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Cigars of the Pharaoh

Cigars of the Pharaoh is the fourth volume of The Adventures of Tintin, the series of comic albums by Belgian cartoonist Hergé. Commissioned by the conservative Belgian newspaper Le XXe Siècle for its children's supplement Le Petit Vingtième, it was serialised weekly from December 1932 to February 1934; the story tells of young Belgian reporter Tintin and his dog Snowy, who are travelling in Egypt when they discover a pharaoh's tomb filled with dead Egyptologists and boxes of cigars. Pursuing the mystery of these cigars, they travel across Arabia and India, reveal the secrets of an international drug smuggling enterprise. Following on from Tintin in America, Cigars was a commercial success, was published in book form by Casterman shortly after its conclusion. Hergé continued The Adventures of Tintin with The Blue Lotus, the plot of which followed on from Cigars; the series itself became a defining part of the Franco-Belgian comics tradition. In 1955, it was re-drawn and coloured by Hergé and his assistants at Studios Hergé to match his distinctive ligne-claire style.

Critical analysis of the story has focused on its innovation, the Adventure introduces the recurring characters of detectives Thomson and Thompson and villain Rastapopoulos. The comic was loosely adapted by Hergé and Jacques Van Melkebeke for the 1941 play Tintin in India: The Mystery of the Blue Diamond. Holidaying on a Mediterranean cruise ship and his dog Snowy meet wealthy film producer Rastapopoulos and eccentric Egyptologist Sophocles Sarcophagus; when two policemen accuse Tintin of heroin smuggling, he escapes the ship and joins Sarcophagus on his search for the undiscovered tomb of the Pharaoh Kih-Oskh. Tintin discovers that the tomb is full of boxes of cigars labelled with a mysterious symbol, but he and Sarcophagus fall unconscious after an unseen enemy gasses them, they are taken aboard a ship inside wooden sarcophagi, captained by smuggler Allan, but to avoid the coastguard Allan orders Tintin and Snowy thrown overboard. They are rescued by a gunrunner. Travelling by land, Tintin meets Sheikh Patrash Pasha, a big fan of his, encounters Rastapopoulos filming a movie.

The local army drafts Tintin and arrests him as a spy, before Thomson and Thompson rescue him so that they can arrest him. However, when the army storms their hideout, Tintin manages to elude the policemen, though the twins escape too. Boarding a plane, Tintin runs out of fuel over India, crashing into the jungle. After saving a sick elephant, Tintin discovers Sarcophagus, who has become insane as the result of being injected with Rajaijah juice, "the poison of madness". Tintin is institutionalized in an asylum, which he soon escapes. Meeting the Maharaja of Gaipajama, the two become friends, with the Maharaja revealing that his family has long been fighting a criminal opium-smuggling gang; the fakir appears and Tintin follows him, discovers the drug cartel's hideout and is able to capture the cartel. Tintin recognises their Kih-Oskh symbol and realises it is the same organisation, operating in Egypt and Arabia; the fakir escapes, with the masked leader of the conspiracy kidnaps the Maharaja's son.

Tintin pursues them in a sports car, rescuing the boy and capturing the fakir, while the leader falls into a chasm dying. Tintin returns to Gaipajama. Unwrapping one of the cigars with the mysterious Kih-Oskh symbol, Tintin explains to the Maharaja how opium was smuggled across the world in the cigars. Georges Remi—best known under the pen name Hergé—was employed as editor and illustrator of Le Petit Vingtième, a children's supplement to Le Vingtième Siècle, a staunchly Roman Catholic, conservative Belgian newspaper based in Hergé's native Brussels, run by the Abbé Norbert Wallez. In 1929, Hergé began The Adventures of Tintin comic for Le Petit Vingtième, revolving around the exploits of fictional Belgian reporter Tintin. Wallez ordered Hergé to set his first adventure in the Soviet Union to act as anti-socialist propaganda for children, to set his second adventure in the Belgian Congo to encourage colonial sentiment, to set his third adventure in the United States to use the story as a denunciation of American capitalism.

