Timeline for 2000 to 2005 CE
Read about the timeline buttons!
For Middle East Updates, editorials, news editions, and background articles see our postings atNews from Israel.'
Ongoing Disruptions and Conflict in the Middle East
Peace negotiations continue to bring appearance of security but true peace is fleeting at best (see: 1Th 5:3)
Within the WindowView... Many themes converge... And here you are!
- Consider that this time line is part of a web site that through science, reveals humans and all life are the product of origins that are not adequately explained as a result of biological evolution. Take a look at the science and the evidence. There is a special relationship to being here. How so? To start exploring this perspective see the Science area.
- Global change grips our planet, degrades the environment, and promises continued decline in the future. Scientists now tell us that life on earth is going to encounter even more worrisome change. How can we grasp the importance of this for our future's sake? See and experience the science to Scripture 'transition' here within the Window area.
- Furthermore... the Middle East and especially Israel are in the news... daily... the stories keep coming. Within the mix of news there are one people who are the intended focal point, the messenger to all nations, the kingpin to your future... see how this is reflected in the Harmony area.
Airborne measurements showed that layers of smoggy, ozone-rich air from Asia can reach the United States (SciNews Jan. 1, 157: 4).
iguanas in the Galápagos Islands are the first vertebrates known
to reduce their size during a food shortage and then regrow to their original
body length (SciNews Jan. 8, 157: 20).
A supposed missing link between dinosaurs and birds turned out to be fossil fakery that combined bones from two different animals (SciNews Jan. 15, 157: 38).
Research on stem cells: significant increase in work on these immature cells that can grow indefinitely and mature into various cell types (SciNews)
To help preserve biodiversity, negotiators from 130 nations crafted rules of conduct for international trade in living, genetically engineered organisms (SciNews Feb. 5, 157: 84).
Preliminary tests supported the notion that the expansion of the universe is accelerating (SciNews: Feb. 12, 157: 106)
People's activities, not volcanoes, proved to be the main source of ozone-depleting chlorofluorocarbons in the atmosphere (SciNews Feb. 19, 157: 118).
experimental data for newly predicted signs that extra spatial dimensions
A controversial national survey warned of growing social isolation among frequent Internet users (SciNews: Feb. 26, 157: 135)
Scientists coaxed green algae to produce hydrogen, a clean-burning fuel that could someday power pollution-free cars (SciNews Feb. 26, 157: 134).
Biologists read the full DNA sequence of the fruit fly (SciNews Feb. 26, 157: 132)
Satellite imagery showed that sprawling urban development is disproportionately gobbling up the land best able to support crops (SciNews March 4, 157: 155).
Scientists in the U. S. offered the first confirmation of widespread drug pollution of surface, ground, and tap water (SciNews April 1, 157: 212).
A Connecticut-size iceberg split from the Ross Ice Shelf in Antarctica (SciNews April 1, 157: 215).
The latest inventory of life in the United States turned up an extra 100,000 species of plants, animals, and fungi, but it warned of threats to at least a third of those species (SciNews April 1, 157: 219).
A balloon-borne experiment found that the cosmos is perfectly flat (SciNews: Apr. 29, 157: 276)
New methods of
delivering genes promised to help gene therapy reach its potential (SciNews
May 13, 157:
Researchers developed detailed maps of the distribution of dark matter, the invisible material believed to make up 90 percent of the universe's mass (SciNews: May 20, 157: 332)
The malicious ILOVEYOU computer virus, spread via an E-mail attachment, shut down thousands of computers and globally caused several billion dollars in damage (SciNews May 27, 157: 351).
Polar stratospheric clouds, which drive ozone loss in Antarctica, turned up in force during the most recent Arctic winter (SciNews June 3, 157: 356).
Two rival groups, one public and one private, announced that each has read most of the 3 billion or so DNA subunits that spell out the human genome (SciNews: July 1, 158: 4)
Public health officials around the world lobbied to preserve DDT for killing malaria-carrying mosquitoes (SciNews July 1, 158: 12).
Up to a quarter of the humanmade structures within 500 feet of America's coastlines may be lost to erosion by 2060 (SciNews July 8, 158: 21).
The massive Permian extinctions 250 million years ago could have occurred within a mere 8,000 years, scientists suggested (SciNews July 15, 158: 39).
NASA studies showed that the vast center of Greenland's ice sheet isn't getting thinner, but most of its margins are, contributing to rising sea levels (SciNews: July 22, 158: 54).
Researchers found that Caudipteryx, a feathered animal that lived 120 million years ago, may have been a flightless bird, not a bird ancestor (SciNews Aug. 19, 158: 119).
New insights into the genetics of body development raised doubts about the statistical method that many anthropologists use to create evolutionary trees (SciNews: Nov. 25, 158: 346)
Global warming talks collapse at Hague conference (Nov. 25). (Info)
Negotiators reach agreement on draft treaty to ban or phase out some of world's most persistent and toxic pollutants (SciNews Dec. 16, 158: 389).
New Millennium brings an 'Era of Intensifying Terror' soon to growing ever more to a global scale--something is now historically and fundamentally very different.
Officials thwart a terrorist plot to disrupt millennium celebrations in U.S.
Reformists win control of Iranian parliament for first time since 1979 Islamic revolution (Feb. 26). (Info)
Mass murder or suicide of hundreds in Ugandan doomsday cult (March 18). (Info)
Acting Russian president Vladimir V. Putin formally chosen for post (March 25). (Info)
Israeli troops withdraw from Lebanese security zone after 22 years of occupation (May 24). (Info)
believed to resume
Bashar al-Assad succeeds late father, Hafez al-Assad, as Syrian president (July 10). (Info)
Palestinians and Israelis clash, spurred by visit of right-wing Israeli leader Ariel Sharon to a joint Jewish/Muslim holy site; “Al Aksa intifada” continues unabated (Sept. 30). (Info)
17 U.S. sailors on navy destroyer Cole die in Yemen terrorist explosion (Oct. 12). (Info)
Israeli prime minister Ehud Barak resigns (Dec. 9). (Info)
also during this year:
Camp David II Summit ends when Arafat abandons talks even when offered significant concessions by Barak. (P)
Scientists created the first genetically engineered primate, a rhesus monkey (SciNews Jan. 20: 38).
presented the first analyses of the full human
Government agencies began developing joint policies to reduce the huge, seasonal dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico (SciNews Feb. 3: 79). New findings indicated that by using a little less fertilizer, farmers could play a role in limiting the zone (SciNews Nov. 10: 295).
Comparisons of satellite data provide direct evidence that the atmosphere's greenhouse effect increased significantly between 1970 and 1997 (SciNews March 17: 165).
British livestock epidemic, foot-and-mouth disease, reaches crisis levels (March 23). (Info)
Bush (US) abandons global-warming treaty (Kyoto Protocol), angering European leaders (March 30). (Info)
Microbiologists unexpectedly revealed that bacteria have an internal protein skeleton similar to that of human cells (SciNews March 31: 198).
Scientists found additional evidence that some mysterious force is pushing galaxies apart at an ever-faster rate (SciNews March 31: 196, April 7: 218).
A 4,000-year-old Peruvian site yielded the remains of the oldest known city in the New World (SciNews April 28: 260).
Experiments examining the relic radiation from the Big Bang confirmed cosmologists' basic model of how the universe evolved (SciNews April 28: 261).
A large share of meats and seafood comes from the grocery store bearing bacteria invulnerable to many drugs, could cause serious infections (SciNews May 26: 325; Oct. 20, 160: 246).
Simulating extraterrestrial impacts on Earth, researchers fired away at the question of how life started (SciNews May 19: 317).
Director's Note: There is no end to ideas that play into scenarios for how life originated - if by material means. Yet, as noted in our feature article on chemical origins to life, no scientifically viable scenario has surfaced. Partial answers are numerous but untenable. The continued effort to research life's origin appears motivatred by what's philosophical rather than on science.
A tiny skull found in 195-million-year-old Chinese sediments indicated that crucial features of mammalian anatomy evolved more than 45 million years earlier than scientists had thought (SciNews May 26: 324).
The U. S. and 126 other nations signed a treaty to phase out major persistent, toxic pollutants (SciNews June 2: 343).
Excavations in Egypt unearthed bones of an 80-ton titanosaur, seemingly the second-most-massive dinosaur known (SciNews June 23: 397).
Analysis that includes a forest's moisturizing effect on regional climate indicated that the Amazon rainforest could disappear in the next 3 decades (SciNews July 14:24).
Global Change issues are highlighted in red text along this time line.
Above-average hurricane activity in the North Atlantic during the past 6 years may signal a threatening weather trend (SciNews July 21: 37).
Without U.S., 178 nations reach agreement on climate accord, which rescues, though dilutes, 1997 Kyoto Protocol (July 23). (Info)
Negotiators in Bonn, Germany, without input from U.S. representatives, resolved controversies blocking an international treaty to limit greenhouse gases (SciNews July 28: 54).
President Bush decided to permit limited research on human embryonic stem cells (SciNews Aug. 18, 160: 105). Scientists learned how to transform those cells into insulin-secreting and heart cells (SciNews Sept. 1: 143).
detected signs of one of the earliest eras in the universe, just before
the first stars and quasars flooded the cosmos with light (SciNews Aug.
11: 84 ).
Discovery of a trove of planets orbiting stars other than the sun suggested that astronomers had finally found a planetary system similar to our own (Aug. 18: 100, Nov. 10: 299).
Damage caused by the Code Red worm and several other viruses focused new attention on rogue computer programs that could bring down the Internet (SciNews Aug. 25: 127).
