In 1963, on this day the ultra-nationalist Canadian Prime Minister John Diefenbaker's minority government was defeated 142-111 in House of Commons.
Collapse of the Diefenbaker PlanHis term of office had been shaped by the apocalyptic events of October 1962; the often unilateral judgements he took, and the heavy-handed way he communicated those decisions to his colleagues and allies. In his diaries, he rejected these charges, claiming that President Kennedy told him bluntly that, "When I tell Canada to do something, I expect her to do it!". What is undisputed is that on the 22nd, his Defense Minister Douglas Harkness advised him that Kennedy had approved an escalation of the NORAD measurement from two (peace) to three (enhanced awareness) on the way to five (war) without consulting Ottawa even though Canada was supposedly an equal partner to America in NORAD.
Two days later, World War Three broke out and the boot was on the other foot. American Cities were devastated by Soviet nuclear missiles. Under the Dieffenbaker Plan, the Canadian Government laid claim to territory possessed by the United States in order to rehabilitate that land "back to a standard of civilization". However that plan failed to gain the necessary Parliamentary support and Dief was thrown out of office.
This is an installemend from the Cuba 62 - Canada thread.
In 1980, on this day ailing Winnipeg-born engineer Sir William Stephenson was awarded the Order of Canada.
Recognition for Codename IntrepidA senior member of British intelligence, he had been appointed director of British Security Co-ordination but the Federal Bureau of Investigation had arrested him for planting propaganda in American newspapers, radio stations & wire servers, harrassing prominent isolationists and plotting against corporations working against British interests.
The subsequent investigation determined that the upper reaches of Washington society and government had been infiltrated. Stephenson had been dispatched by British War Leader Winston Churchill with orders to "do all that was not being done and could not be done by overt means" to reverse the isolationalist policies of President Charles A. Lindbergh.
The White House had reneged on a 1939 pledge from Franklin D. Roosevelt to King George VI that "If London was bombed, the USA would come in". Churchill's response was to order the most controversial, covert action campaign in the annals of espionage. He sent the legendary Canadian spymaster to Washington where he outmanoeuvred the FBI and the Statement Department for months before his exposure by the prominent American businessman and political figure Joseph P. Kennedy.
In 2011, on this day British broadsheet newspapers published reports of a Wikileak cable showing that in order to get the Russians to buy into the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) the United States gave to Russia nuclear warhead secrets involving British Trident missile inventory.
Rubber ReplicasThe goal of the new START Treaty is to disclose and reduce the number of nuclear arms by fifty percent between the US and Russia. It requires that the number of nuclear missiles be limited to no more than 1550 by 2018 and reduce the number of long range missiles and bombers to 700.
However the Wikileak revealed that the number of nuclear missiles had been seriously over-estimated:
"A series of classified messages sent to Washington by US negotiators show how information on Britain's nuclear capability was crucial to securing Russia's support for the New START deal. Although the treaty was not supposed to have any impact on Britain, the leaked cables show that Russia used the talks to demand more information about the UK's Trident missiles, which they were led to believe had been manufactured and maintained in the US.
Perhaps we could save money, and deter aggression, by doing a kind of Saddam Hussein - allowing the world (and above all the Americans) to think we have weapons of mass destruction when in fact we have none. We could invest in a cheap collection of ultra-realistic inflatable missiles and inflatable submarines to pose as our strategic nuclear response. The trouble is that someone would almost certainly pop them accidentally".
In 1919, in a bold move, the greatest actors and directors of their day joined to form a studio where they would be in control of their creations. Mary Pickford, "America's Sweethart;" Charles Chaplin, "The Tramp;" D.W. Griffith, whose epic film Birth of a Nation had rocked the country with controversy; and Douglas Fairbanks, the leading actor as well as a powerful producer of Hollywood, sought more control over their films and decided to pool their impressive resources for a new studio dubbed "United Artists".
Studios Unite to Take Down Artists Metro Pictures head Richard Rowland noted, "The inmates are taking over the asylum". While the action may have produced a new wealth of art for the growing medium of film, it struck a nerve in Hollywood's business arena. If the greatest artists were to gain complete control of their productions, which might be the best sellers, then the millions of dollars to be made would be lost to those who had built up the movie business.
A new story by Jeff ProvineWorst yet was the ramifications for America. One producer noted, "We can't have the eyes of the country glued to the works of a lady Canuck, a Limey, a Clansman, and an adulterer". Only hours after the public release of photos showing Pickford, Chaplin, Griffith, and Fairbanks signing the contracts, a more secret meeting brought together the powerhouses of Hollywood such as Rowland, Loew, Fox, and Laemmle (though none would admit to being part of the conspiracy). While some suspected that the artist-run company would die from overspending as artists tended to do, the conspirators sought to bring United Artists down before it took root. The stars shone over the public with considerable popularity, which became the target for the studios.
Feeding press releases to newspapers, especially those owned by the powerful Hearst, the first major break was the announcement of the "discovery" of the affair between Fairbanks and Pickford. The two had met at a party in 1916 and begun the affair, but the civility of the times kept such things quiet. Fairbanks was currently in proceedings to finalize his divorce with wife Anna Beth in preparation to marry Pickford (herself married to Owen Moore), and the legal papers became fodder for an enormous scandal. With news slow since the end of the Great War and the fights between President Wilson and Congress only marginally interesting, the public was hungry for shocking gossip. The following months tore into Pickford and Fairbanks, ending their careers in America and eventually forcing them to sell out their shares of UA to Chaplin. They left California and moved to Canada, where they would begin new careers filming outside of Toronto. Studio-owned theaters practically refused to show their films in America, so they turned to exporting films, establishing new popularity almost worldwide.
Griffith dropped out soon after, seeing that the resources of United Artists were even less than those offered by penny-pinching studio executives. He returned to creating epics under Louis B. Mayer, whose theaters proved to return Griffith to his blockbuster standing, but his career would fall off as sound transformed filmmaking. Ultimately he would be a consulting director, giving his expertise on epics, such as the film San Francisco in 1936.
Chaplin stood alone with his studio and sought help from wherever he could find it. After barely producing The Gold Rush, he discovered that almost no theater would show it. Quitting America, he returned to London and joined the growing film industry there, which would make him into a titan as audiences across Europe and the British Empire swarmed over his work.
Having successfully defended the business, the studios returned to work creating what many referred to as "hash" or "schlock", depending upon one's standing with Semitism. Still, audiences demanded entertainment through the Depression, and they were given cheaply produced, yet memorable, films. Actors, writers, and directors attempted to unionize numerous times, but the studios crushed each attempt. After World War II, studios fell under suspicion of monopoly, which they clearly were with vertically and horizontally integrated firms controlling nearly every theater, production company, and the distributors connecting them. The studio system collapsed under government pressure and rebellious casts and crews, and the desperate epics of the 1950s only hastened their demise. While international films began to swarm the newly freed American theaters, Hollywood would reinvent itself in the late '50s and '60s into smaller production houses forced to create powerful, though inexpensive, films that mirrored the more triumphant American medium: television. Hollywood today is well known for its productions as well as its Andy Warhol Factory-style, but it is a lesser powerhouse to the Canadian Academy, British Film Corporation, and growing golden age of Bollywood.
