This Week in History

HISTORY, 8 May 2017

Satoshi Ashikaga – TRANSCEND Media Service

May 8-14


“Be happy for this moment. This moment is your life.” – Omar Khayyam


MAY 08

1997  A China Southern Airlines Flight 3456 crashes on approach into Bao’an International Airport, killing 35 people.

1988  A fire at Illinois Bell‘s Hinsdale Central Office triggers an extended 1AESS network outage once considered the “worst telecommunications disaster in US telephone industry history”.

1987  The Loughgall ambush: The SAS kills eight Provisional Irish Republican Army volunteers and a civilian during an ambush in Loughgall, Northern Ireland.

1985  France performs nuclear test at Muruora Island.


History of France Nuclear Tests:

France’s Nuclear Tests:

1984  The Thames Barrier is officially opened.

1984  Corporal Denis Lortie enters the Quebec National Assembly and opens fire, killing three and wounding 13. René Jalbert, Sergeant-at-Arms of the assembly, succeeds in calming him, for which he will later receive the Cross of Valour.

1984 The Soviet Union announces that it will boycott the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles.

Soviet Boycott of the 1984 Summer Olympics:

1980  The World Health Organization confirms the eradication of smallpox.

Eradication of Smallpox:

History of Smallpox:

1978  The first ascent of Mount Everest without supplemental oxygen, by Reinhold Messner and Peter Habeler.

1973  A 71-day standoff between federal authorities and the American Native People Movement members occupying the Pine Ridge Reservation at Wounded Knee, South Dakota ends with the surrender of the militants.

Wounded Knee Incident (February 27, 1973 – May 08, 1973)

Pine Ridge Indian Reservation:

Native People of America (a.k.a. American Indians):

History of Native People of America:

1972  Four Black September terrorists hijack Sabena Flight 571. Israeli Sayeret Matkal commandos recapture the plane the following day.

1972  Vietnam War: US President Richard Nixon announces his order to place mines in major North Vietnamese ports in order to stem the flow of weapons and other goods to that nation.

Vietnam War in 1972:

1970  The British band The Beatles releases their last album Let It Be, one month after they officially broke up the band.

1970  The Hard Hat Riot occurs in the Wall Street area of New York City as blue-collar construction workers clash with demonstrators protesting the Vietnam War.

1967  The Philippine province of Davao is split into three: Davao del Norte, Davao del Sur, and Davao Oriental.

1966 A plane crash at Connellsville, Pennsylvania kills Pennsylvania Attorney General, Walter E. Alessandroni, his wife, and other state officials.

1963  South Vietnamese soldiers of Catholic President Ngo Dinh Diem open fire on Buddhists defying a ban on the flying of the Buddhist flag on Vesak, killing nine and sparking the Buddhist crisis.

1960  USSR and Cuba resume diplomatic relations.

USSR-Cuba Diplomatic Relations:

1951  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:

1946  Estonian school girls Aili Jõgi and Ageeda Paavel blow up the Soviet memorial which stood in front of the Bronze Soldier of Tallinn.

1945  The Halifax Riot starts when thousands of civilians and servicemen rampage through Halifax.

1945  End of the Prague uprising, celebrated now as a national holiday in the Czech Republic.

194World War II: V-E Day, combat ends in Europe. German forces agree in Reims, France, to an unconditional surrender.

Germany’s Unconditional Surrender in World War II:

1945  Hundreds of Algerian civilians are killed by French Army soldiers in the Sétif massacre.

1942  World War II: Gunners of the Ceylon Garrison Artillery on Horsburgh Island in the Cocos Islands rebel in the Cocos Islands Mutiny. Their mutiny is crushed and three of them are executed, the only British Commonwealth soldiers to be executed for mutiny during the Second World War.

1942  World War II: The Battle of the Coral Sea comes to an end with Imperial Japanese Navy aircraft carrier aircraft attacking and sinking the United States Navy aircraft carrier USS Lexington. The battle marks the first time in the naval history that two enemy fleets fight without visual contact between warring ships.

Battle of the Coral Sea:

1942  World War II: The Battle of the Kerch Peninsula: The German 11th Army begins Operation Trappenjagd (Bustard Hunt) and destroys the bridgehead of the three Soviet Armies (44th, 47th, and 51st) defending the Kerch Peninsula, in the eastern part of the Crimea.

1941  The German Luftwaffe launches a bombing raid on Nottingham and Derby

1933  Mohandas Gandhi begins a 21-day fast of self-purification and launched a one-year campaign to help the Harijan movement.

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi (a.k.a. Mahatma Gandhi):

Harijan Movement and Gandhi:

India’s Independence, Nonviolence Movement, and Gandhi:

Gandhi and Spirituality:

1927  Attempting to make the first non-stop transatlantic flight from Paris to New York, French war heroes Charles Nungesser and François Coli disappear after taking off aboard The White Bird biplane.

