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Saturday, May 16

May 8, 2015

Today is Saturday May 16, the 136th day of 2015.There are 229 days left in the year.

Highlights in history on this date:

1532 - Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro lands with a small band of soldiers on the northern coast of Peru.

1596 - Spanish stronghold of La Fere, in what is now northern France, capitulates to French.

1770 - Marie Antoinette, age 14, marries the future king of France, Louis XVI, who is 15.

1866 - U.S. Congress authorizes minting of the nickel.

1871 - British Columbia, a British colony, becomes a province of Canada.

1920 - Joan of Arc is canonized in Rome.

1929 - The first Academy Awards are presented during a banquet at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel.

1932 - Japan’s Premier Tsuyoshi Inukai is assassinated in Tokyo.

1941 - The Icelandic parliament ends treaty with Denmark, proclaims independence.

1961 - Maj. Gen. Park Chung-hee stages a military coup in South Korea and rules until his intelligence chief assassinates him in 1979.

1962 - U.S. Marines begin arriving in Thailand to help counter communist threat from neighboring Laos.

1966 - China’s Cultural Revolution begins when the Communist party’s Politburo approves an edict from Chairman Mao Zedong. An elite corps of young zealous students, the Red Guards, is formed to attack traditional values and bourgeois thinking.

1969 - Soviet spacecraft reaches vicinity of planet Venus and drops capsule that sends back information on planet’s atmosphere.

1975 - Japanese climber Junko Tabei becomes the first woman to reach the summit of Mount Everest.

1979 - Police in El Salvador seal off capital after 10 days of violence by anti-government groups takes 44 lives.

1987 - Leader of military coup in Fiji calls for new constitution to block Indian-dominated government.

1990 - Responding to Soviet pressure, Lithuanian government suspends enforcement of independence laws in that republic.

1991 - France’s first female prime minister, Edith Cresson, takes office.

1992 - A special governing panel fires Azerbaijani President Ayaz Mutalibov, a former communist. Ebulfaz Elcibey later wins elections.

1994 - Scotland Yard for the first time approves a plan to allow some London police officers to openly carry firearms.

1995 - Japanese police arrest doomsday cult leader Shoko Asahara in connection with the nerve-gas attack that killed 12 on Tokyo’s subways two months earlier.

1997 - In the face of rebellion, Zaire’s President Mobutu Sese Seko gives up power after 32 years of autocratic rule.

1999 - Iranian President Mohammad Khatami is greeted with warm embraces and kisses on his historic visit to Saudi Arabia, the first by an Iranian leader in two decades.

2000 - Cuba frees Marta Beatriz, a well-known dissident there, following a United Nations censure for human rights abuses.

2002 - Pakistani police unearth remains of Daniel Pearl, a reporter for the U.S. Wall Street Journal newspaper, who was kidnapped in January and whose execution was recorded on a videotape.

2007 - Estonia’s first and only synagogue opens, six decades after previous houses of worship were destroyed in World War II.

2009 - The ruling Congress Party sweeps to a resounding victory in India’s national elections, defying expectations as it brushes aside the Hindu nationalist opposition and a legion of ambitious smaller parties.

2010 - Iraq’s electoral commission affirms the narrow victory of a Sunni-backed bloc in the March vote after a partial recount undercut the Shiite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s claims of fraud in the tally.

2013 — The first exiles from an Iranian opposition group have moved to Albania from a camp near Baghdad as part of a relocation process, the U.N. says, a step toward defusing an explosive dispute left over from the Iran-Iraq war of the 1980s.

2014 — India’s opposition leader, Narenda Modi, to become next prime minister after the most decisive election victory the country has seen in three decades and sweeping the long-dominant Congress party from power.

Today’s Birthdays:

Maria Agnesi, Italian, first woman to become a known mathematician (1718-1799); Henry Fonda, U.S. actor (1905-1982); H.E. Bates, English author (1905-1974); Woody Herman, U.S. jazz musician (1913-1987); Pierce Brosnan, Irish actor (1953--); Debra Winger, U.S. actress (1955--); Janet Jackson, U.S. pop singer (1966--); Tori Spelling, U.S. actress (1973--).

Thought For Today:

Ideas won’t keep; something must be done about them — Alfred North Whitehead, English philosopher-mathematician (1861-1947).

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