June 19,1990 - Hijacked Soviet plane lands in Helsinki. Gorbachev addresses fractured Communist Party. Nelson Mandela addresses audience in Toronto. First execution in Arkansas since 1964. Marion Barry trial proceeds. Rift in Solidarity Movement in Poland. Excalibur Hotel opens in Las Vegas.
June 19, 2012

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Mikhail Gorbachev - witness to a disintegrating Communist Party.


This day in June in 1990 was a preview at what the future-around-the-corner was going to look like.

Starting with news of a Soviet Passenger jet, hijacked and landing in Helsinki with all aboard safe, and the hijacker in custody.

News of the Communist Party in Russia breaking away from the Soviet government and splintering into factions. News of a rift within the Solidarity Movement and concerns over the future leadership of Lech Walesa. News of Nelson Mandela, addressing an audience in Toronto, telling of South Africa on "the threshold of major change".

Meanwhile, back in the States; jury selection had been completed and the trial of Washington D.C. Mayor Marion Barry was set to begin. The trial, and its sensational attributes, was reported to be the biggest thing to hit D.C. in a long time.

In Arkansas, convicted killer John Edward Swindler was put to death by electrocution. The first death sentence carried out in the state since 1964. And promises of more to come.

A gunman who went on a rampage at a GM Auto Financing office, killing 9, himself and seriously wounding 5 others was linked to two other rampage killings the previous weekend. The gunman in question was also reported to have a previous record, going back to the 1960's, including a previous murder charge knocked down to an Agrevated Assault in 1971. Slipping through the legal system, yet again.

And Las Vegas welcomed the opening of it's biggest hotel, The Excalibur, with a reported 4,032 rooms.

All that, and only Tuesday from The CBS World News Roundup for June 19, 1990.

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