Almanac

Today is Wednesday, Aug. 8, the 220th day of 2018. There are 145 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On August 8, 1974, President Richard Nixon, facing damaging new revelations in the Watergate scandal, announced he would resign the following day.

On this date:

In 1911, President William Howard Taft signed a measure raising the number of U.S. representatives from 391 to 433, effective with the next Congress, with a proviso to add two more when New Mexico and Arizona became states.

In 1942, during World War II, six Nazi saboteurs who were captured after landing in the U.S. were executed in Washington, D.C.; two others who cooperated with authorities were spared.

In 1945, President Harry S. Truman signed the U.S. instrument of ratification for the United Nations Charter.

In 1953, the United States and South Korea initialed a mutual security pact.

In 1963, Britain’s “Great Train Robbery” took place as thieves made off with 2.6 million pounds in banknotes.

In 1973, Vice President Spiro T. Agnew branded as “damned lies” reports he had taken kickbacks from government contracts in Maryland, and vowed not to resign — which he ended up doing.

In 1993, in Somalia, four U.S. soldiers were killed when a land mine was detonated underneath their vehicle, prompting President Bill Clinton to order Army Rangers to try to capture Somali warlord Mohamed Farrah Aidid.

In 2002, Saddam Hussein organized a big military parade and then warned “the forces of evil” not to attack Iraq as he sought once more to shift the debate away from world demands that he live up to agreements that ended the Gulf War.

In 2009, Sonia Sotomayor was sworn in as the U.S. Supreme Court’s first Hispanic and third female justice.

Ten years ago: China opened the Summer Olympic Games with an extravaganza of fireworks and pageantry.

Five years ago: The U.S. sharply escalated its drone war in Yemen, with military officials in the Arab country reporting three strikes that left a dozen dead.