<< Aug 22|         HISTORY “4” “2”DAY         |Aug 24 >>
Events, deaths, births, of AUG 23

[For Aug 23 Julian go to  Gregorian date: 1583~1699: Sep 021700s: Sep 031800s: Sep 041900~2099: Sep 05]
On a 23 August:
2000 Negotiators for Verizon and more than 35'000 telephone workers reached tentative agreement on a new contract, ending an 18-day strike.
1999 Chechnya war: Russian Federation Council Chairman Yegor Stoev said the planned meeting between presidents of Russia and Chechnya is "absurd and useless." http://www.cdi.org/issues/Europe/aug.html
1998 Intel announces the Celeron line of lower-cost microprocessors on this day in 1998. The chipmaker had been slow to respond to the increasing demand for a personal computer costing less than $1000, but this demand prompted the company to get more serious about the market.
1996 (after sunset it is already 9~4[Rabi II]~1417 A.H.) Osama Bin Laden issues a Declaration of Jihad outlining his organization's goals: drive US forces from the Arabian Peninsula, overthrow the Government of Saudi Arabia, liberate Muslim holy sites, and support Islamic revolutionary groups around the world. He declares that Saudis have the right to strike at US troops in the Persian Gulf.
1996 President Clinton imposed limits on peddling cigarettes to children as he unveiled Food and Drug Administration regulations declaring nicotine an addictive drug. The same day, a jury in Indianapolis found cigarette companies were not responsible for the lung cancer death of a 52-year-old lawyer who began smoking at age 5.
1996 Durable goods orders exceed expectations       ^top^
      The US Commerce Department released news that the durable goods orders had exceeded expectations. Already fearful that the '90s stock market bonanza was about to go bust, Wall Street took the report as a sign that the good times were perhaps about to draw to a close. The Dow dropped by 22.75 points and the price of the thirty-year Treasury bond took a dive, sparking a round of inflation jitters.
1991 In the wake of a failed coup by hard-liners in the Soviet Union, President Mikhail S. Gorbachev and Russian President Boris N. Yeltsin acted to strip the Communist Party of its power and take control of the army and the KGB. — Boris Yeltsin, presidente de la Federación Rusa, firma un decreto que suspende las actividades del Partido Comunista soviético (PCUS) e incauta sus bienes en territorio ruso.
1989 Un millón y medio de habitantes de las Repúblicas Bálticas forman una cadena humana de 650 Km. de longitud, coincidiendo con el 50 aniversario de la firma del pacto Molotov-Ribbentrop, en demanda de la restitución de la independencia de Estonia, Letonia y Lituania.
1989 Saddam's "Naked Aggression" spooks Wall Street      ^top^
      The markets took a nosedive and the Dow lost a hefty 76.73 points just a month after it nearly broke the 3000 point barrier. The culprit for the decline? Wall Street's increasing fears about the Persian Gulf crisis, which began in early August when the Iraqi army rolled into the oil-rich territory of its neighbor, Kuwait. Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein openly declared his intention of annexing Kuwait, prompting President George Bush to deride the invasion as an act of "naked aggression." As Bush and Hussein faced off, oil prices marched upward, in turn triggering the sell-off on Wall Street. Indeed, fears of war and escalating prices were written all over the markets: during the week of the 23rd, the Dow lost 6 percent of its total value.
1988 Firma de un acuerdo en Brazzaville entre Sudáfrica, Cuba y Angola para el alto el fuego en Angola y Namibia.
1987 Se producen numerosas manifestaciones anti-soviéticas en los países bálticos, lo que aceleró la disgregación de la URRS.
1984 Restos comunes al hombre y al mono que datan de hace 18 millones de años son hallados en Kenia por científicos estadounidenses.
1982 Lebanon's parliament elected Christian militia leader Bashir Gemayel president. (However, Gemayel was assassinated some three weeks later.)
1979 Russian ballet star defects to US.      ^top^
      Russian ballet star Aleksandr Godunov defects to the United States after a performance in New York City. He became the first dancer to defect from the prestigious Bolshoi Ballet. Godunov was the latest in a string of Soviet ballet dancers to defect to the United States in the 1960s and 1970s. Rudolf Nureyev (1961), Natalia Makarova (1970), and Mikhail Baryshnikov (1974) had all sought and received asylum in the United States and went on to pursue successful dance careers in America and around the world. Godunov was in a different class, however. A New York Times article discussing his defection stated that "with his mane of long blond hair and powerful tall build, Mr. Godunov may well be the premier danseur of the rock generation. ...Young audiences identify with him totally." That may have been the problem for Godunov. Beginning in 1974, he was banned from performing anywhere outside of Russia for four years because his "hippie-like demeanor both on and offstage may have been too flamboyant." Godunov's defection in August 1979 was also noteworthy because he was the first dancer from the prestigious Bolshoi Ballet to seek asylum in America. The previous defectors had been from the Kiev opera company. For decades, the Bolshoi had been Russia's cultural jewel, touring the world numerous times. Godunov's departure was a serious blow. His wife, Ludmila Vlasova, did not join her husband in defecting and returned with the Bolshoi Company to Russia. For the next three years, Godunov danced with some of the most impressive dance companies in America, including the American Ballet Theater and the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater. He also pursued an acting career in Hollywood, appearing in many films, including Die Hard and Witness. Godunov died in 1995.
1977 Man-powered plane wins prize       ^top^
      At Shafter Airport near Bakersfield, Calif., MacCready's Gossamer Condor, pedaled and piloted by 62-kg Bryan Allen, a bicyclist and hang-glider enthusiast, completed the course required to win the Kremer Prize of £50'000 ($95'000), clearing a 3-meter-high start-and-finish line while making a figure-eight flight around two pylons set half a mile apart. The total distance flown was 1.85 km in 6 min 27.05 s, at a top speed of 18 km/h. The 32-kilogram plane had a 29-meter wingspan.
