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Looking ahead

Looking Ahead | News to watch in the weeks to come

Issue: "Schock factor," Jan. 31, 2009

Bolivian ballot

January 25: Bolivians will vote on a draft of a new constitution promoted by Hugo Chavez sidekick President Evo Morales. If voters give more than 50 percent support to the new constitution, the central government will be given more power to socialize the nation's economy and land, but will stop short of removing term limits to Morales' office-something his Venezuelan counterpart Chavez has repeatedly tried.

Lubanga on Trial

January 26: At long last, Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga goes on trial at the International Criminal Court in The Hague. Prosecutors with the world court have filed war crimes charges against Lubanga, claiming the rebel leader conscripted children younger than 15 to fight for him in the Second Congo War in 2002 and 2003.

Sun block

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January 26: The first of two solar eclipses in 2009 will be just a foretaste of a spectacular total solar eclipse in July. The January eclipse will be visible across the Indian Ocean and parts of Indonesia.

Republicans vote

January 30: Republican loyalists will closely follow a vote at the party's winter meeting in Washington, D.C., to determine the GOP's next national party chairman. If current party chairman Mike Duncan of Kentucky is unseated, Republicans will have a new leader to direct fundraising and the party platform in anticipation of the 2010 mid-term elections.

Iranian anniversary

February 1: After more than 14 years of exile, Ruhollah Khomeini returned to Iran on this day 30 years ago to launch a revolution that ditched Iran's centuries-old monarchal system in favor of a theocratic one dominated for years by the man who would be the ayatollah.

Super rock

February 1: Iconic American rocker Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band will take the big stage on Super Sunday during the NFL championship game's halftime show. Since the infamous Janet Jackson incident in 2004, promoters have signed veteran performers like Paul McCartney, The Rolling Stones, Prince, and Tom Petty to perform in the Super Bowl halftime show. Organizers also enlisted singer and Dreamgirls star Jennifer Hudson to sing this year's National Anthem.

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