Today is Wednesday, Dec. 9, the 343rd day of 2015. There are 22 days left in the year.
Highlights in history on this date:
1625 – England and United Provinces agree to subsidize Denmark’s King Christian IV in his campaign against Germany.
1793 – Noah Webster establishes New York City’s first daily newspaper.
1884 – Ball-bearing roller skates are patented in the United States.
1905 – Separation of church and state in France is decreed.
1940 – British 8th Army opens offensive in North Africa in World War II.
1941 – China declares war on Japan, Germany and Italy.
1946 – Indian Constituent Assembly is boycotted by Muslim League.
1951 – The United States invokes its Trading with the Enemy Act to prevent Chinese people in the United States from sending money to Communist China under extortion threats.
1972 – North Vietnam and Soviet Union conclude agreement for economic and military aid to Hanoi.
1975 – Death toll is put at 160 in two days as war rages between Muslims and Christians in Beirut, Lebanon.
1976 – U.N. General Assembly calls for Middle East peace conference in Geneva with Palestine Liberation Organization taking part.
1982 – South African troops stage a pre-dawn raid on Maseru, the capital of Lesotho, in an effort to kill suspected members of the African National Congress, the black nationalist group banned in South Africa.
1987 – Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev meets with U.S. President Ronald Reagan in Washington one day after the U.S.-Soviet nuclear arms treaty is signed.
1988 – West Germans demand curbs on NATO military flights over their densely populated country.
1990 – Poles elect Solidarity labor union founder Lech Walesa as president in free elections.
1991 – Mikhail Gorbachev calls new Commonwealth of Independent States “illegal and dangerous.”
1994 – After 25 years of violence, the Irish Republican Army sits down with British officials to talk peace.
1995 – In India, 75 million children get polio vaccines in an attempt to eradicate the crippling disease.
1997 – Spain softens its long-standing claim on the British colony of Gibraltar, saying it can accept shared sovereignty.
1998 – British Home Secretary Jack Straw rules that Spain can start proceedings to extradite former Chilean dictator Gen. Augusto Pinochet. Chile withdraws its ambassador from Britain.
2001 – The United States discloses a video in which Osama bin Laden says he was pleasantly surprised by the extent of damage from the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania.
2002 – The Indonesian government and the Free Aceh Movement sign a peace agreement to end the rebel group’s 26-year-old separatist insurgency in Aceh province, which left as many as 30,000 people dead.
2004 – Canada’s Supreme Court rules that gay marriage is constitutional, a landmark opinion allowing the federal government to call on Parliament to legalize same-sex unions nationwide.
2007 – The world’s top two polluters, the United States and China, say they are not ready to commit to mandatory caps on global-warming gases at the U.N. climate conference in Bali.
2009 – Iraq’s Western-backed government — facing intense pressure to address security lapses after suicide bombings killed 127 people in the capital — orders a shake-up in the country’s military leadership.
2011 — European leaders agree to redefine their continent — hoping that by joining their fiscal fortunes they might stop a crippling debt crisis, save the euro currency and prevent worldwide economic chaos. Britain says no, risking isolation.
2012 — Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez heads back to Cuba for a third cancer surgery after naming his vice president as his choice to lead the country if the illness cuts short his presidency.
2014 — Senate investigators conclude U.S. brutalized scores of terror suspects with harsh interrogation tactics in CIA prisons that did nothing to make America safer after the Sept. 11,2001 attaacks.
John Milton, English poet (1608-1674); Karl Wilhelm Scheele, Swedish chemist (1742-1786); Claude-Louis Ertholle, French chemist (1748-1822); Kirk Douglas, U.S. actor (1916–); Bob Hawke, former Australian prime minister (1929–); Judi Dench, British actress (1934–): Beau Bridges, U.S. actor (1941–); John Malkovich, U.S. actor (1953–).
Thought For Today:
The well of Providence is deep. It’s the buckets we bring to it that are small — Mary Webb, Scottish religious leader (c. 1881-1927).
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