      A subsequent, more streamlined MacCready plane, the Gossamer Albatross, was pedaled and piloted by Allen from near Folkestone, Kent, Eng., to Cape Gris-Nez, Fr., a distance of 37 km, in 2 h 49 min, on 12 June 1979. This flight won the £100'000 Kremer Prize for the first man-propelled flight across the English Channel. The plane had a wingspan of 28.6 m, weighed 32 kg, and was constructed of Mylar, polystyrene, and carbon-fibre rods.
      On 07 July 1981, the Solar Challenger, a solar-powered plane designed by MacCready, flew from the Pointoise Cormeilles airport, near Paris, to the Manston Royal Air Force Base, in Kent, Eng., a distance of 258 km, in 5 hr 23 min at an average speed of about 30 48 km/h and a cruising altitude of 3350 m. The pilot was Stephen Ptacek, weighing 55 kg. The plane, powered by 16'128 solar cells connected to two electric motors, weighed 95 kg and had a wingspan of 14.3 m.
1972 Republican convention (Miami Beach, Fla) renominates VP Agnew but not unanimous-1 vote went to NBC newsman David Brinkley)
1968 Vietnam: Communist forces renew offensive Communist forces launch rocket and mortar attacks on numerous cities, provincial capitals, and military installations. The heaviest shelling was on the US airfield at Da Nang, the cities of Hue and Quang Tri. North Vietnamese forces numbering between 1200 and 1500 soldiers attacked the US Special Forces camp at Duc Lap, 200 km northeast of Saigon near the Cambodian border. The camp fell but was retaken by an allied relief column led by US Special Forces on 25 August. A reported 643 North Vietnamese troops were killed in the battle.
1966 Vietnam: The American cargo ship Baton Rouge Victory strikes a mine laid by the Viet Cong in the Long Tao River, 35 km south of Saigon. The half-submerged ship blocked the route from the South Vietnamese capital to the sea. Seven crewmen were killed.
1965 Establecimiento en Beja (Portugal) de la primera base aérea permanente de la RFA en el extranjero.
1960 World's largest frog (3.3 kg) caught (Equatorial Guinea)
Sally1960 Sally falls in love with Linus       ^top^
      Sally Brown's brother, Charlie Brown, was so pleased and proud when she was born that he passed out chocolate cigars. Since then he's been trying to understand her. She always looks for the easy way out, particularly at school, where her view of life reflects much of the frustration and confusion kids experience. Her speech is riddled with malapropisms. Uninhibited, and precocious, the very next day after her first appearance in the comic strip, she gets a schoolgirl crush on Linus, her "Sweet Babboo." She may never win Linus' heart, but she has her big brother wrapped around her little finger. Sally, writing letters or doing homework, causes pain and joy to her fans in roughly equal proportions
Sally appears in Peanuts
1950 Up to 77'000 members of the US Army Organized Reserve Corps are called involuntarily to active duty to fight the Korean War.
1948 During its Amsterdam Assembly (22 Aug to 04 Sep), the newly-formed World Council of Churches (147 churches from 44 countries) officially ratified its Constitution.
1944 In Romania, Iuliu Maniu and King Michael overthrow the dictatorship of general Ion Antonescu, allied to Nazi Germany, and establish a new government committed to the Allies. Romania is considered liberated by the Red Army from Nazi occupation (National Day 1944-1990)
1944 German SS engineers begin placing explosive charges around the Eiffel Tower in Paris. Adolf Hitler had decreed that Paris should be left a smoking ruin.
1942 Batalla aeronaval entre estadounidenses y japoneses en las islas Salomón.
1940 II Guerra mundial: Aviones alemanes bombardean sistemáticamente Londres.
1939 Soviet-Nazi Non-Aggression Pact signed       ^top^
      In an unexpected reversal of their national policies, Soviet leader Joseph Stalin and German Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop signed the Nazi-Soviet non-aggression pact in Moscow, freeing Hitler to invade Poland and Stalin to invade Finland. For Nazi leader Adolf Hitler, the pact would neutralize the USSR while he pursued military operations in the West, and for Stalin continued peace would allow his country time to better prepare for its inevitable war with Nazi Germany — its natural ideological enemy. Five days later, Stalin signed a second treaty with Ribbentrop, this one concerning national frontiers. The second agreement had a secret clause dividing Finland, Poland, the Baltic States, and the Balkans into German and Soviet spheres of influence.
     After Nazi Germany's invasion of Czechoslovakia, Britain had to decide to what extent it would intervene should Hitler continue German expansion. Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, at first indifferent to Hitler's capture of the Sudetenland, the German-speaking area of Czechoslovakia, suddenly snapped to life when Poland became threatened. He made it plain that Britain would be obliged to come to the aid of Poland in the event of German invasion. But he wanted, and needed, an ally. The only power large enough to stop Hitler, and with a vested interest in doing so, was the Soviet Union. But Stalin was cool to Britain after his effort to create a political alliance with Britain and France against Germany had been rebuffed a year earlier. Plus, Poland's leaders were less than thrilled with the prospect of Russia becoming its guardian; to them, it was simply occupation by another monstrous regime.
      Hitler believed that Britain would never take him on alone, so he decided to swallow his fear and loathing of communism and cozy up to the Soviet dictator, thereby pulling the rug out from the British initiative. Both sides were extremely suspicious of the other, trying to discern ulterior motives. But Hitler was in a hurry; he knew if he was to invade Poland it had to be done quickly, before the West could create a unified front. Agreeing basically to carve up parts of Eastern Europe — and leave each other alone in the process-Hitler's foreign minister, Joachim von Ribbentrop, flew to Moscow and signed the non-aggression pact with his Soviet counterpart, V.M. Molotov (which is why the pact is often referred to as the Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact). Supporters of bolshevism around the world had their heretofore romantic view of "international socialism" ruined; they were outraged that Stalin would enter into any kind of league with the fascist dictator. But once Poland was German-occupied territory, the alliance would not last for long.
