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Today in History

Today in History

Today is Monday, Oct. 23, the 296th day of 2017. There are 69 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Oct. 23, 1942, during World War II, Britain launched a major offensive against Axis forces at El Alamein (el ah-lah-MAYN’) in Egypt, resulting in an Allied victory.

On this date:

In 1864, forces led by Union Maj. Gen. Samuel R. Curtis repelled Confederate Maj. Gen. Sterling Price’s army in the Civil War Battle of Westport in Missouri.

In 1915, tens of thousands of women paraded up Fifth Avenue in New York City, demanding the right to vote.

In 1935, mobster Dutch Schultz, 34, was shot and mortally wounded with three other men during a gangland hit at the Palace Chophouse in Newark, New Jersey. (Schultz died the following day.)

In 1941, the Walt Disney animated feature “Dumbo,” about a young circus elephant who learns how to fly, premiered in New York.

In 1944, the World War II Battle of Leyte (LAY’-tee) Gulf began, resulting in a major Allied victory against Japanese forces.

In 1946, the United Nations General Assembly convened in New York for the first time, at an auditorium in Flushing Meadow.

In 1956, a student-sparked revolt against Hungary’s Communist rule began; as the revolution spread, Soviet forces started entering the country, and the uprising was put down within weeks.

In 1963, the Neil Simon comedy “Barefoot in the Park,” starring Elizabeth Ashley and Robert Redford, opened on Broadway.

In 1973, President Richard Nixon agreed to turn over White House tape recordings subpoenaed by the Watergate special prosecutor to Judge John J. Sirica.

In 1983, 241 U.S. service members, most of them Marines, were killed in a suicide truck-bombing at Beirut International Airport in Lebanon; a near-simultaneous attack on French forces killed 58 paratroopers. NBC News reporter and anchorwoman Jessica Savitch, 36, and New York Post executive Martin Fischbein, 34, died in a car accident in New Hope, Pennsylvania.

In 1991, Cambodia’s warring factions and representatives of 18 other nations signed a peace treaty in Paris.

In 2001, the nation’s anthrax scare hit the White House with the discovery of a small concentration of spores at an offsite mail processing center.

Ten years ago: Evacuations due to out-of-control wildfires in Southern California topped half a million; President George W. Bush declared a federal emergency for seven counties. Shuttle Discovery and its crew of seven thundered into orbit for a complex space station construction mission.

Five years ago: During a debate with Democratic rival Joe Donnelly, Indiana Republican Senate candidate Richard Mourdock said that when a woman becomes pregnant during rape, “it is something that God intended to happen.” (Other Republican candidates moved to distance themselves from Mourdock, who went on to lose the November election to Donnelly.)

One year ago: A tour bus returning home to Los Angeles from a casino trip plowed into the back of a slow-moving semi-truck on a California highway, killing 13 people. Bill Murray received the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. Former student radical turned California lawmaker Tom Hayden, 76, died in Santa Monica, California.

Today’s Birthdays: Movie director Philip Kaufman is 81. Soccer great Pele (pay-lay) is 77. Rhythm-and-blues singer Barbara Ann Hawkins (The Dixie Cups) is 74. ABC News investigative reporter Brian Ross is 69. Actor Michael Rupert is 66. Movie director Ang Lee is 63. Jazz singer Dianne Reeves is 61. Country singer Dwight Yoakam is 61. Community activist Martin Luther King III is 60. Movie director Sam Raimi is 58. Parodist “Weird Al” Yankovic is 58. Rock musician Robert Trujillo (Metallica) is 53. Christian/jazz singer David Thomas (Take 6) is 51. Rock musician Brian Nevin (Big Head Todd and the Monsters) is 51. Country singer-musician Junior Bryant is 49. Actor Jon Huertas is 48. Movie director Chris Weitz is 48. CNN medical reporter Dr. Sanjay Gupta is 48. Bluegrass musician Eric Gibson (The Gibson Brothers) is 47. Country singer Jimmy Wayne is 45. Actress Vivian Bang is 44. Rock musician Eric Bass (Shinedown) is 43. TV personality and host Cat Deeley is 41. Actor Ryan Reynolds is 41. Rock singer Matthew Shultz (Cage the Elephant) is 34. Rhythm-and-blues singer Miguel is 32. Actress Masiela Lusha (MAH’-see-ella loo-SHA’) is 32. Actress Emilia Clarke is 31. Actress Briana Evigan is 31. Actress Jessica Stroup is 31. Neo-soul musician Allen Branstetter (St. Paul & the Broken Bones) is 27. Actress Taylor Spreitler is 24. Actress Amandla Stenberg is 19.

Thought for Today: “You can fool too many of the people too much of the time.” — James Thurber, American humorist (1894-1961).

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