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Mr. Miniter, 41, is a veteran newsman who has reported from the outposts of U.S. Marines in Iraq, rebel war zones in Uganda, Sudan and Burma — and from smugglers´ routes in Laos, Thailand and Cambodia. He has interviewed military heroes and prime ministers, as well as diplomats, soldiers and spies.

“While Iraq and Sudan have their charms,” Mr. Miniter said, “this is by far my most exciting assignment.”