      When World War II broke out over Hitler's invasion of Poland on 01 September, the Soviets began moving against the territory allotted to them in the secret agreement. However, peace between Germany and the USSR, which according to the Nazi-Soviet pact would last at least ten years, was shattered with the German invasion of the Soviet Union on 22 June 1941. Some nineteen million Soviet soldiers and civilians would die in the Great Patriotic War before Germany was defeated in 1945.
1939 Los ministros de relaciones exteriores alemán y ruso, Joachim von Ribbentrop y Viacheslav Mijailovich Scriabin “Molotov”, firman en Moscú un acuerdo de no agresión germano-soviético, que además contiene un pacto secreto sobre el reparto de Polonia.
1939 Lloyd's of London increases war-risk insurance rates as the Nazis threaten to invade Poland and Europe braces itself for war. The Dow Jones Industrial Average drops by 3.25 points to a close of 131.82.
1924 Mars' closest approach to Earth since the 10th century
1914 Japan declares war on Germany in World War I
1914: Battle of Mons, Battle of Le Cateau: the advancing French collide with the invading Germans and are pushed back.
1914 Japón declara la guerra a Alemania, alegando que quiere impedir que la contienda se extienda al continente asiático.

1913 Cars allowed in Yosemite National Park, California, for the first time, marking a huge change in the national park system. Prior to 1913, most park visitors traveled by train to the park and then took scheduled stagecoach tours. The advent of motor tourism changed the face of Yosemite forever, for it demanded modern, high-quality park roads. The National Park Service’s landscape architects, along with the Bureau of Public Roads, developed a systematic approach to the design and construction of park roads. From the mid-1920s through World War II, a “Golden Age” of park road development flourished as designers attempted to create roads that would “lie lightly on the land.”
1902 Buffalo Bill (William Frederick Cody) es nombrado por el Gobierno de EE.UU. responsable de la salvaguarda del bisonte en todo el territorio nacional.
1877 Texas Ranger John Armstrong (outside of his jurisdiction) arrests John Wesley Hardin in a Pensacola, Florida, rail car, returning the outlaw to Texas to stand trial for murder of Deputy Sheriff Charles Webb..
1866 Treaty of Prague ends Austro-Prussian war
1864 Fort Morgan, at the entrance to Mobile Bay, Alabama, falls to the Federals
1863 Union batteries cease their first bombardment of Fort Sumter, leaving it a mass of rubble but still unconquered by the Northern besiegers.
1863 Siege of Fort Wagner, Charleston Harbor, South Carolina continues
1861 Confederate spy is arrested      ^top^
      Allen Pinkerton, head of the new secret service agency of the Federal government, places Confederate spy Rose O'Neal Greenhow under house arrest in Washington, D.C. Greenhow was a wealthy widow living in Washington at the outbreak of the war. She was well connected in the capital and was especially close with Massachusetts Senator Henry Wilson. The Maryland native was openly committed to the Southern cause, and she soon formed a substantial spy network.
      Greenhow's operation quickly paid dividends for the Confederacy. One of her operatives provided key information to Confederate General Pierre G. T. Beauregard concerning the deployment of Union General Irwin McDowell's troops before the First Battle of Bull Run in July 1861. Beauregard later testified that this dispatch, along with further information provided by Greenhow herself, was instrumental in Beauregard's decision to request additional troops. The move led to a decisive victory by the Rebels.
      It did not take the Federals long to track down the leaks in Washington. Pinkerton placed Greenhow under house arrest, and he soon confined other suspected women in her home. However, Greenhow was undeterred. She was allowed visitors, including Senator Wilson, and was able to continue funneling information to the Confederates. Frustrated, Pinkerton finally confined Greenhow and her daughter to the Old Capitol Prison for five months in early 1862. In June 1862, she and her daughter, "Little Rose," were released and exiled to the South.
      Greenhow traveled to England and France to drum up support for the Southern cause, and she penned her memoirs while abroad. She returned to the Confederacy in September 1864, but a Yankee war vessel ran her ship aground in North Carolina. Weighted down by a substantial amount of gold, Greenhow's lifeboat overturned and she drowned.
1833 Britain abolishes slavery in colonies; 700'000 slaves freed
1821 Mexico wins independence from Spain       ^top^
      Eleven years after the outbreak of the Mexican War of Independence, Spanish Viceroy Juan de O'Donoju signs the Treaty of Cordoba, which approves a plan to make Mexico an independent constitutional monarchy. In the early nineteenth century, Napoléon's occupation of Spain led to the outbreak of revolt all across Spanish America.
      On 16 September 1810, Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, a Catholic priest, launched the Mexican War of Independence with the issuing of his Grito de Dolores. The revolutionary tract called for the end of Spanish rule in Mexico, redistribution of land, and racial equality. After some initial successes, Hidalgo was defeated, captured, and executed. However, he was followed by other peasant leaders such as José María Morelos y Pavón (also a Catholic priest), Mariano Matamoros, and Vicente Guerrero, who all led armies of native and racially mixed revolutionaries against the Spanish and the Royalists.
      Ironically, Mexicans of Spanish descent did not support the revolution until the liberals took power in Spain in 1820. Fearing forced reforms under Spain's new government, independence would be a means of maintaining their privileged position in Mexican society. In early 1821, Augustín de Iturbide, the leader of the Royalist forces, negotiated the Plan of Iguala with Vicente Guerrero. Under the plan, Mexico would be established as an independent constitutional monarchy, the privileged position of the Catholic church would be maintained, and Mexicans of Spanish descent would be regarded as equals to pure Spaniards. Iturbide then defeated his former Royalist allies, and the new viceroy, O'Donoju, was forced to accept Mexican independence. Although Spain at first disavowed O'Donojú's recognition of Mexican independence, this date is now recognized as that of separation of New Spain from Old Spain.
