World History 1982- 1983

1982 Leonid Brezhnev dead Soviet General Secretary of the Communist Party Leonid Brezhnev died. Yuri Andropov succeeded him.
1982 Israel Invades Lebanon Israel invaded Lebanon on June 6. The immediate cause cited for the invasion was the attempted assassination of Israel's Ambassador in London. Israel's plan was designed first to create a buffer between Lebanon and Northern Israel. The incursion quickly grew to a full-fledged attempt to destroy the P.L.O.

Israeli forces advanced to Beirut. In the course of that advance, a large-scale mini-war broke out with Syria. Over two days, Israel shot down 82 Syrian planes with no losses of its own, and completely destroyed the intricate Soviet-designed anti-aircraft missile system protecting Syria. A cease-fire was reached after Israel surrounded Beirut. Under the terms of the agreement, the P.L.O. was forced to leave Lebanon.
1982 Lebanon Phalanges Massacre at Sabre and Shatilla On September 16, Lebanese Christian troops entered the refugee camps of Sabra and Shatilla. There, they opened fire on Palestinian civilians, killing hundreds. The Israelis were not directly involved in the massacres, but their presence nearby and their tactical control of the area resulted in sharp criticism of the Israeli Army at home and abroad. An Israeli commission of inquiry laid the blame on a number of Israelis, including Israeli Defense Minister Ariel Sharon.
1982 War in the Falkland islands On April 2, the Argentinean military seized the Falkland Islands off the coast of Argentina. The islands had been administered by Great Britain. The Argentineans claimed the islands were part of Argentina and renamed them "The Malvinas." The British government announced that they would send a task force to recapture the islands.

On May 4, the British sank the Argentinean cruiser General Belgrano. The British destroyer Sheffield was subsequently sunk by an Exocet missile. On May 21, the first British troops landed on the Falklands and rapidly defeated the Argentinean forces. The British lost 225 servicemen and the Argentineans lost 712.
1983 US Deploys Pershing Missiles- Soviets Walk Out of Talks On November 23, the US deployed the first Persing Intermediate-range Ballistic Missile, in West Germany. The Pershing was developed and deployed in response to the Soviet intermediate missile previously targeted at Western Europe. The Soviets opposed US deployments, and peace groups throughout Europe demonstrated against them. On the day the deployments took place, the Soviets walked out of the disarmament talks taking place in Geneva, in protest.
1983 Korean Airline Shot Down In this tragedy, 269 people were killed when the Soviets shot down a Korean Air 747 that strayed over its airspace. The plane was shot down without warning on a flight from New York to Seoul, Korea. The Soviets claimed that the plane was flying on a spy mission. In fact, however, the actions of Soviet were a horrible accident.
1983 Northern Chad Seized by Libyans and Rebels Libya continued its involvement in Chad. The government requested and received aid from both the US and French governments.
1983 US Peace Keepers Killed In Lebanon Over 200 Marines were killed when a truck loaded with explosives crashed into the US Marine compound at Beirut Airport. The Marines, who had been in Beirut as part of a multi-national force to promote peace in Lebanon, had after a short stay in Lebanon become a target of Syrian-supported extremists. Soon after the bombing, US forces withdrew from Lebanon.
1983 US Invasion of Grenada Prime Minister Maurice Bishop of Grenada was placed under arrest by General Hudson Austin and Deputy Prime Minister Bernard Coard– both avowed Marxists. The United States feared that Grenada would become another Cuba. Under the guise of an invitation by the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States, US troops intervened and took control of the island. There were 1,100 American citizens on the island, including a large number of medical students. Ensuring the safety of those Americans was one of the professed goals of attack. Sixteen Americans were killed and seventy-seven were injured in the military action.