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Did you know? Secret anti-communism network in europe

Did you know that, after World War II came to an end, a secret organisation called "Gladio", funded by the CIA and NATO, was brought to life in Europe in order to (amongst other things) neutralise communistic influences? The organisation spanned almost the whole of West-Europe, including countries such as Belgium, Germany, The Netherlands, France, the Scandinavian countries and more.

The organisation varied widely between countries and remained active (officially) until 1992 in at least the Netherlands. In some countries, the network deteriorated into terrorist organisations. Evidence has been found that in Italy, the organisation was involved in a bombing on the Italian Military Corps. In 1983 the Dutch government was forced to confirm that weapons found in a stash were related to NATO planning for unorthodox warfare. Earlier this year, investigators in the Netherlands found out that weapons had been illegally supplied to the Gladio network long after it had supposedly been dismantled in 1992. The same thing happened in Norway in 1979. Strong evidence was found in Germany that arms caches revealed by the person responsible for the 1980 Octoberfest bombing where related to the Gladio network.

More information on Wikipedia's English Gladio article. A Dutch article (with more information on Dutch specifics of the network) is also available.

A secret organisation brought to life in order to influence politics in a massive amount of countries… and it goes rogue and commits random acts of terrorism.. Amazing! Who would've thought something like that might happen?!

It's strange how today's 'freedom fighting' groups supplied with arms by western countries always seem to wind up being tomorrow's terrible terrorists. Maybe.. I dunno, but, you know, maybe we should stop funding these kind of things? Just maybe. Oh, and, also stop bringing secret organisations to life. They have a tendency to not work out very well, it appears.

Good news for the tin-foil hat wearers though: They can't call you paranoid now anymore. Big bad evil secret organisations really are everywhere! And to top it off, they're terrorists that are funded by your government, with your money, trying to stop you from exercising your right to democracy! Because, just in case nobody informed you yet: Democracy is great, unless you want to believe in something your government doesn't approve of, such as communism.

Did you know? Starwars

Did you know Starwars was actually meant as some kind of Flash Gordon movie? Check out the story.

More cool myth debunking on: The Straight Dope.

PS: I hate the StarWars movies. Just so you know.

Did you know? Common myths

There are some myths out there which are just blatantly false, but that are really pervasive:

  • Water in a sink on one hemisphere does not flow from the sink the other way than on the other hemisphere. There is such a thing as the Coriolis force, which (basically) describes the deflection in the path of an object moving on a rotating sphere due to its inertia. The Coriolis force does explain why cyclones rotate in the opposite direction on the northern hemisphere than on the southern hemisphere. But the force is simply way too small to have any effect on the rotation of water draining from a sink.
  • Hair is not alive, it's dead. The only thing alive is the hair-sack beneath the skin, from which the hair grows. Same goes for nails, as both consist of keratin
  • Split hair-ends cannot be mended. Once split, they stay split. Apparently, some products out there will glue them back together temporary, but after it wears off, the ends split again.
  • Hair does not grow back thicker when you shave it. It just appears that way because the hair-stems are thicker than the ends.
  • Your hair cannot turn gray all at once if something scares you.
  • Going swimming after having eaten something will not give you cramps and make you drown.

I thought about citing references, but that would be useless. People who believe (and keep perpetuating) these myths are apparently hellbent on keeping those beliefs, no matter how much evidence you show them that it's false. For the others out there, google around a bit. You'll find enough information dispelling these myths.

Did you know? Fish cleaning stations

gruntsclean.jpg

The little blue-yellow fish (a Spanish Hogfish) in the picture on the right looks like it doesn't have long to live, doesn't it?

But nothing's farther from the truth. This fish is hard at work. The fish surrounding it (called Grunts, apparently) are inviting, or rather begging, the Spanish Hogfish to clean them. This is happening at a so called 'Cleaning station'. A cleaning station is where fish go when they need a good scrubbing. Kind of a car-wash for fish, where they'll get cleaned of bacteria, dead skin and parasites. Even fish that are normally enemies of the cleaning fish go to the cleaning stations to get themselves cleaned by their, otherwise, enemies.

These cleaning stations are beneficial for both the cleaner and the fish being cleaned. One gets parasites and other stuff cleaned and the other gets free food and some rest at the 'neutral zone'.

Apparently, they even provide services to humans.

More information: