The Problem of Evil
The Problem of Evil is a philosophy of religion that states that the existence of evil in the world is a strong argument against the existence of God. This philosophy is the greatest obstacle to the belief in the existence of God. Looking at the extent and depth of suffering in the world, whether due to inhumanity of man to fellow men or to natural disasters, some people find it hard to believe in the existence of God. However, how can one be sure that God does not exist?
The Problem of Evil mainly seeks to question how to reconcile the existence of evil with that of a deity who is, in either absolute or relative terms described as omniscient, omnibenevolent and omnipotent. An argument from evil tries to point out that the co-existence of evil and such a deity is unlikely or impossible if put in absolute terms.
There are quite a number of responses that different people have been given to the Problem of Evil. These include the explanation that the act of creation by God as expressed in the Pentateuch and act of judgment by God are similar acts. The condemnation of evil by God is believed to be executed and expressed in his created world. It is a judgment that can never be topped due to God’s all powerful, elf-originated will, a constant and eternal judgment that shall be announced and communicated to people on Judgment Day. Based on this explanation, God is viewed as good since his judgment of evil is a good one.
The problem of evil can be simply stated as, If God is so good, why is his world so bad? If an all-good, all-wise, all-loving, all-just and all-powerful God is in control, why does he seem to be doing such a miserable job of not protecting all equally? Why is it that bad things happen to good people who fear him? These are some of the questions that have made many people to abandon their faith. According to studies, the Problem of Evil is the main reason why a number of people abandon their faith to even become atheists.
The Problem of Evil is certainly the greatest test of faith, the greatest temptation to unbelief. Besides, it is not just an intellectual objection. It is something that believers can feel, they live it. That is the reason why most people who have read the Book of Job in the Holy Bible have found it to be more arresting.
According to atheists, God cannot have morally sufficient reasons to permit the evil in the world. But this assumption is not necessarily true. Provided that it is possible that God has morally sufficient reasons for permitting evil, it then follows that God and Evil are logically consistent. Even though this may also not seem to be logically possible, at least it can be reported that it has been widely agreed among contemporary philosophers that the logical problem of evil has been dissolved. It is logically possible for God and evil to co-exist.
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The Principal-agent problem is a specific game-theoretic description of a situation whereby there is a player called the principal and, one or more other players known as agents. The two parties in this situation have utility functions that are in a way different from one another. Principal-agent problem can be said to arise when one party (agent) agrees to work in the favor of another party (principal) in return for some incentives. Such an agreement may be very costly for the agent, thus, leading to the problems of conflicts of interest and moral hazards. Based on the costs incurred, the agent might start to pursue his own agenda, ignoring the best interest of the principal, hence causing the principal-agent problem.
The costs incurred by the agent and the subsequent conflict of interest come about due to the skewed information symmetry and the risk of failure faced by the principal. For instance, shareholders of a company conduct the appointment of managers to look after the proceedings of the company and earn profits on their behalf. The shareholders expect the managers to undertake the distribution of profit to shareholders. However, the managers realizing their own growth and salary expectation try to retain the profits for the future in order to be on the safe side. Such a practice can lead to principal-agent problem.
Today, the principal-agent problem is s common occurrence in most large corporations. The main area where the problem originates is that, the incentives to the agent are not necessarily going to lead to the behavior which best interests the principal. What is in the best interests of the management is not necessarily similar to what is in the best interests of the shareholders. In the case of large corporations, the shareholders are the principals while the management is the agents.
The problem comes up where the two parties (principal and agent) have different interests and asymmetric information (the agent is highly informed than the principal), such that the principal is not able to directly ensure that the agent is always acting in its (principal’s) best interest. Especially when activities that are of value to the principal are costly to the agent, and where elements of what the agent does are expensive to the principal. Concerns of the principal in such a case are based on the possibility of being exploited by the agent that he chooses not to get into any transaction at all, when the deal would have actually been in the interest of both parties.
There are various avenues that can be pursued in aligning the interests of the agent with those of the principal. In an employment scenario, employers (principal) may use mechanisms like profit sharing, piece rates/ commissions, efficiency wages, the threat of terminating the employment of affected employees, performance measurement among others. Cash bonuses for meeting certain targets are yet other avenues that can be pursued towards combating the principal-agent problem.
