Monday, July 30, 2007

Texas Troubles

July 30th, 2007

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The Announcement

Sheep were so stupid.
Djari hated sheep. He hated having to watch them, having to shear them, having to herd them and protect them. He especially hated having to eat them, which he was doing right now. The meat was tough, and there was still some wool on it. It made him feel like he was biting one of them while it was still alive. His stomach churned at the thought of it, and he put the leg back on the hot stones to warm up some more.
Most of the sheep were asleep; it was late at night, and he had been driving them all day, so they were tired. He understood the feeling. He felt the exhaustion in his bones. His father and brother would normally be here, as well, but his brother was tending to a sick child and his father was tending to a sick calf. So, he was going to have to wait until the sheep were back home before he slept.
He shifted on the rocks, trying to find a comfortable spot. There wasn’t one, but hope sprang eternal. The lamb sizzled by the fire, and the smell wafted away on the wind. He almost hoped it would bring something hoping to catch dinner; he could stand some excitement. The stars drifted above him, and he looked for the warrior his father had told him about once; he had been so great that Allah couldn’t take him from the earth, so he was placed in the stars to always watch over the faithful. The warrior always comforted him on nights like this.
He started awake; something had spooked the sheep, and they were bleating and milling about. He cursed at himself for falling asleep, took up his staff, and waded into the herd to see what the matter was.

Maybe you didn't treat me
Quite as good as you should have
Maybe you didn't love me
Quite as often as you could have
Little things you should have said and done
You just never took the time
Elvis PresleyYou were always on my mind
Tell me, tell me that your sweet love hasn't died
I'll give you, give you one more chance
To keep me satisfied, satisfied

~ Lyrics to “Always on My Mind” - Click to Play Sample
Reference has often been made to Presley's allegedly numerous conquests.

According to eyewitness Byron Raphael, who worked for Presley's manager, the star even had a secret one-night stand with Marilyn Monroe. In reality, the King was celibate and dated famous women solely for presentational purposes as a red-blooded American icon. Peter Guralnick's two-volume biography of Elvis Presley Last Train to Memphis concludes simply “he wasn't really interested”.

Trouble was this acting continued into his marriage to Priscilla Beaulieu. And jealousy was to have fatal consequences. In his wife's biography Elvis and Me she confesses to being a “wild child”, indulging in an affair with a mutual acquaintance - Mike Stone, a karate instructor. Elvis raged obsessively: "There's too much pain in me... Mike Stone [must] die. The full lyrics are available at Upper Cut Music
~ quotation by Co-Historian Steve Payne from Counter-history – You're the Judge!

In 1947, T.E. Lawrence was murdered by the underground Jewish group Lehi. Lawrence and Count Folke Bernadotte who also died, had been appointed United Nations Security Council mediators in the Arab-Israeli conflict and were making considerable progress which now appears to have been scuppered by extremists.

Lawrence was born in North Wales in 1888 and educated at Oxford High School and Jesus College, Oxford. From 1911 to 1914 Lawrence worked as an archaeologist in the Middle East for the British Museum excavations team in Northern Syria. On 1st November 1914 the Ottoman Empire declared war on Great Britain. In 1915 he was posted as an intelligence officer to Cairo and subsequently travelled to Hejaz to assess the leadership and prospects of the Arab revolt. Seven Pillars of Wisdom is a description of his liaison role between British and Arab forces.

Lawrence was determined that the wartime promises of self government made to the Arabs by the British government would be honoured. He helped achieve settlements he considered honourable in Iraq and Jordan. Lawrence returned to England in 1918 and subsequently advised Faisal I, then King of Syria (1918-1920), at the Paris Peace Conference in 1919 and worked in the Middle East Department of the Colonial Office in 1921.

In 1922 he enlisted in the ranks of the RAF as John Hume Ross to avoid public attention. He adopted the name T.E. Shaw by deed poll in 1927. Lawrence served for 12 years, latterly working to develop RAF rescue launches which saved thousands of lives in World War II. In 1935, aged 46, he narrowly escaped death in a motorcycle accident.