      In 1822, as no Bourbon monarch to rule Mexico had been found, Iturbide was proclaimed the emperor of Mexico. However, his empire was short-lived and in 1823, republican leaders Santa Anna and Guadalupe Victoria deposed Iturbide and set up a republic with Guadalupe Victoria as its first president.
1775 King George III of England refuses the American colonies' offer of peace and declares them in open rebellion.
1711 A British attempt to invade Canada by sea fails.
1617 1st one-way streets established (London)
1572 Saint Barthélémy massacre of Huguenots is ordered, late in the night.       ^top^
     The Massacre of St. Bartholomew's Day (24 August) had for its background the political and religious rivalries of the court of France. Admiral Gaspard II de Coligny, a Huguenot leader, supported a war in the Low Countries against Spain as a means to prevent a resumption of civil war, a plan that the French king, Charles IX, was coming to approve in the summer of 1572.
      Catherine de Médicis, the mother of Charles, feared Admiral Coligny's growing influence over her son. She accordingly gave her approval to a plot that the Roman Catholic house of Guise had been hatching to assassinate Coligny, whom it held responsible for the murder of François de Guise, who died on his 44th birthday, 24 February 1563, from the wounds inflicted by a Huguenot assassin. On 18 August 1572, Catherine's daughter, Margaret of France (Marguerite de Valois), was married to the Huguenot Henri of Navarre (the future Henri IV of France), and a large part of the Huguenot nobility came to Paris for the wedding. The attempt on Admiral Coligny's life four days later failed; he was only wounded.
      To placate the angry Huguenots, the government agreed to investigate the assassination attempt. Fearing discovery of her complicity, Catherine met secretly with a group of nobles at the Tuileries Palace to plot the complete extermination of the Huguenot leaders, who were still in Paris for the wedding festivities. Charles was persuaded to approve of the scheme, and, on the night of August 23, members of the Paris municipality are called to the Louvre and given their orders.
      Shortly before dawn on August 24 the bell of Saint-Germain-l'Auxerrois began to toll and the massacre began. One of the first victims was Coligny, who was killed under the supervision of Henri de Guise, 21, who wanted to avenge the murder of his father François de Guise.. Even within the Louvre, Navarre's attendants were slaughtered, though Navarre and Henry I de Bourbon, 2nd Prince de Condé, were spared. The homes and shops of Huguenots were pillaged, and their occupants brutally murdered; many bodies were thrown into the Seine. Bloodshed continued in Paris even after a royal order of August 25 to stop the killing, and it spread to the provinces. Huguenots in Rouen, Lyon, Bourges, Orléans, and Bordeaux were among the victims. Estimates of the number that perished in the disturbances, which lasted to the beginning of October, have varied from 2000 by a Roman Catholic apologist to 70'000 by the contemporary Huguenot Duke de Sully, who himself barely escaped death. Modern writers put the number at 3000 in Paris alone.
      The news of the massacre was welcomed by Philip II of Spain. Pope Gregory XIII, allegedly unaware of the massacre, had a medal struck to celebrate the overthrow of the Huguenots. Protestant nations were horrified. To explain the massacre, Charles, assuming responsibility for it, claimed that there had been a Huguenot plot against the crown. Instead of crippling the Huguenot party as Catherine had hoped it would do, the massacre revived hatred between Roman Catholics and Huguenots and helped provoke a renewal of hostilities. Thenceforth the Huguenots abandoned John Calvin's principle of obedience to the civil magistrate, that is, to the royal authority, and adopted the view that rebellion and tyrannicide were justifiable under certain circumstances.
1541 Jacques Cartier lands near Québec on his third voyage to North America.
1244 Turks expel the crusaders under Frederick II from Jerusalem.
3'469'997'998 BC Asteroid 20 km across (and, like asteroids in general, rich in iridium) crashes into Earth vaporizing itself and rocks which, after encircling the globe, fall as a snow of glass particles (rich in iridium). At the same time it causes a tsnunami of more than 1 km in height to circle the globe repeatedly, swamping what little dry land there is. This does not cause the dinosaurs to become extinct, because there are no dinosaurs. There are no living beings other than bacteria. So there is no one to keep calendars, thus the year given here is approximate (give or take 2'000'000 years) and the date is arbitrary, but it is exactly 3'470'000'000 years to the day on which an article in Science (p. 1325) appears reporting the cataclysmic event to have occured 3.47 billion years earlier, as deduced from iridium-rich layers of rock discovered in Australia and South Africa.
— Abstract of the article by Gary R. Byerly, Donald R. Lowe, Joseph L. Wooden, and Xiaogang Xie:
An Archean Impact Layer from the Pilbara and Kaapvaal Cratons
      The Barberton greenstone belt of South Africa and the eastern Pilbara block of Western Australia provide information about Earth's surface environments between 3.2 and 3.5 billion years ago, including evidence for four large bolide impacts that likely created large craters, deformed the target rocks, and altered the environment. We have obtained identical single-zircon uranium-lead ages of 3470 ± 2 million years ago for the oldest impact events from each craton. These deposits represent a single global fallout layer that is associated with sedimentation by an impact-generated tsunami and in Western Australia is represented by a major erosional unconformity.
Deaths which occurred on an August 23:      ^top^
2003 John J. Geoghan, 68, two hours after being strangled by Darrin Smiledge “Joseph L. Druce”, 37. Both were prisoners at the Souza-Baranowski Correction Center in Massachusetts. Druce, an extremist hater of Blacks, Jews, and homosexuals, was sentenced in 1989 to life in prison for the 1988 murder George Rollo (of Gloucester MA), 51, armed robbery, and other counts. On 21 February 2002 Geoghan was sentenced to a 9-to-10 years in prison (with parole possible after 6 years), having been convicted on 18 January 2002 of squeezing the buttocks of a 10-year-old boy in a swimming pool in late 1991. He was a Catholic priest of the Boston archdiocese and had been secularized in 1998. In civil lawsuits, more than 130 persons have claimed that Geoghan sexually abused them as children during his three decades as a parish priest. In most cases criminal prosecution was not possible because the statute of limitations had expired, though two criminal cases were pending. The Geoghan case led to the revelation of sexual abuse by other Catholic priests and to the failure of bishops to take appropriate corrective measures.
