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The almanac

By United Press International   |   Feb. 16, 2008 at 3:30 AM   |   Comments

Today is Saturday, Feb. 16, the 47th day of 2008 with 319 to follow.

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

Those born on this date are under the sign of Aquarius. They include historian Henry Brooks Adams in 1838; orchestra leader Wayne King and actor Chester Morris, both in 1901; ventriloquist Edgar Bergen in 1903; singer Patty Andrews of the Andrews Sisters in 1918 (age 90); U.S. Rep. Sonny Bono, R-Calif., in 1935; actor William Katt in 1951 (age 57); actor/director LeVar Burton in 1957 (age 51); and former tennis star John McEnroe in 1959 (age 49).


On this date in history:

In 1923, archaeologists opened the treasure-laden tomb of Tutankhamen, "King Tut," in Egypt's Valley of the Kings.

In 1933, a patent for the synthetic fiber nylon was awarded to the DuPont Co.

In 1959, Fidel Castro was sworn in as Cuba's leader.

In 1986, Mario Soares was elected Portugal's first civilian head of state in 60 years.

In 1990, former U.S. President Ronald Reagan provided videotaped testimony for the Iran-Contra trial of former national security adviser John Poindexter.

In 1992, the chief of the Iranian-financed Hezbollah and two family members were killed in a bombing raid by Israel in an apparent retaliation for attacks against its soldiers.

Also in 1992, the Los Angeles Lakers retired the jersey number of Earvin "Magic" Johnson, who stepped down after contracting the AIDS virus.

In 1999, Germany announced that $1.7 billion would be set aside to compensate victims of the Holocaust.

Also in 1999, Northern Ireland's legislature approved the structure for a new executive government in the strife-torn province -- a major step toward implementing the 1998 Good Friday peace agreement.

In 2003, a massive storm hit the Northeastern United States resulting in record snowfall in several locations, including Boston, which caught 27.5 inches.

Also in 2003, North Korea celebrated the 61st birthday of President Kim Jong il with nationwide celebrations and a threat to "annihilate" the United States if attacked.

In 2004, a draft survey showed U.S. children accused more than 4,000 Roman Catholic priests of sexual abuse in the years between 1950 and 2002.

In 2005, The National Hockey League canceled its entire season after a five-month lockout.

Also in 2005, a new survey said China had become the world's biggest consumer of agricultural and industrial goods, except for oil, in which the United States still had the lead.

In 2006, former Haitian President Rene Preval was declared winner of the Feb. 7 presidential election in Haiti.

Also in 2006, the U.N. Commission on Human Rights called on the U.S. government to "close immediately the detention center in Guantanamo Bay."

In 2007, the U.S. House of Representatives ended four days of debate with a non-binding resolution rejecting U.S. President George Bush's plan to shore up troops in Iraq. But, the proposal failed to get enough votes to reach the floor in the Senate.


A thought for the day: it was Steve Wozniak who said, "Never trust a computer you can't throw out a window."

© 2008 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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