Home' Greymouth Star : April 25th 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
4 - Saturday, April 25, 2015
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uLetters to the editor
1850 - Paul Julius Reuter, founder of the
news agency that bears his name, uses 40
pigeons to carry stock market prices between
Brussels and Aachen.
1898 - United States declares war
1915 - Allied soldiers including
the Australian and New Zealand
Army Corps land on Turkey ’s
Gallipoli Peninsula, in the event
now commemorated as Anzac Day.
1945 - Delegates of 45 nations
meet in San Francisco, California, to organise
United Nations; and Soviet troops meet at the
Elbe River in central Europe, dramatising the
collapse of Nazi Germany.
1971 - 200,000 anti-Vietnam War protesters
march on Washington.
1982 - British troops recapture South
Georgia, part of the Falkland Islands.
1995 - Death of US film star Ginger Rogers,
uWest Coast yesteryear
uToday in history
King Edward II of England (1284-1327);
Oliver Cromwell, English statesman (1599-
1658); Sir Marc Isambard Brunel, French-born
engineer, father of Isambard Kingdom Brunel
(1769-1849); Edward Grey,
English statesman (1862-1933);
Ella Fitzgerald, US singer (1918-
1996); Al Pacino, US actor (1940-);
Bjorn Ulvaeus, Swedish musician of
ABBA fame (1945-); Dominique
Strauss-Kahn, disgraced French
diplomat (1949-); Hank Azaria,
US actor (1964-); Renee Zellweger, US actress
(1969-); Felipe Massa, Brazilian Formula One
driver (1981-) .
“ Prophecy is the wit of a fool. ” — Vladimir
Nabokov, Russian-born author (1899-1977).
“And may the Lord make you increase and
abound in love for one another and for all, just
as we abound in love for you.”
— (1 Thessalonians 3.12).
in the air in Hokitika
yesterday in more
ways than one. The
Minister of Health, Mr McKay had hardly left
the town after a tour of West Coast hospital
boards, urging amalgamation, when the No 12
District Roads Council was urging the same
thing for the small boroughs of the Coast.
There seemed general agreement at the
council’s annual meeting yesterday with Mr N
Christiansen’s proposals for the small boroughs
of Runanga, Kumara, Brunner and Ross being
absorbed by the counties. This would turn them
into county towns.
The view of Mr M Wallace for the Westland
County Council was that while it was a
good idea, neither he nor his council would
make any attempt to coerce or influence the
boroughs. Speaking of Kumara and Ross, Mr
Wallace said they were run as economically as
possible with the councillors doing much of the
work themselves. He would not be surprised if
they were the most economically run boroughs
in the country.
The 76-acre Gladstone farm offered on
account of the estate of the late Mr G J Dick
was sold by public auction yesterday for
£7050. The new owner is Mr Don Sinclair of
The property which comprised mainly river
flat farmland, included a four bedroomed
house, implement and shearing shed and sheep
yards and dip. Included in the sale were 379
Romney breeding ewes.
Engagement.- Walsh — Boote. — Mr and
Mrs H Boote, D unollie, have much pleasure
in announcing the engagement of their only
daughter Lynette Mae to Norman Francis,
second son of Mr and Mrs C J Walsh, Kaiata.
uFood for thought
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3 Werita Street, PO Box 3, Greymouth
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03 755 8422
Once upon a time big
military operations were given
obscure names so the enemy
would not guess what the
plan was. The German plan
for the invasion of France in
1940 was called Fall Gelb
(Case Yellow); the American
counter-attack in the Korean
War that recovered Seoul was
Operation Chromite. But
then the PR guys got their hands on it.
By the 21st century we were getting
dramatic titles like Desert Storm (the
1991 Gulf war), and then aspirational
ones like Operation Iraqi Freedom. So
it was only natural, when Saudi Arabia
decided to bomb the Houthi rebels who
had taken over most of Yemen, to name
the operation Decisive Storm. That sounds
nice and decisive, and stormy too.
