This Week in History

HISTORY, 15 May 2017

Satoshi Ashikaga – TRANSCEND Media Service

May 15-21


“Learn to enjoy every minute of your life.  Be happy now.  Don’t wait for something outside of yourself to make you happy in the future.  Think how really precious is the time you have to spend, whether it’s at work or with your family.  Every minute should be enjoyed and savored.” – Earl Nightingale


MAY 15

2014  German company Linde begins constructing a facility to convert wind power to hydrogen; the plant will help Germany in its efforts to increase reliance on renewable energy sources.

Linde – Wind Power to Hydrogen:

2013  An upsurge in violence in Iraq leaves more than 389 people dead over three days.

2011  The first protest of the Anti-austerity movement in Spain (also known as the Indignádos or 15-May Movement) begins in 58 Spanish cities.

2010  Jessica Watson becomes the youngest person to sail, non-stop and unassisted around the world solo.

2008  California becomes the second U.S. state after Massachusetts in 2004 to legalize same-sex marriage after the state’s own Supreme Court rules a previous ban unconstitutional.

Same-Sex Marriage in California:

Same Sex Marriage in the United States:

Case Study (1) Netherlands Legalizes the Same-Sex Marriage in April 2001:

Case Study (2): Sweden and the Same-Sex Marriage Legalizes in April 2009:

Case Study (3): Nigeria Prohibits the Same Sex Marriage in May 2013:

Case Study (4): Slovenia Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage in March 2015:

1997  The United States government acknowledges the existence of the “Secret War” in Laos and dedicates the Laos Memorial in honor of Hmong and other “Secret War” veterans.

1991  Édith Cresson becomes France’s first female premier.

1988  Soviet war in Afghanistan: After more than eight years of fighting, the Soviet Army begins to withdrawal 115,000 troops from Afghanistan.

Departure of the Soviet Army from Afghanistan:

Afghan War (1978-1992):

Relations between Afghanistan and the Soviet Union Relations:

Foreign Relations of Afghanistan:


Afghanistan and the United Nations:

History of Afghanistan:

Economy of Afghanistan:

1987  The Soviet Union launches the Polyus prototype orbital weapons platform. It fails to reach orbit.

1986  Elio de Angelis, was killed while testing the Brabham BT55 at the Paul Ricard circuit at Le Castellet.

1974  Ma’alot massacre: Members of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine attack and take hostages at an Israeli school; a total of 31 people are killed, including 22 schoolchildren.

Ma’alot Massacre:

Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine:

1972  In Laurel, Maryland, Arthur Bremer shoots and paralyzes Alabama Governor George Wallace while he is campaigning to become President.

1972  Okinawa, under US military governance since its conquest in 1945, reverts to Japanese control.

Okinawa in the Period of Post-World War II: Occupation of Okinawa and US Military Presence:

Okinawa 1945-1972:

US Policy toward Japan of 1969 and the 1971 Okinawa Reversion Agreement:

The Origin or One of the Main Origins of the Presence of the United States Military in Okinawa:

History of Okinawa Overview: Ryukyu History – World War II – US Occupation – US Military Presence:

History of Okinawa:

Okinawa and World War II:

US Occupation of Okinawa:

The Presence of the United States Military in Okinawa:

Richard Nixon:

Eisaku Sato:

Eisaku Sato and Okinawa:

Japan’s Non-Nuclear Weapons Policy:

A Secret Nuclear Weapons Agreement between the United States and Japan, signed by the President of the United States (Richard Nixon) and the Prime Minister of Japan (Eisaku Sato = a Nobel Peace Prize Laureate):

Okinawa and Nuclear Weapons:

A Huge Explosion Sound Heard and a Huge Mushroom Cloud Witnessed near Kumé Island, Okinawa, on May 21, 2014. An Explosion of an Underwater Volcano in the Region, an Explosion of a Nuclear Device, or Something Else? :

Okinawa and Agent Orange:

For more relevant information on Agent Orange, visit This Week in History, the date of AUGUST 10, 1961: First use in Vietnam War of the Agent Orange by the US Army., and/or the TMS Archive Search.

US Biological Weapon Experiments in Okinawa

Okinawa Travel Guide:

1970  Philip Lafayette Gibbs and James Earl Green are killed at Jackson State University by police during student protests.

1970  President Richard Nixon appoints Anna Mae Hays and Elizabeth P. Hoisington the first female United States Army Generals.

1969  People’s Park: California Governor Ronald Reagan has an impromptu student park owned by University of California at Berkeley fenced off from student anti-war protestors, sparking a riot called Bloody Thursday.

People’s Park Bloody Incident of May 1969:

1966  After a policy dispute, Prime Minister Nguyễn Cao Kỳ of South Vietnam‘s ruling junta launches a military attack on the forces of General Tôn Thất Đính, forcing him to abandon his command.

