Central Intelligence Agency

Late at night, heavily armed CIA-backed Afghan paramilitary forces will land in a village to carry out a raid in Taliban-controlled areas looking for militants. They'll bomb their way through the walls of a compound, then separate whoever they find into groups of women and young children, and men and boys. They'll question the men, and detain some of them. Others will be shot execution-style.

Even when he's praising his spy chiefs, President Trump can't resist taking a swipe.

The instinct was on full display this past weekend, as he announced the killing of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

"Thank you, as well, to the great intelligence professionals who helped make this very successful journey possible," he said in an address from the White House on Sunday.

His intelligence officials are ''spectacular," "great patriots," the president went on.

Amaryllis Fox was about to start her senior year in college when the Sept. 11 attacks hit in 2001. The next day, she drove from Washington to New York to see the smoldering rubble. Just a few years later, she was an undercover CIA officer meeting extremists.

"One of the things I think we all forget is how incredibly young so many of the intelligence officers really are," Fox said in an interview with NPR. Her new book, Life Undercover: Coming Of Age In The CIA, was published Tuesday.

Updated at 5:06 p.m. ET

President Trump said Iran's claim that it has captured 17 people spying for the U.S. is "totally false," as tensions continue to ratchet up between the two nations after the U.S. said it downed an Iranian drone last week.

It comes on the same day that U.K. Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said his country will seek to create a European-led security mission for ships in the Strait of Hormuz, separate from a similar U.S. effort to form a maritime coalition.

An ex-CIA officer pleaded guilty in federal court Wednesday to spying for China, the third separate espionage case in the past year linking a former U.S. intelligence officer to the Asian nation.

Jerry Chun Shing Lee, 54, entered the guilty plea to the most serious of the three charges he was facing.

"I conspired to gather and send secret information to the PRC (People's Republic of China)," Lee said when asked by Judge T.S. Ellis to describe his actions.

WikiLeaks was already established as an online outlet for posting secret documents from anonymous leakers well before its massive disclosure of U.S. government and military information in 2010. That was the year WikiLeaks' Australian founder, Julian Assange, faced allegations that led to his seeking asylum in Ecuador's London embassy.

Here is a timeline of WikiLeaks' key disclosures and related developments.

CIA Director Gina Haspel spent much of her career overseas and undercover — and she wants more CIA officers doing the same.

In her one public speech since becoming head of the spy agency, Haspel said her goal is to "steadily increase the number of officers stationed overseas. That's where our mission as a foreign intelligence agency lies, and having a larger foreign footprint allows for a more robust posture."

For the third time in recent days, a prominent group of former national security officials has signed a letter criticizing President Trump's decision to revoke the security clearance of former CIA Director John Brennan.

In a related development, Trump said in a tweet Monday that he wasn't concerned about Brennan's remarks over the weekend that he might take legal action in response to the president's move.

Updated at 5:07 p.m. ET

The top Democrat on the House Oversight Committee is demanding an explanation of President Trump's decision this week to revoke the security clearance of former CIA Director John Brennan

In a letter to White House chief of staff John Kelly, Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., asked for a detailed briefing on the decision and suggested Trump may have failed to follow proper procedures.

President Trump is looking into revoking the security clearances of several former high-level officials who've criticized him.

Press secretary Sarah Sanders read a list of officials being considered for revocation of their clearances on Monday and said the White House is "exploring the mechanisms" by which the government might take them away.

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