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Wednesday, January 21, 1998

  • Today's Events
  • On Horizon
  • On This Day
  • Newslink
  • Holidays & more
  • Almanac archive
  • "If Jerry Springer had talked about mad cow disease, it would have zero impact. Rosie O'Donnell, Geraldo, et cetera, limited impact. When Oprah said it, it had a big impact."

    -- Jeff Borden of Crains Chicago Business

    Today's events

  • Pope John Paul II begins his first visit to Cuba.

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    On the horizon

  • On Thursday, January 22, National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League chapters hold events marking the 25th anniversary of the Supreme Court's Roe vs. Wade decision.

  • On Friday, January 23, the formal sentencing for Mir Aimal Kasi is to be handed down. In November, a jury recommended he receive the death penalty for fatally shooting two CIA employees in January 1993.

  • On Saturday, January 24, the National Research Council conducts a workshop on failed stars and super planets.

  • On Sunday, January 25, the Denver Broncos and defending champ Green Bay Packers battle it out in the Super Bowl in San Diego.

  • On Monday, January 26, European Union foreign ministers meet in Brussels.

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    On this day

  • In 1781, in America, the Department of Foreign Affairs of the Continental Government appointed the first consular officer. Thomas Barclay took up his post as vice-consul in Paris at a salary of $1,000.

  • In 1793, King Louis XVI of France was guillotined for treason. He had ruled since 1774 and had remained king for three years after the Revolution of 1789.

  • In 1899, Lord Kitchener of Britain was appointed governor-general of Sudan.

  • In 1901, Elisha Gray, U.S. inventor who contested the first patent for the telephone with Alexander Graham Bell, died.

  • In 1911, the first Monte Carlo motor rally began.

  • In 1924, Soviet leader Lenin, who led the Bolsheviks to victory in the 1917 October Revolution, died of a brain hemmorrhage.

  • In 1927, in the United States, act three of Gounod's opera "Faust" became the first opera to be broadcast over a national network. It was broadcast from the Chicago Civic Opera.

  • In 1932, Lytton Giles Strachey, British biographer, critic and member of the Bloomsbury Group, died.

  • In 1936, in Britain, King Edward VIII was proclaimed king following the death of his father, King George V. He remained king until December 1936 when he abdicated and was succeeded by George VI.

  • In 1942, German forces under Erwin Rommel launched a counter-offensive in North Africa. Caught by surprise, the British were forced into a retreat across the desert.

  • In 1950, George Orwell (Eric Arthur Blair), British essayist and novelist, notably of "Animal Farm" and Nineteen Eighty-four," died.

  • In 1954, the USS Nautilus, the first nuclear-powered submarine, was launched.

  • In 1959, Cecil Blount de Mille, U.S. film director and screenwriter, died; his reputation was based on vast film spectaculars such as "The Ten Commandments."

  • In 1965, Hassan Ali Mansur, prime minister of Persia, was assassinated allegedly by the extremist religious group Fidayan-i Islam. Abbas Huveida was appointed prime minister on 27 January.

  • In 1976, two Concorde aircraft entered service simultaneously with flights from London to Bahrain and Paris to Rio de Janeiro. They were the first scheduled passenger services by supersonic aircraft.

  • In 1976, Western newspapers, including Britain's Financial Times and New York Times, went on sale in the Soviet Union for the first time.

  • In 1980, an Iran Air Boeing 727 flying from Mashad to Tehran crashed on a mountainside in fog, killing all 128 on board.

  • In 1984, Britain's first test-tube triplets, a girl and two boys, were born to a couple in London.

  • In 1990, the East German Communist party expelled former leader Egon Krenz and 13 other politburo members.

  • In 1994, Belgian Deputy Prime Minister Guy Coeme and two other leading Socialist politicians resigned over a bribery scandal.

  • In 1996, Mufti Fatkhulla Sharipov, the pro-Moscow Muslim spiritual leader of Tajikistan, was shot dead at his home west of Dushanbe.

  • In 1997, German Chancellor Helmut Kohl and Czech Prime Minister Vaclav Klaus signed a declaration cementing post-war reconciliation between Germany and the Czech Republic.

  • In 1997, "Colonel" Tom Parker, the manager who helped guide Elvis Presley's rise from young hopeful to the king of rock 'n' roll, died.

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    Pope John Paul II makes history today as he steps onto Cuban soil, the first pope to do so. Follow his historic trip with CNN Interactive's special Papal Visit site. For a background look at the pope, visit the official Vatican site.


    Holidays and more

  • It is Errol Barrow's Day in Barbados.

  • Dominican Republic celebrates Feast of Our Lady of Altagracia.

  • Actor Robbie Benson is 42.

  • Actress Geena Davis is 41.

  • Actor Mac Davis is 56.

  • Opera singer Placido Domingo is 57.

  • Actress Jill Eikenberry is 51.

  • Washington Gov. Gary Locke is 48.

  • Golfer Jack Nicklaus is 58.

  • Musician Billy Ocean is 48.

  • Basketball player Hakeem Olajuwon is 35.

  • Actor Paul Scofield is 76.

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    Sources: Associated Press,
    Chase's Calendar of Events 1997, J.P. Morgan

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