UA154太平洋跳島之行

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美國聯合航空一直以來都是跨太平洋航線的主宰者,這一點不僅體現在他們有大量的美中、美日航線,還有夏威夷、關島作爲樞紐機場。曾經偶然看到美聯航有兩條從夏威夷檀香山到關島的航線,一條是直飛,另一條則比較有趣,就是傳說中的太平洋跳島航線UA154/155。這個跳島航線從檀香山開始,經停馬紹爾羣島的馬朱羅環礁(Majuro)、瓜加林環礁(Kwajalein),以及密克羅尼西亞聯邦的科斯雷島(Kosrae)、波納佩島(Pohnpei)、楚克羣島(Chuuk),最終抵達美國太平洋領土關島(Guam)。這條航線由波音737執飛,可謂是爲數不多的波音737執飛的長距離航線。其實這個航線並不是聯航首創的,而是大陸航空。2012年大陸航空被聯航收購了,於是這條航線就變成了今天的UA154/155。

作爲馬紹爾羣島和密克羅尼西亞聯邦兩國人民與世界惟一的聯繫,這個航班班次還挺多的,一週有三班,於是機票並不難買。然而不難買並不意味着便宜,這個飛機價格常年很貴。購買這個航線的機票還是需要一些技巧的,那就是要用美聯航的里程來換。看看差價就知道了,我隨便查了一個日期,UA154從夏威夷到關島的經濟艙直接買的票價是$1345,然而只需要25000里程兌換,外加5.6美元的稅費,沒有燃油附加稅。

這個航班另一個獨特之處在於飛機上配備了兩套飛行員,以及飛行工程師。這是因爲一方面飛機飛行時間太長,可能超過飛行員允許的上限,另一方面這些小島基礎設施匱乏,一旦飛機出現問題無法就地維修。

檀香山啓程

我從美國大陸到達夏威夷的檀香山以後,休息了一天,準備第二天早上出發。在夏威夷的一天,順便去了一趟平等院。這個平等院是日本宇治的千年古剎平等院的按比例複製品,建於1053年。平等院附近的神廟山谷(Valley of the Temples)風景十分漂亮,有種瑞士山間的感覺。張學良將軍就葬在平等院旁邊的山上。

平等院

UA154從檀香山出發的時間是早上7:25,由於時差的關係,我5點就輕易醒來了,6點鐘就到了機場。早上的檀香山機場比較冷清,於是值機和安檢都很快。由於要查護照,這個航班是不能網上值機自己打印登機牌的,必須要到機場由工作人員檢查證件。由於經停了其他國家,這條航線被認爲是國際航線,因此需要護照以及有效的美國簽證(或美國護照、綠卡、ESTA),如果目的地是關島的話。

檀香山機場裏面到處都是日文,許多店鋪還打出「日本語OK」的廣告,可見日本遊客對夏威夷的熱愛。

檀香山機場的一個獨特之處在於其建築結構,候機樓整體採用了開放式的佈局,沒有大面積的玻璃幕牆。這跟檀香山機場不怎麼下雨有很大關係,夏威夷受到加利福尼亞寒流的影響,儘管位於熱帶,氣候卻不算炎熱。機場被山擋住了盛行東風,年均降水量只有434.3毫米,與乾燥的洛杉磯差不多。

更加有趣的是,許多登機口旁邊就是馬路,車可以直接開上來。當然,只有機場的擺渡車和特別許可的車纔可以開到登機口之前。這個細節透露出了航空的歷史,在過去,機場根本不像現在這樣戒備森嚴,經過層層安檢纔能到達登機口。在許多老電影中都可以看到乘客在登機口和親朋好友依依惜別的場景,就像現在許多國家的火車站站臺一樣。看着登機口門前的馬路,我想或許以前人們真的可以直接開車到這裏。如今在恐怖主義的威脅下機場個個戒備森嚴,真是令人唏噓。

馬紹爾羣島

7點鐘準時開始登機,我看到大部分乘客都是太平洋島國人種,而且竟然整個飛機都坐滿了。本來我還想會不會飛機空位比較多,或者有許多像我一樣的獵奇者。飛機起飛後不久,乘務員開始供應早餐,這讓我有點意外,因爲美聯航在美國國內以及加勒比海航線上都是不供應餐食的。本來還怕沒喫的,特地囤積了一些美式日本飯糰。

