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    Today in History






    Today in History



    Highlights of this day in history: Nathan Hale hanged in the American Revolution; Iraq invades Iran; President Gerald Ford faces a second assassination attempt in weeks; 'Fiddler on the Roof' hits Broadway; Songwriter Irving Berlin dies. (Sept. 22)

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    Highlights of this day in history: JFK and Nixon participate in TV's first presidential debate; Cuba ends Mariel boatlift; Composer George Gershwin, poet T.S. Eliot and tennis star Serena Williams born; 'West Side Story' hits Broadway. (Sept. 26)

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    Highlights of this day in history: Chuck Yeager breaks sound barrier; Britain's Battle of Hastings takes place; Martin Luther King, Jr. wins Nobel Peace Prize; Former President Theodore Roosevelt shot; Singer Bing Crosby dies. (Oct. 14)


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    Highlights of this day in history: Inventor Thomas Edison dies; Three scientists share Nobel prize for DNA work; Anthrax scare hits CBS in New York; Two U.S. athletes suspended for Mexico City Olympics protest; Rock star Chuck Berry born. (Oct. 18)

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    Highlights of this day in history: Cult leader Jim Jones and hundreds of followers die in mass murder-suicide in South America; Massachusetts high court rules gay couples can marry; Disney's 'Steamboat Willie' premieres in New York. (Nov. 18)

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    Published on Dec 22, 2012
    Uprising topples Romania's Nicolae Ceausescu; Richard Reid tries to set off explosives in his shoes on an American Airlines flight from Paris to Miami; French army officer Alfred Dreyfus is convicted of treason in a court martial, however is eventually vindicated years later.

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    ^^^^ Nicolae probably woke up that morning and thought, "This will be another great day!" Zoinks! Guess again, Nic.

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    ^^^^
    Published on Dec 27, 2012
    President Woodrow Wilson is born; John C. Calhoun becomes the first vice president of the United States to resign; Alexander Solzhenitsyn's "Gulag Archipelago" is published; Actor Denzel Washington and comic book creator Stan Lee are born. (Dec. 28)

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    Published on Jan 27, 2013
    Highlights of Today in History: Space Shuttle Challenger explosion; Sir Francis Drake dies; Cuban revolutionary Jose Marti born; Vince Lombardi named head coach of Green Bay Packers. (Jan. 28)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Curt James View Post


    Published on Dec 22, 2012
    Uprising topples Romania's Nicolae Ceausescu; Richard Reid tries to set off explosives in his shoes on an American Airlines flight from Paris to Miami; French army officer Alfred Dreyfus is convicted of treason in a court martial, however is eventually vindicated years later.
    Just watched the movie Life of Emile Zola which delved heavily into that whole scandal, very much like the Ollie North debacle in many ways....
    Coarse edged youth, the irish pendants string from their smiles
    not yet plucked as to slacken the seams
    and drag down the features of age,
    no folds or creases from unkempt wear
    eyes of tranquilty, crystalline-beads
    no sign of despair in their hair, nor their hearts
    but oh they have yet to be experienced and that makes aging so very worth it...ML circa2012

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    Published on Feb 9, 2013
    Highlights of this day in history: The Beatles appear on TV's 'Ed Sullivan'; Sen. Joseph McCarthy launches his anti-communist crusade; World War II's Battle of Guadalcanal ends; Soviet leader Yuri Andropov dies; author Alice Walker born. (Feb. 9)

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    Quote Originally Posted by maniclion View Post
    Just watched the movie Life of Emile Zola which delved heavily into that whole scandal, very much like the Ollie North debacle in many ways....

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    Published on Feb 17, 2013
    Highlights of this day in history: Serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer gets life in prison; House lawmakers pick a president; Garry Kasparov beats IBM's Deep Blue at chess; NBA star Michael Jordan born; The Eagles release their greatest hits. (Feb. 17)

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    On February 22, 1953, one of Hemingway's cats, Uncle Willie, was hit by a car. Following the accident, Hemingway sent his close friend Gianfranco Ivancich the following distraught letter:

    Dear Gianfranco:

    Just after I finished writing you and was putting the letter in the envelope Mary came down from the Torre and said, "Something terrible has happened to Willie." I went out and found Willie with both his right legs broken: one at the hip, the other below the knee. A car must have run over him or somebody hit him with a club. He had come all the way home on the two feet of one side. It was a multiple compound fracture with much dirt in the wound and fragments protruding. But he purred and seemed sure that I could fix it.

