This week began inauspiciously with the felling of the "Anne Frank" tree (above). JTA posted the following story on it. Sad.
The giant chestnut tree that Anne Frank wrote about several times in her diary collapsed in stormy weather.
The tree, at more than 150 years old, had developed a fungus that weakened it, and it fell over Monday in heavy wind and rain, according to reports. Weighing about 27 tons, the tree was encased in a steel harness nearly two years ago to keep it upright. Its trunk reportedly snapped about three feet from the ground.
"It broke off like a match," a spokesman for the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam told Reuters. The Anne Frank House was not hit, though several neighboring structures were said to be damaged.
Saplings taken from the tree have been planted around the world. A sapling from the tree reportedly will be planted in its place.
In other news... Jihadist Somalian terrorists slaughtered some 30+ government officials in Mogadishu today. Lovely. The full story over at Reuters here.
And... in the mother of all news (today at least): Hitler DNA shows he was a Jew. But not only that, that his roots were African! This news is breaking everywhere on the interwebs today. Here's a bit from Ha'aretz's version (read the full story here):
Adolf Hitler may have owed more to the 'subhuman' races he tried to exterminate than to his 'Aryan' compatriots, according to new finding published in Belgium this week.
In research for the Flemish-language magazine Knack, journalist Jean-Paul Mulders traced Hitler's living relatives in the Fuhrer's native Austria, as well as the United States.(It's safe to assume Hitler was a profoundly unhappy person to begin with, but I digress...)
"The results of this study are surprising," said Ronny Decorte, a geneticist interviewed by Knack. "Hitler would not have been happy."
While that's interesting and all, does the phrase "Hitler's living relatives" not also make you stop and think 'Who are these people? Where are these people? And how hard must it be for them to exist in this world after good 'ole Unky (cousin? grandfather??!) Adolf did what he did for the history books?' One of those "hmmm" moments.