Return to home392 May 15,
Valentinianus II (21), emperor of Rome (375-392), was murdered.
756 May 15, Abd-al-Rahman was
proclaimed the emir of Cordoba, Spain. Abd al Rahman united the
Umayyad forces in Spain and made the ancient Roman city of Cordoba
his new capital.
(ATC, p.95)(HN, 5/15/98)
1213 May 15, King John
submitted to the Pope, offering to make England and Ireland papal
fiefs. Pope Innocent III lifted the interdict of 1208. He named
Stephen Langton Archbishop of Canterbury.
(HN, 5/15/99)(MC, 5/15/02)
1248 May 15, Archbishop Konrad
von Hochstaden laid the cornerstone for Köln (Cologne) cathedral.
1492 May 15, Cheese and Bread
rebellion: German mercenaries killed 232 Alkmaarse.
1525 May 15, A German army
under Philip of Hesse surrounded and slaughtered 5,000 ending a
peasant revolt led by Thomas Muntzer.
1536 May 15, Anna Boleyn and
Lord Rochford were accused of adultery, incest, treason. [see May 2,
1567 May 15, Claudio Giovanni
Antonio Monteverdi (d.1643), musician and composer (L'Orfeo), was
born in Cremona, Italy. He marked the beginning of the Baroque Era
(LGC-HCS, p.25)(WUD, 1994, p.928)(MC, 5/15/02)
1567 May 15, Mary, Queen of
Scots married James Hepburn, Earl of Bothwell.
1591 May 15, Dimitri Ivanovitch
(9), Russian son of czar Ivan IV, was murdered.
1602 May 15, Bartholomew
Gosnold, English navigator, discovered Cape Cod.
(AP, 5/15/97)(HN, 5/15/98)
1610 May 15, Parliament of
Paris appointed Louis XIII (8) as French king.
1614 May 15, An aristocratic
uprising in France ended with the treaty of St. Menehould.
1618 May 15, Johannes Kepler
discovered his harmonics law.
1625 May 15, In Upper Austria
16 rebellious farmers were hanged in Varcklamarkt.
1648 May 15, The independence
of the Netherlands was finally recognized with the Dutch and Spanish
ratification of the Treaty of Munster, initially signed on January
1665 May 15, Pope Alexander VII
1672 May 15, 1st copyright law
was enacted by Massachusetts.
1679 May 15, The Earl of
Shaftesbury introduced his Exclusion Bill into Parliament proposing
that James, the Catholic brother of King Charles II, be permanently
barred from the line of succession to the English throne.
(ON, 7/06, p.9)
1718 May 15, James Puckle, a
London lawyer, patented the world's 1st machine gun.
1730 May 15, Robert Walpole
became the sole minister in the English cabinet following the
resignation of Lord Townshend.
1759 May 15, Maria Theresia von
Paradis, composer, was born.
1764 May 15, Johann Nepomuk
Kalcher, composer, was born.
1768 May 15, By the Treaty of
Versailles, France purchased Corsica from Genoa.
(SFC, 12/3/96, p.A1)(HN, 5/15/99)
1773 May 15, Prince Clemens Von
Metternich (d.1859), Chancellor of Austria, was born in Coblenz. His
policies dominated Europe after the Congress of Vienna.
(HN, 5/15/99)(WUD, 1994 ed., p.903)
1795 May 15, Napoleon entered
the Lombardian capital of Milan in triumph.
1800 May 15, King George III
survived a 2nd assassination attempt.
1802 May 15, Isaac Ridgeway
Trimble (d.1888), Major General (Confederate Army), was born.
1808 May 15, Michael William
Balfe, composer ("The Bohemian Girl"), was born.
1819 May 15, Thomas Leonidas
Crittenden, Major General (Union volunteers), was born.
1820 May 15, The US Congress
designated the slave trade to a form of piracy.
1823 May 15, Antonio Frantisek
Becvarovsky (69), composer, died.
1829 May 15, Joseph Smith was
"ordained" by John the Baptist- according to Joseph Smith.
Mormon church was founded in NY.
1833 May 15, Edmund Kean (46),
English actor (Shylock), died.
1842 May 15, Emanuel ADMJ Count
de las Cases (76), French historian (Napoleon), died.
1849 May 15, Neapolitan troops
entered Palermo, and were in possession of all of Sicily.
1853 May 15, In San Francisco a
groundbreaking ceremony was held for a tunnel to deliver water from
Mountain Lake to the Presideo and then to downtown SF. The project
was not completed due to lack of funding. In 2010 the entrance,
buried under 42 feet of landfill, was rediscovered in the Presidio
near Polin Springs.
(SFC, 10/11/10, p.A9)
1856 May 15, Lyman Frank Baum
(d.1919) was born in Chittenango, NY. He had been a failed
storekeeper, a reporter and, when his first children's book was
published in 1897, a traveling china salesman. Two years later, Baum
teamed with poster artist William Wallace Denslow to produce “Father
Goose, His Book," the best-selling children's book of the year. “The
Wonderful Wizard of Oz" in 1900 was the second collaboration for
Baum and Denslow. This color woodcut, "You ought to be ashamed of
yourself!" is one of 24 full-page color plates that illustrated the
first edition of the beloved children's classic [see 1891].
(HNPD, 5/14/99)(AP, 5/15/07)
1858 May 15, Emily Folger,
Shakespeare scholar, was born.
1859 May 15, Pierre Curie,
physicist (Nobel 1903), was born. He and his wife discovered radium.
(HN, 5/15/99)(MC, 5/15/02)
1860 May 15, Ellen Louise Axson
Wilson, first wife of President Woodrow Wilson, was born.
1862 May 15, Arthur Schnitzler
(d.1931), playwright and novelist (La Ronde), was born in Austria.
1862 May 15, The US Department
of Agriculture was created.
1862 May 15, In New Orleans
General Benjamin Butler issued an order to the effect that any woman
insulting or showing contempt for any officer or soldier of the
United States should be treated as a woman of the town "plying her
avocation" - meaning soliciting of prostitution.
1862 May 15, The Union ironclad
Monitor and the gunboat Galena fired on Confederate troops at the
Battle of Drewry's Bluff, Virginia.
1862 May 15, The Confederate
cruiser Alabama ran aground near London.
1862 May 15-17, Battle of
1864 May 15, At Battle of New
Market, Virginia, Military Institute cadets repelled a Union attack.
1873 May 15, Nikolay N.
Tcherepnin, composer of ballets, songs, was born in St Petersburg,
1878 May 15, The Tokyo Stock
Exchange, Japan’s 1st public trading institution, formed.
(WSJ, 3/15/07, p.C1)
1882 May 15, May Laws: Czar
Alexander III banned Jews from living in rural Romania.
1885 May 15, Mormons began an
exodus from the United States into Mexico. Chihuahua Governor Ochoa
had agreed to sell land to the Mormons to colonize. Church President
John Taylor had explored the area and church officials selected
Casas Grandes, a valley in the state of Chihuahua, as the place to
1886 May 15, Poet Emily
Dickinson (b.1830) died in Amherst, Mass., where she had lived in
seclusion for the previous 24 years. In 2001 Alfred Habegger
authored her biography: "My Wars Are laid Away in Books." In 2008
Brenda Wineapple authored “White Heat: The Friendship of Emily
Dickinson & Thomas Wentworth Higginson (1823-1911). In 2010
Lyndall Gordon authored “Lives Like Loaded Guns: Emily Dickinson and
her Family Feuds," in which he presents evidence that Dickinson
suffered from congenital epilepsy.
(AP, 5/15/97)(HN, 5/15/01)(WSJ, 11/2/01,
p.W11)(Econ, 7/26/08, p.96)
1891 May 15, Mikhail Bulgakov
(d.1940), Russian novelist (Notes of a Dead Man, Heart of a Dog),
(HN, 5/15/01)(Econ, 3/13/04, p.86)
1891 May 15, Jules Massenet's
opera "Griselde," premiered in Paris.
1891 May 15, Gerard and Anton
Philips began their Philips & Co. operations in Eindhoven,
Holland, with the production of light bulbs.
1894 May 15, Katherine Anne
Porter (d.1980), American author, was born. She is best remembered
for her book "Ship of Fools." "Love must be learned, and learned
again and again; there is no end to it. Hate needs no instruction,
but wants only to be provoked." "I do not understand the world, but
I watch its progress."
(WUD, 1994 p.1120)(AP, 1/25/98)(AP, 3/4/99)(HN,
1896 May 15, A tornado killed
78 in Texas.
1902 May 15, Richard Daley,
mayor of Chicago through the 1960s and early 1970's, was born.
1905 May 15, Joseph Cotton,
actor, was born in Petersburg, Va.
1909 May 15, James Mason, actor
(The Desert Fox, Lolita, Bloodline, Boys From Brazil), was born in
1910 May 15, Robert F. Wagner,
(Mayor-D-NYC, 1949-65), was born.
1911 May 15, Max Frisch
(d.1991), Swiss architect and writer, was born.
1911 May 15, The Supreme Court
ordered the dissolution of Standard Oil Company, ruling it was in
violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act. The anti-trust suit led to
the dissolution of Standard Oil Co. of John D. Rockefeller. From its
remains 34 new companies were formed that included Exxon, Mobil,
Amoco, Chevron, Arco and Conoco. Rockefeller’s quarter interest in
the parent turned into a quarter interest in all the offspring. The
action of the supreme court was based n part on findings by Ida
Tarbell, who published articles in McClure’s Magazine regarding
Rockefeller and Standard Oil. In 2008 Steve Weinberg authored
“Taking on the Trust: The Epic Battle of Ida Tarbell and John D.
(AP, 5/15/97)(WSJ, 5/8/98, p.W10)(WSJ, 3/28/08,
1912 May 15, Ty Cobb rushed a
heckler at a NY Highlander game and was suspended.
1914 May 15, In San Francisco
the new Ewing Field ballpark opened. Cal Ewing, owner of the Pacific
Coast league Seals, erected the 18,000 seat Ewing Field on Masonic
Ave south of Geary Blvd., now the site of Wallenberg High School. It
was used for a half-season by the SF Seals and they fled back to
Rec. Park because of the fog.
(SFEC,12/797, Z1 p.4)(SSFC, 5/11/14, DB p.50)
1915 May 15, AT&T became
the 1st corporation to have 1 million stockholders.
1917 May 15, British Lt. John
Harold Pritchard was killed in a nighttime battle at Bullecourt,
France. This was during the two week 2nd battle of Bullecourt on the
Hindenburg Line. Thousands of dead were scattered on both sides. In
2013 Pritchard’s body was found on a farm that covered the
(SFC, 4/24/13, p.A5)
1915 May 15, In Germany Clara
Immerwahr, chemist and wife of chemist Fritz Haber, shot herself in
the heart with her husband’s service weapon in their garden,
possibly in response to his having personally overseen the first
successful use of chlorine at the Second Battle of Ypres on April
22, 1915. That same morning, Haber left for the Eastern Front to
oversee gas release against the Russians.
1916 May 15, U.S. Marines
landed in Santo Domingo to quell civil disorder. [see May 5, 1916]
1918 May 15, Joseph Wiseman,
actor (Dr No, Viva Zapata, Les Miserables), was born in Montreal.
1918 May 15, The U.S. Post
Office and the U.S. Army began regularly scheduled airmail service
between Washington and New York through Philadelphia. Lieutenant
George L. Boyle, an inexperienced young army pilot, was chosen to
make the first flight from Washington. Even with a route map
stitched to his breeches, Boyle lost his way and flew south rather
than north. The second leg of the Washington--Philadelphia--New York
flight, however, took off and arrived in New York on
schedule--without the Washington mail. The distance of the route was
218 miles, and one round trip per day was made six days a week. Army
Air Service pilots flew the route until August 10, 1918, when the
Post Office Department took over the entire operation with its own
planes and pilots.
(AP, 5/15/97)(HNPD, 6/15/99)(HNQ, 4/24/01)
1918 May 15, Pfc. Henry Johnson
and Pfc. Needham Roberts received the Croix de Guerre for their
services in World War I. They were the first Americans to win
France's highest military medal.
1921 May 15, The Italian
Communist Party won 15 parliament seats out of 535.
1923 May 15, Richard Avedon,
photographer, was born.
