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French submarine Surcouf

Surcouf was the largest French cruiser submarine. She served in both the Free French Naval Forces during the Second World War, she was lost during the night of 18/19 February 1942 in the Caribbean Sea after colliding with an American freighter. Surcouf was named after the French privateer Robert Surcouf, she was the largest submarine built until surpassed by the first Japanese I-400-class submarine in 1943. The Washington Naval Treaty had placed strict limits on naval construction by the major naval powers in regards to displacements and artillery calibers of battleships and cruisers. However, no accords were filed in motion for light ships such as frigates or destroyers or submarines. In addition, to ensure the country's protection and that of the empire, France mounted the construction of an important submarine fleet. Surcouf was intended to be the first of a class of submarine cruiser; the missions were revolved around the following: Ensure contact with the French colonies. Surcouf had a twin-gun turret with 203 mm guns, the same calibre as that of a heavy cruiser provisioned with 600 rounds.

Surcouf was designed as an "underwater heavy cruiser", intended to seek and engage in surface combat. For reconnaissance purposes, the boat carried a Besson MB.411 observation floatplane in a hangar built abaft of the conning tower. However, the floatplane was mainly used for gun calibration purposes; the boat was equipped with 10 torpedo tubes: four 550 mm torpedo tubes in the bow, two swiveling external launchers in the aft superstructure, each with one 550mm and two 400 mm torpedo tubes. Eight 550mm and four 400mm reloads were carried; the 203mm/50 Modèle 1924 guns were in a pressure-tight turret forward of the conning tower. The guns had a 60-round magazine capacity and was controlled by a director with a 5 m rangefinder, mounted high enough to view an 11 km horizon, able to fire within three minutes after surfacing. Using the boat's periscopes to direct the fire of the main guns, Surcouf could increase this range to 16 km; the Besson observation plane could be used to direct fire out to the guns' 26 mi maximum range.

Anti-aircraft cannon and machine guns were mounted on the top of the hangar. Surcouf carried a 4.5 m motorboat, contained a cargo compartment with fittings to restrain 40 prisoners or lodge 40 passengers. The submarine's fuel tanks were large; the maximum safe diving depth was 80 meters, the boat was capable of diving to 110 meters without notable deformations to its thick hull, with a normal operating depth of 178 m. Crush depth was calculated at 491 m; the first commanding officer was Frigate Raymond de Belot. The boat encountered several technical challenges; because of the low height of the rangefinder above the water surface, the practical range of fire was 12,000 m with the rangefinder, well below the normal maximum of 26,000 m. The duration between the surface order and the first firing round was 35 seconds; this duration could have been longer in case the boat was going to fire broadside, which meant surfacing and training the turret in the desired direction. Firing had to occur at a precise moment of roll when the ship was level.

Training the turret to either side was limited to when the ship rolled 8° or more. Surcouf was not equipped to fire at night, due to inability to observe the fall of shot in the dark The mounts were designed to fire 14 rounds from each gun before their magazines were reloaded. To replace the hydroplane whose functioning was constrained and limited in use, trials were conducted with an autogyro in 1938. Surcouf was never painted in olive green as shown on numerous drawings. From the beginning of the boat's career until 1932, the boat was painted of the same grey colour as surface warships in Prussian dark blue, a colour, conserved until the end of 1940 where the boat was repainted with two tones of grey, serving as camouflage on the hull and conning tower. Surcouf is depicted in the boat's 1932 state, harboring the flag of the Free French Naval Forces, not created until 1940. Soon after Surcouf was launched, the London Naval Treaty placed restrictions on submarine designs. Among other things, each signatory was permitted to possess no more than three large submarines, each not exceeding 2,800 long tons standard displacement, with guns not exceeding 6.1 in in caliber.