Several government initiatives aimed to develop computing power in the range of 12 trillion operations per second or more for research use (SciNews Aug. 25: 118).
The first transatlantic surgery took place when physicians in New York electronically manipulated a robot in Strasbourg, France, to remove a woman's gall bladder (SciNews Oct. 6: 216).
Large-scale deforestation in the eastern lowlands of Central America is affecting weather in the mountains downwind and imperiling ecosystems there (SciNews Oct. 20: 245).
A biotech firm's claim to have created the first cloned human embryos reignited scientific and political controversy (SciNews Oct. 20: 250, Dec. 1: 341).
Occasional sediment-rich plumes of fresh water dumped into the ocean by rivers may convey pesticides and nutrients to the seafloor (SciNews Nov. 17: 308).
Radiocarbon data inspired a theory that Middle Eastern farmers rapidly colonized southern Europe 7,400 years ago (SciNews Nov. 17: 308).
Researchers discovered sugars and sugar-related compounds in meteorites, bolstering the view that rocks from space delivered key ingredients for life on Earth (SciNews Dec. 22&29: 388).
Earthquake kills thousands in India (Jan. 26). (Info)
Libyan convicted in Flight 103 bombing over Lockerbie, Scotland (Jan. 31). (Info)
Right-winger Ariel Sharon wins election in Israel (Feb. 6). (Info) Sharon expects to take firm hand in dealing with Palestinians. (P)
After a Palestinian suicide bomber kills 5 and wounds more than 100 in a Netanya shopping mall, Israeli warplanes retaliate by bombing West Bank and Gaza strip (May 18). (Info)
Four are declared guilty in 1998 terrorist bombings of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania (May 29). (Info)
Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh executed (June 11). (Info)
Syrian forces evacuate Beirut area after decades of occupation (June 19). (Info)
Former Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic is delivered to UN tribunal in The Hague to await war-crimes trial (June 29). (Info)
Repeated terrorism and suicide bombings of Jewish civilians cause Israeli politicians to declare end of Oslo Accords and begin to target Palestinian leaders and destruction of PLO bases in West Bank. (July) (P)
Iraqi "Jerusalem Liberation Army" is formed and 10,000 troops enter Jordan with infiltaration into Palestinian areas of West Bank. (August) (P)
U.S. Declares war on terrorism (Sept 12). (P)
U.S. pressures Israel to renew peace negotiations with Palestinians. (Oct. 1-6) (P)
Anthrax scare rivets U.S., as anthrax-laced letters are sent to various media and government officials. Several die after handling the letters (Oct 5). (Info)
In response to Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, U.S. and British forces launch bombing campaign against Taliban government and al-Qaeda terrorist camps in Afghanistan. Bombings continue on a daily basis (Oct. 7). (Info)
Afghani factions create a post-Taliban government (Nov. 27). (Info)
Israel condemns the Palestinian Authority as a “terror-supporting entity” and severs ties with leader Yasir Arafat following mounting violence against Israelis. The Israeli Army begins bombing Palestinian areas (Dec. 4). (Info)
Taliban regime in Afghanistan collapses after two months of bombing by American warplanes and fighting by Northern Alliance ground troops (Dec. 9). Hamid Karzai, new interim Afghan leader, is sworn in (Dec. 22). (Info)
Farm-field runoff containing hormones excreted by steroid-treated livestock appeared capable of harming aquatic life (Jan. 5, 161: 10).
Panel Opposes Cloning of Babies (Jan. 18): Scientific experts call procedure unsafe, but support cloning techniques for treatment of disease. (Info)
Pfiesteria microbes, implicated in fish kills and human illness along the mid-Atlantic U.S. coast, turned up in Norway (Jan. 19, 161: 39). Another study suggested that some types of Pfiesteria don't produce a toxin but kill by eating holes in a fish's skin (Aug. 10, 162: 84).
Bush Offers Antipollution Plan (Feb. 14): Discloses program to slow accumulation of gases linked to climate change and cut pollution from power plants. (Info)
on Fetus Called Success (Feb. 21): Boston surgeons operate
on fetus's aortic valve in utero. Baby born healthy although delivered
six weeks early. (Info)
Scientists analyzed rainfall patterns in the Indian Ocean and predicted the late-summer return of El Niño, the worldwide weather maker marked by sea-surface warming in the tropical Pacific (SciNews March 2, 161: 142 Aug. 17, 162: 110).
Scientists showed that stem cells derived from cloned mouse and cow embryos can cure some animal diseases and create organs such as kidneys (SciNews March 16, 161: 163, June 8, 356) researchers showed that bone marrow from adults contains cells that can mature into many specialized types (SciNews June 22, 161: 390).
A Rhode Island-size section of the Antarctic's Larsen B ice shelf splintered into thousands of icebergs (SciNews March 30, 161: 197).
Scientists identified a new class of compounds that stops herpes simplex virus from replicating (SciNews April 13, 161: 227).
Two research groups independently described the entire genetic sequence of rice, a first for a crop plant (SciNews April 6, 161: 211).
Government scientists found that stockpiled smallpox vaccine doses can be diluted to one-tenth their original concentration and still be effective (SciNews April 13, 161: 238). And researchers calculated that vaccinating an entire city in response to a smallpox attack would save thousands more lives than would quarantining infected people and vaccinating their contacts (SciNews July 13, 162: 21).
At water concentrations found in the environment, the weed killer atrazine stripped male frogs of their masculinity, suggesting that the chemical is partly responsible for global amphibian declines (SciNews April 20, 161: 243; Nov. 2, 162: 275).
Researchers found reason to suspect that artificial lighting at night disrupts the physiology and behavior of nocturnal animals (April 20, 161: 248).
A catastrophic outpouring of water—in a volume four times that of Lake Tahoe—may have gushed from fissures near the equator on Mars as recently as 10 million years ago (March 9, 161: 157). Yet contrary to a popular model in which ancient Mars was warm, wet, and hospitable to life, the Red Planet may have been cold and dry for most of its history, with only brief episodes of scalding rain and flash flooding (SciNews Dec. 14, 162: 372).
A newly found fossil skull entered an ongoing debate about whether the human ancestor Homo erectus was a single species or several (SciNews March 23, 161: 179).
of lab-made minerals suggested that the zone of rocks just outside Earth's
core could hold enough water to fill the oceans five times (March 30,
Bush Calls for Total Ban on Human Cloning (April 10): Urges Senate to pass legislation forbidding procedure for both reproductive and research purposes. (Info)
Setting their sights on the galaxy's faintest stars, scientists the universe's age to be between 13 billion and 14 billion years (SciNews May 4, 161: 277).
Weather data gathered during the 3-day shutdown of commercial aviation within the United States after Sept. 11, 2001, suggest that the contrails from high-flying jets have a significant effect on Earth's climate (SciNews May 11, 161: 291).
Hormone Linked to Obesity Identified (May 23): Ghrelin believed to slow metabolism, cause hunger, and limit ability to burn fat. (Info)
Novel microstructures of crisscrossed tungsten rods filtered various wavelengths of radiated heat—a talent that someday might boost the efficiency of lightbulbs (SciNews May 25, 161: 334).
Space Shuttle Endeavor Launched (June 5): Shuttle to deliver a new crew from to the international space station, Alpha, and will bring the outgoing space station crew back to Earth. (Info)
Scientists Discover New Planet (June 14): Astronomers at the University of California-Berkeley discover a planet similar to Jupiter in planetary system similar to the Earth's own solar system. (Info)
Researchers found that antibiotics excreted by people and animals have the potential to poison plants and end up in food (SciNews June 29, 161: 406).
AIDS Deaths Projected to Skyrocket (July 2): UN announces toll could reach an additional 65 million by 2020 if preventative measures are not expanded. (Info)
Study of adolescents suggests widespread environmental pollutants, such as polychlorinated biphenyls and dioxins, might be delaying young people's sexual development (SciNews July 6, 162: 3).
Early Skull Discovered in Chad (July 11): French scientists report in the journal Nature that they have unearthed a 7-million-year-old member of the human family, Sahelanthropus tchadensis, who has been nicknamed “Toumai.” Fossil combines human and chimpanzee characteristics. (Info)
Scientists Re-create Polio Virus (July 11): Use virus's genome sequence and DNA purchased by mail. Move shows that terrorists may be able to make biological weapons without a live virus. (Info)
Stoking bioterrorism fears, scientists proved they could build the poliovirus from scratch, using the widely known genetic sequence and available chemicals (SciNews July 13, 162: 22).
Data from Arabian Sea sediments suggest that Asian monsoons have been intensifying over the past 400 years, and scientists predict that these storms are slated to get worse (SciNews July 27, 162: 54).
Scientists Identify Hunger Hormone (Aug. 8): London scientists report in journal Nature that the hormone PYY, produced in the small intestine, triggers a feeling of fullness after eating. (Info)
Tests on sunflowers showed that a lab-engineered gene from a crop plant, if introduced into its wild relative, can give the native plant a survival edge over other wild plants (SciNews Aug. 17, 162: 99).
Trace amounts of human-excreted drugs in waterways appeared to work together to deform and kill native microscopic organisms (SciNews Aug. 17, 162: 101).
Sediments laid down on Earth about 3.47 billion years ago contain remnants of what may have been an extraterrestrial object large enough to disperse collision debris over the entire planet (SciNews Aug. 24, 162: 115).
