The almanac

By United Press International  |  Oct. 9, 2008 at 3:30 AM
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This is Thursday, Oct. 9, the 283rd day of 2008 with 83 to follow.

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

Those born on this date are under the sign of Libra. They include French composer Camille Saint-Saens in 1835; Charles Rudolph Walgreen, drug store chain founder, in 1873; American evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson in 1890; Civil War historian Bruce Catton in 1899; convicted Watergate burglar, novelist and lecturer E. Howard Hunt Jr. in 1918; Beatles star John Lennon in 1940; singer-songwriter Jackson Browne in 1948 (age 60); writer/actor Robert Wuhl in 1951 (age 57); and actors Scott Bakula in 1954 (age 54) and Zachery Ty Bryan ("Home Improvement") in 1981 (age 27).

On this date in history:

In 1934, King Alexander of Yugoslavia was assassinated by a Bulgarian-born

Macedonian militant during a state visit to France.

In 1974, Oskar Schindler, the German businessman credited with saving 1,200 Jews from the Holocaust, died at the age of 66.

In 1975, Andrei Sakharov, father of the Soviet hydrogen bomb, became the first Soviet citizen to win the Nobel Peace Prize.

In 1983, James Watt, facing U.S. Senate condemnation for a racially insensitive remark, resigned as U.S. President Ronald Reagan's Interior secretary.

In 1986, the U.S. Senate convicted imprisoned U.S. District Judge Harry Claiborne of tax cheating, making him the fifth U.S. judge to be impeached and removed from office.

In 1989, the Soviet news agency Tass, under Mikhail Gorbachev's policy of increasing openness in society, reported a flying saucer visit to the Soviet Union.

In 1992, NASA announced that the unmanned Pioneer spacecraft was apparently lost after orbiting Venus for 14 years.

In 1995, an Amtrak passenger train derailed in a remote area of Arizona southwest of Phoenix, killing one person and injuring about 100 others in apparent track sabotage.

In 1997, Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi resigned after Communist members of Parliament withdrew their support for his coalition government.

In 2001, the Pentagon reported the destruction of seven terrorist training camps in Afghanistan and, claiming control of the skies over Afghanistan, launched heavy airstrikes against Taliban garrisons and troop encampments.

In 2002, the Washington-area sniper claimed a seventh victim with the slaying of a man at a gas station near Manassas, Va.

Also in 2002, as stock prices continued to fluctuate wildly, the Dow Jones industrials closed at 7,286.27, a five-year low.

In 2004, the death toll in the double bombings in the central Pakistani city of Multan reached 40 with 100 others injured. The explosions caught a crowd of Sunni Muslims leaving an anniversary gathering.

Also in 2004, John Howard, Australia's prime minister, won a fourth term as his nation's leader. Meanwhile, in Afghanistan's first democratic presidential election, nearly all the candidates, concerned over reported irregularities, boycotted the process even as voters went to the polls.

In 2005, as the 7.6-magnitude earthquake death toll soared near the reported 40,000 mark in Pakistan, a massive relief effort was under way in Pakistan, India and Afghanistan. India reported 650 dead and Afghanistan four.

In 2006, North Korea announced it had successfully conducted an underground nuclear test, prompting a flurry of diplomatic reaction in Washington and around the world.

Also in 2006, the U.N. Security Council approved South Korean Foreign Secretary Ban Ki-moon as the next secretary-general to succeed Kofi Annan at the end of the year.

In 2007, the Dow Jones industrial average closed at a record high of 14,164.53 points.

A thought for the day: in "The Taming of the Shrew," William Shakespeare wrote, "Do as adversaries do in law. Strive mightily, but eat and drink as friends."

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