July Crisis

The July Crisis was a series of interrelated diplomatic and military escalations among the major powers of Europe in the summer of 1914, the ultimate cause of World War I. The crisis began on June 28, 1914, when Gavrilo Princip, a Bosnian Serb, assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir presumptive to the Austro-Hungarian throne. A complex web of alliances, coupled with miscalculations by many leaders that war was in their best interests or that a general war would not occur, resulted in a general outbreak of hostilities among every major European nation in early August 1914. Austria-Hungary viewed the irredentist movements of South Slavs, as promoted by Serbia, to be a threat to the unity of the nation. Following the assassination, Austria sought to inflict a military blow on Serbia to demonstrate strength and so Serbia would be more cautious about supporting Yugoslav nationalism. However, it was wary of the reaction of the Russian Empire, who were a major supporter of Serbia, so sought a guarantee from its ally Germany that it would support Austria in any conflict.

Germany guaranteed its support, but urged Austria to attack while world sympathy for Ferdinand was high, in order to localize the war and avoid drawing in Russia. Some German leaders believed that growing Russian economic power would change the balance of power between the two nations, that a war was inevitable, that Germany would be better off if a war happened soon. However, rather than a quick attack with available military forces, Austrian leaders deliberated into mid-July before deciding that it would give Serbia a harsh ultimatum on 23 July and would not attack without a full mobilisation of its army that could not be accomplished before 25 July 1914. Just prior to the Serbian reply to the ultimatum, Russia decided that it would intervene in any Austro–Serbian war and ordered a partial mobilization of its armed forces. While Russian military leadership acknowledged that Russia was not yet strong enough for a general war, Russia believed the Austrian grievance against Serbia was a pretext orchestrated by Germany and that it needed to show strength by protecting its Serbian ally.

This mobilization was the first major military action not by a direct participant in the conflict between Austria-Hungary and Serbia. The German military predicted that Russian mobilization would be slower than that of its French ally on Germany's opposite border. France was aware that it would have to act together with its Russian ally to defeat its German rival, so escalated its preparations as tensions along the Russian border increased, which in turn further alarmed Germany. While Great Britain was aligned with Russia and France, it had friendly diplomatic relations with Germany, many British leaders saw no compelling reason to involve Britain in a Continental war. Britain offered to mediate, using the Serbian reply as the basis of negotiation, Germany made various promises in an attempt to ensure British neutrality. However, Britain decided that it had a moral obligation to defend Belgium and aid its formal allies, becoming the last major nation involved in the July Crisis to formally enter the conflict on 4 August.

By early August, the ostensible reason for armed conflict, the dispute between Serbia and Austria-Hungary over the murdered heir, had become a sidenote to a general European war. Austria-Hungary had annexed Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1908. Sarajevo was the provincial capital. Oskar Potiorek was the military governor of the province. Emperor Franz Joseph ordered Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir presumptive to the Austro-Hungarian throne, to attend military exercises due to be held in Bosnia. After the exercises, on 28 June 1914, Ferdinand toured Sarajevo with Sophie. Six armed irredentists, five Serbs and one Bosnian Muslim, coordinated by Danilo Ilić, lay in wait along Ferdinand's announced motorcade route. At 10:10 a.m. Nedeljko Čabrinović threw a hand grenade at Ferdinand's motorcade. Subsequently, Gavrilo Princip shot and killed Ferdinand and Sophie as they traveled to visit wounded in the hospital. Čabrinović and Princip took cyanide. Both were arrested. Within 45 minutes of the shooting, Princip began telling his story to interrogators.

The next day, based on the interrogations of the two assassins, Potiorek telegraphed to Vienna that Princip and Čabrinović had conspired in Belgrade with others to obtain bombs and money to kill Ferdinand. A police dragnet caught most of the conspirators. Following the assassinations, Serbian envoy to France Milenko Vesnić and Serbian envoy to Russia Miroslav Spalajković put out statements claiming that Serbia had warned Austria-Hungary of the impending assassination. Serbia denied knowledge of the plot. By 30 June, Austro-Hungarian and German diplomats were requesting investigations from their Serbian and Russian counterparts, but were rebuffed. On 5 July, based on interrogations of the accused assassins, Governor Potiorek telegraphed Vienna that Serbian Major Voja Tankosić had directed the assassins; the next day, Austrian chargé d'affaires Count Otto von Czernin proposed to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Sazonov that the instigators of the plot against Ferdinand needed to be investigated within Serbia, but he too was rebuffed.


Ratatouille (video game)

Ratatouille is a platform game based on the Pixar film of the same name. It was developed at Heavy Iron Studios and released by THQ, on June 26, 2007. Ratatouille was released on thirteen platforms: the Wii, the Nintendo DS, the PlayStation 3, the PlayStation 2, the PlayStation Portable, the Xbox 360, the Xbox, the GameCube, the Game Boy Advance, Microsoft Windows, OS X, Java Platform, Micro Edition, mobile phones. Similar to the plot of the movie, the game starts in a farm setting. Remy goes off with his brother Emile to retrieve apple cores for his father. On the road trip he is taught the basic skills he will need to know so that he can pass what he will face on. After the task, the old lady living in the farm catches Remy and Emile, alerting the colony, thus forcing them to escape. Though Remy escapes the shotgun-wielding woman, he gets lost in the rapids of the sewers, he wakes up in front of Gusteau's restaurant, where the rat watches as the garbage boy, attempts to fix the soup he accidentally ruined by throwing in a bunch of random ingredients.

