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Gaza Strikes; Syrian Refugees; Hezbollah Reaction

Aired November 16, 2012 - 08:00:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


KRISTIE LU STOUT, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong and welcome to NEWS STREAM, where news and technology meet.

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STOUT (voice-over): Mounting fear from Tel Aviv to the Gaza Strip as Israel and militants in Gaza continue to fire.

Plus David Petraeus in the hot seat. But not about what you might be thinking. The ex-chief of the CIA faces questions from Congress about September's deadly attack in Benghazi.

And the prime minister of Belize actually called him "bonkers." Where is Internet pioneer John McAfee?

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STOUT: Now the stakes are rising dramatically in the conflict between Israel and militants in Gaza. Israel's military confirms air raid sirens have sounded in Tel Aviv for the second day running. It's not clear if any rockets landed, but one police spokesman says that they may have fallen into the sea.

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STOUT (voice-over): Earlier in the day, Israel planned a cease-fire while Egypt's prime minister visited Gaza, but it failed to hold. Hesham Kandil inspected the destruction and toured a hospital. Hamas al-Aqsa TV reported more bombings.

And an Israeli military official tweeted that during Kandil's visit, 50 rockets flooded Gaza toward Israel. Since the fighting broke out, officials say the conflict has claimed 20 lives on the Palestinian side and three in Israel. Israeli tanks are gathering on the border with Gaza and 16,000 reservists are being recruited, raising fears that the conflict could escalate into a ground war.

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STOUT: Ben Wedeman is in Jerusalem. He joins me now live.

And, Ben, sirens again in Tel Aviv, rockets reaching the general area. Just how significant is this?

BEN WEDEMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's very significant when you consider that in the 2008-2009 war between Gaza and Israel, those rockets did not get as far as Tel Aviv. So clearly Hamas has some more advanced weaponry at its disposal.

The last time Tel Aviv was actually hit by a rocket was by Iraqi Scud missiles back in 1991. So certainly for Tel Aviv -- which, for Israelis, they consider it sort of living in a bubble of its own -- this sort of has burst Tel Aviv's bubble, and now they're having to deal with the reality of what some of their fellow Israelis to the south have to deal with.

Another difficult night, of course, in Gaza; there was some very intense airstrikes just before the sun went up. There was a relative respite while Hisham Kandil, the Egyptian prime minister, was visiting Gaza, even though the cease-fire that was -- it was hoped would hold while he was there, did not. Once he left Gaza, it seems that, on both sides, the firing has picked up.

And what you're hearing here, it sounds like either fireworks, stun grenades or tear gas being fired by Israeli security forces in the Jerusalem area, where there have been limited clashes between Palestinians and the Israeli security forces, Kristie.

STOUT: And, Ben, Israel has started drafting tens of thousands of reservists; tanks have gathered at the border. Why? Is Israel preparing for a ground incursion?

WEDEMAN: Well, certainly if you listen to what senior Israeli officials are saying, including Ehud Barak, the defense minister, they're talking about not just putting an end to the rocket fire from Gaza, he's actually talking about smashing Hamas once and for all. And there's no way that Israel can do that simply by using airstrikes or strikes, artillery bombardment from the sea.

It would, if it wants to, if it's serious about achieving that goal, Israeli forces will have to go into Gaza. And we saw, in early 2009, when Israeli forces went in, it was a very, very messy, protracted and bloody affair.

So even though the Israeli officials at the moment are talking about a ground invasion, there's going to take a lot of preparation. And it's going to be a lot more deaths on both sides of this conflict, Kristie.

STOUT: Ben Wedeman, reporting live from Jerusalem, thank you.

And the violence is provoking fear and anger in civilian populations on both sides of the conflict. CNN's Sara Sidner reports.

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SARA SIDNER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): What is happening on both sides of the Gaza-Israel border looks and feels like war to anyone who has to live with it, no matter what the governments on either side have declared.

This is a small taste of what it felt like in Gaza over a 24-hour period.

SIDNER: OK. That is exactly -- all right. I'm going to move out of the way; I'm going to let you get a look here -- I'm going to let you get a look at what is going on. Now I can see the black smoke; it's difficult to capture on camera, but you saw that flash.

This is what we have been dealing with all day. We've also been dealing with -- I'm sorry; the power has just gone out. We've been dealing with power outages, Wolf. But this feels like war. It may not have been declared but it feels like war to the civilians who live here.

SIDNER (voice-over): The booms and smoke from targeted airstrikes from morning to night left more than a dozen people dead, including militants, women and children.

And in southern Israel, a window into what residents endured there when hundreds of rockets, shells and mortars flew over from Gaza. Some were blown to bits by Israel's Iron Dome missile defense system.

