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Monday, February 22, 2016

Historical Information

World War One in Paris was filled with many events, conflicts, and death. WWI existed for many reasons from European competition for resources, the development of conflict among various nation-states, and the expansion of the German Empire globally. Paris was in the World War One from 1914 to 1918. There was the assassination of the Austrian Archduke Franz-Ferdinand by Serbian terrorists in Sarajevo, which caused Austria-Hungary to declare war on Serbia. Russia declared war on Austria-Hungary, because Russia had a treaty with Serbia. Germany declared war against Russia since Russia had a treaty with Austria-Hungary. France and Germany were known for tensions during this time. In 1911, a German gunboat, the Leopard, had made a provocative demonstration outside the port of Agadir in French-dominated Morocco. The right-wing parties in France wanted revenge for the defeat of France in the Franco-German War of 1870-1871 (when Germany defeated France over lands or territories), which had resulted in the loss of the French province of Alsace and much of Lorraine. Many on the left also favored war, to bring down the reactionary monarchies of Germany and the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Parisians were highly patriotic. People in Paris experienced food shortages, rationing, and the epidemic of influenza. Yet, morale remained high until near end of the war. Men and women participated in the war effort. The city also saw a large influx of immigrants who came to work in the defense factories. The end of the war on November 11, 1918 saw huge celebrations on the boulevards of Paris.  France and Britain, bound by treaties with Russia, mobilized on August 1. Paris mobilized and many socialists and pacifists opposed the war. Jean Jaures (a socialist politician and a well-known opponent of the war) was assassinated at the Café Croissant on Montmartre, not far from the offices of the socialist newspaper L'Humanité, by a mentally-unstable man, Raoul Villain, who considered Jaurès an "enemy of France. Many socialists and pacifists continued to oppose the war under threat of arrest. The arrests were never carried out. Many thought that Paris will have an easy victory against Germany. There were parades and celebrations. Some refugees from Paris came into Paris.  On July 26, the same day that the refugees from Belgium began arriving in the city, General Joseph Gallieni was called from retirement and appointed military governor of Paris, a title which dated back to the fourteenth century. The city of Paris was fortified with weapons and defense systems. The French and the British fought the Germans in the First Battle of the Marne. Adjustments came into Paris in order for them to fight the war. The Parisians gradually adjusted to the life of a city at war. Avenue de l'Allemagne was renamed Avenue Jean-Jaurés, and the rue de Berlin became rue de Liège. The Grand Palais was converted to a military hospital. Concerts existed in Paris to fund efforts to fight the war and cared for wounded soldiers. Colonized people fought in the war too. By the spring of 1917, Paris workers wanted to have more compensation for their efforts. The cost of living in Paris rose twenty percent in 1915, by 35 percent in 1916, and by 120 percent between 1917 and the end of the war in November 1918, while the salaries of factory workers increased only 75 percent during the same period, while the salaries of government employees rose by only 50 percent.  So, strikes existed in Paris since workers wanted higher wages, better conditions, women workers’ rights, and an end to the importation of foreign workers.  Workers in general suffered danger from poisoning, injuries, and death. The first strike led by 2,000 women clothing workers called midinettes started in May 15, 1917. Art and culture continue to grow in Paris with artists and writers like. Amedeo Modigliani, Pablo Picasso and André Salmon. Paris was readily attacked by the Germans. Mutinies existed on both sides. Yet, when America came into World War One, things changed. The Allies forces began to win and defeat Germany plus the rest of the Central Powers. The German offensive failed and the Allied armies’ Hundred Days Offensive with 400 tanks (most of them produced in Paris) and 120,000 men pushed back the Germans. Equally enthusiastic crowds filled the Champs Élysées on 17 November to celebrate the return of Alsace and Lorraine to France. Huge crowds also welcomed President Woodrow Wilson to the Hôtel de Ville on 16 December 1918, when he arrived to take part in the peace negotiations at Versailles. World War One ended with a lot of bloodshed and the world would never be the same again.

