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Top News Stories from 1996

World Events

World Statistics

Population: 4.378 billion
population by decade
Nobel Peace Prize: Carlos Filipe Ximenes Belo and José Ramos-Horta (East Timor)
More World Statistics...
  • Chechens capture 2,000 Russians (Jan. 9). Chechnya peace treaty signed (May 27).
  • France agrees to end nuclear testing (Jan. 29). Background: nuclear disarmament
  • Britain alarmed by an outbreak of "mad cow" disease (March 20 et seq.).
  • UN tribunal charges war crimes by Bosnian Muslims and Croats (March 22). Nations pledge $1.23 billion in aid to rebuild Bosnia (April 22).
  • South Africa gets new constitution (May 8).
  • Israel elects Benjamin Netanyahu as prime minister (May 31).
  • Militant Taliban leaders seize Afghan capital of Kabul (Sept. 27).
  • Iraqis strike at Kurdish enclave (Aug. 31); after warning, US attacks Iraq's southern air defenses (Sept. 2–3).
  • Ethnic violence breaks out in Zairian refugee camps (Oct. 13); Clinton approves plan for UN-backed relief mission for 1.2 million Hutu refugees starving in eastern Zaire (Nov. 13). Hundreds of thousands return to Rwanda (Nov. 15–18).

U.S. Events

U.S. Statistics

President: William J. Clinton
Vice President: Albert Gore, Jr.
Population: 265,189,794
Violent Crime Rate (per 1,000): 50.8
Property Crime Rate (per 1,000) 44.4
More U.S. Statistics...

Economics

US GDP (1998 dollars): $7,661.60 billion
Federal spending: $1572.41 billion
Federal debt $5207.3 billion
Median Household Income(current dollars): $35,492 billion
Consumer Price Index: $156.9
Unemployment: 5.4%
Cost of a first-class stamp: $0.32

Sports

Super Bowl
Dallas d. Pittsburgh
World Series
New York Yankees d. Atlanta Braves
NBA Championship
Chicago d. Seattle
Stanley Cup
Colorado d. Florida
Wimbledon
Women: Steffi Graf d. A.S. Vicario (6-3 7-5)
Men: Richard Krajicek d. M. Washington (6-3 6-4 6-3)
Kentucky Derby Champion
Grindstone
NCAA Basketball Championship
Kentucky d. Syracuse
NCAA Football Champions
Florida (12-1)

Entertainment

Entertainment Awards

Pulitzer Prizes
Fiction: Independence Day, Richard Ford
Music: Lilacs, George Walker
Drama: Rent, Jonathan Larson
Academy Award, Best Picture: Braveheart, Mel Gibson, Alan Ladd, Jr. and Bruce Davey, producers (Paramount)
Nobel Prize for Literature: Wislawa Szymborska (Poland)
Album of the Year: Jagged Little Pill, Alanis Morissette (Maverick/Reprise)
Song of the Year: "Kiss From a Rose," Seal
Song of the Year: "Kiss From a Rose," Seal, songwriter
Miss America: Shawntel Smith (OK)
More Entertainment Awards...

Events

  • President Bill Clinton signs legislation that significantly deregulates telecommunications, creating almost limitless opportunities for broadcasters and cable companies. Pressured by the Federal Communications Commission, television broadcasters agree to include three hours a week of educational children's programming into their schedules.
  • Janet Jackson becomes the highest paid musician in history when she signs an $80-million deal with Virgin Records.
  • Jazz great Ella Fitzgerald dies.
  • Broadcasters and television and PC manufacturers agree on a standard for HDTV (high-definition digital television).
  • Gangsta rapper Tupac Shakur is shot four times in a drive-by shooting. He dies six days later at age 25.

Movies

  • The English Patient, Fargo, Jerry Maguire, The People vs. Larry Flynt, Shine, Sling Blade

Books

  • Frank McCourt, Angela's Ashes
  • Steven Millhauser, Martin Dressler: The Tale of an American Dreamer
  • Alice Munro, Selected Stories
  • Graham Swift, Last Orders

Science

Nobel Prizes in Science

Chemistry: Richard E. Smalley, Robert F. Curl, Jr. (both US), and Harold W. Kroto (UK), for discovery of a new class of carbon molecule
Physics: David M. Lee, Robert C. Richardson, and Douglas D. Osheroff (all US), for their discovery of superfluity in helium-3
Physiology or Medicine: Peter C. Doherty (Australia) and Rolf M. Zinkernagel (Switzerland), for discoveries about how the immune system recognizes virus-infected cells
More Nobel Prizes in 1998...
  • Approximately 45 million people are using the Internet, with roughly 30 million of those in North America (United States and Canada), 9 million in Europe, and 6 million in Asia/Pacific (Australia, Japan, etc.). 43.2 million (44%) of US households own a personal computer, and 14 million of them are online. Background: Computers and Internet
  • Global warming climbs to record (Jan. 3). Background: Environment & Nature
  • Scientists analyzing a Martian meteorite claim that it may provide evidence for the existence of ancient life on Mars. Background: Astronomy
  • Dr. Ian Wilmut and his team clone the world's first sheep from adult cells. The lamb born in July 1996 is named Dolly. Background: Cloning Milestones

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