Electric eels are the sluggish inhabitants of slow freshwater basins in South America. Cylindrical, scaleless, and gray-brown, they can grow to nine feet (2.75 m) long and weigh up to 49 pounds (22 kg). The electric eel, however, is not a true eel, but is rather a knifefish that can produce a shock—powerful enough to stun a human—while hunting or in self-defense. The shock is produced by the electric organs in its body that generate charge in a manner similar to what common household item?
Back in the day
While on patrol in the Gulf of Tonkin, the USS Maddox was attacked by North Vietnamese torpedo boats. Two days later, US boats were supposedly attacked again without provocation. These events—known collectively as the Gulf of Tonkin Incident—prompted US Congress to pass a resolution allowing President Lyndon B. Johnson to use military force in Southeast Asia without a formal declaration of war, leading to increased US involvement in the Vietnam War. Had there in fact been a second attack?
Born on a day like today
The reign of Constantine I was a trying one. He succeeded his father as king of Greece in 1913 and was almost immediately faced with World War I. His neutralist, yet essentially pro-German, attitude caused the Allies and his Greek opponents to force his abdication and send him into exile in 1917. His leading opponent's fall from power in 1920 opened the door for Constantine to be restored to the throne, but his homecoming was short lived. Why did he abdicate for a second time in 1922?