For his fourth Adventure, Hergé was eager to write a mystery story. The 1930s saw mystery novels flourish across Western Europe with the success of authors like Agatha Christie and Ellery Queen; the decision to create a scenario around the tomb of Kih-Oskh was influenced by the 1922 discovery of Pharaoh Tutankhamun's tomb by Howard Carter and the surrounding tabloid claims regarding a Curse of the Pharaohs. Hergé returned to this theme for The Seven Crystal Balls; the name Kih-Oskh was an allusion to the kiosks. The Kih-Oskh symbol was described by Hergé as a distortion of the Taoist symbol of the Taijitu, with biographer Benoît Peeters thinking that it foreshadowed the "Yellow Mark" that featured in the Blake and Mortimer comic The Yellow "M" authored by Hergé's collaborator Edgar P. Jacobs. Hergé was aided in the production of Cigars of the Pharaoh by his assistant Paul "Jam" Jamin, influenced by British magazines The Humorist and Punch. Hergé took influence from the published works of French adventurer and gunrunner Henry de Monfreid his books Secrets of the Red Sea and The Hashish Cruise.

Having lived through the First World War, Hergé disliked arms dealers, used Monfreid as the basis

Paz (satellite)

Paz is a Spanish Earth observation and reconnaissance satellite launched on 22 February 2018. It is Spain's first spy satellite; the satellite is operated by Hisdesat. Paz was referred to as SEOSAR. For observational purposes, Paz uses a synthetic aperture radar to collect images of Earth for governmental and commercial use, as well as other ship tracking and weather sensors, which enables high-resolution mapping of large geographical areas at day and night; the X-band radar imaging payload operates at a wavelength of 3.1 centimetres, or a frequency of 9.65 gigahertz. The Paz satellite is operated in a constellation with the German SAR fleet TerraSAR-X and TanDEM-X on the same orbit; the collaboration was agreed on by both Hisdesat and former European aerospace manufacturer Astrium, operator of the two other satellites. The high-resolution images will be used for military operations, border control, environmental monitoring, protection of natural resources and infrastructure planning, monitoring of natural catastrophes.

Paz was scheduled for launch from the Yasny launch base, Russia, in 2014, but this was delayed due to Russia's 2014 annexation of Crimea, resulting in an International Court of Arbitration legal battle between Hisdesat and Kosmotras. The US launch was estimated to cost around €53 million, cost reduced by the inclusion of several mobile internet satellites on the same flight; the satellite launched on a reused Falcon 9 rocket by SpaceX from Vandenberg Air Force Base, SLC-4E on 22 February 2018 at 14:17 UTC. The satellite hosted two secondary payloads: an AIS receiver and the Radio-Occultation and Heavy Precipitation experiment; the launch was shared by two 400 kg SpaceX test satellites for their Starlink internet satellite constellation, named Tintin A and B. It was the final flight of a Block 3 first stage, reused the booster B1038 from the Formosat-5 mission. Paz weighs 1,282 kg, its total mass with fuel is 1,341 kg; the payloads were carried to a Sun-synchronous dawn-dusk orbit. The launch was scheduled for 30 January 2018.

The booster was expended at sea. It featured Fairing 2.0 with a recovery attempt using a crew boat named Mr. Steven, equipped with a net; the fairing narrowly missed the boat, leading to a soft water landing

2017 International Championship

The 2017 OPPO International Championship was a professional ranking snooker tournament that took place from 29 October to 5 November 2017 in Daqing, China. It was the eighth ranking event of the 2017/2018 season. Qualifying for the tournament took place between 26–30 September 2017 in Preston. Mark Selby was the defending champion. Selby retained his title by beating Mark Allen 10–7 in the final of this year's edition. Kyren Wilson made the 133rd official maximum break in the 10th frame of his last 32 match against Martin Gould, it was Wilson's first professional maximum break. The breakdown of prize money for this year is shown below: The "rolling 147 prize" for a maximum break stood at £5,000 Notes These matches were held between 26 September and 29 September 2017 at the Preston Guild Hall in Preston, England. Matches involving top players Mark Selby, John Higgins, Ding Junhui and Liang Wenbo were held-over to the main venue, as well as matches involving Chinese players who participated in 2017 Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games: Zhou Yuelong, Zhao Xintong, Yan Bingtao and Lyu Haotian.

These were played on 29 October 2017 in China. All matches. Total: 39 Total: 75