Archive for March 31st, 2017

When US SEC Charges Pastor with Defrauding Retirees (Pastor said he was more trustworthy than bankers..)

March 31, 2017

Fascinating story.

US Securities Exchange Commission has recently charged a Pastor for defrauding customers. He using his religious stature pushed people into giving their savings towards his own venture.


Remembering noted botanist GH Krumbiegel, creator of Bangalore’s Lalbagh

March 31, 2017

A nice tribute. We neither know about such people nor remember them.

“There is a saying about him- German by birth, married an English woman, but his heart always belonged to India.” Alyia Phelps Gardner is talking about her great-grandfather Gustav Hermann Krumbiegel (1865-1956), a German botanist and town planner who was one of the chief architects of the Lalbagh Botanical Garden.

Krumbiegel is credited for having brought over 50% of the nearly 9,000 trees from 800 genera in Lalbagh. His work was also instrumental in the city getting the “Green City” tag. Krumbiegel was responsible for planting seasonally-flowering trees on the city’s avenues so that they would be covered in bloom throughout the year.

Were Gustav Krumbiegel alive today, Gardner says, he would have been “very sad” at the sight of the beautiful city losing its green cover which he had painstakingly worked on creating.

“I feel sad about all the trees, some over 100 years old, being hacked and poisoned. I worry about the pollution and the garbage in the Garden City and I feel he is telling me to stand up.”

A part of several local city groups on Facebook, Gardner has been actively advocating the need to plant trees with the help of local citizens. She is also working on a campaign to restore the dilapidated Krumbiegel Hall.

Why Russia gave up Alaska, America’s gateway to the Arctic

March 31, 2017

Fascinating account by Prof. William L. Iggiagruk Hensley of University of Alaska Anchorage.

One hundred and fifty years ago, on March 30, 1867, U.S. Secretary of State William H. Seward and Russian envoy Baron Edouard de Stoeckl signed the Treaty of Cession. With a stroke of a pen, Tsar Alexander II had ceded Alaska, his country’s last remaining foothold in North America, to the United States for US$7.2 million.

That sum, amounting to just $113 million in today’s dollars, brought to an end Russia’s 125-year odyssey in Alaska and its expansion across the treacherous Bering Sea, which at one point extended the Russian Empire as far south as Fort Ross, California, 90 miles from San Francisco Bay.

Today Alaska is one of the richest U.S. states thanks to its abundance of natural resources, such as petroleum, gold and fish, as well as its vast expanse of pristine wilderness and strategic location as a window on Russia and gateway to the Arctic.

So what prompted Russia to withdraw from its American beachhead? And how did it come to possess it in the first place?

As a descendant of Inupiaq Eskimos, I have been living and studying this history all my life. In a way, there are two histories of how Alaska came to be American – and two perspectives. One concerns how the Russians took “possession” of Alaska and eventually ceded it to the U.S. The other is from the perspective of my people, who have lived in Alaska for thousands of years, and for whom the anniversary of the cession brings mixed emotions, including immense loss but also optimism.

Read the piece for more details..

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