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  • This day in Military History

    April 15

    15 April



    1783 – Preliminary articles of peace ending the American Revolutionary War (or American War of Independence) are ratified.

    1791 – Surveyor General Andrew Ellicott consecrated the southern tip of the triangular District of Columbia at Jones Point.

    1813 – U.S. troops under James Wilkinson sieged the Spanish-held city of Mobile in future state of Alabama.

    1861 – Three days after the attack on Fort Sumter, S.C., President Lincoln declared a state of insurrection and called for 75,000 Volunteers to quell the insurrection that soon became the American Civil War.

    1864 – General Steele’s Union troops occupied Camden, Arkansas.

    1865President Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the United States, dies from an assassin’s bullet.

    1885 – Naval forces land at Panama to protect American interests during revolution.

    1900 – Filipino guerrillas launch a surprise attack on U.S. infantry and begin a four-day siege of Catubig, Philippines. The Siege of Catubig was a long and bloody engagement in which Filipino guerrillas launched a surprise attack against a detachment of U.S. infantry, and then forced them to abandon the town after a four-day siege. The attack was very similar to the Balangiga Massacre farther south of Catubig a year later.

    1912 – USS Chester and USS Salem sailed from MA to assist RMS Titanic survivors.

    1918 – First Marine Aviation Force formed at Marine Flying Field, Miami, FL.

    1943 – US forces prepare for an invasion of the Aleutian Island, Attu, held by the Japanese. The US 7th Division, preparing for deployment in North Africa, is earmarked for the operation.

    1944 – The US 15th Air Force sends 500 sorties to Bucharest and Ploesti.

    1944U.S. plans Operation Wedlock, an invasion of the Kurile Islands of northern Japan.

    1945 – US troops occupied the concentration camp at Colditz.

    1945 – Commenting on the death of American President Franklin Roosevelt in his Order of the Day, Adolf Hitler proclaimed: “Now that fate has removed from the earth the greatest war criminal of all time, the turning point of this war will be decided.”

    1945 – On Okinawa, the US 6th Marine Division assaults Yae Hill but is driven back by the Japanese defense.

    1945Units of the US 9th Army, which have crossed the Elbe River near Magdeburg, are forced to retreat.

    1945 – In Italy, both US 5th and British 8th Armies continue their attacks. Elements of the Polish 2nd Corps (part of British 8th Army) has reached the Sillario River after crossing the Santero River.

    1951Lieutenant General James A. Van Fleet took command of Eighth Army.

    1952 – President Harry Truman signed the official Japanese peace treaty.

    1952 – The 1st B-52 prototype test flight was made.

    1961 – US CIA pilots knocked out part of the Cuban air force.

    1961 – Launching of first nuclear-powered frigate, USS Bainbridge, at Quincy, MA.

    1962The first Marine air unit is sent to Vietnam. 15 Sikorsky UH-34D combat helicopters of the US 362nd Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron (HMM-362), arrive from the aircraft carrier Princeton. based near Soc Trang, 100 miles southwest of Saigon, the 450 Marines and their craft, as task unit dubbed ‘Shoofly’, reinforce the three US Army helicopter companies already in Vietnam, and carry supplies and troops to isolated or threatened villages and troop concentrations.

    1964 – US planes conduct an armed reconnaissance over Highways 7 and 8 in North Vietnam. They drop 9 tons of bombs on the boat landing at Muongsen. The operation includes the first night raid on North Vietnam by US planes; sites near Hanoi are being prepared to receive SAM II missiles from the USSR.

    1967 – Two US Air Force F-100 Supersabre jets miss intended targets, hitting South Vietnam Army battalion positions 23 miles east of Quinhon. 41 killed and at least 50 wounded.

    1968 – A USMC operation which will last 10 months begins around Khesahn, named Scotland II. It will result in a listed 3311 enemy casualties.

    1969 – The 173rd Airborne Brigade begins a pacification operation that will conclude on New Year’s Day 1971. Washington Green, through the An Lao Valley in Binhdinh Province will produce 1957 enemy casualties.

    1969 – North Korea shoots down a United States Navy EC-121 aircraft over the Sea of Japan, killing all 31 on board.

    1970As part of the third phase of U.S. troop withdrawals announced by President Nixon, the 1st Infantry Division departs Vietnam.

    1970 – Also part of the third phase of US withdrawal, a force of 12,900 marines depart South Vietnam. Units include the 26th marines, the 1st Antitank Battalion, most of the 1st Tank Battalion, 3rd Amphibian Tractor Battalion, and the 1st Shore Party battalion. There are now 429,200 US troops in Vietnam.

    1971 – North Vietnamese troops ambushed a company of Delta Raiders from the 101st Airborne Division near Fire Support Base Bastogne in Vietnam. The American troops were on a rescue mission.

    1971 – III MAF Redeployed to Okinawa after six years of service in Vietnam.

    1972 – North Vietnamese forces overrun Fire Base Charlie, 20 miles northwest of Kontum as part of their continuing Central Highlands offensive.

    1986 – The United States launches Operation El Dorado Canyon, its bombing raids against Libyan targets in response to a bombing in West Germany that killed two U.S. servicemen. The attack was carried out by the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps via air strikes, in response to the 1986 Berlin discotheque bombing. There were 40 reported Libyan casualties, and one US plane was shot down, resulting in the death of two airmen.

    1986 – The Libyan military (on orders from dictator Moammar Gadhafi) fired a missile (or missiles) at the Coast Guard LORAN Station Lampedusa, off the coast of Italy. The missile(s) missed by a wide margin and there were no casualties.

    2002Operation Mountain Lion began and was designed to find enemy fighters in the Gardez and Khost regions, destroy those that were there and deny them control of the area and an opportunity to reorganize their forces. Operation Mountain Lion was the first major initiative since Operation Anaconda, a 12-day running battle, which ended in March 2002 in the eastern Shah-i-Kot Mountains.


    2004 – The Pentagon told 20,000 US soldiers in Iraq that their tours would be extended.


    Last edited by Linedoggie; 15-04-2015, 12:34 PM.

  • #2
    April 16

    16 April
    1789 – George Washington left Mount Vernon, Va., for the first presidential inauguration in New York
    .
    1818 U.S. Senate ratified the Rush-Bagot amendment to form an unarmed U.S.-Canada border. The Rush-Bagot Agreement between Great Britain and the U.S. had to do with mutual disarmament on the Great Lakes. In the exchange of notes between British minister to the U.S. Charles Bagot and Richard Rush, Acting Secretary of State, the countries agreed to limits on their inland naval forces. A sequel to the Treaty of Ghent, the agreement was approved by the U.S. Senate on April 16, 1818.

    1862 – Confederate President Jefferson Davis approved conscription act for white males between 18 and 35.

    1862Battle at Dam No. 1 in Virginia. Part of the Battle of Yorktown or Siege of Yorktown that was fought from April 5 to May 4, 1862, as part of the Peninsula Campaign of the American Civil War. On April 16, the Union probed the defensive line at Dam No. 1, the point on the Warwick River near Lee’s Mill where Hancock had reported a potential weakness on April 6.

    1863Gunboats under Rear Admiral Porter engaged and ran past the Confederate batteries at Vicksburg shepherding Army transports to New Carthage below the Southern citadel.

    1917Vladimir Lenin, leader of the revolutionary Bolshevik Party, returns to Petrograd after a decade of exile to take the reins of the Russian Revolution.

    1942 – Japanese overcome all resistance on Cebu and land 4000 troops on Panay.

    1944 – The destroyer USS Laffey survived horrific damage from attacks by 22 Japanese aircraft off Okinawa.

    1944 – The Coast Guard-manned destroyer escort (DE) USS Joyce, along with her sister ship USS Peterson and a Navy DE sank the U-550 off New York after the U-boat torpedoed a tanker that was part of a convoy the warships were escorting to England.

    1945 – In his first speech to Congress, President Truman pledged to carry out the war and peace policies of his predecessor, President Roosevelt.

    1945Just four days after President Franklin Roosevelt passed away–the federal government tacked another year on to the term of one of Roosevelt’s key pieces of wartime legislation, the Lend-Lease Act. All told, the U.S. funneled $50.6 billion worth of Lend-Lease aid to the Allies during the war, the majority of which went to Britain and the USSR.

    1945 – US 7th Army units reach the outskirts of Nuremberg. The special prisoner of war camp at Colditz is liberated by other Allied units during the day.

    1945 – The US 77th Infantry Division lands on the small island of Ie Shima and encounters heavy Japanese resistance.

    1945 – American forces land on Fort Frank and find it abandoned. This completes the capture of the islands in Manila Bay.

    1946 – 1st US launch of captured V-2 rocket was at White Sands, NM. It reached 8 km.

    1947Multimillionaire and financier Bernard Baruch, in a speech given during the unveiling of his portrait in the South Carolina House of Representatives, coins the term “Cold War” to describe relations between the United States and the Soviet Union.

    1947 – Act of Congress gives Navy Nurse Corps members commissioned rank.

    1951 – General and Mrs. MacArthur departed Haneda Airport for the United States. Nearly 500,000 Japanese turned out to say goodbye.

    1953 – During the Battle of Pork Chop Hill, the 17th and 31st Infantry Regiments of the 7th Infantry Division were hit hard by the Communist Chinese and sustained heavy casualties.

    1954Vice-President Nixon tells a convention of newspaper editors that the United States may be ‘putting our own boys in [Indochina]…regardless of allied support.’

    1961 – In a nationally broadcast speech, Cuban leader Fidel Castro declares that he is a Marxist–Leninist and that Cuba is going to adopt Communism.

    1961 – Pres. Kennedy called off the CIA air strikes in Cuba. The message did not reach the 1,511 commandos headed for the Bay of Pigs.

    1972From Cape Canaveral, Florida, Apollo 16, the fifth of six U.S. lunar landing missions, is successfully launched on its 238,000-mile journey to the moon.

    1972In an effort to help blunt the ongoing North Vietnamese Nguyen Hue Offensive, the United States resumes bombing of Hanoi and Haiphong after a four-year lull. In the first use of B-52s against both Hanoi and Haiphong, and the first attacks against both cities since November 1968, 18 B-52s and about 100 U.S. Navy and Air Force fighter-bombers struck supply dumps near Haiphong’s harbor. Sixty fighter-bombers hit petroleum storage facilities near Hanoi, with another wave of planes striking later in the afternoon.

