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Top Stories: Defection In Syria? Solar Flares; Congress Tackles Jobs Bill

Good morning.

Our early headlines:

-- In Video, Man Said To Be Syrian Oil Ministry Official Says He's Defecting.

-- House Expected To OK Jobs Bill In 'Rare Agreement' With Obama.

-- Jobless Claims Rise By 8,000.

Other stories in the news:

-- "Solar Flares Speeding Toward Earth." (Bill's post from Wednesday.)

-- "U.S. Warns Apple, Publishers" About Alleged "Collusion Over E-Book Pricing." (The Wall Street Journal)

-- "Intractable Afghan Graft Hampering U.S. Strategy." (The New York Times)

-- "World Powers Back 'Sustained Dialogue' On Iran Nuclear Program." (CNN)

-- Sources Say 12 NFL Teams Have Contacted Quarterback Peyton Manning's Representatives. (ESPN)

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Mark Memmott is NPR's supervising senior editor for Standards & Practices. In that role, he's a resource for NPR's journalists – helping them raise the right questions as they do their work and uphold the organization's standards.