After the end of the First World War in November 1918, there was jubilation and celebration. The population of Paris within its city limits had been 2,888,107 in 1911, before the War. It grew to 2,906.472 in 1921, its historic high. An enormous military parade was held on July 14, 1919 from Porte Maillot to Place de la Republique to celebrate the victory in the Great War. People felt relief in Paris, but soon unemployment surged, prices, soared, and rationing continued. Parisian households were limited to 300 grams of bread per day and meat only four days a week. A general strike paralyzed the city in July 1919. The old fortifications surrounding the city were useless and were torn down in the 1920’s. They were replaced by tens of thousands of low cost seven story public housing units that were filled by low income, blue collar workers. Paris struggled to regain its old prosperity and gaiety. On August 19, 1920, the French National Assembly voted to give a credit to give a credit of 500,000 francs for the construction of the first Mosque in Paris. The mosque was created to honor the sacrifice of tens of thousands of Muslim soldiers from the French colonies in Africa who had been killed in the War. The French economy boomed from 1921 until the Great Depression reached Paris in 1931. This period, called Les années folles or the "Crazy Years", saw Paris reestablished as a capital of art, music, literature and cinema. The artistic ferment and low prices attracted writers and artists from around the world, including Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali,Ernest Hemingway, James Joyce, and Josephine Baker. Josephine Baker was a great dancer in Paris. She was also a social activist. One of the most popular entertainers in Paris during the period was the American singer, Josephine Baker. Baker sailed to Paris, France, She first arrived in Paris in 1925 to perform in a show called "La Revue Nègre" at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées. During the 1920’s, fashion grew in Paris. The 1925 Exposition of Decorative arts featured the work of seventy-two Paris fashion designers; the leading figures included Paul Poiret, Jeanne Lanvin, etc. New forms of architecture developed in Paris too. Between 1919 and 1939, Paris hosted the 1924 Olympic Games, major international expositions in 1925 and 1937, and the Colonial Exposition of 1931, all of which left a mark on Paris architecture and culture. Socialists gained political power in Paris. Two-thirds of the seats of the National Assembly from Paris were won by the Bloc National, which included conservative republicans, radicals and socialists who refused any alliance with the Communists. The worldwide Great Depression hit home in 1931 in 1931 bringing hardships and a more somber mood. The population declined slightly from its all-time peak of 2.9 million in 1921 to 2.8 million in 1936. The arrondissements in the center lost as much as twenty percent of their population, while the outer neighborhoods, gained ten percent. The low birth rate of Parisians was compensated by a new wave of immigration from Russia, Poland, Germany, eastern and central Europe, Italy, Portugal and Spain. Political tensions mounted in Paris with strikes, demonstrations and confrontations between the Communists and Front populaire on the extreme left and the Action Française on the extreme right. By the end of the 1930’s in 1939, France prepared for war. On March 10, 1939, the civil population received gas masks. Signs existed that showed bomb shelter locations in case of future air raids. On July 14, 1939, the 150th anniversary of the storming of the Bastille, British soldiers marched along with the French units in the national parade on the Champs-Élysées. On August 25, the government seized copies of the communist newspapers L'Humanitéand Le Soir for praising the Hitler-Stalin pact. On August 31, the government began to evacuate children from the city. September 1, 1939 was the time when news that Germany invaded Poland. So, France began a general mobilization and a state of siege was declared. France declared war on Nazi Germany on September 3, 1939.

There is a pyramid monument at the location of an important Bavarian Illuminati Congress. The Bavarian Illuminati was created in May 1, 1776 by Adam Weishaupt. He was a rationalist and was educated in a Jesuit University. Weishaupt wanted an Utopian society where monarchs, mainstream religion, etc. was abolished, so humanity can live in turned with Nature and form a state filled with their order. The Bavarian Illuminati worked in secret, infiltrated governments in Europe, and many members were Freemasons like Adam Weishaupt himself. The Bavarian government suppressed them later on before 1800. Back during the summer of 1782, the Landgrave of Hesse William IX invited Europe’s leading Freemasons in a conference. This conference was the famous Masonic Congress in the summer of 1782 (from July 16 to August 29, 1782). The masons in the conference deliberated on the fate of the rite of Strict Observance. Adam Weishaupt’s Bavarian Illuminati wanted to recruit key Masonic people like Landgrave himself. William built the pyramid on an artificial island two years later in 1784 to commemorate the death of his 11 year old son Friedrich. Friedrich died prematurely. Franz Ludwig von Canerin designed the pyramid. William IX wasn’t a Freemason, but his brother Prince Karl, Landgrave of Hessen-Kassel (1744-1836), was. Karl was the chief organizer of the conference, and second in command to Grand Master (Magnus Superior Ordinis; ‘Eques a Victoria’) Ferdinand, Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg-Wolfenbüttel (1721-92) – Illuminatus, February 1783. The Landgrave later became Prince-Elector of Hesse. The Prince-Elector of Hesse later worked with the House of Rothschild.