Others landed with deadly force. Three people died in this apartment building after a rocket struck it.

This is the worst fighting Israel and Gaza residents have seen in four years. And if you listen to the government leaders from both sides of the border, life here may not return to normalcy for a while.

BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, PRIME MINISTER OF ISRAEL: No government would tolerate a situation where nearly a fifth of its people live under a constant barrage of rockets and missile fire. And Israel will not tolerate this situation. This is why my government has instructed the Israeli defense forces to conduct surgical strikes.

SIDNER (voice-over): And that's not all. Israel's military said it was bringing in its reserves to prepare for the possibility of a ground war in Gaza. Hamas' deputy foreign minister told CNN his government won't back down in the face of a threat, either.

GHAZI HAMAD, HAMAS DEPUTY FOREIGN MINISTER: They should not feel that this -- it is easy area that you can come and kill people and after that, you go home. You should pay the price. You feel that if the people are not safe, your people that in that area (ph) will not be safe, people in (inaudible) will not be safe, Israel (ph) will not be safe.

SIDNER (voice-over): And for the first time, Hamas managed to send a rocket into central Israel to the outskirts of Tel Aviv, sending off sirens there.

Israel's assassination of Hamas military commander Ahmed al-Jabari following a barrage of rocket attacks from militant groups inside Gaza reignited yet another surge in warfare between the two neighbors. Now the question is: will a full-scale war be declared or just the appearance of one? Sara Sidner, CNN, Gaza City.

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STOUT: We're seeing the worst fighting there since 2009. The Egyptian prime minister, Hesham Kandil, was in Gaza to show support for the Palestinian people. And (inaudible) watching to see what role Egypt will play now that the Arab Spring has ushered in a new government.

Reza Sayah joins us now live from Cairo.

And, Reza, Egypt's prime minister in Gaza earlier today, a show of solidarity and a very bold move for Egypt.

REZA SAYAH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, and clearly, Kristie, over the past few days, Egypt has made a flurry of diplomatic moves to show the world that it wants to play a central role in settling disputes. The mission, the immediate mission of this Egyptian delegation today that went into this Gaza was to get in there and establish a truce, a cease-fire, even if it's a temporary cease-fire.

Clearly that failed. It didn't happen because, in some parts, the violence even escalated. That certainly doesn't bode well for what Egypt says it wants to do. It seems to undermine and weaken the impression that Egypt could have an influential role in this conflict, because the delegation went into Gaza today, and they came back and nothing much really happened.

Some say what this Egyptian delegation did accomplish was to score some PR points, because they went in there and very bluntly and publicly showed their support for the Palestinians, standing next to the Hamas leader, the prime minister Ismail Haniyeh. They visited some hospitals, visited some ruins.

Maybe the most heartwrenching scene was when Hamas leaders, Egyptian officials, visited Shifa Hospital, and they saw the lifeless body of what appeared to be a very young boy.

So these are PR points that are going to score temporarily with the Egyptian people and the Arab world that the pressure is growing here in Egypt as the violence continues, the pressure on the Egyptian government to do more.

These are people in Egypt and the Arab world that want more than rhetoric. They want some action. It's going to be interesting to see what Egypt can do in the coming days and weeks.

STOUT: Yes, let's talk about that pressure growing and pressure, namely, from the Muslim Brotherhood.

Can the Brotherhood put real pressure on the Egyptian president, Mohammed Morsi, to respond more strongly, more forcefully, to Israel and its airstrikes?

SAYAH: Well, they're certainly applying pressure. There's lots of Muslim Brotherhood figures involved in the protests today, applying pressure on the leadership.

Here's what's fascinating in Cairo and what makes this situation just packed with intrigue and drama.

For 30 years under the Hosni Mubarak regime, the Muslim Brotherhood was outside looking in. It didn't have any role to play when it came to these types of flare-ups between the Palestinians and the Israelis.

Now you have a Muslim Brotherhood's leader as president, Mohammed Morsi. He's being pressured by other Muslim Brotherhood's figures, and that's why this balancing act is going to be incredibly difficult.

If he stands by idly, if he's viewed as ineffective, he's going to anger some of his followers, some of his supporters. If he's too aggressive, he could anger the Israeli government; the violence could escalate. He can also anger the Western powers, one of Egypt's most important allies right now, Washington.

STOUT: Yes, this is a real test for Egypt, a test for Egypt after Hosni Mubarak.

Reza Sayah, joining us live from Cairo, thank you.

Now the conflict between Israel and Gaza is also taking on another dimension.

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STOUT (voice-over): And as the fighting continues, both sides are on the offensive and taking their attacks to a different arena. We'll explain.

