Robertson Founds the Christian Coalition

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

After his failed bid for the U.S. presidency, Pat Robertson created the Christian Coalition to mobilize his base in the service of other Christian conservative political causes and campaigns. Summary of Event In 1987, Pat Robertson, an ordained Baptist minister and founder of the Christian Broadcasting Network Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN), announced that he would […]

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Oregon Guarantees Basic Health Care for the Uninsured

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

In an effort to provide free medical care to more Oregonians, the state government implemented an innovative policy that provided fewer free Medicaid services to a greater number of people. This expansion of the state roster of Medicaid beneficiaries was accompanied by the refusal to cover some medical treatments, a move that generated controversy. Summary […]

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Pan Am Flight 103 Explodes over Lockerbie

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Libyan-sponsored terrorists planted a bomb on a civilian jet, killing 270 people and prompting a long investigation and legal process that finally brought one of the perpetrators to justice. Summary of Event The downing of Pan Am Flight 103 on December 21, 1988, with the subsequent death of 270 people, was the worst aviation disaster […]

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BRAC Commission Is Established to Close U.S. Military Bases

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

To manage the spending of the U.S. defense budget more efficiently, the Base Realignment and Closure Commission was established to evaluate the need for large numbers of military facilities and to make recommendations concerning which bases should be closed and which should have their missions altered so that they would remain relevant. Summary of Event […]

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U.S. Welfare Reform Links Assistance to Work

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The first overhaul of the U.S. welfare system in more than half a century, the Family Support Act cemented a link between welfare and work and strengthened the nation’s child support enforcement system. Summary of Event The link between work strategies and welfare policy in the United States became significant with the “thirty and one-third” […]

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Prodigy Introduces Dial-Up Service

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

In 1988, Prodigy Services Company was launched as the first interactive dial-up Internet service for consumers. With innovative features such as a user-friendly graphical interface, a low flat monthly fee, and unlimited access, Prodigy pioneered online home shopping, a total online newsroom, and other innovations that anticipated future trends in technology and marketing. Summary of […]

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Auspicious Day of 8/8/88 Turns Deadly in Rangoon

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Following a campus protest in which six students were killed by the Burmese military, a prodemocracy uprising erupted in Rangoon that was violently suppressed by the military. General Saw Maung proclaimed himself head of the State Law and Order Restoration Council on September 23, 1988, ushering in an era of military rule. Summary of Event […]

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USS Shoots Down Iranian Civilian Plane

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

After misidentifying Iran Air Flight 655 as an inbound attacking F14 aircraft, the USS Vincennes launched two missiles at the airliner. The first missile struck the target and broke the aircraft in pieces, resulting in the deaths of 290 civilians, 66 of whom were children. Although the United States never officially acknowledged wrongdoing, it agreed […]

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Excommunication of Archbishop Lefebvre

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

When Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre openly defied Pope John Paul II by ordaining four bishops to lead his dissenting conservative faction of the Roman Catholic Church, John Paul excommunicated Lefebvre, alienating many of Lefebvre’s followers and strengthening the belief of others that the papacy-led church was not the true Catholic Church. Summary of Event The Second […]

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Merges Animation with Live Action

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Noted for its combination of animation and live action, Who Framed Roger Rabbit was a success for both the studios that produced it and, more important, for animation as a genre. The film revived interest in animation, an art form that had not had real success on the big screen for more than a decade. […]

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First Monetary Damages Are Awarded to the Estate of a Cigarette Smoker

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

For the first time in U.S. history, a jury awarded damages to a cigarette smoker who had suffered from health problems caused by long-term smoking, marking a major turning point in public policy regarding the tobacco industry. Summary of Event Not long after the early 1950’s, when reports first linked smoking to lung cancer, smokers […]

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Osama Bin Laden Forms al-Qaeda

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Al-Qaeda, a transnational support group of Islamist jihadists founded in early 1988, is dedicated to ushering in a pure Islamic society through a holy war against derelict Muslims as well as the “degenerate” Western powers. Summary of Event The organization al-Qaeda (the base), a multinational Muslim alliance devoted to Islamist jihad (holy war) and associated […]

