Today in History - August 31
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12BCE Aug 31, Caligula (Gaius
Caesar), 3rd Roman emperor (37-41 AD), born.
161CE Aug 31, Lucius Aelius Aurelius Commodus,
emperor of Rome (180-92), was born.
(WUD, 1994 p.297)(MC, 8/31/01)
1057 Aug 31, Leofric, count of
Mercia and husband of Lady Godiva, died. His wife, the Countess
Godgifu (Godiva), had founded a Benedictine priory on a hill
overlooking the River Sowe, and the town of Coventry grew up around
it. The priory probably ran a market that would have formed the
nucleus of the growing town. Such a market would bring fees and
taxes to the priory and the Earl while flooding the district with
goods and money. Godiva may well have ruled the settlement between
Leofric’s death and her own in 1066.
(HNC, 12/2/00)(MC, 8/31/01)
1158 Aug 31, Sancho III, King
of Castilia, died.
1218 Aug 31, Al-Malik ab-Adil,
Saphadin, Saif al-Din, brother of Saladin, died.
1303 Aug 31, The War of Vespers
in Sicily ended with an agreement between Charles of Valois, who
invaded the country, and Frederick, the ruler of Sicily.
1385 Aug 31, English King
Richard the Second invaded Scotland with a force estimated at
1422 Aug 31, Henry V, King of
England (1413-22) and France (1416-19), died.
1512 Aug 31, Giuliano de Medici
became the new governor of Florence.
(ON, 11/04, p.3)
1521 Aug 31, Spanish conqueror
Cortez (1485-1547), having captured the city of Tenochtitlan,
Mexico, set it on fire. Nearly 100,000 people died in the siege and
some 100,000 more died afterwards of smallpox. In 2008 Buddy levy
authored “Conquistador: Hernan Cortes, King Montezuma, and the Last
Stand of the Aztecs.”
(HN, 8/31/98)(WSJ, 7/10/08, p.A13)
1535 Aug 31, Pope Paul II
deposed & excommunicated King Henry VIII.
1667 Aug 31, Johann Rist,
composer, died at 60.
1707 Aug 31, The Treaty or
Convention of Altranstädt was signed between Charles XII of Sweden
and Joseph I, Holy Roman Emperor. It settled the rights of
Protestants in Silesia and forced Augustus the Strong to yield the
Polish throne to Stanisław Leszczyński (1677-1766).
1741 Aug 31, Johann Paul
Aegidius Martini, composer, was born.
1751 Aug 31, English troops
under sir Robert Clive occupied Arcot, India.
1756 Aug 31, The British at
Fort William Henry, New England, surrendered to Louis Montcalm of
1778 Aug 31, British killed 17
Stockbridge Indians in Bronx during Revolution.
1795 Aug 31, Franxois-Andre
Danican Philidor, composer, died at 68.
1802 Aug 31, Captain Meriwether
Lewis left Pittsburgh to meet up with Captain William Clark and
begin their trek to the Pacific Ocean.
1804 Aug 31, Lewis and Clark
held a council with local Sioux Indian chiefs in what is now eastern
(ON, 4/12, p.9)
1811 Aug 31, Théophile Gautier,
French poet, novelist and author of “Art for Art's Sake,” was born.
1819 Aug 31, A naval battle
took place between United States Revenue Cutter Service cutters and
one of Jean Lafitte's pirate ships off southern Florida.
1822 Aug 31, Fitz John Porter
(d.1901), Major General (Union volunteers), was born.
1829 Aug 31, Gioacchino
Rossini's final opera "William Tell" was produced in Paris.
1832 Aug 31, Jean Nicolas
Auguste Kreutzer, composer, died at 53.
1834 Aug 31, Amilcare
Ponchielli, composer (La Gioconda), was born in Paderno, Italy.
1835 Aug 31, Angry mob in
Charleston, South Carolina, seized US mail containing abolitionist
literature and burned it in public.
1842 Aug 31, US Naval
Observatory was authorized by an act of Congress.
1842 Aug 31, Micah Rugg
patented a nuts & bolts machine.
1851 Aug 31, The Yankee clipper
ship Flying Cloud set a record for sailing from NY to San Francisco
around South America in 89 days.
1864 Aug 31, At the Democratic
convention in Chicago, General George B. McClellan was nominated for
president. [see Aug 28]
1864 Aug 31, Atlanta
Campaign-Battle of Jonesboro Georgia, 1900 casualties.
1865 Aug 31, The US Federal
government estimated the American Civil War had cost about eight
billion dollars. Human costs have been estimated at more than
one-million killed or wounded.
1867 Aug 31, [Pierre-]Charles
Baudelaire (46), French poet (Journaux Intimes), died.
1870 Aug 31, Maria Montessori
(d.1952), educator and physician, was born in Chiaravalle, Italy.
She opened her 1st Montessori school in San Lorenzo, Italy in 1907.
1876 Aug 31, Abdul Hamid II
succeeded Murad V as the 34th Sultan of the Ottoman House of Osman.
His ruled continued to April 27, 1909.
1880 Aug 31, Queen Wilhelmina
of Netherlands (d. Nov 28, 1962 at 82) was born. She reigned from
(DTnet, 11/28/97)(YN, 8/31/99)
1881 Aug 31, The first U.S.
tennis championships (for men) were played, in Newport, R.I.
1885 Aug 31, Duboise Heyward,
novelist, poet and dramatist best know for “Porgy” which was the
basis for the opera “Porgy and Bess,” was born.
1886 Aug 31, South Carolina
bore the brunt of the largest-ever earthquake on the East Coast, a
7.3 magnitude earth-shaker that killed at least 60 people in
post-Civil War Charleston.
1887 Aug 31, Inventor Thomas A.
Edison received a patent for his Kinetoscope," a device which
produced moving pictures. [see Apr 14, 1894]
1888 Aug 31, Mary Ann Nicholls,
a 42-year-old prostitute, was found murdered in London's East End.
She is generally regarded as the first of at least five murder
victims of "Jack the Ripper." [see Aug 6]
(AP, 8/31/99)(YN, 8/31/99)
1889 Aug 31, Start of Sherlock
Holmes adventure "Cardboard Box."
1897 Aug 31, Thomas Edison
patented his movie camera (Kinetograph).
1897 Aug 31, General Kitchener
occupied Berber, North of Khartoum.
1899 Aug 31, Paul E. Garber, US
founder and 1st curator of National Air & Space Museum, was
1899 Aug 31, Lynn Riggs,
writer, was born. Her book “Green Grow the Lilacs” was adapted by
Rodgers and Hammerstein to become “Oklahoma.”
1900 Aug 31, British troops
1902 Aug 31, Mathilde Wesendonk
(73), German author and poetess, died.
1903 Aug 31, Arthur Godfrey,
radio and television personality, was born.
1903 Aug 31, Bernard Lovell,
radio astronomer, founded Jodrell Bank, was born in England.
1905 Aug 31, Sanford Meisner,
influential acting teacher, was born.
1907 Aug 31, William Shawn,
longtime editor of The New Yorker, was born.
1907 Aug 31, England, Russia
and France formed their Triple Entente.
1908 Aug 31, William Saroyan
(d.1981), American writer, was born outside Fresno, Ca., to Armenian
parents. “He was a prolific and bombastic writer who never threw
anything away.” He was a native of Fresno, Ca. and his unpublished
materials, held by the Saroyan Foundation, were turned over to
Stanford Univ. in 1996. His work included “The Human Comedy.”
(HFA, ‘96, p.36)(SFC, 5/23/96, p.A1)(WUD, 1994,
p.1269)(HN, 8/31/00)(SSFC, 11/10/02, p.M1)
1909 Aug 31, The A.J. Reach Co.
patented the cork-centered baseball.
1910 Aug 31, Theodore Roosevelt
laid out his progressive philosophy as he delivered the "New
Nationalism" speech at Osawatomie, Kansas, effecting a split in the
Republican Party. The speech was interpreted as an assault upon the
conservatism of the Taft administration. In the speech, Roosevelt
proclaimed that the New Nationalism "maintains that every man holds
his property subject to the general right of the community to
regulate its use to whatever degree the public welfare may require
(HNQ, 12/22/99)(Economist, 10/13/12, p.23)
1911 Aug 31, Anthony Fokker's
demonstrated the aircraft "Snip."
1912 Aug 31, Ramon Vinay
(d.1996), Chilean operatic tenor and baritone, was born in Chillan.
1912 Aug 31, In Ecuador
Leónidas Plaza was inaugurated for a 2nd term as president. Gen.
Plaza had received 98% of the vote in the presidential election. His
1st term was from September 1, 1901 to August 31, 1905.
1914 Aug 31, Germany defeated
Russia at the battle at Tannenberg. Some 30,000 Russians died.
1916 Aug 31, Daniel Schorr,
broadcast journalist (CBS), was born in NYC.
1916 Aug 31, In Indonesia the
Surabaya Zoo was established based on Acceptance Letter of the
general Dutch Governor, by the name of “Soerabaiasche Planten-en
Dierentuin” (the Botany Garden and the Surabaya Animal) on the merit
of a journalist named H. F. K. Kommer who had the hobby of gathering
1918 Aug 31, Alan Jay Lerner,
playwright and lyricist, was born. His work included “Brigadoon” and
1919 Aug 31, John Reed formed
the Communist Labor Party in Chicago, with the motto, "Workers of
the world unite!"
(HN, 8/31/98)(YN, 8/31/99)(MC, 8/31/01)
1919 Aug 31, The Ukrainian
(Petlyura) Army recaptured Kiev. Petlyura's Ukrainian Army killed 35
members of a Jewish defense group.
1923 Aug 31, Mussolini's troops
1928 Aug 31, James Coburn
(d.2002), actor (Our Man Flint, Magnificent Seven), was born in
(YN, 8/31/99)(SFC, 11/19/02, p.A2)
1928 Aug 31, Brecht and Kurt
Weill’s “The Threepenny Opera” opened in Berlin.
(HN, 8/31/00)(MC, 8/31/01)
1935 Aug 31, Eldridge Cleaver,
political activist and author of “Soul on Fire,” was born.
1935 Aug 31, President
Roosevelt signed an act prohibiting the export of U.S. arms to
1936 Aug 31, Marva Collins,
innovative educator who started Chicago's one-room school, Westside
Preparatory, was born.
1939 Aug 31, There was a staged
"Polish" assault on radio station in Gleiwitz by Nazis dressed as
Poles to "provoke" war, an excuse for Germany to invade Poland the
next day to start World War II.
1940 Aug 31, US National Guard
1940 Aug 31, Jack Thompson of
Australia, actor (Breaker Morant), was born.
1940 Aug 31, Joseph Avenol
stepped down as Secretary-General of the League of Nations.
1940 Aug 31, 56 U-boats were
sunk this month (268,000 ton).
1940 Aug 31, Fighter Command
lost 39 and the Luftwaffe lost 41 airplanes.
1941 Aug 31, The radio program
"The Great Gildersleeve," a spin-off of Fibber McGee & Molly,
made its debut on NBC.
(AP, 8/31/97)(MC, 8/31/01)
1941 Aug 31, Alan Lomax,
musicologist for the US Library of Vongress, traveled to
Mississippi, introduced himself to McKinley Morganfield, aka Muddy
Waters, and began recording his Delta Blues songs.
(ON, 8/20/11, p.4)
1941 Aug 31, Marina Tsvetaeva
(b.1892), Russian poet and writer, died. She wrote six plays in
verse and narrative poems, including The Tsar Maiden (1920), and her
epic about the Civil War, The Swans' Encampment, which glorified
those who fought against the communists.
1942 Aug 31, The British army
under General Bernard Law Montgomery defeated Field Marshal Erwin
Rommel's Afrika Korps in the Battle of Alam Halfa in Egypt.
