Thursday, 21 February 2013

King John's Plan to Convert England to Islam

By 1213 King John of England had alienated practically everybody it was possible for a medieval English king to alienate: His barons, the guilds, the knights, the peasantry, the Church, the Emperor, the King of France. 
Desperate to hold on to his position and confound his numerous enemies, John decided on a dramatic course of action: He would embrace Islam and turn England into a Moslem country! He thereupon dispatched a delegation to the most powerful Moslem ruler he knew of. This happened to be the Emir of Morocco, who rejoiced in the name Abu Abdullah Mohammed al-Nasir and was the fourth ruler of the fanatically Shi'ite Muwahid dynasty.

Mohammed was not in the best frame of mind to receive John's ambassadors. As well as his dominions in North Africa, he held a swathe of land in southern Spain. However, the Christian Spanish had inflicted a crushing defeat on him the previous year at the battle of Las Navas de Tolosa, and he was plotting his counterattack. At this difficult point in his fortunes, three Englishmen showed up at his court: the knights Tho monk in a habit, padding into the presemas Hardington and Ralph FitzNicholas, and Master Robert, a London cleric.  The envoys told Mohammed that John "would voluntarily give up to him himself and his kingdom, and if he pleased would hold it as tributary from him; and that he would also abandon the Christian faith, which he considered false, and would faithfully adhere to the law of the prophet Mohammed." Hardington also gave a glowing account of England, of the richness of its soil and the skill and industry of its people.

 After hearing John's petition, he thought briefly on it. Then he delivered his judgment.

Said Mohammed: "I never read or heard that any king possessing such a prosperous kingdom subject and obedient to him, would voluntarily ... make tributary a country that is free, by giving to a stranger that which is his own ... conquered, as it were, without a wound. I have rather read and heard from many that they would procure liberty for themselves at the expense of streams of blood, which is a praiseworthy action; but now I hear that your wretched lord, a sloth and a coward, who is even worse than nothing, wishes from a free man to become a slave, who is the most miserable of all huma beings." Mohammed concluded by wondering aloud why the English allowed such a man to lord over them — they must, he said, be very servile and soft — and by declaring that John was unworthy of any alliance with a Moslem ruler such as himself. He thereupon dismissed the envoys, warning them never to let him set eyes on them again: "For the infamy of that foolish apostate, your master, breathes forth a most foul stench to my nostrils."

Thus the plan was never put in place.

African samurai.

In 1579, the Jesuit Alessandro Valignano traveled to Japan accompanied by his African page. Upon hearing of his skin color, Nobunaga ordered him to be brought before him as an intriguing novelty. One anecdotal story says that Nobunaga had his men scrub the man vigouroulsy with soap and water to see if his skin color was paint.

When Valignano prepared to leave Japan, Nobunaga requested that the slave, now called Yasuke, be left behind for a time. He apparently spent much time with the Daimyo and was even present at Honno-ji where Nobunaga met his end at the hands of Akechi Mitsuhide. From there, Yasuke retired to the service of Nobunaga's heir, Nobutada. When Akechi's forces attacked Nobutada, Yasuke was said to have fought side by side with the Oda until overwhelming odds forced a surrender. 

With his surrender, Yasuke was brought before Akechi who thought him nothing more than a beast and decide that since he was not Japanese, he should be returned to the Jesuits, who were apparently relieved to see him safe.

The Shincho koki, known as the Lord Nobunaga Chronicle, states that Yasuke was," On the 23rd of the 2nd month [March 23, 1581], a black page (黒坊主 "kuro-bōzu") came from the Christian countries. He looked about 26 [24 or 25 by Western count] or 27 years old; his entire body was black like that of an ox. The man was healthy and good-looking. Moreover, his strength was greater than that of 10 men."

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Silvio Berlusconi...

Silvio Berlusconi

Born 29 September 1936) is an Italian politician and media tycoon who served three times as Prime Minister of Italy from 1994 to 1995, 2001 to 2006 and 2008 to 2011.

After driving his country into the toilet and violating innumerable laws Form some reason he seems to think he "MUST" run again for president. I empathize "must" cause in his own statement he says he does not want to contest but is doing so out of a feeling obligation.

Strangely enough,you would think a country in economic ruin would want to throw out the man who had orgies and was dead drunk half of the time, but no seems to say anything against him. I guess the Italians enjoy evil and ineffective weirdos[SUBTLE HINT].And as if to rub it in further the current prime minister Mario Monti who saved the country from total economic collapse was seriously in danger of losing his position due to Silvio.

