Adonis Diaries

Archive for January 24th, 2018

If It Happened There … America’s Annual Festival Pilgrimage Begins

 posted this Nov. 27, 2013
The long journey home. Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

This is the fourth installment of a continuing series in which American events are described using the tropes and tone normally employed by the American media to describe events in other countries.

WASHINGTON, D.C., United States—On Wednesday morning, this normally bustling capital city became a ghost town as most of its residents embarked on the long journey to their home villages for an annual festival of family, food, and questionable historical facts.

Experts say the day is vital for understanding American society and economists are increasingly taking note of its impact on the world economy.

The annual holiday, known as Thanksgiving, celebrates a mythologized moment of peace between America’s early foreign settlers and its native groups—a day that by Americans’ own admission preceded a near genocide of those groups.

Despite its murky origins, the holiday remains a rare institution celebrated almost universally in this ethnically diverse society.

During the holiday, more than 38.4 million Americans will make the long pilgrimage home, traveling an average of 214 miles over congested highways, often in inclement weather.

The more prosperous citizens will frequently opt for the nation’s airways, suffering through a series of flight delays and missed airline connections thanks to the country’s decaying transportation infrastructure and residual fears of foreign terrorist attacks.

Once home, the holiday’s traditions encourage Americans to consume massive quantities of food centered around the turkey, a flightless, and some would say tasteless bird , native to the American continent.

All in all, 46 million of these animals will be slaughtered for the feast, nearly 20% of those raised each year.

The average American will consume an almost unbelievable 4,500 calories, despite ongoing warnings about dangerous obesity rates nationally.

Virtually the only break from the eating comes when Americans gather around the television to watch a special presentation of football, the country’s most popular sport.

If the brutal violence of the game seems at odds with the holiday’s emphasis on thanks and good will, no one seems to mind.

Though rooted in America’s ancient history, the celebration of Thanksgiving today also reflects the transforming values of American society.

One relatively recent tradition is the head of state’s public “pardoning” of a turkey—a sop to animal rights activists made somewhat moot by the fact that the country’s president simply dines on a different turkey.

To outsiders, it can also seem like a somewhat macabre gesture since the United States is one of the last developed countries to employ the death penalty for humans.

Traditionally, the Friday and weekend following Thanksgiving have been set aside for another American institution—intense consumer activity and bargain shopping.

(The availability of deeply discounted goods is increasingly beginning even sooner, sometime on the holiday itself, angering some purists.)

More than $59 billion will be spent over these days, though the exact figure will be watched closely by economists looking for clues about the country’s national mood and economic well-being.

The event is known as “Black Friday,” though contrary to popular belief, this is not due to the injuries and deaths that periodically occur during retail stampedes.

In recent years, some experts have questioned whether the hidden costs of the Thanksgiving holiday have become excessive;

whether the celebration is worth its massive environmental impact and the increased health risks due to traffic accidents and overeating.

Still, the majority of the population holds fast to these pastimes.

For them, they are part of a rare, quintessentially American tradition in a modernizing society that finds itself increasingly under the influence of the outside world.

How the Young Turks committed genocide on Armenians

Turkification of the historic city names in Armenian Highland, Anatolia and Cilicia.

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No automatic alt text available.

Hratch Kozibeyokian added 2 new photos.

The Committee of Union and Progress took the reins of the Ottoman government through a coup d’état in 1913.

At the height of World War I and during the final years of the Ottoman Empire, when the ethnic cleansing policies of non-Muslim Greek, Armenian, and Assyrians were underway, Minister of War Enver Pasha issued an edict (ferman) on October 6, 1916, declaring: 

“It has been decided that provinces, districts, towns, villages, mountains, and rivers, which are named in languages belonging to non-Muslim nations such as Armenian, Greek or Bulgarian, will be renamed into Turkish. In order to benefit from this suitable moment, this aim should be achieved in due course.”

General Directorate of State Archives of the Republic of Turkey, İstanbul Vilayet Mektupçuluğu, no. 000955, 23 Kânunuevvel 1331 (October 6, 1916) Ordinance of Enver Paşa.

Enver Pasha did not change the geographical names belonging to Muslim minorities (i.e. Arabs and Kurds) due to the Ottoman government’s role as a Caliphate. His decree inspired many Turkish intellectuals to write in support of such measures.

One such intellectual, Hüseyin Avni Alparslan (1877–1921), a Turkish soldier and author of books about Turkish language and culture, was inspired by the efforts of Enver Pasha, writing in his book Trabzon İli Lâz mı? Türk mü? (Is the Trabzon province Laz or Turkish?): 

“If we want to be the owner of our country, then we should turn even the name of the smallest village into Turkish and not leave its Armenian, Greek or Arabic variants.
Only in this way can we paint our country with its colors.” Turkified”–Enver Pasha.

