Behind the Headlines
Explore our world, one headline at a time.
World Book Editors break down the news in our Behind the Headlines feature allowing for a deeper understanding of the complex events that shape our world today. Behind the Headlines articles are carefully crafted presenting the latest national and world news, science discoveries, current events and other top stories and are simplified for young readers.
Fifty years ago today, on Jan. 30, 1968, a massive battle known as the Tet Offensive began during the Vietnam War (1957-1975). In the offensive, Communist-led South Vietnamese guerrillas called Viet Cong, backed by forces from Communist North Vietnam, launched attacks against military bases and major cities in South Vietnam.
Last month, the wreckage of HMAS AE1, a Royal Australian Navysubmarine lost early in World War I (1914-1918), was found north of Australia off the coast of Papua New Guinea. HMAS stands for His or Her Majesty’s Australian Ship.
Two hundred and forty years ago today, on Dec. 19, 1777, American troops of the Continental Army set up camp at Valley Forge,Pennsylvania. The camp spanned an area between Valley Forge Creek and the Schuylkill River, about 25 miles (40 kilometers) northwest of Philadelphia.
Yesterday, October 23, the Philippine military announced the end of a bloody five-month campaign to oust Abu Sayyaf and Maute Islamic rebels from Marawi City on the southern Philippine island of Mindanao. Filipino soldiers had been clearing the last rebels from the battered city since President Rodrigo Duterte declared Marawi “liberated from terrorist influence” on October 17.
As Islamic State terrorist forces lost ground in Iraq in 2017, the terror group was also losing ground in neighboring Syria, a country torn apart by civil war since 2011. At times, the Islamic State has controlled large parts of Syria, but its grip has recently shrunk to areas along the Euphrates River in the nation’s sparsely populated east.
On July 10, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi declared victory for government forces in their bloody battle with Islamic State militants for possession of the northern city of Mosul.
Today, May 5, is Cinco de Mayo, a holiday celebrated in Mexico and in many communities throughout the United States. Cinco de Mayo is Spanish for Fifth of May. Many people know that Cinco de Mayo commemorates the victory of a Mexican army over a French army at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. But few people know much about the battle itself, which took place near Puebla, a city in central Mexico, during a French invasion of Mexico.
As part of May’s celebration of Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month (APAHM), World Book today features the Purple Heart Battalion, the nickname given to a Japanese American unit in the United States Army during World War II (1939-1945). The unit was officially the 100th Battalion of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team.
On April 6, 1917—100 years ago today—the United States House of Representatives approved a resolution declaring war on Germany, entering the United States into World War I (1914-1918). Four days earlier, U.S. President Woodrow Wilson had asked Congress for a declaration of war, warning “the world must be made safe for democracy.” The Senate approved the resolution by a vote of 82-6 on April 4.
In honor of Black History Month, today we look at the Montford Point Marines of World War II (1939-1945). “Montford Point Marines” was the nickname given to the first African American units to serve in the United States Marine Corps.
On August 2, the United States Air Force declared its new F-35 Lightning II fighter planes ready for combat. The F-35 (F is the Air Force designation for a fighter plane) is a “fifth generation” fighter, combining advanced stealth technology with heavy firepower, long range, high speed, and remarkable agility.
August 18, 2016, marks the 50th anniversary of the Battle of Long Tan, Australia’s first major conflict in the Vietnam War. In that battle, a small group of soldiers from Australia and New Zealand defeated a much larger enemy force.
Photo information: British troops go “over the top” during the 1916 Battle of the Somme in northern France. Credit: © Paul Popper, Popperfoto/Getty Images Today, July 1, is the 100th anniversary of...