Death on the Rock
"Death on the Rock" is a controversial television documentary, an episode of Thames Television's current affairs series This Week, broadcast in the United Kingdom on ITV on 28 April 1988. The programme examined the deaths of three Provisional Irish Republican Army members in Gibraltar on 6 March 1988 at the hands of the British Special Air Service. "Death on the Rock" presented evidence that the IRA members were shot without warning or while attempting to surrender. It was condemned by the British government. "Death on the Rock" subsequently became the first individual documentary to be the subject of an independent inquiry, in which it was vindicated. The project began after it emerged that the three IRA members shot in Gibraltar were found to be unarmed and not in possession of a bomb; the series' editor, Roger Bolton, dispatched journalists to Gibraltar and Spain, where they interviewed several people who witnessed the shootings as well as Spanish police officers, involved in surveillance of the IRA team.
The journalists filmed the funerals of the IRA members in Belfast. Satisfied by the journalists' findings, Bolton sought a conclusion to the programme; the documentary was broadcast on 28 April 1988, despite two attempts by Foreign Secretary Sir Geoffrey Howe to have the Independent Broadcasting Authority postpone the broadcast. Using the eyewitness statements, the documentary questioned the government's version of events, suggested that the three IRA members may have been unlawfully killed. Reporter Julian Manyon summed up the programme's findings: none of the witnesses interviewed for the programme heard the soldiers challenge the trio before opening fire, but variously believed they had seen the IRA members shot in the back, with their hands up, or after falling to the ground; the final contributor was the lawyer recruited by Bolton, who suggested that a judicial inquiry was necessary to resolve the conflicts. The morning after the broadcast, several tabloid newspapers attacked the documentary, accusing it of sensationalism and "trial by television".
In the following days, they mounted a campaign against Carmen Proetta, one of the documentary's main witnesses, accusing her of being a former prostitute and of being anti-British. Other newspapers accused "Death on the Rock" of misrepresenting the eyewitnesses' statements and criticised the IBA for allowing the documentary to be broadcast; the eyewitnesses interviewed for "Death on the Rock" gave evidence at the inquest into the shootings. As a result of the retraction, Thames commissioned an independent inquiry into the making of "Death on the Rock"—the first time an inquiry had been commissioned into the making of an individual documentary; the Windlesham–Rampton report found that the programme's tendency was to present evidence that the IRA members had been unlawfully killed, but that it sought to raise questions rather than to reach a conclusion. The authors made several criticisms of the documentary, but overall found it a "trenchant" work of journalism, made in "good faith and without ulterior motives".
Thames lost its franchise and the IBA was abolished as a result of the Broadcasting Act 1990—decisions which several involved parties believed were influenced by the government's anger at "Death on the Rock". This Week was a current affairs television series that began in 1956. In 1978, it was renamed TV Eye and took on a lighter format; the programme was broadcast across the ITV regions and became a mainstay of ITV's current affairs programming. By 1988, the programme had interviewed several prime ministers and leaders of the opposition, including Margaret Thatcher, interviewed for three full episodes. On 6 March 1988, three members of an IRA Active Service Unit—Daniel McCann, Mairead Farrell, Sean Savage—were witnessed parking a car in a car park in Gibraltar; the three were suspected by the British authorities of being part of a plot to detonate a car bomb in the car park while it was full of soldiers preparing for the ceremony. In the immediate aftermath of the shootings, the British government released a statement to the effect that a large car bomb had been found in Gibraltar, that three suspected terrorists had been shot dead by the Gibraltar Police.