Surcouf, which would have exceeded these limits, was specially exempt from the rules at the insistence of Navy Minister Georges Leygues, but other'big-gun' submarines of this boat's class could no longer be built. In 1940, Surcouf was based in Cherbourg, but in May, when the Germans invaded, she was being refitted in Brest following a mission in the Antilles and Gulf of Guinea. Under command of Frigate Captain Martin, unable to dive and with only one engine functioning and a jammed rudder, she limped across the English Channel and sought refuge in Plymouth. On 3 July, the British, concerned that the French Fleet wo

Poor Dionis

Poor Dionis or Poor Dionysus is an 1872 prose work by Romanian poet Mihai Eminescu, classified by scholars as either a novel, a novella or a modern fairy tale. It is a liberal interpretation of contemporary German philosophy and ancient motifs, discussing themes such as time travel and reincarnation through the lens of post-Kantian idealism, its eponymous central character, a daydreaming scholar, moves between selves over time and space, between his miserable home, his earlier existence as a monk in 15th-century Moldavia, his higher-level existence as a celestial Zoroaster. Poor Dionis is one of the first, most characteristic, works of fantasy in Romanian literature, one of the poet's last Romantic texts. Beyond its philosophical vocabulary, the story is Eminescu's intertextual homage to the founders of German Romanticism and modern French literature. Read out by Eminescu upon his induction to Junimea literary club, it was dismissed as an incoherent oddity by critics of the day, overlooked by researchers before 1900.

It was reevaluated by successive generations, beginning with the Romanian Symbolists, serving to inspire both the modernists and the postmodernists. Traditionally, Poor Dionis has intrigued researchers with its cultural complexity, discussed in connection with the Vedanta, Gnosticism, or the theory of relativity, its unreliable depiction of the historical past is noted in connection with invented tradition, in the context of Romanian nationalism, while its depiction of mundane contemporary scenes may offer autofictional insight into Eminescu's biography. Its favorable depiction of Jews and Judaism caught attention, was held in contrast to other works by Eminescu, which border on antisemitism. Various scholars, see Poor Dionis as a work of sheer literary fancy. Eminescu begins his story in mid-thought, with first-person musings about subjectivity, time perception, the physical world being "our soul's dream"; the narrator reveals that this is a quote from the amateur metaphysician Dionis. He describes the latter as an unkempt, but good looking, young Bucharester, reduced to poverty and prone to daydreaming.

He is an orphan, born out of wedlock to a priest's daughter. Although a passionate esotericist and reader of sacred books, Dionis is more of "a superstitious atheist". In his miserable room, Dionis is studying an almanac of astrology, listening, through the open window, to a girl singing. In this reverie, his eyes affixed on the zodiac, Dionis understands that he can travel back into the glorified past, he chooses under the rule of Prince Alexander the Good. When he awakens, he finds himself on a meadow near Iași, dressed in Orthodox monastic clothes, grasping the almanac, he is Friar Dan, who he has only dreamed of being Dionis, the book is a present from his teacher, Ruben. Ruben, a learned and pious Sephardi Jew living in exile at the "Socola Academy", has instructed his favorite pupil about "metempsychosis" and apport: "you can slip into the lives of all the ones who led up to your life into all the future lives caused by your present life". There's no such thing as vacant space." Simultaneous travel in spacetime, Ruben teaches, may only happen if one changes places with one's ancestors or descendants.

Taking the Dionis experience as evidence that Ruben is right, Dan asks to be transported into an ideal universe, is told by his master that such a place exists "in your immortal soul". If Dan wishes to reach it, he is to read every seventh page of a spell book: each will take him to a new place, in no known order, no location can be visited twice. After Dan leaves, book in hand, Ruben is revealed to have been possessed by Satan, who takes joy at having ensnared a pious monk: the book is in fact an instrument of perdition. Back in his room, Dan decides to use the book for an egotistic purpose, he is in love with Maria, daughter of Spatharios Mesteacăn, secretly wishes to kidnap her. As Dan weighs in the possibilities, his own shadow begins talking to him, telling him that the book he read was written by the prophet Zoroaster; the monk and his shadow strike a deal: Dan will assign his mortal's identity to the shadow, while he himself will become a "shape of light", with the shadow's power to transcendent.

