Today in History - December 22

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1135        Dec 22, Stephen of Blois was crowned the king of England.
    (HN, 12/22/98)

1428        Dec 22, Richard Neville Warwick, 2nd earl of Salisbury, was born.
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1440        Dec 22, Bluebeard, pirate, was executed.
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1643        Dec 22, Rene-Robert Cavelier La Salle, French explorer (Louisiana), was born. [see Nov 22]
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1668        Dec 22, Stephen Day, 1st British colonial printer, died.
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1696        Dec 22, James Oglethorpe, General, author, colonizer of Georgia, was born in England.
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1727        Dec 22, William Ellery, US attorney and signer of the Declaration of Independence, was born.
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1745        Dec 22, Jan Dismas Zelenka (66), composer, died.
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1772        Dec 22, A Moravian missionary constructed the 1st schoolhouse west of Allegheny.
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1775        Dec 22, Esek Hopkins was named the first commander of the US Navy. He took command of the Continental Navy, a total of seven ships.
    (HFA,'96,.44)(AP, 12/22/97)(HN, 12/22/98)

1783        Dec 22, Washington resigned his military commission. [see Dec 23]
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1807        Dec 22, Congress passed the Embargo Act, designed to force peace between Britain and France by cutting off all trade with Europe. It was hoped that the act would keep the United States out the European Wars.
    (AP, 12/22/97)(HN, 12/22/98)

1808        Dec 21, Ludwig van Beethoven's Symphony No. 5 in C Minor and Symphony No. 6 in F Major had their world premieres in Vienna, Austria.
    (AP, 12/22/06)

1810        Dec 22, British frigate Minotaur sank killing 480.
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1815        Dec 22, Spanish colonial authorities executed Mexican revolutionary priest Jose Maria Morelos (b.1765).
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jos%C3%A9_Mar%C3%ADa_Morelos)

1824      Dec 22, Chiefess Kapiolani, a Christian, defied Pele, the Hawaiian volcano goddess, and lived. Tennyson's eponymous poem celebrated the event.
    (www.aracnet.com/~sbvoices/days_dec.html)

1828        Dec 22, Rachel Jackson, beloved wife of Andrew Jackson, died of heart disease just weeks before her recently elected husband was inaugurated as president of the United States. Andrew Jackson had been 21 and a promising young lawyer when Rachel Donelson Robards, his landlady's daughter and the estranged wife of Lewis Robards of Kentucky, caught his eye. Robards had started divorce proceedings, but had dropped them without his wife's knowledge. Believing she was a free woman, Rachel married Andrew Jackson in 1791. Two years later, the couple discovered that Robards was finally suing for divorce--on the grounds of adultery and desertion. The divorce was granted, and in 1794, the couple quietly remarried. Yet, for the rest of her life, Rachel was unjustly slandered for her irregular marriage. The gossip became particularly painful during the 1828 presidential campaign when the 37-year-old scandal was resurrected as a campaign issue. Andrew Jackson defeated his opponent John Quincy Adams, but when Rachel died soon after the election, Jackson bitterly attributed her death to "those vile wretches who...slandered her."
    (HNPD, 12/22/98)

1829        Dec 22, The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad opened the first passenger railway line.
    (HN, 12/22/98)

1832        Dec 22, HMS Beagle and Charles Darwin reached Barnevelts Islands.
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1856        Dec 22, Frank Kellogg, US Secretary of State (1925-29) who tried to outlaw war with the Kellogg-Briand Pact, was born. He won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1929.
    (HN, 12/22/98)(AP, 10/9/09)

1858        Dec 22, Giacomo Puccini, Italian operatic composer best known for Madam Butterfly, La Boheme and Tosca, was born in Lucca, Italy. [see Jun 22]
    (HN, 12/22/98)(MC, 12/22/01)

1862        Dec 22-Jan 2, Raid on Morgan's: Bardstown to Elizabethtown, Ky.
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1864        Dec 22, During the Civil War, Gen’l. Sherman telegraphed Pres. Lincoln from Georgia, saying: "I beg to present to you, as a Christmas gift, the city of Savannah with 150 guns and plenty of ammunition." In 2008 Noah Andre Trudeau authored “Southern Storm: Sherman’s March to the Sea."   
    (SFEC,11/30/97, p.T4)(AP, 12/22/97)(WSJ, 8/4/08, p.A11)

1868        Dec 22, John Nance Garner, (VP-D-1933-41), was born in Texas.
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1869         Dec 22, Edwin Arlington Robinson (d.1935), American poet, was born. “Christmas has come and gone, and I—to speak selfishly—am glad of it. The season always gives me the blues in spite of myself, though I manage to get a good deal of pleasure from thinking of the multitudes of happy kids in various parts of the world."
    (AP, 12/26/97)(SFEC, 4/23/00, BR p.6)

1882        Dec 22, 1st string of Christmas tree lights was created by Thomas Edison.
    (SFC, 12/23/98, Z1 p.3)(MC, 12/22/01)

1883        Dec 22, Arthur Wergs Mitchell, first African-American to be elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, was born.
    (HN, 12/22/98)

1885        Dec 22, Ito Hirobumi began serving as the first prime minister of Japan. He also served as the 5th (1892-96), 7th (1898) and 10th (1900-1901) PM of Japan.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/It%C5%8D_Hirobumi)

1894        Dec 22, Debussy's "Prelude l'apres-midi d'un faune," premiered.
    (MC, 12/22/01)
1894        Dec 22, French army officer Alfred Dreyfus was fraudulently convicted of treason in a court-martial that triggered worldwide charges of anti-Semitism. Dreyfus, a Jewish artillery captain on the General Staff, was accused of passing secret French military documents to the German embassy in Paris. Dreyfus was eventually vindicated. [see 1906]
    (WSJ, 4/22/96, p.A-20)(AP, 12/22/97)

1899        Dec 22, Wiley Post, aviation pioneer, was born in Texas.
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1902        Dec 22, Jacques-Philippe Leclerc, French WW II hero (liberator of Paris), was born.
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1907        Dec 22, Actress Dame Peggy Ashcroft was born in Croydon, England.
    (AP, 12/22/07)

1910        Dec 22, In Chicago, Ill., 21 firefighters died when a wall collapsed at the Union Stock Yards fire.
    (www.chicagotribune.com/news/chi-ap-il-exchange-1910fire,0,4327692.story)

1911        Dec 22, Ecuador’s President Estrada died of a heart attack.
    (http://tinyurl.com/lxfmo5f)

1912        Dec 22, Claudia "Lady Bird" Johnson, wife of President Lyndon Baines Johnson, was born.
    (HN, 12/22/98)

1915        Dec 22, In China Yuan Shikai proclaimed the Empire of China (1915–1916) with himself as Emperor of China.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yuan_Shikai)

1918        Dec 22, The last of the food restrictions, that had been enforced because of the shortages during World War I, were lifted.
    (HN, 12/22/98)

1929        Dec 22, Soviet troops left Manchuria after a truce was reached with the Chinese over the Eastern Railway dispute.
    (HN, 12/22/98)

1932        Dec 22, The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was proclaimed.
    (www.rogersstudy.co.uk/hejaz/al_nahda/al_nahda.html)

1936        Dec 22, Hector Elizondo, actor (American Gigolo, Young Doctors in Love), was born in NYC.
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1937        Dec 22, The NYC Lincoln Tunnel opened to traffic.
    (SFEC, 7/4/99, p.T4)(MC, 12/22/01)

1939        Dec 22, Ma Rainey (53), "Mother of the Blues", US blues singer and composer, died.
    (MC, 12/22/01)
1939        Dec 22, 99 died in 2nd train wreck at Friedrichshafen, Germany.
    (MC, 12/22/01)
1939        Dec 22, 125 died in train wreck at Magdeburg, Germany.
    (MC, 12/22/01)

1940        Dec 22, Nathanael West (b.1902), [Weinstein], US writer (Cool Million), died in an auto accident at age 37. In 1962 Stanley Edgar Hyman authored “Nathanael West." In 1970 Jay Martin authored the biography: "Nathanael West: The Art of His Life." In 2010 Marion Meade authored “Lonely Hearts: The Screwball world of Nathanael West and Eileen McKeney."
    (WUD, 1994, p.1623)(WSJ, 8/11/97, p.A12)(SFC, 5/25/10, p.E2)

1941        Dec 22, The cartoon character Archie Andrews, drawn by Montana and written by Vic Bloom, first appeared in Pep Comics #22. In 2014 Archie Comics said the Archie character will be heroically sacrifice himself in Life with Archie #36.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Archie_Comics)(SFC, 4/10/14, p.A8)
1941        Dec 22, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill arrived in Washington for a wartime conference with President Roosevelt.
    (AP, 12/22/97)
1941        Dec 22, Japanese troops made an amphibious landing on the coast of Lingayen Gulf on Luzon, the Philippines.
    (HN, 12/22/98)

1942        Dec 22, The Soviets drove German troops back 15 miles at the Don River.
    (HN, 12/22/98)

1943        Dec 22, Beatrix Potter (b.1866), English author, died. She first told the story of Peter Rabbit in the form of a "picture letter" to Noel Moore, the son of Potter's former governess in 1893. A 2nd illustrated letter the same month later became “The Tale of Jeremy Fisher." The “Tale of Peter Rabbit" was published in 1901. At her death she bequeathed all her holdings, 14 farms and 4,000 acres of land, to the National Trust.
    (Econ, 1/6/07, p.67)(www.visitcumbria.com/bpotter.htm)

1944        Dec 22, During the Battle of the Bulge, the Germans demanded the surrender of American troops at Bastogne, Belgium; Brigadier Gen. Anthony C. McAuliffe (1898-1975) reportedly replied: "Nuts!"
    (AP, 12/22/97)(HN, 12/22/98)

1945        Dec 22, Diane Sawyer, newscaster (60 Minutes, ABC Prime Time), was born in Glasgow, Ky.
    (MC, 12/22/01)
1945        Dec 22, The U.S. recognized Tito's government in Yugoslavia.
    (HN, 12/22/98)

1956        Dec 22, The 1st gorilla was born in captivity at Columbus, Ohio.
    (MC, 12/22/01)
1956        Dec 22, The evacuation of the Suez Canal was completed by Britain and France.
    (WUD, 1994, p.1685)(MC, 12/22/01)

1963        Dec 22, The official 30 days of mourning ended following the assassination of President Kennedy.
    (AP, 12/22/99)

1965        Dec 22, The EF-105F Wild Weasel made its first kill over Vietnam.
    (HN, 12/22/98)

1966        Dec 22, The United States announced the allocation of 900,000 tons of grain to fight the famine in India.
    (HN, 12/22/98)

1970        Dec 22, Treblinka SS commander Franz Stangl (b.1908) was sentenced to life in prison. He was responsible for the murder of approximately 900,000 people in the period 1941-1943.
    (www.simon-wiesenthal-archiv.at/02_dokuzentrum/02_faelle/e02_stangl.html)

1971        Dec 22, The UN General Assembly voted to ratify the election of Kurt Waldheim (1918-2007) of Austria to succeed U Thant as the 4th Secretary-General.
    (AP, 12/22/99)