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The Original Position is a hypothetical situation that was developed by John Rawls, an American philosopher as a thought experiment applied in replacement of the imagery of a savage state of nature of prior political philosophers like Thomas Hobbes. In this situation, the parties select principles that will determine the basic structure of the society they will live in. This choice is made from behind a curtain of ignorance, which would deprive participants of information about their particular characteristics; a person’s ethnicity, social status, gender and, most important, Conception of the Good (an individual’s idea of how to lead a good life) This places the participants under the limitation to select principles impartially and rationally.
Basically, the idea of the original position goes to back to political philosophers who posited an original state of nature, where humans came together and made a social contract for their benefit. Instead of supposing this to be a historical situation, Rawls makes it a thought experiment. He asks us to suppose that each one of us had no idea who we are, where we are from, our placement in society, what class we belong to, how much money we have, what race or culture we come from, what religion we believe in, what code of ethics we follow, ho we want to live our life among other things. He asks us to pretend that we had none of that.
With regards to a source experiment, the original position is a hypothetical position that is designed to accurately reflect the kind of principles of justice that would be manifested in a society premised on free and fair cooperation between citizens, including respect for liberty, and an interest in reciprocity.
In the state of nature, it can be argued that the strong and talented type of persons would be able to push the weak and disabled by virtue of the fact that the stronger and more talented would cope better in the state of nature. This form of coercion is sometimes thought to validate any contractual arrangement that occurs in the state of nature. In this hypothetical position, however, representatives of citizens are placed in vacuum, whereby they are deprived of information about the individuating traits of the citizens that they represent.
Now if supposedly, a bunch of people who are exactly the same as in the respect illustrated above were coming together to figure out the principles to base society on, would there be anything substantial to be expected? This is what the original position is all about, a position of ‘’blind justice’’, where there is no bias towards one’s station in life. According to most people, blind justice is the best form of justice. Thus, the principles that the individuals in this position would agree upon are the principles of justice. However, it should be noted that even in such a society, there are people who will have to reject the idea of original position, or the principles that would be agreed to.
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A moral hazard is a concept that says that people will take risks if they have incentives that allow them to do so. The idea is that people might ignore the moral implications of the choices that they make. Instead, they pursue the avenues that they think are of the greatest benefits to them. Moral hazard is a concept that is applied in the insurance industry. In essence, it is applied in insurance to suggest that when an individual or group, or even state is insured, it may take greater risks than if they are not insured.
A number of people understand well, the trade-off that exists between risk and reward in that, when one takes risks, there may be consequences. However, he or she may also be rewarded. For many, it is morality that keeps them away from taking risks. They know that they can get away with taking risks; however, they do not feel that it is the right thing to do. For instance, you might get unlimited car insurance on your rental car. This creates a moral hazard. In case you are driving through the mountains, you may not worry about banging it up on rough roads or scratching it up in thick brush. You can be reckless in driving since any damage is another person’s problems and not yours. Moral hazard states that the more you feel protected against risks, the more temptations you have.
Moral hazard is also important for lenders since you might borrow money to buy something like a home and fail to repay, your credit will have to suffer. This means that you will not find it easier to borrow in future, and you may also have to pay higher interest rates. Besides, you may even have problems in getting a job or insurance cover when you are in need.
According to most economists, moral hazard is a special case of information asymmetry whereby on party in a transaction has got more information than the other. Particularly, moral hazard may occur if a party that is shielded from risk has more information about its actions and intentions than the party paying for the negative results of the risk. Moral hazard occurs when the party that has got more information concerning its actions or intentions has a habit or incentive of behaving inappropriately from the perspective of the party with little information.
Apart from just in the insurance industry, the term moral hazard can also be used in other situations. One of such situations is that state provision of free healthcare may encourage poor individual healthcare, like following poor diet, excessive alcohol consumption or smoking. Another situation is that, students who pay for private education may believe that this offers an insurance against failing exams, and end up not working hard as students who are in enrolled in state education. The early usage of moral hazard bore negative connotations that implied fraud or immoral behavior mainly on the part of the insured.
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Information asymmetry is a situation whereby one party in a transaction has got more or superior information compared to another. Such situations often exist in transactions where the seller is more knowledgeable than the buyer, although the reverse can also happen as well. Information asymmetry situation could be very harmful owing to the fact that one party can take advantage of another’s ignorance to undertake certain undesirable practices or measures.
