Timeline 2009 January to March

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2009        Jan 1, In the SF Bay Area a BART police officer shot Oscar Grant (22) on the platform of the Fruitvale BART Station in the early morning in the midst of a brawl between 2 young rival groups. Grant died later that morning at Highland Hospital. Witnesses said Grant was lying face down with his hands behind him when he was shot in the back by Officer Johannes Mehserle (27). On Dec 6 an attorney for the family filed a $25 million claim against BART. On Jan 13 Mehserle was arrested in Nevada and charged with homicide.
    (SFC, 1/2/09, p.A1)(SSFC, 1/4/09, p.B1)(SFC, 1/7/09, p.A6)(SFC, 1/14/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 1, Bank of America purchased Merrill Lynch to save it from bankruptcy. It was later revealed that the company had awarded $3.6 billion in bonuses to over 39,000 employees just before the acquisition by BofA. The bonuses included $121 million to four top executives.
    (WSJ, 2/12/09, p.C3)(WSJ, 2/12/09, p.C3)
2009        Jan 1, Claiborne Pell (b.1918), former US Senator from Rhode Island (1660-1997), died. He was the chief sponsor of the 1965 law establishing the national Endowment for the Arts and the national Endowment for the Humanities. He also sponsored legislation creating the Basic Educational Opportunities Grants (1972), which provided direct aid to college students. The awards were renamed the Pell Grants in 1980.
    (SFC, 1/2/09, p.B6)
2009        Jan 1, A suicide car bomb exploded near an Afghan and NATO military convoy in the western province of Herat and killed an Afghan policeman. 2 UN staff of the World Food Program and 4 others were kidnapped in Nimroz province by alleged Taliban militants. The 2 UN workers were freed on Jan 27.
    (AP, 1/1/09)(AFP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 1, The IMF announced plans to lend Belarus $2.5 billion to help the country cope with the global economic crises.
    (WSJ, 1/2/09), p.A5)
2009        Jan 1, The Czech Republic took over the six-month rotating presidency from EU heavyweight France. It will face the daunting task of implementing a $258 billion European economic stimulus package approved by EU leaders under the French presidency.
    (AP, 12/31/08)
2009        Jan 1, In Germany thieves over the last 24 hours stole an estimated $250,000 in art work from the Fasanengalerie, a private art gallery in western Berlin.
    (SFC, 1/3/09, p.A3)
2009        Jan 1, In India 3 bombs exploded in the restive northeast, killing at least five people and wounding 50, about an hour before the nation's top security official arrived in the area.
    (AP, 1/1/09)
2009        Jan 1, The United States handed over control of the Green Zone and Saddam Hussein's presidential palace to Iraqi authorities in a ceremonial move described by the country's prime minister as a restoration of Iraq's sovereignty. British forces handed over control of Basra airport, its main military base in southern Iraq, to Iraqi officials in accordance with an agreement signed with Baghdad this week. A roadside bomb killed two Iraqi soldiers in the town of Jalula, 80 miles northeast of Baghdad. In Mosul a parked truck bomb killed three police officers trying to search it and wounded a bystander. In Kirkuk Iraqi and US troops killed three suspected al-Qaida gunmen during a raid. American soldiers shot and wounded a woman after she failed to heed warnings to stop near a Baghdad checkpoint recently targeted by suicide and car bombs.
    (AP, 1/1/09)(AFP, 1/1/09)(AP, 1/3/09)
2009        Jan 1,  Israel assassinated Nizar Rayan (52), a Hamas strongman, in its first assault on the top leadership of Gaza's rulers, escalating a crushing aerial offensive even as it declared it was ready to launch a ground invasion. The aerial strike also killed 12 other people including two of Rayan's four wives and four of his 12 children. Officials said more than 400 Gazans have been killed and some 1,700 have been wounded. The UN said the death toll included more than 60 civilians, 34 of them children. Three Israeli civilians and one soldier have also died in rocket attacks from Gaza.
    (AP, 1/1/09)
2009        Jan 1, Vilnius, Lithuania, a city of about 550,000 people, opened the year sharing the EU Capital of Culture title with Austria’s Linz.
    (SSFC, 7/22/07, p.G6)(www.culturelive.lt/en/european_capitals_of_culture)
2009        Jan 1, Mexican federal police captured two alleged hit men after the suspects threw a hand grenade at police and soldiers who cornered them at a house. Eight officers were wounded in the confrontation. In the western town of La Huerta, a shootout between rival families at a New Year's party left four dead, and a clash between soldiers and alleged drug traffickers in Chihuahua state reportedly killed three smugglers.
    (AP, 1/2/09)
2009        Jan 1, In northwest Pakistan a suspected US missile strike by a drone aircraft destroyed a vehicle, killing at least three foreign militants. The US drone killed 2 Al-Qaida leaders from Kenya, Usama al-Kini and Sheikh Ahmed Salim Swedan. Pakistani authorities arrested Ustad Mohammed Yasir, a former Taliban spokesman, during a raid on his relatives' house in Peshawar near the Afghan border. Yasir had been previously arrested by Pakistan in 2005 and sent to Afghanistan where he was released in 2007 in exchange for a kidnapped Italian journalist.
    (AP, 1/1/09)(AP, 1/3/09)(WSJ, 1/10/09, p.A6)
2009        Jan 1, Russia’s Pres. Medvedev signed a bell ending jury trials in cases involving treason, terror, armed revolt and sabotage. Instead, defendants will have to face three judges.
    (WSJ, 1/2/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 1, Russia cut off the gas to Ukraine after a contract dispute but increased supplies to other European states to try to reassure customers worried about possible disruption.
    (Reuters, 1/1/09)
2009        Jan 1, Slovakia became the 16th European Union member state to adopt the euro. This day also marks 10 years since the euro was introduced.
    (AP, 1/1/09)
2009        Jan 1, Somali pirates seized the Blue Star, an Egyptian cargo ship, and its 28 crewmembers. A Malaysian military helicopter saved an Indian tanker from being hijacked in the new year's first attacks by pirates in the dangerous Gulf of Aden. A crew of the French warship "PM L'Her" dispatch boat intercepted two speedboats carrying 8 Somali pirates as they were preparing to board a Panamanian cargo ship. The Blue Star and its crew of 28 were freed on March 5 after a ransom was dropped from a plane.
    (AP, 1/1/09)(AP, 1/2/09)(AP, 3/5/09)
2009        Jan 1, Helen Suzman (91), South African anti-apartheid activist, died. She won international acclaim as one of the few white lawmakers to fight against the injustices of racist rule. Suzman, who was twice nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, fought a long and lonely battle in the South African parliament against government repression of the country's black majority and the imprisonment of Nelson Mandela.
    (AP, 1/1/09)(Econ, 1/10/09, p.77)
2009        Jan 1, Sri Lanka said its forces have captured a key crossroads from Tamil Tiger rebels in the north and that it will seize the guerrillas' de facto capital within two days. The fighting killed 50 rebels and four soldiers. A roadside bomb blast blamed on the rebels killed two policemen on a foot patrol in the eastern region.
    (AP, 1/1/09)

2009        Jan 1-2009 Jun 30, In Mexico there were some 3,247 drug related killing over this period, compared with 1,935 in the same period in 2008.
    (Econ, 7/11/09, p.38)

2009        Jan 2, In SF the AsianWeek newspaper, founded in 1979, published its final print edition. It planned to continue a presence online at www.asianweek.com.
    (SFC, 1/1/09, p.C1)
2009        Jan 2, Idaho investors met with Daren Palmer of Idaho Falls and were informed that as much as $100 million in their investments was gone. State security regulators soon launched an investigation into Palmer (40) and his Trigon Group Inc. under allegations that he had operated a long running Ponzi scheme.
    (WSJ, 1/17/09, p.B4)
2009        Jan 2, In Britain 2 people were feared dead after a light aircraft crashed into a major railway line, causing severe disruption to train services between Rugeley and Stafford.
    (AFP, 1/2/09)
2009        Jan 2, In Burundi an 8-year-old albino boy was hacked to death in front of his mother and made off with his arms and legs. The body parts of a single albino, to be used in witch doctor potions, fetched about $1000. This attack followed another on a 6-year-old girl.
    (Econ, 1/17/09, p.50)
2009        Jan 2, Ghana's leader appealed for calm and urged his people to accept the results of a tight presidential election as voters in a single district cast ballots that could decide the West African nation's next president. Election results from all other districts showed opposition leader John Atta Mills ahead of his ruling party rival Nana Akufo-Addo by only around 23,000 votes out of more than 9 million cast.
    (AP, 1/2/09)
2009        Jan 2, India eased foreign borrowing for real estate and certain other companies and allowed additional liquidity for non-banking financial firms to boost growth.
    (AP, 1/2/09)
2009        Jan 2, In Iraq a suicide bomber sneaked into a luncheon gathering called by the leader of a local tribe in Youssifiyah, killing at least 23 people and wounding 110. Gunmen killed two people when they opened fire on a checkpoint manned by members of the Sons of Iraq in Jurf al-Sakhar. Four other people were reported wounded in the attack 40 miles south of Baghdad.
    (AP, 1/2/09)(SFC, 1/3/09, p.A3)
2009        Jan 2, Israel bombed a mosque it claimed was used to store weapons and destroyed homes of more than a dozen Hamas operatives, but under international pressure, the government allowed hundreds of Palestinians with foreign passports to leave besieged Gaza. Thus far more than 400 Gazans have been killed and some 1,700 have been wounded. Three Israeli civilians and one soldier have also died in the rocket attacks.
    (AP, 1/2/09)
2009        Jan 2, Kenya's Pres. Mwai Kibaki signed into law a media bill that opponents say threatens the country's hard-fought reputation for having one of Africa's most vigorous press. A controversial part of the bill, which parliament passed last month, allows the government to shut down media outlets by declaring a state of emergency. Kibaki said that part was not included in the bill he signed.
    (AP, 1/3/09)
2009        Jan 2, Mexican Federal prosecutors said they placed three municipal policemen in the northern border city of Ciudad Juarez under house arrest on suspicion of aiding drug traffickers. In the northern city of Monterrey, prosecutors accused former Nuevo Leon state policeman Aldo Perales (34) of leading a gang of bank robbers and participating in more than 30 robberies.
    (AP, 1/3/09)
2009        Jan 2, In southern Nigeria an oil pipeline was blown up with dynamite.
    (AP, 1/3/09)
2009        Jan 2, Pakistan reopened the main supply route for US and NATO troops fighting in Afghanistan after blocking it for three days during a military operation against militants who have been attacking convoys.
    (AP, 1/2/09)
2009        Jan 2, Luis Fortuno (48), Puerto Rico's new governor was sworn, inheriting an island government that is battling a recession, a soaring murder rate and a deficit of more than $1 billion.
    (AP, 1/2/09)
2009        Jan 2, Singapore said its GDP had contracted at an adjusted annualized pace of 12.5% in the 4th quarter. Its biggest contraction since it began publishing data in 1976.
    (WSJ, 1/3/09, p.A4)
2009        Jan 2, Crewmen fired high pressure water jets to fight off heavily armed Somali pirates trying to board a Greek oil tanker in the Gulf of Aden in the fourth such attack since the start of the year. A Chinese cargo ship evaded two pirate boats chasing it in the Gulf of Aden.
    (AP, 1/2/09)(AFP, 1/2/09)
2009        Jan 2, In northern Sri Lanka government forces captured the Tamil Tigers' de facto capital, dealing a devastating blow to the rebels' quarter-century fight for an independent state. A suspected Tamil Tiger suicide attacker on a motorcycle detonated a bomb near the air force headquarters in the heart of Colombo during the afternoon rush hour, killing two airmen.
    (AP, 1/2/09)
2009        Jan 2, Ugandan Lord's Resistance Army rebels killed two wildlife rangers and six other people in a remote national park in northeastern Congo.
    (AP, 1/6/09)
2009        Jan 2, Ukraine sought support in European capitals a day after Russia cut off gas supplies and hardened its stance on prices. The cutoff came after Ukraine made a $1.5 billion overdue payment, but Russia demanded another $600 million, including $450 million penalties for the late payment for gas shipped in November and December. The two sides also have not agreed on prices for 2009. Russia accused Ukraine of stealing gas destined for the rest of Europe.
    (AP, 1/2/09)(Reuters, 1/2/09)

2009        Jan 3, The United States blocked approval of a UN Security Council statement calling for an immediate cease-fire between Israel and Gaza's Hamas rulers.
    (AP, 1/4/09)
2009        Jan 3, In New Orleans Danny Platt (22), was arrested and accused of committing an "extremely hideous" murder because he was ordered to pay child support. He initially told police that gunmen had kidnapped his 2 1/2-year-old son.
    (AP, 1/4/09)
2009        Jan 3, Bitcoin, the “world’s first decentralized digital currency" was introduced. It was devised in 2008 by programmer Satoshi Nakomoto (thought not to be the person’s real name). It was run by a peer-to-per network and limited to 21 million coins. By 2013 the leading exchange was Mt.Gox, a Tokyo-based firm.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bitcoin)(Econ, 6/18/11, p.83)(Econ, 4/13/13, p.69)
2009        Jan 3, Sir Alan Walters (b.1926), a top economic adviser to former British PM Margaret Thatcher, died. Walters received a knighthood from Queen Elizabeth II in 1983.
    (AP, 1/6/09)(Econ, 1/10/09, p.50)
2009        Jan 3, Tens of thousands of people demonstrated in European cities against Israel's bombardment of Gaza, including protesters who hurled shoes at the tall iron gates outside the British prime minister's residence in London.
    (AP, 1/3/09)
2009        Jan 3, In eastern China an explosion at an illegal fireworks factory killed 13 people in the city of Weifang in Shandong province. A boy, Zou Chuanshuo (2) was killed with an ax in Luoyang in Hubei province. The child's grandmother Zhu Deqing (43) and six others were also killed. On Jan 11 authorities arrested junk collector Xiong Zhenlin (32) in Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province. He confessed to the murders, which included a widow who jilted him. A Chinese court sentenced him to death on Feb 9 for the murders. Zhenlin was executed on April 16 in the central city of Suizhou.
    (AP, 1/4/09)(AP, 2/9/09)(AP, 4/16/09)
2009        Jan 3, In Ghana opposition leader John Atta Mills was declared the next president in the closest electoral race this West African nation has ever seen. The peaceful ballot secured Ghana's place as a beacon of democracy on a volatile continent.
    (AP, 1/3/09)
2009        Jan 3, In Iraq two brothers were killed and another was wounded when a bomb they were concealing in their car exploded near the town of Sinjar, 75 miles west of Mosul.
    (AP, 1/3/09)
2009        Jan 3, Israeli warplanes, gunboats and artillery units bombarded more than 40 Hamas targets, including weapons storage facilities, training centers and leaders' homes. Palestinian medical officials said an Israeli airstrike on a mosque in the Gaza Strip killed 10 people and wounded dozens in the northern town of Beit Lahiya.
    (AP, 1/3/09)
2009        Jan 3, In southwest Pakistan two paramilitary soldiers were killed and four wounded in a landmine explosion in Dera Bugti, Baluchistan province. Sarbaz Khan, a spokesman for the Baluch Republican Army, later claimed responsibility of the attack.
    (AFP, 1/3/09)
2009        Jan 3, Russian gas flows to four European Union countries fell normal levels after Moscow cut off supplies to Ukraine in a pricing row with no talks in sight to resolve the dispute. Bulgaria's Bulgargaz joined energy firms in Poland, Romania and Hungary in saying they had noted falls in supply.
    (Reuters, 1/3/09)
2009        Jan 3, In Somalia Islamic insurgents appeared to be scrambling for power, taking over several police stations in the capital as Ethiopian troops who have been propping up the government began to pull out.
    (AP, 1/3/09)
2009        Jan 3, Sri Lankan troops advanced on the military headquarters of the Tamil Tigers and engaged the rebels in fresh gun battles. At least three people were wounded in a bomb blast in Colombo.
    (AFP, 1/3/09)

2009        Jan 4, Pres. Obama signed a law expanding SCHIP, a health scheme covering children in poor families.
    (Econ, 2/7/09, p.26)
2009        Jan 4, New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, Obama's choice for commerce secretary, withdrew under pressure of a federal investigation into how his political donors landed a lucrative transportation contract.
    (AP, 1/5/09)(SFC, 1/5/09, p.A5)
2009        Jan 4, In Louisiana 8 people were killed when a PHI Inc. helicopter, bound for offshore oil fields, crashed about 100 miles southwest of New Orleans.
    (SFC, 1/5/09, p.A3)
2009        Jan 4, In Syracuse, NY, Shawn Rhines (15) killed public works department employee Casimir Snyder (47). Police later said Ja-Le Johnson and Rhines would often hang out in an attic across the street and shoot target practice with rifles from a window. Police recovered two rifles from the attic. Rhines confessed and faced 10 years to life in prison.
    (SFC, 4/17/09, p.A6)
2009        Jan 4-2009 Jan 5, In Afghanistan 12 insurgents and 11 civilians were killed in fighting in central Uruzgan province.
    (AP, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 4, British PM Gordon Brown pledged to create 100,000 jobs through a public works program and said he would press banks to resume normal lending as Britain faces its sharpest economic downturn in decades.
    (AP, 1/4/09)
2009        Jan 4, A northern Guatemala mudslide left at least 37 people dead. At least 50 people were still missing in Aquil Grande.
    (AP, 1/5/09)(AP, 1/6/09)(AP, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 4, In eastern Indonesia a series of powerful earthquakes toppled or badly damaged more than 100 buildings and left one person dead and dozens injured.
    (AP, 1/4/09)(AP, 1/5/09)
2009        Jan 4, In Iraq a female suicide bomber blew herself up among a crowd of pilgrims worshipping at a revered Shiite shrine in northern Baghdad, killing at least 38 people and wounding about 72.
    (AP, 1/4/09)
2009        Jan 4, Israeli ground troops and tanks cut swaths through the Gaza Strip, cutting the coastal territory into two and surrounding its biggest city as the new phase of a devastating offensive against Hamas militants gained momentum. Gaza officials said at least 31 civilians were killed in the onslaught. Israel reported one soldier was killed by mortar fire. The new deaths brought the death toll in the Gaza Strip to more than 500 since Dec 27. At least 45 missiles fell on southern Israel, wounding five people. 2 women waving white flags were killed in the Juher a-Dik neighborhood in Gaza City. The incident occurred when the Abu Hajaj family evacuated their home after it was hit by a tank shell. On Aug 12, 2012, an infantry sergeant, who was initially charged with manslaughter for the deaths of the 2 women, was convicted in a military court of illegal weapons use as part of a plea deal and will serve 45 days in prison.
    (AP, 1/4/09)(AP, 1/5/09)(AP, 6/16/10)(AP, 8/12/12)
2009        Jan 4,  In a densely forested region of Indian Kashmir a gun battle between government forces and suspected Islamic insurgents raged for a fourth day leaving at least seven combatants killed.
    (AP, 1/4/09)
2009        Jan 4, In eastern Nepal dozens of people were missing after an overcrowded boat carrying mostly women and children capsized in the Saptakosi river. More than 50 people were believed on board the boat and only 14 were rescued.
    (AP, 1/4/09)(SFC, 1/5/09, p.A12)
2009        Jan 4, Gunmen hijacked a vessel and 9 crewmen belonging to French oil services group Bourbon off Nigeria's Niger Delta as it traveled toward a Royal Dutch Shell offshore oilfield. The 9 crewmen: five Nigerians, two Ghanaians, one Cameroonian and one Indonesian aboard. were released on Dec 7.
    (Reuters, 1/4/09)(AP, 1/6/09)(AP, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 4, In northwest Pakistan a suicide bomber attacked police as they rushed to treat civilians injured by an earlier explosion, killing seven people and wounding at least 25 others. During a raid elsewhere in northwest Pakistan, the army discovered a van packed with 880 pounds (400 kilograms) of explosives. Six suspected militants were arrested in the raid on a house in the Khyber tribal region.
    (AP, 1/4/09)
2009        Jan 4, Russia's military leaders approved a plan by the navy to station warships permanently in friendly ports across the globe.
    (AP, 1/4/09)
2009        Jan 4, Russia asked the EU to provide monitoring of Ukraine's gas transit system and charged Ukraine was stealing gas bound for Europe, as Kiev leveled its own charges. Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller said that the state-controlled company wanted $450 per 1,000 cubic meters, up from its last offer of $418. The reductions in gas supplies spread to the Czech Republic and Turkey.
    (AP, 1/4/09)(Reuters, 1/4/09)
2009        Jan 4, A French warship foiled attempts by Somali pirates in the Gulf of Aden to seize two cargo vessels and intercepted 19 people.
    (AFP, 1/5/09)
2009        Jan 4, Sri Lanka’s rebel-affiliated TamilNet Web site reported that the insurgents stalled a military advance on the road to Mullaittivu, killing 53 soldiers and wounding 80 others.
    (AP, 1/5/09)
2009        Jan 4, Jimmy Mohlala, a South African official who blew the whistle on alleged corruption in the building of a stadium for the 2010 World Cup, was shot dead by unknown gunmen. The 46,000-capacity Mbombela stadium, scheduled for completion this year, is one of 10 venues for the 2010 World Cup.
    (AFP, 1/6/09)
2009        Jan 4-2009 Jan 5, In South Africa a lethal storm on the eastern coast killed 18 people over the weekend, including four family members struck dead by lightning.
    (AFP, 1/6/09)

2009        Jan 5, President George W. Bush authorized the immediate use of US aircrafts to transport supplies to the international peacekeeping force in Darfur.
    (AP, 1/6/09)
2009        Jan 5, Pres. Elect Obama named William Panetta (70) to head the CIA.
    (SFC, 1/6/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 5, The US Federal Reserve began buying mortgage bonds guaranteed by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Ginnie Mae, in an effort to make home financing more affordable.
    (WSJ, 1/6/09, p.C3)
2009        Jan 5, The California Supreme Court decided that churches that break away from a national denomination may not take church assets with them.
    (SFC, 1/6/09, p.A3)
2009        Jan 5, Alexander James Trabulse (61) of Colma, Ca., was arrested at San Francisco Airport, after arriving from France. He had been charged 3 days earlier with mail fraud. Authorities said he had sent account statements to investors in his Fahey Fund that inflated the hedge fund’s returns by as much as 200%. On Nov 3 Trabulse pleaded guilty for defrauding investors of some $8.3 million. In 2010 Trabulse was sentenced to over 8 years in federal prison.
    (SFC, 1/9/09, p.C1)(SFC, 11/4/09, p.D3)(SFC, 5/5/10, p.C5)
2009        Jan 5, Former US Representative Joseph P. Kennedy said Citgo Petroleum, the US refiner owned by the Venezuelan government, planned to stop deliveries to his Boston-based nonprofit, Citizens’ Energy, due to falling oil prices. The stop order was removed 2 days later.
    (WSJ, 1/6/09, p.A7)(AP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 5, A Minnesota board certified results showing Democrat Al Franken winning the state’s US Senate recount by 225 votes over Republican Norm Coleman, whose lawyer promised a legal challenge.
    (SFC, 1/6/09, p.A2)(WSJ, 1/6/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 5, Boeing signed a $2.1 billion deal with India for eight P-81 maritime patrol aircraft.
    (WSJ, 1/6/09, p.B4)
2009        Jan 5, In Illinois Steven L. Good (52), chief executive of Sheldon Good & Co, one of the nation’s largest real estate auction firms, was found dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound in a forest outside Chicago. In 2003 he authored “Churches, Jails and Gold Mines… Mega-Deals from a Real Estate Maverick."
    (WSJ, 1/7/09, p.A9)
2009        Jan 5, In Afghanistan 9 Taliban militants were killed in a gunfight by Afghan and NATO troops in the southern province of Kandahar. 2 gunmen shot a Muslim cleric to death inside a mosque in Kandahar city.
    (AFP, 1/5/09)(AP, 1/6/09)
2009        Jan 5, British company Waterford Wedgwood PLC, the maker of classic china and crystal, filed for bankruptcy protection after attempts to restructure the struggling business or find a buyer failed.
    (AP, 1/5/09)
2009        Jan 5, Chile’s Pres. Michelle Bachelet announced a $4 billion economic stimulus package.
    (WSJ, 1/6/09, p.A9)
2009        Jan 5, China launched a major crackdown on Internet pornography targeting popular online portals and major search engines such as Google.
    (AP, 1/5/09)
2009        Jan 5, A Chinese woman (19) died from bird flu in a Beijing hospital, but the World Health Organization said the case did not appear to signal a new public health threat.
    (AP, 1/6/09)
2009        Jan 5, In eastern Congo rival rebel chief of staff Bosco Ntaganda announced the dismissal of Laurent Nkunda and has taken control of the CNDP rebel movement.
    (AFP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 5, Germany’s ruling coalition agreed to a 2-year fiscal stimulus package of as much as $69 billion (€50 billion).
    (WSJ, 1/6/09, p.A8)
2009        Jan 5, In southwestern Germany the body of billionaire Adolf Merckle (74) was found near railway tracks at Blaubeuren. He had committed suicide after his business empire ran into trouble in the global financial crisis. Merckle’s VEM holding company controlled Ratiopharm, building materials giant HeidelbergCement and one of Europe's biggest wholesale drug distributors, Phoenix. In 2008 Forbes Magazine ranked Merckle as the world’s 94th richest man.
    (AP, 1/6/09)(Econ, 1/10/09, p.58)(AP, 3/18/10)
2009        Jan 5, In Greece gunmen sprayed Athens riot police with automatic weapons fire, seriously wounding a policeman in an escalation of violence that broke out after the fatal police shooting of a teenager on Dec 6. The Revolutionary Struggle group later claimed responsibility.
    (AP, 1/5/09)(AP, 9/30/11)
2009        Jan 5, In Hong Kong a new survey said one in five residents is considering leaving the city because of its dire air quality, raising fears over the financial hub's competitiveness.
    (AFP, 1/5/09)
2009        Jan 5, India handed to Pakistan what it said was evidence linking the country to the Islamic militants who attacked Mumbai in November.
    (AFP, 1/5/09)
2009        Jan 5, In Iraq the US inaugurated its largest embassy ever in the heart of the Green Zone, officially opening the $700 million fortress-like compound that was built as a testament to America's commitment to Iraq. Four bombs exploded in different parts of Baghdad just before noon, killing four people and wounding 19. Subhi Hassan, who handles political relations for the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, and a bodyguard were killed after unidentified gunmen chased down their car after it passed through a checkpoint. US troops killed a civilian in a vehicle after the driver failed to heed warnings to stop in Baqouba.
    (AP, 1/5/09)(AP, 1/6/09)
2009        Jan 5, Israel consolidated its hold on parts of the Gaza Strip, seizing high-rise buildings on the outskirts of the territory's biggest city as a stream of world leaders headed for the region to press for a truce. About 12 Palestinian children were killed. The 10th day of fighting put the Palestinian death toll at an estimated 550. 3 Israeli soldiers were killed and 24 others wounded by friendly fire. Gaza health officials said an Israeli airstrike outside a United Nations school in the Gaza Strip killed 39 people, many of them children. An Israeli missile struck a building in Zeitoun where Palestinians had been herded. At least 30 people were killed. 4 members of the Haji family, including their three-year-old daughter, were killed and another nine people were injured when an Israeli tank opened fire on them in the Zeitun area, despite the fact that they were holding a white flag. In 2011 Israel's military advocate general closed an investigation into the white flag incident due to lack of evidence.
    (AP, 1/5/09)(SFC, 1/6/09, p.A3)(AP, 1/11/09)(Econ, 1/17/09, p.49)(AFP, 4/12/11)
2009        Jan 5, Israeli forces directly targeted the house of Wa’el Fares Hamdi al-Samouni, and its vicinity, killing 21 persons and injuring many others. Between January 4-7, 27 members of the Samouni family were killed, including 11 children and 6 women, and 35 others were injured. On May 2, 2012, the Israeli military said it has closed its investigation into the shelling deaths of 21 members of a single Palestinian family and would not file any charges.
    (http://tinyurl.com/6m5sh7h)(AFP, 5/2/12)
2009        Jan 5, In Indian Kashmir Omar Abdullah (38), a young pro-India Muslim, was sworn in as the new chief minister after elections that attracted a higher turnout than many politicians and voters expected.
    (AFP, 1/5/09)
2009        Jan 5, Ahmed Aboutaleb (47), a Moroccan immigrant, was installed as mayor of Rotterdam, the Netherlands' second largest city, in a move hailed as a significant step for the integration of minorities in the European Union nation.
    (AP, 1/5/09)
2009        Jan 5, In Pakistan three bullet-riddled bodies were found along a road some 16 miles east of Miran Shah. Police said suspected Taliban militants had executed a Pakistani construction contractor and two Afghan men they accused of spying for the US.
    (AP, 1/5/09)
2009        Jan 5, Sri Lanka’s government troops captured a strategic Tamil Tiger-held town and moved closer to a key rebel base, as citizens raised flags and held a moment of silence to honor the military as it battles to end the country's 25-year-old civil war. The rebels, as well has hundreds of thousands of civilians displaced by the fighting, were confined to a jungle area slightly larger than the city of Los Angeles.
    (AP, 1/5/09)
2009        Jan 5, The Vatican said that Bishop Allen H. Vigneron will replace Cardinal Adam Joseph Maida at the head of the Detroit archdiocese. The pope also named the auxiliary bishop of Halifax, Claude Champagne, as the new bishop of Edmundston in Canada. Benedict appointed the Rev. Cirilo Flores as new auxiliary bishop of Orange, California.
    (AP, 1/5/09)
2009        Jan 5, Turkey restored the citizenship of its most famous poet Monday in a symbolic step meant to show it was addressing criticism of its human rights record in hopes of joining the European Union. Turkey had stripped Nazim Hikmet of his nationality in 1951 at the height of the Cold War because of his communist views, branded him a traitor and imprisoned him for more than a decade. He died in exile in Moscow in 1963.
    (AP, 1/5/09)

2009        Jan 6, Pres. Bush designated parts of 3 Pacific island chains as national monuments to protect them from oil and gas extraction and commercial fishing. The areas totaled some 195,274 square miles and included the Mariana Trench as well as waters and coral surrounding 3 islands in the Northern Mariana Islands, Rose Atoll in American Samoa and 7 islands along the equator in the central Pacific Ocean.
    (SFC, 1/6/09, p.A4)
2009        Jan 6, Roland Burris of Illinois, President-elect Barack Obama's appointed successor, was turned away when he appeared at the US Capitol to take his in the convening of the 111th Congress.
    (AP, 1/6/09)
2009        Jan 6, North Dakota Gov. John Hoeven reported a budget surplus and plans to grow reserves to between $800 million and $1.2 billion.
    (Econ, 1/31/09, p.43)(http://governor.nd.gov/media/speeches/090106.html)
2009        Jan 6, Hal Ellis (b.1931), co-founder of the Grubb & Ellis real estate company (1958), died at his home in Oakland, Ca.
    (SFC, 1/8/09, p.C1)
2009        Jan 6, In southern Afghanistan a NATO serviceman was killed in a hostile incident. In eastern Afghanistan US-led coalition forces killed 32 armed insurgents during a clash in Laghman province. The troops also destroyed two caches of weapons and roadside bomb-making materials that were too unstable to move to another location. Residents reported that some civilians died when buildings collapsed as the cache was destroyed. In western Farah province, Afghan army and coalition troops killed six militants in raid on a compound.
    (AP, 1/6/09)(AP, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 6, In Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina Wajed was sworn in for her second spell as prime minister, restoring democracy to the impoverished country after almost two years of rule by an army-backed regime.
    (AFP, 1/6/09)
2009        Jan 6, Bahrain’s credit outlook was downgraded by Moody’s Investors Service amid tumbling crude prices and the global financial crises.
    (WSJ, 1/7/09, p.A7)
2009        Jan 6, Ethiopia's parliament adopted a controversial bill imposing heavy restrictions on foreign-funded humanitarian groups operating in the war- and famine-ravaged country. Under the new law, any group that draws more than 10 percent of its funding from abroad will be classified as foreign, and thus banned from working on issues related to ethnicity, gender, children's rights and conflict resolution.
    (AP, 1/6/09)(AFP, 1/9/09)
2009        Jan 6, A natural gas crisis loomed over Europe, as a contract dispute between Russia and Ukraine shut off Russian gas supplies to six countries and reduced gas deliveries to several others. Bulgaria, Greece, Macedonia, Romania, Croatia and Turkey all reported a halt in gas shipments.
    (AP, 1/6/09)
2009        Jan 6, Signs mounted that the conflict in Gaza is starting to spill over into violence in Europe's towns and cities, with assaults against Jews and arson attacks on Jewish congregations in France, Sweden and Britain.
    (AP, 1/6/09)
2009        Jan 6, A cease-fire initiative to halt the increasingly bloody Israeli offensive in Hamas-ruled Gaza won support from Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice called on rival sides to follow up on the proposal. A Hamas rocket hit Gedera, 20 miles from Tel Aviv, the farthest one has reached to date.
    (AP, 1/6/09)(AP, 1/7/09)(Econ, 1/10/09, p.24)
2009        Jan 6, In Mexico masked gunmen opened fire and tossed a grenade at a television station in Monterrey as it aired its nightly newscast, leaving behind a message warning the station about its coverage of drug gangs. Gunmen in Tijuana opened fire from several cars, killing a 22-year-old standing with his family outside his house. Two bodies were found wrapped in blankets and dumped on the street near a cemetery.
    (AP, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 6, In southern Nigeria armed men robbed an offshore oil platform operated by a subsidiary of US oil giant ExxonMobile although the attack did not disrupt oil production.
    (AFP, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 6, In Papua New Guinea Police a woman was tied to a wooden pole, surrounded by rubber tires and set on fire. Rumors said she was suspected of spreading witchcraft through the South Pacific island nation.
    (AP, 1/9/09)
2009        Jan 6, In Senegal 9 men, including a prominent activist, were convicted of homosexual acts and sentenced to eight years in prison. Senegal, a primarily Muslim nation in West Africa, is one of 38 countries on the continent that criminalize homosexual acts.
    (AP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 6, In Somalia 3 masked gunmen fatally shot a Somali aid worker. The UN envoy to Somalia said the UN should create a Baghdad-style Green Zone in the African country so he can base all his aid workers there. Aid workers Keiko Akahane (32), a Japanese doctor, and Dutchman nurse Willem Sools (27), were released after being held by Somali gunmen for 108 days.
    (AP, 1/6/09)(AP, 1/10/09)
2009        Jan 6, South Korea said it will invest 50 trillion won ($38.1 billion) over the next four years on environmental projects in a "Green New Deal" to spur slumping economic growth and create nearly a million jobs. Opposition lawmakers ended their violent, 12-day siege of the parliament after successfully delaying a key vote on a US free trade deal and other legislation.
    (AP, 1/6/09)
2009        Jan 6, Sri Lankan forces overran the Tamil Tigers' northernmost defense line and took full control of Muhamalai, forcing the rebels to fall back about 600 yards to another defense line. Armed men attacked a private Sri Lankan television station, tossing hand grenades, shooting out TV screens and starting a fire that caused heavy damage. Reporters Without Borders said the attack follows accusations by state media that the Maharaja Organization's television and radio stations were not "patriotic" enough in their coverage of the government's recent victories.
    (AP, 1/6/09)
2009        Jan 6, Turkey held a shipment bound for Venezuela from Iran saying it contains equipment that can make explosives.
    (WSJ, 1/7/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 6, The WHO said at least 1,732 people have died in Zimbabwe's cholera epidemic and the number of cases diagnosed has risen to 34,306.
    (AP, 1/6/09)
2009        Jan 6, Venezuela ordered Israel's ambassador expelled from the country in protest over the Israeli military offensive in the Gaza Strip.
    (AP, 1/6/09)

2009        Jan 7, The United States said it has released another $99 million as part of an aid package to support Mexico's police and soldiers in their fight against drug cartels. The US released $197 million in December as part of the $1.3 billion US anti-drug package, known as the Merida Initiative.
    (AP, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 7, The SEC charged Joseph S. Forte of Broomall, Pennsylvania, an investment fund manager, with running a Ponzi scheme since at least 1995. Losses to investors were estimated at $50 million.
    (WSJ, 1/28/09, p.A12)(www.sec.gov/litigation/litreleases/2009/lr20847.htm)
2009        Jan 7, US health officials said an outbreak of salmonella food poisoning has made 388 people sick across 42 states, sending 18 percent of them to the hospital.
    (Reuters, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 7, A new federal report said Mississippi now has the nation's highest teen pregnancy rate, displacing Texas and New Mexico for that lamentable title.
    (AP, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 7, In Oakland, Ca., demonstrations over the New year’s killing of Oscar Grant (22) by a BART police officer turned violent. BART Officer Johannes Mehserle quit his job avoiding an interview with police internal affairs investigators.
    (SFC, 1/8/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 7, In San Francisco Peter Fong, a paranoid schizophrenic, slashed the throat of Ryosuke Yoshioka, a sushi chef, in a parking garage in the Inner Richmond neighborhood. In 2013 Fong was sentenced to life in a mental hospital.
    (SFC, 5/18/13, p.C4)
2009        Jan 7, Bank of America Corp. raised more money to cope with US economic turmoil by selling part of its stake in China Construction Bank Ltd., China's second-biggest commercial lender, for $2.8 billion.
    (AP, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 7, Afghan locals said that operations by the NATO-led force in the southern province of Helmand had killed 19 civilians.
    (AFP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 7, In Argentina an Italian climber and an Argentine guide both died when a storm trapped five mountaineers just below the summit of the Aconcagua peak, the highest mountain in the Americas. The three others survived.
    (AP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 7, In China a court in Hangzhou, a prosperous city in eastern Zhejiang province, sentenced Wang Rongqing (65) to 6 years in jail on charges of subverting state power for organizing the banned China Democracy Party.
    (AP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 7, The EU said Russia and Ukraine will accept using international monitors to verify the transit of natural gas from Russia through Ukraine's pipelines. Russia's gas giant Gazprom completely stopped sending gas to European consumers at 7:44 a.m. (0544 GMT). 80% of Russian gas shipped via Ukraine.
    (AP, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 7, Freezing temperatures and exceptional snowfall caused travel delays across Europe and were blamed for at least 12 deaths, including that of a man in Milan who was crushed when a canopy collapsed under the weight of snow.
    (AP, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 7, In Hungary a masked gunman shot to death Jozsef Takacs (62), a school principal, and Laszlo Papp (32), a teacher, at a school in the Budapest neighborhood of Csepel. 2 suspects were arrested the next day. Police said a security guard shot the two men, hours after he and an accomplice, a 36-year-old former administrator at the school, were fired by the principal on suspicion of embezzling up to 4 million forints ($20,000, euro14,600).
    (AP, 1/7/09)(AP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 7, B. Ramalingu Raju, the chairman of India's Satyam Computer Services Ltd., quit after admitting the company's profits had been doctored for several years, shaking faith in the country's corporate giants as shares of the software services provider plunged nearly 80 percent. Raju was arrested 2 days later as Indian authorities fired the remaining board members and launched an accounting review of the company.
    (AP, 1/7/09)(WSJ, 1/10/09, p.B1)
2009        Jan 7, In northern Iraq a female suicide bomber allegedly planning to blow herself up among Shiite pilgrims was arrested, as millions joined processions across the country to honor the martyrdom of one of their most revered saints.
    (AP, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 7,  Israel ordered a three-hour pause in its Gaza offensive to allow food and fuel to reach besieged Palestinians, and said it welcomed a cease-fire proposal as long as Hamas halts rockets and weapons smuggling. About 300 of the more than 670 Palestinians killed so far were civilians. French President Nicolas Sarkozy said that Israel and the Palestinian Authority have accepted an Egyptian-French plan for Gaza.
    (AP, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 7, Wildlife activists said the box turtle is disappearing across Malaysia because of increased illegal hunting for its meat and use in traditional Chinese medicine.
    (AP, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 7, In Mexico four decapitated bodies were found in the Otay Mesa neighborhood of Tijuana. The victims' heads were left inside a black bag at the scene.
    (AP, 1/7/09)
2009        Jan 7, Pakistan’s PM Yousuf Raza Gilani fired national security advisor Mahmood Ali Durrani after he gave media interviews on national security issues without consulting Gilani. The move came hours after Durrani and other top officials told reporters that the sole surviving Mumbai attacker was a Pakistani citizen.
    (AP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 7, Sri Lanka officially outlawed the Tamil Tigers, ruling out for now the possibility of peace talks to end a 25-year civil war.
    (WSJ, 1/8/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 7, Taiwan’s central bank unexpectedly cut its key interest rates by half a percentage point and urged banks to increase corporate lending. The finance ministry had just reported that ex[ports in December had fallen 41.9% from a year earlier.
    (WSJ, 1/8/09, p.A8)
2009        Jan 7, Turkey’s state news said police had detained about 40 people, including 3 retired generals, in a probe of an alleged plot to overthrow the Islamist-rooted AK Party government.
    (WSJ, 1/8/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 7, Venezuela's Citgo Petroleum Corp. announced its fuel oil aid program would continue, just two days after its partner nonprofit group, Boston-based Citizens Energy, said Citgo had halted the free fuel shipments due to the world economic crisis.
    (AP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 7, In Zimbabwe seven members of the main opposition party were the first of dozens of jailed dissidents to be formally charged, and they pleaded not guilty in a bombing plot. Zimbabwe delayed the opening of schools by two weeks, amid fears that teachers may not show up for classes due to the country's worsening humanitarian crisis.
    (AP, 1/7/09)(AFP, 1/7/09)

2009        Jan 8, President-elect Barack Obama warned of dire and lasting consequences if Congress doesn't pump unprecedented dollars into the economy, making an urgent pitch for his mammoth spending proposal in his first speech since his election.
    (AP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 8, The US Navy said a new international force to battle pirates off the Somali coast is being formed under American command in a bid to focus more military resources to protect one of the world's key shipping lanes.
    (AP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 8, Dell Inc. announced that it is moving its Irish manufacturing operations to Poland by 2010, as part of a cost cutting measure that will result in the loss of some 1,900 Irish jobs.
    (WSJ, 1/9/09, p.B4)
2009        Jan 8, Department-store operator Macy's Inc. said it will close 11 underperforming stores in nine states, affecting 960 employees, and lowered its forecast for the fourth quarter after one of the weakest holiday seasons in years.
    (AP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 8, Flooding in the US Pacific Northwest led to mudslides and avalanches and closed 20 miles of I-5 between Olympia, Wa., and the Oregon line.
    (SFC, 1/9/09, p.A2)
2009        Jan 8, Rev. Richard John Neuhaus (b.1936), Catholic priest and author, died. His book included “The Naked Public Square" (1984), which argued that religious values have a crucial place in American politics.
    (WSJ, 1/10/09, p.A6)
2009        Jan 8, Afghan President Hamid Karzai's office said that reports suggested 17 civilians, including women and children, were killed in the Jan 6 US raid in Laghman province. A suicide bomber struck US troops patrolling on foot in southern Afghanistan, killing three civilians, 2 Americans and wounding at least nine others. A coalition strike on a bomb-making network in Zabul killed five militants.
    (AFP, 1/8/09)(AP, 1/8/09)(AP, 1/9/09)(SFC, 1/9/09, p.A10)
2009        Jan 8, The Bank of England cut interest rates from 2% to 1.5%, the lowest level since its founding in 1694, taking it into uncharted territory as it attempts to ward off a prolonged recession.
    (AP, 1/8/09)(WSJ, 1/9/09, p.A5)(Econ, 1/10/09, p.49)
2009        Jan 8, Britain's Financial Services Authority fined insurance broker Aon Ltd. 5.25 million pounds ($8 million) for weak anti-bribery controls, the largest penalty of its kind.
    (AP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 8, In eastern Congo Mai Mai militiamen attacked a group of seven rangers killing one in a government-controlled sector in the far north of Virunga National park.
    (AP, 1/10/09)
2009        Jan 8, A magnitude 6.1 earthquake rocked Costa Rica killing at least 20 people with dozens still missing.
    (AP, 1/9/09)(AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 8, In Iraq 2 simultaneous roadside bombs tore through an Iraqi army patrol responding to a mortar attack north of Baghdad, killing six Iraqi soldiers. Two other Iraqi soldiers died in another blast near the city of Kirkuk.
    (AP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 8, Israeli representatives arrived in Cairo for Egyptian-brokered talks on a cease-fire proposal after the UN Security Council failed to agree on action to end the crisis in Gaza.
    (AP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 8, The UN halted aid deliveries to the besieged Gaza Strip, citing Israeli attacks on a UN truck that killed 2 Palestinian workers. For a 2nd straight day, Israel suspended its Gaza military operation for three hours to allow in humanitarian supplies. Israel killed at least 11 people, including three who were fleeing their homes, raising the death toll from its 13-day offensive to 699 Palestinians. 11 Israelis have died since the offensive began. Militants in Lebanon fired at least three rockets into Israel. UN figures said as many as 257 children have been killed and 1,080 wounded, about a third of the total casualties since Dec. 27.
    (AP, 1/8/09)(SFC, 1/9/09, p.A3)
2009        Jan 8, Kuwait’s top investment bank, Global Investment House, said it had defaulted on most of its $3 billion in debt, raising concerns that other Arab Gulf financial firms may follow as the global financial crises spreads through the region.
    (WSJ, 1/9/09, p.C2)
2009        Jan 8, In Pakistan a fire swept through a slum in Karachi, killing 38 people, many of them children.
    (AP, 1/9/09)
2009        Jan 8, Russia's state-controlled gas monopoly said it would restore supplies to Europe through Ukraine, cut off after a dispute between Moscow and Kiev, as soon as international monitors are in place.
    (Reuters, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 8, In Somalia  gunmen fatally shot a UN World Food program worker during a food distribution, the second staff member killed this week.
    (AP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 8, In Spain Leonidas Vargas (60), a convicted Colombian drug baron with links to two major smuggling cartels, was shot dead in a Madrid hospital.
    (AP, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 8, Sri Lankan troops captured an important Tamil Tiger base and pounded the rebels with air attacks, forcing the insurgents to withdraw deeper into the dwindling area that remains under their control. Gunmen on a motorcycle shot and killed Lasantha Wickrematunge, the editor of a Sri Lankan newspaper critical of the government, the second violent attack on media this week. Three days after he was gunned down execution-style, Wickrematunge's newspaper published a haunting, self-written obituary in which he says he was targeted for his writings and adds: "When finally I am killed, it will be the government that kills me."
    (AP, 1/8/09)(AP, 1/12/09)
2009        Jan 8, Darfur rebels accused Sudan's army of bombing their positions over the last 24 hours, breaking a period of relative calm in the country's violent west.
    (Reuters, 1/8/09)
2009        Jan 8, In Zimbabwe opposition members accused of being involved in a bomb plot said they were tortured into making false confessions.
    (AP, 1/8/09)

2009        Jan 9, The US House of Representatives voted 390-5 for a bill declaring “unwavering commitment" to Israel."
    (Econ, 1/17/09, p.48)
2009        Jan 9,  The US Labor Dept. reported that unemployment rate rose to 7.2 percent in December, the highest level in 16 years, as nervous employers slashed 524,000 jobs. The labor market is expected to remain weak as mass layoffs continue.
    (AP, 1/9/09)
2009        Jan 9, The US government began collecting DNA samples from all immigrants arrested and detained, despite concerns that the move violates their privacy rights.
    (SFC, 1/9/09, p.A3)
2009        Jan 9, California officials said they will close state offices two Fridays a month as the state faced a $42 billion budget gap.
    (WSJ, 1/12/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 9, The Illinois House voted to impeach Gov. Rod Blagojevich, an unprecedented step in state history.
    (AP, 1/9/09)
2009        Jan 9, Chicago-based Merisant Worldwide Inc., maker of the artificial sweetener Equal, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, hobbled by the global credit crisis and sliding sales.
    (Econ, 1/30/10, p.77)(http://tinyurl.com/ykx7ghs)
2009        Jan 9, Baltimore Mayor Sheila Dixon (55) was indicted on charges that she accepted illegal gifts, including travel, fur coats and gift cards intended for the poor that she allegedly used instead for a holiday shopping spree. Her trial began on Nov 9.
    (AP, 1/10/09)(SFC, 11/10/09, p.A8)
2009        Jan 9, In Miami Charles Taylor Jr. (31), the son of former Liberian President Charles Taylor, was sentenced to 97 years in prison for mutilations and executions carried out in Liberia, in the first US prosecution for torture committed abroad.
    (Reuters, 1/10/09)
2009        Jan 9, Jon Hager (67), who performed in the musical comedy duo The Hager Twins on "Hee-Haw," died in Nashville. His brother Jim died in May, 2008. The syndicated TV show, which debuted in 1969, satirized country life with a mixture of music and comedy.
    (AP, 1/10/09)
2009        Jan 9, In southern Afghanistan a suicide bomber detonated explosives strapped to his body inside a produce shop, killing 10 civilians and 2 policemen. 3 US soldiers were killed in southern Zabul province.
    (AP, 1/9/09)(WSJ, 1/10/09, p.A6)
2009        Jan 9, Lloyds TSB Bank said it has agreed to pay a 350-million dollar penalty to settle a probe that it illegally handled financial transfers from 1995 to 2007 for Iran and Sudan in violation of US sanctions.
    (AFP, 1/10/09)
2009        Jan 9, In Worcestershire, England, four armed robbers shot and killed Craig Hodson-Walker (29), a postmaster's son, during a robbery in Fairfield near Bromsgrove. His father was wounded in the leg.
    (AFP, 1/10/09)
2009        Jan 9, Cambodian judges denied that they paid kickbacks to government officials to secure jobs on a genocide tribunal to try former Khmer Rouge leaders.
    (AP, 1/9/09)
2009        Jan 9, In Germany Commerzbank AG issued a euro5 billion ($6.8 billion) bond, the first to be backed by the government's massive stabilization package.
    (AP, 1/9/09)
2009        Jan 9, In India some 55,000 white collar workers at state-run oil companies called off a three-day strike, after causing a severe fuel shortage in India.
    (AP, 1/9/09)
2009        Jan 9, In Iraq a roadside bomb targeting worshippers on their way to pray at a Shiite mosque in Baghdad killed three people.
    (AP, 1/9/09)
2009        Jan 9, Israeli jets and helicopters bombarded Gaza and Hamas responded with a barrage of rockets on at least two cities as both sides defied a UN call for an immediate cease-fire. By the afternoon 22 Palestinians had been killed, pushing the death toll to 776 and in the two-week-old conflict.
    (AP, 1/9/09)
2009        Jan 9, Kenya’s government said 10 million people risked going hungry after harvests failed following a drought.
    (WSJ, 1/10/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 9, Lithuania’s FlyLAL airline, privatized in 2005, announced that SCH Swiss Capital Holdings, a Switzerland-based firm, has purchased it for $1 million and debt of about 1 million euros. On Jan 17 FlyLAL airline said it has suspended its operations after a buyout deal by Swiss investment firm SCH Swiss Capital Holdings failed.
    (AP, 1/9/09)(AP, 1/17/09)
2009        Jan 9, Pakistan’s PM Gilani said his intelligence agency has given India information about the Mumbai attacks, as US Vice President-elect Joe Biden arrived in Pakistan for talks with the country's top leaders. A series of blasts have gone off near a theater in the eastern city of Lahore, but there has been no immediate word on casualties.
    (AP, 1/9/09)
2009        Jan 9, A Russian helicopter owned by the state gas giant Gazprom crashed while on a hunting trip in the mountains of Western Siberia, killing eight aboard. 3 people survived. The crash involved government officials on an illegal hunt.
    (AP, 1/11/09)(WSJ, 4/28/09, p.A8)
2009        Jan 9, Somali pirates released the MV Sirius Star, an oil-laden Saudi supertanker seized on Nov 15, after receiving a $3 million ransom. Five of the Somali pirates drowned with their share of the $3 million ransom after their small boat capsized.
    (AP, 1/9/09)(AP, 1/10/09)
2009        Jan 9, Somali pirates released a captured Iranian-chartered cargo ship. The ship Delight was carrying 36 tons of wheat when it was attacked in the Gulf of Aden Nov. 18 and seized by pirates. All 25 crew were in good health and the vessel sailed toward Iran.
    (AP, 1/10/09)
2009        Jan 9, Sri Lankan troops captured Elephant Pass, the Tamil Tigers' last stronghold on the Jaffna peninsula, seizing control of a symbolic highway and isolating the retreating rebels in a shrinking slice of northeastern jungle. Government soldiers seized a rebel training camp near the village of Mulliyaweli, in Mullaitivu.
    (AP, 1/9/09)(AP, 1/11/09)

2009        Jan 10, President-elect Barack Obama made public a detailed analysis by his economic advisers that estimates the $775 billion plan of tax cuts and new spending would create 3.5 million jobs over the next two years.
    (AP, 1/10/09)
2009        Jan 10, A winter storm left large swaths of the Midwest and Northeast covered in snow and freezing rain. 10 inches of snow forced some 100 cancellations at Chicago’s O’Hare Int’l. Airport. At least 8 inches fell on lower Michigan and Ohio.
    (SSFC, 1/11/09, p.A14)
2009        Jan 10, In Argentina 6 children died in Buenos Aires after a fire ripped through a former bank being used as a home by poor families.
    (AP, 1/10/09)
2009        Jan 10, Australian police said a Canadian man has been charged with trying to smuggle more than two million dollars (1.4 million US) worth of cocaine  inside forklift battery cells into Australia from Mexico.
    (AFP, 1/11/09)
2009        Jan 10, Two British climbers, including the youngest Briton to conquer Everest, fell hundreds of meters to their deaths on Mont Blanc in the French Alps.
    (AFP, 1/11/09)
2009        Jan 10, In Guinea-Bissau a boat carrying passengers on the Geba River capsized in strong winds, leaving 42 people missing.
    (AP, 1/13/09)
2009        Jan 10, Israeli forces pounded rocket-launching sites and smuggling tunnels in Gaza and planes dropped leaflets warning of an escalation in attacks, as Palestinian militants fired at least 10 more rockets at Israel. The Israeli military said more than 15 militants were killed in overnight fighting. An Israeli tank shell killed nine people in a garden outside a home in the northern Gaza town of Jebaliya. In Cairo, Egypt, Palestinian Authority Pres. Mahmoud Abbas urged both Israel and Hamas to agree to an Egypt-brokered truce. Syria-based Palestinian militant groups including Hamas rejected the idea of deploying international observers or troops in Gaza.
    (AP, 1/10/09)
2009        Jan 10, In Nigeria leaders of ECOWAS, West Africa's regional economic body, suspended Guinea's membership following a military coup in the country.
    (AP, 1/11/09)
2009        Jan 10, In northwestern Pakistan at least 40 people were killed over the last 24 hours in clashes between Sunnis and Shiites in villages of the Hangu district.
    (AP, 1/10/09)(SFC, 1/12/09, p.A8)
2009        Jan 10, In northern Peru a bus ran off a slick mountain road into a ravine, killing at least 33 people.
    (AP, 1/10/09)
2009        Jan 10, Russia and the EU took a step toward securing the resumption of gas flows to Europe when the two signed a deal on monitoring the supplies through Ukraine. PM Vladimir Putin said Russia will restart gas supplies to Europe once an EU-led monitoring mission begins to track gas transit via Ukraine.
    (AP, 1/10/09)(Reuters, 1/10/09)
2009        Jan 10, South Korean officials arrested Park Dae-sung (31), a blogger writing under the pseudonym Minerva. They charged that his postings had led to a plunge in the value of the won, forcing the government to intervene in trading. In April 20 Park Dae-sung was cleared of spreading false information.
    (WSJ, 1/13/09, p.A11)(Econ, 1/17/09, p.45)(AP, 4/20/09)
2009        Jan 10, In Sri Lanka government soldiers captured a guerrilla camp in the village of Aiyamperumal in Mullaittivu. A pro-rebel TamilNet Web site reported that four civilians were killed in a government artillery assault on a rebel-held village in Mullaitivu.
    (AP, 1/11/09)

2009        Jan 11, At the Golden Globe awards, "Slumdog Millionaire" emerged as the potential film to beat at the Academy Awards, an unexpected position for a movie with a cast of unknowns and a story set among orphans and criminals on the streets of Mumbai. The late Heath Ledger won a best supporting actor Golden Globe for “The Dark Knight."
    (AP, 1/12/09)(WSJ, 1/12/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 11, A US federal rule took effect allowing visitors to carry a loaded gun into a park or wildlife refuge as long as the person had a permit for a concealed weapon and the state where the park or refuge was located allowed concealed firearms. Previously, guns in parks had been severely restricted. The Bush administration had issued the gun rule in December in response to letters from half the Senate asking officials to lift the restrictions on guns in parks that were adopted by the Reagan administration in the early 1980s. On March 19 a US district Judge blocked the rule.
    (SFC, 3/20/09, p.A8)
2009        Jan 11, South Korea’s Hyundai Genesis was named North American Car of the Year and the Ford F-150 as the 2009 North American Truck of the Year. The awards were first given in 1994. This was the first time a Korean automaker has won.
    (Econ, 3/7/09, p.71)(www.northamericancaroftheyear.org/)
2009        Jan 11, Marcus Schrenker's plane went down en route to Destin, Fla., from Anderson, Ind. Schrenker (38), an Indiana investment manager, had reported that the windshield imploded and that he was bleeding profusely. Federal marshals believe he faked a distress call before parachuting from his plane over Alabama and disappearing on a motorcycle he had stashed in advance. US Marshals apprehended Schrenker on Jan 13 at a northern Florida campground. Officers had to tend to Schrenker's self-inflicted gash to the wrist before he was airlifted to Tallahassee Memorial Hospital. In August Schrenker pleaded guilty was sentenced in Florida to 4 years and 3 months in federal prison.
    (AP, 1/13/09)(AP, 1/14/09)(SFC, 8/20/09, p.A4)
2009        Jan 11, Australia's Defense Ministry said its special forces in Afghanistan had killed Taliban commander Mullah Abdul Rasheed, who had been involved in recruiting suicide bombers and foreign fighters in Uruzgan province.
    (AP, 1/11/09)
2009        Jan 11, In Indonesia scores of people were feared dead after a ferry carrying more than 260 passengers and crew sank in stormy seas off Sulawesi island.
    (AP, 1/11/09)
2009        Jan 11, In Iraq US soldier Pfc. Sean McCune died of a non-combat related injury near Samarra north of Baghdad. Sgt. Miguel A. Vegaquinones later pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter in the accidental shooting death of McCune. Vegaquinones was sentenced in July to three years in jail for the shooting. A US Marine died in a non-combat related incident west of Baghdad.
    (AP, 1/12/09)(SFC, 1/12/09, p.A3)
2009        Jan 11, Israeli troops made their deepest advance into the Gaza Strip's most heavily populated area, encountering increasingly fierce resistance from Islamic Hamas fighters as they warned civilians to stay clear of the battle zone. Human Rights Watch said that Israel's military has fired artillery shells with the incendiary agent white phosphorus into Gaza and a doctor there said the chemical was suspected in the case of 10 burn victims who had skin peeling off their faces and bodies.
    (AP, 1/11/09)
2009        Jan 11, In northwestern Pakistan security forces repulsed an attack by 600 fighters, most of whom had crossed the border from Afghanistan, leaving at least 40 militants and 6 soldiers dead and scores of others wounded.
    (AP, 1/11/09)(SFC, 1/12/09, p.A8)
2009        Jan 11, An estimated 2,500 Lebanese and Palestinians protested peacefully in downtown Beirut against Israel's offensive in the Gaza Strip, as hundreds of demonstrators in neighboring Syria shouted insults at the both the Jewish state and Arab leaders.
    (AP, 1/11/09)
2009        Jan 11, Two Nigerian soldiers were killed and one wounded in an attack by unidentified gunmen in the restive oil-rich Niger Delta. Police said the attack might be connected with the police seizure of a vessel, the Sandra Valleta, which was carrying stolen crude oil.
    (AFP, 1/12/09)
2009        Jan 11,  Arne Naess (b.1912), Norwegian philosopher, writer and mountaineer, died. He was best known for launching the concept of "deep ecology," promoting the idea that Earth as a planet has as much right as its inhabitants, such as humans, to survive and flourish.
    (AP, 1/13/09)
2009        Jan 11, Russia, Ukraine, and the EU struck an agreement to try to resume Russian supplies through Ukraine to Europe. President Dmitry Medvedev said energy giant Gazprom would only resume gas supplies once Russia had a copy of the document signed by Ukraine and once the various teams of international observers were in place. The text of the accord calls for the EU, Russia and Ukraine to each provide 25 experts to "carry out checks on the basis of equal parity both on Ukrainian and Russian territory.
    (Reuters, 1/11/09)(AFP, 1/11/09)
2009        Jan 11, Slovakia reopened a nuclear power plant it was forced to shut down as part of its bid to join the European Union, prompting condemnation from neighboring Austria, which described the reactor at Bohunice as unsafe.
    (AP, 1/11/09)
2009        Jan 11, In central Somalia clashes between Islamist militias killed at least 29 people and wounded more than 50 others. It was the latest sign of divisions within an Islamist insurgency the US government says has links to al-Qaida.
    (AP, 1/11/09)
2009        Jan 11, New Thai PM Abhisit Vejjajiva's government won the most seats in by-elections, strengthening his shaky coalition in its first test at the polls.
    (AP, 1/11/09)
2009        Jan 11, A Turkish court formally arrested 12 more people for ties to an alleged secularist plot by ultranationalists to bring down the Islamic-rooted government, bringing the total of people implicated in the case to more than 100.
    (AP, 1/11/09)

