National Security

Tin City Long Range Radar Site
Michael de Yoanna / KUNC

Inside a small building surrounded by a gate on a military base in Anchorage, Alaska, sits one of North America's most important first lines of defense.

Maj. Christopher Perham unlocks the gate that leads in, followed by a series of doors.

"This is the base of our operations here," Perham says.

He's part of the Alaska Air National Guard in the 176th Air Defense Squadron. But he works for the North American Aerospace Defense Command, better known as NORAD, which is headquartered thousands of miles away in Colorado.

Army Gen. Paul Nakasone, who heads both the National Security Agency and the U.S. Cyber Command, usually doesn't say much in public. But recently, he's been on what amounts to a public relations blitz. The message he's pushing is that the U.S. will be more aggressive in confronting and combating rivals in cyberspace.

In a letter to President Trump, 58 former military and national security officials expressed deep concern about reported plans to create "a committee to dispute and undermine military and intelligence judgments on the threat posed by climate change."

President Obama says his agreement over Iran's nuclear program — while facing fierce criticism in Congress and among the American public now — will look better in years to come.

President Obama is considering widening military strikes against the extremist group that beheaded American journalist James Foley. The U.S. has been bombing the Islamic State's positions in Iraq, and may decide to extend those strikes to Syria.

Three years after the killing of Osama bin Laden, and a year after President Obama tried to turn the page on the open-ended war on terror, the U.S. is facing a threat from a group even more extreme than al-Qaida.

Glenn Greenwald, the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who helped to break stories about mass surveillance in the United States, is making more revelations in a new book coming out Tuesday.

In an interview with NPR's Morning Edition, Greenwald says one of the more "shocking" things he's found is that the National Security Agency physically intercepted shipments of computer hardware, like routers, switches and servers, to outfit them with surveillance equipment.

For decades the National Guard has fought hard against the stereotype that it was the place to avoid the draft during the Vietnam War, or that it's a place to get college money rather than combat duty.

Guard leaders thought that after more than a decade of war in Afghanistan and Iraq they had finally earned some respect. So it was a body blow when the Army's top officer, Gen. Ray Odierno, unveiled his plan on Capitol Hill to take all of the National Guard's Apache helicopters and move them to the regular Army.

The morning I met Elaine Rich, she was sitting at the kitchen table of her small town home in suburban Maryland trying to estimate refugee flows in Syria.

It wasn't the only question she was considering; there were others:

Will North Korea launch a new multistage missile before May 10, 2014?

Will Russian armed forces enter Kharkiv, Ukraine, by May 10? Rich's answers to these questions would eventually be evaluated by the intelligence community, but she didn't feel much pressure because this wasn't her full-time gig.

A Colorado man has filed the first direct challenge to the FISA Amendments Act, claiming that the law allowing the government to collect vast amounts of data from the international communications of U.S. citizens in bulk is unconstitutional.

After a long spell of partisan trench warfare and gridlock, President Obama called for "a year of action" Tuesday as he focused on themes that are central to his second-term agenda. The changes he proposed in his annual State of the Union speech were relatively modest, but flashes of ambition showed in his promise to move forward, with or without Congress, to address issues of income inequality.

Here's what President Obama proposed on the policy front:

Minimum Wage

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