In 2010, on this day US President John S. McCain was presented with a 140-page National Intelligence Estimate (NIE). The report, which represented the consensual view of all sixteen American intelligence agencies, concluded with a "moderate level of confidence" that the Great Nation of Iran would be fully equipped with an operational "Persian Bomb" by the end of the year.
The McCain MomentDespite his predecessor's State of the Union address stigmatising Iran within the "axis of evil", it was widely acknowledged that the nuclear technology had in fact originated from Pakistan, a putative ally in the "war on terror". But regardless of the fact that the late Prime Minister Benezir Bhutto had failed to prevent the Pakistani nuclear engineer A.Q. Khan shipping advanced weapons designs to Tehran, the reality was that the US now faced "the McCain moment". That phrase had been coined during the 2008 Presidential campaign when the then Senator said "There is only one thing worse than the United States exercising a military option. That is a nuclear-armed Iran".
"There is only one thing worse than the United States exercising a military option. That is a nuclear-armed Iran" ~ McCainThe possibility that a nuclear device, piggy-backed on a Shahab-4 missile would be used to "wipe the State of Israel off the map" was of course the worst case scenario. As far back as 2007, the option that Israel itself took pre-emptive action to destroy the Iranian nuclear technology had been taken off the table. In fact Washington analysts doubted that US, let alone Israel, could destroy all sixteen sites where research was being conducted. And then there was the "moderate" confidence level of the NIE itself, produced by the same agencies whose misintelligence had judged that Iraq had a WMD programme in 2003 based on the faulty logic that there was no contrary evidence to show the programme had stopped. And the decision to proceed with a pre-emptive strike was now in the hands of McCain. A faulty decision-maker who had unwisely decided to continue with his bombing run of Hanoi, disregarding a warning tone that an enemy SAM battery had locked onto him.
In 1945, the twenty-third "Sunrise" Infantry Division of the Imperial Japanese Army liberated the Gila River Internment Camp in Arizona on this day. One of the internees was thirteen year old Noriyuki "Pat" Morita (pictured), later to become one of the iconic Japanese American actors of the second half of the twentieth century.
Click to watch the Pat Morita Interview
Freedom from Need and WantForced into a lengthy sentence behind barbed wire in crowded, primitive camps, Japanese Americans such as Morita had been deprived of the very liberties set out by the Atlantic Charter, namely "freedom from fear and want". Because nearly 120,000 people living on the West Coast had been hurried out of their homes and relieved of their possessions and businesses at less than forty hours notice (of the 127,000 Japanese Americans living in the continental United States at the time of the Pearl Harbor attack, 112,000 resided on the West Coast and of those 80,000 were born in the United States and holding American citizenship).
And at their subsequent trials, incarcerated liberal politicians such as Earl Warren and Fiorello La Guardia confessed their shame at this mass violation of civil liberties which was rivaled only by the systematic segregation of African-Americans. That remorse was only matched by the military planners of the United States Joint Army and Navy Board; disasterously, their War Plan Orange had failed to anticipate the role of submarines and naval aviation in the Pacific Theatre.
In 1958, U.S. Air Force officer Howard Richardson was killed during a training exercise when a mechanical malfunction caused the nuclear bomb his plane was carrying to detonate in mid-flight, destroying the bomber and killing its entire crew.
Broken ArrowThe incident put U.S. nuclear forces in the continental United States on full alert for 12 hours and nearly triggered World War III.
In 1844, debate begins in British Parliament over the Colonial Reform Act.
Championed by Daniel Webster of the Massachusetts colonial legislature (pictured), the Act proposes that the American colonies be granted representation in the House of Commons.
Colonial Reform Act of 1844Webster points out that a battle cry of the original American rebellion was "taxation without representation" and asks Parliament to pass the Act "in the interests alike of common fairness and the national tranquility, which can only be fostered by a sense that colonist and home islander alike share common rights as Englishmen".
Peel observes that both the general colonial revolt of the 1770s and the Southern rebellion of 1838-41 arose from a sense on the part of those involved that, without representation, they had no such options; as evidence, he reminds his listeners that one of the key slogans of the first rebellion was "No taxation without representation".
This post is an article from the Liberty Fails thread.
On this day in 1990, Swiss police completed their inquiry into the suicides of Nicolae and Elena Ceaucescu.
Their final report confirmed coroners' preliminary findings that the deposed Romanian dictator and his wife had hanged themselves while their guards were changing shifts.
On this day in 2018 shooting was finally completed for the third CSI movie.
In 1952, Mikhail von Heflin and Velma Porter meet Carl Thompson, the son of his descendant Willard Thompson, in the small town of Bryan, Texas. The Baron von Todt has been told much of Carl's life by Carl's children, who will exist in all times concurrently. Thompson is shocked to discover the true nature of his family lineage, but is charmed by the Baron and his young companion, and invites them to stay in his home.
In 1941, the German Underground lost its Italian wing as the Greater Zionist Resistance obtained the blessings of the Pope as Europe's rightful rulers. This leads the G.U. to secretly assassinate the Pope the next year, and influences enough cardinals to make sure that the next pope is a Nazi-friendly one.
In 1904, Q'B'Ton'ra's fleet is launched against earth; although Ambassador Li'Kanto'Mk assures the alien leader that the Mlosh of earth have no memories of the homeworld, Q'B'Ton'ra feels that they would be compelled to avenge their ancestors. 'I will deal with them as I dealt with the original Mlosh - I will crush and kill them all.'
In 1850, DuBois D. Parmalee of New Paltz, New York patented an invention he called the adding machine, which had a series of keys that could be pressed to add up numbers. When the first company that attempted to put it into use jammed all the keys on the prototype, Parmalee went bankrupt, and his adding machine went into the dustbin of history.
In 12-10-0-4-12, the performance of The Priest Of Quetchuan in Oueztec City marks the beginning of legitimate, professional theater in the Oueztecan Empire. For centuries, small groups of performers had performed theatrical works around the empire, but The Priest of Quetchuan was performed in a theater built specifically for the purpose, and this theater gave all those roving bands hope that they, too, could one be accepted and wealthy.
In 2003, in the closing days of the Northwestern Insurrection, the Washington Soviet launches a nuclear missile at troops stationed in Sacramento, California Soviet. The former capitol of California is utterly destroyed, and many leaders of the Soviet States of America call for nuclear retaliation against the People's Republic, but Comrade President Cobb refused to do it; 'These comrades are misguided,', he told his nation, 'but, they are still our brothers and sisters in the Great Struggle. We cannot and will not treat their lives as expendable.'
In 47,371 BCE Swikolay, great-granddaughter of Telka the Speaker, has a vision of her dead inspiration. In her dream, Telka descends from the sky and lands next to her. 'You are believing something that you can't touch with your hands again,' the vision tells her. 'Dream your own dream, my child.'