2009        Jan 12, The US Senate said it will seat Roland Burris, the junior senator from Illinois.
    (SFC, 1/12/09, p.A8)
2009        Jan 12, The US slapped sanctions on people and firms linked to Pakistani scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan’s black market nuclear network.
    (WSJ, 1/13/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 12, Minnesota officials said lab tests had confirmed salmonella bacteria in a five pound container of King Nut brand peanut butter. King Nut of Solon, Ohio, had recalled the product on January 10. At least 6 people had been killed and over 470 sickened nationwide in 43 states.
    (WSJ, 1/13/09, p.A2)(SFC, 1/20/09, p.A12)
2009        Jan 12, In El Reno, Oklahoma, a woman and her 4 children, aged 3-7, were found killed. Texas officials the next day arrested the mother’s boyfriend, Joshua Steven Durcho (25).
    (SFC, 1/14/09, p.A3)
2009        Jan 12, Sofa retailer Land of Leather filed for bankruptcy protection, becoming the latest British retailer to succumb to a downturn in consumer spending amid the global economic slowdown.
    (AP, 1/12/09)
2009        Jan 12, State media said China has shut down 91 websites for pornographic and other "vulgar" content, as well as a political blog portal, since announcing its latest bid to ensure Internet morality.
    (Reuters, 1/12/09)
2009        Jan 12, In China a Shanghai distributor of a popular brand of dog food said it had suspended sales of the product following reports that dogs who ate it had died from aflatoxin poisoning. This appeared to involve an imported product, Optima, a brand of dog food made by Nashville, Tennessee-based Doane Pet Care Co. It was not clear if the pet food sold in China was the US brand.
    (AP, 1/12/09)
2009        Jan 12, War crimes prosecutors in The Hague accused former Congolese vice president Jean-Pierre Bemba of using systematic rape to terrorize civilians suspected of supporting rebels during a bloody power struggle in neighboring Central African Republic.
    (AP, 1/12/09)
2009        Jan 12, Cuba published new regulations encouraging classic car owners to apply for taxi licenses and set their own prices for the first time in nearly a decade as the communist government turns to the free market to improve its woeful transportation system.
    (AP, 1/12/09)
2009        Jan 12, In Dubai Kabir Mulchandani, chairman of the Dynasty Zarooni development company, was arrested on charges of fraud and embezzlement. He was accused of defrauding investors of more than $100 million. He has been under investigation in India for the past 10 years by the excise department, directorate of revenue intelligence (DRI), enforcement directorate (ED), and income tax authority.
    (WSJ, 1/24/09, p.C3)(http://tinyurl.com/amevml)
2009        Jan 12, Fiji authorities rushed to deliver clean drinking water and other supplies to thousands of villagers who fled flooding from tropical storms. The storms left 11 people dead.
    (AP, 1/12/09)(SSFC, 1/25/09, p.E2)
2009        Jan 12, French teachers hurled shoes and other objects at police to protest President Nicolas Sarkozy's high school reforms, prompting police to respond with tear gas.
    (AP, 1/12/09)
2009        Jan 12, Germany’s coalition government approved a $67 million spending package to mitigate recession effects.
    (Econ, 1/17/09, p.52)
2009        Jan 12, In Greece 3 gunmen had grabbed Periklis Panagopoulos (74), founder of one of Greece's largest ferry operators, and his driver in the southern Athens suburb of Vouliagmeni. Panagopoulos was released unharmed on Jan 20 following a large ransom payment.
    (AP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 12, In Haiti Police Commissioner Philippe Jean Raymond of Port-de-Paix was poisoned after several million dollars of cash seized from the uncle of a prominent drug smuggler went missing.
    (Econ, 2/14/09, p.46)(http://tinyurl.com/dz7gcq)
2009        Jan 12, In Iraq a series of bombs targeted Iraqi security forces in Baghdad. At least 10 people died as Vice President-elect Joe Biden arriving in Baghdad following trips to Afghanistan and Pakistan.
    (AP, 1/12/09)
2009        Jan 12, Israeli warplanes pounded the homes of Hamas leaders and ground troops edged closer to the Gaza Strip's densely populated urban center, as Israel weighed a decision to escalate its devastating offensive. Militants managed to fire off at least four rockets. Gaza officials said the offensive has killed some 870 Palestinians.
    (AP, 1/12/09)
2009        Jan 12, Alitalia's board accepted Air France-KLM's offer to buy 25 percent of the company and become its international partner.
    (AP, 1/12/09)
2009        Jan 12, Kazakh PM Karim Masimov told his ministers to start personal blogs to get them closer to the people of the former Soviet state.
    (AP, 1/12/09)
2009        Jan 12, Mozambique authorities said torrential rains have killed 19 people in the past few days and that worse flooding may lie ahead.
    (AP, 1/12/09)
2009        Jan 12, In Nigeria Susanne Wenger (93), Austrian-born sculptress, died. She had been initiated as a Yoruba traditional priestess and was responsible for towering works of art in one of Nigeria's two World Heritage sites.
    (AFP, 1/13/09)
2009        Jan 12, In Pakistan the bodies of two men killed by Taliban militants for allegedly spying for the US were found in the North Waziristan tribal region to the south of Mohmand. The two were abducted a week ago as they attempted to flee with their families. Trucks and other vehicles blocked the main Quetta-Chaman highway, forcing about 100 trucks carrying NATO supplies to park.
    (AP, 1/12/09)
2009        Jan 12, Russia's state-run monopoly Gazprom announced it will resume shipping natural gas to Europe, where tens of thousands of homes and buildings have been left without heat in freezing weather.
    (AP, 1/12/09)
2009        Jan 12, In Somalia Islamist insurgents fired mortar rounds at the presidential palace in Mogadishu. At least 13 people were killed in 2 attacks. The United States circulated a draft resolution calling for a UN peacekeeping force to be deployed in Somalia to replace a small African Union force, but leaving the Security Council to make a final decision by June 1.
    (AP, 1/13/09)(SFC, 1/12/09, p.A3)
2009        Jan 12, In Sri Lanka heavy fighting was reported around guerrilla-controlled Mullaittivu district, with troops seizing a rebel administration base, a training camp and a bunker line.
    (AFP, 1/13/09)
2009        Jan 12, Taiwan's parliament voted through a controversial bill lifting a decades-old ban on casinos, despite protests that gambling could lead to a damaging decline in public morality.
    (AP, 1/12/09)

2009        Jan 13, President George W. Bush declared his administration had achieved "a good, solid" record and gave thanks to both his closest aides and Americans across the country.
    (AP, 1/13/09)
2009        Jan 13, The Pentagon said that 61 former detainees from its military prison camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, appear to have returned to terrorism since their release from custody.
    (Reuters, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 13, The city of Los Angeles, plagued by 23,000 violent gang crimes since 2004, including 784 murders and 12,000 felony assaults, announced that it had won its first civil judgment, for $5 million, against a criminal gang that had dominated the heroin trade downtown for decades.
    (CSM, 1/15/09)(http://tinyurl.com/85n3cl)
2009        Jan 13, Citigroup announced that it will spin off its SmithBarney retail brokerage into a joint venture with Morgan Stanley. Plans were also afoot for Citigroup to shrink by a third.
    (WSJ, 1/14/09, p.A1)
2009        Jun 13, The Detroit-area band Champagne Saints, comprised of Marius Polikaitis, Saulius Polteraitis, Jide Mbanefo, Paul Juska and Tadas Kasputis, held a CD release party for Throwing Hail Marys at the Pike Room at the Crofoot in Pontiac. Their 2nd album “Sparkle, Darker" came out in 2012.
    (http://voices.yahoo.com/champagne-saints-throw-cd-release-party-3498131.html)
2009        Jan 13, Patrick McGoohan (b.1928), Emmy winning TV and film actor, died. He created and starred in the cult classic TV show “The Prisoner" (1967). The British show premiered in the US in 1968.
    (SFC, 1/15/09, p.A2)
2009        Jan 13, Nancy Bird-Walton (93), Australian aviation pioneer, died from natural causes. She was the first woman in Australia to operate a commercial aircraft. Sir Charles Kingsford-Smith, the first man to fly across the mid-Pacific, taught Watson how to fly in 1933, when she was just 17 years old. Two years later, she obtained a commercial pilot's license and began taking paying passengers for joyrides around the country.
    (AP, 1/13/09)
2009        Jan 13, In Austria Umar Israilov (27), a Chechen refugee, was shot dead on a Vienna street. Officials said they had no proof the killing was political, but human rights activists said his death was linked to his opposition to Chechnya's pro-Moscow president. On Jan 28 Austrian authorities arrested seven suspects, all Chechens, in the killing. On February 19 Polish police arrested Turpal Ali J. (31), a man suspected of killing Israilov. In 2010 Austrian investigators concluded that Chechnya Pres. Ramzan Kadyrov ordered the kidnapping of one of his critics and former bodyguards and that Israilov was shot to death when the abduction went awry.  In 2011 an Austrian prosecutor sought life sentences for three Russian men on charges they carried out the murder of the Israilov.
    (AP, 1/28/09)(AP, 2/22/09)(AP, 4/27/10)(AP, 6/1/11)
2009        Jan 13, China's government reported that exports fell at their fastest rate in a decade as the country's trade slump worsened again in December, a decline that's led to masses of layoffs and growing fears of social unrest.
    (AP, 1/13/09)
2009        Jan 13, Ethiopia handed over security duties in neighboring Somalia to a joint force of Somali government security forces and Islamic militiamen, a shift some fear will leave a power vacuum in the lawless African nation.
    (AP, 1/13/09)
2009        Jan 13, Iran’s judiciary announced that 2 men were stoned to death last month for adultery.
    (WSJ, 1/14/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 13, Israeli ground troops closed in on downtown Gaza City, battling Palestinian militants in the streets of a densely populated neighborhood, destroying dozens of homes and sending terrified residents running for cover as gunfire and explosions echoed in the distance. Some 15 rockets and mortar shells were fired toward Israel, causing no injuries. Egyptian mediators pushed the militant Palestinian Hamas group to accept a truce proposal for the embattled Gaza Strip in talks. The UN secretary-general headed to the region to join the multitrack diplomatic efforts for a cease-fire in Israel’s 18-day offensive, in which more than 900 Palestinians have been killed, half of them civilians.
    (AP, 1/13/09)
2009        Jan 13, In Latvia a protest against economic reforms that drew thousands in Riga turned violent as small pockets of rioters clashed with police and attacked government buildings.
    (AP, 1/13/09)
2009        Jan 13, Pirates attacked a Norwegian cable ship off the coast of Nigeria but failed to seize the boat despite gunfire, leaving the crew of 52 unhurt.
    (AFP, 1/13/09)
2009        Jan 13, Russia and Ukraine hotly blamed each other as Russia restarted natural gas supplies but little or no gas flowed toward Europe. EU officials watched in dismay and criticized both nations for their intransigence.
    (AP, 1/13/09)
2009        Jan 13, A Russian warship helped foil an attack on a Dutch container ship by suspected Somali pirates in the dangerous Gulf of Aden.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 13, Sudanese army planes bombed near Muhajiriya in south Darfur, targeting rebels who had rejected a 2006 peace agreement and the unconditional ceasefire declared by Bashir last year.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 13, Swedish truck maker AB Volvo said it will lay off more than 1,600 employees in Sweden as it slows production amid falling demand for trucks.
    (AP, 1/13/09)
2009        Jan 13, The WHO said Zimbabwe's cholera epidemic has killed more than 2,000 people and almost 40,000 have contracted the normally preventable disease in Africa's worst outbreak in nearly a decade.
    (Reuters, 1/13/09)

2009        Jan 14, The US stimulus plan’s price tag, originally estimated at $775 billion, neared $850 billion as a result of negotiator’s decisions to emphasize investments to spur job creation.
    (WSJ, 1/15/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 14, In Atlanta, Georgia, a federal appeals court upheld the state’s voter ID law.
    (WSJ, 1/30/09, p.A13)
2009        Jan 14, Trammell Crow (b.1914, Texas real estate developer, died. His projects included the Dallas Decorative Center (1955) and the 10-million square foot Dallas Market Center. In the 1970s and 1980s Crow was the nation’s biggest real estate developer. In 1981 he founded Wyndham Co., which became one of the nation’s largest hotel chains. 
    (WSJ, 1/17/09, p.A5)
2009        Jan 14, Ricardo Montalban (b.1920), the Mexican-born actor,  died at his home in Los Angeles. His 1980 autobiography was titled "Reflections: A Life in Two Worlds." He became a star in splashy MGM musicals and later as the wish-fulfilling Mr. Roarke in TV's "Fantasy Island" (1978-1984).
    (AP, 1/15/09)
2009        Jan 14, Al-Qaida chief Osama bin Laden urged Muslims to launch a jihad against Israel and condemned Arab governments as allies of the Jewish state in a new message aimed at harnessing anger in the Mideast over the Gaza offensive.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, In Afghanistan 2 British NATO soldiers were killed in a blast in southern Helmand province.
    (AFP, 1/15/09)
2009        Jan 14, In Brazil Cesare Battisti (54), a leftist fugitive who wrote police thrillers while evading a life sentence for two political murders, was granted refugee status in Brazil and an official said he could go free this week. Italy's government protested the decision. Battisti escaped from an Italian prison in 1981 while awaiting trial on four counts of murder allegedly committed when he was a member of the Armed Proletarians for Communism. He fled to France and reinvented himself as a mystery writer. Battisti has repeatedly insisted on his innocence. On March 5, 2010, he was sentenced to two years in prison for passport fraud.
    (AP, 1/14/09)(AFP, 3/6/10)
2009        Jan 14, Canada’s Nortel Networks Corp, North America's biggest telephone equipment maker, filed for bankruptcy, hoping to save a once high-flying business whose decade-long decline has accelerated with the global economic crisis.
    (Reuters, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, Jan Kaplicky (b.1937), a British-based Czech architect, died in Prague just hours after his wife Eliska gave birth to their daughter Johanka. He designed the award-winning media center at Lord's cricket ground in London.
    (AP, 1/15/09)
2009        Jan 14, The developer of a Dubai skyscraper set to soar two-thirds of a mile said it's halting work on the project for a year as the boomtown grapples with the financial crisis.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, A French court acquitted six doctors and pharmacists in the deaths of at least 114 people who contracted a brain-destroying disease after being treated with tainted human growth hormones.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, Shares in Deutsche Bank, Germany's biggest bank, slumped after it announced massive losses for the fourth quarter and new terms for its takeover of giant retail lender Postbank.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, In Iraq two people were killed and two wounded in a suicide car bombing in the northern city of Mosul.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, Italian police arrested Giovanni Setola, a top Mafia fugitive, who had eluded capture earlier this week by climbing through a trap door and into a sewer below his hideout.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, Guerrillas in Lebanon rocketed northern Israel for the second time in a week, drawing Israeli artillery fire and threatening to drag the Jewish state into a second front as diplomatic efforts to broker a truce in Gaza intensified. Gaza health ministry official Dr. Moaiya Hassanain said the offensive has killed 1,000 Palestinians, about half of them civilians, including 300 children. The Israeli navy intercepted an Iranian ship loaded with medicine, food and clothing destined for Gaza and forced the vessel to Egypt instead. Palestinian surveyors estimated that Israel's fierce assault on Gaza's Hamas rulers has destroyed at least $1.4 billion worth of buildings, roads, pipes, power lines and other infrastructure.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, Police in Indian-controlled Kashmir said they have arrested Mohammed Ahsan Dar, the founder and commander of the region's largest rebel group, calling it a major setback for the separatists.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, Pakistan reopened a supply route for NATO and US forces in Afghanistan after tribesmen ended a three-day blockade. Thousands of people protested in Quetta after four police officers were shot dead in what an official said was a sectarian attack against Shiites.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, Philippine officials said weeklong rains have triggered flash floods, landslides and sea surges across the Philippines, leaving at least 11 people dead and another 8 missing.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, Russia and Ukraine wrangled over gas supplies again. Bulgaria and Slovakia, cut off by the row for a freezing week, launched missions to plead for Russian gas flow to be restored.
    (Reuters, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, Saudi Arabia's most senior cleric was quoted as saying it is permissible for 10-year-old girls to marry and those who think they're too young are doing the girls an injustice.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, In Somalia Islamic insurgents fired mortar rounds at the presidential palace and clashed with government forces, leaving at least five civilians dead a day after Ethiopian troops handed over security duties.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, South Africa’s health ministry said the death toll from a cholera outbreak has risen to 15, with more than 2,100 cases registered in a spillover from Zimbabwe's epidemic. The UN said the death toll from Zimbabwe's cholera outbreak has risen to 2,106.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, South Korea's Chosun Ilbo newspaper said North Korean leader Kim Jong Il has reportedly ordered a crackdown on street markets in an apparent move to reassert control over the economy amid an influx of foreign goods into the isolated country.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, Sri Lankan defense officials said troops have established total control over the northern peninsula of Jaffna after flushing out the last remaining pockets of rebel resistance.
    (AFP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, Sudanese security officers arrested iconic opposition leader Hassan al-Turabi (76) two days after he urged the head of state to surrender to the International Criminal Court. Al-Turabi was freed on March 9.
    (AP, 1/14/09)(Reuters, 3/9/09)
2009        Jan 14, The UN Security Council authorized 5,200 UN peacekeepers to replace a 3,300-strong EU force in Chad and Central African Republic, which have been seriously affected by fighting in neighboring Sudan's Darfur region.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, Venezuelan lawmakers approved a proposed constitutional amendment that would allow President Hugo Chavez to run for re-election indefinitely, the final step before the proposal goes before voters in a referendum.
    (AP, 1/14/09)
2009        Jan 14, Venezuela and Bolivia broke off diplomatic relations with Israel to protest its military offensive in Gaza.
    (AP, 1/14/09)

2009        Jan 15, Pres. George W. Bush offered his own first draft of history, summarizing eight years in office. He told the country that while his policies have been unpopular, there can be little debate about the results saying America has gone more than seven years without another terrorist attack on our soil.
    (AP, 1/16/09)
2009        Jan 15, Pres. Bush passed new rules to end over fishing of 40 struggling marine species. Under the rules the nation’s 8 regional fishery management councils must draw up measures to end over fishing by 2010.
    (WSJ, 1/26/09, p.A2)
2009        Jan 15, Eric Holder, Obama’s choice for attorney general, called waterboarding torture and vowed to shut Guantanamo.
    (WSJ, 1/16/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 15, Roland Burris was sworn in as junior senator from Illinois.
    (SFC, 1/16/09, p.A4)
2009        Jan 15, The US dollar strengthened against the ruble to a record 32.40 rubles, well above the high set in 2003. The depreciation was expected to continue.
    (WSJ, 1/16/09, p.C8)
2009        Jan 15, A US Airways Airbus A320 jetliner, piloted by Chesley B. Sullenberger and bound for Charlotte, NC, landed in the Hudson River after both engines failed shortly after takeoff from LaGuardia and an encounter with a flock of geese. All 155 people aboard Flight 1549 survived.
    (AP, 1/16/09)(WSJ, 1/16/09, p.A3)
2009        Jan 15, In western Afghanistan Gen. Fazaludin Sayar, a top Afghan army general, was killed in a helicopter crash. All 12 others aboard were also killed.
    (AP, 1/15/09)
2009        Jan 15, Australia's tropical Queensland state declared a flood disaster over an area the size of France and Germany after recent monsoon storms. The floods are eventually expected to move inland, helping fill lakes and relieving a long-running drought in parts of Australia's desert interior and tropical north.
    (Reuters, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 15, The British government announced its support for a controversial third runway at London's chronically overcrowded Heathrow Airport, despite angry opposition from green groups and locals.
    (AP, 1/15/09)
2009        Jan 15, Bulgarians held a rally outside parliament for the second day to demand that their government resign because of alleged corruption and a deepening economic crisis.
    (AP, 1/15/09)
2009        Jan 15, A police official said Chinese authorities have detained 13 members of a gang suspected of kidnapping and selling children, sometimes swooping by on motorcycles and snatching them in broad daylight. Xinhua News Agency said Su Tonghua (21) was arrested on Dec. 31. His 12 accomplices were arrested last week.
    (AP, 1/15/09)
2009        Jan 15, Denmark's central bank lowered its key interest rate by 0.75 to 3 percent.
    (AP, 1/15/09)
2009        Jan 15, The European Central Bank cuts its key rate by half a point to 2%, matching its lowest level ever, set in December 2005.
    (WSJ, 1/16/09, p.A5)
2009        Jan 15, The last Ethiopian troops backing Somalia's fragile government left Mogadishu, as Islamist forces took control of bases that the Ethiopians had vacated. An Islamist court under Shabab publicly executed politician Abdirahman Ahmed (55) to death by firing squad for showing sympathy for Christianity.
    (AP, 1/15/09)(Econ, 2/28/09, p.48)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abdirahman_Ahmed)
2009        Jan 15, In Hong Kong Grace Mugabe (43), the wife of Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe, struck a photographer in the face repeatedly as her bodyguard grabbed him when he was trying to snap photos of her leaving the five-star Kowloon Shangri-la Hotel. She was later granted diplomatic immunity from prosecution over her alleged assault of the British journalist.
    (AFP, 3/22/09)(http://tinyurl.com/clw9hb)
2009        Jan 15, Iraq's minister of higher education escaped injury when a roadside bomb exploded near his convoy in central Baghdad. A government security guard was killed and four people were wounded in another blast. Iraqi police arrested 13 suspected Sunni insurgents north of Baghdad, including three senior members of an al-Qaida front group.
    (AP, 1/15/09)
2009        Jan 15, The Irish government nationalized Anglo Irish Bank after its chairman, Sean Fitzpatrick, failed to disclose some €83 million in personal loans.
    (Econ, 2/28/09, p.54)(www.gavinsblog.com/2009/01/15/anglo-irish-bank-nationalised/)
2009        Jan 15, Israel shelled the UN headquarters in the Gaza Strip, engulfing the compound and the main warehouse in fire and destroying thousands of pounds of food and humanitarian supplies intended for Palestinian refugees. Fighting killed at least 70 people including 2 top Hamas leaders, Said Siam (49), the minister of the interior, and deputy Salah Abu Sharah. Gaza medical officials said 1,100 Palestinians have been killed since Israel's offensive started Dec. 27. Israeli soldiers used a Palestinian child, later identified as Majd R, as a human shield by forcing him to check for booby traps. In 2010 two Israeli soldiers were convicted of using the child as a human shield. They received suspended sentences and demotions.
    (AP, 1/15/09)(SFC, 1/16/09, p.A2)(AP, 10/3/10)(AP, 11/21/10)
2009        Jan 15, Kazakh lawmakers approved legislation to guarantee at least two political parties are represented in parliament, a move designed to improve the Central Asian nation's tarnished democratic credentials.
    (AP, 1/15/09)
2009        Jan 15, A Luxembourg court ordered Swiss bank UBS AG to pay French financial company Oddo & Cie euro30 million ($40 million) it had invested in a fund linked to the alleged fraud perpetrated by US financier Bernard Madoff.
    (AP, 1/15/09)
2009        Jan 15, Police in New Zealand said they had nabbed a man who was trying to crack a bar's safe after posting security camera footage of the act on the Internet networking site Facebook.
    (AP, 1/15/09)
2009        Jan 15, Pakistani officials said 71 people have been arrested in a crackdown on groups allegedly linked to the Mumbai attacks, while adding that the information India has handed over needs work before it can be used as evidence in court. Pakistan also said security forces had closed five training camps run by Lashkar-e-Taiba, the group blamed for the Mumbai attack, and arrested the entire top, middle and lower-level leadership and those of a related charity. Security forces killed and injured a large number of militants in the Swat valley in the country's northwest. Four local militant commanders died in the clash.
    (AP, 1/15/09)(Reuters, 1/15/09)(AP, 1/16/09)(WSJ, 1/16/09, p.A5)
2009        Jan 15, In the Philippines gunmen abducted three Red Cross workers in a southern Muslim militant stronghold, prompting a search operation by US-backed Filipino troops through dense jungles in the country's worst foreign hostage crisis in nearly eight years. Seven suspects including three police officers were later arrested in connection with a wide-ranging official enquiry into the abductions on the southern island of Jolo. Eugenio Vagni (63), Italian Red Cross worker, was released on July 11. A Swiss and a Filipino, had been freed earlier in the year by the militants.
    (AP, 1/15/09)(AFP, 4/6/09)(AP, 7/11/09)
2009        Jan 15, The US Air Force began airlifting heavy machinery to Rwandan troops serving in an international mission in Darfur, the first time the new US Africa Command has undertaken a large-scale peacekeeper support operation.
    (AP, 1/15/09)
2009        Jan 15, Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis AG said it has secured a $486 million contract to build a new flu vaccine plant in North Carolina.
    (AP, 1/15/09)
2009        Jan 15, Togo agreed to extradite to the US Solano Cortez Jorge, an alleged druglord from Colombia, who was arrested trying to smuggle hundreds of pounds (kilograms) of cocaine through this West African nation last year.
    (AP, 1/16/09)
2009        Jan 15, In Turkmenistan Pres. Gurbanguli Berdymukhamedov fired almost one-third of his Cabinet and the head of the state oil company in a large-scale reshuffle reminiscent of his eccentric predecessor's frequent purges.
    (AP, 1/16/09)
2009        Jan 15, Ukraine rejected Russia's latest request to pipe natural gas westward to increasingly frustrated EU consumers, deepening the bitter economic and political dispute that has paralyzed energy shipments to Europe.
    (AP, 1/15/09)

2009        Jan 16, A US government watchdog said 83 of the nation's 100 largest corporations, including Citigroup, Bank of America and News Corp., had subsidiaries in offshore tax havens in 2007, and some of the companies received federal bailout funding.
    (AP, 1/16/09)
2009        Jan 16, The US Treasury Dept. froze the assets of 4 key al-Qaida operatives including Saad bin Laden, Osama bin Laden’s 3rd son. Mike McConnell, US Director of National Intelligence, said Saad bin Laden is no longer under arrest in Iran and is probably in Pakistan.
    (WSJ, 1/17/09, p.A2)
2009        Jan 16, Citigroup said it is splitting into two businesses as it reported a fourth-quarter net loss of $8.29 billion, its fifth straight quarterly loss.
    (AP, 1/16/09)
2009        Jan 16, Bank of America Corp , posted its first quarterly loss in 17 years and slashed its dividend, hours after winning a multibillion-dollar lifeline from the US government to help absorb Merrill Lynch, which lost a record $15.31 billion in the quarter.
    (AP, 1/16/09)
2009        Jan 16, Kellogg Co. of Battle Creek, Mich., recalled 16 products containing peanut butter due to possible salmonella contamination as federal officials confirmed contamination at a Georgia facility that ships peanut products to 85 food companies. On Jan 21 federal health authorities confirmed that peanut butter and paste made by a Virginia company were the sole sources of the outbreak. The Blakely, Ga., facility was owned by Peanut Corp. of America, based in Lynchburg, Va. In 2013 four former executives of Peanut Corp. were indicted for the outbreak that left 9 people dead and hundreds sickened.
    (SFC, 1/17/09, p.A2)(WSJ, 1/22/09, p.A4)(SFC, 2/22/13, p.A11)
2009        Jan 16, Circuit City, a bankrupt electronics retailer based in Richmond, Va., said it failed to find a buyer and will liquidate its 567 US stores resulting in the loss of some 30,000 jobs. Circuit city’s last day of sales was on March 8.
    (SFC, 1/17/09, p.C1)(SFC, 3/9/09, p.B1)
2009        Jan 16, Artist Andrew Wyeth (b.1917), American artist, died at his home in the Philadelphia suburb of Chadds Ford. He had portrayed the hidden melancholy of the people and landscapes of Pennsylvania's Brandywine Valley and coastal Maine in works such as "Christina's World."
    (AP, 1/16/09)
2009        Jan 16, In Afghanistan 10 people were killed and more than 30 others had to be rescued when avalanches buried their vehicles in the Salang pass north of Kabul.
    (AFP, 1/18/09)
2009        Jan 16, An Algerian customs officer was killed by armed Islamists west of Algiers. The 35-year-old official had his throat slit after being stopped at a fake barricade put up and manned by about 10 armed Islamists at Miliana near Ain Defla.
    (AFP, 1/17/09)
2009        Jan 16, Australia granted asylum to 28 people from Afghanistan and Iran, in the first such move since relaxing tough rules on asylum seekers.
    (AFP, 1/17/09)
2009        Jan 16, British pop star Boy George (47) was sentenced to 15 months in jail for imprisoning a Norwegian male escort (29) after a nude photoshoot. The singer and disc jockey, who stood trial under his real name George O'Dowd, admitted to police to handcuffing Audun Carlsen to his bed on April 28, 2007, as he investigated the Norwegian's alleged tampering with his computer.
    (AFP, 1/16/09)
2009        Jan 16, Farhad Hakimzadeh, a wealthy US businessman with a passion for books about the Middle East, was sentenced to two years in jail for stealing pages from rare texts at two of Britain's most venerable libraries.
    (AP, 1/16/09)
2009        Jan 16, John Mortimer (b.1923), British lawyer and writer, died. He was the creator of the curmudgeonly criminal lawyer Rumpole of the Bailey.
    (AP, 1/16/09)
2009        Jan 16, In eastern Congo the leader of a splinter rebel faction said his forces would stop fighting the government and the two sides would work together to battle Rwandan militias at the heart of the conflict. Ugandan rebels, according to the UN, massacred 100 civilians in Tora, a village in northeast Congo, the latest atrocity blamed on the insurgents.
    (AP, 1/16/09)(AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 16, The EU threatened new sanctions against Robert Mugabe's government in Zimbabwe, blamed for political deadlock, a surging cholera epidemic and runaway inflation. The UN said the death toll from the cholera outbreak had risen to 2,201 and that the epidemic is still not under control.
    (AP, 1/16/09)
2009        Jan 16, Frenchman Lluis Colet broke the world record for the longest speech after rambling nonstop for 124 hours about Spanish painter Salvador Dali, Catalan culture and other topics.
    (AFP, 1/17/09)
2009        Jan 16, In India a herd of nearly 150 hungry elephants rampaged through a village in the remote northeast, trampling to death a young family as they slept in their hut.
    (AP, 1/17/09)
2009        Jan 16, In Iraq a Shiite candidate for provincial elections was assassinated while campaigning south of Baghdad, underscoring fears that political rivalries will lead to a spike in violence ahead of a Jan. 31 vote.
    (AP, 1/16/09)
2009        Jan 16, Israel said it was close to winding up its offensive against Hamas, and diplomats in Washington said the US will provide assurances on ending weapons smuggling into Gaza as part of a cease-fire. More than 1,100 Palestinians have been killed since the war began on Dec. 27, including 346 children. Khaled Mashaal, Hamas' political chief, rejected Israeli conditions for a Gaza cease-fire and demanded an immediate opening of the besieged territory's borders. Dr. Ezzeldeen Abu al-Aish (Izzeldin Abuelaish) told Channel 10 that his house in the northern Gaza strip town of Jebalia had been hit by Israeli shells and his daughters, ages 22, 15 and 14, were killed along with a neighbor girl. In 2011 Dr. Abuelaish authored “I Shall Not Hate: A Gaza Doctor’s Journey on the Road to Peace and Human Dignity.
    (AP, 1/16/09)(AP, 2/5/09)(Econ, 2/26/11, p.91)
2009        Jan 16, Kenya's president declared the country's food crisis a national disaster and asked international donors to contribute $406 million toward emergency food aid. The US and Britain signed legal agreements with Kenya, essentially extradition treaties, in which Kenya agreed to try suspected pirates.
    (AP, 1/16/09)(WSJ, 2/17/09, p.A8)
2009        Jan 16, In Lithuania police used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse some 7,000anti-government protesters throwing rocks and eggs at the Parliament building. They had gathered to demonstrate against unpopular reforms aimed at combating the Baltic state's deepening economic crisis. The Finance Ministry announced it intended to borrow 1 billion euros (US$1.3 billion) from the European Investment Bank to help plug a yawning budget gap.
    (AP, 1/16/09)
2009        Jan 16, Mauritania and Qatar suspended contacts with Israel to protest the Gaza bloodshed at an Arab summit that deepened the divisions between pro-US Arab nations and their rivals in the Middle East.
    (AP, 1/17/09)
2009        Jan 16, Mexico’s central bank, the Bank of Mexico, cut its benchmark interest rate a half point to 7.75%.
    (Econ, 1/24/09, p.42)
2009        Jan 16, Nicaragua’s Supreme Court overturned former President Arnoldo Aleman's conviction and 20-year prison sentence for money laundering, ending a long-running legal saga that has been colored by Nicaragua's political landscape. Hours later Mr. Aleman’s Liberal Constitutional Party ended a filibuster in the National Assembly and voted to let the Sandinistas run the legislature’s affairs.
    (AP, 1/16/09)(Econ, 2/21/09, p.40)
2009        Jan 16, South African police and game park rangers said they have arrested 11 suspects in an international rhinoceros poaching ring. Some of the rhinos had their horns hacked from them while they were still alive.
    (AP, 1/16/09)
2009        Jan 16, In South Korea Yonhap news agency said Busan District Court handed a man named Lim (42) a suspended 30-month sentence for raping his wife (25) at knifepoint. It was the first time a man in traditionally male-dominated South Korea has been convicted of marital rape. Lim was found dead of apparent suicide on Jan 20.
    (AP, 1/16/09)(AP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 16, The UN Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution expressing its intention to establish a UN peacekeeping force in Somalia, but putting off a decision for several months in order to assess the volatile situation in the Horn of Africa nation.
    (AP, 1/17/09)
2009        Jan 16, In Venezuela a takeover of the Caracas City Hall began violently when dozens of armed Chavez supporters wearing ski masks stormed in after shooting at the building and tying up security guards. Chavez backers occupied the civil registry and other municipal buildings to protest Ledezma's decision to cut them off the city payroll. Caracas Mayor Antonio Ledezma took to working from an undisclosed friend's office.
    (AP, 1/31/09)

2009        Jan 17, President-elect Barack Obama rolled into the capital city after pledging to help bring the nation "a new Declaration of Independence" and promising to rise to the stern challenges of the times. He kicked off a four-day inaugural celebration with a daylong rail trip, retracing the path Abraham Lincoln took in 1861.
    (AP, 1/18/09)
2009        Jan 17, The US Department of Defense announced that it transferred six detainees out of Guantanamo, leaving about 245 at the offshore prison. Four detainees were sent to Iraq, one to Algeria and one to Afghanistan. Since 2002, more than 525 detainees have departed Guantanamo. Haji Bismullah (29) of Afghanistan had always insisted that he was no terrorist.
    (AP, 1/18/09)(SFC, 1/19/09, p.A4)
2009        Jan 17, A US researcher who visited the North said North Korea has hardened its stance on disarmament, saying it has "weaponized" plutonium into warheads, but hopes for better ties with President-elect Barack Obama.
    (AP, 1/17/09)
2009        Jan 17, Susanna Foster (84), film star, died. Her dozen films included "The Phantom of the Opera" (1943).
    (SFC, 1/21/09, p.B6)
2009        Jan 17, In Afghanistan a suicide bomb hit outside the German embassy in Kabul, killing four civilians and wounding dozens of people including a US soldier who later died of his injuries.
    (AFP, 1/17/09)
2009        Jan 17, PM Gordon Brown told British banks they must own up to the extent of their bad assets amid more reports his government could launch a fresh bailout of the struggling sector.
    (AP, 1/17/09)
2009        Jan 17, Edmund de Rothschild (93), former chairman of N.M. Rothschild and Sons merchant bank and a noted horticulturist, died at his home in England.
    (AP, 1/21/09)
2009        Jan 17, A human rights groups said Ugandan rebels in eastern Congo have ruthlessly killed at least 620 people in the past month, and vulnerable civilians in the region desperately need protection. According to Ugandan troops, the Lord's Resistance Army rebels set fire to a church in the village of Tora. it was unclear how many people were killed.
    (AP, 1/18/09)(AP, 1/19/09)
2009        Jan 17, A helicopter carrying 10 French soldiers crashed off the coast of Gabon in central Africa. At least 2 survived and 2 were killed as rescuers searched for 6 missing.
    (AP, 1/17/09)
2009        Jan 17, Iran's state news IRNA reported that four Iranians have been convicted and sentenced to prison in an alleged US-backed plot to topple the government.
    (AP, 1/17/09)
2009        Jan 17, Israel bombarded dozens of Hamas targets hours before a government vote on an Egyptian brokered cease-fire, prompting Egypt to demand an immediate halt to the 3-week-old Gaza offensive.
    (AP, 1/17/09)
2009        Jan 17, Malaysia's opposition snatched a parliamentary seat from the beleaguered coalition government, in a by-election seen as a test of the nation's political mood.
    (AFP, 1/17/09)
2009        Jan 17, In Tijuana, Mexico, a prostitute (19) was smothered to death. 2 US sailors, petty officers Jarrett Monzingo and Joshua Dockery, were taken into custody and faced murder and attempted-murder charges while being held at La Mesa Prison.
    (AP, 2/12/09)
2009        Jan 17, Two dehydrated men from Myanmar were found bobbing in an ice box in the Torres Strait off Australia. They told authorities they had spent 25 days adrift after their fishing boat sank. There was no sign of 18 other crew members.
    (AP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 17, Pakistani security forces, backed by artillery and tanks, killed 14 Taliban insurgents in heavy fighting in the Mohmand region on the Afghan border.
    (Reuters, 1/18/09)
2009        Jan 17, Russia and Ukraine held gas crisis talks in Moscow that the European Union said were the "last and best chance" to resolve the row that has left Europe struggling without key gas supplies.
    (AFP, 1/17/09)
2009        Jan 17, Sri Lanka’s Lieutenant General Sarath Fonseka said troops have almost completely cornered the Tamil Tigers in their northeastern jungle base and that the rebels' elusive supremo may already have fled the island.
    (AFP, 1/18/09)
2009        Jan 17, Near Yemen hundreds of people were missing and feared dead after three boats carrying about 400 migrants from Somalia capsized.
    (AP, 1/18/09)

2009        Jan 18, Bob May (69), American TV and film actor, died. He donned the Robot's suit in the hit 1960s television show "Lost in Space" (1965).
    (AP, 1/19/09)
2009        Jan 18, The Polar Mist unexpectedly sank 25 miles (40 kilometers) off the Argentine coast, near the mouth of the Straits of Magellan, as it was being tugged to dry land. 8 crew members had been rescued 2 days earlier. The owners of its cargo said nearly $22 million in unrefined gold and silver went down with it, and they asked insurer Lloyd's of London to foot the bill for the costly recovery operation. Argentine news media and maritime experts asked whether the precious metals were aboard at all. On July 14 divers recovered nearly a ton of unrefined silver from the ship easing suspicions about insurance claims on the vessel. Divers concluded their mission on August 2 to retrieve 9.5 tons of unrefined gold and silver.
    (AP, 4/8/09)(AP, 7/16/09)(AP, 8/3/09)
2009        Jan 18, Australia listed the world's largest sea turtle, the leatherback, as endangered due to the threats posed by overfishing and the unsustainable harvesting of its eggs and meat.
    (AFP, 1/18/09)
2009        Jan 18, The roof of a Brazilian church in Sao Paulo caved in shortly after a religious service, killing 9 people and injuring 106 more.
    (AP, 1/19/09)
2009        Jan 18, British television presenter Tony Hart (83) died. He had charmed generations of children with his artsy antics.
    (AP, 1/18/09)
2009        Jan 18, Central African Republic President Francois Bozize dissolved the government, after pledging to form a unity government at recent peace talks.
    (AFP, 1/18/09)
2009        Jan 18, China’s public security bureau of Lhasa, Tibet, launched a "strike hard" campaign against crime, with raids on residential areas, Internet cafes, bars, rented rooms, hotels and guesthouses.
    (AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 18, Denmark said it is expanding its financial rescue package by lending the country’s banks and mortgage $17.8 billion.
    (SFC, 1/19/09, p.D1)
2009        Jan 18, Dubai said it has reached a deal with Nigeria to invest in the African nation's conflict-ravaged oil industry and other sectors of the economy.
    (AP, 1/18/09)
2009        Jan 18, In El Salvador polls ahead of six-party elections indicated the Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front, a former guerrilla group known as the FMLN, will increase its 32-seat plurality in the 84-member legislature while winning the capital and most of the 262 mayors races up for grabs.
    (AP, 1/18/09)
2009        Jan 18, Militants in Hamas-ruled Gaza agreed to a weeklong cease-fire with Israel, after three weeks of violence that Palestinian medics say has killed more than 1,200 people, about half of them civilians. The announcement came about 12 hours after Israel declared its own unilateral ceasefire. On March 19 a final tally of Palestinians killed in Israel's recent war on Gaza's Hamas rulers was reported to be 1,417, including 926 civilians. A Palestinian human rights groups published the names, ages and other information about the dead on its Web site.
    (AP, 1/18/09)(AP, 3/19/09)
2009        Jan 18, Kyrgyzstan began to come under a massive cyber attack attributed to Russian “cyber-militia." Less than 20% of the country’s 5.3 million population had online access. Proposed reasons for the attacks included the US use of an air base for operations in Afghanistan or a hit on the fledgling Kyrgyz opposition, which has used the Internet to express its discontent.    
    (WSJ, 1/28/09, p.A10)
2009        Jan 18, Moldovan poet Grigore Vieru (b.1935) died in a car crash. He was admired for his courage in promoting Romanian, the country's native language, when Moldova was a Soviet republic. In the 1970s, he wrote "The Little Bee," Moldova's first Romanian-language school manual for young children.
    (AP, 1/19/09)
2009        Jan 18, Nigerian militants attacked a loading vessel, a tanker and a tug boat at a crude oil platform operated by Shell in Bonny and took 8 crew members hostage. One person was killed in the attack. Nigerian rebels holding two British oil workers said they had moved 3 British hostages to another location after what it claimed was a botched rescue attempt by government troops.
    (AFP, 1/18/09)(AP, 1/18/09)
2009        Jan 18, Pakistan’s information minister said the government will push to quickly reopen girls' schools destroyed by Islamic militants in the northwest Swat valley.
    (AP, 1/18/09)
2009        Jan 18, Russia and Ukraine announced a deal to end the bitter dispute that has blocked Russian natural gas from Europe following talks between Russian PM Vladimir Putin and his Ukrainian counterpart Yulia Tymoshenko. Under the terms, Ukraine will pay 20 percent less than the European "market price" price for gas this year, which Russia says is $450 per 1,000 cubic meters. That's more than twice as much as the $179.50 Ukraine paid in 2008.
    (AP, 1/18/09)
2009        Jan 18, The UN-African Union peacekeeping mission said rebels from the Justice and Equality Movement have taken control of Muhajaria town in the western Sudan region of Darfur.
    (AP, 1/19/09)

2009        Jan 19, President George W. Bush In his final acts of clemency granted early prison releases to Jose Alonso Compean and Ignacio Ramos, two former Texas-based US Border Patrol agents whose convictions for shooting a Mexican drug dealer in 2005 fueled the national debate over illegal immigration.
    (AP, 1/20/09)(SFC, 1/20/09, p.A3)
2009        Jan 19, Afghan President Hamid Karzai's office said that Russia is ready to cooperate on defense matters with Afghanistan. The announcement coincided with an increasingly public tussle between Afghan and Western officials.
    (AP, 1/19/09)
2009        Jan 19, The Arab League’s 22 leaders met in Kuwait City for a 2-day session on infrastructure projects and ways to deal with the global financial crises.
    (SFC, 1/19/09, p.D1)
2009        Jan 19, Britain announced a second rescue plan for the country's ailing banks, hoping to thaw frozen lending by offering to insure banks against large-scale losses on bad assets they already hold.
    (AP, 1/19/09)
2009        Jan 19, CAR President Francois Bozize reappointed Faustin-Archange Touadera as prime minister of Central African Republic, just a day after the president dissolved the government.
    (AP, 1/19/09)
2009        Jan 19, Chile's former top air force commander was arrested on charges of taking graft in the 1994 sale of 25 Belgian military planes to the government. Air Force Gen. Ramon Vega and three other retired officers were charged with tax evasion, misappropriation of public funds and improper negotiation.
    (AP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 19, China warned of a rising bird flu risk after a second person died of the virus in less than a month, and said it could be especially dangerous as the nation headed into the Lunar New Year holiday.
    (AP, 1/19/09)
2009        Jan 19, China’s state media reported that nearly 1,000 people have been caught cheating on China's notoriously competitive civil service entrance exams, some with high-tech listening devices in their ears.
    (AP, 1/18/09)
2009        Jan 19, El Salvador's chief leftist party lost its stronghold in the capital but was winning the most seats in the Legislative Assembly.
    (AP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 19, Some 25 people, most of them Haitians, were aboard an overloaded boat that was illegally traveling the 100-mile (160-kilometer) passage from the Dutch territory of St. Maarten to the British Virgin Islands. They were apparently island-hopping in hopes of eventually reaching US shores when the boat hit a reef, pitching passengers into the ocean. 13 migrants were rescued by a passing fishing boat. In September 4 men, two Sri Lankans and two residents of St. Kitts, were convicted and sentenced to prison terms ranging up to 2 1/2 years for organizing the doomed sea voyage from St. Maarten.
    (AP, 1/21/09)(AP, 9/22/09)
2009        Jan 19, Iran's state news agency reported that two internationally renowned Iranian AIDS physicians were among four men sentenced to prison over the weekend for allegedly participating in a US-backed plot to overthrow Iran's Islamic regime. Arash and Kamyar Alaei have been held in prison since June 2008.
    (AP, 1/19/09)
2009        Jan 19, Patrick Rocca (42), Irish property tycoon, was found dead of apparent suicide at his home near Dublin.
    (WSJ, 1/21/09, p.A13)
2009        Jan 19, Israeli officials said they hope to pull all its troops out of the Gaza Strip by the time Barack Obama is inaugurated as president of the United States on Jan 20. This was the last full day of fighting as Hamas fired 19 rockets into Israel. About 1,300 Palestinians and 13 Israelis died in the offensive, which started Dec. 27.
    (AP, 1/19/09)(Econ, 1/24/09, p.53)(AP, 2/11/09)
2009        Jan 19, The International Court of Justice at The Hague ruled that the United States defied its order when authorities in Texas on Aug 5, 2008, executed a Mexican convicted of rape and murder.
    (AP, 1/19/09)
2009        Jan 19, Militant attacks killed a Pakistani soldier near the crucial supply route to US and NATO forces in Afghanistan. Suspected Taliban militants bombed five schools in a nearby valley in their growing campaign against girls' education.
    (AP, 1/19/09)
2009        Jan 19, Russia released a text by President Dmitry Medvedev ordering the government to introduce economic sanctions against countries supplying weapons to Georgia.
    (AP, 1/19/09)
2009        Jan 19, Russia and Ukraine signed a deal that restores natural gas shipments to Ukraine and paves the way for an end to the nearly two-week cutoff of most Russian gas to a freezing Europe.
    (AP, 1/19/09)
2009        Jan 19, In Russia Stanislav Markelov (34), a human-rights lawyer who unsuccessfully fought the early release of a Russian colonel convicted of murdering a Chechen woman, was shot dead on a Moscow street along with reporter Anastasia Baburova (b.1983). Markelov had told reporters he was considering file an international court appeal against the early release of Col. Yuri Budanov, who was convicted in 2003 and sentenced to 10 years, including time served, for strangling 18-year-old Heda Kungayeva in 2000. He admitted to killing her, saying he believed she was a Chechen insurgent sniper. Budanov was freed last week with more than a year left on his murder sentence. On Nov 4 Nikita Tikhonov and a female comrade were detained for the murder and Tikhonov confessed to the crime. On May 6, 2011, Tikhonov was sentenced to life in prison, and his girlfriend received an 18-year sentence.
    (AP, 1/19/09)(Econ, 2/7/09, p.79)(AP, 11/6/09)(Econ, 11/14/09, p.63)(AP, 5/6/11)
2009        Jan 19, Rwanda said it was restoring relations with Germany after a diplomatic spat between the two countries over Berlin's arrest of a top Rwandan official for complicity in the 1994 genocide. A Rwandan court passed a life sentence on Agnes Ntamabyariro, a former justice minister accused of ordering the killing of Jean Baptiste Habyarimana, a Tutsi official who opposed Rwanda's 1994 genocide.
    (AP, 1/19/09)(AFP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 19, The Saudi king said his country will donate $1 billion to help rebuild the Gaza Strip after the devastating Israeli offensive and told Israel that an Arab initiative offering peace will not remain on the table forever. The Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency cut its benchmark lending rate a half point to 2%, and its deposit rate by three-quarters point to .75%.
    (AP, 1/19/09)(WSJ, 1/20/09, p.A11)
2009        Jan 19, An Atheist Bus Campaign's message, translated into Catalan, began appearing on two routes in Barcelona, with plans to extend the campaign to the rest of the country. A campaign with the concise message "There's probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life," took to the road in Britain this month. In Italy buses with the slogan "The bad news is that God does not exist. The good news is that we do not need him" will begin traversing the northern Italian city of Genoa on February 4.
    (AFP, 1/24/09)
2009        Jan 19, In Russia a girl disappeared after leaving her home in St. Petersburg for school. Vity prosecutor's spokesman later Sergei Kapitonov she was killed that night, and that body parts believed to be hers were found in plastic bags scattered around the city. Yuri Mozhnov (19), a florist, and Maxim Golovatskikh (19), a street-market butcher, were arrested on Jan 31 on suspicion of killing her and eating parts of her body.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Jan 19, In Thailand Harry Nicolaides (41), an Australian writer, was sentenced to three years in prison for insulting Thailand's royal family in his novel, a rare conviction of a foreigner amid a crackdown on people and Web sites deemed critical of the monarchy. Bangkok's Criminal Court sentenced Nicolaides to six years behind bars but reduced the term because he had entered a guilty plea. His 2005 book “Verisimilitude" had sold 7 copies. Nicolaides returned home on Feb 21, after he was granted a royal pardon.
    (AP, 1/19/09)(SFC, 1/20/09, p.A3)(AP, 2/21/09)
2009        Jan 19, In Turkey Abdulkarim Kirca committed suicide. He was found shot in the head in his apartment in Ankara, following allegations in the Turkish press that he had been involved in extra-judicial killings of Kurds.
    (Econ, 1/31/09, p.58)(www.journalistinturkey.com/date/2009/01/)
2009        Jan 19, The United Arab Emirates central bank cut its benchmark lending rate a half point to 1%,
    (WSJ, 1/20/09, p.A11)
2009        Jan 19, In Zimbabwe Southern African mediators tried to forge a compromise between Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe and his rival Morgan Tsvangirai, in a last-ditch effort to save a power-sharing deal. The power-sharing talks ended without a deal and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai said no progress was made on what he called the "darkest day of our lives."
    (AFP, 1/19/09)(Reuters, 1/20/09)

2009        Jan 20, In Washington DC some 2 million people packed the National Mall to celebrate the inauguration of Barack Obama as America's 44th and first black president. “The Question we ask today is not whether government is too big or too small, but whether it works." Obama's new administration ordered all federal agencies and departments to stop any pending regulations until they can be reviewed by incoming staff, halting last-minute Bush orders.
    (AP, 1/20/09)(Reuters, 1/20/09)(SFC, 1/21/09, p.A8)
2009        Jan 20, The head of US Central Command said the US has struck deals with Russia and neighboring countries allowing it to transport supplies to American troops in Afghanistan through their territory. US officials have said that one likely route is overland from Russia through Kazakhstan and on through Uzbekistan using trucks and trains. Another possible route is via Azerbaijan across the Caspian Sea to the Kazakh port of Aktau and then through Uzbekistan.
    (AP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 20, State Attorney General Jerry Brown said California will get $54 million as its share of a national settlement with drug maker Eli Lilly & Co. for marketing the antipsychotic drug Zyprexa for unapproved uses. Lilly agreed to pay $1.415 billion to US state and the federal government, the largest recovery in a health care fraud case in US history.
    (SFC, 1/21/09, p.A21)
2009        Jan 20, In SF Edgar Diaz (23), a member of the Down Below Gang, was sentenced to 40 years in federal prison after admitting that he took part in 3 murders: Beverly Robinson in April 2004, and Kenya Taylor and Antoine Morgan in June 2004.
    (SFC, 1/21/09, p.B2)
2009        Jan 20, Jack Markell (b.1960) began serving as governor of Delaware. He made education reform a centerpiece of his tenure.
    (Econ, 3/16/13, SR p.8)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jack_Markell)
2009        Jan 20, Chrysler and Italy’s Fiat confirmed they had reached an agreement on an alliance that would give Fiat a 35% stake in Chrysler, but only if Chrysler gets $3 billion more in financial help from Washington.
    (WSJ, 1/21/09, p.B1)
2009        Jan 20, US software protection firm F-Secure said a computer worm known as "Conficker" or "Downadup" had infected more than nine million computers and was spreading at a rate of one million machines daily.
    (AFP, 1/21/09)
2009        Jan 20, In Afghanistan the coalition said a nighttime raid had killed 19 militants, including Mullah Patang, a locally feared leader, during an operation in the Tagab Valley, in Kapisa province just 30 miles (50 kilometers) north of Kabul. The Afghan news agency Pajhwok quoted villagers saying 25 civilians had been killed. On Jan 27 US commanders traveled to the village and distributed $40,000 to relatives of 15 people killed in the US raid. The Americans also apologized for any civilians killed in the operation.
    (AP, 1/21/09)(AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 20, In Belgium the “Entropa" art installation at the EU headquarters, by Czech artist David Cerny, covered up the part that showed Bulgaria as a squat toilet after protests from the aggrieved nation.
    (AP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 20, The Bank of Canada cut its key interest rate by a half-point to a fresh 50-year low of 1 percent, as expected, and predicted a period of falling prices this year as an economic recession takes hold.
    (AP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 20, The Central African Republic's main opposition grouping said it refused to join PM Faustin-Archange Touadera's government because he failed to play by allegedly established rules.
    (AFP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 20, In Chechnya Hundreds of people rallied in Grozny to protest the slaying of Stanislav Markelov (34), a lawyer who opposed the early release of a Russian army officer convicted of strangling an 18-year-old Chechen woman.
    (AP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 20, In central China a 16-year-old boy infected with the H5N1 bird flu virus died, the country's third fatality from the disease this month.
    (AP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 20, Hundreds of Rwandan troops rolled into the Democratic Republic of Congo to join Congolese forces hunting Rwandan rebels operating there since 1994.
    (AFP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 20, In Iraq the spokesman of PM al-Maliki said Iraq is willing to have the US withdraw all its troops and assume security for the country before the end of 2011, the departure date agreed to by former Pres. George W. Bush. In Baghdad 2 bombings left 5 people dead.
    (AP, 1/21/09)(SFC, 1/21/09, p.A22)
2009        Jan 20, In Japan Toyota tapped Akio Toyoda, grandson of the automaker's founder, as president, paying homage to its roots at a time when the company faces its first operating loss in 70 years.
    (AP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 20, In Kuwait the deeply divided Arab League failed to come up with a plan to reconstruct the devastated Gaza Strip and could not agree on whether to back Egyptian peace efforts to end the crisis.
    (AP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 20, Mexican prosecutors said three heads were found in an ice box south of Ciudad Juarez, which lies across from El Paso, Texas. The heads belonged to three unidentified men and were found in a rural town about 50 kilometers (30 miles) from Ciudad Juarez. A headless body was discovered in a canal a few miles (kilometers) away. Mexican federal police said they have found 3 suspected drug tunnels under construction in Nogales near the Arizona border.
    (AP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 20, Pakistani police said suspected Taliban militants killed six alleged US spies in a lawless region of northwest Pakistan where American missile attacks have reportedly killed several al-Qaida leaders in recent months. A bomb wounded five police officers in Peshawar, the capital of North West Frontier Province. An industry official said bus drivers in northwest Pakistan have begun removing audio and video equipment from their vehicles after Taliban militants threatened suicide attacks against those who played music or movies for their passengers.
    (AP, 1/20/09)(AP, 1/21/09)
2009        Jan 20, In Gaza UN chief Ban Ki-moon voiced sorrow and frustration over the suffering of civilians during Israel’s 3-week war on Hamas rulers. Ismail Radwan, a Hamas legislator, celebrated the blood battles as proof of Hamas strength and defiance.
    (SFC, 1/21/09, p.A21)
2009        Jan 20, Russian gas reached Europe via Ukraine for the first time in two weeks after Moscow and Kiev ended a contract row that cut supplies to about 20 European countries.
    (Reuters, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 20, Saudi Arabia’s prince Alwaleed bin Talal said his conglomerate Kingdom Holding Co. lost about $7.9 billion in 2008.
    (WSJ, 1/21/09, p.A11)
2009        Jan 20, Abdullahi Yusuf (75), Somalia's former president and an ex-warlord who was forced from government, arrived in Yemen in a private jet from his impoverished homeland, seeking political asylum. Islamic insurgents and Somali forces clashed in Mogadishu, killing at least 14 people in the latest sign the Islamists are making inroads into the few areas the UN-backed government still controls.
    (AP, 1/21/09)(AP, 1/21/09)
2009        Jan 20, South Korean police commandos stormed a vacant office building occupied by displaced tenants in central Seoul, sparking a clash and a blaze that killed six people and injured 23.
    (AP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 20, In Spain 6 people of Pakistani origin were arrested on suspicion of "fraud" in Barcelona. They were suspected of financing terrorist activities by carrying out thefts and sending money raised from criminal activities to Pakistan.
    (AFP, 1/20/09)
2009        Jan 20, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez challenged President Barack Obama to remake US policy toward Latin America, but said he isn't holding out much hope for major changes. Police used tear gas, plastic bullets and a water cannon to break up a protest by university students against Chavez's attempt to eliminate term limits.
    (AP, 1/20/09)

2009        Jan 21, President Barack Obama's first public act in office was to institute new limits on lobbyists in his White House and to freeze the salaries of high-paid aides, in a nod to the country's economic turmoil. A judge quickly granted President Barack Obama's request to suspend the war crimes trial at Guantanamo of a young Canadian in what may be the beginning of the end for the Bush administration's system of trying alleged terrorists. Obama took the oath of office again with Chief Justice John Roberts to correct the previous day’s initial flub in wording. In the Memorandum on Transparency and Open Government President Obama instructed the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to issue an Open Government Directive. On Dec 8, 2009, a memorandum was issued implement this.
    (AP, 1/21/09)(Econ, 5/26/12, p.29)(http://tinyurl.com/83n3uhq)

2009        Jan 21, Rev. John Skehan (81), one of two Florida priests accused of embezzling hundreds of thousands of dollars from their church, pleaded guilty as jury selection was set to begin in the case. Prosecutors said he and Rev. Francis Guinan plucked cash from the offering plate and spent it on upscale homes, gambling trips to Las Vegas with a mistress, even a $275,000 rare coin collection. On March 24 Skehan was sentenced to 14 months in prison. On March 25 Guinan was sentenced to 4 years in prison.
    (AP, 1/21/09)(SFC, 1/22/09, p.A3)(SFC, 3/25/09, p.A7)(SFC, 3/26/09, p.A6)
2009        Jan 21, Arizona’s Republican Sec of State, Janice Brewer (b.1944), became governor after Democrat Janet Napolitano vacated her office to become Pres. Obama’s Sec. of Homeland Security.
    (Econ, 11/7/09, p.33)(www.azgovernor.gov/About_Gov.asp)
2009        Jan 21, Haydar Al-Shukri, the director of the Arkansas Earthquake Center at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, said a previously unknown fault, could trigger a magnitude 7 earthquake with an epicenter near a major natural gas pipeline.
    (AP, 1/22/09)
2009        Jan 21, In Missouri a father was arrested in Daviess County after two sealed coolers with the remains of two infants were found. a third child is believed to have died in Oklahoma. A surviving child, a 3-year-old boy, was in state custody. The man was suspected of fathering four children with his teenage daughter and faced charges of killing at least one after human remains were discovered at their rural home.
    (AP, 1/24/09)
2009        Jan 21, In Portland, Oregon, officials said they would begin a criminal investigation into newly elected Mayor Sam Adams (45), who admitted shortly after taking office on January 1 that he had lied during his campaign about a sexual relationship with a much younger gay man.
    (WSJ, 1/24/09, p.A4)
2009        Jan 21, In Blacksburg, Virginia, Haiyang Zhu (25), a Chinese doctoral student at Virginia Tech, decapitated Xin Yang, a new Chinese graduate student.
    (SFC, 1/23/09, p.A4)
2009        Jan 21, Charles Schneer (b.1920), Hollywood film producer, died in Florida. His 25 films included “It Came From Beneath the Sea" (1955) and “Hellcats of the Navy" (1957).
    (SFC, 1/27/09, p.B4)
2009        Jan 21, In Afghanistan a suicide bomber attacked a wedding party in the northern province of Baghlan, wounding five children and a district police chief. A suicide car bomber detonated his explosives near an Afghan army convoy in western Afghanistan, killing two troops.
    (AP, 1/21/09)
2009        Jan 21, Scientists reported that the entire Antarctic continent has been gradually warming since at least 1957.
    (SFC, 1/22/09, p.A10)
2009        Jan 21, Brazil’s central bank cut its benchmark overnight rate, the Selic rate, to 12.75%, the highest rate in the America’s, even considering its nearly 7% inflation.
    (WSJ, 1/22/09, p.A8)
2009        Jan 21, Official data showed Britain's economy is weakening fast, with more figures due this week expected to confirm the country has sunk into recession for the first time since 1991.
    (AP, 1/21/09)
2009        Jan 21, Germany banned the production, sale or possession of a synthetic marijuana-like drug known as "Spice," effective as of Jan 22, becoming the 4th nation to ban the substance, marketed as an herbal room-freshener, after Austria, the Netherlands and Switzerland.
    (AP, 1/21/09)
2009        Jan 21, In northeastern India an Assam Rifles paramilitary soldier shot and killed six of his colleagues, then fled their military camp in a remote and dangerous outpost.
    (AP, 1/22/09)
2009        Jan 21, In Iraq a top Sunni politician escaped assassination in a Baghdad car bombing that killed at least 2 other people. Samira Ahmed Jassim (nickname Umm al-Mumineen), a woman suspected of recruiting more than 80 female suicide bombers, was arrested, dealing a major blow to one of the most effective forms of attacks in Iraq.
    (WSJ, 1/22/09, p.A1)(AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Jan 21, The last Israeli troops left the Gaza Strip before dawn, as Israel dispatched its foreign minister to Europe in a bid to rally international support to end arms smuggling into the Hamas-ruled territory. The Palestinian Center for Human Rights released a final tally, saying 1,284 Gazans were killed and 4,336 wounded, the vast majority civilians. Israel's military said it will investigate charges that its forces used phosphorous shells in a way that burned civilians during the fighting in Gaza. Hamas officials conceded that they are executing Palestinians suspected of collaborating with Israel during the 3-week invasion. Fatah officials said at least 19 of its members have been executed and more brutally tortured. On Sep 9, 2009, the Israeli rights group B'Tselem published figures it said were compiled in months of research, including visits to families of victims. It said 1,387 Gazans were killed, including 773 civilians (including 252 children younger than 16) and 330 combatants. 13 Israelis also died, including 4 civilians.
    (AP, 1/21/09)(SFC, 1/22/09, p.A3)(AP, 9/9/09)
2009        Jan 21, Kosovo armed forces took over security duties, less than a year after the territory declared independence and in the face of strong protests from Serbia.
    (AP, 1/21/09)
2009        Jan 21, Indonesia’s Health Ministry said 2 people have died of bird flu, apparently after contact with sick chickens, raising the country's death toll to 115.
    (AP, 1/21/09)
2009        Jan 21, In Nigeria the best-known militant group in the Niger Delta said one of its allies carried out an attack on a tanker in southern Nigeria in which one Romanian crewman was taken hostage. He was soon released. The MT Meredith, loaded with 4,000 tons of diesel, was attacked by gunmen in speedboats and sustained "massive damage" during the attack.
    (AFP, 1/21/09)(AFP, 1/22/09)
2009        Jan 21, North Korea and Iran, two nations with nuclear aspirations the US wants to thwart, both signaled that they were open to new initiatives from President Barack Obama that could defuse tensions.
    (AP, 1/21/09)
2009        Jan 21, In Pakistan a Saudi called Zabi ul Taifi was among seven Al-Qaida suspects caught when government forces mounted a raid near the northwestern city of Peshawar.
    (AP, 1/22/09)
2009        Jan 21, Portugal became the 3rd euro zone country this month, after Spain and Greece, to have its credit rating cut by Standard & Poor’s.
    (WSJ, 1/22/09, p.A9)
2009        Jan 21, Russia's military said that an old Soviet-built nuclear-powered satellite has spewed fragments in orbit, but insisted they do not threaten the international space station or people on Earth.
    (AP, 1/21/09)
2009        Jan 21, Sri Lanka's military declared a "safety zone" to enable some 250,000 trapped civilians to cross into government-controlled territory from the diminishing area held by Tamil Tiger rebels in the war-torn north.
    (AP, 1/21/09)
2009        Jan 21, Three relatives of Taiwan's former president Chen Shui-bian pleaded guilty to charges of money laundering, as part of a massive corruption case in which the ex-leader has been implicated.
    (AFP, 1/21/09)
2009        Jan 21, Zimbabwe activists launched a hunger strike to demand faster political change and urge African leaders to isolate the country's president, Robert Mugabe, who is accused of overseeing its political and economic collapse.
    (AP, 1/21/09)

