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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7:50am

Wed February 20, 2013
The Two-Way

Pistorius's Story Challenged: Witness Heard Screams And Shots, Police Say

Originally published on Wed February 20, 2013 1:41 pm

South African sprinter Oscar Pistorius in a Pretoria court Wednesday.
EPA /LANDOV

A neighbor has told investigators that he heard "gunshots ... a female screaming two-three times, then more gunshots" coming from the South African home of Oscar Pistorius in the early morning hours of Feb. 14, a police officer testified Wednesday at a bail hearing for the Olympic and Paralympic athlete.

The witness has also told investigators about "non-stop talking" and sounds "like fighting" coming from Pistorius's home between the hours of 2 a.m. and 3 a.m.

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2:17pm

Tue February 19, 2013
The Two-Way

VIDEO: First 'Unassisted' Backflip By A Car?

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 2:53 pm

Driver Guerlain Chicherit in his Mini Countryman, doing a backflip on Sunday in France.
Thierry Guillot Maxppp /Landov

Driving a modified Mini Cooper Countryman, French rally driver Guerlain Chicherit has successfully pulled off what's said to be the first "unassisted" backflip by a car.

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1:25pm

Tue February 19, 2013
The Two-Way

Gen. John Allen, Recent Top Commander In Afghanistan, Is Retiring

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 2:24 pm

Marine Corps Gen. John Allen in March 2012.
Kevin Dietsch UPI /Landov

Marine Corps Gen. John Allen, who led U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan until earlier this month and had been on track to be the top NATO commander in Europe, is retiring from the military.

The White House early Tuesday afternoon released a statement from President Obama that says, in part:

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12:22pm

Tue February 19, 2013
The Two-Way

At Least Four Dead, Including Gunman, After Southern California Shootings

"A chaotic 25-minute shooting spree" across Southern California's Orange County Tuesday morning "left a trail of dead and injured victims before the shooter killed himself," KPCC reports.

The Orange County Register says "four people are dead and two others [were] wounded."

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11:44am

Tue February 19, 2013
The Two-Way

The Snake's A Snitch: Why Florida Released Biggest Python Caught In Hunt

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 12:47 pm

A Burmese python at Zoo Miami. Authorities are trying to cut down the number of such snakes in the state.
Peter Andrew Bosch MCT /Landov

This headline may make you go "huh?"

"Biggest Python in Florida Snake Hunt Released Back into the Wild."

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11:09am

Tue February 19, 2013
The Two-Way

Obama Pushes Congress To Avoid Automatic Cuts; GOP Says It's Not The Problem

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 11:54 am

As he pressed Congress for action Tuesday, President Obama stood before a group of first responders. He made the case that their departments will be hurt if automatic budget cuts go into effect March 1.
Win McNamee Getty Images

Standing in front of first responders who he says could lose their jobs, President Obama pushed Tuesday for Congress to act now to avoid $85 billion in "automatic, severe budget cuts" set to kick in starting on March 1.

The cuts due because of the so-called sequestration "are not smart, they are not fair [and] they will hurt our economy," the president said.

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10:07am

Tue February 19, 2013

9:24am

Tue February 19, 2013
The Two-Way

Clues Connect Global Hacking To Chinese Government, Security Firm Says

Originally published on Mon March 4, 2013 3:41 pm

Cyberattack headquarters? The 12-story building in a Shanghai suburb that American investigators say houses an operation responsible for hundreds of cyberattacks on companies around the world.
Peter Parks AFP/Getty Images
  • Frank Langfitt on 'Morning Edition'

"Hundreds of investigations convince us" that the Chinese government is at least aware of, and likely sponsoring, cyber thieves who have stolen massive amounts of information from companies around the world, including American defense contractors, a U.S. security firm reported Tuesday.

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8:43am

Tue February 19, 2013
The Two-Way

Quite A Haul: $50 Million Worth Of Diamonds Stolen In Lightning-Fast Heist

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 2:50 pm

Yves Herman Reuters /Landov

In a heist right out of movies such as The Italian Job, eight masked gunman drove on to the tarmac at Brussels' international airport Monday night, sped to a plane being loaded with diamonds and made off with about $50 million worth of the precious stones, authorities say.

It was all over in just a few minutes.

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7:55am

Tue February 19, 2013
The Two-Way

Pistorius Says He Feared For His Life; Prosecutor Says Shooting Was Premeditated

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 9:51 am

Oscar Pistorius in a Pretoria court Tuesday.
Siphiwe Sibeko Reuters /Landov

South African prosecutors laid out their case Tuesday against sprinter Oscar Pistorius, charging that the Olympic and Paralympic athlete committed premeditated murder on Valentine's Day when he allegedly rose from bed, put on his prosthetic legs, walked to a locked bathroom door and fired through it four times — killing his girlfriend, model Reeva Steenkamp.

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2:36pm

Fri February 15, 2013
The Two-Way

Educators Killed At Sandy Hook School Honored At White House

President Obama with Donna and Carlos Soto, who accepted the Presidential Citizens Medal awarded to their daughter, slain Sandy Hook teacher Victoria Soto.
Shawn Thew EPA /LANDOV

The six women killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School by a gunman who also murdered 20 children were honored with posthumous Presidential Citizens Medals today at the White House.

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2:27pm

Fri February 15, 2013
The Two-Way

It's Out Of Here: Asteroid Whizzes By

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 3:46 pm

An illustration of what asteroid 2012 DA 14 may look like as it approaches Earth.
NASA/JPL-CalTech EPA /LANDOV

Update at 2:25 p.m. ET. Asteroid Has Passed By:

According to NASA, asteroid 2012 DA14 — a rock thought to be about 150 feet across and the weight of about 318 fully loaded Boeing 747s — just flew past the planet.

So, we're all safe.

Update at 3:43 p.m. ET. A Photograph:

NASA has released this photograph of 2012 DA14:

Our original post and earlier updates:

If you haven't heard by now, then we've got some perhaps unsettling news:

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11:22am

Fri February 15, 2013
The Two-Way

Grad Who Sued Over C+ Grade Flunks In Court

Megan Thode, who lost her case against Lehigh University.
Donna Fisher/The Morning Call MCT /Landov

The latest person to sue a university over a "bad" grade has failed to make her case.

As the Allentown, Pa., Morning Call reports, "a Northampton County judge on Thursday rejected the claims of a Lehigh University graduate suing over her C+ grade, a verdict that upheld the school's insistence that she earned the mark she got."

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10:38am

Fri February 15, 2013
The Two-Way

Why Did So Many Russian Drivers Get Such Great Meteor Videos?

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 11:58 am

One of the dashcam videos recorded Friday when a meteor appeared over Russia.
RussiaToday

9:07am

Fri February 15, 2013
The Two-Way

'Cruise From Hell' Was A Mix Of 'Survivor' And 'Lord Of The Flies'

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 3:22 pm

After finally getting off the Carnival cruise ship Triumph, this passenger waited for a ride early Friday in Mobile, Ala.
Mark Wallheiser EPA /LANDOV

As they finally came off the Carnival cruise ship Triumph late Thursday and early Friday in Mobile, Ala., passengers from the ill-fated cruise told stories that call to mind TV's Survivor and literature's classic Lord of the Flies, the Los Angeles Times writes.

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