Earth Summit Ends with Pact (Sept. 4): Meeting produces plan to improve sanitation, increase accessibility of clean water, reduce the number of endangered species, and improve safety of chemical production. (Info)
Redwoods and Firs Widely Infected (Sept. 4): Sudden Oak Death Syndrome falling victim to quickly spreading disease, which has claimed tens of thousands of trees in Sonoma County, Calif. (Info)
observations of the cosmic microwave background provided additional support
for the Big Bang (SciNews Sept. 28, 162: 195).
----------------Global Change trends continue to be recognized in this decade with increasing ominous overtones concerning the future of planet earth ...
Feature Area provides examples of driving forces for global change.
Minuscule amounts of over-the-counter weed killers impaired reproduction in mice (SciNews Oct. 12, 162: 228).
Atmospheric scientists learned that the Mediterranean Sea is a crossroads for pollution-laden air currents from Europe, Asia, and North America (SciNews Oct. 26, 162: 261).
Scientists Compare Mouse and Human Genome (Dec. 5): First analysis of two complete genomes reveals striking similarities. Scientists hope finding will hasten understanding of genetic diseases. (Info)
Cloning Claim Greeted with Skepticism (Dec. 27): Spokeswoman for Raëlians, a sect that believes space travelers created humans by cloning, says group has created the first human clone, a 7-pound baby girl. President Bush, United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan, and other leaders condemn the claim, which has not been substantiated. (Info)
most detailed snapshots of the infant universe ever recorded
are providing additional evidence that a mystery material makes up the
bulk of the cosmos' energy and is accelerating
Nine States Challenge Air Pollution Rules (Dec. 31): Northeastern states file suit against EPA's changes to New Source Review, which would allow older coal-fired plants to be improved without requiring installation of expensive antipollution mechanisms. Suit alleges new rules will lead to an increase in acid rain, smog, and asthma. (Info)
Ten years after the World's Scientists signed onto a WARNING concerning global change, the issues of conncern remain the same!
Marines Secure Taliban Compounds (Jan. 1): Two hundred soldiers leave Kandahar to wage extensive American ground operation. (Info)
Israel Eases West Bank Blockade (Jan. 3). (Info)
Israel Seizes Ship Loaded with Arms (Jan. 3): Says Palestinians are involved. (Info)
Arab Gunman Kills Six Israelis (Jan. 17–18). (Info)
Defrocked Priest Convicted (Jan. 18): guilty of indecent assault and battery for fondling a young boy in 1991. (Info)
Mass Killing in Chechnya Reported (Jan. 22). (Info)
Iraqi Opposition Seeks U.S. Aid (Jan. 31). (Info)
U.S. Says al-Qaeda Able to Strike Again (Feb. 6): CIA reports terrorist group is trying to reassemble and manage another large attack. (Info)
U.S. Believes bin Laden Is Alive (Feb. 23). (Info)
Israelis Keep Arafat Confined (Feb. 25) to West Bank city of Ramallah. (Info)
Bush Welcomes Saudi Peace Offer (Feb. 26). (Info)
Israelis Raid Refugee Camps (Feb. 28). (Info)
Muslim Mob Attacks Trainload of Hindus (Feb. 27). (Info)
Hundreds in India Die in Rioting (March 2): Hindu-Muslim clashes in western India claim almost 400. (Info)
U.S. and Afghan Troops Launch Attack (March 2): Target remaining al-Qaeda and Taliban fighters in eastern Afghanistan. (Info)
Afghan Allies Seize Mountain Stronghold (March 12) Shah-i-Kot Valley. (Info)
Out on Church Scandals (March 21): John Paul II calls wave of pedophile
Bomb Kills at Least 19 in Israel (March 27) in a Netanya hotel during a Passover seder. (Info)
Arab League Approves Saudi Peace Plan (March 28). (Info)
Israel Raids West Bank Towns (March 29). (Info)
Sharon Declares Israel in a War (March 31): Israeli prime minister calls Yasir Arafat the enemy of the entire free world. Speech follows a suicide attack in a Haifa restaurant that killed 15, including bomber. (Info)
Fighting Escalates Between Israelis and Palestinians (April 2). (Info)
More than 400 Israeli tanks enter Nablus, largest city in the West Bank, and Jenin, bulldozing buildings and questioning suspected militants. Palestinians retaliate with gunfire (April 3). (Info)
Palestinians Seek Refuge in Church (April 2): More than 250 Palestinians hole up in the Church of the Nativity from Israeli incursion. (Info)
Church of Nativity occupied by Palestinian rebels (April - May). Church later resumes worship services after peaceful ending to occupation. Events leading up to church occupation include terrorist bombings and conflict in Israel - results in 1,500 Palestinian and about 500 Israeli deaths.
Palestinian Suicide Bomber Strikes in Jerusalem (April 13): Six killed at a bus stop. (Info)
Israel Begins West Bank Withdrawal (April 15) responding to plea by President Bush. (Info)
Pope Summons Cardinals to Rome (April 15) to discuss the sex-abuse scandal. (Info)U.S. Cardinals Condemn Sexual Abuse by Priests (April 24). (Info)
In April, 2002, the Temple Institute reports that a red heifer is born in Israel. This is an important part of preparations leading to rebuilding the future Third Temple in Jerusalem.
Drops Plans for Jenin Fact-finding Mission (May 2) after
Israel Releases Arafat (May 2). (Info)
Suicide Bomber Kills 16 in Tel Aviv (May 7). (Info)
Siege at Bethlehem Church Ends (May 10). (Info)
U.S. and Russia Reach Landmark Arms Agreement (May 13) pact to cut both countries' nuclear arsenals by up to two-thirds over next 10 years. (Info)
Arafat Vows to Reform Regime (May 15). (Info)
Palestinian Militants Deported to Europe (May 22): Italy, Spain, Greece, Ireland, Portugal, and Belgium accept 12 of the 13 who took refuge in Bethlehem's Church of the Nativity. One will remain in Cyprus. (Info)
Pakistan Tests Ballistic Missiles (May 25 et seq.). (Info)
Russia Joins NATO as Junior Partner (May 28). (Info)
Arafat Outlines Plan to Reform Security Forces (June 4). (Info)
Israeli Troops Attack Arafat's Compound (June 5): Move follows Palestinian suicide attack that kills 17 Israelis, including 13 soldiers, in Galilee. (Info)
Pakistan President Vows to Curb Kashmir Militants (June 6). (Info)
India Moves to Ease Tension in Kashmir (June 10). (Info)
Hamid Karzai Elected President of Afghanistan (June 13). (Info)
Israel Begins Construction of Fence (June 16): Barrier, 217-miles long, will separate Israel from the West Bank and is intended to thwart suicide attacks. (Info)
Israel Announces Plan to Reoccupy West Bank (June 18): Troops enter Jenin after suicide bombing on a bus in Jerusalem claims 20. (Info)
Al-Qaeda Member Arrested (June 18 ): Saudi Arabia announces it has in custody 13 suspects who were believed to be planning attack on U.S. military aircraft. (Info)
Suicide Bomber Strikes Jerusalem (June 19): Six Israelis at a bus stop die in second consecutive day of violence in Jerusalem. (Info)
Palestinian Gunmen Kill Israeli Settlers (June 20): Raid settlement near Nablus, killing five, including a mother and her three children. (Info)
Israeli Soldiers Seize West Bank Towns (June 20. Move follows three consecutive days of violence. (Info)
Forces Attack Palestinian Authority Office (June 28) in
Police Raid Jerusalem Office of Prominent Palestinian (July 9): Isrealis say Sari
Militants Attack Hindus (July 14):
Kashmir assault claims 25 and wounds more than
Spain Arrests al-Qaeda Suspects (July 16). (Info)
Suicide Bombings Resume in Israel (July 16): Militants ambush bus near West Bank settlement, killing 9 people. First attack in nearly a month. (July 17): Two Palestinian suicide bombers kill three in Tel Aviv. (Info)
Sept. 11 Suspect Enters Guilty Plea (July 18): Zacarias Moussaoui pleads guilty to planning terrorist attacks on U.S. and admits belonging to al-Qaeda. (July 25): Withdraws earlier guilty plea and denies he helped to plan the Sept. 11 attacks. (Info)
Israelis Attack Home of Hamas Leader (July 23): Bomb strikes a house in a dense civilian area, killing militant Sheik Salah Shehada and 14 others.
Die in Jerusalem Attack (July 31): Bomb explodes at a Hebrew University cafeteria.
Iraq Moves to Resume Inspection Talks (Aug. 1): Iraqi foreign minister Naji Sabri invites UN inspector Hans Blix to Baghdad to discuss weapons inspections. (Aug. 5): Iraq says it will give members of Congress access to areas believed to be arms-development sites. (Info)
Several Die in String of Palestinian Attacks (Aug. 5): At least 14 people victims in ambushes in Jerusalem, Galilee, and Nablus. (Info)
Suspected Pakistani Militants Attack Christian Sites (Aug. 5). (Info)
UN and U.S.
