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The Almanac

By United Press International   |   March 22, 2004 at 3:30 AM
Today is Monday, March 22, the 82nd day of 2004 with 284 to follow.

The moon is waxing. The morning stars are Neptune, Uranus and Pluto. The evening stars are Venus, Mercury, Jupiter, Mars and Saturn.

Those born on this date are under the sign of Aries. They include actors Karl Malden in 1913 (age 91) and Werner Klemperer in 1919; French mime Marcel Marceau in 1923 (age 81); composer Stephen Sondheim and televangelist Pat Robertson, both in 1930 (age 74); actors William Shatner in 1931 (age 73) and Emmett Walsh in 1935; singer George Benson in 1943 (age 71); British composer Andrew Lloyd Webber in 1948 (age 56); sportscaster Bob Costas in 1952 (age 52); actor Matthew Modine in 1959 (age 45); Canadian skater Elvis Stojko in 1972 (age 32); and actress Reese Witherspoon in 1976 (age 28).


On this date in history:

In 1791, Congress enacted legislation forbidding slave trading with foreign nations.

In 1941, the Grand Coulee Dam on the Columbia River began producing electric power for the Pacific Northwest.

In 1945, representatives from Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Transjordan, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, and Yemen met in Cairo to establish the Arab League, a regional organization of Arab states to foster economic growth in the region, resolve disputes between its members and coordinate political aims.

In 1968, President Johnson recalled Gen. William Westmoreland as commander of U.S. troops in Vietnam and made him Army chief of staff. Gen. Creighton Abrams took over in Saigon.

In 1974, the Senate passed and sent to the states for ratification the 27th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, a measure popularly known as the Equal Rights Amendment. However, the required number of states -- 38 -- failed to ratify it before the deadline.

In 1987, Chad troops drove Libyan forces from a key airstrip in northern Chad, apparently ending Moammar Gadhafi's seven-year occupation. The Libyans abandoned $500 million worth of Soviet-made tanks and airplanes.

In 1992, 27 people were killed when a US Air plane bound for Cleveland skidded off a runway at New York's LaGuardia Airport during a snowstorm and landed in the bay.

In 1993, a U.S. nuclear submarine collided with a Russian nuclear sub in a Russian training area in the Barents Sea. There were no casualties.

In 1997, Comet Hale-Bopp made its closest approach to Earth -- about 122 million miles.

In 2000, Pope John Paul II visited a Palestinian refugee camp and declared the conditions there to be "degrading."

In 2001, five people were wounded when a teenager opened fire at a school in El Cajon, Calif. The alleged gunman was then shot and seriously wounded by police.

In 2003, as the war in Iraq gained momentum, a U.S. Army maintenance convoy made a wrong turn and was ambushed. Eleven soldiers were killed and seven captured, including Pfc. Jessica Lynch.

Also in 2003, U.S. forces seized a large weapons cache in Afghanistan.


A thought for the day: Gen. William Westmoreland said, "The military don't start wars. Politicians start wars."

© 2004 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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