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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Cruise ship evacuations: More Americans test positive for coronavirus

A bus carrying American citizens from the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship arrives at the U.S. government-chartered aircraft that is taking them back to the United States while authorities wear protective suits look on at Haneda airport in Tokyo on Monday. Photo: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Getty Images

Another 14 passengers tested positive for the novel coronavirus during their evacuation from the Diamond Princess cruise ship before being flown in a "specialist containment" area of the plane to the United States, per a Trump administration statement early Monday.

Details: Over 40 Americans who had been on the ship had previously been confirmed as infected and will remain in Japanese hospitals for treatment, NIAID director Anthony Fauci told "Face the Nation" Sunday. The rest were evacuated, and these latest cases were among them. All evacuees will undergo a 14-day quarantine upon arrival later Monday.

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GM to exit Australia, New Zealand and Thailand

GM's Holden brand is popular among racing fans down under, and it's been a regular fixture at events like the Bathurst 1000 V8 Supercar Race in Australia. Photo: Speed Media/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

General Motors is retiring its Holden brand from sales in Australia and New Zealand and winding down operations in the two countries and Thailand by 2021, the company confirmed in a statement Monday.

Why it matters: The Holden brand has been in Australia and New Zealand for 160 years, per a GM statement issued in Australia. It is beloved by many motor racing fans down under. Holden produced Australia's first wholly locally made car in 1948.

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In photos: Deadly Storm Dennis lashes U.K., Ireland and western France

A family is rescued from a property in Nantgarw, Wales, on Sunday. The storm comes a week after the U.K. was battered by storm Ciara, which killed two people, per the BBC. Photo: Matthew Horwood/Getty Images

Storm Dennis continued to pummel parts of England, Wales and Ireland over Sunday night with heavy rain after battering Northern Ireland and Scotland, per the official British weather agency the Met Office.

Why it matters: It's the second-strongest nontropical storm ever recorded in the North Atlantic Ocean, with its hurricane-force winds and heavy rains that caused widespread flooding across the U.K., the Washington Post notes. Police in Wales confirmed Sunday they found the body of a man who fell into a river as the storm lashed Ystradgynlais.

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