    1977 – The ban on women attending West Point was lifted.

    1999 – President Clinton defended NATO airstrikes against Serbian targets during visits to Michigan and Massachusetts, saying U.S. involvement in Kosovo was a moral imperative.

    2000In Washington DC police blocked some 10,000 protesters from disrupting the meetings of the World Bank and the IMF. Finance ministers and central bankers issued a statement that pledged to seek greater debt relief for the poorest countries and to reform the IMF to prevent future financial crises.

    2003 – During a visit to a fighter jet factory in St. Louis, President Bush called for lifting economic sanctions against Iraq as commanders of both the U.S. military and the reconstruction effort prepared to move into the country.

    2003 – NATO agreed to take command of the UN peacekeeping mission in Afghanistan.2004 – Pres. Bush said he is handing over the lead role in the Iraqi political transition to the UN’s top envoy.

    2004 – In Iraq U.S. military and civilian officials met with leaders from Fallujah, the first known direct negotiations between Americans and city representatives since the siege of Fallujah began April 5

    Comment


    • #3
      April 17
      17 April

      1778 – Sloop-of-war Ranger captures a British brig.

      1797 – Sir Ralph Abercromby attacks San Juan, Puerto Rico, in what would be one of the largest invasions of the Spanish territories in America. The attack was carried out facing the historic town of Miramar. Lieutenant-General Sir Ralph Abercromby invaded the island of Puerto Rico with a force of 6,000-13,000 men, which included German soldiers and Royal Marines and a 60 to 64 ship armada.

      1805 – The Revenue cutter Louisiana engaged two pirates that had been fitted out at New Orleans. Twenty shots were exchanged but the pirate vessels escaped.

      1808 – The Bayonne Decree by Napoleon I of France ordered the seizure of U.S. ships on the pretext that they were in violation of the U. S. Embargo Act (22 December 1807), resulting in over ten million dollars in United States goods and ships being confiscated.

      1824 – Russia abandoned all North American claims south of 54′ 40′.

      1861 – The Virginia State Convention voted to secede from the Union. Virginia became the eighth state to secede from the Union.

      1861 – U.S.S. Powhatan, Lieutenant D. D. Porter, arrived off Pensacola. Under her protecting guns, 600 troops on board steamer Atlantic were landed at Fort Pickens to complete its reinforcement. President Lincoln had stated “I want that fort saved at all hazards.” The President’s wish was fulfilled, and use of the best harbor on the Gulf was denied the Confederacy for the entire war, while serving the Union in*dispensably in the blockade and the series of devastating assaults from the sea that divided and de*stroyed the South.

      1863 – Grierson’s Raid begins – troops under Union Army Colonel Benjamin Grierson attack central Mississippi.

      1863 – Gunboats under Rear Admiral Porter engaged and ran past the Confederate batteries at Vicksburg shepherding Army transports to New Carthage below the Southern citadel.

      1864 – General Grant banned the trading of prisoners.

      1864 – Confederate forces attack Plymouth, North Carolina, in an attempt to recapture ports lost to the Union two years before. The four-day battle ended with the fall of Plymouth, but the Yankees kept the city bottled up with a flotilla on nearby Albemarle Sound.

      1864 – There was a bread revolt in Savannah, Georgia.

      1865 – Mary Surratt was arrested as a conspirator in the Lincoln assassination.

      1865 – The Confederate ironclad Jackson (previously Muscogee) was destroyed at Columbus, Georgia, after Union Army forces overran Southern defenses at the city in an attack that began the preceeding night

      1907 – The Ellis Island immigration center in New York Harbor processed a record 11,747 immigrants, part of a record 1,004,756 for the year. Between 1820 and 1970, the year 1907 saw the largest number of immigrants to the U.S., 1,285,349. Between 1905 and 1915, the annual immigration numbers topped 1 million six times.

      1917 – British and French forces around Ypres halt a second German offensive that had the objective of reaching the ports of northern France. The General Reich Luddendorf and the German General Staff begins laying plans for a third offensive.

      1943 – The US 8th Air Force carries out a daylight bombing raid on aircraft factories in Bremen. Of 115 B-17 bombers employed, 16 are lost on the mission.


      1943 – Lieutenant Ross P. Bullard and Boatswain’s Mate First Class C. S. “Mike” Hall boarded the U-175 at sea after their cutter, the CGC Spencer, blasted the U-boat to the surface with depth charges when the U-boat attempted to attack the convoy the Spencer was escorting. They were part of a boarding party sent to seize the U-boat before the Nazi crew could scuttle it. The damage to the U-boat was severe, however, and it sank after both had boarded it and climbed the conning tower. Both men ended up in the water as it slipped beneath the waves. Nevertheless, they carry the distinction of being the first American servicemen to board an enemy warship underway at sea since the War of 1812

      1944 – US B-17 and B-24 bombers attack Sofia, Bulgaria.

      1944 – US B-17 and B-24 bombers attack Belgrade, Yugoslavia.

      1945 – U.S. Lieutenant Colonel Boris T. Pash commandeers over half a ton of uranium at Strassfut, Germany, in an effort to prevent the Russians from developing an A-bomb.

      1945 – There are American landings in the Moro Gulf at Cotabatu.

      1951 – Operation DAUNTLESS continued to advance against weakened communist resistance in the 24th and 25th Infantry Division zones

      1960 – The International Control Commission, which oversees the implementation of the Geneva Agreements of 1954, agrees to A South Vietnamese government request for the United States to double it’s Military Advisory Assistance Group (MAAG) presence to 68
      1961 – The Bay of Pigs invasion begins when a CIA financed and trained group of Cuban refugees lands in Cuba and attempts to topple the communist government of Fidel Castro.

      1969 – Paris peace talks show no progress as Communist negotiators reject allied proposals for mutual withdrawal, demanding that US forces leave at once and unconditionally.

      1973 – The Senate Armed Services Committee begins a probe into allegations that the US Air Force made thousands of secret B-52 raids into Cambodia in 1969 and 1970 in violation of Cambodian neutrality.
      1975 – The Khmer Rouge troops capture Phnom Penh and government forces surrender.
      1986 – IBM produced its 1st megabit-chip.
      1986 – The bodies of American librarian Peter Kilburn and two Britons were found near Beirut; the three hostages had been slain in apparent retaliation for the U.S. raid on Libya

      1999 – The US launched the 505-foot Navy destroyer Winston S. Churchill at the Bath Iron Works in Maine.

      1999 – NATO forces launched the 25th night of bombing against Yugoslavia in the strongest attacks thus far. Gen. Wesley Clark, NATO’s commander, warned Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic to change his policies in Kosovo or see his military machine destroyed.

      1999 – In Iraq US fighter planes bombed anti-aircraft sites in the northern no-fly zone.

      2000 – In the Philippines Abu Sayyaf rebels on Basilan Island threatened to kidnap and kill Americans if the US does not release the men convicted for bombing the World Trade Center in New York.

      2001 – US envoys arrived in China to resolved issues of the US spy plane collision with a Chinese jet.

      2001 – In Mississippi voters decided to keep the Confederate emblem on the state flag by a margin of 65 to 35%.

      2002 – A US fighter jet accidentally dropped a laser-guided bomb on Canadian forces near Kandahar, Afghanistan, and 4 soldiers were killed. On Sep 12 two U.S. F-16 fighter pilots were charged with manslaughter and assault in the “friendly fire” bombing of Canadian troops that killed four soldiers and injured eight. In 2004 USAF pilot Maj. Harry Schmidt was found guilty of dereliction of duty. He received a reprimand and was docked a month’s pay.

      2003 – In the 30th day of Operation Iraqi Freedom American forces released more than 900 Iraqi prisoners, beginning the process of sorting through the thousands detained in the month-old war. Coalition forces still held 6,850 prisoners. The Bush administration planned to send in a 1,000-man team to search for weapons of mass destruction.

      2003 – US Special Forces captured Barzan Ibrahim Hasan al-Tikriti (5 of clubs), a half brother of Saddam Hussein. He was 3rd the list of 55 former Iraqi officials wanted by the US.

      2003 – The US Mobile Exploitation Team Alpha (MET Alpha) found an Iraqi scientist who led the them to sites that contained precursors for a banned toxic agent.

      Comment


      • #4
        April 18

        18 April

        1689Bostonians rise up in rebellion against Sir Edmund Andros. T

        1775In Massachusetts, British troops march out of Boston on a mission to confiscate the Patriot arsenal at Concord and to capture Patriot leaders Samuel Adams and John Hancock, known to be hiding at Lexington.

        1778 – John Paul Jones attacked the British revenue cutter Husar near the Isle of Man, but it escaped. Soon thereafter he raided Whitehaven and burned one coal ship.

        1805 – The Revenue cutter Louisiana recaptured the merchant brig Felicity from privateers off the mouth of the Mississippi River.

        1806Putatively hoping to locate sailors who had deserted the Royal Navy, the British began to impress American merchant ships. Though the deserters often took refuge on American vessels, the British often simply seized any sailors–deserters or no–who failed to prove their American citizenship. So, on this day in 1806, Congress fired back at England by passing the Nicholson Act (nee the Non-Importation Act), legislation which effectively shut the door on the importation of numerous British goods to America.

        1847 – U.S. forces defeated the Mexicans at Cerro Gordo in one of the bloodiest battle of the war.

        1861 – Colonel Robert E. Lee turned down an offer to command the Union armies. 1861 – Battle of Harpers Ferry, VA.

        1862Union mortar boats, Commander D. D. Porter, began a five day bombardment of Fort Jackson. Moored some 3,000 yards from Fort Jackson, they concentrated their heavy shells, up to 285 pounds, for six days and nights on this nearest fort from which they were hidden by intervening woods. The garrison heroically endured the fire and stuck to their guns.

        1862 – Confederate Congress, hoping to stem the constant sweeping of the seas and inland waters by the Union fleets, passed an act authorizing contracts for the purchase of not more than six ironclads to be paid for in cotton.

        1864 – Landing party from U.S.S. Commodore Read, Commander F. A. Parker, destroyed a Confederate base together with a quantity of equipment and supplies at Circus Point on the Rappahannock River, Virginia.