    I had Rene get a bowl of milk for him and Rene held him and caressed him and Willie was drinking the milk while I shot him through the head. I don't think he could have suffered and the nerves had been crushed so his legs had not begun to really hurt. Monstruo wished to shoot him for me, but I could not delegate the responsibility or leave a chance of Will knowing anybody was killing him...

    Have had to shoot people but never anyone I knew and loved for eleven years. Nor anyone that purred with two broken legs.

    you don't get what you wish for ~ you get what you work for

    ...






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    Published on Mar 4, 2013
    Highlights of Today in History: Boston Massacre; Winston Churchill warns about Soviet Union's growing influence in Europe after WWII; Stalin dies; John Belushi found dead; Patsy Cline dies in plane crash. (March 5)

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    Published on Apr 2, 2013
    Highlights of this day in history: Martin Luther King gives last speech; Execution in Lindbergh baby case; Truman signs Marshall plan; Jesse James killed; Pony Express begins service; Marlon Brando born. (April 3)

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    INTERVIEWSKurt Cobain Died 19 Years Ago Today
    April 5 2013, 1:06 PM ET
    by Kyle McGovern
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    Kurt Cobain / Photo by Getty Images
    SPIN remembers the icon with two decades of coverage




    Nineteen years ago today (April 5), Kurt Cobain's short life came to a sudden, tragic end. In 1994, the Nirvana frontman, at age 27, took his own life in the greenhouse of his Seattle home. Since then, devoted fans have wondered what would have happened if Cobain hadn't died ? even Courtney Love has offered her own take on that alternate reality ? and we here at SPIN have honored the man, music, and myth at the heart of Nirvana many times over.

    We've collected years of exclusive SPIN content dedicated to Nirvana and their immeasurable impact on our culture. Find it all below, followed by Nirvana's breathtaking rendition of "Where Did You Sleep Last Night?" from their legendary MTV Unplugged performance.

    What Nevermind Means to Me, featuring Eddie Vedder, Wayne Coyne, Dave Grohl, and more sharing their personal histories with Nirvana's classic second album
    Kurt Cobain Scrapbook, collecting images of Kurt through the years, as we ran them in the pages of SPIN
    Eight Myths About Nevermind, in which Cobain biographer Charles R. Cross answers two decades of burning questions
    Heaven Can't Wait, SPIN's January 1992 Nirvana cover story
    Smashing Their Heads on the Punk Rock, SPIN's October 1993 Nirvana cover story
    Grunge's European Invasion: Intimate Photos From Nirvana's 1989 Tour
    "Experiencing Nirvana": Sub Pop Co-Founder Revisits Defining 1989 Tour
    "Weird Al" Yankovic Looks Back at 20 Years of "Smells Like Nirvana"
    Blame Nirvana: The 40 Weirdest Post-'Nevermind' Major-Label Albums




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    Published on Apr 12, 2013
    An explosion cripples Apollo 13 on its way to the Moon; President Thomas Jefferson born; Pope John Paul II visits a synagogue; Actor Sydney Poitier achieves an Oscar milestone; Golfer Tiger Woods wins the Masters for the first time. (April 13)

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    Published on May 25, 2013
    Highlights of this day in history: "Star Wars" --- written and directed by George Lucas --- premieres; Former Enron execs Ken Lay and Jeff Skilling are convicted of conspiracy and fraud; Jay Leno begins as host of N-B-C's "The Tonight Show. (May 25)

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    JFK Tells West Berliners That He Is One of Them, 50 Years Ago

    JFK Tells West Berliners That He Is One of Them, 50 Years Ago

    On June 26, 1963, President John F. Kennedy arrived in West Berlin to express solidarity with the city?s residents, who were surrounded on all sides by communist East Germany. After visiting Checkpoint Charlie, the Berlin Wall crossing point where Soviet and U.S. tanks had faced each other down two years earlier, Kennedy delivered a short speech that became one of his most famous. As over 120,000 people looked on, Kennedy aggressively attacked the communist system and, despite his poor foreign language skills, peppered in a couple of German phrases, including ?Ich bin ein Berliner.? The address was so well received that the square where it took place was subsequently renamed John-F.-Kennedy-Platz.

