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Saturday July 17, 1976
. . . where the 1970s live forever!

News stories from Saturday July 17, 1976

Summaries of the stories the major media outlets considered to be of particular importance on this date:

  • The XXI Olympic Games were opened in Montreal by Queen Elizabeth II of Britain, despite political and social disputes and the withdrawal of protesting nations that sharply reduced the number of competitors. When the teams from 94 nations had marched in to martial music and cheers -- 25 nations defected at the last hour -- the Queen spoke the prescribed 16 words: "I declare open the Olympic Games of Montreal celebrating the XXI Olympiad of the modern era." About 70,000 spectators had paid up to $40 a seat -- if they did not get the tickets from scalpers and paid more -- to sit in the vast three-tiered Olympic oval. [New York Times]
  • President Ford made his first attack on the Democratic presidential and vice-presidential nominees at the Connecticut State Republican Convention in Hartford, saying that the Carter-Mondale ticket "tries to be all things to all people." Mr. Ford went to Hartford seeking the support of Connecticut's delegates to the convention in Kansas City, and won the pledges of all 35. He pleaded for party unity and said Republicans must join forces to oppose the Democrats. "We must stop fighting each other and start helping each other," he said. [New York Times]
  • The 26 schoolchildren and their bus driver who were abducted in the central California farm town of Chowchilla were reunited with their families 36 hours after their bus was ambushed Thursday afternoon. Three armed masked men forced the children --19 girls and seven boys, 6 to 14 years old -- and their 55-year-old driver from the school bus into two vans. The captives were then driven in an 11-hour journey to a quarry near Livermore, a San Francisco suburb about 100 miles northwest of Chowchilla. They were then imprisoned in what was apparently a truck body. The children, led by the bus driver, started to dig themselves out, and one child ran for help. A statewide search was underway for the kidnappers. [New York Times]
  • The United States and West Germany announced that they had decided that the so-called offset arrangement under which Bonn contributed toward the maintenance of American troops in West Germany had lost its "relevance" and would not be continued. Instead, Bonn will make a single payment toward the cost of increasing United States combat strength in West Germany by one brigade. A joint statement by President Ford and Chancellor Helmut Schmidt, issued at the end of Mr. Schmidt's visit to Washington, said that West Germany would pay $68.48 million to establish a combat brigade -- about 3,800 men -- about 20 miles from Bremen. The last two-year offset agreement, under which West Germany paid the United States more than $2.2 billion, expired a year ago. [New York Times]
  • Tension increased sharply in Moslem-controlled western Beirut, at least partly as a result of an announcement by the American Embassy that it was organizing another evacuation of American citizens and others and was "strongly urging" all Americans to leave. The embassy published its intentions Friday in a local newspaper, upsetting some observers including some of the remaining Western diplomats. But many Lebanese were troubled by the announcement. "We are up against it now," a Beirut pharmacist said. "What do the Americans know that they are not telling us?" [New York Times]
  • King Juan Carlos I of Spain is expected to put into effect in the next few days the partial political amnesty promised today by the new cabinet that took office 12 days ago in an atmosphere of distrust. The amnesty statement was the first conciliatory gesture toward the opposition since the King was invested after the death of Franco last November. Under the cabinet's recommendation to the King, amnesty would not be granted to political prisoners held responsible for deaths or violence to persons. This may exclude about half of the more than 600 political prisoners. [New York Times]
  • The United States, West Germany and Britain have reached an informal understanding that would bar further loans to Italy if Communists hold cabinet posts in any new Italian government. Officials in Washington said, however, that under a proposal made by Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, participation by the Communist Party in the government short of membership in the cabinet would not be an obstacle to further aid. The understanding, reached at the economic summit meeting in Puerto Rico last month, was disclosed to reporters by Chancellor Helmut Schmidt of West Germany during his visit to Washington. [New York Times]

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