Friday, October 11

Today is Friday, October 11, the 284th day of 2013. There are 81 days left in the year.

Highlights in history on this date:

1531 – Swiss Catholics defeat Protestants at Battle of Kappel, and the Protestant leader Huldrych Zwingli is killed.

1776 – The first naval battle of Lake Champlain is fought during the American Revolution.

1779 – Polish nobleman Casimir Pulaski is killed fighting for American independence at battle of Savannah, Georgia.

1797 – Dutch fleet is defeated by British off Camperdown, Holland.

1811 – The first steam-powered ferryboat, the Juliana, is put into operation in the United States between New York City and Hoboken, New Jersey.

1828 – Russians occupy Varna, now in Bulgaria, in war against Turkey.

1890 – The Daughters of the American Revolution, a nonprofit organization for the descendants of individuals who aided in achieving American independence, is founded in Washington, D.C.

1899 – The Boer War begins in South Africa, with Transvaal and the Orange Free State attacking the British.

1933 – Latin American countries sign Rio de Janeiro nonaggression pact.

1942 – World War II Battle of Cape Esperance begins in the Solomon Islands, resulting in an American victory over the Japanese.

1946 – Roman Catholic Archbishop Aloysius Stepinatz of Yugoslavia is convicted on charges of provoking racial hatred and of forcibly converting Serbs to Catholicism.

1954 – Russia announces it will end its 10-year occupation of Port Arthur by June 1955 and give Communist China sole authority over the Manchurian naval base.

1958 – The American lunar probe Pioneer 1 is launched; but fails to go as far as planned, falling back to Earth, and burning up in the atmosphere.

1963 – United Nations condemns repression in South Africa by 106-1 vote.

1968 – Apollo 7, the first manned Apollo mission, is launched; a cyclone that struck Bay of Bengal in India leaves half a million people homeless.

1980 – Police in India’s southernmost state, Tamil Nadu, kill 12 members of the Naxalites, a Maoist extremist group committed to violent confrontation with government authorities.

1984 – Space shuttle Challenger astronaut Kathy Sullivan becomes the first American woman to walk in space.

1987 – Indian peacekeeping troops, using artillery and mortars, kill more than 120 Tamil rebels on Jaffna peninsula in Sri Lanka.

1992 – Voters in Lebanon’s Kesrouan district elect five deputies, completing the country’s first parliamentary elections in 20 years. But its legitimacy is eroded with most of the country’s Christians boycotting the vote.

1993 – U.S. President Bill Clinton defends his administration’s foreign policy and assails efforts by members of Congress to limit the president’s authority to commit U.S. armed forces to peacekeeping efforts in foreign countries.

1996 – American military forces begin withdrawing from Bosnia.

1997 – Police in Germany arrest some 200 leftists and neo-Nazis to prevent clashes at a banned “chaos day” demonstration organized by right-wing radicals.

1998 – Drawing criticism from Jewish leaders, the pope canonizes Edith Stein, who was born Jewish but converted to Catholicism and died in Auschwitz.

1999 – Israel confirms that 400 Cuban Jews were brought to the country in the past five years in an operation that had the blessing of Cuban leader Fidel Castro.

2000 – Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak and Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat meet in Jerusalem with U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan, to mediate a truce and win the return of three Israeli soldiers captured by Lebanese guerrillas.

2001 – Colombian rebels release two German hostages after holding them for almost three months.

2002 – French Defense Minister Michele Alliot-Marie says investigators found traces of explosives that indicate an explosion and fire aboard a French oil tanker off the coast of Yemen on October 6 was the result of a terrorist attack.

2004 – The U.N. nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency, expresses concern at the disappearance of high-precision equipment from Iraq’s nuclear facilities that could be used to make nuclear weapons.

2006 – Japan orders a total ban on North Korean imports and declares that ships from the impoverished nation are prohibited from entering Japanese ports as punishment for its apparent nuclear test.

2007 – A bomb explodes at a famous Muslim shrine in northern India, killing at least two people and wounding 17 others after dusk as hundreds of men and women break the daily fasts they observed during the holy month of Ramadan.

2008 – A strong earthquake hits Chechnya and other parts of Russia’s North Caucasus, killing at least 12 people and damaging scores of hospitals, schools and other buildings.

2009 – A week of terror strikes across Pakistan, capped by a stunning assault on army headquarters, shows the Taliban have rebounded and appear determined to shake the nation’s resolve as the military plans for an offensive against the group’s stronghold on the Afghan border.

2010 – NATO says U.S. forces may have detonated a grenade that killed a captive British aid worker during a rescue attempt to free Linda Grove in eastern Afghanistan. British Prime Minister David Cameron defends the mission, saying his government authorized it only after learning that Norgrove’s life was in grave danger.

2011 – The Obama administration accuses agents of the Iranian government of being involved in a plan to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the United States.

2012 — Escalating tensions with Russia, Turkey defends its forced landing of a Syrian passenger jet en route from Moscow to Damascus, saying it was carrying Russian ammunition and military equipment destined for the Syrian Defense Ministry.

Today’s Birthdays:

Eleanor Roosevelt, U.S. first lady and Nobel Peace Prize laureate (1884-1962); Francois Mauriac, French writer and Nobel laureate (1885-1970); Daryl Hall, U.S. singer (1946–); Luke Perry, U.S. actor (1966–).

Thought For Today:

In America, an hour is forty minutes — German saying.

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