        1864At Poison Springs, Arkansas, Confederate soldiers under the command of General Samuel Maxey capture a Union forage train and slaughter black troops escorting the expedition. 1st Kansas Colored Infantry, was the first black unit in the army, comprised primarily of ex-slaves. The determined soldiers of the 1st Kansas stopped the first two Rebel attacks, but they were running low on ammunition. A third assault overwhelmed the Kansans, and the rout was on. Williams gathered the remnants of his force and retreated from the abandoned wagons. More than 300 Yankee troops were killed, wounded, or captured, while the Confederates lost just 13 killed and 81 wounded. Most shocking was the Rebel treatment of the black troops. No black troops were captured, and those left wounded on the battlefield were brutally killed, scalped, and stripped. The Washington Telegraph, the major Confederate newspaper in Arkansas, justified the atrocity by declaring “We cannot treat Negroes taken in arms as prisoners of war without a destruction of social system for which we contend.”

        1865 – Dr. Samuel A. Mudd originally claimed to have never met Booth during his initial interview with investigating detectives. Presidential assassin John Wilkes Booth, injured and fleeing Ford’s Theatre, had knocked on the door of Dr. Mudd for help.

        1865 – Confederate Gen Joseph Johnston surrendered to Gen W.T. Sherman in North Carolina.

        1934 – Hitler named Joachim von Ribbentrop, ambassador for disarmament.

        1942 – First issue of the newspaper for U.S. armed forces, Stars and Stripes, was published.

        1942From the decks of the USS Hornet, Col. Doolittle leads 16 B-25 bombers for a raid on Tokyo.

        1943An aircraft carrying the Commander of the Japanese Combined Fleet, Admiral Yamamoto, is shot down by P-38 Lighting fighters over Bougainville. Yamamoto is killed. This action is the result the interception of a coded Japanese message announcing a visit by Yamamoto. The Japanese fail to deduce that their codes are insecure.

        1943 – A massive convoy of 100 transport aircraft leaves Sicily with supplies for the Axis forces. At least half the planes are shot down by Allied fighters.

        1944 – American B-17 and B-24 bombers attack the Heinkel works at Oranienburg and other targets near Berlin. British Mosquito bombers strike Berlin.

        1945Ernie Pyle was killed by enemy fire on the island of Ie Shima.

        1945The last German forces resisting in the Ruhr Pocket surrender. Field Marshal Model, commanding German Army Group B inside the pocket, commits suicide. About 325,000 German prisoners have been taken in this area by the Allied forces. Meanwhile, the US 9th Army captures Magdeburg and troops of US 3rd Army cross the Czechoslovakian border after a rapid advance.

        1945 – Airship training for U.S. Coast Guard personnel (nine officers & 30 enlisted men) began at NAVAIRSTA Lakehurst, New Jersey.

        1949 – The keel for the aircraft carrier USS United States is laid down at Newport News Drydock and Shipbuilding. However, construction is canceled five days later, this would be the last straw culminating in the Revolt of the Admirals.

        1946 – US recognized Tito’s Yugoslavia govt.

        1948 – International Court of Justice opened at Hague, Netherlands.

        1951 – Having completed their tour of duty, the first 385 to rotate out of Korea, set sail from Korea to Japan and finally back to the United States.

        1961 – Soviet leader Nikita Khruschev sent a letter to Pres. Kennedy with an “urgent call” to end “aggression” against Cuba.

        1965 – US planes hit targets that include barracks at Dongthanh, a ferryboat in the Song Trac River, and highways in the southern section of North Vietnam.

        1966 – In a Senate speech, majority leader Mike Mansfield (D-MT) declares that the current political crisis in Vietnam makes it urgent that the US engage in direct talks with North Vietnam, Communist China, ‘and such elements in South Vietnam as may be essential to the making and keeping of a peaceful settlement’ of the war. Peking rejects the proposal.

        1967 – The US pledges an additional $150 million in economic aid for a total annual amount of $700 million, a new annual record.

        1967 – General Westmoreland notifies the Joint Chiefs of additional troop needs. For an ‘optimum force,’ he requests four and two-thirds divisions — 201,250 more troops — to boost the total US strength in Vietnam to 671,616 men.

        1969At a news conference, President Nixon says he feels the prospects for peace have “significantly improved” since he took office.

        1971 – South Vietnamese Vice President Nguyen Cao Ky denounces US Democratic presidential candidate George McGovern’s stated interest in investigating charges that Ky is implicated in opium smuggling.

        1971 – Over the next four days, US jets carry out a 30th raid since 1 January against missile sites and anti-aircraft positions in North Vietnam.

        1972 – Secretary of Defense Melvin laird before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee says the does not rule out the possibility of blockading and mining Haiphong harbor. Every area of North Vietnam, he says, is subject to bombing for the protection of the 85,000 US troops still in Vietnam.

        1978 – The U.S. Senate voted 68-32 to turn the Panama Canal over to Panamanian control on Dec. 31, 1999.

        1983The U.S. embassy in Beirut, Lebanon, is almost completely destroyed by a car-bomb explosion that kills 63 people, including the suicide bomber and 17 Americans.

        1988The United States launches Operation Praying Mantis against Iranian naval forces in the largest naval battle since World War II.

        1989Thousands of Chinese students take to the streets in Beijing to protest government policies and issue a call for greater democracy in the communist People’s Republic of China (PRC).

        1992 – Serbia issued a protest to the United States, accusing Washington of siding with Bosnia-Herzegovina and Croatia in the Yugoslav crisis.

        1994 – Former President Richard Nixon suffered a stroke at his home in Park Ridge, N.J., and was taken to New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center; he died four days later.

        1996 – The US government will deliver $368 million in military equipment to Pakistan that was paid for in the 1980’s. Pakistan will also get $120 mil in cash that it paid for weapons and spare parts that were never manufactured.

        1999 – NATO requested from Bulgaria the use of its airspace.

        1999In Yugoslavia NATO bombers hit refineries, bridges and other targets in the 25th straight day of attacks and the heaviest strikes to date.

        2001 – US negotiators said China agreed to discuss the return of the US spy plane following a day of unproductive talks. Beijing and Washington staked out opposing positions on who was to blame for the incident.

        2002 – Afghanistan’s former king, Mohammad Zaher Shah, returned to his country after 29 years in exile.

        2003 – Burt Rutan, aircraft designer, unveiled SpaceShipOne, a rocket-powered spacecraft. He hoped to win the $10 million 1996 X Prize, offered for the 1st private launch of 3-people to an altitude of 62.5 miles twice in 2 weeks.
        ar.

        2009 – Iranian-American journalist Roxana Saberi is charged with espionage and imprisoned in Iran until 2017.

        2009 – Canada’s HMCS Winnipeg and the United States’ USS Halyburton thwart Somali pirates’ attack on a Norwegian oil tanker.

        2010 – Former President of the United States George Washington owes $300,000 for overdue library books he borrowed from New York Society Library five months into his presidency and which he failed to return.

        Comment


        • #5
          April 19

          19 April

          .
          1764 – The English Parliament banned the American colonies from printing paper money.

          1775At about 5 a.m., 700 British troops, on a mission to capture Patriot leaders and seize a Patriot arsenal, march into Lexington to find 77 armed minutemen under Captain John Parker waiting for them on the town’s common green. British Major John Pitcairn ordered the outnumbered Patriots to disperse, and after a moment’s hesitation the Americans began to drift off the green. Suddenly, the “shot heard around the world” was fired from an undetermined gun, and a cloud of musket smoke soon covered the green. When the brief Battle of Lexington ended, eight Americans lay dead or dying and 10 others were wounded. Only one British soldier was injured, but the American Revolution had begun.

          1778 – Marines participated in the USS Ranger’s capturing and sinking of a British schooner off the coast of Ireland.

          1782 – Netherlands recognized the United States. John Adams secures the Dutch Republic’s recognition of the United States as an independent government. The house which he had purchased in The Hague, Netherlands becomes the first American embassy.

          1783 – George Washington proclaims end of hostilities.1802 – Spain reopened the New Orleans port to American merchants.

          1861President Lincoln issued proclamation declaring blockade of Southern ports from South Carolina to Texas Of the blockade Admiral David Dixon Potter was to later write: “So efficiently was the block*ade maintained and so greatly was it strengthened from time to time, that foreign statesmen, who at the beginning of the war, did not hesitate to pronounce the blockade of nearly three thousand miles of coast a moral impossibility, twelve months after its establishment were forced to admit that the proofs of its efficiency were so comprehensive and conclusive that no objections to it could be made.”


          1861Residents of Baltimore, Maryland, attack a Union regiment while the group makes its way to Washington, D.C. Baltimore’s hostilities to the North were already well known, as just two percent of the city’s voters cast their ballots for Abraham Lincoln while nearly half supported John Breckinridge, the Southern Democratic Party candidate.

          1864C.S.S. Albemarle, Commander Cooke, attacked Union warships off Plymouth, North Carolina, at 3:30 in the morning.

          1865U.S.S. Lexington, Acting Lieutenant William Flye, conveyed Colonel John T. Sprague, Chief of Staff to General John Pope, from Cairo and up the Red River to meet Confederate General Kirby Smith. At the ensuing conference, Smith was given the terms under which the surrender of his forces would be accepted.

          1892Charles Duryea drives the first automobile in the United States, in Springfield, Massachusetts. Charles engineered the car and his brother Frank built it. The Duryea’s “motor wagon” was a used horse drawn buggy that the brothers had purchased for $70 and into which they had installed a 4 HP, single cylinder gasoline engine. The car (buggy) had a friction transmission, spray carburetor and low tension ignition.

          1898 – Congress passed a resolution recognizing Cuban independence and demanding that Spain relinquish authority over Cuba. President McKinley was also authorized to use military force to put the resolution into effect.

          1915 – Aviation engineers working for Dutch-born Anthony Fokker develop the mechanical interrupter gear, which allows machine gun bullets to be fired through rotating aircraft propeller blades.

          1919Leslie Irvin of the United States makes the first successful voluntary free-fall parachute jump using a new kind of self-contained parachute.

          1933 – The United States went off the gold standard by presidential proclamation. FDR tied this with orders that 445,000 newly minted gold $20 “Double Eagle” coins be destroyed. Ten coins escaped and one was scheduled for auction in 2002. The coin fetched $7.59 million.

          1938 – General Francisco Franco declared victory in the Spanish Civil War.

          1938 – RCA-NBC launches its first regular TV broadcasts. The programs, broadcast from the Empire State Building, were an experiment and aired only five hours a week. Very few TV sets existed at the time to receive the programs.

