On this day in 1968, one of the most publicized and controversial battles of the Vietnam War begins at Khe Sanh, 14 miles below the DMZ and six miles from the Laotian border.
On this day in 1941, British and Commonwealth forces enter the port at Tobruk, in Libya, and tens of thousands of Italian occupiers are taken prisoner.
On this day in 1968, the U.S. intelligence-gathering ship Pueblo is seized by North Korean naval vessels and charged with spying and violating North Korean territorial waters. Negotiations to free the 83-man crew of the U.S. ship dragged on for nearly a year, damaging the credibility of and confidence in the foreign policy of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s administration.
On this day in 1781, Patriot commanders Lieutenant Colonel “Light Horse” Henry Lee and Brigadier General Francis “Swamp Fox” Marion of the South Carolina militia combine forces and conduct a raid on Georgetown, South Carolina, which is defended by 200 British soldiers.
On this day in 1863, Union General Ambrose Burnside is removed as commander of the Army of the Potomac after serving in the role for two months.
On this day in 1970, U.S. Navy Lt. Everett Alvarez Jr. spends his 2,000th day in captivity in Southeast Asia. First taken prisoner when his plane was shot down on August 5, 1964, he became the longest-held POW in U.S. history. Alvarez was downed over Hon Gai during the first bombing raids against North Vietnam in retaliation for the disputed attack on U.S. destroyers in the Gulf of Tonkin in August 1964.
On this day in 1943, 8th Air Force bombers, dispatched from their bases in England, fly the first American bombing raid against the Germans, targeting the Wilhelmshaven port. Of 64 planes participating in the raid, 53 reached their target and managed to shoot down 22 German planes—and lost only three planes in return.