David Welna http://nhpr.org en The Challenge Of Keeping Tabs On The NSA's Secretive Work http://nhpr.org/post/challenge-keeping-tabs-nsas-secretive-work Here's a question with no easy answer: How do you hold the nation's spy agencies accountable — when they control the secrets?<p>Former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden apparently thought the answer was to blow the lid off some of the NSA's highly classified programs. He took documents and shared them with journalists.<p>But what about Congress? It's supposed to oversee the NSA — and other spy agencies. Wed, 23 Jul 2014 08:45:00 +0000 David Welna 52413 at http://nhpr.org The Challenge Of Keeping Tabs On The NSA's Secretive Work Before Snowden: The Whistleblowers Who Tried To Lift The Veil http://nhpr.org/post/snowden-whistleblowers-who-tried-lift-veil Bill Binney worked at the National Security Agency nearly three decades as one of its leading crypto-mathematicians. Tue, 22 Jul 2014 08:45:00 +0000 David Welna 52338 at http://nhpr.org Before Snowden: The Whistleblowers Who Tried To Lift The Veil FBI, NSA Spied On American Muslims, Report Says http://nhpr.org/post/fbi-nsa-spied-american-muslims-report-says Transcript <p>STEVE INSKEEP, HOST: <p>It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep.<p>RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: <p>And I'm Renee Montagne. It's been more than a year since Edward Snowden fled the country with top-secret, digital documents from the National Security Agency, and revelations about what he took keep coming. The latest appeared yesterday, in the online publication The Intercept. Its headline is, "Meet The Muslim-American Leaders The FBI And NSA Have Been Spying On," and it was co-written by Glenn Greenwald. Five prominent Muslim citizens are profiled. Thu, 10 Jul 2014 09:01:00 +0000 David Welna 51643 at http://nhpr.org Congress Keeping Close Watch On Obama's Plans In Iraq http://nhpr.org/post/congress-keeping-close-watch-obamas-plans-iraq After bowing out of Iraq when the last American forces left two and a half years ago, the U.S. military is back.<p>Up to 300 military advisers started arriving there this weekend. President Obama said he sent them to help Iraq's military confront the Sunni militants who've overrun much of northern Iraq. He said Thursday that U.S. Sun, 22 Jun 2014 21:45:00 +0000 David Welna 50652 at http://nhpr.org Congress Keeping Close Watch On Obama's Plans In Iraq What, Exactly, Are U.S. Interests In Iraq's Turmoil? http://nhpr.org/post/what-exactly-are-us-interests-iraqs-turmoil As the U.S. steers warships closer to Iraq and beefs up its embassy's security in Baghdad with nearly 300 troops, a nagging question has resurfaced.<p>What compelling interests does Washington still have in a nation where all U.S. forces were pulled out 2 1/2 years ago?<p>Three days after Sunni militants calling themselves the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria seized Mosul, Iraq's second-largest city, President Obama paused on the White House lawn and issued a warning.<p>"Terrorists," he said, were being allowed to overrun part of Iraq's territory. Tue, 17 Jun 2014 22:43:00 +0000 David Welna 50403 at http://nhpr.org What, Exactly, Are U.S. Interests In Iraq's Turmoil? Defending Bergdahl Deal, Hagel Faces Critics On Both Sides Of Aisle http://nhpr.org/post/defending-bergdahl-deal-hagel-faces-critics-both-sides-aisle Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel testified before the House Armed Services Committee on Wednesday, defending the prisoner swap that freed Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl. Wed, 11 Jun 2014 21:16:00 +0000 David Welna 50082 at http://nhpr.org House-Approved USA Freedom Bill Disappoints Original Supporters http://nhpr.org/post/house-approved-usa-freedom-bill-disappoints-original-supporters Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH: We're going to consider now changing perceptions toward fighting terrorism. President Obama has suggested that eventually the war on terror must end and that the nation must think about the tools used to fight it. Here he is speaking a year ago today at the National Defense University.<p>PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: From our use of drones to the tension of terror suspects, the decisions that we are making now will define the type of nation and world that we leave to our children.