Also a tale of two towns, sitting across from each other on the Turkish-Syrian border. Refugees are fleeing off to the Turkish side to escape the conflict at home.

And former CIA director David Petraeus goes to Capitol Hill and he's speaking out about the September attack at the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.

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STOUT: Now anger has been building in Jordan over rising fuel prices. And we're monitoring what could be another volatile day of protests there.

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STOUT (voice-over): Now the kingdom is bracing for possible nationwide demonstrations following Friday prayers. Earlier today, police broke up one demonstration in the capital, Amman. Protests have turned deadly this week. At least one person was killed and dozens were injured in riots on Wednesday.

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STOUT: Turning to Syria, the British foreign secretary, William Hague, met with leaders of the newly formed Syrian opposition coalition in London today. It's suggested that he will soon decide whether to official recognize the group. But he says that he is encouraged by what he's heard so far.

He urged the coalition to develop a clear plan for political transition in Syria with a commitment to human rights.

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STOUT: The spiraling violence inside Syria has been ongoing for nearly two years. And almost every day, videos showing scenes like this are posted to YouTube.

Opposition groups say that the death toll has climbed to nearly 40,000, and the U.N. refugee agency says that more than 400,000 Syrians have fled to neighboring countries, including Turkey. And as the fighting inside Syria threatens to spill over the border, Ivan Watson visited one tense town.

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IVAN WATSON, CNN CONTRIBUTOR (voice-over): Residents of the Turkish town of Ceylanpinar breathed a sigh of relief.

For the first time in a week, there were no explosions, bullets or bombs on Thursday. Turkish military appears to have fortified the border here after a rebel assault on the neighboring Syrian town of Ras Al Ain triggered a week of fighting that threatens to spill over into Turkey.

WATSON: Ras Al Ain and Ceylanpinar are basically one town separated only by a fence. SO when there's fighting across the border in Syria, the people here in Turkey see it, hear it and feel it.

WATSON (voice-over): A local Turkish official shows me shop windows that were blown out this week by Syrian government airstrikes across the border.

"Of course we were afraid," he says. "Jets flew overhead, there were bombardments, the children were terrified. We had to close the schools for their safety."

This sleepy Turkish town is now full of thousands of Syrian refugees. Some tried to take advantage of the lull in hostilities to go home to see whether their houses were still standing.

But we found one Syrian who came to Turkey with a very different mission. This activist, who calls himself Abu Muslim, asks us to hide his face to protect his family in Syria.

ABU MUSLIM, SYRIAN ACTIVIST: (Inaudible) interview with the people in (inaudible).

WATSON: And what are you doing with the pictures now?

MUSLIM: Intend to send to TV, to (inaudible) YouTube.

WATSON: YouTube?

MUSLIM: Yes, to all of the (inaudible) see this.

WATSON: To see what happens?

MUSLIM: Yes.

WATSON (voice-over): Using only his cell phone as a camera, Abu Muslim films pictures of bombed-out buildings he now distributes via the Internet, the same simple method used by activists who filmed terrified civilians fleeing as Syrian warplanes attacked Ras Al Ain earlier this week.

They also showed how rebels led wounded civilians to the border gate, where they were met by Turkish soldiers and ambulances.

Today, on the Turkish side of the border, municipal buildings and ordinary homes are full of refugees.

WATSON: But the refugees here are understandably nervous to speak to us on camera. But in private conversations, some of them tell me that they blame the rebels, the Free Syrian Army, for bringing the conflict to their town, which until last week, had been considered a safe haven.

WATSON (voice-over): The Free Syrian Army has claimed victory in Ras Al Ain, apparently ignoring the fact that some residents did not want the rebels here in their town in the first place -- Ivan Watson, CNN, Ceylanpinar on the Syrian-Turkish border.

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STOUT: Fear and desperation there.

You're watching NEWS STREAM and coming up next, we have the sporting headlines. And the question is this: is the U.S. ready to welcome back F1? We went to the track in Austin, Texas, to find out.

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STOUT (voice-over): Live from Hong Kong, you're back watching NEWS STREAM.

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STOUT: Now he's only the second man to finish top of the U.S. and European tours' money list in the same season, but Rory McIlroy's long year is beginning to take its toll.

Let's join Alex Thomas in London for more.

Alex, what happened?

ALEX THOMAS, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Kristie, on Thursday, he complained of exhaustion and a day later, Rory McIlroy missed his first halfway cut in a European tour event for six months.

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THOMAS (voice-over): (Inaudible) number one was the defending champion of the Hong Kong Open, but he followed an opening round of 73, +3 with a score of 72, which included four birdies but also four bogeys and a double bogey at his final hole and a +5 for the tournament.

