In 1922, on this day the first President of Quebec René Lévesque was born in the Hotel Dieu Hospital in Campbellton, New Brunswick.
Birth of René LévesqueHe was raised 133 km away in New Carlisle, Quebec, studying at Jesuit Colleges before following in his father's footsteps by reading for law at the Université Laval. If not for the outbreak of World War Two, he might also have become a lawyer, but instead he interrupted his studies to become a war correspondent in the United States. A prestigous career in journalism followed, and he famously interviewed Secretary of State for External Affairs Lester B. "Mike" Pearson in Moscow for Radio-Canada in 1955 (pictured). This historic meeting was a rare failure of Pearsonian Diplomacy; the tension between the Canadian Confederation and the Soviet Union was growing acute due to the perceived interference in the internal affairs of the Republic of Newfoundland1.
Events had taken an unexpected turn soon after Lévesque returned from the United States. By a waifer thin majority, Newfies had voted into existence a new state in the extreme northeast of the North American continent. This creation escalated a long-standing disagreement over fishing rights into a much more serious territorial dispute. The Confederation's mishandling of this regional issue pushed Quebec firmly towards separation.
Drawn into this national awakening, Lévesque ran for office in 1960 and eventually became a co-founder of the subsequent ruling Parti Québécois. Elected the 23rd State Premier, he became the first Quebec political leader since Confederation to attempt, through a referendum, to negotiate political separation for Quebec. He won, and then served as inaugural President until his death from a heart attack in 1987. The new nation was distraught; over one hundred thousand people viewed his body lying in state in Montreal and Quebec City, over ten thousand went to his funeral in the latter city, and hundreds wept daily at his grave for months. He was most famously recognized as the architect of the St Pierre Agreement which finally settled the maritime border dispute. It was a diplomatic triumph that Mike Pearson would have been proud of.
This is an article from our Canadian Heroes thread.
In 49 BC, in a glorious triumph for the Optimates, Julius Caesar's general (and eventually successor) Gaius Scribonius Curio won a resounding victory over a large force of the Pompeian-Numidia alliance in a bloody battle fought on the banks of the Bagradas River.
Famous Caesarean victory at the Second Battle of the Bagradas RiverTravelling from Siciliy with his full force of legions1, he got the better of the Numidian allies in a number of skirmishes before defeating Pompeian Republicans rebel Publius Attius Varus at the Battle of Utica.
Varus fled into Utica, where he was reinforced by the townsfolk and a large force led by King Juba. Urged to withdraw, Curio initially queried how he could ever look Caesar in the face after he had lost him his army. But in a stroke of tactical brilliance, he decided to launch a fake retreat back to the transports and galleys. Varus would have been satisfied with repelling the attack, but the bloodthirsty Juba planned to execute Curio's soldiers down to the last man. In his indecent haste to reach their base at Castra Cornelia, he sent his army into Command confusion; the Numidians lost their shape and were surprised by the ambush on the banks of the river.
In 1913, on this day the leader of the Irish Unionist Alliance and Ulster Unionist Party Sir Edward Carson (pictured) was killed in a vehicle accident at Homburg in the German province of Hessee Nassau just hours after lunching at the famous mineral springs with the German Kaiser.
Irish Home Rule in 1914: Part #2The following week the Belfast Evening Telegraph revealed shocking details of the private discussions which were independently confirmed in the The Irish Churchman. Most damning of all was Carson's breath-taking statement that "It may not be known to the rank and file of Unionists that we have the offer of aid from a powerful Continental monarch who, if Home Rule is forced on the Protestants of Ireland, is prepared to send an army sufficient to release England from any further trouble in Ireland".
For six months after his death, rumours would abound until finally the police intercepted a major gun smuggling operation in Larne, Donaghadee, and Bangor. It soon transpired that five arms manufacturers including the Austrian Steyr and the German Deutsche Waffen und Munitionsfabriken had delivered twenty-five thousand rifles and three million rounds of ammunition from Germany.
The following day news of the Larne Gun Running fiasco reached the London Chapter of the Irish Volunteers. One prominent member - Michael Collins - had also been inducted into the Irish Republican Brotherhood. He was working at a stockbroker's office in the City at the time, but decided to immediately resign his position and return to Ireland. Quickly promoted to the rank of Militia Major he would soon emerge as a powerful commander in the forthcoming conflict with the Ulster Volunteers in Derry.
And even as the British Cabinet argued over participation in a general european conflict, unmistakeable signs of a civil war began to appear in Ireland. Because in late July, the Irish Volunteers took delivery of nine hundred Mauser M1871 11 mm calibre single shot rifles and twenty-nine thousand rounds of its black powder ammunition. The architects of this Howth gun-running scheme had convinced German arms dealers that the weapons were destined for revolutionary Mexico. Foremost in that group was Sir Roger Casement who would also play a major part in shaping the tragic events that followed hard on the heels of the opening of the bicameral Irish Parliament.
This article is a post from the Irish Home Rule 1914 collaborative thread.
In 1819, on this day Alexandrina Victoria (pictured) the only child of the Duke and Duchess of Kent was born at Kensington Palace. Fifth in the succession to the throne at the time of birth, her ascension as the last monarch of the House of Hanover was a historic accident caused by the premature death of Princess Charlotte of Wales, the only legitimate grandchild of George III.
This post is an article from the Good Old Willie thread.
Good Old Willie #2Her reign of sixty-three years and seven months was longer than that of any other British monarch and the longest of any female monarch in history. This "Victorian era" was a period of industrial, cultural, political, scientific, and military change within the United Kingdom, and was marked by a great expansion of the British Empire. And ultimately led to a period of intense international rivalry mirroring the earlier Elizabethean Era.
France began to re-emerge as a continental power during the middle of the nineteenth century. The hard-fought victories at Sedan and Metz crushed the formation of a German Empire in its infancy and created the prospect of France rising to undisputed master of continental Europe. If that insidious development was insufficiently menacing of itself, then the development of the Empire Français brought both countries colonial ambitions into direct conflict. The inevitable War was caused by an overseas flashpoint, the Fashoda Crisis which was a dispute over imperial territory in Eastern Africa.
Two years later, the Queen died aged eighty-one; but her successor - her sixty year old daughter - was terminally ill. The truncated six month reign of Queen Victoria II was due to a change of succession allowing the eldest child of either sex to ascend to the throne. Because by 1870 it was evident that an Anglo-German alliance was absolutely necessary in order to confront French hegemony.
