Today in History - April 15
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cApr 15, The Thai new year, Songkran,
is celebrated in mid-April.
(Hem., 3/97, p.27)
1220 Apr 15,
Adolf I, archbishop of Cologne, died.
1250 Apr 15, Pope Innocent III
refused Jews of Cordova, Spain, permission to build a synagogue.
1452 Apr 15, Leonardo da Vinci
(d.1519), Italian painter, sculptor, scientist and visionary, was
born in Vinci near Florence. He apprenticed to the painters
Verrocchio and Antonio Pollaiuolo and was accepted to the Florentine
painters' guild at twenty. Only seventeen surviving paintings can be
attributed to him. These include: “The Last Supper” in Milan, the
“Mona Lisa” and “The Virgin and Child with St. Anne” in the Louvre.
He tried to express his immense knowledge of the world by simply
looking at things. The secret he said was "saper vedere," to know
how to see. His final "Visions of the End of the World" was a
sketchbook in which he tried to depict his sense of the forces of
nature, which in his imagination he conceived of as possessing a
unity that no one had ever seen before. His use of a smoky
atmosphere (sfumato) helped create an impression of lifelikeness.
(V.D.-H.K.p.137)(WSJ, 2/5/97, p.A16)(HN, 4/15/98)
1469 Apr 15, The guru Nanak
(d.1539), 1st guru of Sikhs, was born to Hindu parents in Lahore.
Nanak assimilated tenets of pantheistic Hinduism and monotheistic
Islam and founded Sikhism in the Punjab. He refused to accept the
caste system and the supremacy of the Brahmanical priests and
forbade magic, idolatry and pilgrimages. Brahma is the Hindu god of
creation. Turbaned followers would sport the main of the lion,
Singha or Sikh. The sacred Sikh book, Granth Sahib, was compiled by
the 5th guru, Arjun, in 1605.
(WUD, 1994, p.1326)(Hem., 3/97, p.28)(SFEM,
9/19/99, p.74)(SFC, 9/22/99, p.E1)(WSJ, 10/12/01, p.W17)(MC,
1472 Apr 15, Leon Battista
Alberti (b.1404), Italian humanist, architect (Philodoxis), died. He
wrote the 1st Italian grammar, the 1st theory of painting as an art,
and the treatise “On the Art of Building.” In 1970 Joan Gadol
authored a biography. In 2000 Anthony Grafton authored the biography
“Leon Battista Alberti.”
(WSJ, 11/30/00, p.A20)(MC, 4/15/02)
1493 Apr 15, Columbus met with
King Ferdinand and Isabella in Barcelona.
1594 Apr 15, Flemish painter
Pieter Stevens was appointed royal painter of Rudolf II in Prague.
1632 Apr 15, Swedish and Saxon
army beat Earl Tilly.
1651 Apr 15, Domenico
Gabrielli, composer, was born.
1684 Apr 15, Catherine I,
empress of Russia (1725-1727), was born. [see Feb 24]
(HN, 4/15/98)(MC, 4/15/02)
1688 Apr 15, Johann Friedrich
Fasch, composer, was born.
1689 Apr 15, French king Louis
XIV declared war on Spain.
1715 Apr 15, Uprising of
Yamasse Indians in South Carolina.
1719 Apr 15, In France Madame
de Maintenon (b.1635), the wife of former King Louis XIV, died. In
1930 Maud Cruttwell authored the biography “Madame de Maintenon.” In
2008 Veronica Buckley authored “Madame de Maintenon: The Secret Wife
of Louis XIV.”
p.P10(http://tinyurl.com/32xq5o)(Econ, 7/26/08, p.96)
1729 Apr 15, Johann S. Bach's
"Matthew Passion" premiered in Leipzig.
1738 Apr 15, The bottle opener
1741 Apr 15, Charles Willson
Peale (d.1827), American portrait painter and inventor, was born.
His 2nd teacher was John Singleton Copley.
(SFC, 1/25/97, p.E3)(HN, 4/15/98)
1755 Apr 15, Dr. Samuel
Johnson, English writer, published his “Dictionary of the English
Language,” a selective English dictionary, after 9 years of work.
The 1st edition had 42,773 entries. In 2005 Henry Hitchings authored
“Defining the World,” an account of Johnson’s work.
(WSJ, 9/14/98, p.A30)(HN, 4/15/01)(WSJ, 10/12/05,
1756 Apr 15, Jacques Cassini
(b.1677), French astronomer and cartographer, died.
1764 Apr 15,
Jeanne-Antoinette-Poison LeNormant d'Etoiles, Marquis de Pomador,
1784 Apr 15, The first balloon
flight occurred in Ireland. [see Jun 5, 1783 in France]
1788 Apr 15, Mary Delany
(b.1700), English artist and writer, died. She became known for her
“Flora Delanica,” a collection of 985 botanically accurate portraits
of flowers in bloom. In 2011 Molly Peacock authored “”The Paper
Garden: An Artist Begins Her Life’s work at 72.”
1791 Apr 15, Surveyor General
Andrew Ellicott consecrated the southern tip of the triangular
District of Columbia at Jones Point.
(WSJ, 7/25/00, p.A20)
1800 Apr 15, Sir James Clark
Ross, Scottish explorer, was born. He located the Magnetic North
1812 Apr 15,
Pierre-Etienne-Theodore Rousseau, painter, was born.
1813 Apr 15, U.S. troops under
James Wilkinson sieged the Spanish-held city of Mobile in future
state of Alabama.
1814 Apr 15, John Lothrop
Motley, US historian, author (Rise of Dutch Rep), was born.
1817 Apr 15, The first American
school for the deaf opened in Hartford, Conn.
1820 Apr 15, Evander McNair,
Brig General (Confederate Army), died in 1902, was born.
1832 Apr 15, Wilhelm Busch,
German artist, was born. He created the precursor to the cartoon
1834 Apr 15, The Honore Daumier
painting “Rue Transnonain, le 15 Avril 1834” showed the ghastly
aftermath of a civilian massacre by French government forces.
(WSJ, 5/9/00, p.A24)
1837 Apr 15, Horace Porter
(d.1921), Bvt Brig General (Union Army), was born.
1843 Apr 15, Henry James
(d.1916), US novelist, writer and critic, was born in England. His
older brother was William James, the psychologist and philosopher.
Henry James Sr. in the 1850s dragged his 4 sons and daughter across
Europe in search a “sensual education.” Henry’s first 40 years are
documented by Sheldon M. Novick in "Henry James: The Young Master."
There is also a 5-vol. biography by William Edel. His novels
included "The Princess Casamassima," a work about the folly of
radical politics. "It takes a great deal of history to produce a
little literature." In 2008 Paul Fisher authored “House of Wits: An
Intimate Portrait of the James Family.”
(WSJ, 10/17/96, p.A20)(WSJ, 2/24/97, p.A20)(HN,
4/15/98)(AP, 8/3/98)(WSJ, 6/17/08, p.A21)
1850 Apr 15, The city of San
Francisco was incorporated.
1853 Apr 15, Johann Leopold
Fuchs (67), composer, died.
1854 Apr 15, The immigrant
steamer ship "Powchattan" (Powhattan) struck Brigantine Shoals and
sank off Long Beach, NY. Over 300 people died.
1858 Apr 15, At the Battle of
Azimghur, Mexicans defeated the Spanish loyalists.
1861 Apr 15, Three days after
the attack on Fort Sumter, S.C., President Lincoln declared a state
of insurrection and called out Union troops.
(AP, 4/15/97)(HN, 4/15/98)
1864 Apr 15, General Steele's
Union troops occupied Camden, Arkansas.
1865 Apr 15, President Lincoln
died, several hours after he was shot at Ford’s Theater in
Washington by John Wilkes Booth. Andrew Johnson, Vice-President
under Lincoln, became the 17th President (1865-1869) of the US upon
the assassination. The first Mourning Stamp was issued after his
assassination, a 15-cent black commemorative. In 1999 Allen C.
Guelzo authored "Abraham Lincoln: Redeemer President," an
intellectual biography. In 2002 William Lee Miller authored
"Lincoln’s Virtues: An Ethical Biography." In 2004 Ronald C. White
Jr. authored “The Eloquent President.” In 2005 Doris Kearns Goodwin
authored “Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln.”
In 2006 Douglas L. Wilson authored “Lincoln’s Sword: The Presidency
and the Power of Woods.”
12/29/99, p.A16)(WSJ, 2/8/02, p.W9)(WSJ, 1/20/05, p.D9) (SSFC,
11/27/05, p.M3)(SFC, 11/27/06, p.C2)
1865 Apr 15, Otto von Bismarck
was elevated to earl.
1866 Apr 15, Robert LeRoy
Parker, a.k.a. "Butch Cassidy," was born in Beaver, Utah. [see Apr
1866 Apr 15, William Jackson
(51), composer, died.
1871 Apr 15, 'Wild Bill' Hickok
became the marshal of Abilene, Kansas.
1874 Apr 15, George Harrison
Shull, American botanist, developer of hybrid corn, was born.
1874 Apr 15, Johannes Stark,
Nobel Prize-winning German physicist, was born.
1880 Apr 15, William Gladstone
became Prime Minister of England.
1880 Apr 15, Max Wertheimer,
Czech-born psychologist, was born.
1888 Apr 15, Matthew Arnold
(65), English poet, died.
1889 Apr 15, Thomas Hart Benton
(d.1975), painter, muralist, was born in Missouri.
1889 Apr 15, Asa Philip
Randolph, American labor leader and Civil Rights advocate, was born.
1889 Apr 15, A marshal's posse
killed and captured a group of Sooners, settlers who stole onto the
Public Domain territory in Oklahoma in hopes of claiming it legally,
just nine days before the official start of the land rush.
1889 Apr 15, Rev. Damien de
Veuster (b.1840), Belgian priest who ministered to leprosy patients
in Hawaii, died of leprosy. In 2009 Pope Benedict XVI set his
canonization date for Oct 11, 2009. He was beatified in 1995 after
the Vatican declared that the 1987 recovery of a nun of the Sacred
Hearts of Jesus and Mary was a miracle. Audrey Toguchi recovered
from lung cancer in 1999 after praying to Damien.
1892 Apr 15, General Electric
Co., formed by the merger of the Edison Electric Light Co. and other
firms, was incorporated in New York State.
1895 Apr 15, Josephine Blatt of
the US made a record hip-and-harness lift of 3564 lb.
1896 Apr 15, The first modern
Olympic Games closed in Athens. 164 of the 241 competitors were from
Greece. The remaining represented 13 countries, the largest
international participation of any sporting event up to that time.
(ON, 8/07, p.5)
1898 Apr 15, Bessie Smith,
American blues singer, was born.
1901 Apr 15, The 1st British
motorized burial took place.
1903 Apr 15, Erich Arendt,
writer, was born.
1903 Apr 15, John Williams,
actor (Niles-Family Affair, Dial M for Murder), was born in England.
1904 Apr 15, Arshile Gorky
(d.1948), artist, was born as Vostanig Adoian of Armenian parents in
Eastern Turkey. (The actual year was between 1902 and 1905). He came
to the US in 1920 and assumed a new name in admiration of Russian
writer Maxim Gorky.
1910 Apr 15, In San Francisco
detective Tim Riordan arrested Jolly Trixie, aka Miss Kitty
Plunkett, for allegedly violating the Penal Code. She was accused of
being deformed and exhibiting her deformity in a Fillmore Street
show house. Plunkett said she weighed only 585 pounds as opposed to
the alleged 685 pounds. 2 physicians testified that she was
(SSFC, 4/11/10, DB p.50)
1912 Apr 15, Kim Il Sung, North
Korea's communist founder and leader (1948-1994), was born.
(AP, 7/8/97)(WSJ, 6/26/97, p.A14)(SSFC, 3/17/02,
1912 Apr 15, At 2:20 a.m., two
hours and 40 minutes after impact, the luxury liner RMS Titanic sank
in the North Atlantic Ocean off Newfoundland with the loss of about
1,522 lives. About 1,500  people died. Because there were
lifeboats for only half those on board, only 705 passengers and crew
survived the disaster. Among the survivors was J. Bruce Ismay,
president of the White Star Line, who telegraphed his New York
office, "Deeply regret advise you Titanic sank this morning after
collision with iceberg, resulting in serious loss of life. Full
particulars later." Nearly a third of the passengers died. The
ship’s band played the waltz “Songe d’Automne” as it sank. The
accident killed 1,523  people and 705 survived. By 1996 only 8
were still alive. Nearly 60% of the first-class passengers survived.