1924  The Klaipėda Convention is signed formally incorporating Klaipėda Region (Memel Territory) into Lithuania.

1919  Edward George Honey proposes the idea of a moment of silence to commemorate the Armistice of World War I.

1912  Paramount Pictures is founded.

1902  In Martinique, Mount Pelée erupts, destroying the town of Saint-Pierre and killing over 30,000 people. Only a handful of residents survive the blast.

1901  The Australian Labour Party is established.

1899  The Irish Literary Theatre in Dublin produced its first play.

1886  Pharmacist John Pemberton first sells a carbonated beverage named “Coca-Cola” as a patent medicine.

1846  Mexican–American War: The Battle of Palo Alto: Zachary Taylor defeats a Mexican force north of the Rio Grande in the first major battle of the war.

Battle of Palo Alto:

Mexican-American War:

1821  Greek War of Independence: The Greeks defeat the Turks at the Battle of Gravia Inn.

Battle of Gravia Inn:

Greek War of Independence:

Modern History of Greece:



MAY 09

2015  Russia stages its biggest ever military parade in Moscow’s Red Square to commemorate the 70th anniversary of Victory Day.

Victory Day:

2015  An Airbus A400M Atlas military transport aircraft crashes near the Spanish city of Seville with three people on board killed.

2012  A Sukhoi Superjet 100 aircraft crashes into Mount Salak in West Java, Indonesia, killing 45 people.

2002  The 38-day stand-off in the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem comes to an end when the Palestinians inside agree to have 13 suspected terrorists among them deported to several different countries.

2001  In Ghana, 129 football fans die in what became known as the Accra Sports Stadium disaster. The deaths are caused by a stampede (caused by the firing of teargas by police personnel at the stadium) that followed a controversial decision by the referee.

1992  Westray Mine disaster kills 26 workers in Nova Scotia, Canada.

1992  Armenian forces capture Shusha, marking a major turning point in the Nagorno-Karabakh War.

Capture of Shusha:

Nagorno-Karabakh War:

Timelines of the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict/War:

1987  LOT Flight 5055 Tadeusz Kościuszko crashes after takeoff in Warsaw, Poland, killing all 183 people on board.

1980  In Norco, California, five masked gunmen hold up a Security Pacific bank, leading to a violent shoot-out and one of the largest pursuits in California history. Two of the gunmen and one police officer are killed and thirty-three police and civilian vehicles are destroyed in the chase.

1980  In Florida, Liberian freighter MV Summit Venture collides with the Sunshine Skyway Bridge over Tampa Bay, making a 1,400-ft. section of the southbound span collapse. Thirty-five people in six cars and a Greyhound bus fall 150 ft. into the water and die.

1979  Iranian Jewish businessman Habib Elghanian is executed by firing squad in Tehran, prompting the mass exodus of the once 100,000-strong Jewish community of Iran.

Habib Elghanian:

1977  Hotel Polen fire: A disastrous fire burns down the Hotel Polen in Amsterdam causing 33 deaths and 21 severe injuries.

1974  Watergate scandal: The United States House Committee on the Judiciary opens formal and public impeachment hearings against President Richard Nixon.

Impeachment against President Richard Nixon:

Watergate Scandal:

Watergate Tapes:

1970  Vietnam War: In Washington, D.C., 75,000 to 100,000 war protesters demonstrate in front of the White House.

1970 in the Vietnam War:

Anti-Viet Nam War Movement or Opposition to United States involvement in the Vietnam War:

Viet Nam War and Pertinent Events:

1969  Carlos Lamarca leads the first urban guerrilla action against the military dictatorship of Brazil in São Paulo, by robbing two banks.

Carlos Lamarca’s Guerrila Action against the Military Dictatorship of Brazil:

Military Dictatorship of Brazil:

1964  Ngô Đình Cẩn, de facto ruler of central Vietnam under his brother President Ngo Dinh Diem before the family’s toppling, is executed.

Vietnam War in 1964:

Ngô Đình Cẩn and Ngo Dinh Diem:

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:

1961  FCC Chairman Newton N. Minow gives his Wasteland Speech.

1960  The Food and Drug Administration announces it will approve birth control as an additional indication for Searle‘s Enovid, making Enovid the world’s first approved oral contraceptive pill.

1958  Film: Vertigo has world premiere in San Francisco.


1955  Cold War: West Germany joins NATO.

Germany and NATO:


History of NATO:

Problems of NATO:

The United States and NATO:

1950  Robert Schuman presents his proposal on the creation of an organized Europe, which according to him was indispensable to the maintenance of peaceful relations. This proposal, known as the “Schuman Declaration“, is considered by some people to be the beginning of the creation of what is now the European Union.