When the Saudi military spokesman,
Brigadier-General Ahmed al-Asiri,
announced on Tuesday that Saudi Arabia
was calling the bombing campaign off
after one month and 2415 bombing
sorties, he naturally claimed that it had
been a decisive victory. The bombing had
destroyed 80% of the Houthis’ “transport
lines” (colloquially known as “roads”), and
they had also knocked out all of the rebels’
Ballistic missiles? Yes, the Houthis
had captured a base outside Sana’a that
was home to some Scud B ground-to-
ground missiles (range 300km, vintage
1965), although they might not actually
fly after half a century of Yemeni-style
maintenance, and they could barely reach
the country’s own borders if they did.
Anyway, the Saudi Arabian Air Force
took them out, so we can all rest easier
now. A Saudi billionaire has even
promised to give each of the 100 Saudi
pilots involved in the bombing campaign
a Bentley (sort of a down-market Rolls-
Royce) in gratitude for their efforts.
Moreover, General al-Amiri said, the
Houthi militia is no longer in a position
to harm civilians. He did not actually
say so, but you would assume from the
context and his manner that Yemen is now
at peace, and the Houthis have all gone
home to their own tribal territory in the
north of Yemen, and Yemen’s legitimate
president is safely back in Sana’a, the
What is that? The legitimate president is
still in exile in Saudi Arabia? The Houthis
have not gone home either? They still
control most of Yemen right down to
Aden. Also, the remainder of the country
is now ruled by Al Qaeda in the Arabian
Peninsula, except for the bits run by its
even nastier Islamist rival, Isis. How is that
Have some pity for poor General al-
Asiri. He had to say something positive;
he works for the government. But the
one scene that defines the event was a
television studio in Sana’a where a Yemeni
news anchor was running a clip of Asiri’s
speech. When the anchor comes back
on the screen and picks up his script, he
cannot say anything. He is trying to, but
he is corpsing.
He giggles, he snorts, he fans himself
with his script, he puts his head on the
desk, he completely loses it. Then the
people behind the camera start laughing
too. This is known in PR-speak as ‘abject
failure’. When you are trying to convince
your audience that your bankruptcy was
actually a canny tactical move, you do
not want them to collapse in hysterical
What can have possessed Saudi
Arabia to launch this foredoomed aerial
campaign, and rope in practically every
other Sunni Arab state to send a few
planes along to help? Mostly, it was simple
paranoia. The Saudi Arabian authorities
have convinced themselves that the ‘Shias’
(by which they usually mean Iran) are on
the offensive, and gobbling up any Arab
territories where they can find fellow
Shias. The Houthis are Shias. QED.
There was a lot of talk about Iran
supplying arms to the Houthis at the start
of the bombing campaign, and the Saudis
managed to get almost every other Sunni
Arab counry to send a couple of planes
along to help. At the end of it, General
al-Asiri did not mention the Iranians at
all. Maybe they all went home (although it
would be hard to leave with all the airports
shut and the coast under naval blockade).
Or maybe they were never there.
Bigger countries have made bigger
mistakes and paid quite small prices:
the United States invasion of Iraq, for
example. Saudi Arabia will not pay a big
price either, for it appears that the grown-
ups in Riyadh have inter vened after a
month and turned the military machine
off. No follow-up ground invasion, just a
smooth transition to Operation Restore
Hope, the humanitarian aid they would
have provided after they had won, if they
Saudi Arabia is well out of it, and as
outcomes go, it is less bad than many.
Just a bit of advice. Stop using those
American-style names for operations.
When the United States started using
them is when it started fighting dumb
wars, and losing them.
Stop press: On Wednesday, the Saudis
started bombing again, but just a bit, they
Gwynne Dyer is an independent
journalist whose articles are published in
‘Decisive Storm’ blows over
WORLD IN FOCUS
with Gwynne Dyer
Saudi missiles hit a target in Yemen.
Recently there was an explosion in the
Greymouth Star typesetting room, when
the smoke cleared would you believe it?
There was a book all laid out ready to
print. Well okay this did not happen, but
some people seem to think that a ‘big
bang’ started our world and everything just
happened to fall into place so that life could
begin on Earth. About as likely as my silly
Our world exists under very orderly
yet complex systems. One that is totally
amazing is the solar system; it is so precise,
let me give you an example.
In the book of Daniel there is a prophecy
mentioned about events that would happen.