2009        Jan 22, President Obama signed an executive order to shutter Guantanamo within one year, fulfilling his campaign promise to close a facility that critics around the world say violates the rights of detainees. Obama also banned the CIA from operating secret prisons.
    (AP, 1/22/09)(WSJ, 1/23/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 22, Pres. Obama named George Mitchell as envoy to the Mideast and Richard Holbrook as envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan.
    (WSJ, 1/23/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 22, US federal agents raided Kuchera Industries and Kuchera Defense systems, 2 small Pennsylvania defense contractors. They were given millions in federal funding by Rep. John Murtha, chairman of the defense appropriations committee. In 2007 the WSJ identified Murtha as the largest earmarker in the House.
    (WSJ, 1/23/09, p.A6)
2009        Jan 22, John Thain (53), former head of Merrill Lynch, was forced out of top job at Bank of America, after it was revealed that he had approved multi-million bonuses for Merrill executives in the wake of big quarterly losses ahead of its acquisition by Bank of America.
    (WSJ, 1/23/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 22, In Bangladesh the Awami League won a landslide victory in the country’s 481 upazilas (subdistricts). Three people were killed, 150 injured and voter intimidation was rife.
    (Econ, 1/31/09, p.50)
2009        Jan 22, In Bolivia the government of President Evo Morales began publishing its own newspaper "Cambio" (Change). Morales grew so irked at the local press last month that he said he would no longer hold press conferences for local reporters and said that only 10 percent of journalists are "honorable."
    (AP, 1/22/09)
2009        Jan 22, Asian economic gloom worsened when China said growth plunged in the final quarter of 2008 while Japan said exports fell at a record pace in December amid weakening Western consumer demand.
    (AP, 1/22/09)
2009        Jan 22, A Chinese court condemned two men to death and gave a dairy boss life in prison in the first sentences handed down in the tainted milk scandal, which ignited public anger and accusations of cover-ups.
    (AP, 1/22/09)
2009        Jan 22, Congolese and Rwandan troops advanced on the headquarters of Tutsi rebel leader, Laurent Nkunda, as Kinshasa used its neighbor to smother a rebellion in eastern DR Congo. Rwanda arrested Congo rebel leader Laurent Nkunda after he fled a joint operation launched by the armies of the two nations.
    (AP, 1/22/09)(AP, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 22, Estonia said it will end its nearly six-year military mission in Iraq after it failed to agree with the Iraqi government on terms for its troop deployment.
    (AP, 1/22/09)
2009        Jan 22, European Union antitrust regulators said they raided Slovakia's main telecom operator last week on suspicion of monopoly abuse.
    (AP, 1/22/09)
2009        Jan 22, In Germany Klaus Zumwinkel (65), the former chief executive of Deutsche Post, admitted in court that he evaded taxes by squirreling money away in Liechtenstein, calling it the greatest mistake of his life. A court on Jan 26 convicted Zumwinkel of tax evasion, giving him a two-year suspended sentence and a hefty fine.
    (AP, 1/22/09)(AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 22, In Iraq gunmen killed eight members of a Sunni family and kidnapped two others in a tense area northeast of Baghdad where Shiite militiamen still operate. A US soldier was killed in a non-combat vehicle accident.
    (AP, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 22, Israel said it is lifting restrictions on foreign journalists entering the Gaza Strip, a ban that had drawn strong criticism from news media.
    (AP, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 22, Mexico inaugurated one of the world’s largest wind farms, a $550 million project built by Spain’s Acciona Energia.
    (SFC, 1/23/09, p.A4)
2009        Jan 22, In Mexico a man accused of helping a drug kingpin dispose of hundreds of victims by dissolving their bodies in caustic soda was arrested in the border city of Tijuana. Authorities said Santiago Meza Lopez confessed to disposing of at least 300 bodies over a decade. Army troops acting on a tip raided a chili-drying warehouse, belonging to the brother of Zacatecas state Sen. Ricardo Monreal, and found people loading marijuana onto trucks. More than 11.4 tons of the drug were seized at the plant, near the city of Fresnillo.
    (AP, 1/23/09)(AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 22, NATO's Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer said President Barack Obama's plan to nearly double American troop numbers in Afghanistan needs to be matched by a similar surge in development workers and aid funding.
    (AP, 1/22/09)
2009        Jan 22, Hundreds of workers toiled in southern Gaza to repair dozens of tunnels dug under tents or fake greenhouses while smugglers brought in food and fuel just days after Israel ended a barrage of bombs and missiles aimed at cutting off the supply route from Egypt.
    (AP, 1/22/09)
2009        Jan 22, Russia's Central Bank said it will widen the ruble's trading range to allow an effective 10 percent devaluation of the national currency.
    (AP, 1/22/09)
2009        Jan 22, The Sri Lankan military shelled a village and a makeshift hospital inside a government-declared "safe zone" for civilians in the north, killing at least 30 people and injuring scores of others, according to local health officials.
    (AP, 1/22/09)
2009        Jan 22, Sudanese troops battled with rebels in southern Darfur, and the fighting killed five rebels and two soldiers.
    (AP, 1/22/09)
2009        Jan 22, Turkey’s police detained 39 more suspects in a new wave of arrests connected with Ergenekon, an alleged secularist plot to bring down the Islamic-rooted government.
    (AP, 1/22/09)(Econ, 1/31/09, p.58)

2009        Jan 23, President Barack Obama struck down the Bush administration's “global gag rule," a ban on giving federal money to international groups that perform abortions or provide abortion information, an inflammatory policy that has bounced in and out of law for the past quarter-century.
    (AP, 1/24/09)(WSJ, 1/24/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 23, US federal fisheries regulators announced rules to protect marine mammals during Navy sonar training along the Atlantic coast and in the Gulf of Mexico. Similar regulations were issued previously by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration covering the West Coast and Hawaii.
    (SFC, 1/24/09, p.A2)(AP, 1/24/09)
2009        Jan 23, Gov. David Paterson picked Democratic US Rep. Kirsten Gillibrand to fill New York's vacant US Senate seat, a day after Caroline Kennedy abruptly withdrew from consideration.
    (AP, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 23, Joseph Bruno (79), former majority leader of the New York Senate, was indicted on federal corruption charges.
    (SFC, 1/24/09, p.A3)
2009        Jan 23, Geron Corp., a Menlo Park, Ca., biotechnology company, announced that it had received a FDA clearance to mount a study of its stem cell treatment for spinal cord injuries in up to 10 patients.
    (WSJ, 1/23/09, p.A12)
2009        Jan 23, In Afghanistan a NATO soldier died in a bomb blast in the south of the country. Taliban militants attacked a police post in Kandahar province sparking a battle in which three policemen died. A roadside bomb blast struck a joint Afghan army and NATO forces convoy in western Farah province, killing an Afghan soldier and wounding five NATO troops.
    (AFP, 1/24/09)
2009        Jan 23, In Australia rescuers poured water on the parched skin of sperm whales beached on a remote sand bank on Perkins Island to keep them alive until the next high tide. All 45 whales died with 2 days.
    (AP, 1/23/09)(AP, 1/24/09)(AP, 1/25/09)
2009        Jan 23, Authorities in the Bahamas charged an island lawmaker and detained two other people in an alleged plot to extort money from actor John Travolta after the death of his son. Sen. Pleasant Bridgewater, an attorney from Grand Bahama, was arrested a day earlier and charged with abetment to extort and conspiracy to extort.
    (AP, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 23, In Belgium Kim De Gelder went on a rampage at a day care center, stabbing two young children and a female worker to death and slashing 10 other children all over their bodies.
    (AP, 1/23/09)(AP, 3/22/13)
2009        Jan 23, Bolivia’s Pres. Evo Morales seized control of Pan-American Energy’s local natural gas producer and warned other privately owned companies they would face similar fates if they do not comply with Bolivian laws.
    (WSJ, 1/24/09, p.A6)
2009        Jan 23, The British economy was officially declared in recession as a galloping economic crisis has driven down the value of the British pound to a 23-year low and threatened to remake the country's political landscape.
    (McClatchy Newspapers, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 23, Colombia's national police chief said that fugitive drug boss Daniel Rendon, the country's leading drug lord, has offered assassins a bounty of $1,000 for each police officer they kill. The defense minister said another 10 Colombian soldiers have been fired for negligence in connection with the killings of civilians to inflate guerrilla casualty figures. A major was the highest ranking of the 10 cashiered soldiers from the Popa Battalion in the northern city of Valledupar.
    (AP, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 23, Indian PM Manmohan Singh was hospitalized and will undergo heart bypass surgery after doctors found blocked arteries.
    (AP, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 23, Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshiyar Zebari said Turkey, Iraq and the United States have agreed to set up a joint command center in northern Iraq to gather intelligence to fight Kurdish PKK rebels in the region.
    (Reuters, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 23, Iraq's top security official called a decision by his government to close Camp Ashraf, housing some 3,500 members of an armed Iranian opposition group north of Baghdad "irreversible," saying the Iraqi authorities do not allow anti-Iran activities on their soil. Members of the terrorist People's Mujahedeen, known as the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq, will either be deported to Iran or be given the option of going to a third country. A bomb hidden inside a traffic police booth exploded in western Baghdad, killing a 7-year-old boy and wounding his mother.
    (AP, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 23, Japan’s space agency (JAXA) launched Ibuki (breath), the first satellite dedicated to monitoring carbon dioxide emissions. Officials hoped to gather information on climate change and help the country compete in the lucrative satellite-launching business.
    (AP, 1/23/09)(Econ, 2/14/09, p.90)
2009        Jan 23, Officials said Liberia's worst caterpillar plague in three decades has spread to neighboring Guinea after swarms of the crop-eating insects devastated more than 45 towns.
    (AP, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 23, In northern Norway an off-duty police officer shot and killed his ex-girlfriend with another officer's service pistol, then critically wounded himself outside the elementary school where she was a student teacher.
    (AP, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 23, In Pakistan 2 suspected US missile attacks killed 14 people just east of the Afghan border. At least five victims were identified as foreign militants. A suicide attack and a roadside bomb killed two soldiers and three civilians in the Swat Valley.
    (AP, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 23, In Puerto Rico three of five co-defendants reached plea agreements days after another co-defendant, former Acevedo aide Eneidy Coreano, agreed to testify in a federal corruption trial against former Gov. Anibal Acevedo Vila and have her charges dropped.
    (AP, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 23, Said Ali al-Shihri, a Saudi man released from Guantanamo after spending nearly six years inside the US prison camp, is now the No. 2 of Yemen's al-Qaida branch, according to a purported Internet statement from the terror network.
    (AP, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 23, In Sri Lanka assailants on motorbikes attacked and wounded a newspaper editor and his wife as they drove to work, the latest in a string of assault on journalists.
    (AP, 1/23/09)
2009        Jan 23, In Zimbabwe city workers in Harare began an indefinite strike, demanding to be paid in hard currency. President Robert Mugabe's ruling party refused to budge on opposition demands for a unity government, whose fate hinges on the outcome of a regional summit next week. The WHO said cholera in Zimbabwe has so far killed 2,773 people.
    (AP, 1/23/09)(AFP, 1/23/09)

2009        Jan 24, President Barack Obama took to the airwaves to promote his economic aid plan in what's-it-mean-to-me terms: thousands of better schools, lower electricity bills, health coverage for millions who lose insurance.
    (AP, 1/24/09)
2009        Jan 24, In Las Vegas Miss Indiana Katie Stam was crowned Miss America 2009 by Miss America 2008 Kirsten Haglund.
    (AP, 1/25/09)
2009        Jan 24, In Kansas two people were killed and seven wounded in a shooting on the ninth day of the wake at a house in Wichita.
    (AP, 1/25/09)
2009        Jan 24, In eastern Afghanistan US-led coalition forces killed 15 militants in an overnight operation in Laghman province. Local legislators put the number of dead at more than 20 and said they included women and children.
    (AP, 1/24/09)
2009        Jan 24, Bahamas Sen. Pleasant Bridgewater, accused of trying to extort money from actor John Travolta after his son's death, resigned and vowed to prove her innocence.
    (AP, 1/24/09)
2009        Jan 24, Mariana Bridi (20), Brazilian model, died from complications related to a generalized infection caused by the bacteria Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The bacteria is known to be resistant to multiple kinds of antibiotics. The infection reduced the flow of oxygen to her limbs, causing her feet to be amputated last week and her hands this week.
    (AP, 1/24/09)
2009        Jan 24, China announced the death of a 31-year-old woman from bird flu, its fourth human victim this year, sparking fears of an outbreak during the country's main festive season.
    (AFP, 1/24/09)
2009        Jan 24, In El Salvador final results showed that the former leftist rebels won more seats than any other party in legislative elections but fell short of a majority.
    (AP, 1/24/09)
2009        Jan 24, In India a right-wing Hindu nationalist group, outraged by what they viewed as "obscene" behavior, stormed a fashionable bar in the southern city of Mangalore and the assaulted female patrons. The Sri Ram Sena (Lord Ram's Army) claimed responsibility for the attack.
    (AFP, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 24, In Iraq a suicide car bomber struck a police patrol in the former insurgent stronghold of Karmah west of Baghdad, killing four people, including a senior officer, and wounding six others. Gunmen opened fire on a checkpoint south of the capital manned by government-backed Sunni fighters who have joined forces with the Americans against al-Qaida in Iraq. Two of the so-called Sons of Iraq were killed in the attack in Jurf al-Sakr and two others were wounded. North of Baghdad a man and a woman were killed and a child was wounded during a US-Iraqi military operation in Hawija.
    (AP, 1/24/09)
2009        Jan 24, In Italy some 600 migrants and refugees broke out of an overcrowded immigration facility on the Sicilian island of Lampedusa to protest their treatment. The migrants returned to the facility after several hours.
    (AP, 1/24/09)
2009        Jan 24, Pakistan urged President Barack Obama to halt US missile strikes on al-Qaida strongholds near the Afghan border, saying that civilians were killed the previous day in the first attacks since Obama's inauguration.
    (AP, 1/24/09)
2009        Jan 24, In Singapore a couple treated open air diners to a 15-minute naked parade, triggering both embarrassment and applause for a scene almost unheard of in the conservative city-state. The couple, a Caucasian man and an ethnic Chinese woman in their 20s, were arrested and released on bail.
    (Reuters, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 24, In Somalia 17 people were killed in Mogadishu by a suicide car bomb targeting African Union peacekeepers. The dead included a police officer, who tried to stop the suicide bomber’s car. A gunfight between peacekeepers and insurgents followed left 5 more dead.
    (AFP, 1/24/09)(AFP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 24, In South Korea Kang Ho-sun (38) was arrested at his workplace in Ansan, a city about 20 miles (30 kilometers) south of Seoul, in connection with the killing of a student who disappeared last month. Her body was found in a nearby town the next day. Kang later confessed to kidnapping and killing the student and then admitted to slaying six other women between December 2006 and December 2008.
    (AP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 24, A storm killed 11 people in Spain, including four children who were killed when a sports center collapsed near Barcelona, and four in France as high winds swept across Spain and southern France.
    (AP, 1/24/09)(AP, 1/25/09)
2009        Jan 24, Sudanese government planes bombed a key town in south Darfur, a week after it was seized by Darfuri JEM rebels. The next day peacekeepers said the bomb attack killed and wounded civilians.
    (Reuters, 1/24/09)(Reuters, 1/25/09)
2009        Jan 24, Pope Benedict rehabilitated four traditionalist bishops who lead the far-right Society of Saint Pius X (SSPX), which has about 600,000 members and rejects modernizations of Roman Catholic worship and doctrine. One of the four, British-born Richard Williamson, has made statements denying the full extent of the Nazi Holocaust of European Jews, as accepted by mainstream historians.
    (Reuters, 1/26/09)

2009        Jan 25, Afghan President Hamid Karzai condemned a US operation he said killed 16 civilians, while hundreds of villagers in Laghman province denounced the American military during an angry demonstration.
    (AP, 1/25/09)
2009        Jan 25, Bolivians easily approved a new constitution aimed at increasing their strength while allowing leftist President Evo Morales a shot at staying in power through 2014. The proposed document grants new rights to more than 5 million indigenous inhabitants of 35 distinct “nations." It would create a new Congress with seats reserved for Bolivia's smaller indigenous groups and eliminates any mention of the Roman Catholic Church, instead recognizing and honoring the Pachamama, an Andean earth deity.
    (AP, 1/25/09)(SSFC, 1/25/09, p.A6)(AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 25, In China a Richter scale 5.0 earthquake hit an area inhabited by the Xibe people. It destroyed nearly 200 homes and damaged nearly 3,000 buildings. The community, originally from Manchuria, had established a frontier garrison in Xinjiang during the Qing dynasty.
    (Reuters, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 25, Indian police shot dead two suspected militants from Pakistan in a pre-dawn car chase near New Delhi.
    (AP, 1/25/09)
2009        Jan 25, Liberia’s Ministry of Agriculture said it has set up a command post and called on international experts to help fight an invasion by millions of crop-devouring caterpillars that are eating their way across the country with dire economic consequences.
    (AP, 1/25/09)
2009        Jan 25, In Mexico Chiapas state Attorney General Raciel Lopez said Mariano Herran has been charged with embezzling funds while working as Chiapas economy secretary last year. Herran was Mexico's drug czar from 1997 to 2000, replacing Gen. Jesus Gutierrez Rebollo, who was convicted of aiding a top drug lord.
    (AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 25, Sri Lankan troops overran the last town controlled by Tamil rebels, striking a major blow in Asia's longest-running ethnic conflict.
    (AFP, 1/25/09)
2009        Jan 25, An avalanche slammed into a group of Turkish hikers on a trip to a remote mountain plateau, dragging them more than (1640 feet) 500 meters into a valley and fatally burying 10 of them.
    (AP, 1/25/09)
2009        Jan 25, A small ferry overloaded with holiday shoppers sank in central Vietnam, killing at least 40 people ahead of the traditional Lunar New Year. Most of the dead were women and children.
    (AP, 1/25/09)

2009        Jan 26, President Barack Obama said the nation can't afford "distractions" or "delays" when it comes to the economic stimulus plan working its way through Congress. He also ordered the government to re-examine whether California and other states should be allowed to have tougher auto emission standards, a clean break from Bush administration policy.
    (AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, The US Senate voted 60-34 to confirm Timothy Geithner (b.1961) as Treasury secretary.
    (WSJ, 1/27/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 26, The US Supreme Court ruled unanimously that managers cannot retaliate against employees whop cooperate with discrimination probes.
    (WSJ, 1/27/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 26, Fannie Mae estimated that it would need a capital infusion of 11-16 billion dollars from the US Treasury to cover losses related to home mortgage defaults.
    (WSJ, 1/27/09, p.A4)
2009        Jan 26, Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich skipped the start of his impeachment trial preferring to make his case on national TV.
    (WSJ, 1/27/09, p.A3)
2009        Jan 26, Two Pennsylvania judges were charged with taking millions of dollars in kickbacks to send teenagers to two privately run youth detention centers. Prosecutors later said Luzerne County Judges Mark Ciavarella (58) and Michael Conahan (56) took $2.6 million in payoffs to put juvenile offenders in lockups run by PA Child Care LLC and a sister company, Western PA Child Care LLC. Conahan soon pleaded guilty to a single count of racketeering. The “kids for cash" trial against Ciavarella began in 2011. On Feb 18, 2011, Ciavarella was convicted of racketeering. On Aug 11, 2011, Ciavarella was sentenced to 28 years in prison. On Sep 23 Conahan was sentenced to 17.5 years in prison. On Nov 4, 2011, Robert Powell, the former owner of 2-for profit juvenile detention centers, was sentenced to 18 months in prison for his role in the scheme. In 2014 builder Robert Mericle was sentenced to a year in jail and fined $250k for his role in the kids for cash scandal. On August 10, 2015, a federal judge approved a $4.75 million settlement between Powell and some 2,400 juveniles.
    (AP, 2/11/09)(SFC, 2/7/11, p.A4)(SFC, 2/19/11, p.A6)(SFC, 8/12/11, p.A5)(SFC, 9/24/11, p.A4)(SFC, 11/5/11, p.A5)(SFC, 4/26/14, p.A6)(SFC, 8/13/15, p.A6)
2009        Jan 26, Nicholas Cosmo, founder of Agape World Inc., was arrested for running a Ponzi scheme that bilked investors of an estimated $370 million. His Long Island, NY, firm promised profits of 48-80% a year.
    (WSJ, 1/28/09, p.A12)(www.time.com/time/business/article/0,8599,1874283,00.html)
2009        Jan 26, Caterpillar Inc announced it would cut nearly 20,000 jobs and warned of a tough year ahead as a downturn that began in the United States metastasized into a full-blown global recession, gutting orders for earth-moving equipment. At least 1,500 of the lost jobs were in greater Peoria, Ill.
    (Reuters, 1/26/09)(Econ, 2/21/09, p.37)
2009        Jan 26, Halliburton said is has agreed to pay $559 million to the US to settle charges that one of its former units bribed Nigerian officials during the construction of a gas plant.
    (WSJ, 1/27/09, p.B3)
2009        Jan 26, Home Depot Inc. announced plans to eliminate 7,000 jobs while closing four dozen stores under its smaller home improvement brands as the recession continues to batter the nation's housing market. Its shares climbed more than 5 percent in morning trading.
    (AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, Pfizer Inc. said it is buying rival drug maker Wyeth in a $68 billion deal that will increase its revenue by 50%. At the same time Pfizer announced cost cuts that include slashing more than 8,000 jobs as it prepares for an expected revenue crash when its cholesterol drug Lipitor loses patent protection in November 2011. Pfizer also said it has agreed to pay $2.3 billion to settle a federal investigation into its alleged off-label marketing of the now withdrawn painkiller Bextra.
    (AP, 1/26/09)(WSJ, 1/27/09, p.B2)
2009        Jan 26, In Bellflower, California, Nadya Suleman (33) gave birth to eight babies, only the second time in history octuplets have survived more than a few hours. The woman already had six other children and never expected to have eight more when she took fertility treatment. Her mother later said the woman had conceived all 14 of her children through in vitro fertilization, is not married and has been obsessed with having children since she was a teenager.
    (AP, 1/27/09)(AP, 1/30/09)(AP, 1/31/09)(SFC, 1/31/09, p.A2)
2009        Jan 26, Argentina's Pres. Cristina Fernandez declared an agricultural emergency in the nation's breadbasket provinces, responding to a key demand by powerful farm organizations amid the worst drought in decades.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 26, A Bahamas paramedic was charged in an alleged scheme to extort $25 million from John Travolta after his chronically ill son died of a seizure at the family's vacation home.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 26, China greeted the arrival of the Year of the Ox with fireworks and celebrations, bidding farewell to a tumultuous 2008 marked by a massive earthquake, the Olympics, and a global economic crisis.
    (AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, China’s state media reported that an 18-year-old man has died from bird flu in southern China, the fifth human death from the virus in the country this year.
    (AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, The armies of Congo and Rwanda, battling together against Rwandan Hutu militiamen in eastern Congo, clashed with fighters trying to retake a village and killed 4 of them.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 26, It was reported that recent analysis of vials of treated wastewater taken from a plant in Patancheru, where about 90 Indian drug factories dump their residues, enough of a single, powerful antibiotic was being spewed into one stream each day to treat every person in a city of 90,000.
    (AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, Iran’s state radio reported that several members of its border security forces were killed in an ambush near the Pakistani border.
    (AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, In the Netherlands the first-ever trial of the International Criminal Court began at The Hague with Thomas Lubanga, a Congolese militia commander, denying he committed war crimes by recruiting hundreds of child soldiers to kill and rape.
    (AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, European Union leaders said they were willing to take in prisoners being released from the US detention camp at Guantanamo Bay, but stressed that American authorities must show ex-inmates pose no security threat before they can be resettled.
    (AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, The European Union decided to remove an Iranian opposition group from the EU's terror list and lift the restrictions on its funds, a move likely to further damage relations strained over Tehran's nuclear program.
    (AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, European Union nations announced the addition of 27 Zimbabwean officials and 36 companies to the EU's visa and assets freeze blacklist to pressure President Robert Mugabe to share power with Zimbabwe's opposition.
    (AP, 1/26/09)(Econ, 1/31/09, p.52)
2009        Jan 26, Iceland's coalition government collapsed, leaving the island nation in political turmoil amid a financial crisis that has pummeled its economy and required an international bailout to keep the country afloat.
    (AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, In northern Iraq 2 US helicopters crashed in Tamim province, killing four American troops, in the deadliest single incident for US forces in more than four months. Enemy fire was later reported as the cause of the collision.
    (AP, 1/26/09)(WSJ, 2/28/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 26, In Madagascar thousands of demonstrators demanding a new government in Madagascar took to the streets and set the country's state TV complex on fire to protest the apparent shutdown of the opposition's radio station.
    (AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, Norway announced a 20 billion kroner ($2.89 billion) stimulus package to boost growth and employment.
    (WSJ, 1/27/09, p.A8)
2009        Jan 26, In northwest Pakistan a bomb rigged to a bicycle exploded on a major road in Dera Ismail Khan, killing at least five people and wounding 20 in the latest attack to rattle the volatile region. In the southwest gunmen shot dead the leader of a small Shiite political party in Quetta, triggering violent protests. Several hundred people torched vehicles and a bank. Elsewhere in the northwest a man whom militants accused of spying for America was found shot dead in Datta Khel village in North Waziristan.
    (AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, Southern African leaders opened fresh talks in Pretoria to end Zimbabwe's political crisis amid a new threat by President Robert Mugabe to form a government excluding his arch rival from power.
    (AFP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, Spain's Prado Museum named Asensio Julia as the workshop assistant believed mostly likely to have painted "Colossus" (1808-1912), a work that was once attributed to Francisco de Goya y Lucientes.
    (AP, 1/26/09)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Colossus)
2009        Jan 26, A UN spokesman in Colombo said dozens of civilians have been killed in Sri Lanka's embattled north during ongoing heavy fighting between government troops and Tamil rebels. At least 10 civilians were killed today inside an area declared as a "safety zone." Over the weekend, dozens of people were killed or wounded.
    (AFP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, Sudanese warplanes bombed Darfur rebel positions near the key town of El-Fasher ahead of an expected ground offensive.
    (AFP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, The Economist magazine said this week's edition has not been distributed in Thailand because of local objections to an article about the royal family, the second disruption in two months.
    (AP, 1/26/09)
2009        Jan 26, The Thai navy detained a boat filled with 78 illegal Rohingya migrants, many of whom had lacerations and burns they said were inflicted by Myanmar soldiers.
    (AP, 1/27/09)

2009        Jan 27, President Barack Obama chose an Arabic-language satellite TV network for his first formal television interview as president, delivering a message to the Muslim world that "Americans are not your enemy."
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, Eddied Perez (b.1957, former gang leader and mayor of Hartford, Connecticut, surrendered to police to face a bribery charge related to home renovations.
    (SFC, 1/28/09, p.A4)
2009        Jan 27, In California federal prosecutors said purchasing managers for Kraft Foods and Frito-Lay have admitted to taking $318,000 in bribes from Randall Rahal, a former sales broker for SK Foods of Lemoore, a major Central California tomato processor. On August 11 Robert Watson (59), former Kraft Foods purchasing manager, was sentenced to 2 years and 3 months for taking $158,000 in bribes.
    (SFC, 1/28/09, p.B3)(SFC, 8/12/09, p.D2)
2009        Jan 27, The social-networking site Facebook removed a group whose title advocated raising money so a gunman could be hired to "liquidate" Bolivia's leftist president, Evo Morales. The Spanish-language group, created in August, had 8,069 members and had drawn the attention of at least one outraged blogger, when The Associated Press alerted Facebook. Creator Hony Pierola (20) denied any malice.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, A new study led by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said climate change is "largely irreversible" for the next 1,000 years even if carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions could be abruptly halted.
    (AFP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, Near Los Angeles police found the bodies of 7 people at a home in Wilmington.  Ervin Lupoe (40) killed his five children and his wife before turning the gun on himself. Both adults were recently fired from their hospital jobs.
    (AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 27, John Updike (b.1932), American writer and poet, died of lung cancer. He released more than 60 books, including 28 novels, in a career that started in the 1950s, winning virtually every literary prize. In 2014 Adam Begley authored “Updike."
    (AP, 1/28/09)(Econ, 1/31/09, p.89)(SSFC, 4/13/14, p.F3)
2009        Jan 27, Gunmen abducted 10 Afghan workers in a daring ambush in Herat. 2 local UN staff, kidnapped on New Year’s Day by alleged Taliban militants, were freed. One captive was already freed, but 3 remained hostage. A roadside bomb struck a vehicle carrying civilians in Kandahar province, killing four and wounding nine.
    (AFP, 1/28/09)(AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 27, In Bahrain police fired tear gas at dozens of rioters as the public prosecutor charged three Shiite Muslim activists with promoting a coup.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, In Brazil some 100,000 activists of all stripes converged on the Amazon city of Belem, opening the 9th World Social Forum.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, Brazil established a new set of bureaucratic hoops for importers, raising worries about creeping protectionism.
    (WSJ, 1/28/09, p.A10)
2009        Jan 27, Lord Mandelson, business secretary to Britain’s PM Gordon Brown, announced loan guarantees of up to 2.3 billion pounds (2.5 billion euros, 3.2 billion dollars) in credit funding for its ailing auto industry.
    (AP, 1/27/09)(Econ, 1/31/09, p.63)
2009        Jan 27, Canada's Conservative government unveiled a two-year C$40 billion ($32 billion) stimulus package to help pull the economy out of recession, laying out plans for a budget deficit for the first time after 11 straight years of surplus.
    (Reuters, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, The UN refugee agency said thousands of Congolese civilians have fled across the border to South Sudan to escape rebels of the Lord's Resistance Army.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, Iceland's center-left Social Democratic Alliance Party was chosen to lead the country following the collapse of the island nation's government amid deep economic troubles and intense political discord.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, Iceland raised it quota on whale hunting to 250 a year, a dramatic increase over past levels.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, Ramaswamy Venkataraman (98), India's eighth president (1987-1992), died. He helped draft the country's 1950 constitution.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, Indonesian police opened fire on hundreds of people in Papua province during a protest against alleged police violence. 4 people were injured.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, In Iraq a car bomb exploded near a Kurdish party's office in the northern city of Mosul, killing at least three Iraqi soldiers only days before pivotal elections. A Sunni insurgent group claimed responsibility for downing two US helicopters that crashed a day earlier, killing four US troops. The US military denied the claim.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, Jamaican police said a gunman shot a woman (55) in her one-room wooden shack and then set it ablaze, leaving her 3 grandchildren to perish alongside her in the fire.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, Japan announced a $16.7 billion stimulus package to help businesses that have en decimated by the global financial crisis.
    (www.uiowa.edu/ifdebook/timeline/Credit_Crisis_Timeline.pdf)
2009        Jan 27, Japan’s No. 38 Yoshi Maru fishing boat was seized by Russian authorities in waters between the two countries and was taken to the Russian port of Nakhodka. On Feb 7 Russian authorities released all 10 Japanese crew members seized after allegedly straying into Russian waters.
    (AFP, 1/28/09)(AP, 2/7/09)
2009        Jan 27, In Mexico thieves, apparently targeting people who exchange money at Mexico City's international airport, shot a French citizen in the head. Authorities warned that gangs have put lookouts at exchange windows in the terminal. Mexico City prosecutors soon detained two suspects in the shooting. French scientist Christopher Augur died at a Mexico City hospital four days after his assault.
    (AP, 1/27/09)(AP, 1/30/09)(AP, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 27, Pakistani tribal elders urged the government to stop military operations against Taliban militants in tribal areas bordering Afghanistan and to start peace talks.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, Palestinian militants detonated a bomb that killed an Israeli soldier patrolling near Gaza and Israel responded with an airstrike. Not long after the bombing, a 27-year-old Gaza farmer was killed by Israeli gunfire along the border several miles away. An Israeli airstrike wounded 2 men, at least one of whom was a Hamas gunman. Israel closed its crossings into Gaza to humanitarian aid traffic after briefly opening them.
    (AP, 1/27/09)(SFC, 1/28/09, p.A2)
2009        Jan 27, Pacific Island leaders gathered in Port Moresby and threatened to expel Fiji from their forum if coup leader Frank Bainimarama fails to announce credible plans for elections.
    (Econ, 1/31/09, p.48)(www.abc.net.au/pm/content/2008/s2475598.htm)
2009        Jan 27, A Peruvian court freed two men accused of belonging to a military death squad linked to several massacres in the early 1990s, after the suspects completed six years in prison without a conviction. Douglas Arteaga Pascual and Angel Pino Diaz were charged in 2001 and accused of belonging to a death squad known as the "Colina group." A verdict was expected this year.
    (AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 27, Russian Orthodox bishops, monks and laymen voted for a new head for the world's second largest Christian church in a contest between a powerful modernizer and an influential conservative. Metropolitan Kirill (62) defeated a conservative rival, Metropolitan Kliment, with 508 of 700 votes.
    (AP, 1/27/09)(SFC, 2/2/09, p.A3)
2009        Jan 27, In South Africa the 15-nation SADC grouping said after a meeting, its fifth attempt to secure a deal on forming a unity government, it had agreed that opposition MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai should be sworn in as prime minister by February 11. An analyst said chances for a deal appeared slim. The recently introduced 10 trillion Zimbabwean dollar note cannot buy a loaf of bread, which costs Z$30 trillion. Two weeks ago, a loaf of bread cost Z$30 billion.
    (Reuters, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, South Korea’s central bank announced that a woman will appear on its banknotes for the first time, with the issuance of a new 50,000-won ($36) bill.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, In Sri Lanka a health official alleged that at least 300 civilians were wounded and scores feared killed by Sri Lankan army artillery shells fired into a designated "safe zone" for ethnic Tamils trapped by fighting between the military and Tamil rebels.
    (AP, 1/27/09)
2009        Jan 27, Sudanese armed forces waged air strikes and artillery attacks on rebels in two key areas of Darfur for a second day.
    (AFP, 1/27/09)

2009        Jan 28, President Barack Obama signed requests from Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear and Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe for federal emergency declarations as crews worked around the clock to resurrect power lines downed by thick ice in both states. Since the storm began building on Jan 26, the weather has been blamed for at least six deaths in Texas, four in Arkansas, three in Virginia, six in Missouri, two in Oklahoma, and one each in Indiana and Ohio.
    (AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 28, A White House official said President Barack Obama will press Afghan President Hamid Karzai to extend government control beyond the capital and fight corruption under a new US policy with a "significant non-military component."
    (AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, US federal regulators guaranteed $80 billion in uninsured deposits at the institutions that service the nation’s credit unions.
    (WSJ, 1/29/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 28, Peanut Corp. expanded its recall to all peanut products produced at its Blakely, Ga., plant since Jan 1, 2007, due to a salmonella outbreak.
    (SFC, 1/29/09, p.A3)
2009        Jan 28, Billy Powell (56), Lynyrd Skynyrd keyboard player, died in Florida. He played on such hits as "Sweet Home Alabama" and survived the Oct 20, 1977, plane crash that killed three band members.
    (AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 28, Five African and international human rights groups called on the African Union to press Senegal to move forward with the trial of former Chadian dictator Hissene Habre.
    (AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, Albania awarded a 35-year concession to the British-Swiss Zumax AG group for a euro1.18 billion ($1.55 billion) container terminal for ships in southwestern Albania.
    (AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, China’s state media said at least 81 people have been detained as the country launched a security sweep in Tibet ahead of one of the region's most sensitive anniversaries in years.
    (AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, Cuba’s President Raul Castro began the first visit to Russia by a Cuban leader since the end of the Cold War, the latest sign of reviving ties between the two countries.
    (Reuters, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, El Salvador police said they found the remains of what they believe to be eight to 10 gang victims at the bottom of a well in Tonacatepeque, located outside San Salvador.
    (AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 28, The European Union promised billions of dollars in aid to the world's poorest nations to entice them to sign a new global climate change pact.
    (AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, French PM Francois Fillon said 1,000 French 1,650 soldiers would be pulled out from the EUFOR mission to protect refugees in Chad. He also says France's 1,800-strong contingent in Ivory Coast will be reduced by half.
    (AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, In Iceland both parties of the new coalition government supported the appointment of social affairs minister Johanna Sigurdardottir (66), an openly gay former air hostess, as interim prime minister.
    (SFC, 1/29/09, p.A8)(Econ, 5/2/09, p.52)
2009        Jan 28, In Iraq special voting began for those needed on duty for Jan 31 elections, such as security forces and government officials. Iraqis held in detention also were expected to take part in the early voting.
    (AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, Israeli warplanes struck Gaza smuggling tunnels and a weapons factory. There were no reports of casualties. George Mitchell, Pres. Obama's new Mideast envoy, said a long-term Gaza truce must be based on an end to weapons smuggling to Hamas and the re-opening of the territory's blockaded borders.
    (AP, 1/28/09)(AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 28, Israel’s chief rabbinate cut ties with the Vatican to protest the reinstatement of English-born Bishop Richard Williamson (b.1940), who has continued to deny the Holocaust. Williamson was excommunicated by the Roman Catholic Church in 1988 because of his unauthorized consecration by French Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, deemed by the Holy See to be "unlawful" and "a schismatic act."
     (WSJ, 1/29/09, p.A1)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Williamson_(bishop))
2009        Jan 28, Japan's defense minister ordered the dispatch of ships to fight pirates off the shores of Somalia, joining other countries in the battle against the outlaws.
    (AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, Japan’s territorial row with Russia was re-ignited as Japan announced that it had cancelled humanitarian aid to the four disputed Russian-held islands, north of Japan's main northern island of Hokkaido, following new Russian demand that a disembarkation card be submitted in addition to the usual procedures.
    (AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, Japan's former prime minister Shinzo Abe signed a partnership accord with Iraq, on a rare visit to the country for a senior leader of the close US ally.
    (AFP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, In Kenya a massive fire swept through a supermarket in downtown Nairobi. 28 shoppers were burned alive.
    (AP, 1/30/09)(AP, 2/3/09)(Econ, 2/7/09, p.42)
2009        Jan 28, In Madagascar thousands of opposition supporters demanded the resignation of Pres. Marc Ravalomanana. The director of the main hospital said 43 people had burned to death as protesters set fires in political violence earlier in the week.
    (AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, A new UN report said Myanmar faced food shortages in many parts of the country, largely because of last year's cyclone and a rat infestation that destroyed crops.  A human rights group said the Chin people, Christians living in the remote mountains of northwestern Myanmar, are subject to forced labor, torture, extrajudicial killings and religious persecution by the country's military regime.
    (AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, Pakistan arrested nine men suspected in a string of deadly bombings last year which devastated the Danish Embassy, killed an army general and wounded several FBI personnel. The day’s raids turned up about 220 pounds (100 kilograms) of explosives and other materials suitable for making vests worn by suicide bombers.
    (AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 28, Russia’s military said it has halted plans to deploy missiles near the Polish border, in what could be a sign Moscow is seeking better ties with the new US president.
    (Reuters, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, In Serbia the editor of a popular liberal radio show, critical of Serb nationalism, said attackers have disrupted the broadcasts of Pescanik (Hourglass) and hacked into its Web site.
    (AP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, Sri Lankan forces fought their way into another village still held by Tamil Tiger rebels, as neighboring India raised fears for civilians caught up in the war.
    (AFP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, A Sudanese man, Mohammed el-Sari, was jailed for 17 years on charges of trying to help the International Criminal Court investigate a minister suspected of war crimes in Darfur. He was arrested in June accused of trying to solicit information about special police in Darfur, men trained and paid by the government and supervised by current Minister of Humanitarian Affairs Ahmed Haroun.
    (AFP, 1/28/09)
2009        Jan 28, In Switzerland some 2,500 business and political leaders met at Davos for the World Economic Forum, as the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression served to mute the enthusiasm of previous years. China’s Premier Wen Jiabao and Russia’s PM Vladimir Putin blamed the US-led financial system for the global economic slump.
    (AP, 1/28/09)(WSJ, 1/29/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 28, A Thai court convicted 66 barefoot, disheveled migrants detained at sea of illegally entering the country, raising the prospect they could be sent back to Myanmar despite fears they would be persecuted there.
    (AP, 1/28/09)

2009        Jan 29, President Barack Obama signed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Restoration Act, an equal pay bill, into law, declaring that it's a family issue, not just a women's issue.
    (AP, 1/29/09)(Econ, 2/7/09, p.25)
2009        Jan 29, In Illinois Pat Quinn (60), the Democrat Lt. Gov., became governor after the state Senate voted 59-0 to convict Rod Blagojevich (52) of abuse of power.
    (AP, 1/30/09)(WSJ, 1/30/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 29, A California judge ruled that Gov. Schwarzenegger can force state workers to take furloughs to help close the budget gap.
    (WSJ, 1/30/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 29, In southern Afghanistan coalition troops killed four militants in a strike on a bomb-making operation.
    (AP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 29, The African Union said the exclusion from its summit of Mauritania and Guinea, which both suffered coups recently, proved the continent had moved on from its checkered past. The summit was scheduled for Feb 1-3 in Ethiopia.
    (Reuters, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 29, An Australian man (36) was charged with murder after allegedly throwing his four-year-old daughter from a Melbourne bridge into the Yarra River during peak hour traffic. On April 11, 2011, Arthur Freeman was sentenced to life in prison.
    (AFP, 1/29/09)(AP, 4/11/11)
2009        Jan 29, In Bolivia the last US drug enforcement agents left the country, ordered out by Pres. Morales, even as police reported that coca cultivation and cocaine processing were on the rise.
    (SFC, 1/30/09, p.A4)
2009        Jan 29, Britain’s PM Gordon Brown vowed to act with "purpose and determination" to restore economic growth a day after the IMF said Britain would be the country worst hit by the global recession.
    (AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 29, An international rights group said Cameroon's government is employing extrajudicial killings and torture to crush political opponents, and such violence may escalate as the global economic crisis deepens.
    (AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 29, The first of more than 6,000 Congolese rebels took part in a ceremony to integrate their units into the regular army as part of a deal to end the conflict in eastern DR Congo.
    (AFP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 29, The ship Monchegorsk arrived in Cyprus. It was examined twice after it arrived under suspicion of ferrying weapons from Iran to Hamas fighters in Gaza, and detained. The US military had stopped the ship last month in the Red Sea, and said it found artillery shells and other arms on board. But it could not legally detain the ship, which continued to Port Said, Egypt, and then to Cyprus.
    (AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Jan 29, The European Union signed an agreement to give Ethiopia 251 million euros (322 million dollars) in aid to boost development projects across the Horn of Africa nation.
    (AFP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 29, In France hundreds of thousands of workers staged a nationwide strike to try to force President Nicolas Sarkozy and business leaders to do more to protect jobs and wages during the economic crisis.
    (Reuters, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 29, India began a plan to issue a new biometric identity card to its whole 1.2 billion population. On June 25 Nandan Nilekani, a co-founder of Infosys, was given ministerial status and appointed to run the scheme.
    (Econ, 7/4/09, p.36)(http://tinyurl.com/nvfahh)
2009        Jan 29, Iraq said it will bar Blackwater Worldwide from providing security protection for US diplomats because its contractors used excessive force, sanctioning a company whose image was irrevocably tarnished by the 2007 killings of 17 Iraqi civilians. Hazim Salim al-Zaidi (51), former Iraqi army officer in Mosul, was among three Sunni candidates killed two days ahead of elections. One of the other Sunnis was killed in a drive-by shooting in western Baghdad. The third was abducted along with his brother and cousin in the Diyala province town of Mandali near the Iranian border. Their bullet-riddled bodies were found later in the day.
    (AP, 1/29/09)(AP, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 29, George Mitchell, President Barack Obama's Mideast envoy, turned his attention to the Western-backed Palestinian government in the West Bank. Palestinians fired a rocket into Israel, and residents of the south Gaza town of Khan Younis said an Israeli airstrike there wounded an unidentified man on a motorcycle and five passers-by, among them children walking home from school. Senior officials in the Islamic group Hamas indicated a willingness to negotiate a deal for a long-term truce with Israel as long as the borders of Gaza are opened to the rest of the world.
    (AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 29, Japan hanged four convicted murderers, carrying out the country's first executions of the year despite international criticism.
    (AFP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 29, Madagascar's president made a conciliatory gesture, promising to put a radio station back on air after its closure sparked anti-government rioting that left at least 43 dead. A US envoy later estimated over 100 dead while police said 76 had died in the rioting.
    (AP, 1/29/09)(WSJ, 2/4/09, p.A10)
2009        Jan 29, Mexican police detained an Ecuadorean man for carrying about $2.5 million in cash in a suitcase at Mexico City's international airport.
    (AP, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 29, New Zealand’s central bank lowered its key interest 1.5 percentage points to a record low of 3.5%, in response to a decelerating global growth outlook.
    (WSJ, 1/30/09, p.A8)
2009        Jan 29, In Nigeria gunmen kidnapped a Nigerian boy (9) in the oil city of Port Harcourt, shooting dead a domestic worker who was taking him to school.
    (AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 29, Pakistani police arrested three men who they alleged carried out a deadly 2006 bombing in Pakistan on the orders of India's intelligence agency.
    (AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 29, The UN launched an emergency appeal for $613 million to help Palestinians recover from Israel's three weeks of military operations in Gaza.
    (AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 29, In the Philippines a powerful explosion destroyed a fireworks factory and a nearby electronics plant south of Manila, killing at least six people and injuring more than 40.
    (AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 29, Somali pirates hijacked a German gas tanker, the MV Longchamp, and its 13-man crew in the Gulf of Aden, the third ship captured off the Horn of Africa this month. The ship was released along with its 13 crew members on March 28.
    (AP, 1/29/09)(SFC, 1/30/09, p.A16)(AP, 3/28/09)
2009        Jan 29, A South Korean biotech company claimed to have cloned dogs using a stem cell technology for the first time in the world.
    (AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 29, In Sri Lanka UN workers evacuated hundreds of severely wounded civilians from behind rebel lines as government troops fought to secure final victory over the Tamil Tigers. Up to 250,000 civilians were trapped in the combat zone in the northeast of the island.
    (AFP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 29, Swiss police said they stumbled across a large marijuana plantation last year while using Google Earth, the search engine company's satellite mapping software. They arrested 16 people and seized 1.1 tons (1.2 US tons) of marijuana as well as cash and valuables worth 900,000 Swiss francs ($780,000).
    (AP, 1/29/09)
2009        Jan 29, At the economic forum in Davos, Switzerland, Israel’s Pres. Peres (85) traded accusations with Turkey’s PM Erdogan, who declared: “You kill people," and criticized Israel’s blockade of Gaza. Erdogan stalked off stage after being cut short during the exchange.
    (SFC, 1/30/09, p.A4)(WSJ, 1/30/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 29, Zimbabwe Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa said citizens will be allowed to conduct business in other currencies, alongside the Zimbabwean dollar. A UN report said Zimbabwe's humanitarian disaster is far worse than anticipated with only six percent of the population formally employed and more than half in need of emergency food aid.
    (Reuters, 1/29/09)(AFP, 1/29/09)

2009        Jan 30, President Barack Obama signed a series of executive orders that he said should "level the playing field" for labor unions in struggles with management.
    (AP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 30, The Republican Party chose former Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael Steele as the first black national chairman in its history.
    (AP, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 30, US Senator Claire McCaskill (D., Mo.) introduced legislation that would limit the salary, bonuses and stock options of executives of financial companies getting federal bailout aid to no more than what the US president earns: $400,000 a year, excluding benefits.
    (WSJ, 1/31/09, p.B1)
2009        Jan 30, Exxon Mobil Corp. reported a profit of $45.2 billion for 2008, breaking its own record for a US company, even as its fourth-quarter earnings fell 33 percent from a year ago. Chevron reported a record $23.93 billion annual profit.
    (AP, 1/30/09)(SFC, 1/31/09, p.C1)
2009        Jan 30, Scientists reported that serotonin, a brain chemical that affects people’s moods, can also transform dessert locusts into swarms that ravage the countryside. Serotonin, a messenger molecule, carries signals between nerve cells.
    (SFC, 1/30/09, p.A9)(Econ, 2/28/09, p.85)
2009        Jan 30, A trip to the Grand Canyon turned deadly when a bus carrying Chinese tourists overturned on an Arizona highway near the Hoover Dam, killing seven people and injuring 10 others, several critically.
    (AP, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 30, In West Virginia a small plane crashed in snowy weather killing all six on board.
    (SSFC, 2/1/09, p.A8)
2009        Jan 30, In Algeria at least 27 people were wounded and several buildings torched during clashes among Muslim worshippers outside a mosque in Ghardaia.
    (AFP, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 30, Melbourne, Australia's second-largest city, struggled to cope with a once-in-a-century heatwave as temperatures hit 109 degrees. The heat wave has claimed dozens of lives and sparked wildfires that have razed up to 20 homes.
    (AFP, 1/31/09)(WSJ, 1/31/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 30, Bahrain’s riot police in Manama used rubber bullets and tear gas to disperse protesters angry with perceived government discrimination against the Shiite majority.
    (AP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 30, At least two million worshippers gathered north of the Bangladeshi capital Dhaka for the Bishwa Ijtema, or World Muslim Congregation, a three-day event billed as the largest annual Islamic event after the hajj. It was first held in the 1960s and was launched by Tablig Jamaat, a non-political group that urges people to follow Islam in their daily lives.
    (AFP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 30, In Brazil officials in Rio Grande do Sul state said 10 victims had drowned in the city of Pelotas, and that floods had driven thousands from their homes.
    (AP, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 30, In Britain wildcat strikes against foreign workers spread through oil refineries and other energy facilities, fuelled by fears of rising job cuts due to the global slowdown.
    (AP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 30, Ethiopia said that 4.9 million of its people will need emergency food aid in the first six months of 2009 due to drought and appealed for $390 million from donors to pay for it.
    (AP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 30, In Libreville, Gabon, leaders of the six Central African states (Cameroon, Chad, Gabon, CAR, Congo, Equatorial Guinea), began meeting to discuss closer economic ties, including the creation of a new regional airline. The Economic and Monetary Union of Central Africa, known as CEMAC, planned discussions on such issues as monetary reform and the free movement of citizens.
    (AFP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 30, Hans Beck (79), creator of the colorful plastic Playmobil toy figures that sold by the millions around the world, died in Germany. Beck had created and developed the 3-inch (7.5-centimeter) tall line of figures for the company in 1971. they were dubbed Playmobil and brought to market in 1974.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Jan 30, Georgia's PM Grigol Mgaloblishvili (35) resigned, citing health reasons after just three months on the job as President Mikhail Saakashvili's second-in-command.
    (AP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 30, Guatemala's government filed 3,350 criminal complaints accusing former soldiers, paramilitaries and others of human rights violations against more than 5,000 civilians during the country's 1960-1996 civil war.
    (AP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 30, Indian officials said tigers have killed at least three children and four adults in northern Uttar Pradesh in recent weeks, forcing frightened villagers to stay indoors while forest rangers search for the wild cats.
    (AP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 30, Indonesia said it will repatriate 174 "economic migrants" who fled Myanmar claiming persecution, as new accounts emerged of their harrowing sea journey and alleged abuse by the Thai navy. The 174 Rohingya and 19 Bangladeshis being kept at an Indonesian naval base landed in Weh Island off northern Sumatra on January 7.
    (AFP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 30, An Israeli rights group said it to use a database detailing the complicity of Israel's government in widespread illegal construction in West Bank settlements to help Palestinians file lawsuits over their lost land.
    (AP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 30, Kuwait’s National Assembly passed a law banning women from working between 8 pm and 7 am except in hospitals. Legislation also limited the workweek to 48 hours and required accommodation for expatriate workers. New penalties for begging carried a 6-month sentence and a fine of 500 Kuwaiti dinars followed by deportation.
    (SSFC, 2/1/09, p.A4)
2009        Jan 30, Nigerian militants called off a cease-fire after clashing with government forces.
    (WSJ, 1/31/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan 30, North Korea announced that it is scrapping agreements with South Korea on easing military tensions, accusing Seoul of pushing relations to the brink of war.
    (AP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 30, A roadside bomb hit a Pakistani army convoy near a Taliban stronghold in the Swat valley, killing three soldiers and wounding another six.
    (AP, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 30, In Gaza City some 5,000 people rallied as Hamas lawmaker Khalil al-Hayeh emerged from hiding and declared victory in the 23-day Israeli offensive in Gaza.
    (SFC, 1/31/09, p.A5)
2009        Jan 30, Russia moved to rebuild ties with Cold War ally Cuba, granting it loans and signing deals on energy and industrial cooperation.
    (AP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 30, South African President Kgalema Motlanthe signed legislation that disbands the country's elite anti-crime investigating unit, known as the Scorpions. The unit will now be part of the standard police forces.
    (AP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 30, Sri Lanka rejected growing international calls for a ceasefire amid fears for the safety of 250,000 civilians trapped as the military pushed for victory against Tamil rebels.
    (AFP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 30, Turkmenistan's authoritarian President Gurbanguli Berdymukhamedov ordered members of his government to go back to school or lose their jobs. He said that officials are under qualified to implement the necessary reforms in the energy-rich Central Asian nation.
    (AP, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 30, In Venezuela an armed group vandalized Caracas' oldest synagogue, shattering religious objects and spray-painting walls in what Jewish leaders called the worst attack ever on their community. On March 26 prosecutors filed charges against eight police officers and three other people, accusing them of involvement in the attack.
    (AP, 2/1/09)(AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Jan 30, Zimbabwe's opposition decided to join a government with President Robert Mugabe next month, ending a paralyzing political deadlock that has worsened the desperate economic and humanitarian crisis. WHO reported that the death toll in Zimbabwe’s cholera outbreak had reached 3,161, out of 60,401 recorded cases.
    (Reuters, 1/30/09)(AP, 1/30/09)

2009        Jan 31, President Barack Obama promised to lower mortgage costs, offer job-creating loans for small businesses, get credit flowing and rein in free-spending executives as he readies a new road map for spending billions from the second installment of the financial rescue plan.
    (AP, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 31, In Maryland Goucher College President Sanford Ungar told faculty and students in an e-mail that Professor Leopold Munyakazi (59) was removed from teaching after officials learned he had been indicted in 2006 on genocide charges in Rwanda.
    (AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Jan 31, John Lipsky, deputy head of the IMF, announced that the fund would double its lending capacity to $500 billion. Montek Singh Ahluwalia, India’s chief economic planner, deemed the proposal too modest and suggested that member triple their quotas.
    (Econ, 2/7/09, p.67)
2009        Jan 31, Afghanistan's interior minister announced a US-backed plan to create militias and give them guns to fight the Taliban. It drew criticism from local authorities in areas where the first units are being rolled out. An Afghan tribal leader from southeastern Paktika province was fatally shot by a NATO patrol after the vehicle he was in failed to stop in response to signals from soldiers. A second Afghan was wounded. A Canadian soldier was killed when his armored vehicle hit an explosive device on a road west of Kandahar.
    (AP, 2/1/09)(Reuters, 1/31/09)(AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Jan 31, On the streets of Birmingham, the queen's English is now the queens English. This week the city council made it official. England's second-largest city decided to drop apostrophes from all its street signs, saying they're confusing and old-fashioned.
    (AP, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 31, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao arrived in London in the latest leg of a European tour aimed at tackling the global financial and economic crisis and improving relations between the trading partners.
    (Reuters, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 31, In southern China revelers celebrating a birthday set off fireworks just before midnight inside a bar, triggering a blaze that killed 15 people and injured 22.
    (AP, 2/1/09)
2009        Jan 31, Security sources said Egypt has begun installing cameras and motion sensors along its border with the Gaza Strip to try to combat smuggling to the Hamas-run territory.
    (Reuters, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 31, Porsche's new museum in Stuttgart, a sprawling monument to 60 years of German engineering, opened to the public.
    (AP, 1/30/09)
2009        Jan 31, Roxana Saberi (31), Iranian-American journalist, was detained in Tehran. In April she was charged with espionage, two days after her parents visited their daughter in prison. The government had revoked her press credentials in 2006. On April 13, 2009, she was tried and soon sentenced to 8 years in jail for spying. Her lawyer appealed. She was released in May and in 2010 authored “Between Two Worlds" My Life and Captivity In Iran."
    (www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=101315579)(AP, 4/8/09)(AP, 4/18/09)(SSFC, 4/18/10, p.F7)
2009        Jan 31,  Iraq's provincial elections wrapped up without any reports of serious violence. The polls decided who sits on the councils that run 14 of Iraq’s 18 provinces. The turnout was 51% of the 7.5 million eligible voters. US soldiers killed two Iraqi policemen after coming under fire during an operation against al-Qaida in northern Iraq. An American soldier died of a noncombat-related injury in the northern city of Kirkuk.
    (AP, 1/31/09)(AP, 2/1/09)(Econ, 1/24/09, p.54)(Econ, 2/7/09, p.40)
2009        Jan 31, In Kenya an overturned gasoline tanker exploded as hundreds of people tried to scoop up free fuel. Some 120 people were killed and 200 injured in the inferno. Several witnesses said some police were charging 1,000 Kenya shillings ($13) for 60 liters of fuel, an amount that usually costs about $65, which enraged the crowd.
    (AP, 2/1/09)(AP, 2/2/09)(AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Jan 31, In Pakistan two motorcyclists lobbed a hand grenade at a police patrol in Baluchistan's Khuzdar district, but hit bystanders instead, killing one person and wounding 5 others.
    (AP, 2/1/09)
2009        Jan 31, Palestinian militants fired a rocket from Gaza that exploded close to the southern Israeli town of Ashkelon without causing any damages or injuries.
    (AP, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 31, Thousands of protesters rallied across Russia to criticize the government's economic course and its response to the global financial crisis. In Moscow minutes after protesters unfurled anti-Kremlin banners and chanted "Down with KGB power" and "Russia without Putin," a dozen young men jumped out of cars and started to beat them with fists and metal rods. Police ignored the attacks by alleged members of "Young Russia," a pro-Kremlin youth group.
    (AP, 1/31/09)(AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Jan 31, In Somalia moderate Islamist leader Sheikh Sharif Sheik Ahmed was sworn in. The next day in a published interview he called for a united front against violent extremists and signaled his intent to try to bring together the country's feuding Islamic factions.
    (AP, 2/1/09)
2009        Jan 31, Sudan’s state media reported that a US aid group has been thrown out of the Darfur region after officials found thousands of Arabic-language bibles stacked in its office. The Texas-based Thirst No More website described its work in Darfur as focused on repairing and drilling water wells and makes no mention of evangelism or other faith-based work.
    (Reuters, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 31, In Geneva, Switzerland, riot police fired tear gas after some 1000 demonstrators began throwing bottles protesting against the annual World Economic Forum meeting at Davos.
    (AP, 1/31/09)
2009        Jan 31, In Thailand some 30,000 supporters of ousted premier Thaksin Shinawatra gathered in Bangkok, promising to fight on indefinitely unless the new Thai government leaves office within 15 days. In northeastern Thailand a grenade blast killed eight people and wounded 27 others during an outdoor celebration next to a Buddhist temple.
    (AFP, 1/31/09)(AP, 2/1/09)
2009        Jan 31, The Vatican announced that the Pope has tapped the Rev. Gerhard Maria Wagner (54) to be auxiliary bishop in Linz, the capital of Upper Austria province. Wagner caused a stir in 2005 when he was quoted as saying that he was convinced that the death and destruction of Hurricane Katrina earlier that year was "divine retribution" for tolerance of homosexuals and laid-back sexual attitudes in New Orleans.
    (AP, 2/1/09)

2009        Jan, Little Rock, Arkansas, launched a $650,000 project to excavate the remains of its neglected “Little Rock," estimated to be 300 million years old, and restore it to a place of dignity. In 1872 huge chunks of the rock were blasted away to make room for a railway bridge.
    (WSJ, 1/28/09, p.A1)
2009        Jan, In Ethiopia an inauguration ceremony was held for the new headquarters of the 53-member AU. Completion was expected December 2011. The structure, a gift to the AU, was designed by China, managed by China, financed by China and constructed by China.
    (AFP, 1/31/10)
2009        Jan, The Tamar gas field was discovered off the coast of Israel. It was the largest gas find this year.
    (Econ, 11/13/10, p.54)(www.offshore-technology.com/projects/tamar-field/)
2009        Jan, In Kazakhstan newspaper editor Ramazan Yesergepov was arrested and charged with revealing state secrets in a move that has tarnished the ex-Soviet nation's democratic credentials as it prepared to assume the chairmanship of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). His arrest came after he published correspondence in the small-circulation weekly Alma-Ata Info that appeared to show collusion in corruption between a Kazakh businessman and the National Security Committee, the successor agency to the KGB. On August 8 Yesergepov was sentenced to three years in prison.
    (AP, 8/13/09)
2009        Jan, The population of Madagascar numbered some 20 million. It was estimated that 70% of the people lived on less than $1 per day.
    (SSFC, 1/4/09, p.E4)
2009        Jan, In Montenegro a huge aluminium factory on the edge of Podgornica struggled under falling metal prices. Controlled by Oleg Deripaska, a Russian tycoon, it depended on large quantities of subsidized electricity. The factory and its related industries accounted for 40% of the country’s GDP.
    (Econ, 1/10/09, p.46)
2009        Jan, Liquor company Diageo PLC signed a long-term lease to build a Captain Morgan rum distillery in the Virgin Islands in exchange for a portion of the territory's excise-tax revenue, estimated at $2.7 billion over 30 years. The distillery opened in late 2010 on the island of St. Croix. Puerto Rico expected to lose $140 million in 2012 as a result of the lucrative production of Captain Morgan rum moving to the U.S. Virgin Islands.
    (AP, 7/6/11)
2009        Jan, In northeast Sudan Israel carried out an attack in which at least 30 people were killed, to stop weapons being transported to Gaza during its offensive against Hamas. Reports from Sudan quoted a lone survivor of the attack as saying two planes flew over the convoy then came back and shot up the "four or five" trucks. Israeli aircraft or drones destroyed 23 lorries carrying Iranian arms destined for Hamas. On May 25 Sudan’s Defense Minister Gen. Abdul-Rahim Hussein told parliament that the airstrikes killed 56 smugglers and 63 people they were trying to transport across the border to Egypt, including Somali and Ethiopian migrants.
    (Reuters, 3/27/09)(Econ, 4/4/09, p.50)(AP, 5/26/09)
2009        Jan, Four tourists, two Swiss, a German and a Briton, were kidnapped on the Mali-Niger border. They were transferred to Al-Qaida's North Africa branch, which asked for a ransom and the release of a radical Islamist preacher held in Britain. A Swiss and a German tourist were released in April. Edwin Dyer of Britain, was killed by his captors on May 31. The 2nd Swiss citizen, Werner Greiner, was released in July.
    (AP, 4/23/09)(AP, 7/12/09)
2009        Jan, In Sharjah, UAE, a mob of up to 50 people beat Masri Khan, a Pakistani man, to death with metal bars in a fight over control of an illegal liquor business. In March, 2010, 17 Indians were sentenced to death for the beating. In 2011 the victim’s family accepted over $900,000 in "blood money," allowing the men to return to their families. In September, 2011, an Emirati court commuted the death sentences to two years in prison, paving the way for their return home.
    (AFP, 3/30/10)(AP, 7/21/11)(AFP, 9/12/11)
2009        Jan, In Yemen local jihadists merged with fugitive Al-Qaida operatives to form al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).
    (Econ, 11/6/10, p.73)