<p>CORNISH: In the year since, public attitudes have changed and people are more skeptical. Fri, 23 May 2014 20:26:00 +0000 David Welna 49082 at http://nhpr.org House Passes Measure Reining In Government Surveillance http://nhpr.org/post/house-passes-measure-reining-government-surveillance Transcript <p>RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: <p>One year ago, President Obama called to reshape the fight against terrorism and for more privacy protections as the government intercepts new types of information. Just days later, the extent of data collection by the NSA would be revealed by Edward Snowden. Fri, 23 May 2014 09:03:00 +0000 David Welna 49019 at http://nhpr.org House To Vote On Fate Of A-10 Warthogs http://nhpr.org/post/house-vote-fate-10-warthogs Transcript <p>RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: <p>It's MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne.<p>STEVE INSKEEP, HOST: <p>And I'm Steve Inskeep.<p>Congress ordered big savings in defense spending. Now, Congress is moving to block those savings. What follows is a classic story of how federal budgeting works.<p>MONTAGNE: The Pentagon faces budget restraints. Lawmakers favor cuts in general, but objected when the cuts became specific. Wed, 21 May 2014 09:22:00 +0000 David Welna 48863 at http://nhpr.org Faced With Pentagon Budget Cuts, Congress Finesses The Numbers http://nhpr.org/post/faced-pentagon-budget-cuts-congress-finesses-numbers The Pentagon's congressionally-imposed budget cuts ran into a powerful opponent this week: Congress itself. The House Armed Services Committee rejected $5 billion worth of proposed cuts in order to preserve items cherished by individual lawmakers. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2014 NPR. Fri, 09 May 2014 20:31:00 +0000 David Welna 48246 at http://nhpr.org Bipartisan Bill Would Stop NSA's Bulk Phone Data Collection http://nhpr.org/post/bipartisan-bill-would-stop-nsas-bulk-phone-data-collection The White House and members of Congress agree that the National Security Agency's bulk collection of Americans' phone logs, disclosed by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, has to end. Thu, 08 May 2014 11:41:00 +0000 David Welna 48131 at http://nhpr.org Sanctions Put Pentagon's Business Deals With Russia Up For Debate http://nhpr.org/post/sanctions-put-pentagons-business-deals-russia-debate Washington has imposed a number of economic sanctions on Russia in retaliation for that country's push into Ukraine.<p>Getting European allies to do the same has not always been easy, since many of those nations trade with Russia and fear getting hurt themselves.<p>But the Europeans are not the only ones balking: The Pentagon also buys Russian military hardware.<p>When U.S. military and intelligence satellites are shot into space, all the rocket engines that propel them are made by a state-owned enterprise in Russia. Sat, 03 May 2014 15:31:00 +0000 David Welna 47846 at http://nhpr.org Sanctions Put Pentagon's Business Deals With Russia Up For Debate An Angry Hearing On The Hill For 'Cockamamie' Twitter-like Network http://nhpr.org/post/angry-hearing-hill-cockamamie-twitter-network Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy was incensed that he only learned about the creation of a Twitter-like network in Cuba through press accounts. He had the chance Tuesday to vent his frustration when USAID administrator Rajiv Shah appeared before Leahy's committee. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2014 NPR. Tue, 08 Apr 2014 20:33:00 +0000 David Welna 46415 at http://nhpr.org After 58 Years Of Service, John Dingell To Vacate House Seat http://nhpr.org/post/after-58-years-service-john-dingell-vacate-house-seat Transcript <p>RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: <p>It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne.<p>DAVID GREENE, HOST: <p>And I'm David Greene.<p>I n 1955, Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on an Alabama bus. "Rock Around the Clock" by Bill Haley and his Comets was a top hit on the music charts, and John Dingell became a member of Congress. Nearly six decades later, the Michigan Democrat, the longest-serving member of Congress is leaving. Tue, 25 Feb 2014 10:34:00 +0000 David Welna 44095 at http://nhpr.org House Passes 'Clean' Debt Limit Bill http://nhpr.org/post/house-vote-clean-debt-limit-bill Tuesday saw a rarity in Congress these days: a "clean" bill.<p>The House passed one to raise the debt limit, a move that avoids a possible default later this month.<p>In the past, House Republicans have used this debate to extract concessions from President Obama and congressional Democrats.<p>But not this time. House Republicans demanded nothing in return. Tue, 11 Feb 2014 22:56:00 +0000 David Welna 43404 at http://nhpr.org House Passes 'Clean' Debt Limit Bill