That evening, British television news reported the finding of the alleged car bomb, added that the IRA members had been involved in a "shootout" with authorities. All of Britain's daily newspapers covered the shootings the following morning, several of which cited the size of the alleged car bomb as 500 pounds and claimed that it was "packed with shrapnel"; the same morning, Ian Stewart, Minister of State for the Armed Forces, told BBC Radio 4 that "military personnel were involved" in the shootings, that "a car bomb was found, defused". The following day, Sir Geoffrey H
Tobacco is a product prepared from the leaves of the tobacco plant by curing them. The plant is part of the genus Nicotiana and of the Solanaceae family. While more than 70 species of tobacco are known, the chief commercial crop is N. tabacum. The more potent variant N. rustica is used around the world. Tobacco contains the alkaloid nicotine, a stimulant, harmala alkaloids. Dried tobacco leaves are used for smoking in cigarettes, pipe tobacco, flavored shisha tobacco, they can be consumed as snuff, chewing tobacco, dipping tobacco and snus. Tobacco use is a risk factor for many diseases. In 2008, the World Health Organization named tobacco as the world's single greatest preventable cause of death; the English word "tobacco" originates from the Spanish and Portuguese word "tabaco". The precise origin of this word is disputed, but it is thought to have derived at least in part, from Taino, the Arawakan language of the Caribbean. In Taino, it was said to mean either a roll of tobacco leaves or to tabago, a kind of L-shaped pipe used for sniffing tobacco smoke.
However coincidentally, similar words in Spanish and Italian were used from 1410 to define medicinal herbs believed to have originated from the Arabic طُبّاق ṭubbāq, a word dating to the 9th century, as a name for various herbs. Tobacco has long been used in the Americas, with some cultivation sites in Mexico dating back to 1400–1000 BC. Many Native American tribes have traditionally used tobacco. Eastern North American tribes carried tobacco in pouches as a accepted trade item, as well as smoking it, both and ceremonially, such as to seal a peace treaty or trade agreement. In some populations, tobacco is seen as a gift from the Creator, with the ceremonial tobacco smoke carrying one's thoughts and prayers to the Creator. Following the arrival of the Europeans to the Americas, tobacco became popular as a trade item. Hernández de Boncalo, Spanish chronicler of the Indies, was the first European to bring tobacco seeds to the Old World in 1559 following orders of King Philip II of Spain; these seeds were planted in the outskirts of Toledo, more in an area known as "Los Cigarrales" named after the continuous plagues of cicadas.
Before the development of the lighter Virginia and white burley strains of tobacco, the smoke was too harsh to be inhaled. Small quantities were smoked at a time, using a pipe like the midwakh or kiseru or smoking newly invented waterpipes such as the bong or the hookah. Tobacco became so popular that the English colony of Jamestown used it as currency and began exporting it as a cash crop; the alleged benefits of tobacco account for its considerable success. The astronomer Thomas Harriot, who accompanied Sir Richard Grenville on his 1585 expedition to Roanoke Island, explains that the plant "openeth all the pores and passages of the body" so that the natives’ "bodies are notably preserved in health, know not many grievous diseases, wherewithal we in England are times afflicted." Tobacco smoking and snuffing became a major industry in Europe and its colonies by 1700. Tobacco has been a major cash crop in Cuba and in other parts of the Caribbean since the 18th century. Cuban cigars are world-famous.
In the late 19th century, cigarettes became popular. James Bonsack created a machine that automated cigarette production; this increase in production allowed tremendous growth in the tobacco industry until the health revelations of the late-20th century. Following the scientific revelations of the mid-20th century, tobacco became condemned as a health hazard, became encompassed as a cause for cancer, as well as other respiratory and circulatory diseases. In the United States, this led to the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement, which settled the lawsuit in exchange for a combination of yearly payments to the states and voluntary restrictions on advertising and marketing of tobacco products. In the 1970s, Brown & Williamson cross-bred a strain of tobacco to produce Y1; this strain of tobacco contained an unusually high amount of nicotine, nearly doubling its content from 3.2-3.5% to 6.5%. In the 1990s, this prompted the Food and Drug Administration to use this strain as evidence that tobacco companies were intentionally manipulating the nicotine content of cigarettes.
