2011

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2010 2011 2012 The Future

Contents

Timeline

January

  • January 1
    • President Barack Obama says his New Year's resolution is to keep the U.S. economic recovery going and he called on Republicans to help.
    • North Korea calls for better ties with rival South Korea, warns that war "will bring nothing but a nuclear holocaust."
  • January 2
    • Obama signs Sept. 11 first responders bill.
  • January 5
    • The 112th United States Congress convenes.
    • GOP Reps. Pete Sessions and Mike Fitzpatrick voted a half-dozen times in the opening session before they were sworn in. They were at a reception in the Capitol Visitor Center when other members took the oath.
    • Robert Gibbs will step down as the Obama administration's press secretary after President Obama's State of the Union speech.
  • January 6
    • Chicagoan, William Daley, former Commerce Secretary under Clinton, is chosen as new White House chief of staff and outgoing chief of staff Pete Rouse will continue as White House counselor.
    • Republicans make history by staging the first-ever reading of the entire Constitution on the House floor. Representatives of both parties were called forth, more than 130 in all, to recite passages from the U.S. Constitution.
    • The House passes a measure that would cut committee and legislative office budgets by five percent or more, a GOP pledge.
    • Supreme Court justice Antonin Scalia: "the Constitution does not require discrimination on the basis of sex." In other words, the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution does not protect against discrimination on the basis of gender or sexual orientation. [1]
  • January 7
    • The U.S. Department of Labor reports the jobless rate fell to 9.4 percent down from 9.8 percent, partly reflecting a shrinking workforce.
    • President Obama named Gene Sperling director of the National Economic Council.
    • Defense Secretary Robert Gates announces that the Pentagon will spend $78 billion less over the next five years than it projected it would.
    • On a largely party-line vote, the House cleared the way for debate on legislation that would repeal the national health-care overhaul, setting up a repeal vote.
    • The Congressional Budget Office says repeal of the federal law to overhaul the health-care system would increase federal deficit by about $230 billion over the next decade and leave 32 million more Americans uninsured. The CBO also predicts that most Americans would pay more for private health insurance if the law were repealed.
  • January 8
    • Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., was shot in the head and an aide killed at a 'meet and greet' event where she was meeting publicly with constituents. Giffords was one of 20 victims of a shooting at a Safeway supermarket in an area north of the Tucson, six were killed, including a federal judge and nine year old girl, and fourteen injured, including Giffords.
  • January 9
    • Jared Loughner is charged with five federal counts for the Arizona shooting spree in which Rep. Gabrielle Giffords was wounded and United States District Court Judge John Roll was killed. Of the twenty victims of the shooting spree, six people were killed.
  • January 11
    • The southern part of Sudan votes on an independence referendum. Passage of the referendum would create the new country of Southern Sudan.
  • January 12
    • President Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle visit privately at Tuscon's University Medical Center with Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and other victims of the January 8th shootings that killed six people and wounded 13.
    • President Obama give a speech at the University of Arizona, Tucson, at a memorial service for victims of Saturday's mass shooting.
    • Congress paid tribute to the victims and the heroes of the Tucson shooting by approving a resolution saluting the dead and critically injured Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.
    • Sarah Palin posts a video on her Facebook page condemning those who blame political rhetoric for the Arizona shooting that gravely wounded U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. Her use of the term "blood libel" draws criticism.
    • Floods in Queensland, Australia over the past week claimed the lives of 13 people across Queensland, Australia. Floodwaters swept through the capital Brisbane, Australia's on this date.
  • January 13
    • Republican U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison of Texas announces she will retire after her current term expires next year.
  • January 15
    • Tunisia's parliamentary speaker, Fouad Mebazaa, sworn in as the country's acting leader.
  • January 17
    • Martin Luther King holiday.
  • January 18
    • Democratic officials say Connecticut Senator Joe Lieberman will retire in 2012.
    • Senator Kent Conrad, a Democrat, announces that he will not seek re-election from North Dakota in 2012.
    • Chinese President Hu Jintao arrives in Washington D.C. for a four day visit to the U.S.
    • Sargent Shriver, the first US Peace Corps director, Democratic vice-presidential candidate and brother-in-law to President John F Kennedy, passes away from Alzheimer's Disease.
  • January 19
    • The U.S. House, by a vote of 245-189, passed legislation to repeal the nation's year-old health care overhaul law.
    • The House Rules Committee pass a resolution to allow House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R., Wis.) to set fiscal 2011 discretionary spending (excepting secutiry) at fiscal 2008 levels or lower.
  • January 20
    • Chinese President Hu Jintao calls for closer U.S.-Chinese cooperation in Southeast Asia and the Pacific Rim. He urged the United States to treat China "with respect and as equals" after encountering a fresh criticism from lawmakers over human rights. Hu is on a four day visit to the United States.
    • President Obama moves his political operation to Chicago preparing for his 2012 reelection campaign.
  • January 22
    • New Hampshire Republicans elect a tea party candidate and former gubernatorial candidate, Jack Kimball to lead their Republican Party.
  • January 24
    • An Illinois appeals court rules that Rahm Emanuel does not meet the residency requirement in his run for Chicago mayor. Emanuel's lawyer immediately asked the Illinois Supreme Court to stop the appellate ruling and to hear an appeal as soon as possible.
    • In an attack on Moscow's Domodedovo Airport, a suicide bomber kills 36 and wounds dozens more.
  • January 25
    • In the State of the Union address, President Obama tacked toward the center.[2] Rep. Paul Ryan gave the Republican response to the SOTU.[3] Rep. Michelle Bachman gave a response for the Tea Party that was televised on CNN and PBS.[4]
    • The Illinois Supreme Court agrees to decide whether Rahm Emanuel can run for Chicago mayor, and ordered Chicago election officials not to print any ballots without his name until they rule.
    • Egyptions clash with police during demonstrations inspired by the downfall of Tunisia's President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali on Jan. 14. Egyptian police fired tear gas and use water cannons against demonstrators in Cairo's main Tahrir Square.
  • January 26
    • Egyptian police fight with thousands of Egyptians who defy a government ban to protest against Mubarak's rule. Police use tear gas, water cannons and batons to disperse protesters in Cairo.
  • January 27
    • Mohamed ElBaradei, reform campaigner and former head of the IAEA, arrives in Cairo. Protests in Egypt continue.
    • In Egypt, Facebook, Twitter and Blackberry Messenger services are disrupted.
  • January 28
    • Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak extends a curfew to all cities in Egypt as anti-government demonstrations continue. Egyptian troops and tanks are ordered into cities overnight to stifle demonstrations. Demonstrators cheer the neutrality of the military as Egyptian police and anti-government protesters clashes continue throughout the country..
  • January 29
    • Mubarak in a speech to the Egyptian nation says he will replace his cabinet but refuses to step down. Mubarak names intelligence chief Omar Suleiman Vice President, Egypt's first in 30 years. Protesters continue to roam the streets defying the curfew and ignoring an army warning to heed the curfew. Police withdraw from the streets of Cairo leaving property owners to form vigilante groups.
  • January 30
    • President Barack Obama urges an "orderly transition" to democracy in Egypt.
    • In Egypt, thousands of anti-government protesters in Cairo's Tahrir Square stand their ground, despite troops firing into the air in a bid to disperse them.
  • January 31
    • A new Egyptian cabinet is sworn in. Egyptian Vice President Suleiman to start dialogue with all political forces, including on constitutional and legislative reforms.
    • Egypt's army announced that it will not use force against Egyptians staging protests.
    • Egyptian protesters continue to defy the military-imposed curfew: thousands remain gathered in Cairo's Tahrir Square and hundreds have marched through Alexandria.
    • Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn signs the state's civil-unions into law.

