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1 SEPTEMBER

 

BRITISH TROOPS SACK SAN SEBASTIAN, RAPING MANY OF THE WOMEN.

[ 1 September 1813 ] [ Some of the fires and killings may have started on 31 August ]

On this day in 1813, British troops, under the command of the legendary Arthur Wellesley, Marquess of Wellington, ransacked and burned the Basque city of San Sebastian, killing an unknown number of people, but estimated to have been at least a thousand.  Enraged by the casualties they had suffered at the hands of the French defenders, they turned on the civilians, burning street after street and raping most of the women.  The fire didn’t stop for seven days by which time approximately 600 buildings, including the City Hall, had been burned to the ground. Lord Wellington, however, refused to grant a desperate request from the survivors for a “starvation wage.”

BRITISH GOVERNMENT INDIFFERENT TO GADAFFI’S COUP AS LONG AS THE OIL FLOWS

[ 1 September 1960 ]

Muammar Gaddafi, along with several young army officers, staged a military coup in oil rich Libya, with its production at three million barrels a day, then surpassing even that of Saudi Arabia’s. British foreign secretary Michael Stewart advised the cabinet that “there has been no interruption in the flow of oil” and suggested that “it is important to be on good terms with whatever government controls Libya,” since “BP and Shell have an investment in the country of about £100 million.” British prime minister Harold Wilson saw no reason to object to such a pragmatic view.[1]

FOOTNOTES

  1. Michael Stewart quoted in Paul Kenyon (2018), “Dictatorland: The Men Who Stole Africa,” Head of Zeus, London, p167.

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