Robert Schuman:

Schuman Declaration:

European Integration and Its History:

Hague Congress of 1948:

Treaty of London of 1949:

Council of Europe:

1949  Rainier III of Monaco becomes Prince of Monaco.

Rainier III of Monaco:

1948  Czechoslovakia‘s Ninth-of-May Constitution comes into effect.

1946  King Victor Emmanuel III of Italy abdicates and is succeeded by Umberto II.

1945  World War II: The Channel Islands are liberated by the British after five years of German occupation.

1945  World War II: Ratification in Berlin-Karlshorst of the German unconditional surrender of May 8 in Rheims, France, with the signatures of Marshal Georgy Zhukov for the Soviet Union, and for the Western Headquarters Sir Arthur Tedder, British Air Marshal and Eisenhower’s deputy, and for the German side of Colonel-General Hans-Jürgen Stumpff as the representative of the Luftwaffe, Field Marshal Wilhelm Keitel as the Chief of Staff of OKW, and Admiral Hans-Georg von Friedeburg as Commander-in-Chief of the Kriegsmarine.

1942  Holocaust: The SS murders 588 Jewish residents of the Podolian town of Zinkiv (Khmelnytska oblast, Ukraine). The Zoludek Ghetto (in Belarus) is destroyed and all its inhabitants murdered or deported.

Zoludek Ghetto:

1941  World War II: The German submarine U-110 is captured by the Royal Navy. On board is the latest Enigma machine which Allied cryptographers later use to break coded German messages.

1940  World War II: The German submarine U-9 sinks the French coastal submarine Doris near Den Helder.

1936  Italy formally annexes Ethiopia after taking the capital Addis Ababa on May 5.

Italia’s Occupation of Ethiopia:

Modern History of Ethiopia:

1927  The Australian Parliament first convenes in Canberra.

1926  Admiral Richard E Byrd and Floyd Bennett claim to have flown over the North Pole (later discovery of Byrd’s diary appears to cast some doubt on the claim.)

1920  Polish–Soviet War: The Polish army under General Edward Rydz-Śmigły celebrates its capture of Kiev with a victory parade on Khreshchatyk.

Polish-Soviet War:

Poland and Russia:

History of Poland:


Foreign Relations of Poland:

Economy of Poland:

1918  World War I: Germany repels Britain’s second attempt to blockade the port of Ostend, Belgium.

1915  World War I: Second Battle of Artois between German and French forces.

Second Battle of Artois:

1911  The works of Gabriele D’Annunzio are placed in the Index of Forbidden Books by the Vatican.

Index Librorum Prohibitorum:

1904  The steam locomotive City of Truro becomes the first steam engine in Europe to exceed 100 mph (160 km/h).

1901  Australia opens its first parliament in Melbourne.

1887  Buffalo Bill Cody‘s Wild West Show opens in London.

1877  A magnitude 8.8 earthquake off the coast of Peru kills 2,541, including some as far away as Hawaii and Japan.

1877  Mihail Kogălniceanu reads, in the Chamber of Deputies, the Declaration of Independence of Romania. This day became the Independence Day of Romania.

1874  The first horse-drawn bus makes its début in the city of Mumbai, traveling two routes.

1873  Der Krach: Vienna stock market crash heralds the Long Depression.

1864  Second Schleswig War: The Danish navy defeats the Austrian and Prussian fleets in the Battle of Heligoland.



MAY 10

2013  One World Trade Center becomes the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere.

2012  The Damascus bombings are carried out using a pair of car bombs detonated by suicide bombers outside of a military intelligence complex in Damascus, Syria, killing 55 people and injuring 400 others.

Damascus Bombings of May 2012:

2008  An EF4 tornado strikes the OklahomaKansas state line, killing 21 people and injuring over 100.

2005 A hand grenade thrown by Vladimir Arutyunian lands about 65 feet (20 meters) from U.S. President George W. Bush while he is giving a speech to a crowd in Tbilisi, Georgia, but it malfunctions and does not detonate.

2002  FBI agent Robert Hanssen is sentenced to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole for selling United States secrets to Moscow for $1.4 million in cash and diamonds.

1997  The Maeslantkering, a storm surge barrier in the Netherlands that is one of the world’s largest moving structures, is opened by Queen Beatrix.

1997  An earthquake of 7.3 Mw strikes Iran‘s Khorasan Province, killing 1,567, injuring over 2,300, leaving 50,000 homeless, and damaging or destroying over 15,000 homes.

1994  Nelson Mandela is inaugurated as South Africa’s first black president.

1993  In Thailand, a fire at the Kader Toy Factory kills 156 workers.

1981  François Mitterrand wins the presidential election and becomes the first Socialist President of France in the French Fifth Republic.

1979  The Federated States of Micronesia become self-governing.

1975  Sony introduces the Betamax videocassette recorder in Japan.

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:

1972  First flight of the Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II (a.k.a. “Warthog”).

1970  Bobby Orr scores “The Goal” to win the 1970 Stanley Cup Finals, for the Boston Bruins‘ fourth NHL championship in their history.

