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Today in History

Today is Monday, May 16, the 136th day of 2022. There are 229 days left in the year.

Birthdays: Former US senator and Connecticut governor Lowell Weicker is 91. Former director of National Intelligence Dan Coats is 79. Jazz musician Billy Cobham is 78. Actor Danny Trejo is 78. Actor Bill Smitrovich is 75. Actor Pierce Brosnan is 69. Actor Debra Winger is 67. Olympic gold medal gymnast Olga Korbut is 66. Olympic gold medal marathon runner Joan Benoit Samuelson is 64. Actor Mare Winningham is 63. Rock musician Boyd Tinsley (The Dave Matthews Band) is 58. Rock musician Krist Novoselic is 57. Singer Janet Jackson is 56. Country singer Scott Reeves (Blue County) is 56. Actor Brian (BREE’-un) F. O’Byrne is 55. R&B singer Ralph Tresvant (New Edition) is 54. Actor David Boreanaz is 53. Political commentator Tucker Carlson is 53. Actor Tracey Gold is 53. International Tennis Hall of Famer Gabriela Sabatini is 52. Country singer Rick Trevino is 51. Musician Simon Katz is 51. TV personality Bill Rancic is 51. Actor Khary Payton is 50. Rapper Special Ed is 50. Singer-rapper B. Slade (formerly known as Tonex) is 47. Actor Joseph Morgan is 41. DJ Alex Pall (The Chainsmokers) is 37. Actor Megan Fox is 36. Olympic bronze medal figure skater Ashley Wagner is 31.

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In 1770, Marie Antoinette, age 14, married the future King Louis XVI of France, who was 15.

In 1866, Congress authorized minting of the first five-cent piece, also known as the “Shield nickel.”

In 1929, the first Academy Awards were presented. “Wings” won “best production,” while Emil Jannings and Janet Gaynor were named best actor and best actress.

In 1939, the federal government began its first food stamp program in Rochester, N.Y.

In 1943, the nearly monthlong Warsaw Ghetto Uprising came to an end as German forces crushed the Jewish resistance and blew up the Great Synagogue.

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In 1957, federal agent Eliot Ness, who organized “The Untouchables” team that took on gangster Al Capone, died in Coudersport, Pa., at age 54.

In 1960, the first working laser was demonstrated at Hughes Research Laboratories in Malibu, Calif., by physicist Theodore Maiman.

In 1966, China launched the Cultural Revolution, a radical as well as deadly reform movement aimed at purging the country of “counter-revolutionaries.”

In 1975, Japanese climber Junko Tabei became the first woman to reach the summit of Mount Everest.

In 1990, death claimed entertainer Sammy Davis Jr. in Los Angeles at age 64 and “Muppets” creator Jim Henson in New York at age 53.

In 1997, President Bill Clinton publicly apologized for the notorious Tuskegee experiment, in which government scientists deliberately allowed Black men to weaken and die of treatable syphilis.

In 2007, antiwar Democrats in the Senate failed in an attempt to cut off funds for the Iraq war.

In 2012, General Ratko Mladic went on trial at the Yugoslav war crimes tribunal in the Netherlands, accused of genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes. (Mladic would be convicted on 10 counts and sentenced to life in prison.)

In 2016, President Barack Obama called on the nation to support law enforcement officers as he bestowed the Medal of Valor on 13 who risked their lives.

In 2017, the White House issued a furious denial after a report that President Donald Trump personally appealed to FBI Director James Comey to abandon the bureau’s investigation into National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.

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Last year, Israeli airstrikes on Gaza City flattened three buildings and killed more than 40 people; the attack was the deadliest in the latest round of violence between Israel and Hamas. Hamas launched rockets from civilian areas in Gaza toward civilian areas in Israel; one slammed into a synagogue in the southern city of Ashkelon hours before evening services for the Jewish holiday of Shavuot, but no injuries were reported.