2009        Jan - 2009 May, A UN report in 2011 found that tens of thousands were killed in Sri Lanka during this period. They were mostly civilian casualties caused by government shelling.
    (Econ, 4/30/11, p.46)

2009        Feb 1, In Super Bowl XLIII at Tampa, Florida, the Pittsburgh Steelers beat the Arizona Cardinals 27-23.
    (SFC, 2/2/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 1, In California police officers and two armed robbers exchanged gunfire at a Papa John's Pizza outlet in Chino, 35 miles east of downtown Los Angeles. Bystander Daniel Baledran (21), of Rubidoux, died after he was shot by officers.
    (AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Feb 1, In Afghanistan a suicide bomber in a car attacked a convoy of foreign troops in Kabul, wounding two Afghans. Afghans demonstrated against an overnight US military raid in Ghazni province that one villager said killed several civilians. The US military said its forces only killed two militants.
    (AP, 2/1/09)
2009        Feb 1, The African Union's 12th summit opened in Ethiopia with an agenda officially focused on infrastructure development. Leaders set aside the first day to discuss Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi's long-standing pet project to establish a United States of Africa.
    (AFP, 2/1/09)(Reuters, 2/1/09)
2009        Feb 1, Algerian newspapers reported that Ali Ben Touati, a leading member of Al-Qaeda's North African branch, has surrendered to Algerian authorities.
    (AFP, 2/1/09)
2009        Feb 1, In Brazil the world's biggest counterculture political gathering ended with a flurry of photo-snapping, tent folding and farewell embraces, as well as uncertainty about what concrete results were accomplished in the stifling heat of Belem.
    (AP, 2/1/09)
2009        Feb 1, Colombia's battered FARC rebels freed three police officers and a soldier held hostage for more than a year, handing them over to the International Red Cross. A car bomb exploded near a police post in the city of Cali, killing at least one person and injuring at least 18 others after officers were lured to the scene by a bogus fire alarm.
    (AP, 2/2/09)
2009        Feb 1, In Iran police killed 10 drug smugglers in a shootout near the Afghan border. After the shootout, police confiscated more than 2,500 pounds of drugs, most of it opium.
    (AP, 2/1/09)
2009        Feb 1, In Iraq according to unofficial projections allies of Iraq's US-backed prime minister appeared to have made gains in the provincial elections, rewarding groups credited with reining in insurgents and militias.
    (AP, 2/1/09)
2009        Feb 1, In Italy an Indian (35) was attacked while sleeping on a bench in Nettuno, a town 50 miles (80 kilometers) south of Rome. 3 young men were arrested for allegedly beating and setting on fire the Indian immigrant.
    (AP, 2/2/09)
2009        Feb 1, Mexico City shut down a main water pipeline under a new conservation program, cutting service to more than 2 million residents after some reservoirs dropped to their lowest levels in 16 years.
    (AP, 2/1/09)
2009        Feb 1, In Pakistan at least 16 suspected militants, one soldier and 19 civilians were killed in clashes over the last 24 hours in the northwestern Swat Valley, as the military escalated its offensive against insurgents in the one-time tourist haven.  In the southwest a bomb rigged to a motorcycle exploded in a market, wounding at least 10 people.
    (AP, 2/1/09)(WSJ, 2/2/09, p.A10)
2009        Feb 1, Gaza militants launched at least 10 rockets and mortar shells into southern Israel, drawing a threat of "disproportionate" retaliation from Israel's prime minister and further straining a cease-fire that ended Israel's Gaza offensive. Israeli warplanes bombed the area where Hamas smuggles in weapons from Egypt.
    (AP, 2/1/09)(WSJ, 2/2/09, p.A10)
2009        Feb 1, Sri Lanka's army declared that rescuing civilians trapped by its offensive against Tamil Tiger rebels is now one of its top priorities, and said it captured two camps used by suicide squads. Shells hit a crowded hospital in the northeast combat zone, killing at least nine people.
    (AP, 2/1/09)(AFP, 2/2/09)
2009        Feb 1, In Sudan a spokeswoman for the UN mission known as UNAMID said the has government asked peacekeepers to clear out of the town of Muhajeria. She said Sudan wants to launch an offensive against rebels from the Justice and Equality Movement, a Chad-backed rebel group that has held the south Darfur town since mid-January.
    (AP, 2/1/09)
2009        Feb 1, In Switzerland the 5-day World Economic Forum at Davos ended with the realization that the depth of the global financial crises is still unknown and that the solution remains elusive.
    (SFC, 2/2/09, p.A10)

2009        Feb 2, President Barack Obama promised to establish a review board to oversee the government's $700 billion rescue package aimed at averting a financial meltdown, declaring that some of the nation's banks would have to write down bad debts, while other banks may fail.
    (AP, 2/2/09)
2009        Feb 2, Eric Holder won US Senate confirmation as the nation's first African-American attorney general, after supporters from both parties touted his dream resume and easily overcame Republican concerns over his commitment to fight terrorism and his unwillingness to back the right to keep and bear arms.
    (AP, 2/2/09)
2009        Feb 2, Tom Daschle, President Barack Obama's choice to head the Health and Human Services Department, apologized to the Senate panel that will decide his fate, saying he was "deeply embarrassed and disappointed" about failing to pay more than $120,000 in taxes. On Feb 3 Daschle withdrew his name from nomination.
    (AP, 2/2/09)(WSJ, 2/4/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 2, In New Mexico Richard Leon Goyette (47) was arrested in Albuquerque for conveying false information. Angered over losses in the stock market he has sent financial institutions angry e-mails and dozens of threatening letters containing suspicious powder.
    (WSJ, 2/4/09, p.A6)
2009        Feb 2, In southern Afghanistan a Taliban suicide bomber in a police uniform detonated his explosives inside a police training center, killing 21 officers and wounding at least 20.
    (AP, 2/2/09)
2009        Feb 2, Hundreds more British power plant workers went on strike in a widening labor campaign over the use of overseas workers to build an oil refinery in Immingham. Workers were upset over the decision by Italian construction company IREM SpA to use Italian and Portuguese workers for a 200 million-pound ($280 million) project at a Total refinery. An estimated 6 million people skipped work when the largest snowstorm to hit London in 18 years stopped bus and subway services, grounded airliners and hobbled businesses.
    (AP, 2/2/09)(AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Feb 2, In Cambodia police in Siem Reap arrested Jack Louis Sporich (75), an American from Chicago. He was charged with sexually abusing four Cambodian boys.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 2, In England a protester hurled abuse and then a shoe at China's Premier Wen Jiabao as he delivered a speech on the global economy at Cambridge University.
    (AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Feb 2, A Chinese official said an estimated 26 million desperately poor rural Chinese are jobless after pinning their hopes on factory jobs that dried up due to the global economic slowdown, noting that widespread unemployment could threaten the country's social stability.
    (AP, 2/2/09)
2009        Feb 2, In Ethiopia Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi was elected to head the 53-nation African Union at a summit amid concerns over deadly unrest in Madagascar and a bid to indict Sudan's president for war crimes.
    (AFP, 2/2/09)
2009        Feb 2, In Greece riot police fired tear gas at farmers to prevent them from driving their tractors to Athens as part of a protest demanding government financial help.
    (AP, 2/2/09)
2009        Feb 2, Guyana banned nighttime flights because of a strike by air traffic controllers. The strike began the night of Jan 30 over union demands for salary increases of 5 percent. The government says it cannot grant the pay hikes because it needs to upgrade airport safety equipment.
    (AP, 2/2/09)
2009        Feb 2, The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) signed a nuclear inspections deal with India.
    (AP, 2/2/09)
2009        Feb 2, Indonesia's navy picked up 198 starving, dehydrated boat people from Myanmar who said they drifted for three weeks after authorities in Thailand forced them to sea in a boat without an engine. Indonesian fishermen had discovered the 40-foot (12-meter) boat off Aceh's coast in northern Sumatra and towed it to shore.
    (AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Feb 2, Iran successfully launched a missile carrying Omid (hope in Farsi), its first domestically made satellite into orbit. In 2005, Iran launched its first commercial satellite on a Russian rocket in a joint project with Moscow, which appears to be the main partner in transferring space technology to Iran.
    (AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Feb 2, In Iraq a roadside bomb targeting an American convoy exploded. Two people were killed and six others were wounded.
    (AP, 2/2/09)
2009        Feb 2, A missile from an Israeli aircraft struck a car traveling in the southern Gaza Strip, killing a Palestinian militant and further straining a truce with the territory's Hamas rulers. Defense Minister Ehud Barak proposed linking Gaza with the West Bank by digging a tunnel through Israeli territory.
    (AP, 2/2/09)(WSJ, 2/3/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 2, A volcano near Tokyo erupted, shooting up billowing smoke and showering parts of the capital with a fine ash that sent some city residents to the car wash and left others puzzled over the white powder they initially mistook for snow.
    (AP, 2/2/09)
2009        Feb 2, In southwestern Pakistan gunmen seized John Solecki, head of the UN refugee office in the city of Quetta, as he traveled to work. On April 4 Solecki was released unharmed.
    (AP, 2/2/09)(SSFC, 4/5/09, p.A7)
2009        Feb 2, Saudi Arabia issued a list of its 83 most wanted suspects living abroad, including six Saudis released from Guantanamo Bay, and asked Interpol for help in arresting them.
    (AP, 2/2/09)
2009        Feb 2, In Somalia AU peacekeepers opened fire on civilian vehicles and fatally shot 18 people after an AU vehicle was hit by a land mine in Mogadishu.
    (SFC, 2/3/09, p.A3)
2009        Feb 2, In Sri Lanka rare images of suffering civilians trapped in the war zone emerged: Dead parents still cradling their children. A teenage boy with no arms crying in despair. A severely crowded hospital with many patients lying on mats under already full beds.
    (AP, 2/2/09)
2009        Feb 2, Zimbabwe's central bank revalued its dollar again, lopping another 12 zeros off its battered currency to try to tame hyperinflation and avert total economic collapse.
    (AP, 2/2/09)

2009        Feb 3, Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm announced a new $54 million movie production facility to be built at a former GM facility in Pontiac. The state offered $15 million in film related tax credits and as much as $101 million in state credits over 12 years.
    (WSJ, 2/3/09, p.B2)
2009        Feb 3, Sayed Ansari, spokesman for the Afghan National Directorate of Security, said the service has broken up a cell of suicide bombers allegedly responsible for six attacks in Kabul that killed 20 civilians. He also said those arrested had links to a Pakistani-based jihadist group, Harakat ul-Mujahedeen, and Sirajjudin Haqqani, an eastern Afghan insurgent leader.
    (AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Feb 3, In Australia PM Kevin Rudd announced a $27 billion stimulus package. Australia’s Parliament passed the bill on Feb 13.
    (www.youtube.com/watch?v=8sz_2IM3K80)
2009        Feb 3, In Brazil hundreds of riot police occupied one of Sao Paulo's biggest slums following a night of clashes in which three police officers were shot. Residents said the clashes were a response to the police killing of a man on Feb 1 in Paraisopolis.
    (AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Feb 3, In Brazil Ocelio Alves de Carvalho was killed on the Kulina Indian reservation. An Indian who witnessed the killing, and tried to stop it, arrived at the police station to report the alleged murder the next day. The witness said body parts were roasted and eaten.
    (AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 3, The Bank of England said high-street banks had borrowed 185 billion pounds since April to help to free up the home-lending market.
    (AFP, 2/3/09)
2009        Feb 3, In Colombia leftist rebels freed their fifth hostage in three days. Ex-governor Alan Jara (51), held for 7½ years, said that President Alvaro Uribe and the guerrillas are equally to blame for the country's still-festering conflict.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 3, In Greece a suspected left-wing terror group attacked a police station in Athens, shooting at the building and throwing a hand grenade.
    (AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Feb 3, Indonesia’s central bank cut its key interest rate a half point to 8.25%.
    (WSJ, 2/4/09, p.A10)
2009        Feb 3, Eluana Englaro (37), a woman at the center of Italy's right-to-die debate, was transferred to a hospital where she is to be allowed to die after 17 years in a vegetative state.
    (AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Feb 3, A medium-range rocket from Gaza landed in the Israeli city of Ashkelon. Hamas said it is ready to commit to a yearlong cease-fire with Israel in exchange for a full opening of Gaza's border crossings, ahead of a new round of talks with Egyptian mediators in Cairo.
    (AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Feb 3, Kyrgyzstan said it would end the US lease of an air base that supports military operations in Afghanistan. Kyrgyzstan President Kurmanbek Bakiyev announced his intention to shut the base, at least for the moment, after Russia agreed to provide Kyrgyzstan with $2 billion in loans plus another $150 million in financial aid. The lease deal obliges Kyrgyzstan to give the US 180 days notice to clear the base.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 3, In Mexico the bodies of retired Mexican General Mauro Enrique Tello and two other men were found in a sport utility vehicle abandoned on a highway outside of Cancun. All had been shot many times. Octavio Almanza, the suspected head of the Zetas in Cancun, was later arrested on suspicion of masterminding Tello's killing.
    (AP, 2/3/09)(SSFC, 2/8/09, p.A4)(AP, 2/11/09)
2009        Feb 3, Islamist militants blew up a bridge in northwestern Pakistan, cutting a major supply line for Western troops in Afghanistan in the latest in a series of attacks on the Khyber Pass by insurgents seeking to hamper the US-led mission against the Taliban.
    (AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Feb 3, Hamas policemen broke into an aid warehouse in Gaza City and confiscated 3,500 blankets and more than 4,000 food parcels meant for 500 families after UN officials refused to voluntarily hand it over to the Hamas-run Ministry of Social Affairs. Ahmad Kurd, the Hamas Minister of Social Affairs countered that the U.N. had been handing out relief to groups tied to Hamas' opponents.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 3, A Russian military Mi-24 helicopter gunship crashed about 700 kilometers (450 miles) southeast of Moscow,  killing all three people aboard.
    (AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Feb 3, The Kremlin said Russia and Belarus will create a new military system to monitor and defend their air space.
    (WSJ, 2/4/09, p.A10)
2009        Feb 3, The hardline Somali Islamist group Shebab called on its fighters to intensify their holy war against African Union (AU) peacekeepers.
    (AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Feb 3, Spanish police arrested 13 people on suspicion of links to organized crime and terrorism groups.
    (AP, 2/3/09)
2009        Feb 3, In Sri Lanka patients who could walk fled one of last functioning hospitals in the northern war zone after it was hit by artillery shells, while the Red Cross negotiated for the evacuation of those severely wounded. The military said it captured the Tamil Tigers' seventh and final airstrip, effectively grounding their tiny air force.
    (AP, 2/3/09)

2009        Feb 4, President Barack Obama imposed $500,000 caps on senior executive pay for the most distressed financial institutions receiving federal bailout money, saying Americans are upset with "executives being rewarded for failure."
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 4, Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe signed into law new animal-cruelty restrictions that make aggravated cruelty to cats, dogs and horses a felony on the first offense. According to the US Humane Society Arkansas became the 46th state to make cruelty to animals a felony.
    (AP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 4, A document was released that listed thousands of people identified as customers and victims of Bernard Madoff’s Ponzi scheme.
    (WSJ, 2/6/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 4, Dr. Randeep Mann allegedly bombed the car of Dr. Trent Pierce, the chairman of the Tennessee state medical board, in revenge for punishment after 10 of Mann’s patients fatally overdosed on drugs he had prescribed. Pierce lost an eye and was severely burned.
    (http://a11news.com/1760/dr-randeep-mann-is-car-bomb-suspect/)(SFC, 1/7/10, p.A4)
2009        Feb 4, In Afghanistan a roadside bomb killed six bodyguards working for a controversial Afghan district governor in southern Helmand province.
    (AP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 4, In northeastern Australia rain-battered residents were on alert for snakes in their bathrooms and crocodiles in the road following repeated storms that have sent local wildlife in search of dry land or a safe haven.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 4, Brazilian police killed at least 10 suspects, including two teenage boys, during operations against drug traffickers in Rio de Janeiro.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 4, The British military said an army officer has been arrested in Afghanistan on suspicion of leaking official secrets. Britain’s Sun newspaper said Lt. Col. Owen McNally had leaked figures about civilian deaths in coalition operations to a worker from a human rights group.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 4, Gao Zhisheng, one of China's most daring lawyers, was arrested. In Jan, 2010, the Beijing police officer who took Gao away said he "went missing" in September, leading to fears for the lawyer's safety. On Jan 21, 2010, a Foreign Ministry official said Zhisheng has been judged by legal authorities and "is where he should be." This was China's first public comment on the case. Zhisheng resurfaced in northern China on March 28, 2010, saying he wants spend time with family and away from media attention. Gao described his ordeal to The Associated Press in April and disappeared again 2 weeks later.
    (AP, 1/22/10)(SFC, 3/29/10, p.A3)(AP, 1/10/11)
2009        Feb 4, French-US telecom equipment group Alcatel-Lucent said its net loss widened 48.5 percent to 5.215 billion euros (6.5 billion dollars) in 2008, blaming asset write-downs in a crumbling world economy.
    (AFP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 4, French group Areva signed a draft accord for the sale of two to six nuclear reactors to India, a huge new market now open with the end of a nuclear trade embargo on New Delhi.
    (AFP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 4, In Germany countries leading the drive to resolve concerns about Iran's nuclear program welcomed the new US administration's readiness to engage with Tehran. Foreign Ministry officials from Germany and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council: Britain, China, France, Russia and the US, met in Wiesbaden.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 4, A Greek police officer (38) shot and seriously wounded a Greek private security guard (31) outside the US Embassy in central Athens.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 4, An Iraqi lawmaker said the prime minister's coalition will talk to other parties about sharing power in mostly southern areas after initial projections showed the Shiite leader's allies were the big winners in last weekend's provincial elections. Early results showed that PM al-Maliki’s allies, the Coalition of the State of Law, finished first in 10 of the 14 provinces.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 4, Kazakhstan allowed its currency to devalue 25% in an effort to protect its foreign exchange and gold reserves amidst falling oil prices.
    (WSJ, 2/5/09, p.A6)
2009        Feb 4, In Pakistan assailants overnight torched 10 returning trucks stranded by the bombing of a key bridge on the main supply route for US forces in Afghanistan.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 4, Poland’s defense minister stated plans to end military missions in Lebanon, the Golan Heights and Chad in an effort to cut spending due to the global economic crisis.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 4, In Puerto Rico Sara Kuszak (35) made a desperate call for help from the trunk of her kidnapper's car, about an hour before she was found dead with her throat slashed. Eliezer Marquez Navedo (36) confessed to kidnapping the pregnant tourist as she was jogging and killing her. The FBI used a signal from the victim's cell phone to help locate the suspect. Navedo was later convicted of kidnapping, rape and murder and sentenced to 105 years in prison.
    (AP, 2/5/09)(AP, 6/2/09)
2009        Feb 4, Romania’s central bank cut interest rates by a quarter point to 10%, still the highest in the EU.
    (WSJ, 2/5/09, p.A8)
2009        Feb 4, Russia sought to bolster its security alliance with six other ex-Soviet nations (Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan) by forming a joint rapid reaction force in a continuing effort to curb US influence in energy-rich Central Asia.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 4, In Somalia gunmen killed Said Tahlil Ahmed, the director of the country’s largest media company, HornAfrik, at a market in Mogadishu. Three Somali Canadians had established HornAfrik in 1999.
    (AP, 2/4/09)
2009        Feb 4, South Korea implemented its Capital Markets Consolidation Plan (CMCA).
    (www.iii.co.uk/news/?type=afxnews&articleid=7150292&action=article)
2009        Feb 4, Sri Lanka's president said that the Tamil Tiger rebels are on the verge of defeat, but dozens of civilians were reported killed as fierce fighting continued in Asia's longest-running civil war. The last hospital in Sri Lanka's shrinking war zone was evacuated as Red Cross staff and wounded civilians fled attacks that apparently included cluster munitions. At least 52 civilians were killed by shelling in the war zone.
    (AFP, 2/4/09)(AP, 2/4/09)(WSJ, 2/5/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 4, The Vatican demanded that Bishop Richard Williamson recant his positions on the Holocaust before being admitted as a bishop into the Roman Catholic Church.
    (WSJ, 2/5/09, p.A8)

2009        Feb 5, New US government data said the number of US workers filing new claims for unemployment benefits jumped to a 26-year high last week pointing to a rapid deterioration in the economy.
    (AP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 5, In eastern Afghanistan a suicide car bomb struck a convoy of foreign troops.
    (AP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 5, The Bank of England cut interest rates by a half-point to a record low 1 percent as it fought a deepening recession brought on by the world financial crisis.
    (AP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 5, British workers voted to end a week-long unofficial strike over the use of foreign labor at a French-owned oil refinery that sparked sympathy protests across Britain.
    (AP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 5, The British Council said that it has suspended work in Iran because of what it calls intimidation by the authorities there. The British Council reopened its Tehran office in 2001 after a 22-year break following the 1979 Islamic revolution. It said 13,000 Iranians took part in English lessons and other programs it ran in Tehran last year.
    (AP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 5, A nongovernment organization said the corrupt elite of Cambodia, one of the world's most impoverished nations, has laid the groundwork for siphoning off vast profits from a coming boom in mining and oil exploitation.
    (AP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 5, China declared an emergency in eight provinces suffering a serious drought that has left nearly 4 million people without proper drinking water and is threatening millions of acres of crops. The government published a plan for the relocation and urbanization of farmers living near the Three Gorges Reservoir. Some 1.4 million farmers would have to move again.
    (AP, 2/5/09)(WSJ, 2/7/09, p.A6)
2009        Feb 5, Germany's biggest lender, Deutsche Bank, posted its first annual loss since World War II after a terrible fourth quarter but said it would survive the global meltdown without state aid. Deutsche Bank reported a 2008 loss of $5 billion, including $1.8 billion attributed a group run by Wall Street trader Boaz Weinstein.
    (AP, 2/5/09)(WSJ, 2/6/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 5, The Iraqi election commission said that PM Nouri al-Maliki's party won 38 percent of the votes in Baghdad in the Jan 31 election, followed by allies of anti-US cleric Muqtada al-Sadr and a Sunni party with nine percent each. A suicide bomber blew himself up inside a crowded restaurant in a Kurdish city near the Iranian border, killing at least 12 people.
    (AP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 5, The Israeli navy intercepted a ship delivering 60 tons of supplies to the Gaza Strip from Lebanon in the latest bid to defy Israel's blockade of the militant-held territory.
    (AP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 5, In Nigeria a private security official said unidentified gunmen have attacked an oil-industry vessel off the coast of Nigeria and killed its captain.
    (AP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 5, In central Pakistan a suicide bomber blew himself up near a Shiite mosque in the town of Dera Ghazi Khan, killing 24 people.
    (AFP, 2/5/09)(SFC, 2/6/09, p.A3)
2009        Feb 5, Somali pirates said that they were freeing, a Ukrainian ship carrying tanks and other heavy weapons after receiving a $3.2 million ransom. The MV Faina was seized last September 25. The Kenyan government claimed to the cargo, which included 33 Soviet-designed battle tanks.
    (AP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 5, The South Africa Reserve Bank slashed its benchmark interest rate by a full point to 10.5 percent, following a half-point cut in December, saying inflation is headed downward.
    (AFP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 5, Sri Lanka's prime minister rejected calls for a cease-fire from donor countries concerned by reports of growing civilian casualties in the South Asian nation's civil war and instead demanded the Tamil Tiger rebels' unconditional surrender.
    (AP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 5, The Swedish government agreed to scrap a three-decade ban on building new nuclear reactors, saying it needs to avoid producing more greenhouse gases.
    (AP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 5, Jennifer Figge (56) arrived in Trinidad, exhilarated and exhausted as she touched land this week for the first time in almost a month, becoming the first woman on record to allegedly swim across the Atlantic Ocean. Figge actually swam only a fraction of the 2,100-mile journey. The rest of the time, she rested on her crew's westward-sailing catamaran.
    (AP, 2/8/09)(AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 5, Turkey's parliament approved the Kyoto Protocol on cutting greenhouse gas emissions. The parliament voted 243-3 after the Cabinet signed the protocol.
    (AP, 2/5/09)
2009        Feb 5, Zimbabwe's parliament passed a constitutional bill to allow a coalition government of President Robert Mugabe and opposition rivals, being set up under a deal to end political and economic crisis.
    (Reuters, 2/5/09)

2009        Feb 6, The US FDA approved the first drug made with materials from genetically altered animals. Atryn, developed by GTX Biotherapeutics, was made from the milk of a genetically altered goat and would be used to treat a rare blood-clotting disorder known as hereditary antithrombin deficiency.
    (WSJ, 2/7/09, p.A4)
2009        Feb 6, California ordered 200,000 employees, 90% of the state work force, to take an unpaid day off amid a fiscal crises.
    (WSJ, 2/7/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 6, In Ohio Gertrude "Trudy" Steuernagel, a Kent State University professor, died a week after she was severely injured in a Jan 29 beating by Sky Walker (18), her autistic son.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 6, Phil Carey (b.1925), film and TV actor, died in NYC. He was best known for his role as business tycoon Asa Buchanan in the ABC soap opera "One Life to Live."
    (AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 6, It was reported that Canada has granted Lai Changxing a work permit. Chinese authorities have accused Lai Changxing of masterminding a network that smuggled as much as $10 billion of goods with the protection of corrupt government officials. Before fleeing to Canada in 1999, Lai lived a life of luxury in China complete with a mansion and a bulletproof Mercedes.
    (AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 6, Nigeria’s government reported that 84 infants and children have died after swallowing My Pikin Baby Teething Mixture, a teething syrup laced with diethylene glycol. A failed bid to smuggle a bus filled with rice into Nigeria from Niger left seven people dead including two customs officers set ablaze with petrol.
    (SFC, 2/7/09, p.A2)(AFP, 2/8/09)
2009        Feb 6, A Pakistani court freed nuclear scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan. He had admitted to selling weapon technology to Iran, North Korea and Libya.
    (WSJ, 2/7/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 6, Pakistani forces killed 52 Islamic militants in the northwest.
    (WSJ, 2/9/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 6, The UN agency for Palestinian refugees suspended aid to Gaza, accusing the Hamas rulers of stealing a delivery of humanitarian supplies for the 2nd time in a week. Jamil Shaqqura (51) died in a hospital of wounds from beating and torture, a week after he was picked for interrogation by Hamas' internal security.
    (SFC, 2/709, p.A3)(AP, 2/14/09)
2009        Feb 6, Russia granted transit rights to nonlethal US military supplies headed to Afghanistan, but only after pressuring Kyrgyzstan to close an air base leased to the US.
    (SFC, 2/7/09, p.A3)

2009        Feb 7, San Francisco ushered in the Year of the Ox with its annual Chinese New Year parade.
    (SSFC, 2/8/09, p.B1)
2009        Feb 7, Blossom Dearie (b.1926), jazz pianist, singer and songwriter, died in NYC.
    (SFC, 2/11/09, p.B7)
2009        Feb 7, In Australia searing temperatures and wind blasts created a firestorm that swept across a swath of the country's Victoria state. On “Black Saturday" some 2298 homes were destroyed with a death toll of 173. The town of Marysville and several hamlets in the Kinglake district, both about 50 miles (100 km) north of Melbourne, were utterly devastated. In 2012 James Sokaluk was jailed for at least 14 years for starting a blaze that killed 10 people and destroyed more than 150 homes at Churchill.
    (AFP, 2/8/09)(Econ, 1/14/12, p.61)(AFP, 4/27/12)
2009        Feb 7, In Bolivia President Evo Morales and thousands of supporters celebrated the new constitution as it took effect, saying the new document will enshrine indigenous rights and end centuries of oppression. It renamed the former republic the “Plurinational State of Bolivia," effective as of Jan 22, 2010.
    (AP, 2/7/09)(SSFC, 1/20/13, p.P3)
2009        Feb 7, A Bolivian woman died from an injection of urine allegedly administered by her friend as a form of health therapy. Investigating prosecutor Oscar Flores later said that Gabriela Ascarrunz (35) died of an "infection caused by urine that was injected by fashion designer Monica Schultz."
    (AP, 2/11/09)
2009        Feb 7, In Brazil 4 people at the rear of a plane that crashed in a muddy Amazon river managed to open an emergency door and swim to safety as the aircraft sank, dragging 24 others to their death.
    (AP, 2/8/09)
2009        Feb 7, In Ecuador President Rafael Correa ordered the expulsion of a top US diplomat he accused of suspending $340,000 in annual aid because Ecuador would not allow the US to veto appointments to the anti-smuggling police.
    (AP, 2/7/09)
2009        Feb 7, In Ethiopia Brian Adkins (25) was killed in his home in Addis Ababa. He was serving as a consular officer at the US Embassy there. A suspect was arrested on Feb 11.
    (AP, 2/11/09)(www.huffingtonpost.com/news/africa)
2009        Feb 7, In Antananarivo, Madagascar, at least 28 people were killed by security forces during anti-government protests. Arrest warrants were issued the next day for those deemed responsible for the political violence. A week of violence left up to 100 people dead.
    (SFC, 2/9/09, p.A2)(Econ, 3/21/09, p.50)
2009        Feb 7, Officials in Morocco said heavy rains have claimed 24 lives and forced 2,000 people to be evacuated over the past week.
    (AFP, 2/7/09)
2009        Feb 7, In Gaza Hasan al-Hijazi, who was shot by three masked men. Hamas later issued a statement calling the killing a "mistake."
    (AP, 2/14/09)
2009        Feb 7, In Venezuela tens of thousands of protesters marched in Caracas to oppose a constitutional amendment that could allow President Hugo Chavez to run for re-election indefinitely.
    (AP, 2/7/09)

2009        Feb 8, Coldplay’s “Viva la Vida" won the Grammy for song of the year. Robert Plant and Alison Krauss' unorthodox partnership yielded rich rewards on Grammy night, as the pair nabbed five awards for their haunting "Raising Sand," including record and album of the year honors.
    (WSJ, 2/9/09, p.A1)(AP, 2/9/09)
2009        Feb 8, In Fort Bragg, Ca., Aaron Vargas (31) shot and killed Darrell McNeill (63), a former neighbor. McNeill, a former boy Scout leader and Big Brother, had begun molesting Vargas at age of 11 and continued as Vargas grew into his 20s. 12 other men soon came forward with stories of molestation by McNeill. On April 6, 2010, Vargas pleaded no contest to voluntary manslaughter charges. On June 15 Vargas was sentenced to 9 years in prison.
    (SSFC, 2/21/10, p.A1)(SFC, 4/7/10, p.A1)(SFC, 6/16/10, p.A1)
2009        Feb 8, In Illinois a broken holding tank at a Caterpillar plant near Joliet spilled some 65,000 gallons of oil sludge and contaminated a 30-mile section of the Des Plaines River.
    (SFC, 2/9/09, p.A6)
2009        Feb 8, A single-engine plane carrying six US citizens crashed into the Atlantic Ocean off the north coast of Puerto Rico.
    (AP, 2/9/09)
2009        Feb 8, In Afghanistan two American soldiers died when a roadside bomb they were trying to defuse exploded. An Afghan interpreter and a policeman also died in the blast. a roadside bomb ripped through a police vehicle in Khogyani district, near the border with Pakistan, killing two police and wounding three civilians. A suicide bomber attacked a group of Afghan soldiers in southwestern Nimroz province, killing one soldier and two civilians.
    (AP, 2/8/09)(AP, 2/9/09)
2009        Feb 8, In eastern Bangladesh a ferry boat sank after colliding with a larger ferry on the Titas River, killing 10 women and children.
    (AP, 2/8/09)
2009        Feb 8, In London the film "Slumdog Millionaire", the rags-to-riches tale of a Mumbai tea boy who wins big, swept the board at the British Academy Film Awards (BAFTAs) with seven prizes including best film.
    (AP, 2/8/09)
2009        Feb 8, China’s government said that there was no end in sight for its worst drought in five decades. Some 4.4 million people lacked adequate drinking water in the north as winter wheat withered.
    (SFC, 2/9/09, p.A2)
2009        Feb 8, Sigurdur Helgason (b.1921), former Icelandic airline CEO (1974-1984), died on the Caribbean private island of Mustique. He pioneered cheap flights that carried legions of backpackers between Europe and the United States in the 1960s and '70s.
    (AP, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 8, In Iraq Spc. James M. Dorsey (23) of Beardstown, Ill., was found unresponsive by fellow troops in Baghdad and attempts to resuscitate him were unsuccessful.
    (AP, 2/12/09)
2009        Feb 8, Kuwait's Central Bank governor unveiled a $5.15 billion economic stimulus package aimed at helping struggling investment companies and offering bank loan guarantees.
    (AP, 2/8/09)
2009        Feb 8, Pakistani Taliban militants released a graphic video showing the beheading of a Polish engineer whom they said was killed because Islamabad refused to free detained insurgents. Piotr Stanczak had been seized in the volatile northwest on September 28.
    (AFP, 2/8/09)
2009        Feb 8, Two rockets fired by Palestinian militants struck southern Israel, violating an informal truce even as Israel and Gaza's Hamas rulers appeared to hurry closer to a long-term cease-fire deal two days before Israeli elections.
    (AP, 2/8/09)
2009        Feb 8, In Somalia at least three civilians were killed when insurgents attacked African Union forces and government troops in the strife-torn capital Mogadishu.
    (AFP, 2/8/09)
2009        Feb 8, In Sri Lanka an official said more than 15,000 civilians have fled the northern war zone over the last three days, as government forces appeared poised to crush the separatist Tamil Tigers.
    (AP, 2/8/09)
2009        Feb 8, Voters in Switzerland approved an expanded labor deal with the European Union that allows Romanians and Bulgarians to work in the Alpine republic.
    (AP, 2/8/09)

2009        Feb 9, US Federal judges tentatively ordered California to release tens of thousands of inmates, up to a third of all prisoners, in the next three years to stop dangerous overcrowding.
    (Reuters, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 9, Baseball player Alex Rodriguez admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs with the Texas Rangers from 2001 to 2003.
    (WSJ, 2/10/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 9, In Argentina the ultraconservative Society of St. Pius X said British Bishop Richard Williamson, whose denials of the Holocaust led to Vatican demands he recant, has been removed as the head of an Argentine seminary. On Feb 19 the bishop was ordered to leave Argentina within 10 days.
    (AP, 2/9/09)(AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 9, In Argentina at least 12 people were missing and over 1000 evacuated after a mudslide swept away a railroad bridge and homes in the northern border town of Tartagal.
    (SFC, 2/10/09, p.A2)
2009        Feb 9, In Australia police declared incinerated towns crime scenes, and PM Rudd spoke of "mass murder" after investigators said arsonists may have set some of the country's worst wildfires in history. The official death toll from the wildfires was later downgraded to 173 from a previous count of 210.
    (AP, 2/9/09)(AP, 2/10/09)(AP, 3/30/09)
2009        Feb 9, In Montreal, Canada, researchers said that an Indevus Pharmaceuticals gel formulated to protect women from the virus that causes AIDS appeared to protect about a third of them from infection, the first time a so-called microbicide has been shown to work.
    (AP, 2/9/09)
2009        Feb 9, In Beijing, China, the tower of a nearly completed skyscraper was destroyed by a fire believed to have ignited by a fireworks display marking the end of the Lunar New Year celebrations. It was part of the new headquarters for China Central Television (CCTV). In 2010 a Beijing court sentenced 20 people to up to seven years in prison over the deadly fire at CCTV's iconic headquarters.
    (SFC, 2/10/09, p.A6)(AP, 5/10/10)
2009        Feb 9, In Cuba Orlando "Cachaito" Lopez (b.1933), considered the "heartbeat" of Cuba's legendary Buena Vista Social Club for his internationally acclaimed bass playing, died of complications from prostate surgery.
    (AP, 2/9/09)
2009        Feb 9, The French government said it would give $8.4 million in low interest loans to Renault SA and PSA Peugeot-Citroen in exchange for pledges that the car makers won’t close any factories of lay off workers in France for the duration of the funding.
    (WSJ, 2/10/09, p.B2)
2009        Feb 9, A senior Iraqi security official said that four prisoners have been transferred from the US military detention center in Guantanamo Bay to Iraqi custody. A suicide bomber detonated his car near a US Army patrol in Mosul killing 4 soldiers and their Iraqi translator.
    (AP, 2/9/09)(SFC, 2/10/09, p.A3)
2009        Feb 9, In northern Italy Eluana Englaro (38) died at her clinic as the Italian Senate discussed legislation clarifying the right to die. Englaro had been in a vegetative state since a 1992 car accident and died after her family cut off her food and water.
    (AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 9, Nissan said it is slashing 20,000 jobs, or 8.5 percent of its global work force, to cope with what Japan's third-largest automaker expects will be its first annual loss in nine years.
    (AP, 2/9/09)
2009        Feb 9, Scientists in Japan reported that they have identified an enzyme which appears to suppress breast cancer and they hope the finding will spur new therapies to control the second most common cancer in the world.
    (Reuters, 2/9/09)
2009        Feb 9, In Madagascar defense minister Cecile Manorohanta said she has resigned because civilians were killed when security forces fired on anti-government protesters over the weekend.
    (AP, 2/9/09)
2009        Feb 9, A Palestinian fighter died in a clash with Israeli troops and Israeli aircraft attacked two targets in Gaza as mediators tried to broker a long-term cease-fire a day before Israel holds national elections.
    (AP, 2/9/09)
2009        Feb 9, In the Philippines Abu Sayyaf militants holding three Red Cross workers tried to break a military cordon that has boxed them in for days, setting off a clash that wounded five marines and sparked concerns over the hostages' safety.
    (AP, 2/9/09)
2009        Feb 9, South Korean prosecutors cleared police of any wrongdoing over a commando raid last month that left six people dead in a clash with displaced tenants in central Seoul.
    (AP, 2/9/09)
2009        Feb 9, Spain's interior minister blamed the armed Basque separatist group ETA for an explosion in the east of Madrid, which police said caused extensive damage but no casualties.
    (AP, 2/9/09)
2009        Feb 9, In Sri Lanka a woman with a bomb strapped to her body hid in a crowd of civilians at a refugee camp in Vishvamadu, blowing herself up and killing 29 people as security forces frisked people fleeing the northern war zone.
    (AP, 2/9/09)(SFC, 2/10/09, p.A6)(Econ, 2/14/09, p.52)
2009        Feb 9, In Sri Lanka 9 bodies were dumped on farmland in the northerly district of Mullaitivu after they were killed in an army multi-barrel shell attack. The grave was discovered in 2014. Another mass grave was reported to be 200 meters away.
    (Reuters, 3/2/14)
2009        Feb 9, In Switzerland Paula Oliviera (26), a lawyer from Brazil, claimed she was attacked by three skinheads, one with a Nazi symbol tattooed on the back of his head, outside a Zurich train station. On Feb 13 investigators said  was not pregnant and probably cut wounds into herself.
    (AP, 2/13/09)

2009        Feb 10, Timothy Geithner, US Treasury Secretary, outlined the government stimulus package. As much as $2.5 trillion, including $350 billion from the bailout fund, would come from the Federal Reserve and private investors. The US Senate approved an $838.2 billion stimulus bill with 3 Republicans joining Democrats in the 61-37 vote.
    (SFC, 2/11/09, p.A1)(WSJ, 2/11/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 10, The US Postal Service announced that the price of a first-class stamp will rise to 44 cents on May 11. The Postal Service said it lost $2.8 billion last year and, unless the economy turns around, is headed toward much larger losses this year.
    (AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 10, General Motors Corp. said it will cut 10,000 salaried jobs, citing the need to restructure itself with a government deadline looming and amid some of the worst sales in the auto industry's history.
    (AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 10, Teens in Kalamazoo, Michigan, beat a 50-year-old bicyclist leaving the man critically injured. On March 26 five teens were charged in the beating.
    (SFC, 3/27/09, p.A8)
2009        Feb 10, In Oklahoma an unusual cluster of twisters ripped across the state killing eight people. The eight confirmed deaths included seven people in Lone Grove and a truck driver who was driving through the area.
    (AP, 2/11/09)
2009        Feb 10, The Utah state Department of Agriculture said Africanized honey bees have been found for the first time in the Beehive State. The bees, long the subject of lore as "killer bees," were recently discovered in Utah's Washington and Kane counties.
    (AP, 2/12/09)
2009        Feb 10, The first-ever collision between two satellites occurred over Siberia when a derelict Russian military communications satellite, Cosmos 2251, crossed paths with a US Iridium satellite.
    (AP, 2/12/09)(Econ, 8/21/10, p.65)
2009        Feb 10, In Afghanistan a bomb struck a NATO convoy, killing two soldiers and wounding one. Police spokesman Wazir Pacha said the attack in Khost province was carried out by a suicide bomber in a vehicle. But a NATO spokesman blamed the attack on a roadside bomb.
    (AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 10, The British government banned Dutch right-wing lawmaker Geert Wilders from visiting the country to show his anti-Islam film "Fitna" at the Houses of Parliament. In a telephone interview Wilders called the government's decision "cowardly" and vowed to defy it.
    (AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 10, In England William Foxton (65), died from a single bullet wound to the head in the southern port city of Southampton. He killed himself after losing his life savings in an alleged $50 billion fraud run by Wall Street financier Bernard Madoff. Foxton had served in the British Army and more recently worked as a defense contractor in Afghanistan.
    (AP, 2/14/09)
2009        Feb 10, The European Union announced that it has signed a pact with 17 social networking providers including Facebook, MySpace and Google to improve safeguards against the bullying of teenagers online.
    (AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 10, EU ministers demanded the reopening of negotiations with Liechtenstein on fighting fraud.
    (Econ, 2/21/09, p.53)
2009        Feb 10, A tanker burst into flames after colliding with a container ship in a shipping channel off the coast of Dubai. The Maltese-flagged tanker, Kashmir, was carrying about 30,000 tons of oil condensate.
    (AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 10, President Nicolas Sarkozy made the first-ever visit by a French head of state to Iraq, seeking to reassert French influence in the country even as the US prepares to draw down its forces.
    (AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 10, In Israel front-runners moderate Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and former PM Benjamin Netanyahu made last-minute appeals to voters as polls opened in a close general election whose outcome could determine the course of Mideast peace negotiations.
    (AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 10, In Mexico a drug gang kidnapped and killed six people near a town in the US-Mexican border region, prompting a series of gunbattles with soldiers that left 15 others dead. The violence started when gunmen kidnapped nine alleged members of a rival drug gang in Villa Ahumada and executed six of them along the PanAmerican Highway outside of the town.
    (AP, 2/11/09)
2009        Feb 10, Nigerian union officials said a 2-day-old strike by freight and forwarding agents to protest high charges was worsening cargo congestion in Lagos, the country's main seaport.
    (AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 10, Pakistan called for a new strategy of dialogue to combat militancy and urged Washington to reconsider military action on its territory in its first talks with US envoy Richard Holbrooke.
    (AFP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 10, An unmanned Russian cargo ship lifted off from Kazakhstan carrying supplies and a space suit to the international space station and its three-member crew. American astronauts Michael Fincke and Sandra Magnus are aboard the station along with Russian Yuri Lonchakov. The crew size will be doubled to six members later this year.
    (AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 10, Sri Lanka's military spokesman Udaya Nanayakkara said Tamil Tiger guerrillas shot dead 19 civilians and wounded 75 others fleeing territory still under rebel control. The Red Cross loaded some 240 sick and wounded onto a boat to evacuate them from the war zone.
    (AFP, 2/10/09)(AP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 10, A Sudanese government delegation met Darfur rebels from the Justice and Equality Movement in the Qatari capital for their first peace contacts since 2007.
    (AFP, 2/10/09)
2009        Feb 10, Taiwan's former first lady admitted to laundering $2.2 million and forging documents, the latest in a judicial process that has seen her husband stage a jailhouse hunger strike, her daughter lash out at media, and her son plead guilty to similar charges.
    (AP, 2/10/09)

2009        Feb 11, US House and Senate leaders agreed to a $789 stimulus package.
    (SFC, 2/12/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 11, Massachusetts' top securities regulator said the wife of accused Wall Street swindler Bernard Madoff pulled $15 million out of a brokerage account only days before her husband was arrested.
    (Reuters, 2/12/09)
2009        Feb 11, San Francisco city leaders banned floats, beer and nudity for the upcoming 98th annual Bay to Breakers run. On Feb 27 city officials agreed to allow nudity and registered floats free of alcohol.
    (SFC, 2/12/09, p.A1)(SFC, 2/28/09, p.B1)
2009        Feb 11, BrightSource Energy of Oakland, California, announced that it will sell southern California Edison 1,300 megawatts of electricity from 7 large solar plants planned for the California desert. This was believed to be the world’s largest solar deal to date. In September BrightSource said it had ceased plans for a solar plant at Broadwell Dry Lake in the Mojave desert.
    (SFC, 2/12/09, p.A1)(SSFC, 9/20/09, p.D4)
2009        Feb 11, Estelle Bennett (67), one of the Ronettes, was found dead at her home in Englewood, N.J. She was part of the singing trio whose 1963 hit "Be My Baby" epitomized the famed "wall of sound" technique of its producer, Phil Spector.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 11, In NYC Guido Salvador Carabajo-Jara (26), an immigrant from Ecuador, died after he was hit by a car then trapped under a van and dragged for nearly 20 miles.
    (SFC, 2/13/09, p.A6)
2009        Feb 11, In Afghanistan 8 Taliban gunmen wearing suicide vests attacked 3 government buildings in a coordinated assault that killed 20 people in the heart of Kabul just ahead of a planned visit from the new US envoy to the region. A spokesman for the Taliban, said the attacks were in response to the alleged mistreatment of Taliban prisoners in Afghan government jails. In Logar province a roadside bomb exploded near a French military medical team's convoy, killing one French officer and two Afghans. Also in Logar province a helicopter with the US-backed coalition killed five civilians as it responded to ground fire.
    (AP, 2/11/09)
2009        Feb 11, In Austria Mike Brennan, a teacher and former football player from Jacksonville, Florida, working in Vienna, was attacked by two undercover police officers at a subway station. The police did not identify themselves and left Brennan lying on the platform. In 2010 prosecutors charged an undercover policemen with badly beating the black American teacher after mistaking him for a drug dealer. On Jan 11, 2011, a judge convicted an undercover Austrian police officer of attacking Brennan after mistaking him for an African drug dealer and ordered him to pay a euro2,800 ($3,620) fine.
    (AP, 4/27/10)(AP, 1/11/11)
2009        Feb 11, In Azerbaijan a gunman fatally shot air force chief Lt. Gen. Rail Rzayev (63) outside his home. He had represented Azerbaijan in talks with Russia and the US on Moscow's 2007 proposal to make a Soviet-built radar station in Azerbaijan.
    (AP, 2/11/09)
2009        Feb 11, In Egypt archeologist revealed the discovery of a burial chamber 36 feet below ground at the necropolis of Saqqara dating back to about 640BC.
    (WSJ, 2/12/09, p.A9)
2009        Feb 11, India’s Supreme Court declared ragging, the bullying of first-year undergraduates by older university students, a “human rights abuse in essence" and ordered measures to stamp it out.
    (Econ, 8/1/09, p.38)(http://tinyurl.com/lg6v9a)
2009        Feb 11, In Iraq at least 12 people were killed and 25 others wounded in bombings in Baghdad targeting Shiite pilgrims traveling to Karbala.
    (AP, 2/11/09)(SFC, 2/13/09, p.A4)
2009        Feb 11, Inconclusive election results sent Israel into political limbo with both Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and hard-line leader Benjamin Netanyahu claiming victory and leaving the kingmaker role to a rising political hawk with an anti-Arab platform.
    (AP, 2/11/09)
2009        Feb 11, In northwest Pakistan provincial lawmaker Alam Zeb Khan was killed and seven other people wounded after a bicycle bombing in Peshawar, as US envoy Richard Holbrooke visited the city.
    (AFP, 2/11/09)
2009        Feb 11, The Philippines Supreme Court said in a statement it had ordered Manila to negotiate with the US authorities for an "appropriate agreement on detention facilities under Philippine authorities" for Lance Corporal Daniel Smith. In 2006 Smith was convicted and sentenced to 40 years in jail for raping a Filipina after he took part in military exercises north of Manila in 2005.
    (AFP, 2/11/09)
2009        Feb 11, Off Somalia the USS Vella Gulf detained seven suspected pirates, the Navy's first arrests since it established an anti-piracy task force this year.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 11, Officials in Uruguay said a Cuban long-distance runner and track coach have disappeared and apparently intend to defect. Aguelmis Rojas and Rafael Diaz had arrived in January on a sports exchange program in Maldonado.
    (AP, 2/12/09)
2009        Feb 11, Judges at the Yugoslav war crimes tribunal voted to suspend the trial of ultranationalist Serb leader Vojislav Seselj after the prosecution said its case was being undermined by witness intimidation. The decision came after 71 prosecution witnesses had already been heard and with only a handful still to testify.
    (AP, 2/11/09)
2009        Feb 11, Zimbabwe's opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai was sworn in as prime minister, joining President Robert Mugabe in a unity government after a decade of struggling to push him from power.
    (AFP, 2/11/09)

2009        Feb 12, The first of four new pennies chronicling Abraham Lincoln's rise from a small Kentucky cabin went into circulation to honor the 16th president's 200th birthday.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 12, A commuter plane, Continental Connection Flight 3407 from Newark, N.J., coming in for a landing nose-dived into a house in suburban Buffalo, sparking a fiery explosion that killed all 49 people aboard and a person in the home. It was the nation's first fatal crash of a commercial airliner in 2 1/2 years. Historian Alison Des Forges (66), prominent human rights advocate who documented genocide in Rwanda, was among the victims of the crash.
    (AP, 2/13/09)(AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 12, In New York Aasiya Hassan (37) was found beheaded at the Bridges TV offices. Muzzammil Hassan, founder and CEO of Buffalo, NY-based Bridges TV, was charged after reporting the death of his wife. He had launched Bridges in 2004 with a mission to show Muslims in a more positive light. Muzzammil Hassan, who pleaded that he was a victim of spousal abuse, was convicted on Feb 7, 2011.
    (Reuters, 2/16/09)(SFC, 2/8/11, p.A6)
2009        Feb 12, Ed Grothus (b.1923), owner of the Black Hole “nuclear waste" junk store in Los Alamos, NM, died. The former Manhattan Project machinist began collecting rejected equipment from the weapons lab at Los Alamos in 1969 and in 1972 established his Omega Peace Institute at a former Lutheran church, which later became his First Church of High Technology.
    (SFC, 3/14/09, p.A10)
2009        Feb 12, In southern Afghanistan a gunfight between Australian forces and Taliban fighters killed at least 3 children who were caught in the crossfire in Uruzgan province. In 2010 three former Australian commandos faced serious charges in relation to the late-night raid that killed 6 Afghans, including five children. Another two children and two adults were wounded. In 2011 Australia dropped all charges against the three commandos.
    (AP, 2/13/09)(AP, 9/27/10)(AP, 8/30/11)
2009        Feb 12, In eastern Algeria 2 bombs exploded hours after President Abdelaziz Bouteflika announced he will run for a new term, killing at least seven people.
    (AFP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 12, Canada said its federal police will no longer use stun guns against suspects merely resisting arrest or refusing to cooperate because the guns can cause death. At least 20 Canadians have died after being zapped by stun guns.
    (SFC, 2/13/09, p.A4)
2009        Feb 12, In Canada Timothy Scott (22), a US Marine wanted for abandoning his unit, shot himself to death outside his mother’s home in Nova Scotia after police tried to talk him out of firing a gun. Scott had already served 2 terms in Iraq.
    (SSFC, 2/15/09, p.A6)
2009        Feb 12, Chile’s central bank slashed its key interest rate 2.5% to 4.75%.
    (WSJ, 2/13/09, p.A8)(Econ, 2/21/09, p.40)
2009        Feb 12, China's President Hu Jintao arrived in Mali at the start of a four-country African tour which Beijing insists is about strengthening cooperation and not solely for economic gain.
    (AP, 2/12/09)
2009        Feb 12, The Aluminum Corporation of China (Chinalco) announced that it would invest $19.5 billion in Anglo-Australian miner Rio Tinto. In June it was reported that Chinalco would not complete the deal.
    (Econ, 2/14/09, p.73)(AFP, 6/4/09)
2009        Feb 12, Local officials confirmed that swaths of western China that have large Tibetan populations have been declared off limits to foreign visitors, ahead of the politically sensitive 50th anniversary of a failed Tibetan uprising.
    (AP, 2/12/09)
2009        Feb 12, An Egyptian security official said police have arrested 40 suspected smugglers and seized goods in a new crackdown on smuggling into the Hamas-run Gaza Strip in a  crackdown that started last weekend.
    (AP, 2/12/09)
2009        Feb 12, Researchers in Germany, on the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin’s birth, said they have completed the first draft of the Neanderthal genome, 3 billion genetic building blocks that will shed new light on the ancient hominid as well as the origins of humans, its closest relation. Lead scientist Svante Paabo established in 1997 that Neanderthals were cousins rather than ancestors of modern humans.
    (AP, 2/12/09)(Econ, 2/21/09, p.80)
2009        Feb 12, Domenica Niehoff (63), Germany's best-known former prostitute, died. She was a familiar figure on TV talk shows in the 1970s and '80s and was instantly recognizable for her 48-inch bust and notoriously revealing outfits.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 12, Hong Kong's High Court quashed the conviction of Australian Kevin Egan, one of the city's most high-profile lawyers, who had been jailed for leaking the identity of a protected witness to a journalist.
    (AFP, 2/12/09)
2009        Feb 12, In India Chief Justice A.P. Shah said the High Court in New Delhi is so behind in its work that it could take 466 years to clear the backlog.
    (SFC, 2/13/09, p.A4)
2009        Feb 12, In Indonesia at least 42 people were injured and hundreds of homes and buildings damaged when a major earthquake struck off Sulawesi island near the Philippines.
    (AP, 2/12/09)
2009        Feb 12, In Iraq a bomb attack targeting Shiite pilgrims in Karbala killed 8 people and injured 52 others.
    (AP, 2/12/09)(SFC, 2/13/09, p.A4)
2009        Feb 12, Mexican federal police arrested 10 alleged members of a hit squad working for the Beltran Leyva drug cartel, who had come to Mexico City to start a turf war with a rival cartel.
    (WSJ, 2/13/09, p.A10)
2009        Feb 12, Pakistan’s government said for the first time that last November's attack on Mumbai was launched and partly planned from Pakistan, and it was holding in custody a ringleader and five other suspects.
    (Reuters, 2/12/09)
2009        Feb 12, Hamas deputy leader Moussa Abu Marzouk told Egypt's official MENA news agency that the Islamic militant group has agreed to an 18-month truce with Israel.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 12, Off Somalia an American helicopter from the USS Vella Gulf fired warning shots at gunmen in two skiffs that had opened fire and tried to board the Indian-flagged vessel Premdivya. US forces searched the skiff and found weapons including rocket-propelled grenades, then took nine suspected pirates aboard the American ship. A Russian nuclear-powered heavy missile cruiser, Peter The Great, detained 10 Somali pirates closing in on an Iranian-flagged fishing trawler. The men, were caught with rifles, grenade-launchers, illegal narcotics and a large sum of money.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 12, In Russia's restive southern republic of Ingushetia insurgents and police clashed, leaving four officers and three attackers dead.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 12, Sri Lanka's army disbanded the mostly ineffective "safe zone" it had established in the war-wracked north and set up a new refuge for the tens of thousands of civilians still trapped. A Sri Lankan (26) set himself on fire outside the UN complex in Geneva in apparent protest against the military campaign. A five-page letter found near his body identified the man as a Tamil who had been living in Britain.
    (AP, 2/12/09)(AP, 2/14/09)
2009        Feb 12, In Venezuela tens of thousands clad in red flooded the streets of Caracas, saying a referendum that would end term limits is the only way President Hugo Chavez can complete what he calls a socialist revolution.
    (AP, 2/12/09)

2009        Feb 13, US Congress approved a $787 billion stimulus package. The House vote was 246-183, with all Republicans opposed to the package. The Senate approved the measure 60-38 with three GOP moderates providing crucial support. It contained provisions recognizing and compensating some 18,000 Filipino veterans who fought under the American flag when the Philippines was still an American colony.
    (AP, 2/14/09)(AFP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 13, The Lynchburg, Va.-based Peanut Corp. of America, at the heart of a national salmonella outbreak, filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in US Bankruptcy Court.
    (AP, 2/14/09)
2009        Feb 13, In Southern California Amber Dubois (14) disappeared while on her way to Escondido high school. Her body was found on March 6, 2010, on the Pala Indian Reservation. On May 15, 2010 John Albert Gardner was sentenced to life in prison for attacks on Chelsea King (17) and Amber Dubois (14).
    (SFC, 3/8/10, p.C3)(SFC, 5/18/10, p.A4)
2009        Feb 13, US envoy Richard Holbrooke held key talks in Afghanistan aimed at stepping up the fight against a Taliban-led insurgency that the top US intelligence chief warned was escalating.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 13, Australian authorities charged a man with lighting one of the wildfires that killed at least 189 people, and whisked him into protective custody to guard him from public fury. Brendan Sokaluk (39), faced two charges related to one of the February 7 fires that killed 11 people in Victoria's Gippsland region, east of Melbourne.
    (AP, 2/13/09)(AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 13, Lloyds Banking Group (LBG), already 43% owned by the British government announced a £10billion loss at HBOS, which it had taken over last September.
    (Econ, 2/21/09, p.56)
2009        Feb 13, State media reported that China plans to create a blacklist of journalists who break its reporting rules, adding to an array of controls used to restrict its domestic media.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 13, The World Bank said it will provide a $710 million loan to China to help rebuild areas hit by last year's devastating Sichuan earthquake.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 13, A Congolese military spokesman said more than 40 members of a Hutu militia suspected of atrocities during Rwanda's 1994 genocide were killed in an overnight air raid.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 13, In Germany Ahmad Obeidi (24), and Afghan immigrant, was convicted of murdering his 16-year-old sister in a so-called "honor killing."
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 13, In eastern India at least 15 people were killed and more than 160 injured when a train derailed in Orissa state near Jajpur.
    (AP, 2/14/09)
2009        Feb 13, In Iraq a female suicide bomber attacked a tent filled with women and children resting from a pilgrimage to Karbala, killing 40 people and injuring 60 others. It was the deadliest attack in Iraq this year and the third straight day of bombings against Shiite pilgrims.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 13, In Mexico photographer Jean Paul Ibarra (33) and reporter Yenny Marchan were on their way to the morgue in the southern city of Iguala when gunmen on another motorcycle came alongside and opened fire. Marchan received two bullet wounds but survived; Ibarra was killed.
    (AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 13, Myanmar's military government extended the house arrest of the deputy leader of Aung San Suu Kyi's pro-democracy party for one year, despite recent calls from the United Nations for the release of political prisoners.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 13, Oil giant Royal Dutch Shell said it has declared force majeure on shipments from its main Nigerian terminal because of increased attacks by insurgents on key facilities. Force Majeure (French for "superior force") is a common clause in contracts which essentially frees both parties from liability or obligation when an extraordinary event or circumstance beyond the control of the parties.
    (AP, 2/13/09)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Force_majeure)
2009        Feb 13, Two rockets fired by Gaza militants hit near a communal farm and the town of Sderot. An Israeli airstrike on Gaza killed one man and critically wounded another. The men were riding a motorcycle near the town of Khan Younis when they were hit by fire from an Israeli drone.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 13, In the southern Philippines 9 gunmen snatched a Sri Lankan peace activist from his home, the latest in a wave of kidnappings blamed on al-Qaida-linked militants.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 13, In Sri Lanka the top health official said artillery shelling and gunbattles between government forces and Tamil Tiger rebels were killing about 40 civilians every day and wounding more than 100 others inside Sri Lanka's war zone.
    (AP, 2/13/09)
2009        Feb 13, Turks and Caicos Islands jet-setting PM Michael Misick said he will step down as leader the at the end of March, citing a lack of support for his scandal-plagued government. Premier Misick reportedly paid himself more than Britain’s Gordon Brown for running the territory of 36,000 people.
    (AP, 2/14/09)(Econ, 2/21/09, p.42)
2009        Feb 13, In Zimbabwe Roy Bennett, a white farmer turned politician with Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), was arrested by state agents just as the new cabinet was preparing to take office. Tsvangirai had named Bennett to become the deputy minister of agriculture in the new coalition cabinet.
    (AFP, 2/13/09)