    At the end of World War II, the victorious Allied powers divided Germany into four zones. Three of those?controlled by the United States, the United Kingdom and France, respectively?became democratic West Germany, whereas the one controlled by the Soviet Union became communist East Germany. Berlin, the former capital, was similarly split despite being located squarely within East Germany?s borders, a situation that rankled the Soviet Union. In June 1948 the USSR cut off all land and water routes between West Berlin and the rest of West Germany in an attempt to gain control over the city. But the United States and its allies were able to overcome this 11-month blockade by airlifting in over 2.3 million tons of food and supplies.

    Berlin remained a point of contention between the United States and the Soviet Union when Kennedy took office in January 1961. At a summit that June in Austria, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev threatened the sovereignty of West Berlin and ratcheted up the rhetoric, warning that it was ??up to the U.S. to decide whether there will be war or peace? between the two nations and insisting that as the Cold War heated up, ?Force will be met by force.? ?Worst thing in my life,? Kennedy told a New York Times reporter afterwards. ?He savaged me.? Khrushchev then approved the construction of the Berlin Wall in order to prevent any more East Germans from fleeing to the West (an estimated 3.5 million had already done so). Barbed wire went up on August 13, 1961; concrete blocks later replaced it. More turmoil came in October, when Soviet and U.S. tanks rolled to within a few hundred feet of each other at Checkpoint Charlie, the crossing point for diplomats and other non-Germans. The 16-hour standoff, which precipitated worries about a World War III, ended without any shots being fired.

    On June 23, 1963, Kennedy returned to Europe for the first time since sparring with Khrushchev in Austria. He visited Bonn, Cologne and Frankfurt in West Germany, where big crowds chanted his name and waved U.S. flags, before flying into West Berlin on the morning of June 26. On the way over he showed General James H. Polk, the U.S. commandant in Berlin, a draft of the speech he planned to give later that day. ?This is terrible, Mr. President,? Polk reportedly said. Kennedy agreed and began working out a more forceful version in his head as he toured Checkpoint Charlie and other locations around the city. He also inserted a little German, which he wrote phonetically on note cards. Meanwhile, at least 120,000 West Berliners?some estimates place the total as high as 450,000?had gathered in the plaza outside city hall to hear Kennedy speak.

    Early in his address, the foreign language-challenged president broke out four German words he had supposedly been practicing for days. ?Two thousand years ago the proudest boast was ?civis Romanus sum,?? Kennedy said. ?Today, in the world of freedom, the proudest boast is ?Ich bin ein Berliner.?? Legend holds that by including the article ?ein,? Kennedy had called himself a jelly doughnut. But although speechwriter Ted Sorensen blamed himself for the alleged mistake in a memoir, German linguists maintain that the president used acceptable grammar.

    Kennedy went on to lambaste the failures of communism, saying anyone who thought it was the wave of the future should come to Berlin. ?Freedom has many difficulties and democracy is not perfect, but we have never had to put a wall up to keep our people in,? JFK stated. After praising the people of West Berlin for being at the front lines of the Cold War, he finished up by repeating his soon-to-be famous phrase. ?All free men, wherever they may live, are citizens of Berlin, and, therefore, as a free man, I take pride in the words ?Ich bin ein Berliner!?? he exclaimed.

    The whole speech lasted only nine minutes. Kennedy then gave another address at the Free University of Berlin before flying to Ireland that evening. ?We?ll never have another day like this one, as long as we live,? he reportedly said in reference to the enthusiastic crowds. Although Kennedy was assassinated that November, his wish for the city to ?be joined as one? came true when the Berlin Wall fell in November 1989. To this day he remains an admired figure in Berlin, which is hosting a series of lectures, films and exhibitions coinciding with the 50th anniversary of his visit.

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    June 27, 1950 - The US decides to send troops to fight in the Korean War.