Map prepared by Historian Gevork Nazaryan

Armin Wegner was born in 1886 to an aristocratic Prussian family. He enlisted in the German Army during World War I and served as a medic. Stationed in Baghdad in 1915, Wegner witnessed the death marches of thousands of Armenians who were being deported and slaughtered by the Ottoman Army.

Disobeying direct orders to keep quiet about the massacres because Germany and the Ottoman Empire were allies, Wegner gathered evidence to show the world what was happening. He collected documents and took hundreds of photographs.

Wegner was arrested by the Germans and sent back to Germany. Many of his photographs were confiscated and destroyed, but he managed to save some by hiding the negatives in his belt. Wegner’s photographs remain the best documentation of the Armenian genocide.

After the war, Wegner became a successful journalist and prominent anti-war activist.

In the early 1930’s, Wegner was the only writer to speak out publicly against Hitler’s persecution of the Jews.

He penned an open letter to Adolf Hitler on behalf of the Jews of Germany.

No newspaper would publish it, so he sent the letter directly to Nazi Party headquarters. In the letter, Wegner said that Hitler’s actions against the Jews would destroy Germany.

Soon after sending the letter to Hitler, Wegner was arrested by the Gestapo, tortured, and imprisoned in several concentration camps.

He survived and fled to Rome, never returning to Germany.

In 1967 Wegner was honored as Righteous Among the Nations by Israel’s museum of the Holocaust, Yad Vashem. (Armenians need to find “Righteous Among the Syrians” who made it possible for Armenians to survive after welcoming them in Aleppo and Deir al Zour after their horror journey in 1917-18)

A year later, he was invited to Armenia to receive an award for his heroism.

Armin Wegner died in 1978, at the age of 91, and is buried in Rome. The inscription on his tombstone quotes the dying words of Pope Gregory VII in 1085:

“I loved justice and hated iniquity. Therefore I die in exile”

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Armenian Highlands Have Never Been Called “Eastern Anatolia”

The government of Sultan Abdul Hamid II replaced the name “Armenia” by terms like “Kurdistan” and “Anatolia”.

(The Kurds were employed to guard the Armenian  prisoners on their death journey to Syria. The Kurds were rewarded by looting and confiscating Armenian properties)

Since 1880, the use of the name of Armenia in official documents was forbidden. The Sublime Porte thus attempted to convince everyone that there is no such thing as the “Armenian Question” – no Armenia, no issues related to it.

The Kemalists, ideological successors of Young Turks, carried on with the process of the “nationalization”. It gained momentum especially in the republican years.

In 1923, the whole territory of Western Armenia was renamed Eastern Anatolia.

In his “Jihan Numa”, renowned 17th-century Ottoman scholar, historian, and geographer Kâtip Çelebi wrote a chapter named “About the Country Called Armenia”.

However, when the book was republished in 1957, its editor, one H. Selen, renamed the chapter “Eastern Anatolia”. This case is only one of the hundreds of others, clearly demonstrating the Turkish falsifications in regard to Armenians’ indigenous to Western Armenia, not to mention the rest of historical Armenia.

In the 17th century, when the “Armenian Question” hadn’t yet emerged, the term “Eastern Anatolia” did not exist. Additionally, the 16th-century “Islamic World Map”, as well as 18th- and 19th-century Ottoman maps featured Armenia as a distinct territory with its cities.

Article source:…/armenian-highlands-have-never-been-…/


Please don’t kill the blogs

An open note to Google

To the gmail team,

You’ve built a tool for a billion people. Most of my blog readers use it every day, and so do I.

Thanks for creating an effective way for people to connect to the people and ideas they care about.

That comes with responsibility. The same responsibility that the postal service has… to deliver the mail.

I’m aware that you don’t charge the people who use gmail for the privilege. In fact, we’re the product, not the customer.

Your goal is to keep people within the Google ecosystem and to get the writers and marketers who use email as a permission asset to instead shift to paying money (to Google) to inform and reach their audience.

So you invented the ‘promotions’ folder.

It seems like a great idea. That spam-like promo mail, all that stuff I don’t want to read now (and probably ever) will end up there. Discounts on shoes.

The latest urgent note from someone I don’t even remember buying from. The last time I checked, you’ve moved more than 100,000 messages to my promotions folder. Without asking.

Alas, you’ve now become a choke point.

