Several anniversaries

Posted by Helen Monday, September 02, 2013 , , ,

The most memorable one is probably that of the unconditional surrender signed by the Japanese on September 2, 1945 on SS Missouri. (No, it was not the Emperor who signed it on Japan's behalf as President Obama once said, but by the Foreign Minister, Mamoro Shigemitsu and General Umezu. While the Emperor remained in place, there was an unquestionable regime change during a prolonged American occupation. One cannot really argue that Japan is not a better place for that.

Moving backward into history, today is the 170th anniversary of the first issue of that venerable "newspaper", The Economist, founded by businessman and banker, James Wilson, to advance the repeal of the Corn Laws and, in general, dedicated to the notions of free trade. One wonders to what extent those ideas have been kept going by his present-day successors.

Even further back: September 2, 1666, saw the start of the Great Fire of London that lasted for three days, causing a great deal of material destruction though few actual deaths. I have no intention of writing about it as the best possible account is available here. It is, of course, by Samuel Pepys.


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