The advancement in technology has today been helpful in lowering information asymmetry. In fact, it has been on the decline since a significant number of people are being able to easily gain access to all types of information. However, there are two main problems that are likely to result from information asymmetry that you should take note of. These problems are adverse selection and moral hazard. Adverse selection is an immoral behavior that takes advantage of asymmetric information before a transaction. Moral hazard on the other hand, refers to an immoral behavior that takes advantage of asymmetric information after a transaction.
Moral hazard and adverse selection are the two models of information asymmetry. In adverse selection, the ignorant party lacks information while negotiating an agreed understanding of or contact to the transaction. However, in moral hazard, the ignorant party lacks information about performance of the transaction agreed upon or lacks the ability for retaliation in case the agreement is breached. An example of adverse selection is when people who are at high risk of certain conditions are more likely to purchase insurance, since the insurance company is unable to effectively discriminate against them, usually as a result of lack of information about the particular risk of the individual and also sometimes by law or other constraints.
An example of moral hazard is when people have higher chances of behaving recklessly after becoming insured, either because the insurance company cannot observe their behaviors or unable to effectively retaliate against it, for instance through failing to renew the insurance.
In George Akerlof’s classic paper on adverse selection titled, ‘The Market of Lemons’ (1970), he discussed two primary solutions to the problem of information asymmetry. These solutions are signaling and screening. Signaling was an idea primarily proposed by Michael Spence. He proposed that in a situation of information asymmetry, it is possible for people to signal their type, thus, believably transferring information to the other party and resolving the bias in information.
Screening was pioneered by Joseph E. Stiglitz. According to him, the less informed party can induce the other party to reveal the information. They can offer a variety of choices in such a way that the choice depends on the private information on the other party. Some of the situations where the seller usually has sufficient information than the buyer include mortgage brokers, used car salespeople, stock brokers, and real estate agents among others. Buyers on the other hand, can also have adequate information than sellers in situations like estate sales, life insurance, sale or old art pieces without prior assessment of their value by a professional.
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Greek Debt Crisis
The Greek debt crisis started way back in 2009 and is still on course to date. During this period, quite a number of changes have taken place in Greece. Just to mention a few of the changes, the income of the Greeks has been significantly reduced, the political situation has also taken a different twist, rate of unemployed has increased, the country is marred by frequent protests and riots.
The Greek debt crisis is part of the ongoing Euro zone crisis that was triggered by the arrival of the Global economic recession in October 2008. It is believed to have been directly caused by a combination of structural weaknesses of the economy of Greece along with a decade pre-existence structural deficits and debt-to-GDP levels on public funds that are overly high. In late 2009, investors began developing fears of a sovereign debt crisis concerning the ability of Greece to meet its debt obligations, as a result of a reported strong increase in the levels of government debts. This further led to a crisis of confidence whose indications were the widening of bond yield spreads and the cost of risk insurance on credit default changes compared to the other nations in the Euro zone.
The Greek debt crisis highlights the dilemma that other countries that are heavily indebted also face. Even as the leaders of the European Union are struggling to come to an agreement on a resolution, Greece has triggered the debt crisis in the entire Euro zone, threatening even the viability of the European Union.
The Greek debt crisis came to the attention of the world in 2009 when Greece admitted that its budget deficit would be 12.9% of the country’s GDP. This is more than four times the European Union’s 3% limit. In efforts to pass across a warning of the looming crisis to investors, Fitch, Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s resorted to lowering the credit ratings of Greece. However, this only drove up the cost of future loans, making it more unlikely that Greece could find the funds to pay back its debts.
In 2010, Greece announced an austerity package, which was designed to reassure the agencies that it was fiscally responsible by cutting down the deficit to 3% f GDP b y 2012. However, this hit a deadlock since the country gave out a warning just four months later that it would default. In return for austerity measures, the IMF and EU have already provided a total of 240 billion Euros in emergency funding. Contrary to the expectations of many, these measures only further slowed down the economy of Greece, reducing the tax revenues required to repay the debts.
The funding that Greece received only gave the country sufficient money to pay interest on its debt and keep banks capitalized and barely running. As a result, unemployment rates went up to 25%, the political system was in upheaval since votes now turned to anyone who promised to pave a way out with riots and protests taking center stage.