The automobile industry developed greatly in Detroit. The work of Henry Ford is key to understanding Detroit history. Henry Ford was invoked in the establishment of the automobile Highland Park Ford Plant in 1910. His actions revolutionized automobile manufacturing. It grew the concept of the assembly line and mass production. This relates to workers building specialized parts, cars, other vehicles, etc. can be formed more efficiently and quicker. His manufacturing innovations were used by rival automobile manufactures. Most of these manufactures and their parts supplies back then were headquartered in the Detroit metropolitan area. Detroit has always been known as the world’s car capital. Today, the 1904 Ford Piquette Avenue Plant is a National Historical Landmark. The Piquette Avenue Industrial Historic District and the New Amsterdam Historic is filled with references to early car history. Automobile assembly and associated manufacturing soon dominated Detroit, and the newly minted automotive magnates built commercial and office buildings such as General Motors Building (1919), the General (1928), and the Fisher Building (1928). Many of the best workers in the city worked in Ford plants. He dealt with wage policy. He began with a $5 a day minimum wage in 1910, about double the going rate at rival firms. It succeeded in stopping the massive turnover rate, raised productivity; lowered overall labor costs and helped to propel the Model T to industry dominance. During the 1920’s, Ford had a problem. By that time, his formula of cheap cars with little option fell behind General Motors. GM promoted upscale quality and variety. GM also provided financing for car buyers. The growth of the automobile industry caused labor to make more demands. More immigrants from Europe worked in such fashions. Also, the population grew massively during this time period. Between 1900 and 1930, Detroit's population soared from 265,000 to over 1.5 million, pushing the boundaries of the city outward. The population boom led to the construction of apartment buildings across the city, aimed at the middle-class auto workers. These include the Somerset (1922), the Garden Court Apartments (1915), and the Manchester Apartments (1915). With more population growth, transportation services changed. The Chestnut Street-Grand Trunk Railroad Bridge was created in 1929. It had a grade separation and unsnarled train and automobile traffic.  The Fort Street-Pleasant Street and Norfolk & Western Railroad Viaduct (1928) was a product of the same program, routing trucking traffic over the train traffic. And the West Jefferson Avenue-Rouge River Bridge (1922) allowed the Rouge River to be expanded for barge traffic. Henry Ford had controversies that dealt with accusations of anti-Semitism, patronize, and he had battles with labor unions constantly.

