Today’s Highlights in History:
On July 20, 1944, an attempt by a group of German officials to assassinate Adolf Hitler with a bomb failed as the explosion only wounded the Nazi leader. President Franklin D. Roosevelt was nominated for a fourth term of office at the Democratic convention in Chicago.
On this date:
In 1861, the Congress of the Confederate States convened in Richmond, Virginia.
In 1871, British Columbia entered Confederation as a Canadian province.
In 1917, the World War I draft lottery went into operation.
In 1923, Mexican revolutionary leader Pancho Villa was assassinated.
In 1954, the Geneva Accords divided Vietnam into northern and southern entities.
In 1968, the first International Special Olympics Summer Games, organized by Eunice Kennedy Shriver, were held at Soldier Field in Chicago.
In 1969, astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin became the first men to walk on the moon after reaching the surface in their Apollo 11 lunar module.
In 1974, Turkish forces invaded Cyprus after a coup by supporters of union with Greece.
In 1976, America’s Viking 1 robot spacecraft made a successful, first-ever landing on Mars.
In 1989, Burmese activist Aung San Suu Kyi (soo chee) was placed under house arrest by the military government of Myanmar.
In 1999, after 38 years at the bottom of the Atlantic, astronaut Gus Grissom’s Liberty Bell 7 Mercury capsule was lifted to the surface.
In 2012, a gunman opened fire inside a crowded movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, during a midnight showing of “The Dark Knight Rises,” killing 12 people. (Suspect James Eagen Holmes has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to more than 160 counts of murder and attempted murder.)
Ten years ago: Former national security adviser Sandy Berger quit as an informal adviser to Democrat John Kerry’s presidential campaign after disclosure of a criminal investigation into whether he’d mishandled classified terrorism documents. Iraqi militants freed a Filipino truck driver after the Philippines government gave in to their demands to withdraw troops from Iraq. The head of slain American hostage Paul M. Johnson Jr. was found in a raid in Saudi Arabia. The U.N. General Assembly demanded that Israel tear down the barrier it was building to seal off the West Bank; Israel vowed to continue construction.
Five years ago: A roadside bomb killed four American troops in eastern Afghanistan. The astronauts aboard the shuttle-station complex celebrated the 40th anniversary of man’s first moon landing with their own spacewalk.
One year ago: People rallied in dozens of U.S. cities, urging authorities to press federal civil rights charges against George Zimmerman, the former neighborhood watch leader found not guilty in the shooting death of unarmed teen Trayvon Martin. Five employees of an Italian cruise company were convicted of manslaughter in the Costa Concordia shipwreck that killed 32 people, receiving sentences of less than three years. Longtime White House correspondent Helen Thomas, 92, died in Washington.
Today’s Birthdays: Actress-singer Sally Ann Howes is 84. Author Cormac McCarthy is 81. Rockabilly singer Sleepy LaBeef is 79. Senator Barbara A. Mikulski, D-Md., is 78. Actress Diana Rigg is 76. Artist Judy Chicago is 75. Rock musician John Lodge (The Moody Blues) is 71. Country singer T.G. Sheppard is 70. Singer Kim Carnes is 69. Rock musician Carlos Santana is 67. Rock musician Paul Cook (The Sex Pistols, Man Raze) is 58. Actress Donna Dixon is 57. Rock musician Mick McNeil (Simple Minds) is 56. Country singer Radney Foster is 55. Actor Frank Whaley is 51. Rock singer Chris Cornell is 50. Rock musician Stone Gossard (Pearl Jam) is 48. Actor Reed Diamond is 47. Actor Josh Holloway is 45. Singer Vitamin C is 45. Actor Omar Epps is 41. Actor Simon Rex is 40. Actress Judy Greer is 39. Actor Charlie Korsmo is 36. Singer Elliott Yamin (yah-MEEN’) (American Idol) is 36. Supermodel Gisele Bundchen is 34. Rock musician Mike Kennerty (The All-American Rejects) is 34. Actor Percy Daggs III is 32. Actor John Francis Daley is 29. Country singer Hannah Blaylock (Edens Edge) is 28. Country singer-ballroom dancer Julianne Hough is 26. Actress Billi Bruno is 18.
Thought for Today: “Courage without conscience is a wild beast.” – Robert G. Ingersoll, American lawyer and politician (1833-1899).
Copyright 2014, The Associated Press. All rights reserved.