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Adverse selection is a term that is mostly applied in the insurance industry to refer to a phenomenon wherein the insurer is confronted with the probability of loss due to risk that was not factored in at the time of sale. This happens in the event of an asymmetrical movement of information between the insured and the insurer. Adverse selection occurs when the insured deliberately decides to hide certain pertinent information from the insurer. The information may be very critical in nature as they help in ascertaining the risk profile of the insured party and also assist in determining the correct premiums.
Non-disclosure of the information which affects the life of the insured can lead to confusion during the calculation of premiums, thus loss to the insurance company since the insurer will not find it easy to conduct a prudent asset liability management owing to payment of more claims than the premiums received. Thus, insurers try to encourage people who are healthier to buy coverage unlike those with pre-existing conditions.
In order to counter the impacts of adverse selection, insurance companies today tend to ask a variety of questions and may even request medical and other reports on people who apply to purchase insurance so that the price that is quoted can be accordingly varied, and highly unpredictable risks eliminated. This process of selection of risks is known as underwriting. In many countries, insurance laws incorporate the doctrine of Utmost good faith which requires that if the person who is seeking insurance cover fails to answer the underwriting questions honestly, the insurer may refuse to pay claims later on.
There are quite a number of reasons why adverse selection might be muted in practice. One of them is that the underwriting of insurers is largely effective. Another possible reason is the negative correlation between risk aversions like the willingness to buy insurance. It can be simply put that, if risk aversion is higher among lower risk customers, to an extent that people who are less likely to take part in risk-increasing behavior are more likely to engage in risk-decreasing behavior, adverse selection can be reduced or even reversed.
An ideal example can be like, there is evidence that smokers are often more willing to undertake risky jobs compared to non-smokers. This greater willingness to accept risk might lower the chances of insurance purchase by smokers. From the viewpoint of a public policy, certain adverse selection can also be advantageous because it may lead to a higher fraction of total losses for the entire population that is being covered by insurance than if adverse selection never existed.
Even though adverse selection theoretically seems to be an obvious and inevitable consequence of economic incentives, the empirical evidence is mixed. A number of studies investigating the correlations that exist between risk and insurance purchase have not been able to show predicted positive correlation for life insurance, health insurance and auto insurance.
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Safavid Empire was the most significant ruling dynasties of Persia-modern Iran- and is considered the start of modern Persian history. They ruled the greatest Persian empires after Muslim conquest of Persia. The Islamic Empire had the strength and ability to challenge Ottomans in the West and Mughals in the East.
- The empire lasted from 1501 through to 1722
- It covered Iran, parts of Georgia and Turkey
- The Empire was a theocracy
- State of religion in the Safavid Empire was Shi’a Islam
- Other forms of Islam and religions were suppressed
- The economic strength of the Empire came from its strategic location which was on trade routes
- Iran was made the center of architecture, philosophy, poetry and art as a result of the Empire
- Isfahan, the capital is the most beautiful city in the world
- The key figures in the empire were Isma’il I and Abbas I
- The decline of the empire was as a result of corruption and complacency.
Origin of the Empire
The founders of the empire were the Safavids, a Sufi order that dates back to Safi al Din (1252-1334. Safi al-Din converted to Shi’ism and became a Persian nationalist. Safavid brotherhood was initially a religious group and over the centuries that followed, it became stronger attracting political marriages and local warlords. In the 15th century, it became a military group as well as a religious one.
Many people were attracted by the allegiance the brotherhood had to Ali and the ‘Hidden Imam’. Also, during the 15th century, the brotherhood became military aggressive thus waging a Jihad (Islamic holy war) against parts of what is currently known as Georgia and Turkey. The Empire dates back to the rule of Shah Islmail (who ruled from 1501 to 1524). In 1501, the Shahs declared independence when Ottomans outlawed Shi’a Islam within their territory.
Safavid Empire was strengthened through the important Shi’a soldiers from Ottoman army fleeing persecution. When Safavids came into power, Shah Ismail was proclaimed the ruler. By 1510, the Empire had already conquered the entire region of Iran.
The most important decisions made by the Safavid Empire when it came into power was declaring the state religion as Shi’ism. At that time, the religion was completely new to the Iranian culture but the Safavids launched a vigorous campaign that was aimed at converting what was predominantly a population of Sunni by persuasion and at times, they even used force. The Sunni Ulama which was a religious council of wise men was forced to flee and those who stayed were killed.