In 2003, in response to growth of tobacco use in developing countries, the World Health Organization rallied 168 countries to sign the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. The convention is designed to push for effective legislation and its enforcement in all countries to reduce the harmful effects of tobacco; this led to the development of tobacco cessation products. Many species of tobacco are in the genus of herbs Nicotiana, it is part of the nightshade family indigenous to North and South America, south west Africa, the South Pacific. Most nightshades contain varying amounts of a powerful neurotoxin to insects. However, tobaccos tend to contain a much higher concentration of nicotine than the others. Unlike many other Solanaceae species, they do not contain tropane alkaloids, which are poisonous to humans and other animals. Despite containing enough nicotine and other compounds such as germacrene and anabasine and other piperidine alkaloids to deter most herbivores, a number of such animals have evolved
Rock of Gibraltar
The Rock of Gibraltar known as the Rock, is a monolithic limestone promontory located in the British overseas territory of Gibraltar, near the southwestern tip of Europe on the Iberian Peninsula. It is 426 m high. Most of the Rock's upper area is covered by a nature reserve, home to around 300 Barbary macaques; these macaques, as well as a labyrinthine network of tunnels, attract a large number of tourists each year. The Rock of Gibraltar was one of the two Pillars of Hercules and was known to the Romans as Mons Calpe, the other pillar being Mons Abyla or Jebel Musa on the African side of the Strait. In ancient times, the two points marked the limit to the known world, a myth fostered by the Greeks and the Phoenicians. Gibraltar is surrounded by the Mediterranean Sea; the Rock of Gibraltar is a monolithic promontory. The Main Ridge has a sharp crest with peaks over 400 m above sea level, formed by Early Jurassic limestones and dolomites, it is a eroded and faulted limb of an overturned fold. The sedimentary strata composing the Rock of Gibraltar are overturned, with the oldest strata overlying the youngest strata.
These strata are the Catalan Bay Shale Formation, Gibraltar Limestone, Little Bay Shale Formation, Dockyard Shale Formation. These strata are deformed. Predominantly of shale, the Catalan Bay Shale Formation contains thick units composed of either brown calcareous sandstone, soft shaly sandstone interbedded with bluish-black limestone, interlayered greenish-gray marls and dark gray cherts; the Catalan Bay Shale Formation contains unidentifiable echinoid spines and belemnite fragments and infrequent Early Jurassic ammonites. The Gibraltar limestone consists of greyish-white or pale-gray compact, sometime finely crystalline, medium to thick bedded limestones and dolomites that locally contain chert seams; this formation comprises about three quarters of the Rock of Gibraltar. Geologists have found various badly eroded and rolled marine fossils within it; the fossils found in the Gibraltar limestone include various brachiopods, echinoid fragments, gastropods and stromatolites. These fossils indicate an Early Jurassic age for the deposition of the Gibraltar limestone.
The Little Bay and Dockyard shale formations form a minor part of the Rock of Gibraltar. The Little Bay Shale Formation consists of dark bluish-gray, unfossiliferous shale, interbedded with thin layers of grit and limestone, it predates the Gibraltar limestone. The Dockyard Shale Formation is an undescribed variegated shale of unknown age that lies buried beneath the Gibraltar's dockyard and coastal protection structures. Although these geological formations were deposited during the early part of the Jurassic Period some 175-200million years ago, their current appearance is due to far more recent events of about 5 million years ago; when the African tectonic plate collided with the Eurasian plate, the Mediterranean became a lake that, over the course of time, dried up during the Messinian salinity crisis. The Atlantic Ocean broke through the Strait of Gibraltar, the resultant flooding created the Mediterranean Sea; the Rock forms part of a mountain range that dominates southeastern Iberia. Today, the Rock of Gibraltar forms a peninsula jutting out into the Strait of Gibraltar from the southern coast of Spain.
The promontory is linked to the continent by means of a sandy tombolo with a maximum elevation of 3 m. To the north, the Rock rises vertically from sea level up to 411.5 m at Rock Gun Battery. The Rock's highest point stands 426 m near the south end above the strait at O'Hara's Battery; the Rock's central peak, Signal Hill and the top station of the Gibraltar Cable Car, stands at an elevation of 387 m. The near-cliffs along the eastern side of the Rock drop down to a series of wind-blown sand slopes that date to the glaciations when sea levels were lower than today, a sandy plain extended east from the base of the Rock; the western face, where the City of Gibraltar is located, is comparatively less steep. Calcite, the mineral that makes up limestone, dissolves in rainwater. Over time, this process can form caves. For this reason the Rock of Gibraltar contains over 100 caves. St. Michael's Cave, located halfway up the western slope of the Rock, is the most prominent and is a popular tourist attraction.