1969  Vietnam War: The Battle of Dong Ap Bia begins with an assault on Hill 937. It will ultimately become known as Hamburger Hill.

Vietnam War in 1969:

Battle of Dong Ap Bia (a.k.a. Battle of Hamburger Hill):

1967  US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site.

1962  Marvel Comics publishes the first issue of The Incredible Hulk.

1960  The nuclear submarine USS Triton completes Operation Sandblast, the first underwater circumnavigation of the earth.

1954  Bill Haley & His Comets release “Rock Around the Clock“, the first rock and roll record to reach number one on the Billboard charts.

1948  The Republic of China implements “temporary provisions” granting President Chiang Kai-shek extended powers to deal with the Communist uprising; they will remain in effect until 1991.

1946  First successful launch of an American V-2 rocket at White Sands Proving Ground.

1942  World War II: The Thai Phayap Army invades the Shan States during the Burma Campaign.

Shan State(s) and Its History:

1941  World War II: Rudolf Hess parachutes into Scotland to try to negotiate a peace deal between the United Kingdom and Nazi Germany.

Rudolf Hess:

1941  World War II: The House of Commons in London is damaged by the Luftwaffe in an air raid.

1940  World War II: Invasion of Iceland by the United Kingdom.

1940  World War II: Winston Churchill is appointed Prime Minister of the United Kingdom following the resignation of Neville Chamberlain.

1940  World War II: Germany invades Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg.

1940  World War II: German raids on British shipping convoys and military airfields begin.

1940  World War II: German fighters accidentally bomb the German city of Freiburg.

1933  Censorship: In Germany, the Nazis stage massive public book burnings.

Nazi Book Burnings:

1924  J. Edgar Hoover is appointed first Director of the United States’ Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and remains so until his death in 1972.

  1. Edgar Hoover:

History of the FBI:

1922  The United States annexes the Kingman Reef.

Kingman Reef:

1916  Sailing in the lifeboat James Caird, Ernest Shackleton arrives at South Georgia after a journey of 800 nautical miles from Elephant Island.

1908  Mother’s Day is observed for the first time in the United States, in Grafton, West Virginia.

Mother’s Day:

1904  The Horch & Cir. Motorwagenwerke AG is founded.

1893  The Supreme Court of the United States rules in Nix v. Hedden that a tomato is a vegetable, not a fruit, under the Tariff Act of 1883.

1877  Romania declares itself independent from the Ottoman Empire following the Senate adoption of Mihail Kogălniceanu‘s Declaration of Independence. Recognized on March 26, 1881 after the end of the Romanian War of Independence.

Romanian War of Independence:

History of Romania:

1876  The Centennial Exposition is opened in Philadelphia by U.S. President Ulysses S. Grant and Brazilian Emperor Dom Pedro II.

1872  Victoria Woodhull becomes the first woman nominated for President of the United States.

1866  Romania National Holiday 1866-1947, The Modern Monarchy Instauration of the Kingdom of Romania, Carol I of Romania

Kingdom of Romania:

Carol I of Romania:

History of Romania:



MAY 11

2014  Fifteen people are killed and 46 injured in Kinshasa in a stampede caused by tear gas being thrown into the stand by police officers attempting to defuse a hostile incident.

2013  Fifty-two people are killed in a bombing in Reyhanlı, Turkey.

2011  The Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) together with the Government of Japan will not cap compensation payments resulting from the Fukushima I nuclear accidents.

TEPCO and the Compensation for the Fukushima I Nuclear Accidents:

2010  David Cameron becomes Prime Minister of the United Kingdom following talks between the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats to form the UK’s first coalition government since World War II after elections produced a hung parliament.

2000  Second Chechen War: Chechen separatists ambush Russian paramilitary forces in the Republic of Ingushetia.

Republic of Ingushetia:

Second Chechen War:

First Chechen War:

Chechen Wars:

1998  India conducts three underground atomic tests in Pokhran to include a thermonuclear device.

1997  Deep Blue, a chess-playing supercomputer, defeats Garry Kasparov in the last game of the rematch, becoming the first computer to beat a world-champion chess player in a classic match format.

1996  The 1996 Mount Everest disaster: on a single day eight people die during summit attempts on Mount Everest.

1996  After the aircraft’s departure from Miami, a fire started by improperly handled chemical oxygen generators in the cargo hold of Atlanta-bound ValuJet Flight 592 causes the Douglas DC-9 to crash in the Florida Everglades killing all 110 on board.

1995  More than 170 countries extend the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty indefinitely and without conditions.

1987  In Baltimore, the first heart–lung transplant takes place. The surgery is performed by Dr. Bruce Reitz of the Stanford University School of Medicine.