Refuse Inspection Talks in Iraq (Aug. 5): Congress rejects
Iraq's offer to have
U.S. and Palestinian Leaders Meet (Aug. 8): Secretary of State Colin Powell, Palestinian Authority negotiator Saeb Erekat, and other leaders discuss future of Yasir Arafat and timetable for elections and statehood. (Info)
Iraqi Opposition Leaders Meet with U.S Officials (Aug. 9). (Info)
Indicts Palestinian Leader (Aug. 14): Marwan Barghouit, leader in Yasir Arafat's Fatah
and Palestinians Agree on Withdrawal Plan (Aug. 18): Agreement, “Gaza, Bethlehem
Videotapes Support al-Qaeda Weapons Theory (Aug. 19): CNN broadcasts footage of al-Qaeda members giving instructions on how to build bombs and fire surface-to-air missiles and of dogs dying, allegedly from exposure to chemical agents. Network paid $30,000 for 64 tapes. (Info)
Terrorist Dies (Aug. 19 ): Abu Nidal, blamed for
deaths of 900 people in 20
Palestinian Cabinet Resigns (Sept. 11): Yasir Arafat's ministers step down to avoid a no-confidence vote by Legislative Council. Arafat sets presidential and parliamentary elections for Jan 20. (Info)
Bush Addresses United Nations (Sept. 12): Citing torture, oppression, and 11 years of defiance by Saddam Hussein's regime, president argues for an attack on Iraq. (Info)
Al-Qaeda Operative Captured in Pakistan (Sept. 13). (Info)
Iraq Says Weapons Inspectors May Return (Sept. 16). (Info)
Suicide Bomber Strikes in Tel Aviv (Sept. 19): Six die in second attack in less than 24 hours. Israel responds by surrounding Yasir Arafat's compound. (Sept. 20): Israeli troops further isolate Arafat, destroying several buildings in his compound. (Info)
Iraq Refuses New Resolution (Sept. 28): Rejects proposed Security Council resolution giving Iraq 30 days to disclose weapons inventory and calling for unfettered access to sites. (Info)
Israeli Troops Withdraw from Arafat's Base (Sept. 29): End 10-day siege in which forces destroyed most of Arafat's Ramallah compound and trapped him inside. (Info)
Church Settles with Abuse Victims (Sept. 18): Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston agrees to pay $10 million to 86 victims of pedophile priest John Geoghan. (Info)
Israel Attacks Gaza Town (Oct. 7): Targets members of militant group Hamas. Missile and gun fire kills 16 people in crowded Khan Yunis. (Info)
European Union Announces New Members (Oct. 9): Ten countries—Poland, Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Malta, and Cyprus — expected to join in 2004. (Oct. 20): Irish vote to support expansion. (Info)
Blast in Bali Kills Hundreds (Oct. 12): About 200 people die when car bomb explodes in front of crowded club in a resort area. Three Americans among the victims. (Oct. 14): President Bush links bombing to al-Qaeda. (Info)
North Korea Admits to Developing Nuclear Arms (Oct. 16). (Info)
Chechen Rebels Take Hostages (Oct. 23): Seize crowded Moscow theater and detain 763 people, including 3 Americans. Guerrillas, armed and wired with explosives, demand Russian government end war in Chechnya. (Oct. 24): Rebels kill one hostage. (Oct. 26): Government forces storm the theater after rebels begin to kill other hostages. Russian troops also release a gas into the theater, which kills 116 hostages. (Info)
October, Washington, D.C., metropolitan area terrorized three weeks by dual sniper team shooting from a car trunk. Thirteen shootings, ten fatalities. Elder sniper is recent convert to Islam.
Conditionally Endorses Palestinian State (Dec. 4): Israeli prime minister accepts U.S. peace plan that includes
a Palestinian state in parts of the West Bank and Gaza Strip as long as
Yasir Arafat is removed from power. (Info)
Iraq Cited for False Statements in Declaration (Dec. 19): U.S. Secretary of State says Iraq in “material breach” of Security Council resolution because of omissions and inconsistencies in weapons declaration. (Info)
Increasing fresh water discharges into the Arctic Ocean could disrupt patterns of deepwater ocean circulation that affect climate (SciNews Jan. 11, 163: 29).
U.S. begins developing a system that will monitor germ attacks (Jan 22) (Info)
Mexican earthquake kills nearly 30 (Jan 22)
Scientists find winged dinosaur (Jan 23) a four-winged Microraptor gui, in China.
Space Shuttle Explodes (Feb 1) Columbia breaks up as it renters Earth's atmosphere; killing crew: R.D. Husband, W.C. McCool, M.P. Anderson, D.M. Brown, K. Chawla, L. Clark, and first Israeli astronaut Ilan Ramon. (Info)
Panel criticizes Bush's climate plan (Feb 26)
The first large test of an AIDS vaccine failed to shield an at-risk population (SciNews Feb. 22, 163: 133)
Astronomers Confirm Big Bang Theory (Feb 11) The Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy satellite produces detailed map of universe, illustrating first stars appeared 200 million years after the bang, a half billion years earlier than previously thought. Also, reveals universe is 13.7 billion years old, is rapidly expanding, and weight is 4% atoms, 23% dark matter, and 73% dark energy. (Info)
AIDS Vaccine fails to prevent infection (Feb 23) First AIDS vaccine to reach large-scale test stage, does, however, seem to decrease infection rate of some minorities.) (Info)
New portrait of infant cosmos pinned down age with unprecedented precision, new evidence that universe began with brief but humongous growth spurt & cosmos already contained a plethora of stars when it was just 200 million years old (SciNews Feb. 15, 163: 99).
Trace amounts of the chemicals used to battle bacteria in kitchens and bathrooms may kill off algae in streams, with potentially far-reaching consequences, studies found (SciNews March 29, 163: 196).
The flow of five of the six large glaciers that once fed into Antarctica's Larsen A ice shelf has sped up significantly since that floating ice mass collapsed and drifted away in January 1995 (SciNews March 8, 163: 149).
Researchers probed the biology of intelligence (Feb. 8, 163: 92) and the environment's effect on IQ scores (SciNews May 10, 163: 293).
Mystery Illness Strikes Asia (Mar 15) World Health Organization calls virus, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), a "worldwide heath threat." (Mar 19) WHO reports progress in finding cause of the virus and a test to detect it. (Info)
China Admits Underreporting SARS Cases (April 20) ... much higher than originally reported. (Info)
Supermassive black holes at cores of galaxies can blow out as much material as they swallow, creating high-speed winds that seed the universe with elements essential for life (SciNews April 5, 163: 214).
SARS Genome Decoded (April 12) Scientists at the British Columbia Cancer Agency determine that a “completely new” coronavirus causes the illness. (Info)
AIDS Plan (May 1) Votes, 220–197, for $15 billion measure to fight
disease globally. Includes provision that one-third of the money be
used to encourage abstinence.
In the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, analytical chemists raced to develop portable sensors capable of detecting the barest whiff of a chemical or biological weapon (SciNews June 7, 163: 362).
Robot Heads for Mars (June 10): A rover, named Spirit, equipped with eight cameras and a robot arm to analyze samples of the red planet's geologic composition, takes off from Cape Canaveral, Florida. (Info)
SARS Declared Under Control (July 5): WHO declares illness contained. No new cases reported since June 15. Officials warn that it could be a seasonal problem. (Info)
Bush Names Executive to Head AIDS Office (July 2): Nominates Randall Tobias, former CEO of Eli Lilly & Co., to run new $15 million State Department program to fight AIDS.
Study Reports Increased Resistance to AIDS Drugs (July 16): Researchers in Europe announce about 10% of new patients have drug-resistant strain. (Info)
Microbiologists discovered that bacteriophages, the viruses that invade bacteria, have incredible genetic diversity and abound in oceans and soils (SciNews July 12, 64: 26).
In less than a generation, modern industrial-scale fishing can exhaust the edible bounty of a plot of ocean (SciNews July 26, 164: 59).
A DNA study suggested that people first reached the Americas fewer than 20,000 years ago (SciNews Aug. 9, 164: 84).
A decrease in precipitation over the Pacific Ocean north of Hawaii in recent years has left the ocean there saltier and has diminished its capacity to soak up carbon dioxide (SciNews Aug. 16, 164: 101).
Analyses of genetic material from fossils of large, flightless birds called moas suggested that three types of the extinct creatures may not have been separate species after all (SciNews Aug. 9, 164: 84).
Chemical analyses of Earth's lower atmosphere showed that the overall concentration of bromine, a component of some potent ozone-destroying chemicals, has dropped by 5 percent since peaking in 1998 (SciNews Aug. 23, 164: 118).
A piece of 130-million-year-old amber revealed a thin filament of spider silk with sticky droplets that look just like those produced by modern spiders (SciNews Aug. 30, 164: 141).
Astronomers found new evidence that a mysterious substance, dubbed dark energy, is ripping the cosmos apart, causing the universe to expand at an ever-faster rate (SciNews Aug. 2, 164: 67*; Oct. 11, 164: 227).
Massive Blackout Darkens Northeast and Midwest (Aug. 14): In the country's largest power failure in history, 50 million people in eight U.S. states and parts of Canada are without electricity. Cause unknown, but officials acknowledge that electricity grid is antiquated. (Aug. 15): Power restored to most areas after 29-hour blackout. (Aug. 16): Electricity restored in Detroit, the last metropolitan left in the dark. (Info)
Virus Attacks Computers (Aug. 12): Program, called the Blaster worm, wreaks havoc with thousands of computers running recent versions of Microsoft Windows operating systems. (Info)
Studies suggest strongly materialistic values lessen people's sense of happiness and well-being (SciNews Sept. 6, 164: 152).
The fires that swept through Indonesian rain forests late in 1997 seemed to have laid waste to some of the region's marine ecosystems (SciNews Sept. 6, 164: 158).
Vaccines advanced: Against Ebola in monkeys (SciNews Aug. 9, 164: 83); tuberculosis vaccine in animal tests (May 17, 163: 318); rotavirus (Sept. 27, 164: 204); and an experimental anthrax vaccine (Sept. 6, 164: 147).
