On this day: May 20

POSTED: 02:26 PM PDT May 17, 2013    UPDATED: 11:00 PM PDT May 19, 2016 

Vasco da Gama arrives in India, Christopher Columbus dies, Norman Rockwell makes his Saturday Evening Post cover debut, HIV is discovered, and "Cheers" airs its series finale, all on this day.

OTD May 20 - Hamburger Hill
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U.S. Army

1969: The Battle of Hamburger Hill in Vietnam ends. In total, the U.S. lost 72 soldiers, committed five infantry battalions and 10 batteries of artillery, flew 272 missions and expended more than 500 tons of ordnance during the 10-day battle only to capture the heavily fortified hill, which was of little strategic value, only to quietly abandon the hill a couple weeks later. The controversy over the battle led to outrage back home and contributed to a growing negative public opinion about the war.


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