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  • A tunnel found in the Northern Gaza Strip by the Israel Defense Forces, August 3, 2014. (photo credit: IDF spokesperson/Flash90)

    The Hamas terror group has been redoubling its efforts to restore the cross-border offensive tunnels that were destroyed by Israel during last summer’s war in the Gaza Strip, Israeli media reported Friday morning.

    According to the reports, some of the cement and other materials being delivered to the coastal Palestinian territory, as part of an international rebuilding effort, has been diverted to the tunnels.

    Hamas has realized that the tunnels, which were used to stage attacks on Israeli military targets during the war, provide it with a psychological edge over residents of Israeli border towns in the area, Israel Radio reported in an unsourced report.

  • The rocket that was launched into Israel on Friday. (Photo: Roee Idan)

    Air force jets attack Hamas training facility in Khan Yunis in retaliation for rocket fired at Israel earlier Friday; attack marks first IAF strike in Gaza since military op.

    The Israeli Air Force struck a Hamas training facility in the area of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip on Friday night in retaliation for a rocket fired at southern Israel earlier in the day. The attack marks the first time Israel carried out an air strike in the Gaza Strip since Operation Protective Edge ended in August. No injuries were reported.

    The IDF spokesperson issued a statement confirming that the IAF hit "terrorist infrastructure" belonging to Hamas's military wing in the southern Gaza Strip.

  • President Barack Obama said the U.S. will respond to North Korea’s cyber-assault on Sony Pictures Entertainment “in a place and time and manner that we choose,” adding that he thought the studio made a mistake by canceling the release of a movie linked to the attack. 

    In his first extensive public comments on a hacking attack the U.S. Justice Department today said was carried out by the North Korean government, Obama said companies shouldn’t be intimidated. 

    “We cannot have a society in which some dictator in some place can start imposing censorship here in the United States,” Obama told reporters in Washington today.

  • The U.S. investigation into the recent hacking attack at Sony Pictures Entertainment has turned up evidence that does not point to North Korea as the "sole entity" in the case, but rather, raises the possibility that Iran, China or Russia may have been involved, an intelligence source told Fox News on Thursday.

    The source pointed to the sophistication of malware “modules or packets” that destroyed the Sony systems -- on a level that has not been seen from North Korea in the past -- but has been seen from Iran, China and Russia.         

  • N. Korean leader Kim Jong Un at parliament session / AP

    North Korea dispatched covert commando teams to the United States in the 1990s to attack nuclear power plants and major cities in a conflict, according to a declassified Defense Intelligence Agency report.

    The DIA report, dated Sept. 13, 2004, reveals that five units of covert commandos were trained for the attacks inside the country.

    According to the report, the “Reconnaissance Bureau, North Korea, had agents in place to attack American nuclear power plants.”

  • The U.S. Justice Department will announce today that the North Korean government is responsible for the cyber-attack on Sony Pictures Entertainment computers that exposed Hollywood secrets, destroyed company data and caused the studio to cancel release of its movie “The Interview.” 

    The Justice Department and Federal Bureau of Investigation will reveal evidence they believe links the attack to North Korea, according to a U.S. law enforcement official who spoke on condition of anonymity prior to the formal announcement. President Barack Obama is expected to address the matter at a previously scheduled press conference this afternoon.

  • If the U.S. decides to retaliate over North Korea’s alleged hacking of Sony Pictures Entertainment computers, officials could target the government’s financial resources, its illicit drug and counterfeiting operations or the hackers themselves. 

    One thing the Obama administration is unlikely to do is unleash a tit-for-tat cyber attack, analysts said. Any eventual U.S. response also will likely be unannounced, in order to avoid feeding the North Koreans’ desire for a public showdown with the world’s sole superpower. 

    “What the North Koreans can’t stand is when no one pays attention to them,” said Joel Brenner, former head of U.S. counterintelligence. “What we do may not be publicly known, but the North Koreans will know who did it.”

  • Blaming the U.S. and Europe for an economic crisis gripping his country of 144 million and warning the slump could drag on for two years,Putin today signaled a sustained standoff over Ukraine. 

    “He believes that the economy is capable of withstanding the shock,” said Alexei Makarkin, deputy director of the Moscow-based Center for Political Technologies. “Putin’s psychology is very simple. From his point of view Russia has made concessions for years and to no effect.” 

    Putin held his annual press conference, speaking to hundreds of reporters for more than three hours in an event that took on heightened importance as a 40-percent plunge in the ruble evoked memories of the country’s 1998 default.

  • op Hamas officials Ismail Haniyeh and Moussa Abu Marzouk | Photo credit: AFP

    Netanyahu is outraged: Hamas is a murderous terrorist group and we will continue to fight it • Hamas hails decision, though EU insists it is temporary, purely bureaucratic • Hamas assets to remain frozen for three months or until appeal.

    The European Union's second-highest court on Wednesday annulled the bloc's decision to keep Hamas on a list of terrorist organizations, but temporarily maintained the measures for a period of three months or until an appeal is closed.

    The General Court of the European Union said the contested measures were not based on an examination of Hamas' acts but on imputations derived from the media and the Internet.

    The court said it was nevertheless maintaining the effects of the measures in order to ensure that any possible future freezing of funds would be effective.

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