February

  • February 1
    • Approximately one million Egyptians protest throughout the country for Mubarak to step down immediately.
    • Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, in a televised speech says he will not seek reelection when his term ends in September disappointing demonstators in the streets who desire regime change immediately.
  • February 2
    • A winter storm stretching for 2000 miles across the nation's midwest and northeast affects millions of people in a number of U.S. states, causing thousands of flights to be canceled, stranded motorists, and leaving hundreds of thousands without power.
    • Senator John McCain, the 2008 Republican presidential contender, met privately for half an hour with President Barack Obama, the product of outreach between the two after the Arizona shooting spree that wounded Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in January.
    • Violence breaks out between pro- and anti-Mubarak groups in Tahrir Square. Anti-government protesters say the some of the attackers were police in civilian clothes. Egyptian troops make no effort to intervene in the clashes.
  • February 3
    • A State Department spokesman tweets that the U.S. condemns the campaign in Egypt to silence journalists. The Egyptian military begins rounding up journalists, possibly for their own protection.
    • In an effort to separate pro- and anti-Mubarak groups, the Egyptian army sets up a buffer zone around Tahrir Square as clashes continue.
  • February 4
    • Day 12 of Egypt Protests
    • The Obama administration backs attempts by Egyptian Vice President Omar Suleiman to reach a compromise with opposition groups and prepare for elections.
  • Febrary 5
    • New Start, a strategic arms control treaty between the United States and Russia is put into force.
    • The politburo of Egypt's ruling National Democratic Party (NDP) resign en masse. The new NDP leadership includes 'liberal' Hossam Badrawi as its Secretary General.
    • The jobless rate fell to 9 percent in January from 9.4 percent in December and 9.8 percent in November.
  • February 6
    • The Muslim Brotherhood decides to participate in dialogues with the Egyptian government. Protests continue in Cairo's Tahrir Square.
  • February 7
    • President Barack Obama spoke at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce offering to partner with business to get the U.S. economy growing.
  • February 8
    • The House fails to pass a nine-month extension of counter-terrorism surveillance powers that are key to the Patriot Act.
    • Keith Olbermann takes his new job as the Chief News Officer for Current TV.
  • February 9
    • Anti-government protesters in Egypt are continue to occupy Cairo's Tahrir Square for a 16th day and have blocked the entrance to parliament.
    • Virginia Sen. Jim Webb (D) announces he will not seek reelection in 2012.
    • Rep. Chris Lee (R), NY-26 resigns from the U.S. House of Representatives just hours after Gawker posts topless photos he used with regard to a Craigslist relationship ad.
  • February 10
    • Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak disappoints anti-government protesters by not resigning in a televised speech. It had been anticipated that Mubarak would resign given signals earlier in the day by the Egyptian military.
    • Republican U.S. Sen. Jon Kyl will not seek reelection in 2012.
  • February 11
    • President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt resigns. Billions in swiss assets frozen. Jubilant crowds fill the streets.
    • Robert Gibbs leaves the White House after two years as press secretary and presidential adviser.
    • Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker released his proposal to require public employees to pay half the contributions to their pensions and more toward health insurance premiums, to take away most negotiating rights for union members and to make it more difficult for government workers to remain in organized labor.
  • February 15
    • Anti-government protests erupt in Libya's second largest city Benghazi days after the resignation of Egypt's Hosni Mubarak.
    • In Wisconsin, unions representing public employees begin staging mass rallies in Wisconsin's capitol, Madison and smaller gatherings statewide in protest of Governor Scott Walker's union busting legislation.
  • February 16
    • In Wisconsin, the Madison school district cancels classes for the day, as an estimated 1,000 teachers called in sick to protest the emminent passage of a union busting, budget fix bill.
  • February 17
    • Fourteen Wisconsin Senate Democrats flee to Illinois to prevent a quorum on Governor Scott Walker's union busting budget fixing bill, which would likely pass. Protests continue.
    • Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown reveals that he was sexually and physically abused as a child.
    • February 21
    • Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi unleashes a military assault in the heart of the Libyan capital, Tripoli, in an effort to crush popular protest.
    • Tripoli's ambassador to New Delhi and the deputy ambassador to the United Nations in New York, say they no longer support the Libyan regime.
    • Kadhafi makes a brief appearance on state television to deny that he has fled the country.
  • February 22
    • A devastating 6.3-magnitude earthquake hits Christchurch, New Zealand.
    • Political turmoil in the Arab world drives oil prices sharply higher and stocks lower.
    • Via a phone call with a fake David Koch, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker revealed his now thwarted plan to trick the fourteen Senate Democrats into returning to Madison from Illinois and thus pass a budget fix bill that among other things weakens the right for public employment unions to collectively bargain. [5]
    • In a televised address he deemed a "fireside chat", Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker says he's not backing down. Protests continue agains the anti-union bill and the 14 Senate Democrats remain in Illinois.
    • Former White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel was elected mayor of Chicago.
  • February 23
    • President Barack Obama condemns the Libyan government’s violent crackdown on protesters.
    • Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. announces in a letter to Congress that the Justice Department will now take the position in court that the Defense of Marriage Act should be struck down as a violation of same-sex couples’ rights to equal protection under the law.
    • Hawaii Governor Neil Abercrombie signed into law a bill legalizing civil unions and making Hawaii the seventh state to grant such privileges to same-sex couples.
    • The EPA issued significantly revised new air pollution rules on Wednesday that will make it easier for operators of thousands of industrial boilers and incinerators to meet federal air quality standards.
    • Most Democratic members of the Indiana House of Representatives have left for Illinois to avoid voting on legislation that includes a bill that would allow workers in private sector unions the right to opt out of their unions and not pay dues.
    • Libya's eastern province of Cyrenaica, which includes Benghazi, is no longer under Muammar Gaddafi's control.
  • February 28
    • President Barack Obama is willing to have states opt out of the federal health law in 2014 instead of 2017, but only if they can find their own ways to accomplish the law's goals.