1926 May 15, Anthony Shaffer,
English playwright (Sleuth), twin brother of Peter Shaffer, was
1926 May 15, Peter Shaffer,
English playwright (Equus, Amadeus), twin brother of Anthony
Shaffer, was born.
1929 May 15, Fire in X-ray film
stock killed 125 at Crile Clinic, Cleveland.
1930 May 15, Jasper Johns, Jr.,
painter, leader of the Pop Art movement, was born in Augusta, Ga. He
grew up in South Carolina.
1930 May 15, Ellen Church, the
first airline stewardess, went on duty aboard an Oakland-to-Chicago
flight operated by Boeing Air Transport, a forerunner of United
(HN, 5/15/98)(AP, 5/15/07)
1932 May 15, Japan’s PM
Tsuyoshi Inukai (b.1855) and his family were assassinated by young
right-wing naval officers. His son Ken Inukai, watching a Sumo
wrestling match with Charlie Chaplin, survived.
(WSJ, 8/3/06, p.D5)
1933 May 15, 1st voice
amplification system was used in US Senate.
1934 May 15, US Dept. of
Justice offered $25,000 reward for John Dillinger, dead or alive.
1935 May 15, Kasimir Malevich
(b.1878), Ukraine-born Cubist painter, died. He was a leader of the
Suprematist movement in Russian painting. He pioneered the use of
abstract geometrical elements and limited colors to demonstrate the
supremacy of expressing feelings.
1937 May 15, Trini Lopez,
singer, guitarist (If I Had a Hammer), was born in Trinidad.
1939 May 15, US Supreme
Court Justice James McReynolds in the US vs. Miller case said that
the 2nd Amendment did not bar restrictions on the ownership of
sawed-off shotguns, because the regulations did not have a
"reasonable relationship" to militias. A District Court had held
that section eleven of the National firearms Act violates the Second
Amendment. It accordingly sustained the demurrer and quashed the
indictment. The Supreme Court rejected the decision of the lower
1940 May 15, Nylon stockings
went on general sale for the first time in the United States. [see
Oct 24, 1939]
1940 May 15, German troops
occupied Amsterdam. Gen Winkelman surrendered.
1940 May 15, German armor
division moved into Northern France.
1941 May 15, Lainie Kazan,
singer, actress (Lust in the Dust, Beaches), was born in Brooklyn.
1941 May 15, Joe DiMaggio
started his 56-game hitting streak. The Yanks lost 13-1. In 2011
Kostya Kennedy authored “56: Joe DiMaggio and the Last Magic Number
1941 May 15, 1st British
1941 May 15, All preparations
for the German attack against Russia in Operation Barbarossa were to
1941 May 15, Nazi occupiers in
Netherlands forbade Jewish music.
1942 May 15, Gasoline rationing
went into effect in 17 states, limiting sales to 3 gallons a week
for nonessential vehicles.
(AP, 5/15/97)(HN, 5/15/98)
1943 May 15, Halifax bombers
1943 May 15, Warsaw ghetto
uprising ended in it's destruction by Nazi-SS troops.
1944 May 15, Eisenhower,
Montgomery, Churchill and George VI discussed the D-Day plan.
1944 May 15, A partisan attack
on a movie theater killed 5 German soldiers in Genoa. 4 days later
SS Officer Friedrich Engel ordered the killing of 59 Italian
prisoners in reprisal. In 2002 Engel (93) was sentenced to 7 years
in prison for the order.
(SFC, 7/6/02, p.A14)(AP, 2/14/06)
1948 May 15, A 28 year old
British Mandate over Palestine ended.
1948 May 15, Hours after
declaring its independence, the new state of Israel was attacked by
Transjordan, Egypt, Syria, Iraq and Lebanon.
1952 May 15, California’s
Central Valley Regional Water Pollution Control Board issued
resolution No. 127 barring entry of perchlorate and 8 other
chemicals into local groundwater and the American River. Medical
researchers soon published that perchlorate blocks the uptake of
essential iodide into the thyroid. Aerojet Corp., a rocket fuel
manufacturer, objected and continued untreated discharges.
(WSJ, 12/16/02, p.A9)
1952 May 15, Italo Montemezzi
(76), composer, died.
1955 May 15, A treaty was
signed in Vienna by the representatives of the four powers and
Austria. It formally reestablished the Austrian republic in its
pre-1938 frontiers as a “sovereign, independent and democratic
1957 May 15, The 1st British
hydrogen bomb was detonated on Christmas Island in South Pacific.
The 200 - 300 kilotons yield was less than expected.
1958 May 15, The MGM movie
musical "Gigi," starring Leslie Caron as a young French
courtesan-in-training, was released.
1958 May 15, Vice President
Richard Nixon received a hero's welcome on his return from a
violence-marred tour of Latin America.
1958 May 15, In South Korea the
Yoido Full Gospel Church was founded by David Yonggi Cho and his
mother-in-law, Choi Ja-shil, both Assemblies of God pastors. Their
first worship service was held in the home of Choi Ja-shil. Apart
from the two pastors, only Choi Ja-shil's three daughters and one
elderly woman, who had come in to escape from the rain, attended the
first service. By 2007 Yoido counted some 830,000 members and its
church in Seoul was the largest in the world.
1958 May 15, Sputnik III, the
first space laboratory, was launched in the Soviet Union.
1961 May 15, 36 Unification
church couples were wed in Korea.
1962 May 15, US marines
"arrived" in Laos.
1963 May 15, Peter, Paul &
Mary won their 1st Grammy (If I Had a Hammer).
1963 May 15, U.S. astronaut L.
Gordon Cooper blasted off atop an Atlas rocket aboard Faith 7 on the
final mission of the Project Mercury space program. He orbited Earth
22 times and manually piloted his craft to a pinpoint splashdown.
(AP, 5/15/97)(WSJ, 11/7/97, p.A1)(HN, 5/15/98)
1966 May 15, South Vietnamese
army battled Buddhists and about 80 died.
1967 May 15, Edward Hopper
(b.1882), US painter (House by Railroad), died in NYC. He studied in
Paris but never painted in the abstract. He often used his wife,
artist Josephine Nivison (d.1968), as his model. He was the first
artist to paint the American scene as a desolate, vacant place. A
biography of Mr. Hopper and his 44 years with Josephine was
published in 1995 by Gail Levin titled “Edward Hopper." In 1998 the
Whitney Museum published: "Edward Hopper: A Journal of His Work."
(www.fact-index.com)(WSJ, 10/4/95, p.A-12)(SFEC,
3/15/98, BR p.7)(HN, 7/22/02)
1968 May 15, A tornado at
Jonesboro, Arkansas, killed 34 people. Another near Anchorage,
Alaska, killed one person.
(SFC, 5/15/09, p.D8)
1968 May 15, US Marines
relieved army troops in Nhi Ha, South Vietnam, after a fourteen-day
1969 May 15, US Supreme Court
Justice Abe Fortas resigned amid a controversy over his past legal
1969 May 15, Univ. of
California officials fenced People’s Park and planned to build
dormitories. This prompted some 3,000 protesters to try to seize it
back. Gov. Reagan placed Berkeley under martial law and dispatched
tear gas-spraying helicopters and riot police who shot and killed
(SSFC, 6/9/02, p.F7)
1970 May 15, Phillip Lafayette
Gibbs and James Earl Green, two black students at Jackson State
University in Mississippi, were killed when police opened fire
during student protests.
1970 May 15, South Africa was
excluded from Olympic play.
1972 May 15, Alabama’s Gov.
George Wallace was shot by Arthur Bremer while campaigning in
Laurel, Maryland, for the Democratic presidential primary. Wallace
was left paralyzed. In 2007 Bremer was released from jail after
serving 35 of his 53 year sentence.
(HFA, '96, p.30)(SFC, 8/16/96, p.D11)(AP,
1972 May 15, The US returned
Okinawa and the Senkaku Islands to Japan. The US had taken them over
after WW II. Japan had begun administering Senkaku Islands between
Okinawa and Taiwan in 1895.
1973 May 15, Robert MacNeil and
Jim Lehrer teamed up on NPACT’s coverage of the Senate Watergate
hearings. In 1975 the MacNeil-Lehrer Report" premiered on PBS.
1974 May 15, PFLP terrorists
took a school in Maalot, Israel. 26 people were killed including 21
children after an unsuccessful rescue attempt.
(www.mfa.gov.il/mfa)(WSJ, 9/14/04, p.A20)
1975 May 15, US forces raided
the Cambodian island of Koh Tang and recaptured the American
merchant ship Mayaguez. All 40 crew members were released safely by
Cambodia, but some 40 US servicemen were killed in the military
operation. Some 200 Marines stormed the island of Koh Tang to rescue
the crew of the Mayaguez, but the crew had been moved. The Marines
fought all day against the Khmer Rouge and escaped by helicopter in
the evening. Three comrades were left behind and later died under
the Khmer Rouge. The crew was freed about the same time that the
Marine assault began.
(SFEC, 5/16/99, p.A14)(AP, 5/15/08)
1976 May 15, Samuel Eliot
Morison (b.1887), US historian (Admiral of Ocean Sea), died.
1978 May 15, The US Supreme
Court’s Santa Clara Pueblo vs. Martinez decision held that tribal
enrollment issues are an Indian-only matter immune from outside
1979 May 15, In Ghana J.J.
Rawlings (b.1947) led an unsuccessful coup d'état that resulted in
his arrest, imprisonment, and a death sentence.
1983 May 15, The Madison Hotel
in Boston, Mass., was destroyed by implosion.
1984 May 15, Thomas Albright
(48), art critic for the SF Chronicle, died. He had just completed
his book “Art in the San Francisco Bay Area 1945-1980."
(SSFC, 5/10/09, DB p.50)
1985 May 15, Edmond O'Brien
(b.1915), film actor, died. His films included "Hunchback of Notre
Dame" (1939) and "The Wild Bunch" (1969).
1986 May 15, Searchers on
Oregon's Mount Hood found two teenage survivors of a hiking
expedition that became trapped in a whiteout blizzard. Nine other
1986 May 15, Theodore H. White
(b.1915), US journalist, died. His book “Making of the President"
(1960) won a 1962 Pulitzer Prize.
1986 May 15, In Sudan Francis
Bok (7) was kidnapped when Arabs from a government-armed militia
swept into his village shooting the men and cutting off their heads
(WSJ, 5/23/02, p.A1)(http://tinyurl.com/ybn8g5)
1987 May 15, President Reagan
told a gathering of out-of-town reporters at the White House he did
not consider himself "mortally wounded" by the Iran-Contra affair.
1988 May 15, The Soviet Union
began the process of withdrawing its 115,000 troops from
Afghanistan, more than eight years after Soviet forces had entered
(AP, 5/15/98)(HN, 5/15/98)
1989 May 15, Soviet President
Mikhail S. Gorbachev arrived in Beijing for the first Sino-Soviet
summit in 30 years. His 3-day visit was overshadowed by
pro-democracy demonstrations led by Chinese students.
(SFC, 2/20/96, p.A4)(AP, 5/15/99)
1990 May 15, Congressional
leaders and Bush administration officials began a bipartisan summit
on the fiscal 1991 budget and its deficit.
1990 May 15, "Portrait of
Doctor Gachet" (1890) by Vincent Van Gogh sold for $82.5 million to
Ryoei Saito, Japan's second-largest paper manufacturer.
1991 May 15, Simon and Schuster
published “Nancy Reagan: The Unauthorized Biography" by Kitty Kelly.
Review copies came out in April.
1991 May 15, President Bush
took Britain’s Queen Elizabeth the Second to a baseball game between
the Baltimore Orioles and the Oakland Athletics. The queen left
after two innings; the A’s won, 6-to-3.
1991 May 15, Defense lawyers
released docs claiming Noriega is "CIA's man in Panama."
1991 May 15, French President
Francois Mitterrand appointed Edith Cresson to be France’s first
1992 May 15, A judge in Los
Angeles ordered police officer Laurence Powell retried on a charge
of excessive force in the beating of Rodney King. The charge was
1993 May 15, Prairie Bayou won
1993 May 15, The $186 million
Alamodome opened in San Antonio, Texas.
1993 May 15, Bosnian Serbs
began voting in a two-day referendum that overwhelmingly rejected a
U.N.-backed peace plan.
