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Today in History: Dec. 27

A look at things that have happened on Dec. 27 in history.

Today is Thursday, Dec. 27, the 361st day of 2018.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Dec. 27, 1979, Soviet forces seized control of Afghanistan. President Hafizullah Amin (hah-FEE’-zoo-lah ah-MEEN’), who was overthrown and executed, was replaced by Babrak Karmal.

On this date:

In 1831, naturalist Charles Darwin set out on a round-the-world voyage aboard the HMS Beagle.

In 1904, James Barrie’s play “Peter Pan: The Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up” opened at the Duke of York’s Theater in London.

In 1945, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund were formally established.

In 1947, the original version of the puppet character Howdy Doody made his TV debut on NBC’s “Puppet Playhouse.”

In 1949, Queen Juliana of the Netherlands signed an act recognizing Indonesia’s sovereignty after more than three centuries of Dutch rule.

In 1968, Apollo 8 and its three astronauts made a safe, nighttime splashdown in the Pacific.

In 1970, the musical play “Hello, Dolly!” closed on Broadway after a run of 2,844 performances.

In 1981, composer and bandleader Hoagy Carmichael (”Stardust”) died in Rancho Mirage, Calif., at age 82.

In 1985, Palestinian guerrillas opened fire inside the Rome and Vienna airports; 19 victims were killed, plus four attackers who were slain by police and security personnel. American naturalist Dian Fossey, 53, who had studied gorillas in the wild in Rwanda, was found hacked to death.

In 1995, Israeli jeeps sped out of the West Bank town of Ramallah, capping a seven-week pullout giving Yasser Arafat control over 90 percent of the West Bank’s one million Palestinian residents and one-third of its land.

In 2001, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld announced that Taliban and al-Qaida prisoners would be held at the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

In 2002, A defiant North Korea ordered U.N. nuclear inspectors to leave the country and said it would restart a laboratory capable of producing plutonium for nuclear weapons; the U.N. nuclear watchdog said its inspectors were “staying put” for the time being.

Ten years ago: Israel bombed security sites in Hamas-ruled Gaza in retaliation for rocket fire aimed at civilians in southern Israeli towns, opening one of the Mideast conflict’s bloodiest assaults in decades. Tens of thousands of people in Pakistan paid homage to Benazir Bhutto on the one-year anniversary of her assassination.

Five years ago: Connecticut police released thousands of pages from their investigation into the Newtown massacre, providing the most detailed and disturbing picture yet of the Dec. 14, 2012, shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School that left 20 first-graders and six educators dead.

One year ago: Freezing temperatures and below-zero wind chills socked much of the northern United States. Houston Astros star second baseman Jose Altuve was named AP Male Athlete of the Year after leading the team to its first World Series title. A power outage struck parts of Disneyland in California, forcing some guests to be escorted from stalled rides.

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© 2018 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.