Thursday, May 31, 2007

The Greatest Sport

May 31st, 2007

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in 1891, General Theodore Monteith's 25,000 men march to the outskirts of Topeka, Kansas, where the Union general sends word to the rebels that they may surrender and avoid bloodshed at this time. His messenger is returned with a note from the leader of the rebellion, 'Sockless' Jerry Simpson: “I fear we must politely decline the general's noble request; however, should he wish to surrender to us, we guarantee good treatment for his men and a fair trial for himself and his fellow war criminal, Major Mark Wainwright.” General Monteith laughs out loud when he reads the reply, telling the messenger, “Well, I guess they didn't hear of Wainwright's promotion. All right, then. I guess we have to go through with this.” He prepared his men for the assault on Topeka the next day. Meanwhile, three Kansan commanders - Dell Lee Lewis in the south, Emmanuel Carter in the east, and Frederick S. Ogilvy in the west – converged on Topeka with almost 50,000 reinforcements for the rebels.

in 1999, King Arthur II returns home to London amid great fanfare for his successful mission to New Zealand. Prime Minister Kay Ector, overshadowed by His Majesty's involvement in the negotiations, feels somewhat left out of the celebrations, and Queen Gwen takes note of this. She approaches him privately at the official party at Buckingham Palace, and says, “My dear Prime Minister, you seem to have not caught the festive mood of our time. Is there anything I can do to help you?” Ector, uncomfortable at the thought of being noticed by the queen, mumbles, “I'm sorry, Your Majesty. I am, of course, delighted that New Zealand will contribute to the war effort. Perhaps I am simply tired from the long trip.” The queen seems to accept this excuse, but files away Ector's mood as something that could be useful later.

Harold Wilson"[Journalists] should investigate the forces that are threatening democratic countries like Britain. Occasionally when we meet I might tell you to 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... I am not certain that for the last eight months when I was prime minister I knew what was happening, fully, in security. "
~ Harold Wilson
Harold Wilson - Prime Minister
Prime Minister
BBC journalist Barrie Penrose researched the TV drama documentary The Plot Against Harold Wilson which investigated the Labour prime minister's conviction that he was the target of plans to stage a military coup - and that the Royal Family backed it. Penrose says they confirm such plotting "wasn't in the fevered imagination of an embittered ex-PM". Penrose concludes his Radio Times article: "You may ask, at the end of the programme, why the coup was not believed earlier? My view now, as it was then, is that Wilson was right in his fears.... in answer to the question 'how did we come to get a military government' I can only say – we didn't speak to that Blind Man on Charing Cross Road." The review of this alternate historical masterpiece is available at BBC Web Site
~ quotation by Guest Historian Steve Payne from Counter-history – You're the Judge!

In 1919, Uncle Alf wrote - To my sweet and most delicious Geli, Hello, my darling. I wonder whether this letter will get to Munich ahead of me, for I have been mysteriously discharged by the Pomeranian doctors in this field hospital. The superhuman strength of my lycanthropy arms me for my struggles ahead. I await my meeting in Munich with General Ludendorff; together we must worship the Norse Gods together - our chosen one is Azazel. I will be home soon, I intend to show you just what a hero, just what a conqueror is your Uncle Alf.

~ variant from Steve Payne: extensive use of original content has been made to celebrate the author's genius.

In 1947, General Hans Guderian addressed the planners of D-Day2. To explain his defection he read from the incantation Christabel by Samuel Taylor Coleridge. 'And in my dream methought I went To search out what might there be found ; And what the ..
.. sweet bird's trouble meant, That thus lay fluttering on the ground. I went and peered, and could descry No cause for her distressful cry ; But yet for her dear lady's sake I stooped, methought, the dove to take, When lo ! I saw a bright green snake Coiled around its wings and neck.'

'Revenge motivated my flight to America, gentlemen' explained Guderian, 'but not revenge for me. Fear of revenge from the vial which was crying out for its owner – you sir'. General Sir Bernard Montgomery beamed with pleasure, this time he was going to REALLY make history. The glory of D-Day2 would be his, of that he had no doubt. No doubt at all.

~ entry by Steve Payne from Counter History in Context - You're the Judge!

In 1989, following a transatlantic flight the remains of the British Royal Household had their suitcases unpacked by servants in the Governor General's residence at Rideau Hall, Ottawa. King James IV was not too distressed, he was looking forward to some R&R in Canada. They would be back before the New Year ushered in the .. King James IV
King James IV
.. 1990s. Until then, it was party season. It was going to be a riot.

~ entry by Steve Payne from Counter History in Context - You're the Judge!

Anon Detective
Anon Detective
In 2001, he experienced deep remorse at the death of the decoy. He had falsified his report, changed Eilat to Tel-Aviv, not mentioned the child. How could he? The greatest fisherman set free their catch. They have no need for unnecessary cruelty having demonstrated the mastery of their skill. Hunting, he reflected, ..
.. was after all, but a sport. The greatest sport of all.

~ entry by Steve Payne from Counter History in Context - You're the Judge!

In 1977, the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System was completed by the Russian Government. Due to the Oil Crises of the decade, the United States was unexpectedly forced into seeking a d├ętente with the Communists as the need to find oil out-weighed the antagonisms of the Cold War.Map of the pipeline
Map of the pipe..

~ entry by Steve Payne from Counter History in Context - You're the Judge!

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