This Day in History

Archived Facts

1991

Somali dictator Mohammed Siad Barre flees Mogadishu as rebels claim control of the capital.

1950

The Indian constitution takes effect, making India the world’s largest democratic republic.

1924

The first Winter Olympic Games are held in Chamonix, France.

1980

The United States announces military equipment sales to China, a response to Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.

1981

Fifty-two hostages held at the U.S. embassy in Tehran, Iran, for 444 days are freed after the United States releases $8 billion in Iranian assets.

1966

Indira Gandhi becomes prime minister and India’s first woman head of government.

1950

Communist China recognizes the Democratic Republic of Vietnam and agrees to provide military support.

1945

Soviet troops liberate Warsaw after more than five years of German occupation.

1966

U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson makes Robert C. Weaver the first African-American cabinet appointee, as head of the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

1943

Soviet troops breach the German siege of Leningrad, which had lasted for over a year.

1972

East Pakistan is formally renamed Bangladesh.

1946

The first General Assembly of the United Nations convenes in London, England.

2005

The Sudanese government and the People’s Liberation Movement sign an agreement ending the twenty-two-year civil war.

1977

Czechoslovak activists publicize the manifesto of Charter 77, a movement dedicated to ending human rights abuses.

1918

Anton Drexler founds the German Workers’ Party, predecessor of the Nazi Party.

1999

Eleven EU nations launch the euro as their new form of currency.

1961

President Dwight D. Eisenhower closes the U.S. embassy in Havana, ending diplomatic relations with Cuba.

2006

Former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein is executed.