There are 17 days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History:
- On Dec. 14, 1799, the first president of the United States, George Washington, died at his Mount Vernon, Va., home at age 67.
On this date:
- In 1819, Alabama joined the Union as the 22nd state.
- In 1861, Prince Albert, husband of Queen Victoria, died in London.
- In 1911, Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen and his group became the first men to reach the South Pole, beating out an expedition led by Robert F. Scott.
- In 1939, the Soviet Union was dropped from the League of Nations.
- In 1946, the United Nations General Assembly voted to establish U.N. headquarters in New York.
- In 1962, the U.S. space probe Mariner 2 approached Venus, transmitting information about the planet.
- In 1975, six South Moluccan extremists surrendered after holding 23 hostages for 12 days on a train near the Dutch town of Beilen.
- In 1981, Israel annexed the Golan Heights, which it had seized from Syria in 1967.
- In 1995, Presidents Alija Izetbegovic of Bosnia, Slobodan Milosevic of Serbia and Franjo Tudjman of Croatia signed the Bosnian peace treaty in Paris.
- In 2006, South Korea's Ban Ki-moon was sworn in as the eighth secretary-general of the United Nations.
Ten years ago:
- President Bill Clinton stood witness as hundreds of Palestinian leaders renounced a call for the destruction of Israel.
Five years ago:
- A weary, disheveled Saddam Hussein was displayed on television screens worldwide, a day after his capture by American troops.
- A car bombing outside an Iraqi police station near Baghdad killed at least 17 people.
- Actress Jeanne Crain died in Santa Barbara, Calif., at age 78.
One year ago:
- A man accused of being the Phoenix Baseline Killer was sentenced to 438 years in prison for the sexual assaults of two sisters. (Mark Goudeau still faces trial for the slayings of eight women and a man in 2005-2006; he has pleaded not guilty.)
- Jazz musician Clark Terry is 88.
- Former "60 Minutes" executive producer Don Hewitt is 86.
- Actor Hal Williams is 70.
- Actress Patty Duke is 62.
- Pop singer Joyce Vincent-Wilson (Tony Orlando and Dawn) is 62.
- Entertainment executive Michael Ovitz is 62.
- Actress Dee Wallace is 60.
- Rhythm-and-blues singer Ronnie McNeir (The Four Tops) is 59.
- Rock musician Cliff Williams (AC/DC) is 59.
- Rock singer-musician Mike Scott (The Waterboys) is 50.
- Singer-musician Peter "Spider" Stacy (The Pogues) is 50.
- Actress Cynthia Gibb is 45.
- Actress Natascha McElhone is 39.
- Rhythm-and-blues singer Brian Dalyrimple (Soul For Real) is 33.
- Actress KaDee Strickland is 33.
- Actress Tammy Blanchard is 32.
- Actress Sophie Monk is 29.
- Actress Vanessa Hudgens is 20.
Thought for Today:
"You can close your eyes to reality but not to memories."
Stanislaw J. Lec, Polish author (1909-1966).
"Let's all be careful out there!"