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The sun continues to set on Britain's once-mighty empire as Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher signs an agreement to transfer Hong Kong to China, effective in 1997. The 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles suffer when the Soviet Union and several East Bloc countries boycot the event, citing security concerns. Soul singer Marvin Gaye is killed in a dispute with his father.

  • Syrian officials release U.S. flyer
  • Marvin Gaye killed
  • Soviets boycott Olympics
  • Indian army attacks Sikh Golden Temple
  • Hong Kong transfer
  • Indira Ghandi assassinated
  • Subway vigilante


  • Syrian officials release U.S. flyer -- January 3, 1984

    Syrian officials released U.S. Navy Lt. Robert O. Goodman Jr. following a personal appeal by then-Democratic presidential candidate Rev. Jesse Jackson to Syrian president Hafez al-Assad. Assads humanitarian gesture, a dramatic response to Jacksons mission of mercy, reduced tensions between the countries. Goodmans A-6E attack bomber was part of a multinational peacekeeping force sent to stabilize the situation in Lebanon. His plane was shot down in December 1983 while launching a strike against Syrian anti-aircraft artillery in retaliation for their shooting at unarmed U.S. reconnaissance aircraft. Goodman spent a month as a Syrian prisoner of war.

    Goodman arrives:
    1.5 M QuickTime Movie (160x120) 2.5 M QuickTime Movie (320x240)


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    Motown legend Gaye killed by father -- April 1, 1984

    Recording artist Marvin Gaye is shot and killed during a domestic dispute with his father. Investigators say the singer had beaten his father before the shooting, and traces of cocaine are found during an autopsy. A judge places Marvin Gay Sr. (the singer had added an e to his name) on probation.

    The funeral:
    1.9 QuickTime Movie (160x120) 5.9M QuickTime Movie (320x240)

    Friends eulogize Gaye:
    4.5M QuickTime Movie (160x120) 14.3M QuickTime Movie (320x240)


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    Soviets pull out of L.A. Olympics -- May 7, 1984

    The Soviet Union announces May 7 it will pull out of the 1984 Summer Olympic Games to be held in Los Angeles. The Soviets cite "undisguised threats" against their athletes and officials. Bulgaria and East Germany also say they will not attend. The United States had boycotted the 1980 Summer Games in Moscow to protest the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.

    CNN coverage:
    1.3 QuickTime Movie (160x120) 1.4 QuickTime Movie (320x240)


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    Indian army attacks Sikh Golden Temple -- June 4, 1984

    The Indian army stormed the Sikh Golden Temple in Amritsar, Punjab, in an effort to crush a two-year-old terrorist campaign by Sikh separatists. Three hundred died and hundreds were wounded in the daylong gun battle. The Sikh separatists had been using the temple as a refuge and a fortress. The Sikhs fundamentalist leader Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale was killed. The government of Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi used force in its effort to keep the Indian federation together, but the action sparked a violent backlash by militant Sikhs.

    The Sikh Golden Temple:
    1.4 M QuickTime Movie (160x120) 4.1 M QuickTime Movie (320x240)


    1980 -- 1981 -- 1982 -- 1983 -- 1984 -- 1985 -- 1986 -- 1987 -- 1988 -- 1989 -- 1990 -- 1991 -- 1992 -- 1993 -- 1994 -- 1995 -- 1996 -- 1997

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