Dispatches > Looking Ahead

Looking Ahead

Issue: "Babies are back," Jan. 29, 2011

Museveni's anniversary

On Jan. 26 a quarter century ago, Ugandan political leader Yoweri Museveni was sworn into office as the nation's president after he led his National Resistance Army in the overthrow of Uganda's unelected government. The length of his time in office makes him the longest-serving East African leader and has some Africa watchers wondering if he will allow a free and fair election when Ugandans go to the polls later this year.

Happy birthday, Gretzky

Perhaps the greatest hockey player ever turns 50 years old on Jan. 26. By the end of his 21-year playing career in the NHL, Wayne Gretzky had amassed 2,857 points and today remains nearly 1,000 points ahead of the next closest player on the NHL's all-time points chart.

State of the Union

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When President Barack Obama delivers his State of the Union address in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 25, television viewers will see a new backdrop. Joining Vice President Joe Biden behind the president will be new House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio. Boehner took over the leadership of the House when Republicans were sworn into the majority earlier in January.

Mock Mars mission

More than six months into their experimental mission, six members of a European Space Agency-sponsored experiment will on Jan. 28 begin mock operations on the surface of Mars. Called Mars500, the 520-day isolation experiment is designed to study the effects of a manned mission to the Red Planet. The crew entered a sealed mock spacecraft in Russia on June 3, 2010, and simulated departure from Earth's orbit on June 14. Since then, they've been cut off from direct contact with the world outside. The experiment ends in November.

Challenger anniversary

The space shuttle Challenger broke apart over Cape Canaveral, Fla., 25 years ago on Jan. 28, killing six crew members and one civilian. Images of Challenger disintegrating 73 seconds after lift-off shocked the nation, and the disaster-caused by a failed O-ring seal-led to a 32-month hiatus in NASA's shuttle program.

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