1. The failure of the European Constitution. By voting against the European Constitutional Treaty at a national referendum, France caused heated debates on the future of the European Union.
2. A terrorist act in London overshadowed the G8 summit in Gleneagles, Scotland, and spoiled Britons' joy over London's election as the host city for the 2012 Olympics. Four explosive devices went off in the underground and a bus, leaving 50 people dead and about 700 injured.
3. The death of Pope John Paul II marked the end of an era in the life of the Roman-Catholic Church and modern history.
4. The outbreaks of interethnic violence in wealthy European countries and Australia.
5. The disengagement of Israeli troops and settlements from the Gaza Strip and the West Bank caused a split in Israeli society and made Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, who once initiated the creation of these settlements, quit the ruling party.
6. Hurricane Katrina in the United States showed that the world's leading super power was unprepared to deal with the aftermath of the natural disaster. The hurricane destroyed the cradle of jazz, New Orleans.
7. Talk of a possible civil war resumed in Lebanon for the first time since 1975 following the assassination of Lebanon's former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri and the withdrawal of Syrian troops from the country. An international commission reported to the UN in October 2005 that senior officials in Syria and Lebanon could have had a hand in the assassination.
8. Latin America "tilted to the left" a great deal in 2005. Venezuela, Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina and Bolivia formed a new political alliance based on anti-American sentiments. Ultra radical leftist politician Evo Morales was elected president of Bolivia. The United States failed to create a free trade zone in the region.
9. The trial of former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein triggered debate about whether convicting the dictator would help bring stability or cause a new wave of violence in Iraq.
10. Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadi-Nejad's anti-Semitic statements outraged the world and complicated Tehran's efforts to prevent its "nuclear file" from being handed over to the UN Security Council.
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