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Sat, 23 Feb 2019
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The Medieval warm period and how grapes grew where polar bears now roam

Vineyards In Russia, Norway, N England (55°N)
© Wiki
1-2°C Warmer Medieval Times Supported Wine Vineyards In Russia, Norway, N England (55°N)
Canada's stable-to-increasing polar bear population extends its range slightly further south of the 55th parallel (York et al., 2016).

cliamte medieval vineyards
© York et al., 2016
According to published geological evidence from the 1950s, remnants of wine grape vineyards have been unearthed in regions as far north as the polar-bear-inhabiting 55th parallel during the Medieval Warm Period (~800s to 1300s AD).

Comment: As the data shows, our planet experiences cycles of warming and cooling:


Heart - Black

How the US Navy poisoned San Franciscans in 1950 chemical weapons experiment, killing one

san francisco chemical weapons
Many Americans would not be surprised to hear that the United States government conducted one of the largest human experiments in history by simulating a chemical attack on thousands of unsuspecting individuals. But that attack was carried out in San Francisco, California, and the people who died and were seriously injured as a result were poisoned by their own government.

In 1950, the U.S. government carried out this attack by spraying the city of San Francisco with the microbe Serratia marcescensin an attack that targeted thousands of innocent civilians. Discover Magazine reported that the experiment was conducted as a "vulnerability test to identify susceptible regions in the event of a biological terrorist attack."

The attack was called "Operation Sea-Spray" and San Francisco was chosen as the target because it is close to the ocean and because it has a unique geography, tall buildings, and dense population.

For six days in September 1950, the United States Navy used giant hoses to spray clouds of Serratia along the San Francisco coastline, which resulted in the city's 800,000 residents receiving heavy doses of the chemical. It is also estimated that residents in the neighboring communities of Albany, Berkeley, Daly City, Colma, Oakland, San Leandro, and Sausalito, were exposed to it.

Star of David

A brief history of Israeli terror in Palestine

Palestine Israel massacre

Child killed at Qana, 2006, during Israeli airstrike.
It would be nice to think that, as an Israeli officer once put it, "This time we went too far" - that the killings of 17 unarmed protesters in Gaza by Israeli riflers across a security fence on Friday would cause the world to sanction Israel for its conduct. But if you look over Israel's history, you find that the massacre has been a ready tool in the Israeli war-chest; and Israelis have not been prosecuted for carrying them out. Indeed, a couple of those responsible later became prime minister!

Here, largely from my own memory, is a rapidly-assembled list of massacres, defined by Webster's as the killing of a "number of usually helpless or unresisting human beings under circumstances of atrocity or cruelty" (and yes, a couple precede the birth of the state).

1946. Zionist militias blow up the south wing of the King David Hotel, killing 91 people, most of them civilians, in order to protest British rule of Palestine.

Comment: Further reading:


Info

The destruction of ancient Rome - The barbarians were not responsible

Destruction of Rome
© Malaga Bay
Rodolfo Lanciani was an archaeologist who produced "unsurpassed" plans of Ancient Rome.
Rodolfo Amedeo Lanciani (1845 - 1929) was an Italian archaeologist, a pioneering student of ancient Roman topography, and among his many excavations was that of the House of the Vestals in the Roman Forum.

Ancient Rome
© Malaga Bay
Lanciani's great work was the production of a map of the ancient city of Rome.

The work was realized as a set of 46 very detailed maps of ancient Rome issued in 1893-1901, which remains unsurpassed to this day, even if there have been many new discoveries since.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rodolfo_Lanciani

Attention

Professor John Erickson: 'Edinburgh Conversations' with Russians

Professor John Erickson
© Unknown
As Edinburgh University today hosts the annual Erickson Lecture, it is a good moment to reflect on the remarkable contribution of Professor John Erickson (1929-2002) to easing tensions between Russia and the West during the original Cold War.[1]

Erickson was the initiator of a nine-year series of meetings through the 1980s that came to be known as the Edinburgh Conversations. With the wholehearted support of the University's principal, Erickson created a 'back channel', away from politicking and press, which allowed Western and Soviet admirals and generals to engage face-to-face for open and mutually respectful dialogue in a neutral setting. According to parliamentarian Tam Dalyell, this initiative 'singlehandedly kept open contact with the Soviet high command and the Soviet military when times were at their most edgy.' Erickson himself ensured that the meetings - typically lasting about three days - were conducted strictly under 'academic rules'. (In Erickson's view, 'good scholarship is good morality.') This allowed them to proceed in good spirit, despite the tensions of the time. The series of Conversations continued for nine years, with the venue for annual meetings alternating between Edinburgh and Moscow.

Archaeology

Built to last! The roads of Ancient Rome

Roman Empire

The Roman empire in the time of Hadrian (ruled 117–138), showing the network of main Roman roads.
The Romans were renowned as great engineers and this is evident in the many structures that they left behind. One particular type of construction that the Romans were famous for is their roads. It was these roads, which the Romans called viae, that enabled them to build and maintain their empire. How did they create this infrastructure that has withstood the passing of time better than most its modern counterparts?

Roads of All Kinds

It has been calculated that the network of Roman roads covered a distance of over 400,000 km (248,548.47 miles), with more than 120,000 km (74,564.54 miles) of this being of the type known as 'public roads'. Spreading across the Romans' vast empire from Great Britain in the north to Morocco in the south, and from Portugal in the west to Iraq in the East, they allowed people and goods to travel quickly from one part of the empire to another.

