The Year That Was…

Whistleblower stranded

Edward Snowden began the year as a guest of Moscow Airport, after the US tore up his passport.
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Turmoil in Egypt

Unsettled by the direction that the Muslim Brotherhood was taking, the Egyptian military deposed President Mohamed Morsi, leaving Egypt in a state of civil unrest.
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Cruise Captain changed course

Francesco Schettino, captain of the Costa Concordia cruise ship, goes on trial in Italy for manslaughter and abandoning ship.
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Sports highlights and lowlights

Sport continued to deliver for Australians, both at home and on the world stage, but not always in a good way.
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A King is born

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, gave birth to a healthy baby boy, George Alexander Louis. His Royal Highness Prince George of Cambridge is third in line to the British throne.
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Syrian crisis worsens

The UN announced that the Syrian civil war had killed more than 100,000. Beginning in 2011, this conflict is now regarded as the worst humanitarian disaster of our time.
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RIP Patrick

Australia went into mourning when Offspring’s adored anaesthetist Dr Patrick Reid succumbed to a subdural haematoma, following an apparently minor encounter with a slow-moving car.
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‘Blade runner’ shame

South African track star, Oscar Pistorius was charged with murdering his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, after shooting four times through a locked bathroom door. It was Valentine’s Day.
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WikiLeaks leaker goes to jail

US Army private Chelsea Manning (formerly Bradley Manning) was sentenced to 35 years in jail for providing classified material to WikiLeaks.
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Change of government

Tony Abbott became Australia’s 28th Prime Minister in Australia’s 44th parliament and declared his government would ‘be competent and trustworthy’.
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Russians jail Hobart activist

Colin Russell, an activist aboard Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise protesting Russian oil exploration in the Arctic, was arrested at gunpoint and charged with ‘hooliganism’.
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‘I quit’

YouTuber Marina Shifrin got the world’s attention when she posted ‘I quit – an interpretive dance for my boss’.
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America stops

America ground to a halt when the Republican House of Representatives refused to pass the Democrat government’s budget.
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Chopper Read silenced

The most colourful career criminal since Ned Kelly, the earless Mark ‘Chopper’ Read was never shy about self-promotion.
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Equal right to love equally

Fed up with the Government's serial inability to legislate for same-sex marriage, the ACT went ahead and did it anyway. It lasted five days.
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Ballot papers vanish

Red faces all round in Western Australia when it was discovered that 1375 ballot papers had gone missing from the 2013 half-Senate election recount.
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Vale Mandela 1918–2013

The world mourned the loss of Nelson Mandela, the remarkable man who ended apartheid and will forever be a symbol of global peacemaking.
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Australia wins the ashes

After a 15-year drought, Australians rejoiced when we crushed England in the third test match of the Ashes series at the WACA.
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Aussie journo arrested in Egypt

Australian Peter Greste was arrested in Cairo, accused of reporting news ‘damaging to national security’, and imprisoned in solitary confinement.
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Gone but not forgotten

We pause to remember some of those who left us during the first half of this year.
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50 years on...

While John F. Kennedy’s assassination absorbed the world’s attention, indigenous Australians in WA, NT and Queensland were at last able to vote in a federal election.
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2014 Australian of the Year

Sydney Swans legend and anti-racism campaigner Adam Goodes was this year honoured as the 2014 Australian of the Year.
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Smoke chokes small town

Bushfires, believed to be lit by arsonists, spread to a disused coal mine in the small Victorian town of Morwell. For 45 days it burned, smothering the 13,500 residents with a toxic smoke.
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Schapelle set free

After serving nine years of her 15 year sentence for drug smuggling in Bali’s Kerobokan Prison, Schapelle Corby was released on parole.
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Ukraine Revolution

Then President Yanukovych chose Russia over the EU to help bail out Ukraine, an economic basket case. The capital, Kiev, erupted into violent protest. Yanukovych was ousted.
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MH370 vanishes

Carrying 239 people, MH370 left Kuala Lumpur at 00.41. Less than an hour later, air traffic control heard its last words, ‘Good night, Malaysian Three Seven Zero’. Then, it vanished.
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Aussie crashes Formula One party

First-time racer, Daniel Ricciardo took fellow countryman Mark Webber’s seat in the Red Bull team at the Australian F1 Grand Prix, came second and was promptly disqualified.
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Terrorists take schoolgirls

Boko Haram terrorists attacked a Nigerian school and kidnapped 276 schoolgirls, exercising its leader’s claim that his brand of Islam denied girls an education.
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Bombings don’t stop Marathon

A year on from the Boston marathon bombings, the second highest number of entries [36,000] and twice the number of spectators [one million+] took to the streets of Boston for the annual marathon.
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Two Popes become saints

More than one million of the faithful crowded St Peter’s Square on Divine Sunday to witness the canonisation of Popes John Paul II and John XXII.
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2014 Logie Awards

TV’s night of nights saw Scotty Cam, Asher Keddie, Chris Lilley, Peter Havey and many other talented Australians honoured, along with the teams that make the shows possible.
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Mixed month for women

May began with the revelation that Iranian women were posting pictures of themselves without their hijabs on a Facebook page called My Stealthy Freedom.
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Bank won’t fund reef damage

At its annual meeting, Deutsche Bank said it would not put at risk the Great Barrier Reef by funding the expansion of Queensland’s Abbot Point coal terminal.
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Gone but not forgotten

We pause to remember those that left us during the second half of this year.
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50 years on...

It was the year of The Beatles, as they recruited teenagers across the planet, and in the background feminism was taking its first tentative steps.
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