Greg Myre

The Senate and House intelligence committees say they expect top national security officials to once again provide in-person briefings on potential threats to the November election.

The director of national intelligence, John Ratcliffe, caused a stir last month when he said his office would no longer provide face-to-face briefings to Congress. He said the sensitive information was routinely leaked to the media.

Ratcliffe, a staunch supporter of President Trump, said he would keep Congress updated through written reports.

The al-Qaida attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, may now seem like a distant memory for some. But not for Ali Soufan, a former FBI agent who interrogated many al-Qaida suspects.

"For me, it has the feeling that it just happened yesterday," Soufan told NPR in an interview.

He has good reasons for feeling that way. This week, Soufan released a new version of his 2011 book, The Black Banners (Declassified): How Torture Derailed The War On Terror After 9/11, which now includes details of interrogations previously censored by the U.S. government.

A Department of Homeland Security official said in a whistleblower complaint that the head of DHS told him to stop reporting on the Russian threat to the U.S. election because it "made President Trump look bad."

The White House and DHS denied the allegations. However, the president's Democratic critics say the accusations are the latest sign that the Trump administration is attempting to politicize the intelligence community and downplay Russian attempts to interfere in this year's election, as Moscow did in 2016.

The Pentagon ordered the closure of the venerable military newspaper Stars and Stripes on Friday. But hours later, President Trump tweeted that he wouldn't allow that to happen "under my watch."

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In August 2016, during the run-up to the last presidential election, U.S. intelligence officials began briefing congressional leaders on what they described as unprecedented Russian interference efforts.

The Russians had a history of meddling, but this time was different, Mike Rogers, then the director of the National Security Agency, told All Things Considered co-host Mary Louise Kelly.

A satellite photo shows the eastern Syrian town of Baghouz, the last holdout of Islamic Stat

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A recently ousted counterterrorism chief says the country is risking the gains made against terrorist threats by cutting back resources with little or no public debate. In an interview with NPR, Russ Travers also expressed frustration at the poor state of relations between the intelligence community and the Trump administration.

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The National Security Agency, as well as its counterparts in Britain and Canada, all said Thursday that they're seeing persistent attempts by Russian hackers to break into organizations working on a potential coronavirus vaccine.

The Western intelligence agencies say they believe the hackers are part of the Russian group informally known as Cozy Bear. The intelligence agencies refer to it as APT29.

Russian military intelligence, known as the GRU, was founded a century ago under the leadership of the revolutionary Leon Trotsky.

Only in recent years has it come to the fore with a series of brazen actions. They include Russia's military operations in Ukraine and Syria and the hack of Democratic Party emails in the 2016 U.S. election.

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President Trump has said he was not told about a suspected Russian bounty program to pay the Taliban to kill U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

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Many immigrants have inspiring stories. Then there's Janis Shinwari, who worked eight years as an Afghan interpreter with the U.S. military in some of the most dangerous parts of his homeland.

"During his service, he saved the lives of five American soldiers. That is not something many people can say," Ken Cuccinelli, the acting director of Citizenship and Immigration Services.

John Bolton reportedly received a $2 million advance for his tell-all book about his time as President Trump's national security adviser, and if it sells well, additional royalties could follow.

But a judge's ruling has raised questions about whether Bolton will be allowed to keep the money for his work titled The Room Where It Happened.

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President Trump on Sunday ordered National Guard troops to start withdrawing from Washington, where the protests over the killing of George Floyd have been peaceful in recent days.

In a telephone briefing with reporters, Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy said guardsmen from 11 states, who came to assist the D.C. National Guard, will be returning home over the next two or three days.

Altogether, the National Guard force from D.C. and the states totaled more than 5,000 this past week, though only about one-third were on the streets at any given time, he said.

When Dr. Jonas Salk first began testing his potential polio vaccine in 1953, he brought it home from his nearby lab at the University of Pittsburgh.

"I just hated injections," recalled his son Peter Salk, 76, and the oldest of three brothers. "So my father came home with polio vaccine and some syringes and needles that he sterilized on the kitchen stove, boiling them in water, and lined us kids up and then administered the vaccine."

The race to defeat the coronavirus can be viewed in two very distinct ways. One is based on international cooperation, with a vaccine treated as a "global public good." The other is competitive, a battle between nations that's being described as "vaccine nationalism."

Many are hoping for the former, but are seeing signs of the latter.

Despite Democratic opposition, the Republican majority in the Senate on Thursday confirmed U.S. Rep. John Ratcliffe, R-Texas, as the new director of national intelligence, overseeing all 17 intelligence agencies.

With the 49-44 vote along party lines, Ratcliffe becomes the fourth person to hold the job in less than a year.

He takes over at a sensitive moment. U.S.-China tensions are rising over the coronavirus pandemic, and many in the national security community say they are certain that Russia again will attempt to interfere in the U.S. presidential election this fall.

Edward Snowden's story on disclosing some of the National Security Agency's most sensitive surveillance programs has by now been oft told, by Snowden himself, among others.

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As researchers around the globe race to develop a coronavirus vaccine, U.S. authorities are warning American firms to exercise extreme caution in safeguarding their research against China and others with a track record of stealing cutting-edge medical technology.

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The Trump administration keeps raising the, so far, unproven theory that the coronavirus originally escaped from a Chinese lab in the city of Wuhan. Here's Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaking Sunday on ABC's "This Week."

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President Trump said this evening that he has seen evidence that the coronavirus came from a lab in China. This would be a major development, but the president declined to give any details in the exchange with a reporter.

Since the day he took office, President Trump's "America First" policies have been at odds with the traditional U.S. global leadership role that's been in place since the end of World War II.

Trump has questioned the value of NATO and military alliances in Asia. He's pulled the U.S. out of the Paris Climate Accord and the nuclear agreement with Iran. Many analysts say the most striking example has been the president's approach to the coronavirus, where the U.S. has struggled with the pandemic at home and offered little or no leadership abroad.

President Trump says the U.S. Navy should fire on Iranian boats if they continue to harass U.S. warships in the Gulf, a move that raises the prospect of open hostilities between the two rivals.

The president's Wednesday morning tweet came shortly after Iran announced it had successfully launched a military satellite into orbit for the first time.

With the U.S. and Iran both battling to control a coronavirus outbreak at home, the ongoing friction between the two countries had receded from the headlines.

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