Posts Tagged ‘Apartheid

15
Aug
08

On This Day, 8-15-2008: Woodstock

Woodstock begins in upstate New York

The Woodstock Music and Art Fair, “An Aquarian Exposition,” opens at Max Yasgur’s dairy farm in upstate New York. Promoters expected the music festival, modeled after the famous Monterey Pop Festival, to attract up to 200,000 for the weekend, but nearly a half a million people converged on the concert site. Promoters soon realized that they could not control access to the site and opened it up to all comers free of charge. Because of the unexpected size of the audience, volunteers were needed to help alleviate many of the logistics problems, while helicopters were used to fly in food, doctors, and medical supplies, as well as many of the musical acts that performed during the three-day festival. Despite rain and mud, the audience enjoyed non-stop performances by singers like Richie Havens, Janis Joplin, Arlo Guthrie, Joe Cocker, and Joan Baez, as well as the bands Creedence Clearwater Revival; The Grateful Dead; The Jefferson Airplane; Sly and the Family Stone; and Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young. Although many different types of people attended the festival, many were members of the counterculture, often referred to as “hippies,” who rejected materialism and authority, experimented with illicit drugs, and actively protested against the Vietnam War. Much of the music had a decided anti-war flavor. Representative of this genre was the “Fixin’ to Die Rag” by Country Joe and the Fish. This song and its chorus (“And it’s one, two, three, what are we fighting for…Don’t ask me, I don’t give a damn, next stop is Vietnam….And it’s five, six, seven, open up the pearly gates…There ain’t no time to wonder why…Whoopie, we’re all gonna die!”) became an anti-war classic. Jimi Hendrix closed the concert with a freeform solo guitar performance of “The Star Spangled Banner.” Woodstock became a symbol of the 1960s American counterculture and a milestone in the history of rock music.

On Aug. 12, 1994, the much-publicized Woodstock II music festival takes place in Saugerties, New York, near the site of the legendary Woodstock concert of 1969. An estimated 300,000 people attended the event, marked–as was the original–by bad weather and pervasive mud. Some 50 bands and singers performed, including the Neville Brothers, Nine Inch Nails, Bob Dylan, Green Day, Jimmy Cliff, and Crosby, Stills and Nash.”Woodstock begins in upstate New York.” 2008. The History Channel website. 15 Aug 2008, 04:22 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=1271.

Jimi Hendrix:  The Star Spangled Banner

 

The Japanese emperor speaks

On this day in 1945, Emperor Hirohito broadcasts the news of Japan’s surrender to the Japanese people.

Although Tokyo had already communicated to the Allies its acceptance of the surrender terms of the Potsdam Conference several days earlier, and a Japanese news service announcement had been made to that effect, the Japanese people were still waiting to hear an authoritative voice speak the unspeakable: that Japan had been defeated.

That voice was the emperor’s. In Japan’s Shinto religious tradition, the emperor was also divine; his voice was the voice of a god. And on August 15, that voice-heard over the radio airwaves for the very first time–confessed that Japan’s enemy “has begun to employ a most cruel bomb, the power of which to do damage is indeed incalculable, taking the toll of many innocent lives.” This was the reason given for Japan’s surrender. Hirohito’s oral memoirs, published and translated after the war, evidence the emperor’s fear at the time that “the Japanese race will be destroyed if the war continues.”

A sticking point in the Japanese surrender terms had been Hirohito’s status as emperor. Tokyo wanted the emperor’s status protected; the Allies wanted no preconditions. There was a compromise. The emperor retained his title; Gen. Douglas MacArthur believed his at least ceremonial presence would be a stabilizing influence in postwar Japan. But Hirohito was forced to disclaim his divine status. Japan lost more than a war-it lost a god.”The Japanese emperor speaks.”2008. The History Channel website. 15 Aug 2008, 04:33 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=6552.

 On This Day

1057 – Macbeth, the King of Scotland, was killed by the son of King Duncan.

1848 – The dental chair was patented by M. Waldo Hanchett.

1914 – The Panama Canal was officially opened to commercial traffic as an American ship sailed from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean.

1918 – Diplomatic ties between the U.S. and Russia were severed.

1935 – Will Rogers and Wiley Post were killed in an airplane crash in near Point Barrow, AK.

1939 – “The Wizard of Oz” premiered in Hollywood, CA. Judy Garland became famous for the movie’s song “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.”

1944 – The Allied forces of World War II landed in southern France.

1947 – India became independent from Britain and was divided into the countries of India and Pakistan. India had been under British about 200 years.

1948 – The Republic of Korea was proclaimed.

1961 – East German workers began construction of the Berlin Wall.

1971 – U.S. President Nixon announced a 90-day freeze on wages, rents and prices.

1986 – The U.S. Senate approved a package of economic sanctions against South Africa. The ban included the importing of steel, uranium, textiles, coal, and produce from South Africa.

1997 – The U.S. Justice Department decided not to prosecute FBI officials in connection with the deadly 1992 Ruby Ridge siege in Idaho. The investigation dealt with an alleged cover-up.

2001 – Chandra Levy’s parents appeared on CNN’s “Larry King Live.” They discussed Levy’s disappearance on April 30, 2001. 

1968 — Heavy fighting erupts in and around the DMZ

Heavy fighting intensifies in and around the DMZ, as South Vietnamese and U.S. troops engage a North Vietnamese battalion. In a seven and a half hour battle, 165 enemy troops were killed. At the same time, U.S. Marines attacked three strategic positions just south of the DMZ, killing 56 North Vietnamese soldiers.”Heavy fighting erupts in and around the DMZ.” 2008. The History Channel website. 15 Aug 2008, 04:41 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=tdihArticleCategory&id=1272.

1969 — Regional Forces victorious

South Vietnamese officials report that regional forces killed 308 Communist troops in four days of heavy fighting along a coastal strip south of the DMZ. This was one of the biggest victories of the war for the regional forces in the war and was extremely significant since one of the prime objectives of Nixon’s Vietnamization policy was the strengthening of the regional/popular forces so that they could help secure the countryside.”Regional Forces victorious.” 2008. The History Channel website. 15 Aug 2008, 04:48 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=tdihArticleCategory&id=1273.

1970 — North Vietnamese capture Vietnamese marine base

In South Vietnam, North Vietnamese troops increase operations along the DMZ. This activity had begun on August 12 and continued until the 15th. The North Vietnamese captured the South Vietnamese marine base at Ba Ho, two miles south of the DMZ; most of the defenders were killed or wounded, but the Communists suffered 200 dead in taking the base.”North Vietnamese capture Vietnamese marine base.” 2008. The History Channel website. 15 Aug 2008, 04:43 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=tdihArticleCategory&id=1274.

 

You don’t have to teach people how to be human. You have to teach them how to stop being inhuman.
Eldridge Cleaver 

Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

The Declaration of Independence

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