Empire Without End?

c4wJ0mFThe clear purpose of this article is to serve the audience whose intentions are to enrich their knowledge on Empires in World History. The article portrays an ironic ambition, hence the title, to prove the rule of empires– they always fall in the end. Though the author, Charles S. Maier, doesn’t draw a direct connection between Polybius and Thomas Jefferson, she shows the similarity in their political outlooks. For instance, Polybius is referred to as the Greek living in Rome who made himself to be a preeminent political interpreter. Comparably, Thomas Jefferson envisioned an empire of liberty securing the Mississippi and Missouri regions. The idea of imperial power facing a short-life can also be joined by the quote in the reading, “That all existing things are subject to decay and change is a truth that scarcely needs proof; for the course of nature is sufficient to force this conviction on us.” Maier supports the belief of ‘all existing things are subject to decay’ by following empires chronologically from their rise to their fall. The most familiar empires to us would be the Aztecs, Incans, and the Mayans, which at the time were considered powerful empires amongst the western hemisphere. Yet again, another imperial powers facing their expected outcome.

Maier, Charles S. “Empire without End.” Foreign Affairs, vol. 89, no. 4, 2010, pp. 153-159, Social Science Premium Collection, https://login.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/login?url=https://search-proquest-com.ez-proxy.brooklyn.cuny.edu/docview/577070717?accountid=7286.

-Amir, Team Juno.

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Everyone ‘Knows’?

Marshall, coworker, 45, and Atlas Steakhouse (BEST IN BROOKLYN, COME VISIT)

Do you know who the Alexander the Great was? Alexander the Great I believe was a Greek leader… I don’t know exactly what period of time he was from maybe like 1100-1200, don’t know if I’m right about that but I think he was a Greek leader.

What do you know about him? I don’t know that much about him as you can tell because I’m not really sure about my dates but I know he was like a crusader … he was somebody that made a difference in his time period. I know he is a leader of some substantial … I know he has definitely made his mark on the world at some point, but I believe he was a Greek leader, I want to say from like between 1000-1200… I think – I could be wrong – I’m probably totally wrong.

Where did you learn about him? It’s more through hearing other people talking about him … I don’t think I was ever given lesson on him.

Julia, a friend, 18, Caesars Bay parking lot

Do you know who the Alexander the Great was? Uhm I know who … I have a general idea of who he is.

What do you know about him? I know that he was … uhm … a king? Maybe in Greece, he conquered Persia…Egypt, and Mesopotamia which is why he was so great, he is referred to Alexander the Great for a reason – he was able to conquer a lot of land.

Where did you learn about him? I learned about him in AP World History.

Nadeen, a friend, 18, Rocca Café

Do you know who the Alexander the Great was? Yes I do know of him …a bit

What do you know about him? I know that he is an ancient Greek King

Where did you learn about him? I learned about him in 7th grade

All of the answers that I received are fairly similar; they all mention Alexander The Great being a conqueror. Although some information that Mr. Marshall provided me with was incorrect, such as the dates, he does have a general idea of Alexander and his legacy as a leader. However, he is absolutely correct on Alexander The Great leaving a mark in the world, even after his death. Alexander introduced the Persian idea of Absolute Monarchy to the Greco-Roman world and also influenced culture and language. To solidify his mark on the world, he built number of cities named “Alexandria”. One specifically instructed by the Gods, that the city was only for Alexander where other Kings would gift and admire him as the one who has become a god. “Not one of the Greek kings has entered Egypt except Alexander; and he did this not for making war but in order to ask an oracle of the gods as to where he should build a city to immortalize his name.” [144].

Julia and Nadeen had a clear understanding of Alexander The Great, a king and a god. In the reading Sarapis says, “and when you die, you shall be revered as having become a god” [93] clarifying his god-like status amongst the people. We can also assume his relationship with the gods when he is given birth by Olympias. For example, “And when the boy fell to earth, there was an earthquake and thundering; and frequent lightning flashes appeared on the earth, while nearly the whole world trembled.” [27]. King Philip refers to him “seed from the gods” and takes on the responsibility to being the father of Alexander.

-Amirjon, Team Juno

Ideal Is Not Real

What do you value the most in life? Some say money, family, love, luck, but students from Al Noor school may want something different, perhaps idealistic. Susan Sachs, author of The 2 Worlds of Muslim American Teenagers, states, “Their ideal society would follow Islamic law and make no separation between religion and state.” In other words, the ideal life the author is portraying has no boundary between religion law and state law. Contemporary society is so diverse that incorporating religion into our law would be spurious because the United States is a melting pot of different people with different traditions. The society where racism is still a big factor is no help to keep peace with other regions of the world. I have similar views and experiences as these students where they confronted racism through out their days. Being a Muslim teenager in the United States is pretty easy, only if you accept the fact that people will ALWAYS have something negative to say against the religion you follow.