In 1840 Victoria had married her first cousin, Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. Their nine children and twenty-six of their thirty-four grandchildren who survived childhood married into royal and noble families across the continent, tying them together and earning her the nickname "the grandmother of Europe". One of those grandchildren was Wilhelm, who would eventually serve for forty years as the second monarch of the House of Hohenzollern. "Good Old Willie" was welcomed by friendly crowds when he came to her death bed. Their desire for an iconic leader was borne out of a common recognition that Great Britain was entering a new era of great uncertainy and danger.
In 2009, U.S. President John McCain, visiting Libya with Defense Secretary Lindsey Graham, assured that country's national security advisor, Mutassim Qaddafi, son of dictator Muammar Qaddafi, that relations between their two nations were on the mend after years of strain under McCain's predecessors.
By Eric LippsActing on behalf of the President and the Secretary, Vice-President Joseph I. Lieberman pressed Congress to approve the rehabilitation of Libya's fleet of eight C-130 military transport planes. The Vice-President called Libya an important ally in the war on terrorism, noting that "common enemies sometimes make better friends". Lieberman's efforts were instrumental in securing approval of the aid, which had been stalled because of continuing anger over Libya's involvement in terrorist actions such as the Dec. 21, 1988 downing of the passenger jet Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, which had resulted in 270 deaths.
A new story by Eric LippsEighteen months later, when mass protests against the Qaddafi regime erupted, swiftly turning into open rebellion, and Qaddafi responded with massive force, the McCain administration found itself in the humiliating position of having to approve a UN Security Council resolution calling for arming the rebels against a Qaddafi regime whose military forces it had only recently reinforced. The UN vote won the President no friends among those of both parties who had opposed the original C-130 refurbishment, and cost him within his own party among those who distrusted the United Nations on principle and believed that if the President felt he needed to act, he should do so without seeking the approval of any international organization.
In 1791, as the "Beast" Alexander Hamilton subdued the "monster with thirteen heads" his libertarian adversaries Maximilien Robespierre, Jean-Paul Marat and Thomas Jefferson spent a convivial evening at Monticello smoking Virginia Hemp.
Mashed Up at MonticelloSurely Charles De Montesquieu had it right when he declared that "There is no greater tyranny than that which is perpetrated under the shield of the law and in the name of justice".
But as Jefferson pottered off to scare up some much needed munchies, Robespierre realised that he wasn't too bombed to notice that some of the children in the yard had a striking resemblace to the host. Nor to notice that Marat appeared to be dying from some form of wretched venereal disease.
But he reflected, even in this relaxed atmosphere, the inner thoughts of Jefferson himself were quite unknown. He was as unfathomable as the sphinx.
By 1814, the War of 1812 had turned to a fiasco. America's invasion of Canada had been rebuffed despite taking the city of York twice (and burning public buildings there the second time). Naval victories in the Great Lakes had stalled Canadian counter-invasions.
Ceasefire Declared at Washington A flotilla of ships in a British expedition blockaded the Atlantic, but, even with the defeat of Napoleon, there were too few troops to do much more than raid coastal shipping. For the most part, the war was over, and commissioners had begun to meet in Ghent to discuss a treaty.
In the meantime, the raiding continued. Alexandria, Virginia, had been looted by the British, and American forces worked to defend the militarily significant Baltimore from full invasion. British General Robert Ross, however, had a different aim: the center of politics and morale for the young nation, Washington, D.C. As British landed on August 21, Americans scurried to put together militia to oppose them. On August 24, a haphazard collection of 7,000 men, including President James Madison himself armed with a collection of pistols, met with the British at Bladensburg.
The battle was yet another fiasco for the Americans. Brigadier General Tobias Stansbury had moved his exhausted men away from well defended positions to prevent a possible, but unlikely, flanking maneuver. As officials from Washington arrived, Secretary of State James Monroe ordered troops to different positions, creating confusion and weak gaps in the line. American regulars fought valiantly, but the rest were quickly routed without clear evacuation plans, and the British marched on Washington unopposed.
Returning to Washington, James Madison had planned to grab papers and escape into the countryside like most of his cabinet and Congress were doing. As he saw the evacuation of the city, he decided that the war had gone long enough. When an advance guard of British arrived under the white flag, Madison rode out to meet them. Patriots looked as if they were ready to ambush the Redcoats, but Madison's presence stopped them. After a brief discussion, the British returned to Ross with Madison and his entourage of diplomats and soldiers.
Madison met with Ross, and the two began to discuss ceasefire. On the 25th, Admiral Cockburn arrived, giving more clout to the discussion. Vice-Admiral Alexander Cochrane, the Commaner-in-Chief of the North American Station was preparing for the bombardment of Baltimore, but messages from Ross and Cockburn about the Americans' request for peace stopped the altercation. By the end of the month, word of armistice began to spread throughout the war-weary country. Diplomacy would take many more months to sort out, but the Treaty of Ghent would officially end the war December 24, 1814.
Feeling officially independent of Britain, the Americans settled about their affairs. Madison would pass his presidency to James Monroe, who would in turn pass it to John Quincy Adams, and then to the firebrand John C. Calhoun of South Carolina (who narrowly defeated Andrew Jackson of Indian-fighting fame in party conventions). Calhoun vetoed often, such as the Tariff of 1828 and the Tariff of 1832, keeping Southern ideals of states rights in place over the more Federal-thinking Whigs.
After Calhoun's presidency, the workable federation of the United States went to war with Mexico while he still served as senator. Polk's War ended favorably with large gains in the Southwest, but this sudden gain of territory stressed the question of slavery for the nation. After countless arguments and debates in Congress, the idea of secession finally came up. The North and the South would never agree, so perhaps they would best seek their fortunes as neighbors rather than housemates. The Constitution never addressed secession completely, so legal precedent allowed the peaceful separation of the United States with the consent of Congress, which had never happened before in the minor uprisings of territories decades before. Henry Clay and Stephen Douglas, under the guidance of an ancient Calhoun too weak to speak but able to write powerful pages, crafted the Act of Disunion of 1850, separating the United States of America in the North and the Confederated States of America in the South with a westward border compromised at 36 degrees, 30 minutes north.
With a stronger industrial base, the USA quickly outpaced its southern neighbor, who spent much of its political time and energy with expansionism toward Latin America, adding Cuba, Puerto Rico, and other Caribbean islands to its domain in the Spanish-American War in the 1880s. World War I would see the South enter on the side of the Allies early in 1916 while the USA sat out. In 1941, when the Confederate base at Pearl Harbor was bombed by Japan, CSA President "Cactus Jack" Garner asked USA President Franklin Roosevelt to acknowledge various treaties between the two brotherly countries and join them in battle. FDR agreed, and the two nations fought alongside one another for the first time since the Mexican War that had ended up driving them apart.