1944 Aug 31, A US B-24-J bomber
crashed into Maoer Mountain in China after having completed its
bombing mission over the port of Takao in Taiwan. All 10 men onboard
were killed. The wreckage was not discovered until Oct, 1996.
(SFC, 1/17/97, p.A13)
1944 Aug 31, The British Eighth
Army penetrated the German Gothic Line in Italy.
1944 Aug 31, The French
provisional government moved from Algiers to Paris.
1945 Aug 31, Van Morrison,
singer (Here Comes the Night), was born in Belfast, Ireland.
1945 Aug 31, Itzhak Perlman,
violinist, was born.
1949 Aug 31, Richard Gere,
actor (Breathless, Cotton Club), was born in Phila., Pa.
1949 Aug 31, Six of the 16
surviving Union veterans of the Civil War attended the last-ever
encampment of the Grand Army of the Republic, held in Indianapolis,
1950 Aug 31, Three North Korean
divisions opened an assault on UN lines on the Naktong River in a
push to take Pusan.
(SSFC, 11/7/04, Par p.4)
1951 Aug 31, The former enemies
of the world war reconvened in San Francisco to finalize
negotiations on the peace treaty to formally end WW II. Japan agreed
to pay the Int’l. Red Cross about $15 per POW while the allies
agreed not to bring charges against it.
(Park, Spring/95, p.2)(SFEC, 12/1/96, p.C4)
1951 Aug 31, The 1st Marine
Division began its attack on Bloody Ridge in Korea. The four-day
battle resulted in 2,700 Marine casualties.
1951 Aug 31, The 1st 33 1/3
(LP) album was introduced in Dusseldorf.
1954 Aug 31, Hurricane Carol
hit the northeastern United States, resulting in nearly 70 deaths
and millions of dollars in damage.
1955 Aug 31, 1st sun-powered
automobile demonstrated, Chicago, Ill.
1957 Aug 31, The Federation of
Malaya (Malaysia) gained independence from Britain (National Day).
Malaysia established itself as a constitutional monarchy. Article 11
in the constitution gave every person “the right to profess and
practice his religion.” Pro-bumiputra (sons of the soil)
discrimination was laid down in the constitution to ease Malays’
fears of being marginalized by Chinese and Indian migrants. A 1988
amendment denied the regular courts all jurisdiction over matters
dealt with by the Muslim sharia courts.
(YN, 8/31/99)(SFC, 11/22/01, p.A29)(AP,
8/31/07)(Econ, 9/1/07, p.11)
1958 Aug 31, Edwin Moses, track
star, was born. Olympic Gold Medalist [1976, 1984] & Hall of
Famer: 400-meter hurdles: the first athlete to use 13 strides
between hurdles; 1983 winner of Sullivan Award: the U.S. outstanding
1959 Aug 31, Australia defeated
the US for tennis' Davis Cup.
1961 Aug 31, A concrete wall
replaced the barbed wire fence that separated East and West Germany,
it would be called the Berlin wall.
1962 Aug 31, The Caribbean
nation of Trinidad and Tobago became independent within the British
Commonwealth. Eric Williams, a Marxist historian, led the country to
(SFC, 7/1/97, p.A9)(AP, 8/31/97)(Econ, 8/26/06,
1963 Aug 31, George F. Braque
(81), cubist painter, died in Paris.
1965 Aug 31, The Beatles
returned to the Cow Palace in Daly City, Ca., for another concert.
1965 Aug 31, The US House of
Reps joined Senate to establish Dept of Housing & Urban Develop.
1966 Aug 31, In China a
response to Mao’s call for a Cultural Revolution led to a massacre
in Hongsheng, one of 13 communes in Beijing’s Daxing district, that
left 110 people dead. The official death toll for all 13 communes
was put at 324. Over 2 weeks some 2,000 Beijing residents were
(Econ, 5/20/06, p.43)
1967 Aug 31, Ilya G. Ehrenburg
(76), Russian poet and propagandist ("Russians, get your German!"),
1968 Aug 31, In northeast Iran
some 7-12 thousand people died in the 7.8 Dashte Bayaz earthquake,
which also destroyed 60,000 buildings.
1969 Aug 31, Andrew Phillip
Cunanan, serial killer, was born. His victims included fashion
designer Gianni Versache.
1969 Aug 31, Boxer Rocky
Marciano died in a light airplane crash in Iowa, the day before his
1971 Aug 31, John Lennon left
UK for NYC, never to return.
1972 Aug 31, At the Munich
Summer Olympics American swimmer Mark Spitz won his fourth and fifth
gold medals, in the 100-meter butterfly and 800-meter freestyle
1972 Aug 31, Olga Korbut
(b.1955) of Belarus, USSR, won Olympic gold medal in floor exercises
and the balance beam.
1973 Aug 31, John Ford
(b.1894), US film director, died. He directed some 140 films
including “Mary of Scotland” (1936) and “Stagecoach” (1939).
1976 Aug 31, George Harrison
(1943-2001) was found guilty of plagiarizing "My Sweet Lord."
1977 Aug 31, Ian Smith,
espousing racial segregation, won the Rhodesian general election
with 80% of overwhelmingly white electorate's vote.
1978 Aug 31, Emily and William
Harris, founding members of the SLA, pleaded guilty to 4 charges
related to the 1974 kidnapping of Patty Hearst. On Oct 4 they were
sentenced to prison terms.
1978 Aug 31, Imam Moussa
al-Sadr, the spiritual leader of Lebanon's Shiite Muslim community,
disappeared along with 2 companions during a visit to Libya. In 2008
a Lebanese prosecutor charged Moammar Khadafy and 6 other Libyan
officials in the disappearance.
1979 Aug 31, Sally Rand
(b.1904), exotic dancer and actress, died.
1980 Aug 31, Poland's
Solidarity labor movement was born with an agreement signed in
Gdansk that ended a 17-day strike. The Communist government signed
an agreement with the Strike Coordination Committee in Gdansk,
Poland, to allow legal organization, but not actual free trade
1981 Aug 31, Joseph H.
Hirschhorn (b.1899), Latvia-born US art collector and founder the
Hirschhorn Museum in Washington, DC, died at 82.
1983 Aug 31, In Fairfield, Ca.,
Kyle Stracner (15) returned home after visiting with friends and
found his mother, Priscilla Strole (40), naked and beaten to death
on the floor. In 2014 investigators used DNA evidence to identify
Robert Hathaway (48), a childhood friend of Kyle, as the murderer.
Hathaway hanged himself on Feb 15, 2014.
(SFC, 3/6/14, p.D2)
1984 Aug 31, San Francisco 19
plainclothes police officers raided Lord Jim’s bar at 1500 Broadway
and arrested the owner. Patrons and employees were detained for up
to 90 minutes as police checked for warrants. Attorney William
Barfield, one of those detained, later filed 5 of six damage claims
totaling 375,000 against the city. Proposed settlements in 1988
included $63,500 for a dozen people in the first batch of lawsuits.
(SSFC, 9/20/09, DB p.50)(SSFC, 10/13/12, DB p.46)
1984 Aug 31, In southern
California Ebora Alexander (57), the mother or 49ers star Kermit
Alexander, was shot dead along with his sister and two nephews.
Tiequon Cox, a member of the Rollin’ 60 Crips, was later convicted
of the murders and sentenced to death. Two others were sentenced to
life in prison.
1985 Aug 31, Richard Ramirez,
later convicted of California's "Night Stalker" killings, was
captured by residents of an East Los Angeles neighborhood.
1986 Aug 31, Aeromexico flight
498 with 64 passengers collided with a light plane as it approached
Los Angeles and crashed to the ground where an additional 15 people
were killed. The National Transportation Safety Board blamed flaws
in the overloaded traffic control system. 82 people were killed when
an Aeromexico jetliner and a small private plane collided over
(SFC, 8/31/96, p.A20)(AP, 8/31/97)
1986 Aug 31, The Soviet
passenger ship Admiral Nakhimov collided with a merchant vessel in
the Black Sea, causing both vessels to sink; up to 448 people
1986 Aug 31, Henry Moore
(b.1898), English sculptor and cartoonist, died. In 1998 John
Hedgecoe published "A Monumental Vision: The Sculpture of Henry
(SFEC, 7/19/98, BR
1987 Aug 31, The US Justice
Department challenged the constitutionality of the 1978 Ethics in
Government Act, which provided for the appointment of independent
counsels. The Supreme Court upheld the law.
1988 Aug 31, Arbitrator George
Nicolau ruled sports owners conspired against free agents.
1988 Aug 31, Fourteen people
were killed when a Delta Boeing 727 crashed during takeoff from
Dallas-Fort Worth Airport.
1988 Aug 31, A 5-day power
blackout of downtown Seattle began.
1988 Aug 31, In South Africa
the Khotso House was bombed. Police chief Johan van der Merwe was
instructed to blow up the Johannesburg headquarters of the South
African Council of Churches, called Khotso House, for harboring
anti-apartheid groups. The bombing injured 21 people. He said in
1996 that the instructions came from Law and Order Minister Adriaan
Vlok, who told him that the order came directly from Pres. P.W.
Botha. In 1997 a document submitted by Vlok said the order to
destroy the headquarters came from Pres. Botha. Col. Eugene de Kock
testified in 1998 that he was called in by a police general to
blowup Khotso House. Vlok testified in 1998 that Botha dictated the
bombing. Vlok and van der Merwe were given amnesty in 1999.
(SFC, 11/23/96, p.A9)(SFC, 6/21/97, p.A10)(SFC,
6/4/98, p.A12)(SFC, 7/22/98, p.A11)(SFC, 8/6/99, p.A14)
1989 Aug 31, Arbitrator Thomas
Roberts ordered Major League sports owners to pay $105 million for
collusion against free agents after the 1985 baseball season.
1989 Aug 31, Britain's Princess
Anne and husband Mark Phillips announced they were separating.
1990 Aug 31, East & West
Germany signed a treaty to join legal & political systems.
1990 Aug 31, UN
Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar met twice with Iraqi
Foreign Minister Tariq Aziz in Amman, Jordan, trying to negotiate a
solution to the Persian Gulf crisis.
1991 Aug 31, Uzbekistan and
Kirghizia declared their independence, raising to 10 the number of
republics seeking to secede from the Soviet Union.
1992 Aug 31, White separatist
Randy Weaver surrendered to authorities in Naples, Idaho, ending an
11-day siege by federal agents that claimed the lives of Weaver's
wife, son and a deputy U.S. marshal. [see Aug 21]
1993 Aug 31, Mideast peace
talks resumed in Washington amid hopes that a historic agreement to
establish Palestinian autonomous areas would be concluded within
1993 Aug 31, Hurricane Emily
hit North Carolina's Outer Banks, killing three people.
1993 Aug 31, Russia withdrew
its last soldier from Lithuania, the first Baltic nation to eject
all former Soviet troops.
1993 Aug 31, Venezuela’s
Congress officially removed President Andres Perez (b.1922) from
office. Perez had served 2 terms as presidents (1974-1979,
1989-1993). He was impeached following a scandal on the alleged
mishandling of US$17 million from the presidents' special secret
fund, used to help Violeta Chamorro's government in Nicaragua.
1994 Aug 31, In the London
Intel Speed Chess Grand Prix a Pentium computer beat world chess
champ Gari Kasparov.
1994 Aug 31, The Irish
Republican Army (IRA) announces a "complete cessation of military
operations," opening the way to a political settlement in Ireland
for the first time in a quarter of a century.
(SFC, 6/18/96, p.A8)(AP, 8/31/99)(HN, 8/31/99)
1994 Aug 31, Russia officially
ended its military presence in the former East Germany and the
Baltics after a half-century.
