Today of course allows a worldwide opportunity to celebrate lovers with the erstwhile Christian melding of Pagan symbology that occurs on Valentine’s Day, while in more contemporary parlance this date marks V-Day as a commitment to end social violence against women and girls; in the early decades of Islam’s growth to worldwide prominence, seventeen hundred sixty-two years ago, Rome’s Imperial authorities continued their predatory attacks on Christians with the beheading of the spiritual leader whom we now know as St. Valentine; seven years shy of five centuries afterward, in 748, the inevitable schisms that always characterize such religious expressions of culture unfolded with a consolidating of the Abbasid Revolution over Umayyad imprimatur when rebelsoverthrew the defending garrison at Merv, a provincial capitol; a thousand three years ahead of today, an eight Pope Benedict formalized the conjunction between Italian and Germanic peoples by appointing Henry of Bavaria as King of Germany and Italy; three hundred thirty-five years onward from that passage, in 1349, along the borders of what are now France and Germany in Strasbourg, enraged crowds burned to death as many as hundreds of neighbors of the Jewish faith, while they stampeded the remaining Jews of the region into banishment; three years more than a century and a half later, in 1502, a somewhat similar action of the Spanish Inquisition issued, with Catholic monarch’s signing a decree that faced Granadian Muslims with the choice between converting to Catholicism or leaving Spain altogether; twenty-eight years exactly past that dire directive, in 1530, across the sea in Mexico, other Spanish predators finalized their conquest of the Tarascan State with the brutal execution of its ruling chieftain; precisely a hundred twenty-five years further in the direction of today, in 1655, invasive Spanish settlers in Chile found themselves in the midst of an Arauco War when Mapuche fighters under the command of Clentaru embarked on a bloody insurrection against Iberian rule; just a year less than an additional one and a quarter centuries along the temporal arc, in 1779, Hawaiian Islanders responded in similar fashion to interloping Englishmen, killing Captain James Cook on the archipelago’s big island in the event; another quarter century onward on the dot, in 1804, half a world away in the Balkans, the initial Serbian uprising against Ottoman Rule unfolded under the leadership of Karadorde; fourteen years hence, in 1818, the possibility exists, according to some current conventions, that the baby boy was born to a slave mother and master father whom the father would soon enough sell as Frederick Douglass, who would go on to lead a revolutionary movement against the conditions of his origins; the very next year, in 1819, another male baby came along who would mature as the journalist, and inventor of the typewriter, Christopher Latham Sholes; an additional sixteen years en route to today, in 1835, Kirtland Ohio witnessed the first Latter Day Saints Quorum of the Twelve Apostles; just over four decades henceforth, in 1876, Alexander Graham Bell and Elisha Gray applied simultaneously for patents for a working telephone; three more cycles of the sun on the path to now, in 1879, the War of the Pacific started with Chile’s seizing the Bolivian port city of Antofagasta and cutting off the now landlocked country from the Pacific; yet one
more sixteen year period on the way to today, in 1895, Oscar Wilde’s final drama, The Importance of Being Earnest, opened in London, and across the English Channel in Germany, the baby boy opened his eyes who would rise as the Marxist philosopher and social scientist, Max Horkheimer; eight years subsequent to those debuts, in 1903, the United States embraced its capitalist destiny completely by initiating the Department of Commerce and Labor, which would soon enough break asunder to leave the managing of proletarians in a separate agency, at the very same moment that in the middle of the Continent the Western Federatiofn of Miners initiated a strike to limit their labors, contractually, to an eight hour day; nine years further along, in 1912, the U.S. Navy introduced its first class of diesel-powered submarines; a mere year nearer to the here and now, in 1913, a male child bounced into the world who would grow up as the rough and tumble leader of labor, Jimmy Hoffa; seven hundred thirty days onward from there, in 1915, workers in Minneapolis who lacked jobs rallied, as many as ten thousand strong, in sleet and snow to demand work; four more years along time’s trek, in 1919, a determined but weakening Woodrow Wilson presented a first draft of a League of Nations covenant to the gathered attendees at the Versailles Peace Conference, which was busily laying the foundations for another world war a generation in the future; the next year along time’s relentless march, in 1920, persistent women activists in Chicago founded the League of Women Voters; in a key transition in matters technological a thousand four hundred and sixty-one days yet later on, in 1924, an International Business Machines Corporation emerged out of the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company; half a decade more on the road to now, in 1929, a series of gangster
