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July 22, 1983 – News from Beirut and the ongoing presence of U.S. Marines in Lebanon. Earlier in the day Beirut International Airport (BIA), the headquarters of the U.S. 24th Marine Amphibious Unit (24th MAU), was shelled with Druze mortar and artillery fire, wounding three U.S. Marines and causing the temporary closure of the airport. Lebanese Army sources said it was a political attack and an attempt at sending a message to Lebanese President Gemayel, who was visiting President Reagan in Washington, engaged in talks with the President, attempting to drum up additional support in the ongoing civil war, which was threatening to split Lebanon into several parts. Officials indicated more such “messages” would be sent before Gemayal returned to Lebanon.
Meanwhile, after 19 months, Martial Law was relaxed in Poland, but a new set of statutes were on the books in case of trouble. General Wojciech Jaruzelski was still in power and pledged to continue the process of reform, to try and make Socialism more workable. But he made it clear that changes must come under the control and guidance of the Communist Party and with limits acceptable to the Soviet Union. Under this move, most political prisoners were scheduled to be released, but not the main ones, and most likely not several of the key Solidarity activists. Some harsh measures that were to be put into law were postponed, partly because of pressure from the Church, partly because authorities knew the institution of such measures would lessen chances of the West lifting economic sanctions. But the government already had sufficient power to keep things under control.
And a scorching heat wave was gripping most of the Eastern U.S., even though a cold front triggered severe storms in Pennsylvania and New York, the heat wave was blazing on. Some 400,000 people gathered in Central Park for a Diana Ross Concert when a severe thunderstorm struck, forcing cancellation of the concert until the following day.
And that’s just a little of what went on, this July 22, 1983 as presented by CBS Radio News.