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Graf Wins Golden Grand Slam

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Steffi Graf became the third woman to win the grand slam of tennis, winning the Australian, French, and U.S. Opens, as well as the Wimbledon tournament in England. During 1988, she also won the gold medal in women’s tennis in the Summer Olympics, making her the winner of the “golden grand slam.” Summary of Event […]

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Doppler Radar Revolutionizes Weather Forecasting

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

In 1988, after twenty-four years of development, the U.S. National Weather Service began installing Doppler weather surveillance radar systems at 164 locations around the United States and its overseas territories. Capable of detecting wind movements and precipitation, Doppler radar significantly improved the monitoring and predictability of intermediate-size weather systems. Summary of Event Centrally located on […]

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FDA Approves Prozac as an Antidepressant

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

With U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval, Prozac was introduced in the United States as a new way to manage depression. Thanks to brilliant marketing and the promise of few side effects, Prozac revolutionized psychiatry’s approach to depression and paved the way for a flurry of similar drugs. Summary of Event The concept of depression […]

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FDA Approves the First Cholesterol-Lowering Drug

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s approval of the first member of the statin family of drugs, lovastatin, led to the discovery and production of a whole line of very effective cholesterol-lowering drugs. Extensive clinical trials with statins also ended the debate regarding the causative link between high blood cholesterol levels and coronary heart disease, […]

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NATO and Russia Sign Cooperation Pact

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The signing of a cooperation pact between NATO and Russia cleared the way for eastward expansion of NATO. Hungary, Poland, and the Czech Republic would join NATO in July. Summary of Event On May 27, 1997, leaders of the sixteen member countries of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and Russian president Boris Yeltsin signed […]

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Wilmut Clones the First Large Mammal from an Adult Cell

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

A team of scientists working in Scotland achieved their goal of creating an exact copy of an adult mammal. Summary of Event On February 22, 1997, officials of the Roslin Institute, Roslin Institute a biological research institution near Edinburgh, Scotland, held a press conference to announce startling news: They had succeeded in creating a clone—a […]

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Russian Troops Invade Chechnya

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Russian troops invaded Chechnya in an attempt to prevent the province’s secession, but the invasion failed to end the independence movement and further eroded the popularity of Russian president Boris Yeltsin. Summary of Event On December 11, 1994, Russian president Boris Yeltsin ordered Russian forces to invade the province of Chechnya, in the Caucasus region […]

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Opening of the Channel Tunnel

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

With the opening of the Channel Tunnel, linking England with the Continent, a new age in European rail travel and freight movement began. Summary of Event A tunnel that would allow people to travel beneath the English Channel between England and France had been considered a technological possibility since the eighteenth century, when scientists and […]

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Ulster Peace Accord

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The Ulster Peace Accord made it possible for the peoples of Northern Ireland (Ulster), the Republic of Ireland (Eire), and Great Britain to be involved in determining Northern Ireland’s political future. Summary of Event The Ulster Peace Accord, also known as the Joint Declaration of Peace and the Downing Street Declaration, has deep roots in […]

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Czechoslovakia Splits into Two Republics

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The splitting of Czechoslovakia into two republics—in a peaceful process that came to be known as the Velvet Divorce—offered a sharp contrast to the violent breakup of Yugoslavia at roughly the same time. Summary of Event The victors of World War I created Czechoslovakia, along with a number of other countries, out of territories that […]

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Immigrants in Germany Become Targets of Violence

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Protests and violence against immigrants in Germany in the wake of the nation’s reunification were followed by brutal murders of ethnic minorities in November that shocked the world, forcing the German government to address the problem of neofascism in German society. Summary of Event After the reunification of Germany in October of 1990, the nation […]

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Civil War Begins in Yugoslavia

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Civil war in Yugoslavia unleashed ethnic violence and resulted in the atomization of Yugoslavia into separate republics. Summary of Event Ever since the seventh century, when three Slavic tribes—Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes—migrated from Russia to the Balkans, the groups had maintained their separate existence, until the formation of the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats, and […]

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Sweden Applies for Membership in the European Community

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

With its application for membership in the European Community in the wake of German reunification, Sweden indicated that it had overcome the view that such membership would be incompatible with the nation’s traditional policy of neutrality. Summary of Event The road to Sweden’s application for membership in the European Community was a long one. Sweden […]