1994 May 15, Supreme Court
nominee Stephen G. Breyer arrived in Washington to spend the night
at the White House, while Republicans joined Democrats in predicting
swift Senate confirmation.
1995 May 15, Dow Corning
Corporation filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, citing
potentially astronomical expenses from liability lawsuits.
1996 May 15, Republican
presidential candidate Bob Dole announced he was leaving the Senate
after 27 years to challenge President Clinton full time.
1996 May 15, Bishop Fabian
Bruskewitz of the Lincoln, Nebraska, diocese in a March diocesan
newspaper ordered Catholics to quit 12 proscribed groups or face
excommunication. The groups include: Planned Parenthood, Call to
Action, Catholics for a Free Choice, The Hemlock Society, and
Masonic organizations such as the Rainbow Girls and others.
(SFC, 5/16/96, p.A-3)
1996 May 15, An asteroid about
a third of a mile across was detected and enroute to miss Earth by
only 279,000 miles on 5/19/96. Timothy Spar and Carl Hergenrother
discovered the asteroid and named it 1996 JA-1. It was traveling at
10 miles per second on a 4-year orbit around the sun.
(SFC, 5/19/96, p.A-2)
1996 May 15, In India the BJP
parliamentary leader, A.B. Vajpayee, was named prime minister. Pres.
Shankar Dayal Sharma asked the new prime minister to form a
coalition government by May 31. The BJP wants to build a nuclear
bomb and revoke the autonomy of the disputed territory of Kashmir,
India’s only Muslim-majority state.
(WSJ, 5/16/96, p.A-1)
1996 May 15, Serb. Pres.
Slobodan Milosevic voted to sack the rump Yugoslavia’s central bank
governor, Dragoslav Avramovic.
(WSJ, 5/16/96, p.A-10)
1996 May 15, The UN closed its
offices in Western Sahara due to a deadlock over election
registration. 4/5 of Western Sahara is under Moroccan
administration. The Polisario Front claims that Morocco is packing
the electoral rolls with supporters having only tenuous links with
the territory. Polisario has declared an independent republic and
said this is recognized by more than 70 countries.
(SFC, 5/15/96, p.A-10)
1996 May 15, Bishop Fabian
Bruskewitz of the Lincoln, Nebraska, diocese in a March diocesan
newspaper ordered Catholics to quit 12 proscribed groups or face
excommunication. The groups included: Planned Parenthood, Call to
Action, Catholics for a Free Choice, The Hemlock Society, and
Masonic organizations such as the Rainbow Girls and others.
(SFC, 5/16/96, p.A-3)
1997 May 15, Attorney General
Janet Reno requested the death penalty for Unabomber suspect
Theodore Kaczynski. However, under an arrangement in which he
admitted his guilt, Kaczynski later agreed to be sentenced to life
in prison without possibility of parole.
1997 May 15, In Louisiana Hayes
Williams (49) was released after 30 years from the State
Penitentiary at Angola after new evidence confirmed his innocence in
the 1967 murder of a white service station owner. He had filed a
lawsuit against the state (Williams vs. Governor John McKeithen)
that led to a 25-year overhaul of Louisiana’s prison system along
with federal oversight.
(SFC, 12/1/97, p.A3)
1997 May 15, Space shuttle
Atlantis blasted off on a mission to deliver urgently needed repair
equipment and a fresh American astronaut to Russia's orbiting Mir
1997 May 15, It was reported
that scientists at Cal Tech identified the source of mysterious
gamma rays as coming from behind a large intergalactic cloud some 2
billion light-years from Earth.
(SFC, 5/15/97, p.A6)
1997 May 15, In Algeria armed
men massacred 30 villagers, 17 of them children, in Chebli, 15 miles
south of the capital.
(SFC, 5/16/97, p.A8)
1997 cMay 15, In the Congo in
mid May Kabila’s soldiers were reported to have killed as many as
275 people in Uvira on Lake Tanganyika.
(SFC, 7/26/97, p.A14)
1997 May 15, In Hungary the
government approved the payment of $553.8 million to the Roman
Catholic Church for assets lost under Communist rule. Negotiations
on a concordat with the Vatican were in the final stages. Physical
assets would be gradually returned through 2011.
(WSJ, 5/16/97, p.A14)
1997 May 15, Pres. Fidel Ramos
of the Philippines visited California and planned to announce a pact
with Oracle Corp. to wire the country for long-distance phone
(SFC, 5/15/97, p.A21)
1997 May 15, Saadallah Wannous,
Syrian playwright, died in Damascus. His plays included “A Night
Party for July 5," “Rituals of Signs and Changes," “The King Is the
King," and “The Rape," an adoption of a Spanish play that was
(SFC, 5/19/97, p.A24)
1998 May 15, In Washington DC
Latia Robinson (7) took control of a Honda Accord after her father
passed out and drove him safely to a hospital at the beginning of
(SFC, 6/20/98, p.A6)
1998 May 15, Leaders of eight
countries, including the US, opened a three-day summit in
1998 May 15, Three African
nations, Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania, announced plans for an
economic, political and social union.
(SFC, 5/16/98, p.A11)
1998 May 15, It was reported
that the Burmese junta was expanding opium production while
collecting money from the UN for destroying poppy fields.
(SFC, 5/15/98, p.A14)
1998 May 15, Trapped in blazing
shopping malls, hundreds of looters burned to death in rioting that
laid smoking waste to Indonesia's capital, Jakarta.
1998 May 15, Tuanku Mizan
Zainal Abidin (b. 1962) became the 17th Sultan of Terengganu and the
13th Yang di-Pertuan Agong, the constitutional head of state of
1998 May 15, In Northern
Ireland the Loyalist Volunteers announced a cease-fire to encourage
Protestant voters to reject the peace accord referendum.
(SFC, 5/16/98, p.A11)
1998 May 15, Serbian police
began to turn back truckers in a blockade of Kosovo. Shortage of
critical food supplies soon developed.
(SFC, 5/20/98, p.C16)
1999 May 15, Charismatic won
the Preakness, finishing 1 1/2 lengths ahead of Menifee.
1999 May 15, US warplanes
attacked Iraqi air defense sites after being targeted by radar.
(SFEC, 5/16/99, p.A15)
1999 May 15, In Russia the
Communist-led drive to impeach Pres. Yeltsin failed as nearly 100
members stayed away from the balloting.
(SFEC, 5/16/99, p.A1)
1999 May 15, In Russia two Red
Cross workers were abducted in Nalchik, a town in the southern
republic of Kabardino-Balkaria. A Russian woman was released but
Geraldo Cruz Ribeiro of New Zealand was held by alleged Chechen
(SFC, 5/17/99, p.A10)
1999 May 15, In Slovakia
presidential elections were held and Rudolf Schuster (65), mayor of
Kosice, was the front runner over Vladimir Meciar (57). Schuster won
47% of the vote to Meciar's 37% and a runoff was scheduled for May
(SFEC, 5/16/99, p.A21)(SFC, 5/17/99, p.A10)
2000 May 15, By a five-to-four
vote, the US Supreme Court threw out a key provision of the 1994
Violence Against Women Act, saying that rape victims could not sue
their attackers in federal court.
2000 May 15, United Press
International was sold to the parent company of The Washington
2000 May 15, A consortium of
Western oil companies found a large oil reserve in the northern
Caspian Sea off the coast of Kazakhstan. The 480-sq. mile Kashagan
field was estimated at 8 to 50 billion barrels of oil. In 2007 it
was reported that the Kashagan field contained some 12-billion
barrels of oil.
(SFC, 5/16/00, p.A14)(Econ, 11/17/07, p.43)
2000 May 15, Near Chiquinquira,
Columbia, Elvia Cortez (53) and Jairo Lopez, a bomb technician, were
killed by explosives placed on her neck by kidnappers who claimed to
be members of FARC and demanded $7,500.
(SFC, 5/16/00, p.A13)(SFC, 5/17/00, p.A14)
2000 May 15, In Ethiopia tens
of thousands marched in Addis Ababa in support of the renewed border
war with Eritrea.
(WSJ, 5/16/00, p.A1)
2000 May 15, In Greece the
government ordered the removal of religious affiliation from state
(SFC, 5/17/00, p.A18)
2000 May 15, Palestinian police
and Israeli soldiers fought gun battles across the West Bank and
Gaza Strip. 4 people were killed and hundreds were wounded.
(SFC, 5/16/00, p.A1)
2000 May 15, In Serbia some
20,000 opposition supporters rallied in Belgrade for free elections
and the resignation of Pres. Milosevic.
(WSJ, 5/16/00, p.A1)
2001 May 15, The US Federal
Reserve lowered the short term federal funds interest rate .5% to
(SFC, 5/16/01, p.A1)
2001 May 15, The US government
issued new guidelines for managing high cholesterol.
(SFC, 5/16/01, p.A1)
2001 May 15, In California
regulators adopted the highest rate increase in the state’s history.
The residential consumer burden was raised by over $100 million.
(SFC, 5/16/01, p.A1)
2001 May 15, A runaway freight
train rolled about 70 miles through Ohio with no one aboard before a
railroad employee jumped onto the locomotive and brought it to a
2001 May 15, In Colombia
paramilitary forces kidnapped some 207 workers as they returned home
in the state of Casanare.
(SFC, 5/17/01, p.A10)
2001 May 15, The IMF approved
$8 billion in loans to Turkey.
(WSJ, 5/16/01, p.A1)
2001 May 15, In India gunmen
killed 3 Catholic priests at Ngarian in Manipur state.
(SFC, 5/17/01, p.C4)
2001 May 15, On Israel’s 53rd
birthday Israeli troops shot and killed at least 4 Palestinians and
over 200 were wounded. An Israeli woman was also killed in the West
(SFC, 5/16/01, p.A10)(WSJ, 5/16/01, p.A1)
2001 May 15, A celebratory mood
took hold of Japan after the palace formally announced that Crown
Princess Masako was pregnant.
2001 May 15, Macedonia’s new
unity government ordered a halt to attacks on ethnic Albanian rebels
but warned them to clear out of northern villages within 2 days or
face full-scale assaults.
(SFC, 5/16/01, p.A10)
2001 May 15, Tens of thousands
of Palestinians packed town squares in the West Bank town of
Ramallah as they marked what they called the day of "catastrophe" in
1948, when they were uprooted and the state of Israel created.
2001 May 15, In the Philippines
gunmen killed a policeman and stole ballot boxes as voting
continued. Arroyo’s party held a flimsy lead.
(WSJ, 5/16/01, p.A1)
2001 May 15, Fidel Castro
arrived in Syria from Qatar for a 2-day visit.
(SFC, 5/16/01, p.D14)
2001 May 15, Yugoslav forces
forced ethnic Albanian rebels from the village of Oraovica in the
Kosovo-Macedonia buffer zone. 14 rebels were reported killed.
(SFC, 5/16/01, p.A10)(WSJ, 5/17/01, p.A1)
2002 May 15, The White House
acknowledged that in the weeks before the Sept. 11 attacks,
President Bush was told by U.S. intelligence that Osama bin Laden's
terrorist network might hijack American airplanes, but that
officials did not know that suicide hijackers were plotting to use
planes as missiles.
2002 May 15, The Bush
administration rejected pleas by former Pres. Carter and farm-state
lawmakers to ease the trade embargo on Cuba.
(WSJ, 5/16/02, p.A1)
2002 May 15, Financier Martin
Frankel pleaded guilty in New Haven, Conn., to pulling off one of
the most brazen swindles Wall Street had ever seen. In 2004 Frankel
(50) was sentenced to over 16 years in prison.
(AP, 5/15/03)(SFC, 12/11/04, p.A3)
2002 May 15, German
Metalworkers in Baden-Wuerttemberg won a higher than expected wage
increase that included 4% in June and 3.1% in 2003. A 10-day strike
was expected to end.
(WSJ, 5/16/02, p.A1)
2002 May 15, In Israel Binyamin
Ben-Eliezer, the defense minister, proposed a peace package that
called for sharing Jerusalem with the Palestinians and granting them
most of the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
(SFC, 5/16/02, p.A6)
2002 May 15, Election results
in the Netherlands showed the opposition Christian Democrats with a
sizeable victory with 43 seats. List, the party of recently slain
Pim Fortuyn, took 2nd place with 26 seats and named Mat Herben as
leader. Jan Peter Balkenende, head of the Christian Democrats, was
set to be PM. The ruling Labor Party won 23 of the 150 seats.
