Year 2009

The year 2009 is now coming to a close, and it's time to take a look back
over the past 12 months through photographs. Historic elections were held in
Iran, India and the United States, some wars wound down while others
escalated, China turned 60, and the Berlin Wall was remembered 20 years
after it came down. Each photo tells its own tale, weaving together into the
larger story of 2009. This is a multi-entry story, 120 photographs over
three days. Please watch for part 2 and part 3 tomorrow and the next day.

Barack H. Obama is sworn in as the 44th president of the United States as
his wife Michelle Obama holds the Bible and their daughters Malia Obama and
Sasha Obama look on, on the West Front of the Capitol January 20, 2009 in
Washington, DC.

Vertie Hodge, 74, weeps during an Inauguration Day party near Martin Luther
King, Jr. Blvd. in Houston on Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2009 after President Barack
Obama delivered his speech after taking the oath of office, becoming the
first black president in the United States. (

A group of Common Cranes gather in dawn light, on their night-roost on a
lake in the German state of Brandenburg, close to Berlin September 26, 2009.
From September to November tens of thousands of Cranes use the rural area
close to the German Capital for a stopover during their migration from
Scandinavia and Eastern Europe to their wintering quarters in Spain.

Soldiers from the U.S. Army First Battalion, 26th Infantry take defensive
positions at firebase Restrepo after receiving fire from Taliban positions
in the Korengal Valley of Afghanistan's Kunar Province, in this May 11, 2009
file photo. Spc. Zachery Boyd of Fort Worth, TX, far left was wearing "I
love NY" boxer shorts after rushing from his sleeping quarters to join his
fellow platoon members. From far right is Spc. Cecil Montgomery of Many, LA
and Jordan Custer of Spokane, WA, center.

Airline passengers wait to be rescued on the wings of a US Airways Airbus
320 jetliner that safely ditched in the frigid waters of the Hudson River in
New York, after a flock of birds knocked out both its engines on January 15,

A student receives a H1N1 vaccine injection at a hospital in Suining,
Sichuan province November 11, 2009.

A Iranian riot-police officer sprays tear-gas at a supporter of defeated
Iranian presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi attacking him with a
police stick during riots in Tehran on June 13, 2009.

A frame grab from YouTube shows a woman identified as Neda Agha-Soltan lying
on the ground after being shot in the chest in Tehran, Iran June 20, 2009.
Iranians on social networking sites called for mourning for "Neda", a young
woman shot dead on Saturday.

Fishermen row a boat in the algae-filled Chaohu Lake in Hefei, Anhui
province, China on June 19, 2009. China invested 51 billion yuan ($7.4
billion) towards the construction of 2,712 projects for the treatment of
eight rivers and lakes in 2009, Xinhua News Agency reported.

The moon passes between the sun and the earth, nearing a total solar
eclipse, as seen in Changsha, Hunan province, China on July 22, 2009.

A girl displaced from her home by a huge tidal wave caused by Cyclone Aila,
stands in front of her temporary shelter on a river dam in Satkhira in
southwestern Bangladesh June 2, 2009.

A cone of moisture surrounds part of the Ares I-X rocket during lift off
Wednesday, Oct. 28, 2009, on a sub-orbital test flight from the Kennedy
Space Center's Launch Pad 39-B in Cape Canaveral, Fla.

Riot police contain supporters of Mozambique's national soccer team after
their World Cup 2010 qualifying soccer match against Kenya in Maputo,
September 6, 2009.

Chicago White Sox pitcher Scott Linebrink delivers a pitch against the
Chicago Cubs during the fifth inning of a spring training baseball game in
Las Vegas, in this March 5, 2009 photo.

A man walks his dog through Observatory Hill near Sydney on September 23,
2009 as Australia's biggest city is shrouded in an eerie blanket of red
dust. Sydney's cars and buildings turned orange as strong winds blew desert
dust across the city, snarling commuter and air transport and prompting a
warning for children and the elderly to stay indoors.

Claire Williams, right, and Cori Giroux kiss as they wed at the stroke of
midnight in South Burlington, Vermont, on September 1, 2009 - the first day
that Vermont's marriage equality law went into effect.

Brazilian Formula One driver Felipe Massa of Scuderia Ferrari is carried
from his car after being struck in the head by a piece of bodywork that fell
from another car during the qualifying session at the Hungaroring race track
in Mogyorod near Budapest on July 25, 2009. Massa was airlifted to hospital
and underwent surgery on his fractured skull.

French aerobatic team "Cartouche Dore" flies in formation near
Aix-en-Provence, southern France.

The sun shines on the skin of a hippo in its enclosure in the Zoo in Berlin,
Friday, April 3, 2009.

AP photographer Emilio Morenatti takes pictures as he is carried on a
stretcher out of the University of Maryland Medical Center's R Adams Cowley
Shock Trauma Center to be transferred to the Kernan Orthopaedics and
Rehabilitation Hospital in Baltimore, Tuesday Aug. 25, 2009. Morenatti,
whose left foot was amputated after a bomb blast in Afghanistan, was
transferred Tuesday to a rehabilitation hospital in Baltimore, where he will
be fitted for a prosthesis.

