The Story of the AK-47: The World’s Most Famous and Deadliest Rifle

Reading time: 7 minutes
The AK-47 is perhaps one of the most recognizable automatic rifles in the world. This simple gun, produced by Mikhail Kalashnikov, was initially intended to replace the somewhat ineffective weapons carried by Soviet forces. However, it quickly became the weapon of choice during most conflicts following the Second World War. But, how did this weapon become the most famous and deadliest rifle in the world?

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Dispatches from Red Square: reporting Russia’s revolutions then and now

Reading time: 9 minutes
“No news from Petrograd yesterday”, was the headline in the Daily Mail on March 14, 1917. The story – or non-story – which followed, was only a few dozen words: “Up to a late hour last night the Russian official report, which for many months has come to hand early, had not been received”, it ran. So why publish it? The non-appearance of the daily news bulletin from the Russian government had led the Mail’s writer, trying to prepare a report in London, to suspect something was going on.

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Putin’s brazen manipulation of language is a perfect example of Orwellian doublespeak

Reading time: 6 minutes
If you’ve been paying attention to how Russian President Vladimir Putin talks about the war in Ukraine, you may have noticed a pattern. Putin often uses words to mean exactly the opposite of what they normally do.
He labels acts of war “peacekeeping duties.”
He claims to be engaging in “denazification” of Ukraine while seeking to overthrow or even kill Ukraine’s Jewish president, who is the grandson of a Holocaust survivor.

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The Beginning of the End: Napoleon’s Retreat from Russia

Reading time: 6 minutes
On 24 June 1812, Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte led the French Grand Army across the Neman River, invading Russia. By this point, the French Emperor had won many military victories, giving him control over most of Europe. However, his invasion of Russia would prove to be a devastating point in the Napoleonic wars and a major blow to his political and military power across Europe.

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Under what conditions are international sanctions effective?

Reading time: 7 minutes
According to US government data, 32 sanctions regimes are currently in effect. Canada, for its part, currently imposes sanctions on 20 different states and on terrorist groups such as Al Qaeda. The EU is currently implementing sanctions against some 30 countries and international actors. As for the United Nations, since 1966, the Security Council has put in place 30 sanctions regimes, from apartheid South Africa to Gaddafi’s (and according to him) Libya, Saddam Hussein’s Iraq and the Islamic Republic of Iran.

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The Political History of France, 1789-1910 – Audiobook

THE POLITICAL HISTORY OF FRANCE, 1789-1910 – AUDIOBOOK By Muriel O. Davis This little book opens on the eve of the French Revolution. The government is crippled by financial mismanagement, ruled by a King who, in the author’s words, is “devoid of both ability and energy,” and resented by a tax-oppressed peasantry and a rising […]

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A Short History of the World – Audiobook

A SHORT HISTORY OF THE WORLD – AUDIOBOOK By H. G. Wells (1866 – 1946) A Short History of the World is a non-fictional historic work by English author H. G. Wells, largely inspired by Wells’s earlier 1919 work The Outline of History. The book summarises the scientific knowledge of the time regarding the history of […]

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The Great Events by Famous Historians, Volume 5 – Audiobook

By Charles F. Horne (1870 – 1942),Rossiter Johnson (1840 – 1931) A comprehensive and readable account of the world’s history, emphasizing the more important events, and presenting these as complete narratives in the master-words of the most eminent historians. This is volume 5 of 22, covering from 843-1161 AD.

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A Short History of Russia – audiobook

A SHORT HISTORY OF RUSSIA – AUDIOBOOK By Lucy Cazalet (1870 – 1956) A Short History of Russia by Lucy Cazalet is a helpful introduction to the people, places, and events that shaped Russia, the largest country in the world. While covering the bullet points of Russian history, the author expands to greater detail when talking […]

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The Russian Revolution

For most people, the term “Russian Revolution” conjures up a popular set of images: demonstrations in Petrograd’s cold February of 1917, greatcoated men in the Petrograd Soviet, Vladimir Lenin addressing the crowds in front of the Finland station, demonstrators dispersed during the July days and the storming of the Winter Palace in October. What happened in the Russian Revolution? These […]

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ROME’S AUGUSTUS AND THE ALLURE OF THE STRONGMAN

ROME’S AUGUSTUS AND THE ALLURE OF THE STRONGMAN The Roman emperor Augustus is held up by some as a statesman who brought peace, and as a potential model for the future. But what was the cost of Augustus’ peace, and how real was it? On his 2012 honeymoon to Rome, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg took […]

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Could the Charge of the Light Brigade have worked?

COULD THE CHARGE OF THE LIGHT BRIGADE HAVE WORKED? Middle East tensions. Russian soldiers in Crimea. Western nations’ warships in the Black Sea. Those descriptions sound like Russia’s 2014 takeover of Crimea. But they also applied 150 years earlier during The Crimean War between Russia and a British-French-Turkish alliance. That war is largely forgotten now, apart […]

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Sachsenhausen-Oranienburg Gate (Image)

Remembering Sachsenhausen-Oranienburg

REMEMBERING SACHSENHAUSEN-ORANIENBURG By Rachel Horne. 35 kilometres north of Berlin, you will find the Nazi concentration camp of Sachsenhausen-Oranienburg. Some particularly well-known figures were imprisoned here, including the Prime Ministers of Spain and France, and the wife and children of the crown prince of Bavaria. Joseph Stalin’s oldest son was also interred at Sachsenhausen, before […]

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Rising Sun, Complacent Bear: The Russo-Japanese War

The Russo-Japanese War resulted in one of Russia’s greatest military upsets, and one of Japan’s most significant military victories, in modern history. By Madison Moulton At odds over imperial ambitions in Asia, a recently modernized Japan declared war on Russia in 1904, sparking a year-long conflict that set the stage for the century of war […]

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A Period of Change: Global Events in the Lead Up to WWI

The history of the lead up to WWI is undoubtedly dominated by Europe. European powers understandably take centre stage, given their influence on the start of the Great War. However, the years before WWI were a period of change – not just in Europe – but all over the world. Revolutions, wars, and political upheaval […]

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How Romania’s WW1 Gamble Paid Off Spectacularly

Reading time: 6 minutes
The Great War was a major turning point for virtually all European countries, but not too many of them enjoyed a positive outcome. Although it took two years for Romania to enter the war and another two for the conflict to reach a conclusion, the result was an unlikely unification of its historical lands and the beginning of the most prosperous period in the nation’s history.

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Military Marine Mammals

It has recently emerged that the Russian Navy used specially trained marine mammals, probably seals, for harbour defence in Syria in 2018. This is part of what has been a very long lived program by the Russian Navy. Dolphins are trained in anti-diver warfare, seen here in Sevastapol harbour. The marine mammal deployment in Syria […]

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Putin’s New History of World War 2

Russia’s President has decided to revise the role of the USSR in and immediately before the second world war. While the conventional western view of the USSR’s role doesn’t give them nearly enough credit for their pivotal role in defeating Nazi Germany, Putin’s article seeks to completely absolve them of blame for anything. Read the […]

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