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    Published on Jul 2, 2013
    Highlights of this day in history: Continental Congress votes to break away from Britain; Civil Rights Act signed; Amelia Earhart disappears; President James Garfield shot; Author Ernest Hemingway commits suicide; Actor Jimmy Stewart dies.

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    Anne Frank captured — History.com This Day in History — 8/4/1944

    Acting on tip from a Dutch informer, the Nazi Gestapo captures 15-year-old Jewish diarist Anne Frank and her family in a sealed-off area of an Amsterdam warehouse. The Franks had taken shelter there in 1942 out of fear of deportation to a Nazi concentration camp. They occupied the small space with another Jewish family and a single Jewish man, and were aided by Christian friends, who brought them food and supplies. Anne spent much of her time in the "secret annex" working on her diary. The diary survived the war, overlooked by the Gestapo that discovered the hiding place, but Anne and nearly all of the others perished in the Nazi death camps.

    Annelies Marie Frank was born in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, on June 12, 1929. She was the second daughter of Otto Frank and Edith Frank-Hollander, both of Jewish families that had lived in Germany for centuries. With the rise of Nazi leader Adolf Hitler in 1933, Otto moved his family to Amsterdam to escape the escalating Nazi persecution of Jews. In Holland, he ran a successful spice and jam business. Anne attended a Montessori school with other middle-class Dutch children, but with the German invasion of the Netherlands in 1940 she was forced to transfer to a Jewish school. In 1942, Otto began arranging a hiding place in an annex of his warehouse on the Prinsengracht Canal in Amsterdam.

    On her 13th birthday in 1942, Anne began a diary relating her everyday experiences, her relationship with her family and friends, and observations about the increasingly dangerous world around her. Less than a month later, Anne's older sister, Margot, received a call-up notice to report to a Nazi "work camp." Fearing deportation to a Nazi concentration camp, the Frank family took shelter in the secret annex the next day. One week later, they were joined by Otto Frank's business partner and his family. In November, a Jewish dentist?the eighth occupant of the hiding place?joined the group.

    For two years, Anne kept a diary about her life in hiding that is marked with poignancy, humor, and insight. The entrance to the secret annex was hidden by a hinged bookcase, and former employees of Otto and other Dutch friends delivered them food and supplies procured at high risk. Anne and the others lived in rooms with blacked-out windows, and never flushed the toilet during the day out of fear that their presence would be detected. In June 1944, Anne's spirits were raised by the Allied landing at Normandy, and she was hopeful that the long-awaited liberation of Holland would soon begin.

    On August 1, 1944, Anne made her last entry in her diary. Three days later, 25 months of seclusion ended with the arrival of the Nazi Gestapo. Anne and the others had been given away by an unknown informer, and they were arrested along with two of the Christians who had helped shelter them. They were sent to a concentration camp in Holland, and in September Anne and most of the others were shipped to the Auschwitz death camp in Poland. In the fall of 1944, with the Soviet liberation of Poland underway, Anne was moved with her sister Margot to the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in Germany. Suffering under the deplorable conditions of the camp, the two sisters caught typhus and died in early March 1945. The camp was liberated by the British less than two months later.

    Otto Frank was the only one of the 10 to survive the Nazi death camps. After the war, he returned to Amsterdam via Russia, and was reunited with Miep Gies, one of his former employees who had helped shelter him. She handed him Anne's diary, which she had found undisturbed after the Nazi raid. In 1947, Anne's diary was published by Otto in its original Dutch as Diary of a Young Girl. An instant best-seller and eventually translated into more than 50 languages, The Diary of Anne Frank has served as a literary testament to the nearly six million Jews, including Anne herself, who were silenced in the Holocaust.

    The Frank family's hideaway at Prinsengracht 263 in Amsterdam opened as a museum in 1960. A new English translation of Anne's diary in 1995 restored material that had been edited out of the original version, making the work nearly a third longer.

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    Bertha Benz Hits the Road, 125 Years Ago

    Bertha Benz Hits the Road, 125 Years Ago

    In August 1888, Bertha Benz, the 39-year-old wife of German engineer Karl Benz, made history when she became the first person to complete a long-distance trip by automobile. The trip helped popularize Karl Benz?s latest invention?and likely saved him from professional and financial ruin. One hundred and twenty five years after Bertha?s big journey, get the facts about the world?s first road trip.