2009        Feb 14, In Alabama suspicious fires destroyed 2 churches and damaged a third near the Georgia border.
    (SFC, 2/18/09, p.A6)
2009        Feb 14, In Canandaigua, New York, Kimberly and Christopher Glatz were killed at their home. Mary Silliman (23) was slain along with Randall Norman (41) a motorist who intervened when he saw her being roughed up in the parking lot in a pre-dawn attack outside Lakeside Memorial Hospital in Brockport. In August Frank Garcia, a nursing supervisor, was convicted of the Glatz killings and faced another trial for the Brockport killings. On Sep 1 Garcia was sentenced to life in prison.
    (SFC, 8/14/09, p.A5)(http://tinyurl.com/myhxsv)(SFC, 9/2/09, p.A8)
2009        Feb 14, Louie Bellson (b.1924), big band and jazz drummer, died. The master musician performed with such greats as Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Benny Goodman and his late wife, Pearl Bailey.
    (AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 14, US envoy Richard Holbrooke met Afghan President Hamid Karzai as part of Washington's push to step up efforts against extremism. The Afghan leader admitted to tensions with its US ally. Marine Sgt. Daniel Hansen was killed while supporting combat operations in Farah province.
    (AP, 2/14/09)(SFC, 2/19/09, p.B4)
2009        Feb 14, Sir Bernard Ashley (82), British businessman, died. He teamed up with his wife to build the Laura Ashley (d.1985) fashion and home furnishing brand into a global business.
    (AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 14, Over 6,000 people have fled the Ndele region of the Central African Republic for a Chadian border village after violence erupted between two ethnic groups, the Runga and the Gulus.
    (AFP, 2/14/09)
2009        Feb 14, China's Pres. Hu Jintao toured the site of a new, Chinese-financed national theater in Senegal, a day after signing a bilateral agreement promising the West African nation over $90 million in gifts and loans.
    (AP, 2/14/09)
2009        Feb 14, Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Abul Gheit held talks with Sudanese President Omar al-Beshir amid reports that the International Criminal Court has decided to issue a warrant for his arrest..
    (AFP, 2/14/09)
2009        Feb 14, In Rome G-7 finance ministers strongly rejected protectionism, pledging to work together to support growth and employment and to strengthen the banking system so the world can overcome its worst financial crisis in 50 years.
    (AP, 2/14/09)
2009        Feb 14, In Iraq a roadside bomb killed two civilians and wounded four others, including a soldier, when it exploded near an Iraqi army patrol in western Mosul.
    (AP, 2/14/09)
2009        Feb 14, Irish authorities learned about an oil spill through surveillance carried out by the European Maritime Safety Agency in Lisbon, Portugal. Irish military aircraft flew over the area and saw the Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov, a Russian oil tanker, and a Russian oceangoing tug near the slick. this was the biggest oil spill in the waters around Ireland in the last ten years.
    (AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 14, Mexico City set a new record as nearly 40,000 people locked lips in the city center for the world's largest group kiss. Gunmen killed a state police officer  Carlos Reyes and 10 members of his family, including five children in the town of Monte Largo, Tabasco state. The shooting also killed a street vendor in front of the house of the officer. In Jalisco state gunmen burst into a restaurant, killing seven people and wounding five, including 3 children.
    (AP, 2/14/09)(AP, 2/15/09)(AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 14, In northwestern Pakistan a suspected US missile strike by a drone aircraft flattened a militant hide-out, killing 27 local and foreign insurgents. Two officials said dozens of followers of Pakistan's top Taliban leader, Baitullah Mehsud, were staying in the housing compound when it was hit.
    (AP, 2/14/09)
2009        Feb 14, Saudi King Abdullah (86), in an apparent bid to reform the religious establishment,  dismissed the head of the feared religious police and a hard-line cleric who issued an edict last year saying it was permissible to kill owners of satellite TV stations that show "immoral" content. King Abdullah also appointed Noura al Fayez as deputy minister of women’s education, the 1st female to hold a ministerial post.
    (AP, 2/14/09)(SSFC, 2/15/09, p.A6)(Econ, 2/21/09, p.48)
2009        Feb 14, In Somalia legislators approved a former leader's son as the country’s new prime minister. Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke faced the task of uniting a fractious government besieged by Islamic insurgents that control most of the country.
    (AP, 2/14/09)
2009        Feb 14, In Sri Lanka a suspected Tamil Tiger rebel hurled a hand grenade at a bus full of war-displaced refugees, killing a woman and wounding 13 others.
    (AP, 2/14/09)

2009        Feb 15, In Washington state a 16-year-old girl was found dead and another teenage girl was discovered unconscious in a barracks at Fort Lewis Army base south of Tacoma. In March Army authorities charged Pvt. Timothy E. Bennitt (19) if the drug overdose of his girlfriend.
    (AP, 2/16/09)(SFC, 3/11/09, p.A8)
2009        Feb 15, Illinois Republicans called for the resignation of Democratic Sen. Roland Burris following reports of contradicting statements regarding conversations with close associates of former Gov. Rod Blagojevich. The next day Burris admitted that he tried to raise money for Gov. Blagojevich before being appointed to the US Senate.
    (SFC, 2/16/09, p.A5)(WSJ, 2/17/09, p.A3)
2009        Feb 15, Afghan President Hamid Karzai said his government will take part in a US strategic review of the war there in a sign of increased cooperation at a time of strained relations. An appeals court upheld 20-year prison sentences for two men who published a translation of the Quran that drove religious leaders to call for their execution. The controversial text is a translation of Islam's holy book into an Afghan language without the original Arabic verses alongside. A host of Muslim clerics have condemned the translation, which was published in 2007 and handed out for free, as blasphemous and accused its publishers of setting themselves up as false prophets. A coalition airstrike killed Ghulam Dastagir and eight other militants in the village of Darya-ye-Morghab. Dastagir was a powerful Taliban commander who broke a promise to renounce violence after village elders persuaded President Hamid Karzai to free him from prison.
    (AP, 2/15/09)(AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 15, A series of attacks in Algeria left seven soldiers and a suspected militant dead, as authorities ratcheted up efforts to secure the country before presidential elections. An Algerian newspaper reported that security forces killed a senior member of Al Qaeda's north African wing after a tip-off from a former militant led them to his hideout. The daily Ennahar reported that Mourad Bouzid (65), also known as Ami Slimane, was a charismatic figure instrumental in recruiting and motivating younger Al Qaeda fighters.
    (AP, 2/16/09)(Reuters, 2/15/09)
2009        Feb 15, Britain's Sunday Times reported that Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has bought a 4 million pound ($5.6 million) home in Hong Kong. It was bought last year, as Mugabe's 20-year-old daughter began studying at the University of Hong Kong. The paper said it was one of several properties the Mugabes own in Asia but the first to be documented.
    (AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 15, China and Tanzania signed cooperation agreements worth millions of dollars during a visit by President Hu Jintao to this east African country aimed to reinforce ties.
    (AFP, 2/15/09)
2009        Feb 15, French specialists unveiled a new weapon against cancer, a molecular "decoy" that mimics DNA damage and prompts cancerous cells to kill themselves.
    (AFP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 15, Iraqi officials nullified election results in more than 30 polling stations across the country due to fraud in last month's provincial balloting, but the cases were not significant enough to require a new vote in any province. A bomb hidden in a garbage pile killed one person and injured 18 others in Sadr City. In Mosul one civilian and one police officer were killed in two separate attacks on police patrols. Police arrested a would-be suicide bomber south of Baghdad who had explosives under his clothes and said he was also planning to target pilgrims headed to Karbala. US Staff Sgt. Dean D. diamond (41) was killed after an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle.
    (AP, 2/15/09)(SFC, 2/18/09, p.B5)
2009        Feb 15, Authorities in Malaysia arrested 26 unmarried Muslim couples in hotel rooms during Operation Valentine, aimed at curbing illegal premarital sex in this conservative country.
    (AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 15, A rickety boat carrying illegal migrants from Morocco capsized in rough seas just off Spain's Canary Islands and 19 of them drowned. At least three were missing.
    (AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 15, The Taliban announced a 10-day cease-fire in Pakistan's Swat Valley after freeing a Chinese hostage during peace talks with the government, while an abducted American threatened with imminent death by his kidnappers remained missing.
    (AP, 2/15/09)
2009        Feb 15, In southern Russia a fire ripped through a wooden apartment building, killing 16 people in Molodyozhny, a village in the Astrakhan region.
    (AP, 2/15/09)
2009        Feb 15, Shots from a Russian naval vessel sank the Chinese-owned cargo ship the New Star off Russia's east coast. 8 the 16 crew members on board were killed. The Sierra Leone-flagged, Chinese-owned vessel New Star had earlier fled the Russian port of Nakhodka where it had been impounded for alleged smuggling.
    (AFP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 15, In Turkey police clashed with stone-throwing demonstrators across the country's predominantly Kurdish southeast during protests marking the 10th anniversary of a separatist rebel leader's capture.
    (AP, 2/15/09)
2009        Feb 15, Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez tried for a second time to win the right to seek re-election far into the future with a referendum widely regarded as a way to cement socialism. Some 55% percent of the voters approved the amendment.
    (AP, 2/15/09)(AP, 2/16/09)(Econ, 2/21/09, p.39)

2009        Feb 16, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton launched her Asia tour in Japan calling US-Pacific ties "indispensable" for curbing problems like climate change, the global financial crisis and nuclear weapons.
    (AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 16, In Stamford, Connecticut, a 200-pound domesticated chimpanzee  was shot dead by police after a violent rampage that left a friend of its owner badly mauled. Travis (15) had once starred in TV commercials for Old Navy and Coca-Cola. The chimp was acting so agitated earlier that afternoon that the owner gave him the anti-anxiety drug Xanax in some tea. Owner Sandra Herold later denied giving Xanax to the chimp. Charla Nash lost her hands, nose, lips and eyelids in the attack. Doctors later said she will be blind for life.
    (AP, 2/17/09)(SFC, 2/19/09, p.A5)(AP, 4/7/09)
2009        Feb 16, In Kansas Republican legislators blocked an effort by Democratic Gov. Kathleen Sebelius to transfer funds to allow the state to pay its bills. Income tax refunds were suspended and the state payroll was threatened. The impasse was resolved the next day as Gov. Sibelius met a key Republican demand and signed a bill to balance the budget.
    (WSJ, 2/17/09, p.A5)(WSJ, 2/18/09, p.A6)
2009        Feb 16, Konrad Dannenberg (b.1912), German-born rocket designer, died in Huntsville, Ala. He was part of Werner von Braun’s rocket development team, which sent a rocket into outer space (1942) and came to the US after WW II.
    (WSJ, 2/21/09, p.A5)
2009        Feb 16, A new British anti-terrorism law went into effect that could effectively bar photographers from taking pictures of police of military personnel.
    (SFC, 2/17/09, p.A2)
2009        Feb 16, Authorities acknowledged that nuclear-armed submarines from Britain and France collided in the Atlantic Ocean earlier this month, touching off new concerns about the safety of the world's deep sea missile fleets. The HMS Vanguard, the oldest vessel in Britain's nuclear-armed submarine fleet, and the French Le Triomphant submarine, which was also carrying nuclear missiles, both suffered minor damage in the collision.
    (AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 16, Sir Ernest Harrison (b.1926), British businessman, died. He led Racal Electronic PLC and oversaw the birth of Vodafone Group PLC (1988).
    (WSJ, 2/28/09, p.A8)
2009        Feb 16, China’s Pres. Hu Jintao arrived in Mauritius to sign deals worth more than 270 million dollars to fund infrastructure projects on the Indian Ocean island. The next day he  pledged continued aid to Africa despite his country's economic downturn, and wrapped up a four-nation visit to the continent.
    (AFP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 16, France's top judicial body recognized the French government's responsibility for the deportation of Jews during World War II, the clearest such recognition of the state's role in the Holocaust.
    (AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 16, On the French island of Guadeloupe police detained about 50 people after coming under a barrage of stones as they tried to take down barricades. On Martinique as many as 10,000 demonstrators marched through the narrow streets of the capital to protest spiraling food prices and denounce the business elite.
    (AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 16, In Iraq roadside bombs struck two minibuses filled with Shiite pilgrims returning to Baghdad, killing eight people, in the latest of a series of deadly attacks targeting the pilgrims.
    (AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 16, Officials said Israel has taken control of a large chunk of land near a prominent West Bank settlement, paving the way for the possible construction of 2,500 settlement homes, in a new challenge to Mideast peacemaking.
    (AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 16, Japan warned it was in the deepest economic crisis since World War II, after Asia's biggest economy suffered its worst contraction in almost 35 years.
    (AFP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 16, In Madagascar anti-government protesters threw stones and police responded with tear gas as opposition leader Andry Rajoelina continued his attempts to force out the president. No casualties were immediately reported.
    (AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 16, Pakistan’s government agreed to impose Islamic law and suspend a military offensive across much the northwest in concessions aimed at pacifying the Taliban insurgency spreading from the border region to the country's interior.
    (AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 16, Russia’s Pres. Medvedev replaced four provincial governors for their poor performance amid financial crisis and named new governors for the western Oryol, Pskov and Voronezh regions and the northern Nenets region.
    (AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 16, Russia Pres. Medvedev said Bolivia will receive helicopters from Russia to help fight drugs as well as assistance to develop energy resources.
    (AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 16, Cardinal Stephen Kim Sou-hwan (86), South Korea's first cardinal, died. He was a tireless advocate for democracy and stood up to a string of military dictators.
    (AP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 16, In Spain Samsung of South Korea unveiled the world's first solar-powered mobile phone at an industry show where the sector is showcasing the new technology it hopes will drive demand through the economic crisis.
    (AFP, 2/16/09)
2009        Feb 16, The UN said Tamil Tiger guerrillas have prevented tens of thousands of civilians from leaving Sri Lanka's war zone and those trying to escape have been "shot and sometimes killed."
    (AP, 2/16/09)

2009        Feb 17, Pres. Obama announced the deployment of 17,000 extra US troops to Afghanistan. Pres. Karzai spoke on the phone with President Barack Obama for the first time.
    (AP, 2/18/09)(http://news.yahoo.com/s/time/20090218/us_time/08599188024600)
2009        Feb 17, The US federal government said Texas financier R. Allen Stanford's investment businesses were too good to be true, and shut his companies down. The SEC charged Stanford (58) with an $8 billion fraud. On Feb 19 Stanford was tracked down in Virginia, where FBI agents served him with civil complaint legal papers.
    (AP, 2/17/09)(WSJ, 2/18/09, p.A1)(AP, 2/19/09)
2009        Feb 17, Chrysler and GM told the US government they may need up to $21.6 billion in combined bailout loans. GM’s survival plan called for cutting a total of 47,000 jobs globally and closing 5 more US factories.
    (SFC, 2/18/09, p.C1)(WSJ, 2/18/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 17, Liberty Media Corp. said it will invest $530 million in financially struggling satellite radio company Sirius XM Radio Inc.
    (AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 17, Trump Entertainment Resorts Inc, the casino operator named for Donald Trump, filed for bankruptcy protection as recession and declining gambling revenues battered the company and its rivals.
    (Reuters, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 17, In the SF Bay Area a sewage spill began at the Fort Baker treatment plant of the Sausalito-Marin County Sanitaru District. By the next day some 300,000 gallons of bacteria-laden sewage had entered the SF Bay.
    (SFC, 2/18/09, p.B4)
2009        Feb 17, In Atlanta, Georgia, Eugenia Calle (57), a prominent researcher who studied links between cancer and obesity, was found beaten to death in her condominium. Jamal Thompson (22) was soon arrested and charged with her murder.
    (SFC, 2/20/09, p.A10)(www.inquisitr.com/18407/dr-eugenia-calle-murder/)
2009        Feb 17, In Afghan a US airstrike reportedly killed six women and two children, despite a recent US-Afghan agreement to increase participation of Afghan forces in US missions, a step aimed at preventing civilian casualties. The US coalition said that the strike in the Gozara district of Herat province killed 15 militants and targeted a leader named Ghulam Yahya Akbari. The US military on Feb 21 said an investigation into a coalition operation Gozara found that 13 civilians were among 16 people killed.
    (AP, 2/18/09)(AP, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 17, British experts that they have found the first evidence of a hemophiliac contracting mad cow disease from contaminated blood products.
    (AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 17, China and Russia signed a $25 billion energy deal in Beijing that will see the Asian country secure oil supplies from Moscow for the next 20 years in return for loans.
    (AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 17, Colombia's main leftist rebel group said that it "executed" eight Indians in the country's remote southwest, accusing them of acting as paid informants for Colombia's military. The communique posted on a Web site sympathetic to the rebels followed widespread but unconfirmed reports that as many as 27 Awa Indians had been killed.
    (AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 17, The UN said some 4.9 million more Ethiopians are in urgent need of food aid, bringing the total number of people in Ethiopia who need relief aid to 12 million, or 15 percent of the population.
    (AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 17, In Equatorial Guinea gunmen clashed with security forces near the presidential palace. Gunmen in two speedboats attacked the island capital before dawn. 16 men from neighboring Nigeria were arrested in the mysterious attack on the presidential compound. The government said several attackers drowned.
    (AP, 2/17/09)(AP, 2/19/09)
2009        Feb 17, France's lower house of parliament unanimously passed a law granting government payments to those who take time off work to care for dying relatives in their last weeks of life.
    (AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 17, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Germany's foreign minister met with top Iraqi leaders in Baghdad in the latest high-level visit by a major Western nation that opposed the 2003 US-led invasion but has promised to help Iraq rebuild now that security has improved.
    (AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 17, In southern Iraq a bus filled with Shiite pilgrims collided with a British military vehicle, killing seven pilgrims and injuring 27 others.
    (AP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 17, A Milan court sentenced David Mills, the British former tax lawyer of Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi, to four-and-a-half years in jail for corruption.
    (AFP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 17, Japan's Finance Minister Shoichi Nakagawa abruptly resigned over allegations he made a drunken appearance at a G-7 news conference, shaking PM Taro Aso's already deeply unpopular government. On Oct 4 Nakagawa (56) was found dead in his home. Police ruled out foul play.
    (AP, 2/17/09)(AP, 10/4/09)
2009        Feb 17, In Japan US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton warned North Korea against following through on a threatened missile launch, saying it would damage its prospects for improved relations with the United States and the world. Clinton also signed an agreement with Japan that will move 8,000 Marines off the southern Japanese island of Okinawa to the US territory of Guam.
    (AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 17, Kosovo celebrated the first anniversary of its unilateral declaration of independence from Serbia. Thus far it was recognized by only 54 of the UN’s 192 countries. Five of the EU’s 27 countries so far refused recognition.
    (Econ, 2/14/09, p.16)
2009        Feb 17, Business leaders in Martinique agreed to a 20 percent price cut on most supermarket products, despite initial refusal.
    (AP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 17, In Mexico hundreds of people blocked bridges to the US in three border cities, demanding the army leave in another challenge for the Mexican government as it struggles to quell escalating drug violence. 3 police officers, including the operations director of the Ciudad Juarez city police, were shot to death by unidentified assailants on a street near the US consulate. Federal police fighting gunmen in the northern border city of Reynosa had to call the army for help. After the fighting, which left five gunmen dead and seven police injured, authorities seized several assault rifles and even a 60 mm mortar. Cardboard signs with handwritten messages appeared taped to the doors and windows of businesses in ciudad Juarez, warning that one officer would be killed every two days police chief Roberto Orduna did not quit.
    (AP, 2/18/09)(AP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 17, In southern Nigeria gunmen attacked two oil facilities operated by Royal Dutch Shell. A local militant leader claimed responsibility for the attack in a letter and threatened further violence. A Nigerian appeal court sacked the governor of the southwestern state of Ekiti after complaints of vote irregularities and ordered a fresh poll within three months.
    (AP, 2/17/09)(AFP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 17, NATO warned that Pakistan risked creating a safe haven for Islamist extremists after it struck a deal to impose Islamic law and suspend a military offensive in the former tourist haven of Swat.
    (AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 17, In Portugal Conchita Cintron (b.1922), Peruvian-born matador, died. She faced her first bull at age 13 and made her premier at the main arena in Lima in 1937. She reportedly killed over 750 bulls during her career in Europe.
    (SFC, 2/20/09, p.B8)(Econ, 3/7/09, p.93)
2009        Feb 17, The UN agency for children said Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers have stepped up conscription of child soldiers, as the rebels prepare to face a final onslaught by the military. Tamil politicians accused the Sri Lankan government of ignoring the safety of tens of thousands of civilians in its campaign to wipe out the Tamil Tiger rebels, saying more than 2,000 noncombatants have been killed in the recent fighting.
    (AFP, 2/17/09)(AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 17, The Sudanese government and Darfur's most powerful rebel group signed an declaration to conduct future peace negotiations, but failed to agree on a hoped-for cease-fire after a week of talks.
    (AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 17, Sudanese writer Tayeb Salih (b.1929), one of the most respected Arab novelists of the 20th century, died in London where he spent most of his life. His books included the classic "Season of Migration to the North" (1966) about a Sudanese man's experiences of life and love in Britain in the 1960s.
    (AFP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 17, The Yemeni Interior Ministry announced the surrender of Abu al-Hareth Muhammad al-Oufi, a former Guantanamo detainee who later became an al-Qaida field commander. He was handed over to Saudi authorities.
    (AP, 2/17/09)
2009        Feb 17, In Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe and his arch rival Morgan Tsvangirai sat at a cabinet table for the first time as ministers of the country's new unity government held their inaugural meeting. A Zimbabwe court charged Roy Bennett, a senior MDC party official, over a plot involving terrorism and insurgency, just days after the party joined a unity government.
    (AFP, 2/17/09)(Reuters, 2/17/09)

2009        Feb 18, President Barack Obama unveiled the next step in his multi-pronged efforts to lift the United States out of recession, pledging up to $275 billion to help stem a wave of home foreclosures that sparked the US financial meltdown. Obama advisors said he has settled on Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius as top choice for secretary of health and human services.
    (Reuters, 2/18/09)(SFC, 2/19/09, p.A4)
2009        Feb 18, Fifty-one Democrats and 2 Republicans, sent a letter to President Barack Obama urging him to enforce a ban on importing assault weapons, saying many such guns are later smuggled south to arm Mexico's ruthless drug cartels. The ban was implemented under the administrations of Pres. George H.W. Bush and Pres. Bill Clinton, and the US government can enforce it under provisions of the 1968 Gun Control Act. But the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has quietly abandoned the ban in recent years.
    (AP, 2/18/09)(AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 18, A Florida jury ordered Philip Morris to pay $8 million in damages to Elaine Hess, the widow of a smoker who died of lung cancer.
    (SFC, 2/19/09, p.A2)
2009        Feb 18, Al Qaeda's Algeria-based branch (AQMI) claimed it is holding two missing Canadian diplomats hostage and 4 tourists. UN envoy Robert Fowler and his aide Louis Guay, went missing in the West African country of Niger last month.
    (SFC, 2/19/09, p.A2)(www.thestar.com/printArticle/589398)
2009        Feb 18, In Antigua panicky depositors were turned away from Stanford International Bank and some of its Latin American affiliates, unable to withdraw their money after US regulators accused Texas financier R. Allen Stanford of perpetrating an $8 billion fraud against his companies' investors.
    (AP, 2/19/09)
2009        Feb 18, A British judge discharged the jury in the trial of a group of British Muslims accused of plotting to blow up trans-Atlantic passenger jets in mid-air, citing legal reasons. Britain’s high court ruled that Abu Qatada, an extremist Muslim preacher, can be deported to Jordan  despite fears he could face torture there.
    (AP, 2/18/09)(SFC, 2/19/09, p.A2)
2009        Feb 18, A Chinese state news agency said AIDS was the top killer among infectious diseases in China for the first time last year, with 6,897 people dying in the nine months through September.
    (AP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 18, In Ecuador US diplomat Mark Sullivan was declared a “persona non grata" and told to leave. Pres. Correa later said Sullivan had directed CIA operations in Ecuador.
    (SFC, 2/23/09, p.A2)
2009        Feb 18, A leading Egyptian dissident, Ayman Nour (44), who was jailed after challenging the country's longtime president in the 2005 elections, was unexpectedly freed after years of pressure from the United States.
    (AP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 18, Georgia and Russia agreed to let monitors visit anywhere they want in Georgia and its 2 breakaway provinces.
    (WSJ, 2/19/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 18, Greek police destroyed a powerful car bomb left outside the offices of Citibank in a northern Athens suburb in an escalation of left-wing militant attacks.
    (AP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 18, In Guadeloupe rioters manning barricades fatally shot Jacques Bino, tax agent and union member, in a housing project in Pointe-a-Pitre, as he returned home from protests. This was the first death in unrest that has convulsed France's Caribbean islands for weeks.
    (AP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 18, Iran’s Deputy Defense Minister Ahmad Vahidi said in published remarks that Iran has built an unmanned surveillance aircraft with a range of more than 600 miles, enough to reach Israel. Iran announced two years ago that it had built an unmanned aircraft, but Vahidi's comments were the first by a top official revealing its range.
    (AP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 18, In Iraq a roadside bomb targeting a police patrol in the northern city of Mosul killed one policeman. In Baghdad gunmen killed a local official from the Sunni Iraqi Islamic Party.
    (AP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 18, Israel set a series of tough conditions for accepting a proposed cease-fire with Hamas, saying there would be no deal, and no open borders for Gaza, until the Islamic militant group releases a captured Israeli soldier. Israeli planes attacked smuggling tunnels around the Gaza-Egypt border and a disused Hamas security base near the town of Khan Younis.
    (AP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 18, Japanese PM Taro Aso met Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on an island near disputed resource-rich maritime territory, hoping to make progress toward resolving a dispute lingering since World war II.
    (AP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 18, In Morocco Abdelkader Belliraj (50) was arrested together with a number of other people, allegedly in possession of a large arsenal of firearms. The Belgian-Moroccan national was suspected of spearheading a presumed 35-member terrorist ring.
    (AFP, 4/3/09)
2009        Feb 18, In Nigeria gunmen in a midnight raid attacked a compound housing ExxonMobil staff in the Niger Delta but were repulsed after a fierce battle with Nigerian troops.
    (AFP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 18, In Pakistan a pro-Taliban cleric vowed to restore calm to the troubled Swat valley, leading thousands of men in a march for peace after securing a controversial deal to enforce sharia law. Gunmen killed a television reporter hours after he covered the peace march in the Swat Valley.
    (AFP, 2/18/09)(AP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 18, Polish police said they have detained 78 people, including a priest and a doctor, suspected of possessing child pornography and spreading it on the Internet.
    (AP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 18, In Sri Lanka government artillery attacks and air raids inside the northern war zone killed at least 38 civilians and wounded 140 others.
    (AP, 2/18/09)
2009        Feb 18, Sudanese forces bombed rebel positions in Darfur, with the ink barely dry on a deal between Khartoum and the strongest rebel group that was hailed as a turning point in efforts to end the six-year conflict. The next day the Sudanese army said that it was an allied armed group that fought Darfur rebels the previous day, not government troops.
    (AP, 2/18/09)(AFP, 2/19/09)
2009        Feb 18, Taiwan’s central bank cut interest rates to a record low as a government statistician predicted that its economy will shrink for five consecutive quarters.
    (WSJ, 2/19/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 18, Zimbabwe’s the new finance minister announced that Zimbabwe has begun paying government workers in US dollars and will allow more trade in foreign currency in the first act by a unity government that gave the opposition control of much of the devastated economy. A court ordered ministerial nominee Roy Bennett to be kept in custody until March 4, on the grounds there was "reasonable suspicion" against him in a terrorism case.
    (AP, 2/18/09)

2009        Feb 19, Barack Obama made his first foreign trip as president to Canada where he sought to quell Canadian concerns about US protectionism.
    (AP, 2/19/09)
2009        Feb 19, The DJIA fell 89.68 to 7465.95, a new 6-year low.
    (WSJ, 2/20/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 19, The California state Senate approved a long-awaited budget intended to wipe out a $42 billion deficit, possibly steering the state clear of a fiscal disaster.
    (AP, 2/19/09)
2009        Feb 19, Banking giant UBS said it has agreed to pay $780 million and turn over once-secret Swiss banking records to settle allegations it conspired to defraud the US government of taxes owed by thousands of American clients.
    (AP, 2/19/09)
2009        Feb 19, In Daly City, Ca., a car with 4 friends was sprayed by gun fire on John Daly Blvd., near the BART station. Moises Frias Jr. (21), a student at City College, was killed. Two men in a sedan escaped. The 4 friends had no known gang affiliations. Police later arrested Luis Herrera (18) and Danilo Velasquez (28), members of the MS-13 gang, for their participation in the murder. Jaime Balam (20), a 3rd gang member was being sought. He was deported to Mexico 8 days after the shooting, but before being identified as a suspect. In 2011 Herrera pleaded guilty to racketeering and conspiracy after federal prosecutors agreed to drop a murder charge. Velasquez was convicted of racketeering and conspiracy.
    (SFC, 2/25/09, p.B2)(SFC, 7/10/09, p.D1)(SFC, 11/11/11, p.C3)(SFC, 11/30/11, p.C2)
2009        Feb 19, In Pennsylvania Roger Leon Barlow (19) was charged with setting 9 fires in arson-prone Coatesville, 35 miles west of Philadelphia.
    (SFC, 2/20/09, p.A10)
2009        Feb 19, Virginia’s House of Delegates voted 60-39 on a partial ban on smoking in bars and restaurants. The Senate had voted 27-13 earlier on the bill, which was supported by Gov. Timothy Kaine.
    (WSJ, 2/20/09, p.A6)
2009        Feb 19, Thomas E. Bolger (b.1927), former head of Bell Atlantic (1983-1988), died.
    (WSJ, 2/21/09, p.A5)
2009        Feb 19, In southern Bangladesh 13 people died and scores were missing after a ferry carrying more than 100 passengers collided with a cargo boat and capsized.
    (AFP, 2/19/09)
2009        Feb 19, Belgium took Senegal to the International Court of Justice over the African nation's failure to prosecute a former Chad president for crimes against humanity and torture.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 19, Europe's highest human rights court has awarded Abu Qatada, an extremist Muslim preacher, euro2,800 ($3,550) for being held unlawfully by British authorities during an anti-terrorist probe. A day earlier Britain's highest court ruled that Abu Qatada could be deported to Jordan despite fears he could face torture there. The European Court of Human Rights ruled that Qatada and 10 other detainees had their right to liberty violated when they were held in high-security conditions.
    (AP, 2/19/09)
2009        Feb 19, France bowed to demands for wage increases in Guadeloupe in the hope of ending a month-long strike that has plunged the French Caribbean island into rioting.
    (AP, 2/19/09)
2009        Feb 19, In southern India lawyers sympathetic to Sri Lankan rebels set fire to a police station in Chennai and clashed with police leaving 20 police injured.
    (WSJ, 2/20/09, p.A12)
2009        Feb 19, In Israel far-right politician Avigdor Lieberman endorsed Benjamin Netanyahu for Israeli prime minister, all but guaranteeing that Netanyahu will be the country's next leader.
    (AP, 2/19/09)
2009        Feb 19, Kyrgyzstan's parliament voted to close a key US air base in the country, a move that could hamper Pres. Obama's efforts to increase the number of US forces in Afghanistan.
    (AP, 2/19/09)
2009        Feb 19, About 12 pirates armed with guns attacked the tug and barge in the Malacca Strait and kidnapped two crew members as the vessel was en route to Singapore.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 19, US Sen. John Kerry as well as 2 other congressional Democrats came to the Gaza Strip, the highest-level visit by a US official since the Hamas militant group seized power in the territory nearly two years ago. Kerry said he was in Gaza to view the aftermath of Israel's recent military offensive against Hamas.
    (AP, 2/19/09)(SFC, 2/20/09, p.A6)
2009        Feb 19, US Defense Sec. Robert Gates, in Europe for NATO talks, signed a new military cooperation agreement with Poland.
    (WSJ, 2/20/09, p.A12)
2009        Feb 19, A Moscow court acquitted three men accused of helping murder Kremlin critic and journalist Anna Politkovskaya, leaving Russia's most politically charged killing in years still unsolved. This decision was overturned in June.
    (Reuters, 2/19/09)(AP, 6/25/09)
2009        Feb 19, In Spain the mobile phone industry's biggest trade show wrapped up after four days that delivered exciting news for technophiles, average phone users and even environmentalists. During the show leading manufacturers announced an initiative to produce a standard charger that would fit all phones by 2012 in a step set to reduce waste and increase convenience.
    (AFP, 2/19/09)
2009        Feb 19, The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said samples taken from a Syrian site suspected of being a secretly built reactor have revealed new traces of processed uranium.
    (AP, 2/19/09)
2009        Feb 19, Naser Abdel Karim al-Wahishi, Yemen's most wanted fugitive and leader of al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, used an audio recording to urge Yemenis to rise up against the government and called on Arabs in Saudi Arabia and Gulf countries to help their brothers in Yemen.
    (AP, 2/19/09)
2009        Feb 19, Trading resumed at the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE) after a three-month suspension but transactions were carried out only in US dollars, the first time in President Robert Mugabe's 29-year rule.
    (AFP, 2/19/09)

2009        Feb 20, US Defense Secretary Robert Gates said up to 20 nations have offered to boost their civilian or military commitments to Afghanistan.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 20, A US Army medic was convicted of murder for his involvement in the execution-style slayings of four bound and blindfolded Iraqi detainees shot in the back of the head in the spring of 2007. The court sentenced him to life in prison.
    (AP, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 20, California’s Gov. Schwarzenegger made nearly $1 billion in line-item trims and signed the new budget bill. The 33 bills in the budget plan included $15 billion in spending cuts, $11.4 billion in borrowing, $12.8 billion in taxes and about $2 billion in funds from the new federal stimulus package.
    (SFC, 2/20/09, p.A12)(SFC, 2/21/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 20, In California Ahmadullah Sais Niazi (34), the Afghan-born brother-in-law of Osama bin Laden’s former bodyguard, was arrested in Orange County on charges that he lied about ties to terrorist groups on citizenship and passport papers.
    (SFC, 2/21/09, p.A4)
2009        Feb 20, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal announced that he will decline stimulus money specifically targeted at expanding state unemployment insurance coverage, becoming the first state executive to officially refuse any part of the federal government’s payout to states.
    (http://news.yahoo.com/s/politico/19092;_ylt=AlTYJh.MxX8VcaG8HASlBbYDW7oF)
2009        Feb 20, In Homer, La., police officers Tim Cox and Joey Henry were involved in the fatal shooting of Bernard Monroe Sr. (73). The shooting sparked protests and at least 2 investigations. In July both officers resigned from the police force.
    (SFC, 7/29/09, p.A4)
2009        Feb 20, General Motors Corp.'s Swedish-based subsidiary Saab went into bankruptcy protection so the unit can be spun off or sold by its struggling US parent.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 20, In Wampum, Pennsylvania, Jordan Brown (11) shot his father's pregnant fiancee, Kenzie Marie Houk (26), in the back of the head as she lay in bed. He then put his youth model 20-gauge shotgun back in his room before going out to catch his school bus. On March 29, 2010, a judge ruled that boy will be tried as an adult.
    (AP, 2/22/09)(SFC, 3/30/10, p.A10)
2009        Feb 20, Australian Federal Police agents with search warrants boarded an anti-whaling group's ship, the Steve Irwin, as it docked in the southern Australian city of Hobart. They seized videotapes of violent clashes between the activists and Japanese whalers.
    (AP, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 20, The Canadian units of General Motors Corp and Chrysler sought as much as C$10 billion ($8 billion) in aid from the Canadian and Ontario governments as they fought to survive an industry wide crisis.
    (AP, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 20, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton arrived in Beijing for talks with Chinese leaders after vowing not to let human rights block progress on the global economic crisis, climate change and security.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 20, Chinese authorities closed a chemical plant being investigated for contaminating water supplies to 1.5 million people in the country's east. Water supplies were restored after a five-hour shutdown. Biaoxin Chemical Company caused "massive" tap water pollution in Yancheng, a city in east Jiangsu province. Investigators identified the pollutant as a phenol compound used to make products including air fresheners, medical ointments, cosmetics and sunscreens.
    (AP, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 20, In Egypt 5 crew members died when a Ukrainian cargo plane crashed during takeoff, burst into flames and slid down the runway in the city of Luxor.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 20, Christopher Nolan (43), an Irish poet and novelist, died in Dublin. He had refused to let cerebral palsy get in the way of his writing. Using a "unicorn stick" strapped to his forehead to tap the keys of a typewriter, Nolan laboriously wrote out messages and, eventually, poems and books as well. His autobiography, "Under the Eye of the Clock: The Life Story of Christopher Nolan," won the prestigious Whitbread Award in 1988.
    (AP, 2/22/09)(Econ, 2/28/09, p.91)
2009        Feb 20, In Israel Benjamin Netanyahu appealed to his moderate rivals to join him after the hard-liner was formally tapped to put together Israel's next ruling coalition, an alliance that would dilute the power of nationalists bent on derailing Mideast peace talks.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 20, Kyrgyzstan ordered US forces to depart within six months from an air base key to military operations in Afghanistan, complicating plans to send more troops to battle rising Taliban and al-Qaida violence. A US military official said Uzbekistan will allow non-lethal US military cargo heading to Afghanistan to transit through the country.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 20, Latvia's center-right coalition government resigned after weeks of instability brought on by the Baltic country's economic collapse. President Valdis Zatlers said he accepted the resignation of PM Ivars Godmanis and his administration, which had been in power since December 2007.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 20, Madagascar security forces regained control of four government ministries overnight from opposition activists. Police arrested 50 people and no injuries were reported.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 20, In Mexico criminal gangs in Ciudad Juarez followed up on threats and killed police officer Cesar Ivan Portillo and city jail guard Juan Pablo Ruiz as they left their homes before dawn to head to work. Public Safety Secretary Roberto Orduna, the police chief  of Ciudad Juarez, stepped down hours later.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 20, In Myanmar the government announced an amnesty for 6,300 prisoners. Only a handful of political detainees were among those released.
    (SFC, 2/21/09, p.A2)(AFP, 2/22/09)
2009        Feb 20, Nigeria ordered its customs service and security and environmental agencies to clamp down on illegal imports of potentially toxic electronic waste.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 20, In northwestern Pakistan a suicide bomber attacked the funeral of a slain Shiite Muslim leader, killing 28 people and triggering deadly rioting.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 20, A Swaziland government report said about 42 percent of pregnant women in the country are infected with the virus that causes AIDS, a 3 percent jump in a single year. An estimated 185,000 of Swaziland's 1 million people are HIV positive, and about 30,000 are receiving antiretrovirals.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 20, In Somalia hardline Islamist militia attacked African Union forces in Mogadishu, killing one civilian and wounding two others.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 20, Tamil Tiger rebel pilots on a kamikaze mission crashed their planes in the Sri Lankan capital, killing two people.
    (AP, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 20, Banking details of eight American clients of Switzerland's largest bank were sent to US authorities along with the names of more than 240 other American clients of UBS. A Swiss court order blocking the move came too late to stop the action.
    (AP, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 20, In southern Thailand suspected Muslim insurgents ambushed a military convoy and beheaded two soldiers in the second such attack this month.
    (AP, 2/20/09)
2009        Feb 20, Six African migrants drowned and 11 more are presumed dead after smugglers in the Gulf of Aden forced their passengers overboard in deep water off Yemen. The smuggling boat was carrying 40 Somalis and 12 Ethiopians when it approached Yemen's coast.
    (AP, 2/24/09)

2009        Feb 21, President Barack Obama ordered the US Treasury to implement tax cuts for 95 percent of Americans, fulfilling a campaign pledge he hopes will help jolt the economy out of recession.
    (Reuters, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 21, The US postal service released a set of six 42-cent stamps honoring a dozen early civil rights activists.
    (SFC, 2/21/09, p.A4)
2009        Feb 21, The Journal Register Co., a Yardley, Pa.-based company, filed for bankruptcy protection. The company owned 2o daily and 159 nondaily newspapers with some 3,500 employees.
    (SSFC, 2/22/09, p.A8)
2009        Feb 21, In Afghanistan a battle outside Kandahar killed at least six Taliban fighters. Fighting continued into the next day. An airstrike against militants in Helmand province killed 8.
    (AP, 2/22/09)
2009        Feb 21, In India Sivaprakasam (60), a former civil servant, burned himself to death in Tamil Nadu to protest Sri Lanka’s campaign against the Tamil Tiger rebels. His was the 5th Tamil Nadu suicide by fire this year.
    (Econ, 2/28/09, p.46)
2009        Feb 21, In western Indonesia a Sumatran tiger mauled two illegal loggers to death, bringing to 5 the number of people killed by the critically endangered cats in less than a month.
    (AP, 2/22/09)
2009        Feb 21, Iraq's infamous Abu Ghraib prison reopened as the Baghdad Central Prison, with official promises of humane treatment in a lockup notorious as a center for abuse, both under Saddam Hussein and the US military.
    (AP, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 21, In Ireland around 100,000 people filled the streets of Dublin in protest at the government's handling of the country's economic crisis.
    (AP, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 21, Jamaican regulators said they are forbidding all explicit references to sex and violence over the airwaves. The announcement followed a Feb. 6 ban that specifically targeted dancehall tunes and videos depicting "daggering," a dance style popular among Jamaican youth that features pelvic grinding simulating sex.
    (AP, 2/22/09)
2009        Feb 21, In Kashmir two men were killed when soldiers opened fire after a group of Kashmiri youths hurled stones at them and chanted anti-India slogans. On March 21 the Indian army said it would punish three soldiers for their role in the shooting.
    (AFP, 3/21/09)
2009        Feb 21, Two rockets were fired from south Lebanon at Israel, with one slamming into a mostly Christian Arab village and causing minor injuries to at least one Israeli. Israel responded by firing at least 6 shells on a village in the area where the rockets had been launched.
    (AP, 2/21/09)(SSFC, 2/22/09, p.A5)
2009        Feb 21, In Mexico assailants in an SUV hurled two grenades at a police station in the Pacific resort town of Zihuatanejo, wounding one officer and four civilians. Teenagers stoned a 22-year-old man to death in Tuxtla Gutierrez because they believed he had stolen a cell phone and a bicycle from one of their friends.
    (AP, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 21, In central Nigeria rioters burned homes, churches and mosques, when violence flared after Muslims parked their cars in front of a church in Bauchi. The clashes followed an argument between Christians and Muslims the previous day. Authorities in northern Nigeria have deployed troops and imposed a curfew following clashes between Christians and Muslims which left at least 11 people dead.
    (AP, 2/21/09)(AFP, 2/23/09)
2009        Feb 21, A Pakistani official said that the Taliban and the Pakistani government had agreed to a "permanent cease-fire" in the restive northwest Swat Valley. A roadside bomb apparently targeted an oil tanker headed to NATO troops in Afghanistan. The remote-controlled bomb killed one person and wounded two others near the Landi Kotal area. The Taliban had been engineering a class revolt for years by exploiting fissures between a small group of wealthy landlords and their landless tenants.
    (AP, 2/21/09)(WSJ, 4/16/09, p.A4)
2009        Feb 21, A few hundred Russian opposition sympathizers held an anti-Kremlin rally in central Moscow demanding the resignation of the government. Former chess champion Garry Kasparov and former Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov addressed the crowd from a truck.
    (AP, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 21, In Russia assailants with automatic rifles blocked a car of 2 bank employees on a highway in Tula province south of Moscow and stole about 43 million rubles ($1.2 million; euro 940,000) in cash at gunpoint. The bank employees, a cashier and a driver, were traveling in a Toyota with no armed escort despite the large amount of cash.
    (AP, 2/23/09)
2009        Feb 21, In central Slovakia a train collided with a bus, killing 11 people and injuring 21 others near the town of Brezno.
    (AP, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 21, A South Korean housewife broke a world record in marathon singing after crooning for more than 76 hours without stopping at a Seoul karaoke bar.
    (AFP, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 21, In eastern Sri Lanka a group of Tamil rebels stormed a village, killing two ethnic Sinhalese farmers and wounding 15 others.
    (AP, 2/21/09)
2009        Feb 21, Sudan's justice minister said Sudan will free 24 Darfur prisoners as part of a goodwill agreement with rebels, even as fresh reports of violence came in from the battle-scarred region. Two Sudanese working for Aide Medicale Internationale, a French humanitarian group in Darfur, were shot dead in an attack that also left four people wounded. A gang of 24 men on horses and camels ambushed the workers on a road between Kurunji and Khor Abeshe in South Darfur.
    (Reuters, 2/21/09)(AFP, 2/23/09)

2009        Feb 22, The film "Slumdog Millionaire," a tale of hope amid adversity and squalor in Mumbai, came away with 8 Oscars, including best picture and director for Danny Boyle. Sean Penn won his second best-actor Oscar, this one for playing slain gay-rights pioneer Harvey Milk in "Milk," while Kate Winslet took best actress for "The Reader," in which she plays a former concentration camp guard. Heath Ledger (d.2008) won as best supporting actor in “The Dark Knight"; Penelope Cruz won as best supporting actress for “Vicky Cristina Barcelona."
    (AP, 2/23/09)(SFC, 2/23/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 22, Mississippi Gov. Barbour said he would join Louisiana Gov. Jindal in turning down federal incentives to expand unemployment insurance coverage.
    (WSJ, 2/23/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 22, In eastern Algeria 9 members of a private security firm were killed when Islamist militants attacked their base near Jijel.
    (AFP, 2/23/09)
2009        Feb 22, In Brazil bubbles, feathers and glitter swirled on the first night of parades in Rio's Carnival, as the city's samba schools battled it out for top honors in what many bill as the world's largest party.
    (AP, 2/23/09)
2009        Feb 22, In Brisbane, Australia, Father Peter Kennedy (71), a rebel Catholic priest who was sacked for blessing gay couples and allowing women to preach, defied his archbishop and led mass.
    (AFP, 2/22/09)
2009        Feb 22, In northern China a gas explosion ripped through a coal mine outside Taiyuan, capital of the main coal-producing province of Shanxi, killing at least 77 miners and trapping dozens in the deadliest Chinese coal mine accident in more than a year.
    (AFP, 2/22/09)(AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 22, In Egypt a group of French teenagers on a school trip was hit hard by a bombing at Cairo’s famed 14th century Khan al-Khalili bazaar. The attack killed a 17-year-old French girl and wounded another 24 people: 17 French, three Saudis, three Egyptians and a German. Egyptian police soon arrested three suspects. On May 23 Egyptian authorities said they had arrested seven people for being part of an al-Qaida linked group accused of carrying out the attack. They included two Palestinians, two Egyptians, a British-Egyptian, a Belgian-Tunisian and a French-Albanian woman, some of whom had entered Egypt as students.
    (AP, 2/23/09)(AP, 5/23/09)
2009        Feb 22, The bodies of four people were found in a smuggling tunnel under the Gaza-Egypt border, a day after another body was discovered in the area. Border officials said about 1,000 university students and holders of foreign residency permits were eligible to cross, and by mid-afternoon, about 600 people had made the trip.
    (AP, 2/22/09)
2009        Feb 22, The heads of Europe's largest economies agreed on the need for greater regulation of financial markets and of products such as hedge funds, as they met in Berlin to hammer out a joint European position for the G20 meeting in London on April 2.
    (AFP, 2/22/09)
2009        Feb 22, In Greece Vassilis Palaiokostas (44) and his Albanian accomplice Alket Rizaj staged a 2nd getaway by helicopter. Palaiokostas was serving a sentence for robbery and kidnapping when he first escaped with Rizaj in 2006 in a helicopter. On Nov 16 Alket Rizaj was arrested with a female companion at an isolated house near the town of Marathon.
    (AP, 2/23/09)(AP, 11/16/09)
2009        Feb 22, Iran's official news agency says the country's first nuclear power plant will begin preliminary phase operation on Feb 25 after a series of delays.
    (AP, 2/22/09)(SFC, 2/23/09, p.A2)
2009        Feb 22, A military official said Iraqi authorities have issued an arrest warrant for a Sunni lawmaker accused of masterminding a series of high-profile attacks, including mortar strikes on the Green Zone and a 2007 suicide bombing inside the parliament building. Lawmaker Mohammed al-Dayni denied the allegations.
    (AP, 2/22/09)
2009        Feb 22, In Mexico gunmen in Chihuahua city shot at a convoy carrying the governor of Chihuahua, a violence-wracked border state, killing one of his bodyguards and wounding two other agents. Police arrested two suspects March 31 in the northern city of Chihuahua, who then led them to 2 more suspects.
    (AP, 2/24/09)(AP, 4/5/09)
2009        Feb 22, In Pakistan a top official said the local government the North West Frontier Province will distribute 30,000 rifles to villagers to help security forces fight the growing strength of Taliban and al-Qaida militants.
    (AP, 2/22/09)
2009        Feb 22, Gunmen in northern Somalia kidnapped a Pakistani. Al-Shabab insurgents claimed to have carried out a suicide attack on an African Union peacekeeping base in Mogadishu. 11 Burundi peacekeepers in Somalia were killed and another 20 injured in a suicide attack by a Somali contractor who delivered supplies and had easy access to the base.
    (AP, 2/22/09)(AP, 2/23/09)
2009        Feb 22, In Turkey Aydin Dogan (72), chairman of Dogan Sirketler Grubu Holdings AS, a conglomerate that controls 7 newspapers, 28 magazines and 3 Turkish television channels as well as energy interests, accused PM Erdogan of seeking to muzzle criticism. Dogan was recently hit with a corporate tax bill of around $500 million. Most of the bill centered on the 2007 sale of a stake in Dogan to Germany’s Axel Springer AG. Dogan was forced to shrink his empire and dump some critics of pres. Erdogan before pressure on him ceased.
    (WSJ, 2/23/09, p.A9)(Econ, 4/6/13, p.62)
2009        Feb 22, The United Arab Emirates said it will spend $10 billion to bail out Dubai, whose huge construction and financial sector expansion plans slowed under the world wide downturn.
    (WSJ, 2/23/09, p.A1)

2009        Feb 23, A government official said US aid for the Gaza Strip's reconstruction will likely top $900 million, as Secretary of State Hillary Clinton prepared to make her first Mideast trip as America's top diplomat.
    (AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 23, The FBI said it has rescued more than 45 suspected teenage prostitutes, some as young as 13, in a nationwide 3-night sweep, Operation Cross Country, to remove kids from the illegal sex trade and punish their accused pimps.
    (AP, 2/23/09)
2009        Feb 23, The DJIA fell 250.89 (3.4%) to 7114.78, nearly half the peak it hit 16 months ago, and its lowest close in over 11 years.
    (WSJ, 2/24/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 23, California’s Assemblyman Tom Ammiano of San Francisco introduced a bill to legalize the recreational use of marijuana.
    (SFC, 2/24/09, p.B1)
2009        Feb 23, In SF Leticia Hunter (33) was shot and killed in the Tenderloin district. On March 17 three men were charged with murder, assault and cocaine trafficking conspiracy.
    (SFC, 3/18/09, p.B3)
2009        Feb 23, In Florida the Rev. Francis Guinan (66) was convicted of 2nd degree grand theft for embezzling thousands of dollars from his Delray Beach church.
    (SFC, 2/24/09, p.A4)
2009        Feb 23, In Vassalboro, Maine, the Grand View Topless Coffee Shop began operations with a staff of 3 topless waitresses and one bare-chested waiter.
    (www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/02/24/grand-view-topless-coffee_n_169670.html)
2009        Feb 23, Ford Motor Co. said it has reached a tentative deal with the United Auto Workers union on changes to retiree health care, becoming the first Detroit automaker to secure union concessions on the key issue.
    (Reuters, 2/23/09)
2009        Feb 23, Binyam Mohamed (b.1978), Ethiopian-born former British resident, was freed from Guantanamo after nearly seven year in US captivity without facing trial. He claimed that he was tortured at a covert CIA site in Morocco. He was arrested at the Karachi airport in April, 2002, while trying to fly back to Britain on a false passport. During three months of detention in Pakistan, he was allegedly tortured by Pakistani agents. In 2004 he was taken to the US prison at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan and signed a confession, which he later claimed was extracted under duress. On Sep 20, 2004, he was flown to the US military detention center at Guantanamo Bay.
    (AP, 2/23/09)
2009        Feb 23, In Afghanistan a NATO air strike killed up to 16 militants overnight in Badghis province. In Nimrod province a twin suicide attack killed a policeman outside the counter-narcotics office of the provincial capital of Zaranj. Lt. General Jim Dutton, the deputy NATO force commander, said around 17,000 extra US troops earmarked for Afghanistan will deploy as fast as possible and thousands more are requested for August elections. 3 Afghan children died when a shell blew up. Canada's army later said the children had died after they brought back a Taliban improvised explosive device to their village.
    (AFP, 2/23/09)(AP, 3/2/09)
2009        Feb 23, In southern Australia more than 100 people evacuated their homes in Victoria state when new bushfires threatened communities, two weeks after the nation's worst fire disaster killed more than 200 people.
    (AP, 2/23/09)
2009        Feb 23, China’s state media said pig organs contaminated by a banned animal feed additive have been blamed for sickening at least 70 people in southern China. The pig organs tainted by the steroid clenbuterol were sold last week in markets in Guangzhou, the capital of Guangdong province. Another 14 cases  in Guangzhou were reported on Feb 25.
    (AP, 2/23/09)(AP, 2/26/09)
2009        Feb 23, Denmark seized control of Fionia Bank A/S by injecting about $172 million in a deal that will take away shareholder control and split the bank into two parts until a sale can be realized. The bank was hit by mounting losses on bad loans to property developers.
    (WSJ, 2/24/09, p.C2)
2009        Feb 23, Finance Minister Christine Lagarde said the French government is to provide 2.5-5.0 billion euros in loans to support the merger of banks Caisse d'Epargne and Banque Populaire.
    (AP, 2/23/09)
2009        Feb 23, Iraq's restored National Museum was formally dedicated, nearly six years after looters carried away priceless antiquities and treasures in the chaos following the US-led invasion. Iraq's Interior Ministry said it has arrested a Shiite police gang accused of killing the Sunni vice president's sister. 3 US soldiers and an interpreter were killed during fighting north of Baghdad.
    (AP, 2/23/09)(AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 23, Honda Motor Co. named Takanobu Ito (55), head of core automaking operations, as its new chief executive, in an effort to provide fresh leadership to battle a global crisis in the auto industry. He replaced Takeo Fukui (64) as CEO and president.
    (AP, 2/23/09)
2009        Feb 23, Norwegian architect Sverre Fehn (b.1924) died in Oslo. His unique style of blending modern forms with Scandinavian traditions earned him the prestigious Pritzker Architecture Prize (1997). His white concrete Glacier Museum (1991), which has been hailed as a landmark within contemporary architecture. It stands on a plain carved by Norway's Jostedal Glacier at Fjaerland Fjord.
    (AP, 2/28/09)
2009        Feb 23, Pakistani paramilitary forces killed 10 Taliban militants in a tribal area bordering Afghanistan and destroyed more than a dozen vehicles and a main communications system.
    (AFP, 2/23/09)
2009        Feb 23, South Korea's Defense Ministry said North Korea recently deployed a new type of medium-range ballistic missile capable of reaching northern Australia and the US territory of Guam.
    (AP, 2/23/09)
2009        Feb 23, Sri Lanka's Tamil rebels, facing likely defeat on the battlefield, appealed for a cease-fire, a call immediately rejected by the government. Rebels said more than 30 civilians were killed and many more injured as the government advanced on Puthukkudirirppu.
    (AP, 2/23/09)(AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 23, Swedish power company Vattenfall said it had made a friendly 8.5-billion-euro (10.9-billion-dollar) offer for Nuon of the Netherlands in a takeover aimed at creating one of Europe's biggest energy groups.
    (AP, 2/23/09)

2009        Feb 24, Pres. Obama addressed the US Congress and the American people to tap the deep well of American optimism. Themes of responsibility, accountability and, above all, national community rang throughout an address carefully balanced by the gravity of its times. Republican leaders calling his plan irresponsible and certain to increase taxes and federal debt.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 24, President Barack Obama told Japanese PM Taro Aso that his nation was the cornerstone of US security policy in East Asia and America's links to the world economy.
    (AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 24, In NYC Monzer al-Kassan, a Syrian-born arms dealer, was sentenced to 30 years in prison for conspiring to sell weapons to Colombian militants in 2007.
    (SFC, 2/25/09, p.A4)
2009        Feb 24, A rocket carrying a NASA satellite crashed near Antarctica after a failed launch, ending a $280 million mission to track global warming from space.
    (AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 24, In southern Afghanistan a roadside bomb killed four US troops in the deadliest single attack on international forces this year. Japan said it will pay the salaries of Afghanistan's 80,000 police officers for six months as part of its ongoing financial support for the country. Afghan soldiers killed 18 militants targeting a poppy eradication force in Helmand province. Two soldiers were also killed in the battle. Afghan and coalition forces killed 10 militants in Uruzgan province. A "precision" airstrike was called in, killing most of the militants.
    (AP, 2/24/09)(AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 24, British mining group Lonmin announced up to 5,500 job cuts in South Africa, dealing a new blow to the continent's biggest economy as it contracted for the first time in a decade.
    (AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 24, China’s state media reported that a Chinese delegation will buy as much as $15 billion worth of machinery, automobiles and food products while on a trip to Europe this week.
    (WSJ, 2/25/09, p.A11)
2009        Feb 24, Tour agencies and other industry people reported that China has closed Tibet to foreign tourists ahead of next month's highly sensitive 50th anniversary of a failed uprising against Chinese rule.
    (AFP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 24, France’s Pres. Sarkozy and Italy’s Premier Berlusconi signed a deal pairing utilities from each nation to study the feasibility of building nuclear power plants in Italy.
    (WSJ, 2/25/09, p.A11)
2009        Feb 24, A Paris appeals court overturned five men's terror convictions, ruling that French intelligence officials improperly questioned them while they were detained at the US prison in Guantanamo Bay. Lawyers for the men: Brahim Yadel, Khaled ben Mustafa, Nizar Sassi, Mourad Benchellali and Ridouane Khalid, hailed the decision. During their 2007 Paris trial, the five acknowledged having spent time in military training camps in Afghanistan but they said they had never put their combat skills to use.
    (AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 24, In Guinea Ousmane Conte, the son of Guinea's late longtime dictator, was arrested on allegations of drug trafficking.
    (AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 24, Two Iraqi police officers opened fire on 4 American soldiers and two interpreters inside a police station in Mosul. One US soldier and an interpreter were killed. The assailants, believed to be associated with Al-Qaida, escaped. The two policemen an officer and a sergeant, were arrested in June by US and Iraqi forces and handed over to Iraqi custody.
    (SFC, 2/25/09, p.A2)(AP, 6/18/09)
2009        Feb 24, The Kenya National commission on Human Rights released a video showing a Kenyan policeman, who was later killed, saying he saw other officers execute 58 suspects instead of arresting them.
    (SFC, 2/25/09, p.A2)
2009        Feb 24, Iran’s Pres. Ahmadinejad arrived in Kenya with a delegation of nearly 100 officials and business people. He soon struck a deal to export 4 million tons of crude oil a year, to open direct flights between Tehran and Nairobi, and to provide scholarships for study in Iran.
    (http://tinyurl.com/yewhqnk)(Econ, 2/6/10, p.49)
2009        Feb 24, In Michoacan state, Mexico, Vista Hermosa Mayor Octavio Carrillo was arriving at his home when four gunmen waiting for him opened fire. He became the 6th elected local official killed in Michoacan since June.
    (AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 24, In Nigeria 2 days of clashes between rival gangs in the southern state of Edo left at least eight people dead.
    (AFP, 2/26/09)
2009        Feb 24, North Korea said it is preparing to shoot a satellite into orbit, its clearest reference yet to an impending launch that neighbors and the US suspect will be a provocative test of a long-range missile.
    (AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 24, Taliban militants extended a cease-fire in northwestern Pakistan's Swat valley, granting more time for peace talks with the government that the US worries could create a haven for insurgents in the nuclear-armed country.
    (AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 24, South Korea signed a $3.55 billion deal with Iraq to help rebuild the war-ravaged country in return for oil and gas. The deal was inked by South Korean President Lee Myung-bak and his Iraqi counterpart Jalal Talabani.
    (AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 24, Sri Lanka’s government troops advanced on the last urban area in the north still in the hands of Tamil Tiger rebels. The defense ministry said 13 bodies of rebel fighters were recovered. The LTTE  said 10 civilians were killed and 25 injured when troops fired artillery guns at the densely populated Puttumattalan.
    (AFP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 24, In Sudan fighting erupted in the key southern city of Malakal. Some 50 people were killed and another 100 wounded in 2 days of fighting.
    (AFP, 2/27/09)
2009        Feb 24, Syria's nuclear chief told the UN's nuclear agency that his nation has built a new missile facility on the site of what the US says was a nearly finished nuclear reactor bombed by Israel in Sep 2007.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 24, In Thailand thousands of protesters surrounded the prime minister's office demanding that parliament be dissolved and new elections held, the latest challenge to the two-month old coalition government.
    (AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 24, A Kurdish politician spoke to lawmakers in Turkey's parliament in the Kurdish language, openly defying the law, to celebrate UNESCO world languages week. State-run television immediately cut off the live broadcast.
    (AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 24, The United Arab Emirates' official news agency said US firms Boeing Co. and Lockheed Martin Corp. have been awarded almost $3 billion in contracts to supply transport aircraft for the country's military.
    (AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 24, Four Yemenis were convicted and sentenced up to seven years in prison on for forming an al-Qaida cell and plotting to attack government and foreign targets in the country.
    (AP, 2/24/09)
2009        Feb 24, Officials said Zimbabwe's teachers have agreed to end a strike that emptied classrooms for a year, after the government promised to review salaries and appealed for 458 million dollars' aid for schools.
    (AFP, 2/24/09)

