The Pacific Ring of Fire, also known as the circum-Pacific seismic belt, is a 40,000 km (24,854 mile) horseshoe shaped zone of frequent seismic and volcanic activity. Ninety percent of the world's earthquakes occur in the Ring of Fire, which encircles the basin of the Pacific Ocean. The Ring of Fire is a direct consequence of plate tectonics and the movement and collisions of crustal plates. What causes the high levels of volcanism in British Columbia and the Yukon Territory?
Back in the day
The Imperial, or Meiji, Constitution was the fundamental law of the Empire of Japan from 1889 until 1947. Enacted after the Meiji Revival, it provided for a form of constitutional monarchy based on the Prussian model. This constitution allowed the active Emperor to wield considerable political power, but this control was to be shared with an elected assembly. What did Ito Hirobumi, who was charged with drafting Japan's constitution, think of the different Western constitutions that he reviewed?
Born on a day like today
Chirac served as President of France from 1995 to 2007. He has played a critical role in the development of the EU, of which France is a leading member. He has also been an outspoken critic of the war in Iraq. At home, Chirac has faced criticism, even from some of his long-time supporters, for controversial comments that he has made and for his alleged involvement in various unlawful schemes. In 2002, he survived an assassination attempt during celebrations of what French national holiday?