This Day in History – October 20
This is the 293rd day of 2023. There are 72 days left in the year.
1969: The first National Heroes’ Day in Jamaica is celebrated on this day.
1945: Egypt, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon warn the US that creation of a Jewish State could lead to war in Middle East; the Arab League is formed.
1603: A Chinese uprising in the Philippines fails after 23,000 are killed.
1792: US President George Washington writes about religious differences as the cause of the world’s troubles: “Of all the animosities which have existed among mankind, those which are caused by a difference of sentiments in religion appear to be the most inveterate and distressing and ought to be deprecated.”
1897: The king of Korea proclaims himself emperor, and Russia and Japan intervene.
1947: The House Un-American Activities Committee opens hearings into alleged communist influence and infiltration within the motion picture industry.
1968: Former First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy marries Greek shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis on his privately owned island of Skorpios in the Ionian Sea.
1991: An earthquake strikes the Himalayan foothills in India, killing at least 341 people and destroying tens of thousands of homes.
1993: NATO defence ministers agree to offer former Warsaw Pact states and neutral European countries “partnerships for peace” as a first step toward qualifying for full membership in the alliance.
2003: Italian officials find the bodies of 13 African immigrants who died at sea in a small boat en route from Libya to Italy; survivors of the passage say a total of at least 63 people had died of hunger and cold, and dozens of the dead were thrown overboard.
2004: Two Muslim girls who refuse to remove their head scarves in class are expelled from their schools, and two more risk the same fate as officials begin taking action against those who defy a new French law banning conspicuous religious symbols from public schools.
2005: A UN investigation concludes that high-ranking Syrian and Lebanese security officials were involved in the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.
2007: Radio Shabelle’s Bashir Nor Gedi, critical of both the Somali Government and the Islamic militants who have been trying to topple it, is killed outside his home in the Somali capital, the eighth journalist slain in the country for the year.
2009: The Vatican announces that it is making it easier for Anglicans to convert to Roman Catholicism — a surprise move designed to entice traditionalists opposed to women priests, openly gay clergy, and the blessing of same-sex unions.
2010: The United States says Pakistan should support Afghanistan’s peace talks with the Taliban, and presses Pakistan to take stronger military action against militant groups sheltering within its borders.
2011: Moammar Gadhafi, Libya’s dictator for 42 years until he was ousted in an uprising-turned-civil war, is killed by rebel forces following a revolt that received international military assistance.
2014: Dominican-born fashion designer Oscar de la Renta — whose work in blending European luxury with American ease helped define standards of elegant dressing among socialites, US first ladies, and red-carpet celebrities — dies in Connecticut.
2016: US President Barack Obama defends his health-care programme — long a target of Republicans and at the time criticised by some Democrats — saying millions of Americans “now know the financial security of health insurance” because of the Affordable Care Act.
2020: The US Justice Department sues Google for having an illegal monopoly regarding searches and search advertising.
Bela Lugosi, Hungarian-American actor (Dracula) (1882-1956); Don Stephen Senanayake, first prime minister of Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) (1884-1952); Mickey Mantle, American baseball player (1931-1995); Christiane Nüsslein-Volhard, German geneticist (1942- ); Snoop Dogg, US rapper (1971- ); Kamla Harris, US vice-president and senator (1964- )
– AP/ Jamaica Observer