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Today in history: August 8

Celebrity birthdays, highlights in history, plus more facts about this day
/ Source: The Associated Press

Today is Tuesday, Aug. 8, the 220th day of 2006. There are 145 days left in the year.

Today’s Highlight in History:

On Aug. 8, 1974, President Nixon announced he would resign following damaging new revelations in the Watergate scandal.

On this date:

In 1876, Thomas A. Edison received a patent for his mimeograph.

In 1942, six convicted Nazi saboteurs who’d landed in the U.S. were executed in Washington, D.C.; two others received life imprisonment.

In 1945, President Truman signed the United Nations Charter.

In 1945, the Soviet Union declared war against Japan during World War II.

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

In 1968, Richard M. Nixon was nominated for president at the Republican national convention in Miami Beach, Fla.

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 eventually did.

In 1978, the U.S. launched Pioneer Venus 2, which carried scientific probes to study the atmosphere of Venus.

In 1991, the slain bodies of former Iranian Prime Minister Shahpour Bakhtiar and his chief of staff were found in Bakhtiar’s residence outside Paris.

In 1994, Israel and Jordan opened the first road link between the two once-warring countries.

Ten years ago: President Clinton belittled Bob Dole’s tax plan, vowing to oppose tax cuts that he said the country couldn’t afford. Republican sources, meanwhile, said Dole was seriously considering choosing Jack Kemp for his running mate.

Five years ago: Former President Reagan’s daughter Maureen died at age 60. Mohammad Khatami was sworn in for a second term as Iran’s president.

One year ago: President Bush signed a bill to give billions in tax breaks to encourage homegrown energy production but acknowledged it wouldn’t quickly reduce high gasoline prices or the nation’s dependence on foreign oil. Iran resumed work at a uranium conversion facility after suspending nuclear work for nine months to avoid U.N. sanctions. Actress Barbara Bel Geddes died in Northeast Harbor, Maine, at age 82. Publisher John H. Johnson, founder of Ebony and Jet magazines, died in Chicago at age 87.

Today’s Birthdays: Producer Dino DeLaurentiis is 87. Actress Esther Williams is 85. Actor Richard Anderson is 80. Joan Mondale (wife of former Vice President Walter F. Mondale) is 76. Actress Nita Talbot is 76. Singer Mel Tillis is 74. Actor Dustin Hoffman is

69. Actress Connie Stevens is 68. Country singer Phil Balsley (The Statler Brothers) is 67. Actor Larry Wilcox is 59. Actor Keith Carradine is 57. Rhythm-and-blues singer Airrion Love (The Stylistics) is 57. Country singer Jamie O’Hara is 56. Movie director Martin Brest is 55. Actor Donny Most is 53. Rock musician Dennis Drew (10,000 Maniacs) is 49. TV personality Deborah Norville is 48. Actor-singer Harry Crosby is 48. Rock musician The Edge (U2) is 45. Rock musician Rikki Rockett (Poison) is 45. Rapper Kool Moe Dee is 44. Rock musician Ralph Rieckermann is 44. Rock singer Scott Stapp is 33. Country singer Mark Wills is 33. Actor Kohl Sudduth is

32. Rock musician Tom Linton (Jimmy Eat World) is 31. Singer JC Chasez (’N Sync) is 30. Rhythm-and-blues singer Drew Lachey (98 Degrees) is 30. Rhythm-and-blues singer Marsha Ambrosius (Floetry) is 29. Actress Countess Vaughn is 28. Britain’s Princess Beatrice Elizabeth Mary is 18.

Thought for Today: “It is the anonymous ’they,’ the enigmatic ’they’ who are in charge. Who is ’they’? I don’t know. Nobody knows. Not even ’they’ themselves.” — Joseph Heller, American author (1923-1999).