Way back when: Today in history
BY GENE CURTIS
Thursday, November 15, 2012
11/15/12 at 3:04 AM
1986 - American convicted
American Eugene Hasenfus, who was captured three months earlier as the only survivor of an airplane that was shot down while delivering arms to Contra rebels, was sentenced to 30 years in prison by a Nicaragua panel that convicted him of terrorism and crimes against the state. But Hasenfus was pardoned a month later and left Nicaragua. Hasenfus was working as the cargo handler on the plane that was flying weapons to U.S.-backed Contra rebels fighting the country's leftist government.
1990 - Clean-air bill signed
A revised clean-air bill was signed into law by President George H.W. Bush who said every American "deserves to breathe clean air." The bill updated and tightened federal air pollution standards for the first time since 1977 and according to Bush, "means cleaner cars, cleaner power plants, cleaner factories and cleaner fuels. And it means a cleaner America."
2003 - Bombers target city
Suicide bombers believed to have ties to al-Qaida set off explosives almost simultaneously at the Neve Shalom and Beth Israel synagogues about three miles apart in Istanbul, killing at least 20 and wounding about 300. Those bombings were followed Nov. 20 by suicide bombs that killed 27 and injured about 450 at the British consulate and at London-based HSBC bank. Seven were sentenced to life in prison in 2007 for their parts in the bombings and 41 other defendants were given various prison terms of up to 18 years.
2007 - Cyclone kills 5,000
Bangladesh was blasted with 150 mph wind in the deadliest cyclone in more than a decade that left an estimated 5,000 people dead, wreaked havoc on the county's electric and telephone lines, uprooted trees and sent billboards flying. Rescuers - some even employing the brute force of elephants - contended with roads that were washed out or blocked by wind-blown debris to try to get water and food to people stranded by flooding from Tropical Cyclone Sidr. The cyclone swept in from the Bay of Bengal and roared across the southwestern coast with driving rain and high waves that destroyed the world's largest mangrove forest, Sundarbans.
Investigators examine the debris outside of the Neve Shalom Synagogue in Istanbul, Turkey, after the synagogue was damaged by suicide car bombers. Associated Press file