1987  Klaus Barbie goes on trial in Lyon for war crimes committed during World War II.

Klaus Barbie:

1985  Bradford City stadium fire: Fifty-six spectators die and more than 200 are injured in a flash fire at Valley Parade football ground during a match against Lincoln City in Bradford, England.

1984  Eight people perish in a fire at Six Flags Great Adventure‘s Haunted Castle.

1973  Citing government misconduct, Daniel Ellsberg has charges for his involvement in releasing the Pentagon Papers to The New York Times dismissed.

1972  United States performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site, which was part of the series Operation Grommet and Operation Toggle.

Operation Grommet:

Operation Toggle:

Nuclear Tests at the Nevada Site:

Nuclear Weapons and the United States:

1970  The Lubbock tornado, a F5 tornado, hits Lubbock, Texas, killing 26 and causing $250 million in damage.

1968  The Toronto Transit Commission opens the largest expansion of its Bloor–Danforth line, going to Scarborough in the East, and Etobicoke in the West.

1965  USSR performs nuclear test (underground) at Eastern Kazakh/Semipalatinsk USSR.

USSR Nuclear Tests in 1965:

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:

1963  Racist bombings in Birmingham, Alabama disrupt nonviolence in the Birmingham campaign and precipitate a crisis involving federal troops.

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:

A Case Study: – Apartheid of South Africa:

Sports and Racism:

Beauty Contest and Racism:

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

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

1962  US performs atmospheric nuclear test, at Christmas Island.

Nuclear Tests at Christmas Islands:

Atmospheric Nuclear Tests of the United States and Radioactive Fallout:

Nuclear Tests by the United States:

1960  In Buenos Aires, Argentina, four Israeli Mossad agents capture fugitive Nazi Adolf Eichmann who is living under the alias of Ricardo Klement.

Adolf Eichmann:

Trial of Adolf Eichmann in Jerusalem:

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:

1958  US performs atmospheric nuclear test at Bikini Atoll.

Operation Hardtack I:

Nuclear Tests by the United States:

Atmospheric/High-altitude Nuclear Explosion Testing:

Nuclear Tests at Bikini Atoll:

Nuclear Weapons and the United States:

1953  The 1953 Waco tornado outbreak: An F5 tornado hits downtown Waco, Texas, killing 114.

1949  Israel joins the United Nations.

Israel and the United Nations:

Israel, Palestine and the UN Resolutions:


Israel’s Nuclear Capability:

Foreign Relations of Israel:

Israel -US Relations:     

Israel-Vatican Relations:

Vatican and the Holocaust:

History of Israel:

Economy of Israel:

1949  Siam officially changes its name to Thailand for the second time. The name had been in use since 1939 but was reverted in 1945.

1946  UMNO is created.

United Malay National Organization (UMNO):

1945  World War II: Off the coast of Okinawa, the aircraft carrier USS Bunker Hill is hit by two kamikazes, killing 346 of its crew. Although badly damaged, the ship is able to return to the U.S. under its own power.

USS Bunker Hill and the Kamikaze Attack:


1944  World War II: The Allies begin a major offensive against the Axis Powers on the Gustav Line.

1943  World War II: American troops invade Attu Island in the Aleutian Islands in an attempt to expel occupying Japanese forces.

1942  William Faulkner‘s collections of short stories, Go Down, Moses, is published.

1927  The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is founded.

1918  The Mountainous Republic of the Northern Caucasus is officially established.

1910  An act of the US Congress establishes Glacier National Park in Montana.

1907  Thirty-two Shriners are killed when their chartered train derails at a switch near Surf Depot in Lompoc, California.

1894  Pullman Strike: Four thousand Pullman Palace Car Company workers go on a wildcat strike in Illinois.

1891  The Ōtsu incident: Tsarevich Nicholas Alexandrovich of Imperial Russia (later Nicholas II) suffers a critical head injury during a sword attack by Japanese policeman Tsuda Sanzō. He is rescued by Prince George of Greece and Denmark.

1889  An attack upon a US Army paymaster and escort results in the theft of over $28,000 and the award of two Medals of Honor.

1880  Seven people are killed in the Mussel Slough Tragedy, a gun battle in California.

1867  Luxembourg gains its independence.


History of Luxembourg:

Economy of Luxembourg:



MAY 12

2015  An earthquake of 7.3 magnitude and six major aftershocks hit Nepal, killing over 200 people.

2015  A train derailment in Philadelphia kills 8 people and injures over 200.

2008  US Immigration and Customs Enforcement conducts the largest-ever raid of a workplace in Postville, Iowa, arresting nearly 400 immigrants for identity theft and document fraud.

2008  An earthquake (measuring around 8.0 magnitude) occurs in Sichuan, China, killing over 69,000 people.

2007  Riots in which over 50 people are killed and over 100 are injured take place in Karachi upon the arrival in town of the Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry.