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Safavid Empire was based in Persia (now known as Iran) and it ruled over a large portion of Southwestern Asia from 1501 through to 1736. Members of the Empire were of Kurdish Persian descent and part of the unique Sufi-infused order known as Safaviyya.
At the height of the Empire, the dynasty controlled not only Iran, Azerbaijan and Armenia but it also had control over most of Iraq, Caucasus, Georgia and Afghanistan. In addition to this, it also had control over parts of Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkey and Turkmenistan.
- January 1, 1501-Safavid Empire is founded by Ismail I and he declares himself the Shah of Azerbaijan.
- 1507-The island of Hormuz is taken over by the Portuguese
- 1508-Baghdad is conquered by Ismail
- November 12, 1508-The Al-Kazimiyyah Shrine which was built in 799 original is reconstructed
- 1510-Shah Ismail had conquered the all of Iran by this time
- 1514-Ottomans attack causing breakout of a war in what came to be known as the Battle of Chaldiran west of Tabriz
- 1555-Safavid and Ottomans declare peace
- 1587 to1629-Shah Abbas begins his reign at the age of sixteen.
- November 12, 1611-Under the rule of Abbas I, the Shaj Mosque is built and during his rule, he built several mosques.
- 1598-The capital is moved from Tabriz to Isfahan. Mashhad and Heart are also recaptured the same year.
- 1609 to 1610-The war between the Kurdish tribes and the Ottoman’s begins
- 1638-Truce is made between Safavid and the Ottomans
- 1666-This makes the start of the Safavid empire decline
- November 12, 1694-The downfall of Safavid Empire is witnessed under the rule of Husayn
- 1722-Safavid is invaded and taken over by the Afghans. The Hotaki Dynasty invades Safavid and the Empire is beaten though later, it regains control.
- 1723- This marks the collapse of the empire.
- November 12, 1736-By the turn of the 17th century, Safavid was facing a large number of enemies and in 1736, the empire was disestablished.
Despite the demise of the Safavid Empire in 1736, the legacy the Empire left behind was revival of Persia as the economic stronghold between the West and East. In addition to this, they also left behind the establishment of bureaucracy and efficient state based upon ‘balances and checks’, their patronage of fine arts and architectural innovations. Safavid also left its mark on the present era by spreading Shi’a Islam in Iran and major ports such as Central Asia, Caucasus, South Asia and Anatolia.
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The Ottoman Empire was a very powerful military and political entity of the Turks established in the middle ages and which lasted into the twentieth century. It all started with a small state comprised of a handful of Turks believed to be Seljuk Turks descendants. The timeline of the empire can be broken down as follows:
Growth, rise and fall
- 1299-The empire is founded and the reign of Osman I’s begins
- 1389-Battle of Kosovo results to the capture of a big portion of Serbia
- 1396-Bulgaria conquest in the Nicopolis battle
- 1444- Varna crusade comes to an end on Ottoman victory of the Varna battle
Subsequent Growth of the Empire
- 1453-Mehmed II captures Constantinople. During battle, Constantine (Christian emperor) dies and Mehmed II claims the title Caesar of Rome as Roman Byzantine Empire yields to Ottoman force finally.
- 1460-Mehmed II conquers Morea
- 1461Mehmed conquers Trabzon bringing to an end the Trebizond Empire.
- 1463-Bosnia is conquered
- 1473-Uzun Hassan of Akkoynlu Turkmens is defeated by Mehmed II in the battle of Otlukbeli.
- 1475- Gedik Ahmet Pasha captures Caffa and Crimea is declared Ottoman Empire vassal state.
- 1478-Albania conquest
- 1480-Otranto, the southern part of Italy is conquered by Pasha as a strategic move for creating a base to orchestrate further conquest of Italy.
- 1481- Mehmed II dies and the Ottoman Throne goes to Bayezid II’s
- 1498-Montenegro conquest
- 1514-Safavid Persia’s Ismail I is defeated by Selim bringing East Anatolia under Turkish rule in Chaldiran Battle.