Under this guise, Dionis visits Maria, persuades her to make a similar exchange with her own shadow. As a new Zoroaster, Dan carries his lover to the moon. No longer held back by the laws of physics, he rearranges the celestial sphere and the lunar landscape for Maria's pleasure, building her a heavenly abode, serviced by the angels and decorated with blue flowers. Dan finds that the entire cosmos is his, except for the inaccessible "dome of God", he becomes obsessed with looking upon the divine countenance, with reshaping the angels into instruments of his will. With this blasphemy, everything is lost. Feeling himself expelled from Heaven, Dan reawakens as Dionis, catches a glimpse of the singing girl: "Ophelia" is Dan's Maria. Still confused by his apparent change of status, not being sure of himself, Dionis decides to write her a letter, confessing his affec

Murat Bektanov

Murat Karibayuly Bektanov is a Kazakh military leader and the current Chief of the General Staff. He served as the Commander in Chief of the Kazakh Ground Forces, he was born on September 18, 1965 in the village of Sokolovka of the North Kazakhstan Region of the Kazakh SSR. 1988 - Graduated from the Kiev Higher All-Arms Command School 1989–1990 - Commanded a motorized rifle platoon 1990–1993 - Served as head of an intelligence unit of an airborne assault battalion 1993–1997 - commander of a platoon, company of cadets of the Alma-Ata Higher All-Arms Command School 1997–1998 - An officer in a combat training department of the Ministry of Defense of Kazakhstan 1998–2000 - Studied at the Military Academy of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Kazakhstan 2000–2001 - Senior Officer of the Operational Planning Department of the General Staff of the Armed Forces 2001–2005 - Head of the Operational Directorate and Training Department of the Republican Guard 2005–2007 - Studied at the Military Academy of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation 2007–2010 - Deputy Head of the Operational Planning Department of the Heads Committee of the Ministry of Defense 2010–2013 - Head of the Operational Planning Department of the Chiefs of Staff Committee of the Ministry of Defense 2013–2016 - Commander of the Regional Command "East" 2016–2019 - Commander-in-Chief of the Kazakh Ground Forces Since April 2019 - Chief of the General Staff Order of Glory 2nd degree Armed Forces of the Republic of Kazakhstan

Jabbar Savalan

Jabbar Savalan is an Azerbaijani blogger and political activist. On 4 May 2011, he was sentenced to two and half years in prison on charges of dealing drugs; the Azerbaijani government defended the ruling, but the European parliament and several human rights groups such as Amnesty International alleged the charges were fabricated and part of a pattern of framing government dissidents to silence them. He received a presidential pardon on 26 December 2011. A student at Sumgait State University, Savalan became active in the youth wing of the Azerbaijan Popular Front Party, the nation's primary opposition party to the continued rule of President Ilham Aliyev, son of previous president Heydar Aliyev. With this group, he participated in an anti-government rally on 20 January. On 4 February 2011, he posted on Facebook calling for a "Day of Rage" emulating recent pro-democracy protests in Egypt and Syria, he urged citizens to join in protesting in Freedom Square in the nation's capital. The following day, 5 February, he was arrested returning from an APFP meeting in the city of Sumgayit.

The police had searched his home in his absence. Savalan was taken to the police station; the police officer conducting the search allegedly found 0.74 grams of marijuana in the pocket of his coat, Savalan was booked on charges of "possessing narcotics with an intent to supply". Savalan signed a confession which he retracted, alleging that he had signed it only in the face of police pressure. On 7 February, a judge ordered him two months of pre-trial detention. At Savalan's trial, he claimed. A blood test showed that he had not used drugs, his friends and family testified that he had no history of drug use. One friend told Amnesty International, "Jabbar is not a smoker and doesn't drink alcohol at all – there is no way he would be a drug user." However, he was convicted on the basis of his confession, sentenced to two and a half years' imprisonment. He was twenty years old at the time of his sentencing. Savalan's lawyer, Anar Gasimov, alleged that following the trial, one of the police officers had approached and threatened him, stating, "I know where you live.

We will see what I will do for you." People protesting the verdict were violently dispersed by police forces. Savalan's appeal to Azerbaijan's Supreme Court was rejected on 29 November 2011. Amnesty International described the charges against Savalan as "trumped up", stating its belief that the accusation formed part of a pattern of "similar cases where drugs have been found on prominent critics of the government, such as Eynulla Fatullayev and Sakit Zahidov"; the organization named him a prisoner of conscience. The organization selected Savalan's case for their 2011 Letter-Writing Marathon, which generated more than one million appeals on behalf of prisoners, his arrest was protested by the human rights organizations Index on Censorship, ARTICLE 19, the Norwegian Helsinki Committee. Human Rights Watch described the government's actions as a "fresh example of the government's efforts to silence critical voices" and "blatant repression", urging that Savalan be released immediately. On 12 May 2011, the European Parliament passed a resolution condemning Azerbaijani "human rights violations" and "oppression of opposition forces".

