the history of the time war


Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

“A gorgeous, pitiless account of love, violence and betrayal during the Biafran war.” —Time

Authentic and compelling, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Half of a Yellow Sun is story about life. It represents hope, compromises, bitter truths and wisdoms, as well as history and romance. Set in Nigeria during the Biafran war and the pursue for independence in the late 1960s, we meet five incredible characters: Ugwu, a 13-year old house houseboy who is employed by Odenigbo, a passionate university professor and supporter of the revolution; Olanna, the professor’s stunning mistress, who abandoned her life in Lagos; and Richard, a timid young Englishman who is infatuated with Kaeinene, Olanna’s twin sister. 

Overall Half of a Yellow Sun is heart-felting, Adichie supernaturally communicates through her prose that she was meant to write this book. She has said in the past: “This is a book I had to write. I have been thinking about this book my whole life." 

A deeply moving story about religious tensions and a genocide, Half of a Yellow Sun is graceful, illuminating and realistic. Adichie does not shy from depicting the horrors of war, which bring starvation and irreparable destruction and disturbing sights. Surprisingly these elements do not overshadow the fictional lives Adichie crafted to paint her story. 

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Memorial Day

On May 11, 1950, Congress issued a joint resolution requesting that the President proclaim a “Prayer for Peace” on each Memorial Day.  In 1971, Congress declared Memorial Day a federal holiday to be held on the last Monday of every May. 

The commemoration of fallen soldiers was originally called Decoration Day – a time to honor Civil War graves with flowers.  The first Decoration Day was observed on May 30, 1868, three years after the end of the Civil War. 

Over time, people adopted the name Memorial Day, and ceremonies were held across the country to honor all U.S. soldiers who had died at war. 

This Memorial Day weekend, we honor the men and women who have served our country.


George W. Bush stands with U.S. Army Major General Guy Swan for a moment of silence during the Memorial  Day wreath laying ceremony at the Arlington National Cemetery Tomb of the Unknowns. 5/29/06.

Harry S. Truman laying a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier for Memorial Day ceremonies.  5/30/48.

Ronald Reagan attending a Memorial Day ceremony honoring the Vietnam Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery. 5/28/84.

Dwight D. Eisenhower participates in the ceremonies for the internment of the Unknowns of World War II and Korea. Arlington National Cemetery. 5/30/58.

A bugler plays during a Memorial Day ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery attended by John F. Kennedy. 5/30/63.

anonymous asked:

1 but like... with reasoning?

1. Favorite Gem

I think Garnet and Steven are like, universally liked in most, if not all, of the fandom

however my ultimate fave baby gem is definitely Pearl no question I love her, with Amethyst in close close CLOSE second

Pearl’s character is super funny like with the neurotic tendencies and frantic air about her but also her unbridled enthusiasm for history of all kinds, even the bad times like the Gem war, pearl is very much an amalgamation of anxiety, insecurity, vigor, gusto (in certain areas of course), pride, and a whole lot of other good and bad things. She’s imperfect but she wants to be perfect and its like her hubris (with pride in there of course since she believes she knows what’s best for steven when most of the time she’s as lost as the other two CG’s)

She has a unique way of defending herself because she, as all the gems are, is suffering a great deal due to the loss of their leader (and her love you cannot convince me she did not love Rose) and deals with it by lashing out, and isolation which goes against her group-dependent behavior.

But at the same time she has the capability to be sincere and apologetic and genuine and super nice and caring about her friends and ‘her baby’ Steven.

In short Pearl is super flawed and tries really hard and I lover her aaugh.and she can sing and deedee is great also

Churchill Resigns as First Lord of the Admiralty

Churchill and Lloyd George in 1915. In his final desperate struggle to stay at the Admiralty, Churchill would shout at his one-time ally: “You don’t care what becomes of me. You don’t care whether I am trampled under foot by my enemies." 

May 21 1915, London–The resignation of Jacky Fisher as First Sea Lord (which had still not been accepted by the Prime Minister), on top of the recent revelations on shell shortages, had prompted a political crisis in the United Kingdom. Fisher’s departure would give Churchill even more power in the Admiralty, an outcome unacceptable to the opposition Conservative Party. Churchill had switched from the Conservative Party to the Liberal Party ten years prior, and had made an enemy of the Conservative leader, Bonar Law. The ruling Liberals at this point had fewer seats than the Conservatives, but held on thanks to support from Labour and Irish MPs. The Conservatives had so far in the war held off from direct public attacks on the government in the interest of national unity, but could not promise this if Churchill were to stay on in the Admiralty. 

