Today in History
Today is Wednesday, Aug. 8, the 220th day of 2018. There are 145 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On August 8, 1974, President Richard Nixon, facing damaging new revelations in the Watergate scandal, announced he would resign the following day.
On this date:
In 1815, Napoleon Bonaparte set sail for St. Helena to spend the remainder of his days in exile.
In 1911, President William Howard Taft signed a measure raising the number of U.S. representatives from 391 to 433, effective with the next Congress, with a proviso to add two more when New Mexico and Arizona became states.
In 1942, during World War II, six Nazi saboteurs who were captured after landing in the U.S. were executed in Washington, D.C.; two others who cooperated with authorities were spared.
In 1945, President Harry S. Truman signed the U.S. instrument of ratification for the United Nations Charter. The Soviet Union declared war against Japan during World War II.
In 1953, the United States and South Korea initialed a mutual security pact.
In 1963, Britain’s “Great Train Robbery” took place as thieves made off with 2.6 million pounds in banknotes.
In 1968, the Republican national convention in Miami Beach nominated Richard Nixon for president on the first ballot.
In 1973, Vice President Spiro T. Agnew branded as “damned lies” reports he had taken kickbacks from government contracts in Maryland, and vowed not to resign — which he ended up doing.
In 1993, in Somalia, four U.S. soldiers were killed when a land mine was detonated underneath their vehicle, prompting President Bill Clinton to order Army Rangers to try to capture Somali warlord Mohamed Farrah Aidid.
In 2000, the wreckage of the Confederate submarine H.L. Hunley, which sank in 1864 after attacking the Union ship Housatonic, was recovered off the South Carolina coast and returned to port.
In 2002, Saddam Hussein organized a big military parade and then warned “the forces of evil” not to attack Iraq as he sought once more to shift the debate away from world demands that he live up to agreements that ended the Gulf War.
In 2009, Sonia Sotomayor was sworn in as the U.S. Supreme Court’s first Hispanic and third female justice.
Ten years ago: China opened the Summer Olympic Games with an extravaganza of fireworks and pageantry. A charter bus crashed near Sherman, Texas, killing 17 members of a Vietnamese-American Catholic group en route to Missouri. Former Democratic presidential candidate and vice-presidential nominee John Edwards admitted having an extramarital affair. Russia sent an armored column into the breakaway enclave of South Ossetia after Georgia launched an offensive to crush separatists there.
Five years ago: The U.S. sharply escalated its drone war in Yemen, with military officials in the Arab country reporting three strikes that left a dozen dead. Actress Karen Black, 74, who was featured in such counterculture favorites as “Easy Rider,” Five Easy Pieces” and “Nashville,” died in Los Angeles. Opera singer Regina Resnik, 90, died in New York.
One year ago: President Donald Trump said continued North Korean threats aimed at the United States would cause the U.S. to respond with “fire and fury like the world has never seen.” Venezuela’s new constitutional assembly, created by embattled President Nicolas Maduro, took over the halls of the opposition-controlled congress and decreed itself to be superior to all other branches of government. Singer Glen Campbell died in Nashville, Tennessee, at the age of 81; he had announced in 2011 that he’d been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.
Today’s Birthdays: Actress Nita Talbot is 88. Actor Dustin Hoffman is 81. Actress Connie Stevens is 80. Country singer Phil Balsley (The Statler Brothers) is 79. Actor Larry Wilcox is 71. Actor Keith Carradine is 69. Movie director Martin Brest is 67. Radio-TV personality Robin Quivers is 66. Percussionist Anton Fig is 65. Actor Donny Most is 65. Rock musician Dennis Drew (10,000 Maniacs) is 61. TV personality Deborah Norville is 60. Actor-singer Harry Crosby is 60. Rock musician The Edge (U2) is 57. Rock musician Rikki Rockett (Poison) is 57. Rapper Kool Moe Dee is 56. Rock musician Ralph Rieckermann is 56. Middle distance runner Suzy Favor Hamilton is 50. Rock singer Scott Stapp is 45. Country singer Mark Wills is 45. Actor Kohl Sudduth is 44. Rock musician Tom Linton (Jimmy Eat World) is 43. Singer JC Chasez (‘N Sync) is 42. Actress Tawny Cypress is 42. Rhythm-and-blues singer Drew Lachey (lah-SHAY’) (98 Degrees) is 42. Rhythm-and-blues singer Marsha Ambrosius is 41. Actress Lindsay Sloane is 41. Actress Countess Vaughn is 40. Actor Michael Urie is 38. Tennis player Roger Federer is 37. Actress Meagan Good is 37. Rock musician Eric Howk (Portugal. The Man) is 37. Actress Jackie Cruz (TV: “Orange is the New Black”) is 34. Britain’s Princess Beatrice of York is 30. Actor Ken Baumann is 29. Pop singer Shawn Mendes is 20. Actress Bebe Wood (TV: “The Real O’Neals”) is 17.
Thought for Today: “Man adjusts to what he should not; he is unable to adjust to what he should.” — Jean Toomer, African-American author-poet (1894-1967).