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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

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world lead

November 18th, 2014
05:57 PM ET

Obama administration orders review of hostage policy

(CNN) - Some of the families of Americans taken hostage by ISIS terrorists have been critical of the Obama administration's efforts to negotiate releases of their loved ones. And now, some indication that the White House is trying to fix whatever problems exist.

The mother of one of those murdered hostages, journalist James Foley, openly assailed the Obama administration after her son's murder, saying U.S. officials seemed disengaged and even annoyed by efforts to free him. Now, President Obama has ordered a review of how U.S. hostage cases are handled going forward.


pop lead

November 11th, 2014
06:49 PM ET

Cosby's social media stunt backfires

(CNN) - He's long been considered one of America's all-time favorite television dads, and so much of a pop culture icon that even his sweaters are considered a "thing." But now that some pretty serious allegations from a decade ago have resurfaced, Bill Cosby's brand as the lovable, huggable, puddin' pop pushing mega-star could be suffering a major hit.


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money lead

November 10th, 2014
05:52 PM ET

Led Zeppelin and the promises and pitfalls of band reunions

It's news that has Led Zeppelin fans dazed and confused.

A report in the British newspaper The Daily Mirror claims that Zeppelin front man Robert Plant ripped up a contract worth $800 million for the band to reunite.

It's a heart-breaker no doubt, not just for Zeppelin fans, but for Virgin Atlantic mogul Richard Branson, who reportedly made the offer.

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national lead

September 30th, 2014
06:10 PM ET

FBI profiler: Okla. killer deranged man holding on to radicalized religion

Alexander Nolen said he "didn't like white people" and had an apparent fascination with beheadings.

Those are just two of the chilling details CNN learned Tuesday about the man accused in a sickening attack on his co-workers in Moore, Oklahoma.


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world lead

September 1st, 2014
07:05 PM ET

What is North Korea's 'end game'?

(CNN) - It is a government cloaked in secrecy, which made North Korea's decision to grant a CNN crew rare access to three American captives all the more stunning.

Kenneth Bae, Matthew Miller and Jeffrey Fowle were each presented for five minute interviews with CNN's Will Ripley. Bae pleaded for help from the US government. Miller described his situation as "urgent." And Fowle acknowledged he was desperate to get back to his family.

The men all say they were speaking freely, but that notion is being met with heavy skepticism and with good reason. North Korea has long used its detainees as pawns in a bizarre chess match with US officials.

So just what exactly does their government hope to gain by granting these interviews and how should the Obama administration react?

Philip Yun, former North Korea Adviser under President Clinton and Executive Director of Ploughshares, joined CNN's "The Lead with Jake Tapper" to discuss.

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