Butiama Bed & Breakfast

Butiama Bed & Breakfast

Wednesday, 28 February 2018

32 years ago today Swedish premier Olof Palme was assassinated

32 years ago today Swedish Premier Olof Palme was assassinated. His murder remains unsolved.

Palme was walking back from a cinema to ride a subway home after watching a film with his wife and was attacked by a lone gunman who immediately fled the scene.

Numerous investigations have failed to solve the murder after an initial conviction of manslaughter of Christer Pettersson was overturned by a Swedish court. After he was killed Swedish law was changed to extend the 25-year limit to murder investigations to allow his murder investigation to remain open.
Olof Palme in 1974. Source: The Swedish National Archive
Numerous theories have been developed to solve his killing, all inconclusive. These include suggestions that his killing was ordered by the Yugoslav Security Service, the South African Apartheid regime, or the CIA.

As prime minster Sweden was a staunch follower of non-aligned policies towards the superpowers. He supported African liberation movements and developed close relations with Tanzania under President Mwalimu Julius Kambarage Nyerere, a leader whose government was in the forefront of providing support to Africa's liberation movements.

Tuesday, 27 February 2018

It is Thiago Neves' birthday

It is Thiagos Neves' birthday today. He is 33 years today. He is a Brazilian footballer who currently plays for Cruzeiro Esporte Clube based in Barro Preto, Belo Horizonte, Brazil. His transfer fee to Cruzeiro was £3.6m.

He has represented his national team only six teams between 2008 and 2012. Brazil opens its World Cup bid against Switzerland on 16th June. The tournament kicks off in Moscow on 14th June 2018.

The peak ages for a football player are between 27 and 29, so we are certain not to see Neves playing in this World Cup.

Wednesday, 27 December 2017

Former soccer player George Weah has won Liberian elections

Former soccer player George Weah has won Liberia's elections, held on 26th December 2017.

When I wrote about his possible political ambitions in 2008 it appeared to me that he placed a higher priority on his soccer career.

George Tawlon Manneh Opong Ousman Weah is 51 years old and was FIFA Footballer of the Year in 1995. He also won the Ballon d'Or and was the first African to win these two prestigious awards.

In 1999 soccer legend Pele named him in FIFA's list of 100 world's greatest living players.

Some of the teams he played for include Monaco, Paris Saint-Germain, Milan, and Manchester City.

In politics, he ran against and lost to outgoing president, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf in 2005. He was elected to the Liberian Senate in 2014.

If he still occasionally puts on his soccer boots, he would be the second African soccer playing president, after Burundi's Pierre Nkurunziza.

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

The League of Nations sought a world peace that remains elusive

At the end of World War I the allied victors formed the League of Nations, later to become the United Nations, as part of the outcome of the Paris Peace Conference of 1919. The first session of the League of Nations was held in Geneva on this day, 97 years ago.

The principal objective of the League of Nations was to maintain world peace, a quest that has remained elusive throughout.
Bell Uh-1, Helicopter, Iroquois, Huey
The Vietnam War estimated deaths: more than 2 million.
The League had 42 founding members who agreed to avoid future wars through collective security and disarmament, and settling disputes through arbitration and negotiations.
Landing Craft, Omaha Beach, Normandy
World War II casualties: more than 50 million deaths
Fast forward to today and throughout the existence of the United Nations and it would appear that humans are still grasping to learn the principles of the maintenance of peace. There have been more than 180 armed conflicts in the world between 1900 and today, claiming an estimated 80 million battle-related deaths.

As the United States flexes its muscles against North Korea, we know we still have a long way to go to grasp the painful lessons of war and find a lasting solution to the elusive nature of the peace we claim to cherish.

Sunday, 12 November 2017

it is the 37th anniversary of Voyager I's Saturn approach

This day, 37 years ago, NASA's Voyager I spacecraft approached Saturn and sent back images of the outer planet.
Saturn from Voyager I. Photo: NASA
The spacecrafts' statistics are mind-boggling:
  • it has travelled through space for forty years and two months - and counting
  • it's the spacecraft that has covered the farthest distance from Earth
  • it became the first craft to enter interstellar space, having crossed the boundaries of the heliopause on 25th August 2012. That's 14.4 billion kilometres away.
  • it travels at 17 kilometres per second. It would take just over 7 minutes to cover the distance between Cairo and Cape Town
  • it will continue its trajectory for the next 40,000 years, perhaps eternally, if it does not collide with any object
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