Fossils of Neanderthals have been found at several sites in Gibraltar. In 1848, a Neanderthal woman's skull was found at Forbes' Quarry, located on the north face of the Rock. However, its significance was not recognized until after the 1856 discovery of the type specimen in the Neander Valley. Excavations in Gorham's Cave, located near sea level on the eastern side of the Rock, found evidence it was used by Neanderthals, plant and animal remains in the cave gave evidence of Neanderthals' varied diet; the Moorish Castle is a relic of Moorish rule over Gibraltar. It was built in the year A. D. 711, when the Berber chieftain Tariq ibn-Ziyad first landed on the rock that still bears his name. The 17th-century Muslim historian Al-Maqqari wrote that upon landing; the principal building that remains is the Tower of Homage, a massive building of brick and hard concrete called tapia. The upper part of the tower housed Moorish bath. A unique feature of the Rock is its system of underground passages, known as the Galleries or the Great Siege Tunnels.
The first of these was dug towards the end of the Great Siege of Gibraltar, which lasted from 1779 to 1783. General Elliot, afterwards Lord Heathfield, who commanded
Mineral oil is any of various colorless, light mixtures of higher alkanes from a mineral source a distillate of petroleum. The name mineral oil by itself is imprecise, having been used for many specific oils over the past few centuries. Other names imprecise, include white oil, paraffin oil, liquid paraffin, paraffinum liquidum, liquid petroleum. Baby oil is a perfumed mineral oil. Most mineral oil is a liquid by-product of refining crude oil to make gasoline and other petroleum products; this type of mineral oil is a transparent, colorless oil, composed of alkanes and cycloalkanes, related to petroleum jelly. It has a density of around 0.8 g/cm3. Some of the imprecision in the definition of the names reflects usage by buyers and sellers who did not know, did not need to care about, the precise chemical makeup. Merriam-Webster states the first use of the term “mineral oil” was 1771. Prior to the late 19th century, the chemical science to determine such makeup was unavailable in any case. A similar lexical situation occurred with the term "white metal".
"Mineral oil", sold and cheaply in the USA, is not sold as such in Britain. Instead British pharmacologists use the terms "Paraffinum perliquidum" for light mineral oil and "Paraffinum liquidum" or "Paraffinum subliquidum" for somewhat thicker varieties; the term "Paraffinum Liquidum" is seen on the ingredient lists of baby oil and cosmetics. British aromatherapists use the term "white mineral oil". In lubricating oils, mineral oil is termed from groups 1 to 2 worldwide and group 3 in certain regions; this is because the high end of group 3 mineral lubricating oils are so pure that they exhibit properties similar to polyalphaolefin - PAO oils. The World Health Organization classifies untreated or mildly treated mineral oils as Group 1 carcinogens to humans; the UK Food Standards Agency carried out a risk assessment on the findings of a survey made in 2011 on risks due to migration of components from printing inks used on carton-board packaging, including mineral oils, into food. The FSA did not identify any specific food safety concerns due to inks.
People can be exposed to mineral oil mist in the workplace by breathing it in, skin contact, or eye contact. In the United States, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has set the legal limit for mineral oil mist exposure in the workplace as 5 mg/m3 over an 8-hour workday; the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health has set a recommended exposure limit of 5 mg/m3 over an 8-hour workday and 10 mg/m3 short-term exposure. Levels of 2500 mg/m3 and higher are indicated as dangerous to life and health. However, current toxicological data does not contain any evidence of irreversible health effects due to short term exposure at any level. Mineral oil is used as a laxative to alleviate constipation by retaining water in stool and the intestines. Although considered safe, as noted above, there is a concern of mist inhalation leading to serious health conditions such as pneumonia. Mineral oil of special purity is used as an overlay covering microdrops of culture medium in petri dishes, during the culture of oocytes and embryos in IVF and related procedures.