After WWII, many asked if the two nations would rejoin, but, despite its troubled economy, the South sought to maintain its independence. Racial subjugation rejected in the North under two-term president JFK was still accepted as legal in the South with gradual concessions such as the Civil Rights Act of 1968 signed by President George Wallace guaranteeing separate but equal segregation.
Despite their differences, the two American nations remain, for the most part, friendly. Their fiercest competition come in the Olympics, when the anthems of "My Country, "Tis of Thee" and "God Save the South" are often heard.
In 1217, on this day King John's slippery hold on the English throne was further weakened by the catastrophic defeat of the English Navy at the Battle of Sandwich.
Salty SandwichHoping to blind the French mariners, Hubert de Burgh had attacked upwind, ordering his English sailors to throw lime salt into the air. But a sudden change in the direction of the wind had caused the reverse effect, and after boarding and hand-to-hand combat, de Burgh was captured and beheaded.
With the English Channel in French hands, the eighty vessels under the command of Eustace the Monk proceeded to Dover, unloading reinforcements of nine hundred troops and fresh supplies. Prince Louis could proceed apace with his plans for a Second Norman Conquest, soon realising his dream of becoming King Louis I of England.
In 1940, in a desperate act of ruthless determination unmatched since the destruction of the French Fleet at Mers-el-Kébir, RAF Bomber Command launched a fercious, unprovoked attack on the city of Berlin. The appalling loss of citizen life ensured that Arthur "Bomber" Harris (pictured) would be provided with a front row seat at the Nuremberg Trials right next to his fellow "war criminal", Admiral James Somerville.
Last Throw of the DiceAfter the defeat of France, Winston Churchill advised the House of Commons that "the whole fury and might of the enemy must very soon be turned against us". And so events transpired, because by mid August, the RAF's communication system had been knocked out by waves of German bombers. It appeared inevitable that Britain would very soon be "fighting on the beaches".
"[Mers El-Kebir] will rouse the whole world against us - we all feel thoroughly ashamed" ~ SomervilleTo achieve this impressive feat of arms, the Luftwaffe had sent over a thousand planes per day, destroying many of the radar stations in Southern England. Then Hermann Göring directed the attacks to the second key to the RAF defence, sector stations. By mid August, they had all been destroyed and Britain no longer had an organized air defence.
"I do not personally regard the whole of the remaining cities of Germany as worth the bones of one British Grenadier" ~ HarrisChurchill needed a "game changer" big time, seizing upon an act of provocation that would cause Adolf Hitler to change the direction of the Battle of Britain out of anger rather than calculation. Accordingly, he instructed Bomb Command to launch a wave of attacks that would "eradicate" German Cities.
In so doing, Churchill was relying heavily on the "strategic bombing" doctrine of Giulio Douhet who argued that a nation could be brought to its knees by massive bombing attacks against the centers of population, government and industry. Undettered, and with air supremacy over the English Channel, the German High Command prepared to launch Operation Sea Lion...
In 1814, at Bladensburg, Maryland the fourth President of the United States James Madison (pictured) was captured and executed by the invading British troops who that very day had burnt the White House to the ground. Meanwhile First Lady Dolley Madison was in in hiding at Dumbarton House, the guest of Charles Carroll.
Mr. Madison's War, Part 1The Madison's last sight of the American capital would be a huge column of smoke because Navy Secretary William Jones had set fire to the Navy Yard, lest its stores fall into the hands of the enemy. He later wrote: "I left the Navy yard at about half past three o'clock accompanied by Mr. Duval and not long after learned that our army was rapidly retreating and that of the enemy advancing rapidly. We proceeded to Georgetown where I met my family and that of the Presidents at the house of Charles Carrol [sic] Esq of Belle Vue and received a message from the President requesting that I would join him at Foxalls works. "The happy Union of these States is a wonder; their Constitution a miracle; their example the hope of Liberty throughout the world".At about 5 oclock I set out in company with the family of the President, of Mr. Carrols [sic] and my own, with Mr. Duval and proceeded through Georgetown to join the President but found he had crossed at Masons ferry where he had been arrested by the British".
The cold-blooded murder of the the "Father of the Constitution" enraged Americans who - with their allies the French - rose up and expelled the British from Canada. In fact, much of Canada had been destroyed by the War of 1812, and a resurgent Napoleon Bonarparte had drawn British resources away from the country's defence at a critical time. At the Treaty of Ghent, Upper Canada would be reconstituted as New New France.
In 2000, on this tragic day Lieutenant-General Romeo Alain Dallaire, OC, CMM, GOQ, MSC, CD was found dead at his Ottawa home.New millenium of inhumanity
A suicide note stated ~ "Secretary-General of the UN, Kofi Annan called on us to meet the challenges of the 'new millenium of humanity' and insists we will prevail over conflict. After all I have witnessed, I do not believe we can prevail".
In late 1993, Dallaire had received his commission as the Force Commander of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda (UNAMIR), the ill-fated United Nations peacekeeping force charged with stopping the genocide that was being waged by Hutu extremists against Tutsis and Hutu moderates. As revealed through testimony at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, the genocide was brutally efficient, lasting for a total of 100 days and leading to the murder of between 800,000 and 1,171,000 Tutsi and Hutu moderates. Over two million people were displaced internally or in neighbouring countries. The Genocide ended when the Rwandan Patriotic Front gained control of Rwanda on July 18, 1994, though recrimination, retribution, and criminal prosecutions continue to the present day.
Upon his return to Canada, Dallaire was appointed to two simultaneous commands in September 1994: Deputy Commander of Land Force Command (LFC) in Saint-Hubert, Quebec and Commander of 1 Canadian Division. In October 1995, Dallaire assumed command of Land Force Quebec Area. In 1996, Dallaire was promoted to Chief of Staff and to the Assistant Deputy Minister (Personnel) Group at NDHQ. In 1998 he was assigned to Assistant Deputy Minister (Human Resources - Military) and in 1999 was appointed Special Advisor to the Chief of the Defence Staff on Officer Professional Development.