A rescuer holding a two-year-old child tries to close a window on the girl's
suicidal father who is trying to jump from the eighth floor of an apartment
block in Chengdu, Sichuan province, July 7, 2009. Rescuers managed to
distract the man while another snatched the girl and brought her to safety.
The man, who later tested positive for drugs, was arrested and taken into
custody, according to China Daily.

Blood and bullet holes are seen on a car door after an unidentified man was
murdered in Tijuana, northern Mexico, Wednesday, Aug. 19, 2009.

Demonstrators charge through a street in London during protests to coincide
with Thursday's G20 summit meeting April 1, 2009. Demonstrators clashed with
riot police and smashed bank windows in Britain's financial centre on
Wednesday ahead of a G20 meeting in protest against a system they said had
robbed the poor to benefit the rich.

Australian surfer Mark Visser surfs an 11 m (36 ft) wave at Cow Bombie, near
the West Australian town of Gracetown, 280km (174 mi) south of Perth,
Australia in this photograph obtained September 28, 2009. The organisers
claim that Visser had caught one of the biggest waves in Australia for 2009.

Rows of 7.62 mm bullets are shown, ready to be shot by Afghan National Army
recruits as part of their daily training at the Kabul Military Training
Center in Kabul, Afghanistan on July 19, 2009. A massive effort is underway
to train thousands of new troops to join the fight against the vicious
Taliban-led insurgency. But the task is hobbled by the lack of mentors and
high levels of illiteracy among the recruits.

A woman shows her ink-marked finger after casting her vote at a polling
station in Sonapur, about 50 km (31 miles) from Guwahati, the major city of
India's northeastern state of Assam April 23, 2009. Millions of Indians,
including Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, voted in the largest democratic
election in the world.

Residents stand on electric wires to stay on high ground while others wade
in neck-deep flood waters caused by Typhoon Ondoy in Cainta Rizal, east of
Manila September 27, 2009.

A Dog belonging to Rhonda O'Hearn of Sandown, New Hampshire waits before the
start of a 60-mile race at the Can-Am Crown sled dog races in Fort Kent,
Maine on Saturday, February 28, 2009.

A view of Santa Maria Paganica church, severely damaged after an earthquake
on April 7, 2009 in the Abruzzo capital L'Aquila, Italy.

Handout picture released June 8, 2009 by the Brazilian Navy showing divers
recovering a huge part of the rudder of the Air France A330 aircraft lost in
midflight over the Atlantic ocean June 1st. At the time, seventeen bodies
had been recovered from the Atlantic where an Air France jet came down.

A Pakistani displaced boy from Swat valley sleeps under a mosquito net
outside his tent at the Jalozai refugee camp near Peshawar, Pakistan,
Tuesday, May 26, 2009.

Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) sailors march pass Tiananmen Square
during the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the founding of the
People's Republic of China on October 1, 2009 in Beijing, China.

The body of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) leader Vellupillai
Prabhakaran is carried on a stretcher through a group of Sri Lankan soldiers
at Nanthikadal lagoon, near the town of Mullaittivu in northern Sri Lanka
May 19, 2009. Sri Lanka's army chief said Tamil Tiger leader Prabhakaran's
body was found on Tuesday, and Sri Lankan TV stations aired video of what
appeared to be his corpse, with the top of its head blown off.

An explosion is seen as missiles fired from an Israeli aircraft fall towards
a target in the northern Gaza Strip, as seen from the Israeli side of the
border, Thursday, Jan. 1, 2009.

A mental patient named Totok reacts as he is given a shower at the Galuh
foundation house in East Bekasi, outskirt of Jakarta, Indonesia on October
23, 2009. The Galuh foundation house has housed more than 285
underprivileged mental patients since it was founded in 1982 by Gendu

A recently constructed section of the controversial US-Mexico border fence
expansion project crosses previously pristine desert sands at sunrise on
March 14, 2009 between Yuma, Arizona and Calexico, California. The new
barrier between the US and Mexico stands 15 feet tall and sits on top of the
sand so it can lifted by a machine and repositioned whenever the migrating
desert dunes begin to bury it. The almost seven miles of floating fence cost
about $6 million per mile to build.

Military and forensic experts inspect the body of a man who was killed
outside a nightclub in the border city of Ciudad Juarez, Mexico on August
31, 2009. A man was handcuffed to a fence and shot several times by drug
hitmen outside a nightclub, according to local media. The assailants also
left a warning message, known as "narco mensaje", at the site of the

A view taken from the International Space Station of the Sarychev Volcano on
the Kuril Islands in an early stage of eruption on June 12, 2009.

Sixteen-month-old Aubrey Melton reaches for her father SSG Josh Melton as
she views his remains with her mother Larissa before his funeral service
June 27, 2009 in Germantown, Illinois. SSG Melton, who was serving in
Afghanistan with the Illinois National Guard, was killed in Kandahar during
an IED attack June 19.

Young revellers run from the "Fire Bull", a man carrying a metal structure
loaded with fireworks, at the San Fermin festival in Pamplona, Spain on July
12, 2009.

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