This is the view from Brian's kitchen window in London. Observe the tiny figure just to the left of the narcissi; it's a solar-powered Queen. Each morning, she welcomes Brian by waving and wiggling her bum. She was a Christmas present from Hildie and Brian loves her very much indeed...
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My old friend Brian has sent me a cutting from London’s Evening Standard. It’s a letter sent in by a genius called Aubrey Bailey, who deserves a medal the size of a very, very big frying pan.
It’s headed Clear As Mud….
‘Are you confused by what is going on in the Middle East? Let me explain.
We support the Iraqi government in the fight against Islamic State - but IS is supported by Saudi Arabia, whom we like.
We don’t like President Assad in Syria. We support the fight against him - but we don’t support IS, which is also fighting against him.
We don’t like Iran but Iran supports the Iraqi government against IS. So...some of our friends support our enemies and some of our enemies are our friends and some of our enemies are fighting against our other enemies, who we want to lose, but we don’t want our enemies who are fighting our enemies to win.
If the people we want to defeat are defeated, they might be replaced by people we like even less.
And all this was started by us invading a country to drive out terrorists who weren’t actually there until we went in to drive them out.
Do you understand now?'
* * *I’ve also received this beautiful viral email from Eric and Jean, who run the Commercial in Tantobie.
'About six miles from Maastricht, in the Netherlands, lie buried 8,301 American soldiers who died in ‘Operation Market Garden’ in the battles to liberate Holland in the autumn and winter of 1944-5.
Every one of the men buried in the cemetery, as well as those in the Canadian and British military cemeteries, has been adopted by a Dutch family who mind the grave, decorate it, and keep alive the memory of the soldier they have adopted. It is even the custom to keep a portrait of ‘their’ soldier in a place of honour in their home.
Annually, on Liberation Day, memorial services are held for ‘the men who died to liberate Holland’. The day concludes with a concert. The final piece is always Il Silenzio, a memorial piece commissioned by the Dutch and first played in 1965 on the 20th anniversary of Holland's liberation.
It has been the concluding piece of the memorial concert ever since. This year the soloist was a 13-year-old Dutch girl, Melissa Venema, backed by André Rieu and his orchestra (the Royal Orchestra of the Netherlands). This beautiful concert piece was composed by Italian composer Nino Rossi.'
You can watch it by clicking on the link below, or by cutting and pasting the link into the Search box of your Browser.
* * *AGM XLVI
Our next AGM will take place at 1100 on Thursday 26 February in Newcastle. And not before time.
A splendid time is guaranteed for all.
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* * *CONTACT ME
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