David Lloyd George convinced PM Asquith that the way forward was to form a national coalition government. Asquith and Bonar Law had largely agreed on the terms of such a coalition by May 17; this of course included Churchill’s departure. Over the next few days, Churchill desperately tried to keep his job, writing (along with his wife Clementine) an incredible number of letters to anyone who might be in a position to help. Finally, on May 21, Asquith responded to Churchill’s six letters: "My dear Winston: You must take it as settled that you are not to remain at the Admiralty.” Churchill tendered his resignation the same day, writing, “I accept your decision. I shall not look back." 

With Churchill on the way out, Fisher, who had been lauded by the press over the last few days, thought he had the leverage to work his way back into the Admiralty with more authority than before. He gave Asquith a set of conditions for his return to the Admiralty, including: "I shall have complete professional charge of the war at sea, together with the absolute sole dispostion of the fleet…and absolutely untrammeled sole command of all the sea forces whatsoever.” However, the mood had since turned against Fisher. He was still officially First Sea Lord, but had been absent from the Admiralty for days, during which time Room 40 had (incorrectly) suggested the Germans were sortieing their fleet. Asquith rejected Fisher’s conditions out of hand, remarking privately “that Fisher, strictly speaking, ought to be shot for leaving his post.” Fisher left for Scotland on May 22, and on the way received official notice that his resignation had been accepted.

Sources include: Robert K. Massie, Castles of Steel; Carlo D'Este, Warlord.


I own few photos from my childhood. Most are stored in boxes and albums, hidden in my parents’ basement. Last time I went down there, I unearthed some painful shit. These are the only photos I have from any childhood birthday parties of mine. They were taken in the early nineties, on a farm, in a small village in the middle of nowhere. A place that was exclusively white until the old elementary school building was turned into refugee housing for families fleeing the wars in Afghanistan and  Yugoslavia. There were few kids in my neighbourhood and some of the only kids I could play with as a child were refugees. Considering my family’s history and political background, I came to realize only a few years ago how remarkable my friendships were and still are. In a time when refugees were murdered, hunted and lynched in high numbers, their homes attacked, beleaguered and burned, it strikes me as odd how welcoming the vast majority of neighbours were to the families who came to settle amongst them. I talked with my friends and their parents and though they do acknowledge the high racist tension in Germany in the early 1990s, they felt indeed at ease in my neighbourhood. I know it’s because of my mom and her Widerständigkeit that I was allowed in the first place to make these new friendships and connections, to learn about Afghan culture and customs before I could learn about my grandfathers’ involvement in national-socialism and the rebuilding of “Arische Gemeinschaften” (Aryan Alliances) after 1945. I found these three photos today and after I had a physical fight and discord with my dad about his ideologies earlier this week, seeing these photos of me and my mom, I had to cry about all the nastiness in this family.


VE Day: May 8, 1945 - The War Ends In Europe

“Throughout the world throngs of people hail the end of the war in Europe.  It is five years and more since Hitler marched into Poland. Years full of suffering, and death, and sacrifice. Now the war against Germany is won.”

Excerpted from “The War Ends in Europe
Motion Picture Films from “United News” Newsreels, 1942 - 1945





  • SO….



May 8th 1945: VE Day

On this day in 1945, at the end of the Second World War, combat ended in Europe with the Germans accepting unconditional surrender in Rheims, France. The German surrender marked the end of Hitler’s Third Reich, following the dictator’s suicide on April 30th. Germany’s surrender was led by German President Karl Dönitz, and was signed on May 7th and ratified on May 8th. The Western world celebrated the end of the bloody conflict, with huge festivities in Trafalgar Square and outside Buckingham Palace in London, and in New York’s Time Square. British King George VI and Prime Minister Winston Churchill led the celebrations in their country, and U.S. President Harry Truman dedicated the victory to his recently deceased predecessor, remarking his only wish was that “Franklin D. Roosevelt had lived to witness this day”.

“This is your hour. This is your Victory”
- Winston Churchill to crowds on VE Day

70 years ago

terrible tudors, gorgeous georgians, slimy stuarts, vile victorians, woeful wars, ferocious fights, dingy castles, daring knights. horrors that defy description, cut throat celts, awful egyptians, vicious vikings, cruel crimes, punishments from ancient times. romans: rotten, rank and ruthless. cavemen: savage, fierce and toothless. groovy greeks, brainy sages, mean and measly middle ages. gory stories we do that. and your host a talking rat. the past is no longer a mystery. welcome to HORRIBLE HISTORIES.





anonymous asked:

I've seen around that a lot of people think Romeo and Juliet is a dark comedy or satire rather than a romantic tragedy. Do you agree?