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Ceauşescu Is Overthrown in Romania

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The overthrow of Nicolae Ceauşescu in Romania was part of the violent climax to the collapse of Communism in Europe and the dissolution of the Soviet empire. Summary of Event Before Nicolae Ceauşescu’s overthrow, Romania appeared quiescent, accepting the last unreformed, Stalinist ruling party in Soviet-dominated Europe. In reality, however, Romania was ready to explode. […]

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Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Czechoslovakia’s Velvet Revolution marked the end of the Marxist-Leninist system and the beginning of both a pluralistic democracy and a free market economy in that nation. Summary of Event In its “gentle revolution,” Czechoslovakia became the second Soviet bloc country, after Poland, to establish a non-Communist government. Although Czechoslovakia before 1989 had not undergone any […]

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Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The threshold of the danger of a nuclear war was reduced when the Soviet Union and the United States agreed to eliminate existing intermediate-range nuclear missiles deployed in Europe. Summary of Event Decades of suspicion, misunderstanding, and confrontation during the Cold War years after 1945 greatly reduced the opportunity for the United States and the […]

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Election of Waldheim as President of Austria Stirs Controversy

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Kurt Waldheim’s election to Austria’s presidency created controversy because Waldheim’s victory, achieved despite his falsified autobiography, typified the eagerness of Austrians to gloss over their nation’s Nazi past. Summary of Event On June 8, 1986, Kurt Waldheim, former secretary-general of the United Nations, became president of Austria amid continuing controversy about his activities under the […]

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Palme Is Assassinated

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

With the assassination of Olof Palme, the world was deprived of a great statesman dedicated to international peace and the nonproliferation of nuclear weapons. Summary of Event On the evening of February 28, 1986, Prime Minister Olof Palme and his wife, Lisbeth Beck-Friis Palme, left a movie theater on Tunnelgaten (Tunnel Street) in Stockholm and […]

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Anglo-Irish Agreement Is Signed

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The signing of the Anglo-Irish Agreement represented an attempt to ameliorate the endemic problems of Northern Ireland. Summary of Event The Anglo-Irish Agreement, signed at Hillsborough, Northern Ireland, on November 15, 1985, was the most serious political attempt between the early 1970’s and the truce of 1994 to settle the long, often violent dispute in […]

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Britain Signs Agreement to Leave Hong Kong in 1997

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

When Great Britain signed an agreement to leave Hong Kong in 1997, the event marked one of the final steps away from Hong Kong’s colonial heritage while bringing into question the territory’s free market status. Summary of Event Great Britain first came into possession of Hong Kong Island through the Treaty of Nanking (1842), which […]

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Martial Law Ends in Poland

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The end of martial law in Poland marked the Communist government’s failure to govern without appealing to democratic elements chiefly the banned trade union Solidarity. Summary of Event The ending of martial law signaled the final failure of communist rule in postwar Poland. General Wojciech Jaruzelski, prime minister and first secretary of the Polish Communist […]

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Falkland Islands War

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

After Argentina’s unexpected seizure of the Falklands, Great Britain asserted sovereignty over the islands in a short but hard-fought war and removed an Argentine junta, thus restoring civilian control of the government. Summary of Event In the early morning hours of April 2, 1982, Argentine armed forces staged an amphibious invasion of the lightly defended […]

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Greek Socialists Win Parliamentary Majority

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Greek socialists won a parliamentary majority under the leadership of Andreas Papandreou, who formed the first socialist government in the country’s history. Summary of Event The years of military rule in Greece (1967-1974) left a lasting legacy of revulsion against authoritarian rule and the determination to create a stable democracy. Called from self-imposed exile, Konstantinos […]

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Mitterrand Is Elected to the French Presidency

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

François Mitterrand’s electoral victory brought to power a president from the political Left for the first time since the Fifth Republic was established twenty-three years earlier. After France faced economic troubles early in his presidency, Mitterrand’s policies became increasingly moderate. Summary of Event In 1981, many people believed that François Mitterrand’s electoral victory was a […]

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Death of Tito

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The death of Tito left a power g ap in his union of Serbs, Croats, and Muslims that ultimately resulted in Yugoslavia’s dissolution in war. Summary of Event When Tito died in 1980, he left behind a unified but precarious Yugoslav state. He had been the undisputed leader of Yugoslavia since the end of World […]