1972        Dec 22, Diana Sue Sylvester (22) was raped and killed in the SF Sunset District after walking home from UCSF. In 2006 John Puckett (72), a retired carpet installer in Stockton, was arrested for the murder based on DNA evidence. In 2008 Puckett (74) was convicted of first-degree murder.
    (SFC, 4/22/06, p.B1)(SFC, 2/22/08, p.B7)
1972        Dec 22, In Vietnam Bac Mai hospital was bombed by American B-52s when they missed an air base on the outskirts of Hanoi. 18 hospital workers and patients were killed.
    (SFC,12/16/97, p.B1)

1975        Dec 22, The Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) made it policy for the US to establish a reserve up to one billion barrels (159 million m³) of petroleum. The Strategic Petroleum Reserve was created to provide a guaranteed domestic supply. The oil was put into salt domes on the Gulf Coast near the Texas-Louisiana border. The storage capacity was 700 million barrels.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strategic_Petroleum_Reserve)(SFC, 11/14/01, p.A15)

1977        Dec 22, Steve Cauthen (b.1960), Kentucky-born jockey, won his 355th race at age 16 setting a new earnings record.
    (www.liketelevision.com/liketelevision/tuner.php?channel=357&format=tv&theme=history)
1977        Dec 22, Thomas Helms (26) climbed to the edge of the observation deck on the eighty-sixth floor of the Empire State Building, and jumped intending to kill himself on the streets 1000s of feet below. He only fell twenty feet before landing on a narrow ledge on the 85th floor. Helms suffered no major injuries but was knocked unconscious for half-an-hour--adequate time for an emergency crew to bring him safely inside.
    (www.funtrivia.com/en/Humanities/Architecture-1944.html)
1977        Dec 22, Three dozen people were killed when a 250-foot-high grain elevator at the Continental Grain Co. plant in Westwego, La., exploded.
    (AP, 12/22/97)

1978        Dec 22, The Communist Party in China issued a communiqué following 2 meetings on the economy. Teng Hsiao-p’ing (Deng Xiaoping) led the Chinese people in a Great Leap Forward with a program of economic reform in a market oriented economy. Deng introduced the "household responsibility system" in a drought-parched region which allowed farmers to keep some of the benefits of their labors. Deng Xiaoping announced a new "open door" policy.
    (http://tinyurl.com/3y2ljv)(WSJ, 12/19/94, A-1)(SFC, 2/20/96, p.A4)(WSJ, 5/3/99, p.A22)(Econ, 12/13/08, p.31)
1978        Dec 22, Rudolf Slavik, Czechoslovakia-born creator of the Leviathan cocktail (1934), died.
    (SSFC, 12/13/09, p.K3)

1980        Dec 22, US Congress passed the Low-Level Radioactive Waste Policy Act to ease the burden being placed on these states. The Act gave each US state the responsibility of developing a method of disposing of their own waste by 1986.
    (WSJ, 2/27/97, p.A1)(www.ieer.org/pubs/highlvlr.html)
1980        Dec 22, Ben Weingart (b.1887), a multimillionaire philanthropist, died. He and 2 partners had developed the city of Lakewood, north of Long Beach, Ca. On June 6, 1951, Ben Weingart and his wife Stella established The B.W. Foundation as a non-profit California corporation. The name was changed to the Weingart Foundation in April, 1978.
    (SFC, 2/24/10, p.C5)(www.weingartfnd.org/default.asp?PID=6)

1981        Dec 22, Zdzislaw Rurarz (1930-2007), Polish ambassador to Japan, defected to the US to protest the imposition of martial law. Romuald Spasowski, the ambassador to the United States, also defected.
    (AP, 1/28/07)

1983        Dec 22, Egyptian president Mubarak met with PLO leader Yasser Arafat.
    (http://preview.tinyurl.com/2luhxs)

1984        Dec 22, Bernhard Goetz shot at four black teens who attempted to rob him in a New York subway. He later claimed self-defense and was acquitted of attempted murder in 1987 in a trial where lawyer William Kunstler represented Darrel Cabey, who was paralyzed in the shooting. 3 other wounded teens, James Ramseur, Barry Allen, and Troy Canty went to jail.
    (SFC, 4/8/96, p.A-3)(AP, 12/22/98)

1987        Dec 22, The Reagan administration criticized Israel's handling of the Palestinian uprising in the occupied territories, particularly the military's use of live ammunition against civilians.
    (AP, 12/22/97)
1987        Dec 22, In Zimbabwe ZANU leader Robert Mugabe and ZAPU leader Joshua Nkomo signed a unity agreement that merged the two parties to form one party known as ZANU PF. This effectively dissolved ZAPU into ZANU, renamed ZANU-PF.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gukurahundi)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joshua_Nkomo)

1988        Dec 22, President-elect Bush appointed Dr. Louis W. Sullivan secretary of health and human services, Samuel K. Skinner transportation secretary and Manuel Lujan Jr. interior secretary.
    (AP, 12/22/98)
1988        Dec 22, Chico Mendes, a rubber tapper and political and environmental activist, was murdered in Acre state by a death squad allegedly directed by Hildebrando Pascoal.
    (WSJ, 3/16/99, p.A1)(SFC, 12/22/08, p.A17)

1989        Dec 22, Samuel Beckett (83, playwright, died in Paris. His work included the novel "The Unnamable." In 1997 2 biographies of Beckett were published: "Damned to Fame" by James Knowlson and "Samuel Beckett: The Last Modernist," by Anthony Cronin. In 1999 Maurice Harmon published "No Author Better Served: The Correspondence of Samuel Beckett and Alan Schneider." Schneider (d.1984) was Beckett's American director.
    (SFEC, 9/30/96, p.A23)(WSJ, 7/11/97, p.A12)(SFEC, 1/17/99, BR p.7)(AP, 12/22/99)
1989        Dec 22, Germany’s Brandenburg Gate opened for border crossings.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Berlin_Wall)
1989        Dec 22, In Romania there was a revolt and miners riots. Romania's hard-line Communist ruler, Nicolae Ceausescu, was toppled in a popular uprising following 23 years of dictatorial rule. Ion Ileascu and other top Communist functionaries of Ceausescu seized control. Ileascu ruled until Nov 1996.
    (SFC, 11/18/96, p.A10)(SFC, 11/20/96, p.C4)(AP, 12/22/97)(SFC, 6/15/98, p.A11)

1990        Dec 22, Twenty-one sailors returning from shore leave to the aircraft carrier USS “Saratoga" drowned when the Israeli ferry they were traveling on capsized.
    (AP, 12/22/00)
1990        Dec 22, Lech Walesa took the oath of office as Poland's first popularly elected president. Ryszard Kaczorowski (1919-2010), the last president of  Poland’s government in exile in London, ended his 2-year term. He passed the presidential insignia to Lech Walesa, thus ending the 45-years long episode of the Polish government in exile. 
    (AP, 12/22/97)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ryszard_Kaczorowski)

1991        Dec 22, The body of Lt. Col. William R. Higgins, an American hostage murdered by his captors, was found dumped along a highway in Lebanon.
    (AP, 12/22/97)

1992        Dec 22, President-elect Clinton chose Warren Christopher to be his secretary of state and tapped Les Aspin to be defense secretary.
    (AP, 12/22/97)
1992        Dec 22, The UN General Assembly adopted resolution A/RES/47/193 by which 22 March of each year was declared World Day for Water, to be observed starting in 1993.
    (www.unesco.org/water/water_celebrations/index.shtml)
1992        Dec 22, A Libyan Boeing 727 jetliner crashed, killing 157 people.
    (AP, 12/22/97)

1993        Dec 22, Singer Michael Jackson, fighting back against child molestation allegations, issued a video statement in which he said he was "totally innocent of any wrongdoing."
    (AP, 12/22/98)

1994        Dec 22, US House Democrats chastised Speaker-to-be Newt Gingrich for accepting a $4.5 million book advance from Rupert Murdoch's media empire.
    (AP, 12/22/99)
1994        Dec 22, North Korea handed over the body of American pilot David Hilemon, killed when his helicopter was shot down over the communist country three days earlier. [see Dec 17]
    (AP, 12/22/99)

1995        Dec 22, The Senate approved a wide-ranging Republican plan to overhaul the nation’s welfare system, 52-to-47, but without enough votes to override President Clinton’s promised veto.
    (AP, 12/22/00)
1995        Dec 22, The Mt. Zion Baptist Church in Boligee, Ala., burned down. Arson was suspected and investigations by the FBI and ATF were later begun.
    (SFC, 6/11/96, p.A16)
1995        Dec 22, Actress Butterfly McQueen, who’d played the scatterbrained slave Prissy in “Gone With the Wind," died at age 84.
    (AP, 12/22/00)

1996        Dec 22, Eight workers were killed in an explosion at the Wyman Gordon Forgings metal-fabricating plant in northwest Houston. They had been doing maintenance on 9-story pressurized tanks.
    (SFC, 12/24/96, p.A3)(AP, 12/22/97)
1996        Dec 22, Peruvian guerrillas holding more than 360 hostages at the Japanese ambassador's residence in Lima released 225 hostages but still held 140 of their captives.
    (SFC, 12/24/96, p.A7)(AP, 12/22/97)

1997        Dec 22, During his visit to Bosnia, President Clinton thanked American troops and lectured the nation's three presidents to set aside their differences.
    (AP, 12/22/98)
1997        Dec 22, Actress Hunter Tylo, whose pregnancy got her fired from TV's steamy soap "Melrose Place," was awarded $4.9 million by jurors who agreed she was wrongfully terminated.
    (AP, 12/22/98)
1997        Dec 22, The FDA approved Merck’s drug Propecia for countering baldness.
    (WSJ, 12/23/97, p.A1)
1997        Dec 22, A small plane crashed near Hampshire, Ill., and 4 people were killed.
    (SFC, 12/5/98, p.A6)
1997        Dec 22, In Algeria attackers stormed Shari hamlet and killed 28 villagers including 15 children and 5 women. The same night 53 villagers, mostly women and children, died in a massacre in the neighboring Sidi el Antar hamlet. Another 11 had their throats cut in Algiers in the Bainem area.
    (SFC,12/26/97, p.A19)
1997        Dec 22, In Columbia a new wave of paramilitary attacks began in the Riosucio region and some 500 more peasants fled to Pavarando for safety.
    (SFC, 1/5/98, p.A10)
1997        Dec 22, In Lithuanian a vote count showed Arturas Paulauskas led the country’s 2nd presidential vote since breaking with the Soviet Union. A runoff with Vladas Adamkus was set for Jan 4. Vytautas Landsbergis, who ran third, threw his support behind Adamkus.
    (SFC,12/22/97, p.A11)(WSJ, 12/23/97, p.A1)
1997        Dec 22, In Mexico some 70 pro-government gunmen of the Peace and Justice paramilitary group killed 45 people, including 21 women 9 men and 15 children, in the Tzoztzil Indian village of Acteal. Opposition groups called for the resignation of Gov. Julio Cesar Ruiz Ferro, who had repeatedly denied the existence of paramilitary groups in the state. In 1998 12 officials of the state attorney general’s office were arrested for failing to stop the massacre. The government paid compensation to families of the victims and to the wounded. In 1999 20 government supporters were sentenced to 35 years in prison and 81 people were still scheduled for trial. In Dec 2007 authorities re-arrested Antonio Santiz, the alleged mastermind of the massacre. Santiz had been arrested for his alleged involvement in 2000, but a judge threw out the charges in 2001, ruling there wasn't enough evidence. In 2008 a Mexican judge sentenced brothers Antonio and Mariano Pucuj to 26 years in prison for their participation in the massacre. In August, 2009, Mexico's Supreme Court ordered freedom for 20 men convicted in the Acteal massacre and new trials for six more, ruling that prosecutors used illegally obtained evidence. In November, 2009, the Supreme Court ordered the release of nine more people convicted in massacre, ruling their convictions were based on illegally obtained evidence. New trials were ordered for 16 others.
    (SFC,12/24/97, p.A1)(SFC,12/26/97, p.B7)(SFC, 7/4/98, p.A9)(SFC, 7/20/99, p.A11)(AP, 12/23/07)(AP, 2/27/08)(AP, 8/12/09)(AP, 11/4/09)
1997        Dec 22, In Somalia leaders of the rival factions approved a plan to restore national government. An interim government was planned with power to be shared among the factions.
    (SFC,12/23/97, p.D2)

