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2000, THE YEAR IN PICTURES

MILLENNIUM MADNESS

No, that's not chad falling on Mizumi Malfitamo and her husband, Francesco, in New York's Times Square. New Year's 2000 came in with much fanfare, but virtually none of the catastrophes predicted around the world. Planes flew, electricity flowed and, as always, so did the champagne.

POPE IN THE HOLY LAND

He wanted to live to lead his church into the next millennium. Pope John Paul II did that and brought some of the few days of peace the Middle East saw this year. During a six-day visit in March the pope visited the Western Wall and some of Christianity's holiest sites.

CONCORDE'S FIREY CRASH

A set back for high technology. The Concorde could fly higher, faster, but not cheaper or safer. The crash near Paris on July 25 of this Air France Concorde that killed all 109 people aboard quickly led to the grounding of a fleet of planes that never lived up to the promise of transforming intercontinental travel. The planes proved too expensive and, as this engine fire showed, not safe enough to replace larger, slower, but more cost-effective planes.

SEN. CLINTON

No, that's not chad raining down on Hillary and Chelsea Clinton, either. After eight years of fighting against Republican attacks and surviving her husband's world famous indiscretions, the first lady won a consolation prize of sorts - the U.S. Senate seat held by Sen. Patrick Moynihan. The year ended with an $8-million book deal for Mrs. Clinton and a closely watched house hunt throughout the Washington D.C. area.

RIVER OF FLAME

Dry weather, lightning strikes and questionable forest management spawned blazes that kept firefighters racing throughout the western U.S. Even amid nature's destruction, though, scenes of beauty could be found, like this pair of cow elk standing in Montana's Bitterroot River as the hills burn.

MIDEAST TURMOIL

And then there was Jerusalem. Peace prospects in the Middle East moved along nicely until only the hardest issues remained. Violence returned quickly including this scene caught by video cameras of Jamal Aldura trying to protect his 12-year-old son Mohammed. Moments later, the boy slumped to the ground, fatally hit.

ATTACK ON THE USS "COLE'

A suicide bomber almost sank the destroyer USS Cole in Aden, Yemen, on Oct. 20, killing 17 sailors, injuring 39 and spurring a worldwide investigation to find the mastermind behind this attack.

A WATERY GRAVE

The decline in post-Soviet Russia continued on the land and sea. An explosion aboard the Russian nuclear submarine Kursk sank the vessel Aug. 12 with 118 officers and sailors aboard. The official reaction to the tragedy further undermined Russians' faith in their own government. On Aug. 24, relatives of the crew tossed flowers from a ship in the Barents Sea.

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