Today in History - December 26

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Boxing Day  Only recently an official holiday, Boxing Day is celebrated in Britain, Australia, New Zealand and Canada, as well as other countries in the British Commonwealth. Although the tradition does appear to have arisen in Britain, falls on the Feast Day of St. Stephen and involves gift-giving to the less fortunate, its exact origins are the subject of debate among historians and folklorists. One explanation: December 26 was the traditional day to open alms boxes-placed in churches during the holidays-and distribute the contributions to the poor. Another origin may be when lords and ladies distributing Christmas gifts in boxes to servants on their estate, a custom which continued to include gift-giving to postal carriers and other service employees. It has often been a day of outdoor sports such as horse racing and hunting and also a time for family gatherings.
 (HNQ, 12/26/00)

267        Dec 26, Dionysius, bishop of Rome and saint, died.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1194        Dec 26, Frederick II, German Emperor (1212-1250) and King of Sicily, was born in Lesi, Italy.
    (HN, 12/26/98)(MC, 12/26/01)

1476        Dec 26, Galeazzo Maria Sforza (Il Sforza del Destino), duke of Milan, was murdered.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1530        Dec 26, (OS) Zahir al-Din Mohammed Babur Shah (47), founder Moguls dynasty (India), died. Babur left power to his son Humayun, who built a royal city called Purana Qila that is part of Delhi today. His memoirs, known as the Baburnama, are considered the first true autobiography in Islamic literature. The first English translation was made in 1922 by Annette Beveridge.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Babur)(Econ, 12/18/10, p.80)

1716        Dec 26, Thomas Gray, poet, was born: Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard: “The paths of glory lead but to the grave."; also: “...where ignorance is bliss/’Tis folly to be wise."
    (440.com)

1770        Dec 26, Pierre earl de Cambronne, French general (Waterloo, Elba), was born.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1771        Dec 26, Claude A. Helvétius (56), French encyclopedist (L'esprit), died.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1773        Dec 26, Expulsion of tea ships from Philadelphia.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1776        Dec 26, The British suffered a major defeat in the Battle of Trenton during the Revolutionary War. After crossing the Delaware River into New Jersey, George Washington led an attack on Hessian mercenaries and took 900 men prisoner. Two Americans froze to death on the march but none died in battle. There were 30 German casualties, 1,000 prisoners and 6 cannon captured. Four Americans were wounded in the overwhelming American victory, while 22 Hessians were killed and 78 wounded. The surprise attack caught most of the 1,200 Hessian soldiers at Trenton sleeping after a day of Christmas celebration. The Americans captured 918 Hessians, who were taken as prisoners to Philadelphia. The victory was a huge morale booster for the American army and the country. The victory at Trenton was a huge success and morale booster for the American army and people. However, the enlistments of more than 4,500 of Washington’s soldiers were set to end four days later and it was critical that the force remain intact. General George Washington offered a bounty of $10 to any of his soldiers who extended their enlistments six weeks beyond their December 31, 1776, expiration dates. The American Revolution Battle of Trenton saw the routing of 1,400 Hessian mercenaries, with 101 killed or wounded and about 900 taken prisoner, with no Americans killed in the combat. Four Americans were wounded and two had died of exhaustion en route to Trenton.
    (AP, 12/26/97)(HN, 12/26/98)(SFC, 12/26/98, p.A3)(HNQ, 3/20/99)(HNQ, 4/11/99)(HNQ, 12/26/99)

1778        Dec 26, Juan Lovera, artist, was born: ‘artist of independence’: originator of Venezuelan historical painting: paintings commemorate Venezuela’s independence dates.
    (440.com)

1785        Dec 26, Laurent Clerc, teacher, was born: 1st deaf teacher in U.S., helped establish American School for the Deaf in Connecticut.
    (440.com)

1786        Dec 26, Daniel Shay led a rebellion in Massachusetts to protest the seizure of property for the non-payment of debt. Shay was a Revolutionary War veteran who led a short-lived insurrection in western Massachusetts to protest a tax increase that had to be paid in cash, a hardship for veteran farmers who relied on barter and didn‘t own enough land to vote. The taxes were to pay off the debts from the Revolutionary War, and those who couldn‘t pay were evicted or sent to prison. [see Jan 25, 1787]
    (HN, 12/26/98)(HNQ, 7/6/00)

1792        Dec 26, Charles Babbage (d.1871), English inventor of the calculating machine, was born.
    (HN, 12/26/98)

1799        Dec 26, The late George Washington was eulogized by Col. Henry Lee as "first in war, first in peace and first in the hearts of his countrymen."
    (AP, 12/26/97)

1806        Dec 26, Napoleon’s army was checked by the Russians at the Battle of Pultusk.
    (HN, 12/26/98)

1822        Dec 26, Dion Boucicault, Irish-US actor and playwright (Rip van Winkle), was born.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1826        Dec 26, Franz Coenen, composer, was born.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1830        Dec 26, Gaetano Donizetti's opera "Anna Bolena," premiered in Milan.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1831        Dec 26, Vincenzo Bellini's opera "Norma," premiered at La Scala in Milan.
    (www.musicabona.com/bellini_vincenzo/13853/cd/index.html.en)

1837        Dec 26, George Dewey, Admiral of the Navy, was born: Spanish-American War: hero of Manila: “You may fire when you are ready, Gridley."
    (440.com)

1848        Dec 26, The 1st California-bound gold seekers arrived in Panama enroute to SF.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1854        Dec 26, Wood pulp paper was 1st exhibited in Buffalo.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1860        Dec 26, Major Robert Anderson, under cover of darkness, concentrated his small federal force at Ft. Sumter, SC.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1861        Dec 26, Friedrich Engel, German mathematician (group theory), was born.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1862        Dec 26, In Minnesota 38 Santee Sioux were hanged in Mankato for their part in the Sioux Uprising. This marked the end of the US-Dakota War. In 2012 a memorial was unveiled for the 38 hanged men, the largest mass execution in US history.
    (HN, 12/26/98)(SFC, 12/27/12, p.A8)
1862        Dec 26-28, Battle of Dumfries, Va.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1865        Dec 26, James H. Nason (Mason) of Franklin, Mass., received a patent for a coffee percolator.
    (AP, 12/26/97)(MC, 12/26/01)

1866        Dec 26, In San Francisco Lazarus Moses was fined $300 for selling goods stolen by the Hoodlum gang.
    (http://www.frederickbee.com/faginfine.pdf)
1866        Dec 26, Brig. Gen. Philip St. George Cooke, head of the Department of the Platte received word of the Dec 21 Fetterman Fight in Powder River County in the Dakota territory.
    (HN, 12/26/99)

1872        Dec 26, The 4th largest snowfall in NYC history reached 18 inches.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1878        Dec 26, The 1st US store to install electric lights was in Philadelphia.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1879        Dec 26, The "Tragic Overture" by Johannes  Brahms premiered.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1890        Dec 26, Heinrich Schliemann (86), German businessman and archaeologist, died. He excavated the site of ancient Troy in 1870-1871.
    (NH, 4/96, p.48)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heinrich_Schliemann)

1891        Dec 26, Henry Miller (d.1980), American writer, was born. His work included "Tropic of Cancer" and "Tropic of Capricorn". “Until we lose ourselves there is no hope of finding ourselves." “Like ships, men founder time and again."
    (AP, 3/16/97)(AP, 5/2/98)(HN, 12/26/98)

1893        Dec 26, Mao Tse-tung, founding father of the People’s Republic of China  (PM 1949-76), was born in Shaoshan.
    (HFA, ‘96, p.44)(HN, 12/26/98)(SFC, 8/24/99, p.A12)

1894        Dec 26, Antonio Molina, composer, was born.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1908        Dec 26, Jack Johnson (1878-1946) of Texas knocked out Tommy Burns in Australia to become the 1st black world heavyweight boxing champion. He was not officially given the title until 1910 when he beat Jim Jeffries in Las Vegas. In 1913 Johnson fled the US because of trumped up charges of violating the Mann Act's stipulations against transporting white women across state lines for prostitution. Johnson held the title until 1915. In 1920 he returned to the US, was arrested and served a one year sentence in Leavenworth in Kansas, where he was appointed athletic director of the prison.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jack_Johnson_(boxer))(ON, 4/09, p.7)

1914        Dec 26, Richard Widmark, actor, was born: Judgment at Nuremberg, Murder on the Orient Express, The Halls of Montezuma, How the West was Won, The Alamo, Against All Odds, True Colors. 
    (440.com)

1917        Dec 26, Rosemary Woods, Pres. Nixon's secretary, was born.
    (MC, 12/26/01)
1917        Dec 26, As a wartime measure, President Wilson placed railroads under government control, with Secretary of War William McAdoo as director general.
    (AP, 12/26/97)(HN, 12/26/98)

1921        Dec 26, Steve Allen comedian, author, musician, composer, TV host, was born: The Tonight Show, The Steve Allen Show; films: The Benny Goodman Story, cameo with wife Jayne Meadows: Casino.
    (440.com)

1925        Dec 26, Six U.S. destroyers were ordered from Manila to China to protect interests in the civil war that was being waged there.
    (HN, 12/26/98)

1931        Dec 26, The Pulitzer Prize-winning musical play “Of Thee I Sing" opened on Broadway.
    (AP, 12/26/01)

1932        Dec 26, Some 70,000 were killed in a massive earthquake in Kansu, China.
    (HN, 12/26/98)(www.disaster-management.net/earthqu1.htm)

1936        Dec 26, The Palestine Orchestra was formed. It grew to become the Israeli Philharmonic.
    (SFC, 1/8/98, p.E1)(MC, 12/26/01)

1939        Dec 26-27, In Turkey a series of vicious earthquakes in Erzincan province, magnitude 7.9, took some 33,000 lives in Turkey.
    (HN, 12/27/98)(MC, 12/27/01)(SFEC, 8/22/99, p.A17)(AP, 6/22/02)

1940        Dec 26, J.A. Fields' and J. Chodorov's "My Sister Eileen," premiered in NYC.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1941        Dec 26, Winston Churchill became the first British prime minister to address a joint meeting of the U.S. Congress.
    (AP, 12/26/97)
1941        Dec 26, General Douglas MacArthur declared Manila an open city in the face of the onrushing Japanese Army.
    (HN, 12/26/98)

