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Pearl Harbor bombed

Posted by Kenneth Peck on

On this day December 7th 1941 At 7:55 a.m. Hawaii time, a Japanese dive bomber bearing the red symbol of the Rising Sun of Japan on its wings appears out of the clouds above the island of Oahu. A swarm of 360 Japanese warplanes followed, descending on the U.S. naval base at Pearl Harbor in a ferocious assault. The surprise attack struck a critical blow against the U.S. Pacific fleet and drew the United States irrevocably into World War II.With diplomatic negotiations with Japan breaking down, President Franklin D. Roosevelt and his advisers knew that an imminent Japanese attack was...

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Operation Farm Gate combat missions authorized

Posted by Kenneth Peck on

On this day December 6th 1961 U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff authorize combat missions by Operation Farm Gate pilots. With this order, U.S. Air Force pilots were given the go-ahead to undertake combat missions against the Viet Cong as long as at least one Vietnamese national was carried on board the strike aircraft for training purposes. The program had initially been designed to provide advisory support to assist the South Vietnamese Air Force in increasing its capability. The gradual but dramatic expansion of Operation Farm Gate reflected the increasing involvement of the United States in Vietnam.President John F. Kennedy originally...

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Bush orders U.S. troops to Somalia

Posted by Kenneth Peck on

On this day December 4th, 1992 President George H. Bush orders 28,000 U.S. troops to Somalia, a war-torn East African nation where rival warlords were preventing the distribution of humanitarian aid to thousands of starving Somalis. In a military mission he described as “God’s work,” Bush said that America must act to save more than a million Somali lives, but reassured Americans that “this operation is not open-ended” and that “we will not stay one day longer than is absolutely necessary.” Unfortunately, America’s humanitarian troops became embroiled in Somalia’s political conflict, and the controversial mission stretched on for 15 months...

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Bush and Gorbachev suggest Cold War is coming to an end

Posted by Kenneth Peck on

On this day December 3rd, 1989 Meeting off the coast of Malta, President George Bush and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev issue statements strongly suggesting that the long-standing animosities at the core of the Cold War might be coming to an end. Commentators in both the United States and Russia went farther and declared that the Cold War was over.The talks were part of the first-ever summit held between the two leaders. Bush and his advisers were cautiously optimistic about the summit, eager to follow up on the steps toward arms control taken by the preceding Reagan administration. Gorbachev was quite...

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Antarctica made a military-free continent

Posted by Kenneth Peck on

On this day December 1st 1959 Twelve nations, including the United States and the Soviet Union, sign the Antarctica Treaty, which bans military activity and weapons testing on that continent. It was the first arms control agreement signed in the Cold War period.Since the 1800s a number of nations, including Great Britain, Australia, Chile, and Norway, laid claim to parts of Antarctica. These competing claims led to diplomatic disputes and even armed clashes. In 1948, Argentine military forces fired on British troops in an area claimed by both nations. Incidents of that sort, together with evidence that the Soviet Union...

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