Chronology of Events in 2002

Some notable news in 2002:

Jan. 1

Euro becomes legal tender for much of Europe.

Jan. 2

American bombs kill Taliban's intelligence chief. Federal judge dismisses Puerto Rico's lawsuit to stop resumption of Navy bombing exercises on Vieques.

Jan. 3

No criminal charges filed against New Jersey Sen. Robert Torricelli after three-year federal investigation into his finances. Former Ku Klux Klansman Bobby Frank Cherry found mentally competent to be tried for 1963 Birmingham church bombing that killed four black girls.

Jan. 4

First American soldier killed in eastern Afghanistan.

Jan. 7

Fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent retires after 40 years.

Jan. 8

Archbishop of Canterbury retires after leading world's 70 million Anglicans for more than a decade. President Bush signs $26 billion education plan to expand academic testing and literacy programs.

Jan. 9

Bush administration and auto industry join to develop pollution-free cars and trucks powered by hydrogen fuel cells.

Jan. 10

White House reveals Enron Corp. sought government's help shortly before collapsing.

Jan. 11

Ford Motor Co. announces it will eliminate 35,000 jobs, close five plants, drop four models.

Jan. 13

White House says President Bush was never told of Enron Corp.'s requests for federal help. Pakistan's pledge to crack down on terrorism fails to persuade India to ease military standoff in contested Himalayan territory of Kashmir.

Jan. 14

World Trade Organization decides European Union can ask for punitive tariffs on U.S. imports. NBC's Today celebrates 50 years.

Jan. 17

Enron Corp. fires accounting firm Arthur Andersen.

Jan. 18

Volcano erupts in eastern Congo; 500,000 people flee to Rwanda. Israel retaliates for Palestinian attack on Jewish confirmation party by destroying Palestinian government headquarters.

Jan. 20

Two Marines killed, five injured when U.S. military aircraft crashes in Afghanistan.

Jan. 21

At least 30 killed in Congo when lava from volcano causes explosion at gas station.

Jan. 22

Kmart Corp. files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

Jan 23

President Bush proposes biggest defense spending increase in 20 years.

Jan. 24

Supporters of campaign finance reform force a House vote on a version of the bill.

Jan. 25

Thomas Junta sentenced to up to 10 years in prison for beating another man to death at their sons' hockey practice.

Jan. 27

A Palestinian woman becomes first female suicide bomber against Israel. More than 1,000 people die in Nigeria when munitions depot explodes.

Jan. 28

Hamid Karzai becomes first Afghan leader to visit Washington in 39 years; President Bush promises "lasting partnership" with Afghanistan.

Jan. 29

In his first State of the Union address, President Bush says terrorists still threaten America and warns of "an axis of evil" of North Korea, Iran and Iraq.

Feb. 1

President Bush responds to Enron collapse by proposing regulation reforms of 401(k)retirement plans.

Feb. 3

Earthquake in Turkey kills at least 45.

Feb. 4

President Bush proposes $2.13 trillion budget, including billions for fighting terrorism.

Feb. 5

Federal grand jury indicts John Walker Lindh for allegedly conspiring with the Taliban to kill Americans.

Feb. 6

Taliban's foreign minister surrenders in Afghanistan.

Feb. 8

Olympic Winter Games open in Salt Lake City.

Feb. 11

Israel attacks Palestinian security headquarters in response to unprecedented rocket fire and a shooting attack on Israeli civilians.

Feb. 12

Pakistan charges three men with kidnapping Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl in Karachi. Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres outlines peace plan negotiated with senior Palestinian lawmaker that calls for a cease-fire followed quickly by establishment of Palestinian state.

Feb. 13

Queen Elizabeth II makes former New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani an honorary knight.

Feb. 14

House votes to ban unregulated contributions to national political parties. France asks for investigation into Olympic figure skating pairs event after saying its judge voted for Russians under duress. Enron executive says it was widely known at company that partnerships were used to hide debt and inflate profits. Researchers announce cloning of a cat.

Feb. 15

President Bush approves Nevada's Yucca Mountain as site for long-term nuclear waste disposal. Canadian skaters who lost to Russians will also receive a gold medal; French judge suspended indefinitely.

Feb. 16

Georgia authorities arrest crematorium operator accused of stacking decomposing corpses in storage sheds and nearby woods.

Feb. 17

New federal agency takes over supervision of aviation security from airline industry and Federal Aviation Administration.

Feb. 21

State Department declares Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl dead.

Feb. 22

Videotape shows Enron executives urging employees to invest retirement money in company stock just before company declared bankruptcy. General Accounting Office sues Vice President Dick Cheney for list of members of energy task force. Saudi Arabia proposes peace with Israel in exchange for land to Palestinians.