March

  • March 1
    • The House on a 335 to 91 vote passed a two-week budget extension that also includes $4 billion in spending cuts.
    • The average U.S. price for a gallon of regular grade gasoline rose to $3.38/gallon due to unrest in the Middle East with some gas stations in the U.S. breaking $4.00/gallon.
  • March 2
    • The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the First Amendment protects the Westboro church members who mount anti-gay protests outside military funerals.
    • President Obama signs a two-week budget extension.
    • Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi warns that Libya will replace western banks, oil firms and companies by others from China, India, Russia and Brazil. Gaddafi continues to refuse to give up power.
    • A counteroffensive is launched by Col. Muammar Gaddafi against rebel held eastern half of Libya.
    • The Ohio Senate passed Senate Bill 5 by a one-vote margin (17-16), it targets workers' collective bargaining rights and moves on to the House.
    • Apple releases the iPad 2,
  • March 3
    • President Barack Obama demanded that Libyan leader, Col. Muammar Gaddafi, “step down from power and leave” immediately.
    • The Libyan town of Brega, the site of Libya’s second largest oil refinery, is attacked by Gaddafi's airforce. Brega is under rebel control.
    • Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker warned that steps could be taken to lay off 1,500 state workers unless 14 absent Democratic lawmakers return to the state Capitol.
    • Thousands of unionized New Jersey police and firefighters rallied at the statehouse in Trenton against layoffs and Gov. Chris Christie's plan to have them contribute more to health and pension plans.
    • Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich announces plan to explore 2012 GOP presidential bid.
  • March 4
    • The U.S. Labor Department said the unemployment rate edged down to 8.9 percent in February from 9 percent in Janruary, marking the third straight month of decline.
  • March 5
    • More than 191,000 people have fled the violence in Libya, the UN says.
    • Rebel held Zawaiya, Libya under seige by Gaddafi forces. Rebel forces capture the refinery town of Ras Lanuf.
  • March 7
    • Nevada's Sen. John Ensign announces that he will not run for reelection in 2012.
    • U.S. gasoline prices average $3.51 a gallon for regular unleaded, according to the AAA Daily Fuel Gauge Report.
  • March 8
    • International Women's Day
  • March 9
    • David Broder, a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist on national politics for The Washington Post dies.
    • Wisconsin Senate Republicans voted 18-1 yesterday to pass a measure stripping government unions of most collective bargaining power.
    • Space shuttle Discovery touches down for the last time. It will be eventually displayed at the Smithsonian Museum in Washington D.C.
    • Illinois ends the death penalty.
    • Libyan military actions to reacquire rebel held towns continues.
    • National Public Radio (NPR) CEO Vivian Schiller resigns, in light of a video by conservative James O'Keefe in which an NPR senior official is conned into expressing personal political views while being surreptitiously filmed while fundraising for NPR.
  • March 10
    • Forces loyal to Col. Muammar Gaddafi attack the strategic refinery town, Ras Lanuf and recapture the town of Zawiya.
    • Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.), who chairs the House Committee on Homeland Security, opened a congressional hearing on radicalization among American Muslims. Rep. King has said in the past that more than 80 percent of American mosques were tainted by radicalism.
    • The Wisconsin State Assembly, by a 53 to 42 vote, approved a bill to strip state government unions from collective bargaining. The bill was passed by the Wisconsin Senate on March 9.
    • The hacker collective Anonymous is giving the U.S. military until March 14 to improve its treatment of Bradley Manning, the U.S. army private accused of leaking classified information to Wikileaks and who is being held in solitary confinement and purportedly being mistreated.
  • March 11
    • At 05:46 UTC, an 9.0 magnitude earthquake offshore from Sendai, Japan creates a Pacific-wide tsunami. The earthquake, Japan's worst in recorded history and fifth worst in world history created waves up to 33 feet in height in the Sendai area and was felt as far away as Beijing, China. Many coastal towns and cities in northeastern Japan are destroyed by the tsunami. Tens of thousands perish.
    • Gov. Scott Walker signs a bill that strips most collective bargaining rights from most public employees.
  • March 12
    • The Japanese government announces a 12 mile evacuation zone around the Fukushima Daichi reactors disabled by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami. Those people living between 12 and 19 miles from the reactors are asked to take shelter. The American Embassy recommends that Americans within 50 miles of the Fukushima reactors evacuate.
  • March 14
    • 1,000 Saudi-led troops from several Gulf nations cross the border into Bahrain to support the Bahraini king against a Shiite demonstrations.
  • March 15
    • Bahrain's king declares a three-month state of emergency to quell a Shiite uprising, as clashes spread through the capital and surrounding villages.
  • March 16
    • Sharron Angle, who lost to Sen. Harry Reid in the 2010 Nevada Senate race, announced she will pursue Nevada's district 2 House seat (NV-02]) in 2012. Rep. Dean Heller, NV-02's present representative, had previously announced he will be running for Sen. John Ensign's Senate seat in 2012.
    • 180 emergency workers at Japan's crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi complex are ordered back to work to avert disaster at the plant. Japan's Ministry of Health Labor and Welfare raised the maximum legal exposure for nuclear workers to 250 millisieverts from 100 millisieverts to allow the workers to continue to work at the plant. Many countries are urging their citizens living in Japan to leave.
    • The U.S. House passes a 3-week funding bill to keep the government running through April 8.
  • March 17
    • The United Nations Security Council passes Resolution 1973 to allow "all necessary measures" to stop Gaddafi. The vote was 10-0 with five countries abstaining: Russia, China, India, Germany and Brazil.
    • President Barack Obama assured Americans that there was no danger of radiation for the country from the troubled Japanese nuclear plant.
    • The U.S. Senate sends 3-week funding bill to keep the government running through April 8 to President Obama.
    • Michigan Republican Governor Rick Snyder has signs a package of bills into law that will grant more control to emergency managers named to run struggling cities and school districts. Emergency managers according to the new law can void union contracts and some collective bargaining rights.
  • March 18
    • In Yemen, nationwide state of emergency is declared, hours after pro-government gunmen firing on protesters in the capital.
  • March 19
    • 22 world leaders including some members from the Arab League gather in a summit in Paris called by French President Nicolas Sarkozy to solidify an alliance of European, Arab and African countries that are prepared to take the lead against Gaddafi's regime. The group plan for actions enforcing the U.N. Resolution 1973 to allow "all necessary measures" to stop Libya from attacking its citizens. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is in attendance.
    • France and Britain take the lead in enforcing a no-flight zone in Libya. Italy allows its military bases to be used to enforce a no-fly zone. French fighter jets attack Libyan military vehicles.
    • Missiles are fired from U.S. naval ships against Libya's integrated air and missile defense system mainly along Libya's northern coast to assist in establishing a no-fly-zone.
    • President Barack Obama and his family arrived in Brasilia, Brazil, the first stop on a five-day trip to Brazil, Chile and El Salvador intended to underscore economic ties to the region.
    • Loyalists for Col. Gaddafi and opposition forces clash in Benghazi and Mizrata, Libya effecting an exodus of Benghazi residents to Tobruk.
  • March 20
    • Air attacks against Libya's anti-aircraft defense systems to form a no-fly-zone over northern Libya continue.
    • In Japan, spinach grown near Fukushima and milk from the area are found to have radiation. Other foods are being tested.
    • Pressure and temperatures in the troubled Fukushima Daichi nuclear reactors are stabilized.
  • March 21
    • Air attacks against northern Libyan defense systems and some ground forces continue.
    • In Japan, pumps to some of the Daichi reactors are found to be irreparable. Vegetables produced from Fukushima prefecture in open fields are banned from shipment.
  • March 22
    • Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh indicated that he would step down before his term ends in 2013. This comes after weeks of bloodshed and street protests that have led to the defection of five top army commanders and dozens of government officials.
    • A leading human rights activist is arrested as anti-government protests enter their sixth day in defiance of the Syria’s strict prohibition of dissent.
    • An U.S. fighter jet crew of an F-15E Strike Eaglewere were rescued in eastern Libya after their jet malfunctioned and crashed.
    • In Japan, black smoke coming from Fukushima Daichi's reactor number 3 increases radiation worries.
    • Iodine-131 is detected in Tokyo water samples at a level of 210 becquerels per liter. The recommended limit for infants is 100 becquerels per liter. For adults, the recommended limit is 300 becquerels.
  • March 23
    • In Libya, allied aerial military attacks pressure forces loyal to Col. Muammar Gaddafi who surround the western towns of Zintan and Misurata, and the strategic eastern city of Ajdabiya.
    • In Jerusalem, a small bomb exploded at a bus stop outside Jerusalem’s main bus station, killing one woman and leaving many injured.
    • The Japanese government says tap water in Tokyo is now safe enough for infants to drink.
    • Actress Elizabeth Taylor dies at age 79.
  • March 25
    • Middle East unrest continues:
      • Libya: Air strikes increase over Tripoli, with the targeting of fuel depots and military installations. The United States is in the process of transferring control of the Libyan mission to NATO.
      • Jordan: Security forces disperse a clash between pro-monarchy demonstrators who hurled stones at protesters calling for political reform.
      • Syria: tens of thousands of people who marched in the southern city of Deraa during funerals for demonstrators killed earlier in the week. Deaths are reported as government troops open fire. Rioting is spreading to other parts of Syria.
      • Yemen: Yemeni President Ali Abdullah says he was ready to cede power only into "safe hands", negotiations are said to be underway.
    • A possible core breach of Fukushima Daichi reactor 3 into its containment building prompts government officials to encourage voluntary evacuation in the area from 12 to 19 miles outside the facility. The government had previously had told residents of that area to stay inside.
  • March 27
    • In the Middle East:
      • Libya: Rebel forces advance toward Sirte, winning back what they had lost in the previous week.
      • Syria: Syrian security forces disperse protesters in Deraa.
    • Workers at the Fukushima Daichi Nuclear Plant try to contain radioactive water from leaking into the ocean. Low levels of plutonium is detected in soil near the plant.
  • March 30
    • Libya's foreign minister, Moussa Koussa, defects.
  • March 31
    • Another top Libyan official, Ali Abdussalam el-Treki, defects to Egypt.

