Timeline: 1982

President Hafez al Assad

President Assad crushes the
Muslim Brotherhood

Jan 1  Another military coup in Ghana. Exuberant soldiers loot homes and shops.

Jan 7  Ghana's new military regime, led by Jerry Rawlings, announces the creation of tribunals for "revolutionary justice" regarding "crimes against the people."

Jan 12  The Rawlings regime announces the return of diplomatic relations between Ghana and Libya. Libya's leader, Gaddafi, has sent a message of solidarity with Ghana's "revolution."

Jan 26  Unemployment in Britain increases by 129,918 to 3,070,621 -- a post-war record.

Feb 2  In Hama, a Syrian city of 350,000, Muslim Brotherhood insurgents have taken power, driving out Baathist authorities and declaring the city liberated. With tanks and air power, Syria's Baathist president, Hafez al Assad, crushes the Brotherhood. Estimates of those killed in the city will range from 10,000 to 40,000. In 1982 Hama has a population of around 270,000. In 2011 its population will be 699,000 and largely hostile to the rule of the son of Hafez. For the Assad regime the massacre buys thirty years of rule.

Feb 25  The European Court of Human Rights rules that teachers who beat children against the wishes of the parents are in breach of the Human Rights Convention.

Mar 10 The United States describes Libya as supporting terrorism and subversion and places an embargo on Libyan oil imports.

Mar 13  Massacre and rape of Mayans is occur ab out 100 kilometers northwest of Guatemala City. A civil war is taking place and the Mayans are being described by anti-Communists as subversives and by soldiers as "garbage" and "trash". (NewsHour, 8 May 2013)

Mar 13  Colonel Gaddafi describes President Reagan as a "destructive person" and a "terrorist."

Mar 22  In Nicaragua the Sandinista government has been criticized for forcibly removing some 10,000 Miskito Indians from land along the Honduran border. It claims that the evictions were necessary because of incursions into northern Nicaragua by armed exiles.

Mar 23  In Guatemala, General Efraín Ríos Montt, takes power in a coup. He was critical of Catholic priests who had questioned the mistreatment of the Catholic Mayans, and had described the priests were leftist agents. The Reagan administration

Apr 2  The military junta in Argentina lands troops in British-ruled Falkland Islands, which Argentines call the Malvinas and consider Argentinean.

Apr 3 Prime Minister Thatcher announces the despatch of a naval task force to the Falklands.

Apr 5  Britain's government in Falklands surrenders.

Apr 25  Israel completes its withdrawal from the Sinai peninsula in keeping with the Israel-Egypt Peace Treaty of 1979.

May 2  A British nuclear submarine sinks an Argentine Navy cruiser, killing 323 sailors.

May 4  An Argentine missile hits a British light cruiser, killing 20.

May 24  Iranian troops retake the border town of Khorramshahr, 40 kilometers southeast of Basra, capturing 19,000 Iraqi soldiers. They execute 2,000 of their prisoners in retaliation for the rape of Iranian women at the beginning of the war.

May 29  British paratroopers defeat a larger force of Argentine troops in the first land battle of the Falklands.

May 30  Spain becomes the 16th member of NATO.

Jun 3  In London, Israel's ambassador to Britain is shot and critically wounded by the Palestinian terrorist organization led by Abu Nidal.

Jun 4  Palestinians have been launching attacks against Israelis from southern Lebanon, including rocket and artillery attacks across the border into northern Israel. Israel bombs Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) ammunition depots and training bases. The PLO retaliates by shelling Israeli settlements.

Jun 6  Israel invades southern Lebanon, an operation the Israelis call "Operation Peace for Galilee."

Jun 9  Israeli forces have engaged Syrian forces and forced them to withdraw to Lebanon's Bekaa Valley. Israeli troops are on the perimeter of the city of Beirut. They send airplanes against trapped PLO there, and they begin patrolling all roads in and out of the city.

Jun 11  The Sandinista regime says that they have killed 21 ''counterrevolutionaries'' in recent days near the Honduran border. Those fighting the Sandinista regime from Honduras have been described as former National Guard soldiers who fled Nicaragua when the Sandinistas overthrew the Somoza regime.

Jun 13  Inflation has dropped to 7 percent, but the nation is in a recession and unemployment is rising. President Reagan's budget director, David A. Stockman, tells the U. S. Chamber of Commerce that the nation should stick with President Reagan's policies if it is to ''end the curse of inflation once and for all, even if it means short-run economic and fiscal difficulties.''

General Galtieri

Argentina's General Galtieri

Malvinas War Memorial

Soon to be built: Argentina's Malvinas War Memorial

Jun 14 In the Falklands, at Stanley, the commander of Argentina's forces, General Mario Menéndez, surrenders to British Major General Jeremy Moore.

Jun 15-16  In Argentina, policemen disperse crowds angered by the surrender to the British.

Jun 16  Returning to her residence at 10 Downing Street, Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher is cheered by a crowed behind police barricades. They sing ''Rule, Britannia'' and ''She's a Jolly Good Fellow.''

Jun 18  In Argentina, junta leader General Leopoldo Galtieri, who started the Falklands War, resigns.

Jun 18  In the US, the Census Bureau reports that the number of families headed by one parent has doubled since 1970, caused primarily by divorce.

Jun 19 Total dead in the Falklands War: 649 for Argentina, 258 for Britain.