    Bertha Ringer Benz, the daughter of a wealthy family from the southwestern German town of Pforzheim, had come to her husband?s aid before. Two years before the couple?s 1872 wedding she had used part of her dowry to help prop up the failing iron construction company Karl Benz had launched with an irresponsible business partner. When he lost control of the company shortly thereafter, Benz moved on, using Bertha?s continued financial support (and business acumen) to form a new manufacturing venture known as Benz & Cie. When the company proved successful, Karl was able to turn his attention to a lifelong dream?the creation of the first true automobile. After several years of failed attempts, Karl finally finished work on his first horseless carriage in December 1885 (he received a patent for it the following year). The single-cylinder, 2.5-horsepower car had three wheels?one in front and two in the back?and could reach a maximum speed of 25 mph.

    Karl may have been a supremely talented engineer, but he was a terrible marketer. The first few public displays of his new invention didn?t go well, including one demonstration that quickly ended when a driver lost control of the vehicle and crashed into a nearby wall, terrifying onlookers. Ever the perfectionist, Benz retreated to his factory, where he continually tinkered with his automobile in private. However, Bertha, whose inheritance had helped keep the family afloat in the lean years, was well aware of the need to publicize the automobile as much as possible. And there was added pressure from the competition just a few miles away; another German engineer, Gottlieb Daimler, had invented a horseless carriage of his own? the world?s first four-wheeled, high-speed automobile.

    Frustrated by her husband?s apparent unwillingness to act on his own, Bertha took matters into her own hands. In early August 1888 (the date has been variously given as either August 5 or 12), Bertha packed up one of her husband?s cars, the recently completed Patent-Motorwagen No. 3, and with her two teenage sons in tow set out to visit her mother in Pforzheim. She didn?t tell Karl beforehand, but instead left him a letter informing him of her plans.

    The Benzes hit the road? which in many places turned out to be rocky, dusty and unpaved?with Bertha acting as both driver and automobile mechanic along the way. When she ran low on fuel, she sought out a local pharmacy that sold ligroin, the petroleum solvent used to run Karl Benz?s cars. She made an emergency repair to the car?s ignition with her garter. When the fuel line became clogged part of the way through their journey, Bertha was able to clear it using nothing more than her hairpin. Bertha is even credited with devising the world?s first pair of brake pads: when the car?s worn-down, wooden brakes began to fail, she asked a local shoemaker to install leather soles instead.

    The three travelers finally reached the home of Bertha?s mother around dusk, having covered 65 miles in less than 12 hours. Bertha sent Karl a telegram informing him of the family?s safe arrival but news of her exploit had already reached the press, thanks to eyewitness reports from residents of the towns and villages Bertha and the boys had passed along the way. Most expressed amazement at Karl Benz?s achievement and how safe it seemed to be, although others were reportedly terrified of the sudden appearance of the automobile in their midst?one driven by a women, no less. While the publicity was certainly nice, there was a more practical upshot to Bertha Benz?s road trip. The difficulties she and her sons faced getting Karl?s 2.5-horse-powered car up neighboring hills (often manually pushing the car uphill) convinced the inventor to make a crucial modification ? the introduction of the world?s first gear system.

    After visiting with her mother for several days, Bertha set out for her return trip, following a different route and introducing her husband?s automobile to even more people before arriving home safely. In all, she had driven over 120 miles at a time when no other automobile had traveled more than a few dozen feet. Her trip unleashed an avalanche of publicity and the couple began receiving orders for their newfangled contraption almost immediately. Within a decade Karl?s company, Benz & Cie., became the world?s largest automobile company with a full-time staff of more than 400 and annual sales of nearly 600 vehicles.

    Karl remained with the company he had founded in an advisory position until his death in 1929. Benz & Cie. had merged three years earlier with Gottlieb Daimler and Wilhelm Maybach?s company to form Daimler-Benz, home to the Mercedes-Benz. While the Benz family remained on the company?s board, they also started another automobile business, Benz Sonz, in 1906. Karl and Bertha, along with sons Eugen and Richard, who had accompanied their mother on her history-making 1888 trip, formed the new company, which remained family-owned until it closed its doors in 1924. Bertha Benz died 20 years later at the age of 95. Her 1888 triumph has been memorialized in books and on film, and today motorists can travel the 120-mile long Bertha Benz Memorial Route, which follows the path of her historic trip.

