Today in History - December 2
Return to home
1170 Dec 2,
Thomas Becket, archbishop of Canterbury, returned to Canterbury from
(ON, 8/20/11, p.3)
1515 Dec 2, Gonzalo de Cordoba,
Spanish general, strategist, viceroy of Naples, died.
1594 Dec 2, Gerardus Mercator
(82), Flemish philosopher and cartographer, died. Mercator's dream
was to publish a volume of maps, which would also give a history of
the world since creation. Called the 'Atlas', the first section came
out in 1569. It contained a chronology from creation to 1568.
1620 Dec 2, An English
newspaper headline read: “The new tidings out of Italie are not yet
come.” In 2006 this was reported to be the world’s oldest headline.
(Econ, 12/23/06, p.103)
1697 Dec 2, St. Paul's
Cathedral opened in London.
1719 Dec 2, Pasquier Quesnel
(85), French theologian (La Foi), died.
1763 Dec 2, Touro Shul, the
oldest existing US synagogue, was dedicated in Newport, RI.
1774 Dec 2, Johann Friedrich
Agricola (54), German court composer and organist, died.
1776 Dec 2, George Washington's
army began retreating across the Delaware River from New Jersey to
Pennsylvania. In 2004 David Hackett Fischer authored "Washington's
(WSJ, 2/6/04, p.W8)
1777 Dec 2, British officers
under Gen. Howe met in the Philadelphia home of Lydia Darragh to
discuss plans to the attack American forces on December 5, just
prior to Gen. Washington’s planned move to Valley Forge. Mrs.
Darragh listened in on the plans and sent word to Whitemarsh of the
(ON, 8/07, p.8)
1804 Dec 2, Napoleon crowned
himself emperor of France with Josephine as Empress as Pope Pius VII
looked on. In 1807 Jacques-Louis David completed his painting of the
(WSJ, 12/14/04, p.D10)(AP, 12/2/07)
1805 Dec 2, Napoleon Bonaparte
celebrated the first anniversary of his coronation with a victory at
Austerlitz over a Russian and Austrian army.
1812 Dec 2, James Madison was
re-elected president of US; E. Gerry was vice-pres.
1814 Dec 2, Marquis de Sade
(74), writer, died.
1816 Dec 2, The first savings
bank in the United States, the Philadelphia Savings Fund Society,
opened for business.
1823 Dec 2, President Monroe,
replying to the 1816 pronouncements of the Holy Alliance, proclaimed
the principles known as the Monroe Doctrine, "that the American
continents, by the free and independent condition which they have
assumed and maintained, are henceforth not to be considered as
subjects for future colonization by European powers." His doctrine
opposing European expansion in the Western Hemisphere insured that
American influence in the Western hemisphere remain unquestioned.
Former US Pres. Thomas Jefferson (1801-1809) helped Monroe shape the
1837 Dec 2, Dr. Joseph Bell,
British physician, was born. He is believed to be the prototype of
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's detective 'Sherlock Holmes.'
1840 Dec 2, William Henry
Harrison was elected president of US. Whig candidate William Henry
Harrison, Old Buckeye, and his running mate John Tyler ran and won
in a landslide against Democrat Pres. Martin Van Buren. Depression
and financial panic had marked Van Buren’s term. Fans of the
Harrison Party rolled huge balls of paper, rope and tin through
Midwestern towns and into the Pennsylvania convention. "Hard cider"
Whigs disrupted the Democratic gathering in Baltimore.
(HFA, ‘96, p.46)(Hem, 8/96, p.84)(WSJ, 8/15/00,
1840 Dec 2, Gaetano Donizetti's
opera "La Favorita," premiered in Paris.
1845 Dec 2, Johannes Simon Mayr
(82), composer, died.
1848 Dec 2, Austria’s Emperor
Ferdinand I (1793-1875) abdicated in favor of Franz Joseph
1852 Dec 2, Louis Napoleon, the
little nephew of Napoleon Bonaparte, established the Second Empire
in France (1852-1870) and called himself Napoleon III. He married
the Spanish beauty Eugenie and ran a semi-liberal autocracy for 18
(WUD, 1994, p.950)(WSJ, 3/14/95, p.A16)(MC,
1859 Dec 2, George Seurat
(d.1891), French artist, was born in Paris. He entered the Ecole des
Beaux Arts in 1875. His method of painting with bright colors
juxtaposed as tiny dots was called pointillism, often called
(SFC, 5/6/97, p.E4)(WUD, 1994, p.1306)(DPCP
1859 Dec 2, John Brown, US
abolitionist, was hanged for his raid on Harper’s Ferry the previous
October. Brown was convicted and executed at Charlestown for treason
against the state of Virginia after his unsuccessful October 16-18
raid at Harpers Ferry. Six of Brown‘s men were later convicted and
hanged. In 1910 Oswald Garrison Villard authored an account of
Brown’s life. In 1972 Richard O. Boyer authored "The Legend of John
Brown." In 1998 Russell Banks published his novel "Cloudsplitter,"
narrated by Owen Brown (1824-1889), the 3rd son of John Brown. In
2005 David S. Reynolds authored “John Brown: Abolitionist.”
(SFEC, 2/22/98, BR p.8)(ON, 7/02, p.8)(WSJ,
4/19/05, p.D8)(SSFC, 4/24/05, p.B1)
1863 Dec 2, Charles Ringling,
one of the 7 Ringling brothers of circus fame, was born. Of the 7
Ringling brothers, five were involved in the founding of the famous
Ringling Brothers Circus. The 5 Ringling brothers who founded the
circus were Albert, Otto, Alfred, Charles and John. Two other
Ringling brothers were never associated with the circus, which began
as a wagon show in 1884. In 1907 they bought the Barnum & Bailey
Circus and after 1918 called their circus the Ringling Brothers and
Barnum & Bailey Combined Shows. John Ringling’s son, John
Ringling North, sold the circus to interests outside of the family
(HN, 12/2/00)(HNQ, 1/22/03)
1863 Dec 2, General Braxton
Bragg turned over command of the Army of Tennessee to General
William Hardee at Dalton, Ga.
1864 Dec 2, Major General
Grenville M. Dodge was named to replace General Rosecrans as
Commander of the Department of Missouri.
1864 Dec 2, Skirmish at Rocky
Creek Church, Georgia.
1867 Dec 2, People waited in
mile-long lines to hear Charles Dickens give his first reading in
New York City.
1877 Dec 2, Camille
Saint-Saens' opera "Samson et Dalila," premiered in Weimar.
(WSJ, 2/20/98, p.A16)(MC, 12/2/01)
1880 Dec 2, Josephine Lang
(65), composer, died.
1883 Dec 2, Johannes Brahms'
3rd Symphony in F, premiered.
1884 Dec 2, Ruth Draper,
actress and writer, was born.
1885 Dec 2, Nikos Kazantzakis
(d.1957), Greek writer and lawyer, was born. His work included
"Zorba the Greek." [see Feb 18, 1887]
1885 Dec 2, George Richards
Minot (d.1950), physician (Nobel-1934), was born.
(WUD, 1994 p.913)(Internet)
1885 Dec 2, Karl Goldmark's
opera "Queen of Sheba," premiered in Vienna.
1888 Dec 2, Mehmed N. Kemal Bey
(47), Turkish writer and journalist (Vatan), died.
1892 Dec 2, Jay Gould (b.1836),
American financier, died. In 1986 Maury Klein authored "The Life and
Legend of Jay Gould." His fortune was estimated at $72 million.
1893 Dec 2, Pauline C. Fryer
(b.1833), stage performer and Union spy during the Civil War, died
in San Francisco.
1896 Dec 2, Georgi Zukov,
Soviet general during World War II who captured Berlin, was born.
1899 Dec 2, John Barbirolli,
English conductor (NY Philharmonic Orchestra), was born.
1900 Dec 2, John Hossack
(b.1841), an Iowa farmer and a prosperous citizen of Warren County,
was killed in his bed from two blows with an ax. His wife was
accused of the murder. In 1927 Susan Gaspell (1876-1948), American
novelist and playwright, authored “A Jury of Her Peers,” a short
story based on his murder trial.
1901 Dec 2, King Camp Gillette,
a former bottle-cap salesman, began selling safety razor blades. The
story of Gillette was told in the 1998 book "Cutting Edge" by Gordon
McKibben. Gillette went on to become a millionaire and a utopian
socialist who believed that competition was wasteful.
(WSJ, 2/13/98, p.A13)(WSJ, 7/26/99, p.A22)(MC,
1903 Dec 2, The play “Kuolema”
(Death), a drama by Finnish writer Arvid Järnefelt, was first
performed. It included incidental music by Jean Sibelius. The
opening number, Valse Triste (Sad Waltz), was later adapted into a
separate concert piece.
1906 Dec 2, Peter Carl Goldmark
(d.1977), engineer, was born in Budapest, Hungary. He developed the
first commercial color television and the long-playing phonograph
(HN, 12/2/00)(AP, 12/2/06)
1907 Dec 2, Spain and France
agreed to enforce Moroccan measures adopted in 1906.
1908 Dec 2, Emp. Zxuan Tong
(Aisingyoro Henry Puyi, 2 1/2 years old) ascended the dragon throne
and became China's Last Emperor.
(SFC, 6/11/97, p.A24)(MC, 12/2/01)
1909 Dec 2, J.P. Morgan
acquired majority holdings in Equitable Life Co. This was the
largest concentration of bank power to date.
1912 Dec 2, Henry Armstrong,
the only boxer to hold three titles simultaneously, was born.
1913 Dec 2, Woodrow Wilson
re-established the tradition of delivering the US state of the union
address in person. He was the first to do so since John Adams in
1913 Dec 2, The US Senate
passed the Raker Act which authorized SF rights to dam the Tuolumne
River in Yosemite National Park for water-collection and
1914 Dec 2, Ray Walston, actor
(My Favorite Martian), was born.
1914 Dec 2, Austrian troops
occupied Belgrade, Serbia.
1915 Dec 2, Adolph Green,
songwriter (married to Phyllis Newman), was born.
1915 Dec 2, Millicent Hearst,
wife of William Randolph Hearst (d.1951), gave birth to twin sons,
David (d.1986) and Randolph (d.2000).
(SFC, 12/19/00, p.A21)(MC, 12/2/01)
1916 Dec 2, Paolo Tosti,
Italian-born composer and music teacher, died at the Hotel Excelsior
in Rome. In 1894 Tosti joined the British Royal Academy of Music as
a professor. In 1906, he became a British citizen and was knighted
two years later by his friend, King Edward VII. In 1913 he returned
to Italy to spend his last years there. Tosti wrote a total of 360
songs in his lifetime including: “Goodbye,” “Forever,” and “Mother.”
1918 Dec 2, Armenia proclaimed
independence from Turkey. An independent Republic of Armenia was
established in Russian Armenia under Dashnak administration.
(HN, 12/2/98)(Compuserve Online Enc. / Armenia)
1919 Dec 2, Henry Clay
Frick (b.1849), coal and steel magnate, died in NYC. He partnered
with Andrew Carnegie and built of the largest coke & steel
operation of the time. In 1998 Martha Frick and Symington Sanger
authored “Henry Clay Frick.” In 2005 Les Standiford authored “Meet
You In Hell,” an account of the rivalry between Frick and Andrew
p.W8)(WSJ, 8/4/07, p.P9)
1923 Dec 2, Maria M. Callas
(d.1977), opera singer (Norma, Traviata, Medea, Lucia, Tosca), was
born in NYC.
1925 Dec 2, Alexander Haig,
American army general and Secretary of State for President Ronald
Reagan (1981-82), was born in Bala-Cynwyd, Pa.
(HN, 12/2/98)(MC, 12/2/01)
1927 Dec 2, Ford Motor Co.
unveiled its "Model A" automobile, the successor to its "Model T."
The Ford Rouge plant employed 70,000 men. A vehicle was assembled in
3 1/2 days and the price for a Model T dropped to $290 per vehicle,
down 65% from its original price. The Model A was introduced with a
revolutionary teaser campaign and the 1st one sold for $385.
Production for the Model T was shut down for almost 6 months to
retool for the Model A and compete with GM.
(WSJ, 6/19/96, Adv. Supl)(AP, 12/2/97)(WSJ,
11/5/99, p.A1)(MC, 12/2/01)
1929 Dec 2, 1st skull of Peking
man was found 50 km out of Peking at Tsjoe Koe Tien.
1931 Dec 2,
Paul-Marie-Theodore-Vincent D'indy (80), French count and composer,
1932 Dec 2, "Adventures of
Charlie Chan" was 1st heard on NBC-Blue radio network.
1932 Dec 2, In Germany Pres.
Hindenburg appointed Gen. Schleicher as Chancellor.
1934 Dec 2, The 5.08-m (200")
Mt. Palomar Observatory mirror was cast.
Dec 2, Albert Kessel (29) and Robert Lee Cannon (30) became the
first two people to die in California’s new gas chamber at San
Quentin. Kessel and Cannon (30) were convicted of the 1937 murder of
Folsom Prison Warden Clarence Larkin. Four other inmates were also
executed in connection with this murder, three within two weeks.
12/1/13, DB p.46)
1939 Dec 2, New York's
Municipal Airport began operations as an airliner from Chicago
landed at one minute after midnight. The North Beach Airport opened
in Queens, NYC, with 2 levels for passenger circulation. It was
renamed LaGuardia on March 31, 1940.
(Hem., 5/97, p.70)(AP, 12/2/98)
1939 Dec 2, British Imperial
Airways and British Airways merged to form BOAC.
1941 Dec 2, Naval Intelligence
ended the bugging of the Japanese consul.
