Below are current event articles that relate to events, topics, and people found in Espionage Escapades.
Britain went to war on August 4 1914. In the second part of a four-day series, we document the dramatic events leading up to the declaration of war as they happened, hour-by-hour.
These days, however, Big Pit digs tourism, not coal; the party descending into the earth are American visitors. There are no working deep-mines remaining in South Wales; already in decline, the area's coalfield was annihilated in the wake of the 1984-5 Miners' Strike, the names of the closed collieries to toll like funeral bells. Mardy. Tower. Deep Navigation. Markham. Lady Windsor. How black was my valley a century ago, on the eve of the Great War, when there were a dozen collieries within sight, and another 600 coal mines across South Wales, employing 232,000 men, who hewed 57 million tons a year, a fifth of the entire output of the United Kingdom. The very earth vibrated to the metronomic percussion of thousands of subterranean men wielding the pick. Coal for the Navy. Coal for industry. Coal for locomotives. Coal for homes.
1 HORATIO KITCHENER As the first British troops marched whistling off to the front in autumn 1914 the cliche of the hour was: "It'll be all over by Christmas." An experienced campaigner on three continents, Horatio Kitchener from Ballylongford, Co Kerry, knew it would be a long haul. As Secretary of State for War he put together the largest volunteer army the world had ever seen, and put industrial production on an efficient war footing.
The National Archives currently has in its collection 1.5 million pages of handwritten diaries kept by soldiers of World War I. They're some of the most requested documents in the National Archives reading room, but until now have been accessible only to anyone who's made the trip to D.C. But now the archivisits are working to put them online, and you can help them. The project is called Operation War Diary, and it comes from a partnership between the National Archives, the citizen science initiative Zooniverse and the Imperial War Museum in the UK. The diaries have all been scanned and posted online for citizen historians to look at and transcribe. According to the project: "The war diaries contain a wealth of information of far greater interest than the army could ever have predicted. They provide unrivalled insight into daily events on the front line, and are full of fascinating detail about the decisions that were made and the activities that resulted from them."
No one nation deserves all responsibility for the outbreak of war, but Germany seems to me to deserve most. It alone had power to halt the descent to disaster at any time in July 1914 by withdrawing its "blank cheque" which offered support to Austria for its invasion of Serbia. I'm afraid I am unconvinced by the argument that Serbia was a rogue state which deserved its nemesis at Austria's hands. And I do not believe Russia wanted a European war in 1914 - its leaders knew that it would have been in a far stronger position to fight two years later, having completed its rearmament programme.
On the cobbled streets of industrial Sheffield an Indian elephant dutifully lumbered along. Her task was important - she had to cart munitions, machines and scrap metal around the city, a job previously done by three horses taken off to war. Lizzie - as she was known - was used to performing tricks as part of a travelling menagerie. But with the outbreak of World War One she was conscripted to help with heavy labour, fitted with a harness and sent to work at a scrap metal merchants.
British archaeologists recently discovered more than 40 German U-boats sunk during World War I off the coast of England. Now they are in a race against time to learn the secrets hidden in their watery graves. On the old game show "What's My Line?" Briton Mark Dunkley might have been described with the following words: "He does what many adventurers around the world can only dream of doing." Dunkley is an underwater archeologist who dives for lost treasures. His most recent discoveries were anything if not eerie.
The six CIA officers were sweating. It was almost noon on a June day in the Middle Eastern capital, already in the 90s outside and even hotter inside the black sedan where the five men and one woman sat jammed in together. Sat and waited.
Barbara Morgan's 1940 image of Martha Graham in the ballet Letter to the World may be the most famous photograph ever taken of an American dancer. It ranks, in honor, with Ansel Adams' photographs of Yosemite and Walker Evans' of small-town churches, and it bears much the same message: Americans' belief in the flinty, frank truth of their vision of life, as opposed, say, to European decorativeness and indirection.
WA's national treasure Claude Choules, Australia's oldest man and the world's last surviving World War I veteran, has died in Perth aged 110. Mr Choules was a man who made the best of life and devoted himself to his family and country. His fighting spirit helped him survive two world wars, and also live long enough to become the oldest man in WA and the last World War I veteran living in Australia.
So you want to open sealed envelopes without getting caught? Here's the secret, according to one of the six oldest classified documents in possession of the Central Intelligence Agency: "Mix 5 drams copper acetol arsenate. 3 ounces acetone and add 1 pint amyl alcohol (fusil-oil). Heat in water bath - steam rising will dissolve the sealing material of its mucilage, wax or oil." But there's a warning for the intrepid spy: "Do not inhale fumes."
Frank Woodruff Buckles, a onetime Missouri farm boy who was the last known living American veteran of World War I, has died. He was 110. Buckles, who later spent more than three years in a Japanese POW camp as a civilian in the Philippines during World War II, died Sunday of natural causes at his home in Charles Town, W.Va., family spokesman David DeJonge said.
Bayonet: In the early 17th century, sportsmen in France and Spain adopted the practice of attaching knives to their muskets when hunting dangerous game, such as wild boar. The hunters particularly favored knives that were made in Bayonnet a small French town near the Spanish border long renowned for its quality cutlery.
Dame Margot Fonteyn is still remembered as one of the greatest ballerinas of the 20th century, revered worldwide for her duets with Rudolf Nureyev and still seen as a national treasure in her native Britain. Her role in a plot to overthrow the pro-U.S. government of Panama in 1959 was all but forgotten until recently, when Britain's National Archives released formerly classified British diplomatic cables on the matter.