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February 17, 2013

Today in History for Sunday, Feb. 17, 2013

-- — Highlight in History

On Feb. 17, 1913, the Armory Show, a landmark exhibit of European modern art, opened in New York City. (One work in the exhibit that stirred much controversy was “Nude Descending a Staircase (No. 2),” an abstract painting by French artist Marcel Duchamp.)

On this date

In 1863, the International Red Cross was founded in Geneva.

In 1947, the Voice of America began broadcasting to the Soviet Union.

In 1959, the United States launched Vanguard 2, a satellite which carried meteorological equipment.

In 1972, President Richard M. Nixon departed the White House with his wife, Pat, on a historic trip to China.

Ten years ago

Twenty-one people were killed in a stampede at the crowded E2 nightclub in Chicago. European Union leaders declared their solidarity with the United States, warning Saddam Hussein that Iraq faced one “last chance” to disarm peacefully but calling war a last resort. Baltimore Orioles pitcher Steve Bechler died of heatstroke at a Fort Lauderdale, Fla., hospital, less than 24 hours after complaining of dizziness during a spring training workout. An estimated 40 million viewers tuned in to the finale of Fox’s reality show “Joe Millionaire,” in which Evan Marriott chose Zora Andrich.

Five years ago

President George W. Bush rejected proposed Democratic changes to his prized AIDS relief program, issuing a challenge to Congress from Tanzania to “stop the squabbling” and renew it as is. (Bush signed a compromise version into law in July 2008.) Kosovo declared itself a nation in defiance of Serbia and Russia. Ryan Newman snapped an 81-race winless streak, giving car owner Roger Penske his first Daytona 500 victory. The East beat the Western Conference 134-128 in the NBA All-Star Game.

One year ago

Congress voted to extend a Social Security payroll tax cut for 160 million workers and to renew unemployment benefits for millions more.

The New York Knicks saw their seven-game winning streak with team sensation Jeremy Lin come to an end as they lost to the New Orleans Hornets, 89-85.

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