1943        Dec 26, Count Claus von Stauffenberg tried in vain to plant a bomb in Hitler's  headquarters.
    (MC, 12/26/01)
1943        Dec 26, The 32,000-ton German battleship Scharnhorst sank off Norway following an Allied attack led by the British battleship Duke of York. Only 36 of the 1,900 crew survived. Researchers found the wreck in 2000.
    (CMW, 1968, p.589)(HN, 12/26/98)(SFC, 10/4/00, p.A12)

1944        Dec 26, Tennessee Williams' play "The Glass Menagerie" was first performed publicly, at the Civic Theatre in Chicago.
    (AP, 12/26/97)
1944        Dec 26, In the World War II Battle of the Bulge, the embattled U.S. 101st Airborne Division was relieved by units of the 4th Armored Division. The Battle of the Bulge was the final major German counter-offensive of the war and thrust deep into allied territory in N & E Belgium and Luxembourg. US Gen Patton's tanks repulsed the Germans. Jimmy Hendrix (19) captured 13 Germans in two 88-mm gun batteries and rescued 3 Americans under enemy fire. Hendrix (d.2002 later awarded the Medal of Honor.
    (WUD, 1994, p.195)(SFC, 9/1/96, T3)(AP, 12/26/97)(MC, 12/26/01)(SFC, 11/21/02, p.A25)
1944        Dec 26, In Italy two platoons of the segregated 92nd Infantry Division fought the German 14th Army at Sommocolonia. Of 70 “Buffalo Soldiers" and 25 Italian Partisans only 18 survived. In 1977 Lt. John Fox and 6 other black Americans were awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor. By the end of the war 2,916 Buffalo soldiers fell breaking the Gothic Line.
    (SFC, 7/13/00, p.A15)(Ind, 1/11/03, 5A)
1944        Dec 26, In Slovakia American OSS personnel were captured in a surprise raid by a German intelligence unit. Slovak agent Maria Gulovich (1921-2009) helped 2 American and 2 British agents escape. In 2002 Jim Downs authored “World War II: OSS Tragedy in Slovakia."
    (SFC, 10/2/09, p.E5)

1945        Dec 26, The Big Three, the US, Soviet Union and Great Britain, ended a 10-day meeting, seeking an atomic rule by the UN Council.
    (HN, 12/26/98)

1946        Dec 26, The Las Vegas Flamingo Casino opened. Billy Wilkerson designed the Flamingo and sold a controlling interest to Bugsy Siegel when his money ran out. It was the 3rd hotel casino built on the Las Vegas strip.
    (SFEC, 5/10/98, DB p.64)(SSFC, 3/11/01, p.T8)

1947        Dec 26, Heavy snow blanketed the Northeast, burying New York City under 25.8 inches of snow in 16 hours. A record 26.4 inches fell and led to 77 deaths.
    (AP, 12/26/97)(Econ, 2/18/06, p.28)

1948        Dec 26, Hungarian Cardinal Mindszenty was arrested.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1950        Dec 26, Emile Enthoven (47), composer, died.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1953        Dec 26, The U.S. announced the withdrawal of two divisions from Korea.
    (HN, 12/26/98)

1954        Dec 26, "The Shadow," aired for last time on radio.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1957        Dec 26, The Ingmar Bergman film "Wild Strawberries," starring Victor Sjostrom, opened in Sweden.
    (AP, 12/26/07)

1960        Dec 26, Musical "Do Re Mi" with Phil Silvers premiered in NYC.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1962        Dec 26, Eight East Berliners escaped to West Berlin, crashing through gates in an armor plated bus.
    (HN, 12/26/98)

1963        Dec 26, Beatles released "I Want To Hold Your Hand" and "I Saw Her Standing There."
    (MC, 12/26/01)
1963        Dec 26, "Gorgeous George" Wagner, perfumed and pampered wrestler, died.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1965        Dec 26, "Funny Girl" with Barbra Streisand closed on Broadway.
    (MC, 12/26/01)

1966        Dec 26, Dr. Maulana “Ron" Karenga celebrated the first Kwanzaa, a seven day African American celebration of family and heritage. Dr. Karenga established Kwanzaa (“first fruits of the season" in Swahili), the African American celebration of unity and community values over the Christmas to New Year season. The 7 principles of Kwanzaa include: Umoja - Unity; Kujichagulia - Self-determination; Ujima - Collective work and responsibility; Ujamaa - Cooperative economics; Nia - Purpose; Kuumba - Creativity; and Imani - Faith. The holiday runs for 7 days from Dec 26 to Jan 1.
    (SFC, 12/27/96, p.C17)(SFC,12/26/97, p.A30) (HN, 12/26/98)

1967        Dec 26, BBC-1 television aired "Magical Mystery Tour," the Beatles' critically drubbed one-hour special.
    (AP, 12/26/07)
1967        Dec 26, Atlantic Richfield oil workers struck oil on Alaska’s North Slope at Prudhoe Bay.
    (AH, 10/04, p.42)

1968        Dec 26, Jay Allen's "Forty Carats," premiered in NYC. It was adapted from the French original by Pierre Barillet and Jean-Pierre Gredy. The 1973 film adaptation starred Liv Ullman.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forty_Carats)
1968        Dec 26, Usher Fellig (Weegee), Ukraine-born (1899) American photographer, died. He worked in the Lower East Side of New York City as a press photographer during the 1930s and '40s, and developed his signature style by following the city's emergency services and documenting their activity.
    (Econ, 1/28/12, p.82)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Weegee)
1968        Dec 26, A Palestinian terrorist attack in Athens on an Israeli civilian airliner killed one person. Mahmoud Mohammad (25) and Maher Suleiman (19) were later captured by Greek officials, In 1970, a Greek court convicted Mahmoud Mohammad for his role in the attack. In 1987 Mahmoud Mohammed Issa Mohammed entered Canada, where he was ordered to be deported in 1988. In 2007 he was still in Canada after some 30 appeals and reviews.
    (http://tinyurl.com/35olct)(Econ, 9/15/07, p.48)(www.skyjack.co.il/chronology.htm)
1968        Dec 26, The underground Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) was formed as a Maoist group. Its armed wing, the New People’s Army (NPA) began waging guerrilla warfare in 1969.
    (SFC, 8/21/01, p.A6)(AP, 12/26/10)

1972        Dec 26, The 33rd president of the United States, Harry S. Truman, died in Kansas City, Mo. In 1995 Robert H. Ferrell published the biography "Harry S. Truman: A Life." In 1999 Ferrell published "Truman and Pendergrast."
    (AP, 12/26/97)(WSJ, 7/19/99, p.A13)
1972        Dec 26, In Vietnam the bombing over Hanoi resumed after one day of respite and bombs hit a residential street killing 283 civilians. North Vietnam agreed to resume peace negotiations within five days of the end of bombing.
    (SFC,12/16/97, p.B1)(www.historyplace.com/unitedstates/vietnam/index-1969.html)

1973        Dec 26, "The Exorcist," starring Linda Blair, premiered with an X rating.
    (http://movies.yahoo.com/movie/1800062915/info)

1974        Dec 26, Comedian Jack Benny (b.1894) died in Los Angeles at age 80.
    (AP, 12/26/98)(www.imdb.com/name/nm0000912/)

1975        Dec 26, The Soviet Union inaugurated the world's first supersonic transport service with a flight of its Tupolev-144 airliner from Moscow to Alma-Ata.
    (AP, 12/26/99)

1978        Dec 26, In San Jose, Ca., Nolan K. Bushnell, inventor of the Pong video game, opened the 20,000-sq.-foot Pizza Time Theater, the world's largest pizza parlor.
    (SFC, 12/26/03, p.E2)

1979        Dec 26, Robert Ben Madison (14) founded the virtual Kingdom of Talossa in his Milwaukee, Wisc., bedroom and migrated it to the Internet in 1996.
    (Econ, 12/24/05, p.85)(www.wired.com/wired/archive/8.03/kingdoms_pr.html)

1980        Dec 26, Iranian television footage was broadcast in the United States, showing a dozen of the American hostages sending messages to their families.
    (AP, 12/26/05)
1980        Dec 26, Tony Smith (b.1912), sculptor, died. His work, "Ten Elements," is in the courtyard of the San Francisco Legion Of Honor Museum. He began his career as an architect and ended up as a founding figure of minimalism. His 3 daughters included artist Kiki Smith.
    {Artist, USA}
    (SFC, 1/8/97, p.B1)(SFC, 11/19/05, p.E10)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/December_26)

1982        Dec 26, TIME magazine’s Man of the Year, in the issue dated January 4, 1983, was a computer.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1982)

1985        Dec 26, Dian Fossey (53), American zoologist who had studied gorillas in the wild (Gorillas in the Mist), was murdered in Rwanda. Her body was found the next day. Wayne Richard McGuire, a doctoral candidate working with Fossey, was later found guilty in absentia in Rwanda. A native tracker was also charged and died in jail. McGuire claimed total innocence.
    (AP, 12/27/01)(SFC, 3/15/05, p.A7)

1987        Dec 26, A bomb exploded at a USO bar in Barcelona, Spain, killing one U.S. sailor and injuring nine others; a little-known group called the Red Army of Catalonian Liberation claimed responsibility.
    (AP, 12/26/97)

1988        Dec 26, Another body from the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 was found, bringing the confirmed death toll to 240.
    (AP, 12/26/98)
1988        Dec 26, An anti African student rebellion took place in China.
    (http://tinyurl.com/z2b7t)

1989        Dec 26, Romanian television broadcast videotape of ousted President Nicolae Ceausescu and his wife, Elena, at their secret trial and footage of Ceausescu's body after his execution. That same day, a provisional government took control of Romania.
    (AP, 12/26/99)

