July 25th is an explosive day not just because of the atomic blasts or the Concorde explosion, but because it is also a day of significant change that would have ripple effects from Dylan going electric, to Jordan and Israel making peace to WikiLeaks.
The Fall of Mussolini
Two weeks after the Allied landing in Sicily, the Italian ruling junta, the Grand Council of Fascism, passed a vote of no confidence in Benito Mussolini – ending his 21-year reign. Overnight the fascist party collapsed, leading one writer to note “[b]ehind the façade there was nothing.” Italy would surrender 46-days later.
Bikini Atoll Underwater Nuclear Blast
The second of three nuclear tests at Biki Atoll, the first detonations of nuclear devices since the atomic bombing of Nagasaki on August 9, 1945. The purpose of the tests was to investigate the effect of nuclear weapons on warships.
Andrea Doria Collides with MS Stockholm
The Italian ocean liner SS Andrea Doria collides with the MS Stockholm in heavy fog and sinks the next day, killing 51 a mere 45 miles south of Nantucket Island.
Dylan Goes Electric
Folk star Bob Dylan, who had been labelled as the “spokesman of a generation” by the media due to songs like Blowing in the Wind, stuns the crowd at the Newport Folk Festival by playing a short electric set. Dylan was met with boos but it is unclear if this was due to the shortness of the set or the electrified content that included the classic Like a Rolling Stone.
First Test Tube Baby
Louise Joy Brown became the first baby born through in vitro fertilization. She is married and has two children of her own now that were born naturally.
Jordan and Israel Make Peace
Jordan and Israel sign the Washington Declaration in a Rose Garden ceremony officially ending a state of war that had existed since 1948.
Concorde’s Tragic End
Air France Flight 4590, a Concorde supersonic passenger jet, F-BTSC, crashes just after takeoff from Paris killing all 109 aboard and 4 on the ground – ending the Concorde program.
WikiLeaks Releases Afghan War Files
WikiLeaks released over 91,000 documents covering the U.S. war in Afghanistan between January 2004 and December 2009. The documents were made available to The Guardian, The New York Times and Der Spiegel and published on this day. The Guardian called the material
one of the biggest leaks in U.S. military history…a devastating portrait of the failing war in Afghanistan, revealing how coalition forces have killed hundreds of civilians in unreported incidents, Taliban attacks have soared and NATO commanders fear neighbouring Pakistan and Iran are fuelling the insurgency.