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Monday, December 4, 2017

December 4th...This Day in History

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Hostage Terry Anderson freed in Lebanon 1991

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On this day in 1991, Islamic militants in Lebanon release kidnapped American journalist Terry Anderson after 2,454 days in captivity.
As chief Middle East correspondent for the Associated Press, Anderson covered the long-running civil war in Lebanon (1975-1990). On March 16, 1985, he was kidnapped on a west Beirut street while leaving a tennis court. His captors took him to the southern suburbs of the city, where he was held prisoner in an underground dungeon for the next six-and-a-half years.
Anderson was one of 92 foreigners (including 17 Americans) abducted during Lebanon’s bitter civil war. The kidnappings were linked to Hezbollah, or the Party of God, a militant Shiite Muslim organization formed in 1982 in reaction to Israel’s military presence in Lebanon. They seized several Americans, including Anderson, soon after Kuwaiti courts jailed 17 Shiites found guilty of bombing the American and French embassies there in 1983. Hezbollah in Lebanon received financial and spiritual support from Iran, where prominent leaders praised the bombers and kidnappers for performing their duty to Islam.
U.S. relations with Iran–and with Syria, the other major foreign influence in Lebanon–showed signs of improving by 1990, when the civil war drew to a close, aided by Syria’s intervention on behalf of the Lebanese army. Eager to win favor from the U.S. in order to promote its own economic goals, Iran used its influence in Lebanon to engineer the release of nearly all the hostages over the course of 1991.
Anderson returned to the U.S. and was reunited with his family, including his daughter Suleme, born three months after his capture. In 1999, he sued the Iranian government for $100 million, accusing it of sponsoring his kidnappers; he received a multi-million dollar settlement.


 (More Events on This Day in History)
  • American Revolution

  • 1780 Washington’s cousin tricks Loyalists
  • Automotive

  • 1928 “Irish Godfather” killed by car bomb in St. Paul
  • Civil War

  • 1864 Engagement ends at Waynesboro
  • Cold War

  • 1945 Senate approves U.S. participation in United Nations
  • Crime

  • 1969 Police kill two members of the Black Panther Party
  • 2009 Amanda Knox convicted of murder in Italy
  • Disaster

  • 1952 Smog kills thousands in England
  • General Interest

  • 1872 The mystery of the Mary Celeste
  • 1918 President Wilson travels to Europe
  • 1992 Bush orders U.S. troops to Somalia
  • Hollywood

  • 1981 Warren Beatty writes, directs, stars in Oscar-winning Reds
  • Literary

  • 1916 Somerset Maugham sails for Pago Pago
  • Music

  • 1956 The “Million Dollar Quartet” convenes at Sun Studios in Memphis, Tennessee
  • Old West

  • 1867 Oliver Kelley organizes the Grange
  • Presidential

  • 1783 Washington bids farewell to his officers
  • Sports

  • 1997 NBA suspends Latrell Sprewell for attacking coach
  • Vietnam War

  • 1966 Viet Cong attack Tan Son Nhut airport
  • 1967 Riverine force surrounds Viet Cong battalion
  • World War I

  • 1917 Psychiatrist reports on the phenomenon of shell shock
  • World War II

  • 1942 Polish Christians come to the aid of Polish Jews