Today in History

Published 12:01 am Saturday, August 11, 2018

Today is Saturday, Aug. 11, the 223rd day of 2018. There are 142 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On August 11, 1965, rioting and looting that claimed 34 lives broke out in the predominantly black Watts section of Los Angeles.

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On this date:

In 1909, the steamship SS Arapahoe became the first ship in North America to issue an S.O.S. distress signal, off North Carolina’s Cape Hatteras.

In 1949, President Harry S. Truman nominated General Omar N. Bradley to become the first chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

In 1952, Hussein bin Talal was proclaimed King of Jordan, beginning a reign lasting nearly 47 years.

In 1954, a formal peace took hold in Indochina, ending more than seven years of fighting between the French and Communist Viet Minh.

In 1956, abstract painter Jackson Pollock, 44, died in an automobile accident on Long Island, New York.

In 1964, the Beatles movie “A Hard Day’s Night” had its U.S. premiere in New York.

In 1975, the United States vetoed the proposed admission of North and South Vietnam to the United Nations, following the Security Council’s refusal to consider South Korea’s application.

In 1984, at the Los Angeles Olympics, American runner Mary Decker fell after colliding with South African-born British competitor Zola Budd in the 3,000-meter final; Budd finished seventh.

In 1992, the Mall of America, the nation’s largest shopping-entertainment center, opened in Bloomington, Minnesota.

In 1997, President Bill Clinton made the first use of the historic line-item veto, rejecting three items in spending and tax bills. (However, the U.S. Supreme Court later struck down the veto as unconstitutional.)

In 2003, Charles Taylor resigned as Liberia’s president and went into exile in Nigeria.

In 2014, Academy Award-winning actor and comedian Robin Williams, 63, died in Tiburon, California, a suicide.

Ten years ago: President George W. Bush, back from his Asia tour, warned of a “dramatic and brutal escalation” of violence by Russia in the former Soviet republic of Georgia; he pressed Moscow to accept an immediate cease-fire and to pull back its troops. In Beijing, Michael Phelps got his second gold medal — thanks to a late comeback in the 400-meter freestyle relay by Jason Lezak, who lunged to the wall just ahead of the French anchor.

Five years ago: Israel approved building 1,200 more settlement homes and agreed to release 26 long-held Palestinian security prisoners. Suspected militants gunned down 47 worshippers as they recited their early morning prayers at a mosque in Konduga, Nigeria, and killed another 12 civilians in a nearby village. Jason Dufner won his first major title with a two-stroke victory over Jim Furyk at the PGA Championship.

One year ago: A federal judge ordered Charlottesville, Virginia, to allow a weekend rally of white nationalists and other extremists to take place at its originally-planned location downtown. (Violence erupted at the rally, and a woman was killed when a man plowed his car into a group of counterprotesters.) President Donald Trump unleashed fresh threats against North Korea, warning Kim Jong Un that he “will regret it fast” if he takes any action against U.S. territories or allies. Trump also said he would not rule out military action against Venezuela following a power grab by President Nicolas Maduro. A judge in Denver threw out a lawsuit by a disc jockey who’d been accused by Taylor Swift of groping her during a photo op; David Mueller claimed that Swift and her team got him fired for it. (The jury later awarded Swift $1 after deciding that Mueller had, in fact, groped her.) Two passenger trains collided outside Egypt’s port city of Alexandria, killing 43 people.

Today’s Birthdays: Actress Arlene Dahl is 93. Songwriter-producer Kenny Gamble is 75. Rock musician Jim Kale (Guess Who) is 75. Magazine columnist Marilyn Vos Savant is 72. Country singer John Conlee is 72. Singer Eric Carmen is 69. Computer scientist and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak is 68. Wrestler-actor Hulk Hogan is 65. Singer Joe Jackson is 64. Playwright David Henry Hwang is 61. Actor Miguel A. Nunez Jr. is 59. Actress Viola Davis is 53. Actress Embeth Davidtz is 53. Actor Duane Martin is 53. Actor-host Joe Rogan is 51. Rhythm-and-blues musician Chris Dave is 50. Actress Anna Gunn is 50. Actress Ashley Jensen is 50. Actress Sophie Okonedo is 50. Rock guitarist Charlie Sexton is 50. Hip-hop artist Ali Shaheed Muhammad is 48. Actor Nigel Harman is 45. Actor Will Friedle is 42. Actor Rob Kerkovich is 39. Actress Merritt Wever is 38. Actor Chris Hemsworth is 35. Rock musician Heath Fogg (Alabama Shakes) is 34. Singer J-Boog is 33. Rapper Asher Roth is 33. Actress Alyson Stoner is 25.