(WSJ, 5/16/02, p.A14)(SFC, 5/16/02, p.A8)(WSJ,
2002 May 15, In Palestine
Yasser Arafat conceded mistakes and proposed new elections and
(WSJ, 5/16/02, p.A1)(SFC, 5/16/02, p.A6)
2002 May 15, The Swiss National
Exhibition, Expo.02, opened. The $823 million production, scattered
around 3 lakes and 4 town, was set to close Oct 20.
(SSFC, 5/26/02, p.C5)
2002 May 15, Authorities
imposed water rationing in Taipei for the 1st time in 22 years as
drought reduced the main water reservoir to its lowest level since
(SSFC, 5/19/02, p.C15)
2002 May 15, Zimbabwe was
reported to have begun evicting thousands of black families
occupying white-owned farms and other lands not listed for seizure
under Pres. Mugabe's land plan.
(WSJ, 5/16/02, p.A12)
2003 May 15, The three-year
championship reign of the Los Angeles Lakers came to a decisive end
as the San Antonio Spurs overpowered the Lakers 110-82 to win the
Western Conference semifinal series 4 games to 2.
2003 May 15, Emergency
officials rushed to a series of mock catastrophes in the Chicago
area on the busiest day of a national weeklong exercise.
2003 May 15, Runaway Texas
Democrats boarded two buses and returned home after a self-imposed
weeklong exile in Oklahoma that succeeded in killing a redistricting
bill they opposed.
2003 May 15, San Francisco
attorney Stephen Joseph withdrew his recent suit against Kraft Inc.
to stop the sale of Oreo cookies. He was satisfied with the media
attention on the high trans fat content in the cookies and other
(SFC, 5/15/03, p.A3)
2003 May 15, Scott S. Sheppard
of the Univ. of Hawaii reported 43 more moons around Jupiter and
said he expects to find 50 more. The total number of Jupiter moons
(SFC, 5/15/03, p.A9)
2003 May 15, June Carter Cash
(73), the Grammy-winning scion of one of country music's pioneering
families and the wife of Johnny Cash, died of complications from
2003 May 15, Britain cancelled
all flights to and from Kenya following US warnings of a possible
(SFC, 5/16/03, p.A12)
2003 May 15, China threatened
possible execution or jail sentences for people who cause death or
injury by deliberately spreading SARS.
(WSJ, 5/16/03, p.A1)
2003 May 15, Fleeing Congo
civilians jammed roads out of Bunia by the thousands, trying to
escape rival ethnic militias battling for control with mortars and
2003 May 15, The Dominican
government took control of the Caribbean nation's oldest and most
respected newspaper and seized 70 radio and four television stations
after Ramon Baez, banker and media baron, was charged with bank
(AP, 5/15/03)(WSJ, 6/30/03, p.A1)
2003 May 15, French Foreign
Minister Dominique de Villepin said in an interview that France
wants "lies and calumny" published in both the U.S. and British
press to stop.
2003 May 15, The economies of
Germany, Netherlands and Italy contracted during the first three
months of 2003 as the European Union as a whole showed no growth for
the first time in almost two years.
2003 May 15, In northern India
a fire engulfed the rear three coaches of a moving express train,
killing at least 39 passengers and injuring 20 others.
2003 May 15, The Development
Fund for Iraq was established to fund reconstruction projects with
Iraqi oil revenue.
(WSJ, 10/28/03, p.A4)
2003 May 15, US Army forces
stormed into a village near the northern city of Tikrit before dawn,
seizing more than 260 prisoners, including one man on the
most-wanted list of former Iraqi officials.
2003 May 15, Israeli troops
killed 5 people including 3 youths during a raid at Beit Hanoun
aimed to stop Palestinian fighters from firing rockets into Israel.
(SFC, 5/16/03, p.A10)
2003 May 15, In Karachi,
Pakistan, a series of explosions shook 18 Shell gas stations,
slightly injuring four employees.
2004 May 15, Smarty Jones won
the Preakness by a record 11 1/2 lengths.
2004 May 15, In Golden,
Colorado, a 40-ton steel bridge girder collapsed on I-70 near Golden
and sheered off the top of an SUV killing its 3 passengers.
(SSFC, 5/16/04, p.A2)(AP, 5/15/05)
2004 May 15, William Hinton
(b.1919), American agronomist and author: “Fanshen: A Documentary of
Revolution in a Chinese Village" (1966), died.
(Econ, 5/29/04, p.85)
2004 May 15, Col. Robert Morgan
(85), commander of the famed Memphis Belle B-17 bomber that flew
combat missions over Europe during World War II, died in Asheville,
2004 May 15, Suspected
insurgents attacked a coalition combat patrol in southern
Afghanistan, killing one American soldier and wounding two others.
At least 122 U.S. troops have died, 53 killed in action, since the
start of Operation Enduring Freedom in 2001 to topple the Taliban
regime for harboring al-Qaida.
2004 May 15, Yang Shen-sum
(92), a Chinese artist who was a master of the Lingnan school of
painting, died in Hong Kong. He had moved to Canada in 1988 and was
in Hong Kong on a visit.
2004 May 15, In Iraq a U.S.
soldier was killed and another was wounded in a roadside bombing.
The death brought to 776 the number of U.S. service members who have
died since the start of military operations in Iraq last year. Of
those, 566 died from hostile action and 210 died of non-hostile
causes. At least 38 Iraqis were killed over the last 24 hours.
(AP, 5/16/04)(SSFC, 5/16/04, p.A3)
2004 May 15, In Iraq a US
patrol was hit by a roadside bomb in Baghdad that contained the
nerve agent sarin. This was the first case of an IUD used to
disperse a nerve agent. In 2014 Staff Sgt. James Burns and Pfc.
Michael Yandell, wounded in the attack, shared their story in a NY
(SSFC, 12/7/14, p.A19)
2004 May 15, More than 100,000
Israelis rallied in favor of a pullout from the Gaza Strip.
2004 May 15, In Jordan a
three-day World Economic Forum began. Augusto Lopez-Claros, chief
economist and director of the Global Competitiveness Program in the
World Economic Forum, said "oil will remain a source of instability
in the world, and perhaps in the short-term it is the most
(AP, 5/14/04)(AP, 5/15/04)
2004 May 15, U.S. forces fought
militiamen loyal to radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr in Karbala, while
insurgents in the northern city of Mosul attacked an Iraqi army
recruiting center, killing four people and wounding 19.
2004 May 15, Visiting U.S.
national security adviser Condoleezza Rice and Russian President
Vladimir Putin on Saturday discussed the next steps necessary to
bring stability to Iraq.
2005 May 15, Newsweek, in its
May 23rd edition, issued a partial apology for a story from its May
9th edition that said US interrogators at Guantanamo Bay prison
flushed a Quran, the Muslim holy book, down a toilet. The next day,
under pressure from the Bush administration and others, Newsweek
retracted the story.
(SFC, 5/17/05, p.A1)(Econ, 5/21/05, p.32)
2005 May 15, Algerian Islamic
militants with alleged links to al Qaeda killed 11 soldiers in the
worst attack on government troops in months.
2005 May 15, In southern
Bangladesh at least 22 people have died and over 70 are missing
after a twin-deck ferry with more than 100 aboard sank on the Char
Kazal river during a storm.
2005 May 15, The Czech Republic
denied Canada its third straight title and won the world ice hockey
championship 3-0 in Vienna, Austria.
2005 May 15, Ethiopia held
elections. EU monitors later said the elections did not meet int’l.
standards. Ethiopia's opposition soon claimed major gains in the
unprecedented open parliamentary election that drew a turnout of
90%. Post election violence left close to 200 people dead.
(WSJ, 8/26/05, p.A1)(AP, 5/16/05)(AP, 12/22/09)
2005 May 15, The bodies of 46
men shot execution-style were found dumped at an abandoned chicken
farm, a trash-strewn lot and an insurgent stronghold west of the
capital. Gunmen in two cars shot dead Industry Ministry official
Col. Jassam Mohammed al-Lahibi and his driver in western Baghdad's
Ghazaliyah neighborhood. attackers killed Shiite cleric Sheik Qassim
al-Gharawi and his nephew in the capital's New Baghdad neighborhood.
2 explosions detonated about five minutes apart in a busy street as
residents were heading to work in Baqouba killing four people and
(AP, 5/15/05)(SFC, 5/16/05, p.A1)
2005 May 15, Gunmen freed the
kidnapped governor of Iraq's western Anbar province after US troops
ended a weeklong offensive in the region. 125 insurgents were
reported killed along with 9 US soldiers in Operation Matador.
(AP, 5/15/05)(WSJ, 5/16/05, p.A1)
2005 May 15, Secretary of State
Condoleezza Rice paid a surprise visit to Iraq to express support
for its new government.
2005 May 15, In Saudi Arabia 3
reform advocates were sentenced to terms ranging from six to nine
years in prison, prompting a human rights activist to call their
trial a "farce."
2005 May 15, Ali al-Dimeeni
(al-Domeini), already jailed more than a year in a Saudi prison
outside Riyadh, was sentenced to nine years in prison for sowing
dissent, disobeying his rulers and sedition. His 1998 novel "A Gray
Cloud," centered on a dissident jailed for years in a desert nation
prison where many others have done time for their political views.
(AP, 5/25/05)(Econ, 5/21/05, p.51)
2005 May 15, In eastern
Uzbekistan groups of attackers killed several soldiers before
fleeing across the border into Kyrgyzstan. About 500 bodies were
laid out in nearby Tefektosh, where troops fired on a crowd of
2006 May 15, Pres. Bush asked
Congress for $1.9 billion to permanently expand the civilian Border
Patrol. He endorsed a guest worker program and a program for
citizenship for many of the estimated 12 million illegal immigrants.
Bush also called for the development of a tamper-proof ID card for
workers and pledged to send the National Guard to tighten security
along the US border with Mexico.
(SFC, 5/16/06, p.A1)(WSJ, 5/16/06, p.A1)
2006 May 15, The United States
restored full diplomatic ties with Libya, rewarding the longtime
pariah nation for scrapping its weapons of mass destruction
2006 May 15, Washington banned
all US arms sales to Venezuela, punishing President Hugo Chavez for
his ties with Cuba and Iran and for what it believes is his inaction
against guerrillas from neighboring Colombia.
2006 May 15, The Pentagon
disclosed the names, ages and home countries of everyone held at the
isolated Guantanamo Bay Naval Base in southeastern Cuba as a suspect
in the U.S.-led war on terror. None of the most notorious terrorist
suspects was included in the list, raising questions about their
2006 May 15, Valeant
Pharmaceuticals received FDA approval to resume sales of Cesamet
(also called nabilone) a synthetic version of tetrahydrocannabinol
(THC), the active ingredient of marijuana, which it bought from
Lilly in 2004. Lilly received FDA approval in 1985, but withdrew it
from the market in 1989 for commercial reasons.
(SFC, 5/17/06, p.A3)
2006 May 15, In Brazil prison
riots and attacks on police by a criminal gang extended into a 4th
day, raising the reported death toll to 70.
2006 May 15, China's official
exchange rate broke through the psychologically important 8 yuan per
dollar level, its highest level in more than a decade, in a move
traders said might signal Beijing's willingness to allow its
currency to appreciate faster.
2006 May 15, Ecuador expelled
Occidental Petroleum following a dispute over the sale of
oil-drilling rights by Occidental to Canada’s EnCana Corp. without
government approval. Occidental filed for international arbitration.
(WSJ, 5/16/06, p.A12)(Econ, 5/20/06, p.41)
2006 May 15, A top official
said the EU will support an Iranian nuclear program that cannot be
put to military use and will boost political and economic
cooperation if Tehran accepts international oversight.
2006 May 15, More than 12,000
doctors across Germany went on strike in the biggest walkout in the
sector since a dispute over pay flared two months ago.
2006 May 15, Indonesia’s Mount
Merapi erupted violently, sending searing gas clouds and burning
rocks down its scorched flanks and threatening villagers who refused
to leave because of ancient mystical beliefs.
2006 May 15, In Iran
Mohammadi-Ashtiani was convicted of having an "illicit relationship"
with two men, according to her lawyer and London-based human rights
watchdog Amnesty International. Amnesty said she received 99 lashes
as per her sentence but was subsequently accused of "adultery while
being married" in September 2006 during the trial of a man accused
of murdering her husband. In 2010 her sentence of death by stoning
was temporarily halted.
