Four score and seven years ago, our Jewish forefathers brought forth, upon this continent… a stationery company that provided the paper on which Abraham Lincoln’s wrote the Gettysburg Address. The speech, given on November 19, 1863, still stands as the backbone of American democracy in part, one could argue, because of the fine paper on which it was written. This was supplied by the Washington, D.C. stationery company Philp & Solomons, which was co-founded by Franklin Philp and Adolphus Simeon Solomons, a prominent Jewish citizen with close ties to Lincoln.
Philp & Solomons was one of several companies known to supply paper and writing materials to the government, according to Michele Hamil, a Paper and Photograph Conservator at Cornell University who who made this discovery. Receipts from the Treasury Department have confirmed that the stationery company did in fact supply paper to the White House.
There are currently five known copies of the Gettysburg Address. Two are drafts and three are considered final versions of the speech, which Lincoln gave on that fateful Thursday afternoon in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, in November 1863. Two of the three final copies were written on paper that came from the Philip & Solomons, as is indicated by the stationery store’s unique watermark on the top corner of the paper. Cornell University Library is home to one of these copies.
“Lincoln would have understood that in making copies of the Gettysburg Address he was creating important documents ,” Hamil explained, “and therefore would have specifically chosen a fine writing paper.” That, she said, would ensure the paper lasts longer and “has had a profoundly beneficial impact on its preservation.” Philp & Solomons were of the top quality paper producers in country; one ream of paper cost $3.25.
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If 9/11 was the declaration of jihad against the West, 9/12 will be remembered as one of the most dramatic knee-bends of the Western cultural submission to Islam.
On September 12th 2006, Pope Benedict XVI (Joseph Ratzinger) landed in Bavaria, Germany, where he was born and first taught theology. He was expected to deliver a lecture in front of the academic community at the University of Regensburg. That lesson would go down to history as the most controversial papal speech of the last half-century.
On this, the 10th anniversary of the speech, the Western world and the Islamic world both owe Benedict an apology, but unfortunately, the opposite happened: the Vatican has apologized to the Muslims.
In his lecture, Pope Benedict clarified the internal contradictions of contemporary Islam, but he also offered a terrain of dialogue with Christianity and Western culture. The Pope spoke of the Jewish, Greek and Christian roots of Europe’s faith, explaining why these are different from Islamic monotheism. His talk contained a quote from the Byzantine emperor, Manuel II Paleologus: “Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman”.
This keg of dynamite was softened by a quotation from a Koranic sura of Mohammed’s youth, Benedict noted, “when Mohammed was still powerless and under threat”, and which says: “There is no compulsion in religion.”
Pope Benedict’s talk was not a surprise. “It is no secret that the Pope worried about Islam”, Christopher Caldwell noted in the Financial Times.
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The recent discovery that Mahmoud Abbas, president of the Palestinian Authority (PA), was a KGB spy in Damascus in 1983, was discarded by many in the mainstream media as a “historical curiosity” — except that the news inconveniently came out at the time that President Vladimir Putin was trying to organize new talks between Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Predictably, the Palestinian Authority immediately dismissed the news. Fatah official Nabil Shaath denied that Abbas was ever a KGB operative, and called the claim a “smear campaign.”
The discovery, far from being a “historical curiosity,” is an aspect of one of many pieces in the puzzle of the origins of 20th and 21st century Islamic terrorism. Those origins are almost always obfuscated and obscured in ill-concealed attempts at presenting a particular narrative about the causes of contemporary terrorism, while decrying all and any evidence to the contrary as “conspiracy theories.”
There is nothing conspiratorial about the latest revelation. It comes from a document in the Mitrokhin archives at the Churchill Archives Center at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom. Vasily Mitrokhin was a former senior officer of the Soviet Foreign Intelligence service, who was later demoted to KGB archivist. At immense risk to his own life, he spent 12 years diligently copying secret KGB files that would not otherwise have become available to the public (the KGB foreign intelligence archives remain sealed from the public, despite the demise of the Soviet Union). When Mitrokhin defected from the Russia in 1992, he brought the copied files with him to the UK. The declassified parts of the Mitrokhin archives were brought to the public eye in the writings of Cambridge professor Christopher Andrew, who co-wrote The Mitrokhin Archive (published in two volumes) together with the Soviet defector. Mitrokhin’s archives led, among other things, to the discovery of many KGB spies in the West and elsewhere.
Unfortunately, the history of the full extent of the KGB’s influence and disinformation operations is not nearly as well-known as it should be, considering the immense influence that the KGB wielded on international affairs. The KGB conducted hostile operations against NATO as a whole, against democratic dissent within the Soviet bloc, and set in motion subversive events in Latin America and the Middle East, which resonate to this day.
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This election of Donald Trump to be the next President of the United States has really stressed me out. I am reeling and in dire need of a series of safe spaces in near every place which I visit. I go get coffee at my usual place and there it is in my face, Donald Trump will be President come January 20, 2017. Dinner out, more Trump is pushed in my face. Where are my safe spaces like all those lucky college children have access to while their professors cancel exams and hold weep-ins instead of lectures. Even going to the grocery store and you pass the newsstand where you are reminded about President elect Trump and all that entails and there will always be somebody who just has to discuss the election and if unlucky the checkout person who might just decide to want to speak about the election…
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A human rights group recently published photos documenting the Islamic State’s fanatical and virulent hate for Christians — even dead ones. The photos show the Christian cemetery of Qarqoosh, Iraq that was vandalized by the Islamic group. Among other things, the jihadis opened coffins and desecrated the remains of the dead– in the picture below, by snapping off the head of a formerly resting-in-peace corpse and throwing the crucifixes surrounding it on the ground.
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A daytime show on Moroccan television has sparked an online petition after staging a detailed live tutorial that showed women at home how to cover up facial bruises from domestic violence. According to international statistics, Morocco is home to some of the world’s most disempowered women.
Sabihayat is a studio lifestyle on the popular majority state-owned 2M channel that airs a regular makeup segment, but the one that appeared on November 23 was unusual, despite presenters maintaining their usual chirpy tone.
In the chair sat a woman who bore lurid purple “bruises” on her face. Over the next six minutes, the victim was covered up with foundation and powder brushes, until it was completely invisible.
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A few things left out of this whitewashed presentation, which is typical of such presentations all over the country:
“Men have authority over women because Allah has made the one superior to the other, and because they spend their wealth to maintain them. Good women are obedient. They guard their unseen parts because Allah has guarded them. As for those from whom you fear disobedience, admonish them and send them to beds apart and beat them.” — Qur’an 4:34
Nowhere does the Qur’an teach that a woman can beat a man under any circumstances.
The Qur’an likens a woman to a field (tilth), to be used by a man as he wills: “Your women are a tilth for you, so go to your tilth as you will” (2:223).
It declares that a woman’s testimony is worth half that of a man: “Get two witnesses, out of your own men, and if there are not two men, then a man and two women, such as you choose, for witnesses, so that if one of them errs, the other can remind her” (2:282).
It allows men to marry up to four wives, and have sex with slave girls also: “If you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly with the orphans, marry women of your choice, two or three or four; but if you fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly, then only one, or one that your right hands possess, that will be more suitable, to prevent you from doing injustice” (4:3).
It rules that a son’s inheritance should be twice the size of that of a daughter: “Allah directs you as regards your children’s inheritance: to the male, a portion equal to that of two females” (4:11).
It allows for marriage to pre-pubescent girls, stipulating that Islamic divorce procedures “shall apply to those who have not yet menstruated” (65:4).
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