Samantha's Today in History

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August 20th

1741 Danish navigator Vitus Jonas Bering discovered what is now Alaska.
1968 Approximately 200,000 Warsaw Pact troops and 5,000 tanks invaded Czechoslovakia to crush the Prague Spring -- a brief period of liberalization in the communist country.
1977 The first U.S. Voyager spacecraft was launched from Cape Canaveral, Fla., bound for Jupiter and Saturn.
1982 U.S. President Ronald Reagan announced that a contingent of U.S. Marines would join French and Italian troops as peacekeepers in Beirut.
1986 Postal worker Patrick Henry Sherrill killed 14 fellow workers and wounded six others in the Edmond, Okla., post office before killing himself.
1990 U.S. President George H.W. Bush declared that Americans and other foreigners held by Iraq are hostages and warned he will hold Iraq responsible for their safety and well-being.
1996 U.S. President Bill Clinton signed into law an increase in the minimum wage in two steps from $4.25 to $5.15 an hour.
1997 NATO forces seized thousands of weapons being kept at police stations in Serbian Bosnia's largest city.
1998 U.S. missiles struck sites in Afghanistan and Sudan said to be linked with terrorists. The attacks were in response to the bombings of the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania 13 days earlier.
2002 A group of Iraqis opposed to the regime of Saddam Hussein took over the Iraqi Embassy in Berlin for five hours before releasing their hostages and surrendering.
2003 Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore was suspended after refusing to comply with a federal court order to remove a rock inscribed with the Ten Commandments from the lobby of the state supreme court building.
2005 In his first visit to his German homeland since becoming pope, Benedict XVI told a group of Muslims that Islam and Christianity must work together to defeat terrorism.
2006 Schoolteacher John Mark Karr was returned to the United States for questioning in the decade-old death of 6-year-old Colorado beauty queen Jon Benet Ramsey. Karr confessed to the killing but said it was an accident. He was later determined not to have a role in the girl's death.
2007 The governor of Iraq's southern al-Muthana province and five of his aides were killed when a roadside bomb struck their convoy. Mohammed Ali Hassan Al-Hassani was a member of the largest Shiite political group in parliament.
2007 Fall term classes started at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg on a day after a memorial service for the 32 people gunned down by a student on campus in April.
2008 Spanish officials have put the death toll at 153 in the Madrid crash of a Spanair jet on takeoff. Twenty-seven people were said to have survived though injured. Observers told authorities the left jet engine was on fire as the plane lifted off.
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