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Events, deaths, births, of 20 OCT
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On a 20 October 20:
2002 “The generous amnesty by his excellency the president is to show gratitude and pride in the heroic stand of the people who said Yes to him" Interior Minister Mahmoud Diyab al-Ahmed declares. On 15 October every single one of the 11'445'938 eligible voters voted Yes in a referendum to give his excellency another 7 years of dictatorship. Not a single voter chose the only alternative, No, according to official results. Where does this happen? Why, in the most perfect democracy the world has ever seen, of course, led by its beloved Saddam Hussein: Iraq, a far cry from the banana-republic US with its rigged presidential election of George “Dubyu” Bush, its secret arrests, its indefinite imprisonment on occupied Cuban soil of “unlawful combatants”, its barbarous death penalty, etc. etc. “All jailed prisoners, detainees and sentenced fugitives for political reasons are granted a complete, comprehensive, and final amnesty,” Saddam declares in the decree. The amnesty also covers most criminal prisoners and those held for evading military service, and states: “Prisoners and detainees will be set free immediately except in the case of those who are sentenced or detained because of murder, then they would be set free only if the families of victims would forgive them or if they pay back their debts to the government or people.” What is not mentioned is that all those whom Saddam Hussein considered as even remotely potential threats have already been freed long ago — their souls freed from the bond of the body — Saddam Hussein himself having shot some of them, including his son-in-law. The amnesty saves the minimal expense of feeding the prisoners, and the prisons await any future US aggressors who escape death on the battlefield.

2002 (Sunday) US: start of National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week.

2000 Egyptian-born Ali Mohamed, a US citizen who served in the US Army, pleads guilty in New York to helping plan the deadly 07 August 1998 US Embassy bombings in Africa in 1998 that killed 224 people, including 12 from the US.
1999 Russians shell outskirts of Grozny (CNN)

1997 Microsoft accused of incorporating browser in Windows 95
      The US Justice Department files a complaint against Microsoft, alleging that the company had violated a consent agreement it had entered into in 1995. The government accused Microsoft of unfair business practices in relation to its bundling of its Internet browser with its Windows 95 operating system. The suit came two years after Microsoft settled government charges that it had illegally exploited its operating system dominance. The Justice Department asked the court to stop Microsoft from linking the use of Windows 95 to Microsoft's Internet browser.
1996 Japanese Prime Minister Ryutaro Hashimoto's party won a parliamentary election
1996 After months of persecution, the FBI notifies Richard Jewell's attorney that Jewell is no longer a suspect in the Olympic bombing in Atlanta. Jewell was the security guard who removed the explosives just in time to save hundreds of lives.
1995 UN Asks US to pay up
      On the eve of its fiftieth anniversary, the United Nations announces that the United States, after years of failing to pay dues or the expenses for peacekeeping missions, owes the UN $1.25 billion. The debt threatens the United States' membership in the organization. Under the United Nations' charter, a member would be forced to relinquish its vote if "its arrears equals or exceeds what it owes in contributions for the preceding two years.” Though the US seems to be on the way to crossing that mark by 1997, officials concede that it is highly unlikely that the UN would banish one of the world's most powerful countries. Still, America's delinquency was troublesome for the UN, which had exceeded its annual budget by August of 1995 and was forced to take out a $125 million loan.
1994 MecklerWeb fails, for lack of customers, after two weeks
     Two weeks after its highly vaunted MecklerWeb service launched, Meckler Media shut it down. The service, also backed by Digital Equipment Corp., General Motors, and Ogilvy and Mather, was designed to help companies create their own Internet presence. The company planned to charge companies up to $50,000 to create interactive online brochures. However, the company shut down the service just two weeks after its launch, saying it had found only one customer willing to pay the high fees. Instead, the company decided to put its magazines online and sell advertising.
1990 Antiwar protest marches begin in 20 US cities (US-Iraq)
1989 US Senate impeaches US District Judge Alcee L Hastings
1988 Britain ends suspects right to remain silent in crackdown on IRA
1983 IBM-PC DOS Version 2.1 released
1981 three members of the radical Weather Underground are arrested following a bungled armored truck robbery in Nyack, N.Y
1978 The US Federal Reserve increased the rediscount rate on loans to 9.5 percent, to counter the inflation fears that are making the stock market plummet.
1975 Putting economics ahead of Cold War politics, the US announces a deal to make annual sales of 6 to 8 million tons of grain to the Soviet Union
1973 OPEC oil embargo begins, following the outbreak of Arab-Israeli war.
1973 Sat Night Massacre, Watergate prosecutor Archibald Cox dismissed by Solicitor Gen Bork, AG Richardson & Deputy AG Ruckelshaus resigned
1973 Watergate special prosecutor dismissed
      Solicitor General Robert Bork dismisses Watergate special prosecutor Archibald Cox; Attorney General Richardson and Deputy Attorney General Ruckelshaus resign in protest. Cox had conducted a detailed investigation of the Watergate break-in that revealed that the burglary was just one of many possible abuses of power by the Nixon White House. Nixon had ordered Richardson to fire Cox, but he refused and resigned, as did Ruckelshaus when Nixon then asked him to dismiss the special prosecutor. Bork agreed to fire Cox and an immediate uproar ensued. This series of resignations and firings became known as the Saturday Night Massacre and outraged the public and the media. Two days later, the House Judiciary Committee began to look into the possible impeachment of Nixon.
      The Watergate scandal involved the bungled burglary of the offices of the Democratic National Committee in the Watergate apartment complex in Washington, D.C., on June 23, 1972. It was eventually learned that the cover-up went all the way to the White House; President Nixon, facing impeachment, resigned from the presidency in August 1974. This had a major impact on the situation in Vietnam. Nixon had convinced President Nguyen Van Thieu to consent to the provisions of the Paris peace accords by personally promising (on more than 30 occasions) that the United States would re-enter the conflict if the North Vietnamese violated the peace agreement. However, Nixon's successor, Gerald R. Ford, was not able to keep Nixon's promises because he could not, despite Thieu's desperate pleas for help, get Congress to appropriate significant funds to help the South Vietnamese. Having lost its sole source of aid and support, South Vietnam fell in April 1975.
