Information for the Year 2006

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  • Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon suffers a massive stroke; he is replaced by acting prime minister Ehud Olmert (Jan. 5).
  • Militant group Hamas wins 74 of 132 seats in Palestinian legislative elections (Jan. 25). Israeli leaders vote to withhold $50 million per month (Feb. 19).
  • In Iraq, a coalition of Shiites and Kurds dominates the new government. Secretarian violence wracks the country, killing tens of thousands, with fatality rates rising throughout the year; some observers describe the situation as a civil war between Sunnis and Shiites. Several internal reports characterize the U.S. military efforts as failing.
  • After weeks of crippling student-led protests, French president Jacques Chirac repeals a new labor law that would have made it easier for employers to fire workers under the age of 26 (Apr. 10).
  • In defiance of the U.N. Security Council, Iran president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad announces that Iran has successfully enriched uranium (Apr. 11). The International Atomic Energy Agency reports to the Security Council that it has found traces of highly enriched uranium at Iran's Natanz facility (July 31). U.N. Security Council resolution bans the Iranian import and export of materials and technology used to enrich uranium (Dec. 23).
  • North Korea test fires missiles over the Sea of Japan (July 4) and explodes a nuclear device in the North Korean mountains (Oct. 9). The U.N. Security Council votes in favor of a resolution banning the sale of materials to North Korea that could be used to produce weapons (Oct. 14). North Korea agrees to resume disarmament talks with China, Russia, the U.S., and South Korea (Oct. 31).
  • Saddam Hussein is convicted of crimes against humanity by an Iraqi court (Nov. 5), and hanged in Baghdad. A witness videotapes the hanging using a cell phone and captures the chaos that unfolds as Shiite guards taunt Hussein (Dec. 30).
  • Population:   6.5 billion
  • Nobel Peace Prize:  Muhammad Yunus (Bangladesh) and the Grameen Bank of Bangladesh
  • President Bush signs a law renewing the Patriot Act, including a signing statement stating that he does not consider himself bound by its requirement to tell Congress how the law is being used (Mar. 9).
  • House releases a report on the response to Hurricane Katrina, assigning blame on all levels of government (Feb. 15).
  • The Supreme Court rules that military tribunals cannot be set up to try prisoners in the absence of Congressional authorization and that prisoners are entitled to fair trials under the Geneva Conventions (June 29).
  • Democrats gain control of both houses of Congress in the midterm elections (Nov. 7).
  • John Bolton steps down as the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations when it becomes clear that he does not have enough votes in the Senate to win confirmation (Dec. 4).
  • President:  George W. Bush
  • Vice President:  Richard Cheney
  • Population:   300 million
  • Life expectancy:  79.3 years
  • US GDP (2006 dollars):  $12,964.6 billion
  • Federal spending:  $2,655.4 billion
  • Federal debt:   $8,680 billion
  • Median Household Income(current dollars): $69,716
  • Consumer Price Index:   201.6
  • Unemployment:   4.6%
  • Cost of a first-class stamp:   $0.39
  • Super Bowl  Pittsburgh Steelers defeated Seattle Seahawks (SCORE 2110)
  • World Series of Baseball  St. Louis Cardinals defeated Detroit Tigers
  • National Basketball Association Championship  Miami defeated Dallas
  • National Hockey League Stanley Cup  Carolina Hurricanes defeated Edmonton Oilers
  • Women Wimbledon Tennis  Amelie Mauresmo defeated Justine Henin-Hardenne (26, 63, 64)
  • Men Wimbledon Tennis   Roger Federer defeated Rafael Nadal (60, 76 [75], 67 [27], 63.)
  • Kentucky Derby Horse Race Champion  Barbaro
  • National College Athletic Association Basketball Championship  Florida defeated UCLA (SCORE 7357)
  • National College Athletic Association Football Champions   Flordia (13-1-0)
  • The 2006 Winter Olympics were held at Torino, Italy
  • The Crocodile Hunter died after being stung in the chest by a stingray. Died: Australia, Sept. 4, 2006
  • Rod Stewart releases first rock album in over 8 years.
  • Playstation 3 is released before Christmas
  • Americans report that they get more than 50% of their information from the internet rather that cable news.
  • Academy Award, Best Picture:  Crash
  • Grammy Award - Record of the Year  Boulevard of Broken Dreams by Green Day
  • Emmy Award - Best Television Comedy   The Office," NBC
  • Miss America:  Jennifer Berry, Tulsa, Oklahoma
  • After a seven-year, three-billion-mile expedition, NASA's Stardust spacecraft capsule lands in the Arizona desert with particles captured from Comet Wild-2 (Jan. 15).
  • New Horizons spacecraft is launched. It will travel three billion miles over nine years to study Pluto's atmosphere and surface (Jan. 19).
  • A $415 million, eight-year federal study finds that a low-fat diet does not decrease the risk of heart disease, cancer, or stroke. Many in the medical community call the results stunning (Feb. 8).
  • Journal Science reports that the spacecraft Cassini has taken pictures of what look like water geysers on Enceladus, a moon of Saturn (March 10).
  • A group of scientists report finding the fossil of a 375-million-year-old fish that has early signs of limbs. The fossil suggests the missing link between fish and land animals (April 6).
  • The International Astronomical Union votes to redefine the solar system, and Pluto loses its status as a planet. It is reclassified as a dwarf planet (Aug. 24).

 

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