You take the posts from this blog and dump them into my promo folder–and the promo folder of more than a hundred thousand people who never asked you to hide it.

Emails from my favorite charities end up in my promo folder.

The Domino Project blog goes there as well. Emails from Medium, from courses I’ve signed up for, from services I confirmed just a day earlier. Items sent with full permission, emails that by most definitions aren’t “promotions.”

Here’s a simple way to visualize it: Imagine that your mailman takes all the magazines you subscribe to, mixes them in with the junk mail you never asked for, and dumps all of it in a second mailbox, one that you don’t see on your way into the house every day. And when you subscribe to new magazines, they instantly get mixed in as well.

It’s simple: blogs aren’t promotions. Blogs subscribed to shouldn’t be messed with. The flow of information by email is an extraordinary opportunity, and when a choke point messes with that to make a profit, things break.

The irony of having a middleman steal permission is not lost on me. That’s what you’re doing.

You’re not serving your customers because you’re stealing the permission that they’ve given to providers they care about it. And when publishers switch to SMS or Facebook Messenger, that hardly helps your cause.

The solution is simple: Create a white-list.

Include the top 10,000 blogs (you probably still have the list from when you shut down Google Reader). Make the algorithm smarter, and make it easier for your users to let you know about the emails that are important enough to be in their inbox. When an email sender shows up regularly, it’s probably a smart idea to ask before unilaterally shifting it to the promo folder.

Of course, users are free to choose a different email client. Alas, senders aren’t. And as a publisher, it hurts me that I can’t keep the promise I’ve made to my readers.

And, while you’re upgrading the system, what’s up with all the weird sex spam we’ve been getting the last four months? It doesn’t seem that difficult to distinguish it from actual human emails…

Google and Facebook are now the dominant middlemen for more than 85% of all online advertising.

Along the way, Google has also dominated much of the email communication on the planet.  You get all the money but I think you need to up your game in return.

Thanks in advance for fixing this.

My readers want to get the stuff they asked to get. You probably do too.

Notes and tidbits posted on FB and Twitter. Part 134

Note: I take notes of books I read and comment on events and edit sentences that fit my style. I pay attention to researched documentaries and serious links I receive. The page is long and growing like crazy, and the sections I post contains a month-old events that are worth refreshing your memory.

If this Symbol of Jerusalem can appease the soul of all the religious sects swarming in this calamity city, let Trump declare Jerusalem a “neutral zone” to all religious sects, including the Jews, and the religious sites run by the UN as museums.

Since 1915, US Zionists pressured England to agree on a land for the Jews in Palestine in 1917, as part of entering the war. In 2017, an entire century, US pressured Israel to agree on Jerusalem as Capital. (Apartheid Israel has enough troubles without this new calamity)

So the US killed, injured, famished and displaced millions of Syrians, Iraqis and Yemenis for 2 decades in order to make the swallowing of Jerusalem as Capital of Israel as a far lesser Evil? Can Jerusalem from now on be considered the Symbolic Center of All evils?

In 1781, Jacques Necker, France minister of finance, proclaimed that “There can be No peace in Europe unless public debts are reduced to the bare minimum:

Public debts are sources for increasing the military capabilities designed for destructive activities; and then more debts are accumulated for the reconstruction phase.  A devilish cycle that is anathema to prosperity and security.”

Thomas Jefferson recommended, and then imposed his view when he became President to the new Independent America, that loans should never be contracted out by States for longer than 19 years so that future generations do not have to suffer decisions of the living ones.

In 1748, Montesquieu in “Of the spirit of laws” wrote: “There are a few financial specialists disseminating the concept that public debts multiply wealth and increase circulation of money and internal trade. Facts are, the real revenues of the State, generated by the activities of industrious citizens, are transferred to idle classes. The consequences are that we make it more difficult on the industrious citizens to produce profit and worst, extending privileges to the passive classes.”

Funny. Lebanon news media are still focusing on Saad Hariri. Is Jerusalem crisis off the air? Is Jerusalem within the stupid concept of “na2i bil nafess” (Not meddling)?

As life expectancy is increasing, I suggest that Constitutions should force governments and official institutions to restrict the life of any loan to be 5 years shorter of the lower number of the average life expectancy or the age of retirement of citizens in the creditor nation.

War is the preferred default mechanisms on outrageous contracted debts, particularly when the creditor nation is weaker militarily.

If it were in another time USA and another serious President, this declaration about Jerusalem status would have worried me. It seems all too clownish. And the government altogether. from Jared to this Pence the idiot.




January 2018

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