- 1566-The reign of Suleiman comes to an end
- 1590-Istanbul treaty
- 1610-Kuyucu Murat Pasha suppresses Jelali revolts with the Turkmens suffering the greatest loss
- 1612-Nasuh Pasha treaty
- 1615-Serav treaty
- 1683-At the Battle of Vienna, Ottomans are defeated
- 1686-Hungary evacuation
- 1687-Mehmed IV dies
- 1699-Karlowitz treaty
- 1718-Passarowitz treaty and beginning of Tulip Era
- 1730-The revolt of Patrona Halil brings to an end the Tulip Era resulting to dethronement of Ahmet III
- 1739-Belgrade treaty
- 1774-Kucuk Kaynarca treaty
- 1807-Kabakci rebellion results to Selim III’s dethronement
- 1821-Start of the Greek independence war
Fall of the Ottoman Empire
- 1830-Algeria surrenders to French rule gradually
- Greek sovereignty is established officially as a result of Greek War of Independence
- 1831 to 1833-Ottoman-Egyptian War
- 1853-Crimean war
- 1881-Tunisia gets converted into a French colony
- 1885-Eastern Rumelia is taken under the jurisdiction of Bulgaria
- 1913-The Ottoman Empire, save for Istanbul and a small surrounding region is erased completely from the political map of Europe.
- 1914-Ottoman Empire joins World War I and sides with Central Power. At about the same time, Britain annexes Cyprus.
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The Italian unification was as a result of sixty days of daring action, revolutionary ideas and events. The timeline of the unification is as indicated below:
- 1796-Italy is invaded by Napoleon
- 1815-At the Vienna congress, the powers that defeated Napoleon-Russia, Great Britain, Prussia and Austria draw a new geopolitical map of Europe with the objective of renegotiating spheres of balance and influence of all powers to ensure a season of peace and restoration of monarchial absolutism in order to protect themselves from revolutionary revolts.
- 1820-In some states, there are nationalist revolutions.
- 1830-More nationalist revolutions are reported
- 1831-Mazzini forms ‘Young Italy’ and meets Garibaldi who inspires him. A second revolutionary wave sentiment begins spreading from Modena to Perugia because of the liberal aristocracy support.
- 1833-Garibaldi gets sentenced to death for having played a part in the revolution in Piedmont and goes to exile.
- 1846-Pius IX becomes the pope and he is seen as a liberal
1848- Time for Revolutions
- In January, revolution breaks out in Sicily to break from Naples. On 13th March, Metternich falls from Austria power.
- March 17th to 22nd– 5 days revolutions breaks out in Milan
- March 22nd– Venetia declares its independence from Austria
- March 23rd-King Charles Albert of Piedmont declares car on Austria to assist Venetia and Lombardy.
- April 29th– Pope issues Allocution says he is not in support of the revolutions
- May-An Austrian army is defeated by king Charles Albert
- June General Radetsky arrives from Austria with reinforcements
- July 24th– Charles Albert is defeated by Austria during the Custoza battle and he abdicates.
- Sept-Troops from Naples manage to crush the Sicily revolution
French troops retreat from Papal States as Italian government renounces its wish to take over Rome as its capital. Agreement between France and Italy results to transfer o the capital city from Turin to Florence.
Austrian Prussian war gives Italy the opportunity to become partners with Prussia in a bid to liberate Venetia under Austrian rule. The third independence war breaks out and despite the defeats of Italian army in Custoza and Lissa, Prussia won the war annexing Venetia to Italy. Though Garibaldi defeats Austrians in Bezzecca in Trentino, he is forced to withdraw following orders from the King because the war had come to an end.
Garibaldi cannot do away with the idea of making Rome the capital and he makes the attempt to conquer it with a group of volunteers. The French protect the pope and stop the expedition in Mentana at the Rome gates. Garibaldi is forced to return to Caprera.
France declares war on Prussia and withdraws the last of its troops from Rome. Napoleon III gets defeated in Sedan and Italian government capitalizes on this to send military expeditions to fight Papal States.
Rome becomes the capital of Italy and parliament approves a law that declares the pope as the spiritual leader in the nation.
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The Boxer rebellion took place in the 1900’s in China. It has some interesting parallels to 21st century events. The rebellion was an uprising in non-western country against what was viewed as the corrupt influence of western ideologies and practices.
Grass root organizations at the time were fighting against what they saw as a war and they waged it against a collection of technologically foreign powers in a bid to preserve their beliefs and values. The events that lead to the Boxer rebellion timeline are as highlighted below:
- 1807-The first protestant Christian missionary from London Missionary school arrives in China.
- 1835 to 36- Missionaries are expelled by Daoguang Emperor for distributing Christian books.
