Happy Birthday to the countries!

Happy Birthday to Mongolia!

Traditional Mongolian wrestling. *Photo from Wikipedia November 26 is Independence Day, celebrates the independence of Mongolia from China on July 11, 1921 and the establishment of “Mongolian People’s Republic” on the day in 1924. The area that is now Mongolia was ruled by various nomadic empires, including the Xiongnu (匈奴), the Xianbei (鮮卑), the Rouran (柔然), the Turkic Khaganate (突厥汗国), among others. In 1206, Genghis Khan founded the Mongol Empire, which became the largest contiguous land empire in history. His grandson Kublai Khan conquered China to establish the Yuan dynasty (元朝). After the collapse of the Yuan, the Mongols retreated

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Happy Birthday to Cambodia!

View of Angkor Wat, one of the largest religious monuments in the world. *Photo from Wikipedia November 9 is Independence Day, which celebrates the independence of Cambodia from France in 1953. In 802 AD, Jayavarman II declared himself king, uniting the warring Khmer princes of Chenla under the name “Kambuja”. This marked the beginning of the Khmer Empire which flourished for over 600 years, allowing successive kings to control and exert influence over much of Southeast Asia and accumulate immense power and wealth. The Indianized kingdom built monumental temples including Angkor Wat, now a World Heritage Site, and facilitated the

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Happy National Day of China!

2004 National Day celebration in Tiananmen Square, Beijing. *Photo from Wikipedia October 1 is National Day of the People’s Republic of China (PRC). The PRC was founded on October 1, 1949, with a ceremony at Tiananmen Square. One thing should be noted is that the PRC was not founded on that day, but on September 21, 1949. The Central People’s Government passed the Resolution on the National Day of the People’s Republic of China on December 2, 1949, and declared that October 1 is the National Day. The National Day is celebrated throughout mainland China, Hong Kong, and Macau with

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Happy Malaysia Day!

Kuala Lumpur, the national capital of Malaysia as well as its largest city. *Photo from Wikipedia September 16 is Malaysia Day. It commemorates the establishment of the Malaysian federation on the same date in 1963. It marked the joining together of Malaya, North Borneo, and Sarawak to form Malaysia. *As for the overview of Malaysia such as history, culture, religion etc, see this article. *Reference: Wikipedia

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Happy Birthday to Qatar!

The news desk of Al Jazeera English, a Qatari news channel. *Photo from Wikipedia September 3 is Independence Day, celebrates the second independence of Qatar from the United Kingdom in 1971. Following Ottoman rule, Qatar became a British protectorate in the early 20th century until gaining independence in 1971. Qatar has been ruled by the Al Thani family since the mid-19th century. Qatar, officially the State of Qatar, is a sovereign country located in Southwest Asia, occupying the small Qatar Peninsula on the northeastern coast of the Arabian Peninsula. Qatar will host the 2022 FIFA World Cup, becoming the first

MET Column

Happy Vietnamese National Day!

Vietnamese women wearing traditional costume Áo dài. *Photo from Wikipedia September 2 is National Day, celebrates the independence of Vietnam from Japan and France in 1945. The Japanese occupied Vietnam during World War II but allowed the French to remain and exert some influence. At the war’s end in August 1945, a power vacuum was created in Vietnam. Capitalizing on this, the Việt Minh launched the “August Revolution” across the country to seize government offices. Emperor Bảo Đại abdicated on August 25, 1945, ending the Nguyễn Dynasty. On September 2, 1945, at Ba Đình Square, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh, leader

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Happy Birthday to Malaya!

Kuala Lumpur was the capital city of Malaya. *Photo from Wikipedia August 31 is Independence Day, celebrates the independence of Malaya from the United Kingdom in 1957. The Federation of Malaya was a federation of what previously had been British Malaya comprising 11 states (nine Malay states and two of the British Straits Settlements, Penang and Malacca) that existed from February 1, 1948 until September 16, 1963. Although Muslims had passed through the Malay Peninsula as early as the 10th century, it was not until the 14th century that Islam first firmly established itself. Islam had a profound influence on

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Happy Birthday to Afghanistan!

A market street in central Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan and its largest city. *Photo from Wikipedia August 19 is Independence Day of Afghanistan, commemorates the Treaty of Rawalpindi in 1919, granting independence from Britain. The land has historically been home to various peoples and has witnessed numerous military campaigns, including those by Alexander the Great, Mauryas, Muslim Arabs, Mongols, British, Soviet, and in the modern era by Western powers. The political history of the modern state of Afghanistan began with the Hotak and Durrani dynasties in the 18th century. In the late 19th century, Afghanistan became a buffer state

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Happy Birthday to Indonesia!

Dancers in traditional costume. *Photo from Wikipedia August 17 is Independence Day, celebrates the proclamation of Indonesia’s independence from Japan in 1945. The earliest evidence of Islamised populations in Indonesia dates to the 13th century in northern Sumatra; other Indonesian areas gradually adopted Islam which became the dominant religion in Java and Sumatra by the end of the 16th century. For the most part, Islam overlaid and mixed with existing cultural and religious influences. Europeans such as the Portuguese arrived in Indonesia from the 16th century seeking to monopolize the sources of valuable nutmeg, cloves, and cubeb pepper in Maluku.

Happy Birthday to the countries!

Happy Birthday to India!

Uttar Pradeshi thali, a Northern Indian cuisine. Thali is the Indian name for a round platter used to serve food. *Photo from Wikipedia August 15 is Independence Day, celebrates the independence of India from the United Kingdom in 1947. The Indian subcontinent was home to the urban Indus Valley Civilisation of the 3rd millennium BCE. In the following millennium, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism began to be composed. Social stratification, based on caste, emerged in the first millennium BCE, and Buddhism and Jainism arose. Early political consolidations took place under the Maurya and Gupta empires; the later peninsular Middle