1966 in the Vietnam War:

1964  US performs nuclear test (underground) at Nevada Test Site.

US Nuclear Weapons Tests:

Nuclear Weapons and the United States:

Nevada Test Site:

Ecological and Health Issues in and around the Nevada Test Site:

1963  Project Mercury: The launch of the final Mercury mission, Mercury-Atlas 9 with astronaut Gordon Cooper on board. He becomes the first American to spend more than a day in space, and the last American to go into space alone.

1960  The Soviet Union launches Sputnik 4.

1958  The Soviet Union launches Sputnik 3.

1957  At Malden Island in the Pacific Ocean, Britain tests its first hydrogen bomb in Operation Grapple.

1955  US performs nuclear test (atmospheric) at Nevada Test Site.

Atmospheric/High-altitude Nuclear Explosion Testing:

US Nuclear Tests at Nevada Site:

Nuclear Weapons and the United States:

1953  Cubmaster Don Murphy organized the first pinewood derby, in Manhattan Beach, California, by Pack 280c.

1951  The Polish cultural attaché in Paris, Czesław Miłosz, asks the French government for political asylum.

1948  Following the expiration of The British Mandate for Palestine, the Kingdom of Egypt, Transjordan, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq and Saudi Arabia invade Israel thus starting the 1948 Arab–Israeli War.

British Mandate for Palestine:

Arab-Israeli Conflict:

Causes of the 1948 Arab-Israeli War:

Timeline of the Arab-Israeli War of 1948:


Foreign Relations of Israel:

History of Israel:

Israeli-Palestine Conflict:

Timeline of Israel-Palestine Conflict:

Balfour Declaration:

History and Background of the Balfour Declaration:

1945  World War II: The Battle of Poljana, the final skirmish in Europe is fought near Prevalje, Slovenia.

1943  Joseph Stalin dissolves the Comintern (or Third International).

1942  World War II: In the United States, a bill creating the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC) is signed into law.

Female Soldiers/Women in the Military:

1941  Joe DiMaggio begins a 56-game hitting streak.

1941  First flight of the Gloster E.28/39 the first British and Allied jet aircraft.

1940  World War II: After fierce fighting, the poorly trained and equipped Dutch troops surrender to Germany, marking the beginning of five years of occupation.

1940  USS Sailfish is recommissioned. It was originally the USS Squalus.

1935  The Moscow Metro is opened to the public.

1934  Kārlis Ulmanis establishes an authoritarian government in Latvia.

1932  In an attempted coup d’état, the Prime Minister of Japan Inukai Tsuyoshi is assassinated.

1928  Walt Disney character Mickey Mouse premieres in his first cartoon, Plane Crazy.

1925  Al-Insaniyyah, the first Arabic communist newspaper, is founded.

1919  Greek invasion of Smyrna. During the invasion, the Greek army kills or wounds 350 Turks. Those responsible are punished by the Greek Commander Aristides Stergiades.

1911  Three hundred three Chinese and five Japanese immigrants are killed in the Torreón massacre when the forces of the Mexican Revolution led by Francisco I. Madero‘s brother Emilio Madero take the city of Torreón from the Federales.

1911  In Standard Oil Co. of New Jersey v. United States, the United States Supreme Court declares Standard Oil to be an “unreasonable” monopoly under the Sherman Antitrust Act and orders the company to be broken up.

1905 Las Vegas, is founded when 110 acres (0.45 km2), in what later would become downtown, are auctioned off.

1904  Russo-Japanese War: The Russian minelayer Amur lays a minefield about 15 miles off Port Arthur and sinks Japan’s battleships Hatsuse, 15,000 tons, with 496 crew and Yashima.

1891  Pope Leo XIII defends workers’ rights and property rights in the encyclical Rerum novarum, the beginning of modern Catholic social teaching.

1869  Women’s suffrage: In New York, Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton form the National Woman Suffrage Association.

National Women Suffrage Association:

Susan B Anthony:

Elizabeth Cady Stanton:

Nineteenth Amendment and Women’s Suffrage:

History of Women’s Suffrage Movement in the United States:

History of Women’s Rights in the United States:

Women’s Suffrage and Its History:

Women’s Suffrage in General (1) – Overview:

Women’s Rights in General (2) – Worldwide:



MAY 16

2015  A passenger train collides with a tractor and trailer on a level crossing at Ibbenbüren, Germany. Two people are killed and 40 are injured.

2014  Twelve people are killed in two explosions in the Gikomba market area of the Kenyan capital of Nairobi.

2011  STS-134 (ISS assembly flight ULF6), launched from the Kennedy Space Center on the 25th and final flight for Space Shuttle Endeavour.

2007  Nicolas Sarkozy takes office as President of France.

Nicolas Sarkozy:

2005  Kuwait permits women’s suffrage in a 35–23 National Assembly vote.

Kuwaiti Women’s Suffrage:

2003  In Casablanca, Morocco, 33 civilians are killed and more than 100 people are injured in the Casablanca terrorist attacks.