There were 214 staff members of the 685 survivors. It was later
discovered that Harland & Wolff, the ship’s builder, had used a
lower quality rivet on the ship that likely contributed to the rapid
sinking. The last night on the ship was described by Rick Archbold
and Dana McCauley in their book: “Last Dinner on the Titanic.” The
steamer Carpathia rescued 705 of the 2,358 people onboard. Prof.
Steven Biel of Brandeis Univ. wrote “A Cultural History of the
Titanic” in 1997.
(AP, 4/15/97)(SFC, 7/5/96, PM, p.16)(SFC,
9/22/96, Par p.25)(WSJ, 4/9/97, p.A1)(SFC, 4/14/97, p.E8)(SFC,
4/19/97, p.A3)(SFEC,12/797, DB p.37)(SFC, 4/15/08, p.A6)
1915 Apr 15, Manuel de Falla's
ballet "El Amor Brujo," premiered in Madrid.
1917 Apr 15, The British
defeated the Germans at the battle of Arras.
1918 Apr 15, Clemenceau
published secret French-Austrian documents.
1919 Apr 15, Jane Arminda
Delano (b.1862), founder of the American Red Cross Nursing Service,
died in France while on a Red Cross mission and was buried there.
She was posthumously awarded the US Distinguished Service Medal, the
1st female recipient. In 1920 She was brought back to the U.S. and
re-interred in Arlington National Cemetery.
1920 Apr 15, A paymaster and
his guard at a shoe factory in Braintree, Massachusetts, were killed
in a robbery. Italian immigrants Sacco and Vanzetti were accused of
(HN, 8/23/98)(WSJ, 8/18/07, p.P8)
1920 Apr 15, Richard von
Weizsacker, baron, president (Germany, 1984-94), was born.
1921 Apr 15, Georgi
Timofeyevich Beregovoi, USSR cosmonaut (Soyuz 3), was born.
1921 Apr 15, The Black Friday
Labour Party strike of mine workers failed.
1922 Apr 15, Neville Mariner,
conductor, was born. [see Apr 15,1924]
1922 Apr 15, Harold Washington,
first black mayor of Chicago (1983-1987), was born.
1922 Apr 15, Wyoming Democratic
Senator John Kendrick introduced a resolution that set in motion one
of the most significant investigations in Senate history. On the
previous day, the Wall Street Journal had reported an unprecedented
secret arrangement in which the Secretary of the Interior, without
competitive bidding, had leased the U.S. naval petroleum reserve at
Wyoming's Teapot Dome to a private oil company. Wisconsin Republican
Senator Robert La Follette arranged for the Senate Committee on
Public Lands to investigate the matter. His suspicions deepened
after someone ransacked his Russell Building office.
1923 Apr 15, American inventor
Lee De Forest (1873-1961 premiered 18 short films made in Phonofilm
at the Rivoli Theater in New York City. Phonofilm recorded sound
directly onto film.
1923 Apr 15, Insulin became
generally available for diabetics.
1924 Apr 15, Neville Mariner,
conductor, was born in Lincoln, England. [see Apr 15,1922]
1925 Apr 15, John Singer
Sargent (b.1856), US portrait painter, died in London.
(WSJ, 8/5/99, p.A16)(
1927 Apr 15, Babe Ruth hit his
1st of 60 HRs of season off A's Howard Ehmke.
1927 Apr 15, Francesco Gaeta
(47), Italian poet (Di Giacomo), died.
1931 Apr 15, Florian Zabach,
violinist (Hot Canary, Club), was born in Chicago.
1932 Apr 15, Eva Figes, British
novelist, was born.
1933 Apr 15, Elizabeth
Montgomery, actress (Samantha/Serena-Bewitched), was born in LA,
1940 Apr 15, Jeffrey Archer,
English novelist and politician (Kane and Abel, Honor Among
Thieves), was born.
1940 Apr 15, French and British
troops landed at Narvik, Norway.
1941 Apr 15, 1st helicopter
flight of 1 hour duration took place at Stratford, Ct.
1942 Apr 15, Kenneth Lay, the
son of a Baptist minister, was born. He grew up in Rush, Missouri,
and in 1986 became the CEO of Texas-based Enron Corp.
(SSFC, 2/3/02, p.A19)
1942 Apr 15, George VI awarded
the George Cross to the citizens of Malta.
1945 Apr 15, President Franklin
D. Roosevelt was buried on the grounds of his Hyde Park home.
1945 Apr 15, Commenting on the
death of American President Franklin Roosevelt in his Order of the
Day, Adolf Hitler proclaimed: “Now that fate has removed from the
earth the greatest war criminal of all time, the turning point of
this war will be decided.”
1945 Apr 15, British and
Canadian troops liberated the Nazi concentration camp at
Bergen-Belsen. It is a village in west Germany about 30 miles north
of Hanover. About 40,000 people were liberated from the camp,
although about 13,000 later died of illness. Overall, about 70,000
people died in Belsen.
(AHD, p.122)(AP, 4/17/05)
1945 Apr 15, The deadly battle
for Berlin began. The Seelow Heights posed the last natural barrier
to Berlin in April 1945 from an advancing Red Army. The rolling
plains and plateaus of the Seelow Heights were only 35 miles from
the German capital and were well defended. The battle, which raged
for a week, was extremely costly to both sides, leaving some 30,000
Red Army soldiers and at least 80,000 Germans killed.
1945 Apr 15, The USS Laffey,
built at Maine's Bath Iron Works in 1943, got its nickname as "The
Ship That Would Not Die" when it was on picket duty off Okinawa.
About 50 Japanese planes attacked and about half got through to the
Laffey. The ship suffered 103 casualties when it was hit by four
bombs and five kamikaze planes. In 2012 it returned to its home at a
maritime museum on Charleston Harbor on the South Carolina coast.
1947 Apr 15, Jackie Robinson,
modern baseball's first black major-league player, broke the color
barrier and made his official debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers on
opening day. The Dodgers defeated the Boston Braves, 5-3.
(AP, 4/15/97)(HN, 4/15/98)
1948 Apr 15, Arabs were
defeated in the first Jewish-Arab battle.
1952 Apr 15, President Harry
Truman signed the official Japanese peace treaty.
1952 Apr 15, The 1st B-52
prototype test flight was made.
1952 Apr 15, Franklin National
Bank issued the 1st bank credit card.
1955 Apr 15, Ray Kroc acquired
the McDonald’s chain of fast food restaurants. He was a food service
equipment salesman who owned the national marketing rights to the
milk-shake mixers used at the chain. He purchased the chain from
Richard (d.1998 at 89) and Maurice McDonald (d.1971) who started the
operation in California in 1948. Kroc built his first restaurant in
Des Plains, Illinois, and later established his world headquarters
and a company museum there.
(WSJ, 5/30/97, p.A1)(HN, 4/15/98)(SFC, 7/15/98,
1957 Apr 15, Saturday mail
delivery was restored after Congress gave the PO $41 million.
1958 Apr 15, In the 10th Emmy
Awards: Gunsmoke, Robert Young and Jane Wyatt won.
1958 Apr 15, The Giants
baseball team of Horace Stoneham, brought from New York to San
Francisco, opened at Seal Stadium against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The Giants won 8-0.
(SFC, 10/8/97, p.A20)(SFEC,12/797, Z1 p.4,5)
1959 Apr 15, Emma Thompson,
actress (Henry V, Howard's End, Oscar-1992), was born in England.
1959 Apr 15, John Foster
Dulles, US Sec. of State, resigned.
1959 Apr 15, Cuban leader Fidel
Castro arrived in Washington, D.C., to begin a goodwill tour of the
(AP, 4/15/97)(HN, 4/15/98)
1960 Apr 15, The Student
Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) organized at Shaw
1961 Apr 15, "Music Man" closed
at Majestic Theater in NYC after 1375 performances.
1961 Apr 15, Anti-Castro Cuban
pilots, under the hire of the US CIA, knocked out part of the Cuban
air force. 54 people were killed in the attacks on 3 military bases
including two airfields and the Antonio Maceo Airport. Two
“defecting” B-26 bombers flew to Miami.
(SFEC, 2/22/98, p.A19)(AH, 4/07, p.18)
1964 Apr 15, Virginia’s
Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel opened top northbound traffic with two
tunnels and four man-made islands. It stretched 20 miles from
Virginia Beach and Norfolk to Virginia’s eastern shore. A parallel
span was added in 1995.
1969 Apr 15, North Korea shot
down a US airplane above the Sea of Japan. All 31 men aboard the
plane were believed dead.
1970 Apr 15, Last Gasp’s first
publication, Slow Death Funnies #1, came out for the first “Earth
Day” (see April 22). Ron Turner founded Last Gasp, a San Francisco
publisher of underground comics and graphic novels.
(SFC, 3/27/10, p.E1)(http://tinyurl.com/ye78lv9)
1971 Apr 15, In the 43rd
Academy Awards "Patton" won for best picture and George C Scott won
best actor for his role as Patton. Glenda Jackson won as best
actress for her role in “Women in Love.” George C. Scott (b.1927)
refused his Oscar nomination for on grounds that actors should not
have to compete against each other. He had refused it before in 1962
for his performance in "The Hustler."
1971 Apr 15, North Vietnamese
troops ambushed a company of Delta Raiders from the 101st Airborne
Division near Fire Support Base Bastogne in Vietnam. The American
troops were on a rescue mission.
1972 Apr 15, Canada’s PM Pierre
Trudeau and President Richard Nixon met in Ottawa to sign the Great
Lakes Water Quality Agreement. The agreement followed measurements
that showed that high concentrations of phosphorus and nitrogen led
to the lakes being choked to death from vegetation and algae.
Methods for quantifying eutrophication had been developed by Swiss
scientist Richard Vollenweider (1922-2007).
(http://tinyurl.com/ygrc3p)(WSJ, 2/3/07, p.A8)
1974 Apr 15, SLA members
including Patty Hearst robbed the Sunset Branch of the Hibernia Bank
in SF of more than $10,000. While fleeing they wounded 2 people
(SFEC, 3/1/98, p.W23)
1975 Apr 15, Karen Ann Quinlan
went into a coma after drinking several gin-and-tonics on top of a
mild tranquilizer. She lived in a coma for over 10 more years. The
New Jersey Supreme Court allowed the removal of the respirator that
assisted her in 1976.
(SFC, 12/12/96, p.C8)
1975 Apr 15, Richard Conte
(b.1910), film actor, died. He appeared in films such as “I'll Cry
Tomorrow” and “The Godfather.”
1975 Apr 15, Egypt’s Pres.
Anwar Sadat chose Hosni Mubarak to serve as vice president.
1976 Apr 15, Gerald L.K. Smith
(b.1898), a leader of the “Share Our Wealth” movement and founder of
the America First Party (1943), died in Arkansas.
1976 Apr 15 In Argentina
Floreal Avellaneda (14), the son of a Communist trade union leader
of Greater Buenos Aires, was kidnapped from his house with his
mother, by an Army contingent looking for his father. On May 14,
1976, Floreal’s corpse was found on the coast of Montevideo,
Uruguay, hands and feet bound and with signs of torture. Iris
Pereyra, the boy’s mother, was released after three years. In 2009
former general Santiago Omar Riveros (86) and 4 others were found
guilty of involvement in the boy’s murder.
1980 Apr 15, The Mariel
boatlift officially began. When it ended on Oct 31, some 207,000
refugees entered the US of which 125,00 were Cubans.
(NG, Oct. 1988, p.
1980 Apr 15, Existentialist
philosopher, novelist and dramatist, Jean-Paul Sartre (b.1905) died
in Paris at the age of 74. His work included "Being and Time" (1927)
and "Nausea" (19238). He won the 1964 Nobel Prize for literature and
his work included "Being and Nothingness." Philosophical replies to
this work were written by Claude Levi-Strauss: "The Raw and the
Cooked," a book that popularized structuralism in France, and by
Michael Foucault: "Words and Things," ("The Order of Things" in the
American edition). "If you're lonely while you’re alone, you’re in
bad company." In 2000 Bernard-Henri Levy authored "Sartre: The
Philosopher of the Twentieth Century."
