The Almanac

By United Press International

Today is Monday, March 8, the 68th day of 2004 with 298 to follow.

The moon is waning. 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 Pisces. They include U.S. Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. in 1841; Scottish children's writer Kenneth Grahame, author of "The Wind in the Willows," in 1859; American printer and type designer Frederic William Goudy in 1865; German nuclear chemist Otto Hahn, discoverer of nuclear fission, in 1879; actresses Louise Beavers in 1902 and Claire Trevor in 1909; actress/dancer Cyd Charisse in 1923 (age 81); Motown cofounder Berry Gordy in 1937 (age 67); actresses Susan Clark in 1940 (age 64) and Lynn Redgrave in 1943 (age 61); former Monkee Mickey Dolenz in 1945 (age 59); songwriter Carole Bayer Sager in 1947 (age 56); actors Aidan Quinn in 1959 (age 44) and Camryn Manheim in 1961 (age 43); model Kathy Ireland in 1963 (age 41); and actors Freddie Prinze Jr. in 1976 (age 28) and James Van Der Beek in 1977 (age 27).


On this date in history:

In 1913, the Internal Revenue Service began to levy and collect income taxes.

In 1917, strikes and riots in St. Petersburg marked the start of the Russian Bolshevik revolution.

In 1921, after Germany failed to make its first war reparation payment, French troops occupied Dusseldorf and other towns on the Ruhr River in Germany's industrial heartland.

In 1957, Egypt reopened the Suez Canal to international traffic after Israel withdrew from occupied Egyptian territory.

In 1961, the U.S. nuclear submarine Patrick Henry arrived in Holy Loch, Scotland, from Charleston, S.C., to become the first American sub to use the Scottish naval base.

In 1965, nearly 4,000 U.S. Marines landed in South Vietnam.

In 1990, Colombia's M-19 leftist guerrilla group surrendered its arms, ending 16 years of insurrection.

In 1991, America began welcoming home its combat troops from the Persian Gulf.

In 1992, Menachem Begin, the stern underground leader hunted as a terrorist before Israel won independence who went on to win the Nobel Prize as prime minister for making peace with Egypt, died of heart failure.

In 1993, the siege at the Branch Davidian religious cult compound near Waco, Texas, dragged on with no sign of surrender.


In 1996, China fired three missiles into the sea off Taiwan. The United States responded by beefing up its naval presence in the region.

In 1998, James McDougal, a former business partner of then-Gov. Bill Clinton, died while serving a prison sentence in Texas. He had been convicted in connection with the Whitewater scandal.

In 1999, the U.S. Dept. of Energy fired a Chinese-born computer scientist from the Los Alamos (N.M.) National Laboratory as the investigation continued into how China had managed to steal U.S. nuclear secrets.

Also in 1999, baseball great Joe DiMaggio died at age 84.

In 2002, as more charges of child abuse by Roman Catholic clergy emerged across the United States and dozens of priests resigned or were suspended, the bishop of Palm Beach, Fla., stepped down after admitting he had abused a teenage seminary student in the 1970s. His predecessor had resigned in 1999 admitting he had molested five boys.

In 2003, Isrfaeli helicopter fired missiles at a car in the Gaza Strip, killing a top Hamas leader and three bodyguards.

A thought for the day: Spencer Johnson said, "Happiness is not having what you want, it's wanting what you have."



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