It’s Monday, March 11, the 70th day of 2013. There are 295 days left in the year.
Highlight: In 1888, the Blizzard of ’88, also known as the “Great White Hurricane," began inundating the northeastern United States, resulting in some 400 deaths.
In 1513, Giovanni de’ Medici was proclaimed pope, succeeding Julius II; he took the name Leo X.
In 1862, during the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln removed Gen. George B. McClellan as general-in-chief of the Union armies, leaving him in command of the Army of the Potomac, a post McClellan also ended up losing.
In 1942, as Japanese forces continued to advance in the Pacific during World War II, Gen. Douglas MacArthur left the Philippines for Australia. (MacArthur, who subsequently vowed, “I shall return," kept that promise more than 2½ years later.)
In 1977, more than 130 hostages held in Washington, D.C., by Hanafi Muslims were freed after ambassadors from three Islamic nations joined the negotiations.
In 1985, Mikhail S. Gorbachev was chosen to succeed the late Soviet President Konstantin U. Chernenko.
In 1993, Janet Reno was unanimously confirmed by the Senate to be attorney general.
In 2004, 10 bombs exploded in quick succession across the commuter rail network in Madrid, Spain, killing 191 people and wounding more than 2,000 in an attack linked to al-Qaida-inspired militants.
In 2011, a magnitude-9.0 earthquake and resulting tsunami struck Japan’s northeastern coast, killing nearly 20,000 people and severely damaging the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power station.
Ten years ago: A U.S. Army helicopter crashed near Fort Drum in upstate New York, killing 11 soldiers. After a four-day walkout that cost New York City $10 million, Broadway musicians settled the first strike on the Great White Way in nearly 30 years.
Five years ago: The top U.S. military commander for the Middle East resigned amid speculation about a rift over U.S. policy in Iran; Defense Secretary Robert Gates said that Adm. William J. Fallon had asked for permission to retire and that Gates agreed.
One year ago: Sixteen Afghan villagers — mostly women and children — were shot dead as they slept, allegedly by U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Robert Bales, in an attack that reignited fury at the U.S. presence in Afghanistan following a wave of deadly protests over Americans burning Qurans.
Media mogul Rupert Murdoch is 82. ABC News correspondent Sam Donaldson is 79. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia is 77. Musician Flaco Jimenez is 74. Actress Tricia O’Neil is 68. Singer Bobby McFerrin is 63. Movie director Jerry Zucker is 63. Singer Nina Hagen is 58. Singer Cheryl Lynn is 56. Actor-director Peter Berg is 51. Country musician David Talbot is 50. Former U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., D-Ill., is 48. Actor Terrence Howard is 44. Rock musician Rami Jaffee is 44. Actor Johnny Knoxville is 42. Singer LeToya is 32. TV personality Melissa Rycroft is 30. Actor Anton Yelchin is 24.
— From wire reports