This Day In History

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  • World Anti-Doping Agency accuses Russia of widespread cheating at Olympics

    On December 9, 2016, the World Anti-Doping Agency details a vast "institutional conspiracy" involving Russian officials and more than 1,000 athletes in systematic doping at major athletic competitions, including the Olympics. A second WADA report says the conspiracy involves the Russian ...
  • New York Giants beat Chicago Bears in 'Sneakers Game'

    On December 9, 1934, the New York Giants win the NFL championship by beating the Chicago Bears, 30-13, in the famous "Sneakers Game." With the temperature at 9 degrees and the Polo Grounds field a sheet of ice, the Giants open the second half wearing basketball shoes and score 27 points in the ...
  • Smallpox is officially declared eradicated

    On December 9, 1979, a commission of scientists declare that smallpox has been eradicated. The disease, which carries around a 30 percent chance of death for those who contract it, is the only infectious disease afflicting humans that has officially been eradicated. Something similar to smallpox ...
  • Separation of Charles and Diana announced

    British Prime Minister John Major announces the formal separation of Charles, Prince of Wales and heir to the British throne, and his wife, Princess Diana. Major explained that the royal couple were separating “amicably.” The report came after several years of speculation by the tabloid press that ...
  • John Birch Society founded

    In Indianapolis, retired candy manufacturer Robert H.W. Welch, Jr., establishes the John Birch Society, a right-wing organization dedicated to fighting what it perceives to be the extensive infiltration of communism into American society. Welch named the society in honor of John Birch, considered ...
  • Lech Walesa elected president of Poland

    In Poland, Lech Walesa, founder of the Solidarity trade union, wins a landslide election victory, becoming the first directly elected Polish leader. Walesa, born in 1943, was an electrician at the Lenin Shipyard in Gdansk when he was fired for union agitation in 1976. When protests broke out in ...
  • Intifada begins on Gaza Strip

    In the Israeli-occupied Gaza Strip, the first riots of the Palestinian intifada, or “shaking off” in Arabic, begin one day after an Israeli truck crashed into a station wagon carrying Palestinian workers in the Jabalya refugee district of Gaza, killing four and wounding 10. Gaza Palestinians saw ...
  • U.S. Marines storm Mogadishu, Somalia

    On December 9, 1992, 1,800 United States Marines arrive in Mogadishu, Somalia, to spearhead a multinational force aimed at restoring order in the conflict-ridden country. Following centuries of colonial rule by countries including Portugal, Britain and Italy, Mogadishu became the capital of an ...
  • Paris peace talks break down

    For the first time since the Paris peace talks began in May 1968, both sides refuse to set another meeting date for continuation of the negotiations. The refusal to continue came during the 138th session of the peace talks. U.S. delegate William Porter angered the communist negotiators by asking ...
  • The Texan Army captures San Antonio

    Inspired by the leadership of Benjamin Rush Milam, the newly created Texan Army takes possession of the city of San Antonio, an important victory for the Republic of Texas in its war for independence from Mexico. Milam was born in 1788 in Frankfort, Kentucky. He became a citizen and soldier of ...