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Larry Abramson 2010

Larry Abramson

Larry Abramson is NPR's National Security Correspondent. He covers the Pentagon, as well as issues relating to the thousands of vets returning home from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Prior to his current role, Abramson was NPR's Education Correspondent covering a wide variety of issues related to education, from federal policy to testing to instructional techniques in the classroom. His reporting focused on the impact of for-profit colleges and universities, and on the role of technology in the classroom. He made a number of trips to New Orleans to chart the progress of school reform there since Hurricane Katrina. Abramson also covers a variety of news stories beyond the education beat.

In 2006, Abramson returned to the education beat after spending nine years covering national security and technology issues for NPR. Since 9/11, Abramson has covered telecommunications regulation, computer privacy, legal issues in cyberspace, and legal issues related to the war on terrorism.

During the late 1990s, Abramson was involved in several special projects related to education. He followed the efforts of a school in Fairfax County, Virginia, to include severely disabled students in regular classroom settings. He joined the National Desk reporting staff in 1997.

For seven years prior to his position as a reporter on the National Desk, Abramson was senior editor for NPR's National Desk. His department was responsible for approximately 25 staff reporters across the United States, five editors in Washington, and news bureaus in Los Angeles, New York, and Chicago. The National Desk also coordinated domestic news coverage with news departments at many of NPR's member stations. The desk doubled in size during Abramson's tenure. He oversaw the development of specialized beats in general business, high-technology, workplace issues, small business, education, and criminal justice.

Abramson joined NPR in 1985 as a production assistant with Morning Edition. He moved to the National Desk, where he served for two years as Western editor. From there, he became the deputy science editor with NPR's Science Unit, where he helped win a duPont-Columbia Award as editor of a special series on Black Americans and AIDS.

Prior to his work at NPR, Abramson was a freelance reporter in San Francisco and worked with Voice of America in California and in Washington, D.C.

He has a master's degree in comparative literature from the University of California at Berkeley. Abramson also studied overseas at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland, and at the Free University in Berlin, Germany.

  • Years of war have overtaxed Gaza's hospitals, making it tough for kidney patients to get good treatment. Thanks to help from British doctors, Gaza surgeons are now being trained to perform kidney transplants. They hope to help ease the huge demand for dialysis, but transplants have their own cost.
  • Soldiers around the world will stop what they're doing Thursday to take part in suicide prevention training. The "stand down" is part of the Army's response to an alarming suicide rate — on average, one a day.
  • The Bush administration plans to appeal a federal judge's ruling that the government's warrantless wiretapping program violates the constitution. The judge ordered that the program be stopped, but both sides in the suit have agreed the program can continue pending the outcome of the appeal.
  • The Justice Department will compare U.S. and British anti-terror laws to see if any British tactics should be adopted. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales has expressed interest in the powers held by his U.K. counterparts, including the ability to hold terrorism suspects without charge for up to 28 days. But the U.S. Constitution could doom tougher detention laws. And U.S. officials may already have enough power to effectively pursue terrorists.
  • More court fights over the Internet could erupt if a provision to a House appropriations bill passes. The legislation would require labels on sexually explicit Web sites. The sponsors say the labels would make it easier for filtering software to block access to all such sites.
  • A federal judge upholds the FBI's search of the office of Rep. William Jefferson, the Louisiana Democrat at the center of a bribery investigation. The judge also denied a request to have the materials seized in the May raid returned.
  • Law enforcement officials say they've thwarted a plan by foreign terrorists to bomb a tunnel that connects New York City and New Jersey. The planners reportedly wanted to blow up the Holland Tunnel in the hopes of flooding lower Manhattan.
  • Law enforcement officials say a laptop stolen from the home of an employee of the Department of Veterans Affairs has been recovered. The laptop contained sensitive personal information on millions of veterans and active duty service members. The FBI says there is no evidence that the information was accessed.
  • Four Connecticut librarians spoke bitterly Tuesday about a months' long gag order they were subjected to after the FBI requested patrons' records under the Patriot Act. The librarians decried their inability to participate in congressional debate on how to rewrite the act.
  • The Senate Intelligence Committee grills Air Force Gen. Michael Hayden, the president's nominee to head the Central Intelligence Agency. Much of the questioning centered on Hayden's role in designing two controversial National Security Agency programs, as well as intelligence concerns.