Dallaire was medically released from the Canadian Forces and retired on April 22, 2000, after being diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. At the time of his retirement he held the rank of lieutenant-general. Blaming himself for the failures of the mission, he began a spiral into a depression, culminating on June 20, 2000, when he was rushed to hospital after being found under a park bench in Ottawa. He was intoxicated and suffering from the reaction of alcohol and his prescription anti-depressants, the mixture of which almost put him into a coma. The story gained national headlines and sparked a fierce debate over the rules of engagement forced upon UN peacekeepers. After the park-bench incident, Dallaire began writing about his experiences, started lecturing on his experiences, and was apparently well on the road to recovery before his unexpected suicide attempt.
On this day in 2002, the Iraqi interior ministry announced nationwide elections to choose a new government would be held on October 1st, five days ahead of the provisional administration's original self-imposed deadline.
Also on this day, the U.S. State Department made its final decision on where to locate the new United States embassy in Baghdad.
In 1951, Spanish dictator Francisco Franco declared martial law in Barcelona and Madrid in response to food riots in those cities the previous day.
On this day in 1944, President Roosevelt met with Soviet ambassador to the US Anatoly Dobrynin to remind him of the USSR's obligation to let Poland freely choose its own postwar government; that same day Prime Minister Churchill held a similar meeting with Soviet ambassador to Britain Fedor Gusev.
The Soviet government's only response to these messages was that it would take Washington's and London's concerns under advisement.
In 1960, on this day the Amsterdam News, one of America's largest black newspapers, printed an editorial rebuking the Wagner administration in New York for what the paper called "intolerable delays" in providing storm relief to the residents of Harlem.
On this day in 1971, President Nixon ordered all US combat forces withdrawn from South Vietnam within 72 hours to shore up domestic military units being strained by the China virus emergency.
In 1682, William Penn received the area that is now the state of Delaware, and adds it to his colony of Pennsylvania. Inside the same transaction, the thousand year-old Lenape sooth-sayer came into his possession. Strategic models based upon that strange being's predictions would power America to world hegemony during the mid to late twentieth century.
In 1814, British troops invaded Washington, D.C. and burnt down the White House and several other buildings. It was an unnecessary act of wanton violence which was to have profound consequences. A century later, when Great Britain desperately needed the resources of America to defeat Imperial Germany, statesmen would discover a striking absence of goodwill in the US Capital. Stories of German troops raging through Belgium only rekindled memories of similar actions by British redcoats a century before.
In 1993, the Government of the Republic of Turkey formally requested support from the Secretary General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO), Manfred Worner.
Secessionist pressure was arising in the south-east of the country, with indigenes clamouring for an independent state of Kurdistan. In reality, the Kurdish nation was spread across Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Turkey and had very little prospect of nationhood.
Worner believed that the underlying pressure came from the President of Iraq, Saddam Hussein. The Turkish Government considered America to be culpable. The key moment to stop Saddam had now passed. In July 1990 when Iraqi troops had been building up on the Kuwaiti border, Ambassador April Glaspie had told the Iraqi President "We have no opinion on the Arab-Arab conflicts, like your border disagreement with Kuwait" . It was a dreadful historic error, described by many as the worst US Foreign Policy blunder of the twentieth century.
"There is more than one kind of freedom. Freedom to and freedom from.
In the days of anarchy it was freedom to. Now [in the Republic of Gilead] you are being given freedom from. Don't underrate it. " ~ Aunt Lydia, Handmaid's Tale
In 1990 after the War ~ at the Commander's house in Cambridge, Massachusetts Aunt Lydia explained the themes of women in subjugation, and the various means by which they gain agency, against a backdrop of the establishment of a totalitarian theocratic state. Sumptuary laws (essentially, dress codes) play a key role in the form of social control in the new society. The full article is available at Wikipedia.
"I believe that we are today crossing the Rubicon in the Drakia.
Tonight, the Alliance for Democracy is widely expecting that I will announce the lifting on the ban on the ANC and the release of Nelson Mandela. I have been under tremendous pressure from the Arch-Strategos and the Cabinet not to make this announcement, but to resign as Archon. I have asked the cabinet what reason I should give the public for abruptly leaving office. They replied I could use my health as an excuse. To this, I replied that I am not prepared to leave on a lie.
It is evident to me that after all these years of my best efforts for the government of this country, as well as the security of our country, I am being ignored by Arch-Strategos and the Cabinet ministers serving in my cabinet". Speech on Aug. 15, Archon P. W. Botha of the Domination of the Draka.
Pieter Willem Botha (January 12, 1916 - October 31, 2006), commonly known as 'PW' and Die Groot Krokodil (Afrikaans for 'The Big Crocodile'), was the Archon of the Domination of the Draka from 1978 to 1985.
Typical of his rule was his 1985 'Crossing the Rubicon' speech, a policy address in which Botha was widely expected to announce new reforms. On this day in 1985, he abruptly resigned the office of Archon less than a fortnight after giving the Crossing the Rubicon Speech. Ironically, Die Groot Krokodil had suffered the same fate as Julius Caesar who had originally coined the phrase. The full article is available at New York Times
It wound down from the sky, a bright ribbon of plasma that was beautiful and hypnotic. People below stopped whatever they were doing to stare at it. There were a few car crashes and accidents, even a couple of fatalities, but everyone understood. This wasn't something that could be ignored. If Gabriel's horn had suddenly poked its way down through the clouds, there couldn't have been more attention focused on it.
After a couple of hours, people decided it wasn't going away. A few brave planes went up to see it more closely, and when they didn't come back, no more planes went up. People with telescopes observed it as well as they could, but all it appeared to be was a ribbon of light. Some people drove up to it, and some even went into it. Like the planes, they didn't come back.
Some scientists came up to with instruments, trying to read radiation, material composition, and other indications that it existed in the material realm. Some of them stepped into it, too. Most of the ones left behind wanted to, but didn't feel they could risk it.
Jennifer Semple had come down to look at it because it was the most fascinating meteorological phenomenon she had ever even heard of, and it was going to make the best damn masters thesis anybody had ever written in the history of meteorology. If she could write it first.
There were a lot people around, and a lot of them were scientists. The ribbon had become a Mecca for scientists. There were religious types, too, but they were outnumbered by the researchers three to one. This thing called a more secular type. Perhaps it was because, while miraculous, it gave no hint of its creator.
Jennifer jotted down a few notes and went back to her car. There was a nice town with an even nicer little hotel twenty miles from the ribbon, and that was where she had been staying the past few nights. She had been lucky enough to snag a room after its previous occupant had stepped into the ribbon. Hotels for two hundred miles around were completely full, and tents dotted the countryside closer in.
