This Day in History — May 13Thursday, May 13, 2021
Today is the 133rd day of 2021. There are 232 days left in the year.
1981: Pope John Paul II is shot and seriously wounded in Rome by Mehmet Ali Agca, a Turk. Eastern European intelligence agencies are suspected to be behind the attack on the Polish-born pontiff.
1809: French army under Napoleon Bonaparte takes Vienna.
1871: Law of Guarantees in Italy declares pope's person inviolable and allows him possession of the Vatican.
1888: Serfdom is abolished in Brazil.
1917: Three peasant children near Fatima, Portugal, report seeing a vision of the Virgin Mary.
1940: In his first speech as prime minister of Britain, Winston Churchill tells the House of Commons, “I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat.”
1968: Peace negotiations open in Paris between United States and North Vietnam.
1969: More than 100 people are reported killed in race riots in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
1985: A confrontation between Philadelphia authorities and the black radical group MOVE ends as police drop an explosive onto the group's headquarters; 11 people die in the resulting fire.
1991: South African judge convicts Winnie Mandela of kidnapping four young men and being an accessory in their beating.
1992: Election officials in Manila ban media from reporting unofficial vote counts; the crew of the shuttle Endeavor walk in space to rescue a damaged satellite.
1994: Israeli troops leave Jericho after 27 years, giving the Palestinian Authority control over its first West Bank town.
1998: Riots break out in the Indonesian capital of Jakarta after students were killed by police the previous day. President Suharto cuts short a state visit to Egypt.
1999: With foreign reporters invited to watch, Yugoslavia withdraws 120 of its estimated 40,000 troops from Kosovo. North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) calls the pull-out insignificant and airstrikes continue.
2000: The Vatican ends an enduring mystery, saying the third secret of Fatima — the Virgin Mary is said to have told three children in 1917 — which was a foretelling of the shooting of Pope John Paul II in 1981.
2001: Cuban leader Fidel Castro leaves Malaysia after his first state visit to that country. The visit is part of Castro's efforts to bolster support for Cuba, which languishes under a four-decade US embargo.
2002: The United States and Russia announce they have reached agreement on a pact committing them to cut their arsenal of nuclear weapons by two-thirds over the next 10 years.
2004: A French lawyer, Jacques Verges, claiming to represent a nephew of Saddam Hussein says he has filed suit at the International Criminal Court for alleged war crimes by British military leaders in Iraq.
2005: Soldiers loyal to Uzbekistan's authoritarian leader open fire on thousands of demonstrators to put down an uprising. Witnesses say that more than 700 people, most of them peaceful demonstrators, were killed by the troops. The Government contends the uprising was encouraged by Islamic extremists, and puts the death toll at 187.
2007: The Taliban's most prominent military commander, Mullah Dadullah, a one-legged fighter who orchestrated an ethnic massacre and a rash of beheadings, is killed in a US-led military operation in southern Afghanistan.
2009: European Union fines Intel, world's largest chip maker, a record US$1.45 billion for using strong arm sales tactics.
2010: A rogue army general working with anti-government protesters is shot in the head while talking to reporters in downtown Bangkok, triggering more clashes that leave one demonstrator dead and worsen Thailand's political chaos.
2011: A double-Taliban suicide attack that killed 66 paramilitary police recruits represents the deadliest terrorist strike in Pakistan since the killing of Osama bin Laden. It sends a strong signal that militants mean to fight on and try to avenge the al-Qaeda leader.
2012: Forty-nine decapitated and mutilated bodies are found dumped on a highway connecting the northern Mexican metropolis of Monterrey to the US border, in what appears to be the latest blow in an escalating war of intimidation among drug gangs.
Pius IX, Italian pope (1792-1878); Sir Arthur Sullivan, English composer (1842-1900); Dame Daphne du Maurier, English novelist/playwright (1907-1989); Joe Louis, US former heavyweight boxing champion (1914-1981); Bea Arthur, US actress (1922-2009); Stevie Wonder, US pop singer (1950- ); Stephen Colbert, US comedian (1964- ); Samantha Morton, British actress (1977- )
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