" Nothing can save us from a perpetual headlong fall into a bottomless abyss but a solid footing of dogma; and we no sooner agree to that than we find that the only trustworthy dogma is that there is no dogma. "
George Bernard Shaw

Back in the day


Pan Am Flight 103 Explodes

After a three-year investigation, US and UK authorities announced indictments against two Libyan officials in connection with the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland—an attack that killed 270 people. During a trial held a decade later in the Netherlands, one of the defendants was found guilty and sentenced to life imprisonment. Whose presence on board the airplane has given rise to a number of conspiracy theories about the motivations behind the bombing?



Cities of Refuge

Cities of refuge were towns in the ancient Kingdoms of Israel and Judah in which the perpetrators of manslaughter could claim the right of asylum. Outside of these cities, blood vengeance against such perpetrators was allowed by law. According to some regulations, perpetrators who had claimed asylum were to be taken from the city and put on trial; if found innocent, they were to be returned safely to the city of refuge, which they could ultimately leave without fear of harm when what happened?

Born on a day like today


Benjamin Disraeli

Disraeli, a Conservative politician and novelist, succeeded the earl of Derby as prime minister of Great Britain in 1868 but lost the office to political rival William Gladstone that same year. During his second term as prime minister, from 1874 to 1880, Disraeli's ministry enacted a number of domestic reforms. He was a staunch imperialist and, under his leadership, Britain gained a controlling interest in the Suez Canal. Why was Disraeli's first book, Vivian Grey, strongly criticized?

Last updated on Monday, 21st December 2009

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