          1939 – Connecticut finally approved Bill of Rights.

          1942In Burma, General Alexander confers with his field commanders (British Brigadier General Slim and American Lieutenant General Stilwell). Meanwhile, the Japanese strike at the weak and poorly led Chinese 55th Division, which the Japanese find idly sitting in its bivouacs. The Chinese are attacked from three directions at once and the division disintegrates. Soldiers flee into the hills. The 93rd Chinese Division moves in to help, sees the chaos, and retreats without fighting.

          1942 – On Bataan, Japanese resources are overwhelmed by thousands of American and Filipino prisoners who assemble in the town of Balanga.

          1944 – The British Eastern Fleet in the Indian Ocean (Admiral Somerville) is reinforced with the USS Saratoga. The carrier aircraft attack Japanese positions at Sabang and nearby airfields. One plane is lost and 27 Japanese planes are claimed to have been shot down.

          1944 – The House of Representatives approves an extension of Lend-Lease legislation.

          1945 – US aircraft carrier Franklin was heavily damaged in Japanese air raid.

          1945 – In the advance by US 1st Corps units, on the northwest coast of Luzon, Vigan is taken.

          1945 – On Okinawa, the US 24th Corps now has three divisions in the line and all three begin attacks after a heavy ground and air bombardment. The heaviest efforts are on coastal flanks.

          1945 – The US 1st Army captures Leipzig. The British 2nd Army reaches the Elbe south of Namburg.

          1951 – Gen. Douglas MacArthur, relieved of his command by President Truman, bid farewell to Congress.

          1951 – I and IX Corps reached the Utah Line, south of the Iron Triangle.
          1952 – The U.N. delegation informed the communists that only 70,000 of 132,000 of the prisoners of war held by the United Nations Command were willing to return home.

          1964 – Several Laotian generals attempt a coup, but with the support of the US Ambassador, Souvanna Phouma regains control of the coalition government. The Pathet Lao reject the coalition and go on the offensive.

          1965US military and civilian leaders, including Secretary of Defense McNamara, and JCS Chairman Earle Wheeler, meet at Honolulu with General Westmoreland and Ambassador Taylor. They agree to more than double the US military force (from 40,200 to 82,000) and to bring the forces of Australia and South Korea up to 7250 men. Taylor initially opposes the increase, but he is outvoted and apparently won over.

          1965An article in Electronics magazine by Gordon Moore, later Intel Chairman, noted that chips seem to double in power every 18 months. Thus was born Moore’s Law. Moore later asserted that his claim was that the number of components that can be packed on a computer chip doubles every 2 years. Articles often misquote Moore and claim an annual doubling. In 2005 Intel offered $10,000 for a pristine copy of the magazine.

          1967 – The US proposes widening the currently 6-mile wide DMZ by an additional 10 miles on each side with troops on both sides withdrawn behind the wider buffer. North Vietnam rejects the proposal as it does not include their primary condition for peace talks–an end to air attacks on North Vietnam.

          1968Operation Delaware/Lam Son 216 through the Ashau Valley begins and will run for nearly a month. The 1st Cavalry Division commander describes the Valley as a ‘top logistical support base” for the NVA, ‘as important to him as Camranh bay is to us.’ The intent is to prevent a new attack on Hue.

          1969 – The US turns over the first 20 of 60 jet fighter-bombers to the South Vietnamese Air Force.

          1972 – US 7th Fleet warships, while bombarding the North Vietnamese coast, are attacked by MiGs and patrol boats as Hanoi begins to challenge US naval presence in The Tonkin Gulf for the first time since 1964. The destroyer USS Higbee is badly damaged.

          1989 The battleship USS Iowa’s number 2 turret exploded while on maneuvers northeast of Puerto Rico. 47 sailors were killed and a $4 million investigation was launched .The Navy attempted to lay the blame on Clayton Hartwig, a seaman described disappointed in a gay affair.

          1990 – Nicaragua’s nine-year-old civil war appeared near an end as Contra guerrillas, leftist Sandinistas and the incoming government agreed to a truce and a deadline for the rebels to disarm.

          1993At Mount Carmel in Waco, Texas, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) launches a tear-gas assault on the Branch Davidian compound, ending a tense 51-day standoff between the federal government and an armed religious cult. In 1999, the FBI admitted they used tear-gas grenades in the assault, which have been known to cause fires because of their incendiary properties.

          1995A massive explosion at the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, kills 168 people and injures hundreds more.
          2001 – The space shuttle Endeavour went into orbit with 7 astronauts on an 11-day mission to install a billion-dollar robot arm on the Int’l. Space Station.

          2008 – Muqtada al-Sadr threatens a new rebellion if a United States-Iraqi crackdown against his followers continues.

          2009 – United States President Barack Obama announces that Central Intelligence Agency personnel who employed enhanced interrogation techniques on terrorism suspects will not be prosecuted.

          2011 – U.S. serviceman PFC Bradley Manning, pending cort martial for the release of reams of classified documents to the Wikileaks website, is moved by officials from the Marine stockade at Quantico to a military prison in Kansas

          Comment


          • #6
            April 20

            20 April
            1657 – Freedom of religion is granted to the Jews of New Amsterdam (later New York City).

            1769 – Ottawa Chief Pontiac (b~1720) was murdered by an Indian in Cahokia.

            1775British troops began the siege of Boston.

            1777 – New York adopted a new constitution as an independent state.

            1789 – President George Washington arrives in Philadelphia after his first inauguration to elaborate welcome at Gray’s Ferry just after noon.

            1796 – Congress authorizes completion of 3 frigates.

            1827 – John Gibbon (d.1896), Major General (Union volunteers), was born.

            1836The Territory of Wisconsin was established by Congress.

            1861Colonel Robert E. Lee resigns from the United States army two days after he was offered command of the Union army and three days after his native state, Virginia, seceded from the Union. Lee opposed secession, but he was a loyal son of Virginia. His official resignation was only one sentence, but he wrote a longer explanation to his friend and mentor, General Winfield Scott, later that day. Lee had fought under Scott during the Mexican War, and he revealed to his former commander the depth of his struggle. Lee interviewed with Scott on April 18, and explained that he would have resigned then “but for the struggle it has cost me to separate myself from a service to which I have devoted the best years of my life and all the ability I possess.” Lee expressed gratitude for the kindness shown him by all in the army during his 25-year service, but Lee was most grateful to Scott. “To no one, general, have I been as much indebted as to yourself for uniform kindness and consideration…” He concluded with this poignant sentiment: “Save in the defense of my native State, I never desire again to draw my sword.” But draw it he would. Two days later, Lee was appointed commander of Virginia’s forces with the rank of major general. He spent the next few months raising troops in Virginia, and in July he was sent to western Virginia to advise Confederate commanders struggling to maintain control over the mountainous region. Lee did little to build his reputation there as the Confederates experienced a series of setbacks, and he returned to Richmond when the Union gained control of the area. The next year, Lee assumed command of the Army of Northern Virginia after General Joseph Johnston was wounded in battle. Lee quickly turned the tables on Union General George B. McClellan, as he would several other commanders of the Army of the Potomac. His brilliance as a battlefield tactician earned him a place among the great military leaders of all time.

            1861Thaddeus Lowe’s balloon landed in South Carolina only to be surrounded by a group of incredulous Carolinians who believed he was a spy.

            1861Norfolk Navy Yard partially destroyed to prevent Yard facilities from falling into Confederate hands and abandoned by Union forces.

            1862 – U.S.S. Itasca, Lieutenant Caldwell, and U.S.S. Pinola, Lieutenant Crosby, under direction of Commander Bell, breached the obstructions below Forts Jackson and St. Philip under heavy fire, opening the way for Flag Officer Farragut’s fleet.

            1863A joint Army-Navy attack succeeded in capturing a strong Confederate position at Hill’s Point on the Nansemond River, Virginia, taking 5 howitzers and some 160 prisoners, as well as denying the South the use of an effective position from which to shell the flotilla guarding the Union Army position near Suffolk. was broken.

            1863 – U.S.S. Estrella, Lieutenant Commander Cooke, with U.S.S. Clifton, Arina, and Calhoun, engaged and received the surrender of Fort Burton, Butte a’ la Rose, Louisiana.

            1871With passage of the Third Force Act, popularly known as the Ku Klux Act, Congress authorizes President Ulysses S. Grant to declare martial law, impose heavy penalties against terrorist organizations, and use military force to suppress the Ku Klux Klan (KKK).

            1914Ending a bitter coal-miners’ strike, Colorado militiamen attack a tent colony of strikers, killing dozens of men, women, and children, known as the Ludlow Massacre.

            1914 – In first call to action of naval aviators, detachment on USS Birmingham sailed to Tampico, Mexico.

            1915 – First Navy contract for lighter-than-air craft awarded.

            1940 – RCA publicly demonstrated its new and powerful electron microscope in Philadelphia, Pa.

            1942Malta’s precarious position continues. German and Italian bombing continue. When the USS Wasp accompanied by HMS Renown, two cruisers and six destroyers attempt to deliver 47 desperately needed Spitfires to the island, thirty per cent of them are destroyed immediately after landing.

            1944During the night (April 20-21), the Germans use Neger (in English: Negro) human torpedoes against shipping off Anzio. A total of 37 are launched from beaches and 24 are lost. No results are achieved. Meanwhile, 6 Allied merchant ships are hit by torpedo planes near the Straits of Gibraltar.

            1945 – Allied bombers in Italy begin a three-day attack on the bridges over the rivers Adige and Brenta to cut off German lines of retreat on the Italian peninsula.

            1945During World War II, Allied forces, the U.S. 7th army, took control of the German cities of Nuremberg and Stuttgart. The American flag is raised over the rostrum of the Nuremberg Stadium — scene of Nazi Party rallies. In the Stuttgart area, the French 1st Army is advancing rapidly along the Neckar Valley, trapping German forces in the Black Forest in Bavaria.

            1945 – American forces liberated Buchenwald. 350 Americans were imprisoned at Berga, a sub-camp of Buchenwald, following their Dec, 1944, capture at the Battle of the Bulge. Charles Guggenheim’s (d.2002) last documentary film was title “Berga.”

            1945 – US troops capture Leipzig, Germany, only to later cede the city to the Soviet Union.

            1945On Okinawa, US 3rd Amphibious Corps completes the capture of the Motobu Peninsula and the whole of the main northern part of the island. The US 24th Corps, on the Shuri Line, continue to attack but the limited gains made cannot be held against the Japanese counterattacks.