1998        Dec 22, The women's American Basketball League folded in the midst of its 3rd season.
    (SFC, 12/23/98, p.A1)
1998        Dec 22, The Energy Dept. for the first time awarded a billion-dollar contract to the Tennessee Valley Authority to produce tritium at a TVA nuclear reactor for military use.
    (SFC, 12/23/98, p.A3)
1998        Dec 22, Nationwide gas stations faced this deadline to replace or improve their underground fuel tanks. Thousands of rural gas stations were expected to go out of business due to the costs.
    (SFC, 12/7/98, p.A1)(WSJ, 12/22/98, p.A1)
1998        Dec 22, The Bil Mar meat packing plant in Michigan recalled 35 million pounds of hot dogs and lunch meats following the deaths of 16 people due to the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes. In Jan. another 30 million pounds were recalled from the Thorn Apple Valley plant in Arkansas.
    (SFC, 2/11/99, p.A7)
1998        Dec 22, In Angola rebels shelled Kuito and 26 people were reported killed. Some 60,000 refugees had fled there to escape fighting elsewhere.
    (WSJ, 12/23/98, p.A1)(WSJ, 12/24/98, p.A1)
1998        Dec 22, A third Chinese dissident, Qin Yongmin, was sentenced to prison for trying to organize an opposition party.
    (AP, 12/22/99)
1998        Dec 22, In Iraq UN aid groups returned to Baghdad.
    (WSJ, 12/23/98, p.A1)
1998        Dec 22, In Lebanon an Israeli rocket killed woman and her 6 children.
    (SFC, 12/23/98, p.C2)
1998        Dec 22, In South Africa Gugu Dlamini (36), an AIDS activist, died from wounds inflicted by a mob.
    (SFC, 12/28/98, p.A7)

1999        Dec 22, President Clinton urged Americans not to panic despite enhanced security measures prompted by fears of terrorism.
    (AP, 12/22/00)
1999        Dec 22, In Atlanta, Georgia, federal drug police seized $72 million worth of cocaine in "Operation Juno," a 3 year sting operation that also netted $10-26 million laundered through a fake brokerage firm. 5 people were arrested in Tucker and another 47 nationwide.
    (SFC, 12/23/99, p.A2)(WSJ, 12/23/99, p.A1)
1999        Dec 22,  An Algerian accused of trying to smuggle nitroglycerin and other bomb-making materials into the United States from Canada pleaded innocent in Seattle to all five counts of a federal indictment. Ahmed Ressam was convicted in April 2001 of terrorist conspiracy and eight other charges.
    (AP, 12/22/04)
1999        Dec 22, In Chicago Louis Farrakhan, leader of the Nation of Islam, preached a new line and called for an end to "the cycle of violence and the cycle of hatred."
    (SFC, 12/23/99, p.A3)
1999        Dec 22, Two astronauts from the shuttle “Discovery" went on a spacewalk to replace broken instruments in the Hubble Space Telescope.
    (AP, 12/22/00)
1999        Dec 22, In Algeria a 5.8 earthquake struck near Oran and at least 20 people were killed and 75 injured.
    (SFC, 12/23/99, p.C7)
1999        Dec 22, In Britain a Korean Air 747 cargo plane crashed near London and all 4 people aboard were killed.
    (SFC, 12/23/99, p.C7)
1999        Dec 22, In Italy Premier Massimo D'Alema won a vote of confidence for a new cabinet.
    (SFC, 12/23/99, p.C7)
1999        Dec 22, In Mozambique Pres. Joaquim Chissano was declared the winner of elections that were held earlier in the month. He won 52% as opposed to 48% for Afonso Dhlakama of the Mozambique Resistance Movement, known as Renamo. In parliament Frelimo won 133 seats vs. 117 for Renamo.
    (SFC, 12/23/99, p.C7)
1999        Dec 22, In the Philippines the MV Asia South Korea ferry with 606 passengers sank southeast of Manila near Bantayan Island and at least 9 people were killed. 58 people were missing.
    (SFC, 12/23/99, p.C7)(SFC, 12/24/99, p.A11)
1999        Dec 22, In Spain police found a 2nd van loaded with 1,650 pounds of explosives in Alhama de Aragon. Two days earlier a van, bound for Madrid, was stopped with 1,980 pounds of explosives.
    (SFC, 12/24/99, p.A20)
1999        Dec 22, In Venezuela 2 helicopters crashed on aid missions and at least 4 people were killed.
    (WSJ, 12/23/99, p.A1)

2000        Dec 22, Pres. Clinton granted Christmastime clemency to 62 people including Dan Rostenkowski, former Illinois congressman and chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee.
    (SFC, 12/23/00, p.A1)(AP, 12/22/05)
2000        Dec 22, Pres.-elect Bush named Sen. John Ashcroft of Missouri to become US Attorney General, and Gov. Christie Todd Whitman of New Jersey as head of the EPA.
    (SFC, 12/23/00, p.A1)
2000        Dec 22, Madonna and film director Guy Ritchie wed in Scotland.
    (AP, 12/22/01)
2000        Dec 22, The US, Japan, Europe and other industrial powers agreed to provide debt relief to 22 poor nations: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mozambique, Niger, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Bolivia, Guyana, Honduras and Nicaragua.
    (SFC, 12/23/00, p.A14)
2000        Dec 22, UN members agreed to reduce US dues following the Ted turner proposal to pick up a $34 million tab.
    (SFC, 12/23/00, p.A12)
2000        Dec 22, In Germany 3 American teenagers were convicted of murder for the Feb 27 deaths of 2 people, killed from rocks thrown from a freeway overpass.
    (SFC, 12/23/00, p.A1)
2000        Dec 22, In India separatists attacked the Red Fort in New Delhi and 3 people were killed.
    (WSJ, 12/26/00, p.A1)
2000        Dec 22, Israel announced that it is prepared to surrender sovereignty over the Temple Mount in Jerusalem as part of a peace agreement.
    (SFC, 12/23/00, p.A12)
2000        Dec 22, In Mexico the army closed a base in Chiapas and continued to pull troops from the region.
    (SFC, 12/23/00, p.A14)
2000        Dec 22, In South Korea some 15,000 bank workers went on strike to protest merger plans that threatened mass layoffs.
    (SFC, 12/26/00, p.C5)
2000        Dec 22, Three armed robbers stormed into Stockholm's National Museum and made off with a Rembrandt self-portrait and two masterpieces by Renoir. 10 people were later sentenced to prison for their roles in the theft; all three paintings have been recovered.
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2000        Dec 22, In Turkey government prison raids ended after 430 inmates surrendered at Umraniye. The 4-day siege left 28 people dead including 16 burned alive. Government forces had not been able to enter the leftist controlled wards of Bayrampasa prison in Istanbul for a decade.
    (SSFC, 12/24/00, p.B4)

2001        Dec 22, It was reported that a new “thermobaric" bomb had been developed by the Pentagon for use in caves and tunnels. The BLU-118b was capable of destroying a tunnel’s contents without collapsing the tunnel mouth.
    (SFC, 12/22/01, p.A19)
2001        Dec 22, Passengers and flight attendants subdued Richard Colvin Reid on AA Flight 63 from Paris to Miami. He appeared to have explosive materials in his shoes. The flight was diverted to Boston and the FBI confirmed that his shoes were packed with explosives. Reid had trained with Lashkar-e-Taiba. French police identified the man as Tariq Raja (28), a Sri Lankan traveling on a British passport. The sneakers contained pentaerythritol tetranitrate (PETN) and triacetone triperoxide (TATP). On Jan 30, 2003 Reid was sentenced to life in prison. A 2nd plot involved Saajid Badat, who backed out of similar plan on a different flight. In 2005 a British judge sentenced Badat (25) to 13 years in prison.
    (SSFC, 12/23/01, p.A1)(SFC, 12/24/01, p.A1,6)(SFC, 1/31/03, p.A1)(SFC, 4/23/05, p.A4)(WSJ, 12/8/08, p.A6)
2001        Dec 22, A cloned cat named CC (Carbon Copy) was born following a year of experimentation by scientists at Texas A&M scientists. The $3.7 million  research project was funded by John Sperling (81), founder of the Univ. of Phoenix. Sperling soon formed the Sausalito firm Genetic Savings to clone pets.
    (SFC, 2/15/02, p.A1)(SFC, 2/16/02, p.A1)(SFC, 8/6/04, p.A14)
2001        Dec 22, Hamid Karzai was sworn in as prime minister of Afghanistan.
    (AP, 12/22/02)
2001        Dec 22, A fishing boat from North Korea, suspected of spying, exchanged fire with Japanese coast vessels and sank after a 6-hour chase. 15 crewmen were lost. 2 bodies were later recovered. North Korea later denied any links to the fishing boat and accused Japan of a “smear campaign."
    (SSFC, 12/23/01, p.A15)(SFC, 12/24/01, p.A4)(SFC, 12/27/01, p.A5)