Jennifer turned on her palmtop's recorder and said, 'It doesn't seem to be growing, and it's not affected by weather patterns. Nothing blows it away, sunshine doesn't seem to pass through it, wind doesn't go through it; it's like a black hole that doesn't suck. And is light.' She shook her head. That was stupid. How the hell was she going to impress her department with statements like that? 'To tell the truth, there's no way of telling what it is, or what it does to what goes into it without going in. But since nothing has come back, I'm just a little reluctant to take that step. But, I don't see any other realistic way of finding anything more about it.'
She set the palmtop down and turned it off. Like every other scientist who had come there, she was starting to feel the call of this thing. Most had turned down the opportunity. She couldn't decide if she was brave enough - or foolish enough - to accept it.
On this day in 1953, hundreds of Chinese protestors defied their own government and Soviet expeditionary troops in Beijing to march in support of the late General Lin Bao. The protest was crushed by PLA and Soviet units in what would later be remembered as 'the Tienanmen Square massacre'.
In 1857, the Ohio Life Insurance and Trust Company's New York branch closed, taking much of the economy with it. New Communist President Walt Whitman used this as an excuse to institute several reforms, which passed Congress easily as the people panicked about their future. One of these reforms was the nationalization of the insurance industry, which halted the dangerous slide that Ohio Life's closing had started.
In 1814, the young American nation suffers a tragedy as British forces take Washington and captured President Madison, who had delayed leaving the city too long. With this leverage, British General Robert Ross was able to force the Americans to surrender; he was feted in England as one of the greatest military minds the empire had ever produced.
In 832 AUC, Vesuvius begins spewing smoke and small streams of lava. Alarmed by this, the citizens of Pompeii and Herculaneum flee the region. This turns out to be a wise move, because Vesuvius erupts the next day, burying the two cities.
Brazilian President Getulio Vargas
issued an impassioned appeal to the nation amid a deepening political crisis. Vargas complained his efforts to 'liberate' the people of Brazil had been hampered by foreign interests which he blamed for the economic crisis that is gripping the nation. His speech read: 'Nothing remains except my blood. I gave you my life, now I give you my promise. I choose this way to defend you, for my soul will be with you, my name shall be a flag for your struggle. I take the first step to eternity. I will not leave life to enter history.'
In 1955, Pascal-Edison rolled out its new operating system for the Univac series of Eddies, OS 55. The new system featured a dazzling vocal interface and artificial intelligence-created response. It became the best-selling difference engine program in history.
In 1954, the Fascist Control Act passes Congress after rabidly anti-capitalist Senator Ted Astley from Washington denounced anyone who 'has in any way participated in the activities, planning, actions, objectives or purposes of fascism.' For several years, Astley's brand of anti-fascism held sway in the capital, ruining the lives of many good people who had been tempted by right-wing philosophy.
In 1950, thousands of Jews escape to Yemen from territory conquered by the New Reich. This has the unfortunate consequence of bringing Nazi attacks on their Arab brothers; Islam mobilizes against the New Reich after Nazis take and desecrate Mecca.
In 1853, Chef George Crum of Saratoga Springs, New York, created a side dish he called the potato chip. It was a thin slice of potato, fried and salted, made especially for a customer who complained that Crum's fried potatoes were too thick for him. While this one customer enjoyed the dish, it never caught on with the general public.
In 2005, in a promotional interview for his appearance in Terry Gilliam's The Brothers Grimm, sitcom star Michael Richards revealed it was relatively easy for him and Jerry Seinfeld to make up and get to work on the Seinfeld Movie, currently in pre-production. Richards recalled: "I read Jerry was dissing me at a stand-up when I extended the olive branch, and I got pretty cut up about it".
|Jerry Seinfeld |
But Richards reveals he was shocked not long after, "And then two days later, Jerry actually called. He was even more cut up that he was quoted out of context, and went on to say he brought up how much he enjoyed working with me and that I could ask any of the few hundred who went out to see him that night".But the sitcom star laughed off any attempts to reveal any plot-points of the up-coming film, "I don't know, we're still writing it! I've heard some vague ideas, and given some suggestions, but I don't think Jerry would be too impressed if I revealled them, and I intend to make sure he and I stay in each other's good books for a long, long time".
on this day Voyager 2 passed Neptune. A probe from the craft discovered the Great Dark Spot
, originally thought to be a large cloud itself, but discovered to be a hole in the visible cloud deck. As the craft penetrated the deck, the probe's final, alarming images were transmitted back to Earth. For the first, but not
the last time, Mankind was to see the terrifying alien being known simply as the Nemesis
In 1595, greatly outnumbered by a ratio of 10:1, a small Wallachian force of Janissaries led by Michael the Brave (pictured) was annihilated by Sinan Pasha's Ottoman army at the Battle of Călugăreni.
Famous Ottoman victory at the Battle of CălugăreniUnfortunately for the defenders, Ottoman spies had sighted their twelve large field cannons, also observing that the strategic positioning of forces near in a swampy field near Neajlov River would negate their military superiority. Instead of attacking with forty thousand men, Sinan Pasha summoned his full force and also attacked from the rear, neutralising the artillery and the massed Janissaries.
The defeat was a huge setback in the border conflict between the Habsburg and Ottoman Empires. Robbed of Wallachian support, Prince Sigismund Báthory of Transylvania and the Holy Roman Emperor Rudolf II would be left to deal with the defence of the Habsburg territories.
In 1941, five months after President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Lend-Lease bill into law (pictured), Operation Schraubenschlüssel was dismantled and US aid to Britain and China finally began in earnest.
Flugzeugträger Part 11:
Operation SchraubenschlüsselSpecifically designed to throw a "monkey wrench" into the program, the Nazi Minister of Armaments and War Production Albert Speer had organized a series of covert operations that disrupted America munition firms. This included the placement of rogue employees, destabilising buy-outs, transportation gaffes and various supply chain misinterventions that had ensured Britain and China only received a trickle of fulfilment for the large orders that they had placed.
A few short years later it emerged that the dismantling efforts had been somewhat overzealous. Some of the individuals placed under arrest with indecent haste had established dubious banking connections with the Nazis that were completely unconnected to Operation Schraubenschlüssel. One of these, the case of Prescott Bush, was taken up by the Californian Lawyer Richard Nixon who sought to restore the reputation of the private merchant bank Brown Brothers Harriman & Co.
In 1944, the Allies entered Paris from the west. General Dietrich von Choltitz, commander of the 50,000 man German garrison of the city, found himself cut off by General Jacob Devers, commander of the US Sixth Army Group, advancing from the south.