2006  Iranian Azeris interpret a cartoon published in an Iranian magazine as insulting, resulting in massive riots throughout the country.

2006  Mass unrest by the Primeiro Comando da Capital begins in São Paulo (Brazil), leaving at least 150 dead.

2003  The Riyadh compound bombings, carried out by al-Qaeda, kill 26 people.

2002  Former US President Jimmy Carter arrives in Cuba for a five-day visit with Fidel Castro becoming the first President of the United States, in or out of office, to visit the island since Castro’s 1959 revolution.

Jimmy Carter:

Fidel Castro:

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

Foreign Relations of Cuba:

Cuba and the United States:

History and Culture of Cuba:

Economy of Cuba:

1998  Four students are shot at Trisakti University, leading to widespread riots and the fall of Suharto

1989  The San Bernardino train disaster kills four people. A week later an underground gasoline pipeline explodes killing two more people.

1986  NBC debuts the current well-known peacock as seen in the NBC 60th Anniversary Celebration.

1984  France performs nuclear test at Muruora Island. [See 1983-85 French nuclear tests – Wikipedia.]


History of France Nuclear Tests:

France’s Nuclear Tests:

1982  During a procession outside the shrine of the Virgin Mary in Fátima, Portugal, security guards overpower Juan María Fernández y Krohn before he can attack Pope John Paul II with a bayonet. Krohn, an ultraconservative Spanish priest opposed to the Vatican II reforms, believed that the Pope had to be killed for being an “agent of Moscow”.

1981  Francis Hughes starves to death in the Maze Prison in a Republican campaign for political prisoner status to be granted to Provisional IRA prisoners.

1978  In Zaire, rebels occupy the city of Kolwezi, the mining center of the province of Shaba (now known as Katanga). The local government asks the U.S.A., France and Belgium to restore order.

1975  Mayaguez incident: The Cambodian navy seizes the American merchant ship SS Mayaguez in international waters.

1970  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:

1968  Vietnam War: North Vietnamese and Viet Cong forces attack Australian troops defending Fire Support Base Coral, east of Lai Khe in South Vietnam on the night of 12/13 May, resulting in heavy casualties on both sides and beginning the Battle of Coral–Balmoral.

Vietnam War in 1968:

Battle of Coral-Balmoral:

Viet Cong:

Viet Nam War and Pertinent Events:

1965  The Soviet spacecraft Luna 5 crashes on the Moon.

1962  US performs atmospheric nuclear test, at Christmas Island.

Nuclear Tests at Christmas Islands:

Atmospheric Nuclear Tests of the United States and Radioactive Fallout:

Nuclear Tests by the United States:

1958  A formal North American Aerospace Defense Command agreement is signed between the United States and Canada.

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:

1957  Alfonso de Portago crashes during the Mille Miglia, killing himself, his co-driver, Ed Nelson and ten spectators – five of whom were children.

1955  Austria regains its independence as the Allied occupation following World War II ends.

Independence of Austria of 1955:

Allied Control Council:

Occupation of Germany:


1955  Nineteen days after bus workers went on strike in Singapore, rioting breaks out and seriously impacts Singapore’s bid for independence.

1952  Gaj Singh is crowned Maharaja of Jodhpur.

1949  The western occupying powers approve the Basic Law for the new German state: The Federal Republic of Germany.

Basic Law of the Federal Republic of Germany:

1949  The Soviet Union lifts its blockade of Berlin.

Lift of the Berlin Blockade:

Berlin Blockade by the Soviet Union:

Berlin Blockade and the Airlift:

1948  Wilhelmina, Queen regnant of the Kingdom of the Netherlands cedes throne.

1945  Argentinian labor leader José Peter declares the Federación Obrera de la Industria de la Carne dissolved.

1942  World War II: The US tanker SS Virginia is torpedoed in the mouth of the Mississippi River by the German submarine U-507.

1942  World War II: Second Battle of Kharkov: In eastern Ukraine, Red Army forces under Marshal Semyon Timoshenko launch a major offensive from the Izium bridgehead, only to be encircled and destroyed by the troops of Army Group South two weeks later.

1941  Konrad Zuse presents the Z3, the world’s first working programmable, fully automatic computer, in Berlin.

1937  The Duke and Duchess of York are crowned as King George VI and Queen Elizabeth of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in Westminster Abbey.

1935  Bill Wilson and Dr. Bob Smith (founders of Alcoholics Anonymous) meet for the first time in Akron, Ohio, at the home of Henrietta Siberling.

Alcoholics Anonymous:

History of Alcoholics Anonymous:

1933  The Agricultural Adjustment Act is enacted to restrict agricultural production by paying farmers subsidies.

1932  Ten weeks after his abduction, the infant son of Charles Lindbergh, Charles Jr., is found dead in Hopewell, New Jersey, just a few miles from the Lindberghs’ home.