2002        Dec 22, Time magazine named Coleen Rowley, Cynthia Cooper and Sherron Watkins as Persons of the Year for their whistle-blowing efforts against the FBI, WorldCom and Enron.
    (SFC, 12/23/02, p.A2)
2002        Dec 27, Keith Mackie-Harris and Jerry Duckworth were shot to death at a party in the 800 block of Campbell St. in Oakland, Ca. A gang called the Nut Cases was found responsible and gang members faced trial in 2006. In 2007 Joe Ralls (31) was sentenced to 23 years in prison for the killings.
    (SFC, 2/6/06, p.A11)(SFC, 5/12/07, p.B2)
2002        Dec 22, Afghanistan's 6 neighbors (Iran, Pakistan, China, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan) agreed to halt meddling and signed a non-intervention agreement in Kabul.
    (SFC, 12/23/02, p.A3)
2002        Dec 22, Joe Strummer (50), lead singer of the legendary British punk band The Clash, died in Broomfield, England.
    (SFC, 12/24/02, p.A2)(AP, 12/22/03)
2002        Dec 22, Suspected Colombian rebels blew up a bus carrying workers to a U.S.-run oil field, killing two and wounding 11.
    (AP, 12/23/02)
2002        Dec 22, In Guyana Desmond Hoyte (b.1929), former President (1985-1992) died.
    (AP, 12/30/02)
2002        Dec 22, In Lithuania Valdas Adamkus failed to get an absolute majority (35.2%) in national elections, forcing him into a Jan. 5 runoff with former Prime Minister Rolandas Paksas (19.8%).
    (AP, 12/23/02)
2002        Dec 22, Montenegro held presidential elections but voters failed to turn out in sufficient numbers.
    (AP, 12/22/02)(WSJ, 12/24/02, p.A1)
2002        Dec 22, North Korea said it had begun removing U.N. monitoring equipment from a nuclear reactor at the centre of the communist state's suspected pursuit of nuclear weapons.
    (Reuters, 12/22/02)    
2002        Dec 22, In Spain tens of thousands of people marched in silence through the coastal city of Bilbao to demand the dissolution of the armed Basque separatist group ETA.
    (AP, 12/22/02)

2003        Dec 22, A federal deadline for Sept 11 related injury claims was set for midnight. A final tally showed 4,033 claims for the 2001 WTC attack.
    (SFC, 12/30/03, p.A4)
2003        Dec 22, A federal judge ruled the Pentagon couldn't enforce mandatory anthrax vaccinations for military personnel.
    (AP, 12/22/04)
2003        Dec 22, A 6.5 earthquake jolted the central California coast. Marilyn Zafuto (55) and Jennifer Myrick (20) were killed in Paso Robles when the 1892 Mastagni Building and its 15-foor clock tower collapsed. Damages from the San Simeon quake were estimated at some $100 million.
    (AP, 12/23/03)(SFC, 12/23/03, p.A1)(SFC, 12/24/03, p.A1)
2003        Dec 22, Leaders of Arab countries from the Persian Gulf agreed to form a pact to combat terrorism and praised Washington for planning to transfer power to Iraqis by mid-2004.
    (AP, 12/22/03)
2003        Dec 22, Brazil's Pres. Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva signed a sweeping gun-control law in an effort to rein in what he called "an epidemic of murder by firearms."
    (AP, 12/23/03)
2003        Dec 22, China put forth legislation to change its constitution to protect private property rights for the first time since the 1949 communist revolution, a key step in making capitalism its economy's driving force.
    (AP, 12/22/03)
2003        Dec 22, Colombian rebels freed four Israelis and a Briton held hostage for 101 days.
    (AP, 12/22/04)
2003        Dec 22, An international human rights group criticized a peace agreement giving soldiers and rebels temporary immunity from prosecution for atrocities committed against civilians in Burundi's 10-year civil war.
    (AP, 12/22/03)
2003        Dec 22, Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Maher (68) was attacked by Islamic extremists at the Al Axsa mosque in Jerusalem. He said the incident would only strengthen his country's resolve to settle the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
    (AP, 12/23/03)(SFC, 12/23/03, p.A3)
2003        Dec 22, In Haiti an armed gang opened fire on anti-government protesters during a clash that killed one man and left President Jean-Bertrand Aristide facing growing unrest. A radio station later reported that the death toll rose to eight.
    (AP, 12/22/03)(AP, 12/25/03)
2003        Dec 22, In Iraq a roadside bomb exploded near a U.S. military convoy, killing two American soldiers and an Iraqi translator.
    (AP, 12/22/03)
2003        Dec 22, Ivory Coast rebel officials said they will rejoin a power-sharing government meant to secure peace after a nine-month civil war in the divided West African nation.
    (AP, 12/22/03)
2003        Dec 22, The UN Security Council voted unanimously to maintain sanctions on Liberia including an arms embargo and a ban on importing diamonds from the west African nation.
    (AP, 12/23/03)
2003        Dec 22, Poland's Pres. Aleksander Kwasniewski made an unannounced visit to the headquarters of Polish-led peacekeepers in Iraq.
    (AP, 12/22/03)
2003        Dec 22, Pakistan acknowledged that some scientists participating in its nuclear program may have been involved in the proliferation of sensitive technology.
    (AP, 12/22/03)
2003        Dec 22, Russia agreed to write off 65% of the debt owed by Iraq.
    (WSJ, 12/23/03, p.A1)
2003        Dec 22, South Korea and Japan began negotiations on establishing a free-trade agreement between the East Asian economic powerhouses.
    (AP, 12/22/03)
2003        Dec 22, The South Korean government dispatched hundreds of soldiers to farms to help slaughter chickens and ducks in an effort to contain a contagious bird flu spreading throughout the country.
    (AP, 12/22/03)
2003        Dec 22, The world's richest lottery spread $2.2 billion in Christmas cheer throughout Spain, including to a village whose name means luck.
    (AP, 12/22/03)

2004        Dec 22, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, stung by criticism that he'd been insensitive to the needs of troops and their families, offered an impassioned defense, saying when he meets wounded soldiers or relatives of those killed in battle, "their grief is something I feel to my core."
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2004        Dec 22, Vancouver Canucks forward Todd Bertuzzi received a conditional discharge after pleading guilty to assault, more than nine months after slugging Colorado forward Steve Moore from behind during a hockey game.
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2004        Dec 22, A Texas woman paid $50,000 for a cloned cat, Little Nicky, created by Genetic Savings and Clone of Sausalito, Ca.
    (SFC, 12/23/04, p.A1)
2004        Dec 22, A European Union court ruled that Microsoft Corp. must immediately divulge some trade secrets to competitors and produce a version of its flagship Windows operating system stripped of the program that plays music and video.
    (AP, 12/22/04)
2004        Dec 22, Former Argentine president Carlos Menem returned to Argentina following months abroad to avoid arrest. Menem announced he would run again for the presidency after an Argentine judge last week dismissed a warrant against him.
    (AP, 12/22/04)
2004        Dec 22, In Mexico an explosion at a pumping station near Santiago Tuxtla caused a burst of high pressure that ruptured the oil line 70 miles away in Nanchital. 210,000 gallons of oil flowed into the Coatzacoalcos River, creating a 10-mile-long slick extending into the gulf.
    (AP, 12/24/04)
2004        Dec 22, Thieves stealing fuel from a pipeline in Nigeria set it ablaze as they fled from police, and at least 20 people died in the fire.
    (AP, 12/23/04)
2004        Dec 22, The husband of Pakistani opposition leader Benazir Bhutto was freed from house arrest, a day after he was detained for failing to attend a court hearing.
    (AP, 12/22/04)
2004        Dec 22, Poland's PM Marek Belka and Defense Minister Jerzy Szmajdzinski arrived in Iraq for a Christmas visit to Polish troops.
    (AP, 12/22/04)
2004        Dec 22, In an apparently secret deal, the state-owned Rosneft oil company bought BaikalFinansGroup, the obscure company that purchased Yukos' most important production unit at auction Dec 19. The Yuganskneftegaz subsidiary was sold for $9.3 billion, half of what foreign auditors say it was worth.
    (AP, 12/23/04)
2004        Dec 22, Saudi Arabia announced it was withdrawing its ambassador to Libya and ordered out Libya's envoy in response to reports that Tripoli plotted to assassinate the Saudi crown prince.
    (AP, 12/22/04)
2004        Dec 22, The US signed a 99-year lease on a site for its new de facto embassy in Taiwan, an event described as a milestone in relations.
    (AP, 12/22/04)
2004        Dec 22, Turkey and Syria signed a free-trade accord.
    (WSJ, 12/23/04, p.A1)
2004        Dec 22-2004 Dec 26, Government troops in eastern Congo battled Rwandan militiamen in growing violence between the former allies from the country's bloody 1998-2002 war.
    (AP, 12/27/04)

2005        Dec 21, The US Congress completed work on a one-month extension of the Patriot Act and sent it to President Bush.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2005        Dec 22, NYC striking bus and subway workers ended a 3-day strike voting to return to work and resume negotiations on a labor contract.
    (SFC, 12/23/05, p.A3)
2005        Dec 22, Astronomers using the Hubble Space Telescope reported the discovery of 2 new moons and 2 new rings circling Uranus.
    (SFC, 12/23/05, p.A4)
2005        Dec 22, Brazil said it will pay off its remaining $2.6 billion debt to the Paris Club in January, 2006.
    (WSJ, 12/23/05, p.A13)
2005        Dec 22, A decomposed body discovered in a Brussels canal a week ago was reported to be that of Juvenal Uwilingiyimana, a Rwandan former minister indicted by a UN tribunal on charges of genocide.
    (AFP, 12/23/05)
2005        Dec 22, China's southern business capital of Guangzhou rushed to ensure water supplies as a toxic spill from a smelter flowed toward the city of 7 million people 60 miles north of Hong Kong. Yingde, a smaller city nearby, stopped drawing drinking water from the contaminated Bei river. The spill from a smelter in Shaoguan pushed up levels of the heavy metal cadmium in the Bei to 10 times acceptable limits.
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2005        Dec 22, In southwestern China a gas explosion at a road construction site killed 42 people in Sichuan province.
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2005        Dec 22, Cuba announced it had turned a corner in its recovery from severe financial crisis, reporting 11.8 percent growth in 2005 using its own method for calculating gross domestic product.
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2005        Dec 22, Mohammed Mahdi Akef, the leader of Egypt's main Islamic opposition group, said the Holocaust was a "myth," and he slammed Western governments for criticizing disclaimers of the Jewish genocide.
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2005        Dec 22, The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) ordered Turkey to put in place within three months an effective reparations mechanism for Greek Cypriots who were stripped of their possessions in the 1970s.
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2005        Dec 22, France's parliament approved an anti-terrorism bill that will boost the use of video surveillance and allow police more time to question terror suspects.
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2005        Dec 22, Tali Fahima (28), an Israeli woman, was sentenced to three years in prison for aiding a Palestinian gunman and relaying information to the enemy.
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2005        Dec 22, Israeli troops shot and killed three Palestinian militants, including Bashar Hanani (29), the local leader of a small radical faction, during an arrest raid in the West Bank city of Nablus.
    (AP, 12/22/05)(SFC, 12/23/05, p.A15)
2005        Dec 22, Italy's antitrust authority said it has opened an investigation to determine whether Premier Silvio Berlusconi violated conflict of interest rules when his government approved subsidies to Italians who buy digital-television decoders.
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2005        Dec 22, Japan's government said the population dropped this year for the first time on record, signaling a demographic turnaround for one of the world's fastest-aging societies. Japan became the world's first leading economy to suffer a decline in population, with 21,408 more deaths than births, the feared onset of what may become a crippling labor shortage at mid-century.
    (AP, 12/22/05)(AP, 1/20/07)
2005        Dec 22, The Dutch government said it planned to send up to 1,400 additional troops to Afghanistan for expanded NATO peacekeeping.
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2005        Dec 22, A lottery known as "El Gordo" — the Fat One — sprinkled more than $2.4 billion in Christmas cheer around Spain, with this Catalan town known for its churches and convents blessed with a quarter of the windfall.
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2005        Dec 22, Romania's prime minister rejected US calls to allow adoptions by foreigners of about 1,000 Romanian children.
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2005        Dec 22, A toxic spill from China reached Khabarovsk, and the region's governor appealed for calm in the Far Eastern Russian city, where residents have crammed their apartments with bottles, pails, pans and even bathtubs full of fresh water.
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2005        Dec 22, Sweden's immigration authority was facing harsh criticism after media reported that employees celebrated deportations of asylum-seekers with cakes and champagne.
    (AP, 12/22/05)
2005        Dec 22, An Istanbul court fined an author and a journalist for insulting the Turkish state, the latest convictions under a law that European officials say limits freedom of expression and must be changed.
    (AP, 12/22/05)

