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3. Israel vs. Iran and Palestine
No surprises here. Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, on his final visit to the GA, rehashed his offensive rhetoric, while Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu fulminated about Iran's nuclear threat. Having dominated last year's GA with a push for statehood, Palestine found itself in a familiar, frustrating place: on the back burner.
4. China vs. Japan
The recent upsurge of nationalist fervor in Tokyo and Beijing over rival claims to a few uninhabited islets remains unresolved. (Although not a U.N. member, Taiwan briefly made it a three-way spat.) Obama's Asia policy may seek to contain a more militarily assertive China, but the President made no mention of the maritime contretemps in his speech.
5. Climate Change
Agreement on meaningful international action to curb the output of carbon gases is hopelessly stalled, with emerging economies reluctant to agree to terms on sharing the burden of carbon cuts. Scientists say the major industrialized powers can no longer afford to ignore the issue. At the GA, they did precisely that.
The Middle Kingdom's Flagship
4 | CHINA
Naval officers line the deck of the Liaoning, China's first aircraft carrier, which was unveiled Sept. 25. The vessel is a mark of Beijing's modernizing military, interpreted by some as a challenge to rival maritime powers in Asia as well as the U.S.'s long-standing hegemony in the Pacific. The carrier is a refurbished former Soviet hulk purchased from Ukraine and is still a few years away from being combat-ready.
Mug shots of the prisoners who escaped
'They left through the door.'
JORGE LUIS MORAN, public-security secretary of the Mexican state of Coahuila, on the escape of more than 100 prisoners. The men were thought to have dug a tunnel, but now guards are accused of helping the inmates in an escape orchestrated by Los Zetas cartel
Extra portion of their income-tax bill that German Roman Catholics must forfeit to the church, according to a new decree; those who don't will no longer be considered Catholics
No More Sanctions
5 | BURMA
Parliamentarian Aung San Suu Kyi embarked on a landmark tour of the U.S., where she met with President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and asked the U.S. to lift the remaining sanctions it had imposed on the former military regime. "We should not depend on U.S. sanctions to keep up the momentum for democracy," said the diplomatic icon, who also called for more responsible investments in her resource-rich but impoverished country.