He's going to miss the weekend action. It's Michael Campbell of New Zealand who leads the way with two rounds to go, the former U.S. Open winner -9 (inaudible) there at the field.

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THOMAS: And the last time United States hosted a Formula 1 Grand Prix, George Bush was still in the White House, Tiger Woods was golf's undisputed World #1, and Italy were football's world champions. A lot's changed in five years, and F1 is back in America, at especially made circuit. And we sent Rob Marciano to take a look at it.

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ROB MARCIANO, AMS METEOROLOGIST: This is the brand new $400 million Circuit of the Americas. Formula 1: it's back in the States.

This is the approach to turn 1. It's a 133-foot climb up that hill, followed by 20 sweeping high-speed turns. This track promises to be like none other. And I'm about to get a feel of what it's like.

Oh, yes. Whoo!

As someone who's never been in one of these cars, what is it going to feel like?

JEROME D'AMBROSIO, LOTUS TEST DRIVER: You won't feel a thing. Kind of just look at the road, obviously, if you can, if you manage that. In the corner, you want to try to keep feeling the car; you don't want to let your body go and everything. So you have to (inaudible) probably.

MARCIANO: Well, that's a tight fit.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.

MARCIANO: Got to tell you, pretty nervous, but in a good way.

Let's do this!

Here we go!

D'AMBROSIO: You get out there, and you see that wall in front of you, it's quite special. It will be very leg-breaking, flying when you get -- when you get in and the exit (inaudible) as well. So that will be something special.

Corner 2, corner 8, that's (inaudible) direction high-speed. For me, that's like a bit (inaudible) like it's -- it's a corner that we'll definitely enjoy (inaudible) drive in the (inaudible) the corner where you get the most out of an F1 car.

(Inaudible) and after (inaudible) definitely a good opportunity for overtaking.

This is something very special and you know, (inaudible) experience (inaudible) really enjoy it.

MARCIANO: Oh, that was amazing!

(LAUGHTER)

Good to have F1 back. Oh, my God! Whoo!

That was so much more than I expected. You're ripping around these turns with incredible G-forces. At times, the car's sliding out, of course, world-class driver corrects and moves on. But now the speed that you take going into these corners, it's unlike anything I've ever experienced.

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THOMAS: (Inaudible) Beckham's management team has denied claims from Australia's Football Federation that the L.A. Galaxy star's thinking about joining the country's A League. A spokesman for Beckham said he has absolutely no plans to play there and the former England captain is focused on the MLS playoffs.

Well, as well as his footballing ability, Beckham's famous for being a father of four, and parenthood is one of the topics that cropped up in our exclusive interview with Cristiano Ronaldo, the Portugal and Real Madrid star, telling Pedro Pinto what it's like being a dad.

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PEDRO PINTO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: This is a picture of your mother, your son and more people close to you, your girlfriend as well, at the Santiago (inaudible). And I have to ask you about being a father. How is Cristiano, the father?

CRISTIANO RONALDO, PRO FOOTBALLER: I think I'm not bad. I feel that I still learn, but I think it's the best things in life is to have a kid.

PINTO: How old is he now?

RONALDO: Two and I think it's like -- I live like a dream, you know. To wake up in the morning and to see him and to say, "Daddy, Daddy," it's great. I love it.

PINTO: How involved do you get? Tell me, how -- honestly, how many diapers did you change?

RONALDO: I change a few ones. But there's not --

PINTO: I've never changed one. How would you -- how would you describe it?

RONALDO: It's not my real challenge to change diapers. And I -- to be honest, I don't like a lot. But I change a few ones. I think it's normal. I prefer to do other things.

(LAUGHTER)

PINTO: I'm sure you do. Like what? What do you like doing -- ?

RONALDO: I like to give him a shower, for example. It's much easy, put shampoo, conditioner in his hair. I think it's much easier. It's more fun.

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THOMAS: Yes, the shower's always easier. Other than that, (inaudible) "Cristiano Ronaldo All Access," our half-hour special on the Real Madrid star. You can see it in just over three hours' time; in fact, here, 21/2 -- oh, yes, three hours' time is when you can catch that.

For now, Kristie, back to you in Hong Kong.

STOUT: "All Access," I definitely want to catch more of that.

Alex Thomas there, thank you.

Now you're watching NEWS STREAM.

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STOUT (voice-over): And coming up next, we'll look into whether the clash between Israel and militants in Gaza could cause wider conflict in the Middle East.

Also ahead, police are still hunting for the software guru, John McAfee, wanted for questioning in the recent killing of his neighbor. We have a live report from Belize coming straight up.