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SALT II Is Signed

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The second treaty that came out of the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks between the Soviet Union and the United States established limits on the size and technology of the nuclear arsenals of the two nations, thus limiting the nuclear arms race and creating a more stable deterrence. Summary of Event To facilitate the passage of […]

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Terrorists Kidnap and Murder Former Italian Prime Minister

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Aldo Moro was kidnapped and murdered by Italian terrorists from the Red Brigades, a left-wing terrorist group in Italy in the 1970’s. Although several terrorists were convicted for the murder of the former Italian prime minister, many questions about the motives of Italy’s government officials and the integrity of their efforts to find Moro alive […]

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Concorde Flies Passengers at Supersonic Speeds

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The Concorde’s introduction of passenger flight at supersonic speeds proved the technological viability of supersonic air travel despite high initial costs. Summary of Event On January 21, 1976, the Concorde became the first supersonic transport (SST) to fly in commercial service. The aircraft had been under development since 1962, when the French and British governments […]

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Death of Franco

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The death of Francisco Franco ended authoritarian dictatorship in Spain and elevated King Juan Carlos I as head of state. Within fourteen months of Franco’s death, the Spanish parliament passed a law of political reform with the king’s clear approval, thereby opening up the political system by legalizing political parties and the holding of a […]

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IRA Terrorists Bomb British Parliament

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

In a terrorist campaign intended to force British withdrawal from Northern Ireland, the Irish Republican Army bombed the Parliament building, the symbol of English parliamentary law and government. Summary of Event The genesis of England’s claim to Ireland lies in an agreement between King Henry II and Pope Adrian IV in the twelfth century, when […]

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Portugal Grants Independence to Its African Colonies

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Portugal granted independence to its African colonies, freeing itself from an economically disastrous series of wars and signaling the dissolution of one of the few remaining colonial empires. Summary of Event At the middle of the twentieth century, the small European country of Portugal still retained nine colonies in various parts of the world: some […]

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European Space Agency Is Formed

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The European Space Agency became a model of international cooperation by uniting many European countries to reach common scientific and commercial goals in space technology. Summary of Event At the dawn of the space age in 1957, the United States and the Soviet Union began to develop space programs, and the larger countries of Europe, […]

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East and West Germany Establish Diplomatic Relations

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

East and West Germany established diplomatic relations in a watershed of the détente era, one symbolizing the acceptance of the post-World War II European order by the two blocs. Summary of Event The Treaty on the Basis of Relations Between the Federal Republic of Germany and the German Democratic Republic, the so-called Basic Treaty, was […]

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“Bloody Sunday” in Northern Ireland

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Northern Ireland’s “Bloody Sunday” erupted when a peaceful demonstration led to a violent confrontation with British troops. Thirteen people, six of whom were minors, were killed. Summary of Event On January 30, 1972, a protest rally organized by the Northern Ireland Civil Rights Association (NICRA) in Londonderry, Northern Ireland, to demand an end to the […]

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U.S. Supreme Court Upholds the Constitutionality of Capital Punishment

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Despite evidence showing that race has a statistical impact on whether or not a jury recommends the death penalty, the U.S. Supreme Court concluded that the existence of statistical disparity did not violate the principles of the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution. Summary of Event In 1978, Warren McCleskey, a thirty-one-year-old African […]

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Iraq Uses Poison Gas Against Kurds

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

During and immediately after the eight-year Iran-Iraq War, Saddam Hussein ordered the destruction of Kurdish villages and towns in Kurdistan. Summary of Event From the time Saddam Hussein became president of the Republic of Iraq in 1979, he seemed bent on eradicating the Kurds in the northern part of his country. With a population of […]

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Waite Is Kidnapped in Lebanon

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

While in Beirut to seek the release of four Western hostages, Terry Waite, the envoy of the archbishop of Canterbury, was kidnapped by the terrorist group Islamic Jihad. He was held in close quarters until November, 1991, when he was released with three of the other hostages. Summary of Event During the twentieth century, Middle […]

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Cann Postulates the African Eve