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    New Mammal Discovered in the Americas

    New Mammal Discovered in the Americas

    With its long, bushy tail, big eyes and rust-colored fur, the olinguito is being described as a cute-as-a-button combination of house cat and teddy bear. It?s actually the smallest member of the raccoon family, and more importantly, the first new species of carnivore to be identified in the Western Hemisphere since 1978. After nearly a decade of research and exploration, a team of scientists has identified thousands of the cute creatures living in the cloud forests of Colombia and Ecuador, among the peaks of the Andes Mountains. This week, they unveiled their findings in a news conference held at the Smithsonian Institution.

    The identification of the newest species of mammal, the olinguito, solves a long-running mystery in the scientific and zoological community. Over the years, the animal has been misidentified as the olingo, a related member of the raccoon family, when spotted in the wild, included in museum collections or even displayed in zoos. During the 1960s, one captured ?olingo? confounded zookeepers when it refused to breed or mingle with its peers. The mystery began to unravel a decade ago, when Kristofer M. Helgen, a mammal expert from the Smithsonian Natural History Museum, examined olongo specimens in the collections of the Field Museum of Chicago. He noticed that a number of the preserved specimens appeared quite different from the known species of olingo, with smaller skulls and pelts of a reddish-brown color (the olingo has short, brownish-gray fur).

    Helgen, who had previously identified two new species of hog badger, was certain he had discovered a new species, and began working to confirm it. In addition to a thorough investigation and DNA testing, he turned to zoologist Roland Kays of the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, the world?s top expert on olingos, to help track down an actual olinguito in its natural habitat. In 2006, the researchers set off with Ecuadorian zoologist Miguel Pinto on a weeks-long field expedition to the Andes Mountains in Ecuador. They confirmed the existence of four distinct subspecies of olinguito living among the misty treetops of the cloud forest, at elevations of some 5,000-9,000 feet above sea level.

    The researchers used their findings to map out predictions for the geographic distribution of the animal, which they believe may also be found elsewhere in Central and South America. Adding the Spanish diminutive suffix ?ito? to indicate its smaller size, they named the species ?olinguito.? Its scientific name is Bassaricyon neblina, from the Spanish word for mist, and it belongs to the taxonomic order Carnivora, which includes civets, hyena and bears, along with cats and dogs. The olinguito?s primary food source is not meat, however: It mostly eats tree fruit, such as figs, and occasionally eats insects. The smallest member of the raccoon family, it weighs in at only two pounds and measures some 14 inches long, compared to 16 inches and 2.4 pounds for other known olingo species.

    In contrast to other newly identified species, many of which have often been known to indigenous peoples for centuries, the olinguito seems to have escaped notice until now. Helgen found no one among the local population who knew anything about the olinguito, and no native names exist. While scientists discover new species all the time, most of them tend to be insects or other invertebrates, only a fraction of which have been catalogued. The discovery of a new mammal belonging to the carnivore order is much more unusual. The last new carnivorous mammal, a mongoose-like creature native to Madagascar, was discovered in 2010, while the most recent such find in the Western Hemisphere was the Colombian weasel, in 1978.

    Helgen, Kays and their colleagues announced their discovery of the olinguito in a news conference at the Smithsonian this week; they also published their complete findings online in the journal ZooKeys. They estimate that the olinguito population numbers in the tens of thousands, which means it?s not an endangered species, or at least not yet. More than 40 percent of its potential habitat range has been converted to agricultural or urban areas, however, and the researchers hope their work with the olinguito will help reverse this process by bringing attention to the conservation of such a unique habitat. According to Kays, the Andean cloud forest is ?a magical place? and ?a crucible of evolution,? and its isolation has promoted a vast diversification of animals, many of which may not yet have been identified.


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    Published on Oct 10, 2013
    Highlights of this day in history: Congress OK's U.S. military force against Iraq; Former President Jimmy Carter wins Nobel Peace Prize; Anita Hill accuses Supreme Court pick Clarence Thomas; Second Vatican Council opens; 'SNL' premieres. (Oct. 11)

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