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Thimphu

Thimphu is the capital and largest city of Bhutan. It is situated in the western central part of Bhutan, the surrounding valley is one of Bhutan's dzongkhags, the Thimphu District; the ancient capital city of Punakha was replaced as capital by Thimphu in 1955, in 1961 Thimphu was declared as the capital of the Kingdom of Bhutan by the 3rd Druk Gyalpo Jigme Dorji Wangchuck. The city extends in a north-south direction on the west bank of the valley formed by the Raidāk River, known as the Wang Chuu or Thimphu Chuu in Bhutan. Thimphu is the fifth highest capital in the world by altitude and ranges in altitude from 2,248 metres to 2,648 metres. Unusually for a capital city, Thimphu does not have its own airport, but relies on the Paro Airport connected by road some 54 kilometres away. Thimphu, as the political and economic center of Bhutan, has a dominant agricultural and livestock base, which contributes 45% of the country's GNP. Tourism, though a contributor to the economy, is regulated, maintaining a balance between the traditional and modernization.

Thimphu contains most of the important political buildings in Bhutan, including the National Assembly of the newly-formed parliamentary democracy and Dechencholing Palace, the official residence of the King, located to the north of the city. Thimphu is co-ordinated by the "Thimphu Structure Plan", an Urban Development Plan which evolved in 1998 with the objective of protecting the fragile ecology of the valley; this development is ongoing with financial assistance from the World Bank and Asian Development Bank. The culture of Bhutan is reflected in Thimphu in literature, religion and national dress code, the monastic practices of the monasteries and dance, in the media. Tshechu is an important festival when mask dances, popularly known as Cham dances, are performed in the courtyards of the Tashichho Dzong in Thimphu, it is a four-day festival held every year in September or October, on dates corresponding to the Bhutanese calendar. Before 1960, Thimphu consisted of a group of hamlets scattered across the valley including Motithang, Changlimithang and Taba, some of which constitute districts of the city today.

In 1885, a battle was held at. The decisive victory opened the way for Ugyen Wangchuck, the first King of Bhutan to control the whole country. Since this time the sports ground has been of major importance to the city; the modern Changlimithang Stadium was built on the site in 1974. Under the Wangchu Dynasty, the country enjoyed peace and progress under successive reformist monarchs; the third king, Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, reformed the old pseudo-feudal systems by abolishing serfdom, redistributing land, reforming taxation. He introduced many executive and judiciary reforms. Reforms continued and in 1952 the decision was made to shift the capital from the ancient capital of Punakha to Thimphu; the fourth king, Jigme Singye Wangchuck, opened the country for development and India provided the needed impetus in this process with financial and other forms of assistance. In 1961, Thimphu became the capital of Bhutan. Bhutan joined the Colombo Plan in 1962, the Universal Postal Union in 1969 and became a member of the United Nations in 1971.

The presence of diplomatic missions and international funding organizations in Thimphu resulted in rapid expansion of Thimphu as a metropolis. The fourth king, who had established the National Assembly in 1953, devolved all executive powers to a council of ministers elected by the people in 1998, he introduced a system of voting no confidence in the king, which empowered the parliament to remove the monarch. The National Constitution Committee in Thimphu started drafting the Constitution of the Kingdom of Bhutan in 2001. In 2005, the fourth king of Bhutan announced his decision to hand over the reins of his kingdom to his son Prince Jigme Khesar Namgyal Wangchuk; the coronation of the king was held in Thimphu at the refurbished Changlimithang Stadium and coincided with the centenary of the establishment of the House of Wangchuck. In 2008, this paved way for the transition from absolute monarchic rule to a parliamentary democratic constitutional monarchy, with Thimphu as the headquarters of the new government, with the national defined objective of achieving "Gross National Happiness" concomitant with the growth of Gross National Product.

Thimphu is situated in the constricted, linear valley of the Raidāk River, known as the Thimphu River. While the surrounding hills are in an altitudinal range of 2,000 to 3,800 metres, the city itself has an altitude range varying between 2,248 metres and 2,648 metres, it is these two variations in altitude and climate which determine the habitable zones and vegetation typology for the valley. The valley, however, is spread out to the north and west. At the southern end of the city, the Lungten Zampa bridge connects the east and west banks of the Wang Chuu which flows through the heart of city; the Raidāk River raises in the snow fields at an altitude of about 7,000 metres. It has many tributaries that flow from the Himalayan peaks that dictate the topography of the Thimphu valley; the Thimphu valley, so formed, is delimited by a steep eastern ridge that rises from the riverbed and a valley formation with gr

Mahu (noble)