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

When population geneticist Rebecca L. Cann and her colleagues postulated the existence of an African woman who was the source of all the mitochondrial DNA present in the modern-day human population, their assertions raised controversy and stimulated further study of humankind’s origins. Summary of Event Prior to 1987, molecular biologists had used new technology involving […]

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Tyson Becomes Youngest World Heavyweight Boxing Champion

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Mike Tyson defeated Trevor Berbick to become the youngest world heavyweight boxing champion. Following his defeat of Berbick, Tyson went on to defeat other boxing greats until losing the heavyweight title to James “Buster” Douglas in 1990. Summary of Event Historically, boxing transcended race, ethnicity, and social class. American boxing evolved from competition between slaves […]

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Chissano Succeeds Machel in Mozambique

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

On November 6, 1986, Foreign Minister Joaquim Chissano succeeded to the presidency of Mozambique after Samora Machel was killed in a plane crash. Chissano led the impoverished African nation for nearly two decades, overseeing the end of a devastating civil war and directing the transition to democracy. Summary of Event On the evening of October […]

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Pixar Studios Creates Its First Virtual Studio Film

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The debut of Luxo Jr., a groundbreaking computer-animated short film, paved the way for Pixar Animation Studios to revolutionize the animation industry by showing that it was possible to create realistic and appealing animated characters entirely by computer. Summary of Event In 1983, animator John Lasseter was fired from the animation division of the Walt […]

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Space Probes Begin Examination of Comet Halley

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

When Comet Halley made its fourth predicted return after its orbit was first calculated by Edmond Halley following his observations of the comet in 1682, five space probes—launched by the European Space Agency, the Soviet Union, and Japan—were dispatched to examine it at close range. Summary of Event From the calculations Edmond Halley made in […]

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European Economic Community Adopts the Single European Act

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The Single European Act created a free, internal European market that allowed for free movement of people, goods, labor, and capital in the European Economic Community, which helped to reverse the stagnation and pessimism that had gripped the EEC since 1973. Summary of Event The final acceptance of the Single European Act (SEA) by all […]

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Warren Is Named First Poet Laureate of the United States

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Pulitzer Prize-winning poet and novelist Robert Penn Warren’s appointment as the first official poet laureate of the United States heralded an official change in the title of national poetry consultant, helped distinguish the role of American poet laureate from that of its long-standing British equivalent, and established a legislatively sanctioned guardian of American verse. Summary […]

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Museveni Captures Kampala

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

After years of fighting and nearly a decade of sporadic warfare, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni’s forces seized the Ugandan capital of Kampala, filling the power vacuum that had developed after Idi Amin’s dictatorial regime. Summary of Event The East African state of Uganda had been embroiled in widespread civil unrest for fourteen years leading up to […]

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Portugal and Spain Enter the European Community

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The entry of Spain and Portugal into the European Community (EC) was the culmination of a ten-year candidacy. Leaders in both countries sought EC membership to help speed economic development and continue the process of democratization. Older member states of the EC wanted to ensure that the two nations would participate in the new Europe. […]

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Kamiokande Neutrino Telescope Begins Operation

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The Kamiokande neutrino telescope, the first instrument to determine the direction and time of arrival of neutrinos from space, established that the Sun was the source of most of the neutrinos recorded in earlier detectors, demonstrating that the Sun generates its energy by nuclear fusion. Summary of Event The Kamiokande neutrino telescope was designed to […]

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Microsoft Releases the Windows Operating System

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

With the release of Windows, a multitasking graphical user interface operating system, Microsoft began its move toward becoming the largest and most important software company in history. Summary of Event The story of Microsoft’s Windows operating system begins with two young computer “geeks,” Bill Gates and Paul Allen, who were childhood friends. While still students […]

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Europe Takes the Ryder Cup

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Captained by England’s Tony Jacklin, Europe’s Ryder Cup golf team defeated the team from the United States to win the Ryder Cup for the first time in twenty-eight years. Summary of Event The Ryder Cup was inaugurated in 1927 by Samuel Ryder, a seed merchant, as a biannual tournament between the professional golfers of the […]

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Ballard Discovers the Lost Ship

