Historical

World’s oldest intact shipwreck discovered in Black Sea

Archaeologists say the 23-metre vessel has lain undisturbed for more than 2,400 years Kevin Rawlinson The Guardian Archaeologists have found what they believe to be the world’s oldest intact shipwreck at the bottom of the Black Sea where it appears to have lain undisturbed for more than 2,400 years. The 23-metre (75ft) vessel, thought to be ancient Greek, was discovered with its mast, rudders and rowing benches all present and correct just over a mile below the surface. A lack ... Read More »

Trump seizes on migrant caravan ahead of midterms

The Hill’s Morning Report — Presented by PhRMA A massive caravan of Central American immigrants snaking its way toward the U.S. border has thrust the immigration debate center stage in the midterm elections, giving President Trump a high-profile political target as he… Jonathan Easley and Alexis Simendinger The Hill Democrats are eager to keep the focus on health care in the final two weeks until Election Day, but the president has spent the past 24 hours unloading on the migrant caravan, which ... Read More »

Chinese missile buildup strained US-Russia arms pact

The 1987 INF Treaty banned land-based missiles with ranges of 500 to 5,500 kilometers. Gregory Hellman Politico U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to pull out of a landmark arms control treaty with Russia comes after nearly a year of appeals from top military leaders to confront China’s rising missile ambitions — perhaps the… Trump told reporters Monday outside the White House that Beijing’s growing arsenal played into his decision to withdraw from the Cold War-era Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, even ... Read More »

The Myth of Whiteness in Classical Sculpture

Greek and Roman statues were often painted, but assumptions about race and aesthetics have suppressed this truth. Now scholars are making a color correction. By Margaret Talbot The New Yorker Mark Abbe was ambushed by color in 2000, while working on an archeological dig in the ancient Greek city of Aphrodisias, in present-day Turkey. At the time, he was a graduate student at New York University’s Institute of Fine Arts, and, like most people, he thought of Greek and Roman ... Read More »

The tip-off from a Nazi that saved my grandparents

When Alexander Bodin Saphir’s Jewish grandfather was measuring a high-ranking Nazi for a suit in Copenhagen 75 years ago he got an important tip-off – the Jews were about to be rounded up and deported. BBC It has often been described as a “miracle” that most of Denmark’s Jews escaped the Holocaust. Now it seems that the country’s Nazi rulers deliberately sabotaged their own operation. It was a cold October night 75 years ago when my grandparents, Fanny and Raphael ... Read More »

Bob Dylan to launch ‘life story’ retrospective in Shanghai

Dylan’s current Mondo Scripto exhibition is a pre-cursor to fully-immersive show that melds his music and visual art with his life story Richard Cook Asia Times Bob Dylan is world famous as a musician, singer, writer and poet, as a social critic and cultural icon, and as a winner – among numerous other commendations – of a Nobel Prize in Literature. As if such a mercurial collection of talents and accolades is not enough, this modern day American Renaissance Man ... Read More »

Thousands in London march for vote on Brexit terms

Organizers claimed 700,000 turned out in London, calling for a vote on the terms of the Brexit deal. Prime Minister Theresa May has repeatedly ruled out another referendum. DW Thousands of people marched through central London on Saturday to call for a second Brexit referendum. Organizers and participants in the People’s Vote March have expressed concerns that the UK’s exit from the European Union looks nothing like the Brexit outlined ahead of the first vote in 2016. The 2016 referendum ... Read More »

A portrait of Othello as a black Muslim tragic hero

Adaptation explores religious roots of Shakespeare’s Moor of Venice as director says play is warning about ‘otherising’. Aina Khan AlJazeera London, England – A new adaptation of Othello in the UK subtly interrogates the tragic hero’s religious identity, presenting to audiences the possibility that the Moor of Venice was a… Produced by the English Touring Theatre, there is an Arabic recitation in the opening scene and an image of Othello with his hands cupped in what is unmistakably a… “I was ... Read More »