Based on the reading, I can conclude that Plato would not tolerate such hate living inside our communities. The hate that lives upon the people are created by the people themselves, the racism we face today is enforced by the people and nobody else. For example, “So, since gods are good, they are not—as the masses claim—the cause of everything. Instead, they are a cause of only a few things that hap- pen to human beings, while of most they are not the cause. For good things are fewer than bad ones in our lives. Of the good things, they alone are the cause, but we must find some other cause for the bad ones, not the gods.” In other words, humanity is the cause of such dark emotions not the gods; separation of people based on their culture and tradition is just an effect of these long-lasting negative emotions. I don’t think that all persons consist of these negative emotions, but majority of the society fear Islamic communities. Pointing fingers at the Islamic nations for every catastrophic events the United States faced cannot help ease the ongoing conflict with the society—government and Muslims.

Sachs, Susan. “The 2 Worlds of Muslim American Teenagers.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 6 Oct. 2001
http://www.nytimes.com/2001/10/07/nyregion/a-nation-challenged-muslims-the-2-worlds-of-muslim-american-teenagers.html?mcubz=3

-Amirjon, Team Juno

 

Barbarism Today

According to our everyday life, we can conclude that living in the United States is relatively safe and peaceful. I always questioned and still do, why educate students on ancient history and conflicts encountered throughout that era? I believe it is of our best interest to educate the students with the battles we are fighting in the current world, internally and externally.

In article one, we are given an insight on being a sex slave victim of ISIS. ISIS, a violent militant group conquering chunks of Iraq and Syria terrorizing civilians, has been a major issue in our society for years! Farida Khalaf, only 19, has fallen into the hands of Islamic Terrorists when her village, Kocho was taken over. Separated from her family and a long way from home, she is now on her own. ISIS uses the women they capture as sex slaves or even trade, but the men are usually shot and killed. The writer of the article refers to this trade as the “barbaric trade,” to grab the attention of readers to such outrageous and sickening topic. As she shares her experience being imprisoned, I realized that this is a cry for help, for the slave trade that many people still do not acknowledge. In Herodotus, Cyrus has second thoughts of killing Croesus, until a divine warning stretched into his mind from the lips of Solon, “No one while he lives is happy.” It similarly relates to the victims of ISIS or soon to be victims because they won’t find peace or happiness until a community as strong as ours does something to prevent it.

“In a radio interview with LBC, the commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Cressida Dick, called the attacks barbaric,” referring to the acid attack. According to article two, these attacks have caused severe damages to the victims; in fact, it is an ongoing issue in the city of London. There were many incidents, particularly, the two Muslim women in London that were badly burnt by a white man who attacked them with acid, splashing it on their faces. This specific attack interests me to a certain extent. I believe this attack was hate-motivated. With all the terrorism taking place in our world today, especially when Muslims are to blame, it points at the xenophobia that is still alive in many people.

Citations:

(1) “My Hell as an ISIS Sex Slave Iraq Girl Relives Evils of Fiends’ Barbaric Trade.” New York Post , 17 July 2017.

(2) Rod Nordland. “Men on Scooter in London Throw Acid in the Faces of 5 People .” The New York Times , 15 July 2017.

-Amirjon, Team Juno

Blinded: figuratively and literally

In this specific scene from Spider-Man 2, it’s clear that Harry Osborn, the son of Norman Osborn, has an unhealthy relationship with Spider-man, soon to be revealed as Harry’s best friend, Peter. Harry, unable to understand the truth, is strongly convinced that Spider-man murdered his father. Although Norman Osborn was portrayed as a gifted, inspirational, and successful man to society, in secrecy he was the city’s villain–the Green Goblin trying to destroy Spider-man. In trying to do so, the Green Goblin’s advanced technological glider mistakenly kills himself. No other to blame but the city’s hero, Harry begins to grow hatred strong enough to blind his judgments. Unaware of his surroundings, Harry willingly makes a deal with the city’s new villain, tritium for Spider-man’s capture.

Similar turn of events arise in Oedipus the King, where the country’s savior, Oedipus, becomes a slave to his emotions eventually leading him to his downfall–the loss of his family, sovereignty, and eyesight. As the play progresses, we can picture the city of Thebes being darkened by sickness. The only way to free the people of such ill is to banish or expiate the murderer of King Laius. Oedipus, desperate for answers, interrogates Teiresias to find himself a victim of accusations. Teiresias states, “I say with those you love best you live in foulest shame unconsciously and do not see where you are in calamity”(422-424). His argument with Teiresias ignited spite and fury resulting in Oedipus’s constant blame on Creon and Teiresias; simultaneously, his actions portray the dangers of too much passion. For example, instead of analyzing his position very carefully, Oedipus –figuratively blind– ignored the truth and ultimately became a catalyst to his demise.

This perfectly reflects North Korea’s perpetual hatred of the United States. During the Korean War, North Korea suffered twice as much compared to South Korea because of constant attacks enforced by U.S. troops. Since then, our interference sparked North Korean propaganda against the United States. Propaganda eventually progressed into threats of nuclear attacks that still persist today. These set of emotions enforced by the North Koreans endanger millions of lives, including their own. Blinded by aversion, led by ignorant leaders, and brainwashed by demagogues, North Koreans have looked away from the truth to whatever fits their agenda.

  • Amirjon, Team Juno