It seems like the Italians are content with costing along ever since the roman empire, Indeed even the Greeks could not possibly hope to have a better scapegoat/distraction,from their role, in the rolling waters of the toilet that the euro zone has become.

Sure the euro zone can and most likely will, recover from the current rescission.
But really how can anyone even-think of vetoing for this man? The Italians are a strange people indeed. Maybe it is because a majority of the populace is aged,those old coots must enjoy having some one they can relate to or want to be[who doesn't want to be in an orgy?at 80 something that too] I blame the food though, so much pasta... well to be honest i don't know anything about Italian food [does the pasta that Domino's give count as Italian food?]

Forgetting the fact that he has promised to "give back" some tax money from an unpopular tax introduced to save the counties economy and people are supporting an alternate candidate cause he seems to be an exact opposite of his.

Whatever be the case the economic future of Italy does seem to be bright in case he should win. 

Afghanistan of the 50's

Having seen the title of the post, many probably thought that it would be about a wild, backward, medieval country with even worse living conditions than now. Some time ago, it was an absolutely different country. Afghan women made a career in medicine, went to the movies and studied at the universities of Kabul. Afghan factories produced fabrics and other goods. There was law and order and the government could implement such large infrastructure projects as the construction of hydroelectric plants and roads (though not without help from outside). Ordinary people had hope for the future… All this was destroyed.

The campus of the University of Kabul has changed little since then. It’s people who have changed. In the 50s-60s, the students preferred Western style clothes, and the young people of both sexes could freely communicate with each other.
Today, women hide their faces and a large part of their bodies, even in the capital. Only half a century later, men and women seem to live in different worlds.
In the 50s-60s women could make careers in such fields as medicine. 
Previously education was highly valued.
This incubator at the hospital of Kabul is very different from those which can be found now.
In the 1960s, almost half of Afghanistan’s population had access to health care, now only few do. Today, hospitals are overcrowded, and one in four children dies before his/her 4th year.
The Vaccine Production Center of Kabul in the 60s. Today, medical services are limited by several factors, one of them is lack of electricity. Less than 20% of Afghans have access to electricity, many homes are lit by oil lamps.
In the past, the central government of Afghanistan implemented various programs directed at the development of rural life. One of them is shown in the photo: nurses were sent to remote villages to treat people from cholera. Nowadays, it would be simply impossible because of the problems with security. The governmental health workers are often attacked by the groups of gunmen who want to create disorder and terror in society.
Formerly, there were Girl and Boy Scouts in Afghanistan. In the 50s-60s, such organizations were popular in the USA. The boys and girls of the primary and secondary schools learned about nature, camping and public safety.
Some time ago it was possible to watch a Hollywood movie, which are now restricted.

Light industries, as this plant located on the outskirts of Kabul, once gave great hope for the Afghan economy. But now, how can one work without electricity?
Now there are only small workshops in Afghanistan and opium became its largest exported product.
With the help of Germany, Afghanistan built its first hydroelectric power plant (pictured) in the early 50s. At that time it was considered a work of art. Now it still works, but, unfortunately, over the past eight years, the Afghan government hasn't built any other power plants. The only finished governmental project is the expansion of the shipping line to Uzbekistan.
A clothes factory. Some time ago, there was a feeling that Afghanistan had the bright future – its economy was booming.Then the greater part of cotton processed in this factory was cultivated by hand. 

The radio of the 60s broadcast the world and local news, music programs, jokes, political debates and even children’s programs. Radio Kabul (whose old offices you can see in this photo) was launched in the 1930s.
In today’s Afghanistan, there are a lot of private radio stations, satellite and television programs. However, the access to radio and television depends on electricity and that’s why their audience is limited. Only few families have generators at home.

Boutiques used to be very common for the Kabul of 50s-60s.
Today, furniture stores, like this one, are a real rarity. The greater part of furniture is made outside of Afghanistan.
Fruit markets seem the only thing that remained the same in modern Afghanistan.
The level of education of the administration of Kabul is now much lower than 50 years ago. Then, most officials had master degrees or doctorates. The Western style clothes were the norm. Today, the meeting of the government in Kabul is held among men with long beards, in turbans and traditional dresses.
The once strong and active defense forces of Afghanistan now faded in history. After the withdrawal of the Soviet troops from Afghanistan, Pakistan destroyed the armed forces of the country. The civil war of the 1990s, the constant pressure from the Taliban and the American intervention made the local security forces very difficult to organize, even considering that security remains the major concern of the country.
Now, it is hard to say exactly who is to blame for the decline of Afghanistan but we can say for sure that once a developing country is now destroyed almost completely.