1941 Dec 2, Yamamoto ordered
his fleet to Pearl Harbor.
1942 Dec 2, A self-sustaining
nuclear chain reaction was demonstrated for the first time at the
University of Chicago. On the squash court underneath a football
stadium of the University of Chicago, the first nuclear chain
reaction was set off. At 3:45 p.m., control rods were removed from
the "nuclear pile" of uranium and graphite, revealing that neutrons
from fissioning uranium split other atoms, which in turn split
others in a chain reaction. The reaction was part of the Manhattan
Project, the United States' top-secret plan to develop an atomic
bomb. The group of scientists was led by Enrico Fermi and they
proved that building an atomic bomb would be feasible. Dr. Alexander
Langsdorf was one of the designers of the first 2 nuclear reactors
that followed the first sustained nuclear chain reaction at the
Univ. of Chicago. The first and last atomic bombs ever used in war
were dropped on Japan in 1945.
(TMC, 1994, p.1942)(SFC, 5/26/96, p.C-10)(AP,
1942 Dec 2, The Allies repelled
a strong Axis attack in Tunisia, North Africa.
1943 Dec 2, "Carmen Jones," a
contemporary reworking of the Bizet opera "Carmen" by Oscar
Hammerstein II with an all-black cast, opened on Broadway.
Dec 2, The 1st RSHA (Reichsicherheitshauptamt, the central
SS-department) transport out of Vienna reached Birkenau camp
(Poland). One of the powers of the RSHA was the imposition of
"Protective Custody," which meant the deportation to a concentration
camp without trial or the possibility of appeal for the victims.
1943 Dec 2, Italy’s Bari harbor
was attacked by German bombers. They achieved a complete surprise
bombing shipping and personnel operating in support of the Allied
Italian campaign. 27 cargo and transport ships and a schooner were
sunk. The release of mustard gas from one of the wrecked cargo ships
added to the loss of life.
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_raid_on_Bari)(Econ, 9/14/13, p.20)
1944 Dec 2, General Patton’s
troops entered the Saar Valley and broke through the Siegfried line.
US 95th Infantry division occupied bridge at Saar.
(HN, 12/2/98)(MC, 12/2/01)
1944 Dec 2, Filippo Tommaso
Emilio Marinetti (b.1876), Italian ideologue, poet, and editor, died
in Bellagio, Italy. He was main founder of the Futurist movement
[see 1909]. In 2006 Gunter Berghaus edited “Critical Writings by
F.T. Marinetti,” translated by Doug Thompson.
(http://tinyurl.com/y7v7f3)(SFC, 10/24/06, p.E2)
1946 Dec 2, Gianni Versace,
fashion designer (Versace), was born.
1946 Dec 2, The U.S. and
Britain merged the German occupation zones.
1946 Dec 2, The Protocol to the
International Convention on the Regulation of Whaling (ICRW) was
signed was signed in Washington, DC. The International Whaling
Commission (IWC), formed in 1948, prohibited the hunting of gray
whales worldwide when their numbers were down to the thousands.
Scientific studies and the commercial reality of fewer whales led to
the implementation of bans on hunting many whale species such as the
humpback whale in 1963 followed in 1965 by a hunting ban on the blue
whale (the largest creature known to have ever existed). The IWC
adopted a moratorium on whaling in 1982. Although the IWC attempted
to ban all commercial whaling in 1986, some countries refused to
1947 Dec 2, 13th Heisman Trophy
Award was awarded to John Lujack, Notre Dame (QB).
1947 Dec 2, A Syrian mob burned
a synagogue where the Aleppo Codex was hidden. This followed a UN
resolution calling for the creation of Arab and Jewish states in
Palestine Nearly two-thirds of the pages were retrieved by
congregant, Mourad Faham. But 196 pages vanished, including books of
Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Ecclesiastes, Lamentations,
Esther, Daniel, Ezra and Nehemiah, as well as pages from other
(AP, 9/27/08)(SSFC, 6/28/09, p.A8)
1948 Dec 2, T. Corgaghessan
Boyle, novelist and short story writer, was born. His work included
Dec 2, Dinu Lipatti (b.1917), Romania-born pianist, died of leukemia
in Geneva, Switz.
1952 Dec 2, 1st human birth
televised to public was on KOA-TV Denver, Colo.
Dec 2, The US Senate voted 67-22 to censure Sen. Joseph R. McCarthy,
R-Wis., for "conduct that tends to bring the Senate into dishonor
and disrepute." This followed the McCarthy investigation of the
Army. Roy Cohn was McCarthy’s aide and Joseph Welch was the attorney
for the army. Army general counsel John G. Adams (d.2003) later
authored "Without Precedent: The story of the Death of McCarthyism."
In 1999 Arthur Herman published "Joseph McCarthy," a reexamination
of McCarthy's accusations.
(NYT, 12/3/54, p.1)(WSJ, 8/5/96, p.A10)(AP, 12/2/97)(WSJ, 12/6/99,
p.A32)(SFC, 6/28/03, p.A1)
1956 Dec 2, Fidel Castro landed
on coast of Cuba. Castro landed with a small armed force to
overthrow dictator Fulgencio Batista. Che Guevara was one of the few
who survived the disastrous landing of the rebels’ boat, the Granma.
Guevara kept a diary for the next 2 years and in 2011 it was
published in Cuba as “Diary of a Combatant.”
(TOH, 1982, p.1956)(SFC, 10/15/97, p.C2)(SFC,
1957 Dec 2, The Shippingport
Atomic Power Station in Pennsylvania, the first nuclear facility to
generate electricity in the US, went critical. [see July 12] It was
taken out of service in 1982.
(SSFC, 4/8/07, p.A18)(AP, 12/2/07)
1961 Dec 2, Cuban leader Fidel
Castro declared himself a Marxist-Leninist who would lead Cuba to
1963 Dec 2, Sabu Sabu (39),
actor (Sabu Dastagir), died of a heart attack in Chatsworth,
California. He was born in Karapur, Mysore, India, on January 27,
1924, beginning his movie career at the age of 13. His films
included “Elephant Boy” (1937); “Drums” (1938); “The Thief of
Baghdad” (1940); “Jungle Book” (1942) and “Arabian Nights” (1942).
1964 Dec 2, Mario Savio made a
speech on behalf of the Free Speech Movement that caused hundreds of
students to take over Sproul Hall in Berkeley. Police moved in the
next day and arrested 780, which prompted a student strike. "There
comes a time when the operation of the machine becomes so odious,
makes you so sick at heart, that you can’t take part, you can’t even
passively take part. And you’ve got to put your bodies on the gears,
and upon the wheels, upon the levers, upon all the apparatus, and
you’ve go to make it stop."
(SFC, 12/3/97, p.A21)(SSFM, 4/29/01, p.13)
1964 Dec 2, Brazil sent Juan
Peron back to Spain, foiling his efforts to return to his native
1967 Dec 2, Cardinal Francis
Spellman died in New York City at age 78.
1967 Dec 2, In Gabon Pres. Omar
Bongo began ruling upon the death of Leon M'Ba. Jacques Foccart,
architect of French policy in Africa, helped to handpick Omar Bongo.
(WSJ, 12/10/96, p.A22)(SFC, 3/20/97, p.A24)(AP,
1968 Dec 2, Pres Nixon named
Henry Kissinger (b.1923) security advisor.
1969 Dec 2, Kliment J.
Voroshilov (b.1881), president USSR (1953-60), died.
1970 Dec 2, The US Senate voted
to give 48,000 acres of New Mexico back to the Taos Indians.
1970 Dec 2, The Environmental
Protection Agency began operating under director William
Ruckelshaus. Pres. Nixon appointed a 3-member Council on
Environmental Quality that included journalist Robert Cahn (d.1997
at 80). It was the first centralized White House office to advise
the president on environmental matters. He served to 1972.
(SFC, 11/1/97, p.A17)(AP, 12/2/97)
1971 Dec 2, The British pulled
out of the Trucial States (7 coastal Arab sheikhdoms that included
Sharjah) in the Persian Gulf and these states formed the United Arab
Emirates (UAR). Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ras al Khaimah, Umm al
Qaiwain, Ajman and Fujairah merged to form the new federation.
(NG, 5/88, p.662)(HFA, '96, p.20)(SFC, 12/16/97,
p.B1)(WSJ, 5/7/98, p.B16)
1971 Dec 2, The Mars 3 landed
on Mars and failed after 20 seconds of video data. The orbiter
returned date until August 1972.
(SFC, 11/19/96, p.B1)
1972 Dec 2, In Australia
Neville Bonner (1922-1999) became the first Aborigine to be elected
to the federal Parliament. In 1971 he became the first Aboriginal
person to sit in the Commonwealth parliament when he was chosen to
fill a vacancy in the Senate caused by the resignation of a Liberal
senator for Queensland.
1972 Dec 2, Friedrich
Christian Christiansen (92), German Luftwaffe general, died. He was
born at Wyk on Foehr, Germany, on December 12, 1879. Christiansen
was appointed officer commanding occupied Holland, a post he held
until the end of the war when he was imprisoned by the Allies. On
his release from prison he retired to West Germany and died at
1973 Dec 2, Monica Seles,
tennis star (US Open 1992), was born in Novi Sad, Yugoslavia.
1974 Dec 2, Lucio Cabanas,
leader of a communist rebel group called the Party of the Poor, was
killed in a shootout with Mexican soldiers. In 2002 his remains were
found in a makeshift grave in Atoyac de Alvarez, a city outside a
major military base near the Pacific coast resort of Acapulco. Lino
Rosas Perez and Esteban Mesino Martinez were killed along with
Cabanas, in a gunbattle with authorities in the village of Otatal in
southern Guerrero state. Perez and Martinez were identified in 2006
using DNA evidence.
(AP, 8/13/02)(AP, 11/15/06)
1975 Dec 2, George Moscone
(1929-1978) was elected mayor of San Francisco in a runoff election
with electoral support from the neighborhoods rather than downtown
(SF E&C, 1/15/1995, SFE Mag. p.24)
1978 Dec 2, Streisand and
Diamond's "You Don't Bring Me Flowers," went #1.
1978 Dec 2, Anti-Shah
protesters poured through Tehran chanting "Allah is great."
1978 Dec 2, Pakistan’s General
Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq delivered a nationwide address on the occasion
of the first day of the Hijra calendar. He did this in order to
usher in an Islamic system.
1979 Dec 2, Some 2,000 Libyans
ransacked the US embassy at Tripoli, Libya, chanting support for the
radical Islamic regime that took power in Iran earlier in the year.
1980 Dec 2, Pres. Carter signed
the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act and protected
104 million acres of wilderness. The size of Denali National Park
was tripled to 6.2 million acres. Motorized access to the land was
given for traditional activities such as hunting, fishing and
camping. Peggy Wayburn’s book: "Alaska the Great Land" was credited
with helping persuade Congress. The law directed the Interior Dept.
to assess oil potential in 1.5 million acres of the coastal plain. A
ban was put on drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. In
2002 Pres. Bush pushed to overturn the ban. Estimates on oil there
ranged from 3.2 to at least 5.7 billion barrels.
(WSJ, 5/13/99, p.B1)(SFC, 3/28/02,
p.B6)(Econ, 12/20/03, p.38)(SSFC, 2/24/02, p.A9)(SSFC, 8/28/05,
1980 Dec 2, Three American nuns
and a lay worker were abducted, raped and shot in San Salvador.
Peasants discovered their bodies the next day and buried them. Nuns
Dorothy Kazel, Ita Ford, Maura Clark, and lay worker Jean Donovan
were raped and shot by guardsmen. The murders occurred as the US
began a 10-year $7 billion aid effort to prevent left-wing
guerrillas from coming to power. Five national guardsmen were later
convicted in the killings, and sentenced to 30 years in prison.
(SFC, 4/3/98, p.B2)(SFC, 4/23/98, p.A16)(AP,
1981 Dec 2, Hershy Kay
(b.1919), composer, died.
1982 Dec 2, In the first
operation of its kind, doctors at the University of Utah Medical
Center implanted a permanent artificial heart developed by Dr.
Robert K. Jarvik. Barney Clark, a retired dentist, lived 112 days
with the Jarvic-7 heart, the first human to survive with a man-made
(TMC, 1994, p.1982)(AP, 12/2/97)(HN, 12/2/98)
1982 Dec 2, Marty Feldman (49),
comedian, writer and actor (Young Frankenstein), died from a heart
attack after suffering food poisoning in Mexico City, Mexico.
He was born July 8, 1933, in London, England.
1985 Dec 2, Philip Larkin
(b.1922), English poet, died of esophageal cancer. He had received
the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry in 1965. His books included “High
Windows” (1974). In 2012 “The Complete Poems of Philip Larkin,”
edited by Archie Burnett, was published.
(WSJ, 12/8/07, p.W18)(Econ, 1/21/12, p.94)(Econ,
1985 Dec 2, The 2nd round of
free elections in Guatemala gave a decisive majority of almost 70%
to the centrist Christian Democratic Party candidate, Vinicio Cerezo
(b.1942). The army still held much behind-the-scenes power.
1986 Dec 2, Desi Arnaz
(b.1917), Cuban-born musician and actor (played Ricky Ricardo in “I
Love Lucy”), died from lung cancer in Del Mar, California. In 1949,
Arnaz turned his efforts to developing the hit television series "I
Love Lucy," which ran for six years on CBS and became the most
successful television program in history.
1987 Dec 2, After a chaotic
meeting that had begun the night before, the Chicago City Council
elected Eugene Sawyer acting mayor, succeeding the late Harold
1988 Dec 2, The film "Naked
Gun," a movie based on TV's "Police Squad,” was released.