1926  The Italian-built airship Norge becomes the first vessel to fly over the North Pole.

1885  North-West Rebellion: The four-day Battle of Batoche, pitting rebel Métis against the Canadian government, comes to an end with a decisive rebel defeat.

1881  In North Africa, Tunisia becomes a French protectorate.

1821  The first major battle of the Greek War of Independence against the Turks is fought in Valtetsi.

1797  War of the First Coalition: Napoleon I of France conquers Venice.



MAY 13

2011  Two bombs explode in the Charsadda District of Pakistan killing 98 people and wounding 140 others.

2008  The Jaipur bombings in Rajasthan, India results in dozens of deaths.

2006  São Paulo violence: A major rebellion occurs in several prisons in Brazil.

2005  The Andijan massacre occurs in Uzbekistan.

Andijan Massacre (Uzbekistan):

1998  India carries out two nuclear tests at Pokhran, following the three conducted on May 11. The United States and Japan impose economic sanctions on India.

India’s Nuclear Tests:

1998  Race riots break out in Jakarta, Indonesia, where shops owned by Indonesians of Chinese descent are looted and women raped.

Race Riots (a.k.a. Jakarta Riots) of May 1998:

1996  Severe thunderstorms and a tornado in Bangladesh kill 600 people.

1995  Alison Hargreaves, a 33-year-old British mother, becomes the first woman to conquer Everest without oxygen or the help of sherpas.

1994  Johnny Carson makes his last television appearance on Late Show with David Letterman.

1992  Li Hongzhi gives the first public lecture on Falun Gong in Changchun, People’s Republic of China.

History of Falun Gong:

1990  Dinamo Zagreb-Red Star Belgrade riot

1989  Large groups of students occupy Tiananmen Square and begin a hunger strike.

1985  Police release a bomb on MOVE headquarters in Philadelphia to end a stand-off, killing 11 MOVE members and destroying the homes of 250 city residents.

1981  Mehmet Ali Ağca attempts to assassinate Pope John Paul II in St. Peter’s Square in Rome. The Pope is rushed to the Agostino Gemelli University Polyclinic to undergo emergency surgery and survives.

1972  The Troubles: A car bombing outside a crowded pub in Belfast sparks a two-day gun battle involving the Provisional IRA, Ulster Volunteer Force and British Army. Seven people are killed and over 66 injured.

1972  Faulty electrical wiring ignites a fire underneath the Playtown Cabaret in Osaka, Japan. Blocked exits and non-functional elevators lead to 118 fatalities, with many victims leaping to their deaths.

1969  Race riots, later known as the 13 May Incident, take place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

13 May Incident:

1967  Dr Zakir Hussain becomes the third President of India. He is the first Muslim President of the Indian Union. He holds this position until August 24, 1969.

1963  The US Supreme Court case Brady v. Maryland is decided.

1960  Hundreds of University of California, Berkeley students congregate for the first day of protest against a visit by the House Committee on Un-American Activities. Thirty-one students are arrested, and the Free Speech Movement is born.

1958  Ben Carlin becomes the first (and only) person to circumnavigate the world by amphibious vehicle, having travelled over 17,000 kilometres (11,000 mi) by sea and 62,000 kilometres (39,000 mi) by land during a ten-year journey.

1958  May 1958 crisis: A group of French military officers lead a coup in Algiers demanding that a government of national unity be formed with Charles de Gaulle at its head in order to defend French control of Algeria.

Charles de Gaulle’s Policies on Algeria:

History of Algeria:


Foreign Relations of Algeria:

Algeria and the United Nations:

Economy of Algeria:

1958  The trademark Velcro is registered.

1958  During a visit to Caracas, Venezuela, Vice President Richard Nixon‘s car is attacked by anti-American demonstrators.

1954  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:

1954  The original Broadway production of The Pajama Game opens and runs for another 1,063 performances. Later received three Tony Awards for Best Musical, Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Musical, and Best Choreography.

1954  The anti-National Service Riots, by Chinese middle school students in Singapore, take place.

1952  The Rajya Sabha, the upper house of the Parliament of India, holds its first sitting.

1951  The 400th anniversary of the founding of the National University of San Marcos is commemorated by the opening of the first large-capacity stadium in Peru.

1950  The first round of the Formula One World Championship is held at Silverstone.

1948  Arab–Israeli War: The Kfar Etzion massacre is committed by Arab irregulars, the day before the declaration of independence of the state of Israel on May 14.

Kfar Etzion Massacre:

Arab-Israeli War of 1948:

1943  World War II: German Afrika Korps and Italian troops in North Africa surrender to Allied forces.

1941  World War II: Yugoslav royal colonel Dragoljub Mihailović starts fighting with German occupation troops, beginning the Serbian resistance.

1940  Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands flees her country to Great Britain after the German invasion. Princess Juliana takes her children to Canada for their safety.