The use of oil presents several advantages over the open culture system: it allows for several oocytes and embryos to be cultured but observed separately, in the same dish. Over the counter veterinarian use mineral oil is intended as a mild laxative for pets and livestock. Certain mineral oils are used in livestock vaccines, as an adjuvant to stimulate a cell-mediated immune response to the vaccinating agent. In the poultry industry, plain mineral oil can be swabbed onto the feet of chickens infected with scaly mites on the shank and webs. Mineral oil suffocates these tiny parasites. In beekeeping, food grade mineral oil-saturated paper napkins placed in hives are used as a treatment for tracheal and other mites, it is used along with a cotton swab to remove un-shed skin on reptiles such as lizards and snakes. Mineral oil is a common ingredient in baby lotions, cold creams and cosmetics, it is a lightweight inexpensive oil, odorless and tasteless. It can be used on eyelashes to prevent brittleness and breaking and, in cold cream, is used to remove creme make-up and temporary tattoos.
One of the common concerns regarding the use of mineral oil is its presence on several lists of comedogenic substances. These lists of comedogenic substances were developed many years ago and are quoted in the dermatological literature; the type of refined and purified mineral oil found in cosmetic and skincare products is noncomedogenic. Mineral oil is used in a variety of industrial/mechanical capacities as a non-conductive coolant or thermal fluid in electric components as it does not conduct electricity and functions to displace air and water; some examples are in transformers, where it is known as transformer oil, in high-voltage switchgear, where mineral oil is used as an insulator and as a coolant to dis
Capture of Gibraltar
The Capture of Gibraltar by Anglo-Dutch forces of the Grand Alliance occurred between 1 and 4 August 1704 during the War of the Spanish Succession. Since the beginning of the war the Alliance had been looking for a harbour in the Iberian Peninsula to control the Strait of Gibraltar and facilitate naval operations against the French fleet in the western Mediterranean Sea. An attempt to seize Cádiz had ended in failure in September 1702, but following the Alliance fleet's successful raid in Vigo Bay in October that year, the combined fleets of the'Maritime Powers', the Netherlands and England, had emerged as the dominant naval force in the region; this strength helped persuade King Peter II of Portugal to sever his alliance with France and Bourbon-controlled Spain, ally himself with the Grand Alliance in 1703. Now with access to the Portuguese port of Lisbon the Alliance fleets could campaign in the Mediterranean, conduct operations in support of the Austrian Habsburg candidate to the Spanish throne, the Archduke Charles, known to his supporters as Charles III of Spain.
Prince George of Hesse-Darmstadt represented the Habsburg cause in the region. In May 1704 the Prince and Admiral George Rooke, commander of the main Grand Alliance fleet, failed to take Barcelona in the name of'Charles III'. In order to compensate for their lack of success the Alliance commanders resolved to capture Gibraltar, a small town on the southern Spanish coast. Following a heavy bombardment the town was invaded by Dutch marines and sailors; the governor, Diego de Salinas, agreed to surrender Gibraltar and its small garrison on 4 August. Three days Prince George entered the town with Austrian and Spanish Habsburg troops in the name of Charles III of Spain; the Grand Alliance failed in its objective of replacing Philip V with Charles III as King of Spain, but in the peace negotiations Gibraltar was ceded to Britain. At the start of the War of the Spanish Succession Portugal was nominally an ally of the Bourbons: France under Louis XIV, Spain under his grandson, Philip V. Although not a belligerent, Portugal's harbours were closed to the enemies of the Bourbon powers – principally the vessels of England and the Dutch Republic.