Feb. 23

Archdiocese of Philadelphia dismisses several priests for sexually abusing children.

Feb. 24

Winter Olympics end.

Feb. 25

Former NBA star Jayson Williams charged with manslaughter in shooting death of a limousine driver.

Feb. 26

Gunmen kills 10 minority Shiite Muslims praying in mosque in Pakistan.

Feb. 27

Muslims in India set fire to train carrying hundreds of Hindu nationalists; 57 people die.

Feb. 28

Hindus retaliate for train attack by setting fire to Muslims' homes, then keeping firefighters away for hours. Federal appeals court overturns convictions of three white New York City police officers in torture case of Haitian immigrant Abner Louima. Israel attacks two West Bank refugee camps, a first in 17 months of fighting.

March 1

Archdiocese of Boston agrees to give prosecutors list of people allegedly molested by priests and details of incidents. Odyssey spacecraft finds evidence that vast regions of Mars may abound in water, supporting theory that life existed on Red Planet. Autopsy confirms that body found by a California roadside is that of missing 7-year-old Danielle van Dam.

March 2

Palestinian suicide bomber kills at least nine and wounds more than 30 in Jerusalem. Rioting spreads as death toll in India's religious strife reaches 408.

March 3

Two days of Palestinian attacks end with shooting deaths of 10 Israelis at Jerusalem checkpoint; two-day death toll: 21. Switzerland joins the United Nations after sitting on global sidelines for more than 50 years.

March 4

Nine American soldiers killed, 40 wounded in Afghanistan. Israel kills 16 Palestinians in retaliatory raids, including wife and children of Hamas militant. European Union's 15 members ratify Kyoto Protocol on global warming but fail to set own pollutant-emission levels to meet the accord's targets.

March 5

President Bush orders tariffs on steel imports.

March 6

Federal regulators approve proposed $22 billion merger of Hewlett-Packard Co. and Compaq Computer Corp.

March 7

House passes bill cutting taxes and extending unemployment benefits.

March 8

Kmart Corp. announces closing of 284 stores and elimination of 22,000 jobs. Senate passes bill cutting taxes and extending unemployment benefits.

March 9

Space shuttle Columbia's astronauts release Hubble Space Telescope into orbit after five days of repairs.

March 10

Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon says he is prepared to negotiate with Palestinians on a truce.

March 11

Two columns of light at ground zero commemorate Sept. 11 attacks. Israel lifts Yasser Arafat's three-month confinement in West Bank but rounds up about 1,100 Palestinians for questioning. Police disperse prospective voters in Zimbabwe as court-ordered presidential voting ends with allegations of government rigging.

March 12

Texas housewife Andrea Yates is convicted of murder in the drowning deaths of her five children in the family's bathtub. Homeland security chief Tom Ridge announces color-coded terrorism alerts. Conoco Inc. and Phillips Petroleum Co. stockholders approve proposed $15.6 billion merger.

March 13

U.N. Security Council approves resolution that backs Palestinian state and an immediate cease-fire. "Dear Abby" turns in man who wrote for advice on how to handle his fantasies about having sex with girls.

March 14

Government gets first indictment in Enron collapse by charging Arthur Andersen accounting firm with obstruction of justice. U.S. envoy launches third Mideast truce mission. Federal grand jury in New Jersey indicts Muslim extremist in kidnapping and murder of reporter Daniel Pearl.

March 18

Pentagon proposes reducing air patrols over major U.S. cities.

March 19

Scientists announce that ice shelf in Antarctica that has existed since the last Ice Age 12,000 years ago has collapsed during one of warmest summers on record there.

March 20

Arthur Andersen denies obstruction charges related to Enron Corp. Whitewater prosecutor concludes the Clintons' Arkansas land venture benefited from criminal activity but says evidence insufficient to prove former first family engaged in wrongdoing.

March 21

Philip Morris ordered to pay $150 million in lawsuit that contended low-tar cigarettes are as dangerous as regular ones. Jurors in San Francisco convict woman whose dogs killed a neighbor by ripping open her throat.

March 22

Former seminary student who says he was molested by a priest in the 1980s accuses all U.S. bishops of conspiring to cover up sexual abuse. His federal lawsuit cites racketeering laws meant to bring down the mob.

March 24

U.S.-led truce talks fail, but both Israelis and Palestinians say they'll meet again.

March 26

Earthquake devastates mountain villages in northern Afghanistan; at least 1,800 die, thousands more injured. Arthur Andersen chief executive Joseph Berardino resigns.

March 27

At least 16 Israelis killed, more than 100 wounded in suicide bombing at Seder meal celebrating Passover. President Bush signs campaign finance reform legislation; special interest groups file lawsuits challenging the law.

