general douglas


At the same time, (General Douglas) MacArthur had attacked the imperial mystique when his staff released the famous picture of his first meeting with the Emperor (Hirohito), whose impact on the Japanese public was electric as the Japanese people for the first time saw the Emperor as a mere man overshadowed by the much taller MacArthur instead of the living god he had always been portrayed as. Up to 1945, the Emperor had been a remote, mysterious figure to his people, rarely seen in public and always silent, whose photographs were always taken from a certain angle to make him look taller and more impressive than he really was. No Japanese photographer would have taken such a photo of the Emperor being overshadowed by MacArthur. The Japanese government immediately banned the photo of the Emperor with MacArthur on the grounds that it damaged the imperial mystique, but MacArthur rescinded the ban and ordered all of the Japanese newspapers to print it. The photo was intended as a message to the Emperor about who was going to be the senior partner in their relationship.


Man, MacArthur did not fuck around!

An air-to-air right side view of, from foreground: an F-16C Fighting Falcon aircraft armed with AIM-9 Sidewinder missiles, an F-111A aircraft, an F-15C Eagle aircraft and an A-10A Thunderbolt II aircraft armed with AIM-9 Sidewinder missiles. The F-16C, F-15C and the A-10A are from the 422nd Test and Evaluation Squadron while the F-111A is from the 431st Test and Evaluation Squadron. The aircraft are in-flight over Hoover Dam.

Cabin Pressure

Every time I have to take a plane I bring with me a few Cabin Pressure episodes for the ride. It’s become a tradition. And as I’ll be catching a flight in a few hours, let’s talk about this wonderful radio series!

So, Cabin Pressure is one of the most celebrated radio sitcoms ever. Written and created by John Finnemore, directed and produced by David Tyler. It was first broadcasted on BBC Radio 4 and every now and then you can catch some episodes on BBC Radio 4 Extra. Also, you can download episodes through iTunes and a few other podcast apps.  A couple years ago I got the Complete CD Collection as a Christmas present and, if you still use CDs, it’s totally worth it.

Here are the reasons:

  • Humor – To be honest I’m not a huge fan of sitcoms. I get bored easily and I cringe at too much silliness and absurdity. In Cabin Pressure there’s a lot of both, but somehow it doesn’t feel forced. Is like… when you have never seen anything from Monthy Python and you start watching the Holy Grail. An important part in the “fresh humor” feeling is that the four main characters evolve through the series (some more than others). And as they change and their interactions change, jokes adapt. The conflicts addressed and its resolution feel natural. Also, the cabin calls and all of the word games. ALL OF THEM. And the iconic travelling lemon.
  • The dynamics between the characters – The four main characters are the two pilots, the owner and the son (and flight attendant) of a very small charter airline based at Fitton. Namely, a naïve perfectionist Captain Martin Criff, a seasoned and smooth First Officer Douglas Richardson, a very bossy Carolyn Knapp-Shappey and a very… brilliant Arthur Shappey.
  • The acting – The main characters are voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch as Martin, Roger Allam as Douglas, Stephanie Cole as Carolyn and John Finnemore as Arthur. Other characters voiced by Timothy West, Matilda Ziegler, Geoffrey Whitehead or Anthony Head. I fell completely in love with Roger Allam here.

There are 26 half an hour episodes (the last one a two-parter) spanning all the letters from A (Abu Dhabi) to Z (Zurich), in a way, reflecting Martin’s journey. The original broadcast wasn’t exactly in alphabetical order but that was the intended order, so I’d recommend you to keep it (It’s not very important to stick to the order in the first season, but the later episodes will make more sense if you do so).

Where to start then? Well, Abu Dhabi is the intended start but if you find it too silly, I’d recommend you to give a second try to Douz or Gdansk.

And finally, my favorite episodes that will keep me company on the plane behind the cut (spoilery!)