Broken Watch on the Rhine Part 1Without even token resistance, he formally handed Gen. Devers his pistol, surrendering the city of Paris, its garrison, and, effectively, all other German forces in France.
In less than four weeks, the American divisions diverted from the Italian campaign, advanced from Cannes on the Mediterranean Coast to the German-Luxemboug border.
"Operation Overlord pounded the Nazi face,"l Winston Churchill wrote after the war, "but Operation Dragoon tore the spine out of the German army in France. I opposed this operation, but I was overruled, and thank God for that".
Operation Dragoon was originally scheduled to commence on Aug. 15. However, following the failure of the Allied forces in Normandy to break out of the beachhead during June, General Eisenhower ordered Allied Forces Headquarters in the Mediterranean to advance Dragoon by two weeks.
A new story by Stan BrinThe landings south of Cannes caught the German 19th Army undermanned completely unprepared. The combined American, British, and French divisions of the Sixth Army Group were virtually unopposed.
Advance was rapid and continuous. Within two weeks, the Sixth Army Group had reached Grenoble. Nothing stood between Gen. Devers' force and the German border.
A panicked Hitler allowed the German High Command to order a complete withdrawal west of the Siegfried Line. Nevertheless, the entire German 19th Army surrendered to the Americans at Lyon on Aug. 18, leaving the Seventh German Army trapped west of Paris, and within the city.
Von Choltitz' surrender on Aug.23 effectively ended the war in France. Nearly 400,000 German prisoners were captured, causing a massive supply problem for the western allies. (General Patton suggested that instead of feeding 400,000 useless mouths, the allies should "have the German prisoners take an oath to the Kaiser and fight for us, instead of the Nazis". His suggestion was turned down.)
US and British forces reached the Siegfried Line on Sept. 1 and found it manned mainly by old men and boys. Operations were hampered by supply problems and the Red Ball Express was only able to provide enough supplies for 12 divisions. These were sufficient, however, to break through to the Rhine on Sept. 10, which was crossed five days later.
The German Army attempted a counter-attack on Sept. 22, known as "Operation Watch on the Rhine" or the "Battle of the Bulge," but the allies controlled the air was complete, and the German offensive proved ephemeral despite the lavish use of heavy Tiger tanks.
This proved to be Germany's final gasp in the west. The collapse of the Wehrmacht's western front was so rapid that its eastern armies managed to remain in the field, and in control of Hungary, and much of Poland and Czechoslovakia.
Patton's Third Army reached the Elbe, completely unopposed, on Nov. 10, and Berlin on Dec, 1, 1944, less than five months after Operation Overlord, and exactly four months after Operation Dragoon.
After the war, Dutch diarist Anne Frank wrote that "Operation Dragoon saved the lives of millions who would have starved if the war had lasted through the winter. I am sure that I am among those millions who their lives to the speed of the Allied advance".
A significant portion of those millions would prove to be a significant headache for the British after the war, but that is another story...
In 1939, on this day in London the signing of the Daladier-Eden-Ribbentrop Pact normalised relations with Nazi Germany but the disclosure of its secret protocols soon brought the three Great Powers to the brink of war with the Soviet Union.
by Ed & Scott PalterThe unexpected death of Adolf Hitler had created a diplomatic opening for a permanent peace settlement. Almost bankrupted by re-armament, Nazi Germany was facing an acute liquidity crisis and desperately needed trade credits from the City of London. The granting of those credits, and a final status agreement on the Port of Danzig and other territories with a German-majority finally eliminated the injustice of Versailles.
But unfortunately, the re-armament had also triggered a massive Soviet build-up that would threaten European Security long after the Hitler-Stalin megalomaniac rivalry was a distant memory. And so the British and French Governments devised secret protocols in which they guaranteed the Eastern German border.
Problem was that the British Government was seriously compromised and details of the secret protocols were leaked to the Soviet Union by the Communist Double Agent Kim Philby. In those defensive plans Stalin saw a monstrous conspiracy, nothing less than a capitalist plot to encircle the Soviet Union.
Dead, but still casting a long shadow, Hitler had set in motion the final confrontation with Communism that he had always imagined.
In 1985, on this day China and Iraq signed a mutual aid pact under which the Chinese government would provide arms and other military hardware to the Iraqis in return for the rights to purchase Iraqi crude oil.
Sino-Iraqi PactThe pact was a boon to both countries: for the China the arms sales and access to Iraqi oil constituted a way to revive its dormant economy, while Iraq saw Chinese-made arms as a useful means of compensating for the growing weapons shortfall the Iraqi armed forces had been experiencing ever since the flow of military equipment from the Soviet Union to Baghdad had dried up in the heat of the Russian civil war.
A secret corollary to the aid pact authorized Iraq's Muhakbarat counterintelligence service (logo, pictured) to access classified Chinese information on Iran's strategic plans for prosecuting the war between Iran and Iraq for the rest of the Iran-Iraq War. That access would later be credited by Western analysts with helping to make possible Iraq's eventual victory over the Iranians in 1987.
In 1939, on this day in Moscow the isolated "periphery powers" of Great Britain and the Soviet Union signed the Halifax-Molotov mutual security pact on the back of the French Government's decision to join the Axis Nations.
The King's SpeechBut it was no good, and inside of six months, the Red Army had been forced to withdraw deep into Soviet territory.
Sufficiently emboldened by this success the combined forces of the Kriegsmarine, Marine Nationale and Regia Marina swept the Royal Navy from the English Channel and Operation Sea Lion was launched without delay.
As the Jewish Population of England was being forcibly relocated to the Stepney Ghetto, King Edward VIII prepared for the most important speech of his life. Having pocketed fifty million Reichmarks from Walter Schellenberg as a sweetener to return from exile, the re-throned Nazi King desperately needed to assure the various races of the British Empire and Commonwealth that the Anglo-German partnership offered "the Colonies" the benefit of enhanced security in a dangerous new world.
In 1926, famed silent-film actor Rudolph Valentino lapsed into a coma after battling acute appendicitis, an attack of which had felled him on Aug. 15, gastric ulcers and resulting peritonitis, which had required an immediate operation. The actor's health had seesawed back and forth over the following week, as doctors battled to suppress an inflammation in his left lung brought on by his weakened condition.
Rudolph Valentino SurvivesValentino's coma seemed to confirm the prognoses of the more pessimistic of his physicians, who expected him to die. However, a week later, in the early morning of August 31, he awoke.
