On This Day, December 9th
1. 1992: Prince Charles and Princess Diana announce separation
It was on this date in 1992 that it was announced that the royal couple, Charles and Diana, were separating amicably. Charles is the Prince of Wales and is the heir to the British throne and Diana was everyone’s favorite princess, so this brought sadness to many people. There had been speculations in the media for years that the royal marriage was on the rocks, but nobody was certain until today. Almost a billion people tuned in on television to watch a young English schoolteacher, Lady Diana Spencer, be wed to Prince Charles on July 29, 1981. Not to mention over 2,500 people in attendance at St. Pauls Cathedral. Little did they know that just over ten years later they would be officially separated. The following year, the divorce became final and, unfortunately, she passed away just five years later in a devastating car accident.
2. 1983: Scarface released in theaters nationwide
It was on this date in 1983 that the legend of Tony Montana began when Scarface was released in movie theaters nationwide. The story follows the life of Tony Montana, played by the iconic actor Al Pacino, and his rise to the top of drug underworld of Miami in the ’80s. Montana starts as a Cuban refugee arriving in Miami with virtually only the clothes on his back. But he soon enters the booming business of cocaine that was running wild through the country at the time. Soon he finds himself on top of the world with all the money and power that he could ever dream of. But when you’re at the top that means there are people beneath you that would do anything to take your place. This is about the time when one of Montana’s most famous lines comes into play “Say hello to my little friends” referring to his tommy gun style machine gun. Oliver Stone wrote the screenplay and Brian De Palma directed the film that went on to be a cultural icon. Plus the lovely Michele Pfeiffer was the leading lady so no wonder it was a box office smash.
3. 1992: Unified Task Force storms Mogadishu
The United States Marines lead the Unified Task Force to Mogadishu, Somalia on this date in 1992 for a mission that was later dubbed Operation Restore Hope that was intended to help with the famine and homelessness that plagued the entire country. The entire mission was sanctioned by the United Nations and would last until May the following year. Not only were more than 2 million Somalians homeless, but due to civil conflict within rival clans throughout the country, it made it almost impossible for the delivery of food and water which is one of the many reasons why extreme famine was also a major issue. President George H.W. Bush decided to send a contingent of Marines to help ensure order was kept. Because of this help, international workers soon manages to restore some form of food distribution as well as other humanitarian efforts to aid with things like shelter and medical issues. However, things took a turn for the worse in October of 1993 when rebels shot down two Black Hawk helicopters belonging to the U.S. Army which killed 18 American soldiers. This forced President Bill Clinton to withdraw all U.S. soldiers from Somalia by March the following year.