By The Associated Press
2013-09-27 09:01 AM
Today is Friday, October 4, the 277th day of 2013. There are 88 days left in the year.
Highlights in history on this date:
1830 - The provisional government of Belgium proclaims the country's independence from The Netherlands.
1853 - Turkey declares war on Russia, which occupied modern Romania three months earlier. Later Britain, France and Sardinia join the Crimean War on Turkey's side.
1865 - Napoleon III of France agrees to Prussian supremacy in Germany and to a united Italy after meeting Otto von Bismarck in Biarritz.
1895 - The first U.S. Open golf tournament is held, at the Newport Country Club in Rhode Island.
1910 - Portugal's King Manuel II flees to England on outbreak of revolution in Lisbon. A republic is declared the next day.
1930 - Former presidential candidate Getulio Vargas leads a revolt in Brazil and later becomes president.
1945 - The head of the wartime Vichy government in France, Pierre Laval, is put on trial in Paris as a traitor and a Nazi supporter. He is later executed.
1950 - The U.N. consents to a U.S.-backed invasion on North Korea.
1957 - The Soviet Union puts the first spacecraft, Sputnik, into orbit around earth, heralding the start of the space age.
1958 - The first trans-Atlantic passenger jetliner service begins by British Overseas Airways Corp. with flights between London and New York.
1966 - The British colony of Basutoland becomes independent as the Kingdom of Lesotho.
1971 - The U.S. calls on Egypt and Israel to work out an interim agreement on the reopening the Suez Canal as the first step toward resolving the Middle East crisis.
1980 - Jordan becomes the first Arab state to openly support Iraq in its war with Iran, sending food and supplies.
1986 - Fire breaks out in a Soviet nuclear-powered submarine carrying ballistic missiles. Three people are reported dead.
1988 - Brazil enacts new constitution, completing long-awaited "transition to democracy."
1990 - German lawmakers meet in the Reichstag for the first meeting of reunified Germany's parliament.
1992 - Government and Mozambique National Resistance rebels sign a peace treaty to end 15 years of civil war.
1993 - Two U.S. Blackhawk helicopters headed to capture a local warlord are shot down in the Somali capital of Mogadishu. Gun battles continue into the night while rescue attempts are made in hostile territory, leaving 18 U.S. troops dead and 90 wounded.
1994 - At least 60 people are reported dead in a month as parts of India is hit by a pneumonic plague.
1995 - Israel announces that it will release 1,200 Palestinian prisoners over the next few days, signaling its intention to swiftly honor a key commitment under the new accord with the PLO.
1996 - Armed Taliban fighters haul men off the streets and force them into mosques to hear fiery sermons during the first Muslim holiday in Kabul, Afghanistan, since the new Islamic rulers took over.
1997 - The death toll reaches at least 100 in Algeria after a two day surge of massacres attributed to the Armed Islamic Group.
1999 - A Croatian court convicts Dinko Sakic, a commander of a World War II death camp in Nazi-controlled Croatia, to 20 years in prison on war crime charges.
2000 - Congo President Laurent Kabila orders a $20 million, 267-carat diamond returned to local businessman, Alphonse Ngoyi Kasanji, who was imprisoned while authorities investigated if it was stolen from a state mining company.
2001 - A Ukrainian anti-aircraft missile brings down a Russian airliner over the Black Sea, killing all 78 people on board.
2002 - John Walker Lindh, a U.S. citizen captured by U.S. forces while he was fighting with Afghanistan's now-deposed Taliban militia, is sentenced to 20 years in prison.
2004 - Palestinian Prime Minister Ahmed Qureia condemns what he calls international indifference to Palestinian suffering in the face of a broad Israeli offensive into the Gaza Strip.
2005 - The U.N. Security Council urges Rwandan forces in Congo to disarm and return home without delay, four days after a deadline expires for them to leave or face eviction by force. The estimated 12,000 to 15,000 fighters are mostly extremist Rwandan militiamen blamed for Rwanda's 1994 genocide.
2007 - North Korea pledges to detail its nuclear programs and disable all activities at its main reactor complex by year's end, after which they sign a wide-ranging reconciliation pact with South Korea.
2008 - Poland turns over control of an area south of Baghdad to American troops, making it the latest in a string of countries to leave the dwindling U.S.-led coalition.
2009 - Hundreds of insurgents storm a pair of remote outposts near the Pakistan border, killing eight U.S. soldiers and capturing more than 20 Afghan security troops in the deadliest assault against U.S. forces in more than a year.
2010 - The Nobel Prize in medicine goes to a man whose work led to the first test tube baby, an achievement that helped bring 4 million infants into the world and raised challenging new questions about human reproduction.
2011 - After Italian prisoners gave her a boisterous send-off, Amanda Knox makes her way home to America, holing up with family on the upper deck of a jetliner to Seattle as she enjoys her first full day of freedom since her murder conviction was reversed.
2012 - A team of FBI agents arrives in Benghazi, Libya, to investigate the assault against the U.S. consulate and leaves after 12 hours on the ground as the hunt for those possibly connected to the attack that killed ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans narrows to one or two people in an extremist group.
Francois Guizot, French politician-historian (1787-1874); Buster Keaton, U.S. comedian (1895-1966); Charlton Heston, U.S. actor (1923-2008), Jackie Collins, U.S. author (1937--), Susan Sarandon, U.S. actress (1946--), Jon Secada, singer (1961--).
Thought For Today:
Liberty is not a means to a higher political end. It is itself the highest political end -- Lord Acton, English historian (1834-1902).