Posts Tagged ‘United Nations Charter

08
Aug
08

On This Day 8-08-08: Nixon Resigns

Nixon resigns

In an evening televised address, President Richard M. Nixon announces his intention to become the first president in American history to resign. With impeachment proceedings underway against him for his involvement in the Watergate affair, Nixon was finally bowing to pressure from the public and Congress to leave the White House. “By taking this action,” he said in a solemn address from the Oval Office, “I hope that I will have hastened the start of the process of healing which is so desperately needed in America.”

“Nixon resigns.” 2008. The History Channel website. 7 Aug 2008, 01:34 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=tdihArticleCategory&id=6983.

Vice President Agnew under attack

Vice President Agnew branded reports that he took kickbacks from government contracts in Maryland as “damned lies.” Agnew had taken a lot of heat in the media when he assumed a lead position as Nixon’s point man on Vietnam. He frequently attacked the student protest movement, blaming the intellectual community, which he referred to as “impudent snobs,” for campus unrest. Despite the charges of bribery and income tax evasion, Agnew vowed that he would never resign and blamed his troubles on the press, who, he said, were out to get him for his controversial stand on the war. Ultimately, however, he resigned from office on October 10, 1973.

“Vice President Agnew under attack.” 2008. The History Channel website. 7 Aug 2008, 01:28 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=tdihArticleCategory&id=1253.

 

1588 – The Spanish Armada was defeated by the English fleet ending an invasion attempt.

1815 – Napoleon Bonaparte set sail for St. Helena, in the South Atlantic. The remainder of his life was spent there in exile.

1844 – After the killing of Joseph Smith, Brigham Young was chosen to lead the Mormons.

1866 – African-American explorer Matthew A. Henson was born. Henson, along with Robert Peary and their Eskimo guide, were the first people to reach the North Pole.

1876 – Thomas Edison received a patent for the mimeograph. The mimeograph was a “method of preparing autographic stencils for printing.”

1899 – The refrigerator was patented by A.T. Marshall.

1911 – The number of representatives in the U.S. House of Representatives was established at 435. There was one member of Congress for every 211,877 residents.

1940 – The German Luftwaffe began a series of daylight air raids on Great Britain.

1942 – Six Nazi saboteurs were executed in Washington after conviction. Two others were cooperative and received life in prison.

1945 – The United Nations Charter was signed by U.S. President Truman.

1953 – The U.S. and South Korea initiated a mutual security pact.

1966 – Michael DeBakey became the first surgeon to install an artificial heart pump in a patient.

1978 – The U.S. launched Pioneer Venus II, which carried scientific probes to study the atmosphere of Venus.

1994 – Representatives from China and Taiwan signed a cooperation agreement.

2000 – The submarine H.L. Hunley was raised from ocean bottom after 136 years. The sub had been lost during an attack on the U.S.S. Housatonic in 1864. The Hunley was the first submarine in history to sink a warship.

 

Soviets declare war on Japan; invade Manchuria

On this day in 1945, the Soviet Union officially declares war on Japan, pouring more than 1 million Soviet soldiers into Japanese-occupied Manchuria, northeastern China, to take on the 700,000-strong Japanese army.

The dropping of the bomb on Hiroshima by the Americans did not have the effect intended: unconditional surrender by Japan. Half of the Japanese inner Cabinet, called the Supreme War Direction Council, refused to surrender unless guarantees about Japan’s future were given by the Allies, especially regarding the position of the emperor, Hirohito. The only Japanese civilians who even knew what happened at Hiroshima were either dead or suffering terribly.

Japan had not been too worried about the Soviet Union, so busy with the Germans on the Eastern front. The Japanese army went so far as to believe that they would not have to engage a Soviet attack until spring 1946. But the Soviets surprised them with their invasion of Manchuria, an assault so strong (of the 850 Japanese soldiers engaged at Pingyanchen, 650 were killed or wounded within the first two days of fighting) that Emperor Hirohito began to plead with his War Council to reconsider surrender. The recalcitrant members began to waver.

“Soviets declare war on Japan; invade Manchuria.” 2008. The History Channel website. 7 Aug 2008, 01:25 http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history.do?action=Article&id=6544.

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