            1947CAPT L.O. Fox, USN, supported by 80 Marines, accepted the surrender of LT Yamaguchi and 26 Japanese soldiers and sailors, two and one half years after the occupation of Peleliu and nearly 20 months after the surrender of Japan.

            1953 – Operation Little Switch began in Korea, the exchange of sick and wounded prisoners of war.

            1953 – USS New Jersey shells Wonsan, Korea from inside the harbor.

            1961 – American Harold Graham made 1st rocket belt flight.

            1961Failure of the Bay of Pigs Invasion of US-backed Cuban exiles against Cuba.

            1962 – NASA civilian pilot Neil A. Armstrong took the X-15 to 63,250 m.

            1964USS Henry Clay (SSBN-625) launches a Polaris A-2 missile from the surface in first demonstration that Polaris submarines could launch missiles from the surface as well as from beneath the ocean. 30 minutes later the submarine launched another Polaris missile while submerged.

            1967 – For the first time US planes, 86 planes form the carriers Kitty Hawk and Ticonderoga, bomb Haiphong, attacking two power plants in the city.

            1970 – Following reports that Communist forces in Cambodia have more than doubled their are of control, Premier Lon Nol sends a personal appeal to President Nixon for military aid.

            1970In a televised speech, President Nixon pledges to withdraw 150,000 more U.S. troops over the next year “based entirely on the progress” of the Vietnamization program.

            1971The Pentagon releases figures confirming that fragging incidents are on the rise. In 1970, 209 such incidents caused the deaths of 34 men; in 1969, 96 such incidents cost 34 men their lives.

            1972 – The manned lunar module from Apollo 16 landed on the moon. Apollo 16 was the tenth manned mission in the United States Apollo space program, the fifth and penultimate to land on the Moon and the first to land in the lunar highlands.

            1972 – The Communist delegations in Paris formally propose resumption of the peace talks for 27 April, whether or not the US halts its bombing of North Vietnam.

            1978Soviet aircraft force a Korean Air Lines passenger jet to land in the Soviet Union after the jet veers into Russian airspace.

            1989 – The case of Oliver North went to the jury in his Iran-Contra trial.

            1993 – President Clinton said he accepted responsibility for the decision to try to end the 51-day siege at the Branch Davidian compound in Texas, yet laid “ultimate responsibility” on David Koresh for the deaths that resulted.

            1995In the aftermath of the Oklahoma City bombing, the FBI announced it was looking for two men suspected of renting the truck used to carry the explosive. Rescue teams suspended the search for survivors so that the remaining structure of the Alfred P. Murrah Building could be shored up.

            2003U.S. Army forces took control of Baghdad from the Marines in a changing of the guard that thinned the military presence in the capital. Celebrating Easter, the Reverend Emmanuel Delly, a longtime Iraqi bishop, pleaded for safeguards against the persecution of Christians in the new Iraq.

            2003 – Jamal Mustafa Abdallah Sultan al-Tikriti (9 of clubs), son-in-law to Saddam Hussein and former deputy head of Iraq’s tribal affairs office, left Syria and surrendered to members of the Iraqi National Congress.

            2010 – The Deepwater Horizon drilling rig explodes in the Gulf of Mexico, killing eleven workers and beginning an oil spill, leaking about 4,900,000 barrels of crude oil, that would last six months. The US Coast Guard will play a role in the containment, cleanup, and subsequent investigation.

            Comment


            • #7
              April 21

              21 April

              1649 – The Maryland Toleration Act, which provided for freedom of worship for all Christians, was passed by the Maryland assembly.

              1828 – Noah Webster published the first American dictionary. [see Apr 14] It took grammarian and editor Noah Webster nearly 20 years to complete his two-volume dictionary of more than 35,000 entries.

              1832Abraham Lincoln (23) assembled with his New Salem neighbors for the Black Hawk War on the Western frontier. Illinois Governor John Reynolds had called for volunteers to beat back a new Indian threat.

              1836During the Texan War for Independence, the Texas militia under Sam Houston launches a surprise attack against the forces of Mexican General Santa Anna along the San Jacinto River. The Mexicans were thoroughly routed, and hundreds were taken prisoner, including General Santa Anna himself.

              1855 – The 1st train crossed the Mississippi River’s 1st bridge.

              1861 – U.S.S. Saratoga, Commander Alfred Taylor, captured slave ship Nightingale with 961 slaves on board.

              1861Colonel Charles F. Smith. USA, reported to Secretary of the Navy Welles he had seized and placed under guard steamers Baltimore, Mount Vernon, Philadelphia. and Powhatan near Washington, D.C.

              1863Union Colonel Abel Streight begins a raid into northern Alabama and Georgia with the goal of cutting the Western and Atlantic Railroad between Chattanooga and Atlanta. The raid ended when Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest captured Streight’s entire command near Rome, Georgia.

              1863 – Confederate guns at Vicksburg opened fire on Union Army steamers attempting a night passage of the batteries. Tigress was sunk and Empire City was totally disabled; Moderator was badly damaged, but J. W. Cheeseman, Anglo Saxon, and Horizon passed safely.

              1864U.S.S. Petrel, Acting Master McElroy, U.S.S. Prairie Bird, Acting Ensign John W. Chambers, and transport Freestone steamed up the Yazoo River to operate with Union troops attacking Yazoo City.

              1864Boat crews from U.S.S. Howquah, Fort Jackson, and Niphon, commanded by Acting Lieutenant Joseph B. Breck, destroyed Confederate salt works on Masonboro Sound, North Carolina. The sailors landed under cover of darkness at 9 p.m. without being detected and rapidly demolished the works while taking some 160 prisoners.

              1864 – Boat expedition commanded by Acting Master John K. Crosby from U.S.S. Cimarron destroyed a rice mill and 5,000 bushels of rice stored at Winyah Bay, South Carolina. The blockaded South could ill afford to lose such food stuffs.

              1898The United States Navy begins a blockade of Cuban ports. When the U.S. Congress issued a declaration of war on April 25, it declared that a state of war had existed from this date. The U.S. North Atlantic Fleet, under the command of Rear Admiral William T. Sampson, was ordered to begin the blockade of Cuba on April 21, 1898. The fleet with the armored cruiser New York steamed out of Key West, Fla., at 6:30 a.m. the next morning. The fleet had hardly left port when it pursued and captured a Spanish merchant vessel, Buenaventura. The Spanish-American War had begun.

              1914 – U.S. marines occupied Vera Cruz, Mexico. They stayed for six months.

              1914 – A German arms shipment to Mexico is intercepted by the U.S. Navy near Veracruz, Veracruz. The Ypiranga Incident occurred on April 21, 1914, at the port of Veracruz in Mexico. The SS Ypiranga was a German steamer that was commissioned to transport arms and munitions to the Mexican federal government under Victoriano Huerta. The United States had placed Mexico under an arms embargo to stifle the flow of weaponry to the war-torn state, then in the throes of civil war, forcing the Mexican government to look to Europe for aid. The Ypiranga tried to enter the harbor at Veracruz to unload on the first day of the US occupation but was detained by US troops who were ordered by President of the United States Woodrow Wilson to enforce the arms embargo he had placed on Mexico. There was neither a declaration of war on Mexico by the United States nor a formal blockade on its ports, thus the detention of the Ypiranga was not legal and it was released. It proceeded to a port where the US military was absent, Puerto México (modern-day Coatzacoalcos, Veracruz), and was able to offload its cargo to Huerta’s officials. The arms on the Ypiranga required “three trains of ten cars each” to unload.

              1918 – Baron Manfred von Richthofen, the leading air ace of the war with 80 confirmed kills is shot down and killed. His command is taken by German ace, Hermann Goering.

              1924 – Navy vessels authorized transferred to Coast Guard for law enforcement purposes. The Coast Guard was authorized to commission temporary officers.

              1925 – The Manifesto of the Fascist Intellectuals is published in Il Mondo, establishing the political and ideological foundations of Italian Fascism.

              1934Moe Berg, Senators catcher (and later US spy), played an AL record 117th consecutive, errorless game. In 1934, five years before he retired as a player, Berg made a trip to Japan as part of a traveling major league All-Star team. One might wonder what the seldom-used catcher, a .251 hitter that season, was doing playing with the likes of Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig. Berg, who spoke Japanese, took home movies of the Tokyo skyline that were used in the planning of General Jimmy Doolittle’s 1942 bombing raids on the Japanese capital. The U.S. government wrote a letter to Berg, thanking him for the movies.

              1943 – President Roosevelt announced that several Doolittle pilots were executed by Japanese.

              1943 – Admiral Koga is appointed to succeed Yamamoto as Commander in Chief of the Japanese Combined Fleet.

              1944 – US Task Force 58 (Admiral Mitscher) attacks Wakde Island, Sawar, Sarmi and Hollandia. The American force includes 12 carriers and cruisers. Aircraft strike during the day and cruisers bombard the Japanese positions at night.

              1944 – Marshal Badoglio forms a coalition government in liberated Italy.

              1945A mutual assistance treaty is concluded between the Soviet government and the Provisional Government of Poland, based on the Lublin Committee.

              1945Bologna is captured by units of the Polish 2nd Corps (part of British 8th Army). Units of US 2nd Corps (part of US 5th Army) enter the town a few hours later. US 5th Army forces have now cleared the Appenines and advancing rapidly on the Lombard Plain. East of Bologna, British 8th Army is advancing rapidly.

              1945 – The heavy fighting near Baguio is continuing, with the attacks of the US 37th Division making some gains near the Irisan River and the 33rd Division advancing to the west of the city.
              1945 – The US 77th Infantry Division completes the occupation of Ie Shima.

              1951 – Carrier-based Marine planes downed three Yaks in the first air-to-air contact of Marine air with the North Korean Air Force.

              1951 – U.S. Air Force Captain Robert J. Love, 4th Fighter-Interceptor Wing, scored his fifth and sixth aerial victories in his F-86 Sabre “Bernie’s Bo” to become the 11th ace of the Korean War.

              1964 – Republican leaders of the Senate, Everett Dirksen (IL) and the House, Charles Halleck (IN), hold a joint news conference in Washington DC and charge that the Johnson administration is concealing the extent of US involvement in the war.