April

  • April 1
    • In Syria, anti-government protests erupt in several cities after Friday prayers.
  • April 3
    • Syrian President Bashar al-Assad named a former agriculture minister Adel Safar to form a new government. Thousands of Syrians called for freedom at the funeral of eight protesters
  • April 4
    • U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder announces that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the alleged mastermind of the 9/11 attacks, and four alleged co-conspirators will be tried in a military commission at Guantanamo Bay, not a civilian court.
    • Radiation in seawater at the shoreline off Japan's Fukushima Daichi power plant has measured several million times the legal limit over the past few days.
    • President Barack Obama announces his intention to seek another term as President.
  • April 5
    • The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) invites the government of Yemen and opposition representatives to talks in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in a bid to end the crisis.
  • April 6
    • Fox News announces Glenn Beck is to end his Fox News Channel talk show later in 2011.
    • The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, said a typical beneficiary would spend more for health care under the Ryan budget proposal. Under the proposal, people now 54 and younger would be given vouchers to buy private insurance and pay more out of pocket than those presently on Medicare.
  • April 7
    • Donald Trump says he isn't convinced that President Barack Obama was born in the United States, but says he hopes the president can prove that he was.
  • April 10
    • In Libya, fighting continues around the towns of Ajdabiya and Misrata still controlled by rebels fighting against Col. Muammar Gaddafi's military forces.
  • April 11
    • Republican Mitt Romney announces that he had formed an exploratory committee to begin a White House run.
  • April 12
    • Japan raised the assessment of its nuclear crisis to the most severe rating of 7 from 5. Data showed emissions at the Fukushima Daichi nuclear power plant excedes the threshold for a "major accident," level 7 on a 1-to-7 scale set by the International Atomic Energy Agency. Only one accident has previously rated 7, the 1986 meltdown at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant.
  • April 13
    • Former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum announces the forming of a committee that will let him start fund raising to test the viability of a presidential run.
  • April 21
    • Nevada Republican Sen. John Ensign announces he will resign, amid an ethics investigation.
    • Syrian security forces fired bullets and tear gas at tens of thousands of protesters across Syria, killing at least 75 people in the bloodiest day of the monthlong uprising.
  • April 25
    • Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour announced that he will not run for President in 2012.
    • Donald Trump suggests that President Barack Obama had been a poor student who did not deserve to be admitted to Columbia and later Harvard University.
  • April 27
    • Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and his Fatah movement initial a reconciliation agreement with militant Islamist group Hamas. The agreement calls for the creation a caretaker government including both Fatah and Hamas and to begin the process of calling presidential and legislative elections in one year.
    • The White House releases the long-form version of President Barack Obama’s birth certificate, which showed that he was born in Honolulu. The President, regarding the birther distraction, stated, “We do not have time for this silliness. We’ve got better stuff to do. I’ve got better stuff to do. We’ve got big problems to solve.’’ Link to long form Obama birth certificate.
    • Donald Trump boasts that he had forced the Democratic president to release the long-form Hawaii birth certificate. "Today I am very proud of myself because I have accomplished something that nobody else has been able to accomplish," Trump told reporters. Trump had helped increase the media hype over the birther issue during the previous weeks.
    • Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval announces that he will appoint Rep. Dean Heller to fill the vacancy of retiring Sen. John Ensign, whose resignation becomes official May 3, 2011.
    • Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, in his first news conference as Fed chairman, says the fear of future inflation, and not the crisis of current unemployment, is the greater concern for the Fed.
  • April 28
    • At least 300+ people died in six southern states in the deadliest tornado outbreak in nearly 40 years.
    • President Barack Obama nominates the following in a reshuffle of his national security team:
      • CIA Director Leon Panetta will replace Defense Secretary Robert Gates when Gates leaves the administration this summer.
      • Gen. David Petraeus, the high-profile commander of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, will replace Leon Panetta at the CIA later in 2011.
      • Marine Corps Lt. Gen. John Allen would succeed Petraeus as the top commander in Afghanistan.
      • Diplomat Ryan Crocker will be Afghanistan's ambassador
  • April 29
    • In Great Britian, Prince William of Wales and Miss Catherine Middleton wed in Westminster Abbey. Prince William is the elder son of Charles, Prince of Wales, and Diana, Princess of Wales, and third eldest grandchild of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.
  • April 30
    • Col. Muammar Gaddafi's son, Seif al-Arab Muammar el-Qaddafi, 29, and three of Gaddafi's grandchildren were killed in airstikes in Tripoli, Libya.