第一段飛行是從檀香山到馬紹爾羣島的馬朱羅環礁,這一段飛行時間大約是5小時,也是整個航線中最長的一段。天氣十分晴朗,可以看到下面一望無際的太平洋。這一天的太平洋真的很太平,一點波浪都看不到。看一會就感覺有些無聊了,因爲五個小時的飛行中太平洋上的風景幾乎沒有任何變化。如果是坐船橫渡太平洋,該是多麼無聊的漫長時光啊。

馬紹爾羣島的名字來源於英國探險家John Marshall。

飛機起飛大約三個小時以後,跨過了180度經線,也是國際日期變更線。馬紹爾羣島在國際日期變更線的西側,於是日期突然往前跳了一天。國際日期變更線並不總是在180度,而是儘量保證了一個國家在同一個日期內。薩摩亞和美屬薩摩亞雖然都在180度經線以東,卻被國際日期變更線隔開。

馬朱羅環礁

大概當地時間上午10點,飛機到達了馬朱羅環礁。馬紹爾羣島跟夏威夷有2個小時的時差,或者更精確地說是22個小時的時差(UTC+12)。馬朱羅環礁的機場非常特別,因爲它就建在狹窄的環礁之上,機場兩邊都是海水。早在來這裏之前看Google地圖的時候,我就被這個機場的位置深深地吸引了。

俯瞰馬朱羅環礁

到達馬朱羅環礁以後,飛機上差不多有一多半的人都下飛機了。機組人員說繼續前往其他目的地的乘客不需要下飛機,但是如果要下飛機,必須把所有行李和個人物品帶上。既然來了,我當然要下飛機看看了,於是我就跟着人流走下了飛機。

一下飛機,一股潮溼的熱氣撲面而來,再加上刺眼的陽光,沒過一分鐘就讓我汗流浹背了。走下臺階以後看到了兩個小房子,也就是機場的入境、安檢、候機設施所在了。一個小房子寫的是Arrival,另一個是Departure,有一小半的人都走到了Departure,可見跟我一樣只是想下來看看。

歡迎來到馬紹爾羣島

走進了「出發大廳」,看到座無虛席的椅子和一個小賣部,後面還有一個廁所,這就是出發大廳的一切了。很遺憾的是,我的Project Fi在這裏沒有信號,這也是第一回我到了一個連Project Fi都沒有信號的國家。不過,出發大廳裏面有Wi-Fi,連上以後是一個付費界面,50MB的流量要$5,可以用信用卡支付。雖然有點貴,但我還是買了試試,果然能用,不過還沒用2分鐘就沒有流量了。我看了看系統的Wi-Fi流量統計,發現纔用了8MB而已,不知道它是怎麼計費的,真是太坑人了。

馬朱羅出發大廳

在出發大廳又逗留了幾分鐘,登機開始了。這回飛機上又坐滿了人,看來這條航線還挺熱門,儘管票賣這麼貴。想想看這些島民真是不容易,整個機場被美聯航這一條航線壟斷,去哪都只能任人宰割。

瓜加林環礁

又飛了不到一個小時,飛機降落在了瓜加林環礁的美國空軍基地。由於是美軍基地,這裏下飛機、拍照都受到限制。本來我跟着人羣走到了飛機出口,機組問我瓜加林環礁是不是目的地,我說不是,於是被禁止下飛機,拍的照片也被要求刪除了。

這回飛機又下了大概一半的人,而且基本上沒有人上,飛機一下子空了好多。在等待重新起飛的時候,果然有安檢人員上飛機檢查行李。安檢人員對着飛機上的每一件行李問這是什麼人的,如果沒有人認領,行李將會被移除並銷毀。飛機上的廁所也關閉了,有工程車用管道連接到了廁所清理廢棄物和補充水,基本清理完成以後,飛機就又準備起飛了。

