The 10 Biggest Stories of 2011

2011 is almost over and that can only mean one thing. Top 10 lists. Yes, the barrage of top 10 stories are coming and today, the Associated Press released their annual list of the biggest stories of 2011.

The Associated Press polls news editors and news managers every year to make its annual list. 247 ballots were cast to decide the ten biggest stories of 2011.

1.) The Death of Osama Bin Laden.

Navy SEALS Team 6 stormed Osama Bin Laden’s compound in May and killed the Al-Qaeda leader. Within hours of the attack, his body was buried at sea.

2.) String of disasters in Japan.

japan earthquake

A string of natural disasters left Japan in shambles this year. A 9.0 magnitude earthquake in March was followed by an enormous tsunami. Nearly 20,000 people died, a nuclear reactor was badly damaged, and millions of homes were destroyed.

3.) Arab Spring.

arab spring

The Arab Spring protests sparked a revolution in Egypt. Hosni Mubarak was removed from power and started a civil war in Egypt.

4.) European Union Financial Crisis.


The United States wasn’t the only economy in trouble this year. Austerity measures in Greece sparked strikes, riots, and protests. In Italy, economic pressure ousted Premier Silvio Berlosconi.

5.) Economic Crisis in the United States.

economic crisis

Recent reports have shown that the unemployment rate in the United States is starting to rise (slightly) but for most of 2011, unemployment, housing foreclosures, and economic turmoil were big stories in the United States.

6.) Joe Paterno, Jerry Sandusky, and the Penn State Sex Scandal

joe paterno

The sports world was shook this year after it emerged that former Penn State coach Jerry Sandusky allegedly molested several children. The scandal also revealed that Joe Paterno knew about the allegations, but did little about it.

7.) The Death of Ghadhafi.


For 42-years Moammar Ghadhai ruled over Libya. But the ruthless dictator was captured and killed. The International Criminal Court is now looking at Ghadafi’s death as a possible war crime.

8.) US Credit Rating Downgraded.


Economic turmoil plagued the United States in 2011. Employment rates have improved, but the United States credit rating was downgraded by S&P.

9.) Occupy Wall Street.

occupy wall street

With millions of Americans out of work and fed up with the growing income gap, Occupy protests started spreading across the United States. Some camps have been shutdown in recent weeks.

10.) Gabrielle Giffords Assassination Attempt.

gabrielle giffords

Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was shout in the head in January. Giffords survived the attack, but six other people were killed in the assassination attempt.

Do you think these are the top 10 stories of 2011?