2006        Dec 22, The US said it canceled a joint military exercise with the Philippines scheduled for next year because of a dispute over the custody of a US Marine appealing his rape conviction.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, Rape charges were dropped against three Duke University lacrosse players, but kidnapping and sexual offense charges remained. Those charges were later dropped as well.
    (AP, 12/22/07)
2006        Dec 22, Space shuttle Discovery and its seven-member crew landed in Florida after a smooth, 13-day flight to rewire the International Space Station..
    (AFP, 12/23/06)(AP, 12/22/07)
2006        Dec 22, SF police officer Bryan Tuvera (28) was shot in the head in a gunbattle that left Marlon Ruff (33), a 2-year fugitive, dead in the Sunset District. Tuvera died hours later.
    (SFC, 12/23/06, p.A1)(SSFC, 12/24/06, p.A1)
2006        Dec 22, Rafael Robb (56), tenured economics professor at the Univ. of Pennsylvania, bludgeoned his wife (39) to death in Norristown. In 2007 he pleaded guilty to manslaughter.
    (SFC, 11/27/07, p.A8)
2006        Dec 22, In southern Afghanistan a roadside bomb exploded next to a police patrol killing five policemen.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva called in the Brazilian air force to help transport airline passengers on an emergency basis as long delays and overbooked planes snarled commercial flights over the busy holiday weekend.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, Thick fog caused the cancellation of flights at London's Heathrow Airport for a 4th day, forcing thousands of passengers to scrap or delay their Christmas travel plans.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, In China the first talks on North Korea's nuclear program since the communist nation tested an atomic device ended without an agreement on disarmament or a date for further negotiations.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, Cuban finance officials acknowledged in an unusually critical year-end report that the country's economy is still suffering the affects of the severe crisis of the 1990s but nevertheless grew 12.5 percent in 2006.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, The European spacecraft COROT was launched in Kazakhstan. The satellite will use its 27-centimetre telescope to search for dips of light due to planets passing in front of their parent stars in events called transits (http://tinyurl.com/2pkydl).
    (Econ, 6/2/07, p.86)
2006        Dec 22, India and Pakistan started a two-day swap of detained illegal fishermen and immigrants including children as part of attempts to improve ties between the nuclear rivals.
    (AFP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, A parked car bomb killed two people and wounded four in Samarra. US-led forces launched multiple raids across Iraq, killing one terrorist and capturing 25 terror suspects. A US soldier died when his patrol came under fire.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, Iraqi citizens filed a $200 million lawsuit against a prominent European bank and an Australian wheat exporter, saying they were cheated out of humanitarian goods when the companies permitted the UN oil-for-food program to be corrupted.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, The Roman Catholic Church denied a religious funeral for Piergiogio Welby, the paralyzed Italian author who died after a doctor disconnected his respirator, saying it would treat his public wish to "end his life" as a willful suicide.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, The office of President Mahmoud Abbas of Fatah blocked five major Hamas appointments to senior government positions. Ferocious gunbattles broke out between Hamas and Fatah militants in the Gaza Strip and West Bank. A Hamas militiaman injured in violence that touched off the Gaza City shootout died of his wounds.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, A top executive with Russian gas giant OAO Gazprom said Georgia will pay more than double what it pays now for Russian natural gas under a new agreement.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, In Somalia Ethiopian attack helicopters and tanks headed for battle as fighting raged for a fourth day between Somalia's Islamic militia and the country's secular government.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, South Korea rejected the latest shipment of US beef and asked Washington to explain why it contained unacceptable levels of the toxic chemical dioxin.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, Residents of Almazan, a small town in rural Spain, won the top prize of 390 million euros in the world's richest lottery, known as El Gordo or "the fat one".
    (Reuters, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, In Turkmenistan acting president Gurbungali Berdymukhamedov pledged that new elections will be democratic, but only in the late dictator's interpretation of the word.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, In Ukraine Russia’s Pres. Putin and Pres. Yushchenko oversaw the signing of numerous bilateral accords. Putin assured his Ukrainian counterpart that Moscow wants good relations, in a meeting that both leaders presented as a break from the strained relationship of the past.
    (AP, 12/22/06)
2006        Dec 22, The UN adopted new regulations aimed at restricting the future employment of UN staff who handle contracts for goods and services following fraud allegations.
    (AP, 12/23/06)

2007        Dec 22, In SF Leonard Milo Hoskins (49), a computer software developer, was last seen alive in the city’s Mission Terrace neighborhood. His body was found Feb 1 in a van owned by housemates Richard Carelli (38) and Michelle Pinkerton (38), who left town after their van was towed from the area during a police investigation. Murder warrants were later issued for the couple. On April 7 Carelli and Pinkerton were arrested in El Rosario on the Baha peninsula after they were tracked down by James Spring (39) of San Diego. In 2011 Carelli pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and was expected to serve 6 years in prison.
    (SFC, 2/14/08, p.A1)(SFC, 2/15/08, p.B6)(SFC, 4/9/08, p.A1)(SFC, 2/25/11, p.C5)
2007        Dec 22, Making the first-ever trip to Afghanistan by a French president, Nicolas Sarkozy met with Afghan President Hamid Karzai to discuss the political and military situation in the war-torn country.
2007        Dec 22, In Bahrain Security forces conducted sweeps through Shiite villages, arresting several protesters involved in a week of demonstrations against the Sunni-led government.
    (AP, 12/23/07)
    (AP, 12/22/07)
2007        Dec 22, In Egypt a policeman was killed overnight in a shootout with Bedouin tribesmen smuggling African immigrants into Israel. A minibus fell off a ferry and sank in the Nile River in southern Egypt, killing 16 people including six children.
    (AFP, 12/22/07)(AP, 12/22/07)
2007        Dec 22, Ethiopia claimed it was receiving an influx of around 600 Eritreans fleeing political oppression in their country every month.
    (AP, 12/22/07)
2007        Dec 22, French author Julien Gracq (97), one of the last links with the pre-World War II Surrealist movement, died.
    (AP, 12/23/07)
2007        Dec 22, Ghana's Pres. John Kufuor said that offshore oil reserves discovered in the West African country's waters total 3 billion barrels.
    (AP, 12/22/07)
2007        Dec 22, Police in India arrested two men near Lucknow suspected of being Islamic militants involved in a series of explosions that ripped through courthouse complexes in three north Indian cities last month, killing at least 16 lawyers.
    (AP, 12/22/07)
2007        Dec 22, Iraqi Defense Minister Abdul-Qadir al-Obaidi, who is himself a Sunni, said Sunni militias, known as Awakening Councils, will not be allowed to become a separate military force. A suicide car bomb exploded at a checkpoint manned by Iraqi army and police in the western Baghdad neighborhood of Ghazaliyah, killing 4 people and wounding another six. On the southern outskirts of the capital, a roadside bomb wounded five bystanders near a hospital in the town of Madin. In Mosul a roadside bomb targeting a passing police patrol killed one policeman and wounded two others.
    (AP, 12/22/07)(AP, 12/23/07)
2007        Dec 22, Hundreds of government soldiers withdrew from a vast buffer zone dividing Ivory Coast, the first stage of a long-delayed nationwide disarmament program.
    (AP, 12/23/07)
2007        Dec 22, In northwestern Pakistan clashes started, four days after the Shiite Turi and Sunnite Mengal tribes signed a ceasefire agreement following weeks of fighting which left more than 100 people dead. The rival tribes were using heavy weapons and by Dec 30 the death toll had reached 63.
    (AFP, 12/30/07)
2007        Dec 22, Spain's "El Gordo," the world's biggest lottery, gave out 2.2 billion euros ($3.2 billion) in Christmas prizes.
    (AP, 12/22/07)
2007        Dec 22, In northern Sri Lanka government forces captured a key defense line of Tamil Tiger guerrillas in fighting that killed six rebels and one soldier.
    (AFP, 12/22/07)
2007        Dec 22, Turkish warplanes bombed Kurdish rebel targets in northern Iraq in the third confirmed cross-border offensive by Turkish forces in less than a week.
    (AP, 12/22/07)