1997  Mobutu Sese Seko, the President of Zaire, flees the country.

1991  Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom addresses a joint session of the United States Congress. She is the first British monarch to address the U.S. Congress.

1988  A report by the Surgeon General of the United States C. Everett Koop states that the addictive properties of nicotine are similar to those of heroin and cocaine.

Surgeon General’s Warning Messages:

1986  The Seville Statement on Violence is adopted by an international meeting of scientists, convened by the Spanish National Commission for UNESCO, in Seville, Spain.

Seville Statement on Violence:

1984  US performs nuclear test (underground) at Nevada Test Site.

US Nuclear Weapons Tests:

Nuclear Weapons and the United States:

Nevada Test Site:

Ecological and Health Issues in and around the Nevada Test Site:

1983  Sudan People’s Liberation Army/Movement rebels against the Sudanese government.

Sudan People’s Liberation Army/Movement:


Foreign Relations of Sudan:

Sudan and the United Nations:

Human Rights in Sudan:

History of Sudan:

Economy of Sudan:

1975  Junko Tabei becomes the first woman to reach the summit of Mount Everest.

1975  India annexes Sikkim after the mountain state holds a referendum in which the popular vote is in favor of merging with India.

1974  USSR performs nuclear test (underground) at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalatinsk USSR.

USSR Nuclear Tests in 1974:

USSR’s Nuclear Weapons Tests:

Effect and/or Impact of Nuclear Weapons Tests:

Underground Nuclear Tests:

Semipalatinsk Nuclear Test Site:

Health, and Ecological Issues in Kazakhstan/Semipalatinsk:

1974  Josip Broz Tito is re-elected president of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. This time he is elected for life.

Josip Broz Tito:

History of Yugoslavia:

1969  Venera program: Venera 5, a Soviet space probe, lands on Venus.

1969  USSR performs nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR.

USSR Nuclear Tests in 1969:

1966  The Communist Party of China issues the “May 16 Notice“, marking the beginning of the Cultural Revolution.

1964  USSR performs nuclear test at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR.

USSR Nuclear Tests in 1964:

1961  Park Chung-hee leads a coup d’état to overthrow the Second Republic of South Korea.

1960  Theodore Maiman operates the first optical laser (a ruby laser), at Hughes Research Laboratories in Malibu, California.

1956  Egypt recognizes People’s Republic of China.

Egypt-China Relations:

1953  American journalist William N. Oatis is released after serving 22 months of a ten-year prison sentence for espionage in Czechoslovakia.

1951  The first regularly scheduled transatlantic flights begin between Idlewild Airport (now John F Kennedy International Airport) in New York City and Heathrow Airport in London, operated by El Al Israel Airlines.

1943  The Holocaust: The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising ends.

Warsaw Ghetto:

Warsaw Ghetto Uprising:

1929  In Hollywood, the first Academy Awards are awarded.

1920  In Rome, Pope Benedict XV canonizes Joan of Arc.

Joan of Arc:

Beatification and of Joan of Arc:

Canonization of Joan of Arc:

1919  A naval Curtiss NC-4 aircraft commanded by Albert Cushing Read leaves Trepassey, Newfoundland, for Lisbon via the Azores on the first transatlantic flight.

1918  The Sedition Act of 1918 is passed by the U.S. Congress, making criticism of the government during wartime an imprisonable offense. It will be repealed less than two years later.

1916  The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and the French Third Republic sign the secret wartime Sykes-Picot Agreement partitioning former Ottoman territories such as Iraq and Syria.

1891  The International Electrotechnical Exhibition opens in Frankfurt, Germany, and will feature the world’s first long distance transmission of high-power, three-phase electric current (the most common form today).

1888  Nikola Tesla delivers a lecture describing the equipment which will allow efficient generation and use of alternating currents to transmit electric power over long distances.

Nikola Tesla:

1877  May 1877 political crisis in France.

May 1877 Crisis in France:

1874  A flood on the Mill River in Massachusetts destroys much of four villages and kills 139 people.

1868  United States President Andrew Johnson is acquitted in his impeachment trial by one vote in the United States Senate.

1866  The US Congress eliminates the half dime coin and replaces it with the five cent piece, or nickel.

1843  The first major wagon train heading for the Pacific Northwest sets out on the Oregon Trail with one thousand pioneers from Elm Grove, Missouri.

1834  The Battle of Asseiceira is fought, the last and decisive engagement of the Liberal Wars in Portugal.

1822  Greek War of Independence: The Turks capture the Greek town of Souli.

Greek War of Independence:

Modern History of Greece:

1812  Russian Field Marshal Mikhail Kutuzov signs the Treaty of Bucharest, ending the Russo-Turkish War. Bessarabia is annexed by Imperial Russia.

