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Top 10 stories of 2010

"Top 10 stories of 2010" Continued...

Ten humanitarian aid workers were killed in Afghanistan in August, which was also one of the three deadliest months of the year for U.S. combat casualties there. Militants murdered the civilians-six Americans, a German, a Brit, and two Afghans-in a remote northern area. The Taliban later took responsibility for the attack. The deaths highlighted two trends: a growing shortage of civilian-led development in the country due to the prolonged insecurity, which threatens any postwar transition, and the rise of persecution of Christians. In December Pope Benedict XVI, in a 17-page message, called the lack of freedom to worship an "intolerable" threat to world security, and he lamented that Christians suffer more religious persecution than any other group. "It represents an insult to God and to human dignity," he wrote.
10. Chilean miners

Why end a top 10 list with news of 33 miners rescued from a remote mine shaft in the high Atacama desert of Chile? First, because it was a dramatic story of hope in a year of unprecedented disasters. Second, because the ingenuity and fortitude of the South Americans-those who survived 69 days underground as well as the above-ground crew that managed a never-been-done-before rescue 2,300 feet below the earth's surface-is part of a larger tableau. In it the global south is rising on multiple fronts above its northern neighbors. Consider that Chile in February suffered one of the strongest earthquakes in recorded history (estimated damage at $30 billion), and by the second quarter of the year its economy was growing at an annual rate of 5 percent-a 2010 rate well above economic growth rates in the United States, Canada, Germany, Japan, and Russia.
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