2014

In A Sunny Britain, Would We Read Classics Like 'David Coppertone'?

On a glorious but rare day, a woman relaxes on a bench in the rose garden in Hyde Park on Monday in London, England. The book she's reading might have turned out much different if London were known for fair weather rather than fog.
Dan Kitwood Getty Images

Originally published on Sat June 14, 2014 3:48 am

I'm not sure that cities like Miami and Rio de Janeiro truly appreciate the sun. They clearly enjoy the sun, what with their beach volleyball games and their fruity cocktails. But to really appreciate the sun, I think you have to live in a place that gets dark by 4 p.m. in the winter. A place where a typical summer day involves drizzle. A place, in short, like London.

Read more
Europe
1:27 pm
Wed June 11, 2014

Across Europe, Anti-Uber Protests Clog City Streets

A taxi precedes demonstrators during a protest against Uber in Barcelona on Wednesday. A conventional taxi license in Spain can cost 137,000 euros ($185,400), making competition from services like Uber a major financial issue.
Josep Lago AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed June 11, 2014 5:24 pm

In capital cities across Europe, taxi drivers took to the streets without passengers Wednesday afternoon. They slowed to a snail's pace in what Parisians called "Operation Escargot." Horns blared around Trafalgar Square in London. In Berlin, taxis massed at the Central Station. All to protest the smartphone app Uber.

"We've opened Frankfurt last week, we've opened Lille in France, which is our third city this week. We opened Barcelona a couple weeks ago, and there's many more cities to go," Uber's Pierre-Dimitri Gore-Coty says.

Read more
Parallels
12:30 pm
Tue June 10, 2014

A London Summit Tackles A Problem As Old As War Itself

Actress Angelina Jolie and British Foreign Secretary William Hague brought together representatives from more than 100 countries for the London conference on sexual violence in conflicts.
Peter Macdiarmid Getty Images

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 8:06 pm

For centuries, governments around the world have often treated sexual violence as an unpreventable fact of war. Books from the Bible to the Iliad talk about rape and pillaging as an inevitable part of conflict. Now that attitude is beginning to change.

Read more
Theater
4:06 pm
Thu June 5, 2014

In Leap From Page To Stage, UK's Take On 'Catch-22' Gets It Right

Originally published on Thu June 5, 2014 6:58 pm

Catch-22 is widely considered a great novel; until now, it has been a disaster as a play. Though Joseph Heller adapted his work for the stage decades ago, every production had been a failure. Now, however, a new production of his play seems to have broken the curse: It is touring the UK and receiving strong reviews.

Read more
The Two-Way
11:12 am
Wed May 28, 2014

To Win, Wear Red: Physicist Hawking Advises England's World Cup Squad

Physicist Stephen Hawking has revealed "England's World Cup Success Formula," which he says was derived by using general logistic regression analysis.
YouTube

Originally published on Wed May 28, 2014 11:52 am

After a lifetime contemplating the mysteries of the universe, famed physicist Stephen Hawking is now considering a more mundane question: How can England win the World Cup?

Read more
Parallels
1:38 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

World's Richest People Meet, Muse On How To Spread The Wealth

Prince Charles talks to Lynn Forester de Rothschild (left), organizer of the Conference on Inclusive Capitalism, and Christine Lagarde, head of the International Monetary Fund, before Tuesday's conference. The 250 corporate and financial leaders who attended control some $30 trillion, about a third of the world's investable assets.
WPA Pool Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 27, 2014 7:17 pm

Talk of economic mobility and the wealth gap is hardly new. From the Occupy movement to President Obama's re-election campaign, income inequality has been in the spotlight for years.

Even so, the "inclusive capitalism" conference in London on Tuesday broke new ground. Not because of the conversation, but because of the people having it.

The 250 people from around the world invited to attend this one-day conference do not represent "the 99 percent," or even the 1 percent. It's more like a tiny fraction of the 1 percent.

Read more
The Two-Way
7:49 am
Mon May 26, 2014

Killed The Mockingbird? American Classics Cut From British Reading List

Harper Lee's Pulitzer Prize winning novel To Kill A Mockingbird didn't make the cut in the U.K.
Tim Boyle Getty Images

Originally published on Mon May 26, 2014 11:56 am

For decades, British students have grown up reading the American classics To Kill A Mockingbird, Of Mice and Men and The Crucible. Now, if students want to read those books, it will be on their own time. Harper Lee, John Steinbeck and Arthur Miller are out — perhaps replaced by the likes of Charles Dickens, Jane Austen and George Eliot.