              1965The Central Intelligence Agency and the Defense Intelligence Agency report a “most ominous” development: a regiment of the People’s Army of Vietnam–the regular army of North Vietnam–division is now operating with the Viet Cong in South Vietnam.

              1966 – South Vietnam expels a group of six US pacifists for seeking to stage anti-war demonstrations in Saigon.

              1967 – Josef Stalin’s daughter, Svetlana Alliluyeva, defected to the US.

              1968 – An NVA defector reveals enemy plans for a second wave of attacks on Saigon to begin 22 April.

              1975Members of the SLA robbed the Carmichael Bank in suburban Sacramento, Ca. Myrna Opsahl, a mother (42) of four, was shot dead. Patty Hearst drove the getaway car. Emily Harris shot Opsahl with a 12-gauge shotgun. 4 SLA members were arrested for the murder of Opsahl in 2002. Michael Bortin, William Harris, Sara Jane Olson and Emily Montague all pleaded guilty. Fugitive James Kilgore was arrested in South Africa Nov 8, 2002. In 2003 Montague was sentenced to 8 years, Harris to 7 years, Olson and Bortin to 6 years. In 2004 Kilgore was sentenced to 4 ½ years.

              1975Xuan Loc, the last South Vietnamese outpost blocking a direct North Vietnamese assault on Saigon, falls to the communists.

              1980Boats with Cuban migrants on board began departing Mariel, Cuba. The first two boats arrive in Miami the same day, marking the largest Cuban migration to the U.S. to date. Cuban leader Fidel Castro then declared the port of Mariel “open”, increasing the number of boats involved in the exodus and giving the exodus its name. This becomes the largest Coast Guard operation ever undertaken to date since World War II.

              1995The FBI arrested former soldier Timothy McVeigh at an Oklahoma jail where he had spent two days on minor traffic and weapons charges; he was charged in connection with the Oklahoma City bombing two days earlier in which over 200 people were killed by a truck bomb that exploded in front of a Federal building.

              1998 – US and Britain had begun a secretive removal of nuclear materials near Tbilisi. Britain volunteered to accept the material and had already taken 270 pounds. The unused highly enriched uranium was to be processed by a Scottish plant.

              2005 – U.S. Army Sergeant Hassan Akbar is found guilty by a military jury of the murder of two fellow officers in Kuwait, just prior to the 2003 invasion of Iraq.


              Comment


              • #8
                the 1836 battle of San Jacinto took ONLY 18 minutes, and forever changed the course of history of the United States of America (after the Republic of Texas agreed to join the United States due to mostly economic issues of the young Rep. of Texas) by adding ALMOST ONE THIRD of what is now the United States of America!

                630 Mexicans killed and 730 taken prisoner of the about 1200 soldats and camp followers of Santa Anna.

                Morale of story, Don't mess with Texians...and never underestimate your enemy!

                Comment


                • #9
                  April 22

                  22 April
                  1526The 1st American slave revolt occurred at San Miguel de Guadelupe, SC. The Spanish settlers had brought a group of Africans to labor at the mission, to clear ground and erect the buildings. This was the first time that Spanish colonists had used African slaves on the North American continent. During a period of internal political disputes among the settlers, the slaves rebelled and fled to the interior. They presumably settled with Native Americans if they survived.

                  1778Captain John Paul Jones of Ranger led landing party raid on Whitehaven, England. Whitehaven was an English seaport on the Irish Sea. The decision to raid it was not made because of its strategic value, for the ships in its harbor were mostly coastal fishing vessels, containing little of value to the English war cause. John Paul Jones’ original idea was to capture an important person in the course of the raid and hold the unfortunate prisoner hostage until the British ministry released American sailors from prison. By this time, the Revolutionary War had been going on for three years. Soldiers taken prisoner during land engagements were frequently exchanged as prisoners of war. But the English still treated anyone found on an American armed vessel as a pirate. This was a sore point with sailors in the Continental Navy, and especially with Jones.

                  1790 – Secretary of the Treasury, Alexander Hamilton, submitted a bill to Congress to create a “system of cutters” to enforce tariff and customs laws along the nation’s coastline. Congress passed his bill on 4 August of the same year. This would be the nascent Coast Guard.

                  1792 – President Washington proclaimed American neutrality in the war in Europe.

                  1836 – A day after the Battle of San Jacinto, forces under Texas General Sam Houston identify Mexican General Antonio López de Santa Anna among the captives of the battle when one of his fellow captives mistakenly gives away his identity.

                  1861 – Robert E. Lee was named commander of Virginia forces.

                  1861Captain Franklin Buchanan, Commandant Washington Navy Yard, submitted his resignation and was relieved by Commander John A. Dahlgren; Buchanan joined the Confederate Navy and was promoted to Admiral, CSN. on 26 August 1862. Dahlgren spurred the buildup of Union ordnance and operation of ships for the defense of Washington and Potomac River.

                  1863Colonel Benjamin Grierson’s troops bring destruction to central Mississippi on a two-week raid along the entire length of the state. This action was a diversion in General Ulysses S. Grant’s campaign to capture Vicksburg, Mississippi, the last remaining Confederate stronghold on the Mississippi River.

                  1870 – Vladimir Ilyitch Lenin (d.1924), also known as Vladimir Ilich Ulyanov, Russian revolutionary leader and first communist leader of USSR, was born. It was later learned that he was a hereditary noble and that he had a French mistress named Inessa Armand.

                  1889At precisely high noon, thousands of would-be settlers make a mad dash into the newly opened Oklahoma Territory to claim cheap land.

                  1898The Volunteer Army Act was passed to circumvent the question about the legality of sending the militia (National Guard) abroad. When war did break out with Spain, the Regular Army’s 28,000 men were scattered throughout the country at many different posts and the National Guard numbered around 100,000 men and was composed mostly of infantry units of widely varying degrees of readiness. The act was so framed that National Guard forces could serve as state volunteer units with the approval of the respective governors.

                  1898With the United States and Spain on the verge of formally declaring war, the U.S. Navy began blockading Cuban ports under orders from President McKinley. In the first Spanish-American War action the USS Nashville captured a Spanish merchant ship, the Buenaventura, off Key West, Fla. Also, Congress authorized creation of the First U.S. Volunteer Cavalry, popularly known as the “Rough Riders.”

                  Page 1
                  Last edited by Linedoggie; 22-04-2015, 10:49 AM.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    April 22

                    22 April


                    1915 – The Second battle of Ypres begins with the first use of poison chlorine gas on the Western Front. The Germans use 4000 gas cylinders to open their attack. Targeted units had no defense and many panicked and fled leaving 5 mile wide gap in the front line.

                    1930 – The United States, Britain and Japan signed the London Naval Treaty, which regulated submarine warfare and limited shipbuilding. The London Naval Conference met in Europe and agreed to shrink the world’s navies.

                    1940 – Rear Adm. Joseph Taussig testified before US Senate Naval Affairs Committee that war with Japan is inevitable.

                    1942British troops including the 7th Armored Division assume position around Meiktia to stem the Japanese advance. Chinese troops from the 200th Division are sent as reinforcements. However, the refusal of another division to withdraw under orders from General Stilwell makes the position of these troops vulnerable.

                    1943A series of Allied attacks are launched against the Axis positions in the Tunisian hills. The US 2nd Corps (now commanded by General Bradley) attacks Hill 609 in “Mousetrap Valley,” with the objective of advancing to Mateur. The British 5th Corps attacks “Longstop” and “Peter’s Corner” and the British 9th Corps attacks between Boubellat and Bou Arada. Montgomery has been ordered to cease his attacks along the coast. Meanwhile, another Axis air supply effort results in 30 transports being shot down.

                    1944The Landing at Aitape (Operation Persecution) was a battle of the Western New Guinea campaign of World War II. American and Allied forces undertook an amphibious landing at Aitape on northern coast of Papua New Guinea. The amphibious landing was undertaken simultaneously with the amphibious landings of Battle of Hollandia at Hollandia to isolate the Japanese 18th Army at Wewak. The invasion force was commanded by Brigadier General Jens A. Doe and was built around the US 163rd Infantry Regiment of the 41st Infantry Division (ORARNG). The Japanese defenders numbered less than 1,000 in the area. The landings were planned at “Blue Beach”. Obscured by heavy smoke from fires from the beach head, the landing took place at Wapil. The 163rd Regimental Combat Team landed and opposition was light, with most Japanese defenders fleeing into the hills as the overwhelming force continued to arrive. One landing force transport was badly damaged by a Japanese torpedo bomber. No. 62 Works Wing of the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) went ashore that morning to help secure and repair Tadji Airfield. General Douglas MacArthur watched the landings from a light cruiser, then went ashore in a landing boat. The airfield was secured by 13:00, and the fighter strip was made operational by the RAAF No. 62 Works Wing within 48 hours after working nonstop. Twenty-five P-40s from the No. 78 Wing of the RAAF landed on the field on 24 April, with the rest of the wing arriving the next day to provide support to the Aitape and Hollandia landings.

                    1944 – US forces occupy Ungelap Island, in the Marshalls, completing the campaign.

                    1944 – The 1st Air Commando Group, led by Lt. Col. Clinton B. Gaty, using Sikorsky R-4 helicopters stage the first use of helicopters in combat with combat search and rescue operations in the China-Burma-India theater. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, amidst the Quebec Conference in August 1943, had been impressed by Brigadier Orde Wingate’s account of what could be accomplished in Burma with proper air support. To comply with Roosevelt’s proposed air support for British long range penetration operations in Burma, the United States Army Air Forces created the 5318th Air Unit to support the Chindits. In March 1944, they were designated the 1st Air Commando Group by USAAF Commander General Hap Arnold. Arnold chose Colonel John R. Alison and Colonel Philip Cochran as co-commanders of the unit.

                    1945The US 31st Infantry Division is landed at Moro Gulf. The US 24th Division is already advancing inland and has nearly reached Kabakan. Meanwhile, on Jolo, the last Japanese resistance comes to an end as their final strong-points fall to the US forces. Scattered individual Japanese soldiers remain at large.

                    1945Adolf Hitler, learning from one of his generals that no German defense was offered to the Russian assault at Eberswalde, admits to all in his underground bunker that the war is lost and that suicide is his only recourse.

                    1945 – Himmler meets Count Bernadotte of the Swedish Red Cross and gives him a message to pass to the western Allies, offering a German surrender to the British and Americans but not to the Soviets. The message is passed to the Allies on the 24th.