2009        Feb 25, Attorney General Eric Holder said US and Mexican authorities have arrested 750 people over 21 months in an anti-drug sweep that included 52 members of Mexico's Sinaloa drug cartel. The crackdown culminated 50 overnight raids. It investigated crimes in the United States, Mexico and Canada, netted some 59 million dollars in cash, 12,000 kilos (12 tons) of cocaine, 544 kilos (1,200 pounds) of methamphetamine and 1.3 million Ecstasy pills.
    (AFP, 2/25/09)(WSJ, 2/26/09, p.A6)
2009        Feb 25, A Federal Grand Jury returned a single count indictment charging Kody Ray Brittingham (20) of Camp Lejeune, NC, with threatening the President-Elect of the United States, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 871, which has a maximum penalty of 5 years imprisonment followed by up to three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000. In August Brittingham pleaded guilty to charges of threatening to kill Pres. Obama and armed robbery. Brittingham was arrested in mid-December on an unrelated armed robbery charge and, as a result, separated from the service on Jan 3. But a search of his barracks also turned up a journal containing white supremacist material and a plan to kill Obama.
    (www.marinecorpstimes.com/news/2009/03/marine_obamathreats_032109w/)(SSFC, 12/6/09, p.A18)
2009        Feb 25, US Interior Sec. Ken Salazar put the brakes on leases, created under the Bush administration, on federal land for oil-shale development in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming. He said the Bush royalty rates would shortchange taxpayers.
    (AP, 2/26/09)(WSJ, 2/26/09, p.A6)
2009        Feb 25, The US Supreme Court ruled that the Summum group does not have a right to erect the “Seven aphorism" of its beliefs in Pleasant Gove City, Utah, park just because the Ten Commandments are displayed there.
    (SFC, 2/26/09, p.A6)
2009        Feb 25, The FBI arrested money managers Paul Greenwood (61) of North Salem, NY, and Stephen Walsh (64) of Sands Point, NY, on charges of conspiracy, securities fraud and wire fraud. They ware accused of misappropriating at least $553 million.
    (WSJ, 2/26/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 25, In Florida Pablo Josue Amador (53), a Cuban immigrant and piano teacher, shot and killed wife, Maria (45), and their youngest daughters, Prescilla and Rosa, 14 and 13, before killing himself. A teenage son escaped the shootings and called police.
    (AP, 2/26/09)
2009        Feb 25, In Afghanistan a remote control bomb planted on a motorcycle exploded in Kandahar city as a convoy of soldiers was passing. Two Afghan bystanders were killed, and eight people, including five soldiers, were wounded. A roadside bomb killed 3 British soldiers in Helmand province. A 4th died from wounds sustained in a firefight.
    (AP, 2/25/09)(WSJ, 2/26/09, p.A1)(AFP, 2/26/09)
2009        Feb 25, Mutinous Bangladeshi border guards opened fire at their headquarters in the capital and seized a nearby shopping mall, injuring several people in an insurrection apparently sparked by pay disputes. They agreed to surrender after the government said it would grant them amnesty.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, Danish and Chinese warships stopped pirates attacking two different vessels off Somalia's coast.
    (AP, 2/26/09)
2009        Feb 25, An Estonian court convicted a former top security official of treason for passing domestic and NATO secrets to Russia, the Baltic country's biggest espionage scandal since the Cold War. Herman Simm (61), the former head of security at the Estonian Defense Ministry, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 12 years and six months in prison. Russia’s foreign service (SVR) had recruited Mr. Simm on his holiday in Tunisia in 1995.
    (AP, 2/25/09)(Econ, 2/28/09, p.56)
2009        Feb 25, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development said that it would invest a record 7.0 billion euros this year in the former Soviet bloc to combat an economic crisis in eastern Europe.
    (AFP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, In Paris an auction of art works owned by the late fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent concluded with dazzling sales of nearly $500 million. Two rare bronze sculptures that disappeared from China nearly 150 years ago and demanded back by Beijing, sold for millions. The Chinese businessman, who bid $15.1 million, later refused payment.
    (AP, 2/26/09)(Econ, 3/7/09, p.92)
2009        Feb 25, A 24-hour strike by Greek civil servants disrupted services across the country, forcing public hospitals to accept only emergency cases and airlines to cancel at least 68 flights.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, A UN survey said homicides in Honduras had more than doubled from 2,155 in 2004 to 4,473 in 2008.
    (SSFC, 3/1/09, p.A4)
2009        Feb 25, In India police charged Mohammed Ajmal Kasab, the man they say is the lone surviving gunman in last year's Mumbai attacks, with "waging war" against India and included two Pakistani soldiers among 37 others charged.
    (Reuters, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, Iranian and Russian technicians conducted a test run of Iran's first nuclear power plant, a major step toward launching full operations at the facility.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, Iraqi authorities ordered the mid-flight return of a plane carrying a Sunni lawmaker accused of directing a private terror cell, forcing him back to Baghdad hours before parliament lifted his immunity and cleared the way for his arrest. Mohammed al-Dayni faced allegations he masterminded a string of attacks that include a 2007 suicide bombing inside the parliament building and mortar strike on Baghdad's Green Zone. Al-Dayni was picked up by his personal security contingent before government security arrived. He was later believed to be in Syria where he appeared on a cooking show.
    (AP, 2/25/09)(SFC, 2/26/09, p.A2)(AP, 5/30/09)
2009        Feb 25, A passenger bus plunged into a river in the Indian part of Kashmir, killing at least 33 people.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, Kenya announced its first polio infection in 20 years, after a 4-year-old girl was diagnosed with the disease along the country's remote border with Sudan.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, In Lebanon 3 men jailed for more than three years in the assassination of former PM Rafik Hariri were set free on bail, days before an international tribunal was to begin trying the case. Brothers Mahmoud and Ahmed Abdel-Al, a member of a pro-Syrian Sunni Muslim fundamentalist group, were detained in 2005. Syrian Ibrahim Jarjoura, was arrested in 2006 on suspicion he gave false evidence and misled the investigation.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, Macao passed its own version of “Article 23" legislation, which provided sweeping but vague language banning sedition, but had failed to pass in Hong Kong.
    (Econ, 3/21/09, p.43)
2009        Feb 25, In Martinique vandals burned cars and looted stores overnight, as violence spread to a second French Caribbean island in protests over high prices, low pay and alleged neglect by officials in Paris.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, Mexico’s government said it will deploy extra troops and federal police to Ciudad Juarez across the border from Texas, where the police chief recently bowed to crime gang demands that he resign.
    (AP, 2/26/09)
2009        Feb 25, Nigerian teachers in the country's southwest launched an indefinite strike to press demands for better pay.
    (AFP, 2/26/09)
2009        Feb 25, Pakistan's Supreme Court barred main opposition leader and former premier Nawaz Sharif from holding office and contesting elections, sparking political turmoil in the nuclear-armed nation. The court also turfed his younger brother, Shahbaz Sharif, out of Punjab’s provincial parliament and his post as its chief minister.
    (AFP, 2/25/09)(Econ, 2/28/09, p.47)
2009        Feb 25, Militants in Gaza launched rockets at southern Israel and Israeli planes attacked smuggling tunnels as a stable truce between the two sides remained elusive. Palestinian PM Salam Fayyad said he is seeking $2.8 billion in foreign aid for rebuilding Gaza Strip. The rival Palestinian groups Hamas and Fatah agreed to release each other's loyalists from detention, seeking to lower tensions during reconciliation talks.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, Russian news agencies quoted Chief Military Prosecutor Sergei Fridinsky as saying that his office has exposed an attempt by military officers to smuggle $18 million worth of stolen Russian weapons to China via Tajikistan.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, Russia issued a DVD and a thick book of historical documents to dispute claims that the Ukrainian famine of the 1930s amounted to genocide. It was argued that the Stalin-era famine was a common tragedy across Soviet farmlands.
    (SFC, 2/26/09, p.A2)
2009        Feb 25, Rwandan troops began pulling out of eastern Democratic Republic of Congo after a controversial joint operation with Congolese troops against Rwandan Hutu rebels.
    (AFP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, Saudi police were reported to have clashed with Shiite pilgrims over several days near a cemetery in Islam's second-holiest city, leading Shiite Cleric Sheik Nimr al-Nimr  to appeal to the king to put a stop to the "insults" of the religious police. Shiites make up a small minority of the country's 22 million people. Following the incendiary sermon, more than 35 people were arrested in a government crackdown and al-Nimr went into hiding.
    (AP, 2/25/09)(AP, 4/1/09)
2009        Feb 25, In Sierra Leone an international court modeled after the Nuremberg tribunal convicted 3 top rebel leaders of crimes against humanity. Revolutionary United Front leader Issa Sesay and one of his battlefield commanders Morris Kallon were found guilty on 16 of 18 counts, including mutilation, terrorism, rape, forced marriage, sexual slavery and the enlistment of child soldiers. Commander, Augustine Gbao, was found guilty on 14 of the 18 counts. On April 8 Sesay was sentenced to 51 years in prison, Kallon to 40 years, and Gbao to 25 years.
    (AP, 2/25/09)(WSJ, 4/9/09, p.A10)
2009        Feb 25, In Somalia an artillery shell killed two schoolchildren in Mogadishu during the second day of fighting between AU peacekeepers and Islamist insurgents. The death toll in the worst fighting for weeks reached 81.
    (AP, 2/25/09)(Reuters, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, Spain’s Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos said Spain is open 'in principle' to accepting prisoners from the US prison camp at Guantanamo Bay.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, In Sri Lanka troops fought on the outskirts of the last town under rebel control. Aid groups estimated that more than 200,000 people were trapped in a small strip of rebel-held territory.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, A Turkish Airlines plane with 135 people aboard slammed into a muddy field while attempting to land at Amsterdam's main airport. Nine people were killed and more than 50 were injured, many in serious condition.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, Standard and Poor's said on it had cut Ukraine's credit ratings to a level indicating vulnerability to default, amid worries over whether Kiev will receive the next slice of a vital IMF loan.
    (AP, 2/25/09)
2009        Feb 25, Uzbek President Islam Karimov said he would allow the US to transport non-military supplies through his country as part of a new supply route to Afghanistan.
    (AP, 2/25/09)

2009        Feb 26,  President Barack Obama unveiled a $3.6 trillion budget and promised to slash federal spending by $2 trillion, even as the administration initially invests large sums of money to revive the faltering economy. The budget included $630 billion to start pushing toward a national health insurance program. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said the Obama administration is reversing an 18-year ban on news coverage of the return of war dead, allowing photographs of flag-covered caskets when families of the fallen troops agree.
    (AP, 2/26/09)(WSJ, 2/27/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 26, Virgin Megastore, a music and video retailer, announced the closures of its San Francisco and New York stores. This would leave the company with 3 stores (Hollywood, Denver, and Orlando) from a peak of 23 stores in 2002. The San Francisco, which opened in 1995, planned to shut down in late April.
    (SFC, 2/27/09, p.A8)
2009        Feb 26, General Motors reported a $9.6 billion 4th quarter loss bringing its loss for the year 2008 to $30.9 billion. This was its 2nd worst financial performance in its 100 year history.
    (WSJ, 2/27/09, p.B1)
2009        Feb 26, The Australian government announced a multi-million dollar investment in research on reducing gas emissions from farm animals as part of the fight against global warming.
    (AFP, 2/26/09)
2009        Feb 26, In Bangladesh mutinous members of the Bangladesh Rifles, a paramilitary unit in Dhaka, surrendered their weapons as tanks surrounded their headquarters after a 2nd day of gunfire in a mutiny that killed 74 people. Security forces searching the headquarters of the border guard unit soon discovered the bodies of dozens of officers in shallow graves on the compound, raising the death toll to 76. The trial of some 3,500 paramilitary troops began in November. At least 48 had already died while in custody. In April, 2010, 136 guards were given sentences ranging from four months to seven years for their 2-day uprising. On Nov 5, 2013 152 mutineers were sentenced to hang.
    (Reuters, 2/26/09)(AP, 2/27/09)(AP, 2/28/09)(Econ, 11/28/09, p.44)(AP, 4/18/10)(Econ, 11/9/13, p.47)
2009        Feb 26, British prosecutors said they would not bring charges against Gary McKinnon, a computer expert accused by a US attorney of the "biggest military hack of all time," dealing a blow to his bid to avoid extradition.
    (AP, 2/26/09)
2009        Feb 26, Former EastEnders star Wendy Richard (65), who was diagnosed with cancer in January, died in London. She best known for her role as Pauline Fowler in the London-based soap whom she played for more than two decades.
    (AFP, 2/26/09)
2009        Feb 26, In Canada PM Harper announced a new law to crack down on a wave of gang-related murders in Vancouver, which was preparing to host the 2010 Winter Olympic Games.
    (SFC, 2/27/09, p.A2)
2009        Feb 26, Colombian President Alvaro Uribe said he's no longer allowing wiretapping by the scandal-ridden domestic intelligence agency. The announcement followed allegations that the spy agency, or DAS, has continued illegal wiretapping of prominent journalists, Supreme Court justices and opposition politicians. By the end of April 33 people were dismissed from Colombia’s Dept. of Administrative Security in the wiretapping scandal.
    (AP, 2/26/09)(SFC, 4/29/09, p.A2)
2009        Feb 26, In Iraq an American soldier died while conducting a combat patrol in Baghdad.
    (AP, 2/27/09)
2009        Feb 26, Kazakhstan announced it was pulling out of the Central Asian power grid to protect its energy supplies, a move that forced rolling blackouts and electricity rationing on Kyrgyzstan, its tiny, power-starved neighbor.
    (AP, 2/26/09)
2009        Feb 26,  At The Hague UN judges in the Yugoslav war crimes tribunal acquitted former Serb President Milan Milutinovic of ordering a deadly campaign of terror by Serb forces against Kosovo Albanians in 1999. The court convicted five other senior Serbs and gave them prison sentences of between 15 and 22 years. The marathon trial started July 10, 2006.
    (AP, 2/26/09)
2009        Feb 26, In Nigeria a source close to negotiations said US drug giant Pfizer has agreed to settle a multi-billion dollar damages case with 200 alleged victims of a drugs trial in Kano. Pfizer and families of the victims of the drug trial reportedly reached an out-of-court settlement in principle and agreed to meet in Rome in March to put the deal in writing.
    (AFP, 2/26/09)
2009        Feb 26, The Nigerian military raided and destroyed a militant camp in the volatile Niger Delta as part of its drive to end unrest in the oil-producing region.
    (AFP, 2/27/09)
2009        Feb 26, In Pakistan thousands of supporters of former Pakistan premier Nawaz Sharif protested, a day after a court ruling to exclude him and his brother from elected office raised fears of renewed political turmoil.
    (Reuters, 2/26/09)
2009        Feb 26, The Royal Bank of Scotland posted a 2008 loss of 24.1 billion pounds, the largest in British corporate history, because of the credit crunch and the mis-timed takeover of ABN Amro. The British government has meanwhile agreed to insure RBS "toxic" assets worth 325 billion pounds in its Asset Protection Scheme (APS) and will cover 90 percent of losses stemming from such holdings. Sir Fred Goodwin (50), head of RBS for a decade, insisted that he is entitled to his full pension of over £700,000 ($980,000) a year. In March Goodwin received a $4 million tax-free advance as part of his negotiated pension package. In 2013 Iain Martin authored “Making it Happen: Fred Goodwin, RBS and the men who blew Up the British Economy."
    (AFP, 2/26/09)(Econ, 3/7/09, p.22)(SFC, 3/18/09, p.A2)(Econ, 10/26/13, p.95)
2009        Feb 26, Sudan’s President Omar al-Beshir, who faces a possible arrest warrant for alleged war crimes in Darfur, said he wanted to hold "free" elections soon to guarantee stability.
    (AFP, 2/26/09)
2009        Feb 26, Venezuela condemned a US State Department report on human rights problems in the South American country, saying Washington has no right to pass judgment on its record.
    (AP, 2/26/09)

2009        Feb 27, President Barack Obama outlined his plan for withdrawing combat troops from Iraq by Aug. 31, 2010.
    (AP, 2/28/09)
2009        Feb 27, The US government said it will exchange up to $25 billion in emergency bailout money it provided Citigroup Inc. for as much as a 36% equity stake in the struggling bank. The deal is contingent on private investors also agreeing to a similar swap. A Commerce Dept. report said the US GDP had declined 6.2% in the 4th quarter of 2008.
    (AP, 2/27/09)(WSJ, 2/28/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 27, California’s Gov. Schwarzenegger declared a statewide drought emergency.
    (SFC, 2/28/09, p.A1)
2009        Feb 27, San Francisco handed out pink slips to 262 city employees, with most cuts coming from the Recreation and park Dept., the Human Services Agency, and the Dept. of Public Works.
    (SFC, 2/28/09, p.B1)
2009        Feb 27, Two members of the Final Exit Network appeared in a Maryland court and waived an extradition hearing on charges they aided the suicide of a 58-year-old Georgia man who suffered for years from cancer of the throat and mouth.
    (AP, 2/27/09)
2009        Feb 27, New Mexico authorities said they have recovered bones from 13 victims at a desert site west of Albuquerque. 2 victims were identified as prostitutes reported missing in 2004.
    (SFC, 2/28/09, p.A4)
2009        Feb 27, Alan Landers (68), ex-smoker and former face for Winston cigarette advertising, died of tonsillar cancer.
    (Econ, 3/14/09, p.88)
2009        Feb 27, In Argentina a new rule took effect in which members of the armed forces, related to crimes under the 1976-1983 military dictatorship, will be tried by civil courts rather than military tribunals.
    (SFC, 2/28/09, p.A2)
2009        Feb 27, In China US Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense David Sedney began talks with a delegation led by Maj. Gen. Qian Lihua, the Chinese Defense Ministry's head of foreign affairs, marked a resumption of military consultations after a half-year suspension.
    (AP, 2/28/09)
2009        Feb 27, A Tibetan monk, in his late 20s, was shot after dousing himself with petrol and setting himself alight in the Tibetan-populated town of Aba in China's Sichuan province. Police put out the fire, and the man was taken to hospital with burn injuries to his neck and head.
    (AFP, 2/28/09)
2009        Feb 27, Leading international financial institutions said Eastern Europe's struggling banks will receive euro24.5 billion ($31.1 billion) worth of emergency help to shore up their battered finances. Regional leaders were scheduled to meet this weekend. The Hungarian, Polish and Czech currencies strengthened on the news of the aid package.
    (AP, 2/27/09)
2009        Feb 27, The French film industry awarded the best film Cesar to Martin Provost's "Seraphine." Yolande Moreau, who plays Seraphine, won in the 34th annual Cesar awards best actress category for her portrayal of the dimwitted maid whose talents as a painter were discovered by a German art collector on the eve of World War I. The Cesar for best actor went to Vincent Cassel in "Mesrine," a story based on the real life of a gangster.
    (AP, 2/2709)
2009        Feb 27, Unions in Guadeloupe scored a victory in getting a deal to raise some workers' salaries, but said they will not end a general strike now concluding its sixth week.
    (AP, 2/27/09)
2009        Feb 27, In Ireland the family of banker Shane Travers was freed uninjured after he delivered millions of euros stolen from his own branch. A gang had taken his family hostage and threatened to kill them unless he cooperated. Irish media put the amount at euro7 million ($9 million). The next day police recovered millions in stolen cash and interrogated seven suspected robbers.
    (AP, 2/27/09)(AP, 2/28/09)(SFC, 2/28/09, p.A2)
2009        Feb 27, In Israel Benjamin Netanyahu failed to persuade his centrist rival, Tzipi Livni, to join him in a broad coalition, increasing the likelihood that Israel's next government will be an alliance of hawks and hard-line religious parties opposed to substantial concessions for peace.
    (AP, 2/27/09)
2009        Feb 27, A court ordered the Japanese government to pay 5.6 billion yen ($57.7 million) to compensate people whose lives are disrupted by the noise of warplanes at a US air base on the southern island of Okinawa. The Fukuoka High Court ruling doubled the 2.8 million yen compensation awarded in 2005 to the people living around Kadena Air Base, and upheld the appeals of 5,540 residents.
    (AP, 2/27/09)
2009        Feb 27, In Pakistan police fought running battles with supporters of former PM Nawaz Sharif near Islamabad as protests against a court order barring him from elected office continued for a third day.
    (AP, 2/27/09)
2009        Feb 27, Researchers in Peru said an unusually intact fossilized skull of a pelagornithid, a giant, bony-toothed seabird that lived up to 10 million years ago, had been found in the in the Pisco Formation, a coastal rock bed south of the capital, Lima, known for yielding fossils of whales, dolphins, turtles and other marine life dating as far back as 14 million years.
    (AP, 2/28/09)
2009        Feb 27, In Sri Lanka government forces drove deeper into the Tamil Tigers' dwindling stronghold, confining the rebel group that once controlled a vast swath of northern Sri Lanka to an area smaller than Manhattan.
    (AP, 2/27/09)
2009        Feb 27, A UN tribunal in Tanzania convicted a former Rwandan military chaplain of attempted rape and genocide for crimes that included killing people who had sought refuge in a seminary. The three-judge panel sentenced Emmanuel Rukundo (50) to 25 years in prison. Rukundo will only serve 17 and half years because the judges gave him credit for the seven and a half years he has already spent in detention.
    (AP, 2/27/09)
2009        Feb 27, The UN Children's Fund said 53 million children are being targeted by a mass immunization drive against polio in Benin, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, and Togo. Some 844 polio cases were reported in the 8 countries in 2008, 95% of them in Nigeria.
    (AFP, 2/27/09)

2009        Feb 28, In Louisiana 3 ½ years after Hurricane Katrina, the National Guard pulled the last of its troops out of New Orleans, leaving behind a city still desperate and dangerous.
    (AP, 2/28/09)
2009        Feb 28, A fishing boat from Clearwater, Florida, capsized as the four friends were pulling up the anchor. Nick Schuyler was rescued on March 2. Oakland Raiders linebacker Marquis Cooper, free-agent defensive lineman Corey Smith and former University of South Florida player William Bleakley remained missing.
    (AP, 3/3/09)
2009        Feb 28, Paul Harvey (b.1918), news commentator and talk-radio pioneer, died in Arizona. His staccato style made him one of the nation's most familiar voices. Harvey had been heard nationally since 1951, when he began his "News and Comment" for ABC Radio Networks.
    (AP, 3/1/09)(SSFC, 3/1/09, p.A12)
2009        Feb 28, Afghan President Hamid Karzai ordered that presidential elections be held by April, months earlier than the August 20 date set by a voting authority, after lawmakers said they would not recognize him as president after May 22. Afghan security soldiers killed four militants in a clash in the southern province of Uruzgan.
    (AP, 2/28/09)(AFP, 3/1/09)
2009        Feb 28, In Algeria an army operation in the mountains of Blida province, about 100 kilometers (62 miles) south of Algiers killed 6 Islamist militants. One militant was killed on Feb 26 before the army took the rest of the group by surprise. Another 16 were reported killed during a search operation near Soulahane.
    (AFP, 3/2/09)(AFP, 3/3/09)
2009        Feb 28, China's legislature enacted a tough new food safety law, promising tougher penalties for makers of tainted products in the wake of scandals that exposed serious flaws in monitoring of the nation's food supply.
    (AP, 2/28/09)
2009        Feb 28, A US Marine died in a non-combat related incident in Iraq's western Anbar province.
    (AP, 3/1/09)
2009        Feb 28, Two rockets fired from Gaza crashed into southern Israel, one into a school that was closed for the weekend in the coastal city of Ashkelon and another into an open field.
    (AP, 2/28/09)
2009        Feb 28, Police in southern Mexico found the body of Rolando Landa, head of security in the township of La Union, near the Pacific beach town of Zihuatanejo. The body was accompanied by threatening messages apparently left by members of the Familia Michoacana drug gang. Two police officers in the town of Praxedis Guerrero, just south of the border town of Ciudad Juarez, were shot dead in their patrol vehicle.
    (AP, 2/28/09)(AP, 3/1/09)
2009        Feb 28, Pakistani officers said troops have defeated Taliban militants in the Bajur region near the Afghan border and are close to victory in the tribal region of Mohmand after a grinding offensive.
    (AP, 2/28/09)
2009        Feb 28, In Panama Tomas Altamirano Mantovani (49), a prominent ruling party lawmaker and son of a former vice president, died in a traffic accident.
    (AP, 2/28/09)
2009        Feb 28, The yacht Serenity, with two crew from the Seychelles on board, left the islands en route to Madagascar and disappeared. One of the crew called his family on March 24, saying he was being held by Somali pirates and begging for help.
    (AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Feb 28, Somalia's new Pres. Sheik Sharif Sheik Ahmed said the government and an Islamic insurgent group have reached a cease-fire deal, days after dozens of civilians were killed in fighting in Mogadishu.
    (AP, 2/28/09)
2009        Feb 28, In Thailand prominent activists from military-ruled Myanmar and Cambodia were barred from a meeting with Southeast Asian leaders (ASEAN), upstaging the opening of the annual summit billed as a historic step toward greater human rights in the region.
    (AP, 2/28/09)
2009        Feb 28, President Hugo Chavez ordered troops to intervene in Venezuelan rice processing businesses, saying some have balked at producing under regulated prices.
    (AP, 2/28/09)
2009        Feb 28, In Zimbabwe Pres. Robert Mugabe told followers at his lavish $250,000 birthday party to respect the new power-sharing government but vowed to press on with seizures of white farms. A melee broke out in a dining hall among thousands lined up for a free meal of porridge and vegetables. Soldiers used truncheons to maintain order.
    (AFP, 2/28/09)(SSFC, 3/1/09, p.A5)

2009        Feb, A Texas grand jury returned a 106-count indictment against the former Montague Sheriff Bill Keating and 16 others. It revealed that inmates had the run of County Jail, having sex with their jailer girlfriends, bringing in recliners, taking drugs and chatting on cell phones supplied by friends or guards.
    (AP, 3/17/09)
2009        Feb, Scientists published a study showing that genetically modified material did contaminate native corn in the crop's birthplace in southern Mexico. Elena Alvarez Buylla, author of the article published in the February edition of Molecular Ecology, said the difficult atmosphere surrounding the original debate persists.
    (AP, 3/5/09)
2009        Feb, An Australian man in Victoria state was arrested on charges of raping his daughter for 30 years and fathering four children with her. The daughter first told police about the alleged abuse in 2005, but no charges were filed because she said she feared for her safety and would not cooperate with police.
    (AP, 9/17/09)
2009        Feb, China extended nationwide a program of government financed discounts for household appliances. The program had been due to end in 2008, but was extended to 9 provinces in December and was now expected to continue for 4 years.
    (Econ, 2/21/09, p.44)
2009        Feb, Chinese authorities started using fish to try to clean up Lake Taihu when they released 10 million mostly green and silver carp into the water, after the algae tainted the drinking supply of millions of residents. In 2010 authorities planned to release 20 million more algae-eating fish into the scenic lake ravaged by pollution.
    (AFP, 2/23/10)
2009        Feb, In India the high court of Chhattisgarh state ordered an inquiry into the deaths of 12 Gond tribe people allegedly killed by police in Singaram village.
    (SSFC, 5/31/09, p.A8)
2009        Feb, US jets shot down an Iranian unmanned surveillance aircraft over Iraqi territory about 60 miles northeast of Baghdad. The Ababil 3 was tracked for about 70 minutes before US jets shot it down "well-inside Iraqi airspace."
    (AP, 3/17/09)
2009        Feb, Kazakhstan nationalized BTA Bank, the largest bank in the country. Chairman Mukhtar Ablyazov was stripped of his position and left the country for exile in London. Over a dozen more bank managers were arrested and awaited trial for alleged racketeering and money laundering.
    (Econ, 6/20/09, p.40)
2009        Feb, The government of Liechtenstein fell. New PM Klaus Tschutscher pledged to work with other countries to get off the “uncooperative" list of tax havens.
    (Econ, 4/4/09, SR p.14)
2009        Feb, The UN estimated that 10 million people still lived in Somalia.
    (Econ, 2/28/09, p.49)

2009        Mar 1, In eastern Afghanistan a suicide car bomb blew up near US-led soldiers, wounding six civilians outside Jalalabad. Attacks in Kandahar province left seven security guards dead. The US-led coalition killed four alleged militants in Kandahar.
    (AFP, 3/1/09)
2009        Mar 1, Bangladeshi police charged more than 1,000 border guards with murder and arson after a bloody mutiny in the capital left as many as 148 people dead or missing, most of them army officers.
    (AP, 3/1/09)
2009        Mar 1, China's lunar probe,  the Chang'e-1, named for a moon goddess, ended its 16-month life with a planned crash into the moon.
    (Reuters, 3/1/09)
2009        Mar 1, Scores of Tibetan monks in southwestern China marched in protest over the banning of a prayer service, the latest incident in an apparent increase in acts of defiance against Chinese rule ahead of sensitive anniversaries.
    (AP, 3/2/09)
2009        Mar 1, Germany rejected appeals for a single multibillion euro (dollar) bailout of eastern Europe, even after Hungry begged EU leaders not to let a new "Iron Curtain" divide the continent into rich and poor.
    (AP, 3/1/09)
2009        Mar 1, An adviser to Iran's president demanded an apology from a team of visiting Hollywood actors and movie industry officials, including Annette Bening, saying films such as "300" and "The Wrestler" were "insulting" to Iranians. The film "300," portrays the battle of Thermopylae in 480 B.C., in which a force of 300 Spartans held off a massive Persian army at a mountain pass in Greece for three days. It angered many Iranians for the way Persians are depicted as decadent, sexually flamboyant and evil in contrast to the noble Greeks.
    (AP, 3/1/09)
2009        Mar 1, In Iraq about 2,000 Shiites staged marches to protest the results of provincial elections in tense Diyala province.
    (AP, 3/1/09)
2009        Mar 1, Israel's attorney general notified PM Ehud Olmert that he planned to indict him on suspicion of illicitly taking cash-stuffed envelopes from a Jewish-American businessman, a sensational case that turned public opinion so sharply against the Israeli leader that he was forced to resign.
    (AP, 3/1/09)
2009        Mar 1, Officials said the Malaysian government will issue a new decree restoring a ban on Christian publications using the word "Allah" to refer to God.
    (AP, 3/1/09)
2009        Mar 1, Mexican federal police made two arrests and confiscated weapons and marijuana in Tijuana, across the US border from San Diego, after coming under attack by men linked to a drug cartel.
    (AP, 3/1/09)
2009        Mar 1, In northwest Pakistan at least eight people were killed in two suspected US missile strikes in South Waziristan near to the border with Afghanistan.
    (AFP, 3/1/09)
2009        Mar 1, Tony Blair paid his first visit to the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip as envoy of international peace brokers and said reconstruction aid after Israel's offensive would not have a lasting effect without peace. Israel’s PM Ehud Olmert threatened painful retaliation against Gaza militants for rockets still hitting Israel, six weeks after its military halted an offensive that was supposed to have stopped them for good.
    (Reuters, 3/1/09)(AP, 3/1/09)
2009        Mar 1, Russia's ruling party cemented its grip on elected posts with big victories in local elections despite an economic crisis, but the opposition complained of widespread cheating.
    (Reuters, 3/2/09)
2009        Mar 1, In Spain Basque voters chose a new government. Socialists scored big electoral gains at the expense of nationalists who have held power there for nearly 30 years. The nationalist coalition with 37 seats fell one seat short of the needed majority.
    (AP, 3/1/09)(AP, 3/2/09)(SFC, 3/2/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 1, In Sudan Riek Machar, the vice president of the southern Sudan government, said clashes last week between militia and local government troops in Malakal killed at least 57 people and wounded nearly 100.
    (AP, 3/2/09)
2009        Mar 1, In Thailand Southeast Asian leaders (ASEAN) vowed to push ahead with ambitious plans to become a European Union-style economic community by 2015 despite roadblocks posed by the global financial crisis and Myanmar's dismal human rights record.
    (AP, 3/1/09)

2009        Mar 2, The Obama administration threw open the curtain on years of Bush-era secrets, revealing anti-terror memos that claimed exceptional search-and-seizure powers and divulging that the CIA destroyed nearly 100 videotapes of interrogations and other treatment of terror suspects.
    (AP, 3/2/09)
2009        Mar 2, The US government unveiled a revamped rescue package to insurance giant American International Group (AIG) and will provide the troubled company with another $30 billion in taxpayer money on an "as needed" basis. The DJIA fell 299.64 to close at 6763.29, falling below 7,000 for the first time in 12 years.
    (AP, 3/2/09)(WSJ, 3/3/09, p.A1)
2009        Mar 2, A massive late winter snow storm roared out of the Southeast and into the Northeast overnight, idling hundreds of flights and making the morning rush treacherous as motorists contended with nearly a foot of snow in spots. Some 950 flights were canceled at the three main New York area airports, an almost 300 canceled in Philadelphia.
    (AP, 3/2/09)(SFC, 3/3/09, p.A5)
2009        Mar 2, An asteroid named 2009 DD45, about the size of one that blasted Siberia a century ago, buzzed by Earth. It measured between 69 feet and 154 feet in diameter and came to 48,800 miles from Earth.
    (AP, 3/4/09)
2009        Mar 2, A study by Oceana, a worldwide environmental group, said food supplies for large ocean fish were dwindling due to industrial fishing to supply fish farms. An estimated 4 to 11 pounds of prey fish were being consumed to produce one pound of farmed salmon.
    (SFC, 3/3/09, p.B1)
2009        Mar 2, In southern Australia rescuers used jet skis, backhoes and human muscle to save dozens of whales and dolphins stranded on Naracoopa Beach on Tasmania state's King Island. Rescuers refloated 54 whales and five bottlenose dolphins. A total of 194 pilot whales and seven dolphins became stranded the previous evening. 
    (AP, 3/2/09)(AP, 3/3/09)
2009        Mar 2, A Chinese man said he was the mystery collector behind winning bids for two imperial bronzes auctioned last week at Christie's over Beijing's objections, and that he made the bogus offers to protest any sale of the looted relics. The sculptures disappeared from the Summer Palace on the outskirts of Beijing when French and British forces sacked and burned it at the end of the second Opium War in 1860. The sculptures date to the early Qing Dynasty, established by invading Manchu tribesmen in 1644. The Christie's catalog said they were made for the Zodiac fountain at the imperial palace.
    (AP, 3/2/09)
2009        Mar 2, In China a top justice official said courts will accept the cases of hundreds of families with children sickened in last year's tainted milk scandal.
    (AP, 3/3/09)
2009        Mar 2, Cuban President Raul Castro's ousted powerful officials close to his brother Fidel in the biggest government shakeup since he took power a year ago.
    (AP, 3/3/09)
2009        Mar 2, At a donor’s conference in Egypt Palestinian Pres. Mahmoud Abbas, seeking to shore up his position against rival Hamas, asked international donors to funnel millions of dollars through his government to rebuild the devastated Gaza Strip. The gathering aimed to raise at least $2.8 billion from 80 donor nations and international organizations.
    (AP, 3/2/09)
2009        Mar 2, In Guinea-Bissau soldiers assassinated President Joao Bernardo "Nino" Vieira in his palace hours after a bomb blast killed his rival. A pre-dawn gunfight at the palace erupted hours after armed forces chief of staff Gen. Batiste Tagme na Waie, a longtime rival of the president, was killed by a bomb blast at his headquarters. The military insisted no coup was taking place.
    (AP, 3/2/09)
2009        Mar 2, Iran dismissed US concerns about how much fissile material the country has produced, saying it isn't developing a nuclear bomb and that any effort to make weapons-grade uranium would be difficult under the eyes of international inspectors.
    (AP, 3/2/09)
2009        Mar 2, In Iraq Ali Hassan al-Majid, aka “Chemical Ali," was sentenced to death for a 3rd time, following his conviction relating to the Feb 19, 1999, death of ayatollah Mohammed Sadiq al-Sadr. Previous convictions related the killing of Kurds in the late 1980s and the 1991 crackdown on Shiites in southern Iraq.
    (SFC, 3/3/09, p.A3)
2009        Mar 2, In Morocco Hassan Al Haski (41), a Moroccan man already convicted over the 2004 Madrid bombings, was sentenced on appeal to 10 years in jail for his role in suicide attacks the year before in Casablanca that killed 45 people.
    (AFP, 3/3/09)
2009        Mar 2, In Pakistan a suicide bomber killed at least five people and wounded seven others at a religious school in southwestern Kili Karbala village in Pishin district.
    (AFP, 3/2/09)
2009        Mar 2, In Peru's southern province of Puno 10 people were killed dead and 16 left missing at a remote mining camp buried by a mudslide.
    (AP, 3/3/09)

2009        Mar 3, US President Barack Obama and British PM Gordon Brown held their first White House talks. They discussed the coordination of worldwide actions to stimulate economies.
    (AFP, 3/3/09)(SFC, 3/4/09, p.A5)
2009        Mar 3, The IMF said 22 of the world’s poorest nations may need a total of $25 billion in additional funding this year.
    (WSJ, 3/4/09, p.A10)
2009        Mar 3, In southern Afghanistan 3 Canadian soldiers were killed and two wounded in a bomb blast in Arghandab, northwest of Kandahar.
    (AFP, 3/4/09)
2009        Mar 3, Bangladeshi police arrested Syed Tauhidul Alam, the suspected ringleader of a deadly border guard mutiny that killed 74 people, during a raid in a slum in Dhaka. 4 other border guards were also arrested.
    (AP, 3/3/09)(SFC, 3/4/09, p.A4)(Econ, 3/7/09, p.48)
2009        Mar 3, Canadian banks cut their prime lending rates after the Bank of Canada, the country's central bank, cut its key interest rate by a half-point to a record low of 0.5 percent.
    (Reuters, 3/3/09)
2009        Mar 3, In southern Ethiopia a cattle-herding tribe crowned Guyyoo Gobbaa (36) as their new king in a secret ceremony considered so sacred that the Borena people believe it has the power to kill unauthorized observers.
    (AP, 3/4/09)
2009        Mar 3, In Germany the building that houses the Cologne city archives collapsed. 3 people were feared missing in other damaged buildings nearby.
    (AP, 3/3/09)
2009        Mar 3, Guatemala’s President Alvaro Colom announced that a new government commission will organize and declassify military documents that could shed light on torture, disappearances and other atrocities during Guatemala's 36-year civil war. Inmates at a Guatemalan juvenile prison killed Winter Vidaurre, one of their teachers, during a riot. They removed his heart before police regained control of the prison using tear gas. The prisoners had taken three of their teachers hostage to protest the transfer of several of their fellow inmates to another detention center.
    (AP, 3/3/09)
2009        Mar 3, Lawmakers in Guinea-Bissau voted to uphold the constitution by which parliament speaker Raimundo Pereira succeeds as interim president, following the assassination of the head of state. Pereira took the oath of office.
    (AFP, 3/3/09)(SFC, 3/4/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 3, An official said 4 Indonesians have died of bird flu over the last 2 months, bringing the death toll in the country over the past several years to 119.
    (AP, 3/3/09)
2009        Mar 3, In Iraq the body of Munther Mohammed Shaheen, the son of a newspaper editor, was found in Kirkuk. One American soldier was killed in Mosul as insurgents attacked an US-Iraqi base there.
    (AP, 3/4/09)(SFC, 3/4/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 3, In Kyrgyzstan Syrgak Abdyldayev, a journalist with the Reporter-Bishkek weekly, was stabbed repeatedly by four assailants after leaving his office. Opposition parties described the attack as an attempt to stamp out freedom of expression.
    (AP, 3/4/09)
2009        Mar 3, In Mexico hundreds of heavily armed soldiers fanned out across Ciudad Juarez, trying to prevent a collapse in law and order just south of the US border. Joggers found the decapitated bodies of 3 men near a bullfighting ring in the border city of Tijuana. The heads were found nearby with a message calling the men "snitches." One of the dead included Jorge Norman Harrison (38), an American who had been convicted for drug trafficking in the US. A fourth body, whose head was wrapped in masking tape, was found in a creek.
    (Reuters, 3/3/09)(AP, 3/3/09)(AP, 3/7/09)
2009        Mar 3, In Pakistan at least a dozen men ambushed Sri Lanka's cricket team with rifles, grenades and rocket launchers as they drove to the stadium ahead of a match in Lahore, killing 6 policemen and a driver. The attackers melted away into the city. None were killed or captured.
    (AP, 3/3/09)
2009        Mar 3, Igor Panarin, dean at the Russian Foreign Ministry's school for future diplomats and a regular on Russia's state-guided TV channels, told dozens of students, professors and diplomats that: "There is a high probability that the collapse of the US will occur by 2010." He also said the US will break up into six autonomous regions and Alaska will revert to Russian control.
    (AP, 3/4/09)
2009        Mar 3, In Saudi Arabia Khamisa Sawadi, a 75-year-old widow, was sentenced to 40 lashes and four months in jail for mingling with two young men who are not close relatives. The case drew new criticism for the kingdom's ultraconservative religious police and judiciary.
    (AP, 3/10/09)
2009        Mar 3, Sudanese President Omar al-Beshir inaugurated a massive hydro-electric project that has displaced tens of thousands and is the largest to be built along the Nile in 40 years.
    (AP, 3/3/09)
2009        Mar 3, In Zimbabwe’s parliament former opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai was sworn in. A judge ordered the release on bail of senior opposition lawmaker Roy Bennett after nearly three weeks in prison on weapons charges.
    (AP, 3/3/09)

2009        Mar 4, The Obama administration kicked off a new program that's designed to help up to 9 million borrowers stay in their homes through refinanced mortgages or loans that are modified to lower monthly payments. President Barack Obama approved an order to overhaul the way the US government awards contracts for work to be done by the private sector, reversing a Bush administration policy.
    (AP, 3/4/09)
2009        Mar 4, British PM Gordon Brown addressed a joint session of the US Congress and bestowed an honorary knighthood for Senator Edward Kennedy.
    (Econ, 3/7/09, p.65)
2009        Mar 4, In California David Paradiso (28), a man accused of killing his girlfriend, was shot to death in a Stockton courtroom after he attacked the judge presiding over his murder trial.
    (AP, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 4, In Texas Kenneth Wayne Morris was executed for killing a Houston man in a botched burglary nearly 18 years ago.
    (SFC, 3/5/09, p.A6)
2009        Mar 4, Joseph Bloch, Juilliard School pianist and scholar, died.
    (WSJ, 3/19/09, p.D9)(www.nytimes.com/2009/03/15/arts/music/15bloch.html)
2009        Mar 4, In Afghanistan a car bomb exploded outside the main US military base at Bagram and wounded three people. The Taliban claimed responsibility.
    (AP, 3/4/09)
2009        Mar 4, In central China more than 2,000 people displaced by construction of the Three Gorges Dam clashed with police during a protest over missing resettlement payments, leaving 30 protesters injured.
    (AP, 3/4/09)
2009        Mar 4, Channel tunnel operator Eurotunnel said it will pay its first ever dividend after making a net profit of 40 million euros in 2008 despite fire damage of 200 million euros (250 million dollars).
    (AP, 3/4/09)
2009        Mar 4, The Finnish Parliament approved controversial legislation that allows employers to track workers' e-mails.
    (AP, 3/4/09)
2009        Mar 4, Union leaders on the French Caribbean island of Guadeloupe agreed to suspend a 44-day-old general strike as most of their demands continue to be met.
    (AP, 3/4/09)
2009        Mar 4, In India officials said investigators looking into an outbreak of hepatitis uncovered a huge operation engaged in illegally recycling hundreds of tons of used medical equipment. Gujarat state officials launched the probe 2 weeks earlier after 56 people died of hepatitis B.
    (SFC, 3/5/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 4, In Ingushetia a man fired several grenades at the home of former President Murat Zyazikov in Nazran. Zyazikov was unhurt, but the attacker died in the explosion.
    (AP, 8/17/09)
2009        Mar 4, In Iraq a suicide bomber triggered an explosives-packed belt as he walked among members of a police intelligence unit in central Baghdad, killing three people. A suicide car bomb exploded at a police checkpoint in Mosul, killing at least two policemen and wounding 15 people. Gunmen killed a Sunni sheik, his wife and two sons near Samarra, 60 miles (100 kilometers) north of Baghdad. Gunmen killed Brig. Gen. Salam Salman Mohammed, a senior Ministry of Interior official, as he drove to work in Baghdad.
    (AP, 3/4/09)(SFC, 3/6/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 4, The Israeli military aircraft fired upon three smuggling tunnels along the Gaza-Egypt border. An Israeli missile strike in northern Gaza killed Khaled Shalan, described as a senior Islamic Jihad commander.
    (AP, 3/4/09)(SFC, 3/6/09, p.A3)
2009        Mar 4, Salvatore Samperi (64), Italian director, died in his house on Lake Bracciano. He was best known for erotic comedies that challenged the morals of Italy's middle class.
    (AP, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 4, In Mexico a fight between gangs in a state prison in Ciudad Juarez left at least 20 prisoners dead.
    (SFC, 3/5/09, p.A5)
2009        Mar 4, In southern Nigeria gunmen seized two passengers from a ferry near the Bonny Island gas terminal. 19 others were released shortly after the ferry was seized.
    (AFP, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 4, The UN described the war zone in northern Sri Lanka as an "unfolding humanitarian catastrophe," where civilians were trapped and dying because they lacked food and medicine.
    (AP, 3/4/09)
2009        Mar 4, The International Criminal Court at The Hague issued an arrest warrant for Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir on charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity in Darfur. He is the first sitting head of state the court has ordered arrested. The French medical aid organization Doctors Without Borders (MSF) said it was pulling staff out of Darfur after the Sudanese government ordered them to leave. Sudan ordered at least 10 humanitarian groups expelled from Darfur.
    (AP, 3/4/09)(AFP, 3/4/09)
2009        Mar 4, Ukrainian masked and armed security agents searched the headquarters of Naftogaz, Ukraine's natural gas company, in a raid that the firm said threatened a deal with Russia over the shipment of gas supplies to Europe. The raid was said to be connected to a criminal investigation launched this week into the alleged diversion of some 7.4 billion hryvna ($900 million) in Russian gas by officials at Naftogaz.
    (AP, 3/4/09)
2009        Mar 4, Venezuela’s Pres. Chavez ordered the expropriation of the rice operations of US grain giant Cargill Inc. and threatened to take over beer and food manufacturer Polar, the country’s largest private company.
    (WSJ, 3/5/09, p.A9)
2009        Mar 4, Zimbabwe’s PM Morgan Tsvangirai made his first call for an end to international sanctions, part of his bid to start rebuilding the shattered economy. He also said the detention of political prisoners is undermining donor confidence in Zimbabwe's unity government, hurting efforts to rebuild the economy. US President Barack Obama extended sanctions against Zimbabwe, saying the troubled African nation had not resolved its political crisis.
    (Reuters, 3/4/09)(AFP, 3/4/09)(Reuters, 3/5/09)

2009        Mar 5, A US federal grand jury in LA charged Bruce E. Karatz (63) former chairman and chief executive of KB Home, with multiple counts of fraud and other crimes related to a stock option backdating scheme that authorities say bilked shareholders out of millions of dollars.
    (AP, 3/6/09)
2009        Mar 5, In Bozeman, Montana, a natural gas explosion collapsed 3 downtown buildings and prompted the evacuation of a 2-block area. One person was left missing.
    (SFC, 3/6/09, p.A6)
2009        Mar 5, In Ohio 5 people were found killed  in one of Cleveland’s most horrific shootings in years. Davon Crawford (33), a newlywed, was suspected of killing his wife, his sister-in-law and three young children. Crawford shot himself in the head the next day as police confronted in a home where he was hiding.
    (AP, 3/6/09)(SFC, 3/7/09, p.A6)
2009        Mar 5, Australia and South Korea agreed during a summit between PM Kevin Rudd and President Lee Myung-bak to deepen security ties and launch formal talks on a free trade agreement.
    (AP, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 5, China fleshed out an ambitious expansion in government spending designed to prevent the sinking global economy from further dragging down the country's recently buoyant growth and sparking unrest among laid-off workers and poorer Chinese.
    (AP, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 5, The Bank of England cut interest rates by 50 basis points to a record low of 0.5%, and said it would pump 75 billion pounds of new money into buying assets in its battle with recession.
    (Reuters, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 5, A Colombian warlord who has cooperated closely with prosecutors was extradited to the United States despite human rights groups' objections that sending him away could leave hundreds of murders unsolved. Heberth Veloza (41), alias "HH," has admitted to personally killing more than 100 people and acknowledged that fighters under his command killed hundreds more.
    (AP, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 5, The European Central Bank cut its main interest rate by a half percentage point to 1.5 percent, dropping the cost of borrowing in the 16 countries that use the euro to a new record low amid grim economic news.
    (AP, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 5, The European Court of Justice said Britain's law requiring retirement at age 65 is legal under EU rules. The advocacy group Age Concern took the British government to court in 2006 to demand the reversal of the forced retirement rule.
    (AP, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 5, Germany’s restored Neues Museum was unveiled after six years of painstaking work to repair World War II bomb damage that ruined much of the renowned Berlin building.
    (AP, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 5, In Ingushetia five policemen were killed trying to defuse a bomb. Violence continues to wrack Ingushetia, with bombings, shootings and attacks on police reported almost daily.
    (AP, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 5, Iraq's parliament passed a $58.6 billion budget after agreeing to sharp cuts amid falling oil prices. A car bomb exploded in a crowded livestock market selling sheep, cattle and goats south of Baghdad, killing at least 12 people and wounding dozens. Justin Pope (25), a US veteran who returned to Iraq as a civilian contractor, was shot to death overnight while protecting American diplomats in Kirkuk.
    (AP, 3/5/09)(AP, 3/8/09)
2009        Mar 5, Israeli airstrikes killed 3 gunmen close to the border after they fired an anti-tank missile at Israeli forces. In Jerusalem Mari al-Radeideh (26), a Palestinian driver, rammed a construction vehicle into a bus and police car on a highway, wounding two officers before he was shot dead, the latest in a string of attacks by militants using heavy machinery against Israeli targets.
    (AP, 3/5/09)(SFC, 3/6/09, p.A3)
2009        Mar 5, The Israeli and Turkish foreign ministers met secretly on the sidelines of a NATO conference, the first high-level contact between the countries since friction erupted over Israel's recent offensive in the Gaza Strip.
    (AP, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 5, A political scandal in Japan widened when government figures, including an influential former premier, said they had taken money linked to a firm whose murky donations have shaken the opposition.
    (AFP, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 5, In Kenya Oscar Kamau Kingara and John Paul Oulu, who investigated extrajudicial killings,  were shot at close range night while their car was stuck in traffic near the Univ. of Nairobi. The next day Kenya's top human rights group charged that the slaying was part of a pattern of assassinations of people who made allegations about police death squads.
    (AP, 3/6/09)
2009        Mar 5, NATO foreign ministers agreed to resume high-level formal ties with Russia, suspended last year after Moscow's military thrust into Georgia.
    (AP, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 5, Pakistani officials said that they have identified the gunmen who ambushed the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore on March 3, leaving 8 people dead. Police detained over 2 dozen men and most of them belonged to Jaish-e-Mohammed and Lashkar-e-Mohammed, groups linked to Al-Qaida and designated as terrorist organizations by the US.
    (WSJ, 3/6/09, p.A9)
2009        Mar 5, Protests spread from two French possessions in the Caribbean to the island of Reunion in the Indian Ocean, where about 15,000 people demonstrated in different cities against high prices.
    (AP, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 5, Sri Lanka offered a new safe passage for thousands of civilians trapped in the island's war zone as a local Red Cross employee was killed while helping non-combatants leave the area.
    (AP, 3/5/09)
2009        Mar 5, Ukraine’s Naftogaz paid its February bill for Russian gas just hours after Pres. Putin said Russia would halt supplies if Ukraine failed to meet a March 7 deadline.
    (WSJ, 3/6/09, p.A10)
2009        Mar 5, In Zimbabwe PM Morgan Tsvangirai said more than 4,000 people have died in the cholera epidemic that has hit at least 85,000 people, warning the figures were likely an underestimate.
    (AP, 3/5/09)

2009        Mar 6, The US Labor Department reported that the nation's unemployment rate bolted to 8.1 percent in February, the highest since late 1983, as cost-cutting employers slashed 651,000 jobs amid a deepening recession.
    (AP, 3/6/09)
2009        Mar 6, The IRS said it would not renew its expiring contracts with two private debt collection agencies. An in-house tax collection program was cited as more effective.
    (WSJ, 3/7/09, p.A4)
2009        Mar 6, The CIA destroyed a dozen videotapes of harsh interrogations of terror suspects, according to documents filed in a lawsuit over the government's treatment of detainees. The 12 tapes were part of a larger collection of 92 videotapes of terror suspects that the CIA destroyed. The extent of the tape destruction was disclosed through a suit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union against the government.
    (AP, 3/7/09)
2009        Mar 6, In California Annette Yeomans (51) surrendered at the Vista jail and was booked for investigation of grand theft and embezzlement. The former bookkeeper reportedly embezzled $9.9 million, forcing her company to make layoffs as she bought 400 pairs of shoes that she kept in a room-sized closet decorated with a crystal chandelier and a plasma television. Authorities alleged that Yeomans embezzled the money from 2001 to 2007 while she was chief financial officer for Quality Woodworks, Inc., a cabinetry business in San Marcos.
    (AP, 3/8/09)
2009        Mar 6, NASA's planet-hunting telescope, Kepler, rocketed into space on a historic voyage to track down other Earths in a faraway patch of the Milky Way galaxy. The $600 million satellite failed to communicate in 2013.
    (AP, 3/7/09)(Econ, 10/18/14, p.83)
2009        Mar 6, In Argentina Claudio Lifschitz, a criminal attorney who accused former President Carlos Menem of covering up the nation's worst terrorist attack, was kidnapped and tortured by masked gunmen seeking information about the case.
    (AP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 6, Colombia’s anti-narcotics police seized 5.7 tons of cocaine and cocaine base in a jungle laboratory reportedly run by the Black Eagles, the largest of a new generation of paramilitary groups.
    (SFC, 3/7/09, p.A4)
2009        Mar 6, The EU and Kenya agreed to allow the country to prosecute suspected pirates captured by European forces on the high seas.
    (AP, 3/6/09)
2009        Mar 6, India's government said it assisted an Indian businessman in his successful $1.8 million bid for Mohandas Gandhi's eyeglasses and other items, despite initially protesting the auction as a "crass commercialization" of the pacifist leader's legacy. An Indian court had even filed an injunction in an attempt to prevent the auction in New York.
    (AP, 3/6/09)
2009        Mar 5, Indonesia and South Korea agreed to cooperate more closely on a range of issues including defense, the global financial crisis and alternative sources of energy.
    (AP, 3/6/09)
2009        Mar 6, The Israeli foreign ministry said it had closed its embassy after the government of Mauritania asked the Israeli ambassador and his staff to leave.
    (AP, 3/6/09)
2009        Mar 6, Kyrgyz lawmakers voted overwhelmingly to suspend an agreement that allows US-led coalition forces fighting in Afghanistan to use an air base on its territory.
    (AP, 3/6/09)
2009        Mar 6, Mexico published a new law allowing the planting of genetically modified corn for experimental reasons.
    (SFC, 3/7/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 6, Morocco cut diplomatic links with Iran after an outcry in the Sunni Muslim world over a statement by an Iranian official questioning Sunni-ruled Bahrain's sovereignty.
    (Reuters, 3/6/09)
2009        Mar 6, In Paraguay about 100 women disrobed in a square in downtown Asuncion to protest nuclear weapons.
    (AP, 3/6/09)
2009        Mar 6, The Sri Lankan government appealed for tens of thousands of civilians to flee the northern war zone and said it would open two safe passages for the exodus. Sri Lankan soldiers assailed the last slice of land still controlled by ethnic Tamil separatists, killing at least 32 rebels in Mullaitivu.
    (AP, 3/6/09)(AP, 3/7/09)
2009        Mar 6, A UN spokesman said its human rights office will examine whether Sudan's decision to expel aid groups constitutes a breach of basic human rights and possibly a war crime. UN agencies warned that Sudan's decision to expel 13 international aid groups will leave more than a million people without food or health care and could threaten thousands of lives.
    (AP, 3/6/09)(AFP, 3/6/09)
2009        Mar 6, A senior employee of Taiwan's presidential office was indicted on charges of providing classified information to rival China. Wang Jen-bing was charged with violating the national security law by leaking documents gathered during the last three years of former President Chen Shui-bian's eight-year tenure. Chen Pin-jen, a legislative aid, was indicted on similar charges.
    (AP, 3/6/09)
2009        Mar 6, In Thailand Chiranuch Premchaiporn was arrested for violating the country’s Computer Crime Act. She faced 10 charges for not preventing comments on bulletin boards that might have offended the royal family.
    (http://tinyurl.com/4j6w77d)(Econ, 2/5/11, p.54)
2009        Mar 6, In Zimbabwe PM Morgan Tsvangirai was injured in a car crash that killed his wife. Tsvangirai was flown the next day to neighboring Botswana for medical tests.
    (Reuters, 3/7/09)(AFP, 3/7/09)

2009        Mar 7, President Barack Obama promised to do "all that's necessary" to boost the economy and warned, in an opening shot at critics of his budget proposals, that the country had tough choices ahead.
    (Reuters, 3/7/09)
2009        Mar 7, SF Bay Area police completed a 2-day sweep arresting at least 42 people, all alleged member of the so-called “Taliban" gang.
    (SSFC, 3/8/09, p.A1)
2009        Mar 7, A widow in western Afghanistan burned herself alive in what relatives called a desperate move to escape her miserably poor life.
    (AP, 3/8/09)
2009        Mar 7, In Algeria 2 people were killed and five others wounded in an attack on the barracks of security forces at Tadmait near Tizi Ouzou east of the capital.
    (AP, 3/7/09)
2009        Mar 7, The British government said it will take a majority stake in Lloyds Banking Group and guarantee toxic assets, leaving only two major British banks outside the state's control.
    (AFP, 3/7/09)
2009        Mar 7, In France a commuter train slammed into a group of football fans who were walking on railway tracks in a Paris suburb, killing two youths and injuring 11 people.
    (AFP, 3/8/09)
2009        Mar 7, Iraq's PM Nouri al-Maliki called for an end to the practice of distributing top government jobs along religious and ethnic lines, saying the system leads to weakness and mismanagement.
    (AP, 3/7/09)
2009        Mar 7, Suspected IRA dissidents opened fire on British troops and pizza delivery men at the entrance to Massereene army barracks in Antrim, west of Belfast, killing two soldiers and wounding four other people. The attackers fired on Mark Quinsey (23) and Patrick Azimkar (21) again as they lay wounded on the ground. A week later 3 men were arrested over the killings. On March 27 Colin Duffy (41), a prominent dissident republican, was remanded in custody after being charged with the murders of the two British soldiers. He was linked to the soldiers' murder by DNA evidence. On April 2 police arrested a 19-year-old man on suspicion of gunning down the two British soldiers. On Jan 20, 2012, Brian Shivers (46) was found guilty of the shooting and sentenced to at least 25 years in prison. Colin Duffy was cleared. On May 3, 2013, a judge dismissed the forensic evidence against Shivers and ruled he was too feeble to have played a role.
    (AP, 3/8/09)(AFP, 3/14/09)(Econ, 3/14/09, p.59)(AFP, 3/27/09)(AP, 4/2/09)(AFP, 1/20/12)(AP, 2/10/12)(AP, 5/3/13)
2009        Mar 7, In Pakistan Taliban militants reportedly shot down a suspected drone aircraft in a tribal area bordering Afghanistan. In the northwest a bomb-laden car exploded as police tried to pull a body from it, killing 7 police and a bystander. A roadside bombing in Darra Adam Khel killed 3 civilians. A suicide bomber in the Khyber tribal region killed 4 people.
    (AFP, 3/7/09)(AP, 3/7/09)(SSFC, 3/8/09, p.A10)
2009        Mar 7, Palestinian PM Salam Fayyad submitted his resignation, a move that could help pave the way for an elusive power-sharing deal between Palestinian moderates and militants.
    (AP, 3/7/09)
2009        Mar 7, In Sri Lanka more than 100 Tamil Tiger rebels were killed in two days of fighting as they tried to break a military stranglehold.
    (AFP, 3/8/09)

2009        Mar 8, In Illinois Pastor Fred Winters was shot and killed during his Sunday sermon at First Baptist Church in Maryville. He had deflected the first of Terry Joe Sedlacek’s four rounds with a Bible, sending a confetti-like spray of paper into the air in a horrifying scene that congregants initially thought was a skit. Churchgoers wrestled Sedlacek (27) to the ground as he waved a knife, slashing himself and two other people.
    (AP, 3/9/09)(SFC, 3/9/09, p.A4)
2009        Mar 8,    Country singer Hank Lochlin (b.1918) died at his home in Brewston, Alabama. His 70 charted singles included “Send Me the Pillow You Dream On" (1949 & 1958) and “Please Help Me, I’m Falling" (1960).
    (SFC, 3/12/09, p.B6)
2009        Mar 8, Afghan President Hamid Karzai welcomed President Barack Obama's call to identify moderate elements of the Taliban and encourage them to reconcile with the Afghan government. In southern Afghanistan a roadside bomb exploded, killing a Canadian soldier and wounding four others in Kandahar province.
    (AP, 3/8/09)(AP, 3/9/09)
2009        Mar 8, In Argentina Matthew Lizotte (25) of Aspen, Colorado, died while scaling the 11,411-foot (3,480-meter) Mount Tronador in Nahuel Huapi National Park. Two unidentified students were injured when the ice bridge they were crossing broke.
    (AP, 3/9/09)
2009        Mar 8, Ali Bongo (William Oliver Wallace), English master magician, died at age 79.
    (Econ, 3/21/09, p.93)
2009        Mar 8, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan carried out their first joint counter narcotics operation.
    (AP, 3/11/09)
2009        Mar 8, The US military announced that 12,000 American and 4,000 British troops will leave Iraq by September, hours after a suicide bomber struck police and recruits lined up at the entrance of Baghdad's main academy, killing about  30 people, including 5 police officers.
    (AP, 3/8/09)(SFC, 3/9/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 8, Kim Jong Il was unanimously re-elected to North Korea's rubber-stamp parliament. Outside observers watched closely for hints leader Kim Jong Il may be grooming a successor.
    (AP, 3/8/09)(AP, 3/9/09)
2009        Mar 8, Sudan's Pres. Omar al-Bashir threatened to kick out more aid groups and expel diplomats and peacekeepers during his first trip to the beleaguered Darfur region after an international court indicted him on war crimes.
    (AP, 3/8/09)
2009        Mar 8, Off southern Thailand a 60-foot (18-metre) diving boat, carrying 30 people including 19 foreigners, was reported missing in the Similan islands. Police and navy rescued 23 passengers and crew the next day but two Swiss nationals, two Austrians, a Japanese, a German and a Thai member of the crew remained missing. The body of one woman was found on March 10.
    (AFP, 3/10/09)

2009        Mar 9, President Barack Obama signed an executive order reversing the US government’s ban on funding stem-cell research today and pledge to “use sound, scientific practice and evidence, instead of dogma" to guide federal policy.
    (AP, 3/9/09)
2009        Mar 9, The US and South Korea began annual war games prompting North Korea to call its military into full combat readiness.
    (SFC, 3/10/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 9, In North Carolina Philip Guyett (42) pleaded guilty to falsifying records so that he could sell human tissue from corpses that were riddled with cancer or showed intravenous drug use. He was sentenced in October to 8 years in prison.
    (Econ, 10/24/09, p.38)(http://tinyurl.com/yfnbh8p)
2009        Mar 9, The latest American Religious Identification Survey said 15% of respondents had no religion, an increase from 14.2% in 2001 and 8.2% in 1990.
    (AP, 3/9/09)
2009        Mar 9, Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman and state house and senate leaders agreed to eliminate the state’s 40-year-old private club system in an effort to boost tourism.
    (SFC, 3/10/09, p.A5)
2009        Mar 9, Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine signed a bill that generally restricts smoking in bars and restaurants to separate rooms that have their own ventilation.
    (SFC, 3/10/09, p.A5)
2009        Mar 9, Merck & Co. said it is buying Schering-Plough Corp. for $41.1 billion in stock and cash in a deal that gives the companies more firepower to compete in a drug industry facing slumping sales, tough generic competition and intense pricing pressures. The merger was expected to eliminate some 16,000 jobs.
    (AP, 3/9/09)(SFC, 3/10/09, p.C1)
2009        Mar 9, California-based Genencor, a division of Danisco A/S, announced the first transfer of BioIsoprene™ product to The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. By December the world’s first concept demonstration tires made with BioIsoprene™ technology, a breakthrough alternative to replace a petrochemically produced ingredient in the manufacture of synthetic rubber with renewable biomass, made their debut in Copenhagen, Denmark.
    (http://tinyurl.com/27vewpy)(Econ, 4/24/10, p.79)
2009        Mar 9, Bolivia’s President Evo Morales ordered a US diplomat to leave his country for allegedly conspiring with opposition groups, further straining tense relations six months after he expelled the American ambassador.
    (AP, 3/9/09)
2009        Mar 9, China's President Hu Jintao ordered a "Great Wall" against Tibetan separatism, as extra soldiers were deployed to the Himalayan region on the 50th anniversary of a failed anti-Chinese uprising. Homemade bombs damaged police vehicles in a Tibetan part of western China. Authorities expanded a security cordon across the restive region ahead of the 50th anniversary of a failed revolt that sent the Dalai Lama into exile.
    (AFP, 3/9/09)(AP, 3/9/09)
2009        Mar 9, Chinese ships surrounded and harassed a Navy mapping ship in international waters off China, at one point coming within 25 feet of the American boat and strewing debris in its path. The Obama administration said it would continue naval operations in the South China Sea, most of which China considers its territory, and protested to China about what it called reckless behavior that endangered lives. China held that the USNS Impeccable was operating illegally inside its 200-mile exclusive economic zone.
    (AP, 3/10/09)(WSJ, 3/11/09, p.A8)
2009        Mar 9, Dubai’s public prosecution indicted 7 suspects on bribery and fraud charges alleging losses to the Dubai Islamic Bank of over $501 million in fake deals from 2004 to 2007. Two of the men had left the country.
    (WSJ, 3/10/09, p.A7)
2009        Mar 9, A group of Egyptian army cadets stormed a police station in a southern suburb of Cairo, leaving at least five policemen and three cadets injured. The attack came after a local police chief arrested a cadet on March 5 for loitering on a street corner and refusing to show any ID. The cadet was taken to the police station, beaten and held overnight.
    (AP, 3/11/09)
2009        Mar 9, A cargo ship sank off the Red Sea coast of Egypt shortly after leaving port, leaving 14 sailors missing. At least 2 crew members drowned. 10 people were rescued when the 5,600-tonne Ibn al-Battuta went down in the sea off the port of Abu Dhunaima in Egypt’s Safaga region.
    (AP, 3/9/09)
2009        Mar 9, French lawmakers passed an amendment to ban the sale of alcohol to teens under 18, part of an effort to tackle the rise of binge drinking in a country known for a relaxed attitude toward a little libation.
    (AP, 3/10/09)
2009        Mar 9, Helg Sgarbi, a man dubbed "the Swiss gigolo" by the German media, was sentenced to six years in prison for defrauding BMW heiress Susanne Klatten (46), Germany's richest woman, of euro7 million ($9 million) and attempting to blackmail her for tens of millions more.
    (AP, 3/9/09)
2009        Mar 9, In Iraq rockets slammed into the British military base outside the southern city of Basra, killing one civilian. It was the first such attack on the base in nearly three months.
    (AP, 3/9/09)
2009        Mar 9, The Icelandic government took control of Straumur Burdaras Investment Bank hf., the last of the major Icelandic banks to collapse after running out of liquidity.
    (AP, 3/9/09)
2009        Mar 9, In Mexico gunmen killed six people, including the police chief of Pungarabato, in a series of attacks in mountain towns in the Pacific coast state of Guerrero. Gunmen also shot and killed a Michoacan state police commander outside police headquarters in the city of Zamora.
    (AP, 3/9/09)(SFC, 3/10/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 9, In Northern Ireland Constable Stephen Paul Carroll (48) was shot in the head in an area known to be home to nationalist republican supporters in Craigavon, 20 miles southwest of Belfast. The Continuity IRA said it killed the police officer. On March 30, 2012, Brendan McConville (40) and John Paul Wootton (20) were both found guilty of murder following a two-month trial.
    (AFP, 3/10/09)(AP, 3/10/09)(AP, 3/30/12)
2009        Mar 9, Pakistan's top security official warned opposition leader Nawaz Sharif that his recent anti-government speeches amounted to treason, ratcheting up tensions in the country ahead of planned protest rallies this week. A tribe in the northwestern Bajur region, where the military has fought insurgents, agreed to stop sheltering foreign fighters and hand over local Taliban leaders. A tribal elder said some militants could be pardoned and freed.
    (AP, 3/9/09)(AP, 3/10/09)
2009        Mar 9, The Sri Lankan military said its troops had killed at least 250 Tamil Tigers during a weekend of fierce fighting around the rebels' shrinking fiefdom in the northeast of the island.
    (AP, 3/9/09)
2009        Mar 9, In Sudan 4 soldiers from the joint UN-African Union peacekeeping force in the war-torn Darfur region have been wounded in an ambush.
    (AFP, 3/10/09)
2009        Mar 9, In Sweden researchers reported that a chimpanzee named Santino had collected a stash of rocks and then hurled them at visitors at the Furuvik Zoo, confirming that apes can plan ahead just like humans.
    (SFC, 3/10/09, p.A3)
2009        Mar 9, In Uganda a cargo plane carrying equipment for African Union peacekeepers in Somalia caught fire and crashed into Uganda's Lake Victoria shortly after takeoff, killing all 11 people on board.
    (AP, 3/9/09)