1990        Dec 26, The US government reported that its 1990 census had counted a total 249 million, 632,692 people. The US census for this year categorized the population as "White, Negro or Black, American Indian (tribe can be listed), Eskimo, Aleut, Asian or Pacific Islander, and other. Specific Asian nationalities could be checked off." The census counted over 1.6 million Chinese Americans with 40% of them in California.
    (SFC,12/26/97, p.A21)(SFEC, 2/6/00, Rp.10)(AP, 12/26/00)
1990        Dec 26, Garry Kasparov beat Anatoly Karpov to retain chess championship.
    (http://tinyurl.com/hmp9d)
1990        Dec 26, Nancy Cruzan, the young woman in an irreversible vegetative state whose case led to a US Supreme Court decision on the right to die, died at a Missouri hospital.
    (AP, 12/26/00)
1990        Dec 26, Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev nominated Gennady I. Yanayev to be the Soviet Union’s first vice president. Yanayev helped lead an abortive coup against Gorbachev in August 1991.
    (AP, 12/26/00)

1991        Dec 26, President Bush nominated businesswoman Barbara Franklin to be commerce secretary.
    (AP, 12/26/01)
1991        Dec 26, On Wall Street, the Dow Jones industrial average rose to a then-record high of 3082.96.
    (AP, 12/26/01)
1991        Dec 26, Jack Ruby's gun sold for $220,000 in auction.
    (http://tinyurl.com/s3gun)
1991        Dec 26, Sikh separatists killed about 50 train passengers in Punab, most of them Hindus.
    (AP, 12/26/01)

1992        Dec 26, Time magazine announced it had chosen President-elect Bill Clinton its 1992 "Man of the Year."
    (AP, 12/26/97)
1992        Dec 26, Milan Panic conceded defeat to Slobodan Milosevic almost a week after Yugoslavia's presidential election.
    (AP, 12/26/97)

1993        Dec 26, In Russia a 4-day drama ended as four masked kidnappers, who had abducted 11 teen-agers, landed their explosives-packed helicopter, freed their last hostages and fled with $10 million in ransom. The four men were captured the next morning.
    (AP, 12/26/98)

1994        Dec 26, French commandos stormed a hijacked Air France jetliner on the ground in Marseilles, killing four Algerian hijackers and freeing 170 hostages. The Air France plane was hijacked by the Armed Islamic Group of Algeria Dec 24.
    (SFC, 9/27/97, p.A10)(AP, 12/26/99)

1995        Dec 26, Israel turned dozens of West Bank villages over to the Palestinian Authority in a smooth transfer of power.
    (AP, 12/26/00)
1995        Dec 26, Floods in eastern South Africa killed at least 130.
    (WSJ, 12/27/95, p. A-1)
1995        Dec 26, Heavy snow covered much of Northern Europe and Japan.
    (WSJ, 12/27/95, p. A-1)

1996        Dec 26, In Boulder, Colorado, 6-year-old JonBenet Ramsey was found beaten and strangled in the basement of her family home 8 hours after the mother discovered a ransom note demanding $118,000. To date, the slaying remains unsolved.
    (SFC, 5/10/97, p.A3)(AP, 12/26/97)
1996        Dec 26, In Algiers a car bomb exploded in a crowded suburb. At least 10 were killed and 86 injured.
    (SFC, 12/27/96, p.B3)
1996        Dec 26, In Belarus a $3.5-4 billion nuclear power plant was planned to be built over the next 3 years.
    (WSJ, 12/27/96, p.A4)
1996        Dec 26, In Burma two bombs exploded in Rangoon during an exhibit of a tooth believed to have belonged to Buddha. The military regime blamed student and ethnic Karen insurgents based in eastern Burma. Five people were killed.
    (WSJ, 12/27/96, p.A1)
1996        Dec 26, In Indonesia Muslims rioted in Tasikmalaya in western Java after police tortured 3 Muslim teachers accused of assaulting a policeman’s son.
    (WSJ, 12/27/96, p.A1)
1996        Dec 26, In Israel a top army official said that the focus of military training in 1997 will be to prepare for a possible war with Syria.
    (WSJ, 12/27/96, p.A1)
1996        Dec 26, In Japan former Prime Minister Tsutoma Hata took 12 members of the opposition party Shinshinto (New Frontier Party) with him to form the new Sun Party.
    (SFC, 12/27/96, p.B3)
1996        Dec 26, Honda Motor Co. announced the first human-shaped robot that can move independently and do basic tasks. It stood 6 feet and weighed 462 lbs. and took 10 years of engineering.
    (SFC, 12/26/96, p.B10)
1996        Dec 26, In Mexico the Dept. of Commerce announced a 15% price hike in the cost of tortillas and pasteurized milk.
    (SFC, 12/27/96, p.B3)
1996        Dec 26, In Serbia riot police cleared tens of thousands off the streets of central Belgrade but allowed a smaller protest of 15,000 at the pedestrian Square of the Republic. Patriarch Pavle, head of the Serbian Orthodox Church, said the street violence of the previous day was caused by the authorities. Montenegro threatened to print its own money to counter the inflated dinars of the Milosevic regime.
    (SFC, 12/27/96, p.A1)
1996        Dec 26, In South Korea tens of thousands of workers went on strike to protest a new labor bill that gave employers the right to lay off workers and allowed flexible working hours. A spy bill also passed to crack down on dissent.
    (SFC, 12/26/96, p.B9)

1997        Dec 26, It was reported that the US Centers for Disease Control had begun work on a “Bird Flu" vaccine in response to the 9 confirmed cases and 4 deaths in Hong Kong.
    (SFC,12/26/97, p.D1)
1997        Dec 26, From Texas it was reported that the Emu market had collapsed and that the 100-pound birds were roaming the countryside and being slaughtered by frustrated owners.
    (SFC,12/26/97, p.A4)
1997        Dec 26, In Japan Ichiro Ozawa, leader of the opposition Shinshinto, New Freedom Party, announced that the party would be disbanded.
    (SFC,12/27/97, p.A12)
1997        Dec 26, In Mexico sixteen Maya Indians were charged with first-degree murder in the Dec 22 massacre in Acteal.
    (SFC,12/27/97, p.A1)
1997        Dec 26, In Peru police reported that a Peruvian family hacked 2 Japanese students to death. The students had rowed on the Amazon for hundreds of miles with plans to reach Manaus.
    (SFC,12/27/97, p.A13)
1997        Dec 26, Badly battered South Korean financial markets surged after the International Monetary Fund and the Group of Seven countries agreed on $10 billion emergency loans to Seoul. The South Korean won closed up at 1,498 to the US dollar compared with 1,836 on Wednesday.
    (SFC,12/27/97, p.D1)(AP, 12/26/98)

1998        Dec 26, President Clinton, in his weekly radio address, urged Congress to lower the blood-alcohol limit for drunken driving nationwide to 0.08 percent to conform with 17 states and the District of Columbia. The other 33 states have 0.10.
    (AP, 12/26/99)
1998        Dec 26, In Angola a transport plane with 14 people aboard crashed near Vila Nova, an area of continued fighting. 8 of the passengers were members of a UN Observer Mission. UNITA rebels reportedly held some of the survivors. A rescue team reached the site Jan 8 and there were no survivors.
    (SFEC, 12/27/98, p.A22)(SFC, 12/29/98, p.A8)(SFC, 1/2/99, p.A9)(SFC, 1/9/99, p.A10)
1998        Dec 26, In Cambodia 2 aides of the late Pol Pot, Khieu Samphan and Nuon Chea, emerged from the jungle and expressed in writing their desire to become ordinary citizens and allegiance to the government. Prime Minister Hun Sen welcomed them and spoke against a trial and reopening old wounds.
    (SFEC, 12/27/98, p.A22)(SFC, 12/29/98, p.A8)
1998        Dec 26, Iraq fired on Western aircraft patrolling the southern no-fly zone and said it would shoot at all military aircraft patrolling no-fly zones.
    (SFEC, 12/27/98, p.A1)
1998        Dec 26, In Sierra Leone residents in Freetown burned alive 2 suspected rebel spies. The rebel United Front reported that it had killed 60 Nigerian soldiers of ECOMOG. Defenses in Freetown were bolstered by Kamajor militia.
    (SFEC, 12/27/98, p.A23)

1999        Dec 26, The crew of space shuttle “Discovery" packed up its tools and prepared to return home after an eight-day mission of repairs to the Hubble Space Telescope that NASA declared a success.
    (AP, 12/26/00)
1999        Dec 26, Time Magazine named Albert Einstein (d.1955) as the Person of the Century.
    (SFC, 12/27/99, p.C2)
1999        Dec 26, Curtis Mayfield, soul singer and songwriter, died at age 57 in Roswell, Georgia. His songs included "People Get Ready," "Superfly" (1972), Gypsy Woman," and "It's All Right."
    (SFC, 12/27/99, p.C4)
1999        Dec 26, In Angola government forces with help from Namibian troops captured Jamba and took control of the southern border with Namibia.
    (SFC, 12/27/99, p.A13)
1999        Dec 26, In China 4 alleged ringleaders of the Falun Gong were convicted and sentenced for 7-18 years for stealing "state secrets," organizing a cult to disrupt law and order, and causing deaths.
    (SFC, 12/27/99, p.A1)
1999        Dec 26, In Europe heavy winds and rain killed 88 people in France, 17 dead in Germany and 13 dead in Switzerland. A 2nd storm hit a day later. Damages from the storms were later estimated to be at least $4 billion. The storms destroyed an estimated 400 million trees across France.
    (SFC, 12/27/99, p.A12)(WSJ, 12/27/99, p.A1)(SFC, 12/28/99, p.A8)(SFC, 1/4/00, p.A11)(SFC, 1/15/00, p.A1)(AP, 1/25/09)
1999        Dec 26, Alfonso Portillo, a populist lawyer, scored a resounding victory in Guatemala’s first peacetime presidential elections in nearly 40 years.
    (AP, 12/26/00)
1999        Dec 26, In Indonesia Frenchman Michael Blanc was arrested with 3.8 kg (8.4 pounds) of hash hidden in diving canisters. Blanc maintained his innocence, insisting that he was given the diving canisters to transport by a friend. In 2000 he was convicted and sentenced to life in prison. On Jan 20, 2014 he was freed on parole.
    (AP, 1/20/14)
1999        Dec 26, In Iran members of the opposition Mujahedeen-e Khalq (MEK) crossed from Iraq and attacked Republican Guard barracks in Khuzestan.
    (SFC, 12/27/99, p.A13)
1999        Dec 26, In the Ivory Coast Pres. Henri Konan Bedie fled with his family to Lome, Togo, following the military coup.
    (SFC, 12/27/99, p.A13)

