The Forum Romanum

THE FORUM ROMANUM Perhaps you've been there before, or just wanted to go. You know, "Et tu, Brute?" That was Shakespeare's Julius Caesar. Don't we learn most about ourselves and our history through Shakespeare and the Bible? That is what Orson Wells thought, but he also thought we were being invaded by Martians. At least [...]

The Yemen of Old

  THE YEMEN OF OLD I am fascinated by Yemen. Frankincense and myrrh, spectacular Aden of the spice trade, ancient Saana, the Marib dam, the Port of Mocha, and the lands opposite on the Horn of Africa. But not by its tragic, almost unceasing civil wars. Nor do I seek to wallow in the world [...]

The Dzungarian Gate

THE DZUNGARIAN GATE And what it is not, location is. And here is the place. A 3,000-mile, nearly impenetrable chain of mountains blockading China from the rest of Eurasia. 1.4 billion people, and all looking to get out. Or at least to expand a little, like they did in 471 A.D.   THE TIAN CHAN [...]


GILGAMESH You see him every winter evening on a clear night. And when it is cloudy, he sees you. He is the oldest myth of the humankind, and the first to be placed in the heavens to honor their power. And he kinda, sorta, looks like a person. Not like one of those later Greek [...]