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British Virgin Islands

The British Virgin Islands simply the Virgin Islands, are a British Overseas Territory in the Caribbean, to the east of Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands and north-west of Anguilla. The islands are geographically part of the Virgin Islands archipelago and are located in the Leeward Islands of the Lesser Antilles and part of the West Indies; the British Virgin Islands consist of the main islands of Tortola, Virgin Gorda and Jost Van Dyke, along with over 50 other smaller islands and cays. About 16 of the islands are inhabited; the capital, Road Town, is on Tortola, the largest island, about 20 km long and 5 km wide. The islands had a population of about 28,000 at the 2010 Census, of whom 23,500 lived on Tortola. British Virgin Islanders are British Overseas Territories citizens and since 2002 are British citizens as well; the islands were named "Santa Úrsula y las Once Mil Vírgenes" by Christopher Columbus in 1493 after the legend of Saint Ursula and the 11,000 virgins. The name was shortened to "the Virgin Islands".

The official name of the territory is still the "Virgin Islands", but the prefix "British" is used. This is believed to distinguish it from the neighbouring American territory which changed its name from the "Danish West Indies" to "Virgin Islands of the United States" in 1917. However, local historians have disputed this, pointing to a variety of publications and public records dating from between 21 February 1857 and 12 September 1919 where the Territory is referred to as the British Virgin Islands. British Virgin Islands government publications continue to begin with the name "The territory of the Virgin Islands", the territory's passports refer to the "Virgin Islands", all laws begin with the words "Virgin Islands". Moreover, the territory's Constitutional Commission has expressed the view that "every effort should be made" to encourage the use of the name "Virgin Islands", but various public and quasi-public bodies continue to use the name "British Virgin Islands" or "BVI", including BVI Finance, BVI Electricity Corporation, BVI Tourist Board, BVI Athletic Association, BVI Bar Association and others.

In 1968 the British Government issued a memorandum requiring that the postage stamps in the territory should say "British Virgin Islands", a practice, still followed today. This was to prevent confusion following on from the adoption of US currency in the Territory in 1959, the references to US currency on the stamps of the Territory, it is thought that the Virgin Islands were first settled by the Arawak from South America around 100 BC-200 AD, though there is some evidence of Amerindian presence on the islands as far back as 1500 BC. The Arawaks inhabited the islands until the 15th century when they were displaced by the more aggressive Caribs, a tribe from the Lesser Antilles islands; the first European sighting of the Virgin Islands was by the Spanish expedition of Christopher Columbus in 1493 on his second voyage to the Americas, who gave the islands their modern name. The Spanish Empire claimed the islands by discovery in the early 16th century, but never settled them, subsequent years saw the English, French and Danish all jostling for control of the region, which became a notorious haunt for pirates.

There is no record of any native Amerindian population in the British Virgin Islands during this period. The Dutch established a permanent settlement on the island of Tortola by 1648 clashing with the Spanish who were based on nearby Puerto Rico. In 1672, the English captured Tortola from the Dutch, the English annexation of Anegada and Virgin Gorda followed in 1680. Meanwhile, over the period 1672–1733, the Danish gained control of the nearby islands of Saint Thomas, Saint John and Saint Croix; the British islands were considered principally a strategic possession. The British introduced sugar cane, to become the main crop and source of foreign trade, large numbers of slaves were forcibly brought from Africa to work on the sugar cane plantations; the islands prospered economically until the middle of the nineteenth century, when a combination of the abolition of slavery in the British Empire in 1834, a series of disastrous hurricanes, the growth in the sugar beet crop in Europe and the United States reduced sugar cane production and led to a period of economic decline.

In 1917, the United States purchased the Danish Virgin Islands for US$25 million, renaming them the United States Virgin Islands. Economic linkages with the US islands prompted the British Virgin Islands to adopt the US dollar as its currency in 1959; the British Virgin Islands were administered variously as part of the British Leeward Islands or with St. Kitts and Nevis, with an administrator representing the British Government on the islands; the islands gained separate colony status in 1960 and became autonomous in 1967 under the new post of Chief Minister. Since the 1960s, the islands have diversified away from their traditionally agriculture-based economy towards tourism and financial services, becoming one of the wealthiest areas in the Caribbean; the constitution of the islands was amended in 1977, 2004 and 2007, giving them greater local autonomy. In 2017 Hurricane Irma struck the islands, causing immense damage; the British Virgin Islands comprise around 60 tropical Caribbean islands, ranging in size from the largest, being 20 km long and 5 km wide, to tiny uninhabited islets, altogether about 150 square kilometres (58 square

Beit Ula

Beit Ula, Beit Aula, is a Palestinian town in the Hebron Governorate, located ten kilometers northwest of Hebron, in the southern West Bank. The PEF's Survey of Western Palestine suggested Beit Aula as a place for the Biblical Bethel. In the Ottoman census of 932 AH/1525-1526 CE, Bayt Awla was noted as mazraa land, cultivated land, located in the nahiya of Halil. In 1838, Edward Robinson noted Beit Ula as a Muslim village, between the mountains and Gaza, but subject to the government of Hebron, it was one of a cluster of villages at the foot of a mountain, together with Nuba. Socin, citing an official Ottoman village list compiled around 1870, noted that Betula, located north east of Tarqumiyah, had 51 houses and a population of 207, though the population count included men, only. Hartmann found. In 1883 the Palestine Exploration Fund's "Survey of Western Palestine", described Beit Aula as "a small village standing on a spur surrounded with olives, it has a well on the west in the valley, a mile away.”