1940  World War II: Germany‘s conquest of France begins as the German army crosses the Meuse. Winston Churchill makes his “blood, toil, tears, and sweat” speech to the House of Commons.

Churchill’s Speech: “Blood, Toil, Tears and Sweat”:

1939  The first commercial FM radio station in the United States is launched in Bloomfield, Connecticut. The station later becomes WDRC-FM.

1923  Robert Bellarmine, a Doctor of the Catholic Church, is beatified.

1917  Three children report the first apparition of Our Lady of Fátima in Fátima, Portugal.

Marian Apparition in Fatima:

1912  The Royal Flying Corps, the forerunner of the Royal Air Force, is established in the United Kingdom.

1909  The first Giro d’Italia starts from Milan. Italian cyclist Luigi Ganna will be the winner.

1888  With the passage of the Lei Áurea (“Golden Law”), Brazil abolishes slavery.

Abolishment of the Slavery in Brazil – the Passage of “Lei Áurea”:

1880  In Menlo Park, New Jersey, Thomas Edison performs the first test of his electric railway.

1861  The Great Comet of 1861 is discovered by John Tebbutt of Windsor, New South Wales, Australia.

Great Comet of 1861:

1830  Ecuador gains its independence from Gran Colombia.


History of Ecuador:

Economy of Ecuador:



MAY 14

2013  Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan declares a state of emergency in the northeast states of Borno, Yobe and Adamawa due to the terrorist activities of Boko Haram.

Boko Haram:


Foreign Relations of Nigeria:

Nigeria and the United Nations:

History of Nigeria:

Economy of Nigeria:

2012  Agni Air Flight CHT crashes near Jomsom Airport in Jomsom, Nepal, after a failed go-around, killing 15 people.

2004  The Constitutional Court of South Korea overturns the impeachment of President Roh Moo-hyun.

1995  Dalai Lama proclaims 6-year-old Gedhun Choekyi Nyima 11th reincarnation of Panchen Lama, Tibet’s 2nd most senior spiritual leader.

1988  Carrollton bus collision: A drunk driver traveling the wrong way on Interstate 71 near Carrollton, Kentucky, United States hits a converted school bus carrying a church youth group. Twenty-seven die in the crash and ensuing fire.

197US 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:

1973  Skylab, the United States’ first space station, is launched.

1970  Andreas Baader is freed from custody by Ulrike Meinhof, Gudrun Ensslin and others, a pivotal moment in the formation of The Red Army Faction.

1965  US performs nuclear test at Nevada Test Site.

1963  Kuwait joins the United Nations.

Kuwait and the United Nations:


History of Kuwait:

Economy of Kuwait:

1961  American civil rights movement: The Freedom Riders bus is fire-bombed near Anniston, Alabama, and the civil rights protesters are beaten by an angry mob.

Freedom Riders:

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

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

1955  Cold War: Eight Communist bloc countries, including the Soviet Union, sign a mutual defense treaty called the Warsaw Pact.

1955  US performs nuclear test (atmospheric) at Pacific Ocean off.

Operation Wigwam:

Atmospheric/High-altitude Nuclear Explosion Testing:

Nuclear Tests by the United States:

Nuclear Weapons and the United States:

1951  Trains run on the Talyllyn Railway in Wales for the first time since preservation, making it the first railway in the world to be operated by volunteers.

1943  Israel is declared to be an independent state and a provisional government is established. Immediately after the declaration, Israel is attacked by the neighboring Arab states, triggering the 1948 Arab–Israeli War.

Provisional Government of Israel:

Arab-Israeli War of 1948:

1943  World War II: A Japanese submarine sinks AHS Centaur off the coast of Queensland.

1940  The Yermolayev Yer-2, a long-range Soviet medium bomber, makes its first flight.

1940  World War II: The Battle of the Netherlands ends with the Netherlands surrendering to Germany.

Battle of the Netherlands of 1940:

1940  World War II: Rotterdam is bombed by the German Luftwaffe.

1939 Lina Medina becomes the youngest confirmed mother in medical history at the age of five.

1935  The Philippines ratifies an independence agreement.

1931  Ådalen shootings: Five people are killed in Ådalen, Sweden, as soldiers open fire on an unarmed trade union demonstration.

1925  Virginia Woolf‘s novel Mrs Dalloway is published.

Virginia Woolf:

Mrs Dalloway:

Virginia Woolf and Feminism:

1913  Governor of New York William Sulzer approves the charter for the Rockefeller Foundation, which begins operations with a $100 million donation from John D. Rockefeller.

1889  The children’s charity, the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children is launched in London.

1879  The first group of 463 Indian indentured laborers arrives in Fiji aboard the Leonidas.


(Sources and references:   to may_14;   to may/14;   to may_14.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 8 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. Majid says:

    Happy to be here! Great sources to know about Historic events.