Read more
Europe
6:49 am
Sat May 24, 2014

Anti-Immigrant Sentiment Helps Fuel Right-Wing EU Candidates

Originally published on Sat May 24, 2014 1:09 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Voters across Europe are going to the polls this weekend to choose representatives to Europe's Parliament in Brussels. These elections take place every five years, and they can be an important measure of the mood of voters on the continent. This year, right-wing parties are expected to do well, as NPR's Ari Shapiro reports.

Read more
Europe
4:59 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Britain's Right-Wing Party Make Gains In EU Parliament Election

Originally published on Fri May 23, 2014 8:42 am

British voters went to the polls Thursday in European and local elections. The vote is key for the UK Independence Party, whose anti-Europe and anti-immigration views struck a chord with some Britons.

Parallels
9:45 am
Tue May 20, 2014

Hero Or Villain? Historical Ukrainian Figure Symbolizes Today's Feud

A Ukrainian nationalist carries a portrait of Stepan Bandera, founder of a Ukrainian rebel army that fought the Soviet Union in the 1930s and '40s. The rally was held on Jan. 1, 2013. While many Ukrainians see Bandera as a hero, many Russians view him as an ally of Hitler and a mass murderer.
Efrem Lukatsky AP

Originally published on Thu May 22, 2014 8:39 am

Let's start with the basics: Stepan Bandera was born in 1909 in what is now western Ukraine. In 1959, the Soviet Union's KGB poisoned Bandera with cyanide and he died in Munich, West Germany.

Between those two dates, black and white quickly fades to gray.

In western Ukraine, many see him as a freedom fighter who battled domination by the Soviet Union and other European powers before and during World War II. They see themselves as the heirs to Bandera's struggle.

Read more
Shots - Health News
2:44 am
Fri May 16, 2014

Corruption In Ukraine Robs HIV Patients Of Crucial Medicine

The mask of this Kiev protester (at a 2012 demonstration demanding more funding for HIV treatment) reads "quarantine." There are enough drugs to treat only half the HIV patients in Ukraine.
Sergei Supinsky AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 16, 2014 11:07 am

I recently took a Ukrainian taxi from the airport to my hotel. The fare should have been $20. The cab driver was adamant that I pay $30. When I finally paid him $30, the driver gave me a receipt with a wink. He'd made it out for $40.

The driver got a cut by overcharging me, and assumed that I would take a cut by overcharging NPR (which I did not).

In Ukraine, corruption is a daily fact of life. It reaches into big business, law enforcement, education and even the smallest transactions between people on the street.

Read more
It's All Politics
11:19 am
Fri May 9, 2014

U.S. Spinmeisters Gear Up For Big Election ... Britain's Election

The leader of Britain's opposition Labour Party, Ed Miliband, speaks to supporters earlier this month in London. His party and the ruling Conservative Party have both hired former advisers to President Obama in advance of Britain's national election next year.
Peter Macdiarmid Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 9, 2014 7:45 pm

In 2000, Jeff Shesol was nearing the end of his stint as a White House speechwriter for President Clinton. He went to the Democratic convention in Los Angeles, where he met a young staffer from Britain's Labour Party. They struck up a friendship.

"And so almost immediately after the Clinton administration had ended, I got a call to come over and begin writing speeches," Shesol says. "Before long, Labour was in the throes of its campaign, and I was stationed there along with them."

Read more
Parallels
2:37 am
Wed May 7, 2014

In Ukraine's Corridors Of Power, An Effort To Toss Out The Old

An activist waves the Ukrainian national flag at Independence Square on April 6.
Valentyn Ogirenko Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Thu May 8, 2014 9:57 am

The first time I saw the word "lustration," I thought it was a case of bad translation from Ukrainian. In Kiev, a flyer advertised a talk by the head of parliament's "lustration" committee.

"What does this word mean in English?" I asked a press aide.

"I don't know the English word for it, but it will be an interesting speech," he replied.

And indeed, it was.

Weeks later, Sam Greene, director of the Russia Institute at King's College in London, explained to me that lustration actually is an English word.

Read more
Europe
3:25 pm
Mon May 5, 2014

Sinn Fein Leader's Questioning Dredges Memories Of 'Troubles'

Originally published on Mon May 5, 2014 5:35 pm

Gerry Adams, a leader of Sinn Fein, was questioned in Northern Ireland in connection with an infamous murder 42 years ago. The investigation threatens to impact the fragile peace agreement there.

Pages