1967 In Meridan, Mississippi, and all~white federal jury convicts 7 men for violating the civil rights of three civil rights workers by murdering them.
1965 The last Volvo PV544
      The Volvo PV544 was first introduced in 1958 as an updated version of its popular predecessor, the PV444. Like the PV444 with its laminated windscreen, the PV544 featured an important safety innovation--it was the first car to be equipped with safety belts as standard fitting. But the PV544 was also a powerful automobile, boasting a 4-speed manual transmission option and power up to 95 bhp. Shortly after its introduction, the 544 became one of the most successful rally cars, dominating rally racing into the 1960s. Yet, the PV544 was also affordably priced, and its first-year sales put Volvo over the 100'000--exported automobiles mark. The PV544 was successfully reintroduced every year until 1965, when it was decided by Volvo that production of the model would cease. On this day in 1965, the last 544 was driven off the Volvo assembly line at its Lundy plant in Sweden by longtime Volvo test driver Nils Wickstrom. Gustaf Larson, the engineer who had co-founded Volvo with businessman Assar Gabrielsson in 1927, was present at the ceremony. An impressive total of 440'000 Volvo PV544s had been produced during its eight-year run, over half of which had been exported.
1964 Relations between South Vietnam, the US, and Cambodia deteriorate
      A series of incidents and charges bring relations between Cambodia, South Vietnam, and the United States to a low point. Cambodia under Prince Norodom Sihanouk had tried to maintain its neutrality in the growing conflict between Saigon and the Communists in Vietnam, but the country became a sanctuary for Viet Cong and North Vietnamese forces fighting the Saigon government. Sihanouk, not strong enough to prevent the Communists from using his territory, came under increasing political and military pressure from the United States and South Vietnam.
      In this incident, South Vietnamese planes strafed a Cambodian village; when Cambodia protested, Saigon replied by reiterating its accusation that Cambodia was providing refuge for Viet Cong forces that were attacking across the border into South Vietnam.
      On October 22, the United States charged that Cambodian troops crossed over into South Vietnam and seized an US officer advising South Vietnamese forces. On October 25, the officer's body was recovered just inside South Vietnam, and Cambodia was accused of placing the body there to allow the rescue force to be fired on.
      The next day, Cambodians shot down a US Air Force C-123 cargo plane, loaded with ammunition for a Special Forces camp; eight US servicemen aboard were killed. By October 28, the United States admitted that the plane had strayed over Cambodian territory by mistake, but argued that such incidents arose because of the poorly defined border and the activities of the Viet Cong in the area.
      Despite the charges and threats from Prince Sihanouk and US losses in personnel and planes, neither side pursued the matter. However, the use of Cambodia as a sanctuary by the Communists remained a contentious issue; in 1970, President Richard Nixon ordered US and South Vietnamese forces to attack the sanctuaries in what became known as the Cambodian Incursion.
1963 South Africa begins trial of Nelson Mandela and 8 others for conspiracy.
1962: Cuban Missile Crisis: bomb or blockade Cuba?
      US President Kennedy is away from Washington on the second day of a planned campaign trip. He knows that the Soviets are building bases in Cuba for nuclear missiles that could reach almost everywhere in the US. But the Soviets don't know that he knows, and the public knows nothing. The Executive Committee of the National Security Council (EX-COMM) meets in Washington, presided by the Attorney General, the President's brother Robert Kennedy. It approves two alternative speeches prepared for the President to give one of them, depending on whether the action decided upon is an air strike or a quarantine of Cuba.
      Then Robert Kennedy phones the President to say that he must come back to Washington make with EX-COMM a decision between the two options.The President reluctantly agrees. He gives the excuse of an “upper respiratory infection” to abandon his trip. Back in Washington, Kennedy meets, from 13:30 and to 14:30, with EX-COMM. Roswell Gilpatric, Deputy Secretary of Defense, says: “this is a choice between limited action and unlimited action -- and most of us think it is better to start with limited action." The President favors a blockade but would not finalize his decision until the next day.
1960 The first fully automated post office system is put into service in Providence, Rhode Island, the $20 million experimental project electronically sorted and canceled mail at a rate of eighteen thousand pieces per hour.
1956 15ºC, Esperanza Station, Antarctica (Antarctic record high)
1949 The last of the Inklings' Thursday meetings is held this evening. This group of Christians associated with Oxford included such notable thinkers as J.R.R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, and Owen Barfield.
1947 Un-American Activities in Hollywood?
      The House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) of the US Congress opens its investigation into communist infiltration of the American movie industry. Chaired by Congressman Parnell Thomas, the subsequent hearings focused on identifying political subversives among Hollywood actors and actresses, writers, and directors.
      Although initially opposed by a group of Hollywood heavyweights such as Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, and Gene Kelly, the hearings proceeded. A number of witnesses, including studio owners Walt Disney and Jack Warner, and movie stars Robert Taylor and Gary Cooper, gave statements decrying the communist influence in the film industry; some specifically named colleagues whom they suspected of communist affiliations or sympathies.
     Among those denounced as having un-American tendencies are: Katherine Hepburn, Charles Chaplin and Edward G. Robinson. Among those called to testify is Screen Actors Guild President Ronald Reagan, who denies that leftists ever controlled the Guild and refuses to label anyone a communist.
      Another group of witnesses, including writers Dalton Trumbo and Ring Lardner Jr., were less forthcoming, and loudly complained that the hearings were illegal, and that questions about their political loyalties were inappropriate. Eventually, the "Hollywood Ten," as these protesting witnesses came to be known, were found in contempt of Congress and went on to serve jail terms.
      The fate of the Hollywood Ten terrified many in the film industry, and when new HUAC hearings started in 1951, Hollywood quickly buckled to the committee's demands. Hundreds of performers, directors, writers, and others associated with the movies were placed on a "blacklist," effectively banned from employment. Actors such as Zero Mostel and John Garfield saw their careers in film during the 1940s and 1950s destroyed for refusing to cooperate with HUAC. Hollywood also responded by turning out a bevy of films with anticommunist themes, such as I Was a Communist for the FBI (1951), Big Jim McClain (1952), and My Son John (1952).