2000        Dec 26, Pres. Clinton signed a ban on cutting shark fins and discarding the fish back to the sea.
    (SFC, 12/27/00, p.A6)
2000        Dec 26, Donna Shalala, US Sec. of Health and Human Services, blocked a GOP sponsored drug reimportation plan intended to reduce drug prices.
    (SFC, 12/27/00, p.A3)
2000        Dec 26, Michael McDermott, a software tester at Edgewater Tech. In Wakefield, Mass., shot and killed 7 co-workers. He wielded a semiautomatic rifle and a shotgun. He was beset by both financial and personal problems. McDermott, convicted in 2002, was sent to prison for life.
    (SFC, 12/27/00, p.A1)(AP, 12/26/01)(SFC, 4/25/02, p.A7)
2000        Dec 26, Jason Robards (78), stage and film actor and winner of 2 Oscars and 1 Tony Award, died in Bridgeport, Conn.
    (SFC, 12/27/00, p.A1)(AP, 12/26/01)
2000        Dec 26, The Muslim holiday of Ramadan ended.
    (SFC, 12/27/00, p.A16)
2000        Dec 26, In Montenegro 3 military commanders were dismissed by the Yugoslav top defense body as a concession to Pres. Djukanovic.
    (SFC, 12/27/00, p.A16)
2000        Dec 26, In Nepal rioting began and 4 people were killed following a rumor that Hrithnik Roshan, an Indian film star, allegedly spoke of his hate for Nepal and its people. Roshan denied making such comments.
    (SFC, 12/28/00, p.C2)
2000        Dec 26, In Serbia power shortages due to the summer drought caused cuts across the country.
    (SFC, 12/27/00, p.A16)
2000        Dec 26, In Thailand an anti-corruption body ruled that Thaksin Shinawatra, the leading candidate for prime minister, engaged in financial wrongdoings that disqualified him from holding office.
    (SFC, 12/27/00, p.A15)

2001        Dec 26, The Al Jazeera Arab network broadcast a new video-taped statement from Osama bin Laden that appeared to have been made in late Nov or early Dec. “Our terrorism is benign." The al-Qaida leader condemned the United States as a nation that committed crimes against millions of Afghans.
    (SFC, 12/27/01, p.A1)(AP, 12/25/02)
2001        Dec 26, Argentina planned a new currency, the argentino, to circulate along with the peso and dollar.
    (SFC, 12/27/01, p.A3)
2001        Dec 26, In Brazil rescue workers searched for victims of earth slides and flooding that killed at least 49 people in Rio de Janeiro state.
    (SFC, 12/27/01, p.A5)
2001        Dec 26, Actor Sir Nigel Hawthorne (72) died in Hertfordshire, England.
    (AP, 12/25/02)
2001        Dec 26, In France some 550 Iraqi Kurds, Afghans, Iranians and other refugees from the Sangatte Red Cross center near the 33-mile Channel Tunnel attempted to reach asylum in Britain. All were captured by French police.
    (SFC, 12/27/01, p.A4)(AP, 12/25/02)
2001        Dec 26, India deployed missile batteries and increased jet fighter patrols along its border with Pakistan.
    (SFC, 12/27/01, p.A3)
2001        Dec 26, Israeli troops shot dead 1 Palestinian, Walid Saadi (50), in Jenin while in pursuit of gunmen. Some border restrictions were eased.
    (SFC, 12/27/01, p.A4)

2002        Dec 26, Brigitte Boisselier, a chemist and head of Clonaid, said the world's first human clone, a 7-pound baby girl, was born by Caesarean section. She was associated with the Raelian religion, founded by Claude Vorilhon in 1973. The claim was subsequently dismissed by scientists for lack of proof.
    (AP, 12/27/02)(Reuters, 12/27/02)(SFC, 12/28/02, p.A5)
2002        Dec 26, The Int'l. Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said North Korea had moved 1,000 fresh fuel rods to a nuclear reactor that produces plutonium used in nuclear warheads.
    (AP, 12/26/02)
2002        Dec 26, In Curtiba, Brazil, a C-95 Bandeirante air force plane crashed during an emergency landing, killing two people and injuring the other 14 people aboard.
    (AP, 12/26/02)
2002        Dec 26, Israeli soldiers hunting militiamen in the West Bank killed 9 Palestinians in separate clashes across the West Bank and Gaza.
    (AP, 12/26/02)(SFC, 12/27/02, p.A12)
2002        Dec 26, In the southern Philippines suspected Muslim rebels killed 12 workers as they rode in a truck to a Canadian-owned mine. Extortion was suspected.
    (WSJ, 12/27/02, p.A1)
2002        Dec 26, In Trinidad police reported that 4 people were slain over the Christmas holidays, bringing the number of killings to a record 164 this year.
    (AP, 12/26/02)

2003        Dec 26, An avalanche in Provo Canyon, Utah, left 3 snowboarders dead.
    (SFC, 12/27/03, p.A5)
2003        Dec 26, In northern China a fire raced through coal mine in Wu'an, a city in Hebei province, killing 26 miners.
    (AP, 12/27/03)
2003        Dec 26, A 6.6 earthquake devastated the southeastern Iranian city of Bam, 630 miles southeast of the capital Tehran. It leveled more than half the city's houses and its historic mud-brick fortress. Some 31,000 people were killed and over 10,000 injured. Iran appealed for international help and promised to waive visas for foreign relief workers.
    (AP, 12/27/03)(SFC, 12/30/03, p.A3)(AP, 1/2/04)(AP, 12/26/04)(AFP, 8/12/12)
2003        Dec 26, In Iraq an American soldier died in a rebel ambush and two others were killed in bomb explosions.
    (AP, 12/26/03)
2003        Dec 26, Hamas, the Islamic group responsible for most suicide bombings in three years of violence, called off attacks inside Israel. In response, Israel will hold off targeting Hamas leaders but will still go after other Palestinian militants.
    (AP, 12/27/03)
2003        Dec 26, Kelvin Stark, a new Zealand pilot, was killed while flying a new PAC 750XL airplane to California. The 17-passenger plane was billed as the 1st passenger aircraft built in New Zealand and was specially designed for skydiving.
    (SFC, 12/27/03, p.A15)

2004        Dec 26, The world's most powerful earthquake in 40 years triggered massive tidal waves that slammed into villages and seaside resorts across southern and southeast Asia. The initial estimated death toll of 9,000 soon rose to some 230,000 people in 14 countries. The magnitude 9.0 earthquake was the world's fifth-largest since 1900 and the largest since a 9.2 temblor hit Prince William Sound Alaska in 1964. The epicenter was located 155 miles south-southeast of Banda Aceh, the capital of Aceh province on Sumatra, and six miles under the seabed of the Indian Ocean. In Indonesia at least 166,320 people were killed.
    Bangladesh reported 2 killed; India: at least 9,691 deaths: thousands were missing and possibly dead in India's remote Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Indonesia: At least 101,318 people were killed on Sumatra island and small islands off its coast. Kenya reported 1 killed. Malaysia: At least 68 people, including an unknown number of foreign tourists, were dead. Myanmar: At least 90 people were killed. Sri Lanka: At least 30,680 were killed in government and rebel controlled areas. The Maldives, an archipelago of 1,190 low-lying coral islands and a tiny population of 280,000, at least 82 people were killed and missing. At least 42 islands were flattened in the low-lying atoll nation. Somalia: At least 298 were killed. Tanzania: At least 10 killed. Thailand: The confirmed death toll for Thailand reached 5,322, but many suspected Myanmar migrants were not counted. Some 230,000 people were killed in a dozen countries.
    (SFC, 12/28/04, p.A1)(AP, 12/30/04)(SSFC, 1/2/05, p.A12)(AP, 1/7/05)(Econ, 1/22/05, p.41)(AP, 12/25/09)(AP, 11/12/13)
2004        Dec 26, Thousands of Europeans died in the Asian tsunami disaster. The dead included 543 from Sweden.
    (AP, 12/31/04)(Econ, 9/9/06, p.27)
2004        Dec 26, An unmanned cargo ship docked at the international space station, ending a shortage that forced astronauts to ration supplies.
    (AP, 12/26/05)
2004        Dec 26, Peyton Manning of the Indianapolis Colts broke Dan Marino's single-season touchdown pass record when he threw his 48th and 49th of the season against San Diego. The Colts defeated San Diego in overtime, 34-31.
    (AP, 12/26/05)
2004        Dec 26, Reggie White (43), NFL defensive star, died in Huntersville, NC. White played 15 seasons with Philadelphia, Green Bay and Carolina. He retired after the 2000 season as the NFL's career sacks leader with 198. The mark has since been passed by Bruce Smith.
    (AP, 12/27/04)
2004        Dec 26, In eastern Algeria a gas explosion killed 17 people and injured at least 40 others when a residential block collapsed.
    (Reuters, 12/26/04)
2004        Dec 26, In Brazil an angry mob destroyed police stations and a courthouse in two Amazon towns while trying to lynch murder suspects. One man was killed during the rioting and 44 people were arrested.
    (AP, 12/27/04)
2004        Dec 26, In eastern France a gas explosion tore through a five-storey apartment building in Mulhouse, killing 15 people and injuring another 14.
    (AP, 12/27/04)
2004        Dec 26, India issued a presidential decree to bring its patent laws into compliance with commitments under the World Trade Organization (WTO) agreement.
    (AP, 12/26/04)
2004        Dec 26, Masked gunmen assassinated a high-ranking Iraqi police officer in southwestern Baghdad and wounded his bodyguards.
    (AP, 12/26/04)
2004        Dec 26, The Independent reported that British PM Tony Blair has ordered the military to prepare to deploy up to 3,000 soldiers to the conflict-torn Sudanese region of Darfur.
    (AP, 12/26/04)
2004        Dec 26, The Russian unmanned cargo ship, Progress M-51, docked at the int’l. space station with fresh supplies.
    (SFC, 12/25/04, p.A5)
2004        Dec 26, A woman doused her body with gasoline and set herself ablaze in a busy Istanbul square to protest Turkey's maximum security prison system.
    (AP, 12/26/04)
2004        Dec 26, Ukraine re-ran its presidential election.
    (AP, 12/26/04)
2004        Dec 26, Uzbekistan held elections and all opposition groups were barred from running for office. Europe's top election watchdog criticized the parliamentary vote.
    (AP, 12/26/04)