                    1945 – US 7th Army units cross the Danube at Dillingen and Baldingen.

                    1945 – Units of 2nd and 4th US Corps (parts of US 5th Army) reach the Penaro River in their advance to the Po River. On the left flank Modena is taken.

                    1951 – The Chinese launched their spring offensive with a heavy artillery barrage northeast of Yonchon. The Battle of the Imjin River began.

                    1952 – An atomic test conducted at Yucca Flat, Nevada, became the first nuclear explosion shown on live network television.

                    1954Senator Joseph McCarthy begins hearings investigating the United States Army, which he charges with being “soft” on communism. These televised hearings gave the American public their first view of McCarthy in action, and his recklessness, indignant bluster, and bullying tactics quickly resulted in his fall from prominence. In February 1950, Senator McCarthy charged that there were over 200 “known communists” in the Department of State. Thus began his dizzying rise to fame as the most famous and feared communist hunter in the United States. McCarthy adeptly manipulated the media, told ever more outrageous stories concerning the communist conspiracy in the United States, and smeared any opponents as “communist sympathizers” to keep his own name in the headlines for years. By 1954, however, his power was beginning to wane. While he had been useful to the Republican Party during the years of the Democratic administration of President Harry S. Truman, his continued attacks on “communists in government” after Republican Dwight D. Eisenhower took over the White House in 1953 were becoming political liabilities. In an effort to reinvigorate his declining popularity, McCarthy made a dramatic accusation that was a crucial mistake: in early 1954, he charged that the United States Army was “soft” on communism. McCarthy was indignant because David Schine, one of his former investigators, had been drafted and the Army, much to McCarthy’s surprise, refused the special treatment he demanded for his former aide. In April 1954, McCarthy, chairman of the Government Operations Committee in the Senate, opened televised hearings into his charges against the Army. The hearings were a fiasco for McCarthy. He constantly interrupted with irrelevant questions and asides; yelled “point of order” whenever testimony was not to his liking; and verbally attacked witnesses, attorneys for the Army, and his fellow senators. The climax came when McCarthy slandered an associate of the Army’s chief counsel, Joseph Welch. Welch fixed McCarthy with a steady glare and declared evenly, “Until this moment, Senator, I think I never really gauged your cruelty or your recklessness…Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last?” A stunned McCarthy listened as the packed audience exploded into cheers and applause. McCarthy’s days as a political power were effectively over. A few weeks later, the Army hearings dribbled to a close with little fanfare and no charges were upheld against the Army by the committee. In December 1954, the Senate voted to censure McCarthy for his conduct. Three years later, having become a hopeless alcoholic, he died.

                    1962 – Twenty-nine US helicopters airlift about 600 Vietnamese troops to the Mekong Delta in Kein Phong Province (about 80 miles south of Saigon) to double the number of troops used in a mopping up operation there.

                    1965 – USCG and US Navy agree on the deployment of 82-foot patrol and 40-foot utility boats to support Operation Market Time in Vietnam.

                    1968In a news conference, Defense Secretary Clark Clifford declares that the South Vietnamese have “acquired the capacity to begin to insure their own security [and] they are going to take over more and more of the fighting.”

                    1971 – Former US Navy Lieutenant John Kerry (27) testified before the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee and talked about alleged war crimes and atrocities committed in Vietnam by US forces.

                    1977 – Optical fiber is first used to carry live telephone traffic.

                    1987 – U.S. Navy ordered to provide assistance to neutral vessels under Iranian attack outside the exclusion zone and that requested help.

                    1990 – Pro-Iranian kidnappers in Lebanon freed American hostage Robert Polhill after nearly 39 months of captivity.

                    1991 – Intel released 486SX chip.

                    1993 – The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum was dedicated in Washington, D.C., to honor the victims of Nazi extermination.

                    1994 – Richard M. Nixon (81), the 37th president of the United States (1969-1975), died at New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center, four days after suffering a stroke.

                    2002 – Zacarias Moussaoui (33), charged in connection with the Sep 11 terrorism, made a 50 minute statement and asked that his court-appointed attorneys be replaced by a Muslim legal consultant.
                    2003 – France proposed that the UN suspend economic sanctions against Iraq, but continue to operate the oil-for-food program.

                    2004 – Pat Tillman former safety for the Arizona Cardinals, was killed in an ambush in Afghanistan. He had walked away from millions of dollars to join the Army Rangers and serve his country.

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                    Comment


                    • #11
                      April 23

                      23 April


                      1662 – Connecticut was chartered as an English colony.

                      1778 – US Captain John Paul Jones attempted to kidnap the Earl of Selkirk, but he only got Lady Selkirk’s silverware.

                      1789President-elect Washington and his wife moved into the first executive mansion, the Franklin House, in New York. George Washington was inaugurated at Federal Hall and lived at 3 Cherry Street in New York City. In 1790, with construction on the new federal capital underway, the government was moved temporarily to Philadelphia, where Washington served out his two terms. He is the only president who never resided in the White House.

                      1790Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton asked Congress for authorization to build a “system of [10] cutters” for “securing the collection of the revenue.” Congress approved his request on 4 August 1790. The President was authorized to appoint collectors of customs and establish ports of entry.

                      1791 – James Buchanan, was born in Franklin County, Pa. He was the fifteenth U.S. president (1857-1861) and the only president not to marry.

                      1860 – The Pony Express rider missed the boat at Benicia, Ca. Thomas Bedford, a 34-year-old stable keeper, was hired on the spot and boarded the ferry Carquinez with his horse. His discovered that his horse had lost a shoe and borrowed a horse from Martinez blacksmith Casemoro Briones and delivered the mail to the ferry at Oakland. The mail reached SF 9 hours and 15 minutes from the time it left Sacramento.

                      1861 – Arkansas troops seized Fort Smith.

                      1861 – Battle of San Antonio, TX.

                      1864 – Battle of Cane River, LA (Red River Expedition, Monett’s Ferry).

                      1865 – Union cavalry units continued to skirmish with Confederate forces in Henderson, North Carolina and Munsford Station, Alabama.

                      1908Congress passed legislation that created the Medical Reserve Corps, the Army’s first federal reserve force.

                      1914 – The 3rd Marine Regiment joined in a show of force at Vera Cruz, Mexico, after an insult to the American flag.

                      1915 – ACA becomes National Advisory Council on Aeronautics (NACA), the forerunner of NASA.

                      1918 – USS Stewart destroys German submarine off France.

                      1924 – The U.S. Senate passes Soldiers Bonus Bill.

                      1934 – In first Navy movement through Panama Canal over 100 ships transited.

                      1944 – Advancing US forces capture Hollandia, New Guinea, without a fight; Tadji airfield is also taken. The advance inland encounters resistance near the village of Sabron. There is congestion on the beachheads.

                      1945 – Advance units of both US 5th and British 8th Armies reach the Po River. US 5th Army units manage to cross the river south of Mantua.

                      1945 – Adolf Hitler’s designated successor Hermann Göring sends him a telegram asking permission to take leadership of the Third Reich, which causes Hitler to replace him with Joseph Goebbels and Karl Dönitz. Hitler is infuriated and orders Goring arrested.

                      1945 – On Okinawa, the attacks of US 24th Corps begin to achieve some gains, notably by US 96th Division.

                      1945 – Units of US 37th Division reach the outskirts of Baguio.

                      1945 – In only U.S. use of guided missiles in WW II, 2 BAT missiles release at Balikpapan, Borneo.

                      1945Less than two weeks after taking over as president after the death of Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry S. Truman gives a tongue-lashing to Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav Molotov. The incident indicated that Truman was determined to take a “tougher” stance with the Soviets than his predecessor had. On April 23, 1945, Soviet Foreign Minister Molotov arrived at the White House for a meeting with the new president. Truman immediately lashed out at Molotov, “in words of one syllable,” as the president later recalled. As Molotov listened incredulously, Truman charged that the Soviets were breaking their agreements and that Stalin needed to keep his word. At the end of Truman’s tirade, Molotov indignantly declared that he had never been talked to in such a manner. Truman, not to be outdone, replied that if Molotov had kept his promises, he would not need to be talked to like that. Molotov stormed out of the meeting.

                      1950 – Chaing Kai-shek evacuates Hainan, leaving mainland China to Mao Zedong and the communists.

                      1951The Battle of Kapyong took place with the 27th British Commonwealth Infantry Brigade holding out against the brunt of the communist spring offensive. The 3rd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment; 2nd Battalion, Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry; and A Company, 72nd U.S. Tank Battalion all received the U.S. Distinguished Unit Citation (today known as the Presidential Unit Citation) for Kapyong. North of Uijongbu, the 1st Battalion of the Gloucester Regiment and the 170th Heavy Mortar Battery, both of the British 29th Independent Brigade Group, earned the U.S. Distinguished Unit Citation for the action at “Gloucester Hill” were the battalion was virtually annihilated standing against the assault of 80,000 Chinese. A tank-infantry force including the Philippine Battalion suffered heavy casualties attempting to relieve the Gloucesters.

                      1951American journalist William N. Oatis is arrested for espionage by the Communist government of Czechoslovakia. Oatis was working as the AP bureau chief in Prague, Czechoslovakia when he was arrested. Deprived of sleep and subjected to continuous interrogation for 42 hours, Oatis signed a statement confessing to the charge of espionage. The case made international headlines, as well as leading to trade and travel embargos against Czechoslovakia. On July 4, 1951, a Czechoslovak court sentenced Oatis to ten years in prison. He was released May 16, 1953, shortly after the death of Joseph Stalin and after an angry letter from President Dwight D. Eisenhower to the Czechoslovak government. The Czechoslovak government said it had been moved to pardon Oatis by a poignant plea from Oatis’ wife, Laurabelle. A Czechoslovak court cleared him of all charges in 1959, but the decision was reversed in 1968 after the Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia. In 1990, after Czechoslovakia’s “Velvet Revolution” the previous year, he was cleared again.

                      1956 – Project Vanguard, earth satellite launching program, assigned to DCNO (Air).

                      1966 – In an air battle over North Vietnam, USAF F-4C Phantom jets shoot down two MiG-17s.

                      1975At a speech at Tulane University, President Gerald Ford says the Vietnam War is finished as far as America is concerned.

                      1991 – USSR granted republics the right to secede under certain conditions.

                      2001 – Pres. Bush decided to sell Taiwan older ships and planes, but not the advanced Aegis radar system.

