Saturday, March 26, 2005

Greek Evidence on the Authenticity of the Macedonians

Greek Evidence on the Authenticity of Macedonians. Presents arguments from various periods on the differences between Macedonians and Greeks and discusses Greek policy of denying the existence of Macedonians in Greece.

From the site:

The Republic of Macedonia and the Republic of Greece had good diplomatic and neighborly relations in the past, although certain Greek people regarded the Macedonian state a thorn in their flesh and occasionally some extreme blabbermouth could be heard uttering epithets like the State of Skopje or the Skopje Cancer. However, ever since the Republic of Macedonia requested international recognition, Greece has been flooded with an unprecedented powerful campaign, in which, regretfully; science has also been involved. Scientists with a nationalistic inclination have been engaged and politicians with extreme nationalistic views have been competing in displaying their 'unique' patriotism and at the same time casting aspersions on the country which they have chosen to call Skopje or the Republic invented by the Comintern. There are even some who demand that guns should be turned towards and used against 'the little state' - as they mockingly call the Republic of Macedonia. Their aim is to prove that the name of Macedonia is an exclusive Greek property, that there has never existed a Macedonian nation, that the recognition of Macedonia will destabilize the Balkans, etc.

The purpose of this article, therefore, is to try and show the world community the absurdity of the Greek campaign against our country, bringing to light at least a fragment of the historical truth about Macedonia and the Macedonians, both those living in the Republic of Macedonia and those in Greece.

As a start let us look at the name of Macedonia. Modern Greece constantly turns to ancient Greek mythology to justify their theory. According to one source, the land was named Macedonia after Macedon, the son of Zeus and Thia; a second version claims that the name was derived from Macedon, one of the ten sons of the god Aeolus; a third version says that Macedon was the son of someone called Likaon, and according to a fourth one, Macedon was the son of the Egyptian god Osiris. Which of these four versions can we trust? Ulrich Wilken, a German historian, states that the Greek adherence to old myths is an attempt to justify their present views, i.e. lacking proofs of the Greek thesis, they resort to mythology, legends and tradition.

Friday, March 25, 2005

History of Venezuela

History of Venezuela. This is a nice short overview to the history of the South American nation of Venezuela.

From the site:

At the time of the Spanish discovery, the indigenous in Venezuela were mainly agriculturists and hunters living in groups along the coast, the Andean mountain range, and the Orinoco River. The first permanent Spanish settlement in South America--Nuevo Toledo--was established in Venezuela in 1522. Venezuela was a relatively neglected colony in the 1500s and 1600s as the Spaniards focused on extracting gold from other areas of the Americas.

Toward the end of the 18th century, the Venezuelans began to grow restive under colonial control. In 1821, after several unsuccessful uprisings, the country succeeded in achieving independence from Spain in 1821, under the leadership of its most famous son, Simon Bolivar. Venezuela, along with what are now Colombia, Panama, and Ecuador, was part of the Republic of Gran Colombia until 1830, when Venezuela separated and became a separate sovereign country.

Much of Venezuela's 19th-century history was characterized by periods of political instability, dictatorial rule, and revolutionary turbulence. The first half of the 20th century was marked by periods of authoritarianism--including dictatorships from 1908-35 and from 1950-58. In addition, the Venezuelan economy shifted after the first World War from a primarily agricultural orientation to an economy centered on petroleum production and export.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Modern History Sourcebook: The Foundation of Quebec, 1608

Modern History Sourcebook: The Foundation of Quebec, 1608. Excerpt from Champlain's journal relates one of the explorer's greatest accomplishments. Translated into English.

From the site:

I had the work of our quarters continued, which was composed of three buildings of two stories. Each one was three fathoms long, and two and a half wide, with a fine cellar six feet deep. I had a gallery made all around our buildings, on the outside, at the second story, which proved very convenient. There were also ditches, fifteen feet wide and six deep. On the other side of the ditches I constructed several spurs, which enclosed a part of the dwelling, at the points where we placed our cannon. Before the habitation there is a place four fathoms wide and six or seven long, looking out upon the riverbank. Surrounding the habitation are very good gardens, and a place on the north side some hundred or hundred and twenty paces long and fifty or sixty wide. Moreover, near Quebec, there is a little river, coming from a lake in the interior, distant six or seven leagues from our settlement. I am of the opinion that this river, which is north a quarter north-west from our settlement, is the place where Jacques Cartier wintered, since there are still, a league up the river, remains of what seems to have been a chimney, the foundation of which has been found, and indications of there having been ditches surrounding their dwelling, which was small. We found, also, large pieces of hewn, worm-eaten timber, and some three or four cannon-balls. All these things show clearly that there was a settlement there founded by Christians; and what leads me to say and believe that it was that of Jacques Cartier is the fact that there is no evidence whatever that any one wintered and built a house in these places except Jacques Cartier, at the time of his discoveries.

