The Biggest News Story Every Year Since 1950

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Each year there are major news events that capture the world’s attention. These stories range from massive conflicts or catastrophes that leave thousands dead or stranded to technological developments and Supreme Court decisions that completely change our daily lives.

24/7 Wall St. reviewed the biggest news stories of each year since 1950. The event we chose for a given year was not always the most talked-about story when it occurred, but in retrospect each one proved to have had the biggest impact on history.

Wars and conflicts stand out as major news events during this time period, but so do stories about milestones in civil rights and breakthroughs in science and medicine. As technology evolved, modifying and innovating our lives in ways never dreamed of, progressive ideas also found footing and changed the world. Women, African Americans, and the LGBTQ community demanded, and often won, equal rights — from the desegregation of education to the legalization of same-sex marriage. Here are the most important human rights milestones since 2000.

Increasingly, major news events in recent years have included severe weather events and other catastrophes tied to global climate change. Devastating changes to our climate now endanger the ecosystems of our planet. In the coming years, natural disasters may have an increasingly impactful role on the course of history. Here are 26 disaster scenarios caused by climate change.

Click here to see the biggest news story every year since 1950.