#TodayInHistory – February 122 min read
February 12 – Some important events on this day
1700 👉🏼 The Great Northern War begins in Northern Europe between Denmark–Norway, Saxony and Russia and the Swedish Empire.
1865 👉🏼 Henry Highland Garnet becomes the 1st African American minister to preach to the US House of Representatives, he talks about the end of slavery
1912 👉🏼 The last Qing Emperor of China, Puyi abdicates after losing the support of the Chinese people and thus the mandate of heaven
1912 👉🏼 China adopts the Gregorian calendar
1947 👉🏼 French fashion designer Christian Dior presents his first influential collection, named the “New Look”
1988 👉🏼 US Navy frigate USS Yorktown bumped by Russian frigate Bezzavetny in the Black Sea in dispute over right of innocent passage.
In the 1980s, the Cold War reached new heights of tension between the United States and the Soviet Union. Though this was a proxy war, the military forces of each side occasionally came into contact. One of these incidents was in the Black Sea on this day.
The dispute in the Black Sea came over a disagreement of the right of innocent passage, which allows the vessels of another country to pass through territorial waters of another, subject to certain restrictions.
The USS Yorktown attempted to exercise this right through Soviet waters in the Black Sea, and was bumped by the Soviet frigate Bezzavetny in an attempt to push it into international waters. Another US and Soviet ship had an altercation in the same area. The Yorktown reported minor damage to its hull.
The Russians believed innocent passage applied only to designated sea lanes. The incident was a rare example of direct contact between two hostile nations’ navies.
1994 👉🏼 “The Scream” by Norwegian painter Edvard Munch (1893 pastel version) is stolen in Oslo
1999 👉🏼 US President Bill Clinton acquitted by the Senate in his impeachment trial
2001 👉🏼 NEAR Shoemaker spacecraft touchdown in the “saddle” region of 433 Eros becoming the first spacecraft to land on an asteroid.
2010 👉🏼 XXI Winter Olympic Games open in Vancouver, Canada
2013 👉🏼 North Korea allegedly conducts its third nuclear test, saying it was a nuclear device that could be weaponized
2016 👉🏼 Pope Francis meets Patriarch Kirill in Havana – first meeting between Catholic and Russian Orthodox church heads for nearly 1,000 years