In 2003, Soviet troops storm Seattle as ships bombard it from offshore. By the end of the day, all the People's Republic of America troops inside the city are ready to surrender, and they turn the city over to the victorious Soviet States of America. The entire soviet of Washington soon follows, and the die appears to be cast for the P.R.A.
In 1811, owing to the utter incompetence of the Prince of Wales, Parliament named Prime Minister Spencer Perceval as Lord Protector because King George III had gone mad. After George III's death, the Lord Protector simply continued to rule England, and the princes and princesses of the realm no longer ascended to the throne.
In 1945, on this day the Yalta Conference opened at the Livadia Palace in the Crimea with Churchill, Roosevelt, and Stalin representing the "Big Three".
Yalta Conferences creates a Soviet Prussian StateThe outcome included the highly controversial decision to create a contiguous Soviet Occupation Zone with an undivided Berlin as its capital.
The source of bitter controversy, it was however based upon sound, reasoned logic. Because the truth was that the Soviet Union had steadfastly refused to offer sufficiently firm guarantees to maintain a Western garrison. But instead of gaining this "Achilles Heel", the Western Allies had wrung some important concessions; the retention of Saxony and the Thuringia; the scrapping of plans to grant the lands east of the Oder and Neisse rivers to Poland and the absorption of northern East Prussia into the Soviet Union.
This blog is a reboot of an article with the Berlin Airlift Begins World War III.
In 1458, on this day Philip IV the Duke of Burgundy was born in Dijon to Charles the Bold and his second wife Isabella of Bourbon.
The Last Move of the Spider KingAt the tender age of nineteen he inherited the Duchy. During his regency the family ambition of turning the Burgundian Estates into a Kingdom continued to be blocked by his father's old nemises, Louis XI King of France (pictured).
For years the scheming and intrigue of the "Spider King" had sustained the power of the House of Valois. And so it was a surprise, but not a total shock, when Louis took Philip under his wing, proposing a marriage with his eldest daughter Anne, the Duchess of Bourbon.
During the minority of King Charles VIII of France, Anne would serve as regent. This unexpected development placed Philip at the very centre of political dealings between France, England, and the Holy Roman Emperor. By the time Charles died at the age of just twenty-seven, the long-term future of the Duchy had been secured.
In 211 A.D., Roman Emperor Lucius Septimius Severus came under a deathly illness in the north of Britannia during his planning to defeat the Picts in Caledonia.
Severus Gives Caracalla a Quest His sons Bassianus, nicknamed "Caracalla" after the Gallic cloak he wore, and Geta were with him. Severus had named Caracalla his co-ruler since 198, and the balance of power seemed effective. He planned for it to continue with Caracalla and Geta becoming co-emperors upon his death. As Severus lay dying, however, he thought back over his life and determined that his advice of "Be harmonious" was ultimately foolish. Men needed to work for themselves, as Severus had done.
A new story by Jeff ProvineSeptimius had been born to a provincial family in Africa. While they were not wealthy or significant themselves, they were connected to cousins in high position, such as Praetorian Prefect Gaius Fulvius Plautianus and Gaius Septimius Severus, who recommended him for entry into the Senate to Marcus Aurelius when Severus was only 18. Severus raced through the consecutive positions of the cursus honorum to achieve full senatorial status, having to pause his career as he was forced to wait until the minimum age of 25 to become quaestor. He served under his "uncle" Gaius as legate when he was proconsul of Africa and married a woman of royal heritage from Syria, using every relationship to its full advantage. With the assassination of Commodus and murder of Pertinax, Rome came into disorder, and Septimius would rise to the top by successive victories at Issus and Lugdunum defeating the other would-be emperors. After that, he had fought and conquered, expanding the empire in Parthia, Africa, and, now, Caledonia. As he approached death, he decided the office of emperor should only go to those greatly blessed by the gods and masters of men: conquerors.
Severus amended his will to give his blessing for the ruler of Rome to whoever conquered Caledonia. While the wording was specifically vague and anyone could have done it, he told first his son Caracalla to achieve the deed. If Geta were able to do it, then he would be emperor, causing jealousy that spurred Caracalla to act. Upon Severus' death, Caracalla rallied his father's armies and stormed the Highlands at the cost of many Roman lives. The campaign was brutal on both sides, but the guerilla tactics of the Picts were undercut by their limited food resources from Roman domination in the central lowlands and coast under Severus. In 213, Caracalla was proclaimed fully King of Britain and returned to a triumph in Rome where he would be named emperor. Geta attempted to rise in his own power, but Caracalla "promoted" him to proconsul of the new province.
While there was little treasure and the triumph was minor, the expansion proved a boon for Roman morale along with a fresh trade in slaves and space allowing new colonies for veterans. Caracalla raised an arch bearing his father's dying words, "Conquer, always conquer". He expanded citizenship to all free men in Rome, causing a leap in tax revenue that he used to build popularity with his armies, though he refused to grant them "luxuries" that he himself had not enjoyed while campaigning in Caledonia. With a force tempered in discipline and made loyal by pay raises, Caracalla marched on Parthia, exploiting a civil war that had raised Artabanus IV to king. They met in battle at Nisibis, and Artabanus was narrowly defeated. Infighting had weakened the local vassals, and Caracalla gained their allegiance by promising protection from raiding nomads.
Upon his return to Rome, Caracalla settled to construction projects and unified his empire while adapting his auxiliaries to include the mounted archers of the East. Though he had two surviving sons, he continued his father's tradition of naming the next emperor to be him who conquered new lands. Investment in campaigns became a central point of the Roman economy, outfitting Gothic mercenaries and legionaries to march on new regions. The move proved to be deadly for Rome: hyperinflation led to starvation and mass thievery while ineffectual invasions weakened the borders. With civil unrest skyrocketing, the wealthy who had already organized armies turned to warlords, and the empire broke up shortly after Caracalla's death.
Emperor of Britain and Gaul Constantine would build a haven of stability in the fourth century as he established his capital of Constantinker at Eboracum (York). Other, shorter-lived empires would be forged, but few would last. Existing as a series of feudal states in a dark age, the Mediterranean world would be fought over by various waves of Germanic and Nordic conquerors, eventually being re-forged into an expansive Muslim Empire.
In 1915, with Great Britain characteristically violating recognised treaty agreements upon the high seas and generally acting with impunity in direct contravention of international law, the Kaiser's Government retaliated by declaring the English Channel to be a war zone.
Liable to DestructionBecause First Lord of the Admiralty Winston Churchill (pictured) had issued instructions to the Royal Navy to mine the North Sea and also impose a "right of search" upon merchant ships carrying cargo to German Ports. Not only was Churchill seeking to starve the Central Powers into submission, he was also intent upon embroiling the United States in a war with Germany.
Recognising this danger, his counterpart the US Secretary of the Navy William Jennings Bryan issued an alert that British vessels were "liable to destruction", cautioning American civilians sailing into the war zone that they were travelling "on ships of Great Britain and her allies do so at their own risk". The warning was prescient because less than six weeks later, German submarine captain Georg-Günther Freiherr von Forstner of the Kaiserliche Marine fired a torpedo from the SM-U28 which sunk a West African steamship, the RMS Falaba.