However, following the Anglo-Dutch naval victory at Vigo Bay in 1702 the balance of naval forces had swung in favour of the Grand Alliance. Having now the ability to cut off Portugal's food supplies and trade it was not hard for the Allied diplomats to induce King Peter II to sign the Methuen Treaties of May 1703 and join the Alliance. Once Peter II had committed himself to war the Alliance fleets gained access to Portugal's harbours, in particular the port of Lisbon. In return for his allegiance Peter II had demanded military and financial aid and territorial concessions in Spain. Known to his supporters as Charles III of Spain, the young pretender arrived in Lisbon – via London – with George Rooke's fleet on 7 March 1704, amid great celebrations. Apart from the failed Grand Alliance attempt to take Cádiz in 1702, the subsequent attack on the Spanish treasure fleet in Vigo Bay, the war had thus far been limited to the Low Countries and Italy. With Portugal's change of allegiance, the war moved towards Spain.
In May 1704 the court at Lisbon received news that French and Spanish troops had crossed the frontier into Portugal. This army of 26,000 men under Philip V and the Duke of Berwick scored several victories on the border: Salvaterra fell on 8 May, Penha Garcia on 11 May, Philip V oversaw the fall of Castelo Branco on 23 May, T'Serclaes captured Portalegre on 8 June, but without supply for their forces, the coming summer heat made it impossible for them to continue with the campaign, Philip V returned to Madrid on 16 July to a hero's welcome. However, the heat did not affect the war at sea. Using Lisbon as an improvised forward base Admiral Rooke's Anglo-Dutch fleet ventured into the Mediterranean Sea in May 1704. After seeing the Levant trading fleet safely through the Strait of Gibraltar Rooke headed towards Nice to put himself in touch with Victor Amadeus II, Duke of Savoy; the Grand Alliance had planned for a naval attack upon the French base at Toulon in conjunction with the Savoyard army and the rebels of the Cévennes.
Accompanying Rooke was Prince George of Hesse-Darmstadt who had enjoyed popularity amongst the Catalans as their governor at the end of the Nine Years' War. The Prince was the great exponent of the Barcelona plan. On 30 May, under cover of the ships’ guns, Prince George landed with 1,200 English and 400 Dutch marines. Moreover, the dissidents were incensed by the size of the Alliance force and had expected the personal appearance of'Charles III'. Ultimatums for Velesco to surrender on pain of bombardment were ignored, the plans for an insurrection from within the city's walls failed to materialize. Rooke, fearing an attack from a French squadron, was impatient for departure. Prince George could do little more than order his local followers – a thousand in all – to disperse to
MV Aurora (2000)
MV Aurora is a cruise ship of the P&O Cruises fleet. The ship was built by Meyer Werft at their shipyard in Germany. At over 76,000 tonnes, Aurora is the sixth largest of seven ships in service with P&O Cruises, she entered service with the company in April 2000 and was named by Anne, Princess Royal in Southampton, United Kingdom. Aurora was refitted in 2014, during which the ship is the first of P&O's ships to receive an updated British Union flag design on her bow and her funnel repainted from yellow to blue. Aurora is a mid-sized cruise ship, with an overall length of 270.0 metres, moulded beam of 32.2 metres and draught of 7.90 metres. Her gross tonnage is 76,152 and her deadweight tonnage is 8,486 tonnes; the ship can accommodate up to 1,878 passengers in 939 cabins, with a maximum crew complement of 936. Aurora is powered by four MAN B&W 14V48/60 medium-speed diesel engines with a total power output of 58,800 kilowatts; these engines provide power for two STN AEG propulsion motors. The propulsion motors drive two propellers.
For manoeuvring, the ship has a stern thruster. The ship's service speed is 24 knots, though during sea trials she reached a maximum speed of 29 knots. Aurora was designed to appeal to the British market, was built as an extended and improved version of P&O Cruises' Oriana; the ship's hull and superstructure were designed to be attractive to this market with features similar to more traditional ocean liners, such as her raked, tiered stern. Aurora was built by Meyer Werft in Germany, her keel was laid in December 1998 and she was launched in January 2000. She was delivered to P&O Cruises in April 2000.. The ship was christened on 27 April 2000, by HRH Princess Anne; the champagne bottle did not shatter when it fell unopened into the sea. This type of occurrence is considered a bad omen among seafarers, this incident has been blamed for the numerous setbacks that Aurora has encountered throughout her career. Aurora departed on her maiden voyage on 1 May 2000—a 14-night cruise to various Mediterranean destinations.