1988 Dec 2, The space shuttle
Atlantis was launched on a secret four-day mission.
1988 Dec 2, Benazir Bhutto was
sworn in as prime minister of Pakistan.
1988 Dec 2, The 5 gunmen, who
hijacked Soviet Aeroflot jet, surrendered in Israel.
1990 Dec 2, Composer Aaron
Copland died in North Tarrytown, N.Y., at age 90. In 1999 Howard
Pollack published "Aaron Copland: The Life and Work of an Uncommon
(AP, 12/2/98)(SFEC, 5/2/99, BR p.4)
1990 Dec 2, Bob Cummings
(b.1908), film and TV star, died in Woodland Hills, California.
1990 Dec 2, Chancellor Helmut
Kohl’s center-right coalition easily won the first free all-German
elections since 1932.
1991 Dec 2, American hostage
Joseph Cicippio, held captive in Lebanon for more than five years,
1991 Dec 2, Testimony began in
West Palm Beach, Fla., in the trial of William Kennedy Smith,
accused of raping Patricia Bowman at his family's estate.
1992 Dec 2, The space shuttle
Discovery blasted off with five astronauts and a spy satellite
1992 Dec 2, Germany's lower
house of parliament voted overwhelmingly in favor of the Maastricht
Treaty on European unity.
1992 Dec 2, Uzbekistan adopted
its first constitution as an independent state.
1993 Dec 2, Alan Winterbournem,
an unemployed computer engineer, opened fire at a California
unemployment agency in Oxnard, killing three workers; he killed a
police officer during a chase that ended in Ventura, where he
himself was gunned down.
1993 Dec 2, The space shuttle
Endeavour blasted off on a mission to fix the Hubble Space
1993 Dec 2, Colombian drug lord
Pablo Escobar (b.1949), number 1 man in drug trafficking, was shot
to death by Police Col. Hugo Aguilar in Medellin. Escobar's wife and
children vanished from Colombia in 1995 and were arrested in
Argentina in 1999 for money laundering. In 2001 Mark Bowden authored
"Killing Pablo" a chronicle of the hunt for Escobar. In 2003 Aguilar
ran for governor of Santander province.
(SFC, 7/6/96, p.A10)(AP, 12/2/98)(SFC, 11/17/99,
p.A18)(SSFC, 1/6/02, p.M3)(SSFC, 10/5/03, p.C1)
1994 Dec 2, The US government
agreed not to seek a recall of allegedly fire-prone General Motors
pickup trucks. GM agreed to spend more than $51 million on safety
1994 Dec 2, Reputed "Hollywood
Madam" Heidi Fleiss was convicted in Los Angeles of three counts of
1995 Dec 2, In Baumholder,
Germany, President Clinton told four-thousand American troops who
were on their way to Bosnia-Herzegovina for peacekeeping duty to
strike "immediately and with decisive force" if threatened.
1995 Dec 2, NASA launched a
US-European observatory on a one billion-dollar mission to study the
sun. The Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, SOHO, later detected
rivers of charged particles flowing over the surface of the sun and
sunquakes. In 2003 a motor failure crippled a high-gain antenna.
(SFC, 9/4/98, p.A3)(AP, 12/2/00)(BS, 6/26/03, 3A)
1995 Dec 2, Robertson Davies,
Canadian writer, died. His book "The Merry Heart: Reflections on
Reading, Writing and the World of Books" was published posthumously
in 1997. His 11 novels included "Fifth Business," "What's Bred in
the Bone," "The Lyre of Orpheus" and “The Cunning Man.” Just before
his death he finished a libretto for the opera "The Golden Ass"
based on the Metamorphoses by Apuleius.
(SFEC, 7/6/97, BR p.1)(WSJ, 5/14/99, p.W8)(WSJ,
1996 Dec 2, Arizona financier
Charles Keating Jr., a central figure in the most notorious
savings-and-loan debacle of the 1980s, won a new federal trial
because jurors had learned of his prior fraud conviction in state
court before convicting him of fraud and racketeering. Keating
negotiated a plea settlement in 1999 with no additional prison time
and no admittance of swindling elderly investors. Charges against
his son were also dropped.
(AP, 12/2/97)(SFC, 4/7/99, p.A3)
1996 Dec 2, Scientists
disclosed that a suspected pond of ice was found in a deep crater of
the moon. Astronomers of Cornell Univ. in 1997 wrote that they saw
no evidence for ice on the moon.
(SFC, 12/3/96, p.A2)(WSJ, 6/1/97, p.A1)
1996 Dec 2, In Corsica four
main separatist groups vied for power, the strongest of which was
the FLNC (Corsican National Liberation Front), whose Cuncolta
political arm was led by Francois Santoni. In the capital of
Ajaccio, the French prefect was Claude Erignac.
(SFC, 12/3/96, p.A15)
1996 Dec 2, In France the
Roussel Uclaf SA, a pharmaceutical firm mostly owned by Hoechst of
Germany, agreed to reduce the workweek for 7,000 domestic employees
to 35 from 38 hours without pay cuts. Employees would also get less
in profit sharing but more vacation.
(WSJ, 12/3/96, p.A17)
1996 Dec 2, India and China
agreed to troop withdrawals along their 2,500 mile border, and
pledged not to use military force against one another.
(SFC, 12/3/96, p.A13)
1996 Dec 2, In India a bomb on
a train near Chandigarh in the Punjab region killed 12 and injured
(WSJ, 12/3/96, p.A1)
1996 Dec 2, In Mexico Pres.
Ernesto Zedillo fired Attorney Gen’l. Antonio Lozano Gracia, the
only non-PRI cabinet member. He was succeeded by Jorge Madrazo
Cuellar, the head of the human-rights commission.
(SFC, 12/3/96, p.A12)(WSJ, 12/3/96, p.A1)
1996 Dec 2, In Moldova Petru
Lucinschi, a top Communist official in Soviet days, beat incumbent
Mircea Snegur 53% to 47%.
(WSJ, 12/3/96, p.A1)
1996 Dec 2, In Pakistan Imran
Khan, former cricket player, led the Movement for Justice Party and
planned to run for prime minister.
(WSJ, 12/2/96, p.A1)
1997 Dec 2, Attorney General
Janet Reno declined to seek an independent counsel investigation of
telephone fund-raising by President Clinton and Vice President Gore,
concluding they did not violate election laws, a decision that drew
jeers from Republicans.
1997 Dec 2, The US promised to
donate $29 million over the next 3 years to an int’l. fund for
Holocaust survivors at a conference in London on Nazi gold. Congress
would have to approve the contribution. Britain pledged $1.7
million. Some 5.5 tons of gold were still held in New York and
London. Over the last 50 years the Tripartite Gold Commission,
established by the Allies, had returned over 300 tons of gold to ten
countries whose treasuries were sacked.
(SFC, 12/2/97, p.A10)(SFC, 12/3/97, p.C3)
1997 Dec 2, The US FDA approved
irradiation as a safe way to rid meat of bacteria.
(WSJ, 12/3/97, p.A1)
1997 Dec 2, In Texas Alberto
Gonzales (b.1955), the general counsel to Gov. George W. Bush, began
serving as the Sec. of State.
1997 Dec 2, It was reported
that the US life expectancy at birth has reached 76.1 years and that
the 1996 infant death rate was 7.2 per 1,000.
(WSJ, 12/2/97, p.A20)
1997 Dec 2, It was reported
that video poker takes in $2 billion a year in South Carolina.
(WSJ, 12/2/97, p.A1)
1997 Dec 2, In California
Vanessa Lei Samson (22) was abducted while walking to work in
Pleasanton. Her body was later found off Highway 88 in Alpine Ct.
Michelle Michaud and her boyfriend, James A. Daveggio, were later
picked up by police. The couple had a van converted into a "murder
and abduction chamber." The couple were arrested on a kidnap and
rape charge for a separate attack on a Reno college student in Sep.
and faced charges for raping 12 and 13-year old girls in Sacramento.
Michaud confessed to Samson’s murder. The pair were charged in 1998
for the kidnapping and murder of Samson. In 2001 Robert Scott
authored "Rope Burns," an account of the case. Daveggio and Michaud
went on trial in 2002 and were convicted in June. On Sep 25 they
were sentenced to death.
(SFC, 12/11/97, p.A21)(SFC, 11/7/98, p.A18)(SFC,
1/21/02, p.B1)(SFC, 9/26/02, p.A27)
1997 Dec 2, In India lower
caste villagers of Lakshmanpur were attacked by some 300 armed men,
who stabbed, shot and killed 61 people including 4 children under
age 5. The gunmen were thought to be members of the Ranbir Sena
paramilitary force, composed of higher caste landlords.
(SFC, 12/3/97, p.A11)
1997 Dec 2, It was reported
that Libya was constructing some 2,000 miles of tunnels with 13-foot
concrete pipes. Libya called it the Great Man-Made River Project and
it stretched from Tunisia to Egypt. Analysts feared it would be used
for military purposes. The primary contractor was Dong Ah, a South
Korean construction conglomerate and much of the equipment used was
of US make.
(SFC, 12/2/97, p.A11)
1997 Dec 2, In Peru Pres.
Fujimori ended the yearlong ban on visits by the Red Cross to jailed
(SFC, 12/3/97, p.C5)
1997 Dec 2, In Rwanda Hutu
rebels attacked a prison and released 103 jailed comrades at the
Rwerere prison near the Congo border.
(SFC, 12/4/97, p.C4)
1997 Dec 2, A mine in the
Kuzbass region of southern Siberia exploded from methane gas and
killed 67 miners.
(SFC, 12/3/97, p.C5)
1997 Dec 2, In Spain the
National Court found journalists Fernando Alonso and Andoni Murga
guilty of weapons possession and membership in the ETA and sentenced
them to 39 years each in prison.
(SFC, 12/3/97, p.C5)
1997 Dec 2, Tajikistan forces
killed Rizvon Sadirov, leader of the group that kidnapped Karine
Mane, and a number of his associates.
(SFC, 12/3/97, p.C5)
1997 Dec 2, In Istanbul,
Turkey, 33 people were sentenced to death for their roles in a 1993
mob attack that left 37 intellectuals dead.
(SFC, 12/3/97, p.C4)
1998 Dec 2, Former Agriculture
Secretary Mike Espy was acquitted of all counts in a corruption case
for accepting sports tickets and travel from companies doing
business with his department.
1998 Dec 2, Bill Gates of
Microsoft announced a $100 million gift to deliver vaccines against
4 childhood diseases in developing countries. The Seattle non-profit
Program for Appropriate Technology in Health (PATH) would receive
the money over a 10 year period.
(SFC, 12/2/98, p.A3)(WSJ, 12/2/98, p.B6)
1998 Dec 2, In Bosnia US troops
arrested Bosnian Serb Gen’l. Radislav Krstic for genocide in the
1995 takeover of Srebrenica.
(SFC, 12/3/98, p.A16)
1998 Dec 2, Filanbanco,
Ecuador’s largest bank, was turned over to the federal government
with net losses of $661 million US dollars. Owners Roberto and
William Isaias fled to the US owing $661 million to the state
Deposit Guarantee Agency.
1998 Dec 2, In the West Bank an
Israeli soldier was beaten and an Arab man was stabbed to death in
Jerusalem. Israel announced the suspension of further troops
(SFC, 12/3/98, p.A16)
1998 Dec 2, Macedonia agreed to
provide a base for NATO to get to Kosovo it the need should arise.
(WSJ, 12/3/98, p.A1)
1998 Dec 2, New Zealand agreed
to lease a number of F-16 fighter jets from the US that were
originally intended for Pakistan. Some $105 million was to be paid
over 10 years.
(SFC, 12/3/98, p.A18)
1998 Dec 2, In Nigeria the
military government uncovered a $2 billion fraud by members of
Abacha’s family involving overpayment to Russia for a steel project.
(WSJ, 12/3/98, p.A1)
1998 Dec 2, In Turkey Bulent
Ecevit was asked to form a new government.
(WSJ, 12/3/98, p.A1)
1999 Dec 2, All six Republican
presidential hopefuls, including Texas Governor George W. Bush,
debated in Manchester, New Hampshire.
1999 Dec 2, Relative calm took
over in Seattle, where a meeting of the World Trade Organization was
greeted earlier with sometimes violent demonstrations.
1999 Dec 2, Joey Adams, borscht
belt comedian, died at age 88 in Manhattan. He wrote over 40 books
which included "The Joey Adams Encyclopedia of Humor."
(SFC, 12/4/99, p.C2)
1999 Dec 2, Charlie Byrd, jazz
guitarist, died at age 74.
(SFC, 12/3/99, p.D7)
1999 Dec 2, Tim Cole (b.1960),
an army veteran convicted of a 1985 rape, died in a Texas prison
from complications of asthma. In 2008 Cole was cleared by DNA
evidence. In 2010 Texas Gov. Rick Perry pardoned Cole in the state’s
first posthumous pardon.
1999 Dec 2, The Euro fell below
$1 for the first time to 99.95 cents.
(SFC, 12/3/99, p.A18)
1999 Dec 2, In Algeria 16
alleged Islamic militants were killed by government soldiers near
Chlef, 148 miles west of Algiers.
(SFC, 12/16/99, p.C2)
1999 Dec 2, In Australian a
rail collision outside Sidney killed 7 passengers and injured over
50. A commuter train with 450 people slammed into the back of the
transcontinental Indian Pacific with 159 passengers.
(SFC, 12/3/99, p.D4)
1999 Dec 2, In Austria an
explosion leveled a 3-story apartment building in Wilhelmsberg and 9
people were killed.
