November 7, 1991 – Busy news day. Starting with the NATO summit in Rome where President Bush voiced concerns over the formation of a joint European Army. The Joint Communique, worked out largely before Secretary General Manfred Wörner delivered his opening statement. At a photo op with British Prime Minister John Major, Bush reaffirmed the U.S. commitment to NATO. The U.S. hoped to use the summit as a vehicle to urge Central Control over nuclear weapons in the new Soviet Union. And a senior Administration official said language to that effect would be part of the joint Communiqué. Although the exact wording was still being finalized. The Communiqué was also expected to contain an invitation to the Soviets to take part in regular consultations with NATO and would also discuss Trade and Economic issues.
Meanwhile, in Moscow’s Red Square, Revolution Day was a tepid affair – with the Communist Party banned, there was no military parade, only a march of some 5,000 diehard party loyalists to Red Square where they were met by a few hundred Anti-Communists. In St. Petersburg, site of the 1917 revolution was launched, tens of thousands of people rallied, but most of them were anti-Communists.
And the body of newspaper magnate Robert Maxwell was embalmed for burial, planned for the coming Sunday in Israel. But questions and doubts over the Spanish coroners finding that Maxwell died of natural causes and fell off his yacht. The New York Times reported that Maxwell’s family was hiring investigators to check out crew members on his yacht. But a family spokesman in London was a good deal less forthcoming. While not exactly denying the report, he said the family was reportedly satisfied with the job done by local authorities. Maxwell died the previous Tuesday while cruising the Canary Islands in his yacht. The body was later found floating at sea. Preliminary autopsy reports showed he was dead before he fell into the water, perhaps from a stroke or heart attack. But some question how he could fall into the water from a yacht with high railings designed to prevent just such a possibility. A lot of questions and several more days for speculation before any conclusive answers would be found.
And that’s a small slice of what went on, this November 7, 1991 as reported by The CBS World News Roundup.