Today in History – Friday, Feb. 26, 2016

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Today is Friday, Feb. 26, the 57th day of 2016. There are 309 days left in the year.

Highlights in history on this date:

1531 – Earthquake in Portugal kills tens of thousands of people and flattens much of Lisbon and other cities.

1623 – Dutch massacre English colonists at Amboyna, Indonesia.

1658 – Sweden gains what is now the southern part of the country from Denmark by the Peace of Roskilde.

1815 – Napoleon Bonaparte escapes from the Island of Elba to begin his second conquest of France.

1832 – Polish Constitution is abolished by Russia’s Czar Nicholas I.

1848 – The Second French Republic is proclaimed.

1870 – New York City’s first pneumatic-powered subway line opens to the public.

1871 – Preliminary Peace of Versailles is signed between France and Germany.

1909 – Turkey recognizes Austria’s annexation of Bosnia.

1918 – German planes bomb Venice, Italy, during World War I.

1936 – Military coup in Japan replaces Koki Hirota as premier.

1951 – The 22nd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, limiting a president to two terms of office, is ratified.

1952 – Winston Churchill announces that Britain has produced its own atomic bomb.

1962 – Saigon palace of President Ngo Dinh Diem is bombed by two fighter-bombers flown by dissident pilots of South Vietnam’s Air Force.

1968 – Israel’s Foreign Minister Abba Eban announces that Israel has agreed to what he calls “a form of negotiation” with Arabs.

1990 – Nicaragua’s 14-party opposition coalition led by Violeta Barrios de Chamorro scores stunning election upset victory over Daniel Ortega’s Sandinistas.

1991 – Kuwaiti resistance leaders declare they are in control of their smoke-filled capital following nearly seven months of Iraqi occupation.

1993 – A bomb at the World Trade Center in New York City kills six people and injures hundreds of others.

1995 – Averting a major trade war, China and the United States sign an agreement mandating Chinese respect for copyrights, trademarks and patents.

1997 – The Swiss government formally establishes a humanitarian fund for the benefit of Holocaust survivors.

2001 – A U.N. tribunal convicts a Bosnian Croat political leader and a military commander of war crimes for ordering the systematic murder and persecution of Muslim civilians during the Bosnian war.

2003 – The United States says satellite images show North Korea has restarted its nuclear reactor at Yongbyon, despite agreeing not to.

2004 – U.S. President George W. Bush tightens U.S. restrictions on travel to Cuba, saying that Fidel Castro’s government had taken steps to destabilize relations with the United States over the past year.

2009 – A British bishop whose denial of the Holocaust embroiled Pope Benedict XVI in controversy apologizes for his remarks but does not specifically say they were erroneous.

2011 – In a major setback to Iran’s nuclear program, technicians have to unload fuel from the country’s first atomic power plant because of an unspecified safety concern.

2012 – Voters boo Senegal’s President Abdoulaye Wade as he goes to cast his ballot in elections, the latest sign of how his decision to seek a third term in office has caused his popularity to plummet and divided a West African country long considered a model of tolerance.

2013 – A hot air balloon carrying sightseers on a sunrise flight over the ancient city of Luxor bursts into flames, then plummets about 1,000 feet (300 meters) killing 19 people in what appears to be the deadliest hot air ballooning accident on record.

2014 — The United States warns Russia against a military intervention in Ukraine, saying such a move would be a “grave mistake.”

2015 — Water is eating away at the Antarctic ice, mostly from below, melting it so rapidly that scientists say the continent has become “ground zero” for climate change.

Today’s Birthdays:

Victor Hugo, French author (1802-1885); William F. Cody (Buffalo Bill), U.S. frontier scout (1846-1917); Johnny Cash, U.S. singer (1932-2003); Fats Domino, U.S. singer (1928–); Michael Bolton, U.S. singer (1953–); Corinne Bailey Rae, British singer (1979–).

Thought For Today:

The wise make proverbs and fools repeat them — Isaac D’Israeli, English author (1766-1848).

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