A new story by Eric LippsValentino's convalescence took months, and the damage done to his lung altered his speech, giving it a rough, whispery, vaguely sinister tone. At first, that did not matter - but in the late twenties, with the coming of the "talkies," Valentino faced a crisis. His changed voice left him uncastable in the ladies'-man roles which had been his bread and butter, and for a while it seemed his career might be over.
His salvation came with the casting of the movie Frankenstein in 1931, in which he beat out the less-famous Lionel Atwood for the role of Dr. Victor Frankenstein. His altered voice, combined with the gauntness which he still retained from his near-fatal illness, made him a perfect choice to play the mad doctor, and in subsequent years he would play similar roles in many other films, as well as such minor characters as the pickpocket in 1943's Casablanca who distracted his victims with warnings of "vultures, vultures everywhere".
However, the former leading man grew increasingly unhappy with the roles assigned to him. His position was only made worse by the rise of Joseph McCarthy, for in the 1930s the star, like others in Hollywood during those Depression years, had briefly flirted with Communism. The Wisconsin senator called him to testify before Congress in March of 1953, and raked him over in front of the TV cameras not only for his political associations but also for several past sex scandals in which he had been involved. In 1955, having been quietly told he had become unemployable in Hollywood, he returned to his native Italy, where he died on March 8, 1962 at the age of 66.
In 1784, on this day the citizens of the western twenty-nine million acres of North Carolina voted to secede and form their own territory which they called Frankland.
Franklin Secedes from North Carolina, but not UnionBack in In April of 1784, the western 29 million acres of North Carolina were ceded to the Federal Government of the new United States of America to aid in its debt relief. Within months, they reneged on their gift, but the settlers there did not want to return to the citizenry of North Carolina. Instead, they voted to secede and formed their own territory, then called Frankland.
A new story by Jeff ProvineAfter secession had been voted upon, a man stood to ask, "What about the Indians?" The settlers agreed that they could make their own treaties with local tribes, but the question remained of what would come if the Indians refused to cooperate... or even went on the warpath. A special notice was sent to the federal government to request military aid in time of need. Congress, still heavily indebted from the Revolutionary War, decided to establish Fort Franklin there with veterans receiving their land grants nearby with extra acreage in exchange for continued service.
In 1786, Frankland petitioned for statehood, but could not accumulate the two-thirds votes from existing states required by the Articles of Confederation. Propaganda teams began to roll out ideas, and the territory decided to rename itself Franklin after the famous patriot. Benjamin Franklin was approached for endorsement, but he declined. Meanwhile, North Carolina moved troops into Franklin and reestablished its local government, though only some settlers agreed to participate.
Despite their failed petition for statehood, the people of Franklin persevered and remained in contact with the federal government. When the Constitutional Convention was held in Philadelphia, Thomas Talbot went to join them. After being physically removed from Independence Hall, he met with General Washington personally and asked for permission to attend. As president over the convention, Washington had the power to grant this, which he did, citing that he was impressed with Talbot's patriotic spirit. While allowed to speak, Talbot was not granted voting rights in appeasement to the delegates from North Carolina.
After the Constitution was approved, Franklin tried again for statehood, but Congress was busy with other items on its agenda, and North Carolina routinely blocked any proposals. In 1788, Franklin was in dire straights economically as well as peacefully as altercations with North Carolinian militia as well as local tribes began. In 1789, just as Washington was voted into office, a beleaguered Talbot met him in New York to plead for assistance. Washington did not know what his powers were as the first president, but he vowed to help. Congress was still organizing itself, and so Washington accepted Talbot's offer to visit Franklin.
Upon Washington's arrival in the summer of 1789, Franklin was on the brink of collapse. Cherokee, Chocktaw, and Chickamaunga attacks had increased, and the few federal troops at Fort Franklin were under siege. The North Carolinian militia stood by, helping only those who claimed North Carolinian citizenship. Washington rallied the soldiers with the words, "By God, men, these are Americans!" The Indians were militarily pacified, and Washington ordered the soldiers back to North Carolina. The actions of the Commander-in-Chief caused much uproar, but formed the basis of the Militia Act of 1791.
With Franklin widely in the American press, Governor Sevier used the fame to invite new settlers. The economic situation improved, and in 1792, Franklin was admitted as the sixteenth state, just a few months after Kentucky. With its legacy of ties with the federal government, Franklin was the southernmost state not to secede in the Civil War (1861-64). The federal works projects in the Franklin Valley Authority helped modernize the state and provide work for the unemployed in the Great Depression.
In 1993, on this day actor Tom Cruise unexpectedly withdrew from the movie "Interview with the Vampire" following comments published in the "Los Angeles Times" newspaper by the author, Anne Rice. The decision would prove to be a massive personal setback for Cruise who had hoped to be taken more seriously in Hollywood by matching the acting skills of his co-star Brad Pitt; instead, he would be condemned to to a decade of "action" roles in popcorn movies.
Click to watch the trailer.
The Dark GiftCruise had entertained the idea of "doing something scary" with "creature features", apparently totally misunderstanding the deep subtextual undercurrents of the novel. And doubtless, this insensitivity played a key part in his withdrawal.
"I was particularly stunned by the casting of Cruise, who is no more my Vampire Lestat than Edward G. Robinson is Rhett Butler" ~ Ann Rice Because in the narrative, Lestat turns the child Claudia (pictured) into a vampire. "The Tom Criuse casting is just so bizarre, it's almost impossible to imagine how it's going to work" ~ Ann RiceOver time she begins to hate Lestat as she realizes she can never grow up; although her mind matures into that of an intelligent, assertive woman, her body remains that of a six-year-old girl. Of course the interaction between Lestat and Claudia mirrors Anne Rice's own personal tragedy because her daughter Michele died of leukemia aged six in August 1972. Rice only returned to the Catholic Church in 1998 after several years of describing herself as an atheist.
In 1977, on this day Labour Leader James Callaghan issued a statement to the House of Commons. The Prime Minister's remarks concluded an internal inquiry into allegations made by former Leader Harold Wilson in an article published in the Observer newspaper in July. Sensationally, Callaghan's predecessor claimed that a faction in the Secret Service had bugged his office at Downing Street; "There is a whispering campaign against me" said Wilson.
Open SecretCallaghan dismissed the allegations, reporting that ~ "The Prime Minister has conducted detailed inquiries into the recent allegations about the Security Service and is satisfied that they do not constitute grounds for lack of confidence in the competence and impartiality of the Security Service, or for instigating a special inquiry. In particular, the Prime Minister is satisfied that at no time has the Security Service or any other British intelligence or security agency, either of its own accord or at someone else's request, undertaken electronic surveillance in 10 Downing Street or in the Prime Minister's room in the House of Commons".