2005        Dec 26, "Monday Night Football" ended an unprecedented 36-year run on ABC TV with a lackluster game, a 31-to-21 New England Patriots victory over the New York Jets. The series switched to ESPN the following season.
    (AP, 12/26/06)
2005        Dec 26, New Orleans Police officers shot and killed a man brandishing a knife in a confrontation that was partially videotaped by a bystander, setting off another internal investigation of the embattled department.
    (AP, 12/27/05)
2005        Dec 26, John Diebold (70), a US consultant who preached computers to businesses, died.
    (WSJ, 12/28/05, p.A1)
2005        Dec 26, The US military gave details of its planned troop reduction in Afghanistan, saying the total number would shrink by some 2,500 from the current 19,000 under a routine troop rotation due very soon.
    (AFP, 12/26/05)
2005        Dec 26, Kerry Packer (68), Australian media mogul, died in his Sydney home. He built his empire on the Nine Network television station and the Australian Consolidated Press magazine publishing business but in recent years had concentrated his efforts more in the gaming industry.
    (SFC, 12/27/05, p.B4)(Econ, 1/7/06, p.77)
2005        Dec 26, In Canada gunfire erupted on a busy Toronto street filled with holiday shoppers, killing a young woman (15) and wounding six other people. There have been 78 murders in Toronto this year, including a record 52 by gunfire, twice as many as last year. On June 13, 2006, 8 people were arrested in connection with the shootings.
    (AP, 12/27/05)(Reuters, 6/13/06)
2005        Dec 26, News reports said China has closed 2,411 coal mines for safety violations, and will start requiring mines to post safety bonds. 12,990 mines were ordered to suspend operations for safety inspections.
    (AP, 12/26/05)
2005        Dec 26, Maxima Perez (33), a woman in the Dominican Republic, gave birth to the first sextuplets ever recorded in this Caribbean country.
    (AP, 12/27/05)
2005        Dec 26, The EU announced a 166 million euros ($196.9 million) aid package for 10 African countries. The aid will go to Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi, Chad, Tanzania, Uganda, Liberia, the Ivory Coast, Madagascar and Comoros.
    (Reuters, 12/26/05)
2005        Dec 26, India freed eight Pakistani prisoners as part of peace efforts between the South Asia rivals, while the two governments scheduled new talks to resolve their long-standing dispute over the Himalayan territory of Kashmir.
    (AP, 12/26/05)
2005        Dec 26, Gunmen shot and killed 5 police officers at a checkpoint north of Baghdad. 6 vehicle bombs exploded in Baghdad, leaving another 5 people dead and over 40 wounded. At least two dozen people including a US soldier were killed in shootings and bombings mostly targeting the Shiite-dominated security services.
    (AP, 12/26/05)
2005        Dec 26, Two US pilots were killed after their Apache collided in mid-air with another helicopter just west of Baghdad.
    (AP, 12/28/05)
2005        Dec 26, Israel said it will build more than 200 new homes in Jewish West Bank settlements, a blow to peace efforts despite word that Ariel Sharon's new party plans a major push for Palestinian statehood if it wins upcoming elections.
    (AP, 12/26/05)
2005        Dec 26, Japan's benchmark stock index topped 16,000 points, reaching its highest level since October 2000. The dollar rose slightly against the yen and euro.
    (AP, 12/26/05)
2005        Dec 26, Character actor Vincent Schiavelli (57), who appeared in scores of movies, including "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" and "Ghost," died at his home in Sicily.
    (AP, 12/26/05)
2005        Dec 26, In southeastern Venezuela an accidental fireworks explosion touched off a blaze that raced through a busy strip mall, killing at least 12 people and injuring five others.
    (AP, 12/27/05)

2006        Dec 26, Gerald R. Ford (b.1913), former Michigan Congressman and US President (1973-1976), died. He had declared "Our long national nightmare is over" as he replaced Richard Nixon, but may have doomed his own chances of election by pardoning his disgraced predecessor.
    (AP, 12/27/06)
2006        Dec 26, A 21,000 gallon oil spill off the Texas coast resulted when a ship anchor hit an oil line.
    (WSJ, 12/27/06, p.A1)
2006        Dec 26, It was reported that a large study in Britain had found that taking such popular heartburn drugs as Nexium, Prevacid or Prilosec for a year or more can raise the risk of a broken hip markedly in people over 50.
    (AP, 12/26/06)
2006        Dec 26, Talks between Belarus and the Russian state gas monopoly on Russia's demand for a price increase brought no resolution and a top company official said Belarus could face a New Year's gas cutoff. Gazprom said it failed to gain assent to double gas prices, but added that any cutoff would no affect EU nations.
    (AP, 12/26/06)(WSJ, 12/27/06, p.A1)
2006        Dec 26, Countryside campaigners said more than 300,000 people took part in traditional Boxing Day (December 26) fox hunts across Britain, claiming it proved a ban on hunting with dogs was not working.
    (AP, 12/26/06)
2006        Dec 26, Canada deported a man who posed as a Canadian for years, describing him as a Russian spy who used a fake birth certificate to create a false identity and accumulate three Canadian passports. The man, who acquired passports in the name of Paul William Hampel, left Canada for Russia.
    (Reuters, 12/26/06)
2006        Dec 26, Chinese and Japanese history scholars met for the first in a series of government-mandated study groups aimed at smoothing over differences between the Asian powers on historical issues.
    (AP, 12/26/06)
2006        Dec 26, An Iraqi appeals court has upheld the death sentence imposed on Saddam Hussein at his first trial, and a tribunal official said the verdict will be carried out within 30 days even if the presidency doesn't ratify it. Over 100 Iraqis died in attacks and bombings, including a coordinated strike that killed 25 in western Baghdad. 3 US service members were killed in roadside bombings northwest of Baghdad. Another US soldier was killed south of Baghdad.
    (AP, 12/27/06)(SFC, 12/27/06, p.A3)(WSJ, 12/27/06, p.A1)
2006        Dec 26, Ayham al-Samaraie, a former minister of electricity with dual US and Iraqi citizenship, arrived in Jordan on a US plane. Al-Samaraie, who escaped from a Baghdad prison this month, was serving time for corruption when he escaped mid-December.
    (AP, 12/26/06)
2006        Dec 26, In Nigeria a ruptured gasoline pipeline burst into flames as scavengers collected the fuel in Lagos, killing 269 people. Witnesses said thieves had broken into the pipeline after midnight and hundreds of men, women and children had been collecting leaking fuel in plastic buckets, cans and bags for hours before the explosion. 2 different armed groups lifted sieges of two oilfield stations, releasing more than 20 local workers. Shell resumed production at its Nun River facility. 4 oil workers were still being held hostage by a different armed group after an attack on Agip's Brass River export terminal on Dec 7.
    (AP, 12/26/06)(AP, 12/27/06)(AP, 12/28/06)
2006        Dec 26, Pakistan said it will plant land mines and build a fence on parts of its long, rugged frontier with Afghanistan to meet criticism it does too little to stop Taliban and al-Qaida guerrillas from crossing the border.
    (AP, 12/27/06)
2006        Dec 26, Islamic fighters retreated as Somali government and Ethiopian troops advanced on three fronts in a decisive turn in the battle for control of this Horn of Africa nation. Ethiopia’s PM Meles Zenawi said up to 1,000 of the religious movement's fighters had been killed.
    (AP, 12/26/06)(WSJ, 12/27/06, p.A1)
2006        Dec 26, The Saudi government said it had released 18 men who were detained after returning to their homeland from the US military prison in Guantanamo Bay.
    (AP, 12/26/06)
2006        Dec 26, President Omar al-Bashir said in the letter to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan that Sudan is ready to immediately implement two recent agreements endorsing a three-step UN plan to strengthen the beleaguered 7,000-strong African Union force in Darfur.
    (AP, 12/27/06)
2006        Dec 26, Turkmenistan's top legislative body rewrote the country's constitution to allow the country's acting president, in power for less than a week, to succeed its late leader.
    (AP, 12/26/06)
2006        Dec 26, The Vatican called on retired Bishop Fernando Lugo to give up his plans to run for Paraguay's presidency or face canonical sanctions. Lugo said he had already resigned from the priesthood to lead a planned opposition alliance and challenge conservative President Nicanor Duarte of the Colorado Party in elections scheduled for May 2008.
    (AP, 12/26/06)