2006 May 15, The chief judge
formally charged Saddam Hussein with crimes against humanity,
including torture of women and children, murder and the illegal
arrest of 399 people in a crackdown against Shiites in the 1980s. A
defiant Saddam refused to enter a plea. Iraq's interior ministry
arrested two al-Qaida in Iraq members: Salah Hussein Abdul-Razzaq in
Ramadi and Omar Ahmed Salah in Baghdad. Two US soldiers from 3rd
Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, were killed when
their vehicle struck a roadside bomb near Balad. Gunmen killed Nazar
Abdel-Zahra, a manager of a local soccer team, near his home in the
southern city of Basra.
(AP, 5/15/06)(AP, 5/16/06)
2006 May 15, In Nepal David
Sharp (34), a British engineer, died at about 1,000 feet into his
descent from the summit of Mt. Everest. Dozens of people walked
right past him, unwilling to risk their own ascents.
2006 May 15, Northern Ireland's
legislature, shut down for more than three years, sprang back to
life as a first step toward forming a Roman Catholic-Protestant
administration, the elusive goal of the Good Friday peace accord
eight years ago.
2006 May 15, The Palestine
Liberation Organization reopened its Beirut office, closed since the
1982 Israeli invasion of Lebanon.
2006 May 15, Zimbabwe state
media reported that police, carrying out a massive monthlong
roundup, had detained thousands of capital residents, charging many
were responsible for crime in Harare.
2007 May 15, Kenny Chesney
collected his third consecutive entertainer of the year trophy from
the Academy of Country Music.
2007 May 15, Pres. Bush tapped
Army Lt. Gen. Douglas Lute as a new White House War Czar. At least 5
four-star generals had turned the offer down.
(SFC, 5/16/07, p.A7)
2007 May 15, The US military
said former Guantanamo detainees have organized a jailbreak in
Afghanistan, kidnapped Chinese engineers and taken leadership
positions with the Taliban. In southern Afghanistan at least 11
suspected Taliban and possibly dozens more were killed by airstrikes
on Taliban compounds in the Zhari district of Kandahar province.
2007 May 15, Associated Press
reported that many VA officials who got hefty bonuses last year sat
on the boards that recommended the payments.
(WSJ, 5/16/07, p.A1)
2007 May 15, Voters in southern
Oregon’s Jackson County defeated a property tax measure to prop up
the county’s 15 public libraries.
(SFC, 5/17/07, p.A5)
2007 May 15, Reuters agreed to
a $17.2 billion takeover by Thomson of Canada that would vault the
combined entity ahead of Bloomberg to become the world's largest
financial data and news provider.
2007 May 15, Tyco Int’l. said
it has agreed to pay almost $3 billion to settle class-action suits
brought by investors in the largest payment ever by a company in
such a suit.
(SFC, 5/16/07, p.C1)
2007 May 15, The Rev. Jerry
Falwell (73), the television minister whose 1979 founding of the
Moral Majority galvanized American religious conservatives into a
political force, died.
2007 May 15, Karen Hess (88),
culinary historian and author, died in NYC. Her books included “The
Taste of America" (1977), which sounded an alarm for more healthful
(SFC, 5/22/07, p.B5)
2007 May 15, Argentine
commuters in Buenos Aires enraged by delays in evening train service
set fire to parts of a railroad station, looted nearby shops and
clashed with riot police.
2007 May 15, President Luiz
Inacio Lula da Silva said Brazil will push to improve working
conditions for sugarcane cutters who harvest most of the cane that
is turned into ethanol for the nation's booming biofuel industry. A
jury voted 5-2 to convict rancher Vitalmiro Bastos de Moura of
masterminding the shooting of 73-year-old Dorothy Stang, an American
nun and rain forest defender on Feb. 12, 2005, in a case seen as an
important test of justice in the largely lawless Amazon region. This
ruling was overturned in 2008 after the man who confessed to
shooting Stang recanted earlier testimony, insisting that he'd acted
alone. Gunman Rayfran das Neves Sales was sentenced to 28 years in
prison. In 2009 Para state's top court reversed the 2008 not-guilty
verdict for Vitalmiro Moura on a technicality.
(AP, 5/15/07)(AP, 4/7/09)
2007 May 15, PM Bertie Ahern
became the first Irish leader to address the joint houses of the
2007 May 15, In Denmark
hundreds of black-clad youths clashed with police in Copenhagen,
barricading streets and setting fire to cars to protest the
demolition of a building in the free-wheeling Christiania district.
2007 May 15, Mohammed Sayed
Saber (35). an Egyptian accused of spying for Israel praised the
Jewish state for its advanced technology and claimed documents he
passed on were so outdated they posed no threat to Egypt's security.
2007 May 15, In India
separatist rebels fatally shot six migrant workers in northeastern
Assam state. At the heart of the violence is simmering resentment by
Assam's indigenous people, most of whom are ethnically closer to
people in Myanmar and China than India, against the federal
government in New Delhi, some 1,000 miles to the west, and ethnic
Indians who have migrated to the state over the centuries.
2007 May 15, Iranian President
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called on Gulf Arab neighbors to send experts to
inspect his country's nuclear power plant, in an apparent effort to
ease fears over Tehran's nuclear ambitions.
2007 May 15, In Iraq’s Diyala
province about 50 suspected insurgents attacked a village north of
Baghdad, killing five civilians and wounding 14. Two bombs hidden in
plastic bags exploded in shops in central Baghdad, killing at least
seven people and wounding 17. A parked car bomb exploded near a
market in a Shiite enclave northeast of the capital, killing at
least 32 people and wounding 50. Hospital officials and wounded
victims said chlorine gas may have been used in the attack, but
police denied that.
(AP, 5/15/07)(AP, 5/16/07)
2007 May 15, A top Mexican
anti-drug official said the US must do more to stop weapons from
being smuggled into the hands of drug traffickers who are using them
to kill Mexican soldiers and police.
2007 May 15, Royal Dutch Shell
Plc. said protestors have occupied an oil facility in southern
Nigeria forcing daily production cuts of 170,000 barrels per day.
2007 May 15, In Pakistan a
suicide bomber with a warning to spies for America taped to his leg
attacked a crowded restaurant in Peshawar near the Afghan border,
killing at least 25 people days after a relative of the Taliban's
slain commander was arrested there.
2007 May 15, Hamas gunmen
ambushed rival Fatah forces near a key crossing along the Israeli
border, killing eight people in the deadliest battle yet in three
days of factional fighting.
2007 May 15, International
observers of elections in the Philippines said they witnessed
threats and vote-buying inside some southern precincts, and police
said two more people were killed in violence related to the voting.
2007 May 15, Russia's top AIDS
specialist said Russia's AIDS epidemic is worsening with as many as
1.3 million people infected with HIV as the virus spreads further
into the heterosexual population.
2007 May 15, Serbia's
parliament approved a new pro-democracy government, overcoming
efforts by anti-Western ultranationalists to derail the vote and
force new elections.
2007 May 15, A Spanish
anesthesiologist with hepatitis C was sentenced to prison for
infecting 275 people with the virus by injecting them with morphine
from the same needles he used to feed his own addiction. Juan Maeso
(65) was sentenced to 1,933 years in prison. The most he can serve
under Spanish law is 20 years.
2007 May 15, Venezuela’s health
minister said Venezuela will impose a limited smoking ban in bars
and restaurants but has no plans to halt the production of
cigarettes and tobacco.
2007 May 15, In Vietnam Tran
Quoc Hien, a trade union organizer and member of Bloc 8406, became
the 6th democracy campaigner to be imprisoned within a week.
(Econ, 5/19/07, p.45)
2007 May 15, In Zimbabwe a
spokesman said dozens of doctors at four of the largest state
hospitals have gone on strike to demand higher pay.
2008 May 15, The California
Supreme Court affirmed the right of same-sex couples to marry.
(SFC, 5/16/08, p.A1)
2008 May 15, Anthony Pellicano
(64), a Hollywood private eye, was convicted on federal racketeering
and other charges for digging up dirt on well-heeled LA clients. He
and 14 others were initially indicted in February, 2006. On August
29 Pellicano and entertainment lawyer Terry Christensen (64) were
convicted of conspiring to illegally wiretap the ex-wife of
billionaire Kirk Kerkorian. The verdicts were the result of a 2002
FBI probe into Pellicano’s business. On Dec 15, 2008, Pellicano was
sentenced to 15 years in prison.
(SFC, 5/16/08, p.B4)(SFC, 8/30/08, p.A2)(SFC,
2008 May 15, In Santa Clara
County, Ca., 11 members of the San Jose El Hoyo Palmas gang were
indicted on charges related to 4 homicides over the last 2 years.
(SFC, 5/16/08, p.B7)
2008 May 15, CBS Corp.
announced it was buying SF-based Cnet Networks, an Internet
technology news provider, for $1.8 billion in cash.
(SFC, 5/16/08, p.C1)
2008 May 15, Will Elder
(b.1921), founding artist at Mad Magazine (1952), died. After Mad he
established himself at Playboy where he produced the “Little Annie
(WSJ, 5/17/08, p.A8)
2008 May 15, Bob Florence
(b.1932), a Grammy Award sinning bandleader, died in LA. His
18-piece Bob Florence Limited Edition band was considered one of the
most musically challenging bands in jazz.
(SFC, 5/27/08, p.B3)
2008 May 15, Willis Eugene Lamb
Jr. (b.1913), Nobel Prize winning physicist (1955), died.
2008 May 15, In western
Afghanistan a suicide bomber wearing a burqa attacked a police
patrol at a crowded market, killing at least 12 people and wounding
27 others. Taliban militants attacked the compound of the Shinkay
district chief in Zabul province. The ensuing hour-long gun battle
left 5 Taliban dead and 6 wounded.
(AP, 5/15/08)(AP, 5/16/08)
2008 May 15, Britain's
third-biggest bank, said that first quarter profits fell after
suffering a 1.0 billion-pound (1.25 billion-euro, 1.95
billion-dollar) hit from the global credit crunch.
2008 May 15, China warned the
death toll from this week's earthquake could soar to 50,000, while
the government issued a public appeal for rescue equipment as it
struggled to cope with the disaster.
2008 May 15, In Egypt Abdullah
Kamel Mohammed (42) man was sentenced to 1,000 years behind bars
after scamming hundreds of people out of 280 million pounds (around
52 million dollars).
2008 May 15, In France hundreds
of thousands of teachers and other public sector workers went on
strike to protest jobs cuts and other changes proposed by Pres.
(WSJ, 5/16/08, p.A8)
2008 May 15, Gambia’s Pres.
Yahya Jammeh ordered homosexuals to leave the country and in a
televised speech threatened to cut off the head of anyone discovered
to be gay.
(SFC, 6/3/08, p.A3)
2008 May 15, In Greece the 2
largest labor unions staged strikes to protest pension changes and
(WSJ, 5/16/08, p.A8)
2008 May 15, In northeastern
India suspected rebels gunned down 11 people in two attacks in Assam
state. Rebels allegedly stopped four cement company trucks and shot
10 employees in the vehicles before setting the trucks on fire. In a
separate attack, militants shot at a moving train, killing the
conductor and injuring three others.
2008 May 15, Government troops
began house-to-house searches for al-Qaida in Iraq militants in
Mosul, part of a major security operation to cleanse Iraq's third
largest city from cells of the terror network. An Iranian Embassy
convoy came under fire in Baghdad, wounding four people, including
three Iranians and an Iraqi. Overnight and early morning clashes
between US-backed Iraqi forces and militiamen loyal to al-Sadr left
eight men killed and 19 wounded.
(AP, 5/15/08)(AP, 5/16/08)
2008 May 15, Italian police
announced the arrest of hundreds of suspected illegal immigrants in
a sign of the new right-wing government's determination to clamp
down. Police had arrested 383 people sing May 7.
(AP, 5/15/08)(WSJ, 5/16/08, p.A8)
2008 May 15, The Hezbollah-led
opposition and US-backed government reached a deal to end Lebanon's
worst violence since the 1975-90 civil war, now that the Cabinet has
reversed measures aimed at reining in the Iranian-backed militants.
The violence had left at least 81 people dead.
