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Updated at 11:55 a.m. ET

A senior FBI official said Wednesday the nation is "under relentless assault" from foreign adversaries, as the Senate Judiciary Committee continued its probe into Russia's interference with last year's presidential election.

Bill Priestap, assistant director of counterintelligence at the FBI, painted a bleak picture of efforts — both overt and covert — by foreign government agents inside the U.S. "Our economy, our national security and our way of life are being actively threatened by state actors and their proxies," he said.

The Ohio Supreme Court has again upheld cities' use of traffic camera enforcement, striking down as unconstitutional legislative restrictions that included requiring a police officer to be present.

Updated at 4:30 p.m. ET

President Trump has announced that the government will not allow transgender people to serve in the U.S. military, a year after the Pentagon lifted its ban on transgender service members.

In a series of tweets on Wednesday morning, he wrote:

As scientists watch for the spread of toxic algae blooms in western Lake Erie and other hotspots around the Great Lakes, it's important to remember the dangers for pets.

Ohio is preparing to put a condemned child killer to death in the state's first execution in more than three years.

If you want to see the 40th anniversary WEBN-FM fireworks, plan on seeing them in person.

Managers of all five Cincinnati TV stations – WLWT-TV, WXIX-TV, WCPO-TV, WKRC-TV and WSTR-TV -- tell me they're not planning to broadcast the Western & Southern/WEBN-FM Riverfest fireworks live at 9:05 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 3.  

How tycoon William Jenkins cashed in on the Mexican Revolution

Jul 26, 2017

William O. Jenkins isn't exactly a household name, but he was once among the richest and most influential men in Mexico. Jenkins was born in Tennesee in the 1870s. In his 20s, he moved to Mexico and started investing in everything from sugar to movies. Eventually, he became a millionaire magnate with a lot of friends in high places.

"Dear Dickie," the woman wrote on thin parchment paper. "Here I am, so please don't scold me ..."

The Jan. 2, 1947, letter had made its journey from Honolulu to Kobe, Japan, courtesy of a 5-cent airmail stamp — evidence of an overseas courtship between two young people. She began with an apology for not writing sooner but quickly eased into flirting and teasing, anticipating the day when they would see each other again.

France is asking European neighbors to help it fight fast-growing wildfires that have consumed thousands of acres of forest near the Mediterranean coast, forcing tourists to leave an area that is normally packed with visitors in the summer.

Several large fires have struck near the French Riviera this week, in resort areas near Saint-Tropez and also on the island of Corsica. Their rapid growth is being blamed on dry and windy conditions and plentiful fuel.

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich tells NPR's Rachel Martin that President Donald Trump is right to be troubled that Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from the Justice Department's investigation into Russian collusion in the 2016 election. The Justice Department's culture, Gingrich says, is "very liberal" and has an anti-Trump bias and the probe is a "fishing expedition." Sessions, he says, should exercise more authority and enforce the law.

Domenico Montanaro has analysis.

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President Trump's administration says it's trying harder to bring home American citizens detained in Iran. Iran seems to be hinting that it wants another prisoner swap, as the Obama administration once negotiated.

It sounds like the start of a dystopian novel. A company called Three Square Market inserts microchips in the hands of its employees, right between the thumb and pointer finger. Being part machine does not hurt much, Tony Danna, vice president of international development at the company assured us.

“It stings you when it goes in. It takes about two seconds to go in,” Danna said. You may think it is weird, but according to Danna, it’s not weird, it’s “advanced.”

'Strange Practice:' The Doctor Is In

Jul 26, 2017

Jason Sheehan is currently the restaurant critic at Philadelphia magazine, but when no one is looking, he spends his time writing books about giant robots and ray guns. Tales From the Radiation Age is his latest book.

The Van Helsing family has a long history in the literature of monster-fighting – they've been stomping around the midnight moors and castles since at least 1897 when Professor Abraham Van Helsing first crossed paths with his biggest bad, Dracula.

Crumbs may seem harmless here on Earth, but they can be a hazard in microgravity — they could get in an astronaut's eye, or get inhaled, causing someone to choke. Crumbs could even float into an electrical panel, burn up or cause a fire.

That's part of the reason why it was a very big deal in 1965 when John Young pulled a corned beef sandwich out of his pocket as he was orbiting the earth with Gus Grissom.

"Where did that come from?" Grissom asked Young.

"I brought it with me," Young said.

What You Can Do With 2,000 Pounds Of Butter

Jul 26, 2017

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Good morning, I'm Steve Inskeep. There's no limit to what you can achieve with 2,000 pounds of butter. Sculptors completed the annual butter sculpture at the Ohio State Fair. And the centerpiece is a 6-foot-tall bottle of chocolate milk.

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World Santa Claus Congress Meets In Denmark

Jul 26, 2017

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There's a whole lot of turbulence in Washington, yet the markets are going up. There's uncertainty. The economy is doing all right (but not fantastically). And company earnings reports are just OK. So what gives? Julia Coronado, an economist at Macropolicy Perspectives, joins us to chat about the strange nature of the stock market. Afterwards, we'll talk with the Eurasia Group's Ian Bremmer about the new sanctions bill against Russia, which has bipartisan support here in the U.S., but isn't getting a warm reception in Europe.

It’s been a tumultuous week for the Cavs. The team that was expected to spend the summer beefing up its roster for another title run is now faced with a star player who wants out and an inexperienced general manager at the helm.

WKSU commentator Terry Pluto says Kyrie Irving shocked everyone with news that he wants to be traded.

U.S. military units have long used technology like night vision goggles to enhance their sense of sight.

Now they're trying to get a battlefield edge with their ears, too.

The Marine Corps is experimenting with quieted-down weapons and electronic hearing enhancements that could reshape the soundscape of warfare. They want to minimize some sounds and amplify others to get more control over what they and their enemies hear.

Teachers have one of the lowest-paid professional jobs in the U.S. You need a bachelor's degree, which can be costly — an equation that often means a lot of student loans. We've reported on the factors that make this particular job even more vulnerable to a ton of debt, including chronically low teacher pay, the increasing pressure to get a master's degree and the many ways to repay loans or apply for loan forgiveness.

Baltimore's Lafayette Gilchrist is a jazz pianist, but when his band the New Volcanoes backs him up, listeners also get something different: a go-go beat.

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It is only Wednesday, but what a week it's been in the Senate's push to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.

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House Takes Step Toward Culling Wild Horses

Jul 26, 2017

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Dr. Carmen Puliafito was dean of the medical school at the University of Southern California. A photo in the LA Times shows a man in a dark suit and tie, a white shirt and a serious expression.

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I'm Steve Inskeep. And this is Alice Cooper.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "WELCOME TO MY NIGHTMARE")

ALICE COOPER: (Singing) Welcome to my nightmare. I think you're gonna like it.

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President Trump took an opportunity yesterday to repeat a simple promise.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: We're going to give you great health care.

Venezuela Set To Begin 2-Day Strike

Jul 26, 2017

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