The nation's top military leaders came to Capitol Hill on Tuesday primed to defend their ability to handle, in their chain of command, the sexual assault scandal that has engulfed the armed services.
But the dramatic faceoff with the Senate Armed Services Committee — in particular two of its female members — appeared to only deepen the chasm between the four-star brass and those who want significant change in a system that has failed victims for decades.
The lawyer for Stephen Jin-Woo Kim, a former State Department contractor charged with leaking top-secret information to Fox News, has accused the intelligence community of impeding his defense by slapping the "classified" label on hundreds of irrelevant and harmless documents.
The numbers go like this: Very few single black women — just a quarter of those surveyed — said they were looking for long-term relationships, or LTRs. But on the flip side, nearly 43 percent of single black men said they're looking for a long-term partner.
President Obama announces in the White House Rose Garden on Tuesday his nominations of (from left) Robert Wilkins, Cornelia Pillard and Patricia Millett to fill vacancies on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.
President Obama fired a warning shot Tuesday in the battle over Senate confirmations: He nominated three new judges to the powerful federal appeals court in Washington, and he challenged Senate Republicans not to stand in their way.
Obama complained about procedural roadblocks that have tied up many of his previous nominees — sometimes for years.
Young women covered by a parent's health insurance don't necessarily get maternity coverage. The National Women's Law Center thinks it may have found a way to get them benefits.
The group has filed sex discrimination complaints against five large publicly funded employers, using a little-noticed provision of the Affordable Care Act that bars discrimination in health benefits on the basis of gender.
Ohio State president Gordon Gee, seen here at last month's spring commencement, has announced his retirement. Gee came under fire for his remarks on Catholics, other schools, rival athletic conferences, and coaches.
Ohio State University president Gordon Gee will retire on July 1, ending his leadership of the school that was recently embarrassed by his verbal miscues. Gee, 69, recently sparked anger with comments he made about Catholics and rival universities.
Gee made those comments, reportedly intended as jokes, at a session of Ohio State's Athletic Council.
Former California Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham is a free man today, after spending more than seven years in prison on bribery and other charges. A distinguished Vietnam War veteran and former Navy pilot, Cunningham's 15-year career in Congress ended abruptly when he admitting to taking $2.4 million in bribes from defense contractors and evading taxes.
James Everett Dutschke, the Mississippi man arrested in April on suspicions that he sent letters containing the poison ricin to President Obama and other officials, has been indicted on five federal charges, from sending threats in the mail to knowingly making and possessing "a biological agent... for use as a weapon."
Maximum punishments for the counts leveled against Dutschke, 41, range from five years to life in prison.
Anyone searching for the place where the friction between the Obama White House and congressional Republicans is throwing off the most angry sparks need look no further than the clashes between the administration and Rep. Darrell Issa.
Mississippi lawmakers have embarked on a controversial campaign to discourage older men from having sex with teenagers.
Starting in July, doctors and midwives in the state will be required by law to collect samples of umbilical cord blood from babies born to some girls under the age of 16. Officials will analyze the samples and try to identify the fathers through matches in the state's DNA database.
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday that police can routinely take DNA samples from people who are arrested but not yet convicted of a crime, and see if the DNA matches any samples from unsolved crimes in a national database.
The 5-to-4 decision split the court's conservative and liberal blocs, with conservative Justice Antonin Scalia authoring a fiery dissent. Twenty-eight states and the federal government have enacted laws that provide for automatic DNA testing of arrestees.
The trial of Army Pfc. Bradley Manning, seen here last month, began Monday with prosecutors saying he delivered thousands of classified documents to America's enemies when he provided data to WikiLeaks.
Starkly different views of Army Pfc. Bradley Manning were presented Monday, the first day of his court-martial on charges that he aided the enemy when he gave a large batch of classified data to WikiLeaks that was then posted online.
The Summit Fire burned hot and fast up the Banning Pass area, near Beaumont, Calif., on May 1, leaving a moonscape in its wake. Houses that had cleared brush and wood from around their property were left unscathed.
Credit Nathan Rott / NPR
Julie Hutchinson, a battalion chief with California's firefighting corps, Cal Fire, says she's seeing fire activity usually not seen before late summer.
Fire season is off to an early start in the West. Across California, a hot and dry spring has fire crews on alert. Northeast of Los Angeles, thousands of firefighters are making progress toward controlling the so-called Powerhouse Fire, which has burned more than 30,000 acres and destroyed several homes.
And with no rain in sight, firefighters are out readying homes for a particularly bad year.
Firefighters were able to double containment of the huge Powerhouse wildfire north of Los Angeles to 40 percent Monday, as cooler weather helped them against the blaze that has scorched more than 45 square miles. No deaths have been reported as a result of the fire, which caused some 1,000 homes to be evacuated.
Update at 9 p.m. ET. Some Evacuations Lifted; Name Explained:
The traditionally collegial U.S. Senate was never a natural fit for Frank Lautenberg, the wealthy New Jersey businessman whose headstrong, CEO style could rankle.
