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The following events occurred in December 1988: December 1, 1988 (Thursday) In Ordzhonikidze, North Ossetian Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic, Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic, Soviet Union, four men and a woman hijack a bus carrying 30 schoolchildren, a teacher and a driver and demand US$2 million in ransom and a cargo plane to leave the country. Carlos Salinas de Gortari takes office as President of Mexico. The first World AIDS Day is held. STS-27: NASA postpones the planned launch of Space Shuttle Atlantis from Kennedy Space Center in Florida due to weather. Born: Ashley Monique Clark, American television actress; in Brooklyn, New York City Nadia Hilker, German actress; in Munich, Bavaria, West Germany Tyler Joseph, American singer; in Columbus, Ohio Zoë Kravitz, American actress, singer and model; in Los Angeles, California Dan Mavraides, Greek-American professional basketball player; in Boston, Massachusetts Taione Vea, Tonga rugby union player; in Auckland, New Zealand Died: J. Vernon McGee, 84, American Presbyterian minister and theologian Alun Oldfield-Davies , 83, Welsh broadcaster and public servantDecember 2, 1988 (Friday) A cyclone in Bangladesh leaves 5 million homeless and thousands dead. Benazir Bhutto is sworn in as Prime Minister of Pakistan, becoming the first woman to head the government of an Islam-dominated republic. Agreeing to the bus hijackers' demands, the Soviet government gives them $2 million and an Aeroflot Ilyushin-76 cargo plane with a crew of eight to fly it. After the plane takes off from Mineralnyye Vody, the hijackers decide to fly to Israel rather than Pakistan or Iraq, as they had intended. The plane lands at a military airstrip near Ben Gurion Airport in Lod, Israel, where the hijackers surrender. Yitzhak Rabin, the Israeli Minister of Defense, criticizes the Soviet response to the hijacking, saying, "I must admit I can't understand how they could manage to leave the Soviet Union without the Soviet authorities doing anything to prevent it." STS-27: At 9:30:34 a.m. Eastern Standard Time, NASA launches Space Shuttle Atlantis on a classified mission. Unbeknownst to the five-man crew, 85 seconds after liftoff, falling insulation from one of the Solid Rocket Boosters (SRBs) severely damages the shuttle's thermal protection system. A few hours later, astronaut Mike Mullane uses the shuttle's robot arm to deploy the mission's cargo, the Lacrosse 1 satellite (also known as ONYX) for the U.S. National Reconnaissance Office and the Central Intelligence Agency. In a 2001 interview, shuttle commander Robert L. Gibson will reveal that the satellite experienced a problem after deployment which required that the shuttle rendezvous with it for the issue to be corrected. Gibson's comments and confusion over the identification of the 100th U.S. spacewalk during the STS-98 mission in February 2001 will lead to speculation that STS-27 crewmembers -- possibly astronauts Jerry L. Ross and William Shepherd -- conducted a classified spacewalk to repair the satellite. Presidential transition of George H. W. Bush: U.S. President-elect George H. W. Bush and his defeated opponent in the presidential election, Massachusetts Governor Michael Dukakis, hold a joint press conference. Born: Edward Windsor, Lord Downpatrick, English fashion designer; in London, England Alfred Enoch, British actor; in London, England Fuse ODG (born Nana Richard Abiona), English rapper; in Tooting, South London, England Stephen McGinn, Scottish footballer; in Glasgow, Scotland Soniya Mehra, Indian Bollywood actress Died: Karl-Heinz Bürger, 84, German SS and police leader Tata Giacobetti (born Giovanni Giacobetti), 66, Italian singer and jazz musician (Quartetto Cetra), heart attack Lloyd Rees AC CMG, 93, Australian landscape painterDecember 3, 1988 (Saturday) In the United Kingdom, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Public Health Edwina Currie provokes outrage by stating that most of Britain's egg production is infected with the salmonella bacteria, causing an immediate nationwide decrease in egg sales. STS-27: Mission Control requests that the shuttle crew use Atlantis' robot arm to photograph the heat shield under the shuttle's right wing. According to his own later account, when shuttle commander Robert L. Gibson sees the tile damage on the camera monitor, he thinks, "We are going to die." Due to the classified nature of the mission, the crew is required to use an encryption technique to send video of the damage to mission control, causing ground controllers to underestimate the severity of the damage and inform the crew that it is no worse than on previous flights. Born: Melissa Aldana, Chilean tenor saxophone player; in Santiago, Chile Kevin Clark, American child actor and musician; in Highland Park, Illinois (d. 2021, bicycle accident)December 4, 1988 (Sunday) Riding his motorcycle without a helmet, American actor Gary Busey has a near-fatal accident, sustaining a head injury that places him in a coma for four weeks. He will regain consciousness on January 6, 1989, and will subsequently recover and resume his acting career. Born: Yeng Constantino, Filipina pop rock singer-songwriter; in Rodriguez, Rizal, Philippines Miki Kanie, Japanese Olympic archer; in Gifu, Gifu Prefecture, Japan Mario Maurer (a.k.a. Nutthawuth Suwannarat), Thai model and actor; in Bangkok, Thailand Andriy Pylyavskyi, Ukrainian footballer; in Kiev, Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, Soviet Union Died: Osman Achmatowicz, 89, Polish chemist and academic Jan Mesdag (born Jan Henry de Vey Mestdagh), 34, Dutch singer and cabaret artist, complications from AIDS Fernand Mourlot, 93, French printer and publisher Joseph Zimmerman, M.S.F., 64, Swiss Catholic prelate, bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Morombe in Madagascar, fall from stairsDecember 5, 1988 (Monday) STS-27: The day before reentry, shuttle commander Gibson, still convinced that there is a strong possibility he and his crew will die tomorrow, tells them to relax, saying, "No reason to die all tensed up." A U.S. Navy Grumman EA-6B Prowler on a training mission from the USS Constellation disappears over the Pacific Ocean about 900 miles (1,400 km) west of San Diego, California. All four crewmen are lost. The United States Secret Service and the Soviet Mission to the United Nations notify the Trump Organization that Mikhail and Raisa Gorbachev will not come to Trump Tower during their upcoming visit to New York City. Trump spokespeople cite scheduling and security issues as reasons for the cancellation, but senior Soviet officials say that the Kremlin canceled the visit because of the problematic symbolism of the event. Born: Joanna Rowsell, English Olympic champion cyclist; in Carshalton, Greater London, England Died: Einar Forseth, 96, Swedish artist Monica Beatrice McKenzie, 83, New Zealand dietitianDecember 6, 1988 (Tuesday) The Australian Capital Territory is granted self-government by the Australian Capital.... Discover the Alex Banks Eve Porcello popular books. 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