(SFEC, 4/19/98, BR p.8)(SFEC, 6/21/98, Z1
p.8)(AP, 4/15/99)(Econ, 8/30/03, p.60)
1981 Apr 15, Janet Cooke said
her Pulitzer award 8-year-old heroin addict story was a lie. The
Washington Post relinquished the Pulitzer Prize over the fabricated
1981 Apr 15, Coca-Cola opened
its first bottling plant in China since the country’s Communist
(Econ, 1/25/14, p.9)
1983 Apr 15, The costliest
theft in Israel's history saw 106 timepieces worth millions of
dollars disappear from the L.A. Mayer Museum for Islamic Art. Among
them was a pocket watch made for French queen Marie Antoinette that
museum officials valued at more than $30 million. In 2008 detectives
blamed Naaman Diller, a notorious Israeli thief, who fled to Europe
and died in the United States in 2004. Diller apparently confessed
the crime to his wife on his deathbed. When Israeli police and
American law enforcement officials arrived at Diller's wife's Los
Angeles home to question her, they found some more of the stolen
clocks. Others were later found in hidden locations in Israel and
around the world. They were put up for display again in 2009.
(AP, 11/4/08)(AP, 7/20/09)
1983 Apr 15, Tokyo Disneyland
1984 Apr 15, William Empson
(b.1926), English literary critic and poet, died. His 1950 book,
“Seven Types of Ambiguity,” changed literary criticism. In 2005 John
Haffenden authored “William Empson: Volume I, Among the Mandarins.”
In 2006 Haffenden completed Vol II, “William Empson: Against the
1986 Apr 15, The United States
launched an air raid with F-111 warplanes against Libya in response
to the bombing of a discotheque in Berlin on April 5; Libya said 41
people, mostly civilians, were killed in Tripoli and Benghazi. The
step-daughter of Moammar Gadhafi, Hana, was reportedly among those
killed near Tripoli by the US bombing. In 2011 evidence emerged that
Hana was not killed and completed medical school 2010.
(WSJ, 8/30/00, p.A1)(AP, 12/19/08)(AP,
1986 Apr 15, Jean Genet (75),
French playwright (Lesson Negres), was found dead in Paris.
1987 Apr 15, Alfred Uhry's
"Driving Miss Daisy," premiered in NYC.
1987 Apr 15, A jury in
Northampton, Mass., found Amy Carter, Abbie Hoffman and 13 other
protesters innocent of charges stemming from a demonstration against
CIA recruiters at the University of Massachusetts.
1988 Apr 15, Former White House
spokesman Larry Speakes resigned from Merrill Lynch and Co. less
than a week after disclosing that he had, on two occasions,
fabricated quotations attributed to President Reagan.
1988 May 15, The Soviet Union
began the process of withdrawing its troops from Afghanistan, more
than eight years after Soviet forces had entered the country.
(AP, 5/15/98)(HN, 5/15/98)
1989 Apr 15, In Sheffield,
England, 96 people died in a crush of soccer fans at Hillsborough
Stadium after police allowed spectators to pour onto a crowded
terrace. On Sep 12, 2012, secret documents were released that said
British police tried to blame soccer fans to cover up mistakes that
contributed to the deaths of those who were crushed at a stadium.
(AP, 4/15/08)(Econ, 4/18/09, p.61)(AP, 9/12/12)
1989 Apr 15, In China Hu
Yaobang, former party chief, died. Thousands of students in Shanghai
and Beijing took to the streets to mourn his death. The protests
culminated in the June 5 Tiananmen Square massacre.
(SFC, 2/20/96, p.A4)(AP,
1990 Apr 15, Actress Greta
Garbo died in New York City at age 84. In 1997 Karen Swenson
authored “Greta Garbo: A Life Apart.” In 2000 the Rosenbach Museum
in Philadelphia opened 55 letters written by Garbo to her lesbian
friend Mercedes de Acosta (d.1968) between 1931-1959. Acosta was a
Spanish aristocrat turned Hollywood screenwriter.
(AP, 4/15/97)(SFEC, 4/16/00, p.A5)
1991 Apr 15, Turkey began
moving thousands of Iraqi Kurds from a border settlement to camps
farther inside Turkey, in a major policy shift for President Turgut
Ozal’s government, which had previously kept the refugees in the
1992 Apr 15, Hotel magnate
Leona Helmsley began serving a prison sentence for tax evasion. She
was released from prison after 18 months.
1992 Apr 15, A US court threw
out Apple's lawsuit against Microsoft.
1992 Apr 15, On April 15-16 the
Mujahedeen overthrew the Communist government led by Pres.
Najibullah in Kabul. The Mujahideen took Kabul and liberated
Afghanistan, Najibullah was protected by the UN. The Mujahideen
formed an Islamic State, Islamic Jihad Council, and scheduled
(SFC, 9/23/96, A9)(SFC, 9/27/96,
1992 Apr 15, Countries barred
Libyan jets from their airspace and ordered diplomats to go home
because of Libya's refusal to turn over suspects in the bombing of
Pan Am Flight 103. U.N. Security Council imposed sanctions on arms
sales and air travel against Libya to prod Gadhafi into surrendering
two suspects wanted in the Pan Am 103.
(AP, 4/15/97)(AP, 12/19/03)
1992 Apr 15, Russia's deeply
divided Congress of People's Deputies formally endorsed President
Boris Yeltsin's economic reforms.
1992 Apr 15, Vietnam adopted a
new constitution. It was updated in 2001.
1993 Apr 15, The Group of Seven
nations unveiled a $28.4 billion aid package for Russia at the
conclusion of an emergency two-day meeting in Tokyo.
1993 Apr 15, Leslie Charteris
(85), British mystery writer (Saint), died.
1994 Apr 15, Ministers from 109
countries signed a 26,000-page world trade agreement known as the
"Uruguay Round" accords in Marrakesh, Morocco. The TRIPS agreement
(Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights), negotiated
in the 1986-1994 Uruguay Round of the WTO, enabled governments to
allow generic drugmakers to produce patented medicines.
1994 Apr 15, Valerie
Niyitegeka, a Tutsi woman whose family farmed near Mount Nyakizu,
fled with her husband, Appolloni and their six children as mobs of
Hutu men burned Tutsi houses. The father and children were soon
killed. In 2011 she testified in Kansas, USA, against Lazare
Kobagaya as the US government sought to revoke his US citizenship
for allegedly lying to immigration authorities about his involvement
in the Rwanda genocide. A US federal jury found Kobagaya lied on
immigration forms and deadlocked on his involvement in the genocide.
In August, 2011, charges against Kobagaya (84) were dismissed after
the government failed to prove he took part in the atrocities.
(AP, 5/6/11)(SFC, 6/1/11, p.A8)(SFC, 8/26/11,
1995 Apr 15, In his weekly
radio address, President Clinton asked Congress to protect a short
list of key legislation, saying he was giving the highest priority
to welfare reform, targeted tax cuts and a crime bill preserving the
assault weapons ban.
1996 Apr 15, President Clinton
began a weeklong, round-the-world trip, heading for a three-day
visit to Japan after a brief stopover in Cheju, South Korea.
1996 Apr 15, Funeral services
were held in Pescadero, Calif., for Jessica Dubroff, the 7-year-old
girl who died trying to become the youngest person to fly across
1996 Apr 15, Stavros Spyros
Niarchos (86), Greek ship owner, died.
1996 Apr 15, Tens of thousands
of striking Venezuelan teachers defied a government order to go back
to their classrooms. The month-old stoppage has kept more than 6
million children out of school.
(SFC, 4/15/96, p.A-9)
1997 Apr 15, Jackie Robinson's
number 42 was retired 50 years after he became the first black
player in major league baseball.
1997 Apr 15, The Justice
Department inspector general reported that FBI crime lab agents
produced flawed scientific work or inaccurate testimony in major
cases such as the Oklahoma City bombing.
1997 Apr 15, The US military
said it would allow American Indian soldiers to use peyote in their
(SFC, 4/16/97, p.A3)
1997 Apr 15, In Bosnia the
joint presidency agreed on a new currency, a coupon with a value
equal to one German mark, or about 57 cents.
(SFC, 4/16/97, p.A12)
1997 Apr 15, China blocked a UN
resolution criticizing its human-rights record for the 7th year in a
(WSJ, 4/16/97, p.A1)
1997 Apr 15, In Saudi Arabia at
least 343 Muslim pilgrims died in a fire on a plain outside the holy
city of Mecca and injured 1290. The fires stemmed from cooking gas
canisters. Aid workers and diplomats said the death toll was at
(SFC, 4/16/97, p.A1)(WSJ, 4/16/97, p.A1)(WSJ,
4/17/97, p.A1)(AP, 4/15/98)(AP, 2/1/04)
1998 Apr 15, Pres. Clinton
traveled to Chile for a Latin American trade summit.
(WSJ, 4/14/98, p.A1)
1998 Apr 15, The federal
government accused A. Bruce Rozet and his business partners of
illegally siphoning off $7.5 million from 73 subsidized housing
projects across the nation. HUD had already sued Rozet for milking
17 projects in California and Nevada.
(SFC, 4/16/98, p.A3)
1998 Apr 15, In SF a superior
Court judge ordered the immediate closure of the Cannabis
Cultivator’s Club, the nation’s largest dispenser of medicinal pot.
(SFC, 4/16/98, p.A1)
1998 Apr 15, Brazil lowered its
prime rate from 28% to 23.3%.
(WSJ, 4/17/98, p.A10)
1998 Apr 15, Pol Pot (73) died
of a heart attack in Anlong Veng, northern Cambodia. His body was
cremated. It was later reported that he killed himself with malaria
pills and tranquilizers after learning that an aide planned to hand
him over to the US. In 1999 it was reported that Ta Mok had Pol Pot
executed. In 2001 the place of his death was designated as a
historic site and plans were made to make it a tourist attraction.
In 2004 Philip Short and John Murray authored “Pol Pot: The History
of a Nightmare.”
(SFC, 4/16/98, p.A1)(SFC, 4/18/98, p.A8)(WSJ,
1/21/98, p.A1)(WSJ, 5/27/99, p.A1)(SFC, 12/21/01, p.H5)(Econ,
1998 Apr 15, In Indonesia
anti-government rallies were held on at least 25 campuses around the
country calling for the resignation of Suharto and his Cabinet.
(SFC, 4/16/98, p.A14)
1998 Apr 15, In Nepal Girija
Prasad Koirala began his 2nd term as prime minister. He succeeded
Krishna Prasad Bhattarai.
1998 Apr 15, In Somalia ten aid
workers were kidnapped in Mogadishu.
(WSJ, 4/16/98, p.A1)
1999 Apr 15, Erotica USA, a
pornography trade show, opened a 4-day exhibit at the Javits Center
(SFC, 4/16/99, p.A3)
1999 Apr 15, It was reported
that astronomers, using the Hubble Space Telescope, detected a 13
Billion year-old galaxy, dubbed "Sharon." It was the oldest and most
distant object yet detected.
(SFC, 4/15/99, p.A7)
1999 Apr 15, Astronomers
announced that 3 planets had been detected orbiting the star Upsilon
Andromedae some 44 light-years away.
(SFC, 4/16/99, p.A1,19)
1999 Apr 15, The US Pentagon
planned to ask for 30,000 reservists and National Guard members for
NATO support. Pres. Clinton was expected to ask for $5.9 billion in
emergency spending to cover US costs in the Kosovo operation.
(SFC, 4/16/99, p.A16)
1999 Apr 15, In Salt Lake City,
Utah, Sergei Babarin (70) entered the Mormon Church's Family History
Library and opened fire. He killed 2 people, Patricia Frengs of
Pleasant Hill, Ca. and security guard Donald Thomas (62). He wounded
4 others and was shot dead by police.
(SFC, 4/16/99, p.A3)(SFC, 4/17/99, p.A2)
1999 Apr 15, Algeria held
elections. Abdelaziz Bouteflika was left alone in the race after 6
competitors withdrew over allegations that the vote was rigged. A
60% turnout was reported. Bouteflika said he would turn down the
post without a massive turnout and a large majority support.
(SFC, 2/13/99, p.A5)(SFC, 4/16/99, p.A18)
1999 Apr 15, Austria began
accepting refugees from Kosovo as the Austrian Army and Red Cross
built a camp for 5,000 refugees in Shkoder, Albania.
(SFC, 4/27/99, p.A8)
1999 Apr 15, In Colombia rebels
released 3 more hostages as army units fought to free the remaining
32 captured in the hijacking of an Avianca plane.