The resolution mentioned concern for Savalan's case by name, noting that he had been "targeted for using Facebook to call for demonstrations against the government" and that "serious doubts" existed regarding the fairness of his drug trial. Savalan was freed from prison following a pardon by President Ilham Aliyev on 26 December 2011. Following his release, Savalan stated. I feel good now that I can spend time with them and my family." Amnesty International issued a statement welcoming Savalan's release but calling for his conviction to be overturned. On 6 March 2012, Savalan and three other youth activists were beaten by Baku police officers during a protest, prompting the Index on Censorship, ARTICLE 19, Reporters Without Borders, the Committee to Protect Journalists to protest on their behalf in an advocacy letter. In early May, Savalan was conscripted into the army despite being exempt from military service, leading Amnesty International to state concern that he "was targeted for his peaceful activism".

Bakhtiyar Hajiyev Human rights in Azerbaijan

Carmelo Martínez

Carmelo Martínez Salgado is a former professional baseball player, a member of the Chicago Cubs organization since 1997. He played all or part of nine seasons in Major League Baseball as a first baseman and outfielder, from 1983 to 1991, he played one season in Japan for the Orix BlueWave in 1992. He is the cousin of Edgar Martínez. On August 22, 1983, Martínez hit a home run in his first major league at-bat for the Cubs; the homer came off Cincinnati's Frank Pastore in the 5th inning at Wrigley Field. On December 7, 1983, Martínez was traded by the Cubs along with Craig Lefferts and Fritzie Connally to the San Diego Padres for pitcher Scott Sanderson, he and Kevin McReynolds were dubbed the M&M Boys on the 1984 San Diego Padres team that reached the first World Series in franchise history. Martínez had 66 RBIs. On July 25, 2008, Martínez was involved in a minor league brawl while serving as interim manager of the Chicago Cubs' Single-A affiliate Peoria Chiefs, he approached Donnie Scott, manager of the Dayton Dragons, engaged in a heated discussion before shoving him, resulting in emptied benches.

Martinez is the manager of the Arizona League Cubs. Prior to the 2019 Caribbean Series, Martínez was named manager of the Cangrejeros de Santurce after his predecessor Ramón Vázquez quit minutes after winning the LBPRC title. List of Major League Baseball players from Puerto Rico Career statistics and player information from Baseball-Reference, or Fangraphs, or Baseball-Reference Baseball Almanac

Opera Saratoga

Opera Saratoga is a professional opera company based in Saratoga Springs, New York. It performs an annual summer festival of three staged operas and operettas; the company and its associated Lake George Opera Festival were founded in 1962 by Fred Patrick, a New York-based singer/actor and Juilliard graduate, the husband of Jeanette Scovotti, a soprano who sang at the Metropolitan Opera. Early performances took place at Diamond Point on the shores of Lake George in upstate New York and moved to the nearby town of Queensbury. John Balme was the General Director from 1988 to 1992. Since 1998, Lake George Opera's performance base has been the Spa Little Theater at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. Conductor John Douglas served as the company's chorusmaster and director of the LGO's young artist program from 2002 until his death in 2010. July 1, 2014, Lawrence Edelson became Artistic Director. Several well-known opera singers performed with the company early in their careers, including Catherine Malfitano, Diana Soviero, Eric Halfvarson and Jerry Hadley.

The company celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2011. World premiere productions staged by the company include: David Amram's Twelfth Night, based on Shakespeare's Twelfth Night Robert Baksa's Aria da Capo José Bernardo's The Child, based on José Martí's poem La Niña de Guatemala Alva Henderson's The Last of the Mohicans based on James Fenimore Cooper's novel, The Last of the Mohicans Glenn Paxton's The Adventures of Friar Tuck Mark Houston's Hazel Kirke, based on Steele MacKaye's 1879 play Notes SourcesOpera Saratoga: The history of the Organization Accessed 4 February 2015. Opera Saratoga official website