(AP, 5/15/08)(Econ, 5/24/08, p.67)
2008 May 15, In Mexico Pres.
Calderon held a signing ceremony for an agreement with Elba Esther
Gordillo, head of the national teacher’s union, to promote the
“Alliance for Educational Quality, an effort to improve teacher
(Econ, 5/24/08, p.55)
2008 May 15, Myanmar's junta
warned that legal action would be taken against people who trade or
hoard international aid as the cyclone's death toll soared above
43,000. Myanmar announced that a constitution won massive support in
a referendum, a claim slammed by a leading rights group as an insult
to the country's people.
2008 May 15, In Nigeria a huge
explosion was triggered when an excavator accidentally pierced an
oil pipeline. The Nigeria Red Cross said some 100 people were killed
in a blaze that lasted more than a day. A local government official
put the death toll at 15.
2008 May 15, European and Latin
American leaders gathered in Peru for their fifth summit in a decade
with plans to tackle climate change, high food prices and poverty.
2008 May 15, An unmanned
Russian cargo ship blasted off with supplies, equipment and gifts
for the international space station.
2008 May 15, A body
representing genocide survivors said Generosa Mukanyonga (90), a
Rwandan genocide survivor, was stabbed and burned to death by a gang
that included four assailants who had confessed to taking part in
the 1994 slaughter.
2008 May 15, In Sudan thousands
of civilians fled clashes between former north-south civil war foes
in the oil-rich central town of Abyei. The SPLM said more than $1
billion in oil revenues from Abyei has been taken by the ruling
National Congress Party rather than shared with the south as the
peace deal prescribes.
2008 May 15, Zimbabwe's
opposition reacted furiously to the prospect of a run-off poll being
delayed until the end of July, accusing authorities of flouting the
law to help Robert Mugabe cling to power. Zimbabwe introduced a new
half-a-billion dollar bank note in a bid to tackle cash shortages
fed by rampant inflation.
2009 May 15, General Motors
said it plans to eliminate some 1,000 of 6,000 showrooms over the
next year in an effort to boost profits by lessening competition
(SFC, 5/16/09, p.C1)
2009 May 15, San Francisco’s
Mayor Newsom said that 1,000 city workers would lose their jobs in
the coming months to help close a growing budget deficit. The city’s
biggest union this week rejected $38 million in wage concessions.
(SFC, 5/16/09, p.A1)
2009 May 15, A Minnesota couple
who refused chemotherapy for their son, Daniel Hauser (13), was
ordered to have the boy re-evaluated to see if he would still
benefit from cancer treatment for his Hodgkin’s lymphoma, or if it
may already be too late. On May 18 Colleen Hauser Daniel, who has
Hodgkin's lymphoma, apparently left their home sometime after a
doctor's appointment and court-ordered X-ray showed his tumor had
grown. Hauser and her son returned on May 25 and agreed to medical
(AP, 5/15/09)(SFC, 5/16/09, p.A5)(AP,
5/20/09)(AP, 5/26/09)(SFC, 5/27/09, p.A4)
2009 May 15, In eastern
Afghanistan 2 NATO were killed in fighting with insurgents. In
southern Helmand province 22 Taliban militants, including three
regional commanders, were killed in overnight fighting.
2009 May 15, A court-appointed
liquidator reported that the Antigua offshore Stanford International
Bank, at the center of an alleged Ponzi scheme by a wealthy Texas
businessman, had a $6 billion shortfall between assets and
liabilities, confirming fears that investors will likely get little
of their money back.
2009 May 15, Britain's expense
scandal widened with the suspension of a justice minister who
claimed more than 65,000 pounds ($98,000) in housing costs over
three years. The Daily Telegraph reported that Justice Minister
Shahid Malik put in the claims while he was given a discounted rent
of 100 pounds ($150) a week by a local landlord.
2009 May 15, The Wolfram Alpha
Internet search engine was officially launched. Stephen Wolfram,
British physicist, described it as a “computational knowledge
engine." It was created to compute answers from its own source of
p.86)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wolfram_Alpha)(Econ, 6/4/11, TQ
2009 May 15, Microsoft Corp.
announced a 3-year partnership aimed at helping make the eastern
Chinese city of Hangzhou a model for innovation and protection of
intellectual property, in the company's latest attempt to combat
rampant software piracy.
2009 May 15, In Egypt a
three-year-old boy from north Egypt tested positive for the deadly
H5N1 strain of bird flu in the second such case in two days. This
brought to 71 the number of bird flu infections in Egypt.
2009 May 15, Among perks
enjoyed by EU Parliament lawmakers: flying no-frills and expensing
the cost of a full fare ticket, listing spouse or child as aides and
paying them fat salaries, wining-and-dining friends at
Michelin-starred restaurants and billing the taxpayer. Unprecedented
reforms, agreed in long and difficult negotiations, mean the
incoming 736 assembly members of the EU assembly will earn far less
than their predecessors and face far stricter spending rules.
2009 May 15, Lakhdar Boumediene
(43), a Guantanamo Bay prisoner who was at the center of a Supreme
Court battle over inmates' rights, arrived in France, which agreed
to take in the Algerian in a gesture to the Obama administration.
2009 May 15, In Hong Kong 63
governments approved the Int’l. Convention for the Safe and
Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships. It aimed to make the
business of scrapping ships safer and greener by requiring higher
standards at recycling yards mostly located in South Asia. 107
environmental rights groups complained that the UN accord, doesn’t
go far enough.
(SFC, 5/16/09, p.A2)
2009 May 15, Hugh Van Es (67),
a Dutch photojournalist, died in Hong Kong. He covered the Vietnam
War and recorded the most famous image of the fall of Saigon in
1975, a group of people scaling a ladder to a CIA helicopter on a
2009 May 15, In Indonesia 6
Asia-Pacific countries, meeting at the World Oceans Conference,
agreed on a management plan to protect one of the world's largest
networks of coral reefs, promising to reduce pollution, eliminate
overfishing and improve the livelihoods of impoverished coastal
communities. The Coral Triangle Initiative on Coral Reefs, Fisheries
and Food Security covered an area defined as the Coral Triangle,
which spans Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea,
the Solomon Islands and East Timor.
2009 May 15, In Israel Pope
Benedict XVI ended his pilgrimage to the Holy Land with his
strongest call yet for the creation of a Palestinian state and
telling the faithful at the site of Jesus' crucifixion that peace is
2009 May 15, Mexico received
eight armored vehicles as part of a US aid package to help the
government with its nationwide fight against drug cartels. Mexican
federal police announced the capture of an alleged lieutenant of the
Sinaloa drug cartel. Mario Gonzalez Martinez was described as one of
the most trusted aides of Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman. Martinez was
captured along with four alleged accomplices in the western state of
2009 May 15, Nicaraguans awoke
to find that the Central Bank, moving in the night as stealthily as
the Tooth Fairy, had snuck a new legal tender into their economy
while the markets were sound asleep.
2009 May 15, In Nigeria the
rebel Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND)
declared "all-out war" in the southern oil-producing region. The
Nigerian military rescued 10 hostages from militants in the southern
oil region and destroyed the camp where the victims were being held.
(AFP, 5/15/09)(AP, 5/16/09)
2009 May 15, North Korea said
it has scrapped all wage and rent agreements with South Korea at a
joint industrial estate and told some 100 South Korean companies to
leave if they cannot accept it.
2009 May 15, Pakistani forces
killed 55 Taliban in the northwestern valley of Swat, and lifted a
curfew to allow thousands more civilians to flee before troops
assail the Taliban-held main town of Mingora. Militants had mounted
a counterattack, and three soldiers were killed and 11 wounded in
various clashes over the previous 24 hours.
2009 May 15, In Peru a national
Indian representative said Amazon Indians who have been blocking
roads, waterways and a state oil pipeline since April are declaring
an "insurgency" against Peru's government for refusing to repeal
laws that the protesters say make it easier for foreign companies to
take their lands. The next day they said they would withdraw the
call for an insurgency against the government, but vowed to press
ahead with their protests.
2009 May 15, Polish gas firm
PGNiG announced that it had signed a deal with the Qatari firm
Qatargas for the supply of one million tons of liquefied natural gas
(LNG) per year.
2009 May 15, In Spain police
arrested of Raffaele Amato, an alleged Camorra boss who
investigators say was one of Italy's top cocaine importers.
2010 May 15, Oil leaking from
the ruptured well pipe in the Gulf of Mexico washed ashore in two
new locations, as BP’s latest attempt to contain the spill faltered.
Experts warned that the spill may be growing more than ten times
faster than previous Coast Guard estimates of 5,000 barrels (210,000
gallons) a day.
2010 May 15, In Fresno, Ca.,
police arrested 60 people and impounded 37 vehicles as part of a
crackdown on gangs that began last month.
(SFC, 5/17/10, p.A4)
2010 May 15, In Maryland jockey
Martin Garcia rode “Lookin At Lucky" to victory in the Preakness
(SFC, 5/17/10, p.A1)
2010 May 15, Afghan police
officers came under attack from insurgents while working to defuse a
roadside bomb in eastern Paktia province. One militant was killed
and two others arrested after a gunbattle. Zabiullah Mujahid, a
Taliban spokesman, boasted that the group had kidnapped and killed 4
Afghan interpreters in Khost province. Insurgents attacked a convoy
in Andar district of Ghazni province, killing one private security
guard and injuring two others.
(AP, 5/16/10)(SSFC, 5/16/10, p.A7)(AP, 5/17/10)
2010 May 15, In Australia
Jessica Watson (16) became the youngest person to sail around the
globe solo, nonstop and unassisted when she cruised into Sydney
Harbor in her pink, 34-foot (10m) yacht to a rock star welcome of
thousands. Her feat will not be considered an official world record,
because the World Speed Sailing Record Council discontinued its
2010 May 15, In Brazil a fire
destroyed what may be the world's largest scientific collection of
dead snakes, spiders and scorpions. The Instituto Butantan’s
collection of nearly 80,000 specimens was the main source for
research on thousands of species.
2010 May 15, British PM David
Cameron and Afghan President Hamid Karzai agreed to strengthen ties
between London and Kabul in the first meeting between the new
British PM and a foreign leader.
2010 May 15, In Cuba hundreds
of gay and lesbian activists, some dressed in drag and others
sporting multicolored flags representing sexual diversity, marched
and danced through the streets of Havana along with the daughter of
Cuban President Raul Castro as part of a celebration aimed at
eliminating homophobia around the world.
2010 May 15, In central India
Maoist rebels kidnapped and killed six villagers in a thickly
forested area of Chattisgarh state, alleging that the men were
police informants. Their bodies were found the next day. The rebels
were currently present in 20 of the country's 28 states with an
estimated 10,000 to 20,000 fighters.
2010 May 15, In Iran prosecutor
Abbas Jafari Dolatabadi confirmed the death sentence for six
opposition activists arrested in protests after last year's disputed
presidential election. They included Ahmad Daneshpour Moghadam,
Mohsen Daneshpour Moghadam and Alireza Ghanbari, who were arrested
after opposition protests during the Shiite mourning holiday of
Ashura last December. Mohammad Ali Saremi, Jafar Kazemi and
Mohammad-Ali Haj-Aghai were arrested in September.
2010 May 15, The Israeli army
gunfire killed farmer Fuad Abu Matar (75) and wounded another
Palestinian near northern Gaza's border with the Jewish state.
2010 May 15, Moshe Greenberg
(81), an influential Bible scholar, died in Jerusalem. His work won
the first-ever Israel Prize for biblical studies (1994). His
definitive two-volume commentary on the Book of Ezekiel described,
among other things, how the prohibition of murder became an
unbreakable taboo with the Abrahamic religions because of the rise
of a belief in man's connection to God.
2010 May 15, Former Mexican
presidential candidate Diego Fernandez de Cevallos (69) disappeared.
His abandoned car was found near his ranch in the central state of
Queretaro. Four young men were found decapitated in northern Durango
state. A message on the windshield of a pickup, allegedly signed by
the Zetas gang, said the victims were involved in an attack at a bar
in the neighboring city of Torreon that killed eight people earlier
in the day. Cevallos was released on Nov 26 after the family paid a
ransom of around $20 million.
(AP, 5/15/10)(AP, 5/16/10)(Reuters, 11/27/10)
2010 May 15, Niger government
spokesman Mahamane Laouali Dan Dah said that more than 21,000 tons
of food would be given to 1.5 million people in need.