1811  Peninsular War: The allies Spain, Portugal and United Kingdom, defeat the French at the Battle of Albuera.

Peninsular War:

Battle of Albuera:

1771  The Battle of Alamance, a pre-American Revolutionary War battle between local militia and a group of rebels called The “Regulators“, occurs in present-day Alamance County, North Carolina.

1770  A 14-year-old Marie Antoinette marries 15-year-old Louis-Auguste who later becomes king of France.

Marie Antoinette:



MAY 17

2014  A plane crash in northern Laos kills 17 people.

2007  Trains from North and South Korea cross the 38th Parallel in a test-run agreed by both governments. This is the first time that trains have crossed the Demilitarized Zone since 1953.

2006  The aircraft carrier USS Oriskany is sunk in the Gulf of Mexico as an artificial reef.

2004  The first legal same-sex marriages in the U.S. are performed in the state of Massachusetts.

2000  Arsenal and Galatasaray fans clash in the 2000 UEFA Cup Final riots in Copenhagen

1997  Troops of Laurent Kabila march into Kinshasa. Zaire is officially renamed Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Belgian Congo:

History of the Democratic Republic of the Congo:

Democratic Republic of the Congo:

Foreign Relations of the Democratic Republic of the Congo:

Economy of the Democratic Republic of the Congo:

1995  Shawn Nelson steals a tank from a military installation and goes on a rampage in San Diego resulting in a 25-minute police chase. Nelson is killed by an officer after the tank got stuck on a concrete barrier and tried to break free.

1994  Malawi holds its first multi-party elections.


1992  Three days of popular protests against the government of Prime Minister of Thailand Suchinda Kraprayoon begin in Bangkok, leading to a military crackdown that results in 52 officially confirmed deaths, many disappearances, hundreds of injuries, and over 3,500 arrests.

1990  The General Assembly of the World Health Organization (WHO) eliminates homosexuality from the list of psychiatric diseases.

1987  An Iraqi Dassault Mirage F1 fighter jet fires two missiles into the U.S. Navy warship USS Stark, killing 37 and injuring 21 of her crew.

1984  Prince Charles calls a proposed addition to the National Gallery, London, a “monstrous carbuncle on the face of a much-loved and elegant friend”, sparking controversies on the proper role of the Royal Family and the course of modern architecture.

1983  Lebanon, Israel, and the United States sign an agreement on Israeli withdrawal from Lebanon.

May 17 Agreement and the Lebanese Civil War:

History and Background of Israeli-Lebanese Conflict:

History of Lebanon:


Foreign Relations of Lebanon:

Economy of Lebanon:

1983  The US Department of Energy declassifies documents showing world’s largest mercury pollution event in Oak Ridge, Tennessee (ultimately found to be 4.2 million pounds), in response to the Appalachian Observer’s Freedom of Information Act request.

1980  On the eve of presidential elections, Maoist guerrilla group Shining Path attacks a polling location in the town of Chuschi, Ayacucho, starting the Internal conflict in Peru.

1980  General Chun Doo-hwan of South Korea seizes control of the government and declares martial law in order to suppress student demonstrations.

1974  Police in Los Angeles raid the Symbionese Liberation Army‘s headquarters, killing six members, including Camilla Hall.

1974  The Troubles: Thirty-three civilians are killed and 300 injured when the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) detonates four car bombs in Dublin and Monaghan, Republic of Ireland. It is the deadliest attack of the Troubles and the deadliest terrorist attack in the Republic’s history. There are allegations that British state forces were involved.

The Troubles of 1974 in Ireland:

1973  Watergate scandal: Televised hearings begin in the United States Senate.

Watergate Scandal:

Watergate Tapes:

1973  US performs 3 nuclear tests at Rifle, Colorado.

Project Rio Blanco:

US Nuclear Tests:

1970  Thor Heyerdahl sets sail from Morocco on the papyrus boat Ra II to sail the Atlantic Ocean.

1969  Venera program: Soviet Venera 6 begins its descent into the atmosphere of Venus, sending back atmospheric data before being crushed by pressure.

1968  US performs nuclear test (underground) at Nevada Test Site.

US Nuclear Weapons Tests:

Nuclear Weapons and the United States:

Nevada Test Site:

Ecological and Health Issues in and around the Nevada Test Site:

1967  Six-Day War: President Gamal Abdel Nasser of Egypt demands dismantling of the peace-keeping UN Emergency Force in Egypt.

Six-Day War:

UN Emergency Force in Egypt:

1963  US performs nuclear test (atmospheric) at Nevada Test Site.

Atmospheric Nuclear Testing at the Nevada Site:

Atmospheric/High-altitude Nuclear Explosion Testing:

Atmospheric Nuclear Tests of the United States and Radioactive Fallout:

Nuclear Weapons and the United States:

US Nuclear Weapons Tests:

Nevada Test Site:

Ecological and Health Issues in and around the Nevada Test Site:

1954  The United States Supreme Court hands down a unanimous decision in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas.