May

  • May 1
    • Osama Bin Laden, the mastermind of 9/11, is killed in Abbottabad, Pakistan, the result of a U.S. operation. A small team of American forces, after a firefight, killed bin Laden and took possession of his body.
    • Pope John Paul II is beatified by Pope Benedict XVI in Saint Peter's Square, Rome.
  • May 2
    • Thousands of people gather at Ground Zero of the September 11 attacks in New York to celebrate the news that Osama Bin Laden has been killed. [6]
    • Libya: Forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi continue to attack the city of Misrata.
    • Election results indicate that the Conservative Party of Canada led by Prime Minister Stephen Harper is on track to retain government with a majority of seats.
  • May 3
    • John Ensign resigns as Nevada's senator amid ethics allegations.
    • Two levees are intentionally breached to flood some 200 square miles of Missouri farmland in an effort to save the town of Cairo, Illinois from the rising waters of the Mississippi River.
  • May 4
    • U.S. President Barack Obama decides not to release photographs of al-Qaid leader Osama bin Laden's body.
    • Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, leader of the Fatah party, and Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal formally agree to a reconciliation deal in Cairo which ended a bitter four-year-long dispute between the two largest Palestinian factions. The agreement calls for elections within a year. [7]
    • Syria: Since April 30, more than 1,000 people have been arrested amid ongoing protests.
  • May 5
    • President Barack Obama visits the World Trade Center site in New York City to commemorate the victims of the September 11 attacks following the death of Osama bin Laden.
    • Al-Qaeda issues a statement confirming bin Laden's death and threatens revenge.
    • Rising flood waters from the Mississippi River force evacuations around Memphis, Tennessee.
  • May 7
    • The United States releases videos of Osama bin Laden captured in the raid of the bin Laden compound.
  • May 8
    • Alleged Libyan rape victim Iman al-Obeidi flees to Tunisia fearing reprisals from the regime of Muammar Gaddafi.
  • May 10
    • Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels cuts government funding for Planned Parenthood because it provides abortions.
    • Former Governor of California and actor Arnold Schwarzenegger and journalist Maria Shriver announce their separation after 25 years of marriage.
    • Microsoft Corp. and Skype Global announce that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Microsoft will acquire Skype, the leading Internet communications company, for $8.5 billion in cash.
  • May 11
    • Former Speaker of the House of Representatives Newt Gingrich formally announces that he will be seeking the Republican Party Presidential nomination.
  • May 12
    • Queen Elizabeth II becomes the second-longest-reigning British monarch.
  • May 13
    • US Envoy George J. Mitchell, representing United States interests in the Middle East, is to resign.
  • May 14
    • Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee announces that he will not seek the GOP nomination for president in 2012.
    • IMF head Dominique Strauss-Kahn is arrested over allegations that he sexually attacked a hotel maid near Times Square.
    • The Morganza Spillway on the Mississippi River is opened for the second time in its history, deliberately flooding 3,000 square miles of rural Louisiana to save most of Baton Rouge and New Orleans.
  • May 15
    • Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich criticized the Medicare reform portion of fellow Republican Rep. Paul Ryan's budget plan, referring to it as "radical Paul Ryan change" and "right-wing social engineering" on the Sunday talk show Meet the Press. His statements may doom his candidacy as Rep. Paul Ryan and Paul Ryan's budget plan are the darling of the GOP.
  • May 16
    • Donald Trump announces he will not seek the Republican nomination for the 2012 United States presidential election.
  • May 17
    • A NATO airstrike on the Libyan capital Tripoli damages two government buildings.
    • A mass grave is reported to have been discovered in the Syrian city of Daraa; the government denies it exists.
  • May 18
    • The United States to impose sanctions on the President of Syria, Bashar al-Assad, and six members of his government, for alleged human rights breaches during the 2011 uprising.
    • The Palestinian Authority calls on Israel to reinstate the rights of up to 140,000 people who lived in the occupied West Bank and lost their residency after travelling abroad.
    • Queen Elizabeth II begins state visit to Ireland amid protests, security fears
  • May 19
    • President Barack Obama gives a speech in support of Middle East and North African protests and also calls for a peace agreement between Israel and Palestine based on 1967 borders. The Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu rejects the proposal.
    • Dominique Strauss-Kahn resigns as head of the International Monetary Fund in the wake of sexual assault charges.
    • Rebels in Libya launch a television channel to counter Muammar Gaddafi's state media. NATO claims to have sunk eight Libyan Navy warships in airstrikes on Tripoli's main port.
    • Katie Couric signs off as the host of the CBS Evening News.
    • A special election for the California 36th congressional district’s U.S. House seat, CA-36, left the two front runners, Democratic candidate Janice Hahn and Republican candidate Craig Huey poised for a rematch in the July 12th runoff election.
  • May 20
    • Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu meets with President Barack Obama at the White House, during which Netanyahu states that the pre-1967 borders are "not defensible". (see May 19)
  • May 21
    • Republican Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels’s announces that he will not run for president in 2012.
    • U.S. businessman Herman Cain announces that he will be seeking the Republican Party nomination in the 2012 U.S. presidential election.
    • Harold Camping's May 21, 2011 end times prediction fails to pass despite worldwide attention.
  • May 22
    • Former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty announces his candidacy in a video.
    • NATO warplanes attack the port of Tripoli and the residence of Muammar Gaddafi.
    • Suspected militants stormed a naval base in Karachi, Pakistan. 10 people die.
    • An E5 tornado hits Joplin, Missouri killing 134 people.
  • May 25
    • President Barack Obama addresses the Parliament of the United Kingdom.
    • Jared Loughner, accused of murder in the 2011 Tucson shootings, is found to be incompetent to face a trial because of mental health issues.
  • May 27
    • A Serbian court rules that former Bosnian Serb military leader Ratko Mladić is fit to stand a genocide trial at The Hague.
    • New York Rep. Anthony Weiner's Twitter account linked to a photograph of the pubic area of a man wearing gray boxer briefs. Weiner stated the image was not posted or sent by him, with his spokesman originally stating the belief that the "accounts were obviously hacked".
  • May 29
    • NATO kills 14 civilians, 12 children and 2 women, with an airstrike on homes in Helmand Province, Afghanistan.
  • May 30
    • Germany's ruling coalition led by Chancellor Angela Merkel pledges to end all nuclear power by 2022.
  • May 31
    • Republican Florida Gov. Rick Scott signs a bill requiring welfare benefit recipients to undergo drug testing.
    • Dozens of people are arrested in the Inner Mongolia region of northern China, as ethnic protests spread.
    • The World Health Organization classifies cell phone radiation as a "carcinogenic hazard" and "possibly carcinogenic to humans."
    • Carbon emissions from energy use reached a record level in 2010, up 5% from the previous record in 2008, according to the International Energy Agency.

