News of the day for October 18, 1986. Long time Speaker of the House Thomas P. "Tip" O'Neill retires from Congress. Captured pilot Eugene Hasenfus to go on trial for shipping arms to Contra rebels in Nicaragua. Red Sox and Mets to square off in first game of the 1986 World Series. Language dispute in Belgium threatens government shakeup and Soviet fishing rights withdrawn in Kiribati.
October 18, 2011

Dutch and Tip - improbable buddies.

October 18th 1986 saw passage of the most sweeping change in Immigration law yet to pass Congress. The bill known as the Simpson-Mazzoli Act sought to grant amnesty to otherwise illegal aliens currently living and working in the U.S. while penalizing employers who knowingly hired them. Needless to say, there was sharp criticism on both sides, but the law was signed into law and enacted on November 6th.

News on this October 18th was also about endings and beginnings. The end of an era with Thomas P. "Tip" O'Neill, retiring after a thirty year Capitol Hill run and Speaker of the House from the Ninety-Fifth through Ninety-Ninth Congresses. O'Neill managed to have cordial relations with both sides of the aisle, including a warm personal (even though combative on occasion) relation with President Reagan. The farewell was a teary one.

And an era was about begin with the upcoming trial of captured pilot Eugene Hasenfus, shot down while attempting to deliver U.S. made arms to Contra rebels in Nicaragua. Although a blip on the radar screen, the event was enough to cause concern in Washington. Just how much would remain to be seen as the can of worms was poised to pop open.

Overseas, the Belgians were in an uproar over a language dispute - since the country is neatly divided between French speaking inhabitants and Dutch speaking inhabitants. The uproar was over cabinet members being bi-lingual and some just weren't.

And the South Pacific island nation of Kiribati decided not to renew their fishing rights agreement with the Soviets, causing a rift in relations between those two.

And despite everything else going on in the world, The Boston Red Sox and the New York Mets were slated to begin Game #1 in the World Series.

When all else fails, there's Baseball.

And that's how it went on this particular October 18th in 1986, via the CBS World News Roundup.

And honest, it's the right month this time (sorry about yesterday - I screwed up August 17th with October 17th and luckily an eagle-eyed reader caught it).

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