2002 Two of three Palestinians dressed in Israeli army uniforms and armed with assault rifles and grenades whose attempt to infiltrate, just before daybreak, the Jewish enclave settlement of Kfar Darom, in central Gaza, is foiled by the Israeli soldiers who shoot them.
2001 Mahmoud Zourab, 11, Palestinian shot through the heart by Israeli troops in the Gaza Strip in a clash following the funeral of a Palestinian killed a day earlier. Palestinian youths were throwing stones at an Israeli enclave settlement.
2001 Francisco de Assis Santana “Chico Quele”, 56, a Xukuru Amerindian, is hit in the morning by two blasts from a 12-gauge shotgun near the village of Pe de Serra, Pernambuco state. The Catholic Church-linked Indigenous Missionary Council says that Santana was on a list of Amerindian leaders targeted by some militant settlers resisting their removal from the Xukuru Indian reservation about 2000 km northeast of Rio de Janeiro. Santana was instrumental in the Xukurus' long-running battle to have their ancestral lands set aside an Indian reservation. For many years he worked closely with chief Xicao Xukuru, whao was fatally shot in 1998. Tensions between Amerindians and non-Amerindians who settled on the ancestral Xukuru lands have often led to violence. Brazil's government recognized the 275-square-kilometer Xukuru reservation earlier in 2001, but nearly 300 settlers remain on the land, saying that they want compensation from the federal government before they leave. The gunmen ran in the direction of a ranch whose owner, Jose Cordeiro de Santana, is said to have planned Xicao Xukuru's killing.
2000 John Anthony Kaiser, 67, murdered by a shotgun blast to the head, presumably on orders from government officials of Kenya, where he was a US Catholic missionary priest vocal in defense of human rights.
     Father Kaiser came into the limelight in 1998 when he gave information to the Akiwumi Commission on tribal clashes concerning the origin of the violence, naming some powerful Cabinet Ministers and provincial administration figures as the main perpetrators. As late as 1999, he accused two Cabinet Ministers of sending youths to Israel for commando training to come back and initiate the clashes. It so happens that the two ministers were also on his list of those who financed the 1992 carnage. The priest has tangled with other senior Kenyan government officials accused of crime.
23 Aug 2001 update.
     On this first anniversary day, human rights groups demand a Kenyan public inquest into the mysterious death of Father Kaiser, claiming that an FBI investigation was flawed.
      The Rev. John Kaiser, 67, of Perham, Minn., was found dead last on 24 Aug 2000 along a highway with a gunshot wound to the back of his head. A shotgun was discovered nearby and his truck was located in a ditch. Police at the scene initially said they believed he was slain and that it was made to look like a suicide. But an FBI report in April 2001 claimed that Kaiser was depressed and put a shotgun to the back of his head and pulled the trigger.
      At a symposium on the anniversary of his death, the Kenyan Human Rights Network joins the Catholic Church in rejecting the FBI's finding of a self-inflicted wound. The network of human rights organizations said a public inquest was needed to determine the exact circumstances behind the death.
      Kaiser was known in Kenya as the "the rhino for the poor" because of his work to expose human rights violations committed by government officials and powerful politicians. He had worked in Kenya for 35 years. He publicly accused Cabinet ministers of engineering ethnic fighting and helped bring a private prosecution for rape against one of them.
     The FBI entered the case after President Daniel arap Moi agreed to allow a team of agents to join the Kenyan police investigation. The US Congress later demanded an FBI report on the death. The FBI report released in April 2001 concluded that Kaiser's death was "most consistent with death resulting from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head." The 81-page document was not a formal crime report and the FBI acknowledged that "this analysis is not a substitute for a thorough well-planned investigation and should not be considered all inclusive."
      The report was immediately condemned by Kenya's Catholic bishops and Sen. Paul Wellstone of Minnesota, who called for further investigation. Dr. Ling Kitui, a physician who works with torture victims and attended the autopsy, said she felt the FBI report emphasized evidence that suggested suicide while ignoring evidence that suggested otherwise. She also questioned the FBI decision to rely heavily on circumstantial evidence that Kaiser had a history of depression and was behaving strangely in the days before his death.
      Kaiser's close friend, Sister Brangan Nurula, said the FBI misrepresented her discussions with them as well as what others had said about Kaiser. "They selected items from the interviews, from which they built up the theory of suicide," Nurula said. "But they didn't use other information that suggested otherwise."
      FBI officials have rejected Wellstone's call for further investigation, and Kenyan Attorney General Amos Wako has dodged requests for an inquest. An inquest would allow Kaiser's family and the church to call witnesses and review the evidence. Kenya's Catholic bishops plan to launch a letter-writing campaign on Sunday 26 August 2001. Catholic churches in the United States also plan memorial masses over the weekend.
2000 Pilot Ihsan Shakeeb and all the other 142 persons aboard a Gulf Air Airbus which crashes into the Persian Gulf near Bahrain, dued to pilot error: he aborted his landing and nosed the plane down instead of up. (The final investigation report would be released on 15 July 2002).
1989 Yusef Hawkins, 16, shot by 30 Whites in the Bensonhurst section of Brooklyn. because he's Black 1989, in a case that inflamed racial tensions in New York City.
1986 Más de 2000 personas en Camerún por las emanaciones tóxicas del Lago Nios, situado sobre un volcán.
1973 Hellmuth Kneser, German mathematician born on 16 April 1898.
1960 Oscar Hammerstein II, 65, Broadway librettist, in Doylestown, Pa.
1952 Frederick George Kenyon, 89, British archaeologist and language scholar. Kenyon devoted his life to discovering biblical parallels in ancient Greek papyri, convincing critics that science does not disprove the Bible.