June

  • June 1
    • Syria: he torture and killing of a 13-year-old child held in custody causes further outcry among the people of Daraa.
    • NATO extends its mission on Libya for an additional 90 days.
    • The Space Shuttle Endeavour finishes its final mission.
  • June 2
    • The jobless rate rose in May to 9.1 percent as high energy prices and the effects of Japan's earthquake bogged down the economy. It is the weakest reading since September. Job gains in May of only 25,000.
    • Mitt Romney announces plans to seek the Republican Party nomination as President of the United States.
  • June 3
    • President Barack Obama announces the sale of the US government's stake in Chrysler to Italian automaker Fiat.
    • A federal grand jury indicts former Democratic vice presidential nominee and two-time presidential candidate John Edwards on six counts, including conspiracy, issuing false statements and violating campaign contribution laws. Edwards pleads not guilty.
    • Jack Kevorkian, right-to-die activist, dies in Royal Oak, Michigan.
  • June 5
    • Local Wisconsin Republican Party officials have encouraged the collection of signatures to get a fake Democratic candidate on the ballot in at least two upcoming recall elections. Six Republican Wisconsin senators and two Democrats are being recalled. By running fake Democrats, Republicans would delay a general election by forcing a primary election [8]
    • Jack Kevorkian who assisted many with suicide, dies at age 83.
  • June 6
    • At least 120 members of the Syrian security forces were killed in clashes in the northern town of Jisr al-Shughour.
    • U.S. House Representative Anthony Weiner of New York admits sending a risqué picture of himself to a college student on Twitter unleashing a media frenzy.
  • June 7
    • Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi vows not to surrender even as NATO air strikes target his compound in Tripoli.
    • Arizona's massive Wallow wildfire has burned approximately 500 square miles and as of June 7, completely uncontained. Evacuations are ordered for several communities.
    • Apple announces Mac OS X Lion, iOS 5, and iCloud.
  • June 8
    • The New York Times reports that the United States is intensifying a covert war in Yemen as instability worsens. [9]
  • June 9
    • Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich’s 2012 Republican presidential campaign implodes when its top officials quit en masse. Apparently the decision by Gingrich and his wife, Callista, to take a two-week vacation, including a Greek cruise at a critical time in the campaign sparked the shake-up.
    • GOP Presidential candidate Mitt Romney will not participate in the Iowa straw poll.
    • Thousands of refugees from Syria cross into Turkey and Lebanon.
    • Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh undergoes surgery in Saudi Arabia for injuries sustained in a bomb blast.
  • June 11
    • Congressman Anthony Weiner announces his taking a leave of absence from Congress "to seek professional treatment to focus on becoming a better husband and healthier person."
    • Thousands of emails from when Sarah Palin was Governor of Alaska have been digitized and made available online.
    • Wildfires continue in Arizona.
    • Uprising continues in Syria with tens of thousands of people taking to the streets. Many Syrians continue to flee the turmoil and escape into Turkey.
    • Senior al-Qaeda leader Fazul Abdullah Mohammed, who masterminded the 1998 United States embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania is killed in Somalia.
  • June 13
    • Rep. Michelle Bachmann announces to supporters that she will be running for President of the United States.
  • June 14
    • The Wisconsin state Supreme Court reinstates Gov. Scott Walker's plan to all but end collective bargaining for tens of thousands of public workers.
  • June 15
    • Greek unions initiate a general strike as the Greek Parliament prepares to discuss financial cuts.
    • Protesters in Spain blockade parliament buildings in Barcelona to express their annoyance with government cuts.
  • June 18
    • Russian human rights activist Yelena Bonner, the widow of Soviet dissident and Nobel Peace Prize winner Andrei Sakharov, dies in the city of Boston, MA.
  • June 20
    • The Supreme Court threw out a massive class-action sex-discrimination lawsuit against Wal-Mart Stores Inc, in a major victory for the world's largest retailer and for big business. The justices unanimously ruled that more than 1 million female employees nationwide could not proceed together in the lawsuit seeking billions of dollars and accusing Wal-Mart of paying women less and giving them fewer promotions.
    • Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's speech to the nation fails to please people as nationwide protests against his regime continue.
    • White House officials defended the president's stance that the U.S. mission in Libya does not constitute hostilities, amid reports that the Department of Justice and the Pentagon disagreed. [10]
  • June 21
    • The U.S. Senate unanimously confirmed Leon Panetta as secretary of Defense on Tuesday, putting the Pentagon in the hands of a former Democratic congressman and budget expert.
    • Former Utah governor Jon Huntsman declared his candidacy for president of the United States
    • Two senior aides involved in fundraising for the Newt Gingrich presidential campaign joined 16 other key staffers in leaving.
  • June 22
    • President Barack Obama announces that 33,000 US troops will be withdrawn from the war in Afghanistan by the summer of 2012.
    • Fugitive South Boston gangster James 'Whitey' Bulger, wanted for 19 murders, was captured in Santa Monica, California.
  • June 23
    • Syrian forces mass along the Turkish border near where thousands of refugees are camped.
  • June 24
    • New York Senate gave final approval to same-sex marriage and shortly before midnight, Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed the bill to make gay marriage legal in the country's most populous state.
  • June 25
    • 1,000 Syrians flee into Lebanon to escape the unrest. The Syrian military moves into two villages, one on the border with Turkey and the other on the border with Lebanon.
  • June 27
    • Representative Michele Bachmann of Minnesota formally opened her candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination.
    • The International Criminal Court in The Hague issued arrest warrants for Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi on charges of crimes against humanity.
    • The U.S. Supreme Court struck down an Arizona law that "triggers" public funding of elections when a candidate is heavily outspent by an opponent funded with private contributions. The Court also refused to let California regulate the sale or rental of violent video games to children, saying governments do not have the power to "restrict the ideas to which children may be exposed" despite complaints about graphic violence.
    • The former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich is convicted on 17 of 20 charges, including all 11 related to his attempt to sell or trade President Obama’s vacated Senate seat.
  • June 28
    • Greek trade unions go on a general strike with transport links including airline flights being cancelled.
  • June 29
    • President Barack Obama, in a news conference, demanded Congress do their jobs on the economy, debt reduction and Libya.
    • A federal appeals court affirms ruling that Americans can be required to have minimum insurance coverage.
  • June 30
    • The Greek parliament passes a second austerity bill, this one to put in place pay cuts, tax increases, privatisations and redundancies while protests continue.
    • Glenn Beck hosts his final program on the US Fox News Channel.

July

  • July 1
    • The government of the state of Minnesota shuts down as a result of a budget dispute between Democratic Governor Mark Dayton and the Republican Legislature.
    • Leon Panetta is sworn in as the new United States Secretary of Defense, succeeding Robert Gates.
    • Dominique Strauss-Kahn, former head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), is released from house arrest as prosecutors say that the maid has made false statements.
    • Republican Congressman Thaddeus McCotter (MI-11), confirms that he will run for President of the United States.
    • A portion of the Silvertip pipeline, which feeds the ExxonMobil refinery in Billings, Montana and runs under the Yellowstone River, ruptured and dumped 42,000 gallons of crude oil into the river.
  • July 6
    • The Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals orders the Obama administration to cease its enforcement of the ban on gay men and women in the military (Don't ask, don't tell).
  • July 7
    • Over a thousand people flee Hama, Syria in fear of a government attack by the Syrian Army.
    • Casey Anthony is sentenced to four years of lying to law enforcement regarding the death of her child Caylee in the U.S. state of Florida but after credit for time served will be released on July 17.
  • July 8
    • The U.S. Department of Labor announces June's unemployment rate rose to 9.2 percent from May's 9.1 percent. The jobs added in June was only 18,000.
    • The former editor of The News of the World, Andy Coulson, who is also a former senior aide to Prime Minister David Cameron, and rearrested the newspaper’s former royal editor over allegations of phone hacking and corruption. The News of the World, a British newspaper, is part of Rupert Murdoch’s media empire.
    • The final space shuttle voyage lifted off the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, as Atlantis and four astronauts blasted into orbit.
  • July 10
    • The Prime Minister of Australia Julia Gillard announces the details of a plan to introduce a carbon tax.
  • July 11
    • News International publications including the News of the World and The Sunday Times are revealed to have improperly accessed private information of former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Gordon Brown.
  • July 12
    • U.S. Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul announces that he will not run again for his Texas district in 2012.
    • The Taliban claims responsibility for the death of Ahmad Wali Karzai, the brother of Afghan President, Hamid Karzai, and one of the most powerful people in Afghanistan.
  • July 13
    • Several explosions shake Mumbai, India, killing 20 and injuring over 100 persons.
  • July 14
    • President Barack Obama told the bipartisan leaders that he wanted a path to a debt ceiling agreement that would be able to pass both chambers over the next 24 to 36 hours.
  • July 15
    • Standard & Poor's has warned there is a one-in-two chance it could cut the United States' AAA credit rating if a deal on raising the government's debt ceiling is not agreed soon.
  • July 19
    • The US House of Representatives votes to approve the "Cut, Cap and Balance Act" by 234-190 but fails to pass the United States Senate.
    • News Corporation CEO Rupert Murdoch and his son James Murdoch appear before a select committee of the United Kingdom parliament over the News of the World phone hacking affair. Murdoch Senior apologises for the scandal, but says he is not responsible for it. A man attacks Murdoch during the final part of questioning with a shaving cream pie.
  • July 22
    • An anti-Muslim and right-wing extremist, Anders Breivik, opens fire at a Labour Party camp in Utøya, Norway with 92 people killed. An explosion damages government buildings in Oslo, Norway at least seven people are killed and several injured reported.
    • Debt negotiations between President Barack Obama and Speaker of the House John Boehner collapse.
  • July 24
    • President Obama gives a televised address to the United States warning of "incalculable damage" if the debt limit is not raised.
    • Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, says that President Barack Obama will not invoke the United States Constitution to raise the debt ceiling unilaterally.
  • July 25
    • President Barack Obama gives a televised address to the United States warning of "incalculable damage" if the debt limit is not raised and asks for a "balanced approach" to the debt ceiling talks which include revenues.
  • July 26
    • The Congressional Budget Office said the plan endorsed by Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio), the "Boehner bill", would only create $850 billion in government savings, rather than the sought-after $1.2 trillion. The White House expressed strong opposition to Boehner’s proposal and threatened a veto.
    • Rep. David Wu announces his resignation as a member of the United States House of Representatives following allegations of an unwanted sexual encounter with an 18 year old.
    • Rep. Luis Gutiérrez, an Illinois member of the United States House of Representatives, is arrested outside the White House in Washington D.C. during protests calling for immigration reform.
  • July 27
    • House Republicans delayed a vote on the "Boehner bill" to lift the debt ceiling as they tried to rewrite the measure to ensure that accompanying spending cuts were large enough,
  • July 28
    • The House passes the "Boehner bill", an increase in the federal debt limit tied to progress on a balanced budget, but the Senate responded less than two hours later by putting the House bill on ice.
  • July 29
    • Still smarting from the Senate's swift defeat fo the Boehner bill on June 28, Rep. David Dreier (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Rules Committee, drew up his own version of the Reid bill and sent it to its death on the House floor, 246 to 173. The Reid measure was still pending before the Senate.
    • Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) announced that talks between Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Vice President Joseph Biden had made significant progress, prompting Reid to delay a vote that had been scheduled for 1 a.m. Sunday on his own debt-limit measure.
  • July 31
    • President Obama addressed the nation to announce that he had reached an agreement with Republicans to raise the debt ceiling, just two days from potential default.