March 28

Arab world agrees on peace plan that offers Israel normal relations in exchange for full withdrawal from war-won lands and a Palestinian state.

March 29

Israel invades Yasser Arafat's headquarters; five Palestinians and one Israeli die.

March 30

The Queen Mother Elizabeth dies at 101.

March 31

Pope John Paul II uses Easter message to call for end to violence in the Holy Land.

April 1

Capture of Al Qaeda's top surviving operational commander is one of most significant accomplishments in war on terrorism, officials and experts say.

April 2

Israel seizes control of Bethlehem and another West Bank town; Palestinians force their way into Church of the Nativity, traditional birthplace of Jesus.

April 4

President Bush urges Israel to pull out of Palestinian cities, dismisses Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat as a failed leader, orders Secretary of State Colin Powell to the region seeking a cease-fire.

April 5

U.S. envoy meets with Yasser Arafat at his headquarters on bloodiest day of week-old Israeli military offensive.

April 8

Israel announces it will pull back from two West Bank cities, taking note of President Bush's plea. Iraqi President Saddam Hussein cuts off crude oil exports to demonstrate support for the Palestinians. Arthur Andersen announces it will lay off more than a quarter of its U.S. workforce, about 7,000 workers.

April 9

Former Arthur Andersen auditor David B. Duncan pleads guilty to ordering shredding of Enron documents, agrees to cooperate with prosecutors.

April 11

House responds to Enron collapse by voting to add more worker protections to pension laws. Venezuelan police battle protesters who demand President Hugo Chavez's ouster as a general strike grips the country. Ohio Rep. James A. Traficant Jr. is convicted of taking bribes and kickbacks from businessmen and his own staff.

April 12

Secretary of State Colin Powell's trip to Middle East marred by suicide bombing; White House puts Powell's meeting with Yasser Arafat on hold, demanding anew that Arafat denounce terrorism. Boston's Cardinal Bernard Law ignores growing demand for his resignation because of sex scandal engulfing the church.

April 14

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez returns to office two days after being ousted and arrested by his country's military.

April 15

At least four U.S. soldiers die in Afghanistan when rockets accidentally blow up. Pope John Paul II summons American cardinals to Rome for talk about sex abuse scandals in U.S. church. Chinese jet crashes in South Korea, killing 118.

April 17

Secretary of State Colin Powell fails to get Mideast cease-fire . Federal judge rules Justice Department can't interfere with Oregon's assisted-suicide law.

April 18

An American F-16 pilot in Afghanistan apparently mistakes Canadian soldiers for enemy forces and drops a bomb, killing four and wounding eight.

April 20

World's top economic powers agree to intensify efforts to combat terrorist financing and adopt a plan to better deal with international debt crises.

April 22

Microsoft's Bill Gates takes the stand for the first time in his company's four-year antitrust battle.

April 24

American Roman Catholic leaders agree to make it easier to remove priests guilty of sexually abusing minors but stop short of zero-tolerance policy.

April 25

AOL Time Warner reports biggest quarterly loss in U.S. history. Senate passes energy bill that gives tax breaks to conserve and produce energy; rejects White House proposal to drill for oil in an Arctic wildlife refuge.

April 26

Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes, rapping member of the Grammy-winning trio TLC, dies in car crash in Honduras.

April 27

Rival motorcycle gangs clash in Nevada casino; three die and at least 12 are wounded.

April 28

Tornado-ravaged cities from Missouri to Maryland begin cleaning up after a weekend of severe weather that left six people dead.

April 30

An Islamic charity and its director are charged with perjury and accused by FBI of supporting terrorists who tried to obtain nuclear weapons for Usama bin Laden and plotted to assassinate the pope.

May 1

Israeli armored vehicles begin leaving Yasser Arafat's battered compound, ending his five months of confinement.

May 2

House approves election-year farm bill that will give billions in subsidies to Midwestern and Southern states.

May 3

Unemployment for April jumps to 6 percent, the highest rate in nearly eight years. The Archdiocese of Boston backs out of settlement agreement with 86 people who accused defrocked priest John Geoghan of child molestation, saying the deal was too expensive as the list of potential victims grows.

May 5

France re-elects President Jacques Chirac over extreme-right leader Jean-Marie Le Pen.

May 7

Federal officials begin searching for 21-year-old college student in connection with 18 pipe bombs left in mailboxes in five states

May 9

The college student wanted in connection with the pipe bombs tells authorities he was trying to make a "smiley face" pattern on the map.

May 10

Israel ends its 39-day siege of the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem after 13 Palestinian militants were flown into exile.

May 11

Israel pulls out of a West Bank town, leaving Palestinian-run territories free of Israeli troops for the first time in six weeks.

May 12

Former President Jimmy Carter visits Cuba. Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's Likud party rejects creation of a Palestinian state.