The 21st century in Detroit began with many expansions of new buildings and the continued class struggle. Economic inequality and poverty were still a problem in Detroit and throughout the Earth.  New downtown stadiums were constructed for the Detroit Tigers and the Detroit Lions in 2000 and 2002 respectively.  In 2007, Detroit completed the first major portions of the River Walk, including miles of parks and fountains. The Renaissance Center received a major renovation in 2004. New developments and revitalizations are mainstays in the city's plan to enhance its economy through tourism. Along the river, upscale condominiums rose up, such as Watermark Detroit. Some city limit signs, particularly on the Dearborn border say "Welcome to Detroit, The Renaissance City Founded 1701." In 2004, Compuware made Detroit in downtown its world headquarters like Quicken Loans in 2010. The city has hosted major sporting events - the 2005 MLB All-Star Game, 2006 Super Bowl XL,2006 World Series, WrestleMania 23 in 2007 and the NCAA Final Four in April 2009 - all of which represented the growth of worldly culture. In 2008, the city witnessed grand restorations of the historic Book Cadillac Hotel and the Fort Shelby Hotel. The city’s International Riverfront was developed more.  Significant landmarks such as the Fox Theatre, Orchestra Hall Detroit Opera House, and the Gem Theater have been restored and host concerts, musicals, and plays. The Detroit Institute of Arts completed a major renovation and expansion in 2007. Many downtown centers such as Greektown, Cobo Center and Campus Martius Park, draw patrons and host activities. During this time period, Kwame Kilpatrick was the mayor of Detroit. He was the second black man to be mayor. Both of his parents were politicians. He was in the Michigan House of Representatives before he was mayor. He was elected mayor of Detroit in 2001 and he was inaugurated in 2002. Since his start, Kwame Kilpatrick was filled with controversy. He was one of the many Democrats who followed austerity policies. During his first term he closed the century-old Belle Isle Zoo and Belle Isle Aquarium. The City Council overrode his funding veto for the zoo and gave it a budget of $700,000. He enacted a no bid contract to a close personal aide. He received reelection in 2005. By 2008, things changed. In his 2008 state of the city address, Kwame Kilpatrick said that Detroit had positive changes like increased police surveillance, new policing technologies, and initiatives to rebuild blighted neighborhoods in the city. He received repeated standing ovations from the invitation-only audience. It is true that Kilpatrick was a victim of racist attacks, even against his own family. It is also true that Kilpatrick made mistakes in his mayorship. Scandal hit Kwame Kilpatrick involving corruption, an affair with Christine Beatty, and obstruction of justice. In January, the Detroit Free Press began publishing extensive excerpts of text messages by Kilpatrick and Beatty, sent out over their city-owned cell phones, which confirmed both their affair and the retaliatory firing of the policemen (Gary Brown, Harold Nelthorpe and Walter Harris). On March 24, 2008, Kilpatrick was charged with eight felony counts, including perjury, misconduct in office, and obstruction of justice. On May 13, 2008, the Detroit City Council approved a resolution to request that Michigan's governor, Jennifer Granholm, remove Kilpatrick from office. On August 8, 2008, Michigan's Attorney General, Mike Cox, announced two new felony counts had been filed against Kilpatrick for assaulting and interfering with a law officer. On September 4, 2008, Kilpatrick announced his resignation as mayor, effective September 18, following a guilty plea to two felonies for obstruction of justice arising from a complex settlement scheme in a civil case where he lied about an extra-marital affair under oath, then caused the case to be settled at a premium in exchange for an agreement by the parties not to disclose his affair. He was sentenced to 28 years in prison on October 10, 2013.  Kwame Kilpatrick, Federal Bureau of Prisons Register #44678-039, is serving his sentence at Federal Correctional Institution, El Reno in El Reno, Oklahoma. There is no parole in the federal prison system. However, with time off for good behavior, his earliest possible release date will be August 1, 2037—when he will be 67 years old.  There are no serious political differences between Kilpatrick and the business and financial elite of the Detroit area. He has carried out the mandate of the auto bosses and millionaires to hold the line on wages and benefits of city workers, cut services to the city’s impoverished residents, and create a “business-friendly” environment in the city, including tax-free enterprise zones and the promotion of casino gambling that preys on the most vulnerable sections of the working class. The disaffection with Kilpatrick on the part of the corporate establishment arises because his personal corruption has become an obstacle to the implementation of their agenda. Even before the current scandal, Kilpatrick had become notorious for plundering city resources for his family’s benefit while demanding incessant sacrifices from city employees. In 2005, Kilpatrick barely survived a challenge to his reelection mounted by Freeman Hendrix, a former city deputy mayor. Kilpatrick finished second to Hendrix in the first round of the non-partisan election, but won a runoff by a narrow margin. In other words, Kilpatrick (and we know that the real power structure has done more evil than Kilpatrick) was used by the same corporate elites that he worked for. His actions (which were wrong) should inspire us more to also expose the evils of the one percent in general and continue to defeat the enemy of the system of racism/white supremacy. Following a special election on May of 2009, businessman and former Detroit Pistons star Dave Bing became the Mayor and was subsequently re-elected to a full term of office. The decades long deindustrialization, austerity, population decline, urban decline, and other problems led into the bankruptcy crisis of Detroit. The crisis has reached national news by 2013. On March 1, 2013, Governor Rick Snyder announced that the state would be assuming financial control of the city.

By Timothy

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