The ship's crew identified a major technical problem, the cruise was abandoned after 16 hours at sea. The cause was a propeller shaft bearing, damaged by overheating and required urgent repair while the ship was out of service. On 3 May 2000, the ship returned to Southampton. Passengers expressed disappointment about the incident but reported that they were satisfied with P&O Cruises' response to the situation. P&O Cruises offered all passengers a full refund and compensation package, worth about GBP£6 million. Aurora sailed to Blohm + Voss in Germany; the ship returned to service on 15 May 2000, to undertake her second scheduled cruise to the Canary Islands. In March 2001, Aurora was sailing through the Taiwan Strait on her first world cruise when she was called to assist Pamela Dream, a Cambodian registered ship crewed by Russian officers and crew which had capsized in rough seas. Aurora launched her fast rescue boats to retrieve survivors from the water; the crew were able to retrieve three survivors.
A crewmember described the sea state as "very rough, with waves of about 5 m". One of Aurora's propellers was damaged by flotsam, an inspection of the propeller was carried out in Singapore where it was polished by divers; the damaged propeller was replaced in dry dock in Southampton in December 2002. On the morning of 11 September 2001, Aurora was positioned 80 miles south of New York City and 20 miles east of Atlantic City, New Jersey while a conference of IT executives and vendors was occurring on board; the ship had embarked from Pier 88 in New York City on the evening of 9 September. Following the attacks on the World Trade Center that morning, there were concerns for the safety of the British-owned ship. U. S. Coast Guard helicopters and vessels protected the Aurora until it was determined that the vessel was not in danger; the ship was planned to return to Manhattan on 12 September but due to the closure of New York Harbour the ship instead travelled at full speed to Boston to disembark its passengers before the Port of Boston shut also.
The U. S. Coast Guard requested that Aurora left US waters, with so many New York citizens aboard special dispensation was made to allow the ship into Boston to disembark US passengers. Many of the executives on board were from the banking and financial services industries, it was estimated that as many as 50 executives worked in Tower 1 and Tower 2 of the World Trade Center and adjacent buildings. Reports from conference attendees were that several executives on board were in communication via cell phones with their staffs in both Towers 1 and 2 who perished in the collapse of those buildings. During a cruise around the eastern Mediterranean in October 2003, over 500 passengers suffered stomach infections caused by the contagious Norovirus. During the outbreak, the ship's passengers were denied the right to land at Piraeus, Greece, as the ship was held in quarantine. Aurora departed from Piraeus on 31 October having loaded medical supplies. On arrival in Dubrovnik, Croatia, a health inspector boarded the vessel and ordered the sick passengers to remain in their cabins "as a precautionary measure".
Those unaffected by the virus were allowed to leave the ship. There was uncertainty as to whether the ship would be allowed to dock in Gibraltar, the next scheduled port. Aurora was allowed to dock in Gibraltar on 3 November. A small number of passengers who were still recovering were required to stay o
George Augustus Eliott, 1st Baron Heathfield
George Augustus Eliott, 1st Baron Heathfield, PC, KB was a British Army officer who served in three major wars during the eighteenth century. He rose to distinction during the Seven Years' War when he fought in Germany and participated in the British attacks on Belle Île and Cuba. Eliott is most notable for his command of the Gibraltar garrison during the Great Siege of Gibraltar, which lasted from 1779 and 1783, during the American War of Independence, he was celebrated for his successful defence of the fortress. Eliott was born at Wells House, near Stobs Castle, the 10th son of Sir Gilbert Eliott, 3rd Baronet, of Stobs, by his distant cousin Eleanor Elliot of Brugh and Wells in Roxburghshire. Eleanor's brother was courtier William Elliot of Wells. One of his Eleanor's sisters, had married Roger Elliott, another Governor of Gibraltar. Eliott was educated at the University of Leiden in the Dutch Republic and studied artillery and other military subjects at the école militaire of La Fère in France.