(WSJ, 4/16/99, p.A1)
1999 Apr 15, In Israel Arieh
Deri, leader of the ultra-Orthodox Shas party, was sentenced to 4
years in prison for taking bribes.
(SFC, 4/16/99, p.A18)
1999 Apr 15, A South Korean Air
cargo MD-11 crashed after takeoff from Shanghai and at least 5
people were killed. Explosives were suspect in the crash.
(WSJ, 4/16/99, p.A1)
1999 Apr 15, NATO bombed TV
transmitters, military installations and bridges throughout
Yugoslavia. Military targets in Montenegro were struck as was the
city of Subotica, near the Hungarian border.
(SFC, 4/16/99, p.A19)
1999 Apr 15, In Pakistan a
court convicted Benazir Bhutto in absentia of corruption and
sentenced her to 5 years in prison.
(SFC, 4/16/99, p.A18)
2000 Apr 15, Rem Koolhaas (56),
Dutch architect, won the annual $100,000 Pritzker Architecture
(SFEC, 4/16/00, p.A4)
2000 Apr 15, In California
Pres. Clinton created Giant Sequoia National Monument in Sequoia
National Park. It protected 328,000 acres and 34 groves of Sequoias
from timber harvest within 2 ½ years.
(SFEC, 4/16/00, p.C7)
2000 Apr 15, The world’s
leading financial officials, meeting in Washington, pledged
cooperation to promote global prosperity as anti-globalization
protesters gathered. An estimated 600 people were arrested in
Washington DC prior to the meeting of the IMF and World Bank.
(SFEC, 4/16/00, p.A1)(AP, 4/15/01)
2000 Apr 15, Cal Ripken of the
Baltimore Orioles became the 24th player to reach three-thousand
hits when he lined a clean single to center off Twins reliever
Hector Carrasco. The Orioles won the game, 6-to-4.
2000 Apr 15, Wellesley Women’s
College in Massachusetts received a $25 million gift from Lulu Wang
and her husband Anthony.
(SFEC, 4/16/00, p.A17)
2000 Apr 15, The Int’l. Whaling
Commission turned down a requests from Japan and Norway to allow
expanded limited whaling. 2000 delegates were gathered in Nairobi,
Kenya, for a 10 day UN Convention on Int’l. Trade in Endangered
(SFEC, 4/16/00, p.A22)
2000 Apr 15, In Zimbabwe David
Stevens, a white farmer, was abducted and killed by squatters near
Macheke. 4 neighbors who went to help him were missing.
(SFEC, 4/16/00, p.C22)
2001 Apr 15, Joey Ramone, punk
rock icon, died of cancer in NYC at age 49. The Ramones punk rock
group released their 1st album "Ramones" in 1976. Joey Ramone’s
"Don’t Worry About Me" album was released in 2002. Ramone was born
in 1951 as Jeffrey Hyman.
(AP, 4/15/02)(SFC, 4/17/01, p.C2)(WSJ, 2/22/02,
p.W7)(NW, 12/31/01, p.111)
2001 cApr 15, Australia
indicated that it would not ratify the Kyoto treaty to reduce
carbon-dioxide emissions and said the treaty is probably defunct now
that the US has repudiated it.
(WSJ, 4/16/01, p.A1)
2001 Apr 15, Benin authorities
sought Staneslas Abatan and 2 collaborators believed to be
responsible for the child slave ship off the coast of the Gulf of
Guinea. It was reported that human cargo had been shipped from Benin
to Gabon on the ship MV Etireno over the past 5 years. The Etireno
was later reported to have been confused with another ship, which
was missing. The slave ship was later held to be a false alarm. 30
of the children on the ferry remained unclaimed after 3 days at
(SFC, 4/16/01, p.A8)(SFC, 4/17/01, p.A10)(SFC,
4/18/01, p.A13)(SFC, 4/21/01, p.A16)
2001 Apr 15, In Brazil a prison
takeover in Cuiaba ended when inmates killed 6 leaders of the
rebellion after they took visitors hostage.
(WSJ, 4/16/01, p.A1)
2001 Apr 15, In China police
opened fire on villagers who opposed high local taxes and fees in
Yuntang. 2 were killed and at least 18 wounded.
(SFC, 4/20/01, p.A16)
2001 cApr 15, In Colombia 32
peasant bodies were pulled from a fresh shallow grave and a
right-wing death squad was accused of the killing.
(WSJ, 4/16/01, p.A1)
2001 Apr 15, Rebels in Congo
backed by Rwanda blocked the deployment of UN peacekeepers in Goma
and demanded that the UN first condemn atrocities by Congo.
(WSJ, 4/16/01, p.A1)
2001 Apr 15, U.N. investigators
arrested Bosnian Serb army officer Dragan Obrenovic in connection
with the Serbian Army's slaughter of as many as 7,000 Muslim men and
boys. Obrenovic later pleaded guilty to five war crimes charges and
testified against his one-time superior officers; he was sentenced
to 17 years in prison..
2002 Apr 15, The Boston
Marathon was won by Rodgers Rop of Kenya for the men, 2:09:02, and
Margaret Okayo of Kenya for the women, 2:20:43.
(WSJ, 4/16/02, p.A1)
2002 Apr 15, In Washington DC
thousands of Jews and supporters of Israel gathered for a “National
(SFC, 4/16/02, p.A1)
2002 Apr 15, The FDA approved
Botox to smooth the appearance of wrinkles.
(SFC, 4/16/02, p.A3)
2002 Apr 15, Damon Knight (79),
science fiction writer and editor, died in Eugene. His work included
“The Futurians” (1977), a memoir of a group of budding writers that
included Asimov, Wollheim, Pohl and himself. His 1950 story “To
Serve Man” was made into a Twilight Zone episode in 1962.
(SFC, 4/19/02, p.A27)
2002 Apr 15, Byron R. White
(b.1917), former Supreme Court Justice (1962-1993), died in Denver.
(SFC, 4/16/02, p.A1)
2002 Apr 15, Four American
soldiers were killed in Afghanistan while disarming a rocket.
(SFC, 4/16/02, p.A8)
2002 Apr 15, Israeli forces in
Ramallah seized Marwan Barghouti, a top Arafat lieutenant and
alleged leader of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades. Two Palestinians
were killed in fighting near Bethlehem and 2 of some 200
Palestinians surrendered at the Church of the Nativity Israeli
forces played high-decibel sounds around the clock.
(SFC, 4/16/02, p.A1,10)
2002 Apr 15, Pope John Paul II
summoned all US cardinals to the Vatican to discuss clerical sex
abuse scandals in the US.
(SFC, 4/16/02, p.A1)
2002 Apr 15, In Ukraine
evidence was made public that Pres. Kuchma in 2000 authorized the
sale of an advanced $100 million radar system to Iraq in violation
of UN sanctions.
(SFC, 4/16/02, p.A7)
2003 Apr 15, Umpire Laz Diaz
was attacked by a fan during a game between the Kansas City Royals
and Chicago White Sox; the fan, Eric Dybas, was later sentenced to
six months in jail and 30 months probation.
2003 Apr 15, US and Canadian
officials announced the disruption of a major methamphetamine supply
system. An 18-month investigation netted 67 arrests.
(WSJ, 4/16/03, p.A1)
2003 Apr 15, Theodore Weiss
(b.1916), poet and teacher at Princeton, died. He and his wife had
edited the Quarterly Review of Literature for nearly 60 years.
(SFC, 4/21/03, p.B5)
2003 Apr 15, In Chechnya 16
people, mostly female construction workers, were killed last week in
a bus explosion. The incident was not reported until Apr 21.
2003 Apr 15, Finnish lawmakers
appointed Anneli Jaatteenmaki the country's first female prime
minister, making Finland the only state in Europe with women as
president and premier.
2003 Apr 15, US forces about
this time cut off oil flow from Iraq to Syria. Oil flow had reached
130,000 barrels a day providing both countries over $10 million a
month in profits.
(SFC, 4/11/03, p.A18)
2003 Apr 15, In the 28th day of
Operation Iraqi Freedom selected Iraqi leaders met with retired US
Lt. Gen. Jay Garner to shape a new government with 13 goals, the 1st
being "Iraq must be democratic." Secretary of State Colin Powell
said the United States has no plans to go to war with Syria. Looters
and arsonists ransacked and gutted Iraq's National Library and the
principal Islamic library. Marines came under fire while seizing an
airstrip on the outskirts of Tikrit. 7 Iraqis died when American
troops opened fire to keep an angry crowd from storming a government
complex in Mosul. US troops in Baghdad arrested Abul Abbas, head of
the Palestinian terrorist group that attacked the Italian cruise
ship Achille Lauro in 1985.
(AP, 4/15/03)(SFC, 4/16/03, p.A1, A16)(AP,
4/15/04)(SSFC, 5/4/03, p.C3)
2003 Apr 15, US forces signed a
cease-fire agreement with the People's Mujahedeen (Mujahedeen
Khalq), a designated terrorist organization. The Iranian group had
an estimated 10,000 members and was led by a woman.
(SFC, 4/29/03, A10)
2003 Apr 15,
Israeli-Palestinian clashes in Gaza and the West Bank left 6 people
(SFC, 4/16/03, p.A7)
2003 Apr 15, In the
Netherlands, Volkert van der Graaf, the killer of politician Pim
Fortuyn, was sentenced to 18 years in prison.
2003 Apr 15, Slovakia Pres.
Rudolf Schuster signed an accession document committing Slovakia to
joining NATO, the next-to-last step on the long road to membership
in the military alliance.
2004 Apr 15, In the finale to
the first edition of the NBC reality show "The Apprentice," an
estimated 27.6 million viewers tuned in to watch. Donald Trump
"hired" Bill Rancic over Kwame Jackson during a segment that was
2004 Apr 15, The Pentagon told
20,000 US soldiers in Iraq that their tours would be extended.
(WSJ, 4/16/04, p.A1)
2004 Apr 15, The US EPA warned
California and a 30 other states to clean up smog-plagued regions.
474 counties fell short of standards including 36 in California.
(SFC, 4/16/04, p.A1)
2004 Apr 15, Several Los
Angeles porn-movie companies said they would stop production for 2
months following reports that 2 stars, including veteran performer
Darren James, had recently tested positive for AIDS.
(SFC, 4/16/04, p.A2)(Econ, 4/24/04, p.66)
2004 Apr 15, The United States
pledged $400 million to support a U.N. plan for reunifying Cyprus,
but stressed no money would come unless voters on the divided island
approve the settlement in a referendum next week.
2004 Apr 15, Thomas Corbally
(b.1921), man of mystery, died. He became known as part of the 1963
British Profumo scandal. An FBI report declassified in 1987
characterized him as an American businessman who ran sex orgies in
his London flat."
(SFC, 4/27/04, p.B7)
2004 Apr 15, Colombian police
seized dozens of estates and homes belonging to reputed drug kingpin
2004 Apr 15, A man identifying
himself as Osama bin Laden offered a "truce" to European countries
that do not attack Muslims, saying it would begin when their
soldiers leave Islamic nations, according to a recording broadcast
on Arab satellite networks.
2004 Apr 15, Tim Berners-Lee,
inventor of the world wide web, became the 1st recipient of
Finland’s Millennium Technology Prize.
2004 Apr 15, In Hungary
government leaders and the Israeli president inaugurated this
country's first Holocaust museum in memory of Hungary's 600,000
2004 Apr 15, In Iraq 3 Japanese
hostages who had been threatened with death unless Tokyo withdrew
its troops from Iraq were released.
2004 Apr 15, A U.S. businessman
was abducted from his hotel in the southern city of Basra by
kidnappers disguised as policemen.
2004 Apr 15, Gunmen killed a
high-ranking Iranian diplomat in Baghdad.
2004 Apr 15, Branko
Crvenkovski, Macedonia's PM, took the lead in elections to replace
the president who died in a plane crash, but he didn't get enough
votes to avoid a runoff.
2004 Apr 15, In western Mexico,
an explosion tore through a small fireworks store in Tonala, killing
seven people including a small child.
2004 Apr 15, The liberal Uri
Party loyal to South Korea's impeached president Roh Moo Hyun, won
the most seats in parliamentary elections.
(AP, 4/15/04)(SFC, 4/16/04, p.A3)
2005 Apr 15, The DJIA dropped
191 to close at 10,087, the worst close since May 19, 2003.