1995 Aug 31, At the O.J.
Simpson trial in Los Angeles, Judge Lance Ito ruled the defense
could play only two examples of police detective Mark Fuhrman’s
racist comments from taped conversations with a screenwriter.
1995 Aug 31, NATO planes and UN
artillery blasted Serb targets in Bosnia for a 2nd day in response
to the market attack in Serajevo.
1995 Aug 31, In India blast a
bomb killed 18 people, including Beant Singh (b.1922), chief
minister of the northern state of Punjab. Singh had become chief
minister of Punjab, home to most Indian Sikhs, in 1992, and began
crushing a Sikh militant movement that sought a separate homeland.
Gurmeet Singh was one of six Sikh militants convicted in the attack.
He fled a high-security prison in 2004 before being sentenced in
absentia to life imprisonment in 2007. In 2015 Thai authorities
extradited him back to India.
1996 Aug 31, Three adults and 4
children drowned at John D. Long Lake in Union, South Carolina when
their car rolled into the lake by accident. They had gone to see a
monument to the sons of Susan Smith, who drowned her 2 sons on Oct
25, 1994 when she let her car roll into the lake.
(SFC, 9/2/96, p.D5)(AP, 8/31/97)
1996 Aug 31, New York City
police found the body of 4-year-old Nadine Lockwood in her family's
apartment; she'd been starved to death. The girl's mother, Carla
Lockwood, was later sentenced to serve at least 15 years in prison.
Nadine's father, Leroy Dickerson, was sentenced to 25 years to life
1996 Aug 31, In Austria the
country’s first gay wedding took place in the Evangelical Church in
Vienna’s Simmering district.
(SFC, 9/1/96, p.A4)
1996 Aug 31, In Colombia the
armed forces went on alert after a series of rebel attacks on
government targets that killed about 100 people. The attacks were in
response to a US government backed campaign to eradicate coca plots.
A rebel column overran an army base in Las Delicias and killed 27
(SFC, 9/1/96, p.A15)(SFC, 3/6/98, p.A12)
1996 Aug 31, Over the past week
torrential rains threatened Sudan and Egypt with floods. More than a
million Pakistanis were displaced by fierce floods. The central
Punjab Province had 4.5 million acres of crops swamped.
(SFC, 8/31/96, p.A4)
1996 Aug 31, Rival Kurdish
forces under leaders Jalal Talabani of the Patriotic Union and
Massoud Barzani of the Kurdish Democratic Party clashed. Barzani’s
forces participated with Sadam Hussein’s troops in taking Irbil, a
Talabani stronghold. Talabani’s forces were reportedly assisted by
(SFC, 9/1/96, p.A8)
1996 Aug 31, More than 100
members of the Iraqi National Congress in Irbil were captured by
Iraqi secret police and apparently executed. The Congress was set up
by the US in 1992 as an alternative to Saddam Hussein. Thousands of
opposition members made it to Turkey and were flown to Guam by the
US and promised asylum in the US.
(SFEC, 9/8/96, p.A13)(SFC, 10/12/97, Z1 p.5)
1996 Aug 31, Ljuba Welitsch
(83), Bulgaria-born opera singer, died.
1997 Aug 31, In Phoenix, Az.,
bounty hunters in search of a bail jumper killed a couple that
apparently knew nothing about the sought bail jumper. Chris Foote
(23) and Spring Wright (20) were killed by 5 bounty hunters. Matthew
Brackney (20), his father David Brackney (45) and Michael Martin
Sanders (40) were in custody and 2 others were sought by
authorities. Arizona laws allow bounty hunters to break down doors
and use guns to bring bail jumpers back to jail without a court
order, warrant or license. There were an estimated 2,000 bounty
hunters nationwide. Brian Jay Robbins and Ronald Eugene Timms were
arrested on Sep 3. On October 30, 1998 Michael Martin Sanders was
judged guilty of murder, and nine other felonies including burglary,
aggravated assault and unlawful imprisonment. Co-defendant Ronald
Timms pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and testified against
Sanders, saying the men planned to break into Foote's home because
they mistakenly believed there would be a large amount of drugs and
cash there. The rest were charged with second degree murder and
various counts of felonious assault.
(SFC, 9/3/97, p.A3)(SFC, 9/4/97,
1997 Aug 31, Prince Charles
brought Princess Diana home for the last time, escorting the body of
his former wife to a Britain that was shocked, grief-stricken and
angered by her death in a Paris traffic accident. Princess Diana
(36) and Egyptian billionaire Dodi al-Fayed (42) were killed along
with the car’s driver in a car crash in Paris while trying to evade
paparazzi photographers. A bodyguard was severely injured but
expected to survive. It was later learned that the driver had 3
times the legal alcohol limit and was driving at about 110 mph.
(SFEC, 8/31/97, p.A1)(SFC, 9/1/97, p.A1)(SFC,
9/2/97, p.A1)(AP, 8/31/98)
1997 Aug 31, In Peru 2 small
planes collided at the Nazca archeological site and 12 people were
(SFC, 9/1/97, p.A14)
1997 Aug 31, Vitaly Schmidt
(47), Russian oil tycoon, died in Moscow. Much of his fortune came
from a group of small offshore energy companies he oversaw on behalf
of himself and a few fellow executives of OAO Lukoil.
(WSJ, 12/6/06, p.A1)
1998 Aug 31, President Clinton
left for a summit in Russia, which was in a state of political chaos
over lawmakers' rejection of Boris Yeltsin's candidate for prime
minister, Viktor Chernomyrdin.
1998 Aug 31, The DJIA fell 512
points, 6.37%, while the NASDAQ fell a record 140 points to 1499
amid news of political chaos in Russia and North Korea's apparent
firing of a missile over part of Japan.
(WSJ, 9/2/98, p.A1)(AP, 8/31/99)
1998 Aug 31, In Gaithersburg,
Md., boxer Mike Tyson assaulted 2 motorists following a minor
chain-reaction collision. In 1999 he was convicted of assault and
sentenced to one year in jail.
(SFC, 2/6/99, p.A1)
1998 Aug 31, An explosion in
Algiers killed at least 17 people.
(SFC, 9/1/98, p.A9)
1998 Aug 31, In Angola the
ruling party expelled Unita deputies from parliament.
(WSJ, 9/2/98, p.A1)
1998 Aug 31, Congo’s Kabila
declared victory over the Tutsi-led rebels near Kinshasa and in the
(WSJ, 9/2/98, p.A1)
1998 Aug 31, In Latvia the
Skrunda radar base, the last Russian military outpost in the Baltic
states, was closed.
(SFC, 9/1/98, p.A9)
1998 Aug 31, North Korea fired
a ballistic missile into the Sea of Japan. They later claimed that
it was a rocket to launch a satellite. The US later agreed that it
was a failed satellite launch.
(SFC, 8/31/98, p.A1)(SFC, 9/5/98, p.A11)(WSJ,
1998 Aug 31, In Spain Jose
Antonio Ardanza, 14-year president of the Basque country, dissolved
the regional parliament and set elections for Oct 25. He urged ETA
extremists to lay down their arms.
(SFC, 9/1/98, p.A9)
1999 Aug 31, Detroit’s teachers
went on strike, wiping out the first day of class for 172-thousand
students in one of the largest teachers’ strikes in years. The
walkout lasted nine days.
1999 Aug 31, In NYC 5 police
shot twelve times and killed Gideon Busch (31), a Jewish man and
former medical student, who refused to drop a hammer he’d used to
threaten neighborhood children. The officers were brought up on
charges and, on November 17, 2003, a federal jury cleared the
officers of civil wrongdoing in the fatal shooting.
(SFC, 9/1/99, p.A3)(http://tinyurl.com/qcxba)
1999 Aug 31, In Argentina the
online-auction site DeRemate was launched. In 2002 daily visits
averaged 160,000 as Internet users climbed to 2.7 million.
(WSJ, 9/4/02, p.B5A)
1999 Aug 31, In Argentina 72
people were killed, including 5 on the ground, when a Lapa Airlines
Boeing 737 crashed after takeoff from Jorge Newberry airport in
Buenos Aires. There were 26 survivors.
(SFC, 9/1/99, p.A12)(WSJ, 9/1/99, p.A1)(SFC,
9/2/99, p.A14)(WSJ, 9/3/99, p.A1)(AP, 8/31/00)
1999 Aug 31, In Colombia rebels
seized a hydroelectric plant near Buenaventura and held 100
employees on the 1st day of a nationwide strike. 1.5 million workers
protested government austerity moves.
(WSJ, 9/1/99, p.A1)
1999 Aug 31, Congolese rebels
signed a cease-fire in Zambia.
(SFC, 9/1/99, p.A16)
1999 Aug 31, In Russia a bomb
exploded in a video game parlor in the Manezh shopping mall near the
Kremlin and at least 30 people were injured. A leaflet was left by
the Union of Revolutionary Writers that said in part: "Consumer, we
do not like your way of life…"
(SFC, 9/1/99, p.A16)(SFC, 9/2/99, p.A18)
1999 Aug 31, In Somalia clan
gunmen killed 14 people and wounded 20 in a bus attack outside
(SFC, 9/1/99, p.A16)
1999 Aug 31, In Turkey a 5.2
aftershock earthquake hit Izmit and killed one man and injured 166.
(SFC, 9/1/99, p.A12)
2000 Aug 31, President Clinton
vetoed a bill that would have gradually repealed inheritance taxes,
saying it would have benefited the wealthiest Americans while
threatening the nation's financial well being.
2000 Aug 31, It was reported
that computer scientists had created a robot to design and build
other robots almost entirely without human help.
(SFC, 8/31/00, p.A1)
2000 Aug 31, It was reported
that malaria researchers had identified the mechanism by which the
parasite feeds on blood cells.
(WSJ, 8/31/00, p.A1)
2000 Aug 31, A meeting of South
American presidents opened in Brasilia. They expressed concern over
the civil war in Colombia and planned to discuss the creation of a
South American trade block.
(SFC, 9/1/00, p.A16)
2000 Aug 31, In France the
government announced a package of tax reductions worth $16.5 billion
over 3 years.
(SFC, 9/1/00, p.D2)
2000 Aug 31, In Indonesia
Suharto claimed illness and failed to show up for the 1st day of his
(SFC, 9/1/00, p.A18)
2000 Aug 31, In Mexico retired
Gen. Francisco Hermosillo and Brig. Gen. Mario Arturo Acosta
Chaparro were arrested for collaborating with the Juarez drug
(SFC, 9/2/00, p.A14)
2000 Aug 31, In Ukraine Pres.
Kuchma declared 4 villages near Mykolaiv an ecological disaster zone
due to illnesses of some 400 residents since July 4. Chemical
poisoning from Soviet era rocket fuel leaks was blamed.
(SFC, 9/1/00, p.D5)
2001 Aug 31, Little League star
Danny Almonte's perfect game and his Bronx, N.Y., team's third-place
World Series finish were ruled invalid after officials in the
Dominican Republic, where Danny was born, determined he was 14 years
old, not 12.
2001 Aug 31, It was reported
that scientists at Lucent Tech. achieved superconductivity with
carbon-60 (buckyballs) at minus 249 degrees by combining the carbon
molecules with compounds of chloroform and bromoform.
(SFC, 8/31/01, p.B3)
2001 Aug 31, In Montana a
helicopter assigned to the 25,500-acre Fridley fire crashed and 3
crewmen were killed.
(SFC, 9/1/01, p.D1)
2001 Aug 31, In Saudi Arabia
Prince Turki al-Faisal resigned as head of the General Intelligence
Directorate and Prince Nawwaf took over.
(WSJ, 10/22/01, p.A18)
2001 Aug 31, Brazil withdrew
its threat to make a generic version of the Nelfinavir AIDS drug
after Roche Pharmaceuticals agreed to produce the drug locally and
cut the price by 40% next year.