A combination of drugs that researchers anticipated would work well against HIV failed to stop the virus reliably (SciNews Oct. 4, 164: 222)
China Sends First Astronaut into Orbit (Oct. 15) Lt. Col. Yang Liwei successfully orbits Earth several times in the Shenzhou V, and returns home after 21-hour flight. China is the third country to send a man in space, after the U.S. and Russia. (Info)
The most precise map of galaxy clusters confirmed that most of the cosmos is in the dark, consisting of 70 percent dark energy, 25 percent dark matter, and 5 percent ordinary matter (Nov. 1, 164: 275).
must reduce or eliminate the production and use of 16 persistent
New data support hypothesis for mysterious spike in neurological disease in Guam: The food chain bacteria to plants to bats to people-magnifies the tissue concentrations of a naturally produced neurotoxin (SciNews May 17, 163: 310; Dec. 6, 164: 366).
FDA Approves Contraceptive (Dec. 16) U.S. Food and Drug Administration votes to allow over-the-counter sale of "morning-after pill."
Britain arrests terror suspects (Jan 5).
Suicide bombers strike Tel Aviv (Jan 5)
Britain calls up military reserves (Jan 7)
North Korea withdraws from arms treaty (Jan 9)
U.S. deploys troops to Persian Gulf area (Jan 10)
N. Korea states it has no plans for nuclear weapons (Jan 22)
U.N. Arms inspectors report on Iraq (Jan 27) Iraq not fully cooperating (Info)
Sharon Prevails in Israeli election (Jan 29) and his Likud Party defeats Labor Party by taking 38 of 120 seats, while Labor with 19 loses 6. (Info)
U.S. State Dept. argues for war in Iraq (Feb 5)
New Bin Laden tape broadcast (Feb 11)
U.N. arms inspectors say Iraq missiles violate range limits (Feb 12); later say Iraq more cooperative (Feb 14) (Info)
U.S., U.K., & Spain say Iraq has failed to disarm (Feb 22)
North Korea reportedly has restarted nuclear reactor (Feb 26)
Parliament approves Israeli Government (Feb 28)
US says Saddam Hussein must leave Iraq (Feb 28)
N. Korean jets intercept US plane. (Mar 3); US sends 24 bombers to Guam in case diplomacy with N. Korea fails (Mar 4). (Info)
Suicide Bomber Strikes Israeli Bus (Mar 5) Hamas responsible for attack in Haifa; killing 15. First such attack in 2 months, Israel retaliates in Gaza. (Info)
Argentina Indicts Bombing Suspects (Mar 8) judge issues arrest warrants for four Iranian government officials suspected of blowing up a Jewish community center in Buenos Aires in 1994. Blast killed 85 people. (Info)
Palestinian Parliament Approves Prime Minister Post (Mar 10).
Back and forth movements on UN resolutions ends as US, UK, and Spain withdraw resolution (Mar 17).
War in Iraq begins (Mar 19)
US troops strike in Afghanistan (Mar 20) ... about 1000 soldiers raid Kandahar, seeking out al-Qaeda members. (Info)
U.S. Forces Enter Baghdad (April 5) Baghdad falls. U.S. forces take control the city, but sporadic fighting continues throughout the capital. (April 10) (Info)
Endorses Cabinet (April 23)
Peace Plan Proposed for Middle East (April 30)
Meets with Middle East Leaders in Jerusalem (May 11) U.S.
secretary of state urges Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon and Palestinian
prime minister Mahmoud Abbas to pursue steps toward peace process. (Info)
Terrorists Strike in Saudi Arabia (May 12)
Arab Leaders Promise to Curb Violence (June 3): including Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, and Bahrain, and Palestinian prime minister Mahmoud Abbas. (Info)
Bush Meets with Middle East Leaders (June 5): At a summit meeting in Aqaba, Jordan, Ariel Sharon and Mahmoud Abbas commit to taking the first steps to implement the road map. (Info)
Hamas Ends Talks with Palestinian Leader (June 6): Militant Islamic group withdraws from cease-fire negotiations with Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas, claiming he yielded too much at summit with Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon. (Info)
Road Map Hits Snags (June 8): Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Al Aksa Martyrs Brigades, three Islamic militant groups, collaborate in attack on Israeli soldiers in Hebron. Four soldiers die. (June 10): Israel tries to assassinate Hamas leader Dr. Abdel Aziz Rantisi. President Bush criticizes move. (June 11): Palestinian suicide bomber blows up bus in Jerusalem, killing 16 and wounding more than 100. (Info)
Captured Iraqi Official Tells Interrogators That Hussein Is Alive (June 20): U.S. troops intensify their search for Hussein after Abd Hamad Mahmoud al-Tikriti tells U.S. officials that Hussein and his sons, Uday and Qusay, survived attacks in March and April. (Info)
Israelis Agree to Pullout of Gaza (June 27): Palestinians assume security . First coordinated step in the peace process. (Info)
Palestinian Militant Groups Announce Ceasefire (June 29): Hamas and Islamic Jihad vow to end attacks on Israeli targets for three months. Al Fatah announces a six-month truce.
Israeli and Palestinian Prime Ministers Meet (July 1): Ariel Sharon and Mahmoud Abbas make symbolic public appearance together and hold two-hour meeting to discuss peace plan. Israeli troops continue to withdraw from parts of Gaza and the West Bank.
Israeli Troops Continue Withdrawal (July 2): Soldiers withdraw from parts of Bethlehem and the West Bank. (Info)
Palestinian Prime Minister Threatens to Resign (July 7): In response to attacks from Yasir Arafat and his supporters criticizing his handling of peace negotiations with Israel. (July 14):Arafat and Abbas agree to a power-sharing deal that calls on Abbas to consider negotiating guidelines put forth by a committee of the PLO when dealing with Israel. Both Arafat and Abbas are members of the committee. (Info)
Interim Government Established in Iraq (July 13): Governing Council, a diverse group of 25 Iraqi leaders. (Info)
North Korea Announces Plans for Six Nuclear Bombs (July 14).
Hussein's Sons Killed (July 22): Uday and Qusay Hussein die in firefight in a Mosul palace.
Palestinian Prime Minister Visits White House (July 25): Abbas meets President Bush to discuss Middle East peace plan. Bush presses Abbas to move against Palestinian terrorist groups. (Info)
Sharon Refuses to Dismantle Fence (July 29): At White House meeting, Israeli prime minister says he plans to continue construction of security fence that cuts through the West Bank. (Info)
Investigation Reveals Widespread [sexual] Abuse by Massachusetts Priests (July 23): ... in Boston's Roman Catholic Archdiocese since 1940. (Info)
Suicide Attacks Resume in Middle East (Aug. 12): In separate, uncoordinated incidents, two bombers kill two Israelis. Hamas and Al Aksa Martyrs Brigade claim responsibility. First attacks in more than a month. (Info)
Israel to Give Palestinians Control of West Bank Cities (Aug. 15): (Jericho and Qalqilya) Will also permit Yasir Arafat to travel outside his Ramallah compound to visit his sister's grave. Moves contingent on Palestinians ending violence and that Palestinian militants disarm. (Info)
Bomb Destroys UN Compound in Iraq (Aug. 19).
Devastating Suicide Bombing Threatens Peace Plan (Aug. 19): Attack on bus in Jerusalem kills 20 people, including 6 children, and wounds more than 100. Hamas and Islamic Jihad claim responsibility. (Aug. 21): After Israel retaliates by killing a top member of Hamas, Ismali Abu Shanab, Hamas and Islamic Jihad formally withdraw from cease-fire. (Info)
Church Approves Gay Bishop (Aug. 5): Episcopalian bishops
vote against creating an official blessing of same-sex unions. (Aug.
7): Church leaders pass resolution that says local dioceses are acting
within the parameters of the church when they bless same-sex unions. (Info)
Seeks UN Help in Iraq (Sept. 3): In a shift in policy,
introduces a draft resolution to UN Security Council calling for multinational
force, under U.S. command. (Info)
Suicide Bombers Strike in Israel (Sept. 9): In separate attacks, two Palestinians blow themselves up at a cafe and a bus stop. Fifteen people killed. (Info)
Iran Faces Deadline on Nuclear Compliance (Sept. 9): Britain, France, and Germany submit a UN resolution demanding that Iran provide complete information on its nuclear material and allow UN inspectors free access to nuclear sites. (Info)
Bin Laden Appears on Videotape (Sept. 10): On eve of second anniversary of Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, Osama bin Laden and his deputy, Ayman al-Zawahiri, seen on Al Jazeera network. (Info)
Israeli Government Announces Plans to Remove Arafat (Sept. 11): Threatens to exile, jail, or kill Palestinian leader. Statement bolsters Arafat's popularity among Palestinians. (Info)
Seeks $87 Billion to Help in Iraq (Sept. 7) (Info)
Israel To Expand Barrier and Settlements (Oct. 1) (Info)
Suicide Bomb Attacks Haifa Restaurant (Oct. 4) On the eve of Yom Kippur, female bomber kills 19 people and wounds about 50. (Info)
Israel Attacks Syria (Oct. 5) In a shift in tactic, bombs what it calls a Palestinian terrorist training camp outside Damascus. First Israeli strike inside Syria in 30 years. (Info)
Arafat Installs New Government (Oct. 5) Declares state of emergency and names new cabinet, with Ahmed Qurei as prime minister. (Info)
Americans Targeted in Gaza (Oct. 15) Remote-controlled bomb explodes under a convoy of U.S. diplomatic vehicles, killing three people. (Info)
Israeli Warplanes Target Gaza (Oct. 20) Helicopters fire strike 5 times, killing at least 11 and wounding dozens.