(SFC, 4/16/05, p.A1)
2005 Apr 15, It was reported
that paleontologists have identified a new dinosaur species, an
early relative of Tyrannosaurus rex that probably roamed what is now
the Southeastern US about 77 million years ago. The scientists made
the identification from hundreds of fossilized fragments collected
mostly in Montgomery County, Ala., and southwestern Georgia. They
named the new dinosaur Appalachiosaurus montgomeriensis, which means
"the Appalachian lizard from Montgomery County." The 25-foot-long
creature roamed the earth 10 million years before T. rex and was
smaller and more primitive, with a narrower snout.
2005 Apr 15, Belize
Telecommunications Limited (BTL) suffered an apparent act of
sabotage which left the entire country without any phone, Internet
or fax services. Unfortunately, BTL was unable to restore its
services for the entire weekend, leaving Belize completely stranded.
2005 Apr 15, Administrators for
Britain’s MG Rover Group said they intend to break up the company,
laying off 5,000 workers, in a bid to find buyers for different
units after the Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp. made clear it was
not interested in a joint venture.
2005 Apr 15, Ecuador’s Pres.
Lucio Gutierrez declared a state of emergency in Quito and dissolved
the Supreme Court, saying the unpopular judges were the cause of
three days of pot-banging street protests.
2005 Apr 15, In France a fire
swept through a Paris hotel used by the city to house needy African
families. 24 people were killed, half of them children.
(AP, 4/16/05)(AP, 4/15/06)
2005 Apr 15, Sunni militants
seized a 35-50 Shiite hostages in the central Iraqi town of Madain
and threatened to kill them unless all Shiites leave.
2005 Apr 15, Italy’s government
teetered near collapse after 2 coalition parties said they would
withdraw from PM Berlusconi’s government.
(SFC, 4/16/05, p.A7)
2005 Apr 15, Communist rebels
in southern Nepal dragged at least 10 males from their homes,
including a 14-year-old boy, and gunned them down for refusing to
take up arms with the guerrilla movement.
2005 Apr 15, Police in Peru
seized more than a ton of cocaine destined for the US as it was
being packed into a shipment of canned fish at the Colra Fish
Factory in Tacna.
2005 Apr 15, Peruvian
authorities said 3 poachers have been charged with killing 7 people
during a five-year crime spree in which they allegedly slaughtered
2,500 vicuna, a protected Andean animal prized for its wool.
2005 Apr 15, A Russian Soyuz-FG
rocket lifted off at Baikonur, Kazakhstan, carrying 3 men to the
int’l. space station.
(SFC, 4/15/05, p.A3)
2005 Apr 15, In Sri Lanka at
least five renegade Tamil Tiger rebels were killed in a fresh bout
of violence in the restive northeast.
2005 Apr 15, Turkish troops
backed by attack helicopters killed 21 Kurdish rebels near the Iraqi
border overnight in the biggest clash since the rebels declared a
unilateral truce more than five years ago. 3 Turkish soldiers and a
village guardsman also were killed in the clash 25 miles from the
Iraq border between the town of Pervari in Siirt province and Eruh
in Sirnak province.
2006 Apr 15, Stanford Univ.
said it will use a $3.3 million gift from the Malone Family
Foundation of Englewood, Colo., to offer an online high school for
(SSFC, 4/16/06, p.B2)
2006 Apr 15, In Redwood City,
Ca., 3 men were shot and killed at the Headquarters Bar.
(SFC, 4/16/06, p.B1)
2006 Apr 15, In Oakland, Ca.,
Renardo Williams was shot in the chest. Police presented Williams
with a picture of Ronald Ross and Williams identified Ross as the
shooter. Williams and the son of the real shooter, Steven Embrey
Sr., later recanted their story. In 2013 Ross (51) was freed from
after nearly 7 years behind bars. In 2014 Ross filed a $32 million
civil rights lawsuit against Oakland.
(SFC, 2/23/13, p.C1)(SSFC, 2/23/14, p.C4)
2006 Apr 15, Taliban fighters
simultaneously attacked two police checkpoints on a southern Afghan
highway, and up to 14 militants were killed or wounded in the
ensuing gunbattle. Suspected Taliban attacked coalition and Afghan
army troops with small arms and rocket-propelled grenades in central
Uruzgan province, sparking a gunbattle that killed three attackers.
Suspected Taliban shot and killed a district administrator in
Helmand province. US-led coalition forces using warplanes and
artillery clashed with a small band of militants holed up in a house
and a cave complex in Kunar province in fighting that killed seven
Afghan civilians and wounded three. The US airstrike aimed at
militants in eastern Kunar province mistakenly killed seven
(AP, 4/16/06)(AP, 4/15/07)
2006 Apr 15, Bangladesh said it
will vaccinate about 18 million children aged 5 and under to combat
polio, which recently re-emerged after authorities believed it had
been eradicated five years ago.
2006 Apr 15, Cambodian soldiers
departed to Sudan for a UN-backed landmine clearing operation,
saying they hoped they could use their experience recovering from
civil war to help the war-torn Sudanese.
2006 Apr 15, Chad threatened to
cut off its flow of oil unless the World Bank releases $125 million
frozen in a dispute over how the central African country should
spend its oil revenues.
2006 Apr 15, In southern
Chechnya rebels killed two Russian soldiers and wounded five others
in an ambush.
2006 Apr 15, China announced
tariff cuts on imports of fruit and fish from Taiwan, offering the
self-ruled island new trade concessions in an effort to boost
sentiment for uniting with the communist mainland.
2006 Apr 15, China reported
that the orbiting capsule of its Shenzhou VI spacecraft, which was
launched into space six months ago, has returned to earth after
orbiting 2,920 times.
2006 Apr 15, Shiite politicians
suggested a formula for replacing their nominee for prime minister
to break the deadlock over Iraq's new unity government. At least 12
Iraqis died in a car bombing near a Baghdad restaurant and other
attacks. 4 US Marines were killed in combat in western Anbar
(AP, 4/15/06)(AP, 4/16/06)
2006 Apr 15, In Libya US singer
Lionel Richie jived and rocked for an adoring audience in a concert
to mark the 20th anniversary of a US raid on the North African
country. Libya renewed a demand that Washington apologize and pay
(AP, 4/15/06)(Reuters, 4/16/06)
2006 Apr 15, Palestinian police
sealed off a main road and briefly stormed a government building in
the central Gaza town of Khan Younis, angered by the Hamas-led
government's failure to pay them.
2006 Apr 15, Saudi Arabia's
Crown Prince Sultan Bin Abdul Aziz began a two-day visit to Pakistan
during which he is expected to discuss a possible arms deal.
2006 Apr 15-2006 Apr 17, In
southern Sudan 15 people including 11 civilians were killed in
clashes between militia fighters, straining a deal that ended the
country's north-south civil war.
2006 Apr 15, Suspected Tamil
Tiger rebels detonated mines near two military vehicles in
northeastern Sri Lanka, killing eight people in separate attacks.
2007 Apr 15, Airlines canceled
over 400 flights in the NYC area as a hard-blowing nor'easter
gathered strength along the East Coast. The storm out of the Great
Plains was already blamed for 5 deaths.
(AP, 4/15/07)(SFC, 4/16/07, p.A4)
2007 Apr 15, Researchers
reported that cells that are supposed to nourish and support other
nerve cells instead secrete the poisons that cause amyotrophic
lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease.
2007 Apr 15, Scientists
unveiled the world’s tiniest eyedropper, capable of squeezing out
(SFC, 4/16/07, p.A9)
2007 Apr 15, A fire in Quincy,
Illinois, killed 5 children. Police arrested Zachary Meeks (27), a
cousin who had a grudge with the victim’s parents stemming from a
drug-related prison sentence.
(SFC, 4/16/07, p.A5)
2007 Apr 15, Brant Parker (86),
collaborator with Johnny Hart on the “Wizard of Id” (1964) cartoon
strip, died in Lynchburg, Va. In 1997 Parker handed the illustration
of the cartoon over to his son, Jeff Parker.
(SFC, 4/9/07, p.B3)
2007 Apr 15, Afghanistan's
government promised to end all hostage deals with the Taliban after
two Afghan kidnap victims were executed in an agreement to free an
Italian journalist. In southern Afghanistan a suicide bomber
targeted a private US security firm, killing up to four Afghans
working for the company and wounding another. In Ghazni province,
southwest of Kabul, a clash between Afghan forces and insurgents
left 15 militants dead and 15 wounded. Police and US-led coalition
forces attacked suspected Taliban insurgents crossing from Pakistan
into Afghanistan, killing 10 militants and wounding 15.
(AFP, 4/15/07)(AP, 4/16/07)
2007 Apr 15, Authorities in
Bangladesh arrested a second son of former prime minister Khaleda
Zia, as the military-backed interim government stepped up its
anti-corruption drive. Arafat Rahman (36) was released the next day.
(AFP, 4/16/07)(AP, 4/17/07)
2007 Apr 15, In Belgium 2 men
hijacked a helicopter and forced the pilot to land in a prison
courtyard, where they picked up an inmate in a dramatic jailbreak.
RTL-TVI identified the fugitive as a Frenchman who was in pretrial
detention on charges of fraud and theft.
2007 Apr 15, Blind British
aviator Miles Hilton-Barber, With the aid of co-copilot Richard
Meredith-Hardy, landed his microlight aircraft in Jakarta to
complete another leg of his London-Sydney charity flight.
2007 Apr 15, Ecuadoreans voted
on whether to create a special assembly to rewrite their
constitution. Exit polls said voters overwhelmingly supported Pres.
Correa's plan to remake the nation's system of government and weaken
its discredited Congress.
(AP, 4/15/07)(AP, 4/16/07)
2007 Apr 15, Iran said it is
seeking bids for the building of two more nuclear power plants,
despite international pressures to curb its controversial program.
2007 Apr 15, Four bombs
exploded in predominantly Shiite sections of Baghdad, killing at
least 37 people in a renewal of sectarian carnage. Many women and
children were among the casualties. North of Baghdad, two British
helicopters crashed after an apparent mid-air collision, killing two
service members. The number of bodies found dumped in Baghdad
increased sharply to 30. The number of detainees held in US-run
facilities in Iraq reached 18,000, with an average stay of one year.
(AP, 4/15/07)(SSFC, 4/15/07, p.A7)(AP, 4/16/07)
2007 Apr 15, Israeli and
Palestinian leaders discussed the outlines of Palestinian statehood
for the first time in six years, taking a modest step toward
breaking the long paralysis in peacemaking.
2007 Apr 15, A 14-year-old
matador who left Spain to escape his home country's ban on young
bullfighters was nearly gored to death in a Mexican City ring, his
lung punctured by a 900-pound bull.
2007 Apr 15, Nigeria's mass
daily newspapers reported that dozens of people died during state
elections, as results began to emerge from state elections that were
marred by rigging and violence.
(AP, 4/15/07)(Reuters, 4/15/07)
2007 Apr 15, In Pakistan some
100,000 people rallied in Karachi against a radical Islamic mosque
and seminary that launched a Taliban-style anti-vice campaign in
Islamabad last week.
2007 Apr 15, Three explosions
hit Gaza City, damaging two Internet cafes and a Christian
bookstore. Palestinian security officials have said they suspect a
secret "vice squad" of Muslim militants.
2007 Apr 15, Philippine marines
killed at least 8 Muslim rebels and captured two of their camps in
retaliation for a series of attacks that killed a child and two
2007 Apr 15, Russia launched
its first new generation nuclear submarine since the fall of the
Soviet Union, as the Kremlin seeks to upgrade its undersea nuclear
strike force. Russia began construction of its first floating
nuclear power plant, and planned to build at least six more despite
long-standing environmental concerns that they are vulnerable to
accidents at sea. In St. Petersburg, Russia, club-swinging riot
police clashed with opposition supporters as an anti-Kremlin protest
dispersed. Police chased small groups of demonstrators, beating some
on the ground and hauling them into police buses.
(AP, 4/15/07)(Reuters, 4/15/07)
2007 Apr 15, In Russia a
keel-laying ceremony was held in Severodvinsk, on the White Sea, for
the new 460-foot Mikhail Lomonosov, a $360 million demonstration
ship capable of providing 76-megawatts of nuclear power to an
onshore location. Completion was expected in 2010 with construction
of new ships to start annually.