                      2001 – USS Greeneville Cmdr. Scott Waddle was given a letter of reprimand as punishment for the submarine collision that killed nine people aboard a Japanese fishing vessel off Hawaii.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        the battle of San Antonio, 1861, no shots were fired but an interesting and detailed account of the "battle" at the Handbook of Texas online. (the Handbook of Texas, once only available in print and expensive, is now free to all online and is the best and most detailed reference on Texas history, no matter the period or person), is available here:
                        http://tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/qka01

                        long story short, the Federals were outnumbered and surrendered to the Confederate troops, even their weapons.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Linedoggie View Post
                          April 22

                          22 April


                          1915 – The Second battle of Ypres begins with the first use of poison chlorine gas on the Western Front. The Germans use 4000 gas cylinders to open their attack. Targeted units had no defense and many panicked and fled leaving 5 mile wide gap in the front line.
                          And the damned Canucks HELD THE LINE!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            April 24

                            24 April
                            1704 – The first regular newspaper in British Colonial America, the News-Letter, is published in Boston, Massachusetts.

                            1778 – US Ranger Captain John Paul Jones captured the British ship Drake.

                            1862Flag Officer Farragut’s fleet ran past Forts Jackson and St. Philip and engaged the defending Confederate flotilla. At 2:00 a.m., U.S.S. Hartford had shown Farragut’s signal for the fleet to get underway in three divisions to steam through the breach in the obstructions which had been opened by U.S.S. Pinola and Itasca. A withering fire from the forts was answered by roaring broadsides from the ships. Hartford, grounded in the swift current near Fort St. Philip, was set afire by a Confederate fireraft. Farragut’s leadership and the disciplined training of the crew saved the flagship. U.S.S. Varuna was rammed by two Confederate ships and sunk In the ensuing melee, C.S.S. Warrior, Stonewall Jackson, General Lovell, and Breckinridge, tender Phoenix, steamers Star and Belle Algerine, and Louisiana gunboat General Quitman were destroyed. The armored ram C.S.S. Manassas was driven ashore by U.S.S. Mississippi and sunk. Steam tenders C.S.S. Landis and W. Burton surrendered; Resolute and Governor Moore were destroyed to prevent capture. ”The destruction of the Navy at New Orleans,” wrote Confederate Secretary of the Navy Mallory, “was a sad, sad blow . . . When the Union Navy passed the forts and disposed of the Confederate forces afloat, the fate of New Orleans was decided. Farragut had achieved a brilliant victory, one which gave true meaning to the Flag Officer’s own words: “The great man in our country must not only plan but execute.

                            1863The Union army issues General Orders No. 100, which provided a code of conduct for Federal soldiers and officers when dealing with Confederate prisoners and civilians. The code was borrowed by many European nations, and its influence can be seen on the Geneva Convention. The orders were the brainchild of Francis Lieber, a Prussian immigrant whose three sons had served during the Civil War. One son was mortally wounded while fighting for the Confederacy at the Battle of Williamsburg, Virginia, in 1862. Lieber’s other two sons fought for the Union. Lieber was a scholar of international law who took a keen interest in the treatment of combatants and civilians. He wrote many essays and newspaper articles on the subject early in the war, and he advised General Henry Halleck, general-in-chief of the Union armies, on how to treat guerilla fighters captured by Federal forces. Halleck appointed a committee of four generals and Lieber to draft rules of combat for the Civil War. The final document consisted of 157 articles written almost entirely by Lieber. The orders established policies for, among other things, the treatment of prisoners, exchanges, and flags of truce. There was no document like it in the world at the time, and other countries soon adopted the code. It became the standard for international military law, and the Germans adopted it by 1870. Lieber’s concepts are still very influential today.

                            1865C.S.S. Webb, Lieutenant Read, dashed from the Red River under forced draft and entered the Mississippi at 8:30 at night in a heroic last-ditch effort to escape to sea. Before departing Alexandria, Louisiana, for his bold attempt, Read wrote Secretary Mallory: “I will have to stake everything upon speed and time.” The sudden appearance of the white-painted Webb in the Mississippi caught the Union blockaders (a monitor and two ironclads) at the mouth of the Red River by surprise. She was initially identified as a Federal ship; this mistake in identification gave Read a lead in the dash downstream. A running battle ensued in which Webb shook off the three Union pursuers. As Read proceeded down the Mississippi, other blockading ships took up the chase but were outdistanced by the fast moving Webb, which some observers claimed was making 25 knots. While churning with the current toward New Orleans, Read paused at one point to cut the telegraph wires along the bank.

                            This proved futile as word of his escape and approach passed southward where it generated considerable excitement and a flurry of messages between the Army and Navy commanders who alerted shore batteries and ships to intercept him. About 10 miles above New Orleans Read hoisted the United States flag at half mast in mourning for Lincoln’s death and brought Webb’s steam pressure up to maximum. He passed the city at about midnight, 24 April, going full speed. Federal gunboats opened on him, whereupon Read broke the Confederate flag. Three hits were scored, the spar torpedo rigged at the steamer’s bow was damaged and had to be jettisoned, but the Webb continued on course toward the sea. Twenty-five miles below New Orleans Read’s luck ran out, for here Webb encountered U.S.S. Richmond.

                            Thus trapped between Richmond and pursuing gunboats, Read’s audacious and well-executed plan came to an end. Webb was run aground and set on fire before her officers and men took to the swamps in an effort to escape. Read and his crew were apprehended within a few hours and taken under guard to New Orleans. They there suffered the indignity of being placed on public display but were subsequently paroled and ordered to their respective homes. Following the restoration of peace, Read became a pilot of the Southwest Pass, one of the mouths of the Mississippi River, and pursued that occupation until his death.

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                            • #15

                              APRIL 24
                              24 April

                              1877 – Federal troops were ordered out of New Orleans, ending the North’s post-Civil War rule in the South.

                              1884 – USS Thetis, Bear, and Alert sailed from New York to search for Greeley expedition lost in Arctic.

                              1898 – Spain declared war on the United States after rejecting America’s ultimatum to withdraw from Cuba.

                              1898 – US fleet under commodore Dewey steamed from Hong Kong to Philippines.

                              1917 – Destroyer squadron departs Boston for European service

                              1941 – Roosevelt formally orders US warships to report the movements of German warships west of Iceland. This is happening unofficially already. The information is usually passed one way or another to the British.

                              1944 – The first B-29 arrived in China, over the Hump of the Himalayas.

                              1944The US 8th Air Force raids factories and airfields in Friedrichshafen, near Munich. A total of 55 planes are lost, including 14 which land or crash in Switzerland. During the night, 250 RAF Lancaster bombers scatter “Flying Meteor” methane-petrol incendiary bombs over Munich causing devastation in the area between Central Station and the Isar River.

                              1944 – American forces reach Lake Sentani near Hollandia, New Guinea. To the east, Australian forces advancing from the Huon Peninsula capture Madang.

                              1945 – Dessau on the Elbe River is taken by US 1st Army.

                              1945 – Units of both US 5th Army and British 8th Army begin to cross the Po River at several points near Ferrara and to the west. Ferrara is captured. On the west coast, La Spezia falls to the US 92nd Division. German forces are incapable of stopping the Allied advance.

                              1945 – On Okinawa, Japanese forces defending the Shuri Line, in the south, begin tactical withdrawals.

                              1948The Berlin airlift began to relieve the surrounded city.

                              1951 – U.S. Air Force Captain Joseph C. McConnell, 51st Fighter-Interceptor Wing, qualified as the sixth “double ace” (10 kills) of the war.

                              1965 – President Johnson issues an executive order designating Vietnam a ‘combat area’ for income tax purposes, retroactive to 1 January 1964.

                              1969 – US B-52’s dropped 3,000 ton bombs at Cambodian boundary.

                              1967 – General Westmoreland sparks controversy by saying that the enemy had ‘gained support in the United States that gives him hope that he can win politically that which he cannot win militarily.’

                              1967 – US Marines, of the 3rd Marine Regiment, defeat North Vietnamese troops on thiree hills near the airstrip at Khesan in Quangtin Province. The battle will rage for 12 days.

                              1980An ill-fated military operation to rescue the 52 American hostages held in Tehran ends with eight U.S. servicemen dead and no hostages rescued.

                              1990 – The space shuttle Discovery blasted off from Cape Canaveral, Fla., carrying the $1.5 billion Hubble Space Telescope. It cost $2 billion. The orbital period of the telescope was 97 Minutes.
                              1990 – West and East Germany agreed to merge currency and economies on July 1.

                              1994 – Bosnian Serbs, threatened with NATO air strikes, grudgingly gave up their three-week assault on Gorazde, burning houses and blowing up a water treatment plant as they withdrew.

                              1994Iraq announces completion of a 65-mile canal through southern Iraq that would divert river waters away from marshlands inhabited primarily by Shiite Iraqis to desert lands. The project has long been the object of concern to human rights groups who charge that the primary reason for the project is to punish the Shiite population in this region for their support of anti-government rebels and to make rebel bases more accessible to government attack.

                              1997The US ratified the chemical weapons ban. The Senate voted 74-26 to approve the chemical weapons treaty, five days before the pact was to take effect. It was the 75th country to ratify the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention ban signed by 164 states. The signing obliges members to destroy all chemical weapons and production facilities by 2007.

                              2003 – Tariq Aziz (8 of spades), Iraqi deputy prime minister, surrendered to US forces.

                              2004Three small dhows, a boat often used in the Gulf, exploded in the Gulf waters off Iraq’s port of Umm Qasr when approached by teams sent to intercept them. Oil terminals at al-Basra and Khawr al-Amaya were targeted. The dhow near Khawr al-Amaya flipped over a U.S. Navy interception craft, killing 2 US sailors and wounding five others. Al Qaeda later claimed responsibility.

                              2004 – The United States lifts economic sanctions imposed on Libya 18 years previously, as a reward for its cooperation in eliminating weapons of mass destruction.

                              2007 – The United States Department of Veterans Affairs allows the Wiccan pentagram to be used on the tombstones of deceased soldiers.

                              2012 – The Pentagon establishes the Defense Clandestine Service to focus on the challenges posed to U.S. interests by countries such as Iran, North Korea and China.

                              2013 – The FBI and the CIA admit that Russian intelligence had warned the U.S. intelligence agencies several times regarding the extremist connections of Tamerlan Tsarnaev prior to the Boston marathon bombings.

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