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

After numerous failed searches, the wreckage of the Titanic was discovered, on September 1, 1985, using a submersible and advanced radar technology. The event marked a milestone in deep-water recovery and a major achievement for deep-sea science and exploration. Summary of Event On April 14, 1912, the RMS Titanic sank on its maiden voyage from […]

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Democracy Returns to Brazil

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

As a result of corrosive economic and political conditions, the military regime in Brazil that had begun in 1964 ended in 1985. Amid a swirl of long-repressed ideological and political currents, the first civilian president since 1964 took office in 1985 through an indirect electoral college process. The following year, a national constituent assembly was […]

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Rise of the Internet and the World Wide Web

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

As low-cost personal computers, software, and network services began to flood the mass market, a revolutionary communications network mushroomed. Summary of Event The Internet is a loose collection of interconnecting commercial and noncommercial computer networks, including online information services, that use standard protocols (or rules) to exchange information. The Internet began as the ARPANET, ARPANET […]

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United States Recognizes Vietnam

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

U.S. diplomatic recognition of Vietnam marked an end to the traumatic and divisive Vietnam War era. Summary of Event On July 11, 1995, President Bill Clinton announced the diplomatic recognition of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam by the United States. Recognition of Vietnam brought to a close a war that officially had ended more than […]

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Bombing of the Oklahoma City Federal Building

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

One of the worst terrorist incidents in U.S. history demonstrated that Americans were vulnerable to attack by rogue ideologues. Summary of Event On April 19, 1995, a truck bomb parked in front of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Office Building in downtown Oklahoma City exploded, shattering the foundation and lower floors of the nine-story concrete […]

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General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The ambitious General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade was designed to facilitate free trade and increase exports worldwide. The agreement led to the creation of the World Trade Organization and contributed to the growing globalization of the international economy. Summary of Event On December 1, 1994, the U.S. Senate joined the House of Representatives in […]

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Republicans Regain Control of Congress

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

A growing conservative constituency elected a Republican majority to both houses of Congress for the first time in forty years. Summary of Event In the fall of 1994, as the midterm congressional elections approached, the U.S. electorate was in volatile mood. People were disillusioned and skeptical about political institutions and political leaders. It seemed to […]

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U.S. Gun Control Legislation Takes Effect

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act established a mandatory five-day waiting period and background check before a handgun can be purchased in the United States. Summary of Event On November 30, 1993, President Bill Clinton signed the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act into law—the first significant federal gun control legislation passed in the United States […]

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Astronauts Repair the Hubble Space Telescope

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

After space shuttle astronauts undertook repairs of the Hubble Space Telescope in Earth orbit, the telescope produced images of unprecedented detail and clarity. Summary of Event One of the earliest envisioned scientific applications of space exploration was the placement of a large telescope beyond the optical distortions imposed by Earth’s atmosphere. The Hubble Space Telescope […]

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North American Free Trade Agreement

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The North American Free Trade Agreement reduced barriers to the flow of goods, services, and investment among Canada, Mexico, and the United States. Summary of Event Approval of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in 1993 was one in a long series of policy actions reflecting a commitment by the United States government to […]

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Campbell Becomes Canada’s First Woman Prime Minister

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

When Kim Campbell succeeded Brian Mulroney as the leader of Canada’s Progressive Conservative Party, she also became the prime minister of Canada, the first woman ever to hold that post. Summary of Event Three individuals served as Canada’s prime minister during 1993, including Kim Campbell, the first woman to hold the office. Born on March […]

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Branch Davidians’ Compound Burns

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

When the Federal Bureau of Investigation carried out a raid on the Branch Davidian religious cult, the action resulted in the deaths of more than eighty persons, led to an investigation of the government agencies involved, and became a rallying point for antigovernment sentiment. Summary of Event On April 19, 1993, more than eighty members […]

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World Trade Center Bombing

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The bombing of the World Trade Center in New York City proved to Americans that the United States is not immune to international terrorism. Summary of Event At 12:17 p.m. on February 26, 1993, a yellow rental van loaded with some twelve hundred pounds of nitrate explosives blew up in the garage of the World […]

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U.S. Congress Guarantees Job Security During Family Emergencies

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

American workers gained greater job security with the passage of the federal Family and Medical Leave Act, which guaranteed adequate leave time for employees in times of family and medical emergency. Summary of Event On February 3, 1993, the U.S. Congress passed the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993, a comprehensive plan to ensure […]