The book of Daniel plots the course of
the history from his day until the end of
time. In one of the visions Daniel had, he
saw some things related to history and the
question was asked “How long will this be”
in chapter 8:14 it said “Unto two thousand
and three hundred days; then shall the
sanctuary be cleansed.” Another time
prophecy was 1260 days.
Without going into what the cleansing
of the sanctuary means but focusing on
the 2300 days, a Swiss astronomer in 1750
called M de Cheseaux after much study
found that this 2300 days actually matched
a solar luna cycle.
By the aid of the astronomic tables I
examined this latter, and found that at the
end of 2300 Gregorian years, minus six
hours 14 seconds, the sun and the moon
return to within half a degree of the place
from which they started, and that an hour
later the sun has reached its exact starting
point on the ecliptic: whence it follows the
prophetic period of 2300 years, is cyclical.
M de Cheseaux adds, “I must close with
one observation. Who can have taught the
author (Daniel) the mar vellous relation
of the periods he selected with soli-lunar
revolutions? Is it possible, considering all
these points, to fail to recognise in the
author of the Book of Daniel, the Creator
of the Heavens and all their hosts, of the
earth and the things that are therein?”
Go to the following link to see an article
in more detail.
Also see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/
Greymouth Seventh Day Adventist Church.
The Big Bang (yeah right) chapter 2
Grey District Mayor
he landing at
in the early
hours of April
25, 1915. By
2pm the beach
was crowded with wounded
and dead troops.
Richard Allan Gillingham
from Bright Street, Cobden,
stormed the beach at 3pm,
but was killed by shrapnel 30
minutes later. One hundred
New Zealanders lay dead by
the shoreline during the first
day of combat on Anzac Cove.
With many fellow Kiwis,
Allan now rests at the Lone
Pine memorial in Turkey.
The Turkish 57th regiment
were ordered to advance and
hold until reinforcements
could arrive: “I don’t order you
to attack, I order you to die!”
the commander cried. “ By the
time we are dead other units
and commanders will have
come to take your place. ”
At midnight the Anzacs were
ordered to dig in and hold on
to the little gains that had been
made. They were told that all
they had to do now is dig, dig,
dig until you are safe.
Extreme weather and
primitive living conditions,
rain, snow and chilling winds,
together with inadequate
sanitation, disease, unburied
bodies and swarms of flies
prevailing for the next eight
months of the conflict,
resulting in 11,500 New
Zealand and Australian
men dead. The Allied forces
withdrew during December
In all, 130,000 men lost their
lives at Anzac Cove, including 87,000
The Battle of Passchendaele — 5000
New Zealand dead — and many other
battles in World War One and Two, were
also a living nightmare.
The total number of troops and nurses to
ser ve overseas in the First World War was
100,000, from a New Zealand population ,
1915of just over one million.
New Zealand had one of the highest
casualty and death rates per capita of any
country involved in the war. Today, Anzac
Day commemorates all New Zealanders
and Australians killed in war and also
honours all returned ser vice men and
women who have ser ved our nation.
Thank you West Coasters for taking
time to remember fallen heroes who left
our shores, never returning after making
the ultimate sacrifice for our nation. It is
pleasing to see relatives marching with
deceased soldiers’ medals as a mark of
respect for their ser vice to New Zealand.
Nurses and many women ser ved and
brothers from many families died so their
brothers would be free.
After heroism on the battlefield
Blackball resident Samuel Frickleton was
honoured and awarded the Victoria Cross,
the highest and most prestigious award
of the British Commonwealth. One of
11 children born to a Scottish coalminer
and his wife, he immigrated to the West
Coast in 1913 and worked alongside four
brothers in the Blackball coalmine.
Just 23 Victoria Crosses have been
awarded in New Zealand’s history, and
three of them to West Coasters —
Frickleton, Samuel Mitchell of Mikonui,
and Edward St John Daniel, of Hokitika.
Today, 100 years later, soldiers who were
forced to dig in at Anzac Cove and all
soldiers who ser ved before and after them
would be humbled to know that their
military ser vice was not in vain. Through
their efforts we live in peace.
One hundred years later, West Coasters
have not forgotten.
New Zealand troops disembarking at Anzac Cove.
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