1770 – James Bruce discovers what he believes to be the source of the Nile. 1862 – American Civil War: President Abraham Lincoln approves General Ambrose Burnside's plan to capture the Confederate capital at Richmond, Virginia, leading to the Battle of Fredericksburg. 1889 – Pioneering female journalist Nellie Bly (aka Elizabeth Cochrane) begins a successful attempt to travel around the world in less than 80 days. She completes the trip in 72 days. 1910 – Aviator Eugene Burton Ely performs the first takeoff from a ship in Hampton Roads, Virginia. He took off from a makeshift deck on the USS Birmingham in a Curtiss pusher. 1914 – The Ottoman Empire declares war against Britain, France, Russia, Serbia and Montenegro during the early months of World War I. 1918 – Czechoslovakia becomes a republic. 1921 – Foundation of the Communist Party of Spain. 1922 – The British Broadcasting Company begins radio service in the United Kingdom. 1932 – Al Shorta SC, one of Iraq's biggest football clubs, are founded as Montakhab Al Shorta. 1938 – The Lions Gate Bridge (a National Historic Site of Canada) connecting Vancouver to the North Shore region, opens to traffic. 1940 – World War II: In England, Coventry is heavily bombed by German Luftwaffe bombers. Coventry Cathedral is almost completely destroyed. 1941 – World War II: The aircraft carrier HMS Ark Royal sinks due to torpedo damage from the German submarine U-81 sustained on November 13. 1941 – World War II: In Slonim, German forces engaged in Operation Barbarossa murder 9,000 Jews in a single day. 1952 – The first regular UK Singles Chart published by the New Musical Express. 1957 – The Apalachin Meeting outside Binghamton, New York is raided by law enforcement, and many high level Mafia figures are arrested. 1965 – Vietnam War: The Battle of Ia Drang begins – the first major engagement between regular American and North Vietnamese forces. 1967 – The Congress of Colombia, in commemoration of the 150 years of the death of Policarpa Salavarrieta, declares this day as "Day of the Colombian Woman". 1967 – American physicist Theodore Maiman is given a patent for his ruby laser systems, the world's first laser. 1969 – Apollo program: NASA launches Apollo 12, the second crewed mission to the surface of the Moon. 1970 – Soviet Union enters ICAO, making Russian the fourth official language of organization. 1970 – Southern Airways Flight 932 crashes in the mountains near Huntington, West Virginia, killing 75, including members of the Marshall University football team. 1971 – Enthronment of Pope Shenouda III as Pope of Alexandria. 1971 – Mariner 9 enters orbit around Mars. 1973 – In the United Kingdom, Princess Anne marries Captain Mark Phillips, in Westminster Abbey. 1973 – The Athens Polytechnic uprising, a massive demonstration of popular rejection of the Greek military junta of 1967–74, begins. 1975 – With the signing of the Madrid Accords, Spain abandons Western Sahara. 1979 – Iran hostage crisis: US President Jimmy Carter issues Executive order 12170, freezing all Iranian assets in the United States in response to the hostage crisis. 1982 – Lech Wałęsa, the leader of Poland's outlawed Solidarity movement, is released after eleven months of internment near the Soviet border. 1984 – Zamboanga City mayor Cesar Climaco, a prominent critic of the government of Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos, is assassinated in his home city. 1990 – After German reunification, the Federal Republic of Germany and Poland sign a treaty confirming the Oder–Neisse line as the border between Germany and Poland. 1991 – American and British authorities announce indictments against two Libyan intelligence officials in connection with the downing of the Pan Am Flight 103. 1991 – Cambodian Prince Norodom Sihanouk returns to Phnom Penh after thirteen years of exile. 1991 – In Royal Oak, Michigan, a fired United States Postal Service employee goes on a shooting rampage, killing four and wounding five before committing suicide. 1995 – A budget standoff between Democrats and Republicans in the U.S. Congress forces the federal government to temporarily close national parks and museums and to run most government offices with skeleton staffs. 2001 – War in Afghanistan: Afghan Northern Alliance fighters take over the capital Kabul. 2003 – Astronomers Michael E. Brown, Chad Trujillo, and David L. Rabinowitz discover 90377 Sedna, a Trans-Neptunian object. 2008 – The first G-20 economic summit opens in Washington, D.C. 2010 – Germany's Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull Racing wins Formula One's Drivers Championship to become the sport's youngest champion. 2012 – Israel launches a major military operation in the Gaza Strip, as hostilities with Hamas escalate.
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