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STOUT: I'm Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong. You're watching NEWS STREAM, and these are your world headlines.

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STOUT (voice-over): Fears that the conflict between Israel and Gaza could escalate into a ground war are being stoked by the massing of Israeli tanks on the border. Israel defense forces is also recruiting thousands of reservists. Officials say the Israeli bombardment has claimed 20 lives on the Palestinian side, while rockets from Gaza have killed three people in Israel.

Protests continue to erupt in Jordan over increased fuel prices. Police broke up a demonstration in the capital, Amman, earlier on Friday. On Wednesday, at least one person was killed and dozens were injured in rioting.

Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda has dissolved the Lower House of Parliament, setting the stage for elections next month, and the main opposition, Liberal Democrat Party, has called for the move in exchange for its support of a crucial government financing bill.

BP is paying the single largest criminal fine on record in the U.S. The $4 billion settlement resolves criminal charges stemming from the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Now 11 rig workers were killed in the fiery explosion and BP is pleading guilty to corporate manslaughter charges and paying an additional $525 million to resolve claims brought by the SEC.

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STOUT: As the conflict in Gaza rages on, what effect will it have on the region? With more on this, Nick Paton Walsh joins us now live from Beirut.

And, Nick, first let's talk about Lebanon and implications for Lebanon. If the conflict in Gaza worsens, could Hezbollah enter the fray?

NICK PATON WALSH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: At this point, it does seem unlikely Hezbollah's leader on Thursday, Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah was relatively calm in his response. Of course, there was the usual fiery rhetoric and condemnation of Israel.

Remember, Hezbollah founded very much to resist what they refer to as the Israeli occupation of Palestine.

But he did say now was not the time for Arab countries to open their borders and begin the final liberation of Palestine, and in fact, appeals to Arab countries to in turn appeal to Western countries and America to in turn appeal to Israel to try and find some sort of diplomatic solution here, well, his speech certainly left open the scope for anything in the future.

It does seem, at this point, that maybe there's a recognition within Hezbollah that the 2006 popularity they won in the war against Israel has long diminished, a different set of circumstances for them here, certainly. They're very much more political body here, dominating the government now, whereas they're of course seen much more as a military group in 2006.

And certainly at this point, they're refrained from further involvement in the Syrian crisis next door because of what may do domestically.

And I'm sure that maybe some in Hezbollah concerned if they were to launch rocket attacks on northern Israel, as many have speculated they could do, that could, in turn, bring an Israeli response of southern Lebanon and even Beirut, as you saw in 2006, and that will only add fuel to the anti-Hezbollah fire felt by some in Lebanon here, Kristie.

STOUT: And I also wanted to ask you about Syria, and it was a tweet from Sandmonkey that caught my attention earlier. He's a high-profile blogger and he wrote this, quote, "And while everyone is focusing on Gaza, Bashar -- Bashar al-Assad -- has the opportunity to cover and to do anything for a few days enjoying this cover. And he says, "This will not end well."

And, Nick, I just wanted to get your thoughts on that view.

WALSH: At this point, Bashar al-Assad has shown very little, I think, care about what the outside world thinks and much more he appears to be doing inside the civil war. I'm not entirely sure that (inaudible) cover of the new agenda turning to Gaza a few days will cause him necessarily to change his tactic.

But certainly it does take that story out of the headlines. Is Syria going to get involved at all? That's highly unlikely in anybody's estimation. Certainly there are links to Hamas. Remember, Hamas used to, in fact, base its headquarters in Damascus. They've been significantly weakened recently.

And, of course, many are pointing out the fact that Syria simply doesn't have as a regime the military capacity to do anything at all. It's far too busy caught up in its own civil war. I should point out, though, Wednesday and Thursday say 150 total people die across Syria in this conflict, according to activists, Kristie.

STOUT: Thank you very much indeed for that update and for giving us the regional view of this conflict in Gaza.

Nick Paton Walsh joining us live from Beirut.

Now the fighting is also taking place in another arena -- online. Israeli forces and Hamas' military wing are launching verbal attacks from their Twitter accounts. As Atika Shubert found out, neither side is mincing words.

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ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Rockets and bombs in Gaza, but the war is also fought online, a battle for public opinion, Israeli forces versus Hamas, both using the Internet to get their messages out.

At the exact moment Israeli defense forces began hitting their targets in Gaza, they sent out this tweet, "The IDF has begun a widespread campaign on terror sites and operatives in the Gaza Strip."

Moments later, they posted video of the deadly airstrike that killed the head of Hamas' military wing. Hamas' Alqassam Brigades was quick to respond with its own tweet, confirming the death of its top leader. The war of words had begun.