Stop playing the Hitler card

Comparing the AfD to the Nazis gives them more attention than they deserve. Konstantin Richter Politico BERLIN — A surprising thing or two happened last week after Alternative for Germany’s leader Alexander Gauland wrote an op-ed for the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. An anonymous tweeter found that Gauland’s piece had some likeness to a speech given by Adolf Hitler in 1933. The Berlin daily newspaper Tagesspiegel then asked a couple of historians to compare the two speeches. Their verdict? The wording differed, but Gauland and Hitler ... Read More »

Brexit spurs refugees’ descendants to seek German passports

Britons whose families fled Nazi persecution of Jews look to maintain EU links Tobias Buck Financial Times Brexit has prompted a surge in German citizenship applications by British descendants of Jewish refugees from the Nazis, as part of a broader rush by UK nationals for EU passports. According to official data, such applications have risen almost 40-fold since Britain voted to leave the EU, from just 43 in 2015 to 1,667 last year. In 2016, descendants of refugees made 684 ... Read More »

Pakistan’s Pivot to Asia

Imran Khan is addressing his nation’s challenges by choosing liberally from a menu of Western and Asian futures. Ben Judah The Atlantic Just a few years ago, the news out of Pakistan would have sent official Washington into a tailspin. But with cable TV broadcasting Trump nonstop, few bothered to even note that a champion cricketer turned populist firebrand, Imran Khan, won the election as prime minister this summer. Nor did many pause over the fact that Khan won that ... Read More »

The Climate Won’t Stop Changing In 2100

Computing power and time put limits on long-term climate modeling—but that doesn’t mean things will get better on their own. Alex Lubben The Nation In a recent interview with Lesley Stahl on 60 Minutes, Donald Trump changed his tone on climate change—sort of. “I’m not denying climate change,” he said. “But it could very well go back.” Scientists overwhelmingly agree that President Trump is wrong: To suppose that climate change is somehow reversible in the natural course of events on any ... Read More »

Why the West Should Care About the Turmoil in Armenia

Human rights and stability in Yerevan impact the whole region. Wes Martin The National Interest National Security Advisor John Bolton is planning to visit the South Caucasus, a strategic mountainous region sandwiched between Russia, Turkey and Iran, which changed hands repeatedly between these imperial masters for the last one thousand years. In Georgia, he will deal with a pro-western country still reeling from the war with Russia ten years ago. But a real challenge awaits Bolton in Armenia—a small mountainous country with ... Read More »

Who’s Really Afraid of Nationalism?

Yoram Hazony has written a polemic against what he perceives as the conventional wisdom—a refutation of the “paradigm of the European liberals” for whom the European Union is the highest stage of political excellence. Michael Kimmage The National Interest Yoram Hazony, The Virtue of Nationalism, (New York: Basic Books, 2018), 273 pp., $26.99. It was the best of times in Europe, in the 1990s, and it was the worst of times in Russia. The Soviet Union had ignominiously collapsed in ... Read More »

Criticism of Western Civilisation isn’t new, it was part of the Enlightenment

The duelling sides in today’s cultural wars about “Western civilization” are united in one thing, at least – each is inclined to gloss over the extent to which “Western civilisation” has always been deeply complex and… Matthew Sharpe The Conversation The fact that leading conservatives like Edmund Burke or Joseph de Maistre, as well as revolutionaries like Karl Marx or Rosa Luxembourg, all belong to “Western civilization” ought by itself to give the… But take the 18th century enlightenment, for ... Read More »

A Glimpse Into the Next Decade of Erdogan’s ‘New Turkey’

Upon winning his second term as president in June, and assuming the strong executive powers that had been approved by voters in a 2017 referendum, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan cemented what he had long been seeking: the creation of a… Sinan Ciddi Stratfor The “new Turkey,” as Erdogan calls it, is a country fast becoming insular and inward-looking. From Erdogan’s perspective, Turkey’s founding elite of the 1920s created a state, society and culture fashioned according to the preferences of ... Read More »