August

  • Aug 1
    • The U.S. House passes the debt-ceiling deal worked out by President Barack Obama and congressional leaders by a 269-161 vote.
    • Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Arizona, cast her first House vote since being shot in the head in an assassination attempt in January.
    • The US Senate fails to pass a bill ending the partial shutdown of the Federal Aviation Administration.
  • Aug 2
    • The US Senate gave final approval to the hotly contested debt and deficit-reduction agreement by a 74-26 roll call vote. The bill gives the U.S. Treasury $400 billion in new borrowing authority, raising the debt ceiling.
    • Syrian Army forces shell the town of Hama for a second day.
    • Republicans vow to block a probable recess appointment of Richard Cordray to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). Conservatives complained that Elizabeth Warren the preferred choice by the Obama administration was a zealot. The Obama administration withdrew Warren's nomination because of the objections.
  • Aug 3
    • Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak is rolled into the courtroom on a hospital bed for the beginning of his televised trial. Mubarak is charged with corruption and complicity in the killing of protesters.
  • Aug 4
    • The Dow Jones Stock Exchange loses 513 points, falling 4%.
    • Fourteen states in the Southern United States are on a heat alert with several dozen deaths since July as part of a heat wave.
  • Aug 5
    • The credit rating of the United States is downgraded by Standard & Poor's from AAA to AA+ with a negative outlook. Standard & Poor’s says that one reason the United States lost its triple-A credit rating was that several lawmakers expressed skepticism about the serious consequences of a credit default.
    • The U.S. economy created 117,000 new jobs in July, causing the unemployment rate to drop slightly, from 9.2 percent in June to 9.1 percent in July.
    • In Syria, tens of thousands of people again protest across the country, amid a government crackdown.
  • Aug 6
    • A NATO Chinook helicopter crashes after being shot down by the Taliban with 37 deaths in Afghanistan. Many of the dead included U.S. Navy SEALs
  • Aug 7
    • Former Oregon governor and former U.S. Senator Mark Hatfield passes away.
    • The Arab League calls on Syrian authorities to end the violence against civilians.
  • Aug 8
    • Dow Jones Industrial Average falls by 600 points.
  • Aug 9
    • The U.S. Federal Reserve announces it will keep interest rates at "exceptionally low levels" at least through mid 2013.
    • Recall elections for six Wisconsin Republican Party State Senators are held with Republicans retaining four of the six seats.
    • Rioting continues in London with lawlessness spreading to other English cities.
    • The Dow gained 429 points after the Federal Reserve pledged to keep its key interest rate at nearly zero into 2013.
  • Aug 10
    • The Dow Jones industrial average ended down 519, or 4.6 percent, to 10,720.
  • Aug 11
    • The Dow Jones industrial average ended up 393.02 points, or 3.67 percent, at 11,112.96.
  • Aug 12
    • The United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit strikes down the health insurance mandate of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act passed in 2010.
  • Aug 13
    • Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann wins the Iowa straw poll for the 2012 United States Presidential election.
    • Texas Gov. Rick Perry announces his run for president.
    • Stage rigging collapses at the Indiana State Fair, killing at least five.
  • Aug 14
    • Former Governor of Minnesota Tim Pawlenty ends his campaign for the Republican Party nomination in the 2012 United States presidential election.
  • Aug 16
    • Two Wisconsin Democratic state senators beat Republican challengers in recall elections triggered by a fight over collective bargaining rights for public sector workers.
  • Aug 17
    • Ohio Governor John Kasich moved to compromise with labor groups over his bill that reins in collective bargaining rights of public employee unions.
    • Rasmussen Poll this week of likely Republican primary voters around the country shows Congresswoman Michele Bachmann third, behind Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Mitt Romney. Perry leads by Romney by 11 percentage points taking away Romney's long held lead in the GOP Presidential race.
  • Aug 18
    • Jon Huntsman, Republican candidate for U.S. President and former Governor of Utah, tweets, "To be clear, I believe in evolution and trust scientists on global warming. Call me crazy."
  • Aug 19
    • Hewlett-Packard shares drop 20% on news that the company plans to split off its personal computer division as a separate company.
  • Aug 20
    • Libyan rebels capture the strategic oil port of Brega while heavy fighting is reported in the capital Tripoli.
  • Aug 22
    • The National Transitional Council rebel forces take control of Tripoli, Libya. Street celebrations erupt.
    • Hurricane Irene reaches hurricane strength over Puerto Rico.
  • Aug 23
    • Heavy fighting continues in the Libyan capital Tripoli.
    • The United Nations Human Rights Council orders an investigation into alleged human rights violations by the Government of Syria in the 2011 Syrian uprising.
    • Hurricane Irene becomes Category 2 strength as it hits Haiti and the Dominican Republic.
    • Magnitude 5.8 earthquake hits Virginia and is felt along U.S. east coast.
  • Aug 24
    • Muammar Gaddafi vows to fight until "death or victory" despite the capture of his compound in southern Tripoli.
    • Hurricane Irene strengthens to Category 3 status as it heads towards The Bahamas and Turks and Caicos and then the East Coast of the United States.
  • Aug 25
    • Steve Jobs, Apple's CEO resigns. Tim Cook replaces Jobs at Apple.
    • Norfolk, Virginia declares a mandatory evacuation of low lying areas by 8am Saturday morning in anticipation of Hurricane Irene.
  • Aug 26
    • North Carolina, Maryland, Virginia, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Connecticut as well as the city of Baltimore in the state of Maryland declare states of emergency in anticipation of Hurricane Irene.
    • Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan announces his resignation.
  • Aug 27
    • Hurricane Irene makes landfall in North Carolina near Cape Lookout and takes a path north along the coast.
  • Aug 28
    • Tropical storm Irene passes over New York City with 370,000 people having been evacuated from low lying areas.
    • Baghdad's largest Sunni mosque was the site of a suidide bombing, killing at least 29 people.
    • Former Secretary of State Colin Powell says former U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney took “cheap shots” in his soon to be released memoir and seemed to be chasing “tabloid” headlines by saying his book would make “heads explode” in Washington.
  • Aug 29
    • Republican House Majority Leader Eric Cantor says a natural disaster like Hurricane Irene will incur the use of federal funds for disaster relief, but, those monies not already budgeted for such outlay must be offset from other parts of the federal budget.
  • Aug 30
    • President Barack Obama nominated Alan.B. Krueger to be the next leader of the Council of Economic Advisors.
    • Vice President Dick Cheney's unapologetic memoir In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir is released. It outlines Cheney's version of 9/11, the War on Terrorism, the 2001 War in Afghanistan, the run-up to the 2003 Iraq war, enhanced interrogation techniques and other events.