1943  World War II: the Dambuster Raids by No. 617 Squadron RAF on German dams.

1940  World War II: the old city center of the Dutch town of Middelburg is bombed by the German Luftwaffe, to force the surrender of the Dutch armies in Zeeland.

1940  World War II: Germany occupies Brussels, Belgium.

1933  Vidkun Quisling and Johan Bernhard Hjort form Nasjonal Samling — the national-socialist party of Norway.

1915  The last British Liberal Party government (led by Herbert Henry Asquith) falls.

1914  The Protocol of Corfu is signed, recognizing full autonomy to Northern Epirus under nominal Albanian sovereignty.

1902  Greek archaeologist Valerios Stais discovers the Antikythera mechanism, an ancient mechanical analog computer.

1900  Second Boer War: British troops relieve Mafeking.

Second Boer War:

1869  Imperial Japanese forces defeat the remnants of the Tokugawa shogunate in the Battle of Hakodate to end the Boshin War.

1865  The International Telegraph Union (later the International Telecommunication Union) is established in Paris.

1863  Rosalía de Castro publishes Cantares Gallegos, the first book in the Galician language.

1849  A large fire nearly burns St. Louis, Missouri to the ground.

1814  The Constitution of Norway is signed and Crown Prince Christian Frederick of Denmark is elected King of Norway by the Norwegian Constituent Assembly.

1814  Occupation of Monaco changes from French to Austrian.

1808  Napoleon I of France orders the annexation of the Papal States to the French Empire.

1805  Muhammad Ali becomes Wāli of Egypt.

1792  The New York Stock Exchange is formed under the Buttonwood Agreement.

History of the New York Stock Exchange:

Buttonwood Agreement:



MAY 18

2009  Sri Lankan Civil War: The LTTE are defeated by the Sri Lankan government, ending almost 26 years of fighting between the two sides.

Sri Lankan Civil War:

History of the Sri Lankan Civil War:

History of Sri Lanka:

Sri Lanka:

Foreign Relations of Sri Lanka:

Economy of Sri Lanka:

2006 The post Loktantra Andolan government passes a landmark bill curtailing the power of the monarchy and making Nepal a secular country.

From the Abolishment of Monarchy to the Democratization of Nepal:

Democracy Movement of Nepal in 2006:

Political Turmoil in Nepal in 2005:

History of Nepal:


Foreign Relations of Nepal:

Nepal-Britain Relations:

Economy of Nepal:

1993  EU riots in Nørrebro, Copenhagen caused by the approval of the four Danish exceptions in the Maastricht Treaty referendum. Police opened fire against civilians for the first time since World War II and injured 11 demonstrators. In total 113 bullets are fired.

1991  Northern Somalia declares independence from the rest of Somalia as the Republic of Somaliland but is not recognized by the international community.

Republic of Somaliland:

History of Somalia:

1991 in Somalia and the Somali Civil War:


Foreign Relations of Somalia:

Economy of Somalia:

1991  France performs nuclear test at Muruora Island.


History of France Nuclear Tests in the Pacific:

France’s Nuclear Tests:

1980  Gwangju Massacre: students in Gwangju, South Korea begin demonstrations calling for democratic reforms.

Gwangju Massacre:

1974  Nuclear test: under project Smiling Buddha, India successfully detonates its first nuclear weapon becoming the sixth nation to do so.

India’s Nuclear Weapon Test:

1965  Israeli spy Eli Cohen was hanged in Damascus, Syria.

1959  Launch of the National Liberation Committee of Côte d’Ivoire in Conakry, Guinea.


Independence of Guinea:

1955  Operation Passage to Freedom, the evacuation of 310,000 Vietnamese civilians, soldiers and non-Vietnamese members of the French Army from communist North Vietnam to South Vietnam following the end of the First Indochina War, ends.

Operation Passage to Freedom:

Viet Nam War and Pertinent Events:

First Indochina War:

Timelines of the Indochina Wars:

1948  The First Legislative Yuan of the Republic of China officially convenes in Nanking.

1944  Deportation of Crimean Tatars by the Soviet Union government.

History of Crimea:

Crimean Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic and Autonomous Republic of Crimea:

1944  World War II: Battle of Monte Cassino – Conclusion after seven days of the fourth battle as German paratroopers evacuate Monte Cassino.

1933  New Deal: President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs an act creating the Tennessee Valley Authority.

New Deal:

1927  After being founded for 20 years, the Government of the Republic of China approves Tongji University to be among the first national universities of the Republic of China.

1917  World War I: The Selective Service Act of 1917 is passed, giving the President of the United States the power of conscription.

1910  The Earth passes through the tail of Comet Halley.

1900  The United Kingdom proclaims a protectorate over Tonga.

1811  Battle of Las Piedras: The first great military triumph of the revolution of the Río de la Plata in Uruguay led by José Artigas.



