The almanac

By United Press International
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Today is Wednesday, July 22, the 203rd day of 2009 with 162 to follow.

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


Those born on this date are under the sign of Cancer. They include poet Emma Lazarus in 1849; U.S. political family matriarch Rose Kennedy in 1890; U.S. psychiatrist Karl Menninger in 1893; poet Stephen Vincent Benet and sculptor Alexander Calder, both in 1898; former U.S. Sen. Robert Dole, R-Kan., in 1923 (age 86); actor Orson Bean in 1928 (age 81); R&B singer Keith Sweat in 1961 (age 48); fashion designer Oscar de la Renta in 1932 (age 77); actor Terence Stamp in 1939 (age 70); "Jeopardy!" game show host Alex Trebek in 1940 (age 69); actor/singer Bobby Sherman in 1943 (age 66); comedian/actor Albert Brooks, actor Danny Glover and rock musician Don Henley, all in 1947 (age 62); composer Alan Menken in 1949 (age 60); actor Willem Dafoe in 1955 (age 54); and comedians John Leguizamo and David Spade, both in 1964 (age 45).


On this day in history:

In 1376, according to German legend, a piper -- having not been paid for ridding the town of Hamelin of its rats -- led the town's children away, never to be seen again.

In 1620, Dutch pilgrims started for America. Their ship -- called the "Speedhaven" -- set sail from Delfshaven, Holland.

In 1793, Canadian explorer Alexander Mackenzie reached the Pacific.

In 1864, in the first battle of Atlanta, Confederate troops under Gen. John Hood were defeated by Union forces under Gen. William Sherman.

In 1916, a bomb hidden in a suitcase exploded during a Preparedness Day parade on San Francisco's Market Street, killing 10 people and wounding 40. The parade was in support of the United States' entrance into World War I.

In 1933, Wiley Post completed his first solo flight around the world. It took him 7 days, 18 hours and 45 minutes.

In 1934, bank robber John Dillinger died in a hail of bullets from federal agents outside Chicago's Biograph Theater.

In 1991, Milwaukee police arrested Jeffrey Dahmer as a suspect in the deaths of at least 15 people.

In 1992, Pablo Escobar, the boss of the Medellin cocaine cartel, and nine henchmen vanished from a Colombian prison. Many months later, Escobar was surrounded and shot dead.


In 1994, U.S. President Bill Clinton ordered the Pentagon to begin a major relief effort in Rwanda.

Also in 1994, a U.S. federal judge ordered The Citadel, a state-financed military college in Charleston, S.C., to open its doors to women.

And, at his arraignment, O.J. Simpson declared himself "100 percent not guilty" in the killings of his ex-wife and her friend.

In 1999, the ashes of John F. Kennedy, Jr., his wife and her sister were buried at sea off the coast of Massachusetts. The three died in a plane crash off Martha's Vineyard six days earlier.

Also in 1999, China outlawed the Falun Gong religious sect and began detaining thousands of its members.

In 2003, Saddam Hussein's sons, Uday and Qusai, were killed by U.S. forces in a fierce, six-hour firefight at a house in Mosul in northern Iraq.

Also in 2003, former prisoner of war Jessica Lynch returned to her West Virginia hometown to a hero's welcome.

And, at least 600 people were reported dead in a series of clashes in the Liberian civil war.

In 2004, the Sept. 11 commission recommended a radical overhaul of the way the nation's intelligence and counter-terror agencies were run and criticized Congress and two administrations for failing to stop the 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States.


In 2005, a suspected suicide bomber was killed by London police after he vaulted a security barrier and tried to board a subway train. It was discovered later that the man had no connection with the transit system bombings.

In 2006, Afghanistan was "close to anarchy" with Western military forces "running out of time," the head of NATO's international security force in that country said.

Also in 2006, China's death toll from Tropical Storm Bilis topped 500.

In 2007, the moderate Islamic party ruling Turkey added to its majority in parliamentary elections with 47 percent of the vote, largest share of Turkish votes for any party since 1965.

Also in 2007, at least 26 people died when a bus carrying Roman Catholic pilgrims from Poland fell into a ravine near Grenoble in the French Alps.

In 2008, jailed polygamist sect leader Warren Jeffs and four other members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints were indicted on charges of child sexual assault by a grand jury in Texas. The grand jury met four months after allegations that minor girls were being paired with older men led Texas authorities to remove 400 children during a raid on an FLDS ranch.


A thought for the day: Mordecai Richler wrote, "The revolution eats its own. Capitalism re-creates itself."

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