(SFC, 9/1/01, p.A7)
2001 Aug 31, Israeli troops
battled Palestinian gunmen and 19 Palestinians were wounded.
(SFC, 9/1/01, p.A6)
2001 Aug 31, Ministers of New
Zealand and Nauru announced that they would take the Afghanistan
asylum seekers stranded in Australian waters.
(SFC, 9/1/01, p.A6)
2001 Aug 31, In Thailand
officials reported that AIDS accounted for 16% of all deaths in
(SFC, 9/1/01, p.A10)
2001 Aug 31, The UN World
Conference Against Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and
Related Intolerance began in Durban, South Africa. Yasser Arafat
accused Israel of "racist practices" against the Palestinian people.
(SFC, 9/1/01, p.A1)(AP, 8/31/02)
2002 Aug 31, The Los Angeles
Sparks beat the New York Liberty 69-66 to defend their WNBA
2002 Aug 31, The Burning Man
was put to flames at Black Rock, Nev. Some 29,000 people attended
the event, which featured a 78-foot Temple of Joy, created by David
Best, that was burned down Sep 1.
(SFC, 8/31/02, p.A3)(SFC, 9/2/02, p.A1)
2002 Aug 31, Lionel Hampton
(94), American jazz icon, died in New York City. He pioneered and
popularized the vibraphone as a jazz instrument in a musical career
that spanned six decades beginning in the 1920s.
2002 Aug 31, George Porter
(81), who shared the 1967 Nobel Prize for chemistry for his work on
light-driven chemical reactions, died in London. He had built a
device to study gaseous free radicals and combustion. Among the
practical results of his research was the development of ways to
stop dyes from fading.
2002 Aug 31, Sheldon H. Harris,
historian, died. His work included the 1994 book: "Factories of
Death: Japanese Biological Warfare, 1932-1945, and the American
(SFC, 9/9/02, p.A22)
2002 Aug 31, In Indonesia
unidentified gunmen shot dead three people, including two Americans,
and wounded up to 14 others in an attack on a vehicle convoy near a
giant gold mine in Papua province. Killed in the 30-minute assault
were Rick Spier, 44, of Littleton, Colo., Ted Burgon, 71, of
Sunriver, Ore., and an Indonesian teacher. Indonesian soldiers were
later implicated in the attack. In 2006 Antonius Wamang (31), a
separatist rebel, was sentenced to life in prison and his
accomplices up to seven years.
(Reuters, 8/31/02)(SSFC, 10/27/02, p.A20)(AP,
2002 Aug 31, At least 13 people
died and scores more were rescued when an Indonesian ferry carrying
more than 100 passengers caught fire and exploded after leaving
Baubau in southern Sulawesi province.
2002 Aug 31, Israeli soldiers
arrested Hasan Yousef, the Islamic militant group Hamas' top
political leader, in the West Bank town of Ramallah. An Israeli
helicopter fired three missiles at a Palestinian car, killing three
men inside and two children standing nearby.
2002 Aug 31, Five Kurdish
migrants were found dead in the back of a cargo truck after they
apparently suffocated during a harrowing ferry crossing from Greece
2002 Aug 31, Kuwait will buy 16
attack helicopters from Boeing in a deal worth $886 million. Defense
Minister Sheik Jaber Mubarak Al Hamad and U.S. Ambassador Richard
Jones signed the deal.
2002 Aug 31, Malaysia said it
has agreed to temporarily halt deportation of Filipino workers and
their families amid public outrage over reports of their
2002 Aug 31, It was reported
that Mexican police had arrested Juan Heriberto Carrillo Olivas, a
Mexican citizen, headed a gang in El Paso, Texas, that used a fleet
of tractor-trailers to transport cocaine to other U.S. cities.
2002 Aug 31, The justice
minister of the Netherlands Antilles said Colombian assassins are
behind a series of execution-style slayings in Curacao, which has
seen drug seizures soar in recent years. There have been 28 killings
since the beginning of the year.
2002 Aug 31, A Palestinian
gunman opened fire in a Jewish settlement in the West Bank,
seriously wounding two people before being shot dead.
2002 Aug 31, A Russian
helicopter was downed by a missile in Chechnya, killing two.
2002 Aug 31, In South Africa
some 10,000 people marched from a township of tin shacks and open
sewers to the glittering venue of a U.N. development summit to
protest that world leaders are not doing enough to fight poverty.
2003 Aug 31, In Gerlach,
Nevada, the "Temple of Honor" by David Best went up in flames. Some
30,500 people attended the weeklong "Burning Man" event.
(SFC, 9/1/03, p.A1)
2003 Aug 31, The burned body of
Katie Sepich (22) was found at an old dump in Las Cruces, NM. She
had been raped and strangled earlier that same day. In 2006 DNA
evidence identified Gabriel Adrian Avila, already in prison for
burglary and assault, as her killer.
(SFC, 2/28/07, p.B5)(http://tinyurl.com/yvb63k)
2003 Aug 31, In Afghanistan 2
US soldiers were killed in Paktika province.
(SFC, 9/1/03, p.A3)
2003 Aug 31, It was reported
that Congo tribal fighters killed at least 200 people over the last
month and abducted scores more during a series of attacks that
destroyed, Fataki, a northeast town once controlled by a rival
2003 Aug 31, Vowing revenge and
beating their chests, more than 300,000 Shiites marched behind the
rose-strewn coffin of a beloved cleric, Ayatollah Mohammad Baqir
al-Hakim, who had been assassinated in a car bombing in Najaf, Iraq.
2003 Aug 31, Libyan leader
Moammar Gadhafi said a second agreement over compensation has been
reached between his country and the families of 170 victims of a
French airliner that exploded in 1989.
2003 Aug 31, At least 675,000
people in Malawi urgently need food aid despite the country's good
harvest, the UN World Food Program reported.
2003 Aug 31, In Taiwan a fire
engulfed an apartment building on the outskirts of Taipei before
dawn, killing at least 13 people and injuring dozens.
2004 Aug 31, Arnold
Schwarzenegger and Laura Bush spoke on the 2nd night of the
Republican Convention in NYC as police arrested nearly 1,000
2004 Aug 31, A report was filed
with the SEC that said Conrad Black and associates systematically
looted Hollinger Int’l. of more than $400 million from 1997-2003. In
2007 Black (62) was convicted in Illinois U.S. District Court. He
was sentenced to serve 78 months in federal prison, pay Hollinger
$6.1 million and a fine of $125,000. Black was guilty of diverting
funds for personal benefit from money due Hollinger International
when the company sold certain publishing assets and he obstructed
justice by taking possession of documents to which he was not
entitled. Black's three co-defendants, former Hollinger
International vice presidents John Boultbee (64) of Vancouver and
Peter Y. Atkinson (60) of Toronto and attorney Mark Kipnis (59) of
Chicago were all found guilty of three counts of mail fraud.
(SFC, 9/1/04, p.C3)(WSJ, 9/1/04,
2004 Aug 31, Apple introduced
its 3rd generation iMac with the computer built into the monitor.
(SFC, 9/1/04, p.C1)
2004 Aug 31, US astronomers
reported finding 2 planets orbiting distant stars. One was near 55
Cancri, 41 light-years away; the other was near Gliese 436, 33
(SFC, 9/1/04, p.A1)
2004 Aug 31, Tropical Storm
Gaston flooded Richmond and other parts of central Virginia with a
foot or more of rain. Five people were killed.
(AP, 8/31/04)(WSJ, 9/1/04, p.A1)
2004 Aug 31, In southern
Guatemala landless farm workers resisted police attempts to remove
them from a farm they had occupied and at least four police officers
and three farmers died in the battle.
2004 Aug 31, A video purporting
to show the methodical, grisly killings of 12 Nepalese construction
workers kidnapped in Iraq was posted on a Web site linked to a
militant group operating in Iraq.
2004 Aug 31, In northern Iraq
Ibrahim Ismael, head of Kirkuk’s education department, was killed in
a driveby shooting as he drove to work.
2004 Aug 31, In Beersheba,
Israel, Palestinian suicide bombers exploded two buses almost
simultaneously, killing at least 16 people and wounding more than
(AP, 8/31/04)(AP, 9/1/04)
2004 Aug 31, In Mexico suspects
beat to death Francisco Arratia Saldierna (55), a newspaper
columnist and dumped his body outside the offices of the Red Cross
in the border city of Matamoros.
2004 Aug 31, A woman strapped
with explosives blew herself up outside a busy Moscow subway
station, killing at least 10 people.
2004 Aug 31, The Sudanese
government said rebels in Darfur had kidnapped 22 health workers in
the strife-torn region, following the abduction of eight Sudanese
nationals working for international aid groups.
2004 Aug 31, An official said
Turkish troops had killed 11 Kurdish rebels in southeastern Turkey
during the past three days.
2004 Aug 31, The WTO ruled that
the Byrd amendment of 2000 is a violation of its trade rules. The
amendment authorized that money collected from anti-dumping tariffs
be disbursed to US companies hit by unfairly, low-priced imports.
(WSJ, 9/1/04, p.A3)
2005 Aug 31, The Bush
administration said it will release oil from federal petroleum
reserves to help refiners affected by Hurricane Katrina. New Orleans
Mayor Ray Nagin said there was a significant number of dead bodies
in the water'' following Hurricane Katrina; Nagin ordered virtually
the entire police force to abandon search-and-rescue efforts and
instead stop thieves who were becoming increasingly hostile.
President Bush pledged to do all in our power'' to save lives and
provide sustenance but cautioned that recovery of the Gulf Coast
would take years.
(AP, 8/31/05)(AP, 8/31/06)
2005 Aug 31, At least 25,000 of
Hurricane Katrina's refugees, a majority of them at the New Orleans
Superdome, began traveling in a bus convoy to Houston and will be
sheltered at the 40-year-old Astrodome, which hasn't been used for
professional sporting events in years. New Orleans Mayor Nagin
called for a total evacuation. He said hundreds were dead and
ordered police to stop looters.
(AP, 8/31/05)(SFC, 9/1/05, p.A1)
2005 Aug 31, Theodore Sarbin
(b.1911), noted UC Berkeley psychology professor, died. In 1990 he
co-wrote the report “Gays in Uniform: The Pentagon’s Secret
Reports,” which prompted Pres. Clinton’s policy of “don’t ask, don’t
(SFC, 9/3/05, p.B4)
2005 Aug 31, Militants
kidnapped David Addison, a British engineer, and his interpreter
after an attack in western Afghanistan that left at least three
policemen dead. Addison’s body was found Sep 3.
(AP, 9/1/05)(Reuters, 9/3/05)
2005 Aug 31, Joseph Rotblat
(b.1908), Polish-born British physicist and Nobel Peace Prize winner
(1995), died in London. In 1957 he helped found the Pugwash
Conference on science and world affairs. His work on nuclear fallout
was a major contribution to the agreement of the Partial Test Ban
Treaty (1963). In 2012 Andrew Brown authored “Keeper of the Nuclear
Conscience: The Life and Work of Joseph Rotblat.”
2005 Aug 31, The Chinese
government signed an agreement with the UN human rights agency to
collaborate on reforming China's legal system in preparation for
adopting a key UN treaty on civil and political rights.
2005 Aug 31, A government
newspaper reported that China is suspending production at 7,000 coal
mines, nearly one-third of the nationwide total, in a safety
crackdown on the accident-plagued industry.
2005 Aug 31, Indonesia's
President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said the government needs to cut
fuel subsidies, in effect raising gasoline prices for the public, to
lift the nation's beleaguered currency and stave off an economic
2005 Aug 31, Indonesia released
hundreds of Acehnese rebel prisoners, honoring a major concession in
a recent peace deal and triggering tearful reunions as the former
inmates returned to their tsunami-devastated homeland.
