Today is the 343rd day of 2016 and the 78th day of autumn.
TODAY'S HISTORY: In 1941, the United States declared war on Japan and officially entered World War II.
In 1980, John Lennon was shot to death outside his Manhattan apartment building.
In 1991, the leaders of Russia, Belarus and Ukraine signed an agreement dissolving the Soviet Union and establishing the Commonwealth of Independent States.
In 1993, President Bill Clinton signed into law the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
TODAY'S BIRTHDAYS: Eli Whitney (1765-1825), inventor; James Thurber (1894-1961), humorist; Sammy Davis Jr. (1925-1990), entertainer; David Carradine (1936-2009), actor; Jim Morrison (1943-1971), singer-songwriter; Kim Basinger (1953- ), actress; Ann Coulter (1961- ), political commentator; Teri Hatcher (1964- ), actress; Kevin Harvick (1975- ), race car driver; Ryan Newman (1977- ), race car driver; Ian Somerhalder (1978- ), actor; Nicki Minaj (1982- ), rapper; Dwight Howard (1985- ), basketball player; Josh Donaldson (1985- ), baseball player.
TODAY'S FACT: The Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA), encompassing the Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and the United States, was ratified by the last country, Costa Rica, on Oct. 7, 2007.
TODAY'S SPORTS: In 1940, the Chicago Bears routed the Washington Redskins in the NFL championship game, 73-0. It remains the largest margin of victory in NFL history.
TODAY'S QUOTE: "There are two kinds of light -- the glow that illumines, and the glare that obscures." -- James Thurber, "Lanterns and Lances"
TODAY'S NUMBER: $1.14 trillion -- value of total U.S. trade with Canada and Mexico in 2015.
TODAY'S MOON: Between first quarter moon (Dec. 7) and full moon (Dec. 13).