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This Morning from CBS News, Dec. 7, 2016

Avoidable tragedy?

A federal official says a faulty appliance may have sparked the Oakland, California warehouse fire that left 36 people dead. The local fire chief says the search of the fire-gutted building is nearly complete, but there are many unanswered questions about how years of complaints about the building seemingly went unanswered.

Defense chief

President-elect Donald Trump has continued his post-election “thank you” tour with a speech in North Carolina, and by formally introducing his pick for secretary of Defense, Gen. James Mattis. Mr. Trump stuck to a more optimistic tone in his address than he had on the campaign trail, vowing to revitalize America’s armed forces but only use them “when it’s in the vital interest of the United States.”

School shootings

The number of school shootings in the U.S. has risen sharply in recent years, and a new study shows some states have been hit harder than others. Researchers say they found school shootings were less likely to happen in states with background check laws for gun purchases, but several other factors also come into play.

Joy amid suffering

The Syrian city of Aleppo has been bombed for weeks under a punishing, Russian-backed army offensive to wrest half the city from rebel hands. We see elation as the army’s advance allows a family divided for five years to reunite, and anguish as a man is forced to watch his wife die because his city is destroyed and help came too late.

Remembering Pearl Harbor

Today marks the 75th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii -- the attack that drew the United States military into World War II. Survivors of the surprise Japanese attack will attend commemorative ceremonies to honor those who died, and we find out what some of them are thinking on this solemn day.

Arctic blast

North Dakota and parts of Minnesota are under a blizzard warning. Some places have already been buried in more than a foot of snow. Temperatures are lower than normal across the Great Plains, and even in some parts of the South. They will continue to drop in temperature as cold temperatures head from west to east throughout the week.

Big investment

Donald Trump is claiming credit for Japanese billionaire Masayoshi “Masa” Son’s planned $50 billion investment in U.S. tech startups. But there may be less political art to this deal than it appears. We look at what’s behind the plan, which the president-elect and entrepreneur say would create 50,000 jobs.

Spying toys

When parents give their kids a gift, they probably don’t expect the toy to listen in on their conversations. But some internet-enabled items are drawing scrutiny from privacy advocates who say they can eavesdrop on children and their families, and potentially expose personal information to hackers.

Venetian conundrum

Residents and officials in the famed Italian city understand well how valuable tourism is to their local economy. But Venice’s popularity is a double-edge sword; the small city simply can’t cope with the hordes who descend to snap selfies. Without change, the city risks being labeled a “heritage site in danger.”

More top news:


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Gen. Michael Flynn’s son resigns from Trump transition

Trump’s likely pick for Homeland Security chief is Gen. John Kelly


Blackstone’s plan to cash in on a $10 billion housing bet

The 11 top American companies to work for

The gender gap over who controls holiday spending


Mind-controlled robotic hand helps people with quadriplegia

Science and tech

Man sentenced for hacking celebrity emails


GRAMMY nominations: Who is Lukas Graham?