2005 Aug 31, In Iraq panic
engulfed thousands of Shiites marching across a bridge in a
religious procession after rumors spread that a suicide bomber was
about to attack, triggering a stampede that killed over 960 people.
Hundreds of thousands of Shiites had been marching across the
bridge, which links Baghdad's Shiite Kazimiyah district with heavily
Sunni Azamiyah. They were heading for the tomb of Imam Mousa
al-Kadhim (d.799), an 8th century Shiite saint, about a mile from
2005 Aug 31, In Iraq a US
soldier was shot to death in Iskandariya.
(SFC, 9/3/05, p.A3)
2005 Aug 31, In the Ivory Coast
a UN peacekeeper was killed in a knife attack in a northern rebel
stronghold of the war-divided country.
2005 Aug 31, A new report said
police last January in Papua New Guinea had collared a teen
suspected of picking the pocket of a soldier and dispensed their own
justice. The officers beat him, slammed his head into a truck and
2005 Aug 31, In the Philippines
a congressional committee voted to quash all impeachment complaints
against President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo with the opposition
2005 Aug 31, In Russia Mikhail
Khodorkovsky, the billionaire oil tycoon who was sentenced to nine
years' imprisonment in a politically charged trial this year, said
he will run for a seat in the national parliament.
2005 Aug 31, Some 200 Somalis
and Ethiopians left Somalia's semiautonomous Puntland region in two
boats. Smugglers making the illegal crossing from Somalia to Yemen
forced passengers into the Red Sea at gunpoint 10 miles from the
Yemeni coastline, leaving at least 57 dead and about 100 missing.
2005 Aug 31, A South African
inventor unveiled a new anti-rape female condom that hooks onto an
attacker's penis and aims to cut one of the highest rates of sexual
assault in the world.
2005 Aug 31, Conservationists
in South Africa unveiled a $30 million plan to save the great apes
of Africa, which are under threat of extinction from man and
disease. The plan designated 12 sites in five countries for
emergency programs: Cameroon, Gabon, Congo, Central African
Republic, and Equatorial Guinea.
2005 Aug 31, In Spain tens of
thousands of people armed with 100 tons of plum tomatoes took part
in the "Tomatina," joyously splattering each other in the town of
2005 Aug 31, Orhan Pamuk, a
Turkish novelist, was charged with insulting his country's national
character and could face prison. In February Pamuk was quoted as
saying in an interview with a Swiss newspaper magazine:
"Thirty-thousand Kurds and one million Armenians were killed in
these lands and nobody but me dares to talk about it."
2005 Aug 31, Zimbabwe state
television said the country has paid back 120 million dollars of its
300-million-dollar (245-million-euro) debt to the International
Monetary Fund (IMF), which had threatened to expel Harare for
2006 Aug 31, President George
Bush, speaking in Salt Lake City, predicted victory in the war on
terror, likening the struggle against Islamic fundamentalism with
the fight against Nazis and communists.
2006 Aug 31, The United States
carried out a subcritical nuclear experiment successfully at an
underground test site in Nevada, the 2nd this year and the 23rd such
test since 1997.
2006 Aug 31, In California Tony
J. Daniloo (32) of Turlock was indicted on 122 charges of fraud and
money laundering for allegedly embezzling $7 million from homeowners
in the East Bay and the Central Valley.
(SFC, 9/1/06, p.B12)
2006 Aug 31, NASA awarded a
multibillion contract to Lockheed Martin Corp. to send astronauts to
the moon and maybe on to Mars. The projected Orion crew exploration
vehicle program will cost an estimated $7.5 billion through 2019.
(SFC, 9/1/06, p.A7)
2006 Aug 31, In southern
Montana a wildfire burned 20 houses and 15 other buildings as it
spread over some 156,000 acres.
(SFC, 9/1/06, p.A3)
2006 Aug 31, In New York 2
state troopers were shot while staking out the property of a former
girlfriend of escaped convict Ralph Phillips. Trooper Joseph
Longobardo (32) died from his wounds on Sep 3. Phillips, a
44-year-old career thief who has spent 20 of the past 23 years in
state prison, surrendered Sep 8 without firing a shot.
(SSFC, 9/3/06, p.A3)(AP, 9/9/06)
2006 Aug 31, J.S. Holliday
(b.1924), California historian, died. His book included “The World
Rushed In” (1981), a history of the California gold rush.
(SFC, 9/2/06, p.B1)
2006 Aug 31, In Afghanistan
Taliban militants attacked Naw Zad in Helmand province, sparking
intense fighting with government troops that left two insurgents
dead. In Zabul province a suicide attacker plowed his
explosives-filled car into a police convoy traveling on the main
road, wounding three officers. A Dutch F-16 fighter jet crashed in
the Ghazni province in central Afghanistan, killing the pilot.
2006 Aug 31, In Argentina tens
of thousands gathered in the central square of Buenos Aires for one
of the biggest anti-crime rallies ever seen there. It was organized
by Juan Carlos Blumberg, a businessman and leader of the
(Econ, 9/9/06, p.39)
2006 Aug 31, A minister said
Bangladesh has bowed to demands from protestors and cancelled a 734
million pound (1.4-billion dollar) plan by British firm Asia Energy
to build an open-pit coal mine.
2006 Aug 31, Heng Pov, former
Phnom Penh police chief, was arrested at a hotel in Singapore when a
clerk brought food for him. A Cambodian court warrant had been
recently issued against him accusing him of involvement in a number
of crimes such as the killing of Phnom Penh judge Sok Sethamony,
assassination attempts on general Sao Sokha and judge Uk Savuth, as
well as a number of other criminal cases. Pov claimed that he was
being framed for refusing orders to kill Hok Lundy, the internal
(http://tinyurl.com/gtumm)(Econ, 9/9/06, p.46)
2006 Aug 31, A Chinese court
sentenced Ching Cheong, a Hong Kong reporter, to five years in
prison on spying charges in a case that prompted outcries by press
freedom groups. In Hunan Province a mine gas explosion killed at
least nine people.
(AP, 8/31/06)(Reuters, 9/3/06)
2006 Aug 31, Sen. Barack Obama,
D-Ill., visited a sprawling tent camp in eastern Ethiopia for people
displaced by devastating floods earlier this month, saying the US
military will continue to help the region.
2006 Aug 31, Sexus Politicus,
by co-authors Christophe Dubois and Christophe Deloire, was
published in France. It revealed decades of philandering, adultery
and seduction at the heart of the French state, with politicians of
all colors apparently sharing the same passion for extra-marital
2006 Aug 31, Guyana’s elections
commission said President Bharrat Jagdeo won re-election and his
ruling People's Progressive Party increased its majority in Guyana's
parliament. The PPP received 183,887 votes, or about 55%, and
increased its seats in parliament by two to 36.
2006 Aug 31, In eastern India
at least 30 people drowned when a crowded boat capsized in the
rain-swollen Ganges River in the state of Bihar.
2006 Aug 31, Indian officials
said more than 11,000 Tamil refugees have fled to India since
January to escape renewed fighting between the Sri Lankan army and
separatist rebels and more are likely to come.
2006 Aug 31, Iran defied a UN
deadline to stop enriching uranium.
2006 Aug 31, PM Nouri al-Maliki
said Iraqi security forces will take over Dhi Qar province in
September, and will take over the control of more provinces during
the rest of the year. A suicide car bomb targeting a line of cars
waiting at a Baghdad gas station killed two people and wounded 13. A
barrage of coordinated attacks across eastern Baghdad neighborhoods
killed at least 64 people and wounded 286 within half an hour. The
dead included at least 13 women and a dozen children. A total of 85
people were killed across the country.
(AP, 8/31/06)(AP, 9/1/06)(SFC, 9/1/06, p.A3)
2006 Aug 31, The Israeli army
said that it has transferred control over a portion of the
Israel-Lebanon border to Lebanese and international troops for the
first time in two decades.
2006 Aug 31, Israeli soldiers
searching for tunnels and explosives withdrew from the outskirts of
Gaza City, ending a five-day operation that Palestinians said left
20 people dead and heavily damaged houses, streets and farmlands.
Palestinian militants fired five homemade rockets into Israel,
defying the calls by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to halt the
2006 Aug 31, Kenya stepped up
criticism of US Senator Barack Obama, accusing him of insulting the
Kenyan people and trivializing their achievements during a visit to
his father's homeland. Obama had rebuked Kibaki's government for
failing to address corruption and said Kenya's democratic progress
"is in jeopardy... being threatened by corruption."
2006 Aug 31, Hurricane John
pummeled Mexico's resort-studded Pacific Coast with wind and rain.
2006 Aug 31, The UN Security
Council passed a resolution that would give the United Nations
authority over peacekeepers in Darfur as soon as Sudan's government
gives its consent, which it has so far refused to do.
2006 Aug 31, An internal
investigation concluded that a UN official steered millions of
dollars in contracts to a company owned by the government of his
native India in exchange for favors that included low-rent
2006 Aug 31, In southern
Thailand nearly two dozen bombs exploded almost simultaneously
inside commercial banks, killing two people in a region bloodied by
a Muslim insurgency.
2007 Aug 31, President Bush met
privately at the Pentagon with the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who
conveyed their concern about a growing strain on troops and their
families from long and repeated combat tours in Iraq. Bush also
announced a set of modest proposals to deal with an alarming rise in
2007 Aug 31, Mike Nifong, the
disgraced former district attorney of Durham County, N.C., was
sentenced to a day in jail after being held in criminal contempt of
court for lying to a judge when pursuing rape charges against three
falsely accused Duke University lacrosse players.
2007 Aug 31, A federal appeals
court allowed the US Navy to resume underwater sonar blasts in
anti-submarine warfare tests off of Southern California, saying
military needs come before whales. A federal judge ruled that giant
pumps in northern California supplying water to southern California
were killing smelt and would have to be shut down for much of the
(SFC, 9/1/07, p.B3)(Econ, 9/8/07, p.36)
2007 Aug 31, In Iowa Polk
County Judge Robert Hanson cleared the way gay marriage when he
ruled that a state law allowing marriage only between a man and
woman violated the constitutional rights of due process and equal
protection. County attorney John Sarcone said the county would
appeal to the state Supreme Court, and he immediately sought a stay
that would prevent gay couples from seeking a marriage license until
the appeal is resolved.
2007 Aug 31, The 34th annual
Telluride Film Festival opened in Colorado.
(SFC, 9/3/07, p.E1)
2007 Aug 31, The World Trade
Organization opened a formal investigation into allegations by the
US and Mexico that China is providing illegal subsidies for a range
2007 Aug 31, In eastern
Afghanistan a barrage of rockets missed a US-led coalition base but
hit houses in the nearby village of Babul, killing 10 civilians and
wounding seven. Outside the gates of the Kabul airport, a suicide
car bomber targeting a patrol of German soldiers killed two Afghan
soldiers and wounded 10 others. A senior Afghan official close to
the negotiations alleged the South Koreans paid a ransom for their
released hostages. In southern Helmand province, a combined police
and US-led coalition patrol came under attack with mortar,
rocket-propelled grenade and small-arms fire. In the fight that
ensued, "almost two dozen" insurgents were killed. More than 20
insurgents were killed and 11 others were detained, while officers
also discovered a bomb-making factory in the remote Pitigal Valley
border region. Afghan police attacked a group of Taliban who were
planning to strike security forces in the central Afghan province of
Ghazni, killing 18 and arresting six others.
(AP, 8/31/07)(AP, 9/1/07)
2007 Aug 31, Australia and
India agreed to study the possibility of a free trade agreement.
Trade Minister Warren Truss said it was a natural result of New
Delhi's rising economic power.