(SFC, 12/3/99, p.D5)(WSJ, 12/3/99, p.A1)(SFC,
1999 Dec 2, In Brazil riot
police killed one person and wounded 9 others during a worker
protest at the Bandeirantes television station in Brasilia
(SFC, 12/3/99, p.D5)
1999 Dec 2, Congolese rebels
lost Bokungu as Zimbabwean soldiers broke through to save surrounded
comrades at Ikela airport.
(SFC, 12/4/99, p.A14)
1999 Dec 2-4, In Indonesia
3-days of violence in the Maluku Islands (Moluccas) left 31 people
dead. Violence that began a year ago had left 700 dead.
(SFC, 12/6/99, p.A14)
1999 Dec 2, In Mexico Pres.
Zedillo suspended the controversial border car-deposit program under
(SFC, 12/3/99, p.D5)
1999 Dec 2, In Northern
Ireland, a power-sharing Cabinet of Protestants and Catholics sat
down together for the first time.
2000 Dec 2, Al Gore sought a
recount in south Florida, while George W. Bush flatly asserted, "I'm
soon to be the president" and met with GOP congressional leaders.
2000 Dec 2, In India 2 trains
collided at Sarai Banjara in the Punjab and at least 46 people were
(SFC, 12/4/00, p.E2)
2000 Dec 2, In Chiapas
Subcommander Marcos announced that he would begin talks with the
government in Mexico City in Feb.
(SFC, 12/4/00, p.A12)
2001 Dec 2, Nicolas Escude gave
France its ninth Davis Cup, defeating Australian Wayne Arthurs in
the deciding fifth match.
2001 Dec 2, US bombers hit
Taliban defenses around Kandahar. US strikes at Tora Bora reportedly
killed at least 8 civilians.
(SFC, 12/3/01, p.A9)
2001 Dec 2, Enron Corp. under
CEO Kenneth Lay filed for bankruptcy. Employee fury in Nov persuaded
Lay to give up a severance package worth about $60 million. From
1999 to 2001 a group of 29 Enron executives sold 17.3 million shares
and received $1.1 billion. Days earlier Enron paid $55 million in
bonuses to some 500 employees. The Enron top corporate structure was
published in 2002
(SFC, 12/30/01, p.D8)(SSFC, 1/13/02, p.A12)(SSFC,
1/20/02, p.A18)(SFC, 2/11/02, p.A12)
2001 Dec 2, An outbreak of
Ebola virus hit Gabon with the 1st death in Ekata, about 5 miles
from the Congo border. Within weeks at least 15 people died. The
virus spread to Congo and movement in the area was restricted.
(SFC, 12/21/01, p.A5)
2001 Dec 2, The weekend’s 3rd
Palestinian suicide bomber, Maher Habashi (21), sd’d in Haifa and 15
bus passengers were killed. Hamas took responsibility. Israel warned
Arafat of his regime’s annihilation. Arafat condemned the attacks
and declared a "state of emergency" in Palestinian territories.
(SFC, 12/3/01, p.1,3,11)(WSJ, 12/3/01, p.A1)
2002 Dec 2, The US Supreme
Court agreed to decide whether minorities can be given a boost to
get into universities. In June, a divided Court allowed the nation's
colleges and universities to select students based in part on race,
but emphasized that race could not be the overriding factor.
2002 Dec 2, Achille Castiglioni
(84), Italian interior designer and architect, died in Milan.
2002 Dec 2, Ivan Illich (76),
former Catholic priest and author, died in Germany. His work
included "De-Schooling Society" (1971).
(SFC, 12/4/02, p.A28)
2002 Dec 2, Mal Waldron (77),
jazz pianist, died. He was the last accompanist for Billie Holiday
and composed "Soul Eyes," a ballad for John Coltrane.
(SFC, 12/4/02, p.A28)
2002 Dec 2, A statement
attributed to al-Qaida claimed responsibility for the Nov 28
car-bombing of an Israeli-owned hotel in Kenya and the attempted
shoot-down of an Israeli airliner.
2002 Dec 2, Belarus said its
ambassador to Japan has refused an order to return to the ex-Soviet
state in what the envoy's friends said could be an attempt to stage
a "Cold War-style" defection.
2002 Dec 2, In Beijing Russia's
Pres. Putin and Jiang Zemin signed a 13-page declaration calling for
a "multi-polar" world and peaceful solutions in Iraq and North
(SFC, 12/3/02, p.A8)
2002 Dec 2, Israeli troops shot
dead a Palestinian gunman trying to enter a Jewish settlement in the
Gaza Strip, and a Palestinian teenager was killed when a mob of
stone throwers clashed with troops in the West Bank town of Jenin.
2002 Dec 2, In Russia a car hit
a land mine and exploded near a settlement housing Russian military
personnel outside Moscow, killing a businessman and his two
2002 Dec 2, Venezuela's
opposition launched a general strike to protest President Hugo
Chavez's defiant refusal to call a referendum on his rule, closing
hundreds of businesses in Caracas.
2003 Dec 2, The Supreme Court
ruled unanimously that after knocking, police don't have to wait
longer than 20 seconds before breaking into the home of a drug
2003 Dec 2, Authorities in Ohio
announced that they had linked 12 shootings along a five-mile
stretch of interstate around Columbus, including one that killed a
woman and another that broke a window at an elementary school. A
suspect was arrested the following March. Charles A. McCoy Jr.,
later pleaded guilty to manslaughter and 10 other charges, and was
sentenced to 27 years in prison.
(AP, 12/2/04)(AP, 12/2/08)
2003 Dec 2, In northern
Afghanistan, Abdul Rashid Dostum and Atta Mohammed, 2 main feuding
warlords, handed over tanks and cannons to the fledgling national
(AP, 12/2/03)(SFC, 12/3/03, p.A3)
2003 Dec 2, British authorities
arrested Babar Ahmad (29), a computer specialist and British
citizen. He was accused by the US of running websites used to raise
money for terrorists and for supplying them with gas masks and night
vision goggles. The Metropolitan Police paid out £60,000 in
compensation to Ahmad, following civil court action in 2009. In 2010
four British officers faced criminal charges for assaulting Ahmad
during his arrest. On June 3, 2011, constables Roderick James-Bowen,
Mark Jones, Nigel Cowley, and John Donohue were acquitted of claims
that they assaulted Babar Ahmad.
2003 Dec 2, Alan Davidson (79),
a career diplomat who shared his knowledge of exotic cuisines in a
series of best-selling books, died in London. His books included:
"Mediterranean Seafood" (1972), "Seafood of South East Asia" and
"North Atlantic Seafood" (1979).
2003 Dec 2, Surging floodwaters
killed three men and swept a woman off a bridge in storms that
lashed southern France.
2003 Dec 2, In northern India a
bus skidded off a steep mountain road and fell into a river, killing
at least 27 passengers and injuring 30 others.
2003 Dec 2, US troops have
captured or killed a "big fish" in a large military operation in
Kirkuk. American soldiers arrested dozens of people there in an
2003 Dec 2, Israeli troops
killed an armed Palestinian trying to flee in the West Bank town of
2003 Dec 2, Nigeria dismissed a
human rights report that accused the government of killing
opposition activists and stifling free speech, calling the charges
"jaundiced and misconceived."
2003 Dec 2, A senior adviser to
President Vladimir Putin said that Russia cannot ratify the Kyoto
Protocol limiting greenhouse gas emissions, dealing a mortal blow to
the pact that required Russia's ratification to take effect.
2003 Dec 2, In Venezuela
opposition leaders claimed that more than 3.6 million people had
signed a petition demanding a recall referendum on Venezuelan
President Hugo Chavez.
2004 Dec 2, Pres. Bush picked
Bernard Kerik (49), a former NYC police commissioner, to take over
the Dept. of Homeland Security. Kerik recently made millions from
the sale of stock options granted when he joined the board of
stun-gun maker Taser Int’l. in 2002. On Dec 10 Kerik requested that
his name be removed from consideration saying he had not paid taxes
for a recent nanny who may have been an illegal immigrant.
(SFC, 12/3/04, p.A1)(SFC, 12/10/04, p.A8)(SFC,
2004 Dec 2, President Bush
announced that Nebraska Gov. Mike Johanns was his choice as the next
agriculture secretary, replacing Ann Veneman.
2004 Dec 2, UN ambassador John
Danforth resigned after five months representing the U.S. at the
2004 Dec 2, Mona Van Duyn
(b.1921), US poet laureate (1992), died at her home in University
(SFC, 12/4/04, p.B7)
2004 Dec 2, In Chile an appeals
court ruled to strip former dictator Gen. Augusto Pinochet of
immunity from prosecution for a 1974 car bombing that killed an
exiled Chilean general and the man's wife.
2004 Dec 2, Dame Alicia Markova
(b.1910 as Alice Marks), eminent ballerina and founder of the
English National Ballet, died.
(SFC, 12/3/04, p.B6)(Econ, 12/11/04, p.85)
2004 Dec 2, The European Union
began its biggest-ever military operation, formally taking over
NATO's peacekeeping mission in Bosnia with 7,000 troops (EUFOR).
(AP, 12/2/04)(Econ, 3/19/05, p.60)
2004 Dec 2, In Iraq a mortar
barrage hammered the heavily fortified Green Zone and elsewhere in
central Baghdad, killing at least one person.
2004 Dec 2, From Italy it was
reported that a mob turf war claimed more than 20 lives in the last
month in the Naples area, prompting police to launch an emergency
2004 Dec 2, Interior Secretary
Santiago Creel announced authorities had arrested 224 street gang
members during a weeklong sweep across Mexico.
2004 Dec 2, In the Philippines
back-to-back storms killed more at least 842 people and left 751
missing. 1,100 were feared dead in the wake of Typhoon Nanmadol.
(AP, 12/4/04)(SFC, 12/10/04, p.A26)
2005 Dec 2, In North Carolina
Kenneth Lee Boyd, a double murderer who said he didn't want to be
known as a number, became the 1,000th person executed in the United
States since capital punishment resumed 28 years ago.
2005 Dec 2, The G-7 finance
ministers and central bankers discussed interest rates, high energy
prices, inflation and trade imbalances for the final time under
Britain's leadership. The meeting was Alan Greenspan's last G-7
appearance as Federal Reserve chairman.
2005 Dec 2, In southern
Afghanistan a remote-controlled bomb ripped through a vehicle
killing a district government chief and two police officers and
wounding three others.
2005 Dec 2, Peter Menegazzo,
one of Australia's main cattle barons, was among four people killed
in a light plane crash in the Outback.
2005 Dec 2, Belarus' lower
house of parliament passed legislation that would make it a crime to
discredit the state, be a member of the political opposition or an
advocate for human rights.
2005 Dec 2, Manfred Nowak, the
first UN torture investigator to visit China said that abuse was
still widespread and authorities subjected detainees to electric
shocks, beatings and sleep deprivation. He also accused the
government of obstructing his work.
2005 Dec 2, China’s state news
said police in southern China have arrested 16 people allegedly
involved in kidnapping and selling baby girls as young as newborns
2005 Dec 2, Jiamusi, a second
city in northeast China, shut down a water plant on a poisoned
river, fearing contamination from the approaching toxic chemicals.
The slick on the Amur River, which is fed by the Songhua River,
originally 50 miles long, now stretched for 90 miles.
2005 Dec 2, In China 16 workers
were killed and 42 others trapped in two separate coal mine
2005 Dec 2, In Colombia
officials said several hundred members of a right-wing paramilitary
militia that held sway for years over much of Colombia's
coffee-growing region have agreed to lay down their arms in exchange
for a government amnesty.
2005 Dec 2, Election officials
said that Egypt's leading opposition group did not win any seats
outright in the final round of parliamentary voting, which was
marred by violence and police barring thousands from casting
2005 Dec 2, A Finnish man was
jailed for 11 years for sexually abusing dozens of boys during trips
to Thailand in what the court called the biggest pedophile case in
Finland's history. Jouko Jaatinen (43) was detained in April on
suspicion of molesting at least 445 Thai boys aged 13 or younger
over the last 15 years and creating massive amounts of pornography.
2005 Dec 2, In eastern Germany
a fire at a shelter for the homeless killed nine people.
2005 Dec 2, Honduras' ruling
party said it had enlisted 300 lawyers to check results of the
country's disputed presidential election for evidence of fraud.
Officials still hadn't declared Honduras' new president, five days
after the country's contentious election.
(AP, 12/02/05)(AP, 12/03/05)
2005 Dec 2, India’s hybrid
species of national affiliation called Overseas Citizenship of India
(OCI) became operational. It was made available to anyone who was an
Indian citizen post 1950, and to their children and grandchildren
wherever they were born. The Citizenship (Amendment) Ordinance 2005
was promulgated by the President of India and came into force on 28
2005 Dec 2, In Iraq 3 US
soldiers from the 48th Brigade Combat Team were killed in a traffic
accident south of Baghdad.
2005 Dec 2, Former Iraqi PM
Muhammad Hamza al-Zubaydi (67), one of the top Saddam Hussein-era
leaders captured in Iraq, died at a U.S. military hospital in
2005 Dec 2, Israeli officials
said Palestinians have allowed up to 15 militants wanted by Israel
to return to the Gaza Strip, violating a U.S.-brokered agreement
that was to have let Israel monitor who enters the area from Egypt.
2005 Dec 2, African leaders and
French President Jacques Chirac converged on Mali for a two-day
summit expected to focus on Africa's conflict hotspots, immigration
and the problems of African youth.
2005 Dec 2, The Mexico City
government said 5 federal agents arrested in connection with the
videotaped torture and killing of drug hitmen have been released
from prison for lack of evidence.