assassinations took place in Chicago, all of opponents of Al Capone’s organization, in what soon received the name of the Saint Valentine’s Day massacre, while in more salubrious developments, researchers in England first stumbled upon the antibiotic potential of the citrus mold that they would designate as penicillin; fourteen years thereafter, in 1943, David Hilbert, the philosopher, physicist, and mathematician who had emigrated from Russia to Germany, composed his ultimate theorem; as if to replace a loss, the next year, 1944, across the grey Atlantic in the U.S. a baby male first shouted out whom fate had designated to become the investigative journalist and popular author, Carl Bernstein; another year hence, in 1945, the waning Franklin Roosevelt met with Ibn Saud aboard a U.S. Naval vessel to officiate the inauguration of the ‘special relationship’ between America and Saudi Arabia; an additional spin round the solar center after that, in 1946, Great Britain
nationalized the Bank of England, furthering the identification of capital with the British nation; a thousand ninety-six days still more proximate to the present pass, in 1949, the Israeli nation’s new legislature, the Knesset, convened for its initial session, while five thousand mile Northwest in Quebec, a massive asbestos strike began that marked the start of the province’s Quiet Revolution; a year more on time’s measured move forward through space, in 1950, around the globe in China, reactionary Nationalists with the support of the United States began their final attempt at the Battle of Tianquan, unsuccessful like their others, to unfurl the flag of history that the People’s Liberation Army bore as its standard; half a dozen years farther down the pike, in 1956, the transformational Twentieth Communist Party Congress started in Moscow, where Nikita Khrushchev would eventually begin the process of articulating and condemning the crimes of Joseph Stalin; yet one more half dozen year interlude along the temporal progression, in 1962, the imperial leaders of America demonstrated that they would refuse to learn the lessons that liberation-fighters were teaching, with John Kennedy’s authorization that ‘advisors’ in the section of Vietnam that the U.S. had illegally instigated could engage in fire fights while they were ‘teaching;’ a decade afterward, in 1972, around the world in Estonia, a male infant gazed all about him on his path to becoming the programmer who would be one of the instrumental developers of the Skype platform; another three years even closer to the current context, in 1975, a co-founder of the World Wide Fund for Nature and brother of Aldous, Julian Huxley, breathed his last, while his fellow countryman, novelist and dramatist, P.G. Wodehouse, also died; a further eight years en route to the here and now, in 1983, a Knoxville Tennessee bank collapsed as a result of fraud that, miraculously, its chief executive Jake Butcher faced a conviction for facilitating; half a dozen years subsequently, in 1989, Union Carbide consented to pay for its predatory negligence in the Bhopal Disaster that left hundreds of thousands dead and injured the relatively paltry sum of $470 million to the Indian government, while in nearby Iran, Ruhollah Khomeini issued a fatwa that called on Muslims to kill Salman Rushdie, a South Asian offspring of Islamic tradition who wrote the iconoclastic volume, The Satanic Verses, and seven thousand miles to the West, the Sandinista movement in Nicaragua agreed to ‘free elections’ that U.S. depredations had forced them to accept; another year still later, in 1990, the far-ranging first Voyager spacecraft sent back the iconic photograph of Earth that became famous as the “Pale Blue Dot;” four years after that juncture, in 1994, the controversial and provocative historian and social critic Christopher Lasch made his final exit; two years in even greater proximity to the present point, in 1996, desperate Detroit newspaper workers offered to end their strike and return to work, sans contract or any additional rights; a further three years along time’s path, in 1999, the well-regarded singer and songwriter of the American tradition, Buddy Knox, sang a swan song; six years further down the road, in 2005, a bevy of college buddies launched YouTube, which would rapidly vault to the top of web-economy properties in the creation of new billions along the social mediated roadway of capital’s Internet route.