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Today in History: November 9, East Germany opens its borders

Today in History

Today is Wednesday, Nov. 9, the 313th day of 2022. There are 52 days left in the year.

Today's Highlight in History:

On Nov. 9, 1989, communist East Germany threw open its borders, allowing citizens to travel freely to the West; joyous Germans danced atop the Berlin Wall.

On this date:

In 1620, the passengers and crew of the Mayflower sighted Cape Cod.

In 1872, fire destroyed nearly 800 buildings in Boston.

In 1918, it was announced that Germany's Kaiser Wilhelm II would abdicate; he then fled to the Netherlands.

In 1935, United Mine Workers president John L. Lewis and other labor leaders formed the Committee for Industrial Organization (later renamed the Congress of Industrial Organizations).

In 1938, Nazis looted and burned synagogues as well as Jewish-owned stores and houses in Germany and Austria in a pogrom or deliberate persecution that became known as "Kristallnacht."

In 1965, the great Northeast blackout began as a series of power failures lasting up to 13 1/2 hours, leaving 30 million people in seven states and part of Canada without electricity.

In 1970, former French President Charles de Gaulle died at age 79.

In 1976, the U.N. General Assembly approved resolutions condemning apartheid in South Africa, including one characterizing the white-ruled government as "illegitimate."

In 2007, President Gen. Pervez Musharraf (pur-VEHZ' moo-SHAH'-ruhv) of Pakistan placed opposition leader Benazir Bhutto (BEN'-uh-zeer BOO'-toh) under house arrest for a day, and rounded up thousands of her supporters to block a mass rally against his emergency rule.

In 2011, after 46 seasons as Penn State's head football coach and a record 409 victories, Joe Paterno was fired along with the university president, Graham Spanier, over their handling of child sex abuse allegations against former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky.

In 2016, Democrat Hillary Clinton conceded the presidential election to Republican Donald Trump, telling supporters in New York that her defeat was "painful, and it will be for a long time." But Clinton told her faithful to accept Trump and the election results, urging them to give him "an open mind and a chance to lead."

In 2020, President Donald Trump fired Defense Secretary Mark Esper, injecting more uncertainty to a rocky transition period as Joe Biden prepared to assume the presidency; Trump said Christopher Miller, director of the National Counterterrorism Center, would serve as acting secretary.

Ten years ago: Retired four-star Army Gen. David Petraeus abruptly resigned as CIA director after an affair with his biographer, Paula Broadwell, was revealed by an FBI investigation. Thousands of union bakers went on strike against Hostess Brands, Inc., to protest cuts to wages and benefits under a new contract offer. (Hostess responded by shutting down its operations and selling its assets to new owners who revived the Hostess brand.)

Five years ago: During a visit to Beijing, President Donald Trump criticized what he called a "very one-sided and unfair" trade relationship between the U.S. and China, but said he didn't blame China for having taken advantage of the U.S. Actor John Hillerman, best known for his supporting role on the TV series "Magnum, P.I.," died at the age of 84 at his home in Houston.

One year ago: A federal judge rejected former President Donald Trump's request to block the release of documents to the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riot. The Oklahoma Supreme Court overturned a $465 million opioid ruling against drugmaker Johnson & Johnson. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service struck down a Trump-era rule that would have opened millions of acres of forest in Oregon, Washington and California to potential logging. Max Cleland, who lost three limbs to a hand grenade in Vietnam and later became a groundbreaking Veterans Administration chief and U.S. senator from, died at his Atlanta home at 79. Brian Williams, who anchored NBC's "Nightly News" before losing that job in 2015 for making false claims about his wartime experiences, announced that he was leaving the network after 28 years.

Today's Birthdays: Baseball Hall of Famer Whitey Herzog is 91. Movie director Bille August is 74. Actor Robert David Hall is 74. Actor Lou Ferrigno is 71. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, is 70. Gospel singer Donnie McClurkin is 63. Rock musician Dee Plakas (L7) is 62. Actor Ion Overman is 53. Rapper Pepa (Salt-N-Pepa) is 58. Rapper Scarface (Geto Boys) is 52. Blues singer Susan Tedeschi (teh-DEHS'-kee) is 52. Actor Jason Antoon is 51. Actor Eric Dane is 50. Singer Nick Lachey (98 Degrees) is 49. Country musician Barry Knox (Parmalee) is 45. R&B singer Sisqo (Dru Hill) is 44. Country singer Corey Smith is 43. Country singer Chris Lane is 38. Actor Emily Tyra is 35. Actor Nikki Blonsky is 34. Actor-model Analeigh (AH'-nuh-lee) Tipton is 34.