1949 Domingo Díaz Arosemena, presidente de Panamá.
1942: 40'000 Stalingrad civilians, by Nazi bombing       ^top^
      During World War II, the German Sixth Army sights the Russian city of Stalingrad on the banks of the Volga River, the pre-designated boundary of the Third Reich. As the Sixth Army approaches Stalingrad, the German Fourth Air Fleet under General Wolfram von Richthofen reduces the city to a burning rubble, killing over forty thousand civilians.
      As part of the summer campaign by German forces in Russia, the Sixth Army under Field Marshall Friedrich von Paulus was to take Stalingrad, an industrial center and obstacle to Nazi control of the precious Caucasian oil wells. At the beginning of September, General Paulus ordered the first offensives into the suburbs of Stalingrad, estimating that it would take his army about ten days to capture the city. Thus began the most horrific battle of World War II, and arguably the most important because it marked the turning point in the war between Nazi Germany and the USSR.
      In Stalingrad, the German Sixth Army faced a bitter Red Army employing the ruined city to their advantage, transforming destroyed buildings and rubble into natural fortifications. In a method of fighting the Germans began to call the Rattenkrieg, or "Rat's War," the opposing forces broke into squads eight or ten strong, and fought each other for every house and yard of territory. The battle saw rapid advances in the technology of street fighting, such as a German machine gun that shot around corners and a light Russian plane that glided silently over German positions at night, dropping lethal bombs without warning.
      However, both sides lacked the necessary food, water, or medical supplies, and tens of thousands perished. Soviet leader Joseph Stalin was determined to liberate the city named after him, and in November, he ordered massive reinforcements to the area. On November 19, the Red Army under General Georgi Zhukov launched Operation Uranus, the great Soviet counter-offensive, out of the rubble of Stalingrad.
      German command underestimated the scale of the counterattack, and the Sixth Army was quickly overwhelmed by the offensive, which involved eleven Soviet armies, 900 tanks, and 1400 aircraft. Within three days, the entire German force of over 200'000 men was encircled. For the next two months, the Germans desperately hung on, waiting for reinforcements that never came. Starvation and the bitter Russian winter took as many lives as the merciless Soviet troops, and when Field Marshal Friedrich Von Paulus finally surrendered on 2 February 1943, only 90'000 German soldiers were still alive.
SaccoVanzetti1927 Nicola Sacco [<<<], 36, and Bartolomeo Vanzetti [>>>], 39, on the electric chair, in Massachusetts       ^top^
after a controversial murder trial extending over seven years, 1920-27
      The trial resulted from the murders in South Braintree, Massachusetts, on 15 April 1920, of F.A. Parmenter, paymaster of a shoe factory, and Alessandro Berardelli, the guard accompanying him, in order to secure the payroll of over $15'000 that they were carrying. On 05 May 1920, after going to a garage to claim a car that police said was connected with the crime, Nicola Sacco [born 22 April 1891] and Bartolomeo Vanzetti [born 11 June 1888], two Italian anarchists who had immigrated to the United States in 1908, Sacco a shoe-factory worker and Vanzetti a fish peddler, were arrested for the crime. Both men carried guns and made false statements upon their arrest, but neither had a previous criminal record. On 31 May 1921, they were brought to trial before Judge Webster Thayer of the Massachusetts Superior Court, and on 14 July 1921 both were found guilty by verdict of the jury and sentenced to die.
      Socialists and radicals protested the men's innocence. Many people felt that there had been less than a fair trial and that the defendants had been convicted for their radical, anarchist beliefs rather than for the crime for which they had been tried. All attempts for retrial on the ground of false identification failed. On 18 November 1925, one Celestino Madeiros, then under a sentence for murder, confessed that he had participated in the crime with the Joe Morelli gang. The state Supreme Court refused to upset the verdict, because at that time the trial judge had the final power to reopen on the ground of additional evidence.
      The two men were sentenced to death on 09 April 1927. A storm of protest arose with mass meetings throughout the nation. Governor Alvan T. Fuller appointed an independent advisory committee consisting of President A. Lawrence Lowell of Harvard University, President Samuel W. Stratton of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Robert Grant, a former judge. On 03 August 1927, the governor refused to exercise his power of clemency; his advisory committee agreed with this stand. Demonstrations proceeded in many cities throughout the world, and bombs were set off in New York City and Philadelphia. Sacco and Vanzetti, still maintaining their innocence, were executed 23 August 1927.
      Opinion has remained divided on whether Sacco and Vanzetti were guilty as charged or whether they were innocent victims of a prejudiced legal system and a mishandled trial. Some writers have claimed that Sacco was guilty but that Vanzetti was innocent: in 1961, a test of Sacco's gun using modern forensic techniques apparently proved that it was his gun that killed the guard; although little evidence has been found to substantiate Vanzetti's guilt.. There is widespread agreement, however, that the two men should have been granted a second trial in view of their trial's significant defects. On 23 August 1977 the governor of Massachusetts, Michael S. Dukakis, issues a proclamation stating that Sacco and Vanzetti had not been treated justly and that no stigma should be associated with their names.
1926 Rodolpho Alfonzo Rafaello Pietro Filiberto Guglielmi Di Valentina D'Antonguolla (“Rudolph Valentino”), 31, from a ruptured ulcer, in NY, silent movie idol, the "Great Lover" of the 1920s., in NY. His death sends his fans into a hysterical state of mass mourning. More than 100'000 fans pay tribute at his open coffin. Actress Pola Negri, reported inconsolable, sends 4000 roses. Many suicide attempts are reported. His films included The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (1921), The Sheik (1921), Blood and Sand (1922), The Eagle (1925), and The Son of the Sheik (1926).
