The Almanac

By United Press International  |  July 29, 2005 at 3:30 AM
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Today is Friday, July 29, the 210th day of 2005 with 155 to follow.

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

Those born on this date are under the sign of Leo. They include Grigoriy Rasputin, born in 1871; French historian Alexis de Tocqueville in 1805; novelist Booth Tarkington in 1869; Italian dictator Benito Mussolini in 1883; actress Theda Bara in 1885; composer Sigmund Romberg (The Student Prince, The Desert Song, Lover Come Back to Me, When I Grow Too Old to Dream), in 1887; actors William Powell in 1892 and Richard Egan in 1923; bluegrass star Homer Haynes, member of Homer and Jethro, in 1917; former Labor Secretary Elizabeth Dole in 1936 (age 69); TV anchorman Peter Jennings in 1938 (age 67); actor David Warner in 1941 (age 64); Marilyn Tucker Quayle in 1949 (age 56); documentary filmmaker Ken Burns in 1954 (age 51); country singer Martina McBride in 1966 (age 39); and actor Wil Wheaton ("Star Trek: The Next Generation") in 1972 (age 33).

On this date in history:

In 1588, off the coast of Gravelines, France, Spain's so-called "Invincible Armada" was defeated by an English naval force under the command of Charles Howard and Francis Drake.

In 1848, at the height of the Potato Famine in Ireland, an abortive nationalist revolt against English rule was crushed by government police in Tipperary.

In 1900, Italian King Umberto I was shot to death by Gaetano Bresci, an Italian-born anarchist who resided in America before returning to his homeland to murder the king.

In 1914, the first transcontinental telephone linkup was completed between San Francisco and New York City.

In 1968, Pope Paul VI upheld the prohibition of all artificial means of birth control for Roman Catholics.

In 1981, Prince Charles, heir to the British throne, married Diana Spencer at St. Paul's Cathedral in London.

In 1986, a jury ruled in favor of the U.S. Football League, agreeing that the National Football League illegally monopolized pro football. But the panel only awarded the USFL $1 in damages, effectively spelling the demise of the rival league.

In 1991, the Federal Reserve sought a $200 million penalty against BCCI for violating U.S. banking laws. It was the largest fine in the Federal Reserve's history.

In 1992, former Secretary of Defense Clark Clifford and his law partner, Robert Altman, were indicted on charges of lying about their roles in the BCCI bank scandal.

In 1993, the Senate Judiciary Committee unanimously approved Judge Ruth Bader Ginsburg's nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Also in 1993, the Israeli Supreme Court overturned the conviction and death sentence of retired U.S. autoworker John Demjanjuk, accused of being a Nazi death camp guard known as "Ivan the Terrible."

In 1994, a doctor and his escort were shot to death outside an abortion clinic in Pensacola, Fla.

Also on 1994, the Senate approved the nomination of Federal Judge Stephen Breyer to the U.S. Supreme Court.

In 1996, China conducted an underground atomic test, then declared a moratorium on such explosions.

In 1998, President Clinton agreed to give videotaped testimony at the White House, which would be viewed by a federal grand jury investigating his alleged affair with former intern Monica Lewinsky.

Also in 1998, a costly 54-day strike by the United Auto Workers against General Motors ended. The walkout at two Flint, Mich., plants caused 27 other GM assembly plants to close.

In 1999, a federal judge in Little Rock, Ark., fined President Clinton $89,000 for lying about his relationship with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky in his deposition in the Paula Jones sexual harassment case.

Also in 1999, a securities trader who'd suffered heavy losses killed nine people and wounded 11 others in Atlanta before taking his own life. Police later found the bodies of his wife and two children at his home.

In 2003, U.S. security officials reported threats of possible new airline suicide hijackings by terrorists.

Also in 2003, President George W. Bush met with Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to discuss the Middle East peace process but no significant progress was reported.

In 2004, Islamic extremists claiming to be linked to al-Qaida issued an Internet threat of a "bloody war" in Europe.

Also in 2004, Pakistan announced the capture of a Tanzanian al-Qaida member sought by the United States in the 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.

A thought for the day: Matthew Arnold said, "Conduct is three-quarters of our life and its largest concern."

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