This place, as I think, must have been called St. Croix, as he named it, which name has since been transferred to another place fifteen leagues west of our settlement. But there is no evidence of his having wintered in the place now called St. Croix, nor in any other there, since in this direction there is no river or other place large enough for vessels except the main river or that of which I spoke above; here there is a half a fathom of water at low tide, many rocks, and a bank at the mouth, for vessels, if kept in the main river, where there are strong currents and tides, and ice in the winter, drifting along, would run the risk of being lost; especially as there is a sandy point extending out into the river, and filled with rocks, between which we have found, within the last three years, a passage not before discovered; but one must go through cautiously, in consequence of the dangerous points there. This place is exposed to the north-west winds; and the river runs as if it were a fall, the tide ebbing two and a half fathoms. There are no signs of buildings here, nor any indications that a man of judgment would settle in this place, there being many other better ones, in case one were obliged to make a permanent stay. I have been desirous of speaking at length on this point, since many believe that the abode of Jacques Cartier was here, which I do not believe, for the reasons here given; for Cartier would have left to posterity a narrative of the matter, as he did in the case of all he saw and discovered; and I maintain that my opinion is the true one, as can be shown by the history which he has left in writing.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

THE LEBANON WAR

THE LEBANON WAR. Israeli perspective on the war against Lebanon and resulting occupation, from the Anti-Defamation League.

From the site:

In Lebanon, the fragile state of no-war, no-peace, in place since 1973, began to break down as the PLO strengthened its mini-state in Lebanon, established PLO military training centers, and escalated artillery and cross-border attacks on civilians in northern Israel. Israelis were forced to spend long periods of time in bomb shelters.

The immediate trigger for Israel's operation into Lebanon was the attempted assassination of the Israeli ambassador in London on June 3, 1982. The next day, Israeli jets attacked PLO targets in Lebanon and the PLO responded with rocket and artillery barrages into northern Israel. The Israeli cabinet met to approve sending ground troops into Lebanon. Defense minister Ariel Sharon briefed the cabinet on "Operation Peace for Galilee" ­ a plan for a limited incursion of twenty-five miles into Lebanon to wipe out PLO positions in southern Lebanon and thus safeguard Israel's population in northern Israel. The cabinet, including the opposition Labor Party, supported the plan for a limited operation.

Mr. Sharon and Chief of Staff Rafael Eitan, however, had a wider-reaching grand plan beyond that of destroying the PLO's military power in southern Lebanon and the creation of a security zone there. They envisioned completely eradicating the PLO's military, political and economic hold over Lebanon, evicting Syrian forces from Lebanon, and facilitating the creation of a Christian-dominated Lebanon which would sign a peace treaty with Israel. The Lebanese presidential election was scheduled for August 23, 1982. Sharon discussed the Israeli plan with Christian Phalangist leader Bashir Gemayel, who apparently supported it and agreed to help rout the PLO from Beirut. Counting on Phalangist assistance, Sharon and Eitan ordered Israeli troops to advance as far as Beirut.

History Posters

History Posters. Here is a nice collection of history posters and prints for browsing and for sale. They are organized by world culture or by place.

Some Examples:

Argentina Art
Egyptian Culture
Native American Culture
Social Studies Art

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

American Heritage Education Foundation, Inc.

American Heritage Education Foundation, Inc. Provides free K-12 curriculum lessons by and for teachers in social studies, U. S. history/government, political science, philosophy, and economics. The curriculum educates students about America's factual, philosophical heritage. Turn your sound off! The music is annoying.

From the site:

AHEF is a non-profit educational foundation dedicated to the understanding and teaching of our nation's factual and philosophical heritage to promote freedom, unity, progress, and responsibility among our students and citizens.

Monday, March 21, 2005

History of Solomon Islands

History of Solomon Islands. This is an overview to the history of the Pacific island nation of the Solomon Islands.

From the site:

Although little prehistory of the Solomon Islands is known, material excavated on Santa Ana, Guadalcanal, and Gawa indicates that a hunter-gatherer people lived on the larger islands as early as 1000 B.C. Some Solomon Islanders are descendants of Neolithic, Austronesian-speaking peoples who migrated somewhat later to the Pacific Islands from Southeast Asia.

The European discoverer of the Solomons was the Spanish explorer Alvaro de Mendana Y Neyra, who set out from Peru in 1567 to seek the legendary Isles of Solomon. British mariner Philip Carteret , entered Solomon waters in 1767. In the years that followed, visits by explorers were more frequent.

Missionaries began visiting the Solomons in the mid-1800s. They made little progress at first, however, because "blackbirding"--the often brutal recruitment of laborers for the sugar plantations in Queensland and Fiji--led to a series of reprisals and massacres. The evils of the labor trade prompted the United Kingdom to declare a protectorate over the southern Solomons in 1893. In 1898 and 1899, more outlying islands were added to the protectorate; in 1900 the remainder of the archipelago, an area previously under German jurisdiction, was transferred to British administration. Under the protectorate, missionaries settled in the Solomons, converting most of the population to Christianity.

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Pages through the Ages

Pages through the Ages. Created by 5th-graders at Oak View Elementary School in Fairfax, Virginia, this site explores the geography, government, daily life, religion and technology of ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome.

From the site:

The prehistoric era is also called the Stone Age. The Stone Age is divided into two parts -- the Old Stone Age and the New Stone Age. The Old Stone Age started about 2 million years ago and ended about 10,000 years ago. The New Stone Age was the last 5,000 years of the era. We know about the Stone Age because researchers have found artifacts like tools, skeleton remains and cave paintings.

The people who lived then were known as nomads. They survived by hunting and gathering. The hunters got meat from the deer and the gatherers collected plants and berries. The deer were very important to these people. Other than food, they used the hides for clothing and blankets, and the bones for tools. They constantly moved around following herds of deer.

Since the people wandered around following the deer, they did not have permanent homes. There were no villages, so they did not know what farming was. Although they used their cave paintings to communicate, the nomads didn't have language like we know it today. They had trouble growing socially and culturally until they learned how to share their ideas.