In the 1922 census of Palestine, conducted by the British Mandate authorities, Bait Ula had a population of 825 inhabitants, all Muslims, increasing in the 1931 census to 1,045, still Muslim, in 217 inhabited houses. In the latter census it was counted with Kh. Beit Kanun, Kh. Hawala and Kh. Tawas. In the 1945 statistics the population of Beit Ula was 1,310 Muslims, the total land area was 24,045 dunams of land according to an official land and population survey. Of this, 1,324 dunams were plantations and irrigable land, 8,747 were for cereals, while 71 dunams were built-up land. In the wake of the 1948 Arab–Israeli War, after the 1949 Armistice Agreements, Beit Ula came under Jordanian rule from 1948 until 1967. In 1961, the population of Beit Aula was 1,677. Since the Six-Day War in 1967, Beit Ula has been under Israeli occupation. According to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, the town had a population of 10,885 inhabitants in 2007. Beit Ula has a total land area of 22,432 dunams, of which 74.5% is located in Area B and 25.5% is located in Area C.

Welcome to Bayt Aula Beit Ula, Welcome to Palestine Survey of Western Palestine, Map 21: IAA, Wikimedia commons Beit Ula town, Applied Research Institute–Jerusalem Beit Ula town profile, ARIJ Beit Ula aerial photo, ARIJ The priorities and needs for development in Beit Ula town based on the community and local authorities’ assessment, ARIJ

A. J. Benza

Alfred Joseph Benza is an American gossip columnist and television host. Benza was born in Bensonhurst, New York City, though he moved with his family to West Islip, New York on Long Island shortly after his birth, he has two sisters and Lorraine. After graduating from West Islip High School in 1980, Benza majored in journalism at C. W. Post College on Long Island. During college Benza began writing for Newsday and was soon hired full-time as a gossip columnist for that paper and for the New York Daily News, it was as a gossip columnist that he began appearing on E! Entertainment Television's The Gossip Show in the mid-1990s; this led to appearances on talk shows such as Geraldo, Hard Copy, The Montel Williams Show, The Maury Povich Show, various other television talk shows. He was fired from the New York Daily News by editor Pete Hamill. Soon after leaving the paper, Benza was offered a job hosting Mysteries and Scandals, a program detailing true crimes and scandals involving celebrities, which necessitated a move to Los Angeles.

It was on this show that Benza popularized the catchphrase "Fame, ain't it a bitch," which became the title of his autobiography. The show ran for three seasons between 1998 and 2000. In 2001, Benza had a short-lived late-night E! Talk show known as A. J. After Hours. In the same year during an appearance on The Howard Stern Show, Benza slapped Stern staffer "Stuttering John" Melendez in the face, alleging Melendez was screening out positive listener calls about him. Melendez made a prank call making fun of the failure of After Hours, provoking Benza further; the incident resulted in a lifetime ban for Benza from Stern's show direct from WXRK general manager Tom Chiusano. In 2002, he starred in P. S. Your Cat is Dead!, a comedy film and directed by Steve Guttenberg. In 2006, Benza hosted, he appeared as a co-host on the first five seasons of High Stakes Poker on the GSN. He was replaced by poker pro Kara Scott for the show's sixth season, he wrote an open letter expressing his discontent with network executives at GSN in a post on his blog titled "Flop turn and river of shit".

Benza had an acting role as L. C. Luco in the 2006 film Rocky Balboa. Benza appeared on the sixth season of Celebrity Fit Club on VH1. In 2008, Benza appeared in Gimme My Reality Show, a reality competition series on Fox Reality that followed a group of D-list celebrities with previous reality credentials as they battle for their chance to shine with their own show. But, midway through the show, he walked away from production, he cited not wanting to have his young children subjected to cameras inside their home. In 2015, Benza's second book, 74 and Sunny—a memoir about his childhood on Long Island—was published by Simon & Schuster. George Gallo is attached to direct the picture, with Benza credited as screenwriter; the following year Benza turned his energies to film and executive produced So B. It, a film based on the award-winning YA book by Sarah Weeks; the movie premiered at the Los Angeles Film Festival in the summer. That same year he struck a deal with ReelzChannel to host Demons in the City of Angels and Case Closed with A.

J. Benza. Benza writes columns for Star RadarOnline, his daily podcast, Fame Is A Bitch—a mix of Hollywood gossip and personal stories, airs on PodcastOne, He is married and living in Los Angeles, CA, with his wife and two kids and Rocco. In 2003, Benza became aware of Harvey Weinstein's affair with Georgina Chapman while he was married to his first wife. Upon discovering this information, Benza offered to provide Weinstein with gossip that would draw attention away from his affair; this was the beginning of a partnership between the two to preserve Weinstein's name. When sexual harassment allegations against Weinstein began reaching the press in 2017, Weinstein reached out to Benza asking for his help, he discussed paying Benza "up to $20,000 a month" to investigate the claims made against him. Weinstein did not follow up on this offer. Fame, Ain't it a Bitch, Miramax Books: May 2, 2001. ISBN 978-0-7868-6753-0'74 and Sunny, Gallery Books: July 2015. ISBN 978-1-4767-3878-9 A. J. Benza on IMDb Online interview at The Black Table Q&A with fans from E