May 14

NATO and Russia reach historic agreement to combat common security threats in the post-Sept. 11 era.

May 15

Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat gives speech that includes rare self-criticism and a pledge of new elections and government reform.

May 18

India and Pakistan exchange fire across their shared border, renewing fears the countries are on the brink of nuclear war over the Himalayan region of Kashmir.

May 22

Mostly white jury in Alabama convicts former Ku Klux Klansman Bobby Frank Cherry of murder in a 1963 church bombing that killed four black girls. The remains of Chandra Levy, the federal intern who disappeared more than a year ago, are found in a Washington park. Senators demand turnover of information about White House contacts with Enron officials.

May 23

Milwaukee Archbishop Rembert Weakland denies sexually assaulting a man but acknowledges reaching a $450,000 settlement with his accuser and asks the Vatican to expedite his resignation. The family that founded Adelphia Communications Corp. relinquishes control of the troubled cable provider and turns over $1 billion to cover its debts.

May 24

President Bush and Russian President Vladimir Putin sign the biggest arms-reduction treaty in history.

May 25

A healthy 3 1/2-month-old girl who came into the world weighing just 9.97 ounces spends her first full day home from the hospital; her doctors believe she is the tiniest human being on record to live so long.

May 26

A barge hits an interstate bridge over the Arkansas River during a storm, sending more than a dozen vehicles into the water.

May 28

NATO declares Russia a limited partner in the Western alliance.

May 30

Ceremony marks end of cleanup at ground zero. Nine climbers fall into a crevasse near summit of Oregon's Mount Hood; three die.

May 31

Three-judge panel rules public libraries cannot be forced to install software that blocks sexually explicit Web sites.

June 2

Yasser Arafat offers Cabinet posts to militant groups as part of government reshuffle.

June 4

President Bush says CIA and FBI failed to communicate adequately before Sept. 11; Congress begins closed hearings into pre-Sept. 11 intelligence lapses. Roman Catholic bishops call for zero-tolerance policy against priests who molest children in the future and a two-strikes policy for those guilty of past abuse.

June 5

Car explodes alongside moving bus, killing 13 Israeli soldiers and four others. Justice Department announces it will require roughly 100,000 new visitors each year to provide fingerprints, photographs and details about their plans in the United States.

June 6

President Bush asks Congress to create a homeland security department. Cigarette maker R.J. Reynolds Co. is fined $20 million for violating terms of 1998 tobacco settlement by running magazine ads aimed at teens.

June 7

Yearlong hostage crisis involving a U.S. missionary couple comes to bloody end as Filipino commandos manage to save only one of the three captives, American Gracia Burnham. Kennedy cousin Michael Skakel is convicted of beating Greenwich, Conn., neighbor Martha Moxley to death when they were 15 in 1975.

June 10

Organized crime figure John Gotti dies in prison hospital at age 61.

June 11

A gathering of 1,500 Afghans convenes to elect American-backed interim leader Hamid Karzai.

June 13

America's Roman Catholic bishops open a meeting on clerical sex abuse by acknowledging that their mistakes helped cause the crisis. Accused Sept. 11 conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui denies in court that he had been in contact with the hijackers and says he had secret information that would set him free.

June 14

American Catholic bishops adopt policy that will bar sexually abusive clergy from face-to-face contact with parishioners but keep them in the priesthood. A suicide attack in front of the U.S. consulate in Pakistan kills 11 and injures 45.

June 15

Arthur Andersen is convicted of obstruction of justice in the Enron case.

June 16

U.S. Forest Service worker is accused of starting a campfire that sparked a wildfire in Colorado's Pike National Forest.

June 18

A Palestinian detonates a nail-studded bomb in a bus, killing 19 passengers and himself.

June 19

A suicide bomber blew himself up at a busy Jerusalem intersection killing at least six others.

June 20

Supreme Court declares that executing mentally retarded murderers is unconstitutionally cruel. A huge fire in the tinder-dry forests of eastern Arizona prompts evacuation warnings for thousands.

June 22

An earthquake in northwestern Iran kills at least 500, injures more than 1,600 and leaves thousands homeless.

June 23

Two mammoth wildfires threaten to join a 50-mile-long line of flames and burn into Show Low, Ariz., population 7,700.

June 24

Supreme Court rules that juries, not judges, must decide whether a convicted killer lives or dies.

June 25

President Bush declares the fire-ravaged West a disaster area.

June 26

WorldCom Inc., the nation's No. 2 long-distance company, discloses what could be the biggest case of crooked accounting in U.S. history.

June 27

Supreme Court rules that tuition vouchers are legal for private schools.

June 28

Xerox Corp. announces it improperly reported $1.9 billion in revenue over the past five years and will restate those financial results.

