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Around the same time, Bank of America was reportedly also in talks to purchase Lehman Brothers, however a lack of government guarantees caused the bank to abandon talks with Lehman. Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy the same day Bank of America announced its plans to acquire Merrill Lynch. This acquisition made Bank of America the largest financial services company in the world. Shareholders of both companies (Bank of America and Merrill Lynch) approved the acquisition on December 5, 2008, and the deal closed January 1, 2009.
On 3 January 2009, the bitcoin network was created when Nakamoto mined the starting block of the chain, known as the genesis block. Embedded in the coinbase of this block was the text "The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks". This note references a headline published by The Times and has been interpreted as both a timestamp and a comment on the instability caused by fractional-reserve banking.
The receiver of the first bitcoin transaction was cypherpunk Hal Finney, who had created the first reusable proof-of-work system (RPoW) in 2004. Finney downloaded the bitcoin software on its release date, and on 12 January 2009 received ten bitcoins from Nakamoto. Other early cypherpunk supporters were creators of bitcoin predecessors: Wei Dai, creator of b-money, and Nick Szabo, creator of bit gold.
Sullenberger asked controllers for landing options in New Jersey, mentioning Teterboro Airport. Permission was given for Teterboro's Runway 1, Sullenberger initially responded "Yes", but then: "We can't do it ... We're gonna be in the Hudson". The aircraft passed less than 900 feet (270 m) above the George Washington Bridge. Sullenberger commanded over the cabin address system, "Brace for impact", and the flight attendants relayed the command to passengers. Meanwhile, air traffic controllers asked the Coast Guard to caution vessels in the Hudson and ask them to prepare to assist with the rescue.
Sullenberger opened the cockpit door and gave the order to evacuate. The crew began evacuating the passengers through the four overwing window exits and into an inflatable slide/raft deployed from the front right passenger door (the front left slide failed to operate, so the manual inflation handle was pulled). A panicked passenger opened a rear door, which a flight attendant was unable to reseal. Water was also entering through a hole in the fuselage and through cargo doors that had come open, so as the water rose the attendant urged passengers to move forward by climbing over seats. One passenger was in a wheelchair. Finally, Sullenberger walked the cabin twice to confirm it was empty.
Bank of America received $20 billion in the federal bailout from the U.S. government through the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) on January 16, 2009, and a guarantee of $118 billion in potential losses at the company.
The bank, in its January 16, 2009, earnings release, revealed massive losses at Merrill Lynch in the fourth quarter, which necessitated an infusion of money that had previously been negotiated with the government as part of the government-persuaded deal for the bank to acquire Merrill. Merrill recorded an operating loss of $21.5 billion in the quarter, mainly in its sales and trading operations, led by Tom Montag. The bank also disclosed it tried to abandon the deal in December after the extent of Merrill's trading losses surfaced, but was compelled to complete the merger by the U.S. government. The bank's stock price sank to $7.18, its lowest level in 17 years, after announcing earnings and the Merrill mishap. The market capitalization of Bank of America, including Merrill Lynch, was then $45 billion, less than the $50 billion it offered for Merrill just four months earlier, and down $108 billion from the merger announcement.
The partially submerged plane was moored to a pier near the World Financial Center in Lower Manhattan, roughly 4 miles (6 km) downstream from the ditching location. The left engine, detached by the ditching, was recovered from the riverbed. On January 17 the aircraft was barged to New Jersey. The initial National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) evaluation that the plane had lost thrust after a bird strike was confirmed by analysis of the cockpit voice and flight data recorders. Two days earlier the plane had experienced a less severe compressor stall, but the affected engine was restarted. A faulty temperature sensor was replaced, and inspection verified the engine had not been damaged in that incident.
At noon on January 20, 2009, Joe Biden became the 47th vice president of the United States, sworn into the office by Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens. Biden is the first United States vice president from Delaware and the first Roman Catholic to attain that office.
The crew, especially Sullenberger, was praised, notably by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and New York State Governor David Paterson, who said: "We had a Miracle on 34th Street. I believe now we have had a Miracle on the Hudson." U.S. President George W. Bush said he was "inspired by the skill and heroism of the flight crew," and praised the emergency responders and volunteers. President-elect Barack Obama said that everyone was proud of Sullenberger's "heroic and graceful job in landing the damaged aircraft." He thanked the crew, whom he invited to his inauguration five days later.
On January 21, the NTSB found evidence of soft-body damage in the right engine along with organic debris including a feather. The left engine also evidenced soft body impact, with: "dents on both the spinner and inlet lip of the engine cowling. Five booster inlet guide vanes are fractured and eight outlet guide vanes are missing." Both engines, missing large portions of their housings, were sent to the manufacturer for examination. On January 31, the plane was moved to Kearny, New Jersey. The bird remains were later identified by DNA testing to be Canada geese, which typically weigh more than engines are designed to withstand ingesting.
