This Day in History - February 22


This Day in History - February 22

Monday, February 22, 2021

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Today is the 53rd day of 2021. There are 312 days left in the year.


1630: English settlers in America discover how to make popcorn.


1495: French forces under King Charles VIII enter Naples in Italy.

1759: French abandon siege of Madras, India, on arrival of British fleet.

1819: Spain cedes Florida to the US.

1828: Peace of Turkmanchai is established by which Persia cedes part of Armenia, including Yerevan, to Russia.

1848: Revolt erupts in Paris due to failure of Louis Philippe's reign.

1862: American Jefferson Davis is inaugurated as Confederate President.

1879: Frank Winfield Woolworth opens a 5-cent store in Utica, New York.

1924: Calvin Coolidge delivers the first presidential radio broadcast from the White House.

1935: It becomes illegal for airplanes to fly over the White House.

1942: Tribesmen in the Philippines wipe out a Japanese regiment during World War II.

1945: US Third Army crosses Saar River south of Saarburg, Germany, in World War II.

1959: The inaugural Daytona 500 race is held. Although Johnny Beauchamp is initially declared the winner, the victory was later awarded to Lee Petty.

1964: Ghana becomes one-party Socialist state.

1966: Uganda's Prime Minister Milton Obote orders five Cabinet members arrested and assumes full power.

1967: More than 25,000 US and South Vietnamese troops launch Operation Junction City, aimed at smashing a Vietcong stronghold near the Cambodian border. (Although the communists were driven out, they later returned.)

1972: Qatar's heir apparent, Khalifa bin Hamad Al Thani, overthrows oil state's emir Sheik Ahmed in bloodless coup.

1974: Pakistan officially recognises Bangladesh (formerly East Pakistan).

1975: Military Government of Ethiopia announces that 2,300 guerrillas have been killed in fighting in Eritrea.

1980: The “Miracle on Ice” took place in Lake Placid, New York, as the United States Olympic hockey team upset the Soviets, 4-3. (The US team went on to win the gold medal.)

1986: Philippines armed forces break with the Government of President Ferdinand E Marcos, precipitating his downfall.

1990: Last Stalin statue topples in Mongolian capital of Ulan Bator.

1991: US President George Bush demands that Saddam Hussein begin unconditional withdrawal from Kuwait by noon of following day or risk ground war with allied forces.

1992: Shiite militias in Lebanon agree not to fire rockets into Israel, ending a week of heavy fighting with Israeli troops.

1993: Artillery duels between Israel's militia and pro-Iranian guerrillas kill a UN peacekeeper and a villager in southern Lebanon.

1994: US authorities say that the Central Intelligence Agency's (CIA) former top Soviet spycatcher Aldrich Hazen Ames actually spied for the Soviet Union. He is later sentenced to life in prison.

1995: France accuses five Americans of political and economic spying and orders them to leave the country.

1996: Russia and the head of the International Monetary Fund reach a deal for a loan of more than US$10 billion.

1997: Fleeing fighting, 30,000 refugees from Rwanda and Burundi leave their refugee camp in eastern Zaire. Scientists in Scotland announce they have succeeded in cloning an adult mammal, producing a lamb named “Dolly”. (Dolly, however, was later put down after a short life marred by premature aging and disease.)

1998: Tamil separatist rebel gunboats attack a 12-ship convoy carrying soldiers to northern Sri Lanka, killing up to 80 people.

1999: Fighting flares in Kosovo between ethnic Albanians and the Yugoslav army as the deadline for peace talks in France nears.

2000: Space shuttle Endeavor and its crew of six return to Earth with more than a week's worth of radar images that will be transformed into the finest maps of the planet.

2001: In a landmark human rights decision, the UN International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia find three Bosnian Serb soldiers guilty of raping, torturing and enslaving Muslim women during the 1991-95 ethnic conflicts between the Serbs, Croats and Muslims in Bosnia.

2002: Angolan officials say government troops killed Jonas Savimbi, leader of the rebel National Union for the Total Independence of Angola, in a gun battle between soldiers and rebel members.

2005: Icelandic immigration authorities agree to grant the former American chess champion Bobby Fischer a special passport for foreigners that would allow him to travel to Western Europe.

2006: Insurgents disguised as police trigger bombs inside one of Iraq's most famous Shiite shrines, destroying its golden dome and triggering reprisal attacks on Sunni mosques.

2007: The UN nuclear watchdog announces findings that Iran has expanded its uranium enrichment programme instead of complying with a UN Security Council ultimatum to freeze it, clearing the way for harsher sanctions against Tehran.

2008: Turkish troops launch a ground incursion across the border into Iraq in pursuit of separatist Kurdish rebels, escalating Turkey's conflict with the militants. Singer-actress Jennifer Lopez gives birth to twins, a girl and a boy. Civil rights activist Johnnie Carr dies in Montgomery, Alabama, at age 97.

2009: European leaders mount a united front against global economic crisis, proposing stricter market regulation and caps on executive salaries.

2010: A former airport shuttle driver accused of buying beauty supplies to make bombs for an attack on New York City subways pleads guilty, admitting he agreed to conduct an al-Qaeda-led “martyrdom plan” because of US involvement in his native Afghanistan.

2011: Two Iranian warships sail from the Suez Canal into the Mediterranean, the first such trip in at least three decades, eliciting Israeli charges that Tehran is seeking to dominate the Middle East.

2012: Syrian gunners pound an opposition stronghold where the last dispatches from a veteran, American-born war correspondent chronicled the suffering of civilians caught in the relentless shelling. An intense morning barrage killed her and a French photojournalist — two of 74 deaths reported that Wednesday in Syria.

2013: The Justice Department joins a lawsuit against disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong alleging the former seven-time Tour de France champion had concealed his use of performance-enhancing drugs and defrauded his long-time sponsor, the US Postal Service.

2017: The Donald Trump Administration in the US lifts federal guidelines that say transgender students should be allowed to use public school bathrooms and locker rooms matching their chosen gender identity. Most of the Dakota Access pipeline opponents abandon their protest camp ahead of a government deadline to get off the federal land.


George Washington, first US president (1732-1799); Arthur Schopenhauer, German philosopher (1788-1860); Frederick Chopin, Polish composer (1810-1849); John Mills, British actor (1908-2005); Jonathan Demme, US director (1944-2017); Drew Barrymore, US actress (1975- ); James Blunt, British singer (1974- )

— AP

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