July 1

U.S. planes bomb a village in central Afghanistan after American forces came under fire, according to U.S. officials; Afghans said the villagers were celebrating a wedding. Plane carrying Russian children to Spain for vacation and a cargo jet ram into one another; 71 killed. American Steve Fossett becomes first person to fly a balloon solo around the world.

July 4

Gunman opens fire at Israel's El Al airline ticket counter at Los Angeles International Airport. Three people die, including the gunman. Heavy rains in Texas force hundreds to flee.

July 5

The Dow Jones industrial average records its strongest one-day gain since September, more than 320 points.

July 6

Gunmen assassinate Afghan Vice President Abdul Qadir, key to U.S.-backed efforts to stabilize the war-fractured nation.

July 7

Afghanistan's vice president is buried with full military honors one day after being assassinated. Flooding forces hundreds more evacuations in Texas. Corporate misconduct is the hot topic in Washington: a House committee holds a hearing on WorldCom and President Bush puts forth his ideas for tougher penalties on executives.

July 8

WorldCom and its former auditors clash over responsibility for nearly $4 billion in accounting improprieties. High-ranking Israeli and Palestinian cabinet members meet face-to-face for the first time in months.

July 10

Senate approves harsh new penalties for corporate fraud. Dow Jones industrials lose more than 280 points and close below 9,000 for first time since October.

July 11

President Bush's bioethics advisers reject permanent ban on cloning for biomedical research. Triple-digit temperatures bake much of West for third straight day.

July 12

Senators ban personal loans from companies to their top officials. U.N. Security Council agrees to exempt U.S. peacekeepers from war crimes prosecution for a year, ending a threat to U.N. peacekeeping operations.

July 13

High health care costs is the main topic of discussion by the nation's governors at their summer meeting.

July 14

A man tries to assassinate French President Jacques Chirac during Bastille Day parade.

July 15

John Walker Lindh pleads guilty to two felonies in deal sparing him life in prison.

July 16

Irish Republican Army issues unprecedented apology for killing hundreds of civilians in bomb blasts or attacks over last 30 years.

July 18

Zacarias Moussaoui tries to plead guilty to charges that could bring death penalty, but judge insists he take time to think about it.

July 19

Dow Jones industrials dip below their post-terrorist attack lows in 390-point selloff. A Colorado company asks Americans nationwide to destroy 19 million pounds of hamburger meat because of E. coli concerns.

July 23

Thousands of Palestinians march to bury their dead after an Israeli airstrike kills a top Hamas leader and 14 civilians, including nine children.

July 24

The House expels convicted Ohio Rep. James Traficant, only the second time a sitting member has been banished since the Civil War. Nine coal miners are trapped in a flooded mine in western Pennsylvania. The Dow soars more than 480 points.

July 25

Congress sends legislation to President Bush creating stiff penalties for corporate fraud and document shredding. Zacarias Moussaoui declares he's guilty of conspiracy in the Sept. 11 attacks, then withdraws the plea.

July 27

An air force fighter jet slices through crowd of spectators at Kiev air show, killing at least 78 and injuring 115 others.

July 28

The nine trapped coal miners are rescued. Speaking publicly on church abuse scandal for the first time, Pope John Paul II tells young Catholics that sexual abuse of children by priests "fills us all with a deep sense of sadness and shame." But he urges them to support the vast majority of priests who do good.

July 29

Amtrak train derails outside Washington, injuring 90.

July 30

President Bush signs into law the most far-reaching government crackdown on business fraud since the Depression.

July 31

Bomb kills seven, injures more than 80 at Hebrew University cafeteria. An alleged Russian crime boss is arrested on charges he fixed figure skating results at Salt Lake City Winter Games.

Aug. 1

Two former WorldCom executives arrested on charges of falsifying the books at the now-bankrupt long-distance company.

Aug. 2

Federal judge rules United States must reveal names of people detained in Sept. 11 investigation.

Aug. 4

Palestinian suicide bomber blows up bus in northern Israel during rush hour, killing himself and nine passengers.

Aug. 5

Israeli helicopters fire missiles at a suspected weapons factory in Gaza City following attacks that killed 13 people in 24 hours.

Aug. 6

One-year-old Guatemalan twins joined at the head are separated.

Aug. 11

US Airways files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Aug. 13

American Airlines says it will eliminate 7,000 jobs and cut flights in hopes of saving millions of dollars. Tens of thousands of Czechs flee their historic capital as torrential rains flood Vltava River. Death toll from flooding in Europe reaches 88.

Aug. 16

Baseball's union sets Aug. 30 strike date.

Aug. 19

Israeli troops begin withdrawing from Bethlehem as Israel and the Palestinians take steps to carry out first security agreement reached without U.S. help in nearly two years of fighting.