1945 Egypt, Syria, Iraq and Lebanon form the Arab League to present a unified front against the establishment of a Jewish state in Palestine.
1944 Revolution by workers and students in Guatemala
1944 US 1st army wins battle of Aachen
1944 US forces land at Leyte Island in the Philippines
      More than 100'000 American soldiers land on Leyte Island, in the Philippines, as preparation for the major invasion by Gen. Douglas MacArthur. The ensuing battles of Leyte Island proved among the bloodiest of the war in the Pacific and signaled the beginning of the end for the Japanese.
      The Japanese had held the Philippines since May 1942, when the awful defeat of American forces led to General MacArthur's departure (while he promised: "I shall return.”) and General Wainwright's capture. MacArthur was back, as he promised, but his invasion of Luzon required a softening up of the enemy. Thus, the amphibious landing of the American forces at Leyte and the concomitant goal of destroying the Japanese fleet in the gulf was undertaken.
      The Japanese anticipated the American landing by launching Operation Sho-Go, an attempt to divert the US 3rd Fleet north and away from the fighting on the island. The Japanese fleet assembled was the largest ocean task force assembled during the war, including seven battleships, 11 heavy cruisers, and 19 destroyers. US submarines and aircraft carriers met the Japanese fleet and the Battle of Leyte Gulf began on October 23.
      Meanwhile on Leyte Island, the US troops took on the Japanese garrison, which was composed of 8',000 soldiers. It took 67 days to subdue the island, with extraordinary acts of physical bravery and courage demonstrated on both sides. Even after the US troops had taken control of the island, Japanese soldiers who had been hidden away continued to emerge and fight on, preferring to die than surrender. All told, the Japanese lost more than 55'000 soldiers during the two months of battle and approximately another 25'000 in mopping up operations in early 1945. The US forces lost about 3500-compared with the Japanese loss of 80'000 total.
      The sea battle of Leyte Gulf was the same story. The loss of ships and sailors was horrendous for both sides. The sinking of the American carrier Princeton resulted in the drowning deaths of 500 men. When the Japanese battleship Musashi was destroyed by a massive American aerial attack, more than 1000 sailors died, including the captain who stood on his bridge and literally went down with his ship. Three days of sea battle saw the destruction of 36 Japanese warships-compared with the US's three. It also saw the introduction of the Japanese kamikaze-"divine wind"--suicide bombers. The St. Lo, a US aircraft carrier, was one of the first casualties, when one kamikaze pilot drove his plane straight into its flight deck. More than 5000 kamikaze pilots died in this gulf battle-taking down 34 ships. But when all was said and done, the Japanese had not been able to prevent the loss of their biggest and best warships, signaling the virtual end of the Japanese Imperial Fleet. The US victory on land and sea opened the door for General MacArthur's invasion and the recapture of the Philippines.
A personal victory for MacArthur. After advancing island by island across the Pacific Ocean, US General Douglas MacArthur wades ashore onto the Philippine island of Leyte, fulfilling his promise to return to the area he was forced to flee in 1942. The son of an American Civil War hero, MacArthur served as chief US military adviser to the Philippines before World War II. The day after Pearl Harbor was bombed on 07 December 1941, Japan launched its invasion of the Philippines.
      After struggling against great odds to save his adopted home from Japanese conquest, MacArthur was forced to abandon the Philippine island fortress of Corregidor under orders from President Franklin Roosevelt in March 1942. Left behind at Corregidor and on the Bataan Peninsula were 90'000 US and Filipino soldiers, who, lacking food, supplies, and support, would soon succumb to the Japanese offensive. After leaving Corregidor, MacArthur and his family traveled by boat 900 km to the Philippine island of Mindanao, braving mines, rough seas, and the Japanese navy. At the end of the hair-raising 35-hour journey, MacArthur told the boat commander, John D. Bulkeley, "You've taken me out of the jaws of death, and I won't forget it." On 17 March the general and his family boarded a B-17 Flying Fortress for northern Australia. He then took another aircraft and a long train ride down to Melbourne.
      During this journey, he was informed that there were far fewer Allied troops in Australia than he had hoped. Relief of his forces trapped in the Philippines would not be forthcoming. Deeply disappointed, he issued a statement to the press in which he promised his men and the people of the Philippines, "I shall return." The promise would become his mantra during the next two and a half years, and he would repeat it often in public appearances. For his valiant defense of the Philippines, MacArthur was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor and celebrated as "America's First Soldier." Put in command of Allied forces in the Southwestern Pacific, his first duty was conducting the defense of Australia. Meanwhile, in the Philippines, Bataan fell in April, and the 70'000 American and Filipino soldiers captured there were forced to undertake a death march in which at least 7000 perished.
      Then, in May, Corregidor surrendered, and 15'000 more US and Filipino soldiers were captured. The Philippines were lost, and the US Joint Chiefs of Staff had no immediate plans for their liberation. After the US victory at the Battle of Midway in June 1942, most Allied resources in the Pacific went to US Admiral Chester Nimitz, who as commander of the Pacific Fleet planned a more direct route to Japan than via the Philippines. Undaunted, MacArthur launched a major offensive in New Guinea, winning a string of victories with his limited forces. By September 1944, he was poised to launch an invasion of the Philippines, but he needed the support of Nimitz's Pacific Fleet. After a period of indecision about whether to invade the Philippines or Formosa, the Joint Chiefs put their support behind MacArthur's plan, which logistically could be carried out sooner than a Formosa invasion.
      On 20 October 1944, a few hours after his troops landed, MacArthur waded ashore onto the Philippine island of Leyte. That day, he made a radio broadcast in which he declared, "People of the Philippines, I have returned!" In January 1945, his forces invaded the main Philippine island of Luzon. In February, Japanese forces at Bataan were cut off, and Corregidor was captured. Manila, the Philippine capital, fell in March, and in June MacArthur announced his offensive operations on Luzon to be at an end; although scattered Japanese resistance continued until the end of the war, in August. Only one-third of the men MacArthur left behind in March 1942 survived to see his return. "I'm a little late," he told them, "but we finally came."