2005 Dec 2, In Nepal tens of
thousands of people marched in Kathmandu to demand restoration of
2005 Dec 2, In the Netherlands
a broad coalition of political parties unveiled a pilot program to
regulate marijuana farming on the model of tobacco, which opponents
say would be tantamount to legalizing growing the drug.
2005 Dec 2, In Nigeria rebel
leaders from the western Sudanese region of Darfur rejected an
African Union draft agreement on power-sharing between their forces
and the government in Khartoum, pushing the sides' seventh session
of peace talks close to stalemate.
2005 Dec 2, Russian media
reported that Russia plans to sell more than $1 billion worth of
tactical surface-to-air missiles and other defense hardware to Iran.
2005 Dec 2, It was reported
that a money-laundering scandal that started in Germany has spread
to other countries and implicated Leonid Reiman, Russia’s
telecommunications minister and close Putin ally. Prosecutors
suspected that Mr. Reiman had set up a network of shell companies
and trusts to conceal over $1 billion in assets.
(WSJ, 12/2/05, p.A3)(WSJ, 1/19/06, p.A8)
2005 Dec 2, Singapore executed
25-year-old Australian Nguyen Tuong Van for drug trafficking, after
he had a "beautiful last visit" with his family. Australia's leader
protested the sentence, saying it would damage ties.
2005 Dec 2, In Kiev 9
presidents from Baltic and Black Sea nations pledged to strengthen
democracy in a region traditionally considered Russia's
neighborhood. They included Estonia, Georgia, Latvia, Lithuania,
Macedonia, Moldova, Slovenia, Romania and the Ukraine.
2006 Dec 2, The National World
War I Museum opened in Kansas City, Missouri. The $26.5 million
museum at the Liberty Memorial joined the ranks of The National
World War II Museum in New Orleans and other definitive repositories
for key events in history.
2006 Dec 2, Thousands of US
homes and businesses had no electricity for heat and lights after
the Midwest's first big snowstorm of the season.
2006 Dec 2, In Oakland
Mayor-elect Ron Dellums (71) said he would appoint a young person to
every board and commission in the city.
(SSFC, 12/3/06, p.B1)
2006 Dec 2, A sport utility
vehicle driven by actor Lane Garrison hit a tree in Beverly Hills,
killing a 17-year-old passenger; Garrison was later sentenced to
three years and four months in prison for drunken driving.
2006 Dec 2, A civilian
helicopter crashed in southern Afghanistan. Militants attacked a
NATO convoy in southern Helmand province's Nawzad district. NATO
troops fired back and called in airstrikes that left five militants
dead. In Zabul province, suspected Taliban militants attacked a
police checkpoint, sparking a gunbattle that left four insurgents
dead and one police officer wounded. NATO troops also battled
militants near Musa Qala in Helmand province for four hours. The
fighting, including airstrikes, killed or wounded "a significant
number of insurgents." Militants tried to block the main highway
linking Kandahar and Helmand province, and a clash with police left
three militants dead and eight wounded.
2006 Dec 2, In Bahrain the 2nd
round run-off election for the lower house of parliament pitted the
Shiite-led opposition against Sunnis backed by the island kingdom's
government in a tight race. Islamic hardliners dominated the Sunni
supporters of Bahrain's government who defeated an opposition led by
the kingdom's majority Shiites in parliamentary elections. Ali
Salman (41) led Wifaq, the main Shia-based opposition party.
(AP, 12/2/06)(Econ, 11/25/06, p.46)
2006 Dec 2, A US-based election
monitor said Bangladesh's list of voters contains 12.2 million false
2006 Dec 2, At least 15,000
demonstrators marched through Brussels in protest at planned job
cuts at the Belgian factory of German car maker Volkswagen.
2006 Dec 2, A bomb exploded in
southwest Bhutan near the border with India, seriously injuring four
people and shattering the calm of the isolated Himalayan kingdom.
2006 Dec 2, Stephane Dion (51),
a former environment minister who criticized PM Harper for modeling
himself after President Bush, won leadership of Canada's Liberal
2006 Dec 2, Government troops
in the Central African Republic said they have recaptured the town
of Sam Ouandja on the sixth day of a counter-offensive supported by
French troops, leaving rebels with only one major northeastern town,
2006 Dec 2, China’s Xinhua news
said underground water reserves in around 9 out of every 10 Chinese
cities are polluted or over-exploited, and could take hundreds of
years to recover.
2006 Dec 2, A 50-year-old
battle to evict squatters from one of Egypt's most renowned
archaeological sites, the West Bank of Luxor, ended as authorities
began demolitions. The fate of Qurna's 10,000 residents was sealed
when authorities gave the demolition order for the mud-brick houses
erected over ancient Egyptian tombs.
2006 Dec 2, In eastern India at
least 14 soldiers died when a landmine planted by suspected Maoist
guerrillas exploded near the steel-producing town of Bokaro,
Jharkhand state. A colonial-era footbridge collapsed onto railroad
tracks in eastern India, burying a train beneath tons of red rock
and killing at least 34 passengers.
(AFP, 12/2/06)(AP, 12/3/06)
2006 Dec 2, In Baghdad the
death toll from a triple car bombing at a food market in a
predominantly Shiite area rose to 53 civilians dead and 121 wounded.
Gunmen attacked the main gate of Yarmouk Hospital, killing one
policeman and wounding three, and the bodies of 12 people who had
been handcuffed and shot to death were found by police. US and Iraqi
forces began an offensive operation in Baqouba. One al-Qaida in Iraq
insurgent was killed and 43 detained, including two foreigners.
Drive-by shootings in two towns near Baqouba killed 2 civilians and
wounded 5. A truck driving at high speed slammed into a bus stop in
al-Wahada, 22 miles south of Baghdad, killing about 20 people
waiting for buses to the capital and wounding 15. US forces killed
an insurgent who was caught planting a roadside bomb on a major
highway about 40 miles south of Baghdad. A roadside bomb also hit a
police patrol in Youssifiyah killing one policeman and wounding six.
In the town of Karmah coalition ground and air forces killed six
insurgents while destroying two buildings that militants were using.
Gunmen in two cars intercepted a vehicle carrying Haithem Yassin, a
Shiite adviser to Iraq's minister of electricity, in northeast
Baghdad, kidnapping him, his driver and two bodyguards. 3 American
soldiers were killed by roadside bombs.
(AP, 12/2/06)(AP, 12/3/06)
2006 Dec 2, In Rome some
700,000 supporters of Silvio Berlusconi demonstrated against the
government’s planned tax increases. Pier Ferdinando Casini’s Union
of Christian Democrats (UDC) held its own rally in Palermo.
(Econ, 12/9/06, p.56)
2006 Dec 2, In Lebanon
thousands of Hezbollah supporters camped out in tents in central
Beirut as the Shiite Muslim guerrilla group and its allies kept up
the pressure on the US-backed government of Fuad Saniora to resign.
2006 Dec 2, Mexico's new
president pledged to substantially raise the wages of the armed
forces, calling them a crucial weapon against heavily armed drug
gangs terrorizing the nation.
2006 Dec 2, In Nigeria press
reports said Abubakar Audu, a former governor of Nigeria's central
state of Kogi (1999-2003), has been charged in a high court with
corruption and money laundering. Audu was slammed with 80 counts of
corruption and money laundering during his tenure.
2006 Dec 2, Hamas rejected
demands by PLO leaders that its government resign over the failure
to form a moderate coalition acceptable to the West, a sign of an
intensifying power struggle between Islamic militants and moderate
President Mahmoud Abbas.
2006 Dec 2, In the Philippines
rescuers scouring mountain villages buried under mud and boulders
loosed by a powerful typhoon discovered more bodies, raising the
death total to more than 300, with another 300 missing.
2006 Dec 2, Saudi news said
authorities have arrested 136 suspected militants over the past
three months, accusing some of plotting to carry out suicide attacks
inside the kingdom.
2006 Dec 2, About 30,000 Serbs
protested in front of the United States embassy in defense of
Radical Party leader Vojislav Seselj, now 22 days into a hunger
strike at The Hague's war crimes tribunal.
2006 Dec 2, A UN official said
days of fighting between former rebels and government forces killed
more than 150 people and wounded at least 400 in a southern Sudanese
2007 Dec 2, Singer and song
writer Brian Wilson, filmmaker Martin Scorsese, actor Steve Martin,
singer Diana Ross and pianist Leon Fleisher were honored at the
White House for their contributions to American culture. The five
were named in September as members of the 30th class of Kennedy
2007 Dec 2, A snow storm headed
to the US Northeast after plastering a wide area of the Midwest the
day before, disrupting airport and highway traffic. At least 10
people were killed in weather-related traffic accidents.
(AP, 12/2/07)(SFC, 12/3/07, p.A4)
2007 Dec 2, Robert O. Anderson
(b.1917), oil man and creator of the Atlantic Richfield Co. (1966),
died in Roswell, NM.
(WSJ, 12/8/07, p.A7)
2007 Dec 2, In southern
Afghanistan coalition forces killed five suspected Taliban militants
in an operation targeting a commander believed to be involved in the
kidnapping of an Italian journalist earlier this year.
2007 Dec 2, In Australia night
time thieves stole 17.6 tons of ham and bacon from a warehouse in
suburban Sidney and left behind a message saying “Thanks” and “Merry
Christmas.” The stolen meat was worth up to $88,000.
2007 Dec 2, China and Japan
amicably wrapped up their first high-level trade and economic talks
on Sunday by pledging greater overall cooperation, but left the
touchy issue of gas exploration in the East China Sea unresolved.
2007 Dec 2, Police in northern
Greece seized hundreds of ancient coins, some dating back 2,300
years, allegedly stashed away by a 70-year-old barber.
2007 Dec 2, Two outspoken
political veterans faced off in one of Hong Kong's most keenly
watched legislative elections. Pro-democracy candidate Anson Chan, a
hugely popular former government official, won a seat in Hong Kong's
legislature, a win she hailed as a victory for democracy in the
southern Chinese territory. Her closest opponent, former security
chief Regina Ip, who had the backing of Beijing-allied parties,
received 137,550, or 42.7% of votes.
(AP, 12/2/07)(AP, 12/3/07)
2007 Dec 2, The number of
Iraqis killed last month fell to 718. A roadside bomb targeting a
police patrol in a Sunni-dominated neighborhood of Baghdad killed
two officers. A roadside bomb targeting an Iraqi army patrol near
Samarra killed three soldiers and injured four. Gunmen in two cars
fired on a Sunni Interior Ministry aide, Maj. Gen. Fauzi Hussein
Muhammed, as he returned home, killing him and wounding his driver.
A mass grave with the remains of 12 people, including a paramedic
who disappeared more than a year ago, was unearthed near Lake
Tharthar, an area long controlled by al-Qaida in Iraq.
(AP, 12/2/07)(AP, 12/3/07)
2007 Dec 2, In Mexico Sergio
Gomez, lead performer for the top-selling group K-Paz de la Sierra,
was abducted, tortured and strangled to death. His body was found
the next day. A day earlier Zayda Pena of the group Zayda and the
Guilty Ones was killed execution-style at the hospital where she was
recovering from neck surgery for a shooting on Nov 30, in which 2
other people were killed. Fears rose that singers, whether
they have any links to drug cartels or not, get routinely "adopted"
by drug gangs, which post Internet videos showing their members
torturing and executing rivals to soundtracks of popular tunes.
(AP, 12/5/07)(SFC, 12/5/07, p.E3)
2007 Dec 2, Hamas officials
shut down the Gaza census office, saying the surveyors had violated
an agreement to share their data with Hamas as it is collected.
2007 Dec 2, About two dozen
protesters angry over a rape case involving a Marine stormed the
American Embassy. The protesters demanded the transfer to a
Philippine jail of Marine Lance Cpl. Daniel Smith, who was convicted
a year ago of raping a Filipino woman but has remained under U.S.
2007 Dec 2, Russians voted in a
parliamentary election. Putin's United Russia party swept 70 percent
of seats in parliament.
(AP, 12/2/07)(AP, 12/3/07)
2007 Dec 2, A Somali human
rights group said violence in Mogadishu has killed 5,960 civilians
2007 Dec 2, Defense lawyers
said Sudan has authorized the release of Mubarak al-Fadil, a
high-profile opposition leader detained for more than four months.
Fadil is the leader of the opposition Umma Party for Renewal and
Reform and the cousin of former PM Sadig al-Mahdi.
2007 Dec 2, In Ukraine 5
workers looking for the bodies of miners killed in the country’s
worst mine explosion since the Soviet collapse were killed in a new
explosion. A day earlier 44 people were injured in an explosion in
the same section of the mine.
2007 Dec 2, Venezuelans voted
in a referendum on granting President Hugo Chavez expanded powers
and ending term limits under sweeping constitutional changes. Voters
narrowly rejected changes to 69 of 350 articles in the 1999
constitution by 51% to 49%.
(AP, 12/2/07)(AP, 12/3/07)(Econ, 12/8/07, p.30)
2008 Dec 2, Detroit’s Big Three
auto makers presented turnaround plans to Congress and sought $34
billion in aid.
(WSJ, 12/3/08, p.A1)
2008 Dec 2, The new Washington,
DC, Capitol Visitor Center opened to the public. The 580,000
square-foot structure ended up costing $621 million, over twice the
(Econ, 12/20/08, p.53)(www.aoc.gov/cvc/)
2008 Dec 2, In Arkansas a
federal indictment was unsealed accusing evangelist Tony Alamo (74)
of sexually abusing five girls on separate occasions beginning in
1994, including a period when he was serving a tax-evasion sentence
at a halfway house in Texarkana. Alamo was convicted on July 24 of
taking girls as young as 9 across state lines for sex. On Nov 13
Alamo was sentenced to 175 years in prison.