2008        Dec 22, In Tennessee a dam broke at the Kingston Fossil Plant spilling some 5.4 million cubic yards of toxic coal ash sludge near the Emory River. TVA officials later said the spill does not threaten water in the Tennessee River, which is fed in part by the Emory River. On Jan 2 federal data showed arsenic levels over 100 times the acceptable amount in the Emory River. In February the TVA estimated cleanup costs of up to $825 million. In May the estimate for cleanup was raised to $975 million. In 2010 state regulators hit the TVA with penalties totaling $11.5 million for the coal ash spill. The sludge was shipped to a landfill outside Uniontown, Alabama.
    (SFC, 12/25/08, p.A6)(WSJ, 12/26/08, p.A2)(SFC, 12/27/08, p.A2)(SFC, 1/3/09, p.A3)(WSJ, 2/13/09, p.A1)(SFC, 5/2/09, p.A4)(SFC, 6/15/10, p.A4)(Econ, 12/4/10, p.44)
2008        Dec 22, In Texas a gunman in pickup truck killed two people and injuring another in a series of rush hour shootings on Dallas-area roads. The next day police identified Brian Smith (37), a former Utah state trooper, as the shooter. Smith died Dec 24 from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
    (AP, 12/23/08)(SFC, 12/24/08, p.A3)(SFC, 12/25/08, p.A6)
2008        Dec 22, California's chief financial officer warned that the state would run out of money in about two months as hopes of a Christmas budget compromise melted into political finger-pointing by the end of the day.
    (AP, 12/23/08)
2008        Dec 22, In California it was announced that the Sebastiani Vineyards and Winery has been sold to the Foley Wine Group of Los Olivos, Ca.
    (SFC, 12/23/08, p.A1)
2008        Dec 22, An Associated Press analysis found that the 116 banks that so far have received US taxpayer dollars to boost them through the economic crisis gave their top tier of executives nearly $1.6 billion in salaries, bonuses and other benefits in 2007.
    (AP, 12/22/08)
2008        Dec 22, In Nevada the Encore, Steve Wynn’s vaguely Chinese-themed hotel, opened.
    (Econ, 2/7/09, p.29)(http://tinyurl.com/byf3qk)
2008        Dec 22, Alfred Shaheen (b.1922), the dean of Hawaiian couture, died. In 1948 he started manufacturing rayon Hawaiian shirts in a Quonset hut left over from the war. Within a decade annual revenue grew to $4 million.
    (WSJ, 1/24/09, p.A12)
2008        Dec 22, In central Afghanistan a car bomb with two attackers exploded near the governor's compound in Ghazni province, killing one Afghan civilian and wounding seven. The two attackers also died.
    (AP, 12/22/08)
2008        Dec 22, Albania passed a law removing from public posts people linked with the feared former Communist secret police, despite criticism from opposition parties and concerns within the international community.
    (AP, 12/23/08)
2008        Dec 22, Belarus' president sought $3 billion in economic aid from Russia to help its struggling economy, but Moscow demanded in return that Belarus recognize two breakaway Georgian regions as independent nations.
    (AP, 12/22/08)
2008        Dec 22, China’s central bank announced its 5th interest rate cut in just over 3 months. The benchmark one year lending rate was cut .27% to 5.31%.
    (WSJ, 12/23/08, p.A5)
2008        Dec 22, In Egypt 7 Russian tourists died when their bus flipped over along the winding mountain roads north of the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheik.
    (AFP, 12/23/08)
2008        Dec 22, In Guinea longtime dictator Lansana Conte died. His death was made public the next day as a military-led group seized control of the airwaves.
    (AP, 12/23/08)
2008        Dec 22, OSCE talks on the Georgia collapsed, when Russia demanded the group join Moscow in recognizing the statehood of the provinces of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. The mission will expire on Dec 31.
    (AP, 12/23/08)
2008        Dec 22, Toyota Motor Corp. projected its first-ever operating loss since 1939, acknowledging  that its nine-year stretch of global vehicle-sales growth had stalled. Pres. Katsuaki Watanabe projected an operating loss of $1.7 billion.
    (AP, 12/22/08)(WSJ, 12/23/08, p.A7)
2008        Dec 22, Laura Zuniga (23), a reigning Mexican beauty queen from the drug-plagued state of Sinaloa, was arrested with suspected gang members in a truck filled guns and ammunition. Soldiers found a large stash of weapons, including two AR-15 assault rifles, .38 specials, 9mm handguns, nine magazines, 633 cartridges and $53,300 in US currency.
    (AP, 12/24/08)
2008        Dec 22, In Pakistan suspected US drones fired at least two missiles into South Waziristan region on the Afghan border, killing seven people.
    (Reuters, 12/22/08)
2008        Dec 22, The ruble dropped further as the Central Bank again eased its support of the Russian currency, under constant pressure from plunging oil prices and economic woes.
    (AP, 12/22/08)
2008        Dec 22, Sri Lankan troops launched a major attack against Tamil rebel fortifications, sparking clashes that killed 57 insurgents and 10 soldiers. The Tamil Tigers said more than 100 soldiers were killed.
    (AP, 12/22/08)
2008        Dec 22, A Sudanese official said at least 18,000 Eritrean and Somali refugees have arrived in Sudan since the start of the year, and the government is struggling to provide them with aid.
    (Reuters, 12/22/08)
2008        Dec 22, UN experts said some 5.5 million people in Zimbabwe, about half the population, need food aid, as they called for increased international help for the country which is battling a cholera epidemic. A UN human rights expert said Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe is "a mad dictator" who has lost all sense of reality.
    (AP, 12/22/08)(Reuters, 12/22/08)

2009        Dec 22, The Obama administration announced that Howard Schmidt is the president's choice to be his cyber security coordinator.
    (http://tinyurl.com/yfhswrz)
2009        Dec 22, A US federal appeals court ordered Microsoft Corp. to stop selling its Word program in January and pay a Canadian software company $290 million for violating a patent, upholding the judgment of a lower court. Toronto-based i4i Inc. sued Microsoft in 2007, saying it owned the technology behind a tool in the popular word processing program.
    (AP, 12/22/09)
2009        Dec 22, Parker Griffith (b.1942), a Democratic congressman from Alabama, announced that he was switching parties to become a Republican.
    (Econ, 1/9/10, p.32)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parker_Griffith)
2009        Dec 22, In Afghanistan 4 militants were killed in two separate operations. In the Qarabagh district of Ghazni province, 3 insurgents were killed by a joint Afghan-international force. An Afghan army and police patrol killed a militant suspected of making bombs in Zabul province. In Kandahar province, 2 civilians were killed and 3 wounded when a roadside mine explosion hit their vehicle.
    (AP, 12/23/09)
2009        Dec 22, The EU Court of Human Rights said Bosnia’s constitution discriminates against Jews and Roma because it does not allow them to run for parliament of president. Only Bosnians, Serbs and Croats are allowed to run for those offices.
    (SFC, 12/23/09, p.A2)
2009        Dec 22, Budget airline EasyJet cancelled about 180 flights due both to the "significant snowfall" and airport closures across Britain, in a fresh blow to passengers hoping to travel for the Christmas holidays.
    (AFP, 12/22/09)
2009        Dec 22, Chinese local media reported that a man who killed and ate what may have been the last wild Indochinese tiger in China was sentenced to 12 years in jail. Kang Wannian, a villager from Mengla, Yunnan Province, met the tiger in February while gathering freshwater clams in a nature reserve near China's border with Laos. He claimed to have killed it in self-defense.
    (Reuters, 12/22/09)
2009        Dec 22, Egypt confirmed it is engaged in construction along its border with Gaza but said it is not building what some reports have said is a steel wall to block cross-border smuggling.
    (Reuters, 12/22/09)
2009        Dec 22, An Ethiopian court sentenced five people to death, including Berhanu Nega, an Ethiopian professor teaching at a US university, and 33 to life in prison for being members of a terror group and conspiring to assassinate government officials. Nega, an exiled opposition leader, was elected mayor of Addis Ababa in 2005. Berhanu and more than 100 other opposition politicians were arrested after the 2005 election and put on trial for treason. Berhanu and others were pardoned and freed after 20 months, but the government last week revoked Berhanu's pardon.
    (AP, 12/22/09)
2009        Dec 22, Eurostar resumed its high-speed rail service linking Britain, France and Belgium after a three-day suspension that stranded tens of thousands of holiday travelers.
    (AP, 12/22/09)
2009        Dec 22, Hansjoerg Haber, EU monitoring mission chief, said Russia has failed to fully observe an EU-brokered peace deal that ended last year's war with Georgia. He said Russia has not met an obligation to withdraw its forces to positions held before the August 2008 conflict.
    (AP, 12/23/09)
2009        Dec 22, The Pan American Development Foundation reported that poverty has forced at least 225,000 children in Haiti's cities into slavery as unpaid household servants, far more than previously thought.
    (AP, 12/22/09)
2009        Dec 22, Iran's president dismissed a year-end deadline set by the Obama administration and the West for Tehran to accept a UN-drafted deal to swap enriched uranium for nuclear fuel, and claimed his government is now "10 times stronger" than a year ago. A state television Web site said Pres. Ahmadinejad had appointed a new chief of the Art Academy, removing opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi from the post. In southern Iran police shot dead two relatives of convicts during a melee that erupted at a public execution. Relatives, who came to watch the hanging of two convicts, started a scuffle, prompting the police to open fire.
    (AP, 12/22/09)(AP, 12/23/09)(AP, 12/24/09)
2009        Dec 22, American Airlines Flight 331 carrying 154 people skidded across a Jamaican runway in heavy rain, bouncing across the tarmac and injuring more than 40 people before it stopped just short of the Caribbean Sea.
    (AP, 12/23/09)(SFC, 12/24/09, p.A2)
2009        Dec 22, Lithuania said it may have hosted two 'war on terror' lock-ups used by American agents to interrogate suspected Al-Qaeda members. Arvydas Anusauskas, the head of an inquiry commission, said the first project was developed from 2002 and that a 2nd site was created in 2004. The probe found that five CIA-linked aircraft landed on Lithuanian soil from 2003 to 2006. Two touched down in Vilnius on February 3, 2003, and October 6, 2005. In the second case, border guards were barred from checking the plane. Three other aircraft landed at Palanga, on the Baltic coast, around 330 km from Vilnius, on January 2 and February 18, 2005, and March 25, 2006.
    (AFP, 12/22/09)
2009        Dec 22, In Mexico assailants gunned down the mother, aunt and siblings of Melquisedet Angulo (30), a marine killed in the Dec 16 raid that took out Arturo Beltran Leyva, one of Mexico's most powerful cartel leaders. This sent a chilling message to troops battling the drug war: You go after us, we wipe out your families. Gunmen sprayed bullets at a restaurant in Piedras Negras where the mayor of a Texas border town was eating with a Mexican state attorney general and other officials. A woman leaving the building was killed. Journalist Alberto Velazquez of the newspaper Expresiones de Tulum was gunned down this week as he left a holiday party in the Mexican Caribbean resort town of Tulum, bringing to 12 the number of reporters killed this year in the country.
    (AP, 12/22/09)(AP, 12/25/09)
2009        Dec 22, Pakistani Taliban commander Hakimullah Mehsud urged his fighters not to stir trouble in North Waziristan, apparently in the hope of securing sanctuary in a region that is dominated by militants who have signed a truce with the government. A suicide bomber struck outside a press club in the northwestern city of Peshawar, killing three people and wounding 17.
    (AP, 12/22/09)
2009        Dec 22, In Puerto Rico Gov. Luis Fortuno signed legislation that lowered the blood alcohol limit for drivers ages 18 to 20 to .02% from the standard .08% that applies to all other drivers on the US island.
    (AP, 12/22/09)
2009        Dec 22, Saudi Arabia said that 73 Saudis have been killed and 26 gone missing since the kingdom launched an offensive against Yemeni Shiite rebels along the border last month. Rebels, known as Hawthis, have alleged dozens of civilian deaths in Saudi air assaults.
    (SFC, 12/23/09, p.A2)
2009        Dec 22, Spain's Christmas lottery showered hundreds of thousand of euros (dollars) in prize money on the country's capital. The top prize of the lottery, ranked among the world's richest, went to holders of tickets bearing the number 78294. The number appears on 1,950 tickets, and each holder stood to win euro300,000 ($430,000).
    (AP, 12/22/09)