- 1839 to 42- The First Opium War takes place and Britain imposes the right to equal treaty on China thereby taking over Hong Kong.
- 1842- Extraterritorial rights are provided to all foreigners in China as a result of the Nanjing treaty and foreigners are not longer subjected to Chinese laws.
- 1840s- A high number of Western Christian missionaries continue flooding China.
- 1850-64- Hong Xiuquan, a Christian convert leads the bloody Taiping Rebellion against the Qing Dynasty.
- 1856 to 60-The Second Opium War takes place Britain and France manage to defeat China and they impose some harsh Tientsin treaties
- 1894 to 95- The first Sino-Japanese War takes place and the former Japan tributary defeats China and Korea is taken over.
- November 1, 1897-Juye Incident takes place-two Germans are killed by armed men at a missionary home in Shandong province, Northern China.
- November 14, 1897- Fleets are sent to Shandong by German Kaiser Wilhelm II and he urges them not to take any prisoners like the Huns and the Attila.
- 1878-98-Drought which is followed by floods strikes Shandong causing in its wake spread of misery.
- 1898-Young men from the Righteous Fist groups in Shandong practice martial arts and traditional spiritualism.
- June 11 September-21st 1898-100 Days Reform as Emperor Guangxu attempts to modernize China quickly.
- September 21, 1898-Guangxu is on the verge of handing sovereignty over to Japan but is stopped forcing him to go to internal exile Empress Dowager Cixi takes over the rule in his name.
- June 5, 1900-Boxers cut the railroad line at Tianjin and isolates Beijing
- June 13, 1900-First Boxer appears in the Legation Quarter in Beijing
- August 15, 1900- Empress Dowager Cixi and Guangxu go back to Beijing from Xi’an and they resume control of government.
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Austro Prussian Seven Weeks War
The Austro Prussian seven weeks war, also known as the Unification war, German Civil War, Prussian German War was a 1866 war fought between the German Confederation which was under the leadership of Austrian Empire and German allies on one side and Prussia Kingdom with Italy and German allies on the other hand. The war resulted to the Prussian dominance over German states. In Italian Unification process, it is known as the Third Independence War.
The major result arising from the war was the shift of power among German states from Austrian towards Prussian hegemony and the impetus towards unification of all northern German states in what was known as Kleindeutschland that excluded Austria.
Germany was shifting from what the British thought of as a land of tinkering forests and clockmakers and becoming more middleclass and urban. It was heading on a course that would by the end of the century make it a third power in the manufacturing industry globally with a 13.2% share behind the US which had a 23.6% share and Britain with 18.5% share.
Austria has been isolated during the war with Sardinia-Piedmont and France. It had interests of reviving partnership with Prussia’s monarchy against nationalism and liberalism and wished to lure Prussia to assist in reversing the settlement at Villafranca in order to recover Lombardy-Austria’s monarch.
The German states confederation was made up of thirty nine states. Out of these thirty five were monarchies while four were free city states. The confederation was a security arrangement for mutual defense with representatives at Frankfurt parliament which was one among the Free states.
Compared to the Austrians representing Emperor Franz Joseph, Bismarck was less opposed to the question of nationalism. He favored expansion of Prussian influence with Germany’s small states and removed Austria’s influence within the German States Confederation. After the death of King Fredrick of Denmark in 1963, the question of whether to go to war came up.
Christian of Glucksburg ascended to the Danish throne giving the duchy Holstein its independence. The war came to an end successfully in 1864 for Austria and Prussia with the Vienna treaty making Prussia the administrator of Schleswig while Austria was made the administrator of Holstein.
Austria continued with its support of the Duke of Augustenburg’s claim for 2 duchies but Bismarck was interested in taking control over both duchies and both to be integrated economically with Prussia. The war lasted for seven weeks. The good organization of Prussia and its railroads enabled it to get its troops to the battle quickly and Italy sent troops against Austrian troops in Venetia and Austria’s troops stopped that advance.
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After the general election of 1948, apartheid begins. The National Party in order to get votes from White Africans promises to make laws that prohibit the rights of black people once they win the election. The National Party wins after defeating the United Party marking the start of apartheid. The apartheid system is officially launched thus restricting the freedom enjoyed by Black Africans.