(WSJ, 8/21/07, p.A13)
2007 Apr 15, The official Saudi
news agency reported that Sudan has signed a joint agreement with
the UN and the African Union that defines their respective roles in
2008 Apr 15, Pope Benedict
arrived at Andrews air Force Base in Maryland and was met by
President Bush and Catholic dignitaries. Benedict turned 81 the next
(AP, 4/16/08)(SFC, 4/16/08, p.A2)
2008 Apr 15, Data firm
RealtyTrac said home foreclosure filings surged 57% in the 12
month-period ended in March and bank repossessions soared 129% from
a year ago. US inflation at the wholesale level soared in March at
nearly triple the rate that had been expected as the costs of energy
and food both climbed rapidly.
(Reuters, 4/15/08)(AP, 4/15/08)
2008 Apr 15, Mike Leavitt, the
top US health official, said US food and drug regulators will start
working in China next month once Beijing gives its final approval.
2008 Apr 15, J Street, an
American pro-Israel and pro peace lobby was established under
director Jeremy Ben Ami. It argued for a 2-state solution based on
Israel’s pre-1967 borders. It is the first and only federal
Political Action Committee (PAC) established to explicitly promote
meaningful American leadership to end the Israeli-Palestinian and
Israeli-Arab conflicts peacefully and diplomatically.
2008 Apr 15, A draft report by
the US National Toxicology Program acknowledged concerns over
bisphenol-a (BPA), a chemical found in thousands of everyday plastic
products, saying it may cause cancer and other serious disorders.
(SFC, 4/16/08, p.A4)
2008 Apr 15, California Sen.
Leland Yee dropped efforts to put the Cow Palace in Daly City up for
sale and settled on a compromise plan to allow an adjoining parking
lot to be sold.
(SFC, 4/16/08, p.B14)
2008 Apr 15, Hazel Court
(b.1926), British-born horror film queen, died in Tahoe City, Ca.
Her films included “Devil Girl From Mars” (1954). Her autobiography,
“Hazel Court: Horror Queen,” was published later this month.
(SFC, 4/19/08, p.B5)
2008 Apr 15, A Bangladesh
official said at least 17 people were killed when a train plowed
through a packed bus at a railway crossing in Tangail district.
2008 Apr 15, Brazil and Russia
signed an agreement to jointly develop top-line jet fighters and
satellite launch vehicles.
2008 Apr 15, In Brazil a police
raid on drugs and dealers in a Rio de Janeiro shantytown set off a
fierce gunbattle that killed at least nine people and wounded seven.
2008 Apr 15, Colombia's Nevado
del Huila volcano erupted in a shower of hot ash, prompting
thousands of people to leave their homes.
2008 Apr 15, In eastern
Democratic Republic of Congo at least 44 people were killed and up
tot 100 injured when a passenger plane crashed onto a market
district after taking-off at Goma.
(Reuters, 4/16/08)(WSJ, 4/18/08, p.A1)
2008 Apr 15, In Egypt a
security official said 25 members of the opposition Muslim
Brotherhood have been sentenced to up to 10 years in jail.
2008 Apr 15, French high school
students threw bottles and rocks on the fringes of a Paris
demonstration that drew thousands of protesters to a march against a
government plan to cut teaching jobs.
2008 Apr 15, A parked car bomb
targeting a police patrol in central Baghdad, killed four civilians
who were passing by and wounding 15 other people. In Baqouba a car
parked in front of a restaurant exploded killing at least 35 people.
In Ramadi a parked car bomb exploded near a kebab restaurant killing
at least 13 people. US soldiers backed by an airstrike killed six
militants during clashes in the Sudayrah area near Baghdad's Sadr
City. American troops killed four militants who fired
rocket-propelled grenades at a tank elsewhere in the area. More
clashes in Sadr City left four militiamen killed and 15 others
2008 Apr 15, Israel said it
will resume some crucial fuel shipments to the Gaza Strip. Defense
officials confirmed that Israel will let Jewish settlers build new
houses in existing West Bank settlements if they remove unauthorized
settlement outposts. An Israeli aircraft fired a missile at a
motorcycle in northern Gaza, killing Mohammed Ghausain, an Islamic
2008 Apr 15, Italy's Silvio
Berlusconi (71) pledged to use his big election win to push through
economic reforms, and vowed to close the border to illegal
immigrants in a crackdown on criminals he called "the army of evil."
He owed his majority in parliament to the support of the xenophobic
Northern League, which won 8 percent of votes.
2008 Apr 15, Kazakhstan joined
other Black Sea grain exporters in curbing shipments to combat
double-digit inflation. Wheat exports were suspended until Sep 10.
Kazakhstan will become the world’s 5th largest wheat exporter this
year, shipping half its record 2007 crop.
(WSJ, 4/16/08, p.A8)
2008 Apr 15, In Mexico gunmen
held up a family of US tourists in Baha and made off with their
small plane from a hotel airstrip in Mulege.
2008 Apr 15, Nepal's former
rebels surprised observers by winning more than half of the directly
elected seats where counting was complete in an assembly that will
shape the Himalayan nation's political future. Re-voting was held in
2008 Apr 15, In New Zealand 5
people were killed and three others missing after they were swept
away by a storm-swollen river in the Mangatepopo Gorge.
2008 Apr 15, Former US Pres.
Jimmy Carter visited the West Bank and laid a wreath at the grave of
Yasser Arafat. Carter was criticized by Israel and Washington for
his plans to meet with Hamas leaders in Syria.
(SFC, 4/16/08, p.A8)
2008 Apr 15, In the northern
Philippines army troops clashed with communist rebels, leaving three
people dead in Quezon province's General Nakar town.
2008 Apr 15, President Vladimir
Putin accepted the leadership of the dominant United Russia party,
securing his grip on power after he leaves the Kremlin and becomes
PM next month.
2008 Apr 15, In Uganda a fire
tore through a primary school dormitory overnight, killing 19 girls
and two adults. Police said that the blaze may have been
2008 Apr 15, Venezuela moved to
take a greater cut of windfall oil profits, approving a 50 percent
tax on foreign oil companies when crude tops US$70 a barrel.
2008 Apr 15, An opposition
general strike to demand the release of Zimbabwe's delayed election
result flopped and the ruling party in South Africa said the
situation in the neighboring country was "dire."
2009 Apr 15, Pres. Obama
directed the US Treasury Dept. to seize assets of 3 Mexican drug
cartels including the Sinaloa cartel, the Los Zetas cartel and the
La Familia Michoacan group.
(SFC, 4/16/09, p.A2)
2009 Apr 15, In Washington, DC,
the FBI arrested Walter Kendall Myers (72) and his wife, Gwendolyn
(71), for spying. For three decades, Myers and his wife had shuffled
secrets to their Cuban contacts. Kendall Myers first worked for the
State Department as a lecturer at the Foreign Service Institute and
later as a European analyst in the department's intelligence arm,
the Bureau of Intelligence and Research, from 2000 until his
retirement in October 2007. On Nov 20 Myers and his wife pleaded
guilty to serving as covert agents since 1979. Myers agreed to serve
life in prison and his wife agreed to serve 6-7½ years.
(AP, 6/6/09)(SFC, 11/21/09, p.A4)
2009 Apr 15, In Florida inmates
Doni Ray Brown (23) and Wayne Fletcher (25) escaped the county jail
in Palatka and within hours stole 2 vehicles and killed Fletcher’s
step-grandmother (66). Both were arrested on April 18 and charged
(SFC, 4/20/09, p.A6)
2009 Apr 15, Hundreds of
Afghans swarmed a demonstration of more than 100 women protesting
against a new marriage law they say restricts wives' rights. The
women were pelted with small stones as police struggled to keep the
two groups apart. A NATO soldier and 2 Afghan policemen were killed
in fresh violence. Taliban insurgents beheaded a government employee
on charges of spying for foreign forces in the Bala Murghab district
of Badghis province.
(AP, 4/15/09)(AFP, 4/16/09)
2009 Apr 15, Bolivian police
foiled an alleged plot to assassinate President Evo Morales, killing
three men at the Hotel Las Americas in a 30-minute gunbattle with a
mysterious group that included suspects from Hungary, Ireland and
possibly Croatia. The 3 men were killed in their beds and 2 others
were arrested. The dead included: Eduardo Rozsa Flores (49), the son
of a Hungarian father and Bolivian mother, Arpad Magyarosi, a
Romanian-born Hungarian, and Irishman Michael Martin Dwyer. Mr.
Rozsa Flores was known as an activist for the autonomy of Bolivia’s
department of Santa Cruz. The 3 men were involved in a conspiracy to
create a separatist right-wing militia in the eastern,
opposition-dominated state of Santa Cruz.
(AP, 4/16/09)(WSJ, 4/18/09, p.A5)(Econ, 7/18/09,
2009 Apr 15, Clement Freud
(84), a grandson of Sigmund Freud, died. He became a well-known
writer, politician and urbane regular on British radio. He was best
known from his three decades appearing on the BBC game show, "Just a
Minute," in which panelists compete to see who can talk the longest
without hesitation, deviation or repetition.
2009 Apr 15, China fired into
orbit its second satellite in a program to build an alternative to
the global positioning system based on U.S. satellites.
2009 Apr 15, Colombia's most
wanted drug lord was captured in a jungle raid involving hundreds of
police officers. Daniel Rendon Herrera (43), a far-right warlord
known as "Don Mario," was taken in shackles to the capital to await
possible extradition to the United States.
2009 Apr 15, Egyptian police
detained three teenage Palestinian men on suspicion of crossing
illegally into Egypt and also found explosives near the border with
2009 Apr 15, Fiji's military
government tightened controls on the media, devalued the currency by
20% and said it would not tolerate opposition to plans for a
sweeping overhaul of the country's politics.
(AP, 4/15/09)(Econ, 4/18/09, p.44)
2009 Apr 15, A blockade by
French fishermen angry at EU quotas cut ferry links with Britain for
a second day as a union official threatened to block the Channel
Tunnel in support of the movement.
2009 Apr 15, French forces
detained 11 pirates during an assault on a pirate "mother ship" and
thwarted a pirate attack on a Liberian-registered vessel.
2009 Apr 15, Iranian scientists
at the Royan Research Institute cloned a goat and planned future
experiments they hope will lead to a treatment for stroke patients.
The female goat, named Hana, was born in the city of Isfahan in
2009 Apr 15, In Iraq 11 Oil
Ministry guards were killed and 13 wounded in a car bombing in
2009 Apr 15, In Mauritania Gen.
Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, the leader of a coup that ousted the
elected government, gave up power. This freed him to seek the
presidency in balloting aimed at returning civilian rule. Senate
president Ba Mamadou Mbare was quickly sworn in as interim leader of
the desert nation in western Africa.
2009 Apr 15, Mexico’s troubled
border city of Ciudad Juarez and the federal government signed an
agreement to train, recruit and equip enough city police officers to
take over from 5,000 army troops now performing security patrols
2009 Apr 15, Nigeria set up a
panel to probe a multi-million dollar cash-for-contract scandal
embroiling US giant Halliburton and reportedly implicating three
2009 Apr 15, Sri Lankan forces
attacked Tamil guerrillas with mortar fire, artillery and heavy
machine guns following a two-day cease-fire aimed at letting
civilians flee the war zone, a pro-rebel Web site reported. The
government denied launching a new attack.
2009 Apr 15, A Sudanese court
condemned 10 rebels from the Darfur rebel Justice and Equality
Movement to death for an unprecedented attack on Khartoum in May,
2008, which killed more than 220 people.
2009 Apr 15, In southern
Zimbabwe at least 29 people were killed and 39 injured when a bus
plunged into a river bed near Chivhu town.
2010 Apr 15, The White House
released a statement by Obama instructing his Health and Human
Services secretary to draft rules requiring hospitals that receive
Medicare and Medicaid payments to grant all patients the right to
designate people, including gay and lesbian partners, who can visit
and consult with them at crucial moments.
2010 Apr 15, President Barack
Obama set a goal to visit an asteroid by 2025. Obama outlined NASA's
new path during a visit to the Kennedy Space Center.
2010 Apr 15, A US Senate panel
report was released saying some of the largest US health insurers
are changing their accounting practices to book administration costs
as medical costs in an attempt to circumvent new industry reforms.
2010 Apr 15, In Washington, DC,
several thousand Tea Party protesters marked tax day with a rally in
Freedom Plaza capping a national protest tour that began in Nevada.
