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A federal judge has awarded $300 million in punitive damages in each of two suicide bombings blamed on Iran and Iranian-backed Islamic groups.

One of rulings Thursday was made on behalf of the family of Alan Beer, a U.S. citizen who was killed in Jerusalem in 2003 in the bombing of a bus by the Iran-backed organization Hamas.

The other award was made to American citizen Seth Haim, his father and his brother. They were injured in the 1995 bombing of a bus in the Gaza Strip by the Iranian-supported Shaqaqi Faction of the Palestine Islamic Jihad.

U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth said he was making the awards - which will be difficult, perhaps impossible, for the families to collect - in the interest of deterring terrorist attacks.


U.S. adds Gaza group to terrorism blacklist

The United States on Thursday put the Army of Islam, a Palestinian militant group based in the Gaza Strip and blamed for numerous attacks, on its official terrorism blacklist.

The Army of Islam gained notoriety in 2006 when it worked with Hamas to capture Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit and was involved in the 2007 abduction of BBC journalist Alan Johnston. The two groups are now rivals.

The State Department said the Army of Islam, which is closely linked to Gaza’s powerful Doghmush clan, was also responsible for a number of rocket attacks on Israel and attacks on Egyptian civilians in 2009 that resulted in casualties and deaths.

The State Department now has 48 groups on its official list of foreign terrorist organizations including Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip.


Cheney’s book to have strong views, daughter says

NEW YORK — Dick Cheney has finished his memoir, according to his daughter, and the book is scheduled to be released Aug. 30.

Liz Cheney said the former vice president’s manuscript was submitted at the beginning of the month. She said the book, now being edited, will be “very straightforward” with “a lot of in-depth analysis of really critically important issues.”

Mr. Cheney’s memoir, “In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir,” is being published by Threshold Editions, a conservative imprint of Simon & Schuster run by Republican strategist and former Cheney aide Mary Matalin.

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