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On this day in history - January 17

What Happened On This Day – January 17

  • 1995 The Great Hanshin earthquake hits Kobe, Japan

    6,434 people lost their lives during the quake, according to estimates.

  • 1991 The Gulf War in Iraq begins

    “Operation Desert Storm”, launched in response to Iraq's invasion of Kuwait, resulted in about 100,000 civilian deaths.

  • 1961 Patrice Lumumba is murdered with support from western governments

    An independent commission concluded that Lumumba, the first democratically elected leader of the Congo, died at the hands of his domestic adversaries with the assistance of the Belgian government and the CIA.

  • 1946 The UN Security Council holds its first session

    The UNSC is the most powerful organ of the United Nations and it is charged with upholding international peace and security.

  • 1945 Soviet and Polish forces liberate Warsaw during World War II

    About 85% of the city was destroyed at that point.

Illustration of stork, signifying birth

Births On This Day,
January 17

  • 1962 Jim Carrey

    Canadian/American actor, producer

  • 1942 Muhammad Ali

    American boxer

  • 1927 Eartha Kitt

    American actress, singer

  • 1899 Al Capone

    American gangster

  • 1706 Benjamin Franklin

    American politician, scientist, publisher, 6th President of Pennsylvania

Illustration of tombstone, signifying death

Deaths On This Day,
January 17

  • 2008 Bobby Fischer

    American chess player

  • 1961 Patrice Lumumba

    Congolese politician, 1st Prime Minister of the Democratic Republic of the Congo

  • 1936 Mateiu Caragiale

    Romanian author

  • 1893 Rutherford B. Hayes

    American politician, 19th President of the United States

  • 1468 Skanderbeg

    Albanian lord