MAY 19

2010  The Royal Thai Armed Forces concludes its crackdown on protests by forcing the surrender of United Front for Democracy Against Dictatorship leaders.

1997  The Sierra Gorda biosphere, the most ecologically diverse region in Mexico, is established as a result of grassroots efforts.

1991  Croatians vote for independence in a referendum.

Croatia and its Independence:

1986  The Firearm Owners Protection Act is signed into law by U.S. President Ronald Reagan.

1976  USSR performs nuclear test (underground) at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalatinsk USSR.

USSR Nuclear Tests in 1976:

USSR’s Nuclear Weapons Tests:

Effect and/or Impact of Nuclear Weapons Tests:

Underground Nuclear Tests:

Semipalatinsk Nuclear Test Site:

Health, and Ecological Issues in Kazakhstan/Semipalatinsk:

1972  US performs nuclear test (underground) at Nevada Test Site.

US Nuclear Weapons Tests:

Nuclear Weapons and the United States:

Nevada Test Site:

Ecological and Health Issues in and around the Nevada Test Site:

1963  The New York Post Sunday Magazine publishes Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Letter from Birmingham Jail, drafted shortly after his arrest on April 12th during the Birmingham campaign advocating for civil rights and an end to segregation in Birmingham, Alabama. The letter was in response to “A Call for Unity“: a statement made by eight white Alabama clergymen against King and his methods, following his arrest, and became one of the most-anthologized statements of the African-American Civil Rights Movement.

1959  The North Vietnamese Army establishes Group 559, whose responsibility is to determine how to maintain supply lines to South Vietnam; the resulting route is the Ho Chi Minh trail.

Vietnam War in 1959:

Viet Nam War and Pertinent Events:

1950  Egypt announces that the Suez Canal is closed to Israeli ships and commerce.

Egypt and Israel over Suez in 1950:

Egypt-Israel Relations:

Suez Crisis (1956-1957):

Anthony Eden and the Suez Crisis:

UN Documentation Guide and UNGA Res 1002 of Nov 7, 1956:

History of (Modern) Egypt:

1943  World War II: British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt set Monday, May 1, 1944 as the date for the Normandy landings (“D-Day”). It would later be delayed over a month due to bad weather.

  • Note that the above description is taken from May 19 – Wikipedia. However, D-Day (military term) – Wikipedia writes, “D-Day for the invasion of Normandy by the Allies was originally set for June 5, 1944, but bad weather and heavy seas caused U.S. Army General Dwight David Eisenhower to delay until June 6 and that date has been popularly referred to ever since by the short title ‘D-Day’.”

1942  World War II: In the aftermath of the Battle of the Coral Sea, Task Force 16 heads to Pearl Harbor.

Battle of the Coral Sea:

1941  Viet Minh, a communist coalition, formed at Cao Bằng Province, Vietnam.

1934  Zveno and the Bulgarian Army engineer a coup d’état and install Kimon Georgiev as the new Prime Minister of Bulgaria.

1922  The Young Pioneer Organization of the Soviet Union is established.

1919  Mustafa Kemal Atatürk lands at Samsun on the Anatolian Black Sea coast, initiating what is later termed the Turkish War of Independence.

Turkish War of Independence:

1848  Mexican–American War: Mexico ratifies the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo thus ending the war and ceding California, Nevada, Utah and parts of four other modern-day U.S. states to the United States for US$15 million.



MAY 20

2014  More than 118 people are killed in two bombings in Jos, Nigeria.

History of Nigeria:


Foreign Relations of Nigeria:

Nigeria and the United Nations:

Economy of Nigeria:

2012  Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tells his cabinet that Israel’s identity is threatened by hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants from Africa.

Netanyahu and the Jewish Immigrants from Africa:

2002  The independence of East Timor is recognized by Portugal, formally ending 23 years of Indonesian rule and three years of provisional UN administration (Portugal itself is the former colonizer of East Timor until 1976).

Independence of East Timor:

History of East Timor:

East Timor:

Human Rights of East Timor:

Indonesian Invasion of East Timor:

US Approval of Indonesia’s Invasion of East Timor in 1975:

Behind the Invasion: Australia’s Tacit Approval and the UK’s Support:

Timor-Leste, and the Vatican:

1996  Civil rights: The Supreme Court of the United States rules in Romer v. Evans against a law that would have prevented any city, town or county in the state of Colorado from taking any legislative, executive, or judicial action to protect the rights of gays and lesbians.

Romer v. Evans:

History of the Civil Rights Movement in the United States – Overview:

Civil Rights Movements of Various Ethnic Minorities in the United States:

LGBT Rights in General:

1990  The first post-Communist presidential and parliamentary elections are held in Romania.

1983  First publications of the discovery of the HIV virus that causes AIDS in the journal Science by Luc Montagnier.


1980  In a referendum in Quebec, the population rejects by a 60% vote the proposal from its government to move towards independence from Canada.

