On this day: 
1979: The Shah of Iran flees the country leading to Ayatollah Khomeini taking power and proclaiming Iran an Islamic Republic.
1991: Beginning of Persian Gulf War triggered by Iraq’s occupation of Kuwait in August 1990
2006: Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, the first woman to be elected head of state of an African country, was sworn in as president of Liberia.

Born on this day:
1933: Susan Sontag, American author

Gone on this day:
2017: American astronaut Eugene Cernan, the last person to walk on the Moon (1972)