Intense media scrutiny and public pressure mounted, demanding an American response after the sinking of the Falaba, which was widely and inaccurately reported as nothing short of a massacre of innocent civilians without warning. In fact, one hundred and four people were killed, including one American passenger - Leon Chester Thrasher, a 31-year-old mining engineer from Massachusetts.
Despite the cynical British attempts to maximise the impact of their propoganda, an investigation by the US Government soon determined that the German captain had given the Falaba three warnings, and only opened fire when a British warship appeared on the horizon. The Chief Magistrate John Bassett Moore would later note in his diary that "what most decisively risked the involvement of the United States in the recent war would have been the assertion of a right to protect belligerent ships on which Americans saw fit to travel and the treatment of armed belligerent merchantmen as peaceful vessels. Both assumptions were contrary to reason, and no other neutral advanced them".
In 1787, rebel forces under the command of Daniel Shays of Massachusetts enter Boston, forcing Gov. James Bowdoin (pictured) and the state legislature to flee the city.Shays' Rebellion by Eric Lipps
Shays' rebels had been greatly aided by their capture of a government armory, which allowed them to defeat the 4,400-man force dispatched against them by the governor under the command of Gen. Benjamin Lincoln.
Shays declares himself 'acting governor' and issues a series of decrees directing the issuance of paper money, halting mortgage foreclosures and imposing caps on fees charged by lawyers. The legal fees had been a prime cause of resentment among those who would become Shays' followers; it was charged that in representing debtors, the lawyers were charging so much that the were forcing their clients into bankruptcy, costing them not only their savings but their homes and livelihoods. Appeals to the state senate had produced no result.
The successful armed overthrow of a state government sets an ominous precedent for the young United States. The ineffectualness of the government established under the Articles of Confederation lies exposed by the inability of the Continental Congress to intervene even against open insurrection. This sends a clear signal to disaffected elements throughout the country that they need not try to achieve their aims peacefully.
The nation's leaders will attempt to rectify matters in the summer of 1787 at the Philadelphia Convention, which was intended to propose amendments to the Articles in the hope of creating a more effective government and stabilizing the country. They would fail. The Convention, instead of merely amending the national charter, would come up with an entirely different constitution, and the state legislatures, accusing the delegates of having overstepped their mandate to produce what Virginia's Thomas Jefferson denounces as a 'blueprint for monarchy.' The new charter fails to be ratified, and in 1794, after a Congress increasingly desperate for money had attempted to levy taxes on the production of hard liquor, the so-called 'Whiskey Revolution' will go further than Shays, toppling the national government. The burning of Philadelphia that October will spell the end of the American union; after that, the individual states will insist upon their own sovereignty, creating on the east coast of the North American continent a mirror image of the patchwork of nation-states existing in Western Europe.
Alexander Hamilton, who had advocated the whiskey tax not only for financial reasons but as a means of asserting 'social discipline'-by which he meant the authority of the central government-warns following the Whiskey Revolution that disunion will offer not only England but other European powers the opportunity to return America to colonial rule. He will be proven right, as one after another of the 'sovereign' states are forced into economic and political vassalage. By 1812, it will be clear to almost everyone what 'state sovereignty' has meant, but it will be too late. In 1820, the last holdout, West Pennsylvania-a breakaway region of the old state of Pennsylvania-will formally surrender to a British occupation force sent to 'restore order' and collect by force the state's large outstanding trade debt.
On this day in 1958, Sandy Koufax earned his 350th NBA career assist in a 113-107 Celtics win over the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden.
In 2003, in the closing days of the Northwestern Insurrection, the Washington Soviet launches a nuclear missile at troops stationed in Sacramento, California Soviet. The former capitol of California is utterly destroyed, and many leaders of the Soviet States of America call for nuclear retaliation against the People's Republic, but Comrade President Cobb refused to do it; 'These comrades are misguided,', he told his nation, 'but, they are still our brothers and sisters in the Great Struggle. We cannot and will not treat their lives as expendable.'
In 1985, Congressmen of the Constitutionalist Party introduce the Alien Sedition Amendment in their first full session in complete control of both houses. They fail to get the 2/3 majority needed for the amendment to pass, but they have hopes that they can bring it back on a later date.
In 1974, the laughably inept band of would-be revolutionaries known as the Symbionese Liberation Army tried to kidnap heiress Patty Hearst in Berkeley, California. When they showed up at her apartment, though, they found no one - Hearst had gone to Beverly Hills for the weekend on a whim, and stayed with friends through Tuesday. They were arrested at the apartments after a neighbor heard them break in.
In 1969, Wilhelm Schoemann finds himself in the alternate universe he has helped neo-Nazis create. He has decided to look up his doppelganger and see what he would have done had he been on the victorious end of a war. The devastation that he sees his double has caused brings him to the brink of suicidal despair.
In 1295, Agha Mohammed Khan, great Moghul of the Indian people, was born in Peshawar. He led one of the largest nations in Islam for 20 years, and transformed much of Asia into a home for the word of the Prophet.
In 1904, Ambassador Li'Kanto'Mk of the Congress of Nations is brought before Q'B'Ton'ra, the ruler of the Mlosh homeworld. The officers of his ship stand with him, and Q'B'Ton'ra has a special interest in the humans. 'They will make excellent slaves,' he says, examining them. 'Strong, unlike our people. Stupid, like yours.' The ship's crew is thrown into a holding cell; on the way there, they see a massive fleet being prepared.
In 1866, faith healer Mary Baker Eddy begins to tout the spiritual healing techniques of her mentor, Phineas Quimby. She feels that simply reading from a Bible will cure all ills and heal wounds. This theory is found sorely lacking a few weeks later, when she dies after a fall on an icy road.
In 1587, Italian playwright and composer Claudio Monteverdi, realized he had made a mistake translating a Greek word while he was in the middle of attempting a recreation of classic Greek theater. He had thought that the Greeks sung their entire performance - but the word he had mistranslated meant spoke. It was a good thing he had discovered his error early on - otherwise he might have produced an entire play where nothing was spoken, only sung.
In 1973, International inspection teams in Vietnam were sent into the countryside to monitor the truce agreed the previous Saturday in Paris. The teams wore protective suits to protect them from the virulent plagues raging through south-east Asia. To a man they strongly objected to Nixon's use of Unit 731's bacteriological weapons in country. Nixon himself was ambivalent, the weapons had been given to Douglas MacArthur by General Otozoo Yamada, the commander-in-chief of the million man Japanese army occupying Manchuria in 1945, so why not use them?
the Forty-Seven Ronin
commit seppuku as the great City of Sapporo falls to the Soviet Union. Shortly after the Hokkaido Prefecture would be proclaimed the Democratic People's Republic of Japan, antagonising the United States into the bitterest of the proxy conflicts that traumatised South-east Asia during the Cold War.