African National Congress begins the defiance campaign with volunteers beginning a peaceful resistance to the system b y breaking those laws they consider wrong. The protests include black people being out in the city after curfew hours and others sitting on benches clearly marked for whites. The first legal firm for blacks in SA is opened by Tambo and Nelson Mandela.
Bantu education act, which was a law separating the education system for the whites and blacks is created. Blacks get trained to prepare to become part of the working class as they are not expected or allowed to do anything beyond this.
December 1956-Nelson Mandela, an anti-apartheid activist gets arrested along side others for fighting against apartheid. He gets charged with treason but after a 4 year trial, he is not found guilty of any crime.
Separate homelands get created for major black groups. At the time, the government also passes some new laws to create separate homelands known as Bantustans for major black groups within the country. The government carries this out in order to keep blacks from being South African citizens.
21 March, 1960
60 people are killed in Sharpeville massacre. Apartheid requires blacks to carry passbooks that contain personal information like date of birth, photos and name. Protestors show up at Sharpeville police station without passbooks and a riot ensues with the police killing sixty nine people.
5, August 1962
Mandela, the leader of Umkhonto we Sizwe, part of African National Congress gets arrested for treason. He is charged with bombing government targets and sentenced to life imprisonment.
11 November 1962
Rhodesia gains independence illegally from Great Britain. Prime Minister Ian Smith announced Rhodesia has broken from Britain and whites will be in control of the government. Great Britain as prepared to grant independence if blacks would be given some of the power in government.
SA gets expelled from UN and it is not allowed back till apartheid comes to an end.
16 June, 1976
Over 600 high school students are killed in Soweto Massacre. This is because they were protesting to get better education for the blacks. The protest is broken by police with bullets and tear gas.
12, September 1977
Steve Biiko, one of the Soweto protest organizers is arrested and dies on 12th while in police custody. The cause of death is brain injury likely from beatings by the police.
11, February 1990
Nelson Mandela is freed after twenty seven years in prison and thanks President de Klerk for assisting in setting him free though he says much needs to be done to put apartheid to an end.
10 May, 1994
The first election that allows blacks and whites alike to vote is carried out and Mandela gets elected as president making him the first black president in the South African history.
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Anglo Zulu War
Anglo Zulu war was between the Zulu Kingdom and British Empire fought in 1879. Following the successful introduction of federation in Canada by Lord Carnarvon, it was assumed that a similar political effort together with military campaigns might work for the tribal areas, Boer republics in SA and African Kingdoms. Sir Henry Bartle Frere was therefore sent to SA as the High Commissioner in 1874 for the British Empire in order to see to it that such plans were implemented.
However, things did not work out as expected as there were numerous obstacles some of which included presence of independent state of the Kingdom of Zululand, South African Republic and its army. Without consent from the British government, Frere presented an ultimatum on 11 December 1878 with intent of instigating a war with the Zulu. Zulu king, Cetshwayo did not comply with the ultimatum causing Frere to send Lord Chelmsford to invade Zululand.
Under the common of Lord Chelmsford, British forces (many of them whites/colonials or Natal Native Contingent/blacks members started carrying out the general plan which was out into place to invade Zululand. The objective was to occupy Zulu royal kraal at Ulundi by advancing on it from 3 directions. The attack plan was similar to the tactic used by the Zulu of attacking from 3 sides by means of a central chest or main force, an extended left and right horn on either side.
The first attack took place on 12th January 1879 when the Sihayo’s kraal position which was located at the Batshe Valley threatened successful advancement of British column. Under orders from Chelmsford, the attacking force moved across Batshe and attacked a rocky gorge into which Sihayo’s men had retreated while driving their cattle before them.
The Native Natal Contingent showed reluctance facing the Zulus as some were armed with rifles. In a bid to thwart the attack, stones were rolled down into the attackers and after this action, the Zulus retreated with thirty dead, four wounded and 10 captured. The British however did not have a high casualty number as there were only 2 casualties and 15 wounded.
The battle of Isandlwana and Rorke’s Drift followed thereafter. A depot at Rorke’s Drift was attacked without orders from Cetshwayo who preferred a defensive strategy. After an overwhelming victory over the British at Isandlwana, reserve forces of the Zulu who were not in the battle field the previous day attacked a hastily erected fort at the Rorke’s Drift garrison. While the Zulu kingdom was not destroyed by the war, the subsequent events divided the Sulu and undermined their social and economic cohesion.
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