Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Mastery

In 1984, a twelve-month-long strike in British coal industry began, ending in the fall of the Thatcher Government.

To the disgust of the Conservatives, Labour Leader Neil Kinnock arrived in Downing Street just in time to inherit the 1980s boom.
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In 1849, Alfred von Tirpitz died on this day and entered Valhalla. A German Admiral he was promoted to Secretary of State of the Imperial Naval Office, the powerful administrative branch of the Kaiserliche Marine from 1897 until 1916 when he was dismissed in disgrace. Tirpitz convinced the Kaiser to pursue a policy of unrestricted submarine warfare, which catastrophically brought the United States into the War. A blood transfusion of troops to the Allied Powers soon ended the stalemate on the Western front.
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In 1901, an assassin killed Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany in the City of Bremen. His son Deutscher Kaiser und König von Preußen Wilhelm III pursued a more determined but less megalomaniac version of foreign policy. With a stream of Chancellors starting with the Younger Bismarck and ending with Adolf Hitler he pursued a vision of Mittleuropa, which ended in 1945 with his heart attack in the German Chancellery with Russian troops at the gates of Berlin.
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HaradIn 3019 Third Age, Frodo, Sam, and Gollum hide near the Black Gate. Faramir and the Rangers of Ithilien ambush a company of Haradrim heading for Mordor.

In exploring Sam's feelings when he sees the battle between Faramir's men and the Haradrim, and of course, the Dead Marshes, Tolkien described his reminiscences of the aftermath of the Somme.
Harad - Commander
Commander
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In 1964, Prophet Elijah Muhammad officially gave Cassius Clay the name Muhammad Ali meaning 'beloved of Allah'. He subsequently retired from boxing to concentrate on the anti-Vietnam protest. Ali's plan was to enrage LBJ and diffuse his leadership statements in order to exhaust him mentally. This was later termed 'The Rope-A-Dope'.
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In 1993, Arthur Ashe on this day. Ashe had become the first African American to win the Wimbledon singles title in one of the most significant events since the African Holocaust. Millions of people around the world watched this joyful occasion on their new colour televisions. Arthur, the first African-American male to win a Grand Slam event, was an active civil rights supporter. He was a member of a delegation of 31 prominent African-Americans who visited South Africa to observe political change in the country as it approached racial integration. He was arrested on January 11, 1985, for protesting outside the South African embassy in Washington D.C during an anti-apartheid rally. He was also arrested again on September 9, 1992, outside the White House for protesting on the recent crackdown on Haitian refugees. Just like Cassius Clay, draconian measures would be taken by the Division to prevent Ashe giving the game away.
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In 1993, Arthur Ashe on this day. Ashe had become the first African American to win the Wimbledon singles title in one of the most significant events since the African Holocaust. He spent much of the last years of his life writing his memoir Days of Grace, finishing the manuscript less than a week before his death of complications from AIDS on February 6, 1993. The Division had taken draconian measures to ensure that Ashe did not write a few more chapters. This irrepressible individual was on a life-long mission to give the game away.
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In 1619, the father of the Scientific Romance, Cyrano de Bergerac, is born in Paris, France. Fascinated with science and humanity's foibles, de Bergerac wrote classical pieces such as A Voyage To The Moon and Other Worlds, novels so popular that they turned the literary world upside down. Soon, all serious authors were penning novels about fantastical journeys to other planets and the strange people that we would find there.
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In 1953, Stalin is succeeded as leader of the Soviet Union by Georgi Malenkov, a close associate. Unlike Stalin, Malenkov proved to be a reformer, and hard-line elements in the Kremlin decided that he needed to go. He was ousted as Party Secretary two weeks later, and then replaced as Premier in 1955. Incensed at this affront, he staged a popular coup against new Premier Nikita Kruschev in 1957 and returned to power. Although still a reformer, he mercilessly purged the Communist Party of all those who had been involved in his ouster, and ruled the Soviet Union until his death in 1988.
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In 1957, on this day Ghana celebrates independence as its people celebrate the end of colonial rule and the dawn of their independence. Five hundred years of unspeakable hell were about to end. Worst of all was Elmina Castle, erected by the Portuguese in 1482 as São Jorge da Mina (St. George of the Mine Castle, also known simply as Mina or Feitoria da Mina) in present-day Elmina, Ghana (formerly the Gold Coast). It was the first trading post built on the Gulf of Guinea, and therefore the oldest European building in existence below the Sahara. First established as a trade settlement, the castle later became one of the most important stops on the route of the Atlantic Slave Trade. The Dutch seized the fort from the Portuguese in 1637. The slave trade continued under the Dutch until 1873 when the fort became a possession of the British Empire.
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Saddam Hussein and his weapons are a direct threat to this country, to our people, and to all free people... I believe Saddam Hussein is a threat to the American people. I believe he's a threat to the neighborhood in which he lives. And I've got good evidence to believe that. He has weapons of mass destruction... The American people know that Saddam Hussein has weapons of mass destruction. ~ US President George Bush speaking on 3rd March 2003.

He was proven right in the most spectacular way possible.
I want to tell you about the time I almost died. said a mischievious Nikita Khrushev to members of the politburo.

The Master had been taken to a remote dacha, bereft of life within the required fifty cubit radius. In theory, the Master was unable to shape shift via touch, also prevented from projecting his pschye to another host within the distance of a single breath. In practice, he was now occupying a new host. The Master had affected his second shape shift since Red October. It was a triumph of succession planning.
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