1942 "Durham Manifesto" calls for fundamental changes in race relations
1938 Czechoslovakia, complying with Nazi policy, outlaws the Communist Party and begins persecuting Jews. The unprecedented Nuremberg Trial. 1940 German troops reach the approaches to Moscow.
1935 Mao's Long March concludes
      Just over a year after the start of the Long March, Mao Zedong arrives in Hanoi in northwest China with 8000 survivors, and sets up Chinese Communist headquarters. In October of 1934, the Communist leader Mao and over 100,000 of his followers began an epic flight from the vastly superior Nationalist forces of Chiang Kai-shek. In a retreat known as the Long March, Mao's forces battled their way across 6,000 miles of territory, before finally reaching safety in Hanoi. In 1936, under the increasing threat of Japanese invasion, a coalition is formed between Mao and his Nationalist foes. But with the defeat of Japan in 1945, civil war erupts again. Mao's Communist forces emerge triumphant in China in 1949, and the Nationalists are expelled from the mainland as the People's Republic of China is declared with Mao as both president of the republic and chairman of the Communist Party.
      Just over a year after the start of the Long March, Mao Zedong arrives in Shensi Province in northwest China with 4,000 survivors and sets up Chinese Communist headquarters. The epic flight from Chiang Kai-shek's Nationalist forces lasted 368 days and covered 6,000 miles, nearly twice the distance from New York to San Francisco. Civil war in China between the Nationalists and the Communists broke out in 1927. In 1931, Communist leader Mao Zedong was elected chairman of the newly established Soviet Republic of China, based in Kiangsi province, in the southwest. Between 1930 and 1934, the Nationalists launched a series of five encirclement campaigns against the Soviet Republic. Under the leadership of Mao, the Communists employed guerrilla tactics to successfully resist the first four campaigns, but in the fifth, Chiang raised 700,000 troops and built fortifications around the Communist positions. Hundreds of thousands of peasants were killed or died of starvation in the siege, and Mao was removed as chairman by the Communist Central Committee. The new Communist leadership employed more conventional warfare tactics, and its Red Army was decimated. With defeat imminent, the Communists decided to break out of the encirclement at its weakest points. The Long March began on October 16, 1934. Secrecy and rear-guard actions confused the Nationalists, and it was several weeks before they realized that the main body of the Red Army had fled. The retreating force initially consisted of 86,000 troops, 15,000 personnel, and 35 women. Weapons and supplies were borne on men's backs or in horse-drawn carts, and the line of marchers stretched 50 miles. The Communists generally marched at night, and when the enemy was not near, a long column of glowing torches could be seen snaking over valleys and hills into the distance. The first disaster came in November, when Nationalist forces blocked the Communists' route across the Hsiang River. It took a week for the Communists to break through the fortifications and cost them 50,000 men--more than half their number. After that debacle, Mao steadily regained his influence, and in January he was again made chairman during a meeting of the party leaders in the captured city of Tsuni. Mao changed strategy, breaking his force into several columns that would take varying paths to confuse the enemy. There would be no more direct assaults on enemy positions, and the destination would now be Shensi Province, in the far northwest, where the Communists would fight the Japanese invaders and earn the respect of China's masses. After enduring starvation, aerial bombardment, and almost daily skirmishes with Nationalist forces, Mao halted his columns at the foot of the Great Wall of China on October 20, 1935. Waiting for them were five machine-gun- and red-flag-bearing horsemen. "Welcome, Chairman Mao," one said. "We represent the Provincial Soviet of Northern Shensi. We have been waiting for you anxiously. All that we have is at your disposal!" The Long March was over. The Communist marchers crossed 24 rivers and 18 mountain ranges, mostly snow-capped. Only 4,000 troops completed the journey. The majority of those who did not complete the journey had perished along the way. It was the longest continuous march in the history of warfare and marked the emergence of Mao Zedong as the undisputed leader of the Chinese Communists. Learning of the Communists' heroism and determination in the Long March, thousands of young Chinese traveled to Shensi to enlist in Mao's Red Army. After fighting the Japanese for a decade, the Chinese Civil War resumed in 1945. Four years later, the Nationalists were defeated, and Mao proclaimed the People's Republic of China. He served as chairman of the country until his death in 1976.
Il a accompli la Longue Marche, la plus longue sans doute du siècle qu’un dirigeant ait réalisée avec ses partisans, car c’en était vraiment une : Mao Tsé-Toung et ses troupes communistes avaient mis 369 jours pour franchir 18 chaînes de montagnes, 24 fleuves, 54 villes et accomplir 12 000 km . Son but : mobiliser la population contre le pouvoir en place de Tchang Kaï-chek contre lequel Mao-Tsé Toung s’est rebellé depuis le début des années 30. Au cours de la Longue Marche, les troupes de Mao rencontrent la population, s’enrichissent de son contact, expliquent leur combat et deviennent plus forts et plus puissants qu’ils ne l’étaient. L’Armée rouge de Mao est prête à abattre le régime de Tchang Kaï-chek. De violents combats opposent tout au long des années 40 les communistes au régime en place. Premières victoires décisives de Mao en 1948 avec la prise de Moukden. Début 1949, les communistes font le siège de Pékin qui se rend le 1er février. Puis ce sera le tour de Nankin, Shanghai... Tchang Kaï-chek prend la fuite. Il se réfugiera à Formose, future Taïwan. Mao, lui s’installe à la tête de la Chine, proclame le socialisme et la République populaire de Chine. Il régnera jusqu’à sa mort, en 1976, et fera de la Chine l’une des grandes puissances de ce monde, mais controversée.