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United States and Russia Reach Nuclear Arms Reduction Agreement

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The United States and Russia commited to deep reductions in their nuclear arsenals and inaugurated a post-Cold War environment of reduced superpower threats with the second treaty to come out of the Strategic Arms Reduction Talks. Summary of Event For decades after the end of World War II, the United States and the Soviet Union […]

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U.S. Marines Enter Somalia

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Under the auspices of the United Nations, U.S. forces entered a nation in anarchy to secure humanitarian operations. Summary of Event President George H. W. Bush announced on December 4, 1992, that U.S. forces would be sent to Somalia to provide security for the provision of emergency humanitarian assistance. This announcement followed months of civil […]

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Clinton Wins the U.S. Presidency

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Bill Clinton promised change and met with intense congressional resistance when he became the first Democrat to capture the White House in a decade. Summary of Event On January 20, 1993, Bill Clinton was sworn in as the forty-second president of the United States. In a three-cornered race, he had won a substantial electoral victory […]

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Defeat of the Charlottetown Accord

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Canada’s constitutional crisis deepened when the electorate rejected an intensely negotiated package of reforms. Summary of Event The 1990 failure of the Meech Lake Accord Meech Lake Accord plunged Canada into a serious constitutional crisis. Political parties saw a great deal of turmoil. A Quebec-based reform party, the Bloc Québécois, Bloc Québécois was formed by […]

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Tailhook Scandal

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Inappropriate behavior during the convention of an organization for naval aviators revealed the hostile environment that existed for women in the U.S. military and resulted in the resignation of the secretary of the Navy. Summary of Event Tailhook, the annual convention for members of the Tailhook Association, Tailhook Association a naval aviators’ organization (named for […]

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Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance Is Established

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance, a labor-activist organization, was formed to address the needs of a growing Asian and Pacific Islander community in the United States. Summary of Event On May 1, 1992, the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA) held its founding convention in Washington, D.C. The gathering drew five hundred Asian American […]

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Los Angeles Riots

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Verdicts of not guilty in the trial of four police officers accused of police brutality revealed the wide gap between African Americans’ and Euro-Americans’ views of the criminal justice system and sparked the worst rioting the city of Los Angeles had experienced up to that time. Summary of Event Before the Rodney King beating on […]

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U.S. Congress Strengthens Equal Opportunity Laws

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

With passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1991, Congress restored equal opportunity law to its status before 1989, the year in which several U.S. Supreme Court decisions weakened two decades of legal precedents. Summary of Event The Civil Rights Act of 1991 has been described as among the most sweeping civil rights laws to […]

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Bush Announces Nuclear Arms Reductions

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Evidencing improved relations between the United States and the Soviet Union, President George H. W. Bush announced plans for the unilateral reduction of U.S. nuclear armaments and level of military readiness. Summary of Event After four decades of Cold War Cold War;conclusion suspicion and periodic confrontations between the United States and the Soviet Union, an […]

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Persian Gulf War

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Kuwait’s sovereignty and Western interests were threatened by Iraqi invasion; allied forces, led by the United States, pushed back the invasion and restored Kuwaiti sovereignty. The peace settlement limited Iraq’s ability to produce weapons of mass destruction and called for U.N. inspections to verify that such weapons were dismantled. No-fly zones were established in Iraq […]

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Bloc Québécois Forms

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

A new political party was created to contest Canadian general elections on the exclusive issue of sovereignty for the province of Quebec. Summary of Event The creation of the Bloc Québécois was a direct result of the constitutional turmoil that gripped Canada in the 1980’s. Canada had adopted a new constitution in 1982, but the […]

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Meech Lake Accord Dies

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

In 1990, Canadian leaders failed in an attempt to reform the Constitution of 1982 by incorporating Quebec. Summary of Event Constitutionally, much unfinished business faced Canada in the 1980’s. The nature of the country’s Senate had not been agreed upon. Fueled by sovereignist impulses, Quebec remained outside the 1982 constitution, and the province’s leaders demanded […]

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Lincoln Savings and Loan Declares Bankruptcy

