For Hiromi, Tomahara, Satomi, Koji, all the others and of course Kenta.

IndianPOWs

Today is the seventieth anniversary of the first atomic bomb being dropped on Hiroshima. It killed seventy thousand people and within three days, a second one was dropped on Nagasaki killing another forty thousand. Nagasaki was the secondary fall-back target of the mission, because the primary target of Kokura was clouded over. Kokura had also been the … Continue reading

I may have signed my actual death warrant.

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Those words were spoken by a man called Michael Collins when he signed what was in effect a peace agreement between Ireland and Britain to end the bloodletting of the War of Independence, knowing his country would be deeply divided on the question of the amount of independence the treaty would grant. He signed anyway because he … Continue reading

Like speaks unto Like, but says nothing new, as it never hears it

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This is another guest article by Graeme No3, one of our regular contributing writers. In it, he draws some political and cultural parallels between ancient China and the situation prevailing today in the democratic parts of the world. The similarities identified are worryingly familiar and one can only hope the results might not be as severe. … Continue reading

The Age of Unenlightenment.

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That slick expression you’re entitled to your own opinions but not your own facts, now has a deeper meaning in this latest stage of the post-enlightenment. If your facts plainly contradict someone else’s orthodox beliefs, then you are simply being “unhelpful” or even “harmful” and should therefore be suppressed. That’s to be done not by … Continue reading

Make no mistake, words are ammo.

HK

In every cell of every living organism on the Earth, there’s DNA, which if you want to get technical stands for Deoxyribonucleic Acid. It’s a long double strand helix structure built using sequences of just four nucleotides; guanine, adenine, thymine, and cytosine, which are usually represented by their capital letters in genetics. G, A, T … Continue reading

Working together.

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You’re moving through hostile territory, so you stick close to each other. The boss is a real leader man, and he’s as good as they come, brave as a fighting Rhode Island Red rooster, liked and held in high respect by his men, which is why he’s right up front, doing the leadership thing. The … Continue reading

The real bastards.

The Gulags.

I want to tell you the story of a couple of things that happened in the not too distant past, because they obviously need to be told again, if only to serve as a warning from history. They’re forgotten stories nowadays, possibly because they’re not very pleasant ones, but they did happen. The philosophical basis for the Nazi movement … Continue reading

Political fracture points and power vacuums.

Well, actually, Truman defeated Dewey ...

A political fracture point is a sudden and radical change in the political landscape. In classical times, it would be the collapse of an empire, such as the Roman Empire. In the last century, World War I resulted in the outright destruction of several, such as the German Empire, and ultimately fatal damage to others, … Continue reading

Words, ideas, primary sources, history and a bit thrown in about writers.

Writing

I write and I read books. Either of those activities will inevitably lead you to think about the nature of the written word. Up until quite recently, it was the only way your thoughts and ideas could survive your death without any sort of distortion. Nobody was half-remembering, interpreting what you said or bending it … Continue reading