2007        Dec 26, Pres. Bush signed a $555 billion domestic spending bill and took a swipe at Congress for including pet projects totaling nearly $10 billion.
    (SFC, 12/27/07, p.A3)
2007        Dec 26, The US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission said that employers could reduce of eliminate health benefits for retirees when they turn 65 and become eligible for Medicare.
    (SFC, 12/27/07, p.A4)
2007        Dec 26, It was reported that Warren Buffet had agreed to pay $4.5 billion to buy a majority of Marmon Holdings, an industrial conglomerate, from the Chicago’s Pritzker family. Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway planned to buy the rest of the company by 2014.
    (WSJ, 12/26/07, p.A1)
2007        Dec 26, Online auction giant eBay said it has launched a microlending website, www.microplace.com,  that lets people invest in entrepreneurs in poor communities around the world and get a return on their money.
    (AFP, 12/27/07)
2007        Dec 26, A roadside bomb targeting a police patrol exploded east of Algeria's capital, killing two officers and injuring two others. The attack came as authorities rounded up 11 suspected members of two suspected support networks for armed Islamic militant groups in recent days.
    (AP, 12/27/07)
2007        Dec 26, Britain’s Daily Telegraph newspaper reported that British intelligence agents held secret talks with Taliban leaders on several occasions this year. Earlier this month, British PM Gordon Brown ruled out direct talks with Taliban insurgents, telling the House of Commons: "I make it clear that we will not enter into any negotiations with these people."
    (AFP, 12/26/07)
2007        Dec 26, A Chadian court convicted six French aid workers of trying to kidnap 103 African children and sentenced them to eight years of forced labor. The French Foreign Ministry in Paris said it would ask Chadian authorities to transfer the six convicted to France. The countries have a bilateral judicial agreement that could allow for such a transfer.
    (AP, 12/26/07)
2007        Dec 26, Georgia's top television station suspended its broadcasts, saying it was protesting the pressure authorities have exerted because of the station's links to a billionaire presidential contender challenging the government.
    (AP, 12/26/07)
2007        Dec 26, In western Indonesia rescuers dug for survivors after landslides and floods triggered by days of torrential rain killed over 87 people.
    (AP, 12/26/07)(AP, 12/27/07)
2007        Dec 26, Iran's defense minister said that Iran had agreed to buy an S-300 surface-to-air missile system from Russia.
    (Reuters, 12/26/07)
2007        Dec 26, Iran and Malaysia signed a $16 billion agreement to develop two Iranian gas fields, in a deal described as the largest energy contract in Iran.
    (AP, 12/26/07)
2007        Dec 26, In Iraq a bomb explosion in the northern province of Ninevah killed three children and wounded another two. An Iraqi soldier allegedly shot dead two American troops while they were patrolling together north of the capital. Three other US soldiers and a civilian interpreter were wounded in the attack. An initial investigation indicated that the Iraqi soldier was linked to local militant groups.
    (AP, 12/26/07)(AP, 1/5/08)
2007        Dec 26, Joe Dolan (68), one of Ireland's first pop music stars, died from a brain hemorrhage. He had entertained audiences for decades with Vegas-style showmanship. His last Irish No. 1 came in 1997, when he re-recorded "Good-Looking Woman" with a popular fictional TV comedian, a puppet named Dustin the Turkey.
    (AP, 12/27/07)
2007        Dec 26, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak visited Egypt to discuss Israeli allegations that Egypt was doing too little to prevent arms smuggling to the Islamist movement Hamas in the Gaza Strip. Egypt rejected Israeli complaints about weapons smuggling into Gaza.
    (Reuters, 12/26/07)
2007        Dec 26, A ruptured gasoline pipeline exploded in flames, killing at least 34 people near Nigeria's main city of Lagos as they tried to scoop fuel from the gushing leak.
    (AP, 12/26/07)
2007        Dec 26, Pakistan's Pres. Pervez Musharraf and Afghan Pres. Hamid Karzai vowed to boost intelligence cooperation to meet the menace of terrorism that was destroying both countries.
    (Reuters, 12/26/07)
2007        Dec 26, An unmanned Russian cargo ship carrying 2 tons of supplies including holiday gifts, docked at the international space station.
    (AP, 12/26/07)
2007        Dec 26, Serbia's parliament overwhelmingly adopted a resolution that threatens to halt the country's integration into the European Union and cut off diplomatic ties with Western countries if they recognize Kosovo's independence.
    (AP, 12/27/07)
2007        Dec 26, South Korea's cabinet approved a bill setting up a fraud inquiry into president-elect Lee Myung-Bak, one week after the conservative opposition candidate won a landslide election victory.
    (AFP, 12/26/07)
2007        Dec 26, In northern Sri Lanka a wave of infantry attacks killed at least 66 rebels and 14 government troops.
    (AP, 12/27/07)
2007        Dec 26, Turkish warplanes hit eight suspected Kurdish rebel hideouts in northern Iraq, the third cross-border air assault in 10 days.
    (AP, 12/26/07)

2008        Dec 26, In Hawaii a power failure during a thunderstorm blacked out Oahu’s population of about 900,000 people and thousands of tourists including vacationing President-elect Barack Obama.
    (AP, 12/27/08)
2008        Dec 26, In Philadelphia a duplex fire apparently caused by fuel spilling from an overfilled kerosene heater killed seven people, including 3 kids, in a basement that had only one exit.
    (AP, 12/27/08)
2008        Dec 26, In southern Afghanistan a Canadian soldier was killed and three others wounded in a bomb blast. 2 suicide car bombs took place in western Afghanistan, but only the attackers were killed in the blasts. 3 foreigners were wounded in an attack in Herat.
    (AP, 12/27/08)
2008        Dec 26, Azerbaijan's parliament voted to hold a referendum next year on constitutional changes that could allow incumbent President Ilham Aliyev to stay in power when his current mandate runs out.
    (AFP, 12/26/08)
2008        Dec 26, Brazilian police detained Regivaldo Galvao, a rancher suspected in the 2005 slaying of rain forest activist Dorothy Stang (73), for allegedly illegally acquiring titles to land the US nun died trying to defend.
    (AP, 12/26/08)
2008        Dec 26, Chinese warships, armed with special forces, guided missiles and helicopters, set sail for anti-piracy duty off Somalia, the first time the communist nation has sent ships on a mission that could involve fighting so far beyond its territorial waters.
    (AP, 12/26/08)
2008        Dec 26, China’s state media reported that nearly 5,000 higher-level Chinese government officials were punished for corruption over the past year.
    (AP, 12/26/08)
2008        Dec 26, China National Offshore Oil Corp., the country's largest offshore oil and gas producer, signed four oil cooperation agreements with Taiwan's CPC Corp.
    (AP, 12/26/08)
2008        Dec 26, A Chinese man and two Lebanese nationals were shot dead in a crime wave in southeastern Democratic Republic of Congo that also left 10 Congolese dead this week. The mayor of Lubumbashi, Marie-Gregoire Tambila, said that 11 people had been killed in the last four days in her city, including a Lebanese national who was killed on Christmas day. In eastern Congo attackers, identified as members of the Lord’s Resistance Army, killed some 100 people at a church in Doruma. The UN said rebels had killed 189 people over 2 days.
    (AFP, 12/26/08)(SFC, 12/30/08, p.A10)
2008        Dec 26, Three suspected al-Qaida in Iraq insurgents broke out of jail during a riot that killed six police officers and seven prisoners in the western city of Ramadi.
    (AP, 12/26/08)(SFC, 12/27/08, p.A5)
2008        Dec 26, Israel reopened its border with Gaza to allow deliveries of humanitarian aid, despite continued rocket and mortar fire from the coastal strip and growing expectations of a large-scale Israeli military campaign against Palestinian militants. A rocket fired by Palestinian militants fell short and killed 2 schoolgirls in the northern Gaza Strip.
    (AP, 12/26/08)(SFC, 12/27/08, p.A5)
2008        Dec 26, In Mexico a gang of about 20 men armed with assault rifles robbed a train in the western state of Michoacan and carted off some of its freight. Dr. Laura Avila. Avila was found dead in the rural health clinic she was staffing in Jalisco state. Police soon arrested Ricardo Garcia Barajas (25), a farm worker, who allegedly hacked the doctor to death with a machete for refusing to treat his son.
    (AP, 12/27/08)(AP, 1/2/09)
2008        Dec 26, Pakistan began moving thousands of troops to the Indian border, sharply raising tensions triggered by the Mumbai terror attacks.
    (AP, 12/26/08)
2008        Dec 26, Russia's ruble fell to a three-year low against the dollar after the Central Bank allowed a third sharp drop in the currency in five days as the government continues to feel the heat of the global meltdown.
    (AP, 12/26/08)
2008        Dec 26, Serbia arrested 10 former Kosovo Albanian guerrilla fighters suspected of involvement in killings and abductions in the former Serbian province of Kosovo in 1999.
    (AP, 12/26/08)
2008        Dec 26, Spain approved a new provision that also allows anyone whose parents or grandparents were born in Spain but went overseas because of their political beliefs or economic hardship to become Spaniards.
    (AP, 12/29/08)

2009        Dec 26, In eastern Afghanistan a heavily armed Taliban commander was killed during an pre-dawn shootout at a mosque in Wardak province. An ISAF service member from the United States died following an IED strike in southern Afghanistan. Two members of the Afghan National Police were killed when militants attacked a checkpoint in western Afghanistan. 3 other policemen were missing following the attack in the Qadis district of Badghis province.
    (AP, 12/26/09)(AFP, 12/27/09)(AP, 12/28/09)
2009        Dec 26, Bolivia’s President Evo Morales said that he plans to make it legal for Bolivia's farmers to grow small parcels of coca plants.
    (AP, 12/27/09)
2009        Dec 26, China unveiled what it billed as the fastest rail link in the world, a train connecting the modern cities of Guangzhou and Wuhan at an average speed of 350 km (217 miles) an hour.
    (AFP, 12/26/09)
2009        Dec 25, A Greek-owned cargo ship, the Aegean Wind, caught fire off the coast of Venezuela. 9 crew members were killed and 5 injured. The ship was carrying iron ore from Brazil to Houston when the fire broke out.
    (SFC, 12/26/09, p.A2)
2009        Dec 26, In India Andhra Pradesh Gov. Narain Dutt Tiwari (86) resigned, a day after a television news channel broadcast a tape allegedly showing him in bed with three women.
    (AP, 12/26/09)
2009        Dec 26, Iranian security forces beat protesters in central Tehran, a sign of mounting tensions ahead of planned opposition rallies to mark a religious festival and the death of a dissident cleric a week ago.
    (AP, 12/26/09)
2009        Dec 26, In Iraq a roadside bomb killed three Shiite pilgrims in eastern Baghdad, the latest round of violence to strike worshippers during a revered mourning observance. Another pilgrim was killed in southern Baghdad late in the day when a bomb struck a procession.
    (AP, 12/26/09)(AP, 12/27/09)
2009        Dec 26, Israeli soldiers stormed homes in the West Bank, killing three Palestinians suspected in the fatal shooting of an Israeli and testing an uneasy security arrangement with Palestinian authorities.
    (AP, 12/26/09)
2009        Dec 26, In Indian Kashmir some 40 people were injured when police fired teargas and used batons to break up banned religious processions by Shiite Muslims.
    (AP, 12/26/09)
2009        Dec 26, In Lebanon 2 members of the Palestinian militant group Hamas were killed in an explosion in a Beirut suburb that one report described as a bombing. The attack was said to have involved three bombs tied to each other.
    (AP, 12/27/09)
2009        Dec 26, In New Zealand some 20 pilot whales died on Colville Beach after stranding but holiday-makers and conservation workers managed to coax 43 others back out to sea. Some 105 long-finned pilot whales, stranded on South Island, died.
    (AP, 12/27/09)(AP, 12/28/09)
2009        Dec 26, In Pakistan a blast in Karachi destroyed a car and injured 19 people near a procession of minority Shiite Muslims for the Islamic holy month of Muharram. Investigators were checking if a gas cylinder accidentally detonated or if a bomb went off. A suspected US missile strike killed three people in North Waziristan. A local government official said the Taliban had beheaded a tribal elder who fought against them in the Bajur tribal region. The remains of Gul Mohammad (45) was found in Mamund town near a road.
    (AP, 12/26/09)
2009        Dec 26, In the Philippines a roll-on, roll-off ferry, carrying at least 88 people and nine cargo trucks, sank in the late evening off Verde Island. 6 people were confirmed dead and at least 22 were missing.
    (AP, 12/27/09)
2009        Dec 26, Berlin-based Transparency International said nearly half a billion dollars in tsunami aid for Sri Lanka is unaccounted for and over 600 million dollars has been spent on projects unrelated to the Dec 26, 2004, tsunami disaster.
    (AFP, 12/26/09)