He served with the Prussian Army between 1735 and 1736. In 1741 he transferred to the Engineers and joined the 2nd Troop of Horse Grenadier Guards, of which his maternal uncle, William Elliot of Wells, was Lieutenant-Colonel, of which Eliott was afterwards Lieutenant-Colonel, he served throughout the War of Austrian Succession between 1742 and 1748, fighting at the Battle of Dettingen, where he was wounded, again at the Battle of Fontenoy. He became an Engineer Extraordinary in 1744 and Engineer Ordinary in 1747 when he was stationed at Sheerness. Eliott resigned from the Engineers in 1757. Eliott served as ADC to King George II between 1756 and 1759 during which time he was raised to Colonel. Appointed Brigadier for the 1758 expedition to France, where he was placed in command of the Brigade of Light Cavalry, He was tasked to raise and was appointed colonel of the 1st Light Horse. Eliott distinguished himself in the German campaign during the Battle of Minden in 1759 when he was promoted to Major-General and the 1760 Battle of Emsdorf.
He took part in the Capture of Belle Île in 1761. He was 2nd-in-charge at the capture of Havana during the 1762 British expedition against Cuba for which he received a significant amount of prize money, he was promoted Lieutenant-General in 1765. On 6 March 1775 he was made a Privy Counsellor and temporarily appointed commander of Forces in Ireland. On 25 May 1777 Eliott was appointed Governor of Gibraltar, taking over from the acting Governor, Robert Boyd. Eliott was promoted to General in 1778. In July 1779, Gibraltar was besieged by the Spanish. Eliott using his engineering skills to good effect in improving the fortifications. By August, it was apparent that the Spanish intended to starve the garrison; the Great Siege of Gibraltar would last from 1779 to 1783. A notable letter from Eliott to the Misses Fuller survives, dated 21 September 1779 and delivered on 4 October, it said "Nothing new. G. A. E." Eliott was an abstemious man, his diet comprising vegetables and water. He rarely slept for more than four hours at a time.
On 13 September 1782, the French and Spanish initiated a grand attack, involving 100,000 men, 48 ships and 450 cannon. Under great duress, the Garrison held its position and, by 1783, the siege was finishing. On 8 January 1783, the British Parliament sent their official thanks to Eliott and he was nominated a Knight of the Bath. By 6 February 1783, the siege was over. Eliott was invested with his honour at Gibraltar on 23 April. A portrait from 1784, "The Siege of Gibraltar" by George Carter survives in the National Portrait Gallery. Eliott returned to England in 1787, he was created Lord Heathfield, Baron Heathfield of Gibraltar on 6 July 1787 and in addition many statues and coins were produced in his honour. A will exists dated 27 February 1788. On 19 May 1788 Eliott was formally installed as Knight of the Bath, and, in June 1788, a portrait "The Installation Supper" was painted by James Gillray and resides in the National Portrait Gallery. About this time, Eliott was making his way overland back to Gibraltar.
However, he stayed in the Aachen area to recuperate. During 1790, he stayed at: Grossen Hotel, Dubigk. In June 1790 he rented the Schloss Kalkofen, moved in his furniture but did not live long to enjoy the facilities. On 6 July 1790, Eliott died at the Schloss Kalkofen, Aachen, of palsy / stroke brought on by drinking too much of the local mineral water, was buried in the grounds of the Schloss, his personal estate was probated by 27 July and his furniture sold off by his heirs. In 1790, his body was reburied at Heathfield, East Sussex. Still, his body was again disinterred and reburied at St Andrew's Church, Buckland Monachorum, Devon in the church associated with his wife's Drake ancestry. On 8 September 1748 at St Sepulchre-without-Newgate, George Augustus Eliott married Anne Pollexfen Drake, a collateral descendant of Sir Francis Drake, they had two children: Francis Augustus Eliott, 2nd and last Baron Heathfield Anne Pollexfen Eliott, who married John Trayton Fuller on 21 May 1777 General Eliott has been commemorated on a Gibraltar pound banknote.
In August and September 1787, George's portrait was painted by Sir Joshua Reynolds and now resides in the National Gallery. A painting entitled The Defeat of the Floating