Today is Palm Sunday, April 1, the 92nd day of 2012. There are 274 days left in the year. This is April Fool's Day.
Today's Highlight in History:
On April 1, 1912, the city of Branson, Mo., was incorporated.
On this date:
In 1789, the U.S. House of Representatives held its first full meeting in New York; Frederick Muhlenberg of Pennsylvania was elected the first House speaker.
In 1853, Cincinnati, Ohio, established a fire department made up of paid city employees.
In 1918, the Royal Air Force was established in Britain.
In 1933, Nazi Germany began persecuting Jews with a boycott of Jewish-owned businesses.
In 1939, the United States recognized the government of Gen. Francisco Franco in Spain, the same day Franco went on radio to declare victory in the Spanish Civil War.
In 1945, American forces launched the amphibious invasion of Okinawa during World War II.
In 1962, the Katherine Anne Porter novel "Ship of Fools," an allegory about the rise of Nazism in Germany, was first published by Little, Brown & Co. on April Fool's Day.
In 1972, the first Major League Baseball players' strike began; it lasted 12 days.
In 1976, Apple Computer was founded by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak and Ronald Wayne.
In 1984, recording star Marvin Gaye was shot to death by his father, Marvin Gay (cq) Sr. in Los Angeles, the day before his 45th birthday. (The elder Gay pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter, and received probation.)
In 1987, in his first speech on the AIDS epidemic, President Ronald Reagan told doctors in Philadelphia, "We've declared AIDS public health enemy no. 1."
In 1992, the National Hockey League Players' Association went on its first-ever strike, which lasted 10 days.
Ten years ago: Israeli tanks and bulldozers rumbled into more Palestinian towns and massed on the edge of Bethlehem in an expansion of a West Bank offensive. Maryland won its first NCAA men's basketball championship with a 64-52 victory over Indiana.
Five years ago: Iran's state television aired new video showing two of the 15 captured British sailors pointing to a spot on a map of the Persian Gulf where they were seized and saying it was in Iranian territorial waters; Britain's Foreign Office immediately denounced the video. Morgan Pressel became the youngest major champion in LPGA Tour history with a game well beyond her 18 years, closing with a 3-under 69 at the Kraft Nabisco Championship.
One year ago: Afghans angry over the burning of a Quran at a small Florida church stormed a U.N. compound in northern Afghanistan, killing seven foreigners, including four Nepalese guards. Jimmer Fredette was named The Associated Press' player of the year after leading the nation in scoring and BYU to one of its best basketball seasons; Notre Dame's Mike Brey was named coach of the year.
Today's Birthdays: Actress Jane Powell is 84. Actress Grace Lee Whitney is 82. Actress Debbie Reynolds is 80. Country singer Jim Ed Brown is 78. Actor Don Hastings is 78. Blues singer Eddie King is 74. Actress Ali MacGraw is 74. Rhythm-and-blues singer Rudolph Isley is 73. Reggae singer Jimmy Cliff is 64. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito is 62. Rock musician Billy Currie (Ultravox) is 62. Actress Annette O'Toole is 60. Movie director Barry Sonnenfeld is 59. Singer Susan Boyle (TV: "Britain's Got Talent") is 51. Country singer Woody Lee is 44. Actress Jessica Collins is 41. Rapper-actor Method Man is 41. Movie directors Allen and Albert Hughes are 40. Political commentator Rachel Maddow is 39. Tennis player Magdalena Maleeva is 37. Actor David Oyelowo is 36. Singer Bijou Phillips is 32. Actor Sam Huntington is 30. Actor Matt Lanter is 29. Actor Josh Zuckerman is 27.
Thought for Today: "Life is short. Live it up." _ Nikita S. Khrushchev, Soviet leader (1894-1971).
(Above Advance for Use Sunday, April 1)
Copyright 2012, The Associated Press. All rights reserved.