Number crunching. As President Obama tries to pretend his Middle East policy is somehow different from George Bush’s, some interesting figures. 80 - number of Palestinian homes in Jerusalem Israel planned to demolish prompting half-hearted protests from the US. 73,000 - number of illegal homes Israel plans to build on land stolen from the Palestinians about which the US has not uttered a peep.
On this day.....131 years ago, HMS Eurydice, a Royal Navy training ship, was off the Isle of Wight almost at the end of her transatlantic crossing from Bermuda. The coastguard said she was “moving fast under plain sail.” Then off Sandown, she was hit by a blizzard, and sank within five minutes.
A quarter of an hour later, the squall had passed, and it was a lovely sunny day. Only two men survived from the crew of 366, and Gerard Manley Hopkins wrote a poem about the shipwreck. For the full story, see A Disastrous History of Britain.