In 1997, Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman are found to be civilly liable for the death of O.J. Simpson.
In 1924, on this day the tenth President of the Confederate States, Thomas Woodrow Wilson died in Richmond, Virginia.
10th Confederate President
March 4, 1915 - March 4, 1921Thomas Woodrow Wilson (December 28, 1856 - February 3, 1924) was the 10th President of the Confederate States. A leading intellectual of the Progressive Era, he served as President of the University of Virginia from 1902 to 1910, and then as the Governor of Virginia from 1911 to 1913. In a surprisingly close race against Constitution Party candidate Oscar Wilder Underwood. Wilson was elected as a Democrat in 1914.
A new article from the "Two Americas" thread on Althistory WikiaWilson persuaded a Democratic Congress to pass the Federal Reserve Act, Federal Trade Commission, the Clayton Antitrust Act, the Federal Farm Loan Act and a progressive income tax in the Revenue Act of 1917, as he saw the inevitability of the Confederacy entering into the hostilities in Europe. Though much of his election campaign around the slogan "he will keep us out of the war," CS neutrality was challenged in early 1917 when the German government proposed to Mexico a military alliance in a war against the CS, and began unrestricted submarine warfare, sinking without warning every American merchant ship -- both Union and Confederate - its submarines could find. Wilson in April 1917 asked Congress to declare war.
He focused on diplomacy and financial considerations, leaving the waging of the war primarily in the hands of the Army. On the home front in 1917, he began the first draft since the war for Confederate independence, raised billions in war funding through Liberty Bonds, set up the War Industries Board, promoted labor union growth, supervised agriculture and food production through the Lever Act, took over control of the railroads, enacted the first federal drug prohibition, and suppressed anti-war movements. Though national women's suffrage was already achieved in the U.S., Wilson was unable to persuade Congress to consider a similar amendment to the C.S. constitution.
In the late stages of the war, Wilson took personal control of negotiations with Germany, including the armistice. He issued his Fourteen Points, his view of a post-war world that could avoid another terrible conflict. He went to Paris in 1919 to create the League of Nations and shape the Treaty of Versailles, with special attention on creating new nations out of defunct empires. Largely for his efforts to form the League, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. In 1919, during the bitter fight with the Constitutionist-controlled Senate over the C.S. joining the League of Nations, Wilson collapsed with a debilitating stroke. He refused to compromise, effectively destroying any chance for ratification. The League of Nations was established anyway, but the Confederate States never joined. Wilson's idealistic internationalism, now referred to as "Wilsonianism", called for the Confederate States to enter the world arena to fight for democracy.
While "making Europe safe for democracy," back home Wilson's administration was occupying much of the Caribbean in attempts to put democratically minded leaders in unstable areas. Decisions made in Nicaragua, for instance, would lead to Communism - which arose as an indirect result of the "Great War" in Europe - getting a stronghold in the western hemisphere. The stress of the peace process worsened the president's health, and he spent several months out of the public eye after his stroke. He was assisted by his second wife through this tough time.
After leaving office, Wilson retired to his home in Richmond, where he died on February 3, 1924. In his six years he had lead the Confederate States onto the world scene as a powerhouse militarily and economically. Though the CSA had not become a member of the League of Nations, he died knowing that his nation had made a difference in the world.
In 2011, to mark the recent admission of the 51st State, inaugural Governor Ronald E. Paul was pleased to welcome the historian Newton Leroy Gingrich to the Moon (pictured).
Lunar Liberty Part 3Inevitably cynics viewed the payment of the archivist's services as a thinly disguised attempt to increase funding for the Lunar Colony during a period of budgetary austerity. Nevertheless, Gingrich's multi-part publication would provide an insightful exploration of space flight history that was well received by the academic community.
Part one reviewed the Soviet-America rivalry of the nineteen fifties, a challenge to national prestige that drove President Kennedy to make a pledge to land on the moon before the decade was out. And yet manned space flight had to complete with another program that was simultaneously draining national resources - the Vietnam War.
Part Two addressed the subsequent challenges of President Hubert Humphrey who was both a beneficiary and a victim of the hard-fought victory won by General Creighton Abrams. Overbold due to a misreading of American triumphalism, the Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir ordered a preemptive strike at the outset of the Yom Kippur War. The resulting Arab backlash forced America to develop alternative energy sources.
And Part Three outlined the accelerated development of Solar Power Satellites, the fundamental technology breakthrough required to transport humanity en masse to the moon. Surely without this invention of sustainable accelerated G-Force, modern rocketry would never had permitted thirteen thousand men and women to staff the Lunar Colony and reach the magic population number that would had triggered a consideration of Statehood.
In 1959, as it progressed, the Winter Dance Party Tour became worse and worse of an event.
Winter Dance Party Tour Nearly Crashes Although it seemed greatly promising with numerous stops around the Midwest in three weeks and brought together some of the greatest talent in the music industry, logistics plagued all involved. The heating on the tour bus broke, which caused Buddy Holly's drummer Carl Bunch to be hospitalized with frostbite. Sick of discomfort and reportedly needing laundry done, Holly and his band chartered a plane to take them to their next destination of Moorhead, MN.
A new story by Jeff ProvineThe night went on to shift the passengers on the plane. "J. P". Richardson, the "Big Bopper", was coming down with the flu and asked if he could have a seat on the plane, to which Waylon Jennings agreed. Eighteen-year-old Ritchie Valens, who had never ridden in a small plane before, asked for a seat as well. He and Tommy Allsup flipped a coin for it, and Valens won. Holly joshed his bandmates for giving up their seats, and the plane piloted by twenty-one-year-old Roger Peterson took off shortly before 1 AM. As he was preparing to leave, his boss Hubert Dwyer mentioned to Peterson that the weather ahead was looking very foul. Peterson, who had not yet passed his instrument tests, became nervous but did not wish to give up the job.
Holly noticed Peterson seemed off, but the pilot assured him things were fine, despite repeatedly checking his instruments. Shortly after takeoff, Peterson realized the Sperry Attitude Gyro was registering his pitch attitude in reverse of the artificial horizon indicator he had trained on. He decided to make an emergency landing and gather his senses, but the stormy weather upset the plane, and Peterson was forced to make a water landing, skidding across nearby Rice Lake, just short of the Lake Mills Municipal Airport. All four occupants survived though were hospitalized with bumps and bruises, and Buddy Holly had broken his left hand. Rumor holds that he broke it punching Peterson's face, but it is more likely that it was catching himself on the dashboard.
Despite losing three of its headliners, the tour went on, giving local talent Bobby Vee a chance to perform. The Big Bopper's flu knocked him out of the rest of the tour, as did Holly's hand, and so Ritchie Valens became the sensation of the Midwest as spring came in 1959. Valens, who would in 1964 release an album over his actual name Ricardo Esteban Valenzuela Reyes, would be instrumental in launching the Chicano Rock craze of the mid-1960s, eclipsing the "British Storm" and giving a major addition to the growing Latino voice in the United States. He would later leave music to pursue a career in politics on the behalf of the Hispanic populace and be elected a congressman from California in 1976 and Senator in 1991.