2010        Dec 22, President Barack Obama fulfilled a campaign promise and signed a landmark law repealing the ban on gay men and women serving openly in the armed services.
    (AP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, The US Senate, in its final act of the lameduck session, approved the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (71-26) signed earlier this year by Pres. Obama and Russia’s Pres. Medvedev.
    (SFC, 12/23/10, p.A6)
2010        Dec 22, In South San Francisco, Ca., 3 young men were shot and killed in a driveby shooting at the corner of Linden and Eighth Lane. In 2012 nineteen people were indicted for the killings. 3 federal agents were wounded during arrest procedures.
    (SFC, 5/4/12, p.A10)
2010        Dec 22, In Chicago 2 firefighters were killed when a roof collapsed in a vacant burning building. The tragedy took place exactly 100 years following the Chicago Union Stock Yards fire that killed 21 firemen.
    (SFC, 12/23/10, p.A7)
2010        Dec 22, Afghan officials said Iran has banned fuel exports to Afghanistan, stranding about 3,000 fuel trucks at the border and driving up wholesale prices for the refined products ahead of what many Afghans fear will be a blistery winter in their oil-poor nation.
    (AP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, A joint Afghan and NATO patrol killed several insurgents in the southern province of Helmand during an operation targeting a mid-level Taliban leader involved in roadside bomb attacks. A Taliban leader involved in the Dec 19 bus bombing in Kabul and two other insurgents in an airstrike in Ghazni province in the center of the country. A roadside bomb struck a tractor pulling a cart loaded with passengers, killing a child and wounding nine people in the Garm Ser district of Helmand province.
    (AP, 12/23/10)
2010        Dec 22, Albania invited an international investigation into claims it was linked with the trafficking of organs from slain civilians during the war in neighboring Kosovo.
    (AP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, In Argentina former dictator Jorge Videla was sentenced to life in prison for the torture and murder of 31 prisoners, most of whom who were "shot while trying to escape" in the months after his military coup.
    (AP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, In Australia Kok Loong Wong of Malaysia appeared in a Sydney court charged with possessing 200 pounds (90 kg) of crystal meth in his home, the seventh-largest "ice" haul in Australian history.
    (AP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, A rights group said Belarus has opened criminal probes against 18 leading opposition figures over involvement in post-election riots that could see them jailed for up to 15 years. Belarus has said it arrested over 600 people in the wake of recent protests against authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko's re-election.
    (AFP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, Bolivia sent a letter to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas declaring its recognition of an independent and sovereign state of Palestine.
    (AP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, A Dubai court slashed the prison terms for two men convicted in the 2009 slaying of a former Chechen warlord from life to just three years in a surprise ruling that highlighted the international intrigue surrounding the case. The family of the slain Chechen strongman, Sulim Yamadayev, had submitted a letter disavowing any desire for further punishments in connection with the killing.
    (AP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, In France 113 children arrived from Haiti to start new lives with adoptive parents in time for the holidays.
    (AP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, Haitian officials said angry mobs have lynched at least 45 people in recent weeks, accusing them of spreading a cholera outbreak that has killed over 2,500 people across the country.
    (AFP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, The Indian government, facing mounting public anger over soaring onion costs, scrapped tax on imports of the vegetable to try to rein in prices of the staple food.
    (AFP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, Iran's armed Sunni militant group said it will kill an abducted Iranian after authorities rejected an offer to swap the hostage for 200 of the group's imprisoned members. The man was identified as a former worker at an Iranian nuclear facility who was kidnapped two months ago.
    (AP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, In Iraq a large military operation targeting Al-Qaeda and their sleeper cells was launched overnight in Anbar province. 93 suspects were arrested, including 60 wanted men. Gunmen with silenced weapons raked the car of General Imad Hasham with gunfire in a Baghdad street, killing him and wounding his daughter. Gunmen also with silenced weapons shot and wounded police Lieutenant Colonel Majid Hamid as he was driving through the Amiriya area of Baghdad.
    (AFP, 12/23/10)
2010        Dec 22, In Rome, Italy, all embassies were informed about a pair of package bombs that exploded at the Swiss and Chilean embassies, injuring two people who opened them. Security officials later said that an Italian group calling itself Informal Anarchist Federation claimed responsibility.
    (AP, 12/23/10)(AP, 12/24/10)
2010        Dec 22, In Rome tens of thousands of students took to the streets to peacefully protest planned changes in the university system. Protests in Palermo and Milan turned violent.
    (SFC, 12/23/10, p.A4)
2010        Dec 22, Nigeria’s state oil firm said it has shut down three of its four refineries because of sabotage of pipelines leading to them. It called on the military to increase security.
    (AFP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, A small Pakistani army training plane crashed into mountains in the country's southwest. The pilot and co-pilot died in the crash.
    (AP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, The Saudi Civil and Political Rights Association said in a statement that the Interior Ministry summoned the coordinators of the protest to notify them that their request has been rejected, without giving any reasons. The group's 20 demands included curtailing privileges of members of the Saudi royal family, fighting corruption and nepotism, and creating an independent judiciary.
    (AP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, South Korea announced land and sea military exercises including its largest-ever live-fire drill near North Korea just as tension on the peninsula was beginning to ease after Pyongyang's attack on a southern island.
    (AP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, Spain's "El Gordo", one of the world's biggest lotteries, gave out 2.3 billion euros (1.9 billion British pounds) in Christmas prizes with Spaniards spending almost the same as last year on tickets.
    (Reuters, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, In Sudan Mudawi Ibrahim, a prominent Darfur activist, was sentenced to one year in prison and fined on embezzlement charges. He was acquitted on the same charges earlier. Authorities appealed and won a new verdict without a retrial.
    (AP, 12/25/10)
2010        Dec 22, Thailand's government withdrew armed soldiers from skytrain stops in Bangkok and other key sites as it lifted an eight-month-old state of emergency imposed when protesters overran the capital.
    (AP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, In Tunisia a 24-year-old jobless protester was electrocuted after announcing he wanted to end his life and mounting a high-voltage electricity pole in the town of Sidi Bouzid. Police fired tear gas at stone-throwing protesters after simmering tensions linked to unemployment erupted after the demonstrator committed suicide.
    (AP, 12/23/10)
2010        Dec 22, The UN nuclear agency said tons of highly radioactive nuclear waste from a defunct Serbian reactor have been repatriated to Russia. The 2.5 metric tons (2.76 tons) of the spent fuel arrived at a secure Russian facility from Serbia's Vinca reactor.
    (AP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, The UN Security Council voted to increase by half the number of African Union peacekeepers supporting Somalia's transitional government against Al-Qaeda-inspired rebels.
    (AP, 12/22/10)
2010        Dec 22, A Venezuelan court sentenced Jose Sanchez Montiel, an opposition politician, to 19 years in prison, saying he was an accomplice in the 2007 killing of a military intelligence official. He was elected to the National Assembly in September while in jail awaiting sentencing. On Dec 24, 2011, a court granted parole to Montiel for humanitarian reasons because of his advanced prostate cancer.
    (AP, 12/23/10)(AP, 12/24/11)

2011        Dec 22, US House Speaker John Boehner announced that Republicans have decided to accept a short-term extension of the payroll tax cut, preventing a hike in taxes just nine days before the tax break expires for 160 million Americans.
    (Reuters, 12/22/11)
2011        Dec 22, US regulators approved a Westinghouse next generation nuclear reactor slated for Florida Power and Light’s Turkey Point plant and five other utilities in the Southeast. These would be the first new reactors in the US in 3 decades.
    (SFC, 12/23/11, p.A6)
2011        Dec 22, The US Justice Dept. unsealed a suit against AseraCare Hospice of Texas for fraudulently certifying patients as terminally ill to illegally collect Medicare payments since at least 2007. AseraCare is a subsidiary of Golden Living, which was 99% owned by the Washington State Investment Board, whose investments are managed by Fillmore Capital Partners.
    (SFC, 1/6/12, p.A8)(http://tinyurl.com/7ewsnhv)
2011        Dec 22, In Fort Wayne, Indiana, babysitter and trusted neighbor Michael Plumadore (39) bludgeoned Aliahna Lemmon (9) to death with a brick then dismembered her, hiding her head, hands and feet at his home and dumping the rest of her remains nearby.
    (AP, 12/28/11)
2011        Dec 22, Francisco Morales (52) was arrested in Brownsville, Texas, for posing as a physician and performing procedures using stem cells on patients in Mexico. Three other were later charged in the operation.
    (SFC, 12/29/11, p.A9)
2011        Dec 22, In eastern Afghanistan a NATO service member was killed by a roadside bomb. Insurgents tried to overrun a police checkpoint in western Ghor province. One attacker was killed and three policemen were wounded in the clashes.
    (AP, 12/22/11)(AP, 12/23/11)
2011        Dec 22, Argentina’s Senate gave final approval to a package of laws doubling the penalties for crimes committed with the goal of terrorizing the people or pressuring authorities to take some action. Human rights groups were concerned it will be used to crack down on social protest. The Senate also imposed tough new limits on foreign ownership of farmland, part of a package of laws that give the government much more control over the agricultural industry.
    (AP, 12/22/11)
2011        Dec 22, Bahrain's official news agency said 79 education ministry employees who were dismissed from their jobs during months of protests will get their jobs back by January 1.
    (AP, 12/22/11)
2011        Dec 22, In southern China witnesses said police have begun arresting protesters after two days of violent clashes, as the local government warned against further "illegal" demonstrations.
    (AFP, 12/22/11)
2011        Dec 22, Egypt's military-appointed PM Kamal el-Ganzouri called for national dialogue to resolve the country's political crisis and pleaded for a two-month calm to restore security after weeks of protests and bloodshed. Some 3,000 students from Ain Shams University in Cairo marched after a prayer service for a student killed in the recent clashes. Turnout was light in the second day of voting in run-off elections.
    (AP, 12/22/11)
2011        Dec 22, French officials prepared to decide if thousands of women should have their implants surgically removed. Silicone gel implants, made by a company called Poly Implant Prothese (PIP) which was shut down in 2010, appear to have an unusually high rupture rate and have sparked an investigation in France into possible links to cancer. Fears over the safety of  the breast implants made by PIP spread to Australia, South America and across Europe.
    (Reuters, 12/22/11)
2011        Dec 22, Berlin-based Transparency International published a survey: "Daily Lives and Corruption: Public Opinion in South Asia," which found 62% of south Asians believed corruption had got worse over the past three years, with Indians and Pakistanis the most pessimistic.
    (AFP, 12/22/11)
2011        Dec 22, Indonesian police arrested eight people in connection with an overloaded boat carrying 250 asylum seekers that capsized on Dec 17 en route to Australia, as the confirmed death toll reached 90.
    (AFP, 12/22/11)
2011        Dec 22, In Iraq a wave of at least 14 morning bombings ripped across Baghdad, killing 69 people in the worst violence in Iraq for months. The bombings bore all the hallmarks of al-Qaida's Sunni insurgents. 4 more bombings in the evening killed 3 more people.
    (AP, 12/22/11)(SFC, 12/23/11, p.A3)(AP, 12/27/11)
2011        Dec 22, Italy’s Senate voted to give final approval to a $40 billion austerity and growth package designed to eliminate its budget deficit by 2013.
    (SFC, 12/23/11, p.A2)
2011        Dec 22, Kenyan authorities said they have seized 727 pieces of ivory in a container at the main port of Mombasa in one of the largest hauls of tusks in recent years. The items were wrapped in plastic bags in a container which documents said was destined for Dubai.
    (AFP, 12/22/11)
2011        Dec 22, In Mexico a group of gunmen attacked three passenger buses in the Gulf coast state of Veracruz, killing seven passengers in what authorities said appeared to be a violent robbery spree. 3 US citizens were among the dead.
    (AP, 12/22/11)(AP, 12/23/11)
2011        Dec 22, In Nigeria unrest broke out in the city of Damaturu and two other northeastern cities, Maiduguri and Potiskum, leaving at least six people dead.
    (AFP, 12/23/11)
2011        Dec 22, Pakistan's PM Yousuf Raza Gilani claimed there was a conspiracy to oust the country's civilian government, a sign of growing tension with the army over a secret memo sent to Washington earlier this year asking for help in averting a supposed military coup.
    (AP, 12/22/11)
2011        Dec 22, In Pakistan nearly 3 dozen Taliban fighters attacked a paramilitary fort in the northwest, killing one soldier and kidnapping 15 others. They captured a significant amount of weapons. The bodies of the kidnapped were found on Jan 5.
    (SFC, 1/6/12, p.A4)
2011        Dec 22, The rival Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas took an important step toward reconciliation, announcing plans for the Islamic militants to join the umbrella group that has overseen two decades of on-and-off peace talks with Israel. Israeli officials reacted with alarm to the emerging agreement.
    (AP, 12/22/11)
2011        Dec 22, Russia’s President Dmitry Medvedev responded to protests over the fraud-tainted election by proposing some reforms to liberalize the political system, but sternly warned that the government won't allow "provocateurs and extremists" to threaten stability.
    (AP, 12/22/11)
2011        Dec 22, In Senegal Barthelemy Dias, the youth leader of the West African country's Socialist party, was attacked by political opponents at his office. Dias was charged with murder on Dec 28 for the political clash that left one person dead and three others wounded. He maintained that he acted in self-defense.
    (AP, 12/29/11)
2011        Dec 22, A rebel spokesman said troops from Sudan's Darfur region have begun moving towards the capital Khartoum, more than three years after they made an unprecedented attack on the capital.
    (AFP, 12/23/11)
2011        Dec 22, In Syria fresh raids and gunfire by government forces killed at least 19 people, most of them in the central city of Homs and northern Idlib province. Arab League delegates traveled to Syria to arrange the deployment of foreign monitors under a plan aimed at ending the regime's deadly 9-month-old crackdown on dissent. A total of 500 observers are planned.
    (AP, 12/22/11)
2011        Dec 22, Turkey's PM Erdogan said his country is recalling its ambassador to France and halting official contact in retaliation for a vote in the French Parliament making it a crime to deny the 1915 mass killings of Armenians was a genocide. The bill, just passed in France's lower house, still needed approval in the Senate.
    (AP, 12/22/11)
2011        Dec 22, In Yemen fighting killed five militants and five soldiers in Zinjibar. Residents reported heavy naval bombardment of the city, near Yemen's southern coast.
    (AP, 12/22/11)

