March 23, 1985 – a day where violence and passions ran high in South Africa over the killings of 18 Black Anti-Apartheid protestors. The trouble started after a news conference by President Reagan who commented, in effect, that the killings wouldn’t have happened, had the Anti-Apartheid groups not provoked just such a confrontation with the minority White government. Violence erupted in the South African town of Port Elizabeth, where the original shootings occurred, as well as the Black Township of Soweto, where 9 black policemen’s homes were burned. A student and workers strike continued. U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Chester Crocker was on a diplomatic swing through South Africa and asked to meet wiht Ssouth Africa’s largest Black Anti-Apartheid organization, but a spokesman for group said they refused, saying Blacks in South Africa were outraged and disgusted b President Reagan’s statement after the shootings. Meanwhile, South African President P.W. Botha said in an interview that he was pledged to keep order and that, as he put it – “nobody in the world is going to stop me”. Going on to say he represented the “hope of Southern Africa”.
Meanwhile, South Korean Navel vessels fired shots, and three Chinese warships pulled away after the Koreans took in tow a Chinese Torpedo boat. South Korean officials would only say that six of the crew members were dead and two wounded when the ship was found. No word how many other people were still aboard. And there was no official explanation as to exactly what had happened. But unconfirmed reports reaching listening posts in Tokyo suggested one and possibly two of the crew members wanted to defect to Taiwan, and tried to take control of the ship and that it triggered a gun fight. Beijing would only comment it had lost contact with several ships in the area, who were taking part in maneuvers. No word as to what South Korea was planning on doing with the ship or the crew and no word of any defectors. The plot was evolving.
The Savings and Loan debacle in Ohio continued, with some 69 institutions closed and customers only allowed to withdraw $700.00 from their accounts from those banks who had limited operating capabilities. Seven of the Savings & Loans got Federal assistance and were able to open for business as usual. The big question around the state was why the Savings and Loans were closed in the first place. Depositors were angry and frustrated – and the S&L scandal marched on.
And that’s just a little of what went on, this March 23rd in 1985 as presented by the CBS World News Roundup.
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