Jun 19  Argentina defeats Hungary in football (soccer) 4 to 1. Some Argentine players weep with joy.

Jun 21  The Princess of Wales, Diana, gives birth to her first son, William.

Jun 25  Governor Rex Hunt returns to his position as Commissioner of the Falklands.

Jul 18  Guatemala's President Montt is reported by the New York Times as announcing to the people of Guatemala, "If you are with us, we'll feed you; if not, we'll kill you."

Jul 20  The Provisional IRA detonates 2 bombs in central London, killing 8 soldiers, wounding 47 others and killing 7 horses.

Jul 23 The International Whaling Commission chooses to end commercial whaling by 1985-1986.

Yasser Arafat

Yasser Arafat, to Greece

Bashir Gemayel

President-elect Bashir Gemayel


Bodies at Shatila refugee camp

Palestinians at Shatila refugee camp

Jul 24  United States envoy Philip Habib brokers a shaky cease fire, but incidents continue.

Aug 12  Mexico announces its inability to pay its foreign debt. A debt crisis is launched throughout Latin America.

Aug 20  An agreement has been reached whereby 800 French, 800 US and 400 Italian "peacekeeper" troops will be in Lebanon for thirty days or less, helping the Lebanese army provide a safe evacuation of Yasser Arafat's PLO combat forces to Damascus.

Aug 21  French forces land in Lebanon.

Aug 23  In Lebanon, Bashir Gemayel of Christian Phalangist political party is elected President. He promises to be the president of all the people and is scheduled to take office on September 23.

Aug 25  The US Marines arrive in Lebanon.

Aug 30  From Beirut, Arafat and his 14,000 combatants take a cruise ship to Greece. Around 2000 Syrian troops are also evacuated from Beirut. From Greece the PLO will go to Cyprus and then be dispersed to Jordan, Syria, Iraq, Sudan, North and South Yemen, Tunisia and Greece. The new PLO headquarters will be in Tunisia.

Sep 10  The US Marines in Lebanon return to their ships.

Sep 14  Lebanon's president-elect Bachir Gemayel is assassinated, killed with 25 others by a bomb. Confessing to the crime will be Habib Tanious Shartouni, a Christian Maronite member of the Syrian Social Nationalist Party, which advocates a Greater Syria.

Sep 18  Israeli commander Ariel Sharon allows Lebanese Christian militiamen to search for terrorists in the Sabra and Chatila Palestinian refugee camps in West Beirut. The camps are surrounded by the Israeli army. Between 700 and 3,500 Palestinians are estimated to have been massacred.

Sep 22  President Reagan orders Marines back into Lebanon to support the Lebanese armed forces.

Sep 23  Amin Gemayel, Bachir's brother, is elected president of Lebanon.

Sep 25  In Israel, 400,000 marchers demand the resignation of Prime Minister Menachem Begin.

Sep 29  US Marines return ashore for peacekeeping duties in Lebanon.

Oct 15  The Garn-St. Germain Depository Institutions Act is signed into law by President Reagan. He calls it "historic reform." The law contributes to the elimination of New Deal restrictions on mortgage lending – restrictions that, in particular, limited the ability of families to buy homes without putting a significant amount of money down. A new era of borrowing by citizens is in the making. The economist Paul Krugman is to describe the law as encouraging risk taking and as allowing the Savings and Loan industry, whose deposits are federally insured, "a license to gamble with taxpayers’ money, at best, or simply to loot it, at worst." (NYT, June 1, 2009)

Oct 17  In El Salvador, some military officials believe that guerrilla factions are acting with greater coordination than they have in recent months.

Oct 29  In Spain elections bring a return of socialists to power for the first time since 1937. Joy erupts in the streets of Madrid. It is the old Socialist Workers' Party, the PSOE (Partido Socialista Obrero Español), which has followed a softening trend. It is moderate and reformist more than it is Marxist – like other Social Democrat parties.

Oct 30  The US Ambassador to El Salvador, Deane R. Hinton, warns that aid to El Salvador could be halted unless El Salvador's government does something about ''thugs'' accused of murdering thousands of civilians.

Nov 2  According to Newsweek magazine, Reagan administration officials say that the US is supporting clandestine military operations against Nicaragua intended to harass but not to overthrow the Nicaraguan Government.

Nov 10  The Soviet Union's Leonid Brezhnev dies at the age of 75.

Nov 12  In the Soviet Union, former KGB chief Yuri Andropov is selected to become the General Secretary of the Communist Party, succeeding the late Leonid Brezhnev.

Dec 4  President Reagan is in Guatemala City. He declares "President Ríos Montt is a man of great personal integrity and commitment. ... I know he wants to improve the quality of life for all Guatemalans and to promote social justice."

Dec 4  The People's Republic of China adopts its current constitution. It will be described in Wikipedia as reflecting "Deng Xiaoping's determination to lay a lasting institutional foundation for domestic stability and modernization."

Dec 31  In the United States, unemployment is described as 10.8 percent, a new high for recent years. But inflation has dropped another point since mid-year, to around 6 percent. The Dow Jones Industrial Average has risen from the 800s in recent months to 1046. The DJIA has been moving sideways for more than a decade. (It was just below 1000 in January 1966.) A new rally is on the way as people begin to put their money back in stocks.

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