With his position as a disc jockey before his rise to rock fame, J.P. Richardson became part of the proceedings of the Payola scandal in the Supreme Court. He reportedly denounced big business and the studios who would deprive genuine artists of playtime by stuffing "factory hack down the ears of listeners". Richardson enjoyed a successful musical career and then returned to deejaying, guiding new voices and setting up his own brand of label that would reportedly listen to any submitted record. The wide diversity of music caused numerous new crazes throughout the 1960s and ?70s, giving every new kind of genre a chance and the audience to reply with critiques. He is credited with coining the term "music video," which he would use to expanding his radio work onto television.
Holly, meanwhile, bemoaned that he would never play as well again, though he still sold numerous records and served as one of the most creative artists of the twentieth century. Many suggest that he alone kept "pure rock" alive and often mentioned what he could do with full use of his left hand, a topic observed in folk singer Don McLean's "The Day the Music Cried". Holly would eventually accept Elvis Presley's invitation to Hollywood, where he would star in a series of films before disastrously experimenting with Surf music. He would come back to stardom as a blues and old rock singer, seeming to personify the aging of rock as it became eclipsed by more energetic disco.
Notably, none of them ever flew again.
In 2011, Michael Sklatch wrote ~ In the future from which I'm writing this letter, the United States has become a totalitarian Christian fundamentalist state.
A brief letter from the future to the United StatesOf course, there's no such thing as a letter from the future. The future doesn't really exist, except as choices to be made in the present. If you who are reading this can respond in your own way to what's happening in your time, then this letter will remain an empty piece of fiction.As you've probably already supposed, it all began when the US government created a Department of Homeland Security, which became one of the fastest growing government agencies in US history.
It quietly and steadily expanded its jurisdiction to cover any activity that it judged to be a threat, direct or indirect, to national security. At first this was done in the name of blocking terrorism, but eventually expanded to areas much further afield.
One of those areas was censorship. The Homeland Security Department began to reserve the power to censor the press for any ideology that it judged to threaten national security.
In a few exemplary cases the Homeland Security Department seized assets and suspended operations of media entities.
Lawsuits were filed, but the Department resolutely flouted legal pressure and public opinion.
The effect of those showcase incidents was enough to neatly chill the press. Most media firms complied voluntarily just because they didn't want to risk attracting the attention of the Homeland Security Department.
The next move had hugely significant consequences. Within the Homeland Security Department a committee called the Council for the Defense of Christian Family Values was created.
The underlying motive for the council was a belief that if a nation was God-fearing it would invite divine favor and protection, and if not, God would punish the nation for its lack of faith. For that reason, Christian faith was seen as intrinsic to national security. No real justification for this was given publicly.
The Christian Family Values Council began working to systematically align the Homeland Security Department with the interests of radical fundamentalist Christians, who had for many years been gaining immense political power in the Republican Party by playing down their radicalism.
Although the threat of censorship had largely muted the mainstream press, the country was deeply divided over the Christian Family Values Council. Many people naturally began seeing parallels with the rise of the Nazis during the 1930s.
There was trouble at the polls as a result. Despite the fact that the Republican Party, which had always been the principal sponsor of the Christian Family Values Council, had itself begun to splinter and appeared to have lost, election results still showed Republicans to be hands-down winners.
Suspecting outright election fraud, the public demanded an official investigation into the election. When the investigation began to uncover evidence that the election had been blatantly tampered with, the Homeland Security Department abruptly halted the investigation.
That provoked large demonstrations and isolated instances of civil unrest. The Homeland Security Department stepped in vigorously to suppress the unrest, using its now formidable surveillance network and the national police force that it had been building.
The Christian Family Values Council had meanwhile been building up alliances with the US military. Several high-ranking officers were now associated with the Council, and the Council itself had become a bastion not only of the religious right, but of a rapidly growing culture of militarism, also a reminder of Nazi Germany.
As the general population began to understand that the Christian Family Values Council was a threat to democracy, large numbers of people began to organize themselves to oppose it across the nation.
Supporters of the Christian Family Values Council also organized themselves, however, meeting in churches and schools in communities that were sympathetic to what the Christian Family Values Council stood for.
They set up local and regional councils for the defense of Christian family values, mirroring the national Council, and those amounted to a de facto political party.
Civil unrest grew as organized supporters of the Christian Family Values Council occasionally clashed with organized opponents.
In the South, where the Christian Family Values Council has strong local roots, any opposition to the Christian Family Values Council was dealt with in a few highly publicized incidents by local thugs using the sort of violence reminiscent of the Nazi brownshirts.
As the situation deteriorated, the nation was so deeply divided and the threat of civil unrest had grown so acute that the presidential administration, which was by then completely dominated by the Christian Family Values Council, took advantage of the situation to preemptively suspend the upcoming congressional elections, to dissolve Congress, and to declare martial law.
The coup was accomplished. The US constitution was rendered useless.
The military was thrown into crisis after the coup. Many high-ranking military professionals were still loyal to the US constitution and considered the Christian Family Values Council to be treasonous.
A power struggle ensued and at first it looked like the coup would be rolled back.
A second American Civil War between the military partisans loyal to the Christian Family Values Council versus those loyal to the US constitution briefly seemed likely.
Ironically, this second civil war would essentially have cut across the same regional boundaries as the first one did.
In the end, the Christian Family Values Council and their partisans prevailed, mainly due to their brutal determination. Professional officers and troops still loyal to the US constitution were required to swear allegiance to the Christian Family Values Council or else be expelled from the military.
Immediately the Christian Family Values Council established a set of regulations similar to Islamic sharia but based on the Judeo-Christian bible.
Among other changes, that meant that women's rights outside the home were dramatically curtailed.
The First Amendment rights to peaceable assembly and free speech were of course vigorously suppressed. Likewise any armed resistance by citizens loyal to the constitution was ruthlessly put down by forces loyal to the Christian Family Values Council.
The threat of civil war had provoked the Christian Family Values Council to demand that all citizens surrender their arms unless they had a license from a local Christian family values defense council.
The First Amendment was now thoroughly defeated.
Almost four years have now passed since the constitutional coup, and the US is a completely different nation. Today it is in precipitous economic decline.
The infrastructure is rotting due to neglect, disorganization, and lack of capital. Roads are becoming unusable in many places, electric power shortages are routine, communications networks are failing, bankrupt municipal governments are unable to provide many essential services, and the medical system is breaking down.
Even before the Christian Family Values Council overthrew the constitution, Wall Street saw trouble coming and began paving the way for quickly moving capital out of the US to safer havens.
After the coup, US treasury bonds sank to junk status, which briefly caused financial turmoil internationally. The dollar is weaker today than some Third World currencies.
The torrent of capital fleeing the United States during the past four years has significantly reshaped the world's economy, to the detriment of the United States and the American standard of living.
China has become the new center of enterprise and technological achievement as well as a source of new military might. Europe and Japan provide a cultural counterweight to a wounded America with its still potent military.