Aug. 21

A neighbor is convicted of kidnapping and killing 7-year-old Danielle van Dam in California.

Aug. 28

Federal grand juries charge six men with conspiring to support Al Qaeda's terrorism. Prosecutors indict two WorldCom Inc. executives, including former chief financial officer Scott Sullivan.

Aug. 29

Military says U.S. soldiers will be screened for psychological problems before leaving Afghanistan and commanders will watch for symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Aug. 30

With just hours to spare, major league baseball averts a strike.

Sept. 3

Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld says Bush administration has secret information supporting its claims that Saddam Hussein is close to developing nuclear weapons.

Sept. 6

Jury convicts 13- and 14-year-old brothers of murdering their sleeping father with a baseball bat.

Sept. 7

President Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair say the world must confront Saddam Hussein.

Sept. 8

Government says violent crime rate dropped by 10 percent last year, reaching lowest level since 1973.

Sept. 10

Bush administration raises nationwide terror alert to second-highest level, closing nine U.S. embassies overseas and increasing security at federal buildings and landmarks in America. Florida's first big test of its new elections system turns into a nightmare as polling stations open late and problems crop up with new touchscreen voting machines.

Sept. 11

With words of comfort and resolve, President Bush joins the nation in remembering "how it began and who fell first" in the terrorist attacks one year earlier. Defiant Palestinian legislators force the resignation of Yasser Arafat's 21-member Cabinet, delivering the biggest political blow to the Palestinian leader since he returned from exile eight years ago.

Sept. 12

State election officials say Bill McBride finished 8,196 votes ahead of Janet Reno in Florida's bungled Democratic primary for governor. Three former Tyco International executives are charged with looting the conglomerate of hundreds of millions of dollars.

Sept. 14

President Bush says United States is willing take Iraq on alone if necessary.

Sept. 17

North Korean leader Kim Jong Il admits that North Korean spies abducted about a dozen Japanese decades ago and says at least four are still alive.

Sept. 18

Wartime collaborator Maurice Papon walks out of prison and into a storm of public outrage after judges rule him too old and sick to finish his 10-year sentence for helping send Jews to Nazi death camps.

Sept. 19

Federal scientists urge stronger warning labels on acetaminophen. President Bush asks Congress for authority to "use all means," including military force if necessary, to disarm and overthrow Saddam Hussein if he does not comply with U.N. demands.

Sept. 25

Tropical Storm Isidore drenches Gulf Coast.

Sept. 26

Former controller of WorldCom pleads guilty to securities fraud charges, saying he was instructed by senior management to falsify records. In Nebraska, three men kill four bank employees and a customer in robbery.

Sept. 28

Finance leaders direct International Monetary Fund to work on new approach to resolving global debt crises.

Sept. 30

Cargo ships wait offshore after longshoremen are locked out in contract dispute.

Oct. 1

Sen. Robert Torricelli ends his scandal-tainted re-election campaign after the deadline to issue a replacement, resulting in court struggle to get new candidate on the ballot.

Oct. 2

The New Jersey Supreme Court rules unanimously that the Democratic Party can replace Sen. Robert Torricelli on November ballot. Enron executive Andrew Fastow is charged with inflating the energy giant's profits and siphoning off millions for himself.

Oct. 3.

Five people are gunned down in the Washington suburbs in 16 hours, beginning the hunt for the "Beltway Sniper." Hurricane Lili strikes Louisiana coast.

Oct. 4

American Taliban John Walker Lindh receives 20-year sentence. Hailing a "defining day" in the fight against terrorism, Attorney General John Ashcroft announces arrests of four people in Oregon and Michigan on charges of conspiring to wage war on the United States and support Al Qaeda.

Oct. 8

Two Americans and a Japanese win the Nobel Prize in physics.

Oct. 9

Pentagon acknowledges some soldiers engaged in chemical and biological weapons testing in the 1960s may not have been fully informed.

Oct. 10

West Coast longshoremen return to ports crammed with cargo after lockout that ends after president intervenes.

Oct. 11

Congress approves use of America's military might against Iraq. Former President Jimmy Carter wins Nobel Peace Prize.

Oct. 12

Bomb destroys a nightclub on the island of Bali, killing nearly 200 people and injuring scores of others.

Oct. 15

ImClone Systems founder Sam Waksal decides to plead guilty in the biotech company's insider trading scandal.

Oct. 18

A judge throws out convictions of two teenage brothers convicted in fatal bludgeoning of their father.

Oct. 19

Former York, Pa., mayor is acquitted and two other men are convicted in the shotgun slaying of a young black woman during 1969 race riots.