1930 British White Paper restricts Jews from buying Arab land
1918 Germany accepted US President Wilson's terms to end World War I.
1911 Roald Amundsen sets out on race to South Pole
1906 Dr Lee DeForest demonstrates his radio tube
1905 Great General Strike in Russia begins; lasts 11 days
1904 Bolivia and Chile sign a treaty ending the War of the Pacific. The treaty recognizes Chile's possession of the coast, but provides for construction of a railway to link La Paz, Bolivia, to Arica, on the coast.
1903 The Joint Commission, set up on 24 January by Great Britain and the United States to arbitrate the disputed boundary between the District of Alaska and Canada, rules in favor of the United States. The deciding vote is Britain's, which embitters Canada. The United States gains ports on the panhandle coast of Alaska.
1883 Treaty of Ancon, Peru cedes Tarapaca to Chile
1870 The Summer Palace in Beijing, China, is burnt to the ground by a Franco-British expeditionary force.
1863 Skirmish at Warm Springs, North Carolina
1844 Orestes Augustus Brownson is taken into the Roman Catholic Church. He was notable as an American intellectual with persuasive views. He was the author of The American Republic: Its Constitution, Tendencies, and Destiny, The American Republic: Its Constitution, Tendencies, and Destiny, The American Republic: Its Constitution, Tendencies, and Destiny, New Views of Christianity, Society, and the Church
1827 The naval Battle of Navarino
      During the Greek War for Independence, a combined Turkish and Egyptian armada is destroyed by an allied British, French, and Russian naval force at the Battle of Navarino. In 1821, the first nationalist uprisings by the Greeks against their Turkish rulers touched off a wave of sympathy in Britain and France, whose cultural traditions enshrined respect for ancient Hellenic values. Russians sympathized with the Greeks as fellow-members of the Orthodox Church struggling against a mutual foe in the Near and Middle East--the Ottoman Empire.
      After Turkey enlisted the aid of Egypt in the conflict, Britain, France, and Russia sent allied squadrons to Navarino Bay on the west coast of the Peloponnese in the eastern Mediterranean. The European allies had hoped to resolve the conflict by a simple show of force, but upon arrival in Navarino Bay their squadrons are immediately fired on by the opposing Egyptian and Turkish naval force. British Admiral Edward Codrington's squadron leads the European attack, and by the next day the Europeans' superior artillery have completely annihilated the Turkish and Egyptian fleets. In the same year, with its sovereignty guaranteed by the three European powers, Greece wins its independence after nearly four hundred years of Turkish rule.
1818 US-Canadian border established
      Great Britain and the United States sign a diplomatic convention establishing a boundary between the US and British Canada along the forty-ninth parallel. The boundary stretches from Lake of the Woods in the east to the Rocky Mountains in the west. The delegates also agree to a joint occupation of Oregon territory for ten years, an arrangement that is extended for an additional ten years in 1827. After 1838, the issue of who possesses Oregon becomes increasingly controversial, especially when mass American migration along the Oregon Trail begins during the early 1840s. American expansionists urge seizure of Oregon, and in 1844, Democrat James K. Polk successfully runs for president under the platform, "Fifty-four Forty or Fight," which refers to his hope of bringing a sizable portion of present-day Vancouver and Alberta into the United States. However, neither President Polk nor the British government want a third Anglo-American war, and on June 15, 1846, the Oregon Treaty is signed. By the terms of the agreement, the US and Canadian border is extended west along the forty-ninth parallel to the Strait of Georgia, just short of the Pacific Ocean. The US gains formal control over the future states of Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Montana, and the British retain Vancouver Island and navigation rights to part of the Columbia River.
1813 German Kingdom of Westphalia abolished
1805 Austrian general Karl Mac surrenders to Napoléon's army at the battle of Ulm. -- A 15 heures, les 27'000 hommes dont 3000 à cheval, et 60 pièces de canon attelées, se rendent. En signe de reddition, le général Mack remet son épée à l'empereur. Les soldats autrichiens qui défilent devant le vainqueur jettent à ses pieds toutes leurs armes.
1803 . The agreement, which provides for the purchase of the western half of the Mississippi River basin from France at a price of about seven cents per hectare, doubles the size of the country and paves the way for westward expansion beyond the Mississippi.
1803 US Senate ratifies the Louisiana Purchase by a vote of 24 to 7.
      The US Senate approves a treaty with France providing for the purchase of the territory of Louisiana, which would double the size of the United States.
      At the end of 18th century, the Spanish technically owned Louisiana, the huge region west of the Mississippi that had once been claimed by France and named for its monarch, King Louis XIV. Despite Spanish ownership, American settlers in search of new land were already threatening to overrun the territory by the early 19th century. Recognizing it could not effectively maintain control of the region, Spain ceded Louisiana back to France in 1801, sparking intense anxieties in Washington, D.C. Under the leadership of Napoléon Bonaparte, France had become the most powerful nation in Europe, and unlike Spain, it had the military power and the ambition to establish a strong colony in Louisiana and keep out the Americans.
      Realizing that it was essential that the US at least maintain control of the mouth of the all-important Mississippi River, early in 1803 President Thomas Jefferson sent James Monroe to join the French foreign minister, Robert Livingston, in France to see if Napoléon might be persuaded to sell New Orleans and West Florida to the US By that spring, the European situation had changed radically. Napoléon, who had previously envisioned creating a mighty new French empire in America, was now facing war with Great Britain. Rather than risk the strong possibility that Great Britain would quickly capture Louisiana and leave France with nothing, Napoléon decided to raise money for his war and simultaneously deny his enemy plum territory by offering to sell the entire territory to the US for a mere $15 million. Flabbergasted, Monroe and Livingston decided that they couldn't pass up such a golden opportunity, and they wisely overstepped the powers delegated to them and accepted Napoléon's offer.
      Despite his misgivings about the constitutionality of the purchase (the Constitution made no provision for the addition of territory by treaty), Jefferson finally agreed to send the treaty to the US Senate for ratification, noting privately, "The less we say about constitutional difficulties the better.” Despite his concerns, the treaty was ratified and the Louisiana Purchase now ranks as the greatest achievement of Jefferson's presidency.
