This Day in History

Archived Facts

1972

In an attempt to control nuclear weapons, the U.S. and the Soviet Union sign the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT) agreements.

1949

West Germany announces independence, diminishing any hope of a possible German unification.

1990

After years of mutual unrest, North and South Yemen agree to merge into the Republic of Yemen with Ali Abdallah Saleh as leader.

1864

The Russian-Circassian War comes to an end, with thousands of Circassians forced into exile.

1956

The arms race continues, as the United States conducts a hydrogen bomb test in the Pacific Ocean.

1950

Egypt closes the Suez Canal to Israeli ships.

1940

Lithuania installs a Communist government leading to anti-Communist movements throughout the country.

1988

After more than eight years in Afghanistan, the Soviet Red Army begins to withdraw.

1948

David Ben-Gurion declares Israel an independent state.

1998

The U.S. places sanctions on India as it initiated two nuclear tests in Pokhran.

1975

The U.S. ship Mayaguez is captured by Cambodian forces under control of the Khmer Rouge.

1955

West Germany joins NATO.

1945

V-E Day marks Nazi Germany’s surrender to Allied forces in World War II.

1954

Vietnamese insurgents overrun French forces at Dien Bien Phu.

1882

President Chester A. Arthur signs the Chinese Exclusion Act into law.

1950

Thailand’s King Rama IX, the world’s longest-serving head of state, is crowned.

1994

Nelson Mandela claims victory in South Africa’s first democratic elections.

1948

The People’s Democratic Republic of Korea (North Korea) is proclaimed.

1975

Saigon, the capital of South Vietnam, is captured, marking the end of the Vietnam War.