(SFC, 4/16/10, p.A12)
2010 Apr 15, US federal agents,
some in black hoods, swarmed over five Arizona shuttle businesses in
a major crackdown on human trafficking, arresting dozens of van
operators and smugglers accused of transporting illegal immigrants
from the Mexican border to Phoenix.
2010 Apr 15, In the San
Francisco Bay Area BART officials stripped officers of Tasers days
after a sergeant fired his stun gun at a boy (13) on his bicycle
fleeing from an altercation with police in Richmond. Bay Area Rapid
Transit police had begun using Tasers in December, 2008.
(SFC, 4/16/10, p.A1)
2010 Apr 15, It was reported
that researchers were warning of a new blight on the ocean: a swirl
of confetti-like plastic debris stretching over thousands of square
miles (kilometers) in a remote expanse of the Atlantic Ocean.
2010 Apr 15, In southern
Afghanistan a car bomb outside hotel in Kandahar city, injuring at
least 6 people. A few hours later an Afghan civilian and two
security guards were killed when the car slammed into a compound in
Kandahar used by foreign security firms. A scrap metal dealer and
four children helping him were killed by a suspected homemade bomb
as they loaded materials collected door-to-door in rural Kandahar.
Fighting in the north of the country left four German troops dead.
One civilian was killed and one injured when a bomb blew up beneath
the tractor they were riding near Gardez in the eastern province of
Paktika. 5 Afghan UN employees were missing after their vehicles
were hijacked in northern Baghlan province. The UN employees were
freed in a military operation on May 17.
(AP, 4/15/10)(AFP, 4/16/10)(AP, 4/16/10)(AP,
2010 Apr 15, British TV
broadcast the country’s first live debate between leaders of its 3
main political parties.
(Econ, 4/17/10, p.60)
2010 Apr 15, British airport
operator BAA Ltd. said all flights at London's Heathrow Airport have
been suspended for the rest of the day, causing travel chaos as ash
clouds from Iceland's spewing volcano halted air traffic across
2010 Apr 15, In Canada the city
of Vancouver released documents indicating it spent more than C$554
million ($554 million) as host of this year's Winter Olympics, much
of it related to building the athletes village. The federal
government and the province of British Columbia also paid the C$585
million cost to build and refurbish competition venues in Vancouver,
and at the nearby mountain resort of Whistler.
2010 Apr 15, A new study by
Oxfam said the number of rapes carried out by civilians in eastern
Congo has increased by 17-fold in the last few years. It said sexual
assaults long perpetrated by armed groups are spreading across the
2010 Apr 15, In Cuba historian
Esteban Morales posted an article on a state Web site saying
corruption at the highest levels of government posed the greatest
threat to Cuba’s communist government.
(SFC, 4/16/10, p.A2)
2010 Apr 15, German authorities
said they have targeted nine suspects, including former staff of
Hewlett-Packard, in a probe into whether the world's top PC maker
paid bribes to win business in Russia.
2010 Apr 15, Police in
Guatemala said a 13-year-old boy has confessed to shooting a woman
to death for a payment of about $12.50. The boy could face 6 years
in a juvenile custody facility if convicted.
2010 Apr 15, Israel customs
officials said they already have confiscated about 10 iPads since
Israel announced new regulations this week. The iPad banned anyone
from bringing an iPad into the country until officials certify that
they are in compliance with local transmitter standards. Israel
lifted a ban on April 25.
(AP, 4/15/10)(AP, 4/25/10)
2010 Apr 15, Deposed Kyrgyzstan
President Kurmanbek Bakiyev' left the country for neighboring
Kazakhstan, just hours after gunfire erupted at a rally where he was
speaking to supporters.
2010 Apr 15, In Myanmar 3 bombs
exploded at a water festival in the former capital Yangon, killing 8
people and wounding 94. State TV blamed "destructive elements" for
2010 Apr 15, In Nigeria the
burnt bodies of a Pentecostal pastor, Ishaya Kadah, and his wife,
Selina, were discovered by the police in Boto village, two days
after they were kidnapped.
2010 Apr 15, The Hamas
government executed two men accused of collaborating with Israel.
Mohammed Ismail (36) was convicted of planting devices in the cars
of militants, presumably to help track them. Nasser Abu Freh (33), a
former Palestinian police captain before the Hamas takeover,
allegedly started receiving money to work with Israel in 1998. The
bullet-riddled bodies of the men, convicted by military tribunals in
2008 and 2009, were dumped by armed men at Gaza City's main hospital
before dawn. It was the first time the death penalty has been
carried out in Gaza since Hamas violently seized power in the
coastal area in 2007.
2010 Apr 15, Russia’s Foreign
Ministry said Russia has suspended all adoptions to US families
until the two countries can agree on procedures, a week after Torry
Hansen, an American woman, sent her adopted son, Artyom Saveliev
(7), back to Russia on a plane by himself.
(AP, 4/15/10)(SFC, 5/19/12, p.A5)
2010 Apr 15, Human Rights
Watch, a leading international rights group, called on Senegal's
government to clamp down on Islamic schools whose leaders are
subjecting tens of thousands of children to forced begging and daily
beatings in conditions it says are "akin to slavery."
2010 Apr 15, Sudanese voters
cast ballots on the last day of landmark elections. Sudan's ruling
party said that the southern army had killed 9 people, including at
least 5 of its officials, stoking tensions during voting in the
first open elections in 24 years. Commission official Abel Alier
said on April 26 that al-Bashir had garnered 68% of over 10 million
(Reuters, 4/15/10)(AP, 4/26/10)
2010 Apr 15, Venezuelan
authorities were reported to be investigating the deaths of six
Yanomami Indians, including two children, in a remote community in
the Amazon. Prosecutors believed that four adults, a man and three
women, died after drinking water contaminated by illegal miners, and
that the two children were apparently killed.
2011 Apr 15, President Obama
and the US Congress approved $205 million in aid to develop “Iron
Dome,” a new Israeli-made missile defense system.
2011 Apr 15, Indictments were
unsealed in Manhattan against 11 people including the founders of
three of the largest online poker sites open to US players.
PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker and Absolute Poker were charged with
bank fraud, money laundering and violating gambling laws.
(SFC, 4/16/11, p.A6)(Econ, 4/23/11, p.68)
2011 Apr 15, Storms marched
into Tennessee, Louisiana and later into Georgia. At least three
twisters touched down in Mississippi, where a state of emergency was
declared in 14 counties, causing widespread damage.
2011 Apr 15, In Afghanistan
Khan Mohammad Mujahid, the police chief in Kandahar city, was killed
by a Taliban suicide bomber along with two of his bodyguards.
2011 Apr 15, In Algeria
Islamist extremists attacked an army post and killed at least 13
soldiers watching the Algerian president's televised speech
promising reforms. Two militants in the group were killed by
soldiers at the post in Kabyle. President Bouteflika announced
constitutional reforms "aimed at deepening the democratic process"
2011 Apr 15, An Australian
Crime Commission report said organized crime costs Australia up to
Aus$15 billion (US$15.8 billion) each year. The report warned that
opportunities for illegal activity were unprecedented.
2011 Apr 15, Burkina Faso
soldiers shot into the air, stole cars and looted shops in the
western and central parts of the capital, Ouagadougou, as protests
by military guards against unpaid housing allowances spread.
2011 Apr 15, In Toronto,
Canada, Liu Qian (23) was found raped and dead a few hours after her
former boyfriend in China watched via webcam as she tried to fend
off an attacker who appeared at her door. On April 7, 2014, Brian
Dickson (32) was convicted of her murder and sentenced to life in
2011 Apr 15, Egypt's top
prosecutor ordered deposed President Hosni Mubarak to be moved from
a hospital at a Red Sea resort to a military hospital for
questioning about the deaths of protesters and allegations of
corruption and abuse of power.
2011 Apr 15, In northeastern
India gunmen ambushed and shot dead seven policemen in Manipur
state, but a local politician managed to escape unhurt.
2011 Apr 15, In Indian Kashmir
suspected Muslim rebels shot dead Haseena Akhter, a woman candidate
contesting village-level polls.
2011 Apr 15, In Indonesia
suicide bomber Muhammad Syarif (32) blew himself up as police were
praying in the West Java town of Cirebon, wounding 30 people in the
first attack on a mosque since extremists started targeting the
predominantly Muslim country a decade ago.
(AP, 4/15/11)(AP, 4/16/11)(AFP, 10/8/11)
2011 Apr 15, In Ivory Coast
Gen. Brunot Dogbo Ble, head of the Republican Guard, was captured.
The Guard had stood beside Gbagbo and fought fiercely in Abidjan.
2011 Apr 15, Japan's government
ordered the embattled operator of the crippled Fukushima nuclear
plant to offer payouts to tens of thousands of people made homeless
by the ongoing crisis.
2011 Apr 15, In Jordan hundreds
of protesting Islamic Salafi hard-liners clashed with supporters of
King Abdullah II, wounding dozens, in the latest move by the
extremist movement to assert itself amid the country's wave of
anti-government demonstrations. 70 Islamic hardliners were soon
arrested for suspected armed attacks that left 83 policemen wounded.
Ayman al-Balawi (38), the brother of an al-Qaida triple agent who
blew himself up in a CIA outpost in Afghanistan in Dec, 2009, was
detained in a sweep along with 102 other members of the
ultraconservative Muslim Salafi sect.
(AP, 4/15/11)(AP, 4/16/11)(AP, 4/19/11)
2011 Apr 15, In Libya a fresh
hail of government rockets crashed into Misrata after Western allies
denounced a "medieval siege" of the city and vowed to keep bombing
Muammar Gaddafi's forces until he stepped down. Gaddafi forces
opened fire on rebels and killed one near the strategic eastern
Libyan town of Ajdabiyah, after an insurgent plan for a new
counter-assault fizzled out.
2011 Apr 15, Italian activist
Vittorio Arrigoni (36) was found hanged in a Gaza apartment just
hours after he was abducted by an al-Qaida-inspired group. Hamas
soon arrested 4 people in connection with the killing, and sought
(AP, 4/15/11)(AP, 4/16/11)
2011 Apr 15, Mexican
authorities said 10 complete bodies, 3 headless bodies and 4 severed
heads were found when authorities dug up a pit in a house in Durango
state. Marines detained 22 more suspects, including five women, in
an operation over the killings of 145 people found in mass graves
this month in Tamaulipas state.
(AP, 4/15/11)(AFP, 4/19/11)
2011 Apr 15, In Mexico
residents of Cheran, Michoacan state, captured five illegal loggers
as their truck attempted to smuggle out illegally harvested wood.
The indigenous Purepecha people said the loggers were backed by
cartel henchmen and local police. Loggers shot and killed two Cheran
men and wounded four others who were patrolling the woods on April
2011 Apr 15, In the Netherlands
Gen. Ante Gotovina (55), a commander hailed by Croats as a hero of
the Balkan conflict, was convicted of war crimes by a UN court and
sentenced to 24 years in prison for a campaign of shelling,
shootings and expulsions aimed at driving Serbs out of a Croatian
border region in 1995.
2011 Apr 15, In Nigeria gunmen
who hid their Kalashnikov rifles in long flowing gowns attacked
residents in the city of Maiduguri. Two people were killed and five
others wounded a day ahead of the country's presidential election.
2011 Apr 15, Somali pirates
took a multi-million ransom and released the Asphalt Venture,
hijacked last Sep 28, and some crew members. 7 Indian crew members
were kept hostage in retaliation for the holding of over 100 Somali
pirates by the Indian Navy.
(AP, 4/16/11)(SFC, 4/16/11, p.A2)
2011 Apr 15, Syrian security
forces fired tear gas at thousands of protesters who were marching
2011 Apr 15, In Tajikistan
Abdullo Rakhimov, also known by his nom de guerre Mullo Abdullo, was
killed along with 14 other militants in the eastern Rasht Valley in
a military operation.
2011 Apr 15, Opponents of
Yemen's president stepped up a campaign to force him out, but Ali
Abdullah Saleh was defiant as he addressed thousands of supporters
and urged the opposition to join peace talks. Loyalists in Sanaa
rallied in his support. Saleh said in a speech that the mingling of
men and women at "Change Square," where daily anti-government
protests take place in the capital, was against Islamic law.
