Mark Memmott

Mark Memmott is one of the hosts of NPR's "The Two-Way" news blog.

"The Two-Way," which Memmott helped to launched when he came to NPR in 2009, focuses on breaking news, analysis, and the most compelling stories being reported by NPR News and other news media.

Before joining NPR, Memmott worked for nearly 25 years as a reporter and editor at USA Today. He focused on a range of coverage from politics, foreign affairs, economics, and the media. He's reported from places across the Unites States and the world, including half a dozen trips to Afghanistan in 2002-2003.

During his time at USA Today, Memmott, helped launch and lead three USAToday.com news blogs: "On Deadline," "The Oval" and "On Politics," the site's 2008 presidential campaign blog.

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The Two-Way
7:44 am
Thu May 24, 2012

Jobless Claims Dip; Orders For Durable Goods Are Soft

The number of first-time claims for jobless benefits dipped slightly last week, to 370,000 from 372,000 the week before, the Employment and Training Administration reports.

The 4-week moving average for claims — which economists say gives a better picture of the trend — was also 370,000, down by 5,500.

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The Two-Way
7:16 am
Thu May 24, 2012

Cyber Countershot: U.S. Hacks Web Ads Of Al-Qaida's Yemen Affiliate

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 4:06 pm

Update at 4:53 p.m. ET. U.S. Is Not 'Hacking':

NPR's Dina Temple-Raston tells us State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland made it clear that the United States is not "hacking" the websites that appeal to al-Qaida. Instead, they are "countering propaganda with a counter-narrative that we believe is closer to the truth of the situation."

In her All Things Considered report, Dina provides an example:

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The Two-Way
6:28 am
Thu May 24, 2012

Man Has Implicated Himself In Etan Patz Disappearance, NY Police Say

Etan Patz, and the "lost child" poster issued after his 1979 disappearance.
AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu May 24, 2012 8:13 pm

Update at 7:13 p.m. ET: Police Announce Arrest Of Suspect:

At a press conference in New York, Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said police had arrested Pedro Hernandez in the killing of Etan Patz, the 6-year-old boy who disappeared as he was walking to school in 1979.

Officials say Hernandez, a former convenience store worker, confessed to police that he suffocated the boy, placing his body in a cardboard box. Etan's body has never been found.

Kelly said Hernandez also took police to the site where he contends the killing occurred.

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The Two-Way
2:22 pm
Wed May 23, 2012

Poachers Can Be Shot, Officials In India Declare

An Indian tiger looks out from a camouflaged cover in the Ranthambhore National Park. (March 2000 file photo.)
J. Scott Applewhite AP

Poachers caught hunting tigers in India's Maharashtra state are on notice that they could be shot on sight.

The Times of India says the "stern stand against poachers" means "if the forest officials fire upon the poachers injuring or killing them, the action will not be considered a crime." Prior to this week's announcement by state officials, those guards were subject to prosecution for such actions.

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The Two-Way
12:00 pm
Wed May 23, 2012

Patrick Fitzgerald, High-Profile Prosecutor, Stepping Down

United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois Patrick Fitzgerald.
John Gress Getty Images

Patrick Fitzgerald, the federal prosecutor who obtained the conviction of Vice President Cheney's chief of staff for lying to authorities about the leaking of a CIA officer's name and who sent former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D) to jail on corruption charges, is stepping down from his post.

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The Two-Way
11:22 am
Wed May 23, 2012

Challenge: Use The Moog Doodle To Play The 'All Things Considered' Theme

Google's Moog Doodle.
Google.com

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 5:05 pm

  • A clip of the current 'All Things Considered' theme
  • Bob Boilen reporting, in 2002
  • Two early versions of the 'All Things Considered' theme

You've probably know by now that Google is paying homage to Robert Moog today with a Doodle that's a virtual version of the iconic Moog Synthesizer. Moog died in 2005. Today would have been his 78th birthday.

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The Two-Way
9:21 am
Wed May 23, 2012

As Talks Begin, Iran And World Powers Stake Out Positions

  • Tom Gjelten reporting
  • Mike Shuster reporting

As talks opened in Baghdad today, "diplomats from six world powers offered Iran new proposals Wednesday to ease international concerns about its nuclear program, but appeared to reject Tehran's appeals to ease economic sanctions to help move along talks," The Associated Press reports.

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The Two-Way
8:35 am
Wed May 23, 2012

Primary Protests: 4 In 10 Say No To Obama; 3 In 10 Say No To Romney

President Obama during a news conference Monday in Chicago.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

Though there's no doubt about the nominees, presidential primaries are still being held.

And in both Democratic and Republican contests, some voters continue to register their unhappiness with the choices before them.

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The Two-Way
7:35 am
Wed May 23, 2012

'Morally Repugnant' Behavior Tolerated By Secret Service, Senator Says

In Cartagena, a prostitute stands on a corner in the historical district.
Manuel Pedraza AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 10:09 am

The first congressional hearing into the scandal involving Secret Service personnel who allegedly cavorted with prostitutes in Colombia last month is set for this morning. As the time for that hearing approaches, a key senator is charging that such "morally repugnant" behavior appears to have been tolerated within the elite agency.

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The Two-Way
6:58 am
Wed May 23, 2012

33 Years In Prison For Pakistani Doctor Who Aided Hunt For Bin Laden

Osama bin Laden.
AP

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 6:22 pm

Shakil Afridi, a Pakistani doctor who helped in the hunt for Osama bin Laden by trying to collect DNA from the al-Qaida leader and his family members, has been convicted of treason and sentenced to 33 years in prison, according to reports from Pakistan.

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