Mahu was Chief of Police at Akhetaten. Mahu was Chief of the Medjay of Akhetaten; the Medjay used to be a term for the people of the Eastern desert who were known for their military skills, at this time referred to the police. Mahu's tomb is Amarna Tomb 9 of the Tombs of the Nobles at Amarna; the tomb was first opened by Bouriant in 1883. A hewn corridor leads to a decorated doorway; this doorway is decorated on one side with a scene depicting Akhenaten and Nefertiti and their eldest daughter Meritaten offering to the Aten. The opposite wall is decorated with an inscription of the Hymn of the Aten; this leads to the first chamber which contains a false door at the other. The stele shows the royal couple and their daughter again, with a depiction and accompanying prayers of Mahu; the false door shows the royal couple offering and Mahu kneeling with a large text. Davies mentions; the walls show both the duties and the rewards of Mahu. The rewards appear on the northern half of the back wall; the inscriptions were not finished but the sketches indicate that there would have been a reward scene showing the king bestowing honors on Mahu at the Window of Appearance.

Mahu was shown accompanied by the Medjay. Another scene showed Mahu receiving honors not at a temple, he is shown inspecting the defences of the city with the queen. This scene seems to be uniquely designed for this tomb; the vizier and other officials are present. In another scene Mahu is shown in his work policing the city, is shown in a meeting with the vizier and a lesser official named Heqanefer. Mahu is leading three prisoners before the vizier. Being in the reset without permission was something one would be arrested for. Scenes in the tomb show. Military standards are shown on these platforms; these structures may have formed a series of watchtowers and watch posts that were used to patrol the city. In the back is a doorway to a second chamber, positioned askew compared to the first chamber. A winding set of stairs at the back of this second chamber leads down to an Intermediary rom. Further steps lead to the lower chamber which contains the burial pit. Paul C. Doherty wrote a trilogy of books told by Mahu in a first-person narrative, recounting the events of the age of Akhenaten and his part in them and his relationships with other personages of the Amarna period.

An Evil Spirit Out of the West The Season of the Hyaena The Year of the Cobra Egyptian Monuments, El-Amarna South Tombs

USS Mindanao (PR-8)

The first USS Mindanao was a river gunboat in the service of the United States Navy before and during World War II. Mindanao was laid down as patrol gunboat PG-48 on 20 November 1926, by Kiangnan Dock and Engineering Works, China. A. W. Ashbrook in command. Departing Shanghai on 28 July 1928, Mindanao conducted shakedown up the Yangtze River, steaming to Chungking and Wansien and returning downstream to Shanghai on 31 August; the gunboat stood out again on 10 September to take up station. Arriving on 22 September, the ship remained there on convoy and patrol duty until sailing back to Shanghai for fuel and repairs on 28 December, she underwent overhaul until 21 March 1929, cruised upriver on patrol, returning intermittently to Shanghai to investigate political conditions. On 2 May, the warship called for Hong Kong and thence to Canton, arriving 14 June where she became flagship of the South China Patrol Force, U. S. Asiatic Fleet. For the next 12½ years, Mindanao cruised the southern coast of China, based alternately at Hong Kong and Canton, protecting American and Allied interests in China and suppressing piracy.

In October 1938, following the Japanese invasion of southern China and seizure of Canton, she commenced operations to guard American neutrality. On 2 December 1941 — as Japanese aggression was expected shortly and the small armed ship could not hope to combat the overwhelming odds facing her in China — the gunboat received orders to sail to the Philippines. Though designed only for river travel, the valiant craft put to sea from Hong Kong on 4 December. Bucking heavy winds and high seas, she stubbornly remained on course for Luzon. At 03:40 on the night of 8 December, she received word of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Going to general quarters, the crew remained near their guns throughout the passage, on 9 December intercepted and sank a small Japanese trawler, taking 10 prisoners-of-war, among the first taken by Americans in World War II. Mindanao concluded this eventful voyage upon arrival at Manila Bay the next day. Assigned to inshore patrol and guard duty in Manila Bay, the gunboat acted as station ship in connection with the minefield channels near Corregidor until the end of December 1941, took nightly turns with China river gunboats USS Luzon and USS Oahu patrolling east of Bataan.

The shortage of fuel in the Philippines ended these patrols in early March, the ships instead took turns watching for Japanese small craft at a position 3 miles east of Corregidor. On the afternoon of 25 March, they engaged nine enemy boats. Mindanao harassed enemy artillery east of Bataan on 6 April; the same day, the gunboat helped rescue some 60 American soldiers from both shore artillery and enemy aircraft. The ship closed the beach to support small boats embarking the soldiers; when the naval situation in Manila Bay appeared hopeless, Mindanao’s crew was ordered ashore on 10 April to help defend Fort Hughes. Hit by shell fire the same day, the gunboat was stripped of all useful gear. On 2 May 1942, after suffering an aerial bomb hit in the engine room, she was sunk to prevent capture. Mindanao received one battle star for World War II service; this article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. The entry can be found here. NavSource Online: Mindanao