2012        Dec 22, Gun enthusiasts thronged to shows around the country to buy assault weapons they fear will soon be outlawed after a massacre of school children in Connecticut prompted calls for tighter controls on firearms.
    (Reuters, 12/22/12)
2012        Dec 22, In Afghanistan US Navy Seal Cmdr. Job W. Price (42) of Pottstown, Pa., died of a noncombat-related injury in Uruzgan province. His death was being investigated as a suicide.
    (AP, 12/24/12)
2012        Dec 22, Dominican Rep. authorities announced the arrest of 7 suspects and the seizure of more than 2,200 pounds of cocaine and heroin. A records 9 tons of cocaine was reported seized this year.
    (SSFC, 12/23/12, p.A10)
2012        Dec 22, Egypt’s Vice President Mahmoud Mekki resigned, saying he realized that politics did not suit his professional background as a judge. Central bank governor, Farouq el-Oqdah, also resigned.
    (AP, 12/22/12)
2012        Dec 22, Egyptians voted in the second and final phase of a referendum on an Islamist-backed constitution that has polarized the nation, with little indication that the result of the vote will end the political crisis in which the country is mired.
    (AP, 12/22/12)
2012        Dec 22, In Iraq a bomb hidden in a plastic bag exploded near the shop in the town of Qazaniyah 180 km northeast of Baghdad. 4 people were killed and 11 wounded.
    (AP, 12/22/12)
2012        Dec 22, In northern Nigeria twin suicide bombings targeted two major mobile phone operators, threatening communications in Kano. Authorities suspected the Boko Haram sect for the attacks.
    (AP, 12/22/12)
2012        Dec 22, Hyundai Heavy Industries Co. paid about $187,000 to free four South Korean workers and their local colleague abducted on Dec 17. Police learned of the kidnapping payment only after arresting one of three suspected kidnappers.
    (AP, 1/4/13)
2012        Dec 22, In Oman more than 1,400 candidates competed in the Gulf nation's first municipal elections, a concession following Arab Spring-linked unrest.
    (AP, 12/22/12)
2012        Dec 22, In Pakistan a suicide bomber attacked a political rally held by the Awami National Party. 9 people were killed including politician Bashir Ahmad Bilour, a senior minister in the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province. Another 20 were wounded in the attack in Peshawar.
    (AP, 12/22/12)(SSFC, 12/23/12, p.A6)
2012        Dec 22, Pope Benedict XVI granted his former butler a Christmas pardon, forgiving him in person during a jailhouse meeting for stealing and leaking private papers in one of the gravest Vatican security breaches in recent times. Paolo Gabriele was freed and returned to his Vatican City apartment where he lives with his wife and three children.
    (AP, 12/22/12)

2013        Dec 22, A band of severe weather from tornadoes to icy blasts left at least 7 people dead as winter storms and severe weather pushed up the East Coast, bringing record high temperatures to Philadelphia and NYC. The storm system brought freezing rain across much of Eastern Canada, cutting power to hundreds of thousands of people and wreaking havoc on holiday plans at one of the busiest travel times of the year.
    (Reuters, 12/23/13)(AP, 12/23/13)
2013        Dec 22, Louisiana’s Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne said the “Duck Dynasty" reality TV show is important to state tourism and that he could connect the Robertson family to new producers if they cannot reach an agreement with the A&E network. Patriarch Phil Robertson was suspended last week for telling GQ magazine that gays are sinners akin to adulterers and swindlers.
    (SFC, 12/23/13, p.A7)
2013        Dec 22, NY-based Tiffany & Co. said it was ordered to pay Swatch Group AG about 402 million Swiss francs ($449 million) in compensation over a contractual dispute. The Netherlands Arbitration Institute also required Tiffany to pay more than $9 million for the Swiss watchmaker's legal fees and the cost of arbitration.
    (AP, 12/23/13)
2013        Dec 22, Apple announced that it has finalized a deal to sell the iPhone through China Mobile, the world’s largest mobile phone carrier.
    (SFC, 12/23/13, p.A12)
2013        Dec 22, Australia announced an aerial Customs and Border Protection mission to the Southern Ocean as a showdown looms between Japan's whaling fleet and Sea Shepherd activists, saying it would send a message to both sides that the world was watching.
    (AFP, 12/22/13)
2013        Dec 22, Bangladesh security forces arrested 37 Chinese and Taiwanese nationals after raiding an illegal Internet telephone operation they were allegedly running in an upscale Dhaka neighborhood.
    (AFP, 12/22/13)
2013        Dec 22, Bangladesh police charged the owners and 11 others over the nation's worst garment factory fire that killed 111 people, after wrapping up an investigation on the Nov 24, 2012, tragedy.
    (AFP, 12/22/13)
2013        Dec 22, In Brazil 14 people died when a bus drove off a road and plunged into a ravine in Sao Paulo state.
    (AFP, 12/22/13)
2013        Dec 22, In Central African Republic former Seleka rebels and their Muslim supporters blocked a route near Bangui's airport to protest against French troops conducting a disarmament operation, accusing them of killing 3 fighters in clashes.
    (AFP, 12/22/13)
2013        Dec 22, In Egypt 3 leading figures of the 2011 uprising were jailed for three years each for their role in recent protests, as the army-backed authorities intensified a crackdown on dissent.
    (Reuters, 12/22/13)
2013        Dec 22, In Germany  Mikhail Khodorkovsky vowed to do all he can to ensure the release of other political prisoners in Russia.
    (AP, 12/22/13)
2013        Dec 22, In Honduras Nedenia Post Dye (46), a great-granddaughter of Marjorie Merriweather Post, was found slain at her luxury spa on Roatan island. Police arrested suspect Lenin Roberto Arana, a local singer that to quit drugs.
    (SSFC, 12/29/13, p.A5)
2013        Dec 22, India's anti-corruption crusader Arvind Kejriwal vowed to clean up "dirty politics" in a fiery speech suggesting that his Aam Aadmi will team up with the Congress party to form a state government in Delhi.
    (AFP, 12/22/13)(Econ, 12/14/13, p.49)
2013        Dec 22, In Libya a suicide car bomb attack on a military checkpoint on the outskirts of Benghazi killed 13 people.
    (AP, 12/22/13)
2013        Dec 22, Saudi Arabia's official news agency says King Abdullah has appointed his son, Prince Mishaal, as the new governor of Mecca.
    (AP, 12/22/13)
2013        Dec 22, In South Korea hundreds of riot police stormed into a labor umbrella group's head office in a bid to arrest union leaders. They detained about 130 strikers and confederation members. Workers with the state-run Korea Railroad had walked off the job in protest against a decision to set up a unit to run a high-speed bullet train, which they say will lead to privatization and layoffs.
    (Reuters, 12/23/13)
2013        Dec 22, South Sudan's central government lost control of Bentiu, the capital of key oil-producing Unity state. Renegade forces loyal to a former deputy president seized more territory in fighting that has raised fears of full-blown civil war in the world's newest country.
    (AP, 12/22/13)
2013        Dec 22, In Spain millions were glued to their televisions as 2.5 billion in euros was distributed in the country’s Christmas lottery during a 4-hour TV show. For the first time 20% of winnings over 2,500 euros was taxed.
    (SFC, 12/23/13, p.A2)
2013        Dec 22, A Sudanese court acquitted award-winning journalist Faisal Mohammed Salih of publishing lies in a column he wrote about an activist's allegation of rape in custody.
    (AFP, 12/22/13)
2013        Dec 22, In Sweden thousands took to the streets of Stockholm in a protest against racism following a neo-Nazi attack on a similar but much smaller rally last weekend.
    (Reuters, 12/22/13)
2013        Dec 22, Syrian aircraft pummeled an opposition neighborhood in Aleppo, killing at least 65 people and extending the government's furious aerial bombardment of the rebel-held half of the divided city to an eighth consecutive day. A suicide bomber detonated his bomb-rigged truck near a primary school in the Shiite town of Umm al-Amed, killing at least 12 people, half of them children.
    (AFP, 12/22/13)(AP, 12/22/13)(CSM, 12/23/13)
2013        Dec 22, In Thailand tens of thousands of anti-government demonstrators massed peacefully across Bangkok in their latest bid to topple PM Yingluck Shinawatra before a February election the main opposition party will boycott.
    (Reuters, 12/22/13)
2013        Dec 22, Turkish media reported that authorities have removed another 25 police chiefs from their posts, widening a crackdown on the force since it launched a corruption investigation that PM Tayyip Erdogan has called a "dirty operation" against his rule. Turkey's interior minister said he has offered his resignation to PM Erdogan over a corruption scandal that has resulted in his son's arrest. Police in Istanbul clashed with protesters denouncing Erdogan's government over a corruption and bribery scandal targeting his allies.
    (Reuters, 12/22/13)(AP, 12/22/13)
2013        Dec 22, Ukrainian opposition leaders urged supporters at a rally to stay on Kiev's main square through New Year and Christmas, as street protests appeared to be losing momentum.
    (Reuters, 12/22/13)

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