What Happened on August 2?

  • Iraq invaded Kuwait, sending in more than 100,000 soldiers and 700 tanks. (1990) On this same day, the United Nations denounced the Iraqi invasion and demanded leaders withdraw their troops. This invasion sparked the beginning of the Gulf War, also known as Operation Desert Storm, which didn't end until November 1995.

  • One million Chinese toys were recalled by toy-making company Mattel. (2007) The company's Fisher-Price brand toys that were made in China were found to contain dangerous levels of lead. More than 10 million toys ultimately were recalled.

  • The world's first underground subway opened. (1870) Commonly called "The Tube," the Tower Subway opened in London, England, the first of its tube railway system. The first underground railway, Metropolitan Railway, also was established in England, creating the first metro transit system.

  • The positron was discovered. (1932) American physicist Carl David Anderson discovered the electron antiparticle. He won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1936 for the discovery.

  • The Marihuana Tax Act of 1937 passed through the US Congress, ultimately leading to the illegalization of marijuana in the US. (1937) What is now known as the 1937 Marijuana Tax Act initially levied a $1 US Dollar tax on sales of hemp or any of its by-products.

  • The Japanese destroyer Amagiri hit and sunk the American patrol boat PT-109, with Lt. John F. Kennedy aboard. (1943) Kennedy, who would become the 35th President of the United States, stepped into action and saved all but two of his crew members.

  • Delta Airlines flight 191 crashed at the Dallas/Fort Worth Airport, killing 135 people. (1985) The plane ran into a supercell thunderstorm, which shoved the plane to the ground about 6,000 feet (1,829 meter) before the runway. The plane hit a car, killing the occupants, and slammed into two water tanks.

  • American Wild West gunfighter "Wild Bill" Hickok was murdered. (1876) Another notorious gunslinger named Jack McCall shot Hickok in the back of the head while he was playing poker in a South Dakota saloon. McCall was later hanged for the crime.

  • The "Casiguran Earthquake" hit the Philippines and killed 270 people. (1968) The earthquake measured a 7.3 magnitude; it was the most destructive earthquake in Philippine history until the 1990 Luzon earthquake hit. It was so powerful, it sent a tsunami all the way to Japan. 268 people died and 261 were injured.

  • American horror film creator Wes Craven was born. (1939) Craven is perhaps best known for his films A Nightmare on Elm Street and the Scream series.

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