Saturday, June 26, 2004

"Ich Bin Ein Berliner"

June 26th, 2004

in 1483, evidence is produced in Parliament that young Edward V, son of the late King Edward IV of England, is the product of a bigamous marriage, and therefore illegitimate and ineligible for the crown, as is his brother Richard. Their uncle, Richard of Gloucester, is urged by many nobles present to seize the crown for himself. Torn between love for his family and righteous indignation at the thought of a bastard on the throne of England, Richard proposes a compromise. He would adopt the boys as his own, rule as regent till Edward came of age, and then abdicate to the boy. After much wrangling, Parliament agreed to this, and Richard was crowned Richard III ten days later. He named Edward his son and heir, and upon his majority, willingly surrendered the crown to him. Richard’s reign is remembered for his fairness in civil matters and mercy to his enemies.

in 1483, Archbishop Richard of Gloucester was named by the College of Cardinals as the next Pope of the Holy British Empire, following the death of Pope Edward IV. Many cardinals of the Order of St. Lancaster objected, preferring Monsignor Henry Tudor of their own order, and this caused a holy war to break out between the 2 factions. In the ensuing battle, the Lancastrians won, and Henry was installed in 1485 as Pope Henry VII. The Holy British Empire mourned the change; His Holiness, Henry VII, was not the best leader they had had.

in 4561, after their captured air raft is shot down, General Pham Tat Tran leads a division of his men to ambush a Siamese unit. Taking their uniforms, they sow division between the Siamese and Chinese soldiers by staging raids on the Chinese in Siamese colors. This tactic succeeds brilliantly, and thousands of Siamese and Chinese soldiers are killed in the in-fighting over the next three days until Pham’s unit is discovered and the ruse is unmasked.

in 1962, Comrade President Rosenberg makes his famous “Ich bin ein Berliner” speech in East Berlin, decrying the wall that fascist Europe has built between itself and the enlightened socialism of the east. In this most famous speech of his career, he said, “There are those who say that communism is the wave of the future. Let them come to Berlin!” Thousands of dedicated communists heeded his call and descended on the divided city to work for the advancement of socialism there.

in 1974, after a brief separation, Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton reconciled their marriage, and remained together happily until Burton’s death ten years later. Ms. Taylor, distraught over losing her greatest love, never married again.

in 1998, Gone With The Wind is re-released. The nostalgic look at northern life prior to the devastation of the Civil War was one of the few films to have successful box office on both sides of the Mason-Dixon line when it was released in 1939. In the wake of the coming reunification of the Confederate and United States, though, it is seen by many on both sides of the border as unnecessarily inflammatory.

in the 45th year of Mikhaol’s reign, the Pharaoh’s ships smashed into Thebes, taking the rebels completely by surprise. By the end of the day, the capital city was once again under the Pharaoh’s control.

in 2003, Martian forces control ¾ of Greenland and penetrate deep into the Scandinavian peninsula. They also land on Tierra del Fuego in South America and begin fortifying their positions on Antarctica. Meanwhile, desperate Australian scientists manage to crack the secret of their power source; nanobots tearing down matter and generating small, controlled nuclear reactions. Jacob Sheridan, a nanotechnologist from New Zealand who had been recruited by the Aussie army, begins experiments to see if he can replicate these effects.

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