Today is Sunday, Feb. 26, the 57th day of 2012 with 309 to follow.
The moon is waxing. The morning stars are Neptune, Mars and Saturn. The evening stars are Mercury, Jupiter, Uranus and Venus.
Those born this day are under the sign of Pisces. They include British playwright Christopher Marlowe in 1564; French novelist and poet Victor Hugo in 1802; Levi Strauss, who created the world's first pair of jeans, in 1829; American frontiersman William "Buffalo Bill" Cody in 1846; surgeon and cornflakes developer John Kellogg in 1852; Hall of Fame baseball pitcher Grover Cleveland Alexander in 1887; actors William Frawley in 1887, Robert Alda in 1914, Jackie Gleason in 1916, Tony Randall in 1920 and Betty Hutton in 1921; R&B pianist Antoine "Fats" Domino in 1928 (age 84); former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, also in 1928 (age 84); political commentator Robert Novak in 1931; singer Johnny Cash in 1932; rock musician Mitch Ryder in 1945 (age 67); singer Michael Bolton in 1953 (age 59); and Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in 1954 (age 58).
On this date in history:
In 1531, an earthquake in Lisbon, Portugal, killed an estimated 20,000 people.
In 1815, Napoleon Bonaparte and 1,200 men left his exile on the Isle of Elba to start his 100-day campaign to regain France.
In 1935, Germany began operation of its air force, the Luftwaffe, under Reichmarshal Hermann Goering.
In 1952, Prime Minister Winston Churchill announced that the United Kingdom had an atomic bomb.
In 1984, the last U.S. Marines sent to Lebanon as part of a multinational peacekeeping force left Beirut. Some 250 of the original 800 Marines lost their lives during the problem-plagued 18-month mission in the war-torn Lebanese capital.
In 1991, U.S. Marines entered Kuwait City as Iraqi troops retreated.
In 1992, a U.N. report accused Iraq of systematic human rights violations including "brutal torture" and "widespread arbitrary and summary executions" during its occupation of Kuwait.
In 1993, a powerful bomb exploded in the parking garage below the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York, killing six people and injuring more than 1,000.
In 1994, 11 members of the Branch Davidian religious cult were acquitted of murder and conspiracy charges stemming from the 1993 federal raid and siege at the compound near Waco, Texas.
In 1997, the Israeli Cabinet approved development of a large Jewish neighborhood in East Jerusalem, a traditionally Arab area.
In 1998, a federal jury in Amarillo, Texas, ruled in favor of Oprah Winfrey in a lawsuit filed by Texas cattlemen. They said she caused beef prices to fall with her 1996 talk show about "mad cow" disease.
In 2003, the U.S. Supreme Court lifted its nationwide ban on protests that interfere with abortion clinic business.
Also in 2003, a Colombian army helicopter searching for guerrillas crashed in the mountains in northern Colombia, killing all 23 people aboard.
In 2004, the U.S. Senate approved a measure requiring child safety locks be supplied with most handguns sold in the United States.
In 2005, Bank of America acknowledged it lost computer tapes containing account information on 1.2 million federal employee credit cards, including those of some U.S. senators.
In 2006, the Winter Olympic Games ended in Turin, Italy. Germany won the most medals, 29, of which 11 were gold. The U.S. team won 25 medals, including nine gold. Canada, Austria and Russia came next.
In 2007, the death toll from a fire aboard an Indonesian ferry that later sank rose to 48 with scores of people missing off Jakarta.
In 2008, as U.S. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., moved closer to clinching the Republican presidential nomination, a USA Today/Gallup Poll indicated it would be a tight race for the presidency no matter whether Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., or Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., won the almost dead-heat Democratic contest.
In 2009, the Obama administration estimated government spending during the 2010 fiscal year to be $3.55 trillion, 9.8 percent less than 2009, and expected revenues to rise 8.9 percent to $2.38 trillion.
Also in 2009, the Bangladesh military was called in to put down a mutiny by border guards, who staged a violent, wide-spread rebellion, reportedly over money. Officials placed the death toll at 77.
In 2010, the three major U.S. Stock Market indexes were on the plus side in February as the Dow Jones industrial average showed a 2.6 percent one-month gain to close at 10,325.26 while the Nasdaq composite rose 4.2 percent and the Standard and Poor's 500 was up 2.9 percent.
In 2011, the U.N. Security Council voted unanimously to impose strong sanctions on Libya and called for a war crimes investigation.
A thought for the day: Victor Hugo wrote, "The learned man knows that he is ignorant."