Oh man. Okay. You didn’t ask for a rant, but it is ABSOLUTELY RANTING TIME because I’ve been travelling for four fucking days, I’m already angry, and I have a lot of feelings about this issue. To be clear I’m not ranting at you, I’m just ranting. In general. At everyone.

First and foremost: Romeo and Juliet is a really fucking complex play, and trying to say it’s strictly one thing or the other is like saying the Civil War was strictly about slavery. (If you disagree take a fucking history class–like, yes, dude, slavery was a HUGE part of the conflict, but was it the sole cause? No. Politics and economics, motherfuckers.) It’s simplistic and reductionist. This is the biggest problem with R & J analysis–people spend a metric ass-ton of time arguing that it’s one thing or the other without admitting the possibility that it could be both. 

Emma Smith, who’s a lectuerer at Oxford, does this amazing series of podcasts called Approaching Shakespeare (which you should absolutely download and listen to if you haven’t already, they’re free) and in her R & J lecture she talks a lot about how it actually plays like a comedy until the crucial turning point of Mercutio’s death in Act III. That’s when everything goes off the rails: Romeo kills Tybalt, he’s banished, Juliet is betrothed to Paris, and it sets off a chain-reaction of catastrophes. Before that, the play looks like a classic romantic farce, complete with forbidden love and oblivious parents and every trope of the genre dating all the way back to commedia dell’arte. So is it partly a comedy? Absolutely. But that’s what makes it so fucking tragic. Would we care half so much what happens to Mercutio or even Romeo if we hadn’t seen them so delightedly playing with each other three or four scenes before the fatal duel? Would Juliet’s death be half so devastating if we didn’t see her as an eager, excited girl, nervous to meet her lover for the first time? Hell no. Mercutio dies and Romeo dies and Juliet dies and it’s all absolutely gut-wrenching because they were alive and well and laughing only half an hour ago. 

This sort of brings me to my second argument, which is with the heartless shitheads who think Romeo and Juliet are just a couple of stupid horny teenagers. (I talked about this briefly in this post here but I want to expand on it.) Romeo and Juliet are not just a couple of stupid horny teenagers. They are a couple of stupid horny teenagers, but they are also in love. For fuck’s sake, do you not remember what it was like to be fifteen? Yes, your hormones were all over the fucking place but so were your emotions. Are they really impatient to get in each other’s pants? Duh. Look at Juliet’s monologue when she’s gearing up for the wedding night:

Gallop apace, you fiery-footed steeds,
Towards Phoebus’ lodging: such a wagoner 1720
As Phaethon would whip you to the west,
And bring in cloudy night immediately.
Spread thy close curtain, love-performing night,
That runaway’s eyes may wink and Romeo
Leap to these arms, untalk’d of and unseen.


But why for the love of Eros should that mean they’re not also head over fucking heels for each other? Isn’t that the dream??? To be married to someone you not only want to bang into oblivion but also someone you love so much that you’d literally die without them? Listen the fuck up R & J haters, because love and lust are not mutually exclusive, and if you think they are, I pity you, because you must have one hell of an empty love life one way or the other. (Unless you’re ace or aro or something in which case you’re probably doing just fine all by your bad self, rock on.) If you want proof that they’re in love, just keep reading. Look at the end of this same goddamn monologue:

Come, gentle night, come, loving, black-brow’d night,
Give me my Romeo; and, when he shall die,
Take him and cut him out in little stars, 
And he will make the face of heaven so fine
That all the world will be in love with night
And pay no worship to the garish sun.

Bro, nobody says that shit about someone they just want to play tonsil hockey with. Every instance of their language towards each other illustrates a consuming, intense (if naive) kind of love. Look at the balcony scene, when Juliet tells Romeo that if he were her pet bird, she would be afraid of killing him by pressing him too tightly in her hand. What does he say in reply? I would I were thy bird. That’s all he wants. When they meet, their first lines to each other form a perfect sonnet. The sonnet was the most romantic poetic form of the time and I fucking refuse to believe that Shakespeare would have wasted one on ‘just a couple of horny teenagers.’ 

