Highlights in History
On June 11, 1963, in one of the most shocking images of the Vietnam War era, a Buddhist monk, Thich Quang Duc, set himself afire on a Saigon street to protest the government of South Vietnamese President Ngo Dinh Diem. (The scene was captured in a Pulitzer Prize-winning photograph taken by Malcolm Browne of The Associated Press.)
On this date
In 1509, England’s King Henry VIII married his first wife, Catherine.
In 1770, Captain James Cook, commander of the British ship Endeavour, discovered the Great Barrier Reef off Australia by running onto it.
In 1776, the Continental Congress formed a committee to draft a Declaration of Independence calling for freedom from Britain.
In 1913, football coach Vince Lombardi and opera singer Rise Stevens were born in New York City.
In 1919, Sir Barton won the Belmont Stakes, becoming horse racing’s first Triple Crown winner.
In 1938, Johnny Vander Meer pitched the first of two consecutive no-hitters as he led the Cincinnati Reds to a 3-0 victory over the Boston Bees. (Four days later, Vander Meer refused to give up a hit to the Brooklyn Dodgers, who lost, 6-0.)
In 1942, the United States and the Soviet Union signed a lend-lease agreement to aid the Soviet war effort in World War II.
In 1962, three prisoners at Alcatraz in San Francisco Bay staged an escape, leaving the island on a makeshift raft; they were never found or heard from again.
In 1971, the year-and-a-half-long occupation of Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay by American Indian activists ended as federal officers evicted the remaining protesters.
In 1977, Seattle Slew won the Belmont Stakes, capturing the Triple Crown.
In 1987, Margaret Thatcher became the first British prime minister in 160 years to win a third consecutive term of office as her Conservatives held onto a reduced majority in Parliament.
In 1993, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that people who commit “hate crimes” motivated by bigotry may be sentenced to extra punishment; the court also ruled religious groups had a constitutional right to sacrifice animals in worship services.
Ten years ago
A suicide bomber killed 16 victims in a Jerusalem bus blast; two Israeli rocket strikes against Hamas fugitives killed 11 Palestinians in Gaza City. Houston’s Roy Oswalt, Pete Munro, Kirk Saarloos, Brad Lidge, Octavio Dotel and Billy Wagner combined for the first no-hitter against the New York Yankees in 45 years, winning 8-0. Pioneering broadcast journalist David Brinkley died in Houston at age 82.
Five years ago
President George W. Bush, during a visit to Germany, raised the possibility of a military strike to thwart Tehran’s presumed nuclear weapons ambitions; Chancellor Angela Merkel joined Bush in urging further sanctions against Iran if it failed to suspend its nuclear enrichment program. For his part, Iranian leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called Bush a “wicked man.” Four Boy Scouts were killed when a tornado hit the Little Sioux Scout Ranch near Blencoe, Iowa.
One year ago
Testimony began in the trial of former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky, accusing of sexually abusing 10 boys over 15 years. (Sandusky was later convicted and sentenced to at least 30 years in prison.) Rafael Nadal won his record seventh French Open title, defeating Novak Djokovic 6-4, 6-3, 2-6, 7-5. The Los Angeles Kings won their first NHL championship, beating the New Jersey Devils 6-1 in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup finals.
Ann Rutherford, 94, the demure brunette actress who played Scarlett O’Hara’s youngest sister in “Gone With the Wind,” died in Los Angeles.
Highlights in History
- National, International News
Song, dance, tears for Mandela in South Africa
Themba Radebe spun slowly in a circle.
First he pointed his cellphone camera at a group of children chanting Nelson Mandela’s name as they waved posters of the anti-apartheid champion. Then pivoting to his right, Radebe aimed his camera at a swaying group of adults who sang in Zulu while rocking and clapping.
Icy winter storm shuts down North Texas
Freezing rain and stinging winds slammed the Southwest Friday and made a strangely blank landscape out of normally sun-drenched North Texas: mostly empty highways covered in a sometimes impassable frost, closed schools and businesses, and millions of residents hunkered down for icy conditions expected to last through the weekend.
Today in History for Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013
Today is Saturday, Dec. 7, the 341st day of 2013. There are 24 days left in the year.
Mexico plans how to safely box up recovered cobalt
Officials were engaged Thursday in the delicate task of recovering a stolen shipment of highly radioactive cobalt-60 abandoned in a rural field in central Mexico state.
Prosecutors face tough choices in NYC derailment
While the Metro-North Railroad is already getting hit with multimillion-dollar civil claims over a deadly commuter train derailment, prosecutors will face tough choices when deciding whether to bring criminal charges against the train’s engineer, who told investigators he nodded or fell into a daze at the controls.
Nelson Mandela, South Africa’s peacemaker, dies
Nelson Mandela was a master of forgiveness.
South Africa’s first black president spent nearly a third of his life as a prisoner of apartheid, yet he sought to win over its defeated guardians in a relatively peaceful transition of power that inspired the world.
Today in History for Friday, Dec. 6, 2013
Today is Friday, Dec. 6, the 340th day of 2013. There are 25 days left in the year.
Anti-gov’t mass rally in Ukraine turns violent
A protest by about 300,000 Ukrainians angered by their government’s decision to freeze integration with the West turned violent Sunday, when a group of demonstrators besieged the president’s office and police drove them back with truncheons, tear gas and flash grenades. Dozens of people were injured.
Egypt police clear protesters; constitution agreed
Police fired tear gas to drive hundreds of supporters of Egypt’s ousted Islamist president from Cairo’s famed Tahrir Square on Sunday, as a panel tasked with amending the constitution adopted during his time in office agreed on changes to the text.
NYC train derailment kills 4, hurts more than 60
A New York City commuter train rounding a riverside curve derailed Sunday, killing four people and injuring more than 60 in a crash that threw some riders from toppling cars and swiftly raised questions about whether excessive speed, mechanical problems or human error could have played a role.
- More National, International News Headlines
- Song, dance, tears for Mandela in South Africa