(ABOVE) THE OBAMA YEARS: After a historic election and promises of change and peace, Barack Obama failed to deliver on almost every pledge he made and went head first into new international conflicts, expanded drone use and containment of China.

(ABOVE) THE PIVOT TO ASIA: As the US winds down the disastrous wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, it's moving its forces to Asia, surrounding China in a move to contain its rival as its power grows. At the same time, Washington meddles in the politics of other countries in the region.

(ABOVE) THE IRAQ WAR: Several stories starting with a round-up of the events in 2004 and ending with the withdrawal of US troops at the apparent "end" of the conflict.

(ABOVE) WAR ON TERROR: Another war fought simultaneously as the one above, yet the enemy, battle lines and tactics are more vague. These stories chart the aftermath of 7/7, outrage at torture revelations and the rise of ISIS (or the continuation of the Iraq War, depending on who you talk to)

(ABOVE) CAMPAIGN CAPERS: Republicans rumble in the fight to unseat Obama. Newt Gingrich calls for a gag on the media, Rick Santorum wants to attack Iran, while Mitt Romney glides into the lead with ease, as if on a trail of slime.

(ABOVE) CELEBRITIES - DEAD AND ALIVE: Popes, pop stars and politicians dying or causing controversy and in some cases both.

(ABOVE) BUSINESS AND MONEY: From the EU crisis to a review of 2009 to the Facebook fiasco.

(ABOVE) MIDDLE EAST: The endless search for peace twists and turns, as Sharon's Gaza pullout becomes his legacy, only to be undermined by Netanyahu's settlement expansions and ruthless assaults on impoverished Palestine.

(ABOVE) WORLD ROUND-UP: Putin vs Bush vs Chavez, Amanda Knox, Eric Garner, elections in the UK and Afghanistan and Scottish independence.