UN Votes to Stop Construction of Barrier (Oct. 22) (Info)
September 11 Casualty List Reduced (Oct. 29) NY officials reduce number killed at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on US by 40 names ... dropping to 2,752 from 2,792. The total number to die from terrorist attacks at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and in rural Pennsylvania is 2,995. (Info)
Blast Rocks Riyadh (Nov. 9) 17 killed and dozens wounded when a bomb explodes at housing complex in capital of Saudi Arabia. Al Qaeda blamed. (Info)
Palestinian Parliament Approves New Government (Nov. 12) Confirms government of Prime Minister Ahmed Qurei. Cabinet, however, seen as loyal to Yasir Arafat rather than Qurei. (Info)
British Bank and Consulate Bombed (Nov. 20) At least 26 people killed and 400 wounded when two trucks blow up in Istanbul, Turkey. One truck explodes outside the British consulate, and the other at the British bank HSBC. Al-Qaeda suspected in the bombings. (Info)
Massachusetts CourtRules in Favor of Gay Marriage (Nov. 18) (Info)
Gay Man Becomes Bishop (Nov. 1) Rev. V. Gene Robinson consecrated as bishop of New Hampshire. He's the first openly gay man to hold the post in the Episcopal Church U.S.A. (Info)
Suicide Bombers Strike in Moscow (Dec. 5) Nearly 50 people killed and about 150 wounded when a commuter train blows up. (Dec. 9) Suicide attacker kills herself and five others near the Kremlin and Red Square.
Saddam Hussein Caught (Dec. 13) American troops find former dictator of Iraq on a farm near Tikrit, in an 8-foot hole. He surrenders without a fight.
U.S. Begins Fingerprinting Foreign Visitors (Jan. 5): New security system, U.S. Visitor and Immigrant Status Indicator Technology, or US-VISIT, requires international travelers to be fingerprinted and photographed. The information is compared with people who are on terrorist lists, have violated their visas, or have committed other crimes. (Info)
Bush Proposes Journey to the Moon (Jan. 14): President sets sights on another flight to the Moon by 2020 and the construction of a launching base there for a trip to Mars and beyond.
FDA Moves to Prevent Mad Cow Disease (Jan. 26): Food and Drug Administration issues new rules that prohibit feeding chicken waste and cow blood to cattle. Also bans the use of dead or injured cows in the manufacture of cosmetics, soups, and dietary supplements. Rules intended to stop the spread of mad cow disease.
Rover Lands on Mars (Jan. 3): Spirit sends back "postcards," black-and-white and color images of the planet. The images, the most detailed ever taken by a Mars lander, show a flat, but rocky surface. (Jan. 25): Second rover, Opportunity, lands on Mars and sends pictures back to Earth.
Bird Flu Reaches Thailand (Jan. 22): The Thai government announces that it is investigating three possible cases of avian flu. Five Vietnamese have died from the bird flu, and officials are concerned that the disease has spread to other parts of Asia.
Virus Affects Millions of Computers (Jan. 26): Worm, called MyDoom or Novarg, spreads through Internet servers, infecting about 1 in 12 e-mail messages.
Massachusetts Court Supports Gay Marriage (Feb. 4): State's supreme judicial court rules that only full marriage complies with its November 2003 ruling that said barring gays and lesbians from marrying violates the state constitution. "The dissimilitude between the terms 'civil marriage and civil union' is not innocuous," the ruling states.
Gay Couples Marry in San Francisco (Feb. 12): More than 50 couples tie the knot after Mayor Gavin Newsom advised the city clerk's office to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. (Info)
Bush Endorses Constitutional Amendment Banning Gay Marriage (Feb. 24)(Info)
Researchers Report New Elements (Feb. 1): Team of American and Russian scientists created two new chemical elements, temporarily named Ununtrium (Element 113) and Ununpentium (Element 115). (Info)
Scientists Say They Have Cloned a Human Embryo (Feb. 12): Scientists in South Korea announce that they have created 30 human embryos by cloning and have removed embryonic stem cells from them. The scientists say these stem cells will be used for medical research, not to create human babies. (Info)
NASA Cites Evidence of Water on Mars (March 2): Space agency announces that the robot explorer Opportunity has detected signs that water had once covered the rocks of a small crater.(Info)
Scientists Report New Planetoid (March 15): NASA reports discovery of a distant object in our solar system that closely resembles a planet. Dubbed Sedna, the frigid object is made of rock and ice. Three times farther away from the Sun than Pluto, it's the most distant object in the solar system. (Info)
Air Pollution Violates Federal Standards (April 15): The EPA tells 31 governors air pollution in their states does not meet federal health standards. (Info)
FDA Rejects Morning-After Pill (May 6): Food and Drug Administration bans over-the-counter sale of emergency contraception drug, citing potential misuse by teenagers.
Bush Administration Alters AIDS Drug Policy (May 16): Changes expedite process for approving generic and combination antiretroviral drugs. Plan will allow countries in Africa and the Caribbean to buy drugs cheaper and administer them more efficiently.
Gay Marriages Begin in Massachusetts (May 17):
Boston Archdiocese to Shutter Churches (May 25): Almost 20% of the Roman Catholic churches in the Boston Archdiocese to close by the end of 2004 due to low attendance and financial problems caused by the sex-abuse scandal.
Aspirin May Prevent Breast Tumors (May 26): Report in the Journal of the American Medical Association shows that women who take aspirin at least seven times a week are 26% less likely to develop a certain kind of tumor than women who did not take it.
Floods Devastate Caribbean Island (May 26): Death toll reaches 1,950 from floods caused by several days of heavy rains in Haiti and the Dominican Republic.
List of Smoking-Related Illnesses Grows (May 27): Surgeon General says smoking can also cause cervix, kidney, pancreas, and stomach cancer, in addition to other serious diseases.
Judge Strikes Down Abortion Ban (June 1): Federal judge in San Francisco says 2003 Partial Ban Abortion Ban Act unconstitutional because it lacks a medical exception to save a woman's life.
Civilian Reaches Space (June 21): Michael Melvil pilots SpaceShipOne into space, becoming the first person to do so in a privately developed aircraft
Spacecraft Transmits Photos of Saturn's Rings (June 30): Black-and-white photos from the Cassini spacecraft reveal details of Saturn's ice and rock ring. (Info)
AIDS Conference Opens in Bangkok (July 11): Officials gather for the 15th International AIDS Conference to discuss status of worldwide epidemic. World Health Organization AIDS director says the world has "failed miserably" to combat the spread of the disease. (Info)
Life Expectancy Drops in Africa (July 15): Report by the UN Development Program finds life expectancy drops to below 40 and poverty on the rise in 7 countries hit hardest by AIDS. Countries include Zimbabwe, Swaziland, Zambia, Malawi, Central African Republic, and Mozambique. (Info)
Church Declares Bankruptcy (July 5):Roman Catholic archdiocese in Portland, Oregon, files for bankruptcy protection as a result of claims in child-sex lawsuits that total about $160 million.
Bush Administration Dismantles Logging Rules (July 12): Agriculture secretary announces plans to end Clinton directive that banned logging, road building, and other development in national forests. States will now decide how the 60 million acres of land will be designated. (Info)
Senate Kills Effort to Ban Same-Sex Marriages (July 14): Votes, 50–48, against proposed constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage.
Hawking Revises Black Hole Theory (July 21): Renowned cosmologist Dr. Stephen Hawking reverses himself and concludes information can be retrieved from black holes. (Info)
Pounded by Storms (Aug. 12): Tropical storm Bonnie
pounds the Florida Panhandle. (Aug. 13): At least 13 people die as Hurricane
Charley tears into the state's west coast, with winds of 145 miles an
Space Probe Crashes (Sept. 8): Capsule with samples of the Sun crashes after its parachutes fail to open.
Panel Recommends Warning for Antidepressants (Sept. 14): Group
advising the FDA urges drug manufacturers to strongly warn parents and
doctors that prescribing antidepressants to teenagers and children may
increase suicidal behavior. (Info)
Helens Erupts (Oct. 1): After almost two decades of dormancy,
the Washington volcano erupts in a small explosion of steam and ash.
No deaths, damage, or injuries reported. (Info)
Malaria Vaccine Proves Promising (Oct. 15): Director of the Malaria Vaccine Initiative says vaccine tested on children in Mozambique prevented disease in 30% of cases and prevented life-threatening illness 58% of the time. (Info)
Pakistan Cited as Supplier of Bomb Design (Jan. 5): Bush administration says it believes Pakistani scientists gave Libya the technology to build nuclear weapons. Pakistan also suspected of providing weapons design to Iran and North Korea. (Jan. 23) President Pervez Musharaff admits that Pakistani scientists probably sold nuclear-weapons designs to other countries for personal profit. (Info)
Iraqi Cleric Calls for Direct Elections (Jan. 11): Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, most influential Shiite cleric in Iraq, says members of country's interim assembly must be selected by direct vote and asserts country will be prepared to manage the elections within months.
Palestinian Suicide Bomber Strikes in Gaza Strip (Jan. 14): Mother of two young children and a member of the militant group Hamas kills herself and four Israeli security officers. Attack marks the first time Hamas has used a woman as a suicide bomber.
U.S., British, and UN Officials Discuss Future of Iraqi Government (Jan. 19):
Israel Agrees to Swap with Hezbollah (Jan. 24): Plans to free about 400 Arab prisoners in exchange for the release of a kidnapped Israeli businessman and the bodies of three soldiers.
of Muslims Killed During Pilgrimage (Feb. 1): Nearly 250 pilgrims crushed
to death in a stampeded during a devil-stoning ceremony in Saudi Arabia.