1976  USSR performs nuclear test at Sary Shagan, USSR.

USSR Nuclear Tests in 1976:

USSR Nuclear Tests:

Sary Shagan Nuclear Test Site:

1969  The Battle of Hamburger Hill in Vietnam ends.

Battle of Hamburger Hill (Battle of Dong Ap Bia):

Vietnam War in 1969:

Viet Nam War and Pertinent Events:

1968  Operation OAU begins during the Nigerian Civil War

Operation OAU and Related Issues:

Nigerian Civil War:



Foreign Relations of Nigeria:

Nigeria and the United Nations:

History of Nigeria:

Economy of Nigeria:

1967  The Popular Movement of the Revolution political party is established in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

1964  Discovery of the cosmic microwave background radiation by Robert Woodrow Wilson and Arno Penzias.

1958  US performs atmospheric nuclear test at Enewetak.

Enewetak Nuclear Test Site:

Atmospheric/High-altitude Nuclear Explosion Testing:

Nuclear Tests by the United States:

Nuclear Weapons and the United States:

1956  In Operation Redwing, the first United States airborne hydrogen bomb is dropped over Bikini Atoll in the Pacific Ocean.

Operation Redwing:

Nuclear Tests at Bikini Atoll:

Atmospheric Nuclear Tests of the United States and Radioactive Fallout:

Nuclear Tests by the United States:

1949  In the United States, the Armed Forces Security Agency, the predecessor to the National Security Agency, is established.

National Security Agency (NSA):

1948  Chiang Kai-shek is elected as the first President of the Republic of China.

1941  World War II: Battle of CreteGerman paratroops invade Crete.

1940  The Holocaust: The first prisoners arrive at a new concentration camp at Auschwitz.

Auschwitz-Birkenau Concentration Camp:

Auschwitz and Holocaust of the Roma and Sinti:

1932  Amelia Earhart takes off from Newfoundland to begin the world’s first solo nonstop flight across the Atlantic Ocean by a female pilot, landing in Ireland the next day.

Amelia Earhart:

What Happened to Amelia Earhart? :

Achievements of Amelia Earhart:

1927  At 07:52 Charles Lindbergh takes off from Roosevelt Field in Long Island, New York, on the world’s first solo non-stop flight across the Atlantic Ocean. He touched down at Le Bourget Field in Paris at 22:22 the next day.

Charles Lindbergh’s Flight to Paris:

1927  Treaty of Jeddah: the United Kingdom recognizes the sovereignty of King Ibn Saud in the Kingdoms of Hejaz and Nejd, which later merge to become the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Treaty of Jeddah of 1927:

History of Saudi Arabia:

1902  Cuba gains independence from the United States. Tomás Estrada Palma becomes the country’s first President.

Cuba or the “Republic of Cuba” (Repúlica de Cuba):

Foreign Relations of Cuba:

Cuba and USSR/Russia:

Cuba and the United States:

History and Culture of Cuba:

Economy of Cuba:

1884  Dinuzulu kaCetshwayo becomes the king of the Zulu Nation.



MAY 21

2012  A suicide bombing kills more than 120 people in Sana’a, Yemen.

2006  The Republic of Montenegro holds a referendum proposing independence from the State Union of Serbia and Montenegro. The Montenegrin people choose independence with a majority of 55%.

History of Montenegro:

2001  French Taubira law is enacted, officially recognizing the Atlantic slave trade and slavery as crimes against humanity.

1998  President Suharto of Indonesia resigns following the killing of students from Tri Sakti University earlier that week by security forces and growing mass protests in Jakarta against his ongoing corrupt rule.

1994  The Democratic Republic of Yemen unsuccessful attempts to secede from the Republic of Yemen; a war breaks out.

History of Yemen:


Foreign Relations of Yemen:

Economy of Yemen:

1991  Mengistu Haile Mariam, president of the People’s Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, flees Ethiopia, effectively bringing the Ethiopian Civil War to an end.

Ethiopian Civil War:

Modern History of Ethiopia:

1991  Former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi is assassinated by a female suicide bomber near Madras.

1988  US performs nuclear test (underground) at Nevada Test Site.

US Nuclear Weapons Tests:

Nuclear Weapons and the United States:

Nevada Test Site:

Ecological and Health Issues in and around the Nevada Test Site:

1986  US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site.

1982  Falklands War: A British amphibious assault during Operation Sutton leads to the Battle of San Carlos.

Battle of San Carlos:

Falklands/Malvinas War:

Timelines of Falklands/Malvinas War:

1981  The Italian government releases the membership list of Propaganda Due, an illegal pseudo-Masonic lodge that was implicated in numerous Italian crimes and mysteries.