2010 May 15, In Pakistan a
suspected US missile strike killed at least five people in the
northwest Khyber tribal region. Militants armed with assault rifles
kidnapped about 60 people in a troubled tribal region in the
northwest in the Kurram region after ambushing their vehicles.
2010 May 15, Bitter Palestinian
rivals marched together in a rare show of unity as they marked 62
years of displacement in the war surrounding Israel's creation. The
Egyptian border post at Rafah in southern Gaza was opened for the
first time in 10 weeks. Some 300 Palestinians crossed the border and
that 8,000 others were expected to follow during the opening due to
last three days.
(AP, 5/15/10)(AFP, 5/15/10)
2010 May 15, In Rwanda 2 people
were killed and 27 others wounded during two separate grenade
attacks in the capital Kigali.
2010 May 15, Sudanese
authorities arrested Islamist opposition leader Hassan al-Turabi and
closed his newspaper, sparking a furious reaction from the country's
opposition. A coalition of 17 opposition parties, including the
heavyweight Umma party, signed a statement condemning Turabi's
arrest as a "violation against freedoms and democratic
transformation and the constitution."
(AFP, 5/16/10)(Econ, 6/5/10, p.54)
2010 May 15, Thailand's PM
Abhisit Vejjajiva defended the deadly army crackdown on the Red
Shirt protesters besieging the capital, saying there was no turning
back as clashes raged in the center of Bangkok. Violence Bangkok
claimed 8 more lives as the embattled premier vowed no turning back
and the army threatened a crackdown on thousands of protesters.
(AP, 5/15/10)(AFP, 5/15/10)
2011 May 15, San Francisco
celebrated the 100th anniversary of its 7.46 mile Bay to Breakers
race. Organizer’s hired guards to confiscate alcohol and banned
(SFC, 5/16/11, p.A1)
2011 May 15, In Illinois a fire
in an apartment building in Aurora, a suburb of Chicago, killed 6
people, including 3 children.
(SFC, 5/16/11, p.A4)
2011 May 15, In southern
Afghanistan a British marine was killed in a blast while searching a
compound in the Nad-e Ali district of Helmand Province.
2011 May 15, In China a one dog
per family policy went into effect in Beijing.
(SSFC, 5/15/11, p.A5)
2011 May 15, Egyptian Foreign
Minister Nabil al-Araby was elected the new secretary-general of the
(SFC, 5/16/11, p.A2)
2011 May 15, Egypt's Pope
Shenouda, head of the Orthodox Coptic church, called on Christians
to abandon a demonstration against attacks on their community after
a clash overnight left 78 wounded.
2011 May 15, Germany’s Welt am
Sonntag newspaper said the government is prepared to pay a billion
euros ($ 1.4 billion) in subsidies over the next two years to help
its industry develop electric cars.
2011 May 15, In northern
Guatemala assailants killed at least 29 people, decapitating most of
the victims, on a ranch in Caserio La Bomba, Peten province, an area
plagued by drug cartels.
2011 May 15, Hong Kong-based
Galaxy Entertainment opened is new $1.9 billion Galaxy casino in
(Econ, 5/21/11, p.70)
2011 May 15, In India police
said 2 Muslim mothers in Baghpat, Uttar Pradesh state, have been
arrested on accusations they killed their daughters for dishonoring
the family by eloping with Hindu men. Newlyweds Zahida (19) and
Husna (26) were strangled last week when they returned home after
getting married to men of their choice.
2011 May 15, Iranian President
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said he has temporarily assumed the duties of
the oil ministry. A day earlier Ahmadinejad dismissed oil minister
Masoud Mirkazemi, alongside two other ministers without
(AFP, 5/16/11)(AP, 5/16/11)
2011 May 15, In Iraq gunmen
broke into a house and fatally shot a family of three as they slept
in Baghdad’s mixed Sunni-Shiite neighborhood of Baiyaa. Separately,
mortar rounds struck in central Baghdad, killing two.
2011 May 15, Israeli troops
clashed with Arab protesters along three hostile borders, leaving at
least 12 people dead and dozens wounded in an unprecedented wave of
violence marking the anniversary of the mass displacement of
Palestinians surrounding Israel's establishment in 1948. Israeli
gunfire killed two protesters and wounded dozens as civilians
crossed from Syria onto the annexed Golan Heights, raising tensions
between Damascus and the Jewish state. 10 of the dead were
Palestinian refugees living in Lebanon.
(AP, 5/15/11)(AFP, 5/15/11)(AP, 5/16/11)
2011 May 15, Italians voted in
partial local elections with all eyes on the northern business hub
of Milan, a center-right stronghold of embattled PM Silvio
2011 May 15, Japan started the
first evacuations of homes outside the 20-km government exclusion
zone radius from the Fukushima Daiichi power plant, after the March
11 earthquake and tsunami crippled one of the country's nuclear
2011 May 15, A Lebanese soldier
was wounded from gunfire coming from the Syrian side of the border.
2011 May 15, In Libya NATO
aircraft blasted an oil terminal in the eastern port of Ras Lanouf.
(SFC, 5/16/11, p.A2)
2011 May 15, Moroccan security
services used truncheons to disperse a pro-democracy protest on the
southern outskirts of the capital Rabat, injuring several people.
2011 May 15, In Pakistan the
bodies of two men, killed by Taliban militants, were found in North
Waziristan. They were accusing them of spying for the United States.
2011 May 15, Sudan said the
northern ruling party won an election for governor in South
Kordofan, the north's main oil state, after a vote the south said
was rigged, creating a fresh flashpoint before the south secedes in
2011 May 15, Sudan's army
carried out air strikes against the villages of Labado and Esheraya
in the troubled western Darfur region.
2011 May 15, In Syria at least
8 people were killed in Talkalakh, the most recent casualties from a
government crackdown that already has killed 850 people nationwide
2011 May 15, The New York Times
reported that the crown prince of Abu Dhabi has hired Erik Prince,
the founder of private security firm Blackwater Worldwide, to set up
an 800-member battalion of foreign troops for the United Arab
2011 May 15, Zimbabwe's central
bank chief Gideon Gono said the southern African country's economy
cannot sustain an election.
2012 May 15, In Florida Tonya
Thomas (33) fatally shot her four children, ages 12-17, and then
killed herself in Port St. John.
(SFC, 5/16/12, p.A6)
2012 May 15, Henry Denker (99),
American novelist and playwright, died at his home in NYC. He
authored over 30 novels. From 1947 to 1956 he wrote, directed and
produced “the Greatest Story Ever Told," a radio drama for which he
won a Peabody Award.
(SFC, 5/24/12, p.C5)
2012 May 15, Australian
researchers said a mystery liver disease, thought to be caused by
introduced weeds, is causing hairy-nosed wombats in southern
Australia to go bald and die.
2012 May 15, British
prosecutors accused former Rupert Murdoch aide Rebekah Brooks (43)
and five others of obstructing justice in the first criminal charges
from the News of the World phone hacking scandal.
2012 May 15, In China police in
Beijing launched a 100-day campaign urging citizens to report on
foreigners illegally living or working in the capital, after a
British man allegedly tried to rape a woman.
2012 May 15, China began
issuing new versions of its passports to include electronic chips.
Inside the passports an outline of China printed in the upper left
corner includes Taiwan and the entire South China Sea hemmed in by
the dashes. This was later seen as a provocation since it would
require other nations to tacitly endorse those claims by affixing
their official seals to the documents.
2012 May 15, In Colombia a
midday bombing killed two bodyguards of an archconservative former
interior minister and injured at least 39 people in a busy
commercial district of Bogota.
2012 May 15, In CongoDRC
villagers marched on the UN base in the Bunyiakiri district of South
Kivu province after an overnight attack which reportedly killed six
people. At least 11 Pakistani peacekeepers were injured as villagers
2012 May 15, The EU naval force
patrolling the Indian Ocean carried out its first air strikes
against pirate targets on shore, with a pirate reporting that the
raid destroyed speed boats, fuel depots and an arms store.
2012 May 15, Francois Hollande
became president of France.
2012 May 15, French energy
giant Total said it has begun the operation to plug a gas leak under
one of its North Sea platforms by pumping it full of mud at high
2012 May 15, Police in northern
India probed alleged fraud in the construction of giant sculptures
of elephants and low-caste political heroes that were the
$1.2-billion pet projects of former leader Mayawati. Akhilesh
Yadav, the new chief minister of the state and bitter rival of
Mayawati, estimated that the total fraud could be as much as 400
billion rupees once everything was taken into account.
2012 May 15, India said it
would cut purchases of Iranian oil by 11% following pressure from
the US to join a drive to isolate the Islamic republic over its
disputed nuclear program.
2012 May 15, Indonesian police
said they would not issue a permit for a Lady Gaga concert scheduled
for June 3 in the capital.
2012 May 15, In Indonesia a
critically-endangered Sumatran elephant was found dead in Aceh
province, the second death from suspected poisoning within a month.
2012 May 15, Iran said Majid
Jamali Fashi, a man convicted of playing a key role in the 2010
murder of a top nuclear scientist and of spying for Israel, was
2012 May 15, In Iraq Ahmed
al-Jubouri, the bodyguard for Iraq's fugitive Vice President Tariq
al-Hashemi, testified that he was paid $3,000 to assassinate
security official Ibrahim Saleh Mahdi in November 2011 on
al-Hashemi's orders. Mahdi's wife also was killed in the drive-by
shooting on a Baghdad highway. Al-Hashemi has hotly denied the
confessions, saying his bodyguards were tortured into making the
2012 May 15, In southern
Kazakhstan a three-man crew, NASA astronaut Joseph Acaba and Russian
cosmonauts Gennady Padalka and Sergei Revin, blasted off from the
Baikonur space center on board a Soyuz craft for a
four-and-half-month stay at the International Space Station. Russian
charges for use of the Soyuz were $450 million per year.
(AP, 5/15/12)(Econ, 5/5/12, p.77)
2012 May 15, In Kenya a
landmine killed a policeman and seriously wounded two others, when
it exploded beneath their vehicle as they escorted aid workers near
the sprawling Dadaab refugee camp. Attackers fired shots and
detonated four grenades outside a nightclub in the coastal town of
Mombasa after they were denied entry, killing a security guard and
wounding 4 people. One suspect was arrested. Both attacks were
blamed on Kenyan recruits of the al-Shabab Somali militant group.
(AFP, 5/15/12)(AP, 5/16/12)
2012 May 15, In Rome the Syrian
National Council elected Paris-based academic Burhan Ghalioun as
head of the exiled opposition coalition.
2012 May 15, Lebanese troops
deployed in tense areas of the northern city of Tripoli after three
days of sectarian clashes killed at least eight people in a
spillover of the conflict in Syria. Officials said two of the eight
people died of their wounds overnight.
2012 May 15, Mexican novelist
Carlos Fuentes (b.1928) died in Mexico City. His books included “The
Old Gringo" (1985) and “The Death of Artemio Cruz" (1962).
(SFC, 5/16/12, p.C4)
2012 May 15, NATO invited
Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari to the alliance's May 20-21
summit in Chicago, after signs that the country could be moving to
reopen its Afghan border to NATO military supplies.
2012 May 15, South African
police fired teargas during clashes between the opposition
Democratic Alliance, angered by youth unemployment over 50%, and
supporters of Cosatu, the most powerful trade union in Johannesburg.
2012 May 15, South African
police officers, tipped off by an anonymous informer, forced their
way into a Johannesburg apartment where they found 10 rhinoceros
horns and an elephant tusk and arrested a Vietnamese man.
2012 May 15, In Syria regime
troops "massacred" 20 people during a funeral procession in Khan
Sheikhun. A roadside bomb hit a UN convoy in the town and left them
stranded overnight with rebel forces. The attack came minutes after
witnesses said regime forces gunned down mourners at a funeral
procession nearby. Across the country 64 people were reportedly
killed, including two rebel fighters and 11 regular army soldiers.
(AP, 5/16/12)(AFP, 5/16/12)
2012 May 15, The UN World Food
Program launched the distribution of cash vouchers for the purchase
of food in Neteboulou, in Senegal's Tambacounda region, for people
hit by poor harvests and high food prices.