2007 Aug 31, In Vienna,
Austria, negotiators from 158 countries reached basic agreement, at
a UN conference on climate, on rough targets aimed at getting some
of the world's biggest polluters to reduce emissions of the
greenhouse gases blamed for global warming.
(AP, 8/31/07)(WSJ, 9/1/07, p.A1)
2007 Aug 31, China officially
put in place systems to recall unsafe food and toys, one of its
strongest steps yet to deal with recurring quality problems. At
least 12 miners were missing after an explosion in central China.
Authorities continued their efforts to reach 181 workers trapped in
flooded coal shafts for two weeks.
2007 Aug 31, Colombia's Alvaro
Uribe and Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez agreed to allow a
representative of Colombia's largest guerrilla group to travel to
Caracas for talks aimed at freeing dozens of rebel-held hostages,
including three U.S. defense contractors.
2007 Aug 31, In Finland
representatives of feuding Sunni and Shiite groups in Iraq began a
2-day meeting at a seminar behind closed doors to discuss ways of
ending the bloodshed.
2007 Aug 31, Officials in
Greece said all major blazes were under control, and firefighters
were working to extinguish smaller fires in the southern part of the
country. The fires cost the country at least $1.6 billion and left
67 people dead. The government provided 13,000 euros to those
(AP, 8/31/07)(AP, 9/8/07)(Econ, 9/1/07, p.47)
2007 Aug 31, As of today at
least 3,737 members of the US military have died since the beginning
of the Iraq war in March 2003. The figure includes seven military
civilians. At least 3,061 died as a result of hostile action. Iraqi
health officials said up to 10 people have died from cholera in
(AP, 9/1/07)(SFC, 9/1/07, p.A6)
2007 Aug 31, Israeli divers
found the bodies of two sailors missing in the Mediterranean Sea, 12
hours after their cargo ship sank in a collision with a passenger
2007 Aug 31, Leading Japanese
mobile phone carrier NTT DoCoMo Inc. said it will tie up with
broadband provider ACCA Networks to introduce ultra-fast mobile
2007 Aug 31, Lebanese army
helicopters stepped up raids on al-Qaida-inspired Islamic militants
barricaded in a Palestinian refugee camp in the country's north
after five soldiers were killed over the last 2 days.
2007 Aug 31, In southern Nepal
tainted liquor killed at least 15 people and sickened several others
on the outskirts of Janakpur over the last 2 days.
2007 Aug 31, In Gaza a protest
of Hamas rule by Fatah supporters turned violent when Hamas men
began forcefully dispersing the crowd, firing in the air and beating
demonstrators and reporters. Five people were wounded in the
clashes, including two French journalists.
2007 Aug 31, A car bomb
exploded near a police vehicle in Russia's troubled North Caucasus
region, killing four police officers in Nazran, Ingushetia.
2007 Aug 31, Russian Foreign
Minister Sergei Lavrov said Russia will accept a partition of
Serbia's Kosovo province if that is the solution agreed by Belgrade
and Kosovo's ethnic Albanian majority. Both Serbia and the Kosovo
Albanians have said they oppose partition but they have shown no
sign of reaching agreement on the central issue of independence for
2007 Aug 31, In northwest Sri
Lanka government forces and Tamil Tiger rebels traded artillery
fire, with each side claiming heavy casualties against the other as
well as among civilians.
2007 Aug 31, The Thai
government said it has lifted a four-month ban on YouTube after the
popular video-sharing Web site's operator agreed not to allow videos
that violate the country's laws or are deemed offensive to Thai
people. 3 people including a state railway worker were shot dead in
separate attacks in the restive Muslim-majority south.
2007 Aug 31, Turkey's PM
Erdogan laid out a policy vision for the next five years that
focuses on pursuing EU membership and defending the state's secular
and democratic principles.
2007 Aug 31, State media said
Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe has banned all pay rises without
authorization and given himself extra powers in a new bid to curb
the world's highest inflation rate.
2008 Aug 31, John McCain, GOP
presidential nominee, directed party officials to drastically scale
back plans for their convention, set to begin Sep 1 in St. Paul,
Minn., and refocus efforts on helping potential victims of Hurricane
(SFC, 9/1/08, p.A1)
2008 Aug 31, Estimates from
distributor Warner Brothers said "The Dark Knight" had become the
second movie in Hollywood history to top $500 million at the
domestic box office, raising its total to $502.4 million. "Titanic,"
the biggest modern blockbuster, remained No. 1 on the domestic
charts with $600.8 million.
2008 Aug 31, SF closed vehicle
traffic to 4.5 miles of its waterfront streets for the city’s first
Sunday Streets day encouraging thousands to come out for the 9 a.m.
to 1 p.m. event.
(SFC, 9/1/08, p.A1)
2008 Aug 31, Cubans returned
from shelters to find flooded homes and washed-out roads, but no
deaths were reported after a monstrous Hurricane Gustav roared
across the island and into the oil-rich Gulf of Mexico.
2008 Aug 31, Allianz, a
Germany-based insurer, sold Dresdner, a German bank, to Commerzbank
for $14.2 billion.
(Econ, 9/6/08, p.88)
2008 Aug 31, Mexico’s President
Felipe Calderon promised to adopt several proposals from civic
groups who led more than 100,000 Mexicans in marches against daily
kidnappings and killings.
2008 Aug 31, Pakistan said it
will suspend its military operations against insurgents in a tribal
region along the Afghan border in honor of the Muslim holy month of
Ramadan. Pakistani Taliban said they will continue attacks during
Ramadan. A missile fired from an unmanned aircraft hit a house in
the North Waziristan tribal area, killing six people including a
woman and a young girl.
(AP, 8/31/08)(Reuters, 8/31/08)(AFP, 8/31/08)
2008 Aug 31, Palestinian
President Mahmoud Abbas rejected Israel's idea of an interim peace
agreement at a summit, insisting on an all-or-nothing approach that
virtually ruled out an accord by a January target date.
2008 Aug 31, Paraguay’s Pres.
Fernando Lugo said Paraguay will reverse its historic support for
Taiwan (since 1957) at the upcoming UN General Assembly, and also is
reconsidering its relations with communist regimes. In return for
Paraguay's 51 years of support, Taiwan has sent millions of dollars
to the impoverished country for low-income housing, agricultural
development and scholarships.
2008 Aug 31, President Dmitry
Medvedev says Russia will follow the recognition of Georgia's
breakaway provinces with agreements on economic and military aid.
2008 Aug 31, Police arrested
Magomed Yevloyev, the owner of the Ingushetiya.ru web site, taking
him off a plane that had just landed in Ingushetia province. Police
whisked Yevloyev away in a car and later dumped him on the road with
a gunshot wound in the head. Yevloyev died in a hospital shortly
2008 Aug 31, In South Africa
strong winds fanned runaway fires across the country killing at
least 16 people, including two children.
2008 Aug 31, Sri Lanka’s
defense ministry said troops killed 12 rebels in the north, while
three soldiers also died in combat.
2008 Aug 31, Thailand's
Parliament convened an emergency session at the request of the
country's prime minister, who acknowledged that his administration
cannot control spiraling anti-government protests.
2008 Aug 31, Venezuela rejected
US requests to resume cooperation in the war on drugs, saying it has
made progress despite an alleged fourfold gain in the amount of
Colombian cocaine now passing through its territory.
2008 Aug 31, Zimbabwe's rival
parties returned home from talks in South Africa with no sign of a
power-sharing deal to resolve the country's bitter political crisis.
2009 Aug 31, In southern
California fashion designer Anand Jon Alexander was sentenced to 59
years to life in prison for sexually assaulting aspiring models he
lured to Los Angeles.
2009 Aug 31, In southern
California a massive fire in the Angeles National Forest nearly
doubled in size overnight, threatening 12,000 homes in a
20-mile-long swath of flame and smoke and surging toward a
mountaintop broadcasting complex. 2 firefighters died a day earlier
when their vehicle rolled down a mountainside amid the flames.
(AP, 8/31/09)(SFC, 8/31/09, p.A4)
2009 Aug 31, Florida’s Gov.
Crist signed a 20-year gambling pact with the Seminole Indian tribe,
which agreed to pay Florida $12.5 million a month for 30 months for
running, currently illegal, slot machines and blackjack games.
(Econ, 9/5/09, p.40)
2009 Aug 31, Deere & Co.,
the world's largest agricultural-equipment maker, said its board of
directors has approved a plan to establish a new manufacturing and
parts center in Russia.
2009 Aug 31, The Walt Disney
Co. said it is buying Marvel Entertainment Inc. for $4 billion in
cash and stock, bringing such characters as Iron Man and Spider-Man
into the family of Mickey Mouse and WALL-E.
2009 Aug 31, In Afghanistan 2
bombings killed two US service members, the last day of the
deadliest month of the war for US forces.
2009 Aug 31, In China a
demonstration occurred when angry villagers from Fujian province's
Fengwei town confronted 2,000 riot police over a wastewater
treatment plant that had fouled local air and water. At least 10
people were injured when the demonstrations turned violent and riot
police fired warning shots.
2009 Aug 31, Egyptian police
found the entrances to four tunnels and two tons of explosives
hidden near the border with Gaza. A day earlier they had thwarted an
attempt to smuggle 500 kg (1,100 lb) of explosives into Gaza.
2009 Aug 31, The European
Commission said an EU-wide transition of power-draining light bulbs
to more energy efficient ones will start Aug 1. The new rules follow
an agreement reached by the 27 EU governments last year to phase out
the traditional incandescent light bulb over three years starting
this year to help European countries lower greenhouse gas emissions.
2009 Aug 31, A Georgian court
sentenced a Turkish cargo ship captain to 24 years in prison for
smuggling and border violations.
2009 Aug 31, A Guatemalan court
convicted and sentenced a former paramilitary to 150 years in prison
for the forced disappearance of six people who were abducted and
presumably killed during the country's civil war. The sentence
against Felipe Cusanero represents 25 years for each victim who
disappeared between 1982 and 1984 from the village of Choatalum.
2009 Aug 31, Muhsin Mohammed
Muhsin (11) was kidnapped around noon on his way home from a
neighbor's funeral in Baghdad's eastern Shiite district of Sadr
City. Kidnappers demanded $100,000, but the father of six said he
only had $10,000. 3 days later police found the boy dumped in the
garbage with his head and hands chopped off. His body showed burns
and marks of torture.
2009 Aug 31, African leaders
gathered in Libya for a special summit to discuss the continent's
trouble spots, on the eve of celebrations to mark 40 years of Moamer
2009 Aug 31, Mexican
authorities said they have arrested four men accused of killing at
least 211 people for the Juarez cartel. The men allegedly belong to
La Linea, a gang of hit men for the Juarez cartel. One of the men
alone was accused of killing 97 people and another 87.
2009 Aug 31, Thousands of
Myanmar refugees headed home from China as fighting between
government troops and a rebel militia that left more than 30 people
dead appeared to be over.
2009 Aug 31, Nepal's PM Madhav
Kumar Nepal opened the first climate change conference of Himalayan
nations with a warning about the dangers of melting glaciers, floods
and violent storms for the region.
2009 Aug 31, The Nigerian
anti-graft agency filed charges against 16 bank chiefs arrested for
incurring billions of dollars in bad loans for five ailing banks.
2009 Aug 31, The Pakistani army
said it killed at least 45 Taliban militants over the last 24 hours
in scattered gunbattles across the northwestern Swat Valley.
2009 Aug 31, In Sri Lanka
reporter J.S. Tissainayagam, singled out by President Barack Obama
as an example of persecuted journalists around the globe, was
sentenced to 20 years in prison on charges of violating the
country's harsh anti-terror law. He was arrested in March, 2008, and
indicted five months later under the anti-terror law.
