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COMM 133: Need to Know: The Tension between a Free Press and National Security Decision Making (COMM 233)

This seminar examines the dynamic interaction at the highest levels of government and the media when news coverage of secret national security policy and operations impinges on United States defense, diplomatic and intelligence activities and decision making and affects the American political system. Prime examples: intelligence information about Russian hacking operations during the 2016 presidential election campaign, the unverified intelligence dossier on Donald Trump's Russian connections, the torrent of secret NSA programs disclosed by Edward Snowden. Students explore attitudes, practices, and actions by the media and the government through a series of case studies and simulations. Former editors, reporters, and government officials appear as guest speakers, including Michael Hayden, former director of the NSA and CIA. The goal of the course is to inform students about the vital but often fraught relationship between a free press and the government in a democratic society. For advanced undergraduates and graduate students. Application for enrollment required. The instructor is a former Washington bureau chief of The New York Times. Email Alexa Philippou ( to request an application. Completed applications are due by 6pm (pacific) on March 25, 2018. Early applications welcome.
Terms: Spr | Units: 4-5 | UG Reqs: WAY-SI | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)
Instructors: ; Taubman, P. (PI)
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