In the Know #5

8 01 2008

January 9, 2008

Word of the Day from Dictionary.com:

pertinacious \puhr-tin-AY-shuhs\, adjective:
1. Holding or adhering obstinately to any opinion, purpose, or design.
2. Stubbornly or perversely persistent.

Today in history, according to Wikipedia:

1788 – Connecticut becomes the fifth state to join the United States.

1861 – “The Star of the West” incident occurs near Charleston, South Carolina. This is considered by some as the first shots of the American Civil War.

1951 – The United Nations headquarters building is officially opened in New York City.

2002 – The US Department of Justice announces it is going to pursue a criminal investigation of Enron (logo pictured).

2006 – The Phantom of the Opera surpasses Cats as the longest running show on Broadway.


Today’s Famous Births:

1913 – Richard Nixon, 37th President of the United States.

1934 – Bart Starr (pictured), American football player with the Green Bay Packers, winner and MVP of Super Bowl I and II.

1935 – Bob Denver, American actor, “Gilligan’s Island”

1959 – Mark Martin, NASCAR driver

1965 – Muggsy Bogues, American basketball player, the shortest basketball player in NBA history at 5’3″.

1967 – Dave Matthews, South African singer and musician, “Ants Marching” and “Crash Into Me”.

1978 – Chad Johnson, American football player, 4 Pro Bowls and led NFL in receiving yards in 2006.

1980 – Sergio Garcia, Spanish golfer, 2nd place 1999 PGA championship.

Trivia:
Today’s category – The Academy Awards

~ The first Academy Awards ceremony was held on Thursday, May 16, 1929, at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel.

~ Bob Hope (pictured) has hosted the Academy Awards more times than anyone else.

~ Three films have won the “Big Five” Academy Awards: It Happened One Night (1934), One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975) and Silence of the Lambs (1991).

[The “Big Five” includes Best Picture, Best Director, Best Writing (original work or adapted screenplay), Best Actor and Best Actress]

I always wondered…
…what happened in the 1991 dissolution of the Soviet Union

The U.S.S.R. – Union of Soviet Socialist Republics – was formed in 1922 when the Bolshevik republics of the Russian SFSR, the Transcaucasian SFSR, the Ukrainian SSR and the Byelorussian SSR approved the Treaty of Creation of the U.S.S.R. and the Declaration of the Creation of the U.S.S.R.

Vladimir Lenin, was leading the Bolshevik party at the institution of the U.S.S.R. After his death, Joseph Stalin came to power and ruled with an iron fist. The post-Stalin Soviet was governed by a collective of Soviet officials. Nikita Khrushchev asserted his power in the background of this joint government. The next major stand-alone leader for the U.S.S.R. was Leonid Brezhnev, who led the country until his death in 1982. A few short years after Brezhnev’s death, Mikhail Gorbachev (pictured) ascended to the position of General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.

And so we have a history of the leadership of the U.S.S.R. What is the thread that runs throughout them? A declining economic and social structure. Gorbachev’s reforms did not have their intended result and led to an almost complete breakdown of these already strained systems.

February 7, 1990 – the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union agreed to give up its monopoly of power.

March 11, 1990 – Lithuania declared its independence, which resulted in a response to suppress it.

December 1, 1991 – Ukrainian popular referendum, 90% of voters opted for independence.

December 8, 1991 – leaders of Russian, Ukrainian and Belarusian republics signed the Belavezha Accords declaring the Soviet Union dissolved (disputed by the Soviet government).

December 21, 1991 – representatives of Russian states signed the Alma Ata Protocol, which confirmed the dissolution.

December 25, 1991 – Gorbachev resigns as president of the U.S.S.R., yielding power to the president of Russia, Boris Yeltsin.

The 15 former republics of the Soviet Union, which became independent states in 1991:
1 – Armenia
2 – Azerbaijan
3 – Belarus
4 – Estonia
5 – Georgia
6 – Kazakhstan
7 – Kyrgyzstan
8 – Latvia
9 – Lithuania
10 – Moldova
11 – Russia
12 – Tajikistan
13 – Turkmenistan
14 – Ukraine
15 – Uzbekistan

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