As China has grown more powerful, old conflicts in Asia between China, Korea, and Japan still flare up, and all-out war has been narrowly avoided on several occasions. China has already seized its opportunity to re-annex Taiwan.
Since the Christian Family Values Council first began to strangle the cultural and spiritual life of the US, the brightest and most vibrant citizens have have been fleeing to Europe, Asia, and even Latin America.
Because open dissent has been extinguished in American universities, many top academics have migrated to Europe, where universities have taken the opportunity to regain the preeminence they lost to the US during the 20th century.
Many of the best engineers and scientists in the US, many of whom are Asian anyway, have moved to Asia and to China in particular.
The only nations friendly to the new regime are the fundamentalist Islamic ones, such as Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq (which became fundamentalist shortly after US troops withdrew), and Israel (where orthodox fundamentalists have also completely overwhelmed the liberal secular democratic roots of the Jewish state).
Ironically, Iraq and Saudi Arabia were countries from whose quarters allegedly came the terrorist threat that led to the creation of the Homeland Security Department.
Our only hope today is for some kind of counter-revolution that will restore the US constitution, with its wise separation of church and state, and with its First Amendment protections that the religious fascists rescinded the moment they seized power.
A counter-revolution seems nearly impossible at the moment. The military is present everywhere, on guard for any whiff of resistance to the regime.
Fully armed soldiers patrol the streets and quickly break up any public gatherings not approved or orchestrated by officials of the Christian Family Values Council.
All males are conscripted into the military at age 17 (women have been expelled from military service) where they are indoctrinated to think along the lines of the Christian Family Values Council. They have daily prayers and sermons by thought leaders of the religious regime.
Television and radio now pump out Christian propaganda. Even what's left of Hollywood cooperates with the propaganda requirements of the Christian Family Values Council.
Only the internet is relatively free, although websites inside territorial US are strictly censored. The Homeland Security Department confiscates web servers at the slightest hint of anti-Christian sentiment. IP addresses blacklisted by the Christian Family Values Council intelligence apparatus of Homeland Security are blocked on internet trunklines running into or through the US.
The Christian Family Values Council has taken aggressive steps to purge American culture of anything that it deems to be "secular humanist". Obviously public schools are strictly managed by fundamentalist Christians at every level.
The professional class in America has been greatly affected, cowed into submission by Christianized thugs.
Corporations have been moving out of the US as quickly as is practical and allowable. Employees of those corporations still operating in the US hold mandatory morning and afternoon prayer sessions to appease the Christian Family Values Council apparatus.
The middle class is disappearing. Among the lower class, the face of abject starvation has appeared in the United States for the first time.
Meanwhile, global climate change has been causing serious disruption for this new Christian Republic of America, along with much of the world, with frequent floods and hurricanes. The interior of North America has become increasingly arid.
Christian fundamentalists interpret all those events to be signs of the imminent return of Jesus Christ. The United States is in the grip of apocalyptic panic and millenarian fever.
How could a constitutional coup have happened in the United States, whose government had been a model of stability in contrast to the paroxysms caused by fascism, Stalinism, Maoism, and other extremist political regimes during the 20th century?
The answer seems partly to be that the stability itself was a major cause. It gave rise to a politically stultified population that was easily overwhelmed by the focused determination of a relatively small group of zealots.
As with fascism and other rightist political movements, the Christian Family Values Council is backed by people who yearn for the "One Truth" in the face of an otherwise bewildering diversity of choice.
Many people in the United States had simply grown tired of freedom. They were uncomfortable with the ambiguity and the cacophony of voices that make up a healthy democracy.
The Christian fundamentalists offered simplicity. Even easier than offering it, they imposed it.
In a society that had grown fat and flaccid in a cocoon of hyper-consumerism, the raw energetic appeal of unconditional truth foisted by the Christian Family Values Council proved irresistible.
The Christian Family Values Council also benefited from having a ruggedly disciplined and charismatic leadership at a time when conventional politicians were largely opportunistic and insincere.
Here I send to you this letter from the future, from your future, or at least one of your possible futures.
If you've somehow come across this little message in a bottle, I hope it stirs you to make a difference in your time and place, so that my letter will someday seem quaint and silly to people living in a different, much better future than the bleak one I've written about here.
In 1923, on this day in alternate history the Austrian Emperor Franz Ferdinand abdicated.
The abdication of Archduke Franz Ferdinand
by Scott PalterHis attempt to bridge the divisions between the ruling Germans in Austria and the various Slavs and other nationalities resulted in first constitutional gridlock from 1917 onwards [Hungarian secession took place at the same time, followed by a nasty war of devolution as Croatia broke free with help from Austro-German Frei Korps under the patronage of the Papacy; this caused Franz Ferdinard to lose the title King of Hungary but keep that of Duke of Croatia] and finally reached civil war in the Kingdom of Bohemia over competing claims of Sudeten Germans and Czechs.
Faced with civil war between competing ethnic militias in every major city of the realm the army intervened to restore order under the banner of his brother Charles. Franz Fredinand left for exile in Portugal leaving Charles to sort out the mess. Charles was negotiating with the Polish and Czech national committees but war with Italy threatened over Istria. In his last speech Franz Ferdinand morbidly commented that history would have thought better of him had the botched 1914 assassination attempt in Bosnia killed him.
In 1917, President Woodrow Wilson severed diplomatic relations with Great Britain.
US/UK diplomatic relations severed by Eric LippsFollowing the outbreak of war in Europe in August 1914, pitting Britain, France, Italy, Russia and Japan against Germany, Austria-Hungary and Japan, Britain had instituted a policy of interdicting neutral shipping to the Continent to choke off trade with its foes. This had led to repeated seizures of U.S. merchant vessels on the high seas, actions denounced in steadily stronger terms by the President, Secretary of State William Jennings Bryan, and a number of influential Midwestern newspapers.
The President did have a strong pro-British adviser, Col. Edward M. House, who had declined a Cabinet position but remained so close to Wilson that he was provided White House living quarters. However, in April 1915 House died unexpectedly in a traffic accident. With his influence absent, Wilson gravitated toward an "a plague on both your houses" attitude regarding the European conflict, condemning Germany - especially after the May 7, 1915 sinking of the passenger liner Lusitania - for its policy of unrestricted submarine warfare while growing increasingly hostile to the British as well over their refusal to cease what he considered "piracy" against American shipping.
In his communication to the British ambassador, Sir Cecil Spring-Rice, informing him of the break in relations, Wilson insisted that he did not intend to join Germany's side in the war. "America," he informed Spring-Rice, "has no interest in becoming a combatant in the present conflict. She wishes only to maintain her neutrality unharassed by either side. Your nation's refusal to honor this desire is the cause of the present break". Challenged by the ambassador as to why he has not also severed relations with Germany, Wilson responded, "Be assured, sir, that your German counterpart shall be hearing from me as you have done".
Wilson proved as good as his word. A week later, on Feb. 10, 1917, Wilson severed relations with Imperial Germany as well, citing that country's submarine warfare practices as well as his desire to remain "a genuine neutral in a conflict to which the United States is not, and does not wish to become, a party".
