The biggest news of the year — the story that has had the most impact on the entire world — has been the US government/Republican Party’s arrogant and greedy quest for world domination and attack on Iraq. That story has had a part in a great many stories: the “war on terror” and the continuing fallout from the September 11 attacks, the ongoing eradication of American civil liberties, Shrub’s occupation of Iraq and Saddam Hussein’s fall, the continuing conflict between Israel and Palestine, the US Democratic Party’s loss of vision and its principle-free approach to the 2004 presidential campaign, the emergence of true progressives, and conflicts between “Old” and “New” Europe, the Kyoto Protocol debate.
Other noteworthy stories from the last 12 months: the still-unsolved Valerie Plame mystery, the still-unresolved UK inquiry into the Blair Administration’s involvement in the mysterious death of weapons expert Dr. David Kelly, the prospects for peace in the Sudan and Somalia, the economic and political challenges facing Latin America and the Caribbean, SARS, the Bush Administration’s anti-environmental moves, the US Supreme Court’s quashing of anti-gay sodomy laws, the Massachusetts highest court’s ruling that banning same-sex marriage is unconstitutional [Windy City Times has a roundup of 2003’s top GLBT news], the proposed Federal Marriage Amendment, the ongoing fallout over the Roman Catholic Church’s child sex-abuse scandal and the denomination’s scapegoating of gays, the US Episcopal Church’s ordination of the first openly gay Anglican bishop — and the institution’s move toward schism, extreme weather and natural disasters around the globe, the human genome project, the tragedy of Columbia, new statistics and advances in the treatment of diabetes, the debate over late-term abortion, the Ten Commandments controversy and separation of church and state.
And, of course, the salacious: Michael Jackson charged with child molestation, basketball player Kobe Bryant facing a rape trial, Phil Spector accused of murder, the Britney-Madonna MTV kiss, Bennifer off and on again, reality-TV romances.
What do you think? Please visit Comments and share your thoughts on these items or on what you consider to be the biggest stories of the year.