April 27 in history: Muslim invasion of Spain, Revolution in Afghanistan, A380 jumbo jet


Here is a list of important events that occurred on April 27


Muslim forces under the command of Tariq ibn Ziyad land at Gibraltar to initiate the invasion of Spain in 711 C.E.


A painting by Martinez Cubells depicts Tariq ibn Ziyad’s cavalry (Right) charging at the retreating Visigothic King Roderic’s forces (left). King Roderic is thought to have died in the battle.


Berber General Tariq ibn Ziyad lands with 12,000 troops at Gibraltar in 711. The invading force was primarily composed of cavalry and engaged the much-larger Visigothic forces led by King Roderic at the Battle of Guadalete. The smaller Muslim army utilised its cavalry advantage and engaged Roderic’s forces with hit-and-run tactics. However, commander of King Roderic’s right-wing abandoned its position, allowing Tariq’s cavalry to punch through the lines and route Visigothic forces. The Muslim army inflicted severe casualties and the battle ended with the death of King Roderic. The victory led to the establishment of Emirate of Cordoba. Caliph Abd al-Rahman went on to establish the Kingdom of al-Andalus, allowing Muslims to rule the territory for close to 300 years. Meanwhile, Muslim forces eventually crossed the Pyrenees mountains and captured southern France within three decades of  Tariq’s victory until they were defeated at the Battle of Tours in 732 C.E., marking the limits of Islamic conquests in Europe.


Saur Revolution in Afghanistan



The Saur Revolution in Afghanistan begins. Led by the People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA), the April 27, 1978 revolution led to the overthrow and death of the Afghan President Mohammad Daoud Khan. Nur Muhammad Taraki became the Prime Minister and quickly introduced communist reforms. Ultimately, differences within the Khalq and Parchami factions of the PDPA led to Taraki’s ouster and eventual death ordered by Hafizullah Amin, who declared himself the president of Afghanistan. Taraki’s death and Soviet suspicion that Amin was a CIA operative forced the Soviet Union to launch Operation Storm-333 on 27 December, 1979, assassinating Amin, installing Babrak Karmal as President and deploying troops in the country as civil disorder increased and millions left for Pakistan. Afghanistan has been at war ever since.

 The A380 goes airborne




The largest passenger airliner in the world, the Airbus A380 makes its first flight on 27 April, 2005.



              Ralph Waldo Emerson dies in 1882


The American Poet, Philosopher and leader of the Transcendentalist movement Ralph Waldo Emerson dies in 1882. Self-Reliance and Nature are among his best known works.

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