Keep reading

After this terrible fury, Japan entered a strange seclusion. It withdrew from the world again—not willingly, but under orders from the victors; and not alone, as in the centuries before Perry, but locked in an almost sensual embrace with its American conquerors. And soon enough, it became apparent that the Americans could not or would not let go… 

There was no historical precedent for this sort of relationship, nor anything truly comparable elsewhere in the wake of the war. Responsibility for occupied Germany, Japan’s former Axis partner, divided as it was among the United States, England, France, and the Soviet Union, lacked the focused intensity that came with America’s unilateral control over Japan.

Germany also escaped the messianic fervor of General Douglas MacArthur, the post-surrender potentate in Tokyo. For the victors, occupying defeated Germany had none of the exoticism of what took place in Japan: the total control over a pagan, Oriental society by white men who were (unequivocally, in General MacArthur’s view) engaged in a Christian mission. The occupation of Japan was the last immodest exercise in the colonial conceit known as ‘the white man’s burden.’

—  Embracing Defeat: Japan in the Wake of World War II, John W. Dower.
Happy Birthday to Stanley Kubrick, the incomparable genius, who helped to create some of the greatest villains of all time!
BREAKING: Grandparents, other extended relatives still barred under travel ban after appeals court declines to weigh in
A three-judge panel with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit said it lacked jurisdiction to get involved.

A federal appeals court panel late Friday declined to involve itself in the latest dispute over President Trump’s travel ban, meaning, at least for now, grandparents and other extended relatives of people in the United States cannot be exempted from the president’s executive order.

The ruling from a three-judge panel for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit is another blow to those who have challenged enforcement of the ban in the wake of a Supreme Court ruling that lifted earlier freezes of it.

The appeals court judges, however, did not address the merits of the challengers’ claims, but rather said they did not have jurisdiction to weigh in on the matter. The judges — Michael Daly Hawkins, Ronald M. Gould and Richard A. Paez, all Clinton appointees — were the same ones that had earlier ruled against Trump and upheld a freeze on his ban. Trump has been critical of their ruling.

It is unclear what might happen next. The judges seemed to suggest that while they could not get involved, the state of Hawaii, which is challenging the ban, could go back to a lower court judge. That judge, Derrick K. Watson, had on Thursday rebuffed a similar request, saying the matter should be taken up with the Supreme Court.

In a statement, Hawaii Attorney General Douglas S. Chin said the ruling “makes clear that Judge Watson does possess the ability to interpret and enforce the Supreme Court’s order, as well as the authority to enjoin against a party’s violation of the Supreme Court’s order placing effective limitations on the scope of the district court’s preliminary injunction.”

“We appreciate the Ninth Circuit for ruling so quickly and will comply,” Chin said.

At issue is how far the administration can go in keeping relatives of U.S. people out under the president’s travel ban, which bars the issuance of new visas to residents of six Muslim-majority countries.

The Supreme Court had ruled late last month that the government could begin enforcing the measure, but not on those with “a credible claim of a bona fide relationship” with a person or entity in the United States.

The court offered only limited guidance on what type of relationship would qualify. “Close familial” relationships would count, the court said, as would ties such as a job offer or school acceptance letter that were “formal, documented, and formed in the ordinary course.”

The government put the measure into effect on June 29, suspending the refu­gee program and barring the issuance of new visas to residents of Iran, Somalia, Sudan, Libya, Yemen and Syria without U.S. connections. Among family members, officials drew lines.

The administration said it would let into the United States from the six affected countries parents, parents-in-law, siblings, spouses, children, sons and daughters, and sons-in-law and daughters-in-law of those already here. (Officials initially wanted to keep out fiances, but later relented.)

Still banned, however, were grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law. And the administration also said it would keep out refugees who had a formal assurance from a resettlement agency.

Hawaii first went to Watson, asking him to clarify that such people could not be blocked. Watson wrote that he would not “usurp the prerogative of the Supreme Court,” and if those suing over the ban wanted relief, they should take their claims there. The state then asked the 9th Circuit to get involved and bar the government from enforcing the measure as it has been.

“These actions are grossly unlawful, and they inflict ongoing and irreparable harm to persons in the United States whose relatives and associates are being denied entry to this country each day,” lawyers for the state wrote in a filing Friday.