Remy hurries in and fixes the soup, but Linguini spots him, thus beginning a chase outside with Linguini on pursuit. After that, Remy befriends Linguini and helps him with what he is forced to do for Skinner, the head chef; the next day Remy helps Linguini cook the food for the customers while helping his colony that he has reunited with by stealing the kitchen's food. Skinner catches Remy, another chase begins, ending with Remy discovering a letter that proves Linguini's right to inherit the restaurant, leading to Skinner's firing. Remy helps his colony steal prized foods at the market. After that, the food critic Anton Ego known as the "Grim Eater," has arrived at Gusteau's for a review. However, with the exception of Linguini and the rôtisseuse Colette, they all leave after finding out about Remy. Now it is up to Remy, his rat colony and Colette to cook for many people, including the critic Ego. Remy decides to cook Ratatouille for the night. Skinner, furious by the food's delicacy, chases Remy throughout the Gusteau's restaurant, wrecking it in the process.

While Remy manages to escape from Skinner, the restaurant's credibility is lost due to the revelation of the rat colony's existence and is forced to close down. However, with Ego's funding and Colette manage to open a bistro called "La Ratatouille" with Remy as its head chef. Disney announced on November 6, 2006 that they planned a Ratatouille video game release, which would coincide with the movies. Several of the actors from the film voice their characters in the game. Ratatouille was met with mixed reception upon release. In descending order, GameRankings and Metacritic gave it a score of 69.67% and 65 out of 100 for the PlayStation 2 version. Alex Navarro of GameSpot gave most versions of the game a score of 6 out of 10 and called it "a sufficient, if unfulfilling, platformer." Navarro wrote, "There's little difference to speak of between any of the older console, PC, or Wii versions of Ratatouille. The PC version predictably looks the sharpest, the PS2 version looks the dullest, though the differences are minor all around" and said "The PC version requires a decent gamepad to play properly, the Wii version dabbles in motion controls."

Navarro said the gameplay is too simplistic for older players. He said that the missions are a bit dull and repetitive. Navarro wrote "if your kid is desperate to relive Remy's adventures for him or herself, Ratatouille isn't a bad game to rent" and wrote "it's the sort of game that will satisfy a younger fan of the film for a few lazy afternoon hours, be forgotten about afterward."Justin Davis of gave the mobile phone version of the game by THQ Wireless a rating of 3 stars out of 5. Davis said the game appears like the game Diner Dash, but it's set in the kitchen instead of the dining area and instead of serving drinks, the player is dropping meat onto a stove, Linguini's hands are controlled independently. Davis said the game was a "pleasant surprise" but that it was a little too short, with not enough depth. Louis Bedigian of GameZone gave the mobile phone version a score of 7.7 out of 10, IGN gave it 7.5. The video game won the award for the "Best Animated Video Game" award at the Annies in 2008.

Ratatouille at MobyGames

Political myth

A political myth is an ideological narrative, believed by social groups. In 1975, Henry Tudor defined it in the book Political Myth, he said that myths are believed to be true if they may be false, they are devices with dramatic constructions used "in order to come to grips with reality". Political myths deal with political topics and always use a group of people as the hero or protagonist. In 2001, Christopher G. Flood described a working definition of a political myth as "an ideologically marked narrative which purports to give a true account of a set of past, present, or predicted political events and, accepted as valid in its essentials by a social group". Examples cited as political myths include Manifest Destiny, The Clash of Civilizations, national myths. In 1946 Ernst Cassirer recounted political theory in his The Myth of the State. In 1973, T. L. Thorson wrote in the 4th edition of A History of Political Theory: "It is the mark of a modern mind to be able to explicitly create a'myth' as a way of influencing others.

In its original sense myth is a literal description." According to Tudor, what recasts myth as political in nature is its subject matter, that being politics. In order for a political narrative to be recast as myth, the narrative of events must be cast in dramatic form and it must serve a practical argument. Tudor defines dramatic form, stating "there is indeed a critical event by reference to which men can order their present experience but the events in question are thought of as taken place in the past." The function of political myth can be better understood when it is broken down into the following components: myth provides the theoretical argument, incorporated into an ideology that supports the myth by providing a practical argument. Every myth has its protagonist/heroic figure that represents a particular community destined to create a morally coherent world which orients the community's activities towards this end. Mythopoeic narratives in political discourse can range from origin stories that recount the establishment of a community, to ascribing a political existence to a community based in the future, to restoring a political community that has ceased to exist.

Although, both myth and ideology carry certain values and beliefs, ideology provides a practical argument rooted in rendering the community's past experiences as coherent, allowing them to make sense of their present circumstances and as a result, providing communities with objectives for future activities. A myth is considered a political myth when the narrative provides an ideologically marked account of the past and future of the political community. By ideologically marked, the narrative carries "assumptions and goals associated with a specific ideology… that conveys an implicit invitation to assent to a particular ideological standpoint."In short, political myths offer "an account of the past and the future in the light of which the present can be understood." A political myth's success is dependent on the practical argument being accepted as true. Georges Sorel Communist symbolism Civil religion Founding myth National symbol Noble lie Political religion Political symbolism Socialist heraldry Arvidsson, Stefan.

Style and mythology of socialism: socialist idealism, 1871-1914. Routledge Bottici, Chiara. A philosophy of political myth. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press Cassirer, Ernst; the myth of the state. London: Oxford U. P. Flood, Christopher. Political myth: a theoretical introduction. New York: Routledge Tudor, Henry. Political myth. London: Macmillan