2009 Aug 31, Turkmenistan
President Gurbanguli Berdymukhamedov said a base will be built at
the Caspian Sea port city of Turkmenbashi to help "effectively fight
smugglers, terrorists and any other forces." Turkmenistan is locked
in a dispute with Azerbaijan, on the opposite shore, over several
oil and gas fields.
2010 Aug 31, President Barack
Obama marked the symbolic end of US combat operations in Iraq. Vice
President Joe Biden presided over the formal end to US combat
operations in Iraq. Biden made a new appeal to Iraqi leaders,
including PM Nouri al-Maliki, to end the political deadlock and seat
a new government. Since the US invasion in March, 2003, almost 5,000
American and allied soldiers lost their lives as well as some
150,000 Iraqis. Over 2 million Iraqis fled the country.
(AFP, 8/31/10)(AP, 8/31/10)(Econ, 8/28/10, p.37)
2010 Aug 31, Police in
Richmond, Ca., shot and killed Efren Valdemoro (38) following a high
speed chase across the East Bay. At least 4 people were killed since
Aug 25 in a tangle of violence centering on Valdemoro. A 5th person,
Frederick Sales (35), was missing. On Sep 9 police found Frederick’s
body at 1066 Crepe Myrtle Drive in Hercules, the site where Ricardo
Sales (73), the father of Frederick Sales, was found on Aug 28.
(SFC, 9/2/10, p.A1)(SFC, 9/4/10, p.C3)(SSFC,
2010 Aug 31, In Arkansas a
medical helicopter crashed in Van Burn County killing 3 crew members
trying to reach a person injured in a traffic accident.
(SFC, 9/1/10, p.A7)
2010 Aug 31, In Afghanistan 6
US soldiers were killed, including 4 in an IED attack.
(AFP, 8/31/10)(AP, 9/1/10)
2010 Aug 31, British aid group
Oxfam said it had suspended operations in a northern Afghan region
after two employees and a local volunteer were killed there on Aug
(Reuters, 8/31/10)(AP, 9/1/10)
2010 Aug 31, Indonesian police
killed five villagers as dozens of people ransacked a station in
central Buol district to protest a person's death in custody. The
protest followed a motorist's death in police custody on Aug 30. It
was unclear why he was detained, but the protesters suspected he was
tortured by police.
2010 Aug 31, Libya freed 37
prisoners, including at least one former detainee at the US military
prison at Guantanamo Bay, who had been jailed for links to radical
Islamist groups but have since renounced violence.
2010 Aug 31, In Mexico 6 women
and two men died in a fire at a bar frequented by locals in the
resort of Cancun. Bar employees told police that unidentified men
tossed gasoline bombs at the establishment. Police soon arrested six
suspects, who said a drug gang hired them to throw gasoline bombs at
the bar, presumably in an attempt at extortion.
(AP, 8/31/10)(AP, 9/3/10)
2010 Aug 31, Pakistani
government airstrikes killed eight suspected insurgents in the
Khyber tribal region bordering Afghanistan. Two intelligence
officials confirmed the airstrikes but said 30 insurgents were
(AP, 8/31/10)(AP, 9/1/10)
2010 Aug 31, A West Bank gunman
opened fire on a passing vehicle in Hebron, killing all four Israeli
passengers inside, two men and two women from settlements in the
area. The dead included a married couple with five children.
2010 Aug 31, Russian police
detained Kremlin critic Boris Nemtsov and several other people at a
protest in Moscow in defense of the right to free assembly, which
activists say is restricted by the Russian government.
2010 Aug 31, South Africa’s
public service ministry said it was increasing its salary hike offer
from 7 to 7.5 percent and housing allowance from 700 rand ($96) to
800 rand ($110). Workers were demanding an 8.6 percent raise and
1,000 rand ($137) for housing.
2010 Aug 31, Spanish police
said that for the first time they have broken up a human trafficking
gang that brought men to the country to work as prostitutes,
providing them with Viagra, cocaine and other stimulant drugs to be
available for sex with other men 24 hours a day. Authorities
arrested 14 people, mainly Brazilians, on suspicion of running the
organization and another 17 alleged prostitutes for being in Spain
2010 Aug 31, The army of
Southern Sudan has been looting food convoys and carrying out other
attacks on aid groups, officials of those groups alleged, and a top
military officer warned that the humanitarian groups could be
expelled if the complaints get too "harsh." South Sudan health
officials said floods have forced nearly 60,000 people from their
homes, warning that the situation could worsen.
(AP, 8/31/10)(AFP, 8/31/10)
2011 Aug 31, Nebraska governor
Dave Heineman urged Pres. Obama's administration to deny a key
permit for TransCanada's Keystone XL crude oil pipeline from
Alberta, Canada to the Gulf Coast of Texas on the grounds that the
line could put the Ogallala Aquifer at risk.
2011 Aug 31, The US Justice
Dept. sued to block AT&T’s proposed $39 billion takeover of
T-Mobile, saying the deal would lessen competition in the wireless
(SFC, 9/1/11, p.D1)
2011 Aug 31, In Fremont, Ca.,
solar-cell maker Solyndra announced that it will close its remaining
plant, layoff 1,100 employees and file for bankruptcy. Solyndra
received $535 million in 2009 to build its 2nd factory in Fremont.
(SFC, 9/1/11, p.A1)
2011 Aug 31, In North Miami
Beach, Florida, a man carrying what was later determined to be a toy
rifle was shot and killed by police.
2011 Aug 31, Federal
investigators in Detroit said a Michigan man and others stole rental
vehicles and sold them to Iraq after spiriting them across the
US-Canada border. Adnan Hana was arrested this week along with 12
others capping an almost 2-year investigation.
(SFC, 9/1/11, p.A8)
2011 Aug 31, Vermont emergency
airlift operations brought ready-to-eat meals and water to residents
left isolated from Hurricane Irene. The storm was blamed for at
least 45 deaths in the continental US, one in Puerto Rico and 7 more
in the Dominican Rep. and Haiti.
(AP, 8/31/11)(SFC, 9/1/11, p.A10)
2011 Aug 31, Australia's High
Court dealt a heavy blow to the government by blocking its plans to
send asylum-seekers to Malaysia, ruling they could not go to a
nation lacking legal safeguards.
2011 Aug 31, In Bahrain
hundreds of demonstrators made their boldest attempt in months to
reclaim control of a central square in the capital Manama, which was
the symbolic hub of the protest movement after it began in February.
Riot police used buses to block roads and flooded streets with tear
gas to drive back the marchers before dawn. Ali Jawad Ahmad (14),
died after being hit by a tear gas canister fired at close range by
(AP, 9/1/11)(AP, 9/2/11)
2011 Aug 31, Britain's biggest
retailer Tesco announced that it is pulling out of Japan after eight
years and putting its 129 small supermarkets on sale to focus on
other operations in Asia.
2011 Aug 31, Guinea-Bissau
Pres. Malam Bacai Sanha was (64) evacuated to neighboring Senegal
for medical care.
2011 Aug 31, In Iraq car bomb
parked outside a shopping area in southwestern Baghdad killed 5
people and wounded 22.
2011 Aug 31, Libyans delighted
at Muammar Gaddafi's downfall celebrated the end of Ramadan feast,
even though the ousted leader remains on the run and forces loyal to
him defied an ultimatum set by Libya's interim council.
2011 Aug 31, In western Myanmar
7 people, including 2 children, were killed when a World War II bomb
they found in a river exploded in Rakhine state.
2011 Aug 31, Mexican police
arrested Jean Baptiste Kingery (40) of the US for smuggling American
grenade parts into Mexico for use by the Sinaloa cartel. Kingery had
been detained in Arizona in June 2010 and then released, purportedly
because officials wanted to use him as an informant or in a sting
(AP, 9/6/11)(WSJ, 9/6/11)
2011 Aug 31, The New Zealand
Press Association, the country's national news agency, closed its
doors after 131 years, the latest victim of media consolidation in
the digital age.
2011 Aug 31, The Nigerian Red
Cross said flash flooding in the country's southwest this week has
killed at least 102 people.
2011 Aug 31, In southwestern
Pakistan a suspected suicide car bomb attack killed at least 11
people in Quetta, as the country celebrated the Muslim festival of
2011 Aug 31, Three Pakistani
soldiers were killed and one Indian trooper was hurt in an exchange
of fire by the rival militaries across their sensitive border in
2011 Aug 31, In Puerto Rico
former Arecibo police officer David Gonzalez Perez was found guilty
of providing security to drug dealers.
2011 Aug 31, Russian bailiffs
raided the offices of BP in Moscow to uncover documents over its
failed deal with Rosneft. The search came less than a day after
Rosneft and ExxonMobil agreed to a stunning Arctic exploration deal
overseen by Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.
2011 Aug 31, In Spain tens of
thousands of people pelted each other with 120 tons of ripe tomatoes
in an annual battle that left the eastern town of Bunol awash in red
pulp. The event has its roots in a food fight between childhood
friends back in 1945.
2011 Aug 31, Syrian troops
backed by tanks raided houses looking for activists in two main
districts of the city of Hama. Troops shot dead one villager, Hazem
al-Shihadi, at a checkpoint overnight near the northwestern border
town of Kfaruma. Dozens of people were arrested at Qadam and Qabun
in the Damascus region, and at Zabadani. Other arrests occurred at
Jizeh in the southern region of Daraa, at Hama and at Al-Jura and
Quriyya. Hama province attorney general Adnan Bakkour appeared on
video declaring his resignation to protest President Bashar Assad's
crackdown, saying security forces killed hundreds of people in the
restive city of Hama and arrested thousands of "peaceful
protesters." Bakkour said security forces killed 72 prisoners on
July 31 and another 420 people during a military siege on Hama, the
main city in the province of the same name, in August.
(AP, 8/31/11)(AFP, 9/1/11)(AP, 9/1/11)
2012 Aug 31, The US Fish and
Wildlife announced the end of protections for wolves in most of
Wyoming. Protections remained in some areas such as Yellowstone
(SFC, 9/1/12, p.A4)
2012 Aug 31, In New Jersey
ex-Marine Terence Tyler (23) opened fire with a hand gun and an
assault rifle at a supermarket in Old Bridge Township and killed 2
co-workers before killing himself.
(SFC, 9/1/12, p.A1)
2012 Aug 31, The Ohio state
Dept. of Health said a woman’s death this week was related to H3N2v,
a new strain of swine flu. 12 new cases were reported in the US
during the week.
(SFC, 9/1/12, p.A4)
2012 Aug 31, Afghan officials
said that a 16-year-old boy accused by the Taliban of spying for the
government was beheaded and skinned in late July.
2012 Aug 31, Angola held its
2nd general election in 20 years. The ruling party was expected to
easily hang onto power despite accusations it is corrupt and has
mismanaged the country’s oil and diamond riches. President Jose
Eduardo dos Santos' ruling party won 72 percent of the national vote
assuring his government, in power for 32 years, another five years
in power. The electoral commission later said 40 percent of voters
(AP, 8/31/12)(AP, 9/3/12)(AP, 9/4/12)
2012 Aug 31, Argentina
tightened its grip on credit card purchases in an effort to stem
capital flight and tax evasion. One measure added a 15 percent tax
every time people make a purchase outside Argentina using a
peso-denominated credit card. Another required card-issuers to
report every purchase to the government.
2012 Aug 31, Armenia broke off
diplomatic ties with Hungary after an Azerbaijani military officer
sentenced to life in prison here for killing an Armenian officer was
sent back to his homeland and, despite assurances, immediately
pardoned and freed. Lt. Ramil Safarov (35) was given a life sentence
in 2006 by the Budapest City Court after he confessed to killing Lt.
Gurgen Markarian of Armenia while both were in Hungary for a 2004
NATO language course.