(AP, 12/3/08)(SFC, 7/25/09, p.A3)(SFC, 11/14/09,
2008 Dec 2, Georgia Sen. Saxby
Chambliss trounced Democrat Jim Martin, winning his second term by a
margin of more than 10 percentage points. The victory in the runoff
denied Democrats a filibuster-proof majority and cemented the
state's reputation as a GOP bastion.
2008 Dec 2, In Chicago federal
prosecutors unveiled a series of elaborate sting operations aimed at
officers who hired out to ride shotgun for drug deals and other
criminal activities. Those charged include 10 Cook County sheriff's
correctional officers, four Harvey police officers and one Chicago
2008 Dec 2, Hawaii unveiled
plans to be first in the nation to roll out electric car stations
statewide, a move Gov. Linda Lingle hailed as a major step toward
weaning the islands off oil.
2008 Dec 2, Eric Von der Porten
(50), SF Bay Area hedge fund manager, committed suicide at his home
in San Carlos, Ca.
(SSFC, 1/4/09, p.A1)
2008 Dec 2, Odetta Holmes
(b.1930), African-American folk singer, died. Her fame peaked in
1963 when she marched with martin Luther King and performed for
(SFC, 12/3/08, p.A4)
2008 Dec 2, Henry Molaison
(82), a native of Connecticut, died. In the 1950s he had his medial
temporal lobes removed by surgery to alleviate his grand mal
epileptic seizures. From that point on he was unable to form new
memories. Scientists learned from Molaison that the hippocampus is
crucial in forming some long term memories, but not for maintaining
or retrieving them.
(Econ, 12/20/08, p.146)
2008 Dec 2, US troops killed 10
Taliban militants during operations in southern and central
Afghanistan, while five more witnesses testified at a hearing over
allegations that two American soldiers mistreated a detainee.
2008 Dec 2, Australia cut its
key interest rate by one percentage point to 4.25%.
(WSJ, 12/3/08, p.A12)
2008 Dec 2, A British judge
ordered Abu Qatada, a radical Muslim cleric, to be jailed because of
fears he was preparing to abscond. Qatada was once described as
Osama bin Laden’s ambassador in Europe.
(SFC, 12/3/08, p.A14)
2008 Dec 2, Mike Terry (61),
anti-apartheid activist, died. He led Britain's anti-apartheid
movement for nearly two decades and played a pivotal role in turning
British public opinion against South Africa's white minority rule.
2008 Dec 2, A Burundi soldier
serving with African Union forces in Somalia was killed in fighting
with Islamist insurgents in the war-torn capital Mogadishu.
2008 Dec 2, Canadian
governor-general Michaelle Jean, the acting head of state, said she
would cut short a foreign trip to help resolve one of the worst
political crises in Canada's history.
2008 Dec 2, Ted Rogers (75),
founder of Rogers Communications, died in Toronto. He transformed a
single FM radio station into a North American broadcasting,
publishing and wireless telecommunications conglomerate.
2008 Dec 2, India demanded
Pakistan hand over 20 of its most wanted fugitives as a sign of good
faith, while both sides tried to cool tensions over the Mumbai
attacks before a visit by Washington's top diplomat. India named
Yusuf Muzammil, the senior leader of Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba,
as the mastermind of the attacks in Mumbai. A bomb exploded in a
train coach in India's insurgency-hit northeast, killing at least
three people and injuring another 29.
(AP, 12/2/08)(WSJ, 12/3/08, p.A1)
2008 Dec 2, A special Iraqi
court sentenced Saddam Hussein's notorious cousin, "Chemical Ali"
Hassan al-Majid, to death after convicting him of crimes against
humanity for his part in crushing the 1991 Shiite uprising in
southern Iraq. A series of bombs in northern and southern Iraq
killed at least 14 Iraqis.
(AP, 12/2/08)(SFC, 12/3/08, p.A17)
2008 Dec 2, Dozens of Jewish
settlers rioted in the West Bank town of Hebron, clashing with the
Israeli troops who guard them but who may also soon evict them from
a disputed building they've occupied.
2008 Dec 2, In Kenya a
government anti-corruption watchdog said it is suing seven current
and former Kenyan officials for a total of a quarter of a million
dollars, saying they obtained the money dishonestly.
2008 Dec 2, In Nigeria
authorities in central Plateau state announced the arrest of 16
alleged "mercenaries" from neighboring Niger. Isa Ibrahim, the
Nigerien Ambassador to Nigeria, said that those arrested had been
living in Jos for several years as water vendors.
2008 Dec 2, In Switzerland Alex
Widmer (52), head of private banking at Julius Baer Holding AG,
(www.iht.com/articles/2008/12/05/europe/baer.php)(WSJ, 2/2/09, p.C4)
2008 Dec 2, In Tanzania Simon
Bikindi, Rwandan singer-songwriter, was sentenced to 15 years in
prison by the Tanzania-based UN war crimes court for inciting the
killings of ethnic Tutsis during the 1994 genocide. In 2010 a court
upheld his 15 year sentence. The time Bikindi has already spent in
prison since his arrest in July 2001 will be deducted from the 15
(AFP, 12/2/08)(AFP, 3/18/10)
2008 Dec 2, Thailand's PM
Somchai Wongsawat resigned after weeks of protests closed the
capital's airports, stranding 300,000 travelers. Protesters promised
to lift their siege, and international flights were expected to
resume on Dec 5. Deputy PM Chaowarat Chandeerakul will become the
caretaker prime minister. Parliament will have to pick a new prime
minister within 30 days.
2008 Dec 2, Zimbabwe slipped
deeper into crisis as the death toll from a cholera epidemic neared
500 and members of President Robert Mugabe's armed forces were
accused of taking part in a looting spree.
2009 Dec 2, Court documents
filed in Boston said Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has agreed to pay $40
million to 87,500 Massachusetts employees who claimed the retailer
denied them rest and meals breaks, manipulated time cards and
refused to pay overtime.
2009 Dec 2, Albania’s PM Sali
Berisha announced an agreement to accept former Guantanamo detainees
following talks with special envoy Daniel Fried.
(SFC, 12/3/09, p.A2)
2009 Dec 2, Australia's plans
for an emissions trading system to combat global warming were
scuttled in Parliament, handing a defeat to a government that had
hoped to set an example at international climate change talks next
2009 Dec 2, Cambodian police
confiscated two tons of live snakes and tortoises and arrested two
men trying to smuggle the slithering cargo up a river from Cambodia
to Vietnam. Police arrested two Cambodians, aged 17 and 20, who said
they were hired to transport the cargo but did not know the
identities of their employers.
2009 Dec 2, Canadian PM Stephen
Harper arrived in Beijing for what Chinese experts are touting as a
fence-mending trip to repair ties damaged by Ottawa.
2009 Dec 2, Canadian National
Railway said it had reached an agreement with striking locomotive
engineers to end their walkout, as the government prepared to step
in with back-to-work legislation.
2009 Dec 2, An Italian-led team
of scientists said a robotic hand has been successfully connected to
an amputee, allowing him to feel sensations in the artificial limb
and control it with his thoughts. A video was shown of Pierpaolo
Petruzziello (26) as he concentrated to give orders to the hand
placed next to him.
2009 Dec 2, In France the
Pompidou Center modern art museum and the Musee d'Orsay, with its
famed paintings by the Impressionists, closed after workers angry
about a government cost-cutting measure voted to strike. Workers at
the Louvre also voted to strike, but by mid-morning parts of the
sprawling complex had been opened to visitors. The Rodin Museum, the
Arc de Triomphe and the Palais de Versailles were also affected.
2009 Dec 2, Honduras' Congress
ended hopes of reversing a coup that has isolated one of the poorest
countries in the Americas, voting 111-14 against reinstating ousted
President Manuel Zelaya despite intense international pressure to do
2009 Dec 2, The World Bank said
it will give India at least one billion dollars to help clean up the
heavily polluted holy river Ganges as part of moves to sharply hike
lending to the country.
2009 Dec 2, President Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad said Iran would enrich uranium to a higher level itself,
apparently ruling out a UN-brokered deal meant to dispel fears
Tehran is pursuing nuclear weapons capability.
2009 Dec 2, Iran freed five
British sailors detained last week when their racing yacht drifted
accidentally into Iranian waters in the Persian Gulf. Britain said
it was delighted with the release and praised Tehran's handling of
the incident. The Fars agency reported that analyst Saeed Leilaz,
known for his criticism of the government, was sentenced to nine
years in prison for possession of classified documents. The
Revolutionary Court also slapped the brother-in-law of opposition
leader Mir Houssein Mousavi with a one-year sentence.
2009 Dec 2, In northeast Iraq
an American airstrike killed one gunman after a joint US-Iraqi foot
patrol was attacked in what a police official described as a case of
mistaken identity. A police official said the gunmen opened fire on
the soldiers in Sadiyah, believing they were insurgents.
2009 Dec 2, Israeli police
arrested the mayor of a West Bank Jewish settlement after protesters
blocked security forces from entering the community to enforce a
construction freeze. The Haaretz daily reported that Israel's
Interior Ministry revoked the residency of 4,577 east Jerusalemites
in 2008, more than 20 times the annual average of the previous 40
2009 Dec 2, Researchers from
the International People's Tribunal on Human Rights and Justice, an
Indian Kashmir-based rights group, issue a report titled “buried
Evidence.” It said nearly 2,600 bodies have been discovered in
single unmarked and mass graves throughout mountainous Indian
Kashmir. They found the graves in 55 villages during a three-year
survey that concluded last month.
2009 Dec 2, Lebanon's new
government endorsed Hezbollah's right to keep its weapons.
2009 Dec 2, Mexican President
Felipe Calderon said that cartels are seeking to control territory
by sinking drug money into political campaigns and buying off
officials before they are even elected. Gunmen shot and killed
Lawyer Eleuterio Cachu Ortiz, a former police commander and
opposition politician, in his office in the Mexican border town of
(AP, 12/2/09)(AFP, 12/3/09)
2009 Dec 2, NATO's chief Fogh
Rasmussen said European and other US allies will contribute more
than 5,000 more troops to the international force in Afghanistan,
declaring that "this is not just America's war."
2009 Dec 2, In Pakistan a
suicide bomber attacked the navy headquarters in Islamabad, killing
a naval policeman and injuring 11 others, one of whom died the next
(AFP, 12/2/09)(AP, 12/3/09)
2009 Dec 2, Poland said it
plans to send 600 more troops to Afghanistan next year.
2009 Dec 2, Somali pirates on
speedboats tried to board the Antigua and Barbuda-flagged BBC Togo,
but were repelled after firing on the vessel. 13 pirates then fled
to a larger fishing boat 150 nautical miles (280km) south of Salalah
where a Dutch frigate captured them.
2009 Dec 2, Turkish diplomat
Ahmet Uzumcu was elected to be director of the 188-nation
Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, based in The
Hague. He takes over next July. He said that he will pursue the last
seven holdouts (Angola, Egypt, Israel, North Korean, Myanmar,
Somalia and Syria) to get them to sign a disarmament treaty and
submit weapons stockpiles for inspection.
2010 Dec 2, A US government
report said nearly 50,000 prison inmates claimed over $130 million
in tax refunds this year without providing and wage information to
(SFC, 12/2/10, p.A13)
2010 Dec 2, NYC Rep. Charles
Rangel (80) was censured by the US House of Representatives for
(SFC, 12/3/10, p.A14)
2010 Dec 2, PepsiCo agreed to
buy one of Russia's top drinks companies in a deal that would make
the US food giant a dominant force in the Russian market and extend
its reach deep into former Soviet lands. Pepsi announced that it
will buy 66% Wimm-Bill-Dann for $3.8 billion and launch a tender
offer for the rest of the company.
(AFP, 12/2/10)(Econ, 12/11/10, p.75)
2010 Dec 2, NASA researcher
Felisa Wolfe-Simon (33) reported that a strange bacterium,
Halomonadaceae, found in California's Mono Lake, thrives on arsenic
and redefines life as we know it. She said the bacterium does not
merely eat arsenic, but incorporates the toxic element directly into
its DNA. Her finding stirred much controversy. In 2012 scientists
reported that the bacteria is just resistant to arsenic and actually
dependent for life on phosphorous.
(Reuters, 12/2/10)(SFC, 5/28/11, p.C1)(SFC,
2010 Dec 2, In Afghanistan 2
coalition service members were killed by bombs and insurgent
fighting in the south and east. Afghan and coalition forces detained
numerous suspected insurgents during two security operations in the
south and east.
2010 Dec 2, Australia's PM
Julia Gillard slammed WikiLeaks' publication of classified documents
as "illegal," in the country's strongest condemnation yet of the
website's ongoing release of sensitive data.
2010 Dec 2, Australian
contractor Leighton Holdings said it had won a 22-year coal mining
contract with India's state-owned NTPC power company worth 5.5
billion dollars (5.3 billion US).
2010 Dec 2, Heavy snow caused
travel chaos across much of northern Europe, keeping London's
Gatwick airport closed for a second day and disrupting road and rail
travel in France, Germany and Switzerland. Freezing temperatures and
often blinding snowfall killed 12 people, 10 in Poland and 2 in
Germany. Poland had already reported 8 dead due to the cold. Some of
the worst floods in a century devastated parts of the Balkans.
Authorities declared a state of emergency in Bosnia, Serbia and
(Reuters, 12/2/10)(AP, 12/2/10)
2010 Dec 2, A CAR spokesman
said 71 people, including 65 rebels, were killed last week in
clashes between insurgents and government troops in northeastern
Central African Republic.
