Sunday, July 01, 2007

Today In History

Today is Sunday, July 1, the 182nd day of 2007. There are 183 days left in the year. This is Canada Day.

Today's Highlight in History:

On July 1, 1946, the United States exploded a 20-kiloton atomic bomb near Bikini Atoll in the Pacific.

On this date:

In 1863, the Civil War Battle of Gettysburg, resulting in a Union victory, began in Pennsylvania.

In 1867, Canada became a self-governing dominion of Great Britain as the British North America Act took effect.

In 1898, during the Spanish-American War, U.S. forces, including Theodore Roosevelt's "Rough Riders," waged a victorious assault on San Juan Hill in Cuba.

In 1932, New York Gov. Franklin D. Roosevelt was nominated for president at the Democratic convention in Chicago.

In 1957, the International Geophysical Year, an 18-month global scientific study, began.

In 1961, Diana, the princess of Wales, was born in Sandringham, England. (She died in a 1997 car crash in Paris at age 36.)

In 1968, the U.S., Britain, the Soviet Union and nearly 60 other nations signed the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.

In 1980, "O Canada" was proclaimed the national anthem of Canada.

In 1987, President Ronald Reagan nominated federal appeals court judge Robert Bork to the U.S. Supreme Court, setting off a tempestuous confirmation process that ended with Bork's rejection by the Senate.

In 1991, President Bush nominated federal appeals court judge Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court, beginning an ultimately successful confirmation process marked by allegations of sexual harassment.

Ten years ago: Hong Kong reverted to Chinese rule after 156 years as a British colony. Actor Robert Mitchum died in Santa Barbara County, Calif., at age 79.

Five years ago: The world's first permanent war crimes tribunal came into existence. A U.S. Air Force gunship attacked several villages in Afghanistan, killing 48 civilians, according to Afghan officials. A Russian passenger jet collided with a cargo plane over southern Germany, killing all 69 people on the Russian plane, and the two cargo jet pilots. Chile's Supreme Court ruled that former dictator Gen. Augusto Pinochet was suffering from dementia and dropped all charges against him for human rights violations during his regime.

One year ago: Thunderstorms forced NASA to call off the launch of Discovery, delaying the first space shuttle flight in a year. (Discovery was launched three days later, on July 4.) A huge car bomb exploded at a bustling outdoor market in a Shiite district of Baghdad, killing more than 60 people.

Thought for Today: "Americans are benevolently ignorant about Canada, while Canadians are malevolently well-informed about the United States." — J. Bartlet Brebner, Canadian historian (1895-1957).

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