The United States remained neutral until the European war ended in March 1919 in what came to be called the "peace of exhaustion". At that point, the idealistic Wilson saw an opportunity to guarantee a lasting peace through a set of proposals which included a policy of "self-determination" for small nations such as Serbia, whose nationalist aspirations had helped ignite the conflict, and the creation of a "league of nations" to arbitrate among countries. However, his determined non-involvement in the war, popular as it had proven at home, had left him with no leverage in Europe. As a result, his audacious "Fourteen Points" went nowhere. Europe at the dawn of the 1920s would be a darkened version of its 1914 self, with Britain and France enriched at Germany"s expense, Russia in the throes of civil war following its 1917 Bolshevik revolution and a bankrupt Italy teetering on the edge of anarchy, while from across the Atlantic the U.S. played spectator.
In 2012, on this day at the Mukataa in Ramallah, and accompanied by his son Abdullah (pictured), Dr Izzeldeen Abuelaish was inaugurated as the first Palestinian deputy President of Israel, pledging to arm the new multi-faith nation with love and education. Armed with love and education
A Harvard education enabled Dr Izzeldeen to escape the crushing poverty of the Jabaliya refugee camp Click to watch the documentary, subsequently working in Israel as a gynaecologist from 2001 until 2009. At the weekends, Dr Izzeldeen would return to a sturdy five story high apartment block in Jabaliya where his extended family lived.
Despite this hard-fought freedom, Dr Izzeldeen's fate was trapped in a closed nightmare world where 1.5 million Gazans were prevented from leaving the Strip by the Israeli Defense Force. And at 04:05pm on 16 January 2009, two Israeli tank shells killed three of his daughters and a niece whilst they were engaged in the terrorist activity of completing their school homework.
Dr Izzeldeen issued a live anguished broadcast in Hebrew from the Israeli hospital where he worked, stating Look at what this family was armed with. Love and education. I dedicated my life really for peace, for medicine. This is the path I believe in. And what I raised and education my children to believe. Click to watch the hospital interview.
His demands that the Israeli military explain why his home had been targeted marked the entrance of Dr Izzeldeen as peace advocate into a radically changed political dynamic. Because the military invasion of Gaza was a political and humanitarian disaster of such magnitude that it served as a catalyst for change. In a very real sense, it was the end of a final chapter that had begun with the death of Yasser Arafat.
Other new vectors of peace had entered play with the departure of George W. Bush from the White House. US President Barack Obama actually recognised Palestinians as human beings, seeking both positive engagement with the Muslim world and a peaceful settlement in Palestine Click to watch Al Arabiya interview. Obama sent a heavy-weight peace envoy to the region, former US Senator George Mitchell who was a veteran of the marathon Northern Ireland peace settlement between Protestants and Catholics during the mid-1990s. And fortuitously Mitchell arrived in the region at a critical juncture, shortly before the departure of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert who had ordered the attack.
A breakthrough was achieved with the incoming Israeli administration. The two state solution was scrapped in favour of a multi-faith state with full democratic representation for Palestinians. The final settlement included an amendment to the Israeli constitution to allow for the appointment of a new executive office of deputy President, an idea inspired by F.W. De Klerks role in Nelson Mandela's first Rainbow administration in South Africa.
Critically, this new minister would have full powers of oversight for the welfare of the Palestinian population, based at the Mukataa in Ramallah. This symbolic location was previously the seat of office for the President of the Palestinian National Authority. Also known as Arafat's Compound, the compound was raided by the Israel Defense Forces and later placed under siege during late 2004 as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict entered its final, tumultuous phase.
On this day in 1975, George Stark, a.k.a. 'the Lawnmower Man', was executed in the gas chamber at Nevada State Prison in Carson City.
In 2008, Brazilian law enforcement officers pursued off-world smugglers into the Hills of New Hampshire.
Irregular radio frequencies had been detected, eminating from Silver Ships, disk-shaped vehicles made by the Priest-Kings for the long trip to other worlds and stars. Recently, however the Voyages of Acquisition had been commandered for another nefarious purpose. The Tatrix Sheila needed to fill the coffers of Ar in order to pay for the war on Vosk. Ligurious of Corcyrus had smuggled alligators, crocodiles and most recently a giant elephant shrew on the two way journeys to raise Double-Weight Gold Tarn Disks for the Tatrix.
'Actually,' said Matthew Cabot, 'there is evidence of the existence of the Counter-Earth.' Tarl looked at him. 'Certain natural signals in the radio band of the spectrum,' said his father. Tarl's astonishment must have been obvious.
'Yes,' he said, 'but since the hypothesis of another world is regarded as so incredible, this evidence has been interpreted to accord with other theories; sometimes even imperfections in instrumentation have been supposed rather than admit the presence of another world in our solar system.'
'But why would this evidence not be understood?' Tarl asked. 'Surely you know,' he laughed, 'one must distinguish between the data to be interpreted and the interpretation of the data, and one chooses, normally, the interpretation that preserves as much as possible of the old world view, and, in the thinking of the Earth, there is no place for Gor, its true sister planet, the Counter-Earth.' ~ Tarnsman of Gor - 32-35
In 1945, the Soviet Union agreed to enter the Pacific Theatre conflict against Japan. The Red Army invaded Hokkaid? Prefecture whilst US forces were bogged down in the main island of Honsh?.
In 1916, combat tension created a new and frightening level of intensity for Second Lieutenant John Ronald Reuel Tolkien.
Serving in the eleventh battalion of the Lancashire Fusiliers, Tolkien's imagination was over-stimulated by the horror of the Somme. In escapist fantasy writing, Tolkien's inner hero struggled to restore his own dissipated life force.
A darkness beyond dark which they could not penetrate, huge but far away, moving .. [Tolkien's fear] with great speed. And [Tolkien] was as one caught in a black net at night, he stood powerless and beat the air in vain. ~ Of the Darkening of Valinor
In, 47,371 BCE, Swikolay begins her ascent of Kilimanjaro. Because she feels it will be her last chance to touch the sky and fulfill the Speaker's dream, she doesn't allow anyone to climb with her; she tells her companions, If I succeed, I will find a way to let you know. If you see no sign, I have failed. Either way, I will not come back.
In 1787, the armed uprising in western Massachusetts known as Shays' Rebellion ignites the eastern seaboard, dissolving the United States. Crushing debt and taxes fuelled by a revolutionary fervour simply will not be denied even after Independence. Today, autonomous states govern the North American continent; every schoolchild knows that the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave was made possible by this liberating anarchy.
In 1871, the counter-history Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee (BMHAWK) is published by the gifted Sioux author Tatanka Iyotake. In the what if world of BMHAWK, indigenes were unable to summon the powerful magicks required to prevent the invasion of the fork-tongues. Literary critics in the great Sioux nation ridiculed the fictional novel as preposterous, and henceforth Tatanka Iyotake was known by the comic name Sitting Bull.
© Today in Alternate History, 2013-. All characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.