2010        Dec 26, Allstate Corp filed suit against Bank of America Corp, its Countrywide lending unit and 17 other defendants for allegedly misrepresenting the risks on more than $700 million of mortgage securities it bought from Countrywide.
    (Reuters, 12/29/10)
2010        Dec 26, In Arizona Gavin MacFarlane (28) opened fire inside a Phoenix strip club killing 2 people and wounding 2 others.
    (SFC, 12/28/10, p.A6)
2010        Dec 26, In Massachusetts police officer John McGuire was shot dead while investigating a robbery in Woburn. Scott Hanwright (19) was charged for murder and Kevin Dingwell (51) was charged with being an accessory after the fact. A 3rd suspect, Dominic Cinelli (57) was fatally shot by responding officers.
    (SFC, 12/28/10, p.A6)
2010        Dec 26, Geraldine Doyle (86), a Michigan factory worker used as the unwitting model for the wartime Rosie the Riveter poster, died. The term "Rosie the Riveter" stems from a 1942 song honoring the women who took over critical factory jobs when American men went off to war. The inspirational "We Can Do It!" poster was not widely seen until the 1980s when it was embraced by the feminist movement as a potent symbol of women's empowerment.
    (AP, 12/31/10)
2010        Dec 26, Teena Marie (b.1956), Motown’s “Ivory Queen of soul" died. Her hits included “Lovergirl," and “Fire and Desire" with mentor Rick James.
    (SFC, 12/27/10, p.C4)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teena_Marie)
2010        Dec 26, The Afghanistan Defense Ministry said it will investigate missing US-donated medicines and pharmaceutical supplies meant for its army and police. "Numerous insurgents were killed" in two separate incidents in Helmand and Kandahar during a NATO operation targeting suspect vehicles. Several suspected insurgents were detained.
    (AP, 12/26/10)(AP, 12/27/10)
2010        Dec 26, In Bolivia the government under Evo Morales announced an end to subsidies on many fuels. The measure involved a 73% increase in the price of petrol.
    (Econ, 1/8/11, p.36)
2010        Dec 26, London’s Underground drivers went on a 24-hour strike in a dispute over holiday pay. Members of the Aslef trade union voted to walk out after transport chiefs refused their demand for triple pay and a day off for working on December 26, the day after Christmas being a national holiday in Britain.
    (AP, 12/26/10)
2010        Dec 26, In Dagestan eight men were killed in a shoot-out with police after they barricaded themselves in a house in the city of Makhachkala and refused to give up.
    (AP, 12/26/10)
2010        Dec 26, In the Dominican Rep. former President Salvador Jorge Blanco (84) died. He was convicted of corruption in 1991 under a political antagonist's administration but declared innocent in 2001 by an appeals court, died. Blanco was president from 1982-1986.
    (AP, 12/26/10)
2010        Dec 26, Egypt said it has adopted a stimulus plan with the aim of injecting 10-20 billion pounds ($1.72-3.44 billion) into the economy in the 2011 calendar year. Gamal Mubarak, the son of Pres. Mubarak, said he will press ahead with bold new economic reforms that will be "more ambitious and more daring" than those that have come before, while still vowing to protect the nation's poor from any fallout.
    (Reuters, 12/26/10)(AP, 12/26/10)
2010        Dec 26, In southern Egypt a tour bus slammed into a truck, killing eight Americans and injuring 21 others in the latest fatal crash involving tourists.
    (AP, 12/26/10)
2010        Dec 26, In Iran local media reported that a death sentence has been imposed on a man suspected of spying for Israel. A Tehran prosecutor confirmed that economist Fariborz Raisdana has been arrested for trying to subvert the recent subsidies plans in radio interviews.
    (AP, 12/26/10)(SFC, 12/29/10, p.A3)
2010        Dec 26, Israel and Palestinian militants traded threats amid fresh skirmishes along the tense Gaza Strip border in which two Islamic Jihad fighters were killed. Nine French activists were arrested during a pro-Palestinian demonstration at a major Israeli checkpoint in the West Bank.
    (AFP, 12/26/10)
2010        Dec 26, In Ivory Coast allies of Alassane Ouattara called for a general strike to last until incumbent Pres. Laurent Gbagbo concedes defeat.
    (SFC, 12/27/10, p.A4)
2010        Dec 26, In Malaysia 3 Singaporean tourists drowned and two others were missing after an overloaded passenger boat capsized near Sibu island.
    (AP, 12/26/10)
2010        Dec 26, In Nigeria clashes left at least one person dead and a number of houses burned in the city of Jos amid tensions following a series of Christmas Eve bomb attacks.
    (AFP, 12/26/10)
2010        Dec 26, In the Philippines Communist rebels threatened more attacks despite looming peace talks with the government, as they marked the insurgency's 42nd anniversary by defiantly marching with their weapons in public view.
    (AP, 12/26/10)
2010        Dec 26, In Russia several thousand people rallied in Moscow to protest the ethnic clashes that have rocked Russia, holding posters reading "Fascists disgrace Russia" and chanting "No to Fascism!"
    (AP, 12/26/10)
2010        Dec 26, In Russia icy rain shut down Moscow's largest airport for nearly 15 hours, coated roads with ice and left more than 300,000 people and 14 hospitals without electricity.
    (AP, 12/26/10)
2010        Dec 26, Ukraine's security service detained former interior minister Yuri Lutsenko, the latest move in a crackdown on the previous government since Pres. Yanukovich took power. The state prosecutor's office this month charged Lutsenko with abuse of office, saying he had embezzled state funds. He denied any wrongdoing and dismissed the charges as politically motivated.
    (Reuters, 12/26/10)
2010        Dec 26, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez made his first use of new decree powers to create a $2.3 billion fund for reconstruction after widespread flooding that left more than 130,000 people homeless.
    (Reuters, 12/26/10)

2011        Dec 26, In London thousands of shoppers seeking post-Christmas bargains were delayed, but not deterred, by a subway strike that shut down parts of the network. Seydou Diarrassouba (18), was stabbed to death in front of horrified shoppers during a fight between two groups of youths on London's Oxford Street. 11 people were arrested the next day in relation to the fatal stabbing. 3 more people were arrested on Dec 31.
    (AP, 12/26/11)(AFP, 12/28/11)(AFP, 12/31/11)
2011        Dec 26, Anuj Bidve (23), an Indian student, was gunned down at point blank range as he walked with friends near their hotel in Salford, England. A boy (17) was soon arrested on suspicion of murder after a warrant was executed in the Salford area. 4 more people, including 2 teens, were soon arrested in relation to the murder. On Dec 2 Kiaran Stapleton (20), accused of the shooting, identified himself in court as “Psycho Stapleton." On July 26, 2012, Stapleton was convicted of murder. The next day he was sentenced to life in prison.
    (AFP, 12/27/11)(Reuters, 12/26/11)(AP, 12/28/11)(AFP, 12/29/11)(AFP, 1/2/12)(AFP, 7/27/12)
2011        Dec 26, A British-registered ship, the M/S Thor Liberty, held in a Finnish port after authorities discovered 69 surface-to-air missiles and 160 tons of explosives onboard, received permission to travel again, but without those materials or its captain. The Patriot missiles were an official shipment from Germany to South Korea. Finnish authorities said the explosives were a legitimate shipment for China, but the missiles lacked proper transit documents, and the explosives weren't safely stored. On Jan 4 the Finnish government authorized the transport.
    (AP, 12/26/11)(AP, 1/4/12)
2011        Dec 26, China's biggest milk producer, Mengniu Dairy Group, said it has destroyed a batch found to have excessive levels of a cancer-causing toxin, in another safety scare for the country's dairy industry. The problem was reportedly discovered before the milk containing high levels of aflatoxin was sold to the public. An expert review identified the mildewed feed as the cause of the excessive levels of aflatoxin in milk.
    (AP, 12/26/11)(AP, 12/27/11)
2011        Dec 26, In Colombia officials in Medellin inaugurated a giant, $6.7 million outdoor escalator for residents of one of its poorest neighborhoods. It provided the 12,000 residents of Comuna 13 a free ride up and down their steep hillside.
    (AP, 12/26/11)
2011        Dec 26, In Grenada Oscar Bartholomew (39) of Toronto, was beaten into a coma after he mistook a plainclothes female police officer for a friend and lifted her for a hug in front of a police station. Bartholomew was visiting family on the island and died the next day. Officers Kenton Hazzard and Wendell Sylvester were detained on Dec 29. On Jan 1, 2012, police officers Edward Gibson, Shaun Ganness and Ruddy Felix were also arrested and charged in the beating death.
    (AP, 1/1/12)
2011        Dec 26, In Guinea-Bissau soldiers demanding better pay attacked the headquarters of the armed forces and fanned out across the streets of the small west African state's capital as the country's president was undergoing treatment in France.
    (AFP, 12/26/11)
2011        Dec 26, India's Tata Motors offered to replace the starter motor on all old Nano models, but said the move was not related to safety concerns surrounding the world's cheapest car.
    (AFP, 12/26/11)
2011        Dec 26, An Iraqi Shiite militia group said it would join the political process. The Asaib Ahel al-Haq, or League of the Righteous, was behind the kidnap of a British consultant and his four bodyguards, and has been blamed for the killing of US troops. A suicide bomber set off a car bomb at a checkpoint leading to the Iraqi Interior Ministry, killing seven people and injuring 32 others. A roadside bomb hit a passing army patrol in the Abu Ghraib area west of Baghdad, killing two soldiers and injuring two others.
    (AFP, 12/26/11)(AP, 12/26/11)
2011        Dec 26, Extra Israeli police patrolled the streets of a small town near Jerusalem after a campaign by ultra-Orthodox Jews to segregate men and women erupted into violence.
    (AFP, 12/26/11)
2011        Dec 26, In Ivory Coast 4 people were killed and 15 were injured in inter-ethnic clashes near the economic capital Abidjan. The violence erupted when an Abidji youth clashed with a soldier of the Republican Forces of Ivory Coast (FRCI) and was killed in Sikensi.
    (AFP, 12/26/11)
2011        Dec 26, Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbayev sacked his billionaire son-in-law, Timur Kulibayev, from his post as head of the sovereign wealth fund.
    (Econ, 12/31/11, p.26)
2011        Dec 26, Mexican medical officials said five recovering drug addicts died and dozens of others were sickened by soy sausage served for Christmas dinner at a rehabilitation center in Guadalajara. 37 people remained hospitalized.
    (AP, 12/27/11)
2011        Dec 26, In South Africa 19 people were killed when an overtaking car smashed head-on into a minibus taxi in central Free State.
    (AP, 12/27/11)
2011        Dec 26, In Syria intense shelling by government forces was reported in the center of the country, just hours before the Arab League monitoring teams were to arrive. Security forces killed at least 42 people, most of them in Homs.
    (AP, 12/26/11)(AP, 12/27/11)
2011        Dec 26, Yemen's military agreed to replace Maj. Gen. Ali al-Shater, a commander accused of corruption, apparently settling a brief strike by 1,000 soldiers. Yemeni soldiers battled al-Qaida-linked militants outside the southern city of Zinjibar, which remains partly under the control of the Islamists. Five soldiers and four fighters were killed.
    (AP, 12/26/11)

