World Events

July to September, 1966

July : The US Medicare federal insurance program went into effect. Ho Chi Minh ordered a partial mobilization of North Vietnam to defend against American air-strikes. B-52 bombers hit the demilitarised Zone between North and South Vietnam for the first time.  The former  British colony of Barbados become an independent state.  England, the home of soccer football, wins its first (and only) World Cup by beating Germany 4-2 in extra time.


August : Charles Joseph Whitman, architectural engineering student and ex-Marine, shot and killed 14 people and wounded 31 others at the University of Texas before he was gunned down by police. Demonstrations against war in Vietnam become widespread throughout US. Australians bloodily repulsed a Viet Cong attack at Long Tan, South Vietnam. The Beatles concluded their fourth American tour with their last public concert, at Candlestick Park in San Francisco.


September : South African Prime Minister Hendrik Verwoerd was stabbed to death by a deranged assassin  during a parliamentary session in Cape Town. The television series “Star Trek” premiered on NBC., “Mission Impossible” premiered on CBS.  Nazi war criminals Albert Speer, the German minister of armaments, and Baldur von Schirach, the founder of the Hitler Youth, were freed at midnight from Spandau prison after serving twenty-year prison sentences. Visitors to the Farnborough Air Show in England see the first appearance of the Hawker Harrier, the world’s first Vertical Take Off jet fighter.