Without even hearing from the government, the appeals court judges ruled that Watson’s order “neither resulted in a final judgment nor engaged in action deemed immediately appealable,” and they thus lacked jurisdiction to get involved themselves. But they seemed to give Hawaii a path forward, if the state merely styled its request to Watson not as a request for clarity, but as a call to enforce the Supreme Court’s order.

“Finally, we note that although the district court may not have authority to clarify an order of the Supreme Court, it does possess the ability to interpret and enforce the Supreme Court’s order, as well as the authority to enjoin against, for example, a party’s violation of the Supreme Court’s order placing effective limitations on the scope of the district court’s preliminary injunction,” the judges wrote. “But Plaintiffs’ motion before the district court was clear: it sought clarification of the Supreme Court’s June 26 order, not injunctive relief. Because the district court was not asked to grant injunctive relief or to modify the injunction, we do not fault it for not doing so.”

Read the appeal ruling below:


Read the emergency order below:

11 Experimentos macabros

MK-ULTRA: Fue un proyecto de la CIA que buscaba encontrar maneras de controlar la mente, En el marco del Subproyecto 68, el Dr. Cameron sometía a los pacientes de su Instituto Memorial Allen en Montreal con depresión bipolar o trastornos de ansiedad a una ‘terapia’ que les dejó serios daños y alteró sus vidas de forma irreparable. Así, entre 1957 y 1964, Inducía a sus pacientes a estado de coma con drogas durante meses y reproducía cintas con declaraciones simples o ruidos repetitivos una y otra vez. Las víctimas olvidaron cómo hablar, olvidaron quienes eran sus familiares y sufrieron amnesia grave, esta terapia sobrepasaba entre 30 y 40 veces las normas establecidas. Para lograr que el proyecto siguiera siendo financiado, Cameron involucró a niños en los experimentos, induciendo en una ocasión a un niño a mantener relaciones sexuales con un alto funcionario gubernamental, para luego utilizar la grabación de esta escena en chantajes.

Soldados en cámaras de gas mostaza: En los años 40 mientras se probaba la eficiencia de las armas químicas y métodos de defensa el Gobierno de EE.UU. involucró a personal militar en sus experimentos, encerraban a los soldados en cámaras de gas mostaza y otros productos químicos para probar máscaras antigás y ropas de protección,  este experimento les dejaba quemaduras en la piel y destruían los pulmones de los soldados, que desconocían que formaban parte del experimento. El gas mostaza tiene propiedades mutágenas y cancerígenas que han costado la vida a muchas personas expuestas.

Unidad 731 japonesa al mando del comandante Shiro Ishii: En nombre de la investigación biológica, extremidades de cuerpos humanos fueron amputadas y luego cosidas en otras partes del cuerpo; las extremidades de las víctimas fueron congeladas y volvieron a descongelarse, resultando en gangrena; diversas bacterias y enfermedades se inyectaron en prisioneros para estudiar sus efectos, etc. Después de la Segunda Guerra Mundial, Ishii fue arrestado, pero nunca llegó a pagar por sus crímenes, ya que el general estadounidense Douglas MacArthur le concedió la inmunidad a cambio de información bacteriológica obtenida mediante estos experimentos macabros.

Pulverización de ciudades con agentes químicos: Para investigar los posibles efectos de un ataque químico aéreo, las Fuerzas Armadas de EE.UU. y la CIA realizaron una serie de simulaciones de ataques químicos y biológicos contra varias ciudades estadounidenses a mediados del siglo pasado, se dispersó el virus de tos ferina en la bahía de Tampa, estallando una epidemia y dejando 12 muertos todo esto al mando de la CIA, la Marina de guerra roció en San Francisco bacterias patógenas que produjeron neumonía a muchas personas. Sobre Savannah estado de Georgia, el Ejército militar soltó millones de mosquitos portadores de la fiebre amarilla y dengue, infectando a miles con estas enfermedades. Después de los ataques, a las zonas afectadas llegaban militares disfrazados de trabajadores sanitarios, con la intención secreta de estudiar los efectos a largo plazo de todas las enfermedades mientras ayudaban a las víctimas.

Keep reading