(Reuters, 4/15/11)(AP, 4/16/11)
2012 Apr 15, Pres. Obama and
Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos said at a joint news
conference that the US-Colombia free trade deal will go into effect
May 15. Obama returned from Colombia to his familiar agenda of
righting the US economy and winning a second term, wrapping up 3
days of Latin American summitry that yielded mixed results and were
clouded by a Secret Service scandal. The 6th Summit of the Americas
ended without a joint declaration due to divisions over Cuba and
Argentine claims to the Falkland Islands.
2012 Apr 15, In Daly City, Ca.,
generations of Serra Bowl patrons gathered for the final day of
operations after 51 years in business. Business was good but the
owners of the property decided not to renew its lease.
(SFC, 4/16/12, p.C1)
2012 Apr 15, In Petaluma, Ca.,
Kim Conover (41) was shot and killed her outside the office of her
divorce attorney. Her estranged husband, Kevin Conover (43), later
turned the gun on himself. A week earlier the schoolteacher was
denied an emergency restraining order.
(http://tinyurl.com/82g8j4y)(SFC, 4/20/12, p.C2)
2012 Apr 15, In Las Vegas
Ignacia Martinez (38) and her daughter Karla (10) were raped and
bludgeoned to death. Arturo Martinez, the husband and father, was
critically injured with head injuries. On April 27 police arrested
Bryan Clay (22) for the attacks.
(SSFC, 4/29/12, p.A9)
2012 Apr 15, In the area of
Woodward, Oklahoma, tornadoes killed at least 5 people and left at
least 29 injured. At least 8,000 were without power in the region.
About 75 tornadoes touched down in Kansas, Oklahoma, Iowa and
(AP, 4/14/12)(SFC, 4/17/12, p.A6)
2012 Apr 15, In Afghanistan
suicide bombers struck across the country in coordinated attacks
claimed by Taliban insurgents as the start of a spring offensive. A
total of 19 insurgents died and 14 police and nine civilians were
2012 Apr 15, Bahrain's Shiite
opposition announced a week of daily pro-democracy protests until
after the controversial Formula One Grand Prix race scheduled for
2012 Apr 15, In Egypt Islamist
militants driving vehicles mounted with machine guns opened fire on
a police checkpoint in the Sinai peninsula, killing two policemen
and injuring a third. In the port city of Suez, one person died and
24 were injured during a fire that raged for nearly 20 hours in the
storage facilities of an oil company.
2012 Apr 15, In Guinea-Bissau
political parties met with the military junta in an attempt to reach
a political situation days after soldiers arrested the prime
minister. They agreed to set up a transitional body to run the
country, a day ahead of talks with West African bloc ECOWAS.
(AP, 4/15/12)(AFP, 4/15/12)
2012 Apr 15, In southern India
a beef-eating festival at Osmania University triggered clashes
between rival students as Hindu activists fought with low-caste
Dalit groups who had organized the event in Hyderabad.
2012 Apr 15, In Iraq unknown
attackers blew up a house north of Baghdad, killing three members of
a family including a five-year-old boy and also wounding a
2012 Apr 15, Israel barred 40
pro-Palestinian activists who had flown in for a "Welcome to
Palestine" campaign as hundreds more would-be protesters were
stranded at airports across Europe.
2012 Apr 15, Jordan's King
Abdullah II ordered the release of 19 political activists charged
with insulting him during pro-reform demonstrations last month.
2012 Apr 15, In northern Mali
armed men abducted a Swiss woman working as a missionary in
(SFC, 4/16/12, p.A2)
2012 Apr 15, North Korea's new
leader, Kim Jong Un, addressed his nation and the world for the
first time, vowing to place top priority on his impoverished
nation's military, which promptly unveiled a new long-range missile.
2012 Apr 15, In Pakistan 384
prisoners including militants escaped from the Bannu prison in the
northwest after an attack by insurgents armed with guns, grenades
and rockets. 11 prisoners were captured and 29 returned themselves.
2012 Apr 15, South African
newspapers reported that authorities have seized assets of Khulubuse
Zuma, a nephew of President Jacob Zuma, to cover debts to a security
company, Aurora Empowerment Systems, that guarded now-liquidated
gold mines he co-owned with a grandson of Nelson Mandela.
2012 Apr 15, The first batch of
Sudanese prisoners of war captured in days of bloody fighting
arrived in the South Sudanese capital, as the South's army said
clashes continued in contested border regions. A Sudanese division
raided Mugum, killed 25 rebels and seized a large quantity of
weapons and equipment.
(AFP, 4/15/12)(AP, 4/16/12)
2012 Apr 15, Syrian troops
shelled residential neighborhoods dominated by rebels in the central
city of Homs, killing at least three people hours before the first
batch of United Nations observers were to arrive in Damascus to
shore up a shaky truce. The bodies of two other people were found in
the Deir Baalbeh and al-Dablan districts.
2012 Apr 15, In Yemen 3
children were killed by a roadside bomb while walking to school. A
4th person was killed in an Al-Qaeda mortar attack on the southern
town of Loder (Lawder).
2013 Apr 15, Two bombs exploded
near the finish of the Boston Marathon killing 3 people, a boy
(8) and two young women. More than 140 people were injured. The
explosives were fashioned out of pressure cookers and packed with
shards of metal, nails and ball bearings to inflict maximum carnage.
(AP, 4/16/13)(AP, 4/16/13)(Econ, 4/20/13, p.29)
2013 Apr 15, Iceland President
Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson announced the formation of the Arctic Circle
at a Pres Club meeting in Washington, DC., The new nonprofit will
dedicated to bringing together the many international stakeholders
in an open venue to address the challenges facing the
2013 Apr 15, The Pulitzer Prize
for fiction went to San Francisco writer Adam Johnson for “The
Orphan Master’s Son,” a novel set in North Korea. “No North Korean
has read a book, as we think of a book – as a work of art whose job
it is to iluminate the human experience – in three
(SFC, 4/20/13, p.D1)
2013 Apr 15, In New Jersey
Mohamed Alessa (23) and Carlos Almonte (27) were sentenced to at
least 20 years in prison for conspiring to join al-Shabab, a
designated terrorist organization in Somalia.
(SFC, 4/16/13, p.A5)
2013 Apr 15, Key measures of
New York's tough new gun law kicked in, with owners of firearms now
reclassified as assault weapons required to start registering the
firearms and new limits on the number of bullets allowed in
2013 Apr 15, FBI and IRS agents
locked down the Knoxville, Tenn., headquarters of the Pilot Flying J
truck stop business owned by the family of Gov. Bill Haslam and his
brother Jimmy, owner of the Cleveland Browns.
(SFC, 4/16/13, p.A5)
2013 Apr 15, The annual Goldman
Environmental Prize was awarded to six activists for their efforts
to protect the world ecosystem. They included Nohra Padilla (50) of
Colombia, who began organizing waste pickers in Bogota in 1990 into
the Bogota Recyclers’ Assoc.; Rossano Ercolini (57) of Italy for
setting up a trash collection and conservation system; Kimberly
Wasserman (36) of Chicago her grassroots campaign to close polluting
coal-fired power plants; Aleta Baun (50) of Indonesia for organizing
villages on west Timor against mining companies clearing forests for
marble; Azzam Alwash (54) of Iraq for his efforts to restore
Mesopotamian marshland; Jonathan Deal of South Africa for his
efforts against hydraulic fracturing in Karoo.
(SFC, 4/15/13, p.A10)
2013 Apr 15, Afghan commandos
killed 22 insurgents during an operation to capture a Taliban
commander in the Bati Kot district of Nangarhar province. Taliban
commander, Jamal Faroqi, was killed in the pre-dawn raid and 10
insurgents were captured. NATO said a team of Afghan and coalition
special forces captured a senior leader of the Pakistan-based
Lashkar-e-Taiba. A roadside bomb killed at least 7 members of a
family travelling in a trailer towed by a tractor in Zabul province.
A roadside bomb killed 4 Afghan police and wounded 3 overnight in
southern Helmand province. 2 policemen were killed and 6 kidnapped
during a Taliban attack on an outpost in northern Zawzjan province.
2013 Apr 15, Australian and
British researchers reported that the summer ice melt in parts of
Antarctica is at its highest level in 1,000 years, adding new
evidence of the impact of global warming on sensitive Antarctic
glaciers and ice shelves.
2013 Apr 15, Bahrain media said
the government has backed proposals to impose penalties of up five
years in prison for insulting the Gulf state's king or its national
2013 Apr 15, The British
government approved a 1.9% rise in the minimum wage, giving the
country's lowest-paid employees a bigger increase than most other
workers but one that is still less than inflation.
2013 Apr 15, Chadian President
Idriss Deby said his country's troops are pulling out of Mali three
months after the French-led mission to oust al-Qaida-linked
2013 Apr 15, China signed a
free-trade deal with Iceland as PM Johanna Sigurdardottir made a
6-day visit there. This was China’s first free-trade with a European
nation. Some saw China’s goal as better access to shipping routes
through the Arctic.
(Econ, 4/20/13, p.50)
2013 Apr 15, Metropolitan
Krystof (59), head of the Orthodox Church in the Czech Rep. and
Slovakia resigned amid allegations of affairs with women and
fathering illegitimate children.
(SFC, 4/16/13, p.A2)
2013 Apr 15, The EU took to
task member states for not implementing new rules on human
trafficking. Only 6 countries had translated the rules into national
legislation by the April 6 deadline.
(SFC, 4/16/13, p.A2)
2013 Apr 15, This was the
deadline for French ministers to declare their assets as set earlier
by PM Jean-Marc Ayrault. Foreign minister Laurent Fabius dedclarewd
€6m in assets.
(Econ, 4/13/13, p.55)(Econ, 4/20/13, p.53)
2013 Apr 15, In France clashes
again erupted over the construction on a new airport near the city
of Nantes. 3 demonstrators were reported injured as anarchists and
beret-wearing farmers joined against the project.
2013 Apr 15, In central Ghana
an accident at a gold mine left 17 miners dead. Authorities said
that the miners were working there illegally.
2013 Apr 15, Iranian Pres.
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad arrived in the uranium-rich West African nation
of Niger for a 2-day visit. Officials discounted that the mineral
was the reason for his visit.
2013 Apr 15, In Iraq insurgents
launched what appeared to be a highly coordinated string of attacks,
killing at least 55 and wounding more than 200 across the country.
2013 Apr 15, In Kuwait former
parliament member Mussallam al-Barrack was sentenced to five years
in prison on charges of insulting the emir during a political rally
last year. Last week Kuwait officials began considering a media law
that reports say could bring fines of about $1 million for insulting
the ruling family.
2013 Apr 15, Liberian President
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf said Francis Korkpor (61) will be the
country's new chief justice.
2013 Apr 15, In central Nigeria
leaders in two villages said at least 10 people were killed over the
weekend in clashes between the Jukun people of Plateau state, a
Muslim ethnic group, and the Tarok people, who are Christian.
2013 Apr 15, In South Africa a
handler at the Elephant Sanctuary near Hartbeespoort Dam was
trampled to death while taking elephants out for exercise. The
handler got caught in the midst of an altercation between two of the
2013 Apr 15, South Sudan’s
government, enraged by recent cattle thefts and resulting deaths,
deployed hundreds of soldiers to hunt down the raiders. But an
official later said the security forces instead indiscriminately
shot and killed civilians and burned down houses and shops and
attacked a hospital, where four medical staff and a patient were
2013 Apr 15, Syrian government
aircraft hit targets in rebel-held areas near Damascus, in Aleppo,
Homs and the city of Raqqa in the province by the same name along
the Euphrates River.
2013 Apr 15, The Togolese
government closed all public and private primary and secondary
schools in the capital, Lome, following protests that rocked the
tiny West Africa nation's education system last week. One student
was fatally shot by security forces in the town of Dapaong.
2013 Apr 15, A Turkish court
convicted Fazil Say (43), a top pianist and composer, of denigrating
religion through his comments on Twitter. He was given a 10-month
suspended prison sentence.
(SFC, 4/16/13, p.A2)(Econ, 4/20/13, p.58)
2013 Apr 15, A UN report said
opium poppy cultivation in Afghanistan has been increasing for a
third year in a row.
2013 Apr 15, The United Nations
Children's Fund said more than a quarter of children under the age
of 5 worldwide are permanently "stunted" from malnutrition, leaving
them physically and intellectually weak and representing a
scandalous waste of human potential.
2013 Apr 15, Venezuela’s
National Guard troops fired tear gas and plastic bullets to disperse
students protesting the official results in the disputed
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