2012 May 15, In the Vatican
prominent Legion of Christ priest Rev. Thomas Williams admitted that
he had had a relationship with a woman and had fathered a child "a
number of years ago." The next day the Legion of Christ admitted
that it knew Williams had fathered a child several years ago yet did
not remove him from teaching morality to seminarians and speaking
publicly about ethics and other church issues.
2012 May 15, Yemeni military
officials said warplanes and troops backed by heavy artillery have
intensified the war against al-Qaida along at least four fronts in
the south. Officials said raids mistakenly killed eight civilians
and wounded 20 in Jaar and that six militants were captured in
Zinjibar while four soldiers died in fighting near Lawder town. At
least 44 people were killed in south Yemen including 25 Islamist
militants. Yemeni officials said for the first time that the
assaults were directly guided by American troops at a nearby
(AP, 5/15/12)(AFP, 5/15/12)
2013 May 15, Pres. Obama
announced the resignation of Steven Miller, acting com missioner of
the IRS. US Attorney General Eric Holder promised angry lawmakers
that the Justice Department will undertake a national investigation
into the IRS wrongdoing. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew forced out
Steven Miller. A Treasury Department Inspector General's report had
detailed how the IRS in 2010 had targeted conservative groups for
special scrutiny when they applied for tax-exempt status.
(AP, 5/15/13)(SFC, 5/16/13, p.A6)
2013 May 15, It was reported
that Ranbaxy Labs, India’s biggest drugmaker, has agreed to pay $500
million to resolve fraud allegations related to adulterated drugs
sold in the US and lying to US regulators. A 2007 whistle-blower’s
lawsuit was unsealed on May 12. Whistelblower Dinesh Thakur had
resigned from Ranbaxy in 2005 and contacted American regulators
regarding invented data to win approval for drugs in American and
treatment for HIV patients.
(SFC, 5/15/13, p.C3)(Econ, 9/21/13, p.65)
2013 May 15, Google announced
that you can now email money, just like you would email a photo or
Word document. Both parties, payer and recipient, would need Google
(Yahoo News, 5/16/13)
2013 May 15, NASA reported that
the Kepler telescope, launched in 2009, was in trouble.
(Econ, 6/8/13, p.83)
2013 May 15, In Kentucky a
Humvee carrying 6 Navy SEALS overturned at Fort Know killing one of
(SFC, 5/18/13, p.A6)
2013 May 15, In North Texas at
least 6 people were killed in an outbreak of spring tornadoes.
(SFC, 5/16/13, p.A6)
2013 May 15, In Afghanistan 2
bombs exploded at a checkpoint outside a provincial governor's
compound, killing at least one police officer in Jalalabad,
2013 May 15, Fourteen members
of the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq arrived in Albania from Iraq, the first of
210 set to travel to new homes in Albania.
2013 May 15, The Arctic
Council, meeting in Sweden, agreed to expand membership and provide
observer status to 6 new nations including China, India, Italy,
Japan, Singapore and South Korea.
2013 May 15, Two million
Argentines will get wage hikes of 24% under a deal President
Cristina Fernandez brokered with six allied labor unions. Economists
say inflation has been running about 25% a year, more than twice the
official inflation rate of 10%.
2013 May 15, In Brussels a plan
to turn Mali into a stable democracy rather than a terrorist haven
drew massive support as various nations and international
organizations pledged 3.25 billion euros ($4.22 billion) to help
reconstruct the conflict-ridden West African nation.
2013 May 15, In CongoDRC at
least 24 militiamen and 3 soldiers died, including a lieutenant
colonel, in fighting between soldiers and Mai Mai militiamen in
Beni, 220 miles (350 km) north of Goma. 5 others, who were awaiting
transfer to a military training center, were also killed.
2013 May 15, The recession
across the economy of the 17 EU countries that use the euro extended
into its sixth quarter, longer than the calamitous slump that hit
the region in the financial crisis of 2008-9.
2013 May 15, In Iraq a wave of
bombings struck in mainly in Shiite neighborhoods, killing 33 people
and raising concerns over a return to the sectarian bloodshed.
2013 May 15, In Libya
protesters and disgruntled job seekers forced the closure of the
eastern Zueitina oil terminal for the second time in six months,
2013 May 15, Mexico’s Pres.
Enrique Peña Nieto fired Humberto Benítez Treviño, the head of its
consumer protection agency, because his daughter got inspectors to
partly close a Mexico City bistro that didn’t give her a table she
(SFC, 5/16/13, p.A2)(http://tinyurl.com/aky7v2o)
2013 May 15, Dutch sociologist
Saskia Sassen was awarded Spain's Prince of Asturias social sciences
prize for her work in the field of globalization and urban
sociology. The jury said that one of her greatest scientific
contributions was "her concept of the 'global city', now accepted
and used worldwide."
2013 May 15, In Pakistan
Mujahid Hussain, chief of disaster management efforts in the Kurram
tribal area, said an estimated 35,000 and 49,000 have left their
villages following a new offensive by the military against
2013 May 15, Violence erupted
as the Palestinians held an annual day of mourning and protests over
the displacement of Palestinians following Israel's creation in
1948. Police say Jewish worshippers inside the Old City of Jerusalem
were attacked during the unrest.
2013 May 15, Syrian rebels
launched a coordinated assault on the main prison in the northern
city of Aleppo in an attempt to free hundreds of regime opponents
believed to be held in the facility. An Internet blackout engulfed
the country for the second time in two weeks.
2013 May 15, The Vatican
ordered disgraced Scottish Cardinal Keith O'Brien to leave Scotland
for several months to pray and atone for sexual misconduct, issuing
a rare public sanction against a "prince of the church" and the
first such punishment meted out by Pope Francis.
2013 May 15, In Vietnam a law,
known as "Decision 20", came into effect. It requires that
translation and editing be performed by an agency licensed by the
government and that content is "appropriate to the people's healthy
needs and does not violate Vietnamese press law." It also states
that commercials running on foreign channels must be made in
2014 May 15, A US federal judge
upheld registration requirements that are part of gun laws in
(SFC, 5/16/14, p.A5)
2014 May 15, In California an
estimated 50,000 gallons of crude oil spilled over a half-mile area
due to a break in an above-ground pipeline in Atwater Village, Los
Angeles. The spill was soon downgraded to 10,000 gallons.
(Reuters, 5/15/14)(SFC, 5/16/14, p.A6)
2014 May 15, A federal judge in
Las Vegas imposed a 20-year sentence on David Camez (22) for his
role in what authorities say is an unprecedented criminal case
involving an international cybercrime syndicate with hundreds of
thousands of US victims. He was already is serving a seven-year term
in Arizona for similar crimes. He also was ordered to share in
restitution of nearly $51 million.
2014 May 15, In Afghanistan a
shootout between Afghan and Pakistani border guards killed one
Afghan policeman in a remote southern region where the border
between the two countries is poorly marked.
2014 May 15, An Azerbaijan
opposition journalist Parviz Gashimly was sentenced on to eight
years in prison in a case critics say highlights a government-led
crackdown on dissent in the oil-rich former Soviet republic. He was
arrested last September after police raided his apartment and
reported finding firearms.
2014 May 15, In central
Bangladesh the M.V. Miraz-4 ferry carrying more than 100 passengers
capsized in the River Meghna after being hit by a storm. Some 25
people swam to safety. 54 bodies were recovered over the next two
days. An unknown number remained missing.
(AP, 5/15/14)(AP, 5/16/14)(AP, 5/17/14)
2014 May 15, Former Belgian PM
Jean-Luc Dehaene (73) died. He helped set up the European Union
treaty and led his nation during the 1990s when it granted
increasing autonomy to its Dutch and French-speaking regions.
2014 May 15, In Brazil
protesters blocked two of Sao Paulo's main highways, burning tires,
waving banners and causing chaos during the morning commute in the
sprawling metropolitan area as officials braced for a wave of
anti-government demonstrations in several Brazilian cities, many of
them protesting the high spending on next month's World Cup.
2014 May 15, A Chinese court
sentenced Vincent Wu, a Chinese-American businessman, to 20 years in
prison on charges of heading a mob that kidnapped rivals and
operated illegal casinos, and rejected his claim that he was
tortured by police. About two dozen other defendants in the case
received sentences of between 19 months and 19 years
2014 May 15, China’s Caixin
business magazine reported that Wei Pengyuan, a senior official of
the National Energy Administration’s coal department, was under
arrest. So much cash ($16m) was found at his home in Beijing that
investigators brought in 16 machines from a bank to count it all.
(http://tinyurl.com/l8kd336)(Econ, 6/28/14, p.38)
2014 May 15, Prime ministers
from central European countries backed Polish plans for close energy
cooperation and agreed to draft joint crisis management plans for
the possibility of a cut in natural gas from Russia in the coming
2014 May 15, In Guatemala Jairo
Orellana Morales (40), a suspected local Zetas leader, was captured
in Zacapa province after a shootout with federal forces that killed
a police officer and two others. The US government last year imposed
financial sanctions against the alleged drug trafficker under the
2014 May 15, Hong Kong started
incinerating its nearly 30-ton stockpile of confiscated ivory to
show it's serious about cracking down on an illegal wildlife trade
that is devastating Africa's elephant population.
2014 May 15, In Iraq a spate of
bombings in Baghdad, killing at least 19 people.
(AP, 5/15/14)(AP, 5/16/14)
2014 May 15, Israeli troops
shot dead two Palestinian teens, Nadim Nuwara (17) and Muhammad Abu
Thahr (16), in a West Bank clash that erupted after Palestinians
marked their uprooting during the Mideast war over Israel's 1948
(AP, 5/15/14)(Reuters, 6/12/14)
2014 May 15, Heavily armed
fighters, believed to have come from Liberia, seized a border
village in western Ivory Coast. They crossed the Cavally
River, which forms the boundary between the two West African
neighbors, and attacked the village of Fetai.
2014 May 15, Russia ratcheted
up pressure on Ukraine, with President Vladimir Putin saying in a
letter released today that it only will deliver gas to its
struggling neighbor next month if it pays in advance.
2014 May 15, A woman and a
firefighter drowned in Serbia and hundreds of people in the Balkans
were evacuated from their homes as rain-swollen rivers flooded
roads, bridges and railways, closed schools and cut off power and
phone service in Bosnia, Serbia, Croatia and Romania.
2014 May 15, In Sudan Mariam
Ibrahim (26), a pregnant woman doctor who married a Christian man in
2011 and who was convicted earlier this week on charges of
"apostasy," was sentenced to death. The court in Khartoum also
ordered Ibrahim be given 100 lashes for committing "zena" — an
Arabic word for illegitimate sex. On May 27 Ibrahim gave birth to
her child in jail. On June 23 the Court of Cassation canceled her
sentence and ordered her release. On June 24 Khartoum airport
passport police arrested Meriam Ibrahim after she presented
emergency travel documents issued by the South Sudanese embassy and
carrying an American visa. She was freed again on June 26. On July
16 a suit by her father to establish her as his Muslim daughter was
(AP, 5/15/14)(AP, 5/18/14)(AP, 5/29/14)(AP,
6/23/14)(AP, 6/26/14)(Reuters, 7/17/14)
2014 May 15, In northern Syria
an explosion near a border crossing to Turkey killed at least 43
people and wounded many others. Shelling on a government-held
neighborhood in Aleppo killed 3 people.
(AP, 5/15/14)(AP, 5/16/14)(SFC, 5/16/14, p.A4)
2014 May 15, In northern
Thailand hundreds of armed men descended on a village and
overpowered residents blocking the road to a goldmine said by locals
to have caused environmental damage so that trucks could take ore
away in the Khao Luang district of Loei province. Residents of Khao
Luang have for years contested the mining operations of Tungkum Ltd,
a subsidiary of Tongkah Harbour Plc.
(SFC, 5/15/14, p.A2)(Reuters, 5/16/14)
2014 May 15, Ukraine’s acting
President Oleksandr Turchynov told lawmakers that government forces
attacked overnight an insurgent base in the city of Slovyansk and
another one in nearby Kramatorsk. Rinat Akhmetov's company,
Metinvest, agreed with steel plant directors, police and community
leaders to help improve security in Mariupol and get insurgents to
vacate the buildings they had seized. A representative of the
self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, which had declared
independence, was also a party to the deal.
(AP, 5/15/14)(AP, 5/16/14)