1917 _ 2 Blacks and 11 Whites, in race riot in Houston Texas — Somehow it adds up to 17 persons murdered by 64 mutinous members of the US 24th Infantry, in Houston, Texas, for which they would be judged by a court martial starting on 1 November 1917.
1914: 674 civils de Dinant, massacrés par les envahisseurs allemands.       ^top^
     Vers 5 heures du matin, le 2ème bataillon du 178ème régiment allemand fait son entrée à Dinant, en Belgique. 152 ouvriers sont fusillés avec à leur tête leur directeur, M. Himmer, vice-consul de la République d'Argentine. Il s'ensuit un massacre de civils à Leffe, dans le quartier St Pierre, dans le quartier de la Grand-Place, au Faubourg St Nicolas, à la Place d'Armes (mur Tschoffen), aux Rivages, à Neffe, au Faubourg St Médart... On dénombrera 674 victimes civiles (92 femmes, 577 hommes et 5 inconnus). Dinant est reconnue «première cité martyre». Le 25 Aug, les habitants indemnes sont emmenés comme prisonniers. Les femmes et les enfants sont enfermés à l'abbaye, les hommes à l'école régimentaire. 416 civils se voient déportés à Cassel pour trois mois de captivité. Sur 1400 maisons, près d'un millier seront détruites. La Ville n'est plus qu'un amas de ruines. Evrehailles, Yvoir, Sorinnes connaissent aussi les incendies, les déportations et les fusillades. Un sort qu'ont partagé d'autres villes martyres comme Andenne, Tamines, Visé...
1903 Paul Joseph Constantin Gabriël, Dutch painter born on 05 July 1828 — MORE ON GABRIËL AT ART “4” AUGUSTA Watercourse at AbcoudeA windmill on a polder waterway aka In the Month of JulyDucks' NestsHuisje aan de waterkant
1902 [23 Aug perhaps Julian, which would be 5 Sep Gregorian] Henryk Siemiradzki, in Rome, Polish Academic painter born on 24 October 1843. — Photo of SiemiradzkiMORE ON SIEMIRADZKI AT ART “4” AUGUST LINKSChrist and the Samaritan Woman _ detailPhryne at the Festival of Poseidon in Eleusin _ main detail _ close detailRest _ detailBy a Spring _ detail Following the Example of the GodsVendeur d'AmulettesAt the SpringSzkic do Obrazu ZebrakU ZródlaRoman IdyllChristian Dirce
1865 Ferdinand Georg Waldmüller, Austrian Baroque era painter born in Vienna on 15 January 1793. — MORE ON WALDMÜLLER AT ART “4” AUGUSTLINKSGyörgy Gaál — Portraits of Eleonore Feldmüller and her husband, sailing-master Matthias FeldmüllerChildren Making Their Grandmother a Present on Her Name DayDer Alte Und Die KuchenmagdThe Center of AttentionA Dog By A Basket Of Grapes In A Landscape
1863 Lawrence, Kansas, civilian men and boys, massacred by Confederate gangsters       ^top^
      A ruthless band of guerillas attacks the town of Lawrence, Kansas, killing every man and boy in sight. Led by William Quantrill and William "Bloody Bill" Anderson, the guerillas were said to have carried out the brutal attack on behalf of the Confederacy. Included in their group was Jesse James' brother Frank and Cole Younger, who would also play a large role in the James gang later on. Bloody Bill Anderson got his name for his love of shooting unarmed and defenseless people. Reportedly, he carried as many as eight handguns, in addition to a saber and a hatchet. His horse was also outfitted with several rifles and backup pistols. Although he claimed to have political motives for his terrorism, Anderson more likely used the Civil War as an opportunity to kill without repercussion.
      Jesse James, only 17 at the time, teamed up with Bloody Bill after he split from Quantrill's band of killers. On 24 September 1864, their small splinter group terrorized and destroyed most of the town of Centralia, Missouri. They also ambushed a small troop of Union soldiers whose train happened to stop at Centralia. Twenty-five Northern soldiers were stripped and lined up while Anderson and Arch Clement proceeded to shoot each of them down in cold blood, sparing only the sergeant. A month later, Anderson paid for his crimes: He was caught by a full contingent of Union army troops in Missouri and killed in the ensuing battle. Jesse James was never brought to justice by the North for his war crimes and went on to become the 19th century's most infamous criminal.
1819 Oliver Hazard Perry, naval hero, dies on 34th birthday
1806 Charles Augustin de Coulomb, French mathematician and physicist, born on 14 June 1736, who worked on applied mechanics but he is best known for his work on electricity and magnetism.
1591 Fray Luis de León, poeta y teólogo español.
1367 Gil Alvarez de Albornoz, cardenal y estadista español.
1305 William Wallace, Scottish patriot, hanged, drawn, beheaded, and quartered in London.
Births which occurred on an August 23:      ^top^
1955 Jaume Plensa, escultor y pintor español.
1932 Mark Russell Buffalo NY, political satirist / pianist (Real People)
1931 Hamilton O. Smith, molecular biologist credited with helping 'open the door' on genetic enginering — Premio Nobel de Medicina y Fisiología 1978.
1930 Michel Rocard, Courbevoie, France, Prime Minister of France.— Michel Rocard, dirigente socialista francés.
1928 Israel Gohberg, Jewish Russian mathematician.
1924 Robert Merton Solow, profesor estadounidense, Premio Nobel de Economía 1987.
1912 Keith Vaughan, British artist who died in 1977.
1908 John Arthur Todd, English mathematician who died on 22 December 1994.
1908 Arthur Adamov Kislovodsk Russia, dramatist (Paolo Paoli)
1904 Automobile tire chain patented
1898 Albert Claude, biologist who won the 1974 Nobel for his work on the sub-structure of the cell. He never graduated from high school.
1883 Jonathan Wainwright, US general who fought against the Japanese on Corregidor in the Philippines and was forced to surrender.
