The Thing About Today – November 29

November 29, 2020
Day 334 of 366

November 29th is the 334th day of the year. It is Unity Day in Vanuatu, a day dedicated to finding unity among the 270,000 citizens, 113 indigenous languages, and various unique customs and traditions across the 83 small volcanic islands.

In the United States, today is “celebrated” as Electronic Greetings Day.

Historical items of note:

  • In 1777, San Jose, California, was founded as Pueblo de San José de Guadalupe by José Joaquín Moraga. It was the first civilian settlement, or pueblo, in Alta California.
  • In 1832, novelist and poet Louisa May Alcott was born.
  • In 1877, Thomas Edison demonstrated the phonograph for the first time.
  • In 1898, British novelist, poet, and critic C. S. Lewis was born.
  • In 1918, author and poet Madeleine L’Engle was born.
  • In 1935, actress Diane Ladd was born.
  • In 1961, The Mercury-Atlas 5 mission was launched. Enos, a chimpanzee, was launched into space. The spacecraft orbited the Earth twice and splashed down off the coast of Puerto Rico.
  • In 1964, actor and producer Don Cheadle was born.
  • In 1972, Atari released Pong, the first commercially successful video game.
  • In 1976, actor Chadwick Boseman was born. He died this year from colon cancer. He was taken from us far too soon.

November 29th is Liberation Day (Dita e Çlirimit) in Albania. It commemorates the day in 1944 when the country was liberated from Nazi Germany forces after the Albanian resistance during World War II.

After Italy was defeated by the Allies, Germany occupied Albania in September 1943. Paratroopers dropped into Tirana before the Albanian guerrillas could take the capital, and the German army drove the guerrillas into the hills and to the south.

Berlin subsequently announced it would recognize the independence of a neutral Albania and organized the Albanian government, police, and military. Many Balli Kombëtar units (an Albanian nationalist anti-communist paramilitary movement and political organization) collaborated with the Germans against the communists, and several Balli Kombëtar leaders held positions in the German-sponsored regime.

The partisans entirely liberated Albania from German occupation on November 29, 1944. The National Liberation Army, which in October 1944 consisted of 70,000 regulars, also took part in the war alongside the antifascist coalition. The Albanian partisans liberated Kosovo, and assisted Tito’s communist forces in liberating part of Montenegro and southern Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The Thing About Today is an effort to look at each day of 2020 with respect to its historical context.

For more creativity with a critical eye, visit Creative Criticality.

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