SHUBERT: While the Israeli defense forces are live tweeting about their actions, using a few hashtags, but most notably #PillarOfDefense, meanwhile Alqassam Brigades has come back with their hashtag #GazaUnderAttack. Both sides have been issuing threats online.

Just take a look at what the IDF put out, a rather dry statement, saying "We recommend that no Hamas operatives, whether low level or senior leaders, show their faces above ground in the days ahead."

And not to be outdone, the Alqassam Brigades responded directly to IDR spokesperson, saying, "Our blessed hands will reach your leaders and soldiers wherever they are (You [have] opened [the gates of hell] on yourselves."

So there you have it, a war of words online.

SHUBERT (voice-over): For every strike, it seems, there is a corresponding tweet or video post with links and graphics, a war of information, battling for hearts and minds online, no less critical than winning the war on the ground -- Atika Shubert, CNN, London.

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STOUT: And questions are being raised about those Twitter taunts. Are IDF and Hamas violating the site's terms of service? Well, so far, Twitter has not posted a comment on its corporate blog or accounts.

Its rules say that users must not post, quote, "specific threats of violence," and you could argue that these posts are not specific. But bloggers are asking if social media sites should ban this kind of content anyway.

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Now former CIA director David Petraeus is testifying on Capitol Hill this hour about the deadly September 11th attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya. And he's being questioned by the House Intelligence Committee.

Next hour, it's a Senate panel's turn. Meanwhile, the retired four- star general is still facing fallout from his extramarital affair that prompted his surprise resignation as CIA director last week. And now the CIA's inspector general is investigating him to determine if he misused CIA resources in carrying out the affair.

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STOUT: Senior U.S. Congressional correspondent Dana Bash joins us now live from Washington.

And, Dana, a number of questions need to be addressed here. But first, Benghazi: and what Petraeus knew about the deadly attack there.

DANA BASH, SR. U.S. CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Exactly. And now we're told is really going to be the only topic, the topic at this hearing is limited to. In fact, both hearings, the one that is going on, I should tell you, right behind that door that just opened, has been going on for a little bit more than an hour.

This is the first one with the House Intelligence Committee. And then he will go onto have another one with the Senate Intelligence Committee.

And committee chairs said that they invited him to come, even though obviously he is no longer the CIA director, but invited to come, and he agreed to voluntarily, but they made clear that they were going to limit their discussion to what happened in Benghazi and specifically what he learned when he went to Libya, which happened not too long before he was forced to resign last week.

So we are told by our Barbara Starr, who got information from a source close to David Petraeus, that one of the main things he wants to do is to explain why, when he was here the one and only time, after the attacks in Benghazi, when he was obviously still CIA director, he didn't give a full accounting.

And in many lawmakers' view, he actually gave them wrong information, because he told them, behind these doors, that he did believe that, for the most part, it was very likely that these -- that the attack was fired by (ph) demonstrations, and there are concerns that did not seem to be what happened.

What he's going to tell these lawmakers, we're told, is that he did actually have two streams of intelligence. Initially one was -- multiple streams, actually, saying that there was a lot of violence after this anti- Muslim video was released.

But the other was that they did hear that Ansar al-Sharia, which is kind of a loosely -- a loose radical Islamist group, that they were likely involved. So how he's going to square that circle, lawmakers are going to want to know.

But before I toss it back to you, Kristie, I just want to actually give you a little bit of the geography here. And if you look here, these are stairs that lead down. We're two floors down below the ground underneath the Capitol complex. The last time and the only time that David Petraeus was here, he walked right down these stairs and we all got pictures of it.

This time, that didn't happen. The reason why you're not seeing photographs of David Petraeus arriving is because we didn't get it; nobody got it, even though we -- trust me, we tried to go around to the entire complex to get every door we could think of.

So the committees are protecting him and they're not -- they're purposely sneaking him so that nobody gets a picture of him, which is a little bit curious why they're doing that.

STOUT: Yes, fascinating detail there. No chance to take a picture and no chance for you to doorstop him. Dana Bash, joining us live from Washington, thank you very much indeed for that.

Now on Thursday, U.S. President Obama, he toured areas still recovering from Sandy. And authorities in New York and New Jersey, they have released new footage from this superstorm. Let's take a look at with Mari Ramos. She joins us now from the World Weather Center.

Mari?

MARI RAMOS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Yes, these are Port Authority from New York and New Jersey that have released this new footage of the path stations (ph), the underground subway stations across New York. And it's pretty amazing, Kristie, because you know, we heard about the flooding that happened, but it's another thing to actually be able to see it.