2012        Dec 26, Los Angeles police traded gift cards for guns in a buyback program Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa announced as a crime-fighting response to the deadly shooting rampage in Newtown, Connecticut.
    (Reuters, 12/26/12)
2012        Dec 26, The Chicago Teachers Union sued the nation's third largest school district, saying Mayor Rahm Emanuel's campaign to reform or close underperforming public schools discriminates against African-American teachers and staff.
    (Reuters, 12/27/12)
2012        Dec 26, A winter storm hit the northeastern US and led to at least 16 deaths.
    (SFC, 12/28/12, p.A5)
2012        Dec 26, In eastern Afghanistan a vehicle driven by a suicide bomber exploded at the gate of Camp Chapman, a major US military base, killing the attacker and three Afghans. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack in Khost province.
    (AP, 12/26/12)
2012        Dec 26, Angry Central African Republic protesters carrying clubs threw rocks at the French Embassy, criticizing the former colonial power for failing to do more to stem a rapid rebel advance as fears grew that the insurgents aim to seize the capital.
    (AP, 12/26/12)
2012        Dec 26, China opened the world's longest high-speed rail line, which runs 2,298 km (1,428 miles) from the country's capital in the north to Guangzhou, an economic hub in the Pearl River delta in southern China.
    (AP, 12/26/12)
2012        Dec 26, Egypt's Islamist Pres. Morsi proclaimed the country's newly adopted constitution as the dawning of a "new republic" in a television address, calling on the opposition to join a dialogue with him after a month of violent turmoil and focus on repairing a damaged economy.
    (AP, 12/26/12)
2012        Dec 26, Thousands of Iraqi demonstrators massed in Sunni-dominated Anbar province, determined to keep up the pressure on a Shiite-led government that many accuse of trying to marginalize them.
    (AP, 12/26/12)
2012        Dec 26, Shinzo Abe, head of the pro-business Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), took office as Japan's 7th prime minister in six years and vowed to overcome the deep-rooted economic and diplomatic crises facing his country. Abe unveiled a 19-member cabinet of radical nationalists.
    (AP, 12/26/12)(Econ, 1/5/12, p.29)
2012        Dec 26, Myanmar Pres. Thein Sein publicly criticized his government for rampant corruption, bribery and inefficiency.
    (SFC, 12/27/12, p.A2)
2012        Dec 26, In Nigeria a massive explosion ripped through a warehouse full of fireworks in Lagos, sparking a fire that threatened surrounding city blocks and sending a plume of thick smoke high into the sky. At least one person died and 15 others were wounded.
    (AP, 12/26/12)
2012        Dec 26, Angry Philippine residents beat a man to death and threw rocks at firefighters after a  Christmas day shantytown fire in suburban San Juan city left thousands of people homeless. The man was reportedly drunk and was not responsible for the fire. The fire was reportedly started in a house where children were playing with lighted candles.
    (AP, 12/26/12)
2012        Dec 26, Russia’s upper chamber of parliament unanimously voted in favor of a measure banning Americans from adopting Russian children. It now goes to President Vladimir Putin to sign or turn down.
    (AP, 12/26/12)
2012        Dec 26, Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said shelling in an agricultural area of Raqqa province near the village of Qahtaniyeh killed 20, including eight children. It said at least five rebels were killed in the fighting that started after midnight and added that Syrian army warplanes attacked rebel positions in the areas.
    (AP, 12/26/12)
2012        Dec 26, In Tunisia journalist Olfa Riahi posted receipts alleging that Foreign Minister Rafik Abdessalam spent six nights at public expense, including one accompanied by an unidentified woman, raising suspicions of adultery. The minister has denied any wrongdoing and described the woman as his cousin. Riahi followed up these allegations on Dec. 29 with documents showing that the Chinese government transferred a million dollars directly into a Foreign Ministry account rather than going via the Finance Ministry or public treasury as is the custom.
    (AP, 1/8/13)

2013        Dec 26, In Louisiana Ben Freeman (38), a nurse embroiled in a custody fight, attacked his former in-laws, his onetime boss and his current wife leaving 3 dead before killing himself.
    (SFC, 12/28/13, p.A12)
2013        Dec 26, Bangladesh's opposition accused authorities of placing their leader under virtual house arrest, as tens of thousands of troops were deployed across the country ahead of general elections next month.
    (AFP, 12/26/13)
2013        Dec 26, Brazilian officials said at least 44 people have died and more than 60,000 have been left homeless following torrential rain in the southeast over the past few weeks.
    (AFP, 12/27/13)
2013        Dec 26, In Central African Republic Red Cross workers said they have recovered 44 bodies from the streets of Bangui after inter-religious fighting in the last two days. 2 African Union peacekeepers were shot dead in night time fighting. Assailants also attempted to attack the presidential palace, but were pushed back.
    (Reuters, 12/26/13)(AP, 12/27/13)
2013        Dec 26, Egypt escalated its crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood, detaining at least 38 of the group's supporters on charges of belonging to a terrorist organization the day after it was declared one by the government. A bomb exploded in a busy intersection near schools in Cairo, hitting a bus and wounding five people.
    (Reuters, 12/26/13)(AP, 12/26/13)
2013        Dec 26, In France a surprise strike by Lufthansa workers at the main Paris airport prompted flight cancellations and brought a new headache to holiday travel. Lufthansa said in statement that only two flights were officially canceled, and that travel was resuming in the afternoon.
    (AP, 12/26/13)
2013        Dec 26, In Guinea a 2-year-old boy in the remote village of Meliandou fell ill with a mysterious illness characterized by fever, black stools, and vomiting. He died 2 days later.  He was later identified as patient zero in the current outbreak of Ebola, which was not recognized until March.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meliandou)(Econ, 12/13/14, p.49)
2013        Dec 26, In Iraq a barrage of rockets were fired on Camp Liberty, home to members of the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq, the militant wing of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, a Paris-based group opposed to Iran's cleric-led government. 3 residents were killed and over 50 wounded.
    (AP, 12/27/13)
2013        Dec 26, Japan’s PM Shinzo Abe paid his respects at the Yasukuni shrine honoring Japan's war dead in an unexpected visit that drew sharp rebukes from China and South Korea.
    (AP, 12/26/13)
2013        Dec 26, Dozens of Libyan militiamen briefly blocked the entrance to the central bank, demanding the resignation of PM Ali Zeidan.
    (Reuters, 12/26/13)
2013        Dec 26, A Russian probe into the 2004 death of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat said it has found no trace of radioactive poisoning.
    (AP, 12/26/13)
2013        Dec 26, Russian authorities issued visas to seven of 30 members of a Greenpeace ship crew that allow them to leave the country after dropping criminal charges against them over a protest outside an Arctic oil rig.
    (AP, 12/26/13)
2013        Dec 26, A Russian plane crashed in Siberia, killing nine people. The Soviet-built Antonov An-12 plane belonging to an aircraft factory in Novosibirsk was carrying six crew and three others on a flight to another factory in Irkutsk.
    (Reuters, 12/26/13)
2013        Dec 26, In Saudi Arabia a 73-year-old man died from a new respiratory virus related to SARS, bringing to 57 the number of deaths in the kingdom at the center of the outbreak.
    (AP, 12/26/13)
2013        Dec 26, In South Sudan heavy fighting raged in the key oil-producing north. Neighbors Kenya and Ethiopia said they had made "good progress" in efforts to broker an end to the civil war.
    (AP, 12/26/13)
2013        Dec 26, Thailand's government rejected a call from the Election Commission (EC) to postpone a February vote. Violence erupted when protesters tried to storm a venue where a draw for election ballot numbers was being held and police fired teargas and rubber bullets to keep the rock-throwing crowd back. A policeman was killed and three were wounded by gunshots from an unknown attacker.
    (Reuters, 12/26/13)
2013        Dec 26, In Thailand a bus carrying New Year travelers plunged off one of the country’s highest bridges around midnight in the kingdom's northeast, leaving at least 29 people dead.
    (AFP, 12/27/13)
2013        Dec 26, A Turkish prosecutor said he had been prevented from expanding a corruption investigation that has touched the heart of the government, alleging pressure on the judiciary.
    (AFP, 12/26/13)
2013        Dec 26, In eastern Yemen tribesmen seized an oil ministry building in Hadramout province and exchanged gunfire with a pro-government tribe seeking to regain control of the premises.
    (Reuters, 12/26/13)

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