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Behind History For December 15 – Today in History

Behind History For December 15

1906 – The London Underground’s Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway opens.

1914 – World War I: The Serbian Army recaptures Belgrade from the invading Austro-Hungarian Army.

1914 – A gas explosion at Mitsubishi Hōjō coal mine, in Kyushu, Japan, kills 687.

1917 – World War I: An armistice between Russia and the Central Powers is signed.

1933 – The Twenty-first Amendment to the United States Constitution officially becomes effective, repealing the Eighteenth Amendment that prohibited the sale, manufacture, and transportation of alcohol.

 

1939 – Gone with the Wind (highest inflation adjusted grossing film) receives its premiere at Loew’s Grand Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia, United States.

1941 – The Holocaust in Ukraine: German troops murder over 15,000 Jews at Drobytsky Yar, a ravine southeast of the city of Kharkiv.

1942 – World War II: The Battle of Mount Austen, the Galloping Horse, and the Sea Horse begins during the Guadalcanal Campaign.

1943 – World War II: The Battle of Arawe begins during the New Britain campaign.

1945 – Occupation of Japan/Shinto Directive: General Douglas MacArthur orders that Shinto be abolished as the state religion of Japan.

1960 – Richard Pavlick is arrested for plotting to assassinate U.S. President-Elect John F. Kennedy.

1960 – King Mahendra of Nepal suspends the country’s constitution, dissolves parliament, dismisses the cabinet, and imposes direct rule.

1961 – Adolf Eichmann is sentenced to death after being found guilty by an Israeli court of 15 criminal charges, including charges of crimes against humanity, crimes against the Jewish people, and membership of an outlawed organization.

 

1965 – Project Gemini: Gemini 6A, crewed by Wally Schirra and Thomas Stafford, is launched from Cape Kennedy, Florida. Four orbits later, it achieves the first space rendezvous, with Gemini 7.

1970 – Soviet spacecraft Venera 7 successfully lands on Venus. It is the first successful soft landing on another planet.

1970 – A South Korean ferry, Namyong Ho, capsizes in the Korea Strait, killing more than 300 people.

1973 – John Paul Getty III, grandson of American billionaire J. Paul Getty, is found alive near Naples, Italy, after being kidnapped by an Italian gang on July 10.

1973 – The American Psychiatric Association votes 13–0 to remove homosexuality from its official list of psychiatric disorders, the DSM-II.

1978 – U.S. President Jimmy Carter announces that the United States will recognize the People’s Republic of China and sever diplomatic relations with Taiwan.

1981 – A suicide car bombing targeting the Iraqi embassy in Beirut, Lebanon, levels the embassy and kills 61 people, including Iraq’s ambassador to Lebanon. The attack is considered the first modern suicide bombing.

1989 – Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights relating the abolition of capital punishment is adopted.

1993 – The Troubles: The Downing Street Declaration is issued by British Prime Minister John Major and Irish Taoiseach Albert Reynolds.

 

1997 – Tajikistan Airlines Flight 3183 crashes in the desert near Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, killing 85.

2000 – The third reactor at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant is shut down.

2001 – The Leaning Tower of Pisa reopens after 11 years and $27,000,000 spent to stabilize it, without fixing its famous lean.

2005 – Introduction of the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor into USAF active service.

2010 – A boat carrying 90 asylum seekers crashes into rocks off the coast of Christmas Island, Australia, killing 48 people.

2013 – The South Sudanese Civil War begins when opposition leaders Dr. Riek Machar, Pagan Amum and Rebecca Nyandeng vote to boycott the meeting of the National Liberation Council at Nyakuron.

2014 – A gunman takes 18 hostages inside a café in Martin Place for 16 hours in Sydney. Monis and two hostages are killed when police raid the café the following morning.

2017 – The 6.5Mw  Java earthquake struck the Java Island in the city of Tasikmalaya. There are four confirmed deaths, 36 injured, and 200 displaced.

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