Things For Thursday

Wasn’t really that long ago…on this day in 1991 the Warsaw Pact, a military alliance between the Soviet Union and its Eastern European satellites, was effectively dissolved as Soviet military commanders announced they had relinquished control of Warsaw Pact forces. In many ways, this marked the end of the Cold War.

The Warsaw Pact was formed in 1955 in response to the formation of NATO in 1949 and its admission of West Germany in 1954. It was under Warsaw Pact “operational principles” that the Soviet Union intervened with force in Hungary in 1956 and in Czechoslovakia in 1968.

I remember the Czechoslovakian situation and thinking that it was going to lead to World War III. I wasn’t alive in 1956, but one of my favorite college professors, Dr. Zsoldos, escaped from Hungary then and made it to the United States. One of the classes for which he was my professor was International Monetary Economics. One day, the discussion turned to exports, imports, and the effects of exchange rates on them. Dr. Zsoldos remarked that for a country like Uganda none of that really mattered because its main exports were mud and malaria. I remember laughing out loud at that remark and writing it in my notes.

He graciously wrote a recommendation that helped me receive the only Economics fellowship granted for the academic year I began attending graduate school at the University of Delaware. Cancer took Dr. Zsoldos far too soon and, sadly, claimed the life of his daughter as well.

The current situation in Eastern Europe is unimaginably cruel. Once again, those historians and other academics who think that one person cannot influence world events and world history are completely wrong.

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The current spate of terrorist attacks in Israel only serves as another reminder that the evil of anti-Semitism is alive and “well.” Ironically, or perhaps as cause, the normalization of relations between Israel and many Arab countries continues at a fast pace. For example, in the first year after Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) normalized relations 200,000 Israelis visited the UAE.

One can only hope that, at some point in the not too distant future, enough Arab nations will have a good association with Israel so that the Middle East can see some peace. I doubt I will live to see it, though.

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Honestly, trying to add some automotive content today after those first two topics seems forced and inorganic. Still, the automotive content is what people expect from my blog. Oh…I doubt the person is reading this, but Disaffected Musings had its first reader today from The Isle Of Man. The Isle Of Man is a small (about 220 square miles, not much larger than Scottsdale, Arizona), prosperous island nation and self-governing British Crown Dependency in the Irish Sea between Great Britain and Ireland. I think Jeremy Clarkson, of Top Gear and The Grand Tour, has a home there. In all, this blog has received views from well over 100 different countries or jurisdictions.

Anyway…here is a picture of a car with which I was quite taken at a recent automobile event. This car really stood out among the plethora of Porsches that day.

 

 

This is a 1947 Cadillac, the last year before the introduction of tail fins. A picture of a 1948 Cadillac (below) was my inspiration to begin blogging about cars.

 

 

In a world where I have virtually unlimited resources and a place to park dozens of cars, a restomod Cadillac of this vintage would almost certainly be in my possession. Once again and from the movie Diner, if you don’t have dreams you have nightmares. I have nightmares, anyway, so I might as well try to have good daydreams.

 

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