2009        Mar 10, In Alabama Michael McLendon (28) set off on a rampage of 10 slayings across two rural counties and then killed himself.
    (AP, 3/11/09)(SFC, 3/12/09, p.A6)
2009        Mar 10, The IMF warned that the world economy will likely contract this year in a "Great Recession" and African leaders said the financial crisis could undo hard-won social-economic gains.
    (Reuters, 3/10/09)
2009        Mar 10, In Afghanistan a roadside bomb ripped through a minibus, killing four civilians and wounding six other people in Helmand province. Gunmen in Kandahar killed Jawed Ahmad (23), an Afghan journalist once held by the US military in Afghanistan as an enemy combatant.
    (AFP, 3/10/09)(AP, 3/11/09)(SFC, 3/11/09, p.A3)
2009        Mar 10, In Algeria border guards seized 3.5 tons of cannabis in a desert region close to the frontier with Morocco.
    (AFP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 10, In Egypt rival Palestinian factions opened talks aimed at coming up with a power-sharing agreement, hearing a call to forget their contentious and sometimes bloody past.
    (AP, 3/10/09)
2009        Mar 10, Germany's navy handed over nine suspected Somali pirates to Kenyan authorities and they will be taken to a court to face charges. The nine were arrested March 3 after they attacked the Hamburg-based MV Courier cargo ship.
    (AP, 3/10/09)
2009        Mar 10, In northern Honduras a plane from Venezuela that was carrying more than 2 tons of cocaine crashed, killing the pilot. 2 US Drug Enforcement Administration helicopters were allegedly pursuing the aircraft when it went down near El Negrito town.
    (AP, 3/11/09)
2009        Mar 10, In Iraq a suicide bomber struck Sunni and Shiite tribal leaders touring a market after a reconciliation meeting west of Baghdad, killing 33 people. A US Marine died in an incident that did not involve combat.
    (AP, 3/10/09)
2009        Mar 10, Two cargo ships collided off the coast of a central Japanese island, leaving 16 South Korean and Indonesian crew members missing.
    (AP, 3/10/09)
2009        Mar 10, In Kenya youths threw stones at police officers and looted stores and cars following a march by about 1,000 university students through the Nairobi to protest the deaths of a fellow student and two activists.
    (AP, 3/10/09)
2009        Mar 10, Libya released Jamal al-Haji and Faraj Humaid. They had been sentenced to prison in 2007 for planning a peaceful demonstration to commemorate protesters who had died in clashes with police.
    (SFC, 3/11/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 10, Malaysia’s government unveiled a 60 billion ringgit ($16.26 billion) economic stimulus plan amounting to 9% of GDP.
    (WSJ, 3/11/09, p.A16)
2009        Mar 10, In western Mexico 5 human heads were found inside coolers along a highway. Authorities were still searching for the bodies.
    (AP, 3/10/09)
2009        Mar 10, Police in Northern Ireland arrested 2 suspects in the fatal shooting of Constable Stephen Paul Carroll. On March 24 one of the suspects, a Northern Ireland teenager (17), was charged with the dissident IRA killing of Carroll. The teen had an assault rifle and 26 rounds of ammunition and refused to say a word to his interrogators during 13 days of questioning. On March 25 Brendan McConville (37), a former Sinn Fein councilman was arraigned on charges of murdering Carroll.
    (WSJ, 3/11/09, p.A16)(AP, 3/24/09)(AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 10, Pakistani security forces claimed to have killed 35 militants in fresh fighting in the northwest, on the Afghanistan border. Gunmen torched a truck in Baluchistan province carrying supplies for NATO forces in neighboring Afghanistan, leaving its driver and a helper wounded.
    (AP, 3/10/09)(AFP, 3/10/09)
2009        Mar 10, The Philippine president signed a law affirming sovereignty over islands also claimed by China and Vietnam, sparking protests over the control of strategic South China Sea islands. The Chinese Embassy issued a statement expressing its "strong opposition and solemn protest" over the signing of the law.
    (AP, 3/11/09)
2009        Mar 10, In Saudi Arabia a huge sandstorm blanketed the city of Riyadh with a thick layer of yellow dust.
    (AP, 3/11/09)
2009        Mar 10, Spanish police said they have arrested an Ecuadorian woman who tried to smuggle into Barcelona liquid cocaine hidden in spray cans of products to starch clothes or clean glass.
    (AFP, 3/10/09)
2009        Mar 10, In southern Sri Lanka a rebel suicide bomber attacked a procession of Muslims celebrating a religious holiday, killing 15 people and critically wounding Postal Services Minister Mahinda Wijesekera (66).
    (AP, 3/10/09)(AFP, 3/11/09)
2009        Mar 10, Syria opened its first stock exchange, closed since the 1960s, as it shifted from socialist policies toward a more market oriented system.
    (SFC, 3/11/09, p.A2)(Econ, 11/28/09, p.50)
2009        Mar 10, Tibetans and their supporters rallied across the Asia-Pacific region demanding an end to Chinese rule in their homeland on the 50th anniversary of the Dalai Lama being forced into exile. Paramilitary police and soldiers swarmed cities and villages in Tibet and restive western China, on the alert for possible unrest. The Dalai Lama said Tibet had become "hell on earth" under Beijing's control.
    (AP, 3/10/09)
2009        Mar 10, Turkey indicted 56 more people on charges of plotting to topple the Islamic-rooted AK Party government. The 56 suspects, including 2 retired four-star generals, were formally indicted on March 25.
    (WSJ, 3/11/09, p.A11)(WSJ, 3/26/09, p.A8)
2009        Mar 10, Venezuela's National Guard destroyed an elaborate network of clandestine cocaine-processing laboratories along the country's border with Colombia as part of its anti-drug efforts.
    (AP, 3/10/09)

2009        Mar 11, Pres. Obama signed a $410 billion US spending bill, stuffed with earmarks, to fund the operations of all but 3 Cabinet departments. He called it a departure point and unveiled new rules to restrict earmarks.
    (SFC, 3/12/09, p.A8)(WSJ, 3/12/09, p.A1)
2009        Mar 11, Pres. Obama signed a bill rolling back the Bush administration restrictions on Cuban Americans visiting relatives in Cuba.
    (SFC, 3/12/09, p.A8)
2009        Mar 11, VP Biden announced that Pres. Obama has chosen Seattle police chief Gil Kerlikowske as the nation’s new drug czar.
    (WSJ, 3/12/09, p.A1)
2009        Mar 11, US authorities deported 60 Nigerians accused of theft, credit card scams and drug-related offences.
    (AFP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 11, A California state study said global warming is expected to cause a rise of nearly 5 feet along the coastline and severely threatening SF Bay by 2100. The rising waters could cost the state $14 billion of more to safeguard the coast.
    (SFC, 3/12/09, p.A1)(WSJ, 3/12/09, p.A1)
2009        Mar 11, Forbes magazine released its list of 793 of the world’s richest people. Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, a suspected drug lord and Mexico's most-wanted fugitive, made the list of billionaires with a fortune described as "self made." He was No. 701 on the list. The list included 5 Indonesians.
    (AP, 3/11/09)(SSFC, 3/15/09, p.A4)
2009        Mar 11, In eastern Algeria suspected Islamist extremists shot and killed a police officer and wounded another in a shoot-out near Batna city. 3 armed Islamists were killed by the security forces in Souk El-Thenine town.
    (AFP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 11, Australia said it would provide funding to Zimbabwe's new unity government, the first Western power to announce direct support to the new administration.
    (Reuters, 3/11/09)
2009        Mar 11, More than 30 shipping containers of ammonium nitrate fell off a ship in stormy seas off Australia, damaging the ship's hull and leaking up to 30 tons of oil [see Mar 13]. Swire Shipping's cargo liner Pacific Adventurer released about 200,000 liters (53,000 US gallons) of heavy fuel oil off the coast of Queensland state as it travelled through cyclonic weather. Australia later sought more than 18 million US dollars in compensation from a Hong Kong-based shipping company. In August the Hong Kong-based Swire Shipping company said it will pay Australia 25 million dollars (21 million US) in compensation for the oil spill.
    (AP, 3/11/09)(AFP, 5/6/09)(AFP, 8/8/09)
2009        Mar 11, Brazil’s Central Bank cut its benchmark Selic rate by 1.5% to 11.25%. further cuts were expected.
    (Econ, 3/28/09, p.44)
2009        Mar 11, In Brazil a prosecutor charged rancher Regivaldo Galvao, accused of murdering US nun Dorothy Strang, with trying to fraudulently obtain a plot of the rain forest that Strang had worked to protect.
    (SFC, 3/12/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 11, In eastern China 11 people were killed and 20 were injured after a blast led to the collapse of a former factory that was housing railway workers. Preliminary investigations revealed the collapse was triggered when leftover aluminium powder in the building in Danyang city, Jiangsu province ignited and exploded just after midnight.
    (AFP, 3/11/09)
2009        Mar 11, French Pres. Sarkozy announced that France will return as full-fledged member of the 26-naqtion NATO alliance.
    (SFC, 3/12/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 11, German prosecutors said they have charged retired Ohio auto worker John Demjanjuk (88) with more than 29,000 counts of accessory to murder for his time as a guard at the Nazis' Sobibor death camp, and will seek his extradition from the US.
    (AP, 3/11/09)
2009        Mar 11, In southwestern Germany Tim Kretschmer (17) dressed in black opened fire at his former high school in Winnenden, killing 12 people. He fled the scene and killed a 56-year-old janitor of a nearby psychiatric hospital in a park. He then fled in a hijacked car, and killed 2 more people before apparently shooting himself to death. Kretschmer graduated last year from the school of about 1,000 students. In 2011 Stuttgart state court gave Kretschmer’s father a 21-month suspended sentence for not securing his 9mm Beretta pistol.
    (AP, 3/11/09)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tim_Kretschmer#Perpetrator)(AP, 3/12/09)(AP, 2/10/11)
2009        Mar 11, In Iraq Tariq Aziz, Saddam Hussein's former foreign minister, was convicted of crimes against humanity and sentenced to 15 years in prison for the 1992 execution of 42 merchants accused of price gouging while Iraq was under UN sanctions.
    (AP, 3/11/09)
2009        Mar 11, Italy's highest court sided with the government and threw out key evidence in an alleged CIA kidnapping of an Egyptian terrorism suspect in Italy, dealing a blow to the trial of 26 Americans charged in the case.
    (AP, 3/11/09)
2009        Mar 11, Prosecutors in Kyrgyzstan charged a prominent opposition leader with murder in a case that government critics say is politically motivated. Alikbek Jekshenkulov was accused of involvement in the shooting of a Turkish citizen in late 2007 and illegal possession of a weapon. Jekshenkulov was foreign minister until February 2007.
    (AP, 3/11/09)
2009        Mar 11, In Madagascar Col. Andre Ndrianarijaona, the leader of a group of mutinous soldiers, declared himself head of the army, raising questions about the president's hold on power on this impoverished Indian Ocean island.
    (AP, 3/11/09)
2009        Mar 11, Officials in Namibia said at least 92 people had drowned in its northern regions since the start of rainy season in Dec.
    (SSFC, 3/15/09, p.A4)
2009        Mar 11, Pakistan arrested hundreds of opposition activists and banned protests in two regions ahead of a planned rally outside the parliament that could weaken the already shaky rule of the country's US-allied government.
    (AP, 3/11/09)
2009        Mar 11, Saudi Arabia hosted the leaders of Egypt and Syria in an effort to persuade Damascus to move away from Iran and join with US-allied Arab countries in working to blunt Tehran's influence.
    (AP, 3/11/09)
2009        Mar 11, The African Union extended by three months the mandate of its peacekeeping mission in Somalia, and called on the UN to lift its arms embargo there.
    (AFP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 11, Sri Lanka’s military killed Sabaratnam Selvathurai, a senior rebel leader, in fighting in Puthukkudiyiruppu, the last town held by the rebels.
    (AP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 11, In Sudan armed men abducted three international aid workers and two Sudanese guards in the Darfur region, a week after the government ordered aid groups expelled in response to an international arrest warrant for Sudan's president on war crimes charges. The abducted workers were from the Belgian branch of Doctors Without Borders and they were seized from their offices in the Saraf Umra area.
    (AP, 3/12/09)

2009        Mar 12, The US House of Representatives passed a non-binding resolution recognizing March 14, 2009 as National Pi Day.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pi_Day)
2009        Mar 12, Bernard Madoff pleaded guilty to charges that he carried out an epic fraud that robbed investors around the world of billions of dollars, turning a revered money man into an overnight global disgrace whose name became synonymous with the economic meltdown.
    (AP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 12, Texas Gov. Rick Perry announced that he turned down $555 million of federal stimulus funding that would expand the state's unemployment benefits, saying the money would have required the state to keep paying for the expanded benefits after the stimulus money ran out.
    (AP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 12, Anthony Doyle, former Chicago police officer, was sentenced to 12 years in prison for racketeering. He was accused of providing information on gangland investigations to reputed mob boss Joseph Lombardo.
    (SFC, 3/13/09, p.A6)
2009        Mar 12, Swiss pharmaceutical giant Roche agreed to pay $46.8 billion to buy the 44 percent of biotech pioneer Genentech that it doesn't already own, ending a long corporate struggle with its US-based cancer drug partner.
    (AP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 12, The Pacific Fishery Management Council agreed to extend for a 2nd year the fishing ban of chinook salmon in California and Oregon.
    (SFC, 3/13/09, p.B1)
2009        Mar 12, Leonore Annenberg (b.1918), the widow of billionaire publisher Walter Annenberg (d.2002), died in southern California. She had continued directing the philanthropy of the Annenberg Foundation based in Radnor, a suburb of Philadelphia, Pa.
    (SFC, 3/13/09, p.B8)
2009        Mar 12, The UN refugee agency said Angola is launching a fresh effort to bring back refugees still displaced in neighboring African countries, seven years after the end of the civil war in 2002.
    (AFP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 12, Antiguan voters, worried by the fallout from an alleged $8 billion fraud scheme involving R. Allen Stanford, decided between the ruling party and the one that welcomed the Texas financier to the Caribbean nation nearly two decades ago. Preliminary results indicated that Antigua's ruling party will stay in power, but with a narrower margin in parliament.
    (AP, 3/12/09)(AP, 3/13/09)
2009        Mar 12, In Benin American Peace Corps volunteer Catherine Puzey was found dead in Badjoude. She had earlier reported that a local Peace Corps hire was abusing children.
    (www.peacecorps.gov/resources/media/press/1435/)(SSFC, 5/26/13, p.A8)
2009        Mar 12, In Canada 17 people died in the frigid waters off Canada's Atlantic coast after a Sikorsky S-92 helicopter crashed while ferrying workers to an offshore oil platform. It went down about 47 nautical miles southeast of the Newfoundland and Labrador capital of St. John's. One person was rescued.
    (Reuters, 3/12/09)(Reuters, 3/13/09)
2009        Mar 12, China announced plans to assist millions of unemployed migrant workers with increases in grain subsidies and rural infrastructure projects.
    (AP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 12, In Germany a scientist accidentally pricked her finger with a needle used to inject the deadly Ebola virus into lab mice. Within 48 hours of the accident, the at-risk scientist, a woman (45) whose identity has not been revealed, was injected with an experimental  vaccine from Canada. After 2 weeks the woman appeared to be healthy. At the time of the accident, she was wearing three layers of protective gloves, and though the needle stuck her, the plunger of the syringe was not pushed so it's not certain the virus entered her bloodstream.
    (AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 12, The leaders of two of Indonesia's biggest political parties signed an agreement on shared goals amid speculation they could join forces against President Yudhoyono.
    (AFP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 12, Latvia's parliament approved a new center-right government with Europe's youngest premier as the economic crisis in this Baltic state deepened. A 67-21 vote made PM Valdis Dombrovskis (37) and his 5-party coalition Latvia’s third government in 15 months.
    (AP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 12, Liberia’s agriculture ministry said the country has been hit by a 2nd invasion of crop-destroying caterpillars. Over a hundred villages have so far been affected by the plague.
    (AFP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 12, Mexico extradited two former US Border Patrol agents accused of taking bribes from migrant smugglers. The US Embassy said Raul Villarreal and Fidel Villarreal allegedly fled to Mexico after they learned US authorities were investigating them in 2006. Two suspected migrant smugglers were also extradited.
    (AP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 12, Dutch police arrested Giovanni Strangio (30), an Italian man wanted for the August 15, 2007, mob killings of six people in the western German city of Duisburg.
    (AP, 3/13/09)
2009        Mar 12, Pakistani police clashed with black-suited lawyers and opposition activists after the launch of a cross-country protest rally in defiance of government attempts to stop it. Paramilitary forces backed by jets and helicopter gunships killed 18 militants in a restive Pakistani tribal region bordering Afghanistan. A suspected US missile strike in northwest Pakistan killed at least 24 people, most of them Taliban militants.
    (Reuters, 3/12/09)(AFP, 3/12/09)(AFP, 3/13/09)
2009        Mar 12, The Islamic militant group Hamas made a rare criticism of Palestinian rocket fire on Israel, saying now is the wrong time as truce talks continue.
    (AP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 12, Serbia’s war crimes court convicted 13 Serbs of war crimes for the execution style killings of some 200 Croats in 1991 during the Balkan conflicts. 7 former soldiers received the maximum 20-year sentence.
    (SFC, 3/13/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 12, The Sri Lankan army seized the last remaining medical facility held by separatist Tamil Tiger rebels in the north of the island. The army estimated that fewer than 500 Tigers were still fighting, although they had also forced some civilians to fight as well.
    (AP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 12, Thailand's opposition filed a censure motion against PM Abhisit Vejjajiva and five government ministers, accusing them of corruption.
    (AP, 3/12/09)
2009        Mar 12, Turkish warplanes carried out new bombing raids against Kurdish rebel positions in northern Iraq. The strike targeted hideouts of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) in the Zap-Avashin region of the Kurdish-held autonomous north of Iraq.
    (AFP, 3/13/09)
2009        Mar 12, In Zimbabwe Roy Bennett, a top aide to PM Morgan Tsvangirai, was released on bail after a legal battle that has raised doubts about Zimbabwe's new unity government.
    (AP, 3/12/09)

2009        Mar 13, The Obama administration dropped the use of the term “enemy combatant" for suspected terrorists detained at Guantanamo Bay and slightly modified the legal standard used to justify their continued imprisonment.
    (WSJ, 3/14/09, p.A3)
2009        Mar 13, California said it faced a new $8 billion shortfall by July 2010 due to declining tax revenues.
    (WSJ, 3/14/09, p.A1)
2009        Mar 13, Alan W. Livingston (91), the music executive who created Bozo the Clown and signed the Beatles during his tenure as president of Capitol Records, died ion Beverly Hills. He came up with the Bozo the Clown character for the 1946 album "Bozo at the Circus," which became a hit and spawned a cottage industry of merchandise and the television series featuring the wing-haired clown.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 13, Betsy Blair (85), Oscar-nominated actress and teenage bride (1941-1957) of Gene Kelly, died in London. In the late 1940s Blair took parts in "The Guilt of Janet Ames," and "A Double Life." But her movie career stalled after her enthusiasm for leftist causes landed her on Hollywood's blacklist. The New Jersey-born actress later married film director Karel Reisz.
    (AP, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 13, Dozens of popular tourist beaches on Australia's northeast coast were declared a disaster zone, with their once-pristine sands fouled by a massive oil and chemical slick. Queensland state's marine safety authority said up to 100 tons of fuel, 250,000 liters, were now believed to have spilled from the Hong Kong-flagged ship Pacific Adventurer amid cyclonic conditions on March 11.
    (AP, 3/13/09)(Econ, 3/21/09, p.45)
2009        Mar 13, Terra Firma, a London-based private equity firm, announced it would buy 90% of Consolidated pastoral Company, the Australian cattle holdings of the Packer family, which encompass 12 million acres of land.
    (Econ, 3/21/09, p.67)
2009        Mar 13, In Bangladesh a fire at Dhaka’s 22-story Bashundhara City mall killed at least 7 people as helicopters plucked survivors from the roof.
    (SFC, 3/14/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 13, Thousands of people across Britain took part in events for Red Nose Day, with money going towards helping the disadvantaged in Africa and Britain.
    (AFP, 3/13/09)
2009        Mar 13, John Worboys (b.1957), a London cab driver, was found guilty of raping or assaulting 12 women, often after persuading them to drink champagne spiked with sedatives. On April 21 he was sentenced  to at least 8 years in prison. In 2010 Scotland Yard said 102 women have come forward to accuse Worboys of sexually motivated crimes since his highly publicized trial.
    (AP, 10/26/10)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Worboys)
2009        Mar 13, In Burundi an albino man was murdered and dismembered overnight by suspected smugglers with links to Tanzanian witch doctors, the fourth such case in a month in the central African nation.
    (AFP, 3/13/09)
2009        Mar 13, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said Beijing is willing to hold talks with the Dalai Lama if Tibet's exiled spiritual leader abandons his separatist cause, as he defended his government's hard-line policies toward the region.
    (AP, 3/13/09)
2009        Mar 13, In Greece dozens of youths carrying sledgehammers and iron bars smashed cars, banks and storefronts in an upscale district of central Athens. Leaflets identified the attackers as members of local anarchist groups. A similar attack also occurred in the northern city of Thessaloniki, leaving three banks damaged.
    (AP, 3/13/09)
2009        Mar 13, Japan said it could shoot down any threatening object falling toward its territory, after North Korea said a planned rocket launch would send it across Japanese territory.
    (AP, 3/13/09)
2009        Mar 13, In Kyrgyzstan Medet Sadyrkulov, a key opposition figure to Pres. Bakiyev, was killed in an alleged car crash that left him and 2 passengers burned beyond recognition.
    (WSJ, 3/14/09, p.A6)(Econ, 1/9/10, p.45)
2009        Mar 13,  In southern Nigeria an attack took place on Chevron Nigeria Limited’s 16-inch Makaraba-Utonana pipeline. The attack forced Chevron cut its crude oil production by 11,500 barrels per day.
    (AFP, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 13, Pakistani officials appealed to the opposition to join talks aimed at resolving the country's political crisis, even as police stepped up a crackdown on activists trying to reach the capital for a planned anti-government protest.
    (AP, 3/13/09)
2009        Mar 13, Tristan Anderson (38) of Oakland, Calif., was wounded in the West Bank village of Naalin, during a protest against Israel's separation barrier. He remained in serious condition after undergoing surgery.
    (AP, 3/14/09)
2009        Mar 13, Russia’s Kontinental Management said it has closed for good its Baikal Pulp and Paper Mill, located on the southern edge of Lake Baikal. It halted production in October. The plant has polluted the world's largest freshwater lake with chemical effluent for decades.
    (AP, 3/13/09)
2009        Mar 13, A spokeswoman for Doctors Without Borders says 35 of its foreign staff are leaving Darfur after the abduction of three colleagues.
    (AP, 3/13/09)
2009        Mar 13, The Swiss government said it would cooperate on cases of international tax evasion, breaking with a long-standing tradition of protecting wealthy foreigners accused of hiding billions of dollars in the Alpine nation.
    (AP, 3/13/09)
2009        Mar 13, Taiwan’s economic stimulus package was reported to include a $104 shopping voucher for every one of the island’s 23 million people to be used between the Chinese New year and the end of April. Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin added $150 food vouchers for the poor along with job training programs, financial incentives for new hires and loan guarantees for small businesses.
    (SFC, 3/13/09, p.C1)
2009        Mar 13, In Thailand suspected Muslim militants killed 3 soldiers in an ambush in southern Narathiwat province.
    (SFC, 3/14/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 13, In Uganda a building collapsed in the capital, Kampala, when nearby construction loosened the foundation. At least five people were killed and dozens remained trapped under the rubble.
    (AP, 3/13/09)

2009        Mar 14, President Barack Obama said the nation's decades-old food safety system is a "hazard to public health" and in need of an overhau. Obama used his weekly radio and video address to announce the nomination of former New York City Health Commissioner Margaret Hamburg as FDA commissioner, and his choice of Baltimore Health Commissioner Joshua Sharfstein as her deputy.
    (AP, 3/14/09)
2009        Mar 14, President Barack Obama met with visiting Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva for talks on the economy, energy and the environment.
    (AP, 3/14/09)
2009        Mar 14, The US government permanently banned the slaughter of cows too sick or weak to stand on their own, seeking to further minimize the chance that mad cow disease could enter the food supply.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 14, In Florida Donte Stallworth, a wide receiver for the Cleveland Browns, killed  pedestrian Mario Reyes (59) while driving after a night out. On April 1 Stallworth was charged with DUI manslaughter.
    (SFC, 4/2/09, p.A6)
2009        Mar 14, In Coatesville, Pennsylvania, the 20th arson fire this year was set, one day after Roger Leon Barlow (19) was held for trial in connection with fires set between Jan 2 and Feb 3.
    (SSFC, 3/15/09, p.A10)
2009        Mar 14, In Afghanistan a helicopter-borne special operations mission by US troops and Afghan forces killed five people in Logar province, south of Kabul, sparking an angry protest from villagers who said the victims were civilians. 3 ISAF soldiers were killed including one French and one British soldier.
    (AP, 3/14/09)(AFP, 3/14/09)(AFP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 14, In Algeria Islamists cut the throat of a shepherd and 300 of his sheep in Chatabia village near the Tunisian border. Three family members and an elected official died in a bomb explosion the following morning as they headed to the site of the killing.
    (AFP, 3/16/09)
2009        Mar 14, Bolivia’s President Evo Morales asked large landowners to voluntarily relinquish some of their holdings to poor Indians during a ceremony on property confiscated from Ronald Larsen, a US rancher for, redistribution.
    (AP, 3/14/09)
2009        Mar 14, In England Matthew Swift (18) and his friend Ross McKnight (16) were arrested for plotting to murder teachers and pupils at Audenshaw High School in Greater Manchester. Both were acquitted at trial on Sep 16.
    (AFP, 9/16/09)(http://dnews.us/comments/2518519)
2009        Mar 14, In Burkina Faso an overloaded canoe capsized on a reservoir, killing at least 15 women and children.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 14, In England G20 finance officials held a day of talks to pave the way for the April 2 London G20 summit on tackling the downturn. They worked to find common ground amid deep divisions on how to tackle the global downturn, with key players trying to inject optimism into talks that many fear could result in little real progress.
    (AP, 3/14/09)(AFP, 3/14/09)
2009        Mar 14, In Indonesia Nasrudin Zulkarnaen, the head of a state-owned pharmaceutical company, was shot dead. On May 4 Jakarta police arrested Antasari Azhar, chairman of Indonesia’s Corruption Eradication Commission, as the alleged mastermind of the drive-by murder.
    (Econ, 5/9/09, p.46)
2009        Mar 14, Iran’s state TV said Iran and China have signed a $3.2 billion gas deal to produce more than 10 tons of liquid natural gas.
    (AP, 3/14/09)
2009        Mar 14, In Martinique thousands of demonstrators marched and sand in the streets after officials signed an agreement ending a monthlong strike on the French Caribbean island.
    (AP, 3/14/09)
2009        Mar 14, In Mexico police acting on a tip found nine bodies partially buried in the desert on the outskirts of the Mexican border city of Ciudad Juarez. 1,500 more troops arrived, on top of 2,150 who arrived a day earlier. Authorities announced the arrest of Sergio Pena Mendoza (39), a suspected leader of the Zetas, a drug cartel hit squad. A male suspect threw a hand grenade at police officers in the western city of Guadalajara. No injuries were reported. Police detained the suspect and later found 14 more grenades and 10 assault rifles in his home.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 14, Nicaragua’s President Daniel Ortega accused the US of "taking bread" from the poor by holding back aid. The US said this week it will continue delaying some $64 million in development aid because of an election dispute.
    (AP, 3/14/09)
2009        Mar 14, A Russian Air Force chief said that Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has offered an island as a temporary base for strategic Russian bombers. Maj. Gen. Anatoly Zhikharev also said Cuba could be used to base the aircraft.
    (AP, 3/14/09)
2009        Mar 14, In South Africa Moss Phakoe, a municipal councilor in North West province, was shot and killed in Rustenburg after handing over a file detailing corruption in the municipality to a high-ranking ANC official. In 2012 former Rustenburg mayor Matthew Wolmarans was jailed for 20 years for the murder of Phakoe. His former bodyguard Enoch Mtshaba was sentenced to life in prison.
    (Econ, 10/20/12, p.23)(http://tinyurl.com/9m8hrx2)
2009        Mar 14, In Sudan 3 foreign aid workers kidnapped in Darfur were freed and were returning to Khartoum with an official who said they were abducted in response to the international arrest warrant issued for the Sudanese president.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 14, Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe denounced political violence and urged Zimbabweans to work together following the formation of an inclusive government with opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai.
    (AFP, 3/14/09)

2009        Mar 15, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said America's recession "probably" will end this year if the government succeeds in bolstering the banking system.
    (AP, 3/16/09)
2009        Mar 15, The space shuttle Discovery and its crew of 7 launched from the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fl., bound for the Int’l. Space Station. It carried the last set of solar wings to boost the station to full power.
    (SFC, 3/16/09, p.A7)(SFC, 3/18/09, p.A5)
2009        Mar 15, The History Guild of Daly City dedicated its new museum located at the former John Daly Library, 6351 Mission Street, Ca. 94014, (650-757-7177).
    (Opening Day Flyer, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, American International Group said its executives will receive tens of millions of dollars in new bonuses, in order to meet a legal deadline, even though it received a taxpayer bailout of more than $170 billion dollars. The group of top executives getting bonuses will receive half of the $9.6 million now, with the average payment around $112,000. The large bulk of the payments at issue cover AIG Financial Products, the unit of the company that sold credit default swaps, the risky contracts that caused massive losses for the insurer.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, In Miami, Florida, a man shot four people to death at a family gathering, then went home and killed himself.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, Richard Masato Aoki (b.1938), former Japanese-American FBI informant (1961-1977) and early member of the Black Panthers (1967), died in Oakland, Ca., from complications relating to diabetes. He had given the Panthers some of their first guns.
    (SFC, 8/20/12, p.A1)(http://tinyurl.com/9g5u4zn)(SFC, 9/8/12, p.C2)
2009        Mar 15, Actor Ron Silver (62) died in NYC. He had been fighting esophageal cancer for two years. Silver won a Tony Award as a take-no-prisoners Hollywood producer in David Mamet's "Speed-the-Plow" and did a political about-face from loyal Democrat to Republican activist after the Sept. 11 attacks.
    (AP, 3/16/09)
2009        Mar 15, In Afghanistan US soldiers killed 5 militants in an operation about 60 kilometers (40 miles) west of Kandahar city. A blast  in Nangarhar province killed four US soldiers. 3 Afghan civilians died from bombs in Kabul and Kandahar.
    (AFP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, Belarus' authoritarian Pres. Lukashenko allowed a banned organization of ethnic Poles to meet for the first time in four years, sending a tentative signal of his willingness to relax his tight hold in exchange for warmer ties with the West. The Union of Poles has been banned since riot police were sent in to take over its headquarters in March 2005.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, In Abeche, Chad, UN forces took over command from EU peacekeepers to protect refugees and displaced people in Chad and the Central African Republic.
    (AFP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, El Salvador's entrenched conservatives faced a stiff challenge from the party of former guerrillas in presidential elections. Mauricio Funes (b.1959), a leftist television journalist, made history by bringing the FMLN, a party of former guerrillas, to power for the first time since the end of a bloody civil war.
    (AP, 3/15/09)(AP, 3/16/09)
2009        Mar 15, Germany's chancellor Angela Merkel called for greater government supervision of gun owners after a school shooting last week that killed 15 people.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, A German newspaper reported that Deutsche Post AG has paid a pension of euro20 million ($26 million) to Klaus Zumwinkel, the former CEO convicted of tax evasion.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, Thirty three pro-democracy legislators from Hong Kong crossed to Macao to confront the local government over banned visitors. 5 were immediately returned over “security reasons" and the rest were allowed to deliver a letter of protest.
    (Econ, 3/21/09, p.43)
2009        Mar 15, In Hungary several thousand people held right wing, anti-government protests in Budapest during a national holiday. Police detained 35 people. The holiday commemorated the unsuccessful 1848 revolution against the Habsburgs.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, Northern Ireland's police commander said about 300 Irish Republican Army dissidents backed by "a few nutters and idiots" are trying to tear apart the peace process, as his detectives interrogated nine people over the killings of two soldiers and a policeman.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, Two Israeli police officers were shot and killed while traveling near the Jewish settlement of Massua in the West Bank. A few days later the Martyrs of Imad Mughniyeh said it was behind the shooting. The group is named after an assassinated Hezbollah mastermind. Israeli and Palestinian security officials said there is no such group. They believe rogue militants have used the fake name as cover to evade Israeli reprisals.
    (SFC, 3/16/09, p.A2)(AP, 3/16/09)(AP, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 15, In northern Mozambique a mob angered by false rumors that health workers were spreading cholera killed a Red Cross volunteer, two health workers and a policeman.
    (AP, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 15,  Pakistan's opposition leader Nawaz Sharif defied house arrest to lead anti-government protests that briefly turned violent before becoming a jubilant show of force against the country's pro-Western president. Suspected militants attacked a transport terminal in northwestern Pakistan used to supply NATO troops in Afghanistan before dawn and torched dozens of containers and military vehicles. A suspected US missile strike killed two Arabs and three other people in northwest Pakistan.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev said that he will publicly declare his income and encouraged other officials to fight corruption by disclosing relatives' incomes and assets.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, In central Somalia clashes between rival Islamist militias killed at least 14 people over the last 2 days. Most of those killed were fighters for the al-Shabab group or its rival Ahlu-sunah Wal-jamea.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, Sri Lanka’s government forces overran a former Tamil Tiger police post, killing at least nine rebels and raising to 41 the number killed in weekend fighting.
    (AFP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, Uganda began withdrawing troops hunting brutal Lord's Resistance Army rebels in neighboring Congo after the deadline for them to leave expired. Felix Kulaigye, a Ugandan military spokesman, said the operation had been a success, with around 100 rebels killed and more than 200 abductees rescued, and that Congo would continue the hunt.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, President Hugo Chavez dispatched the navy to Venezuela's seaports, warning that state governors who challenge a new law bringing transportation hubs under federal control could end up in prison. Chavez also said that Russian bombers would be welcome in Venezuela, but he denied that his country would offer Moscow its territory for a military base.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar 15, In Yemen a bomb killed four South Korean tourists and their Yemeni guide, the latest attack targeting foreigners visiting this poor Arab country that has both famed historic sites and a strong al-Qaida presence. 12 Islamic suspects were soon arrested.
    (AP, 3/16/09)(WSJ, 3/17/09, p.A1)

2009        Mar 16, President Barack Obama blistered insurance giant AIG for "recklessness and greed" and pledged to try to block it from handing its executives $165 million in bonuses after taking billions in federal bailout money. Obama also freed billions of dollars to help the nation’s small businesses with loans.
    (AP, 3/17/09)(SFC, 3/16/09, p.C1)
2009        Mar 16, The US and Germany signed an agreement to share science and technology research in an effort to improve the security of both nations.
    (AP, 3/16/09)
2009        Mar 16,  Hawaii’s Supreme Court rejected a state law that allowed the Hawaii Superferry to operate while an environmental study is being conducted forcing the inter-island ferry service to cease operations.
    (AP, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 16, In Michigan 4 teenagers were killed when their car was struck by a van driven by Frances Patricia Dingle in Roseville. Dingle was measured with a blood alcohol level of .08, twice the legal limit, and was charged with 2nd degree murder.
    (SFC, 3/18/09, p.A5)
2009        Mar 16, Vincent Fumo (65), former Pennsylvania state senator, was convicted of 137 counts of corruption for schemes that defrauded the state senate of more than $3.5 million.
    (WSJ, 3/17/09, p.A6)
2009        Mar 16, Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle said the state will use "Live like you mean it" to promote the state as a tourism and business destination, replacing the slogan "Life's So Good."
    (AP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 16, US researchers said a new test can accurately detect Alzheimer's disease in its earliest stages, before dementia symptoms surface and widespread damage occurs.
    (Reuters, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 16, In southern Afghanistan a suicide bomber struck a police station as a convoy was about to head out on a poppy eradication mission, killing 11people and wounding 29. An Australian soldier in a joint Australian-Afghan army patrol was shot dead during a "very intense firefight" with 20 Taliban insurgents in Uruzgan province.
    (AFP, 3/16/09)(AP, 3/17/09)(SFC, 3/17/09, p.A3)
2009        Mar 16, At least two Algerian soldiers were killed when their convoy was hit by roadside bombs in the east of the country.
    (AFP, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 16, The government of Dubai resigned to prevent the questioning in Parliament of the country’s prime minister, the nephew of Kuwait’s emir, regarding a number of issues including alleged mismanagement and land-use concerns.
    (WSJ, 3/18/09, p.A8)
2009        Mar 16, Amr Moussa (b.1936), former Egyptian Foreign Minister and head of the Arab League, said AL countries will not carry out an International Criminal Court request to arrest Sudan's president on charges of war crimes in Darfur.
    (AP, 3/17/09)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amr_Moussa)
2009        Mar 16, Sir Nicholas Henderson (89), a former British ambassador to the US, died in London. He  helped build support for Britain's war effort in the Falklands Islands.
    (AP, 3/16/09)
2009        Mar 16, Bernard d’Espagnat (87), French physicist and philosopher, was named in Paris as the winner of this year’s $1.42 million Templeton Prize.
    (SFC, 3/17/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 16, In Iraq a 12-year-old girl was killed when American soldiers fired at a vehicle speeding toward them and Iraqi police near Mosul. The military said the girl was standing about 100 yards (meters) behind the vehicle and was struck by a round. In Baghdad a US soldier was fatally injured during combat operations.
    (AP, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 16, In Kyrgyzstan opposition parties called for protests across the country this month, amid worsening economic conditions and mounting accusations of government repression.
    (AP, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 16, Lebanon opened its first-ever embassy in Syria in another sign of improving ties between the long-feuding neighbors.
    (AP, 3/16/09)
2009        Mar 16, Madagascar's opposition leader called on the military to arrest the nation's president as a power struggle between the two appeared to be reaching a decisive moment.
    (AP, 3/16/09)
2009        Mar 16, Mexico said it will increase tariffs on about 90 US products in retaliation for last week's decision to end a pilot program that allowed some Mexican trucks to transport goods in the United States.
    (AP, 3/16/09)
2009        Mar 16, In northern Mexico a tractor-trailer slammed into a bus carrying Canadian and US tourists, killing 11. The bus was carrying a group of Texas retirees from McAllen, Texas, to the northern Mexican state of Zacatecas when a drunken driver lost control of his tractor-trailer outside the city of Saltillo.
    (AP, 3/17/09)(WSJ, 3/18/09, p.A10)
2009        Mar 16, A UN human rights investigator accused North Korean authorities of committing widespread torture in prisons that he called "death traps." Life in the reclusive communist-ruled country is "dire and desperate," said Vitit Muntarbhorn, adding that people are denied enough food to survive.
    (AP, 3/16/09)
2009        Mar 16, In Pakistan the Zardari government relented in a major confrontation with the opposition, agreeing to reinstate Iftikhar Mohammed Chaudhry, the fired Supreme Court chief justice, whose fate had sparked street fights and raised fears of political instability. The government said Chaudhry would be sworn back in on March 21. PM Yousuf Raza Gilani's announcement also promised the restoration of a handful of other judges who had remained off the bench since former President Pervez Musharraf sacked them in 2007. Up to 50 militants attacked a terminal for trucks carrying supplies to US and NATO troops in Afghanistan, in the second such assault in northwest Pakistan in two days. A suicide bomber blew up at a busy bus terminal near Islamabad, killing at least nine people and wounding 18 more.
    (AP, 3/16/09)
2009        Mar 16, Sudan's Pres. Omar al-Bashir he wants all international aid groups out of the country within a year, insisting they can drop off supplies "at airports or seaports" and let Sudanese organizations take care of it.
    (AP, 3/16/09)
2009        Mar 16, In southern Somalia gunmen seized four UN workers, the latest in a series of attacks on aid workers in the war-ravaged Horn of Africa nation.
    (AP, 3/16/09)
2009        Mar 16, In Turkey a UN global forum on water opened in Istanbul. The UN said global demand for water is rising as access to safe drinking water remains inadequate in much of the developing world.
    (SFC, 3/17/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 16, The Vatican said it will launch a Chinese version of its website on March 19 in an effort to bring more of Pope Benedict's message to China, whose communist government does not allow Catholics to recognize his authority.
    (Reuters, 3/16/09)

2009        Mar 17, New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo said AIG, the troubled insurance giant, paid bonuses of $1 million or more to 73 employees, including 11 who no longer work for the company.
    (AP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 17, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir will be responsible for "every single death" caused by the expulsion of 13 foreign aid groups from Sudan.
    (Reuters, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 17, The Seattle Post Intelligencer, owned by the Hearst Corp., printed its last newspaper edition. It will become exclusively Web-based as Seattlepi.com, making it the nation’s largest daily newspaper to move to online only.
    (SFC, 3/17/09, p.A8)
2009        Mar 17, In Utah Chiew Chan Saevang (37), a suspected opium trafficker, killed himself and his girlfriend, Yer Yang (40), after sheriff’s deputies chased them down on a state highway. Saevang was also wanted in the March 12 slaying of four Conover, NC, family members.
    (SFC, 3/19/09, p.A5)
2009        Mar 17, Afghanistan called for more international help to develop its fledgling and embattled security forces so that it can take on a larger role in "the fight against terrorism."
    (AFP, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 17, Pope Benedict XVI arrived in Cameroon to start his first visit to Africa as pontiff. Benedict, arriving in Africa, said that condoms "increase the problem" of AIDS. The comment, made to reporters aboard his plane, caused a worldwide firestorm of criticism.
    (Reuters, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 17, In Canada more than 100 protesters chanted "war criminal" and flung shoes in Calgary, angry that former US President George W. Bush was in the city to give his first speech since leaving the White House.
    (Reuters, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 17, In Colombia Erik Roland Larsson (69), a partially paralyzed Swede, was released by leftist rebels after nearly two years of captivity. He was the last known foreign hostage held in Colombia by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC).
    (AP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 17, Egyptian security officials caught 2 Hamas officials returning to Gaza with nearly $850,000 stuffed into candy tins.
    (SFC, 3/18/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 17, French President Nicolas Sarkozy's government won a parliamentary confidence vote prompted by his plans to rejoin NATO's military command, which many legislators fear would compromise France's independence.
    (AP, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 17, Police in the Republic of Ireland made public-order arrests from St. Patrick’s Day festivities that easily exceeded 200, typical for recent years. Inebriated mobs annually turned districts of Dublin and Belfast into a nightmare.
    (AP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 17, Madagascar's Pres. Marc Ravalomanana ceded power to the military, instead of rival Andry Rajoelina, who plunged the island nation into weeks of turmoil with his bid for power. The military installed opposition leader Andry Rajoelina.
    (AP, 3/17/09)(SFC, 3/18/09, p.A4)
2009        Mar 17, In Malaysia a battle for senior leadership posts in the ruling party was hit with a bombshell as 15 members including several top figures were found guilty in an anti-corruption probe.
    (AFP, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 17, Authorities in Myanmar were reported to have arrested five members of detained pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi's political party from March 6-13. the report came a day after the UN called for the release of more than 2,000 political prisoners in the military-run country.
    (AP, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 17, In the Netherlands the UN criminal tribunal for the former Yugoslavia reduced the jail sentence of Bosnian Serb leader Momcilo Krajisnik from 27 to 20 years, quashing some convictions from a 2006 judgment.
    (AP, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 17, North Korea fully reopened its border to South Koreans commuting to jobs at factories in a northern economic zone after four days of restrictions. North Korean soldiers detained two American journalists near the country's border with China. Laura Ling and Euna Lee, reporters for former Vice President Al Gore's San Francisco-based online media outlet Current TV, were taken into custody near the Tumen River in northeastern North Korea. They had crossed into the country while reporting about the sex trade. Both journalists were formally indicted in April. After 140 days in custody, the reporters were granted a pardon.
    (AP, 3/17/09)(AP, 3/19/09)(SFC, 4/24/09, p.A2)(SFC, 5/18/10, p.A4)(AP, 8/5/09)
2009        Mar 17, In Pakistan Islamic courts started work in the Swat valley under a controversial deal that the government hopes will end two years of bitter fighting.
    (AFP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 17, Philippine marines and al-Qaida-linked militants holding three Red Cross workers clashed for a second day, leaving three troops and up to 7 Abu Sayyaf militants dead.
    (AP, 3/17/09)(AP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 17, Portuguese police said they have captured more than 7.7 tons (7 metric tons) of hashish from Morocco with an estimated street value of more than euro70 million (US$91 million). Police said they netted the drug in a series of coordinated operations over three days beginning last weekend.
    (AP, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 17, Russia's defense minister charged that the US and NATO were beefing up their military presence near Russia's borders in a bid for natural resources that could ignite new conflicts.
    (AP, 3/17/09)
2009        Mar 17, In Sudan a UN/African Union peacekeeper was killed in an ambush in Darfur.
    (AP, 3/17/09)

2009        Mar 18, US Pres. Barack Obama named retired Air Force general Scott Gration as his special envoy to Sudan to confront what Washington sees as a "horrendous" situation in Darfur.
    (AFP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 18, The White House endorsed a bill to triple the size of the AmeriCorps program and expand service opportunities for students and seniors.
    (AP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 18, The US central bank said it would pump more than $1 trillion into the economy with plans to buy up to $300 billion long-term government bonds and some $750 billion in mortgage-backed securities, which would help revive the country's sagging housing market.
    (AP, 3/19/09)
2009        Mar 18, The US government sued Union Pacific in San Diego and Houston saying the rail company had failed to prevent smuggling of illegal drugs by rail into the US from Mexico. The government cited at least 58 occasions of illegal drug transport, mostly marijuana, since 2001. At least one case involved cocaine.
    (WSJ, 3/19/09, p.A7)
2009        Mar 18, New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, who has supported capital punishment, decided to sign legislation to repeal the state’s death penalty. The repeal takes effect on July 1, and applies only to crimes committed after that date.
    (AP, 3/19/09)
2009        Mar 18, Felipe E. Sixto (29) of Miami, a former White House aide, was sentenced to 2½ years in federal prison for stealing nearly $600,000 from a federally funded nonprofit group that promotes democracy in Cuba.
    (SFC, 3/19/09, p.A5)
2009        Mar 18, In Alaska lance Mackey won his 3rd consecutive Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.
    (WSJ, 3/19/09, p.A6)
2009        Mar 18, IBM announced that it was in talks to acquire Sun Microsystems for at least $6.5 billion in cash. The deal soon faltered as the companies failed to agree on terms.
    (Econ, 3/21/09, p.69)(SFC, 4/6/09, p.A5)
2009        Mar 18, Natasha Richardson (45). British actress, died in NYC from a severe brain injury in a skiing accident in Canada earlier this week.
    (Reuters, 3/19/09)
2009        Mar 18, The Australian government said it plans to crack down on excessive executive pay packages. It will amend the Corporations Act to require shareholder approval for any termination payments that exceed average annual base salary, which excludes additional compensation such as shares or stock options.
    (WSJ, 3/19/09, p.C2)
2009        Mar 18, Azerbaijan citizens overwhelmingly voted to scrap presidential term limits in the oil-rich country courted by Russia and the West. Opposition leaders claimed the constitutional referendum was rigged and vowed to dispute the outcome in court. A small European observer mission said, however, that the vote was transparent and it had seen no violations.
    (AP, 3/19/09)
2009        Mar 18, Sean Hodgson (57), a British man who spent 27 years in prison, walked free after his murder conviction was overturned because of new DNA evidence in a case that may help others who have been wrongly convicted.
    (AP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 18, The prime ministers of China and North Korea discussed the nuclear situation on the Korean peninsula as they met in Beijing amid rising tensions over Pyongyang's atomic and missile programs.
    (AFP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 18, Colombia extradited former Maj. Julio Cesar Parga Rivas to the US on drug trafficking charges.
    (AP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 18, Costa Rica said it will re-establish diplomatic ties with Cuba, and El Salvador's new president-elect, Mauricio Funes, promised to do the same after he takes office.
    (AP, 3/19/09)
2009        Mar 18, Egypt opened its border crossing with the Gaza Strip for the second time in two months to allow medical aid and Palestinians to enter the coastal territory.
    (AP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 18, Amnesty international said authorities in Gambia have rounded up about 1,000 people and forced them to drink hallucinogens in a witch-hunting campaign. Authorities began inviting "witch doctors," who combat witches, to come from nearby Guinea soon after the death earlier this year of President Yahya Jammeh’s aunt. The concoctions left six people dead.
    (AP, 3/18/09)(AFP, 7/18/11)
2009        Mar 18, Mumbai police arrested an Indian businessman (49) for allegedly raping his daughter for more than eight years, apparently on the advice of a Hindu mystic who .said it would make him wealthy. Tantrik Hansmukh Bhai Rathode (54) was arrested the next day.
    (AP, 3/19/09)
2009        Mar 18, In Iran Omid Mirsayafi (29), a blogger convicted of insulting the country’s ruling clerics, died in Tehran’s main prison.
    (SFC, 3/20/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 18, In Iraq a bomb killed a farming couple in Diyala province. A suicide car bomber struck a patrol, killing a policeman and wounding two others in  Mosul.
    (AP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 18, Gianni Giansanti (52), an award-winning Italian photographer, died in Rome after battling bone cancer. He shot the 1978 image that for many captured the horror of that era — the bullet-riddled body of Aldo Moro, the kidnapped former Italian Christian Democrat premier, in the truck of a parked car. He also had snapped candid portraits of Pope John Paul II during his pilgrimages.
    (AP, 3/19/09)
2009        Mar 18, Kuwait's emir, Sheikh Sabah al Ahmad al Jaber al Sabah, dissolved the 50-member parliament, to avert parliamentary questioning of his nephew, the prime minister. He called for new elections within two months, saying some lawmakers had abused democracy and become a threat to stability.
    (AP, 3/18/09)(WSJ, 4/9/09, p.A1)
2009        Mar 18, Kyrgyzstan police detained several prominent activists as they held a ceremony to mark the seventh anniversary of shootings that left six protesters dead.
    (AP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 18, Madagascar's highest court endorsed the army's move to replace the toppled president with his rival, but the African Union was considering whether it constituted a coup.
    (AP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 18, In Mexico Vicente "El Vicentillo" Zambada, top figure in the Sinaloa drug cartel, was arrested before dawn at a home in an elite Mexico City neighborhood.
    (AP, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 18, Mozambique’s interior ministry said 12 prisoners arrested during a riot over a cholera epidemic have died in their cell in unclear circumstances. They were among 29 people arrested when riots broke out last month when Red Cross volunteers were blamed for causing a cholera epidemic plaguing the country.
    (AFP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 18, Russian news agencies cited a top defense official as confirming that a contract to sell powerful air-defense missiles to Iran was signed two years ago, but saying no such weapons have yet been delivered.
    (AP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 18, Russia said it was banning the hunting of baby harp seals, weeks after PM Putin reportedly called the hunt a bloody industry.
    (SFC, 3/19/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 18, Defiant Sudanese Pres. Omar al-Bashir rallied Arab supporters in Darfur by saying no war crimes court or the UN Security Council can touch even "an eyelash" on him despite an international order for his arrest.
    (AP, 3/18/09)
2009        Mar 18, In Yemen a suicide bomber struck a convoy carrying South Korean officials sent to Yemen to investigate a bombing earlier in the week that killed four South Korean tourists. No one was hurt.
    (AP, 3/18/09)

2009        Mar 19, Pres. Obama appeared on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno" and captured some 11.2% of TV households in 56 US markets.
    (WSJ, 3/20/09, p.A4) 
2009        Mar 19, A report issued by the US Interior Department said one-third of the nation's endangered birds are in Hawaii. 31 Hawaiian bird species were listed as endangered, more than anywhere else in the country. The native birds were threatened by the destruction of their habitats by invasive plant species and feral animals like pigs, goats and sheep, habitat loss and insect born diseases. The report also said energy production of all types — wind, ethanol and mountaintop coal mining — was contributing to steep drops in bird populations.
    (AP, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 19, In New York Hank Morris, a political advisor, and David J. Loglisci were indicted on allegations of extracting improper fees in exchange for investments from New York state’s pension fund.
    (WSJ, 4/18/09, p.C1)(http://tinyurl.com/crt5kx)
2009        Mar 19, In NYC Henry Morris (55), political adviser to former New York comptroller Alan Hevesi, and David J. Loglisci (38), former New York Deputy Comptroller, were arrested on charged in a 123-count indictment that included money laundering, corruption and bribery charges. Some $30 million was allegedly paid to Mr. Morris in a pay-to-play scheme.
    (WSJ, 3/20/09, p.C1)
2009        Mar 19, Josias Kumpf (83), a former Nazi concentration-camp guard, was deported from Wisconsin to Austria, despite objections from his lawyer that the guard was simply present at the Trawniki Labor Camp in Poland but committed no acts of persecution [see Nov 3, 1943].
    (AP, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 19, South Dakota Gov. Mike rounds signed legislation banning smoking from all indoor public places.
    (SFC, 3/20/09, p.A8)
2009        Mar 19, Howard Feldman (67), an American psychiatrist, was arrested in the Philippines on charges of tricking an upstate New York couple into wiring him $70,000 for a bogus liver transplant, that the husband died waiting for. Feldman has been on the run since 2001.
    (SFC, 3/20/09, p.A8)
2009        Mar 19, Cisco Systems said it will pay around $590 million to acquire Pure Digital Technology, a maker of pocket sized camcorders.
    (WSJ, 3/20/09, p.B5)
2009        Mar 19, In Afghanistan Helmand MP Dad Mohammad Khan, a key anti-Taliban lawmaker, was killed with four other men when a bomb tore through their vehicle. Australia’s defense chief said a bomb disposal expert was killed trying to defuse a device in Afghanistan, announcing the country's 10th combat death there.
    (AFP, 3/19/09)(AP, 3/19/09)
2009        Mar 19, Al-Qaida's chief Osama bin Laden urged Somali militants to overthrow the country's new president in a new Web audiotape, trying to torpedo a new push for peace in a lawless African nation where many fear al-Qaida is gaining a foothold.
    (AP, 3/19/09)
2009        Mar 19, Brazil's Supreme Court sided with Amazonian Indians in a land dispute that some have called critical for determining the future of the rainforest that sprawls the size of Western Europe. The court ruling upheld the Raposa Serra do Sol reservation for 18,000 Indians who lay claim to their ancestral land, despite a handful of large-scale farmers who also occupy the territory in the northernmost reaches of Amazon jungle bordering Venezuela.
    (AP, 3/19/09)
2009        Mar 19, In Quito, Ecuador, a small army plane crashed into an apartment building, killing seven people and sending a fireball into the evening sky. The dead included 3 soldiers, the pilot’s wife and son and 2 people on the ground.
    (AP, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 19, In France hundreds of thousands of people began protests expected to draw at least a million demonstrators to the streets to denounce President Nicolas Sarkozy's handling of the economic crisis.
    (Reuters, 3/19/09)
2009        Mar 19, A US airstrike on a militant hideout south of Balad Ruz in Diyala province killed at least 11 insurgents. A US soldier died from non-combat causes.
    (AP, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 19, Former Israeli President Moshe Katsav was indicted on rape and other sexual offense charges, after calling off a plea deal that would have allowed him to escape jail time.
    (AP, 3/19/09)
2009        Mar 19, Southern African nations declared they will not recognize Madagascar's new leader, an army-backed politician who ousted an elected president. The US said it would reconsider aid to the island nation.
    (AP, 3/19/09)
2009        Mar 19, In Mexico new tariffs on 89 products took effect in retaliation for a US decision last week to cancel a cross-border program that gave Mexican truckers access to their northern neighbor's highways.
    (AP, 3/19/09)
2009        Mar 19, In Pakistan suspected Taliban militants fired a rocket that killed 8 people on a supply rout to Afghanistan.
    (WSJ, 3/20/09, p.A1)
2009        Mar 19, Pirates off the coast of Somalia seized the St. Vincent-flagged Titan, with 24 crew members on board, including a Greek captain and 3 Greek crew members. A Turkish warship foiled a pirate attack on a Turkish commercial ship in the Gulf of Aden.
    (AP, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 19, A Thailand army spokesman said a roadside bomb had killed four paramilitary rangers on an intelligence-gathering operation in southern Pattani province.
    (AP, 3/19/09)

2009        Mar 20, Two US Navy vessels, a submarine and an amphibious ship, collided during the early morning hours in the Strait of Hormuz between Iran and the Arabian peninsula. The USS Hartford, a submarine, and the USS New Orleans, an amphibious ship, collided. 15 sailors aboard the Hartford were slightly injured but able to return to duty. No injuries were reported aboard the New Orleans.
    (AP, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 20, The US Postal Service said it will reduce management by 15%, offer early retirement to 150,000 workers and close 6 of 80 district offices in response to the slowing economy and losses last year of $2.8 billion.
    (SFC, 3/21/09, p.A4)
2009        Mar 20, Washington Mutual's holding company sued federal regulators for billions of dollars, saying the firesale of the bank's assets to JPMorgan Chase violated its rights.
    (AP, 3/22/09)
2009        Mar 20, Walter Kuhlman (90), SF Bay Area artist and teacher, died. He was a noted figure in the postwar Bay Area abstract expressionist movement.
    (SFC, 3/30/09, p.B3)
2009        Mar 20, Afghanistan's top Muslim clerics urged President Hamid Karzai to push ahead with a proposal for talks with the Taliban that would be mediated by Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah. In northern Afghanistan 9 policemen and a district chief were killed in heavy fighting with Taliban insurgents. 4 Canadian troops and a local interpreter were killed in two separate explosions. Another NATO soldier was killed in a "hostile incident" in the south.
    (AP, 3/20/09)(AFP, 3/20/09)(Reuters, 3/21/09)
2009        Mar 20, Tens of thousands of Angolans welcomed Pope Benedict XVI. He urged Angolans to continue on the path of reconciliation after nearly three decades of civil war, saying dialogue could overcome all conflict and tension.
    (AP, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 20, China said a new WTO report rejected the majority of intellectual property complaints made by the US and broadly backed Beijing's stance against commercial piracy.
    (AP, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 20, The African Union suspended Madagascar, the strongest condemnation by the international community since opposition leader Andry Rajoelina took power with the support of the army.
    (Reuters, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 20, EU leaders pledged a 125 billion euros in support for eastern Europe and the IMF after rejecting calls to plough more taxpayer cash into their own faltering economies.
    (AFP, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 20, In France several teenagers were taken into custody after 11 adults were injured in a pellet gun shooting near a nursery school in Lyon.
    (AP, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 20, Iranian engineer Majid Kakavand (37) was taken into custody in Paris as he arrived in Paris from Moscow as part of a European tour with his wife. He was arrested at the airport under a US warrant suspected of evading export controls to buy US technology for Iran's military. He was held in La Sante prison until Aug. 26, then released on condition he stay in Paris. He faced a Feb. 17 Paris hearing on whether to be extradited to the United States.
    (AP, 1/22/10)
2009        Mar 20, In Iraq followers of anti-US Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr protested US presence on the 6th anniversary of the start of the Iraq war. In Baghdad’s Karrada district a pair of roadside bombs exploded within 10 minutes of one another wounding 4 police officers and 3 civilians.
    (SFC, 3/21/09, p.A3)
2009        Mar 20, Mexico’s central bank lowered its overnight lending rate by .75 to 6.75%, in response to the deepening recession.
    (WSJ, 3/20/09, p.A5)
2009        Mar 20, The Mexican army in Saltillo, Coahuila, arrested Sigifrido Najera Talamantes, an alleged drug trafficker. He was suspected of organizing an attack on a US consulate as well as the killing of several soldiers in retaliation for a government crackdown.
    (AP, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 20, North Korea closed its southern border for the third time in recent days, even as it told Seoul it would restore a military communications hot line severed last week.
    (AP, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 20, In Sudan the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), a major rebel group in Darfur, said it had decided to end peace talks with the Sudanese government until it lets back aid groups expelled from the troubled region.
    (AP, 3/20/09)
2009        Mar 20, The UN Security Council gave a stamp of approval to Somalia's new unity government and urged increased international aid to African Union (AU) peacekeepers trying to contain the violence in the lawless country.
    (AP, 3/20/09)