But the five-term senator, who died early Monday at age 89, managed to serve as a passionate and able advocate for a tight collection of causes, from gun control and public health to Israel and mass transit.
The nation's largest retailer announced Monday that it will be delivering produce from farms to stores faster by buying fruits and vegetables directly from growers.
The plan is to source about 80 percent of fresh produce directly, explained Jack Sinclair, executive vice president of the food business for Wal-Mart U.S., during a conference call that we participated in Monday morning.
In many instances, Sinclair says it will be possible to "cut out the middleman," but he added that local wholesalers will continue to "play an important role for us in the areas we serve."
Dad takes a cholesterol-lowering statin so he'll be around to see the kids grow up. But statins, like Lipitor and Zocor, as well as some other common adult prescription drugs are causing a rise in poisonings among children, a study says.
The big surprise is that children are at risk not just from opioid painkillers like Vicodin and OxyContin, which most parents know need to be kept away from kids.
There are now reports that as many as 18 people died from injuries they received Friday when the latest in a weeks-long series of tornado-spawning storms tore through parts of Oklahoma.
Update at 8:50 p.m. ET. Death Toll Revised:
An update from Oklahoma's Department of Emergency Management Monday evening reports that 12 adults and 6 children died in Friday night's storms, NPR Southern Bureau Chief Russell Lewis tells us. Officials say that they haven't identified all of the victims. Our original post continues:
The Saturday morning fog was burning off above the part of Santa Monica's beach known as the Inkwell. It's the stretch of sand to which black Southern Californians were relegated by de facto segregation until the 1960s.
Men, women and children walked across the sand in wet suits, carrying surfboards. They're part of the Black Surfers Collective, which aims to get more people of color involved in surfing.
They had gathered to honor pioneer Nick Gabaldon, a legendary surfer who is remembered as the area's first documented board man of African-American and Mexican heritage.
Protesters march during a rally in support of Army Pfc. Bradley Manning outside Fort Meade, Md., on Saturday. Manning, who is scheduled to face a court-martial beginning Monday, is accused of sending hundreds of thousands of classified records to WikiLeaks while working as an intelligence analyst in Baghdad.
In the three years since his arrest, Bradley Manning, the slight Army private first class with close-cropped blond hair and thick military glasses, has become less of a character than a cause.
"Bradley Manning is a very polarizing figure. People either think that he is a hero or they think he's a traitor," says Elizabeth Goitein, who co-directs the liberty and national security program at the Brennan Center for Justice. "I actually think that he's somewhere in between."
Michelle Williams (center) and two daughters visit the grave of her mother, Judy Williams, at Fairview Cemetery in Hyde Park, Mass., on May 11. Judy died in 2011.
Credit Ellen Webber for NPR
Michelle Williams (center), at home in Dorchester, Mass., talks with grandchildren Ayniah Williams (pink dress) and Drequain Smith (far left). At right are her daughters Vanessa "Nessa" Williams (far right) and Margaret Williams. Both Michelle and Ayniah had latent TB infections and have been treated.
Credit Richard Knox / NPR
Robert Williams, 42, holds a photo of his late mother, Judy Williams.
Detroit's finances are so tight that unclaimed bodies can wait months or years for a pauper's burial. To help, Perry Funeral Home in Detroit has been holding free memorial services and cut-rate burials for unclaimed remains for years, like this service in 2009.
Credit Quinn Klinefelter / WDET
T.C. Latham became homeless after losing his job years ago. He died in September, but with no one to pay for his burial, he has not yet been laid to rest.
Shrinking government budgets are changing not only how people live, but also how some municipalities deal with death. In Detroit, funding is so tight that when a homeless person dies, it can take a year or more to receive even a simple pauper's burial.
I met T.C. Latham several years ago, panhandling in downtown Detroit. He was short with a scraggly beard, bent glasses missing one lens and, for the most part, on the good side of the police.
Many victims of sexual assault in the military say only one experience comes close to the pain of the actual crime, and that's going to court to bring charges against the attacker.
This is believed to be one reason why so few victims come forward and report these crimes, and now the Air Force is hoping a new team of lawyers will help to change that.
At Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama, a tall three-star general stands in front of a class of JAG officers — Air Force lawyers. He tells them they are pioneers in a new field, and then lays a heavy responsibility on them.
When Garfield High School in Los Angeles stopped suspending students for "willful defiance" several years ago. Tuesday, the Los Angeles Unified School District board voted to follow suit in all Los Angeles schools.
Detroit doesn't have to wait for Antiques Roadshow to come to town to know the city owns priceless treasures. The city-owned Detroit Institute of Arts holds works by van Gogh, Matisse, Renoir and other artists that could bring in tens of millions of dollars each.
And they just might sell. With the city more than $15 billion in debt, Kevyn Orr, the state-appointed emergency manager trying to straighten out Detroit's finances, has asked the museum to inventory its works with an eye toward potentially selling them off.