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Saturday, June 28

June 20, 2014

Today is Saturday, June 28, the 179th day of 2014. There are 186 days left in the year.

Highlights in history on this date:

1389 - Serb army is defeated by the Turks at Kosovo Polje. Remainder of Serbia is conquered by Turks, who rule for almost 500 years.

1797 - France occupies Ionian Islands of Greece.

1812 - Napoleon Bonaparte’s army crosses Vilna River as Russian forces retreat.

1881 - Immigration Act of New Zealand restricts Japanese immigration.

1895 - Raids are launched from Bulgaria into Macedonia following founding of an external Macedonian revolutionary organization at Sofia.

1914 - Austria’s Archduke Francis Ferdinand and his wife are assassinated at Sarajevo by Gavrilo Princip, Serb revolutionary, igniting World War I.

1919 - Germany and the Allies sign the Treaty of Versailles, formally ending World War I and providing for the creation of the League of Nations

1942 - British 8th Army in North Africa retreats from Germans to El Alamein; German forces launch counterattack against Soviets in Kharkov region.

1948 - Yugoslavia is expelled from Communist group Cominform for hostility to Soviet Union.

1950 - North Korean soldiers capture Seoul, as South Koreans retreat south of Han River.

1956 - Labor riots are put down in Poznan, Poland, with many casualties.

1976 - The Seychelles, an Indian Ocean island group, become independent after 102 years under British rule.

1986 - West European leaders, meeting in the Netherlands, delay indefinitely imposing economic sanctions against South Africa.

1988 - U.S. military attache to Greece is killed by powerful car bomb that blows his armor-plated car off road.

1989 - In Slobodan Milosevic’s shining moment, one million Serbs gather in Kosovo, Yugoslavia, to mark the 600th anniversary of their defeat by the Turks and cheer their nationalist leader.

1991 - Yugoslav army declares a cease-fire after nearly two days of fighting to keep Slovenia from seceding.

1993 - Thousands of illegal Albanian immigrants in Greece are rounded up and sent home in bus convoys as police crack down following Albania’s expulsion of a Greek Orthodox priest.

1994 - Three masked gunmen seize a bus and take about 40 passengers hostage near the southern Russian city of Mineralnye Vody.

1996 - Turkey’s president Suleyman Demirel approves the country’s first Islamic-led government in 73 years.

1997 - Cuban and Argentine forensic experts uncover the remains of legendary guerrilla leader Ernesto “Che” Guevara and five of his companions near the Bolivian town of Vallegrande.

1998 - Slavko Dokmanovic, Serb former mayor of Vukovar, Croatia, hangs himself in his cell while the International War Crimes Tribunal considers a verdict on his role in a massacre of 200 people.

1999 - Computer hackers deface the U.S. Army’s main web site after having hacked into the White House, FBI and U.S. Senate Web sites.

2000 - Seven months after floating adrift in the Florida straits, 6-year-old Elian Gonzalez returns to his native Cuba, bringing to a close a fierce custody battle.

2001 - Yugoslavia hands over former President Slobodan Milosevic to the U.N. war crimes tribunal.

2004 - The United States hands over sovereignty to the Iraqis two days ahead of schedule and seven months before elections are set to take place.

2005 - The European Union and five nations pick France over Japan as the site for an experimental nuclear fusion reactor, opening the way for development of a potential source of clean, inexhaustible energy.

2006 - U.N. member states lift a $950 million (euro756 million) spending cap on the United Nations budget, averting a financial crisis but dealing a blow to U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s reform agenda.

2007 - Israeli President Moshe Katsav agrees to resign in a plea bargain that drops rape allegations and the threat of jail time in return for pleading guilty to lesser charges.

2008 - Zimbabweans deface ballots and boycott the discredited re-election of President Robert Mugabe after an onslaught of state-sponsored violence pushes his main opposition from the race.

2009 - Soldiers oust the democratically elected president of Honduras and Congress names a successor, but Manuel Zalaya, the leftist ally of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, denounces what he calls an illegal coup and vows to stay in power.

2010 - Ten people are arrested in the U.S. for allegedly serving as secret agents of the Russian government with the goal of penetrating U.S. government policymaking circles.

2011 - German and Chinese leaders pledge a big increase in trade between their countries, the biggest economies of Europe and Asia, while China’s premier underlines his support for the eurozone amid its debt crisis.

2012 — Archeologists say pottery fragments found in a south China cave have been confirmed to be 20,000 years old, making them the oldest pottery in the world.

2013 — A senior Vatican cleric, Monsignor Nunzio Scarano, and two others are arrested on suspicion of smuggling 20 million euros into Italy from Switzerland.

Today’s Birthdays:

England’s King Henry VIII (1491-1547); Peter Paul Rubens, Flemish painter (1577-1640); Jean-Jacques Rousseau, French philosopher-author (1712-1778); Luigi Pirandello, Italian dramatist and Nobel laureate (1867-1936); Richard Rodgers, U.S. composer (1902-1979); Mel Brooks, U.S. actor/director (1926--); Pat Morita, U.S. actor (1932-2005); Kathy Bates, actress (1948--); John Cusack, actor (1966--).

Thought For Today:

I don’t know whether war is an interlude during peace, or peace an interlude during war — Georges Clemenceau, French statesman (1841-1929).

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