1740 Maria Theresa became ruler of Austria, Hungary & Bohemia.
1714 George I of England crowned. .
1709 Marlborough and Eugene of Savoy take Mons in the Netherlands.
1658 An Act made at a General Court, held at Boston, the 20th of October, 1658
     Whereas there is a pernicious sect (commonly called Quakers), lately risen, who by word and writing have published and maintained many dangerous and horrid tenets, and do take upon them to change and alter the received laudable customs of our nation, in giving civil respect to equals, or reverence to superiors, whose actions tend to undermine the civil government, and also to destroy the order of the churches, by denying all established forms of worship, and by withdrawing from orderly church-fellowship, allowed and approved by all orthodox professors of the Truth, and instead thereof, and in opposition thereunto, frequently meeting themselves, insinuating themselves into the minds of the simple, or such as are least affected to the order and government of church and commonwealth, hereby divers of our inhabitants have been infected, notwithstanding all former laws, made upon the experience of their arrogant and bold obtrusions, to disseminate their principles among us, prohibiting their coming in this jurisdiction, they have not been deterred from their impetuous attempts to undermine our peace, and hazard our ruin.
      For prevention thereof, this court doth order and enact, that every person, or persons, of the cursed sect of the Quakers, who is not all inhabitant of, but is found within this jurisdiction, shall be apprehended without warrant, where no magistrate is at hand, by any constable, commissioner, or select man, and conveyed from constable to constable, to the next magistrate, who shall commit the said person to close prison, there to remain, without bail, unto the next court of assistants, where they shall have a legal trial: and being convicted to be of the sect of the Quakers, shall be sentenced to be banished upon pain of death: and that every inhabitant of this jurisdiction, being convicted to be of the aforesaid sect, either by taking up, publishing, or defending the horrid opinions of the Quakers, or the stirring up mutiny, sedition, or rebellion against the government, or by taking up their absurd and destructive practices, viz. Denying civil respect to equals and superiors, and withdrawing from our church assemblies, and instead thereof frequent meetings of their own, in opposition to our church order; or by adhering to, or approving of any known Quaker, and the tenets and practices of the Quakers, that are opposite to the orthodox received opinions of the godly, and endeavouring to disaffect others to civil government, and church orders, or condemning the practice and proceedings of this court against the Quakers, manifesting thereby their complying with those, whose design is to overthrow the order established in church and state, every such person, upon conviction before the said court of assistants, in manner as aforesaid, shall be committed to close prison for one month, and then, unless they choose voluntarily to depart this jurisdiction, shall give bond for their good behaviour, and appear at the next court, where continuing obstinate, and refusing to retract and reform the aforesaid opinions, they shall be sentenced to banishment upon pain of death; and any one magistrate, upon information given him of any such person, shall cause him to be apprehended, and shall commit any such person to prison, according to his discretion, until he come to trial, as aforesaid. [http://worldpolicy.org/americas/religion/masslaw.html]
1629 John Winthrop is elected governor of Massachussetts Bay. He is well-known for the journal he kept.
1600 Battle of Sekigahara sets Tokugawa clan as Japan's rulers (shoguns)
1587 In France, Huguenot Henri de Navarre routs Duke de Joyeuse's larger Catholic force at Coutras.
1541 Coronado writes to the King of Spain: Coronado's Report to the King of Spain Sent from Tiguex on October 20, 1541
1349 Self-flagellation is condemned by pope Clement VI. The practice had arisen two hundred years ealier, initiated by the monk Peter Damien as a means to help himself suppress his lusts.
--480 BC Greeks defeat the Persians in a naval battle at Salamis.
Deaths which occurred on an October 20:
2001 Five men and a woman killed late in the day in the village of El Habra, La Guajira province, Colombia, by FARC guerrillas.fighters also killed five men and a woman late Saturday in the village of El Habra in the same province,
2001 Ten peasants, in Alejandria, Antioquia province, Colombia, 188 km northwest of Bogotá, killed by paramilitaries who accused them of collaborating with the leftist Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia.
2001 Rihab Nofal, 30, and her baby about to be born, Palestinian woman in problem labor being rushed to the hospital in Bethleem, detained at an Israeli checkpoint at the exit of the village of Alkhadir near Bethlehem.
2001 Rania Mario Abu Kharofa, 23, Palestinian woman, by a bullet hitting her neck while she was in her house in Beit Jala.
2001 Samer Yousif Shawahna, 21, and Mostafa Nofal, Palestinians, by gunfire from Israeli forces invading their city,.Qualqilya.
2001 Mostafa Saled al-Zitawi, 53, and Maher Abu Hasna, 33, Palestinian policemen, by Israeli Apache helicopters firing on their security post in Tulkarem, Hamdi Ahmad Abu Attaya is seriously injured in his head. Moayad al Daqqa is also wounded.
2001 A'aisa Oudah, 52, Eisha Mahmoud Abu Odeh, 31, Ranya Haruf, 24, Yousif Mohammed Ibbayat, 15, Johnny Yousif Thaljia, 19, Palestinians killed by gunfire from Israeli troops invading Bethlehem.. — Yousef Abayat, 15, was shot and killed by Israeli forces after he stabbed and lightly wounded an Iraeli soldier, during his funeral procession in Bethlehem Bethlehem on Sunday, Oct. 21, 2001. (AP photo caption Sun, Oct 21 10:18 AM) [even when dead, Palestinian teenagers are terrorists?]
2001 Mousa George, 20, a Palestinian Christian shot in an exchange of fire between Palestinian gunmen and Israeli troops.
2000 Nine Palestinians killed by Israeli troops. 67 Palestinians wounded. This shatters the Israeli-Palestinian truce brokered by President Clinton.
1992 Petra Kelly, and Gert Bastian, who shoots his companion Kelly, founder of Germany's Greens Party and one of Europe's leading environmentalists, and then commits suicide.
1991: 25 persons by a fire in the hills above Oakland, California. More than 3000 homes.1991 are destroyed.
1987 Andrey Kolmogorov, mathematician
1984 Paul Dirac, mathematician
1982 Some 340 sports fans crushed to death in an open staircase during a game between Soviet and Dutch players in Moscow. It is the world's worst soccer disaster.