More to the point, if Romeo and Juliet aren’t in love, the play simply doesn’t work. If Juliet was just a pretty face and a quick fuck, why is banishment worse than death to Romeo? Why does he try so hard not to fight with Tybalt? He goes fucking mental when he learns that Juliet is ‘dead.’ HE BUYS FUCKING POISON, JOY-RIDES BACK TO VERONA, THREATENS TO LITERALLY RIP HIS SERVANT TO PIECES IF HE TRIES TO STOP HIM GOING IN THE CRYPT, MURDERS PARIS, DRAGS HIS BODY INTO THE TOMB, CRIES OVER JULIET’S BODY AND THEN FUCKING OFFS HIMSELF TO BE WITH HER AGAIN. YOU DON’T DO THAT SHIT FOR SOME PIECE OF ASS YOU MET ON TINDER. It’s love. It’s young love and it’s messy and impulsive and irrational, but it is love. Shakespeare isn’t George R. R. Martin, this isn’t Game of Fucking Thrones. Death and sex are not schlock gimmicks to get good ratings. 

But let me be clear: Just like Romeo and Juliet are not just horny teenagers, their story is not just a love story. It’s a didactic tale about the perils of holding a grudge. The ongoing feud between the Capulets and the Montagues has a body count before the play even begins, as we’re told by Prince Escalus, and it takes literally the gruesome deaths of these noble families’ two youngest children–not to mention Tybalt, Paris, and Mercutio–to bring them to their fucking senses and put the bad blood behind them. It’s a love story but it’s much more than that. It’s a cautionary tale against grudges, against revenge, against civil war, and so many things that are so much bigger than the two title characters. 

Like anything else in Shakespeare, you can read it a million different ways. But I think if you reduce it to a cynical satire about the idiocy of youth, you are doing Shakespeare a great disservice by willfully misinterpreting some pretty significant chunks of the text (because he couldn’t possibly be serious about these two young lovers), and you are doing yourself a great disservice by completely missing the passion of the play–and a much bigger picture. 

And exit. 

Marshall Hauer, age 129, oldest man on Earth

Hauer was born in 1886 in Parkville, West Carolina to Harriet and Nestor Hauer, immigrants from Limburg. Marshall Hauer is not only the world’s oldest man, but its oldest veteran, having served not only in WW1, but in the Boer War, the American Civil War, and the 30 Years’ War.

Hauer attributes his extreme old age to a diet of nothing but oatmeal and fermented sauerkraut. He also credits his robust sex life, having been married and divorced a record 76 times in his life, to 81 women. He also claims to have had 476 affairs with 382 women, 59 men, and a turtle named Marcus to whom his will has left his entire estate. Despite having a will, Hauer has no plans to die in the near future:

“I didn’t live 129 years to die on my 130th. It’s 150 or bust.”

In contrast to his old age, Hauer remains active, skydiving, surfing and drag racing- Including a cameo in the next Fast & Furious movie, tentatively entitled “The Fast and Fairly Furious 8: Kentucky Drift 2: Mirror of Fate.”

New York Times columnist David Brooks was once an enthusiastic backer of George W. Bush’s disastrous invasion of Iraq. He’d write columns for the Weekly Standard – the official journal of bankrupt neoconservative thought – glorifying Bush for his steely-eyed determination and tartly mocking the pansy liberals and other anti-war types who opposed Bush’s righteous exercise in nation-building and freedom-spreading. “History will allow clear judgments about which leaders and which institutions were up to the challenge posed by Saddam,” Brooks prophesied in the March 2003 column, “and which were not.”

That prediction didn’t quite pan out. Yes, the Iraq war ended up being a disaster, but contrary to Brooks’ assurance, the “clear judgments” about who was right and who was wrong about Iraq are still pending, as evidenced by the fact that so many people who got it so terribly wrong haven’t faced any real consequences.

—  David Brooks’ sickening Iraq apologia: How the New York Times hack just rewrote history.

A 92-year-old World War II fighter pilot flies her plane for the first time in 70 years.

It’s been decades since her last flight, but Joy Lofthouse, a 92-year-old Air Transport Auxiliary veteran, was given the chance to board a Spitfire airplane for one more trip.

Lofthouse was one of just a few female pilots to fly for the British during World War II, part of an all-female division nicknamed the “Attagirls.”

Her job as a service pilot was to shuttle planes from the front lines back to factories for repairs. During her time in the service, she flew 18 different aircraft, but one always held a special place in her heart.

Watch her fly once again in her favorite model, the Spitfire, here.