Comment: Ancient Rome was unparalleled in its time, not only because of military might and bloody conquests, but also because of its technological ingenuity which allowed the former empire to expand beyond the scope of previous ones that came before it. For more on some of the history of Rome, see also:


Info

Powerful men have left a genetic mark on humanity

Genghis Khan
© Nautilus
In humans, the profound biological differences that exist between the sexes mean that a single male is physically capable of having far more children than is a single female. Women carry unborn children for nine months and often nurse them for several years prior to having additional children.1 Men, meanwhile, are able to procreate while investing far less time in the bearing and early rearing of each child. So it is that, as measured by the contribution to the next generation, powerful men have the potential to have a far greater impact than powerful women, and we can see this in genetic data.

The great variability among males in the number of offspring produced means that by searching for genomic signatures of past variability in the number of children men have had, we can obtain genetic insights into the degree of social inequality in society as a whole, and not just between males and females. An extraordinary example of this is provided by the inequality in the number of male offspring that seems to have characterized the empire established by Genghis Khan, who ruled lands stretching from China to the Caspian Sea. After his death in 1227, his successors, including several of his sons and grandsons, extended the Mongol Empire even farther-to Korea in the east, to central Europe in the west, and to Tibet in the south. The Mongols maintained rested horses at strategically spaced posts, allowing rapid communication across their more than 8,000-kilometer span of territory. The united Mongol Empire was short-lived-for example, the Yüan dynasty they established in China fell in 1368-but their rise to power nevertheless allowed them to leave an extraordinary genetic impact on Eurasia.2

A 2003 study led by Chris Tyler-Smith showed how a relatively small number of powerful males living during the Mongol period succeeded in having an outsize impact on the billions of people living in East Eurasia today.3 His study of Y chromosomes suggested that one single male who lived around the time of the Mongols left many tens of millions of direct male-line descendants across the territory that Mongols occupied. The evidence is that about 8 percent of the male population in the lands the Mongol Empire once occupied share a characteristic Y-chromosome sequence and a cluster of similar sequences differing by just a few mutations. Tyler-Smith and his colleagues called this a "Star Cluster" to reflect the idea of a single ancestor with many descendants, and estimated the date of the founder of this lineage to be 1,300 to 700 years ago based on the estimated rate of accumulation of mutations on the Y chromosome. The date coincides with that of Genghis Khan, suggesting that this single successful Y chromosome may have been his.

Heart - Black

Russophobia, the Jewish Lobby and the Armenian holocaust

"As a result of the Jewish lobby's recommendations, the Young Turks government removed Armenians from Anatolia in 1915. Hence, the economy of the country was left in the hands of Jewish capital." - Ekrem Buğra Ekinci of The Daily Sabah Turkish newspaper, October 13th 2017.
Armenian genocide 1915
© Mary Evans Picture Library

Comment: Must-see docu:

100 years later: The Armenian genocide of 1915






Arrow Down

Destruction of Yugoslavia: The template for America's future policy

SceneYugoslavia
© unknown
The prospects of a Hillary Clinton presidency bring back the memories of the peoples of the Balkans the era of the 1990s, when Bill Clinton, NATO, and the forces of globalism brought about the collapse of Yugoslavia and a surge in nationalism in the Balkans not seen since World War II.

The planned US destruction of Yugoslavia is spelled out in an October 31, 1988, US National Intelligence Council memorandum titled "'Sense of Community' Report on Yugoslavia". Written by Marten van Heuven, the National Intelligence Officer for Europe, the formerly classified Secret memo conveyed the opinion of the US Intelligence Community that it was doubtful that Yugoslavia would survive from its form in 1988. Van Heuven was a product of the RAND Corporation, the Pentagon think tank that developed countless scenarios for nuclear war, including thermonuclear mega-deaths on a global scale.

As the Cold War began to conclude, van Heuven and his American supremacy colleagues, including the later US 'viceroy' for Iraq, Paul 'Jerry' Bremer, and various US military commanders within NATO, began to sharpen their knives for the dismemberment of Yugoslavia.

Rather than blame outside influences for the pressure on the Yugoslav federal system, van Heuven began the meme that would later justify NATO's and America's intervention in Yugoslavian civil wars. For van Heuven, it was Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic who was squarely responsible for the fracture of Yugoslavia's federal system. This lie would persist until Milosevic's suspicious death in 2006 while he was on trial before the International Criminal Court in The Hague.

Info

13,000-year-old human footprints found off Canada's Pacific coast

Ancient Footprint
© Duncan McLaren CC-BY
Photograph of track #17 beside digitally-enhanced image of same feature using the DStretch plugin for ImageJ. Note the toe impressions and arch indicating that this is a right footprint.
As we turn our attention to the stars to search for life on other planets, it's easy to forget that the history of life on our Earth is still being unraveled. Anthropologists only recently discovered more evidence of humans interbreeding with a mysterious sister species to the Neanderthals, and now they've found the oldest human footprints in North America, which may revise estimates of when human crossed over from Asia.

The footprints were found buried in the sand of a beach on Calvert Island, a remote Canadian area accessible only by boat. The first footprint was found in 2014, but over the course of two years, a team from the Hakai Institute and the University of Victoria in British Columbia discovered 29 in all, including the footprints of two adults and a child.

The prints were carbon-dated to be between 11,000 and 14,000 years old, placing them around the end of the last ice age, when sea levels were about six to 10 feet lower than they are now.