1972 Harlow Shapley discoverer of the Sun's position in the galaxy
1964 Herbert Clark Hoover, 90, 31st president of US, in NY
1913 Lucio Rossi, Italian artist born on 23 January 1846.
1896 Tisserand, mathematician
1893 Philip Schaff, US historian of the church, author. SCHAFF ONLINE: America: A Sketch of the Political, Social, and Religious Character of the United States of North America, in Two Lectures, History of the Christian Church
1889 Daniele Ranzoni, Italian painter born on 03 December 1843. — more
1846 Jean-Joseph-Xavier Bidault, French painter born on 10 April 1758. — more
1845 Antonis Oberman, Dutch artist born in 1781.
1840 Rev. John Thomson, of Duddingston, British Scottish painter born on 01 September 1778. — more with portrait.
1801 Louis Gauffier, French painter born in 1762 (1761?). — MORE ON GAUFFIER AT ART “4” OCTOBER with links to images.
1662 Claude Deruet (or Dervet, Drevet, des Ruets), French painter born in 1588. — more with links to images.
1187 Urban II, Pope who promoted the first crusade.
Births which occurred on an October 20:
1940 Robert Pinsky, former US Poet Laureate.
1932 Michael McClure, beat poet.
1928 - Dr. Joyce Brothers (Bauer) (psychologist; syndicated columnist; TV contestant: $64,000 Question [1955]; panelist: The Gong Show)
1925 Art Buchwald Mt Vernon NY, humorist columnist/author (Have I Ever Lied to You, While Reagan Slept, Leaving Home)
1921 Pierre Laporte Canada, journalist/statesman (Revolution Script)
1905 Frederic Dannay "Ellery Queen" (author: mystery series (w/Manfred B. Lee])
1900 Wayne Morse (Sen-R/D-Ore)
1891 Sir James Chadwick, English physicist who won the 1935 Nobel Prize for discovering the neutron. He died on 24 July 1974. . — MORE ON HIS LIFE AND NOBEL PRIZE
1880 Georg Tappert, German artist who died in 1957.
1874 Charles Edward Ives Danbury Ct, composer (Holliday Quick Step)
1874 Viscount Palmerston (Whig) British PM (1855-65)
1865 Kotelnikov, mathematician
^William H. Young1863: William Henry Young, in London, mathematician
He wrote: "Much as I venerate the name of Newton, I am not obliged to believe that he was infallible. I see ... with regret that he was liable to err, and that his authority has, perhaps, sometimes even retarded the progress of science.”
      William Young did significant work in measure theory* and Fourier analysis. He married Grace Chisholm, who was a pupil of Klein, and together they formed a mathematical married partnership of real significance. They had six children. The eldest, Francis, was killed in the first few weeks of World War I, as an aerial observer. Janet became a physician, she married Stephen Michael. Then there was Cecily, and Helen who married Jean Canu, Lawrence who became a mathematician at Cape Town and later at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, and the last one, Patrick, who became an engineer.

Young discovered Lebesgue integration, independently but 2 years after Lebesgue. He studied Fourier series and orthogonal series in general. All advanced calculus books now use his approach to functions of several complex variables.

Young was professor of mathematics at Calcutta, in India, from 1913 to 1917 and professor of mathematics at Aberystwyth from 1919 to 1923.

     Young stayed in his home at La Conversion, near Lausanne, when his wife returned their grandchildren William and Dorothy Michael to Croydon, England, as France fell in June 1940, making her return to Switzerland impossible. William Young was forced to spend the last two years of his life there separated from his family. In 1942 his grandchildren Jean-François, 12, and Anne-Marie, 9, Canu, were on their way from Nazi-occupied Paris, on a special Red Cross children's train, to spend the summer vacation with him. On their arrival in Lausanne, they were shocked to find out that he had just died on 7 July, and they were his only relatives to attend his funeral.
     Honors awarded to William H Young :
Fellow of the Royal Society, Elected 1907
Royal Society Sylvester Medal, Awarded 1928
London Maths Society, President 1922 - 1924
LMS De Morgan Medal, Awarded 1917

* Measure theory investigates the conditions under which integration can take place. It considers various ways in which the "size" of a set can be estimated.
1859 John Dewey philosopher, educational theorist/writer (Learn by doing), author. DEWEY ONLINE: Democracy and Education, Logical Conditions of a Scientific Treatment of Morality, The School and Society (1907)
1856 James Robert Mann, Illinois congressman and author of the "White Slave Traffic Act," also known as the "Mann Act."
1854 Jean-Nicolas-Arthur Rimbaud, in Charleville, France, France, poet/adventurer.
      His father, an army officer, deserted the family when Rimbaud was six. Rimbaud was a brilliant student, and his first poem was published in a French review when he was 16. The following year, he rebelled and ran away to Paris. He joined the National Guard briefly during the Franco-Prussian War but quickly left to wander northern Paris and Belgium. He was captured by police and returned to his home.
      Meanwhile, Rimbaud was writing poetry. He had concluded that poets must break through conventional morality and restraint in order to explore human experience. He sent some of his poems to Symbolist poet Paul Verlaine, who sent him money to travel to Paris and stay with him and his wife. Verlaine and Rimbaud became lovers, and Verlaine left his wife in 1872 for Rimbaud. That year, Rimbaud published his first book, New Poems. Verlaine and Rimbaud quarreled, and after a fight in July 1873, Verlaine shot Rimbaud in the wrist and was sentenced to two years in jail. Rimbaud published Une saison en Enfer in 1873, and Illuminations in 1886. Most of his best poems were written before he was 20. He spent the last decade of his life roaming Africa and the Middle East. In 1891, he contracted gangrene and died in Marseilles on 10 November.
RIMBAUD EN-LIGNE: Oeuvres, Une saison en Enfer, Reliquaire, poésies, Poésies complètes
1848 Hugh Bolton Jones, US painter, specialized in landscapes, who died in 1927. — more with links to images.
1847 Frits Johan Fredrik Thaulow, Norwegian artist who died on 05 November 1906.
1832 Anton Romako, Austrian painter who died on 08 March 1889. . — MORE ON ROMAKO AT ART “4” OCTOBER with links to images.