Pilgrims were celebrating the end of hajj
Suicide Bomber Kills Dozens of Kurds (Feb. 1): Several top Kurdish leaders slain in attacks at the headquarters of two political parties. At least 56 people killed and hundreds wounded.
Says He May Have Settlers Leave Gaza (Feb. 2): Israeli prime minister
indicates he plans to order the evacuation of several settlements in
the Gaza Strip.
Bombs Kill Dozens in Iraq (Feb. 10): At least 54 people,
mostly civilians, die outside a police station in Iskandariyah. They
were lined up applying for jobs. (Feb. 11) Bomber strikes in Baghdad,
killing nearly 50 people, who were seeking employment with Iraq's new
Israeli Army Raids Refugee Camps (March 7): More than a dozen Palestinians killed in attack on Gaza camps. Move follows bold suicide attack by Palestinian militants on a border crossing. (Info)
Spain Rocked By Terrorist Attacks (March 11): At least 10 bombs explode on four commuter trains in Madrid during rush hour, killing nearly 200 people and wounding more than a thousand. (Info)
Sharon Announces Settlement Plan (April 12): plans to keep five West Bank settlements. (April 14): President Bush endorses Israeli prime minister's unilateral strategy.
Pakistani Scientist Reports North Korea Possesses Nuclear Weapons (April 13)
Bin Laden Offers Truce to Europe (April 14) (Info)
Hamas Leader Killed in Gaza (April 17)
Car Bombs Kill Dozens in Iraq (April 21)
Bush Ends Trade Ban with Libya (April 23)
Gunmen Detonate Bomb in Damascus (April 27):
Abuse Reported at Iraqi Prison (April 30)
Likud Party Rejects Sharon's Gaza Plan (May 3)
Shiites Demand Rebel Cleric Withdraw Forces (May 4): About 150 influential leaders meet in Baghdad and urge Moktada al-Sadr to hand over weapons and remove his militia from Najaf and Karbala. (May 4)
Bush Addresses Prison Abuse (May 5)
American Decapitated in Iraq (May 8)
Israeli Troops Raid Gaza (May 11)
Iraqi Leader Killed (May 17): Ezzidin Salim, te president of the Iraqi Governing Council, killed by a suicide bomber
U.S. Soldier Sentenced in Abuse Scandal (May 19)
Israelis Open Fire on Protest (May 20): More than three dozen people killed.
Militants Attack Residential Area of Saudi Arabia (May 29)
Rumsfeld Takes Blame for Abuse in Iraq (May 7)
New Government Formed in Iraq (June 1)
Sharon Fires Cabinet Ministers (June 4): Israeli prime minister sacks two opponents of his plan to withdraw settlers and troops from the Gaza Strip. (June 6): Sharon's coalition government approves plan to begin preparing for evacuation of some settlements in 2005.
Iraqi Officials Fatally Shot (June 12)
Several Bombs Explode Around Baghdad (June 14)
Blasts Shut Down Iraqi Oil Terminal (June 14)
South Korean Beheaded in Iraq (June 22)
Over Power to Iraqis (June 28)
President Reagan Dies (June 3) (Info)
Hussein Appears in Court (July 1): Former Iraqi president and 11 codefendants arraigned on charges of crimes against humanity stemming from the 1988 gassing of Kurds, 1990 invasion of Kuwait, and the persecution of political opponents.
World Court Rules Against Israeli Barrier (July 9): In a nonbinding ruling, International Court of Justice says portion of the fence that cuts into occupied Palestinian land in the West Bank is illegal and advises Israel to remove it. (July 20): General Assembly passes a resolution demanding that Israel comply with World Court decision.
Sharon Seeks Coalition with Labor (July 12)
Palestinian Premier Submits Resignation (July 17): Ahmed Qurei tells Yasir Arafat he plans to step down. Move follows unrest and lawlessness in the Gaza Strip. Arafat, however, refuses to accept the resignation. (July 27): Qurei withdraws resignation after Arafat agrees to hand over some control of security agencies to Qurei. (Info)
Leaders of Islamic Charity Arrested (July 27): Five former officials of the Holy Land Foundation charged by U.S. officials with funneling more than $12 million to Palestinian terrorists. Two other leaders who were wanted by the FBI left the country while under investigation. (Info)
Suffers Setback (Aug. 18): His Likud party votes against
his plan to
Little Progress Reported in Sudan (Sept. 1): Secretary General Kofi Annan says government has failed to disarm Arab militias, called the Janjaweed, or stop attacks on civilians in Darfur. (Info)
Car Bomb Explodes at Embassy in Indonesia (Sept. 7)
Atomic Energy Agency Tells Iran to Stop Enriching Uranium (Sept. 18)
Israeli Troops Attack Gaza Camp (Sept. 30): Soldiers battle with Palestinian militants in refugee camp. Nearly 30 Palestinians and 3 Israelis die in the fighting, the worst in two years. (Info)
Israelis Targeted in Egypt (Oct. 8): More than 30 people die in three bombings at three resorts in the Sinai Peninsula. (Info)
Israeli Troops Withdraw from Gaza (Oct. 16): Move ends 17-day offensive to stop Palestinians from firing rockets into Israeli settlements.
Pours into Asia (Jan. 2): Helicopters based on US aircraft
carriers off Indonesian begin dropping supplies to survivors of the tsunami that devastated a dozen Asian nations.
International community has pledged more than $2 billion in aid. (Jan.
Spacecraft Lands on Saturn Moon (Jan. 14): Photos of Titan sent back to Earth by craft
Huygens reveal rocky surface and lakes of what astronomers think are
frozen gases. Info
Drug companies' overaggressive marketing of risky drugs is hurting public safety, researchers asserted (Feb. 5, SciNews)
N. Korea Admits to Having Nuclear Weapons (Feb. 10): First time country makes declaration. Also says it will not engage in disarmament talks.
of Medicare Drug Plan Rises (Feb. 9): Prescription drug benefit, initially
estimated to cost $400 billion over 10 years, now projected to top $724
Protocol Goes into Effect (Feb.
16): The international environmental treaty requires 35 industrialized
nations to reduce heat-trapping gases such as carbon dioxide. Info
- Transplanting insulin-making pancreas cells from a cadaver
into people with type 1, or juvenile-onset, diabetes reversed
USDA Releases New Food Pyramid (April 19): Government calls MyPyramid an“interactive food guidance system.” There are 12 versions of the new pyramid, allowing people to decide which to follow based on their age, sex, and level of physical activity. Info
Overweight People Face Lower Risk of Death Than Those of Normal Weight (April 20): Federal researchers also find that being very thin can increase one's risk of death. Study seems to contradict earlier reports.
North Korea Says It Has Harvested Fuel for Nuclear Weapon (May 11)
House Passes Bill to Expand Stem Cell Research (May 24): Votes, 238–194, to allow federal financing of embryos that have been frozen at fertility clinics. President Bush has said he will veto the legislation.
South Koreans Report Success in Therapeutic Cloning (May 20): Researchers announce they have devised a new procedure to successfully produce human stem cell lines from a cloned human embryo.
DNA data from Native Americans portrayed the original population of North American settlers as a group of only 200 to 300 people (May 28, SciNews)
Announces Aid for Africa (June 7): In a press conference with British prime minister
Tony Blair, president says he will release $674 million. Blair had urged
Bush to contribute $25 billion. (June 11): The Group of 8 Industrialized
nations agree to cancel $40 billion in debt owed by 18 poor countries
to international lenders, such as the World Bank and the International
Monetary Fund. Info
Court Upholds Changes to Clean Air Act (June 24): Federal appeals court rules that the EPA acted within its authority in 2002, when it introduced a provision to the Clean Air Act, called New Source Review, which allows power plants, refineries, and factories to modernize their facilities without installing pollution control systems. Info
deep Researchers found a
Wealthy Nations Agree to Aid Africa (July
8): Group of 8 industrial nations ends summit meeting
with pledge to double aid to Africa to $50 billion a year by 2010, cancel
the debt of many poor countries, and open trade. Joint statement fails
to set goals for reducing emissions of greenhouse gases.Info
India and the U.S. in Accord on Nuclear Power (July 18): President Bush and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh reach an agreement that would allow India to seek outside help in developing its civilian nuclear program while maintaining its nuclear weapons.
Court Rules Abortion Ban Is Unconstitutional (July 8): Upholds lower court decision that Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act is unlawful because it fails to make an exception to the law for women whose health would be in jeopardy without the late-term procedure. Info
Musicians Urge World to Unite to End Poverty in Africa (July 2): Millions of people attend Live 8, free concerts in nine countries—South Africa and each of the Group of 8 wealthiest nations, to promote increased aid to Africa.
Spacecraft Crashes into Comet (July 4): After a 6-month, 83 million-mile journey, NASA's Deep Impact hits comet named Tempel 1. Scientists will examine pieces of the comet and photos of the collision. Info
sclerosis - Adult stem cells
viruses - Two new vaccines protected monkeys against
A new model of human evolution proposed that anatomically modern folk evolved in small groups that interbred with each other and created a genetic wave that moved from Africa across Asia (Aug. 6, SciNews)
Astronomers discovered what may qualify as the 10th planet, a body larger and more distant than Pluto and possessing a moon (Aug. 6, SciNews)
Bush Signs Bills (Aug. 8): New energy law calls for increased domestic oil and gas production, as well as the construction of new nuclear power plants. It also encourages research into alternative sources of energy.