2009        Mar 21, In Oakland, Ca., Lovelle Mixon (26), a parolee with an "extensive criminal history," opened fire at a routine traffic stop killing Sgt. Mark Dunakin (40) and gravely wounding Officer John Hege (41). Hours later he gunned down Sgt. Ervin Romans (43) and Sgt. Daniel Sakai (35), 2 members of a SWAT team searching for him. SWAT team members returned fire, killing Mixon. Officer Hege was pronounced dead the next day. It was later reported that Mixon had robbed and raped 2 women a gunpoint earlier the same day. In 2011 the city of Oakland paid Douglas Laughlin, a former KGO-TV cameraman, $175,000 under a civil suit filed against police who had attacked him and broken his camera as he tried to film the arrival of the ambulance carrying one of the wounded officers.
    (AP, 3/22/09)(SFC, 3/23/09, p.A1)(SFC, 5/5/09, p.A1)(SFC, 6/9/11, p.C2)
2009        Mar 21, The attorney general of Connecticut said that he is asking AIG why documents appear to show the company paid $53 million more in bonuses to its financial products division than previously reported. a busload of activists representing working- and middle-class families paid visits to the lavish homes of American International Group executives to protest the tens of millions of dollars in bonuses awarded by the struggling insurance company after it received a massive federal bailout.
    (AP, 3/21/09)(AP, 3/22/09)
2009        Mar 21, In Afghanistan 2 separate bombings killed 11 people near the volatile eastern border with Pakistan, marring a festive day throughout the country as citizens celebrated the Persian new year. A bomb detonated by remote control killed five people near a shrine in the country's eastern Khost province as they celebrated Nowruz. North of Khost in Nangarhar province, a suicide bomber in a car blew himself up at a police checkpoint, killing six people, including five civilians and one policeman. In southern Afghanistan NATO killed Maulawi Hassan, a senior Taliban commander, and nine other suspected militants, while the coalition and its Afghan allies suffered an equal number of deaths in separate attacks in the same area.
    (AP, 3/21/09)(AP, 3/23/09)
2009        Mar 21, In Angola Pope Benedict XVI appealed to the Catholics of Angola to reach out to and convert believers in witchcraft who feel threatened by "spirits" and "evil powers" of sorcery. Two people were killed in a deadly stampede that broke out at Luanda stadium a few hours before Pope Benedict XVI addressed young people.
    (AP, 3/21/09)
2009        Mar 21, In Botswana Japanese Foreign Minister Hirofumi Nakasone opened a development conference and warned that the global economic crisis would affect Africa for at least two years.
    (AP, 3/21/09)
2009        Mar 21, In northwestern China hundreds of Tibetans attacked a police station and government officials despite heightened security, prompting the arrests the next day of nearly 100 monks. The protest appeared to be in response to the disappearance of a Tibetan who escaped from police custody in Qinghai province.
    (AP, 3/22/09)
2009        Mar 21, In Dagestan 3 days of intense fighting between police and insurgents in a wooded area ended with five officers and about a dozen militants left dead.
    (AP, 3/22/09)
2009        Mar 21, Hungary’s PM Ferenc Gyurcsany offered his resignation to allow the formation of a new government, citing a loss of popularity and worsening economic crisis. The former communist youth leader was quickly re-elected as party chairman.
    (AFP, 3/21/09)(Econ, 3/28/09, p.63)
2009        Mar 21, Iran's supreme leader rebuffed President Barack Obama's latest outreach, saying Tehran was still waiting to see concrete changes in US policy.
    (AP, 3/21/09)
2009        Mar 21, Tens of thousand of people marched in Naples to commemorate the victims of the mafia and demand an end to the stranglehold of organized crime on southern Italy.
    (AP, 3/21/09)
2009        Mar 21, In Madagascar Andry Rajoelina was sworn in as the new president in a ceremony shunned by the international community after the ousting of the elected president, Marc Ravalomanana. Rajoelina promised new elections within two years.
    (AP, 3/21/09)
2009        Mar 21, In central Mexico toxic fumes killed at least 10 people who were trying to clean a sewage pump station in the town of Atotonilco de Tula.
    (AP, 3/22/09)
2009        Mar 21, Nigeria's anti-graft agency said it was hunting down owners of an Indian business group, Vaswani Brothers, for allegedly defrauding the country of three billion naira in unpaid taxes. The brothers were deported from Nigeria in 2003 after a probe into their operations, but were allowed back into the country in 2007.
    (AFP, 3/22/09)
2009        Mar 21, Russia’s Pres. Medvedev replaced Gov. Yuri Yevdomikov of the northwest region of Murmansk, apparently seeking to ensure that the ruling party remained in control there after it suffered a surprising defeat in local elections.
    (SSFC, 3/22/09, p.A5)
2009        Mar 21, In Sri Lanka more than 1,100 civilians fled the war zone as government troops fought to wipe out separatist Tamil Tiger rebels.
    (AFP, 3/22/09)
2009        Mar 21, Venezuela's federal government seized seaports and airstrips in at least four states, a move critics say is meant to limit the powers of mayors and governors opposed to President Hugo Chavez.
    (AP, 3/21/09)

2009        Mar 22, In Montana a single-engine turboprop airplane crashed just short of Butte’s Bert Mooney Airport, killing all 14 people aboard, including 7 children. The aircraft had departed from Oroville, Calif., and the pilot had filed a flight plan showing a destination of Bozeman.
    (AP, 3/23/09)
2009        Mar 22, Frank Bogert (1910), long time mayor of Palm Springs, Ca., died. He was elected to the City Council as a Republican in 1958 and was appointed major. He stepped down after 9 years in office and in 1992 became the city’s first elected mayor.
    (WSJ, 4/4/09, p.A4)
2009        Mar 22, Afghan and US-led coalition troops killed five suspected militants during a raid in northern Kunduz province. But the local mayor said his house was targeted and that the dead included his cook and driver. A rocket slammed into the main NATO military base at Kandahar airfield, killing a contractor and wounding six others. 2 NATO soldiers were killed in a "hostile incident" in the same region.
    (AP, 3/22/09)(AP, 3/23/09)
2009        Mar 22, In Australia warring bikers brawled through the Sidney airport, beating one suspected gang member to death and brandishing metal poles "like swords" as they rampaged through the main domestic terminal in front of terrified travelers. Anthony Zervas (29) was bludgeoned to death with a crowd control barrier pole during the fracas. On June 30 Mahmoud "Mick" Hawi (29), head of the Comanchero motorcycle gang, was charged with murder.
    (AP, 3/22/09)(AFP, 6/30/09)
2009        Mar 22, In England a murder hunt started with the discovery of a victim's left leg and foot on the side of a Hertfordshire road. By Apr 11 all other body parts were found except for the man’s hands.
    (AFP, 4/13/09)
2009        Mar 22, British reality television star Jade Goody (27) died in her sleep, after a very public battle with cervical cancer.
    (AFP, 3/22/09)(Econ, 3/28/09, p.98)
2009        Mar 22, In India the Election Commission found Varun Gandhi (29), the great-grandson of India's first prime minister, guilty of hate speech and inciting violence against Muslims. He was filmed on March 16 comparing a rival Muslim politician to Osama Bin Laden and threatening to cut the throats of Muslims during two political rallies earlier this month.
    (AP, 3/23/09)(Econ, 4/4/09, p.46)
2009        Mar 22, Macedonia held elections. The governing party's Gjorgje Ivanov (49) emerged as favorite to win the presidency in an April 5 runoff vote against 51-year-old Social Democrat Ljubomir Frckoski.
    (AP, 3/23/09)
2009        Mar 22, In Mexico gunmen killed Edgar Garcia, a state police commander in charge of investigating kidnappings and extortion in the western state of Michoacan.
    (AP, 3/23/09)
2009        Mar 22, In Pakistan Iftikhar Mohammed Chaudhry, the chief justice whose ouster spurred waves of protests that led to a president's downfall, returned to work, while the ruling party and opposition resolved to cooperate despite their own clash over his reinstatement.
    (AP, 3/22/09)
2009        Mar 22, A group of Saudi clerics urged the kingdom's new information minister to ban women from appearing on TV or in newspapers and magazines, making clear that the country's hardline religious establishment is skeptical of a new push toward moderation.
    (AP, 3/22/09)
2009        Mar 22, Off the coast of Somalia pirates fired rocket-propelled grenades and automatic weapons at Japanese, Greek and Hong Kong cargo ships but fled after the ships took evasive maneuvers.
    (AP, 3/23/09)
2009        Mar 22, In South Africa the Sunday Independent said the Chinese embassy in South Africa had confirmed its government had appealed to South Africa not to allow the Dalai Lama into the country for a peace conference on March 27. Archbishop Tutu threatened to pull out of the meeting and to demand an explanation from the authorities. On March 24 organizers postponed the South African peace conference of Nobel laureates after the government denied a visa to Tibet's spiritual leader the Dalai Lama.
    (AP, 3/22/09)(AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 22, In Sri Lanka the military said it had killed two rebel leaders during fighting in the northeast of the island, where the LTTE guerrillas are cornered.
    (AFP, 3/22/09)
2009        Mar 22, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who has for years funneled state oil income into sweeping social programs, vowed to cut nonessential state spending and order a review of top officials' salaries as oil income plunges. Chavez also called President Barack Obama "ignorant," saying he has a lot to learn about Latin America.
    (AP, 3/22/09)

2009        Mar 23, The Obama administration took a fresh shot at ending a national paralysis in lending, teaming up with investors to buy bad bank assets and ease credit for hard-pressed consumers and businesses. The DJIA responded with a gain 497.48 to close at 7775.86.
    (AP, 3/23/09)(SFC, 3/24/09, p.C1)
2009        Mar 23, US District Judge Edward Korman ordered the FDA to make the emergency contraceptive pill, marketed as Plan B, available to 17-year-olds without prescription within 30 days from the date of his ruling.
    (WSJ, 3/24/09, p.A1)(www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=102294234)
2009        Mar 23, Advance Publications Inc., owner of the Ann Arbor News and 7 other Michigan newspaper, announced that the 174-year-old Ann Arbor News will publish its last print edition in July and then become a community oriented Web site.
    (WSJ, 3/24/09, p.B5)
2009        Mar 23, Alaska's Mount Redoubt volcano erupted five times overnight, sending an ash plume more than 9 miles into the air in the volcano's first emissions in nearly 20 years.
    (AP, 3/23/09)
2009        Mar 23, US envoy Richard Holbrooke outlined to NATO new plans to beat insurgents in Afghanistan. Taliban fighters ambushed a police patrol in southern Kandahar province's Spin Boldak district, killing eight officers and wounding another. Afghan police and intelligence agents detained five Taliban militants in Oruzgan, including the group's senior commander for the province, Mullah Azizullah. In Kabul Emrose TV’s Fahim Khodamani was arrested for refusing to censor images of women dancing in short skirts and plunging necklines.
    (AFP, 3/23/09)(AP, 3/23/09)(SFC, 3/25/09, p.A4)
2009        Mar 23, In Australia volunteers joined rescue workers struggling to save the lives of 17 whales that survived a mass stranding on a beach on Australia's west coast. Around 90 long-finned pilot whales and bottlenose dolphins were found beached over more than five kilometers (three miles) in Hamelin Bay, south of the city of Perth. Most of the animals died, but rescuers were able to push four dolphins and four whales out to sea at the stranding site and truck 10 surviving whales overland to deeper waters. Six whales believed to be part of a pod that was rescued from a mass stranding re-beached themselves and two died. One of the 4 surviving whales was found dead on March 26.
    (AFP, 3/23/09)(AP, 3/25/09)(AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 23, Canadian officials declared the nation’s annual seal hunt open, despite a potential EU ban on the import of seal products.
    (SFC, 3/24/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 23, Suncor Energy Inc, Canada's No.2 oil company, agreed to buy rival Petro-Canada for about C$18.43 billion ($14.86 billion) to expand its oil sand reserves and create the country's biggest energy group.
    (Reuters, 3/23/09)
2009        Mar 23, Gov. Zhou Xiaochuan, Chinese central bank governor, called for a new global currency controlled by the International Monetary Fund, stepping up pressure ahead of a London summit of global leaders for changes to a financial system dominated by the US dollar and Western governments.
    (AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 23, A northern Chinese court accepted a compensation suit against the dairy at the heart of China's tainted milk scandal, the first court to do so.
    (AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 23, In southwest China the ceiling at a chemical plant collapsed, killing 11 workers and leaving one person trapped under rubble. A potentially lethal radioactive material was lost after the 53-year-old Shaanxi Qinling Cement Co. was torn down in the Tongchuan city in Shaanxi province. Officials on March 27 said the material had been recovered.
    (AP, 3/23/09)(AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 23, In southeastern Colombia a mortar attack by leftist rebels killed 4 soldiers from an elite counter-guerrilla unit and left one missing in the cocaine-producing jungle area of Guaviare state known as Cano Flauta.
    (AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 23, Georgian officials released videotapes allegedly showing opposition members buying weapons with the aim of sparking violence during demonstrations against the president planned for next month.
    (AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 23, Honduran President Manuel Zelaya announced his government will hold a nationwide poll by June 24 on whether the country should convoke an assembly that would write a new constitution.
    (AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 23, India’s Tata Motors launched its ultra-cheap Nano car in Mumbai. The vehicle was hoped to herald a revolution by making it possible for the world's poor to purchase their first car.
    (AP, 3/22/09)
2009        Mar 23, In eastern Indonesia 2 Komodo dragons mauled a fruit-picker to death. An 8-year-old boy was killed in 2007, the first recorded deadly attack on a human by one of the endangered lizards in three decades.
    (AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 23, Turkey's president began the first visit to Iraq by a Turkish head of state in more than 30 years, seeking to press Iraqi leaders to stop Kurdish rebels from launching cross-border attacks on Turkey. In northern Iraq a suicide bombing against a Kurdish funeral in Jalula killed 27 people. 8 people were killed in a bombing at a bus stop west of Baghdad. A suicide blast in Tel Afar killed police officer and wounded 8 people.
    (AP, 3/23/09)(AP, 3/24/09)(SFC, 3/24/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 23, In Japan an MD-11 aircraft operated by FedEx crashed at Tokyo's main international airport, killing its two-member crew. Though largely retired from passenger use for economic reasons, the MD-11 aircraft is still employed for cargo transport.
    (AP, 3/23/09)
2009        Mar 23, In southern Lebanon an explosion killed Kamal Madhat (55), a senior Fatah official, and three of his bodyguards as they were leaving a Palestinian refugee camp.
    (AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 23, In southwest Nepal at least one person was killed and another injured when a bomb exploded inside a government building.
    (AFP, 3/23/09)
2009        Mar 23, In the Netherlands Joseph Mpambara (40), a Hutu man, was convicted and sentenced to 20 years in prison for the slaying of two Tutsi mothers and at least four of their children during Rwanda's 1994 genocide. The Hague District Court acquitted Mpambara of involvement in the massacre of hundreds of other Tutsis who had sought shelter in a church. He was also acquitted of raping four women and killing one of them in a separate incident.
    (AP, 3/23/09)
2009        Mar 23, Pakistani troops destroyed two militant hideouts in the troubled southwestern province of Baluchistan, where a UN official was kidnapped last month. A suicide bomber blew himself up at a police station housing Pakistan’s terrorism intelligence offices, killing himself and one officer.
    (AFP, 3/23/09)(SFC, 3/24/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 23, Sudan's president traveled to Eritrea, choosing one of Africa's most politically isolated nations for his first trip abroad since an international court sought his arrest on charges of war crimes in Darfur. Adam Khater (39), the Fellowship for African Relief's Darfur director, was shot to death at his home in the town of Kongo Haraza, near Sudan's border with Chad.
    (AP, 3/23/09)(AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 23, Michael Misick, the jet-setting premier of the Turks and Caicos Islands, resigned, a week earlier than expected, following an investigation that found "clear signs" of corruption in the eight-island British dependency. His successor as premier, Galmo Williams, won a 3-way fight to lead the ruling Progressive National Party at a convention in early March.
    (AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 23, The Vatican said Pope Benedict XVI has named Monsignor Salvatore Joseph Cordileone, a San Diego clergyman, to be bishop of Oakland, California.
    (AP, 3/23/09)
2009        Mar 23, In Venezuela thieves in Caracas ransacked the offices of the Ibrahim Al-lbrahim mosque, stealing jewels, computers and other objects and throwing books across the floor. The Ibrahim Al-lbrahim building is Latin America's second largest mosque after the Rey Fahd Islamic Cultural Center in Argentina.
    (AP, 3/24/09)

2009        Mar 24, Pres. Obama in his 2nd prime time news conference made the case for his $3.6 trillion budget plan.
    (WSJ, 3/25/09, p.A1)
2009        Mar 24, US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner called on Congress to grant him new powers to regulate huge financial companies like insurance giant AIG, whose failure would pose a grave danger to the US financial system and the broader economy.
    (AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 24, New York’s Gov. David Paterson ordered layoffs that could total over 4% of state workers after unions refused concessions.
    (WSJ, 3/25/09, p.A1)
2009        Mar 24, Cepheid, a Sunnyvale, Ca., gene-based test developer, said it has devised a rapid, sensitive diagnostic test for tuberculosis and will make it available at reduced cost in developing countries. The new automated test gives results in 2 hours.
    (SFC, 3/25/09, p.C1)
2009        Mar 24, Kraft Foods Inc. notified the FDA that it had detected salmonella in roasted pistachios through routine product testing. Kraft and the Georgia Nut Co. recalled their Back to Nature Nantucket Blend trail mix the next day. The FDA contacted California-based Setton Pistachio and California health officials shortly afterward. California alone is the second-largest producer of pistachios in the world.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 24, NATO troops on a foot patrol shot and killed an Afghan civilian south of Kabul after he ignored their signals to stop as he sped toward them in a car.
    (AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 24, Australian police arrested a senior motorcycle gang member as authorities launched a crackdown on biker groups in response to a deadly airport brawl that shocked the country and brought a simmering gang war out into the open.
    (AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 24, The WHO's annual report on TB, presented in Rio, indicated that there were 1.37 million cases of people with both TB and HIV in 2007, the latest year for which statistics are available. About 700,000 people were infected with both in 2006.
    (AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 24, The British government published its revamped counter-terrorism strategy.
    (Econ, 3/28/09, p.67)
2009        Mar 24, The Czech government collapsed after losing a parliamentary no-confidence vote over its handling of the economic crisis.
    (AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 24, The French government offered for the first time to compensate victims of nuclear tests in Algeria and the South Pacific, bowing to decades of pressure by people sickened by radiation.
    (AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 24, Striking French workers for US manufacturer 3M held their boss hostage amid labor talks at a plant south of Paris, as anger over layoffs and cutbacks mounted around the country. Manager Luc Rousselet was released after being held for 2 days.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 24, In Hungary former bank governor Gyorgy Suranyi emerged as the preferred candidate to replace PM Gyurcsany.
    (WSJ, 3/25/09, p.A1)
2009        Mar 24, Indonesia's controversial Health Minister Siti Fadillah Supari said she wants to end vaccinating children against meningitis, mumps and some other diseases because she fears foreign drug companies are using the country as a testing ground.
    (AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 24, In Indonesia rangers found the bodies of 2 rare Sumatran elephants with gunshots to the head hours after they were used for a patrol against illegal loggers and several hundred yards from their camp.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 24, Kurdish rebels rejected calls by Iraq's president to stop fighting against Turkey and leave Iraqi territory as the visiting Turkish president stepped up pressure on the Baghdad government to act against the group.
    (AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 24, Prosecutors charged a top aide to Japan's opposition leader in connection with a political donations scandal, but the lawmaker said he would stay on as party chief and continue his quest to become the country's next prime minister. Ichiro Ozawa, the head of the Democratic Party of Japan, said he still believed he and his aide have not broken any laws. But he apologized for causing the concerns because of the scandal.
    (AP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 24, Mexican soldiers in a Monterrey suburb detained Hector Huerta Rios, one of the nation's 24 top drug traffickers included on a "most-wanted" list issued two days ago. Officials in Nuevo Laredo began destroying more than 35 statues dedicated to a "Death Saint" popular with drug traffickers.
    (AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 24, It was reported that the Moroccan government has begun a clampdown on what it sees as threats to the kingdom's religious and moral foundations, with Shiite Islam and gays particularly targeted.
    (AFP, 3/24/09)
2009        Mar 24, Sri Lanka's military accused "a vicious coalition" of international aid groups of harboring terrorists and seeking to prolong the island's civil war for economic gain.
    (AP, 3/24/09)

2009        Mar 25, Australia PM Kevin Rudd visited the US and urged Americans not to view China as an enemy but as a country offering huge economic opportunities, even though its leaders have "done some bad things in the past."
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 25, The US House voted to set aside over 2 million acres in 9 states as protected wilderness. Legislators also approved a $400 million project to restore a 3-mile stretch of the San Joaquin River in central California.
    (SFC, 3/26/09, p.A1)(WSJ, 3/26/09, p.A5)
2009        Mar 25, One of the US Air Force's top-of-the-line F-22 fighter jets crashed in the high desert of Southern California, killing test pilot David Cooley (49), an employee of prime contractor Lockheed Martin Corp.
    (AP, 3/26/09)(WSJ, 3/26/09, p.A5)
2009        Mar 25, Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe signed 2 bills creating a state lottery, making his state the 43rd plus the district of Columbia to hold such contests.
    (SFC, 3/26/09, p.A6)
2009        Mar 25, Conservation International, a Washington D.C.-based conservation group, announced the discovery of over 50 new animal species in a remote, mountainous region of Papua New Guinea. The group spent the past several months analyzing more than 600 animal species found during its expedition to the South Pacific island nation in July and August.
    (AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 25, North Dakota officials issued an urgent call for volunteers to help with sandbagging as record amounts of water poured into the Missouri River and evacuations were ordered in riverside areas.
    (AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 25, John Hope Franklin (b.1915), revered Duke Univ. historian and scholar of the African American experience, died in North Carolina. His books included “From Slavery to Freedom" (1947).
    (SFC, 3/26/09, p.B5)
2009        Mar 25, In eastern Afghanistan a roadside bomb ripped through a van carrying civilians on a road used by foreign troops, killing 10 and wounding 7 others in Khost province.
    (AP, 3/25/09)(SFC, 3/26/09, p.A3)
2009        Mar 25, Garth Drabinsky and Myron Gottlieb, Canadian theater impresarios from a company called Livent, were convicted of fraud. They had been indicted in the US in 1999 and fled to Canada, where they were charged in 2002. Six former Livent accountants testified in the trial, saying they were ordered to inflate income and profit documentation.
    (Econ, 4/4/09, p.44)(http://news.yahoo.com/s/playbill/20090325/en_playbill/127701)
2009        Mar 25, China’s state media said forestry officials in far western China have resorted to scattering abortion pills near gerbil burrows in a bid to halt a rodent plague threatening the desert region's fragile ecosystem.
    (AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 25, Czech PM Mirek Topolanek, the current rotating president of the EU, slammed US plans to spend its way out of recession as "a road to hell."
    (AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 25, An Ecuadorean air force training jet crashed in a jungle area near the Colombian border. The pilot and a member of the air force rescue team were killed when a cable snapped as they were being lifted to a helicopter.
    (AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 25, Egypt, one of the strongest US allies in the Middle East, welcomed Sudan's president despite an international warrant seeking his arrest on charges of war crimes in Darfur. Egypt is not an ICC signatory and both it and the Arab League have backed al-Bashir.
    (AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 25,  The EU laid out new labeling rules laid allowing Rose wine customers to know exactly how their grapes were treated to turn their tipple a blushing pink.
    (AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 25, The MT Nipayia, a Greek-owned and Panama registered ship with a crew of 19, was hijacked 450 miles east of Somalia’s south coast.
    (AP, 3/27/09)(WSJ, 3/27/09, p.A8)
2009        Mar 25, The Indian army said it had killed 17 militants from Lashkar-e-Taiba in Kashmir. Recent fighting has left at least 25 people dead.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 25,  In Iraq an American soldier has died of non-combat injuries.
    (AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 25, Incoming Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu said his government would be a "partner for peace with the Palestinians," softening his rhetoric a day after the centrist Labor Party joined his coalition in exchange for vaguely worded promises to pursue negotiations.
    (AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 25, In Mexico US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton pledged to stand "shoulder to shoulder" with Mexico in its violent struggle against drug cartels, and acknowledged the US shares blame because of its demand for drugs and supply of weapons.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 25, In Pakistan a suspected US missile attack killed 8 militants, including 4 foreigners, in the stronghold of Baitullah Mehsud, Pakistan's top Taliban commander. The New York Times carried a report on its Web site saying ISI operatives provide money, military supplies and strategic planning guidance to Taliban commanders, with proof of the ties coming from electronic surveillance and trusted informants. The US State Department announced a $5 million bounty for Baitullah Mehsud.
    (AP, 3/25/09)(AP, 3/26/09)(SFC, 3/26/09, p.A3)
2009        Mar 25, Romania was given a loan totaling 20 billion euros (27 billion dollars) by the IMF, the EU, the World Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). An austerity program accompanied the loans.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 25, In northwestern Russia Kirovsk mayor Ilya Kelmanzon was shot dead in his office. A local utilities chief who was in Kelmanzon's office, then shot himself dead.
    (AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 25, Fahad al-Ruwaily, a senior al-Qaida leader, returned to Saudi Arabia voluntarily and turned himself in. He was on a list of the kingdom's 85 most wanted militants living abroad.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 25, In Edinburgh, Scotland, vandals attacked the home of former Royal Bank of Scotland head Fred Goodwin, smashing windows at the house of the ex-CEO whose 700,000 pound ($1.2 million) annual pension has prompted public outrage.
    (AP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 25, Hundreds of Somalis demonstrated in Baidoa against Islamist fighters after they imposed a ban on leaf qat, a popular narcotic.
    (SFC, 3/26/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 25, Sri Lanka's military repulsed a Tamil Tiger counterattack in the north of the island and killed at least 30 of the rebels.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 25, Sudanese officials said at least 2 people were killed when attackers set fire overnight to a camp for the internally displaced in Darfur, destroying hundreds of shelters. A spokesman for the Darfur rebel group Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) put the toll at three dead and three injured and blamed a pro-government militia for the attack.
    (AFP, 3/25/09)
2009        Mar 25, In Turkey a helicopter crashed in the snow-covered mountains of southern Turkey. Muhsin Yazicioglu, leader of the small conservative Great Unity Party, was one of six people on board. Authorities the next day released a recording of an emergency call made after the crash by journalist Ismail Gunes, who said he thought he was the only survivor. Rescue workers found the wreckage on March 27. All 6 people aboard were found dead.
    (AP, 3/26/09)(AP, 3/27/09)

2009        Mar 26, The Obama administration unveiled a sweeping overhaul of the financial system designed to impose greater regulation on major players like hedge funds. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner told lawmakers that the changes are needed to fix the flaws exposed by the current financial crisis, the worst to hit the country in seven decades.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 26, The US Internal Revenue Service announced new steps aimed at getting taxpayers hiding money in offshore accounts to pay up, promising not to file criminal charges for those who voluntarily fess up to hiding money overseas.
    (Reuters, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 26, A New Jersey girl (14) was accused of child pornography after posting nearly 30 explicit nude pictures of herself on MySpace.com, charges that could force her to register as a sex offender if convicted.
    (AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 26, In Los Angeles US automaker Tesla Motors unveiled its state-of-the-art five-seat sedan, billed as the world's first mass-produced, highway-capable electric car. The San Carlos company said it would likely be built in Southern California rather than San Jose.
    (AFP, 3/26/09)(SFC, 3/27/09, p.C1)
2009        Mar 26,  In Brazil engine pieces from a US plane fell from the sky, hitting 22 houses and a car but sparing passengers and residents on the ground. Arrow Cargo's station manager in Manaus, Rai Marinho, said the company will pay local residents for damages to their property.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 26, The archives from the London Historical Records, dating back to the 16th century, began to be made available online. Around 250,000 records were currently available, with all 77 million uploaded by 2011.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 26, In Ganzi, China, a predominantly Tibetan prefecture in Sichuan province, Phuntsok Rabten (27), a Tibetan Buddhist monk of Draggo monastery, was found dead. He had called for protests against Chinese authorities. He had fled on a motorcycle after police in a van discovered him distributing flyers urging Tibetans to leave their farming plots untended.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 26, Ebtisam Ali Rashid al Bedwani (b.1982) was sworn in as Dubai’s first woman judge.
    (www.gulfnews.com/nation/Government/10298829.html)
2009        Mar 26, French President Nicolas Sarkozy visited Brazzaville and Kinshasa. During the Kinshasa trip, given over in large part to regional political issues, Areva signed an agreement with the government allowing the company to prospect for and mine uranium.
    (AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 26, An official said France will limit or ban bonuses and stock options for executives at companies bailed out with taxpayer money, as the government scrambled to calm public outrage at what some see as the greed that caused the global financial crisis.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 26,  In northern Guatemala a hitman training camp for Mexico's infamous Gulf cartel was found, along with 500 grenades. Officials seized six rifles, three motorcycles and several boxes of ammunition during the operation. The hitmen were among those carrying out nearly daily attacks on Guatemalan buses in which the driver is often killed.
    (AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 26, In Iraq a car bomb exploded near a crowded market in a mainly Shiite area of Baghdad, killing at least 20 people, including 4 women and 4 children, in the country’s sixth major attack this month. A bomb attached to a car exploded elsewhere in eastern Baghdad, wounding four people. Gunmen killed Sheik Abdul-Kareem Saleh, a Sunni Arab cleric, and wounded his son at Jalula, a town northeast of Baghdad where a suicide bomber struck a Kurdish funeral this week. A foreign contractor was shot and killed at a base north of Baghdad. Pfc. Carl T. Stovall III (25) of Kennesaw, Georgia, was taken into custody soon after the shooting at the US base in Taji.
    (AP, 3/26/09)(AP, 3/27/09)(SFC, 3/27/09, p.A4)(AP, 4/5/09)
2009        Mar 26, An Israeli ministry statement said that in a series of tests this week the iron Dome high-tech system faced rockets of the type fired by Palestinian and Lebanese militants, and operated successfully.
    (AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 26, Israeli police said they have seized 15 thousand marijuana water pipes in a raid on a factory in Haifa. Pipes and other drug paraphernalia were banned a few weeks ago and police are cracking down.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 26, In Kazakhstan a Soyuz capsule carrying a Russian-American crew and US billionaire space tourist Charles Simonyi blasted off for the international space station.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 26, The MT Bow Asir, a Norwegian tanker with a crew of 27, was hijacked off the coast of Somalia.
    (AP, 3/27/09)(WSJ, 3/27/09, p.A8)
2009        Mar 26, In Pakistan a suicide bomber killed as many as 11 people at a restaurant near Tank, in South Waziristan, in an attack targeting opponents of the Taliban.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 26, In central Russia a head-on collision between a bus and a truck in Petushki, about 120 kilometers (75 miles) east of Moscow, killed 14 people.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 26, Serbian lawmakers approved a law against discrimination due to race, religion, gender, sexual orientation or other factors despite opposition from conservatives, including the Serbian Orthodox Church, and nationalists.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 26, Somalia's new interior minister was wounded by a roadside bomb in an attack that killed his bodyguard and wounded two others. The moderate Islamist pledged to seek reconciliation with his attackers, widely believed to be hardline fighters.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 26, In Sri Lanka more than 2,100 civilians fled in one day from the northern war zone where the military is squeezing the Tamil Tiger rebels into a smaller area as it pushes to end 25 years of civil war. in New York, John Holmes, the UN's top humanitarian official, said the international organization estimated 150,000 to 190,000 civilians were trapped by the fighting and unable to escape, resulting in dozens of deaths each day.
    (AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 26, Regulators in St. Vincent and the Grenadines took control of an island bank linked to an alleged Ponzi scheme. A complaint alleged that William Wise of Raleigh, NC, and Kristi Hoegel of Napa, Ca., orchestrated the scheme through Millennium Bank and its Geneva-based parent United Trust of Switzerland SA, as well as US affiliates of both organizations.
    (SFC, 3/28/09, p.A2)(http://tinyurl.com/cqedzr)
2009        Mar 26, Sudan's president Omar al-Bashir visited his third country in four days, this time touching down in Libya, the latest country to welcome the leader who's wanted by an international court on war crimes.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 26, In Thailand more than 20,000 protesters ringed the prime minister's office, demanding the government resign and deriding its distribution of checks to millions of low-income workers as a payoff.
    (AP, 3/26/09)
2009        Mar 26, The UN's top human-rights body approved a proposal by Muslims nations urging passage of laws around the world to protect religion from criticism. The resolution was sponsored by Pakistan, Belarus and Venezuela.
    (AP, 3/26/09)(Econ, 4/4/09, p.17)

2009        Mar 27, President Barack Obama ordered 4,000 more military troops into Afghanistan, vowing to "disrupt, dismantle and defeat" the Taliban and al-Qaida.
    (AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 27, The Texas Board of Education approved a science curriculum opening the door for teachers and texts to raise doubts about evolution.
    (WSJ, 3/28/09, p.A1)
2009        Mar 27, In North Dakota the Red River rose to a daunting 112-year high and breached one of the dikes fortifying Fargo, but the mayor pledged to "go down swinging" as he called for more evacuations and additional National Guard troops to prevent a devastating flood.
    (AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 27, In Tracy, Ca., Sandra Cantu (8) went missing from her mobile park home. On April 6 her body was found in a suitcase dumped in an irrigation pond a few miles away. On April 10 Melissa Huckaby (28), a Sunday school teacher, was arrested on suspicion of kidnapping and killing Cantu. In 2010 Huckaby was sentenced to life in prison without parole. 
    (AP, 4/7/09)(AP, 4/11/09)(SFC, 6/15/10, p.C2)
2009        Mar 27, Jack Dreyfus (95), founder of the Dreyfus Fund (1951), died in NYC. His fund helped found the retail mutual-fund business.
    (WSJ, 3/28/09, p.A5)
2009        Mar 27, Southern African countries (Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, Zambia) have been hit by the worst floods in years, killing more than 100 people and displacing thousands, as a tropical storm threatened to bring more pain.
    (AFP, 3/28/09)
2009        Mar 27, Bolivia's Interior Minister Alfredo Rada said police have uncovered one of the country's biggest known cocaine processing factories. Two Colombians and a Bolivian were arrested at the nearly 1,000-acre (400 hectare) site in the dense, southeastern jungles.
    (AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 27, In Chile the Progressive Governance Summit, a 2-day gathering of leaders from Latin America and Europe, opened at the resort city of Vina del Mar. All agreed for an export-credit fund to get trade flowing again.
    (AP, 3/27/09)(Econ, 4/4/09, p.43)
2009        Mar 27, Chinese health officials said that hand, foot and mouth disease has sickened 41,000 people across the country and killed 18 children so far this year.
    (AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 27, In China a minibus collided with two trucks and a bus tumbled into a mountain gorge in two unrelated crashes, killing a total of 37 people.
    (AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 27, In Honda, Colombia, Arcebio Alvarez (59), a farmer and widower, was arrested on charges of incest and sexual abuse. He was accused of incest for allegedly fathering eight children with his daughter. He denied being the woman's biological father.
    (AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 27, In Indonesia torrential rain caused a dam to burst outside Jakarta, sending a wall of muddy water crashing into a densely packed neighborhood and killing at least 96 people with some 130 still missing. The earthen dam, built in 1933 when Indonesia was still under Dutch rule, surrounded a man-made lake in Cirendeu on the southwestern edge of Jakarta.
    (AP, 3/27/09)(AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 27, French President Nicolas Sarkozy wrapped up his mini-tour of three African countries, after meeting with Niger leader Mamadou Tandja. This followed visits to Kinshasa and Brazzaville.
    (AFP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 27, An overcrowded boat packed with migrants capsized in stormy seas off the coast of Libya. Only 20 survived when the wooden vessel with 257 people on board, mostly African migrants, including 70 women and two children, both of whom died, sunk only three hours off Libya.
    (AP, 3/31/09)(AP, 4/1/09)
2009        Mar 27, Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari called for a US change of policy and voiced opposition to missile strikes. A suicide bomber demolished a mosque packed with hundreds of worshippers attending prayers near Jamrud in the Khyber Pass, killing at least 50 people and injuring over 100 more.
    (AFP, 3/27/09)(AP, 3/27/09)(SFC, 3/28/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 27, Russian media reported that the presidential Security Council has released a document outlining government policy for the Arctic that includes creating a special group of military forces.
    (AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 27, Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah (84) appointed his half-brother, Prince Nayef (75), as his 2nd deputy prime minister.
    (Econ, 4/4/09, p.51)
2009        Mar 27, Sri Lanka’s military said it had killed 29 rebels. 13 were reported killed in a battle near Puthkkudiyirippu, while army snipers killed another 16.
    (AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 27, Thai PM Abhisit Vejjavija's rejected calls for his resignation by thousands of anti-government protesters who ringed his office for a second day in a boisterous rally.
    (AP, 3/27/09)
2009        Mar 27, Zimbabwe PM Morgan Tsvangirai decried a fresh wave of farm invasions across the country and warned that those responsible for the farm disruptions risk arrest.
    (AFP, 3/27/09)

2009        Mar 28, In Milton, Massachusetts, Samantha Revelus (17) was stabbed and killed by her brother. Kerby Revelus (23) then decapitated his 5-year-old sister as her birthday cake from the day before sat on the kitchen table. He then turned on his 9-year-old sister, who called police. Responding officers broke down the door and shot him dead. Sarafina was hospitalized with defensive wounds to her hands and stab wounds in her abdomen and one of her legs.
    (AP, 3/30/09)
2009        Mar 28, The space shuttle Discovery landed in Florida following a 13-day mission to the Int’l. Space Station (ISS).
    (SSFC, 3/29/09, p.A12)
2009        Mar 28, In North Dakota the Red River crested at 12:15 a.m. at 40.82 feet, more than 22 feet above flood stage.
    (AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 28, Afghanistan's president offered support for the new US strategy for the growing conflict in his country, praising increased civil and military aid and highlighting a plan for reconciliation with moderate elements of the Taliban.
    (AP, 3/28/09)
2009        Mar 28, Sydney became the world's first major city to plunge itself into darkness for the second worldwide Earth Hour, a global campaign to highlight the threat of climate change.
    (AP, 3/28/09)
2009        Mar 28, Thousands of demonstrators marched through London to demand action on poverty, jobs and climate change at the start of a week of protests aimed at the G20 summit in the capital.
    (AP, 3/28/09)
2009        Mar 28, In Dubai Sulim Yamadayev, a former Chechen rebel and brother of Ruslan Yamadaev (d.2008), was shot in a brazen attack and died on March 30. He had switched sides to the government during Chechnya's long-running conflict with Moscow. On April 5 Dubai authorities said they had arrested two suspects in the slaying. They said Adam Delimkhanov, a Chechen member of Russia’s lower house and the Chechen president's right-hand man, had masterminded the killing. On April 12, 2010, Mahdi Tagi Dhurnia of Iran and Tajik national Mahsoudjan Asmanov were sentenced to 25 years in prison after being found guilty of aiding and abetting the assassination of Yamadayev.
    (AP, 3/31/09)(SFC, 3/31/09, p.A5)(AP, 4/5/09)(SFC, 4/6/09, p.A3)(AP, 4/12/10)(AP, 12/22/10)(Econ., 3/14/15, p.55)
2009        Mar 28, An Egyptian health ministry spokesman said a two-year-old girl has contracted bird flu, the 60th reported case since the first outbreak of the disease in the country in 2006.
    (AP, 3/28/09)
2009        Mar 28, In Guyana Janet Jagan (88), a Chicago native who became Guyana's first white and first female president (1997), died.
    (AP, 3/28/09)
2009        Mar 28, Police in northern India arrested a great-grandson of the country's first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, over allegations he made inflammatory comments against Muslims. Police fired in the air and baton-charged a crowd of at least 10,000 of Varun Gandhi's supporters shouting pro-Hindu slogans as he was arrested in his constituency in Uttar Pradesh.
    (Reuters, 3/28/09)
2009        Mar 28, Iraqi troops in Baghdad arrested the head of Fadhil's Awakening Council for alleged terrorist activity and for purportedly leading an armed group loyal to Saddam Hussein's ousted party. Adil al-Mashhadani was believed to have been involved in murder, extortion and other crimes as well as leading an armed wing of Saddam's Baath party.
    (AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 28, In Nigeria police s outside Lagos freed a Lebanese hostage after a shoot-out in which six of his captors were killed. The man was seized March 23 by gunmen from a waterfront construction site in Lagos' upmarket residential and business area.
    (AFP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 28, Pakistani security forces killed 26 militants during an operation in a restive tribal region bordering Afghanistan. Helicopter gunships went into action in Mohmand, one of seven lawless tribal districts in northwest Pakistan where Taliban militants have been active. Dozens of suspected militants fired rockets at a transport terminal in Peshawar, damaging a dozen shipping containers.
    (AFP, 3/28/09)(AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 28, Tibetans rallied against the China’s new holiday, Serfs Liberation Day, on the 50th anniversary of Beijing’s crushing of a Tibetan uprising that led to the Dalai lama’s exile.
    (AP, 3/29/09)

2009        Mar 29, In Santa Clara, California, police found six people dead, 3 of them children, after a shooting at a home in the Bay Area city. The shooting appeared to be a "family on family, murder-suicide." Devan Kalathat (42), an engineer with Yahoo Inc., killed 5 members of his family before committing suicide.
    (AP, 3/30/09)(SFC, 3/31/09, p.A9)(SFC, 4/1/09, p.A1)
2009        Mar 29, In Illinois Duncan Connolly (9) and his brother Jack (7), missing since March 8 after visiting with their father, were found dead in his car. The body of their father, Michael Connolly, was found nearby.
    (SFC, 3/31/09, p.A6)(www.amw.com/missing_children/recovered.cfm?id=64030)
2009        Mar 29, In North Carolina Robert Stewart (45) went on a terrifying rampage in the Pinelake Health and Rehab center, killing seven residents and a nurse and wounding three other people. He was stopped by a single shot to the chest fired by Justin Garner, a decorated police officer responding to a 911 call. Stewart survived and was charged with 8 counts of 1st degree murder. In 2011 Stewart was convicted of 2nd degree murder and sentenced from 141 to 177 years in prison.
    (AP, 3/30/09)(SFC, 3/31/09, p.A7)(SSFC, 9/4/11, p.A8)
2009        Mar 29, In North Dakota the bloated Red River briefly breached a dike, pouring water into a school campus and the Fargo Mayor Dennis Walaker called it a "wakeup call" for a city that needs to be vigilant for weaknesses in levees that could give way at any time.
    (AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 29, The mysterious boom and flash of light seen over parts of Virginia was not a meteor, but actually exploding space junk from the second stage of a Russian Soyuz rocket, launched March 26, falling back to Earth.
    (www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,511501,00.html)
2009        Mar 29, Maurice Jarre (b.1924), Oscar-winning French composer, died in LA. His film scores included “Lawrence of Arabia" and “Doctor Zhivago."
    (Econ, 4/18/09, p.92)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maurice_Jarre)
2009        Mar 29, Helen Levitt (95), photographer of New York City, died.
    (Econ, 4/11/09, p.87)
2009        Mar 29, Afghanistan's Supreme Court announced that President Hamid Karzai should remain in office until a new leader is chosen in a late-summer election, a decision that effectively extends his term more than three months.
    (AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 29, In Australia thousands of poisonous cane toads met their fate as gleeful hunters gathered for a celebratory mass killing of the hated amphibians, with many of the creatures' corpses being turned into fertilizer for the very farmers they've plagued for years.
    (AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 29, In Australia a gunman opened fire on a senior member of the Hells Angels, shooting him multiple times outside a Sydney apartment complex in the latest incident in an escalating battle between biker gangs.
    (AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 29, Canadian researchers said a shadowy cyber-espionage network based mostly in China has infiltrated secret government and private computers around the world, including those of the Dalai Lama. They said the network, known as GhostNet, had infected 1,295 computers in 103 countries and penetrated systems containing sensitive information in top political, economic and media offices.
    (AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 29, US-backed Iraqi forces swept through a central Baghdad slum, disarming government-allied Sunni fighters who launched a two-day uprising to protest the arrest of their leader. Up to 30% of the Sunni paramilitaries involved in the uprising escaped with their weapons. A roadside bomb exploded near a security patrol in the southern city of Basra, killing one security guard and three civilians.
    (AP, 3/29/09)(AP, 4/1/09)
2009        Mar 29, A senior Israeli defense official said Palestinian militants have smuggled nearly 70 tons of explosives and bomb-making materials and other weapons into Gaza since Israel ended an offensive meant to choke off the arms flow.
    (AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 29, In Abidjan, Ivory Coast, a stampede at the Felix Houphouet-Boigny stadium left 19 dead and at least 132 injured at a World Cup qualifying match.
    (AP, 3/30/09)
2009        Mar 29, A second boat with about 350 migrants aboard was rescued safely off the coast of Libya.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 29, The Indian Ocean island of Mayotte, a mostly Muslim French overseas community, overwhelmingly voted to integrate fully with France, becoming the 101st department of France. The move will bring financial benefits to residents but also outlaw practices like polygamy and early marriages.
    (AP, 3/29/09)(SFC, 3/30/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 29, In northwest Pakistan militants fired rockets at police chasing them after a kidnapping, killing a senior police official and five other people in the Balambat area of Lower Dir. Elsewhere in the region militants kidnapped 11 police officers in the Khyber tribal area that is home to a major US military supply route.
    (AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 29, In the Philippines Abu Sayyaf commander Albader Parad threatened to behead one of three Red Cross hostages, two Europeans and a Filipino, at 2 p.m. March 31, unless police and militiamen withdraw from 15 villages on Jolo island.
    (AP, 3/30/09)
2009        Mar 29, In Russia the film "Olympius Inferno," was first broadcast on state television. It offering the Kremlin's version of the August war with Georgia and contained anti-American overtones, reflecting Russia's anger over US support for Georgia.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 29, In Spain tens of thousands of demonstrators crowded central Madrid, chanting slogans against government plans to liberalize the country's abortion laws.
    (AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 29, The int’l. anti-piracy task force captured 7 pirates in the Gulf of Aden after they opened fire on a German naval supply ship.
    (SFC, 3/31/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 29, In Sri Lanka heavy ground battles between the army troops and the guerrillas left 29 rebels dead.
    (AP, 3/30/09)
2009        Mar 29, Sudan's Pres. Omar al-Bashir, who is sought by an international court on charges of war crimes in Darfur, received a warm welcome in Qatar, where he will attend this week's Arab League summit.
    (AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 29, In central Tanzania a goods train hit a stationary passenger train, killing at least 15 people.
    (AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar 29, Turks voted in local elections. PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan's Islamic-oriented party emerged as the leading party in local elections, but saw a slide in its support compared with a landslide victory two years ago.
    (AP, 3/29/09)(AP, 3/30/09)

2009        Mar 30, President Barack Obama said that neither General Motors nor Chrysler has proposed sweeping enough changes to justify further large federal bailouts, and demanded "painful concessions" from creditors, unions and others as their price for survival. Driving home the point, the White House ousted the GM Chairman Rick Wagoner as it rejected GM and Chrysler's restructuring plans. Fritz Henderson, GM's president and chief operating officer, became the new CEO. Board member Kent Kresa, the former chairman and CEO of defense contractor Northrop Grumman Corp., was named interim chairman of the GM board.
    (AP, 3/30/09)
2009        Mar 30, Pres. Obama signed legislation setting aside over 2 million acres as protected wilderness.
    (SFC, 3/31/09, p.A6)
2009        Mar 30, An “Open Cloud" manifesto was published. IBM and other tech companies issued a statement of principles that called for keeping cloud computing services as open as possible.
    (www.businessweek.com/technology/content/mar2009/tc20090329_463505.htm)
2009        Mar 30, Intel released Nehalem, its new superfast chip for servers.
    (Econ, 4/4/09, p.73)
2009        Mar 30, Findings were presented for an experimental combo pill, to prevent heart attacks and strokes, indicating it as effective as nearly all of its components taken alone, with no greater side effects. The study tested the Polycap, an experimental combo formulated by Cadila Pharmaceuticals of Ahmedabad, India.
    (AP, 3/30/09)
2009        Mar 30, In southern Afghanistan a suicide bomber wearing a police uniform blew himself up inside a police headquarters in Kandahar, killing nine people and wounding eight. A roadside bomb killed three police in the eastern province of Paktia.
    (AP, 3/30/09)
2009        Mar 30, Argentina’s health minister acknowledged that the country was in the middle of a dengue fever epidemic with nearly 8,000 people infected. Neighboring Bolivia had about 51,000 cases reported, while Brazil counted some 40,000 cases.
    (http://ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=46371)(SSFC, 4/19/09, p.G3)
2009        Mar 30, Downtown Sydney, Australia's largest city, was plunged into chaos during the late rush hour when a power cut blacked out traffic lights, caused gridlock on the roads and left tens of thousands of buildings in darkness. The blackout exposed a flaw in the city's terrorism warning system.
    (AP, 3/30/09)(AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 30, Banking officials meeting in Colombia said Argentina and China have tentatively agreed to swap $10 billion worth of their currencies to enable South America's second-largest economy to avoid using dollars in trade between the nations.
    (AP, 3/30/09)
2009        Mar 30, The French government banned companies that get state funding from issuing stock options to top managers and limited some other forms of compensation in an effort to quell public anger over executive pay.
    (WSJ, 3/31/09, p.B1)
2009        Mar 30, Hungary’s ruling Socialist Party nominated economy minister Gordon Bajnai (b.1968) to become the country’s next prime minister.
    (WSJ, 3/31/09, p.A14)
2009        Mar 30, In Lahore, Pakistan, a group of gunmen attacked the Manawan Police Training School and rampaged through it for hours, throwing grenades, seizing hostages and killing 7 police and 2 civilians before being overpowered by Pakistani security forces in armored vehicles and helicopters. Six militants were arrested and 8 others died in the 8-hour battle. A suicide car bombing killed four soldiers in Bannu district.
    (AP, 3/30/09)(AFP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 30, Malaysia's national car maker Proton and Detroit Electric, a Dutch-based company, signed a $555 million deal to make zero emission electric cars that they said would be more powerful that any existing model.
    (AP, 3/30/09)
2009        Mar 30, In Northern Ireland suspected IRA dissidents and their supporters hijacked cars in working-class Catholic areas in a coordinated effort to block roads and threaten police stations.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 30, Fishermen in the Philippines accidentally caught and soon ate a megamouth shark, one of the rarest fishes in the world with only 40 others recorded to have been encountered. The 1,100-pound (500-kilogram) 13-foot (4-meter) megamouth died while struggling in the fishermen's net off Burias island.
    (AP, 4/7/09)
2009        Mar 30, In Qatar Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi stormed out of an Arab summit after denouncing the Saudi king and declaring himself "the dean of Arab rulers."
    (AP, 3/30/09)
2009        Mar 30, In Russia PM Putin pledged over $1 billion in state support to its ailing car industry in a bid to avoid heavy job losses and potential social unrest.
    (WSJ, 3/31/09, p.B2)(http://tinyurl.com/csyby9)
2009        Mar 30, In Russia Sergei Protazanov, a newspaper employee in a Moscow suburb, died one day after being beaten near his home in the in the town of Khimki. Protazanov had been compiling an issue that included reports on alleged falsifications in local mayoral elections.
    (AP, 4/1/09)
2009        Mar 30, In Sri Lanka 26 rebels were killed in a sea battle off Chalai. Four boats belonging to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam were sunk in the battle, which lasted about four hours before dawn. A leader of the Sea Tigers, the rebels' naval wing, was among the dead while one government sailor died and three were wounded.
    (AP, 3/30/09)
2009        Mar 30, Thailand's prime minister avoided his office, as thousands of protesters calling for his resignation surrounded the seat of government for the fifth day and ignored police warnings to disperse.
    (AP, 3/30/09)

2009        Mar 31, The US Government Accountability Office released a report saying 4 countries designated a terrorism sponsors received $55 million from a US supported program promoting the peaceful use of nuclear energy under the IAEA’s Technical Cooperation program. Between 1997 and 2007 Iran received over $15 million, $14 million went to Syria, while Sudan and Cuba received over $11 million each.
    (WSJ, 3/31/09, p.A3)
2009        Mar 31, The US State Department said the United States will seek election to the UN Human Rights Council this year, announcing the Obama administration's latest reversal of former President George W. Bush's foreign policies.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, The US Congress passed the Edward Kennedy Serve America Act, a sweeping overhaul of the 1993 national service program. It tripled the size of AmeriCorps from 75,000 positions to 250,000.
    (Econ, 4/11/09, p.30)
2009        Mar 31, Fritz Henderson, GM's new chief executive said that more of the automaker's plants could close and bankruptcy is "more probable" as it works to meet new, tougher requirements for government aid. In his first news conference as CEO, Henderson said he expects the company would "need to take further measures" beyond the 5 plants the company said it would shutter when it submitted a restructuring plan to the government last month.
    (AP, 4/1/09)
2009        Mar 31, Sun-Times Media Group, the publisher of the Chicago Sun Times, filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy, becoming the 5th newspaper company to file for protection since December.
    (WSJ, 4/1/09, p.B4)
2009        Mar 31, At the Hague Afghan President Hamid Karzai and US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton offered an olive branch to Taliban fighters who reject al-Qaida and pressed an international conference for help in strengthening Afghanistan's security forces.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, In southern Afghanistan foreign and Afghan troops killed 30 Taliban fighters and wounded 17 others during a series of overnight clashes, while a roadside bomb killed the mayor of eastern Khost city. A member of the Kandahar provincial council of religious clerics was shot dead while going home after prayers. A suicide bomber tried to attack a police post on the border with Iran but blew himself up prematurely when police warned him to stop.
    (AP, 3/31/09)(AP, 4/1/09)
2009        Mar 31, Raul Alfonsin (b.1927), former Argentine president (1983-1989), died. He guided his country's return to democracy following a military dictatorship that left thousands missing.
    (AP, 4/1/09)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raul_Alfons%C3%ADn)
2009        Mar 31, In Brazil the state government of Rio de Janeiro said it will build 7 miles of concrete walls around some of its biggest slums in an effort to halt deforestation of the jungle surrounding the metropolis.
    (SFC, 4/1/09, p.A2)
2009        Mar 31, Sir Sacheverell Reresby Sitwell (81) died in London. He restored the stately home of his famously eccentric family to its former glory. In 1965 Reresby Sitwell inherited Renishaw Hall in Derbyshire, the family seat since 1625. Sitwell was the elder son of Sacheverell Sitwell, who with his brother Osbert and sister Edith were famed for their literary talent and their quirks.
    (AP, 4/2/09)
2009        Mar 31, In Cambodia Kaing Guek Eav (aka Duch), the chief Khmer Rouge torturer, formally apologized for the deaths of more than 14,000 people at S-21 prison, the first Pol Pot cadre to accept blame for crimes committed by the regime 30 years ago.
    (Reuters, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, In China and official said police have arrested nine people and revoked the license of a livestock market owner in a case involving pork tainted with a chemical that made 70 people sick in Guangzhou, southern China's biggest city. Investigators determined the pork was tainted with clenbuterol and ractopamine, banned chemicals used to make animals develop more muscle and less fat.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, Twelve Egyptian laborers headed for jobs in Jordan were killed and 35 others injured when their bus overturned in the Sinai peninsula.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, Angry French workers facing layoffs at a Caterpillar factory briefly detained four of their bosses at the US manufacturer's plant in the Alps to protest job cuts.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, Germany's top security official banned the Homeland-Faithful German Youth (HDJ),  a far-right group, on the ground that it organizes seemingly harmless activities to promote racist and Nazi ideology among children and young people.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, In Honduras assailants stopped journalist Rafael Munguia (36) as he was driving night in the city of San Pedro Sula, dragged him from his vehicle and shot him at least eight times. Munguia had recently been reporting on the country's violent crime wave.
    (AP, 4/2/09)
2009        Mar 31, Volkswagen opened a new plant in western India, pledging to make further inroads into the country's growing auto market.
    (AFP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, In Iraq a suicide truck bomber plowed through a sandbag barrier to strike a police station in the northern city of Mosul, killing at least eight people and wounding 12. The British military transferred over coalition command of the oil-rich southern province of Basra to the US. A US Marine died as the result of a non-combat incident in Anbar province. A US soldier died in a "noncombat-related incident" in Salahuddin province.
    (AP, 3/31/09)(AP, 4/1/09)
2009        Mar 31, Israel’s parliament approved Benjamin Netanyahu as prime minister. His Cabinet of 29 ministers was among the largest in Israel’s history. Israeli forces attacked a group of Palestinian militants along the Gaza-Israel border, killing two gunmen and wounding three others in one of the worst flare-ups of violence since Israel ended its offensive in the territory more than two months ago.
    (SFC, 4/1/09, p.A5)(AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, Italian police said they have arrested Mario Chiesa for his alleged role in a scam involving garbage disposal in Milan and elsewhere in northern Italy. He was one of eight people apprehended, with two others being placed under house arrest. Chiesa was arrested in 1992 and convicted for his involvement in the Clean Hands corruption scandals. He served his sentences doing socially useful work and was freed in 2000.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, Bernardo De Bernardinis, deputy chief of Italy’s Civil Protection Department, told the people in the L'Aquila region that recent tremors over the last 4 months posed no danger. He and 6 others were later indicted following the April 6 earthquake that left 308 people dead. Their trial began in 2011. On Nov 10, 2014, an appeals court cleared the seven defendants in the case. Dr. De Bernardinis received a two-year suspended sentence for the deaths of some of the victims.
    (Econ, 9/17/11, p.86)(SFC, 11/11/14, p.A2)(Econ, 11/15/14, p.82)
2009        Mar 31, Madagascar's neighbors suspended the impoverished nation from their regional development and democracy club, and threatened to take further steps if the Indian Ocean island's ousted president is not restored to power.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, Mexico’s Pres. Calderon revealed that his country had secured a $47 billion line of credit from the IMF. It was the 1st country to be approved for the new Flexible Credit Line, which does not require a country to make policy changes.
    (WSJ, 4/2/09, p.A6)(Econ, 4/4/09, p.76)
2009        Mar 31, Mexican authorities said police in northern Mexico caught a gang that allegedly stole oil from state-owned pipelines and smuggled it across the border to sell it to US refineries.
    (AP, 4/1/09)
2009        Mar 31, Pakistan's Supreme Court restored the provincial government of a main opposition leader in the Punjab, easing political turmoil. The decision by a five-member bench returned Shahbaz Sharif to his post as chief minister of Punjab, but it did not end court reviews of a case questioning the eligibility of Sharif and his brother Nawaz for office.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, Baitullah Mehsud, the commander of the Pakistani Taliban, claimed responsibility for the March 30 deadly assault on a Pakistani police academy and said the group was planning a terrorist attack on the White House that would "amaze" the world. A spokesman from Fedayeen al-Islam, a little-known militant group linked to the Pakistani Taliban, also claimed credit for the attack and a similar ambush-style attack against the Sri Lankan cricket team earlier this month in Lahore.
    (AFP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, Peru’s President Alan Garcia reversed course and accepted a donation from Germany for a museum honoring those killed in Peru's 20-year armed conflict with Maoist Shining Path guerrillas.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, In Qatar Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez sought Arab support for a proposed oil-backed currency to challenge the US dollar in his latest swipe at Washington's dominance in global financial affairs.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, In Russia prominent human rights activist Lev Ponomaryov (67) was beaten outside his Moscow home by unknown attackers. His daughter, Yelena Liptser, said she believed Ponomaryov, the head of the All-Russia Movement for Human Rights, was attacked because of his rights work and his strident criticism of the Kremlin.
    (AP, 4/1/09)
2009        Mar 31, In Moscow, Russia, the hatch slammed shut behind six volunteers from Europe and Russia who will spend three months isolated in a capsule to simulate conditions for a manned mission to Mars.
    (AFP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger rebels appealed again for a halt to fighting in their war against the government, though they denied they were on the brink of defeat despite being backed into an ever-shrinking pocket of land.
    (AP, 3/31/09)
2009        Mar 31, In Yemen Jan and Heleen Janszen, a Dutch couple, were kidnapped in a suburb of Sanaa and taken to a mountainous area near the capital. They were released on April 14 after Yemen's government paid more than a quarter million dollars in ransom.
    (AFP, 3/31/09)(SFC, 4/1/09, p.A2)(AP, 4/14/09)

2009        Mar, Capt. Michael Nguyen (28), a West Point Academy graduate, was indicted for skimming over $690,000 in cash while acting as the civil affairs officer responsible for overseeing millions of dollars intended for reconstruction projects and payments to private Iraqi security forces northeast of Baghdad. Former Army Capt. David Gilliam was indicted on charges of stashing over $400,000 in his luggage on return from serving as a disbursement officer in Kandahar.
    (SSFC, 4/12/09, p.A6)
2009        Mar, The Vienna initiative was drawn up to halt the financial contagion spreading through central and eastern Europe. The IMF and EBRD got the main foreign banks to come together in Vienna and reach a gentleman’s agreement between them and with the international financial institutions.
    (www.ebrd.com/english/pages/news/press/2010/100226a.shtml)
2009        Mar, The IMF disbursed nearly $200 million to boost the foreign-currency reserves of the Democratic Republic of Congo and maintain macroeconomic stability.
    (Econ, 4/18/09, p.54)
2009        Mar, In CongoDRC Thomas Kwoyelo, a commander of the Lord's Resistance Army, was captured in Garamba forest. In 2011 he faced a charges in Uganda.
    (AFP, 7/11/11)
2009        Mar, In Guinea confessions regarding drug dealing and corruption began on state television. The broadcasts became known as "The Dadis Show," after Capt. Moussa Dadis Camara, the junior army officer who grabbed power in a coup and promised to crack down on corruption, including on the flagrant drug trade.
    (AP, 3/15/09)
2009        Mar, Liechtenstein’s Prince Alois agreed this month to start following the rules set down by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development in Europe aimed at curbing tax havens. Liechtenstein banks alone managed some $200 billion, while the principality's anonymous trusts controlled several times that much abroad.
    (AP, 3/29/09)
2009        Mar, Mexico’s Attorney General's office first mentioned Servando Gomez as a leader of La Familia, and offered $2.4 million for information leading to his arrest. In 2010 it was reported that Gomez appeared on the government's 2010 teacher payroll as part of the staff of an elementary school in rural Arteaga town in Michoacan state.
    (AP, 12/9/10)
2009        Mar, Mexico City passed legislation to ban free non-biodegradable plastic bags. It was signed in August gave retailers a year to comply.
    (AP, 9/9/09)
2009        Mar, In Venezuela Manuel Rosales, a leading opposition figure, stepped down as mayor of Maracaibo and went into hiding following politically motivated corruption charges. Rosales entered Peru as a tourist on April 4 and sought asylum there.
    (AP, 12/11/08)(SFC, 4/21/09, p.A2)(AP, 4/21/09)

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