Oct. 23

Gunmen seize crowded Moscow theater, taking hundreds hostage. President Bush signs biggest military spending increase since Ronald Reagan's administration -- a $355.5 billion package.

Oct. 24

Authorities arrest Army veteran John Allen Muhammad and a teenager in connection with the Washington-area sniper attacks. The two ultimately are accused of shooting 18 people, killing 13 and wounding five in Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C.

Oct. 25

Sen. Paul Wellstone dies in plane crash just 11 days before the election.

Oct. 26

Commandos striking behind clouds of disabling gas bring a sudden bloody end to the hostage nightmare in Moscow.

Oct. 28

An American diplomat is assassinated in front of his house in Amman, Jordan, in the first such attack on a U.S. diplomat in decades.

Oct. 29

Federal government files charges against sniper suspect John Allen Muhammad under 1946 extortion law that could bring the death penalty.

Oct. 30

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's broad-based coalition collapses when Cabinet ministers from the moderate Labor Party resign in dispute over funding for Jewish settlements.

Oct. 31

Securities and Exchange Commission orders investigation into allegations that Chairman Harvey Pitt concealed information on corporate ties of William Webster, his choice to head a new accounting oversight board.

Nov. 1

Federal judge approves most provisions of antitrust settlement between Microsoft Corp. and Justice Department.

Nov. 4

U.S. forces kill a top associate of Usama bin Laden in missile strike.

Nov. 5

Republicans and Democrats battle for control of Congress in midterm elections clouded by threat of war and shaky economy.

Nov. 6

President Bush and GOP savor sweeping election victories and begin sketching an agenda for a Republican-controlled Congress. Federal Reserve reduces a key interest rate by one-half of a percentage point as the central bank tries to keep America's stop-and-go recovery from stalling.

Nov. 10

Bush administration officials promise "zero-tolerance" if Saddam Hussein refuses to comply with international calls to disarm.

Nov. 11

Residents clean up after twisters and thunderstorms kill at least 35 people in five states.

Nov. 12

In an audiotaped message, a voice purported to be that of Usama bin Laden praises terrorist strikes in Bali and Moscow and threatens Western nations over any attack on Iraq.

Nov. 13

Saying Iraq is seeking the "path of peace," Saddam Hussein's government accepts stringent U.N. resolution calling for return of international weapons inspectors. U.S. Roman Catholic bishops approve compromise sex abuse policy after Vatican demands changes.

Nov. 15

Palestinian militants rake Israeli troops and settlers with gunfire in an ambush, killing 12 Israelis and wounding 15 in Hebron.

Nov. 18

U.N. arms inspectors return to Iraq after four-year hiatus, calling on Saddam Hussein's government to cooperate with their search for weapons of mass destruction.

Nov. 19

Oil tanker carrying 20 million gallons of fuel oil breaks in two and sinks in Atlantic Ocean, threatening environmental catastrophe along scenic Spanish coastline.

Nov. 20

Early testing shows experimental vaccine to be 100 percent effective against virus that causes cervical cancer.

Nov. 21

U.S. counterterrorism officials interrogate a newly captured top operative of Usama bin Laden.

Nov. 22

Russian President Vladimir Putin tells President Bush the United States should not wage war alone against Iraq, and questions whether Pakistan and Saudi Arabia are doing enough to fight terrorism. The Bush administration eases clean air rules to allow utilities, refineries and manufacturers to avoid having to install new anti-pollution equipment when they modernize their plants.

Nov. 25

President Bush signs legislation creating Department of Homeland Security. Federal authorities break up identity theft case and charge three men with stealing credit information from more than 30,000 people.

Nov. 26

Two leading Palestinian militants are killed in Israeli air strike in Jenin refugee camp.

Nov. 27

President Bush appoints former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger to lead investigation into why government failed to foil Sept. 11 attacks.

Nov. 28

In twin attacks reminiscent of Al Qaeda's 1998 assault on two U.S. embassies in East Africa, suicide bombers in Kenya kill 12 people at an Israeli-owned beach hotel and two missiles narrowly miss an airliner carrying home Israelis who had been on holiday.

Nov. 29

Specials and marketing gimmicks draw bargain hunters to stores in kickoff to holiday shopping season. A once-massive federal antitrust lawsuit against Microsoft shrinks to just one state as others announce they will accept settlement.

Nov. 30

International weapons hunters pay unannounced visit to a military post previously declared "sensitive" and restricted by Iraqi government.

Dec. 1

Fire kills 47, injures 12 in overcrowded Caracas, Venezuela, nightclub.

Dec. 2

Statement attributed to al-Qaida claims responsibility for car-bombing of Israeli-owned hotel in Kenya and attempt to shoot down an Israeli airliner, both on Nov. 28. Supreme Court agrees to decide if minorities can be given a boost to get into universities.