The relationship between Israel and Turkey worsened at the 2009 World Economic Forum conference over Israel's actions during the Gaza War. Erdoğan was interrupted by the moderator while he was responding to Peres, and left the panel, accusing the moderator of giving Peres more time than all the other panelists combined. Tensions increased further following the Gaza flotilla raid in May 2010. Erdoğan strongly condemned the raid, describing it as "state terrorism", and demanded an Israeli apology. In February 2013, Erdoğan called Zionism a "crime against humanity", comparing it to Islamophobia, antisemitism, and fascism.
On 28 January 2009, the Vodafone group announced a partner network agreement with Du, the second-largest operator in the United Arab Emirates. The agreement involved co-operation on international clients, handset procurement, mobile broadband, etc.
At the 2009 Australian Open, Nadal won his first five matches without dropping a set, before defeating compatriot Fernando Verdasco in the semifinals in the second longest match in Australian Open history at 5 hours and 14 minutes.
The Black Saturday bushfires were a series of bushfires that ignited or were burning across the Australian state of Victoria on and around Saturday, 7 February 2009 and were among Australia's all-time worst bushfire disasters. The fires occurred during extreme bushfire weather conditions and resulted in Australia's highest ever loss of life from a bushfire; there were 173 direct identified fatalities, The figure was later increased to 180 fatalities, after several people had succumbed to their injuries. Many were left homeless as a result.
The "like" button, stylized as a "thumbs up" icon, was first enabled on February 9, 2009, and enables users to easily interact with status updates, comments, photos and videos, links shared by friends and advertisements.
Under the 1999 constitution, he could not legally stand for re-election again, and so brought about a referendum on 15 February 2009 to abolish the two-term limit for all public offices, including the presidency. Approximately 70% of the Venezuelan electorate voted, and they approved this alteration to the constitution with over 54% in favor, allowing any elected official the chance to try to run indefinitely.
In a match-up against Orlando on March 3, 2009, O'Neal was outscored by Magic center Dwight Howard, 21–19. "I'm really too old to be trying to outscore 18-year-olds", O'Neal said, referring to the then 23-year-old Howard.
The Geneva County massacre occurred in southern Alabama on March 10, 2009. Ten people were killed in a shooting spree by Michael Kenneth McLendon, 28, in three small communities in two counties: Kinston, Samson and Geneva, Alabama. Five of McLendon's victims were family members, starting with his mother, and two were children. After engaging in an exchange of fire with police, McLendon committed suicide, bringing the total number of dead to eleven in the related incidents. Officials at the time said this was the worst shooting event in Alabama history.
In March 2009, he was hospitalized due to heart problems. He postponed his one-man tour for surgery to replace his aortic valve, repair his mitral valve, and correct his irregular heartbeat. The surgery was completed on March 13, 2009, at the Cleveland Clinic.
According to an article in The New York Times published on March 15, 2009, Bank of America received an additional $5.2 billion in government bailout money, channeled through American International Group.
On 27 March 2009, President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev met with Alexander Bortnikov, the Director of the Federal Security Service to discuss the official ending of counter-terrorism operations in Chechnya.
The policies of French President Nicolas Sarkozy resulted in a major reform of France's military position, culminating with the return to full membership on 4 April 2009, which also included France rejoining the NATO Military Command Structure, while maintaining an independent nuclear deterrent.
On April 30, 2009, the U.S. State Department reported that al-Zawahiri had emerged as al-Qaeda's operational and strategic commander and that Osama bin Laden was now only the ideological figurehead of the organization. However, after the 2011 death of bin Laden, a senior U.S. intelligence official was quoted as saying intelligence gathered in the raid showed that bin Laden remained deeply involved in planning: "This compound (where bin Laden was killed) in Abbottabad was an active command-and-control center for al-Qaeda's leader. He was active in operational planning and in driving tactical decisions within al-Qaeda."
During the Clásico on 2 May 2009, however, he played for the first time as a false nine, positioned as a center-forward but dropping deep into midfield to link up with Xavi and Andrés Iniesta. He assisted his side's first goal and scored twice to end the match in an emphatic 6–2 victory, the team's greatest-ever score at Real Madrid's Santiago Bernabéu Stadium.
On May 12, 2009, China marked the first anniversary of the quake with a moment of silence as people across the nation remembered the dead. The government also opened access to the sealed ruins of the Beichuan county seat for three days, after which it will be frozen in time as a state earthquake relic museum, to remind people of the terrible disaster. There were also several concerts across the country to raise money for the survivors of the quake.
Eminem appeared on his Shade 45 Sirius channel in September 2008, saying: "Right now I'm kinda just concentrating on my own stuff, for right now and just banging out tracks and producing a lot of stuff. You know, the more I keep producing the better it seems like I get 'cause I just start knowing stuff." Interscope confirmed that a new album would be released in spring 2009. In December 2008, Eminem provided more details about the album, entitled Relapse: "Me and Dre are back in the lab like the old days, man. Dre will end up producing the majority of the tracks on 'Relapse'. We are up to our old mischievous ways ... let's just leave it at that."
On May 17, 2009, President Barack Obama's Secretary of the Interior, Ken Salazar, announced that as a "special gift" to America, the statue would be reopened to the public as of July 4, but that only a limited number of people would be permitted to ascend to the crown each day.