2010 Dec 2, Dominican Rep.
authorities detained 18 military officials and two US pilots, Kevin
Kuranz (31) and Christopher Smith (28), after stopping a
cocaine-laden airplane from taking off. The plane was owned by
Wisconsin-based Air Cargo Carriers LLC. The pilots were freed on
bail on Dec 20 pending further investigation.
(AP, 12/3/10)(AP, 12/21/10)
2010 Dec 2, Egypt's second
biggest opposition bloc said it would refuse to take up the two
seats it won in a parliamentary election it said was faked, in
addition to refusing to take part in a second round.
2010 Dec 2, In Greece police
clashed with demonstrating students outside the parliament in the
latest protest against austerity measures.
2010 Dec 2, Guinea's Supreme
Court validated Alpha Conde's victory in a presidential race
considered the country's first democratic contest, but which was
tainted by the ethnic divide it exposed.
2010 Dec 2, Iraqi officials
said security forces have arrested 39 suspected Al-Qaeda members in
the mostly Sunni western province of Anbar. 2 insurgents were killed
and 2 others wounded in an army raid in the northern province of
Salaheddin. One of those wounded was a Moroccan fighter. Violence in
Baghdad and the restive northern city of Mosul left three dead,
including an 18-year-old girl, and nine wounded.
2010 Dec 2, In northern Israel
at least 41 people were killed in a massive forest fire. At least 37
of the dead were prison guards on board a bus, who had been trying
to evacuate prisoners from a facility in the forest.
(AP, 12/2/10)(AFP, 12/3/10)(SFC, 12/3/10, p.A4)
2010 Dec 2, Retired Naples
Cardinal Michele Giordano (80), the highest ranking church official
to ever stand trial in Italy, died. The cardinal was acquitted in
2000 of charges that he supplied about $800,000 (€600,000) to
finance a loan-shark ring run linked to his family. He was also
accused of misappropriating another $500,000 in church funds. He had
always proclaimed his innocence.
2010 Dec 2, In Ivory Coast
military policemen killed four people at an office of the opposition
presidential candidate, as the country tensely waited for the
release of election results that were being blocked by the
president's followers. Election commission chief Youssouf Bakayoko
announced that opposition candidate Alassane Ouattara had won with
54.1% of the vote, compared to 45.9% for Pres. Gbagbo. Shortly
thereafter, two decrees read on state TV announced that the
country's air, land and maritime borders had been closed and that
all foreign radio and TV broadcasts were banned indefinitely.
(AP, 12/2/10)(AP, 12/3/10)
2010 Dec 2, In Kuwait City a
two-day conference on east Sudan ended. Donors and investors pledged
3.55 billion dollars for the development of resource-rich but
2010 Dec 2, Mexico’s army
detained a 14-year-old suspected of working as a killer for a drug
cartel. The alleged young assassin, nicknamed "El Ponchis," was
captured at the airport in Cuernavaca with his 19-year-old sister as
they were trying to catch a flight to Tijuana. The siblings' mother
was arrested in her San Diego apartment on Dec 6 and charged on Dec
8 with entering the US illegally. On Dec 9 US officials said the
boy, Edgar Jimenez Lugo, was born in San Diego. On Feb 9, 2011,
Jimenez was charged with the homicides and other crimes, including
arms possession and transporting cocaine. On July 26, 2011, Jimenez
was sentenced to 3 years in prison.
(AP, 12/3/10)(AP, 12/9/10)(AP, 2/10/11)(AP,
2010 Dec 2, Nigeria's
anti-corruption police said they planned to file charges against
former Vice President Dick Cheney in a $180 million bribery case
involving a former unit of oil services firm Halliburton.
2010 Dec 2, ExxonMobil said
management staff in Nigeria have begun an indefinite strike after
dozens of local employees were sacked, but that oil production has
not been affected. A military taskforce (JTF) comprising the
army, navy and air force began raiding three camps which are
believed to belong to a notorious gang leader in Delta state. The
next day local residents said several civilians were killed and
scores displaced during the raids against armed gangs in the Niger
Delta. At least 9 people were reported killed and houses were found
burned after the military raids. Activists and witnesses said as
many as 150 people were killed around the village of Ayakoromo.
(AFP, 12/2/10)(Reuters, 12/3/10)(AFP,
12/4/10)(SFC, 12/4/10, p.A3)
2010 Dec 2, Qatar was selected
as host of the 2022 World Cup, beating out a bid by the United
States to bring soccer's showcase back to America for the first time
2010 Dec 2, Russia won the bid
to host the 2018 World Cup following a vote by FIFA's executive
2010 Dec 2, In Somalia clashes
between Islamic fighters and government soldiers killed at least
five people in Mogadishu. Fighting between two Islamist groups in
the southern town of Burhakaba entered a second day and left 9 dead
and 15 wounded.
2010 Dec 2, Spanish police and
media said hooded thieves have stolen a van containing some 20
pieces of art reportedly including works by Picasso, Colombian
artist Fernando Botero and Spanish sculptor Eduardo Chillida. The
art was valued at least €5 million ($6.6 million).
2010 Dec 2, In Sudan a protest
outside a Western Darfur university against peace mediators ended
violently when police fired gunshots to disperse the crowd, leaving
two civilians dead.
2010 Dec 2, Former Taiwanese
President Chen Shui-bian was moved from a jail to a nearby
penitentiary to formally begin serving a 19-year sentence, after the
Supreme Court upheld his conviction on wide-ranging graft charges.
2010 Dec 2, The UN appealed for
$415 million (€315 million) to feed almost two million Zimbabweans
facing near immediate malnutrition.
2010 Dec 2, Vanuatu PM Edward
Natapei was replaced by deputy premier Sato Kilman following a vote
of no confidence in the nation’s Parliament.
(SFC, 12/3/10, p.A2)
2011 Dec 2, In Santa Clara,
Ca., city officials announced that they have secured $850 million in
funding for a new 49ers football stadium now estimated to cost $1.02
(SFC, 12/3/11, p.A1)
2011 Dec 2, In Florida Michele
O'Dowd (67) was found beaten, strangled and hidden beneath the
Christmas presents in her Jacksonville home. Authorities soon
charged Patty Michelle White (40) of York, S.C., who had been
befriended by the victim.
2011 Dec 2, In Canton, Georgia,
Puerto Rico-born Jorelys Rivera (7) disappeared from a playground
after her babysitter went home to fetch sodas for friends. The
girl’s body was found on Dec 5 in a trash container and she appeared
to have been severely beaten and sexually assaulted. On Dec 7 Ryan
Brunn (20), a maintenance worker, was arrested for her murder. Brunn
was found dead of an apparent suicide in his prison cell on Jan 19.
(SFC, 12/6/11, p.A12)(SFC, 12/8/11, p.A14)(AP,
2011 Dec 2, Michigan Rep. Gov
Rick Snyder’s administration said it would begin a review of
Detroit’s finances. Managers in Michigan were already overseeing
Benton Harbor, Flint, Pontiac and the Detroit public schools. On Dec
6 Michigan took the first legal steps toward a state takeover of
p.A24)(http://tinyurl.com/7t85ca9)(Econ, 12/10/11, p.36)
2011 Dec 2, In eastern
Afghanistan a suicide bomber blew up a truck full of explosives
outside a joint Afghan-NATO combat outpost, killing one Afghan
civilian and wounding dozens of other people in Logar province.
2011 Dec 2, It was reported
that former British police boss John Yates and US ex-cop John
Timoney will oversee reforms to Bahrain's security force after a
report found it guilty of human rights abuses. Yates, who quit as
head of Britain's Metropolitan police force in July over a
phone-hacking scandal, and Timoney, former head of Miami police,
were asked to modernize Bahrain’s police force in order to meet
international human rights standards.
2011 Dec 2, Britain’s PM David
Cameron held emergency talks with French President Nicolas Sarkozy,
while France and Germany tried to drum up support for a new EU
treaty to enforce budget discipline.
2011 Dec 2, Christopher Logue
(85), English poet, died.
(Econ, 12/17/11, p.166)
2011 Dec 2, In Colombia
flooding over the last 3 months has caused 114 deaths with another
21 people missing.
(Econ, 12/10/11, p.42)
2011 Dec 2, Human Rights Watch
said CongoDRC election-related violence has already killed 18
civilians, amid fears that fresh unrest could erupt over alleged
fraud. A UN report on March 20, 2012, said security forces killed at
least 33 people among other "serious human rights violations" during
the November elections.
(AFP, 12/2/11)(AFP, 3/21/12)
2011 Dec 2, In Haiti a dump
truck slammed into a bus in a western coastal town, killing at least
2011 Dec 2, In Iraq the Camp
Victory base complex, at its height was home to 46,000 people, was
handed over to the Iraqi government as part of American efforts to
move all US troops out of the country by the end of the year.
2011 Dec 2, Kosovo and Serbia
agreed on normalizing border procedures, one of the thorniest issues
in current talks between the two rivals. An EU statement said, "The
parties will gradually set up the joint, integrated, single and
secure posts at all their common crossing points."
2011 Dec 2, In Mexico Humberto
Moreira the head of Mexico's former ruling party (PRI) resigned over
a financial scandal in Coahuila that threatened the party's efforts
to rebrand itself as corruption-free and retake the presidency in
2012. The case against two of Moreira’s associates was dropped in
2013 due to lack of evidence.
(AP, 12/2/11)(Econ, 3/10/12, p.50)(AP, 4/24/13)
2011 Dec 2, In Mexico Norma
Andrade (51), an activist representing relatives of women slain or
missing in the border city of Ciudad Juarez, was shot in what
authorities called an apparent robbery attempt. She was shot twice
outside her home and was in stable condition in a hospital.
2011 Dec 2, Myanmar's Pres.
Thein Sein formally approved a bill allowing citizens to protest
peacefully if they have permission, in one of a series of reformist
moves by the regime. Shan State Army-South rebel group, one of the
main ethnic rebel groups battling Myanmar’s government, was reported
to have signed a preliminary cease-fire.
(AFP, 12/3/11)(AP, 12/2/11)
2011 Dec 2, The Environmental
Rights Action (ERA)/Friends of the Earth Nigeria (FoEN) visited
Kalaba community, Bayelsa state, and observed five spill points on
the pipeline which was spewing oil into the environment. The
pipeline was operated by Agip, the local subsidiary of Italian oil
2011 Dec 2, In Peru Jose Flores
Hala, one of two remaining leaders of the Shining Path guerrilla
group, said his troops will cease attacks and is calling for a truce
to start peace negotiations with the government.
2011 Dec 2, In the Philippines
6 fishermen, from China's southern island province of Hainan, were
arrested in waters off western Palawan province's Balabac township,
for catching endangered sea turtles. Officials said the fishermen's
mother ship may have escaped when their speedboat was intercepted.
2011 Dec 2, In Puerto Rico a
man opened fire inside an unemployment office in Caguas, killing
Luis Lopez Rodriguez (27) and wounding another in what an official
said appeared to be targeted attack.
2011 Dec 2, A Russian court
found Golos, the country’s only independent election watchdog,
guilty of violations, casting doubt on its ability to monitor the
Dec 4 parliamentary election as voters complain of record violations
by the Kremlin party.
2011 Dec 2, Royal Bank of
Scotland said it has sold its 918 tenanted pubs in Britain to Dutch
brewer Heineken for 422 million pounds, another step in its exit
from non-core businesses following a government bailout.
2011 Dec 2, The Seychelles
invited Beijing to set up a military base on the archipelago to beef
up the fight against piracy there.
2011 Dec 2, Spanish police said
they have arrested L. Morris (66), a British man, suspected of
raping his step-daughter when she was nine years old and years later
abusing her daughter as well. He had moved to Spain from Kent where
the alleged rapes took place.
2011 Dec 2, In Syria hours of
intense shooting and clashes killed at least four people and wounded
dozens more, including an 11-year-old girl who was struck by stray
bullets that whizzed across the border into Lebanon. The European
Union released the names of Syrian officials and companies to be
added to a growing sanctions blacklist.
2011 Dec 2, Tunisia closed the
second main border post into Libya following attacks on Tunisians on
the Libyan side, two days after the first closure.
2011 Dec 2, Yemeni government
troops shelled residential areas in the restive southern city of
Taiz for a fourth straight day, killing three people.
2011 Dec 2, Venezuela’s Pres.
Hugo Chavez hosted leaders from across the Americas at a two-day
summit. Chavez described the new regional bloc that excludes the US
as a tribute to his idol Bolivar, saying the time has come to put an
end to US hegemony. The 33-nation Community of Latin American and
Caribbean States (CELAC) includes every country in Latin America and
the Caribbean. Plans for the new organization, which grew out of the
24-nation Rio Group, have been in the works since a 2008 summit
hosted by Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.
2012 Dec 2, In Alaska Israel
Keyes (34), who had also confessed to killing a Vermont couple, was
found dead in his jail cell in Anchorage. Investigators later said
Keyes had confessed to killing 8 people before he committed suicide.
(AP, 12/3/12)(SFC, 12/8/12, p.A4)
2012 Dec 2, In southern
California a smuggling vessel rammed a small US Coast Guard boat
killing Terrell Horne III (34) near the Channel Islands west of
Malibu. Two Mexican suspects were detained.
(SFC, 12/3/12, p.A6)(SFC, 12/4/12, p.A14)
2012 Dec 2, In southern
California the bodies of 4 people, 2 men and 2 women, were found at
an unlicensed boarding house in Northridge, LA County.
(SFC, 12/3/12, p.A6)
2012 Dec 2, In eastern
Afghanistan Taliban suicide bombers attacked Forward Operating Base
Fenty, a joint US-Afghan air base in Jalalabad city, detonating
explosives at the gate and sparking a gunbattle that lasted at least
two hours. 9 attackers and 3 Afghan security members were killed.