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RAMOS (voice-over): Take a look. These are from closed circuit TV cameras. First outside, you can see it there, (inaudible) as the water began gushing in. This is in Hoboken and you see the water just gushing in there, through the front door. Those are the terminals. There's where people would normally walk. You can see there, over a meter of water easily.

And this picture, we saw a still that came out right when the storm was happening and we couldn't believe it was real. And there you see the pictures. That is real and the water gushing through the elevator shaft.

Of course, many of these stations have still not reopened, and they probably will not open for quite a while because they are, in some cases, still either getting water out of them and in other cases they need to make sure that everything is still working properly.

They expect that all of the seawater, the saltwater that came in did some damage to a lot of the electrical components, so they have to make everything OK.

That, to me, is the most amazing image right there, kind of scary to think about that.

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RAMOS: Come back over to the weather map over here. Let's go ahead and take a look at the weather across the U.S. very quickly, again, very cold temperatures across the northeastern U.S. You know, even for this time of year, there are still, what, some 15,000 people that are still without power in the New York and New Jersey area.

Most of them are actually in New York. So that is still a huge concern, because so many people still don't have heating across the region.

You can see a little dip in temperature, stretching all the way into the southeastern U.S., but I think the big weather across the U.S. is going to be here in the west. We got lucky in the east, because they were talking about a new nor'easter coming in for next week.

But it looks like most of that moisture will actually remain here off the Carolina coast and not really affecting the northeast. But like I was saying, it's going to here across the west where we have most of the weather as we head into the holiday weekend. We could see some travel delays associated with this, because this is just the beginning.

There's a series of weather systems that will be coming. We already have number one that came in; here comes the next one. You know, by the time all of this is said and done, we could see some significant rainfall and snowfall across California, Washington and Oregon and all the way up into the southern parts of Canada here. And then here comes the other storm on the way.

So this entire region will remain compromised as far as weather over the next few days, but you know, nothing like the superstorm that we saw there in the east.

You know, hurricanes in the East Coast of the U.S. and the Caribbean and in the Atlantic, since it happened between May and November, that's what we call hurricane season. But here across the western Pacific, they can happen at any time, and even just yesterday we were talking about the remnants of a tropical depression that was affecting Vietnam.

You can still see a little bit of moisture associated with that weather system there. And there's this. So this is not tropical in nature with a pretty vigorous cold front that has moved on. We talked about this briefly yesterday. Notice the rain stretching across the Korean Peninsula back over toward mainland China.

Expect travel delays with this and also some pretty cold rain that will be falling, light snow farther to the north. Front stretches all the way down here into the east, and that will not be clearing until probably we head to late Saturday into Sunday. And then we'll begin to see the moisture here across both Honshu and back up into Hokkaido. Be aware.

Have a great weekend. We will be back from NEWS STREAM in just a moment, right after the break. (Inaudible).

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STOUT: Welcome back. And a bizarre story of Internet pioneer John McAfee, he remains on the run.

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STOUT (voice-over): The 67-year-old antivirus software guru has been in hiding since Sunday. And police want to question him about the murder of his neighbor, Gregory Faull. And reports say that the two had argued over the poisoning of several of McAfee's dogs.

And Belize's prime minister has urged McAfee to help police with their inquiries, and he also reportedly called McAfee, quote, "bonkers."

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STOUT: Now at least three people have been retained for questioning in this case, and Martin Savidge has been monitoring this story from inside Belize and he joins us now live.

And, Martin, have you been able to find or track down McAfee?

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: No, no one has been able to track him down, actually. They do believe he's on this island, which is located about 36 miles off of the coast of Belize. It's still part of the country, and it's here that he lived. It's also here that his neighbor who was murdered lived. And it is also the site that's the focus of this intense search to try to find him.

There's a lot of speculation going on as to what's going to happen in the next, say, 24-48 hours. Some of it being that authorities know where he is, but they're giving him time to sort of come to his senses and turn himself in to answer questions. And that's all authorities want him to do, is just be interviewed.

We went to his house; it's in a remote part of this island, and we found a woman there who says that she is his girlfriend, one of seven who live with him. Remember, he's 67; she says she's 23 and dated him for three years. Her name, she said, was Tiffany (ph); we know that's not her real name. Listen.

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"TIFFANY", JOHN MCAFEE'S GIRLFRIEND: He's been saying it since I met him after (inaudible). He's been telling me that.

SAVIDGE: The raid you're referring to is (inaudible) --

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"TIFFANY": It is the stuff that happened in Carmelita (ph) Village, when he shot one of his dogs, (inaudible) his dogs.

SAVIDGE: This was when the gang suppression unit went onto his property?

"TIFFANY": Yes.

SAVIDGE: Looking for drugs and guns?

