Besides from the most important thing that happened on this day, a lot of other cool things happened on this day as well. People born, people died… famous events etc.
I already knew of a lot of these things but there were a few cool ones I hadn’t seen before. So after doing some research, here’s a brief list of cool things that happened on the day I share my birthday with:
1998– Operation Desert Fox begins– The US and UK bomb Iraq because of an alleged failure to comply with UN Security Council resolutions. You can look as this day as a monumental day in how things began developing towards present day Iraq.
1991- Independence Day for The Republic of Kazahkstan. Very nice! I knew I was connected in more than one way to Kazahkstan asides from my infamous Borat costume. Let’s celebrate with a song!
One of my favourites:
1991- UN General Assembly Resolution 4686 is passed, which revokes UN General Assembly Resolution 3379 after Israel makes revocation of resolution 3379 a condition of its participation in the Madrid Peace Conference of 1991
Why is this a big deal? Pretty much the UN reversed a ruling that Zionism is considered racism. Like there was ever any question of that concept in the first place boggles me. The final vote was 111-25 (13 abstained). President Bush told the General Assembly:
Let this be a lesson for everyone…I encourage everyone to look up information about this historic event.
1973- O.J. Simpson becomes the first NFLer to rush for 2,000 yards in a season. And now rots in prison.
1971- “National Day” for State of Bahrain AND Victory Day in Bangladesh– this day marks the surrender of the Pakistani army in the Bangladesh War of Independence and Indo-Pakistani War of 1971, paving the way for independence in Bangladesh.
1966- Jimi Hendrix Experience releases its first single “Hey Joe,” in the UK. And a legend is born.
1969- MP’s in English Commons vote to abolish hanging. 2 days later the House of Lords voted in favour of abolishing the death penalty completely.
1960- 1960 New York air disaster– While approaching New York’s Idlewild Airport, a United Airlines Douglas DC-8 collides with a TWA Lockheed Super Constellation in a blinding snowstorm over Staten Island, killing 134.
1944- The Battle of the Bulge begins. This was the last major offensive by the Germans in WWII before eventually losing the war. Thank G-d for that.
1689- English Parliament adopts Bill of Rights after Glorious Revolution.
1497- Vasco da Gama goes where no man has gone before- around the Cape of Good Hope, the point where Bartolomeu Dias had made it to, but turned back.
1770– Ludwig von Beethoven, the musician who gave us Fur Elise, Symphony No. 9, Moonlight Sonata, and my favourite: his 5th Symphony.
1775– Jane Austen, novelist, Pride and Prejudice.
1883– Max Linder, French pioneer of silent film, it’s said he created what was probably the first identifiable motion-picture character who appeared in successive situation comedies. Jewish too.
1934- Elgin Baylor, NBA Hall-of-Famer.
1938– Frank Deford, American Sportswriter.
1941– Lesley Stahl, American journalist, 60 minutes.
1946– Benny Andersson, singer and songwriter for ABBA – OR, the reason I almost my mind this summer while working because of having to listen to ABBA over and over again…
1949– Billy Gibbons, ZZ Top guitarist. A real musician, and what facial hair! >
1962– William “The Refrigerator” Perry, American football player, awesome nickname- at his peak weight he was 382 lbs!
1963-Benjamin Bratt, American actor, Law & Order, Traffic
1966- Clifford Robinson, American basketball player
1967– Donovan Bailey, Canadian sprinter, 2-time Olympic gold medalist, held the world record for the 100 metre dash at 9.84 seconds. He’s also from Oakville, Ontario, my previous hometown. One of my favourites :
1977– Eric Belanger, Canadian hockey player, Winnipeg Jets.
1859– Wilhelm Grimm, One of the Brothers Grimm, fairy tale writer
1916 (old style calender, so for us its actually on December 29)- Rasputin, powerful Russian monk. legend has it that on this day he was poisoned by Romanov family members who believed his influence on the Tsaritsa became too dangerous. He didn’t die right away but this event is known as the catalyst for his downfall.
1922– Eliezer Ben Yehuda, the man who revived the Hebrew language. Read his bio. What a fascinating story he has. He lived a tough life – after his wife died of tuberculosis and three of his five children died within a span of 10 days – but managed to revive a seemingly dead language. Many orthodox authorities rejected his teachings because of the sanctity of the Hebrew language, which is regarded as “Lashon HaKodesh” or holy language/tongue, and should only be used for the discussion of holy/torah matters, not everyday conversational use (they consider it a misuse of the language, thus explaining the prevalence of Yiddish as a conversational language.) Personally, I agree with the orthodox point of view, but what Ben-Yehuda did was extremely vital to the well-being of Jewish identity. One of the first things any Jew learns is the Aleph-Beis (the alphabet), and without it, it’s extremely difficult to grasp much. Also, when defining a nation, better yet an organized group of similar people – language is usually one of those dominating characteristics. Thank G-d for bringing a man like Elizer Ben Yehuda into this world.
1922– Gabriel Narutowic,1st President of Poland, assassinated a week after his election.
1976– George, a goose that lived to 49 years, 8 months. I read this and thought wow.
1980– Colonel Sanders, Mr. Kentucky Fried Chicken
You can also find more interesting stuff about December 16 by taking this quiz on Sporcle. I surprisingly didn’t do all that well, which I honestly can’t explain.
Hope you enjoyed that!