1828 Caroline Friedrich, German artist who died on 29 July 1914.
1823 Thomas Hughes England, author .HUGHES ONLINE: A Boy's Experience in the Civil War, 1860-1865, The Misfortunes of Arthur, Tom Brown's Schooldays (1905)
1819 Mirza Ali Mohammad [The Bab], forerunner of Baha'u'llah
1819 Daniel Sickles, who would be a most colorful general in the Union army.         ^top^
      Sickles was part of the famously corrupt Tammany Hall political machine in New York City and he served in the US House of Representatives from 1857 to 1861. His political career was marked by scandal--the New York State Assembly censured him for escorting a known prostitute into its chambers, and he took the same woman on a trip to England while his pregnant wife remained in the states.
      While serving as a member of Congress in 1859, Sickles confronted Philip Barton Key, son of "Star Spangled Banner" author Francis Scott Key, when Key had an affair with his wife, Theresa Sickles. Sickles shot Key, Washington's district attorney, in Lafayatte Square, just across from the White House. "Is the damned scoundrel dead yet?" Sickles reportedly asked as he brandished his smoking pistol. Sickles' murder trial created sensational headlines. He assembled a defense team that included Edwin Stanton, who later became Abraham Lincoln's Secretary of War. Stanton employed the temporary insanity defense, and Sickles became the first defendant in the United States to be acquitted using that strategy. Sickles was then shunned by Washington society for taking Theresa back. Southern diarist Mary Chestnut observed him in the House chambers in 1860 and wrote that, "he was left to himself as if he had smallpox." Sickles left office in 1861.
      When the Civil War started, Sickles raised a brigade from New York. The Republican governor, jealous of Sickles' success, ordered the Excelsior Brigade disbanded, but Sickles appealed to President Lincoln. Lincoln gave Sickles the rank of temporary commander and promised to help negotiate the New York political maze to commission the brigade. This took nearly a year, but Sickles and his command came to be part of General Joseph Hooker's corps during the Seven Days' Battles.
      Sickles quickly moved up the ranks. By early 1863, he became commander of the Army of the Potomac's Third Corps. His troops fought well at the Battle of Chancellorsville, and Sickles played a major role in the Battle of Gettysburg. Sickles occupied a low portion of Cemetery Ridge on the battle's second day. He moved his troops forward against the wishes of Commander General George Meade in order to take a section of high ground in Sickles' front. The move left his corps and the Army of the Potomac in a highly vulnerable position. Confederates under General James Longstreet attacked, and Sickles' corps barely survived the day.
      Sickles lost his leg during the battle, and he never regained another command. After the war, he was military governor of the Carolinas and served as US minister to Spain. His time in Madrid was also marked by scandal--rumors spread of an affair between Sickles and Queen Isabella II. After his return to the US in 1874, Sickles spent much of his life defending his actions at Gettysburg and shaping the accounts of the Civil War. He died in 1914 at the age of 94. He is buried in Arlington National Cemetery, but the leg he lost at Gettysburg is on display at the Armed Forces Medical Museum in Washington, D.C.
1812 Austin Flint 19th century heart research pioneer
1802 Ernst W. Hengstenberg, German O.T. scholar. An outspoken defender of evangelical Christianity against the rationalism of his day, Hengstenberg's most significant writing was his four-volume Christology of the Old Testament.
1640 Pieter Cornelisz van Slingeland, Dutch artist who died on 07 November 1691.
1632 Sir Christopher Wren, England, architect, astronomer, mathematician -- Ce grand mathématicien et architecte fut d'abord professeur à l'Université d'Oxford. Il se spécialise dans l'architecture religieuse. Son nom reste attaché à la reconstruction de cinquante églises détruite par le grand incendie de 1666, notamment la célèbre Cathédrale Saint Paul. — Wren's first design for St.Paul's Cathedral.
1631 Joost (or Jan) van Geel, Dutch artist who died on 31 December 1698.
1620 Aelbert Cuyp (or Aelbrecht Kiup), Dordrecht painter and draftsman who died on 15 November 1691. — MORE ON CUYP AT ART “4” OCTOBER with links to images.
1606 Peter Franchoys, Flemish artist who died in 1654)
Holidays Guatemala : Revolution Day/Día de la Revolución (1944) / Kenya : Jomo Kenyatta Day

Religious Observances Buddhist-Laos : End of Buddhist Fast / Christian : St Bertilla Boscardin / Christian : St Irene / Old Catholic : St John Cantius (now 12/23)

Por que no filme "O Planeta dos Macacos" o astronauta não desconfia em que planeta está, se todos os macacos falam inglês?
Thoughts for the day: “Beauty is only skin deep, but ugly goes clear through.”
“Beauty is only skin deep, but cancer can affect any organ.”
“Beauty is only skin deep, but depends on the shape of that skin.”
“When the wolf is at the door, vultures wait by the windows.”
“If there is no Hell, a good many preachers are obtaining money under false pretenses.” —
attributed to William A. "Billy" Sunday, American baseball player turned evangelist (1862-1935). [Did Billy Sunday obtain all his money under true pretenses?].
“If there is a Hell, don't count on it being full before you get there.”
“War is hell, Hell is even worse.”
“If there is no Hell, what was Dante writing about?”
“If there is no Hell, it's going to be an eternity before it freezes over.”
“If there is no Hell, a good many preachers are going to be damned.”
“There has to be a Hell, enough people have told me to go there.”
“Hell is for those who tell others to go there.”
“L'enfer, c'est les autres.”
“L'enfer, c'est pour les autres.”
“L'enfer, c'est pour ceux qui disent que l'enfer, c'est les autres.”
“L'enfer, c'est pour ceux qui pensent que c'est pour les autres.”
“L'enfer, c'est pour ceux qui ne pensent pas comme Dante.”
updated Sunday 19-Oct-2003 23:13 UT
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