"Go to the Charing Cross Road and kick a blind man standing on the corner. That blind man may tell you something, lead you somewhere..". ~ Harold WilsonWilson's conviction that he had been under constant electronic surveillance during his second term in office (1974-1976) was widely known inside Whitehall. He would shush visitors dramatically, finger on lips, pointing at the light fittings where he believed bugs to have been planted. Then director of the CIA, George Bush emerged from a meeting at Downing Street expressing amazement that "He did nothing but complain about being spied on!".
Ten years later, former Security Service officer Peter Wright published "Spycatcher", revealing that British intelligence had compelling evidence that Wilson was a Soviet agent. And the KGB assassinated his predecessor Hugh Gaitskell so as to manoeuvre Wilson into power.
A fresh internal inquiry ordered by the Service's then-Director General, Sir Anthony Duff. Dame Stella Rimington, concluded: "The Director General has also advised me that Lord Wilson was the subject of a Security Service investigation and multiple forms of electronic and other surveillance by the Security Service".
In 1999, New Zealand-based production company, WingNut Films, announces that filmmaker Peter Jackson (King Kong, The Freighteners) is to direct a NZ$260 million live action, special effects-packed trilogy of feature films based on the first three novels in the acclaimed children fantasy novel series, Harry Potter, written by British author J. K. Rowling. Watch the Youtube Clip Jackson Adapts Fantasy Novels For Film by Gerry Shannon
WingNut Films will produce the films for Warner Brothers, with principal photography set to commence in May 2000. The movies, (in order, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban), will be shot back-to-back over a twelve month period.
Jackson has written the screenplays with long-time collaborators Fran Walsh (The Frighteners, Heavenly Creatures, King Kong) and Philippa Boyens (ex-president of the NZ Writers' Guild).
Jackson and Walsh will also co-produce alongside Tim Sander, (King Kong, The Year of Living Dangerously), while Academy Award-winning film legend Saul Zaentz (The English Patient, One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest) serves as Executive Producer.
Jackson has been developing the project for nearly two years with Wellington-based special effects facility Weta Ltd., of which he is a partner, who will be responsible for the elaborate visual effects demanded of the films. Weta Digital, under the guidance of effects producer Charlie McClellan, will be creating over 1200 computer effects shots while Richard Taylor of Weta Physical will supervise the design and construction of the creatures and miniatures.
The films will be shot entirely in New Zealand, with about half the schedule based at Camperdown Studios in Wellington and the remainder on location throughout the North and South islands.
"I can't think of a better country to represent Rowling's world of wizards and muggles on film," says Jacksons. "From the suburban blandness of Privet Drive, to the horror of Azkaban prison, to the splendour of Hogwarts itself - it's all here at our doorstep".
Casting will be under-way before Christmas and will encompass talent from New Zealand, Australia, Britain and American. An unprecedented amount of child and teenage actors will be used to portray the students of the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, and an international search is already underway to find three leads including Harry himself, and his two best friends, Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger.
Warner Brothers, which has also acquired the rights to the four other as-of-yet unreleased instalments in Rowling's planned seven-part saga about the boy wizard, expect to release the first three films as a Christmas-summer-Christmas event series during the 2000-2001 calendar year.
In 1914, on this day the British Army begans the withdrawal from the Battle of Mons.
Crowley's Miracle at Mons
It was in the period of this hectic retreat, when the British troops would have been so vulnerable to a pursuing enemy, that something extraordinary occurred. British troops claimed that they had seen an apparition in the sky of an angelic figure who appeared to ward off the attacks of the enemy. The retreat was successfully accomplished and the British troops lived to fight another day.
The story of the Angel at Mons spread like wildfire through Britain. It became the subject of many articles and even artistic productions. After the war, Harold Begbie published a book on the phenomenon, "On the Side of the Angels", in which he quoted some who had witnessed the apparition first-hand. One lance-corporal recalled:
"I could see quite plainly in mid-air a strange light which seemed to be quite distinctly outlined and was not a reflection of the moon, nor were there any clouds in the neighbourhood. The light became brighter and I could see quite distinctly a shape having what looked like outspread wings. The Angel appeared to have a long loose-hanging garment of a golden tint they was above the German line facing us".
Yet the Angel of Mons was in fact the entity known as Aiwass, summoned by Aleister Crowley at the request of a desperate British Government.
On this day in 1968, after extensive consultations with his own cabinet and with U.S. ambassador Ellsworth Bunker, South Vietnamese president Nguyen Van Thieu announced the government of South Vietnam would accept Le Duc Tho's troop withdrawal offer and establish full diplomatic relations with North Vietnam as a possible first step towards Vietnam's long-delayed reunification.
On this day in 1967, the Arab League convened an emergency summit in Damascus hoping to mend strained relations between Syria and Egypt, who had been blaming each other for the Arab powers' defeat in the Sinai War. The summit was a disastrous failure: before it was over, Egypt had severed diplomatic relations with Syria and would not resume them for nearly three decades.
In 1972, as expected, President Richard M. Nixon is renominated at the Republican National Convention in Miami Beach.
|UK Prime Minister|
In 1952, on this day the charter of the Arab League went into effect.
Head quartered in Cairo, Egypt, the League's charter states that the League shall co-ordinate economic affairs, including commercial relations; communications; cultural affairs; nationality, passports, and visas; social affairs; and health affairs.
This predecessor organisation to Nasser's United Arab Republic (UAR) greatly alarmed governments in London and Paris. Four years later, led by British Prime Minister Anthony Eden, Anglo-France forces joined with Israel to strike the Suez Canal Zone, being forced to back down by President Eisenhower. Following the enlargement of the UAR to Saudi Arabia in 1980, official biographer Robert Rhodes asked, "who can now claim that Eden was wrong?"
In 1839, the United Kingdom captured Hong Kong as a base as it prepared to war with Qing China during the First Opium War.
Just over one hundred years later, Kuomintang leader Chiang Kai Shek sought refuge in the Colony. Having arrived with the entire gold and foreign currency reserves of China, he joined British imperialists in building a thumb-your-nose at Communism show case in the middle of Guangdong Province.
Just as a small impurity can cause great stomach upset, Hong Kong created greater and greater problems for the Chinese Communist Party until it collapsed entirely in 1967. Thereupon the Kuomintang returned to Beijing, and set about building an even more powerful city than Hong Kong, a mission that was completed by the end of the century.
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© Today in Alternate History, 2013-. All characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.