2012 Aug 31, In London
self-exiled tycoon Boris Berezovsky (64) lost his
multibillion-dollar legal battle against fellow Russian mogul Roman
Abramovich (45) after a British judge ruled that he didn't tell the
truth in the clash over vast oil wealth.
2012 Aug 31, Cameroon’s
state-run broadcasting reported that at least 14 people are
confirmed dead and over 22,000 other affected by flood waters in the
Far-North and North Regions. Prolonged rainfall combined with the
release of water by the Lagdo hydroelectricity dam caused the Benoue
River to burst its banks into nearby residential areas.
2012 Aug 31, Chinese dissident
Wang Xiaoning (62), convicted based on evidence provided by US
Internet giant Yahoo!, was released from prison after serving a
10-year term for subversion.
2012 Aug 31, Egyptian police
found the decapitated head in Sinai of Manazil Bereikat, kidnapped
by Islamist militants, reportedly for his role in assassinating an
extremist. He was from the same tribe of Ibrahim Ouda Bereikat, an
extremist killed in a mysterious explosion near the Israeli border
on August 26.
2012 Aug 31, In Germany
Lufthansa flight attendants walked off the job for eight hours at
Frankfurt airport, causing the cancellation of more than 220
flights. Their union warned of more stoppages unless the airline
gives in to its demands.
2012 Aug 31, In Germany
Grunenthal chief executive Harald Stock said in a speech that
his company, the maker of thalidomide, was "very sorry" for its
silence towards the victims of the drug, which was sold to pregnant
women as a cure for morning sickness in the 1950s and early 1960s.
An estimated 10,000 children worldwide were born with defects --
including missing limbs. It was pulled from the market in 1961.
2012 Aug 31, In Guinea a
flat-bottomed boat used by fishermen and for transport, capsized a
few minutes after setting off for Kassa Island, several km (miles)
from the capital Conakry. About 30 people were believed drowned
after the overloaded boat sank. 27 survived.
2012 Aug 31, Indian
gangster-politician Arun Gawli, who rose from the working classes to
be called "daddy" by his adoring followers, was sentenced to life
imprisonment for murdering a local rival in 2008. A court earlier
this week found Gawli and 10 others guilty of killing right-wing
Hindu politician Kamlakar Jamsandekar four years ago in India's
2012 Aug 31, Indonesian
fishermen rescued 43 starving, dehydrated Sri Lankans who had been
adrift in a boat for nine days after their engine broke down while
trying to reach Australia to seek asylum.
2012 Aug 31, In Indonesia 2
suspected militants were killed in a shootout with police in central
Java’s Solo town. The shooting also left one officer dead. Police
were attempting to capture a group responsible for the death of a
policeman a day earlier.
(SSFC, 9/2/12, p.A7)
2012 Aug 31, Iran’s sole
reactor at the country's Bushehr nuclear power plant reached full
2012 Aug 31, An Iranian
opposition organization said that a final convoy of 680 of its
members will leave Camp Ashraf on September 12 for the new Hurriya
transit center near Baghdad.
2012 Aug 31, In Iraq gunmen
shot dead four Shiite worshippers in three separate attacks in
2012 Aug 31, In northern Mali a
man accused of rape in received 100 lashes, as the Islamists
controlling the city continue to mete out punishments under Shariah
law. He was identified as a Burkina Faso citizen named Boubacar
2012 Aug 31, Mexico’s highest
electoral court declared Enrique Pena president. Leftist
presidential candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said that he is
refusing to recognize the results of the presidential election.
(AP, 8/31/12)(SFC, 9/1/12, p.A2)
2012 Aug 31, Mexico extradited
Eduardo Arellano Felix (55), the top advisor to his brother’s
Tijuana-based drug cartel, to the US.
(SFC, 9/1/12, p.A9)
2012 Aug 31, Mozambican police
killed Orquilio Nhassengo, the suspected kingpin of a kidnapping
ring that has targeted wealthy Muslims in Maputo, during a raid in
which six were also arrested.
2012 Aug 31, Niger emergency
officials said that 52 people have died after heavy rains caused
rivers to overflow and buildings to crumble.
2012 Aug 31, In northern
Nigeria 2 speeding buses collided head-on and burst into flames
killing at least 29 people and injuring 16 others in Yobe state.
2012 Aug 31, In northwestern
Pakistan a car bomb exploded in a market, killing at least 11 people
in Mattani bazaar near the city of Peshawar.
2012 Aug 31, A 7.6-magnitude
quake struck off the eastern coast of the Philippines, killing at
least one person in a house collapse, knocking out power in several
towns and generating negligible tsunami surges.
2012 Aug 31, Rwanda announced
it was pulling out 280 of its soldiers from eastern Democratic
Republic of Congo, where they had been working with DR Congo troops
fighting rebel militia there.
2012 Aug 31, Spain’s FROB, a
bank rescue fund set up to help the deeply troubled financial
sector, said it will immediately inject financial aid into Bankia
after the troubled lender announced losses of €4.4 billion ($5.6
billion) in the first half of the year.
2012 Aug 31, Syrian rebels said
they have begun a major operation in the Aleppo region. According to
the Observatory there were 125 people killed in violence nationwide
including 74 civilians, 29 soldiers and 22 rebels.
(AP, 8/31/12)(AFP, 9/1/12)
2012 Aug 31, Syrian troops
fired at least 25 shells overnight striking a Lebanese Christian
village on the northern border, wounding one person and causing
2012 Aug 31, In Thailand
militants in the Muslim-majority south carried out a wave of
coordinated attacks, wounding several soldiers and hoisting the
Malaysian flag across the restive region.
2012 Aug 31, In eastern Yemen a
suspected US drone airstrike hit a vehicle carrying suspected
militants traveling in Hadramawt, killing eight in the third such
strike this week. Khaled Batis, wanted in connection with the attack
on the Limburg off the coast of Yemen that killed one person, was
among five militants riding a vehicle struck by a drone.
(AP, 8/31/12)(AFP, 9/2/12)
2013 Aug 31, President Barack
Obama said that he would seek Congress approval for a military
strike on Syria.
2013 Aug 31, In Afghanistan a
suicide bomber detonated his explosives near a police checkpoint and
a bank in Kandahar leaving 6 people dead. A NATO service member was
killed by insurgents in the country's east. A roadside bomb killed 8
Afghan employees of a private mining company in Parwan province.
(AP, 8/31/13)(AP, 9/1/13)(SSFC, 9/1/13, p.A7)
2013 Aug 31, Veteran British
journalist and broadcaster David Frost (74), who won fame around the
world for his TV interviews with former President Richard Nixon,
died aboard the Queen Elizabeth cruise ship, where he was due to
give a speech.
2013 Aug 31, In China an
ammonia leak from a cold storage unit at a food company in Shanghai
killed 15 people and sickened dozens.
2013 Aug 31, In China a 5.8
magnitude earthquake hit a remote part of Yunnan province near the
popular tourist area of Shangri-La, killing 5 people and injuring 24
2013 Aug 31, An Indian teenager
was sentenced to three years in juvenile detention for the December
gang rape of a trainee physiotherapist, the first verdict in a case
that sparked debate over whether India is too soft on young
offenders. The woman died in a Singapore hospital two weeks after
the December 16 attack.
2013 Aug 31, In Iraq hundreds
of protesters took to the streets of Baghdad as well as central and
southern Iraq against generous pension payments to lawmakers as many
still struggled to get jobs and basic services. A bombing and
shootings in and west of Baghdad killed 13 people. A car bomb killed
12 people and wounded at least 20 other in Ramadi.
(Reuters, 8/31/13)(AP, 8/31/13)(SSFC, 9/1/13,
2013 Aug 31, In northwest
Pakistan a US drone killed at least 4 militants in a missile strike
targeting a compound in North Waziristan.
2013 Aug 31, Somalia’s capital,
Mogadishu, hosted TEDx talks. Academics, activists artists and
entrepreneurs gathered to challenge the negative images of the
infamously dangerous and war-ravaged city.
2014 Aug 31, In Colorado a
Piper PA-46 airplane crashed near an airport north of Denver killing
all 5 people onboard.
2014 Aug 31, In western
Afghanistan a van slammed into a fuel tanker, killing 23 people in
2014 Aug 31, PM Tony Abbott
said Australia will drop military equipment and aid to Kurdish
forces fighting Islamic State militants in northern Iraq in response
to a request from the United States.
2014 Aug 31, China's
legislature ruled out allowing open nominations in inaugural
elections for Hong Kong's leader, saying they would create a
"chaotic society." Democracy activists in the Asian financial hub
responded by saying that a long-threatened mass occupation of the
heart of the city "will definitely happen."
2014 Aug 31, In France a
four-story building in a northeastern Paris suburb collapsed after
an explosion. At least 7 people were killed.
(Yahoo News, 8/31/14)
2014 Aug 31, Iraqi forces broke
through to the jihadist-besieged Shiite town of Amerli, where
thousands of people have been trapped for more than two months with
dwindling food and water supplies. The US announced that it carried
out three air strikes in the Amerli area, expanding its air campaign
outside the far north for the first time, while Australian, British,
French and US aircraft dropped relief supplies for the town. Two
suicide bombers detonated explosives-rigged vehicles near positions
of security forces in the city of Ramadi, killing 13 people and
wounding 17. Iraqi troops and militia looted and burned homes and
destroyed villages after breaking the Islamic State group's
months-long siege of Amerli.
(AFP, 8/31/14)(AFP, 3/18/15)
2014 Aug 31, Israel announced
it will expropriate 400 hectares (988 acres) of Palestinian land in
the occupied West Bank, angering the Palestinians and alarming
Israeli peace campaigners.
2014 Aug 31, A Libyan coast
guard official said a boat carrying over 100 migrants capsized off
the coast near Tripoli.
(SFC, 9/1/14, p.A2)
2014 Aug 31, Mexican officials
said Mario Alberto Arce Moreno (31), a leader of the violent Los
Zetas drug cartel, has been arrested in the northwestern state of
2014 Aug 31, In Pakistan
thousands of anti-government protesters tried to raid the official
residence of PM Nawaz Sharif overnight, sparking clashes with police
that killed 3 people and wounded nearly 400 amid cries for the
premier to step down.
2014 Aug 31, A magnitude-6
earthquake struck northern Pakistan, though there were no immediate
reports of injuries or damage.
2014 Aug 31, Russian President
Vladimir Putin called for immediate talks on "statehood" for
southern and eastern Ukraine, although his spokesman said this did
not mean Moscow now endorsed rebel calls for independence for
territory they have seized.
2014 Aug 31, Slovakia's PM
Robert Fico slammed EU sanctions on Russia as "meaningless and
counterproductive" and threatened to veto additional measures,
highlighting the internal divide within the EU over its tough stance
2014 Aug 31, In Somalia
Islamist rebels blew up a car bomb and gunmen attacked a national
intelligence site in Mogadishu where suspected militants were held,
in an assault that left at least 7 Shebab militants and 4 others
(Reuters, 8/31/14)(AFP, 8/31/14)
2014 Aug 31, The Syrian
Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group said at least 42
children have been killed in government air strikes and shelling
across Syria in the last 36 hours.
2014 Aug 31, In Syria 40
Filipino peacekeepers escaped their besieged outpost in the Golan
Heights after a seven-hour gunbattle with Syrian rebels.
Al-Qaida-linked insurgents still held captive 44 Fijian troops.
2014 Aug 31, A Ukraine naval
vessel in the Azov Sea came under artillery attack from the shore
today, in what pro-Russian rebels claimed as the first sea victory
of their separatist war.
2014 Aug 31, In southern Yemen
11 soldiers were killed in three separate attacks that included
suicide bombings by suspected al Qaeda militants in Shabwa province.
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