(AP, 12/2/12)(SFC, 12/3/12, p.A3)
2012 Dec 2, Burkina Faso voters
lined up for parliamentary and municipal elections.
2012 Dec 2, Colombia’s military
killed at least FARC fighters in the pre-dawn attack near the town
of Ricuarte, Narino state.
2012 Dec 2, Egypt's top court
said it was suspending its work indefinitely to protest
"psychological and physical pressures" after supporters of the
country's Islamist president prevented judges from entering the
courthouse to rule on the legitimacy of a disputed constitutional
2012 Dec 2, In Hungary
thousands of people attended an anti-Nazi rally in Budapest to
protest a call by far-right lawmaker Marton Gyongyosi to screen Jews
for national security risks.
(SFC, 12/3/12, p.A2)
2012 Dec 2, In Iraq gunmen
broke into the house of an anti-al-Qaida militiaman near Samarra and
killed him and his two sons.
2012 Dec 2, Israel roundly
rejected the UN endorsement of an independent state of Palestine,
announcing it would withhold more than $100 million collected for
the Palestinian government to pay debts to Israeli companies.
2012 Dec 2, In Italy somebody
broke into the estate of Gianfranco Soldera in tuscany and emptied
the massive oak casks of 62,600 liters of his 2007-2012 Sangiovese
(Econ, 12/8/12, p.70)
2012 Dec 2, In Japan 9 people
were killed after about 150 concrete panels fell from a 130-meter
stretch of roof of the Sasago Tunnel 80 km (50 miles) outside Tokyo.
(AP, 12/2/12)(SFC, 12/3/12, p.A2)(Econ, 1/12/12,
2012 Dec 2, In Kenya Deputy PM
Uhuru Kenyatta and former minister William Ruto announced an
alliance to run for the presidential and vice presidential seats in
the country's March election. They both faced crimes against
humanity charges at the International Criminal court. Kenyatta faced
charges of committing murder, forcible deportation, persecution and
rape against supporters of the prime minister after the 2007
election. Ruto has been charged with the murder, forcible
deportation and persecution of supporters of the president's party.
2012 Dec 2, In Kuwait
opposition groups hailed their election boycott as a success after
officials said voter turnout a day earlier was sharply lower than
during the last parliamentary races earlier this year. The results
pointed to a solidly pro-government chamber. Three women were among
the new 50-seat parliament.
2012 Dec 2, In northeast
Nigeria at least 10 people were killed in attacks likely carried out
by a radical Islamist sect in Chibok village, Borno state.
2012 Dec 2, Pacific island
nations and environmentalists raised an alarm over destructive
fishing methods and overfishing that they say are threatening bigeye
tuna, at the start of a weeklong tuna fisheries conference in
2012 Dec 2, Slovenia held a
presidential runoff pitting anti-austerity incumbent Danilo Turk
against former PM Borut Pahor, who has supported some of the
government's budget measures during his campaign.
2012 Dec 2, Syria forces
bombarded rebel strongholds in Damascus. A car bomb exploded near a
mosque in the city of Homs, killing at least 15 people. The official
SANA news agency claimed that, the Syrian army killed scores of
rebels in an attack on their hideouts on the outskirts of Homs.
(AP, 12/2/12)(SFC, 12/3/12, p.A3)
2012 Dec 2, The Syrian conflict
spilled into Lebanon, after Lebanese troops exchanged fire with
rebels across the border late today.
2012 Dec 2, A Tunisian labor
union suspended a nearly weeklong strike in Siliana after the
national government agreed to remove a local governor.
2012 Dec 2, In Vietnam a mortar
shell left from the Vietnam War has exploded in a southern village,
killing four children and seriously injuring five other people.
Government figures showed that unexploded ordnance killed more than
42,000 people since the war ended in 1975.
2013 Dec 2, US Pres. Obama
announced a $100 million initiative in pursuit of a cure for HIV at
a White House event marking World Aids Day.
(SFC, 12/3/13, p.A7)
2013 Dec 2, NASA said solar
observatories saw something emerge from around the sun following the
comet ISON’s close approach.
(SFC, 12/3/13, p.A7)
2013 Dec 2, In Hawaii a shark
attack killed a kayak fisherman off Maui.
(SFC, 12/3/13, p.A7)
2013 Dec 2, The Satanic Temple,
a New York-based group, launched a campaign to donate a monument to
stand next to Oklahoma’s Ten Commandments monument in Oklahoma City.
(Econ, 12/14/13, p.41)
2013 Dec 2, In Afghanistan a
suicide truck bombing killed 4 police officers in Wardak province.
2013 Dec 2, In Armenia some 500
people marched through Yerevan to denounce visiting Russian
President Vladimir Putin and to protest against plans to join a
Moscow-led customs union.
2013 Dec 2, In Australia a
class action over birth defects linked to the morning sickness drug
thalidomide was settled in a court, with the British distributor
agreeing to pay victims Aus$89 million (US$81 million).
2013 Dec 2, China government
said it has punished almost 20,000 officials in the last year for
breaching rules to cut down on bureaucracy as well as pomp and
2013 Dec 2, A producer for
China's state broadcaster CCTV said that he had been fired after he
criticized the network's role in a controversial crackdown on online
rumors. Wang Qinglei made the statement in an open letter, which has
since been scrubbed from Chinese social media.
2013 Dec 2, Zhang Yimou (62),
one of China's top movie directors, admitted having three children
with his current wife, according to a studio media posting,
apologising after months of speculation he broke the country's
controversial family planning laws.
2013 Dec 2, China launched
Chang’e-3, its first moon rover mission, the latest step in an
ambitious space program seen as a symbol of its rising global
(AFP, 12/2/13)(Econ, 12/7/13, p.82)
2013 Dec 2, Egyptian police
fired tear gas as more than two thousand students backing ousted
Islamist president Mohamed Morsi entered Cairo's Tahrir Square to
demonstrate against July's military "coup."
2013 Dec 2, French police
arrested 45 people in a vast sweep against international arms
2013 Dec 2, Indonesia's
anti-graft agency questioned the energy minister over a corruption
scandal that has ensnared top oil officials and threatened to
tarnish President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's final year in office.
2013 Dec 2, In Iraq bombings
near the homes of government employees killed 3 people in a Sunni
suburb west of Baghdad.
2013 Dec 2, Lebanon’s
government authorized the army to take control of Tripoli following
three days of sectarian clashes that left 12 dead.
(SFC, 12/3/13, p.A2)
2013 Dec 2, Mexican authorities
said a total of 64 bodies have been found in mass graves in the
western state of Jalisco, as they wrapped up a probe of alleged
victims of a drug cartel.
2013 Dec 2, In Mexico a truck
carrying cobalt-60, used for radiotherapy treatment to combat
cancer, was stolen. The IAEA later said the heist occurred in
Tepojaco, a town near Mexico City, and described the load as
"extremely dangerous" if damaged or removed from its protective
shielding. The truck was found abandoned on Dec 4. The highly
radioactive material had been removed from its container and was
found near the truck.
(AP, 12/4/13)(AP, 12/5/13)
2013 Dec 2, In northeastern
Nigeria hundreds of Islamic militants in trucks and a stolen armored
personnel carrier attacked an air force base on the outskirts of
Maiduguri before dawn. 24 insurgents were reported killed along with
2 air force personnel. Authorities imposed a 24-hour curfew
following the attack.
(AP, 12/2/13)(Reuters, 12/2/13)(SFC, 12/3/13,
2013 Dec 2, At a ceremoney in
Lomndonderry, Northern Ireland, French artist Laure Prouvost won
Britain's Turner prize for contemporary art for her video
installation set among a mock-tea party setting entitled "Wantee."
2013 Dec 2, In central Poland a
priest (49) was sentenced to more than eight years after being
convicted of sexually abusing five boys.
2013 Dec 2, Somalia's
parliament voted to sack PM Abdi Farah Shirdon and his Cabinet in a
no-confidence vote, after a row with the president that has
paralyzed the state and threatened a shaky recovery from war.
(Reuters, 12/2/13)(SFC, 12/3/13, p.A2)
2013 Dec 2, In Syria opposition
fighters abducted 12 nuns from Maaloula, a predominantly Christian
village near the capital that was overrun by rebels. The nuns were
reported freed on March 9.
(AP, 12/3/13)(Reuters, 3/9/14)
2013 Dec 2, Thailand's PM
Shinawatra said she is willing to do anything it takes to end
violent protests against her government and restore peace, but
cannot accept the opposition's "unconstitutional" demand to hand
power to an unelected council.
2013 Dec 2, Turkey said it
stood by a bilateral oil deal with Iraq's Kurdistan region that
bypassed central government but sought to appease Baghdad by drawing
it into the arrangement.
2013 Dec 2, In Ukraine about
1,000 protesters blocked off the government's main headquarters and
surrounding streets, preventing employees getting to work, in
further protests at Kiev's policy U-turn away from integration with
2013 Dec 2, Venezuela's second
massive power outage of the year plunged much of the nation into
darkness, prompting renewed talk of sabotage from President Nicolas
Maduro's government and cries of incompetence from its foes.
2013 Dec 2, In southern Yemen
suspected al-Qaida militants attacked a military checkpoint in
Hadramawt province sparking a clash that left 3 militants and 2
2014 Dec 2, New York-based
Corning announced that it is buying Samsung Electronics' fiber
optics business to help bolster its portfolio of optical
communications products in Asia.
2014 Dec 2, Saxophonist Bobby
Keys (70) died at his home in Franklin, Tenn. He had toured with
Buddy Holly, played on recordings by John Lennon, and laid down the
blowout a solo on the the Rolling Stones’ Brown Sugar” album.
(SFC, 12/3/14, p.E4)
2014 Dec 2, In northwest
Afghanistan Taliban insurgents killed 6 Afghan soldiers in Badghis
province. 3 insurgents were killed in the attack in Bala Murghab
district. An American drone killed 5 insurgents in Shirzad district
in Nangahar province.
2014 Dec 2, Chinese state media
reported that China has adopted pilot programs for circuit courts
and courts with jurisdiction across different regions designed to
reduce local officials' interference in the judiciary.
2014 Dec 2, France’s lower
house of Parliament in a non-binding vote (339-151) urged the
government to recognize a Palestinian state.
(SFC, 12/3/14, p.A2)
2014 Dec 2, Pilots at German
airline Lufthansa extended their two-day strike to long-haul flights
in an ongoing dispute over retirement benefits.
2014 Dec 2, In Greece
anarchists burned a bus and several cars in Athens following a
demonstration in support of Nikos Romanos, a young anarchist
convicted of involvement in an armed bank robbery. Romanos was on a
(SFC, 12/3/14, p.A2)
2014 Dec 2, Three founders of
Hong Kong's pro-democracy protest movement called for an end to
street demonstrations to prevent more violence and take the campaign
to a new stage. Professors Benny Tai Yiu-ting and Chan Kin-man and
Pastor Chu Yiu-ming said they planned to surrender to police on Dec
3 to take responsibility for the protests.
2014 Dec 2, Indian soldiers
killed 6 militants near the border with Pakistan in Kupwara,
2014 Dec 2, Iraqi ministers
agreed to take a 50 percent pay cut while the country grapples with
a financial crisis brought about by falling oil prices and a war
with Islamic State militants.
2014 Dec 2, The Iraqi
government reached a deal with the Kurdish local authorities in the
country's north to exchange oil from the autonomous region for a
nearly 20 percent share of the national budget.
2014 Dec 2, Israeli PM Benjamin
Netanyahu fired Finance Minister Yair Lapid and Justice Minister
(SSFC, 12/7/14, p.A2)
2014 Dec 2, In Italy a probe of
ties between gangsters and allegedly corrupt city politicians.
netted 37 arrests. Dozens of other suspects, including Gianni
Alemanno, Rome's previous mayor, were notified they are being
2014 Dec 2, In northeast Kenya
Somali al Shabaab Islamist militants killed 36 non-Muslim workers at
a quarry near the Somali border. Thus prompted Pres. Uhuru Kenyatta
to sweep out his top security officials to tackle a relentless wave
2014 Dec 2, Kosovo authorities
destroyed more than 2,000 small arms and rifles as part of an
ongoing effort to increase security in the Balkan country.
2014 Dec 2, Lebanese security
officials said that Lebanon’s army detained Saja al-Dulaimi, an
alleged wife and daughter of Islamic State leader Abu Bakr
al-Baghdadi, as they crossed from Syria nine days ago. They said
authorities have also detained the wife of Anas Shirkas, senior
Nusra Front leader from Syria. On Dec 3 a statement by Iraq's
Interior Ministry spokesman Saad Maan said Saja al-Dulaimi is not a
wife of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and that she is the sister of a terror
suspect being held in Iraq.
(Reuters, 12/2/14)(AP, 12/3/14)
2014 Dec 2, In Libya army
airstrikes hit a warehouse and a factory in the western city of
Zwara, killing 8 people and wounding 24. One strike reportedly hit a
warehouse used to store food and the other a chemical factory. An
army spokesman said the buildings were arms depots.
2014 Dec 2, NATO
Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said the alliance member
countries have approved a new interim quick-reaction military force
to protect themselves from Russia or other threats. Foreign
ministers from the 28 NATO countries and Ukraine condemned a Russian
military build-up in Crimea and what they called Russia's
"deliberate destabilization" of eastern Ukraine.
(AP, 12/2/14)(4, 12/2/14)
2014 Dec 2, Pakistan army's
jets and ground forces killed 24 militants as part of ongoing
operations in North Waziristan.
2014 Dec 2, Portugal's national
airline endured its fifth walkout this year, with a 24-hour strike
by cabin crew grounding around 200 flights.
Go to December 3