1875 William Eccles, radio pioneer. William Eccles, a British physicist, was a proponent of Oliver Heaviside's theory that an upper layer of the atmosphere reflects radio waves. Eccles' research helped establish the feasibility of long-distance radio transmission. He wrote two books on wireless technology and studied the effects of the sun and other environmental conditions on the speed and behavior of radio waves.
1871 Jack Butler Yeats II, Irish artist who died on 28 March 1957. — MORE ON YEATS AT ART “4” 2~DAY LINKSThe Small RingReturning from the Bathe, Mid-DayOff the Donegal CoastBack from the RacesMorning after RainThe Death of Diarmuid, the Last Handful of WaterThe Two Travellers
1869 Edgar Lee Masters, US poet and novelist.      ^top^
     He would be best known as the author of Spoon River Anthology, in which the former inhabitants of fictitious Spoon River speak from the grave of their bitter, unfulfilled lives in the dreary confines of a small town.
     Born in Garnett, Kansas, Masters lived during his childhood in small towns in Illinois. His mother, from New England, was homesick for her old East Coast life filled with music and literature, and his father, an attorney, was a cold and distant man. As a result, Masters gained a sense of the unhappiness and lack of fulfillment that could lie below small-town America's pastoral facade. Masters studied for a year at Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois, then studied law in his father's office. He passed the bar, then moved to Chicago in 1891. There, he found himself surrounded by writers taking part in the Chicago Renaissance and began writing undistinguished poetry himself.
      He published a collection of verse in 1898, and various essays and blank-verse dramas in the early 1900s. He married twice and had three children. In 1909, a friend gave him a copy of Epigrams from the Greek Anthology, a collection of 4000 poems written between 700 B.C. and 1000 A.D. The short autobiographical poems inspired Masters to write his masterpiece, Spoon River Anthology. The book contains a series of short, unrhymed poems, the meditations of deceased residents of the small town of Spoon River. In just a handful of lines, the speakers outline their lives — mostly unhappy, unfulfilled, and full of bitterness, anger, or love for other speakers. The poems expose the sterility and small-minded element of small-town life, which became a theme of other writers in the 1920s, notably Sinclair Lewis. The book was a huge success, breaking sales records and allowing Masters to retire from his legal practice and write full time. Although he wrote more than 50 books, including poetry collections and biographies, he is chiefly remembered for Spoon River. He died in 1950.
  • The Blood of the Prophets
  • A Book of Verses (1898)
  • The New Star Chamber, and Other Essays (1904)
  • Songs and Sonnets, by Webster Ford
  • Spoon River Anthology (1916)
  • Spoon River Anthology (2nd site)
  • Spoon River Anthology (3rd site)
  • Spoon River Anthology (4th site)
  • Toward the Gulf
  • 1861 Joseph Edward Southall, British painter who died in 1944 — CinderellaBelgium Supported by Hope
    1849 William Ernest Henley, author. HENLEY ONLINE: Poems — co-author of: The Plays of W. E. Henley and R. L. Stevenson
    1842 Osborne Reynolds, English applied mathematician, specialized in fluid dynamics, who died on 21 February 1912.
    1840 Gabriel Cornelius von Max, Czech-German artist who died on 24 November 1915.
    1829 Moritz Benedikt Cantor, German historian of mathematics who died on 09 April 1920.
    1797 Adhémar-Jean-Claude Barré de Saint-Venant, French civil engineer and mathematician who died on 06 January 1886.
    1785 Oliver Hazard Perry, would grow up to be a naval hero (Battle of Lake Erie: "We have met the enemy, and they are ours.") and die on 34th birthday.
    1778 Josef Hoëné “de Wronski”, Polish French, who would write on the philosophy of mathematics. He died on 08 August 1853.
    1769 Georges-Léopold-Chrétien-Frédéric-Dagobert baron Cuvier.      ^top^
         He would be the French zoologist and statesman, who established the sciences of comparative anatomy and paleontology. He wrote Tableau élémentaire de l'histoire naturelle des animaux (1797), Leçons d'anatomie comparée (1800-1805), Rapport historique sur les progrès des sciences naturelles depuis 1789, et sur leur état actuel (1810), Recherches sur les ossements fossiles de quadrupèdes (1812), Le Règne animal distribué d'après son organisation (1817), Discours sur les révolutions à la surface du globe (1825; online English translation and French original). He died on 13 May 1832.
    1754 Louis XVI, in Versailles, would be king of France (1774-92) and end guillotined.
    1683 Giovanni Poleni, Italian astronomer, physicist, mathematician, who died on 15 November 1761.
    HolidaysNote: Romania : Liberation Day (1944-1990) / Swaziland : Umhlanga Day

    Religious Observances RC : St Philip Benizi, confessor / RC : St Rose of Lima, patron of Latin America (opt) / Santos Rosa de Lima, Felipe Benicio, Apolinar, Claudio, Donato, Eugenio, Restituto, Valeriano y Víctor.

    Thoughts for the day: "Beware the person who can't be bothered with details."
    "Beware the person who is bothered by details."
    "Beware the person who is smothered by details."
    "Beware the leader who can't delegate the details."
    "Beware the details."
    "Read the small print with a fine-toothed comb."
    "Beware the person who can't be bothered with the big picture."
    "You can't see the forest when there's trees in the way."
    "The forest can't hide behind its trees."
    "Dead men tell no details."
    "Dead dogs don't wag details."
    "Shouting is not a substitute for thinking."
    — Adlai Stevenson.
    “Nor is thinking is a substitute for shouting.” — me
    “No matter what accomplishments you make, somebody helps you.” — Althea Gibson, US tennis champion.
    “No matter what accomplishments you make, somebody helps you mess up.”
    “No matter what accomplishments you make, somebody says it's not enough.”
    “No matter what accomplishments you make, somebody will eventually best them.”
    “No matter what accomplishments you make, somebody else profits.”

    updated Sunday 24-Aug-2003 14:56 UT

    safe site
    site safe for children safe site