Desperately needing an inspirational leader for the North Africa campaign, in 1940 Churchill re-appointed Lawrence of Arabia as Commander of the British Eighth Army where he defeated Rommel's Afrika Corps and Italian allies. Less publicly, he also executed a cadre of Egyptian officers who had been attempting to rid North Africa of Britain's presence. Gamal Abdul Nassar, Anwar el-Sadat and Hosni Said Mubarak were just three of the many “traitors” who were found mysteriously floating face down in the River Nile.

After the war, Lawrence was instrumental in the creation of the state of Israel, and the key decision to hand the Canal Zone and the British bases over to David Ben-Gurion. Lawrence remained a powerful agent of change in the region until his tragic death.

~ alternate obituary from Steve Payne: extensive use of original content has been made to re-examine the significance of a controversial historical figure.

In 2009, the TV networks presented episode nineteen of So What If?. Historian Barry Malzberg was interviewed in January 1975 and considered the consequences of Nixon's 1960 election as President and what might have happened if Kennedy had been elected.

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

Luz Long"It took a lot of courage for him to befriend me in front of Hitler... You can melt down all the medals and cups I have and they wouldn't be a plating on the twenty-four kilates friendship that I felt for Lutz Long at that moment. "
~ Jesse Owens at the Games of the XI Olympiad
Luz Long - German Olympic athlete
German Olympic athlete
Jesse Owens on being advised and congratulated by Luz Long at the 1936 Summer Olympics.

Carl Ludwig "Lutz" Long was a German Olympic athlete, most notable for giving advice to his competitor, Jesse Owens. Owens went on to win the gold medal for the broad jump, now referred to as the long jump, event at the 1936 Summer Olympics thanks to Long's advice. For his actions in the spirit of sportsmanship, Long was posthumously awarded the Pierre de Coubertin medal after fighting in Sicily and dying in a British military hospital.
~ quotation Steve Payne: this incredible event has not been modified by the Co-Historian

Jimmy Hoffa
Jimmy Hoffa
In 1975, on this day Jimmy Hoffa disappeared from the parking lot of the Machus Red Fox restaurant in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit, at about 2:30 p.m. Hoffa took over the presidency of the Teamsters in 1957, worked tirelessly to expand the union and in 1964 succeeded in bringing virtually all North American ..
.. over-the-road truck drivers under a single national master freight agreement. Hoffa then pushed to try to bring the airlines and other transport employees into the union. This was of great concern to the United States government and business as a strike involving all transport systems would be devastating for the national economy. Richard Nixon decided to act, authorising the White House Special Investigations Unit known as the Plumbers to abduct Hoffa and bury him under Giant Stadium.

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

In 2002, the accounting law referred to as "The Sarbanes Oxley Act" (Pub. L. No. 107-204, 116 Stat. 745, also known as the Public Company Accounting Reform and Investor Protection Act of 2002 and commonly called SOX or Sarbox; July 30, 2002) was signed into law by United States President George W. Bush. The Public Company ..
Signing of SOX
.. Accounting Oversight Board was charged with overseeing, regulating, inspecting, and disciplining accounting firms in their roles as auditors of public companies. The board found malpractice in the leadership of Haliburton and Texas Rangers by George W Bush and Dick Cheney respectively. Both the President and the Vice-President were hoisted by their own petard.

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

England Victorious
England Victorious..
In 1966, at Wembley Stadium, host nation England won the Football World Cup. After ..
.. drawing 2-2 at the end of 90 minutes, England beat Germany 4-2. The winners medals were awarded by members of the British Royal Family, Saxe-Coburg-Gotha. Patriots were troubled by how much time the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh spent sympathising with defeated coach Helmut Schön, a conversation that was of course made in rapid and fluent German.

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

In 1619, in Jamestown, Virginia, the first representative assembly in the Americas, the House of Burgesses, convened for the first time. Later, after the American Revolution, institutional development resulted in the General Assembly which governs the Commonwealth of Virginia to this day.House of Burgess
House of Burges..

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

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