Today in History
Today is Wednesday, Nov. 25, the 330th day of 2020. There are 36 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On Nov. 25, 2002, President George W. Bush signed legislation creating the Department of Homeland Security, and appointed Tom Ridge to be its head.
On this date:
In 1783, the British evacuated New York during the Revolutionary War.
In 1915, a new version of the Ku Klux Klan, targeting blacks, Jews, Catholics and immigrants, was founded by William Joseph Simmons.
In 1947, movie studio executives meeting in New York agreed to blacklist the “Hollywood Ten” who’d been cited for contempt of Congress the day before.
In 1961, the first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, USS Enterprise, was commissioned.
In 1963, the body of President John F. Kennedy was laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery; his widow, Jacqueline, lighted an “eternal flame” at the gravesite.
In 1986, the Iran-Contra affair erupted as President Ronald Reagan and Attorney General Edwin Meese revealed that profits from secret arms sales to Iran had been diverted to Nicaraguan rebels.
In 1999, Elian Gonzalez, a 5-year-old Cuban boy, was rescued by a pair of sport fishermen off the coast of Florida, setting off an international custody battle.
In 2001, as the war in Afghanistan entered its eighth week, CIA officer Johnny “Mike” Spann was killed during a prison uprising in Mazar-e-Sharif, becoming America’s first combat casualty of the conflict.
In 2009, Toyota said it would replace the gas pedals on 4 million vehicles in the United States because the pedals could get stuck in the floor mats and cause sudden acceleration.
In 2014, attorneys for Michael Brown’s family vowed to push for federal charges against the Ferguson, Missouri, police officer who killed the Black 18-year-old, a day after a grand jury declined to indict Darren Wilson. (The Justice Department later declined to prosecute Wilson.) President Barack Obama sharply rebuked protesters for racially charged violence in Ferguson, saying there was no excuse for burning buildings, torching cars and destroying other property.
In 2016, Fidel Castro, who led his rebels to victorious revolution in 1959, embraced Soviet-style communism and defied the power of 10 U.S. presidents during his half-century of rule in Cuba, died at age 90.
In 2018, U.S. border agents fired tear gas on hundreds of migrants protesting near the border with Mexico after some of them tried to get through the fencing and wire separating the two countries; U.S. authorities temporarily shut down the border crossing from Tijuana, Mexico, where thousands were waiting to apply for asylum.
Ten years ago: Incumbent Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki (NOO’-ree ahl-MAHL’-ih-kee) cemented his grip on power, bringing an end to nearly nine months of political deadlock after he was asked to form the next government. South Korea’s defense minister, Kim Tae-young, resigned amid intense criticism two days after a North Korean artillery attack killed four people on a small island near the Koreas’ disputed frontier.
Five years ago: Vice President Joe Biden attended an urgent summit of southeast European leaders in Zagreb, Croatia, focusing on tensions and security concerns over a surge of asylum-seekers and migrants crossing the region. Pope Francis arrived in Kenya on his first-ever trip to Africa and urged Kenyans to work for peace and forgiveness amid a wave of extremist violence on the continent that threatened to disrupt his trip.
One year ago: A federal judge said former White House counsel Donald McGahn would have to appear before Congress to testify in the impeachment investigation. (An appeals court later undid that ruling, finding that federal judges had no role to play in the subpoena fight.) Defense Secretary Mark Esper said President Donald Trump had ordered him to stop a disciplinary review of a Navy SEAL, Edward Gallagher, who was accused of battlefield misconduct. The Supreme Court rejected the bid of a Maryland man, Adnan Syed, for a new trial based on information uncovered by the hit podcast “Serial”; Syed had been sentenced to life in the strangling death of a high school classmate. Charles Schwab announced that it was buying rival TD Ameritrade, which would combine two of the biggest players in the online brokerage industry. London’s transit authority refused to renew Uber’s operating license over concerns about impostor drivers. (Uber appealed, and won an 18-month license with conditions.)
Today’s Birthdays: Actor Kathryn Crosby is 87. Actor Christopher Riordan is 83. Pro Football Hall of Fame coach Joe Gibbs is 80. Singer Bob Lind is 78. Author, actor and economist Ben Stein is 76. Actor John Larroquette is 73. Actor Tracey Walter is 73. Movie director Jonathan Kaplan is 73. Author Charlaine Harris is 69. Retired MLB All-Star Bucky Dent is 69. Dance judge Bruno Tonioli (TV: “Dancing with the Stars”) is 65. Singer Amy Grant is 60. Former NFL quarterback Bernie Kosar is 57. Rock musician Eric Grossman (K’s Choice) is 56. Rock musician Scott Mercado is 56. Rock singer Mark Lanegan is 56. Rock singer-musician Tim Armstrong is 55. Actor Steve Harris is 55. Actor Billy Burke is 54. Singer Stacy Lattisaw is 54. Rock musician Rodney Sheppard (Sugar Ray) is 54. Rapper-producer Erick Sermon is 52. Actor Jill Hennessy is 51. Actor Christina Applegate is 49. Actor Eddie Steeples is 47. Actor Kristian Nairn is 45. Former NFL quarterback Donovan McNabb is 44. Actor Jill Flint is 43. Actor Jerry Ferrara is 41. Actor Joel Kinnaman is 41. Actor Valerie Azlynn is 40. Former first daughter Barbara Pierce Bush is 39. Former first daughter Jenna Bush Hager is 39. Actor Katie Cassidy is 34. Actor Stephanie Hsu is 30. Contemporary Christian singer Jamie Grace is 29.