Dec. 3

Boston Archdiocese files reveal allegations that priests sexually abused teenage girls, used cocaine and other drugs, and that one had affair with female parishioner.

Dec. 5

Bush administration says it has solid evidence that Iraq has weapons of mass destruction. One of the worst ice- and snowstorms in years leaves millions without electricity in the Carolinas.

Dec. 6

President Bush pushes Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill and economic adviser Larry Lindsey from their posts. Figures show nation's unemployment rate soars to 6 percent in November.

Dec. 7

Iraq hands over its long-awaited arms declaration to United Nations, denying it has doomsday weapons; Saddam Hussein grudgingly apologizes to Kuwait for 1990 invasion.

Dec. 8

President Bush's mid-term election muscle fails in Louisiana, as voters re-elect Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu and limit GOP's Senate majority to 51 seats.

Dec. 9

President Bush selects railroad executive John W. Snow as Treasury secretary. United Airlines files biggest bankruptcy in aviation history after losing $4 billion in last two years.

Dec. 10

President Bush selects William H. Donaldson, an investment banker with ties to Wall Street and the Bush family, as chairman of besieged Securities and Exchange Commission. Former President Jimmy Carter accepts Nobel Peace Prize for his diplomacy in the Middle East in the '70s. Senate Republican leader Trent Lott apologizes for saying country would have been better off if Strom Thurmond had won the presidency when he ran on a segregationist ticket in 1948.

Dec. 11

Intelligence agencies failed to protect Americans from Sept. 11 hijackers because they were poorly organized, poorly equipped and slow to pursue clues that might have prevented the attacks, lawmakers said as they completed their investigation.

Dec. 12

President Bush says Sen. Trent Lott's endorsement of half-century-old segregation policies "is offensive and it is wrong."

Dec. 13

Cardinal Bernard Law resigns as Boston archbishop because of priest sex abuse scandal. Senate Republican leader Trent Lott apologizes again but rejects Democratic calls for resignation from his leadership post. Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger steps down as chairman of a panel investigating Sept. 11 attacks,

Dec. 15

Former Vice President Al Gore says he won't run for president in 2004.

Dec. 16

Threatened New York City transit strike averted as negotiators reach tentative agreement.

Dec. 17

Insurance and finance company Conseco Inc., facing $6.5 billion in debt and a federal investigation of its accounting practices, files for Chapter 11 protection in the third-largest bankruptcy in U.S. history.

Dec. 18

Sen. Lincoln Chafee becomes first Republican senator to call for replacing Trent Lott as the party's leader.

Dec. 19

Secretary of State Colin Powell terms Iraq in "material breach" of U.N. disarmament resolution. After prosecutor cites new DNA evidence, judge throws out convictions of five young men in 1989 attack on a Central Park jogger who was raped and left for dead.

Dec. 20

Trent Lott resigns as Senate Republican leader two weeks after igniting a political firestorm with racially charged remarks. Ten of the nation's biggest Wall Street brokerages agree to pay nearly $1.5 billion to settle conflict-of-interest allegations.

Dec. 21

Military helicopter crash in Afghanistan kills seven German peacekeepers aboard, two children on ground; U.S. soldier dies in combat.

Dec. 22

North Korea says it has begun removing U.N. seals and surveillance cameras from nuclear facilities that U.S. officials say could yield weapons within months.

Dec. 23

Senate Republicans elect Tennessee's Bill Frist as their new leader, ending political firestorm that brought down Trent Lott and threatened to derail GOP efforts to reach out to minorities.

Dec. 24

North Korean officials begin repair work at a nuclear reactor frozen in 1994, a U.N. agency says.

Dec. 25

Grenade kills a girl and two other people worshipping in Pakistan church, bombs explode at church in India, protesters block church doors in Yugoslavia. Major storm makes for white Christmas in parts of U.S.; ultimately blamed for at least 23 deaths during the week.

Dec. 26

West Virginia man winner of $314.9 million Powerball lottery jackpot believed to be the richest single-ticket prize in history.

Dec. 27

North Korea orders expulsion of U.N. nuclear inspectors, says it will reactivate lab that could be used to extract weapons-grade plutonium. Suicide bombers in capital of Chechnya set off two explosions that shatter headquarters of Kremlin-backed administration and kill dozens. Religious sect that believes in space aliens claims to have produced world's first cloned baby, offers no immediate DNA evidence as proof.

Dec. 29

Mwai Kibaki and his opposition alliance win landslide victory in Kenyan elections, breaking the ruling party's 39-year grip on power.

Dec. 30

Suspected extremist kills three U.S. missionaries, wounds another at a Baptist hospital in Yemen

Dec. 31

Asia marks New Year amid terror fears; bomb blast in Philippines kills at least four.