About the Show

Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

On the Next Episode of The Lead

NFL's Roger Goodell to hold a press conference, the first in 9 days. We'll have the latest.

NFL's Roger Goodell to hold a press conference, the first in 9 days. We'll have the latest.

world lead

September 4th, 2014
05:46 PM ET

Struggle to define U.S. mission against ISIS

(CNN) – The President has been very frank about not having a comprehensive strategy on ISIS.

For now the U.S. mission is mostly defined by a series of "What if" questions.

CNN's Barbara Starr reports.

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world lead

September 2nd, 2014
06:37 PM ET

U.S. official: Attack targets Al-Shabaab leader, but his fate is unknown

Mogadishu, Somalia (CNN) - The U.S. military went into Somalia with one goal in mind: Kill Ahmed Abdi Godane, the leader of Al-Shabaab.

One day later, Pentagon spokesman Rear Adm. John Kirby said flatly, "We certainly believe that we hit what we were aiming at."

What he did not say is whether Godane is dead.

The United States is "assessing the effectiveness right now" of the attack launched hours earlier, Kirby said Tuesday, including who, if anyone, was killed.

FULL POST

world lead

August 29th, 2014
05:45 PM ET

Should the U.S. raise terror alert, like the U.K.?

(CNN) – According to AAA, 35 million Americans will be traveling this labor day weekend, the highest number in six years.

So pack the kids in the car, board a flight, or take a seat on the train - and don't worry too much about ISIS terrorists committing an atrocity on U.S. soil, according to the FBI and Department of Homeland Security, who are unaware of "any specific, credible threat to the U.S. homeland" from ISIS.

This, despite the British government raising the alarm about ISIS within its own borders.

On this holiday weekend, why is London so worried, and Washington not?

CNN's Barbara Starr reports.

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world lead

August 26th, 2014
06:22 PM ET

Obama authorizes reconnaissance flights over Syria, U.S. official says

Washington (CNN) - U.S. President Barack Obama has authorized reconnaissance flights over Syria as ISIS militants continue to gain ground in the war-ravaged nation, a U.S. official told CNN.

The flights - seen as a forerunner of possible U.S. airstrikes against ISIS in Syria - could begin at any point, the official said Monday.

FULL POST

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world lead

August 21st, 2014
05:32 PM ET

Does Obama's 'no boots on the ground' fail to address Hagel's call to alarm about ISIS?

(CNN) – Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel said Thursday that the militant group responsible for beheading an American journalist "beyond just a terrorist group."

"They marry ideology, a sophistication of strategic and tactical military prowess. They are tremendously well-funded. Oh, this is beyond anything that we've seen. So we must prepare for everything," Hagel said Thursday.

But then the secretary of defense went on to say there will be no mission creep, and the operation in Iraq will continue to be President Obama's limited mission of airstrikes in Iraq.

CNN's Barbara Starr reports.

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