"TIFFANY": Yes.

SAVIDGE: Are you frightened?

"TIFFANY": I'm just worried about the death threats that I got.

SAVIDGE: Naturally.

So what happens next?

"TIFFANY": I'm not sure. Just wait and see what happens.

SAVIDGE: Do you think he'll turn himself in?

"TIFFANY": I -- he'll turn himself in if they will just ease the pressure off him, because he didn't do it. And he says he didn't do it. Well, he was here with me and two other girls.

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SAVIDGE: Two things there: she is, of course, saying she is John's alibi on the night that the murder took place with the neighbor. She says she was with John; he didn't leave. Then on top of that, she's talking about how he has fear, she has fear that the government and the police will kill not only John but also the girlfriends.

She couldn't explain exactly why that fear exists. So a very unusual interview. But this is, as you already know, Kristie, a very unusual story.

STOUT: Yes, very unusual and rather riveting.

Martin Savidge, joining us live from Belize, thank you.

Now it may be hard to remember now --

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STOUT (voice-over): -- but McAfee, he was once a very successful software engineer. Now you may be familiar with this popup telling you, yes, it is indeed time to update your antivirus software again.

Now, McAfee, he developed the first commercial antivirus software back in 1989. And unlike other software makers at the time, he decided to give his away for free, only charging corporate users for upgrades. And he eventually sold all his shares of McAfee Associates by 1994. And by then, the company was worth half a billion dollars.

You're watching NEWS STREAM. Coming up next, there was a new development in South Africa's battle to save the country's rhinos. Now a poacher is getting a record prison sentence. That story is next.

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STOUT: Welcome back. Now a rhinoceros poacher in South Africa has been handed a record jail sentence. And as Nkepile Mabuse reports, a time man (ph) used fraud to ship rhino horns out of the country.

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NKEPILE MABUSE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Very few words are spoken, all understand their roles. (Inaudible) in South Africa is legal, but this is not ordinary hunt. This is how loopholes in the law are being manipulated to supply a burgeoning trade in rhino horn.

Demand is being driven up by countries in the East, who use it as traditional medicine. This Thai national, Chumlong Lemtongthai, is serving a 40-year jail term in South Africa for recruiting just about anyone willing, including prostitutes, to pose as hunters and supply an international wildlife trafficking syndicate.

Authorities say he did this with the help of local farmers and shooters. In this video obtained by CNN, Lemtongthai and the hunting (inaudible) that he recruited don't handle any rifles during the hunt, nor do they fire a single shot. It's the farm owner who spots a rhino, seemingly slumbering under a tree.

What's about to happen is hard to watch or hear. He aims. Seconds later, sounds of the rhino in excruciating pain confirm it was a clean shot. But they want the animal dead, so he shoots again.

The resilient rhino gets up, disoriented and confused, he attempts to escape the onslaught. Another shot makes sure he doesn't. And then backup to finish him off. His last cries are more helpless and weaker, finally, acknowledging defeat.

The hunters approach; he's still alive. One more shot and soon it's all over. His horn could fetch up to $50,000 U.S. in the East, enough to make these men deaf to his cries.

JULIAN RADEMEYER, JOURNALIST AND AUTHOR: I mean, it's more than, you know, gold, cocaine, heroin.

MABUSE (voice-over): Investigative journalist Julian Rademeyer has probed the problem at home as well as the growing demand in the East. In his book, "Killing for Profit," he describes a people disconnected from the pain their dependence on rhino horn is causing in Africa.

RADEMEYER: It's seen as a product. You know, a lot of people, I expect, you have this impression we had thousands of rhinos running around. They're almost in the streets of Johannesburg, kind of thing.

If you speak to some of the Thai women who posed as hunters in some of these shooter hunts, they'll tell you, you know, this is the first time they'd seen a real rhino. They've seen rhinos on television, you know, is that sort of disconnect from the reality of the situation and the brutality of it.

MABUSE (voice-over): More than 500 rhinos have been poached this year alone in a country that has the world's largest population, estimated at around 20,000. Hunting is crucial for tourism here, but it's also posing a threat to the rhinos' existence -- Nkepile Mabuse, CNN, Johannesburg.

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STOUT: And we want to leave you now with something a bit more uplifting, some images of space.

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STOUT (voice-over): And this is Google's new Chrome Experiments, called "100,000 Stars." And it's an artist's rendition of our galaxy. I hope you get a chance to see it pretty soon. We really do want to share it with you. Here it is. And it gives you a sense of just how small we are. And if you stare at it for a while, it does get pretty hypnotic.

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STOUT: And that, my friends, that is NEWS STREAM. "WORLD BUSINESS TODAY" is next.

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