What the sky looked like on 1964
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1964 opened with a series of riotsover the sovereignty of the Panama Canal zone, which ended with the involvement of the U.S. Army and was a significant factor in the United States’ decision to transfer control of the Canal to Panama in the 70’s.
Another important event in South America that year is the military coup against President João Goulart of Brazil, establishing a 21-year-long military dictatorship.
The United States are going through a rocky time against the backdrop of the Vietnam War. The first student demonstrations against the war occur concurrently in New York City and San Francisco on May 2nd. That same month, young men protest the war by burning their draft cards, the first such demonstration to occur.
President Lyndon Johnson signs the Civil Rights Act of 1964, officially abolishing racial segregation in the country, although tensions between racial groups remain.
In sports, the 1964 Winter Olympics were held in Austria and Cassius Clay, who became Muhammad Ali in March of 1964, wins the title of Heavyweight Champion of the World on February 25th.
In the arts, the British Invasion of the United States begins when the Beatles, having released their first U.S. single a few weeks before, perform on the Ed Sullivan show for about 73 million viewers. The Rolling Stones and the Kinks, two other famous British bands, released their first albums in April and October, respectively.
In movies, actor Sydney Poitier became the first African-American to win the Oscar for Best Actor for his leading role in Lilies in the Field. That same year, the movie version of My Fair Lady wins eight Oscars. Notable births in 1964 include American actress Courteney Cox of Friends fame, Italian actress Monica Bellucci, First Lady of the United States Michelle Obama and Prince Edward, Earl of Essex.
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Which were the important events of 1964?