November 11

At the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, the Armistice of Compiégne went into effect. It was the agreement to end the fighting in Western Europe during World War I. It marked a victory for the Allies and utter defeat for Germany. The terms of the armistice included the cessation of fighting, the withdrawal of German troops into Germany, the exchange of prisoners and the disposition of German warships and submarines. Though the actual fighting ended, it would take six months of negotiations before the Treaty of Versailles came into being.

 

In 1921, President Warren Harding dedicated the Tomb of the Unknowns (better known as the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier) at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia. Earlier that year, Congress had approved the burial of an unknown American soldier from World War I in the new tomb. Each “Unknown” is awarded the Medal of Honor. This original Unknown was an unidentifiable soldier brought back from France during World War I. In 1931, the tomb structure was completed after Congress authorized $50,000 for the project. The western panel of the tomb has the inscription: “Here rests in honored glory an American soldier known but to God.” The tomb began to be guarded 24 hours a day beginning in 1937 and is guarded even during inclement weather. Since 1946, members of the Tomb Guards, a special platoon within the 3rd US Infantry Regiment, have been assigned this duty.

 

The Palestine Liberation Organization confirmed the death of Yasser Arafat in 2004. Arafat had been the leader of the PLO since 1969. First reports of his illness came on October 25 and Arafat was flown to a hospital in France. On November 3, he lapsed into a coma. According to French doctors the cause of death was a hemorrhagic stroke and Arafat’s wife refused an autopsy. The Palestinian people went into a state of mourning for the next forty days. In recent years, rumors concerning his death have become prevalent with poisoning as the most common one.

 

Birthdays Today

 

1922Kurt Vonnegut, American soldier, author, and academic (d. 2007)

1925Jonathan Winters, American comedian, actor, and screenwriter (d. 2013)

1945Daniel Ortega, Nicaraguan politician, President of Nicaragua

1960Stanley Tucci, American actor and director

1962Demi Moore, American actress, director, and producer

1964Calista Flockhart, American actress

Larry Moskal began his career as a Social Studies teacher in 1971. He graduated from the University of Buffalo with degrees in history and education. Larry taught Social Studies for the Ken-Ton School system, a suburban school system north of Buffalo, New York until 2005, and then taught and was the Dean of Students at San Miguel High School in Tucson. At Ken-Ton, he pioneered several online courses for high school students. In the 1980s, he spent three years teaching in Colombia, South America and spent four years at Lewiston-Porter High School. He currently is the PowerSchool Administrator for San Miguel accomplishing his work over the Internet.