September

  • Sept. 1
    • President Barack Obama agreed to deliver an address on jobs and the economy to a joint session of Congress on Sept. 8, yielding to House Speaker John Boehner, who had balked at Obama's request for a Sept. 7 speech.
  • Sept. 2
    • The unemployment rate for August stays at 9.1%, mirroring the same as August.
    • Yoshihiko Noda is formally appointed Prime Minister of Japan, replacing Naoto Kan.
  • Sept. 8
    • President Obama urges Congress to pass a new jobs bill geared toward reviving a stalled economy.
  • Sept. 9
    • President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran joins other world leaders in calling for President Bashar al-Assad to end his crackdown on the uprising that is challenging his rule in Syria.
  • Sept. 17
    • Occupy Wall Street begins as an organized protest in Zuccotti Park, in New York City's financial district.
  • Sept. 21
    • The two American hikers who were imprisoned on espionage charges in Iran for over two years, are released.
  • Sept. 23
    • Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas officially requests a bid for statehood at the UN Security Council.
  • Sept. 25
    • Mitt Romney wins the Michigan Straw Poll with 51%. This is no surprise as Michigan is Romney's home state. Herman Cain wins Florida's Straw Poll by nearly 40%.
  • Sept. 26
    • Senate reaches a spending agreement, avoiding a government shutdown.
    • King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia grants women the right to vote and run for office in future elections.
  • Sept. 30
    • Anwar al-Awlaki, a radical, U.S.-born Islamic cleric associated with al-Qaeda is killed in Yemen by an American drone.

October

  • Oct. 1
    • 700 arrests were made as OWS activists marched across the Brooklyn Bridge.
  • Oct. 5
    • Thousands of union workers marched with the Occupy Wall Street protestors through New York City's Financial District.
    • Steve Jobs dies at the age of 56. Jobs is the co-founder of Apple and is considered a visionary in the digital age.
  • Oct. 7
    • The unemployment rate for September holds at 9.1%, the same as August and July.
  • Oct. 15
    • Rallies were staged in 900 cities throughout the world, including Chicago, Minneapolis, Phoenix, Paris, Tokyo, Berlin, Sydney and Hong Kong. Thousands of Occupy Wall Street activists rallied in New York City's Times Square. More than 70 arrests were made in New York City and 175 protestors were arrested in Chicago.
  • Oct. 19
    • Tens of thousands begin the first day of a two-day general strike in Greece.
  • Oct. 20
    • Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi is killed by rebel troops in Surt, his hometown.
  • Oct. 23
    • A 7.2 Magnitude Earthquake Hits Turkey.
  • Oct. 24
    • Tunisians turn out by the millions to vote in their first ever free election.
  • Oct. 25
    • Police raid and close the Occupy Oakland encampment in Frank Ogawa Park. While clearing the park, police arrested more than 100 protestors. Several Occupy Wall Street activists were injured, including Scott Olsen, an Iraqi war veteran. Olsen received a skull fracture when a teargas container reportedly struck his head.
  • Oct 31
    • Palestine becomes the 195th member of UNESCO.

November

  • Nov. 2
    • The Port of Oakland was shut down by demonstrators associated with the Occupy movement.
  • Nov. 3
    • Dozens of Occupy Oakland protesters are arrested after a peacful march through downtown Oakland turns violent.
  • Nov. 5
    • Former Penn State defensive coordinator, Jerry Sandusky, is arrested on charges of 40 counts of sexual abuse over a 15-year period.
  • Nov. 6
    • Greek Prime Minister Papandreou agrees to create a transitional administration which will manage the country's debt-relief deal and to resign after the country holds early elections.
  • Nov. 7
    • Sharon Bialek comes forward with allegations that Herman Cain, GOP candidate for President, had made unwanted sexual advances toward her in 1997.
  • Nov. 8
    • An anti-abortion measure in Mississippi, an anti-labor law in Ohio, and a measure to clampdown on voting rights in Maine are all rejected.
  • Nov. 12
    • Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi steps down. Mario Monti, a former member of the European Commission, will be Berlusconi's replacement.
  • Nov. 14
    • Police officers in riot gear raid the Occupy Oakland encampment and arrest 33 protesters.
  • Nov. 15
    • The Zuccotti Park encampment of the Occupy Wall Street movement is torn down. About 50 protesters are arrested.
  • Nov. 18
    • Protesters return to Tahrir Square in Egypt to demand the ruling military council step aside in favor of a civilian-led government.
  • Nov. 21
    • The Congressional supercommittee in charge of finding $1.2 trillion in deficit reductions fails to agree on what programs to cut after more than 10 weeks of meeting.
  • Nov. 28
    • Ginger White, comes forward, saying that she and Herman Cain, a GOP candidate for President, had a 13-year extramarital affair.

December

  • Dec. 2
    • In November, the U.S. unemployment rate declines to 8.6%, its lowest level in two and a half years.
  • Dec. 3
    • Herman Cain pulls out of presidential race.
  • Dec. 4
    • Monitors of Russian parliamentary elections condemn the elections as fraudulent. Protests ensue.
  • Dec. 10
    • Over 40,000 Russians rally near the Kremlin. Activists call for Putin's resignation and denounce the election results.
  • Dec. 17
    • North Korean supreme leader from 1994 to 2011, Kim Jong Il dies. Kim Jong-un, his third eldest son, will be his successor.
    • Iceland formally recognizes Palestinian state with pre-1967 borders
  • Dec. 21
    • Remaining US troops exit Iraq.
    • U.S. House rejects Senate version of payroll tax cut
  • Dec. 23
    • U.S. Congress reaches deal on payroll tax cut extension.
  • Dec. 24
    • Republican candidates for President of the United States Newt Gingrich and Rick Perry fail to qualify to be on the ballot for the Virginia primary election, scheduled for March 6, Super Tuesday.
  • Dec. 25
    • 39 people are killed and many injured in a series of attacks against churches in Nigeria during Christmas prayers.
  • Dec. 26
    • Tens of thousands of people are left without power after one of the biggest storms for 30 years hits Scandinavia.
  • Dec. 28
    • Former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson formally withdraws his candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination, and declares his candidacy for the 2012 presidential nomination of the Libertarian Party.
  • Dec. 29
    • Iran threatens to close down the key oil route of the Strait of Hormuz if more sanctions are imposed on it by Western nations.
    • Kim Jong-un is acknowledged as the Supreme Leader of North Korea at the conclusion of a state funeral for his father.
  • Dec. 31
    • President Barack Obama signed a wide-ranging defense bill into law Saturday despite having "serious reservations" about provisions that regulate the detention, interrogation and prosecution of suspected terrorists.
    • Kim Jong-un is named as the Supreme Commander of North Korea's armed forces following the death of his father Kim Jong-Il.
2010   |   2012
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