1981  Irish Republican hunger strikers Raymond McCreesh and Patsy O’Hara die on hunger strike in Maze prison.

Irish Hunger Strike:

Irish Republican Army (IRA)/Provisional Irish Republican Army (PIRA):

History of the IRA:

Sinn Féin:

History of Sinn Féin:

Sinn Féin, IRA and the Catholic Church:

1979  White Night riots in San Francisco following the manslaughter conviction of Dan White for the assassinations of George Moscone and Harvey Milk.

White Night Riots in SF and Related Issues:

1970  USSR performs nuclear test (underground) at Novaya Zemlya USSR.

1970 USSR Nuclear Tests:

Novaya Zemlya Test Site:

1969  Civil unrest in Rosario, Argentina, known as Rosariazo, following the death of a 15-year-old student.

1968  USSR performs nuclear test (underground) at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalitinsk USSR.

USSR Nuclear Tests in 1968:

USSR’s Nuclear Weapons Tests:

Effect and/or Impact of Nuclear Weapons Tests:

Underground Nuclear Tests:

Semipalatinsk Nuclear Test Site:

Health, and Ecological Issues in Kazakhstan/Semipalatinsk:

1966  The Ulster Volunteer Force declares war on the Irish Republican Army in Northern Ireland.

1961  American civil rights movement: Alabama Governor John Malcolm Patterson declares martial law in an attempt to restore order after race riots break out.

History of the Civil Rights Movement in the United States – Overview:

Civil Rights Movements of Various Ethnic Minorities in the United States:

Nonviolence, Movements against Racism, and More:

International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination:

One of the Historical Cases – Nuremberg Laws of Nazi Germany:

One of the Historical Cases – Apartheid of South Africa:

Sports and Racism:

Beauty Contest and Racism:

1946  Physicist Louis Slotin is fatally irradiated in a criticality incident during an experiment with the demon core at Los Alamos National Laboratory.

1937  A Soviet station, North Pole-1, becomes the first scientific research settlement to operate on the drift ice of the Arctic Ocean.

1932  Bad weather forces Amelia Earhart to land in a pasture in Derry, Northern Ireland, and she thereby becomes the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean.

Amelia Earhart:

What Happened to Amelia Earhart? :

Achievements of Amelia Earhart:

1927  Charles Lindbergh touches down at Le Bourget Field in Paris, completing the world’s first solo nonstop flight across the Atlantic Ocean.

1917  The Commonwealth War Graves Commission is established through royal charter to mark, record and maintain the graves and places of commemoration of Commonwealth of Nations military forces.

1911  President of Mexico Porfirio Díaz and the revolutionary Francisco Madero sign the Treaty of Ciudad Juárez to put an end to the fighting between the forces of both men, concluding the initial phase of the Mexican Revolution.

1881  The American Red Cross is established by Clara Barton in Washington, D.C.

History of the American Red Cross:

1879  War of the Pacific: Two Chilean ships blocking the harbor of Iquique (then belonging to Peru) battle two Peruvian vessels in the Battle of Iquique.

War of the Pacific:

1871  French troops invade the Paris Commune and engage its residents in street fighting. By the close of “Bloody Week“, some 20,000 communards have been killed and 38,000 arrested.


(Sources and references:   to may_21;   to may/21;   to may_21.html; and other pertinent web sites and/or documents, mentioned above.)

  1. The views expressed in the cited or quoted websites and/or documents in this article do not necessarily reflect those of the author of this article. These websites and/or documents are cited or quoted for academic or educational purposes. Neither the author of this article nor the Transcend Media Service (TMS) is responsible for the contents, information, or whatsoever contained in these websites and/or documents.
  2. One of the primary purposes of this article is to provide the readers with opportunities to think about “peace”, including positive peace and negative peace as well as external/outer peace and internal/inner peace, and more, directly or indirectly, from various angles and/or in the broadest sense, through historical events. It is because this article is prepared specifically for the TMS whose main objective is to address “peace”.

Satoshi Ashikaga, having worked as researcher, development program/project officer, legal protection/humanitarian assistance officer, human rights monitor-negotiator, managing-editor, and more, prefers a peaceful and prudent life, especially that in communion with nature.  His previous work experiences, including those in war zones and war-torn zones, remind him of the invaluableness of peace.  His interest and/or expertise includes international affairs, international law, jurisprudence, economic and business affairs, project/operations or organizational management, geography, history, the environmental/ecological issues, science and technology, visual/audio documentation of nature and culture, and more. Being a member of the TRANSCEND Network for Peace, Development and Environment, he is currently compiling This Week in History

This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 15 May 2017.

Anticopyright: Editorials and articles originated on TMS may be freely reprinted, disseminated, translated and used as background material, provided an acknowledgement and link to the source, TMS: This Week in History, is included. Thank you.

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One Response to “This Week in History”

  1. listlar says:

    Thanks for share !!!!