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Criminal activities in the manipulation of Lincoln Savings and Loan were found to be symptomatic of deeper problems in the thrift industry. Summary of Event Charles Keating, a champion swimmer, antipornography crusader, and attorney who built a financial empire through takeovers and stock sales, acquired control of a Southern California savings and loan (S&L), Lincoln […]

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Oil Spill

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The largest oil spill that had ever occurred in U.S. waters focused attention on the environmental, economic, and political consequences of tanker ship operations. Summary of Event At 12:27 a.m., March 24, 1989, Captain Joseph Hazelwood reported the Exxon Valdez aground on Bligh Reef, twenty-eight miles from Valdez, Alaska, in Prince William Sound. Eight of […]

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Bush Is Elected President

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

After winning the presidential election of 1988, George H. W. Bush continued the conservative agenda inaugurated by Ronald Reagan’s presidency. Summary of Event George H. W. Bush was the first sitting vice president of the United States to win the presidency since Martin Van Buren in 1836. His election to the presidency marked the first […]

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U.S. Law Supports Indian Gaming

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The U.S. Congress undertook to regulate gaming on Indian lands by dividing the forms of gaming into three classes and authorizing compacts between tribes and states. Summary of Event The Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA), signed into law on October 17, 1988, by President George H. W. Bush, represents an amalgamation of ideas presented in […]

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U.S. Congress Mandates Nondiscriminatory Practices by Recipients of Public Funds

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

With the passage of the Civil Rights Restoration Act, the U.S. government obligated the recipients of federal financial assistance to meet nondiscriminatory requirements in all respects, not merely in activity aided by federal funds. Summary of Event Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964[Title […]

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Ontario’s Pay Equity Act

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

With passage of the Pay Equity Act in 1987, employers in the public and private sectors in Canada’s province of Ontario were required to provide equal pay for jobs requiring comparable skill, effort, and responsibility. Summary of Event By the 1960’s, there was clear economic evidence of differential pay for male-dominated and female-dominated jobs in […]

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Iran-Contra Scandal

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

U.S. government officials violated national policy by conducting the secret sale of arms to Iran and diverting the profits to Contra guerrillas who were attempting to overthrow the Nicaraguan government. Summary of Event In November, 1986, secret operations conducted in Iran and Nicaragua by the staff of the U.S. National Security Council National Security Council […]

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Accident

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

After nearly twenty-five years of safe spaceflight, a stunned nation witnessed the explosion of the space shuttle Challenger and the deaths of its crew. Summary of Event On the morning of January 28, 1986, an explosion pierced the unusually crisp winter air above Cape Canaveral and disrupted the most promising technological enterprise then under way […]

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U.S.-Soviet Summit

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The first summit meeting in six years between the leaders of the United States and the Soviet Union prompted a series of important summits that led to arms reductions. Summary of Event U.S.-Soviet relations were deteriorating in the early 1980’s, with President Ronald Reagan overseeing a buildup of the U.S. military and a series of […]

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Mulroney Era Begins in Canada

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

When Brian Mulroney, leader of Canada’s Progressive Conservative Party, assumed the office of prime minister, three decades of Liberal Party control of the Canadian government came to an end. Summary of Event The landslide election victory of the Progressive Conservative Party (PCP) on September 4, 1984, ended decades of political dominance by Canada’s Liberal Party. […]

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United States Invades Grenada

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Fearing that Grenada could become a Soviet-Cuban base, the United States led a late Cold War operation aimed at communist containment. President Ronald Reagan’s decision to invade the small island nation drew criticism from around the world and at home. Summary of Event Relations between Grenada, an independent republic within the British Commonwealth of Nations, […]

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U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Right of Noncitizens to Social Services

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

The U.S. Supreme Court extended the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution to guarantee the right of noncitizens to public social services. Summary of Event In May, 1975, the Texas legislature enacted a law that denied financial support for the public education of the children of undocumented aliens. The state’s […]

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Canada’s Constitution Act

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

Canada assumed control over its own constitution, ushering in an era of intense debate over the division of powers between the federal and provincial governments and a confrontation between advocates of Quebec’s sovereignty and Canadian nationalists. Summary of Event In 1841, English-speaking Upper Canada and French-speaking Lower Canada were joined in a political union, but […]

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