Mar 4, 2017

What Obama left Trump: cyberwar with North Korea

Lee Jin-man / AP

President Obama reportedly ordered the Pentagon three years ago to enhance their cyber strikes to thwart North Korean missiles in their first few seconds of launch, according to the New York Times. Although initial efforts may have been successful (some of the DPRK's rockets exploded, veered off course, or fell apart in midair), North Korea has launched three medium-range rockets over the past eight months.

Why this matters: Obama told Trump before he was sworn in that North Korean nuclear and missile programs would be the most urgent threats he would confront over the course of his presidency. North Korea's leader, Kim Jong-un, says his country is in "the final stage in preparations" for intercontinental ballistic missiles, but the U.S. still does not have the capabilities to counter North Korean nuclear and missile programs, per the NYT. Trump himself said "we're so obsolete in cyber" during his campaign.

What's next: Trump could ramp up the Pentagon's cyber strikes against North Korea, he could negotiate with the DPRK to halt its nuclear and missile programs, or he could prepare the U.S. for directing missile strikes to the launch sites. These options were all discussed in the Situation Room as recently as Tuesday.

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Minneapolis unrest as hundreds protest death of George Floyd

Tear gas is fired as police clash with protesters demonstrating against the death of George Floyd outside the 3rd Precinct Police Precinct in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on Tuesday. Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

Minneapolis police used tear gas during clashes with protesters demanding justice Tuesday night for George Floyd, an African American who died in police custody, according to multiple news reports.

Driving the news: The FBI is investigating Floyd's death after video emerged of a Minneapolis police officer kneeling on his neck for several minutes, ignoring protests that he couldn't breathe. Hundreds of protesters attended the demonstration at the intersection where Floyd died, per the Guardian.

U.S. coronavirus updates

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios. This graphic includes "probable deaths" that New York City began reporting on April 14.

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam announced plans Tuesday to make wearing face coverings mandatory statewide for most people over the age of 10 when inside public places like retailers, on public transportation and government buildings. He announced the measure, effective Friday, as coronavirus case numbers increased to 39,342.

By the numbers: More than 98,900 people have died from COVID-19 and over 1.6 million have tested positive in the U.S. Over 384,900 Americans have recovered and more than 14.9 million tests have been conducted.

World coronavirus updates

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

Japan is preparing a second coronavirus stimulus package worth $1.1 trillion, or about 40% of the country's gross domestic product, Reuters first reported Tuesday night.

Zoom in: The new measure will be funded by government bonds and will include "a raft of loan guarantees and private sector contributions," per Bloomberg.