PBS and NPR for Southwest Florida
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations
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.

  • The Air Force says retiring the Cold War-era A-10 could help it balance its budget and focus on developing more versatile aircraft. But the military encounters resistance whenever it tries to mothball any weapon, and the case of the plane known as the Warthog is no exception.
  • Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel returned to the Mideast on Monday after a weekend tour of Afghanistan and a stop in Pakistan. The trip focused on a planned security deal with Afghanistan and concerns among Gulf allies about a nuclear deal with Iran.
  • In 2003, U.S. forces discovered a trove of Jewish documents in a flooded Baghdad basement. They tell the tale of a once-thriving Jewish community. The painstakingly restored documents will be exhibited in the U.S. before they are returned to Iraq. But some Jewish groups are trying to prevent that.
  • Several new developments put the NSA surveillance program into the spotlight this week. The U.S. had to explain why it eavesdrops on foreign leaders; The Washington Post reported that the NSA can tap directly into overseas servers of Google and Yahoo; and lawmakers have introduced legislation to rein in the program that allows NSA to gather phone data on Americans.
  • After the Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act, the Pentagon said it would offer military IDs and extend the benefits that come with them to same-sex partners. But some states that don't recognize gay marriages have refused to issue the IDs to same-sex spouses of National Guard members.
  • Law enforcement agencies across the country subpoena cellphone location data regularly. But civil liberties groups hope a series of state-level legal victories will usher in stronger protections for that often-revealing digital information.
  • Since 1980, the percentage of women at the U.S. Military Academy has stayed largely the same, leading some to conclude that the school has set an artificial cap on the number of female cadets it accepts. Now, West Point has been told it must raise those numbers to meet the demand for more female leaders.
  • The National Security Agency violated special court restrictions on the use of a database of telephone calls, but the NSA says it fixed those problems. That's the bottom line from more documents declassified by the director of National Intelligence. The document dump is part of an effort to share more details about NSA surveillance activities that were uncovered by former government contractor Edward Snowden.
  • Congress is trying to fashion language that would restrict U.S. involvement in Syria from escalating. But lawmakers often find it uncomfortable to rein in the commander in chief once U.S. forces have been committed.
  • The Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board holds its first public workshop on the implications of two NSA programs uncovered by the media. The board is getting into action just as the Obama administration faces its biggest privacy challenge.