The Almanac

By United Press International  |  Nov. 20, 2002 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Wednesday, Nov. 20, the 324th day of 2002 with 41 to follow.

The moon is full.

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

Those born on this date are under the sign of Scorpio. They include botanist John Merle Coulter in 1851; Norman Thomas, six times the Socialist Party candidate for U.S. president, in 1884; "Dick Tracy" creator Chester Gould in 1900; TV commentator Alistair Cooke, in 1908 (age 94); singer/actress Judy Canova in 1916; actress Gene Tierney in 1920; Senator Robert F. Kennedy in 1925; actresses Kaye Ballard in 1926 (age 76) and Estelle Parsons in 1927 (age 75); actor/TV game show host Richard Dawson in 1932 (age 70); comedian Dick Smothers in 1939 (age 63); and actors Veronica Hamel in 1943 (age 59), Richard Masur in 1948 (age 54), Bo Derek in 1956 (age 46), Sean Young in 1959 (age 43), and Ming-Na Wen ("ER") in 1967 (age 35).

On this date in history:

In 1272, Edward I was proclaimed King of England.

In 1780, Britain declared war on Holland.

In 1789, New Jersey became the first state to ratify the Bill of Rights.

In 1943, the Battle of Tarawa-Makin, marking the beginning of the U.S. World War II offensive against Japan in the Central Pacific, began.

In 1945, 24 German leaders went on trial at Nuremberg before the International War Crimes Tribunal.

In 1947, Princess Elizabeth, the future Queen Elizabeth II of England, married Philip Mountbatten.

In 1975, Ronald Reagan announced his candidacy for the 1976 Republican presidential nomination. He lost to incumbent Gerald Ford, who was defeated by Democrat Jimmy Carter.

Also in 1975, Generalissimo Francisco Franco of Spain died.

In 1982, President Reagan announced U.S. Marines would go to Lebanon to assist in the evacuation of PLO fighters.

In 1986, former national security adviser Robert McFarlane called the secret arms deal he arranged in Iran a "mistake" that failed to gauge public disapproval.

Also in 1986, the World Health Organization announced a coordinated global effort against the disease AIDS.

In 1990, British Prime Minister Thatcher failed to win a 65-percent majority in a Conservative Party vote, forcing a runoff against Michael Heseltine.

In 1991, the United States provided $1.5 billion in food and technical assistance to the Soviet Union, about half of what was requested.

In 1992, fire erupted at Windsor Castle, Queen Elizabeth's official residence west of London, causing much damage. The queen and Prince Andrew pitched in to help save priceless artworks and other valuables housed in the castle.

In 1993, the U.S. Senate approved the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

A thought for the day: Raymond Carver said, "Maybe I just don't understand poetry. I admit it's not the first thing I reach for when I pick up something to read."

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