Hurricane Causes Catastrophic Damage (Aug. 29): Hurricane Katrina, a category 4 storm, pounds Gulf Coast. Harrison County, Miss., hit particularly hard. More than 80 people are killed and millions lose power. (Aug. 30): New Orleans, suffers calamitous damage as levees break, submerging about 80% of the city. Looting is rampant. (Aug. 31)
South Korean Scientists Clone a Dog (Aug. 3): After a three-year effort and 1,095 eggs, researchers clone the first dog, a male Afghan hound. Info
California Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage (Sept. 6): State legislators approve law that defines marriage as a union of “two persons.” (Sept. 7): Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger says he will veto the bill.
Hurricane Rita Causes Devastation (Sept. 23): Wind-swept waves caused by category 3 storm flood parts of New Orleans and breech another levee. Rita hits the Gulf Coast, causing widespread flooding. Damage estimated at $6 billion.
NASA Releases Plan for Moon Visit (Sept. 19): Michael Griffin, administrator of the agency, outlines $104 billion plan to have astronauts land on Moon by 2018.
Flu fears - Scientists tracked the spread of a threatening influenza virus in birds and explored strategies that could be used to halt a potential pandemic in people (Sept. 10). Meanwhile, the most readily available drugs against influenza were shown to have recently declined in effectiveness (Oct. 1, SciNews)
Earthquake Devastates Pakistan (Oct. 8): Approximately 54,000 people die when a magnitude 7.6 tremblor rocks Pakistani-controlled part of Kashmir. About 800 die in India. The United Nations estimates that more than 2.5 million are homeless.
Hundreds of injured soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan were found to harbor an unusual bacterium that complicates wound healing (Oct. 22, SciNews)
Scientists Announce Discovery of Distinct Crocodile (Nov. 11): Researchers from the Mathematical Biosciences Institute at Ohio State University have found the skull of a sea-dwelling crocodile that lived 135 million years ago. Unlike other crocodiles, it has a short snout.
Chemical Spill Contaminates Water Supply in Part of China (Nov. 13): An explosion at the state-owned Jilin Petrochemical Company in Jilin City releases about 100 tons of benzene and nitrobenzene into the Songhua River. Water is shut off in Harbin for five days.
Federal Judge Rules Against Intelligent Design (Dec. 20): Judge John Jones says that it is unconstitutional for a school district in Pennsylvania to mention intelligent design as an alternative to evolution in biology classes, saying it “is a religious view, a mere relabeling of creationism and not a scientific theory.” He harshly criticized members of the Dover, Pa., school board for their “breathtaking inanity” in attempting to include intelligent design in the curriculum.
Discovery Institute publishes response "Traipsing Into Evolution," (<book link) revealing where Judge Jones ruling fails standard court proceedure and reveals prejudice in the decision delivered Dec 20.
Oldest-Known Mayan Mural Discovered (Dec. 13): Dated at around 100 B.C., the plaster mural portrays the Mayan creation myth. The sophistication and quality of the painting suggests that the Mayan civilization was highly developed much earlier that archeologists had previously believed. Info
South Korean Cloning Scientist Quits (Dec. 23): Hwang Woo-suk steps down from Seoul National University after an investigative panel at the university reports that he falsified the paper in which he claimed that he cloned 11 human embryos and extracted stem cells from them. Info
Iraqi Violence Intensifies as Election Nears (Jan. 4) Info
Mahmoud Abbas Wins Election (Jan. 9): chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization, takes race for president of the Palestinian Authority to succeed Yasir Arafat, who died in Nov. 2004. (Jan 15): Abbas sworn in as the president of the Palestinian Authority. Info
Sudanese Government and Rebels Sign Peace Agreement (Jan. 9)
Palestinian Militants Attack Israelis (Jan. 13): Six civilians killed in Gaza Strip. Israelis respond by killing the militants. (Jan 14): Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon announces he will not engage Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas until he moves against militants. Info
Bush Nominates Homeland Security Secretary (Jan. 11): Michael Chertoff.
President Bush Begins Second Term (Jan. 20) Info
Abbas and Sharon Declare a Truce (Feb. 8)
Counting Complete in Iraqi Elections (Feb. 13) Info
Prime Minister of Lebanon Killed (Feb. 14): Rafik al-Hariri,
and 11 others die when a car bomb explodes.
Withdrawal from Lebanon (Feb. 24)
Earthquake Kills Hundreds in Iran (Feb. 22)
A World In Turmoil
Government Assumes Power in Uruguay (March 1)
Hamas to Participate in Elections (March 12)
Take Control of Jericho (March 16): Move is first
stage of truce agreement between Israelis and Palestinians that will
give Palestinians control of five towns in the West Bank.
Iraqi Assembly Moves Toward Forming a Government (April 3)
Bush Speaks Out Against Settlements (April 11): President tells Israeli prime minister he opposes construction of any new settlements in the West Bank. He confirms support for Sharon's plan to withdraw from the Gaza Strip.
Exits Lebanon (April 26): Troops, which had been stationed in Lebanon
for 29 years, complete withdrawal
Attacks Kill Dozens in Iraq (April 29)
Insurgents Continue Series of Attacks (May 1): At least 35 Iraqis die in bombings in Mosul and Baghdad.
Iran Says It Plans to Resume Nuclear Activity (May 3)
Iraqi Cabinet Sworn In (May 3)
Pakistan Captures High-Ranking Member of al-Qaeda (May 2): Faraj al-Libbi found in Mardan.
British Prime Minister Reelected (May 5): Tony Blair becomes first Labour Party premier to win three successive terms.
Constitution in Jeopardy (June 1)
Violence Escalates Between Israelis and Palestinians (July 12): Suicide bomber kills two women at a shopping mall in Netanya. (July 15): Palestinians attack Israeli settlements in the Gaza Strip. Israeli troops respond with a strike at Hamas militants in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, killing seven of them.
Suicide Bomber Kills Group of Children (July 13): About 27 people, mostly children who were gathered around a U.S. military jeep, die in attack in Baghdad.
Explosions Kill Dozens in Egypt (July 23): At least 90 people die in a series of car bomb explosions at popular Red Sea resort Sharm el Sheik. Two militant groups claim responsibility.
Saudi King Dies (Aug. 1): King Fahd bin Abdel Aziz al-Saud, 82, dies after a bout with pneumonia. Prince Abdullah, 81, assumes the throne.
U.S. Revises Estimate on Iran's Nuclear Arsenal (Aug. 2): Intelligence agencies find that while Iran plans to build nuclear weapons, the country will not have the ability to do so for about 10 years. Earlier estimates put the time frame at five years.
Europe Presents Nuclear Program Plan to Iran (Aug. 4): Britain, France, and Germany offer to allow Iran to acquire nuclear reactors and fuel if it promises to end conversion and enrichment of uranium. (Aug. 6): Iran says it will reject the proposal. (Aug. 10)
Talks on North Korea Weapons Suspended (Aug. 7)
Israeli Cabinet Approves Gaza Withdrawal (Aug. 7): Finance minister and former prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu quits in protest.
Iraq Delays Final Draft of Constitution (Aug. 15)
Settlement Withdrawal Begins (Aug. 15): Israeli police officers and soldiers start process of evacuating about 8,700 residents from the Gaza Strip and 675 from the West Bank.
U.S. Ships Attacked in Jordan (Aug. 19)
Pakistan Says North Korea Received Nuclear Machines (Aug. 24): Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf admits that nuclear scientist A. Q. Khan sent North Korea centrifuge machines, which can be used to make fuel for a nuclear bomb.
Four Charged in Murder of Lebanese Prime Minister (Sept. 1)
Saddam Hussein Trial Set (Sept. 4) trial on Oct. 19 for the 1982 deaths of 150 residents of Dujail.
Talks on North Korea's Nuclear Weapons Program Resume (Sept. 13)
Suicide Bombers Wreak Havoc on Baghdad (Sept. 14): About 150 people die and 500 are wounded in a series of coordinated attacks.
Agency Will Report Iran's Nuclear-Weapons Violations (Sept. 24): International Atomic Energy Agency votes to send a resolution saying Iran violated the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.
Syrian Minister Found Dead (Oct. 12): Ghazi Kanaan, interior minister, reportedly committed suicide. He was questioned in September about the February murder of Lebanon's former prime minister Rafik Hariri.
Iraqis Vote on Constitution (Oct. 15): Millions of Iraqi voters head to the polls to vote on a constitution.
U.S. Deaths in Iraq Reach Solemn Milestone (Oct. 25): Number of deaths of U.S. soldiers fighting in Iraq reaches 2,000.
Iranian President Makes Inflammatory Statement (Oct. 26): At a speech in front of 4,000 students, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says Israel should be “wiped off the map.” Remark ignites international outrage.
Violence on the Rise Between Israelis and Palestinians (Oct. 26): Islamic Jihad claims responsibility for suicide bombing that kills 20 in the Israeli town of Hadera. (Oct. 27): Israeli troops launch retaliatory airstrikes in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
Suicide Bomber Kills Dozens in Jordan (Nov. 10)
Israel's Labor Party Elects New Leader (Nov. 10): Trade union leader and member of Parliament Amir Peretz upsets Shimon Peres. He threatens to withdraw Labor from Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's coalition.
Rice Brokers Gaza Travel Deal (Nov. 15): Agreement between Israelis and the Palestinian Authority—mediated in a marathon session by U.S. secretary of state Condoleezza Rice—allows Palestinians to travel in and out of the Gaza Strip with minimal restrictions.
Lebanese Legislator Assassinated (Dec. 12): Gebran Tueni, who has been critical of Syria, is killed in a car bomb attack less than a day after he returned to the country.
Iraq Holds Parliamentary Elections (Dec. 15): As many as 11 million Iraqis turn out to select their first permanent Parliament since the overthrow of Saddam Hussein.