Summer is nearly officially over (and the weather here in New York shows it). This means the Perspectives on Global Issues blog is back from its sun-drenched hibernation. Our editors have already been churning out their thoughts and analyses on the latest breaking news in the world of international affairs — but just in case you’ve been under a rock or just need to get up to speed with the state of the globe today, here’s a handy little recap of this summer in global affairs, including everything from the big headlines that got the world talking to a couple of smaller, stranger blips on the radar:

June started off with a plane crash of an Airbus flying from Rio de Janeiro to Paris. President Obama went to Cairo to make a speech about Muslims and the U.S — some people thought it was pretty good while others had more measured reactions. North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, widely reported to be sickly with cancer, tapped his youngest son Jong Un as successor, and his sushi chef said he’s just like his dad. Palau decided to accept a few of the Uighur Guantanamo detainees, and a few of them were also taken in by Bermuda. The Bermudans, however, weren’t so happy about how that happened. A little later, Iran had a Presidential election. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad won under most likely fraudulent circumstances because more people voted in some towns than existed there. People protested, and Twittered, and protested some more, with violentrepercussions. New York Times reporter David Rohde escaped after 7 months of being held captive by the Taliban in Afghanistan. In a seemingly pro-feminist move (but actually to the chagrin of many feminists), Nicolas Sarkozy supported a ban of the burqain France. In Honduras, President Manuel Zelaya was ousted in a coup, and the U.S. military finally withdrew troops from Iraq to focus more instead on efforts to curb Taliban influence in Afghanistan.

In Urumqi, China, riots broke out between the majority Han Chinese and the minority Uighurs, and ethnic tension has remained heightened since, including recent claims that Uighurs are attacking Han Chinese with HIV infected needles. Two hotels were bombed in Jakarta, Indonesia. Hillary Clinton went to the Congo and brought attention to the use of rape and sexual violence as a tool of war (against men, too). Bill Clinton flew to North Korea and saved journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee, who had been captured in March and sentenced to 12 years of hard labor. It was a good week to be a Clinton.

Former President of the Philippines Corazon Aquino died. RIP, Cory. In Taiwan, there was a really big typhoon. Burmese democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi’s trial was held over the question of whether or not she violated the terms of her house arrest when a crazy American guy swam through a lake to visit her on a supposedly divine mission. She was found guilty. The American was freed (but remained crazy). Everybody found out that private contractor organization Blackwater (now Xe) was hired by the CIA to assassinate targets. Scotland allowed the one convicted Lockerbie bomber to return to Libya because he is dying of cancer. Everybody was reallyreally mad, especially because it was probably because of oil. Colombian President Alvaro Uribe came down with the H1N1 virus. The Darfur conflict was reported as coming to an end. Afghanistan held Presidential elections which showed incumbent Hamid Karzai leading, but like Iran, this was probably also fraud. Unlike Iran, they’re actually recounting votes and throwing out bad ones.

Hopefully, that’s refreshed your mind with a whirlwind of memories from the past three months. But here are a couple of things that perhaps you might have missed:

China reversed its one child policy, but only in Shanghai.

Cambodia set out to host a “Miss Landmine” pageant to challenge traditional beauty standards by promoting a pageant for landmine victims. The pageant was quickly banned.

A Ukranian polka band came up with this cover of Katy Perry’s “Hot n Cold.”

Some of the lawsuits over harmful pesticide effects made by Nicaraguan farmers for Dole Food Co. turned out to be fraudulent (involving faked sterility tests, among other indicators), effectively casting doubt on all the other farmers who might have actually been harmed by the pesticides.

China tried to use electroshock therapy to cure teens of Internet addiction. The practice was quickly banned.

Canada granted refugee status to a white man from South Africa who claimed he was being persecuted in his native country on the basis of his race.

An IT company in South Africa ran a test to see what could send data faster: South African Internet service or a carrier pigeon. The pigeon won.

Anything missing? Of course. Drop a comment to add in any other summer global affairs news that slipped through the cracks!

Written by Brianna Lee