瓜加林環礁

密克羅尼西亞

密克羅尼西亞聯邦是一個1986年從美國獨立的國家,由距離並不近的四個島嶼組成,分別是科斯雷島、波納佩島、楚克羣島、雅浦島(Yap)。我到達的第一個到是科斯雷島。

科斯雷島

從瓜加林環礁起飛一個小時以後,飛機到達了科斯雷島。這裏和馬紹爾羣島又有一個小時時差(UTC+11),所以降落時間比起飛時間還早幾分鐘。由於科斯雷島基本上沒有平地,機場建在海邊填充的陸地上,背後就是一座山。相比其他島嶼,從飛機上看科斯雷島機場的風景更漂亮。

科斯雷島

和馬朱羅環礁氣候相似,科斯雷島也炎熱而潮溼,太陽更是刺眼得不得了。走下飛機以後跟隨人羣走到了出發大廳,和馬朱羅環礁機場的差不多一樣簡陋,而且一樣不提供免費的Wi-Fi。密克羅尼西亞跟馬紹爾羣島一樣也是一個Project Fi沒有信號的地方。

波納佩島

又過了一個小時,飛機抵達密克羅尼西亞聯邦首都所在地——波納佩島。波納佩島幾乎是一個圓形,機場在島的最北端的外島上,和主島有堤道連接。這個機場跟其他小島上的機場相比明顯要好不少,畢竟是密克羅尼西亞聯邦首都所在地。

波納佩島機場

由於行程出現一些問題,我在波納佩島停留了兩天。波納佩島是一個意外之地,在網上很難找到這裏的旅遊信息,但是經過兩天探祕,這個小島讓我驚喜不斷。關於我在波納佩島的行程,請看我的另一篇日誌「波納佩島探祕」(即將發表)。

兩天以後,我登上了從波納佩島到楚克羣島的飛機。這個航班晚點了一個半小時,原因是前一天的從關島返回夏威夷的航班出現故障。飛機從關島起飛以後,空乘人員發現安全門狀態異常,於是從楚克羣島又折返回到了關島進行維修。這下子飛機到達檀香山的時候已經是第二天凌晨,晚點了6個小時左右,耽誤了下一班去關島的UA154航班。好在後來航班又追了上來,到波納佩島的時候只晚點了一個半小時。

楚克羣島

楚克羣島和關島一樣時區都是UTC+10,和波納佩有一個小時時差。由於晚點,飛到楚克羣島的時候已經下午四點多了,降落前有很多低雲。飛機在進港之前逆時針繞行的時候穿入了許多雲霧,透過雲看楚克潟湖有種海外仙境的感覺。楚克島嶼衆多,但是都在楚克潟湖中,像是一個大圓圈把諸島圍了起來。楚克機場在維諾島上,維諾是楚克的最大城市。

楚克機場

楚克的英文寫法是Chuuk,但是它之前被拼寫爲Truk,所以中文也被曾翻譯爲「特魯克」。在兩種不同的正字法中,chtr都是用來表示/tʂ/這個捲舌塞擦音的。這個音在英語中不存在,在英語母語者聽感上介於ch/tʃ/tr/tʃɹ/之間。

別看機場小,美聯航設施齊全,登機還是要按分組來,而且Global Service、美軍優先。

楚克登機

關島

抵達關島的時候,已經到夜晚了。關島是廣義密克羅尼西亞羣島經濟最發達、基礎設施最完善的島,這一切都得益於美國的補貼。關島是美國的非自治領土,整個島嶼很大一部分都是美軍基地。儘管有些人希望關島獨立,但是考慮到獨立之後可能的美國援助的喪失,就作罷了。

關島屬於正式的美國領土,邊檢是由美國CBP控制的。也就是說如果從夏威夷直飛到關島,是不用經過邊檢入境的。但是UA154經過了其他國家,所以算國際航線,到達關島需要經過美國邊檢。不出所料的是,入境的時候我被關了傳說中的「小黑屋」,也就是邊檢官認爲我入境目的有問題,需要進一步審查。

原因是因爲我持有的是美國的工作簽證(H、L之類),而關島並不是我的工作地,所以說入境目的與簽證不符。持學生簽證入境關島也會遇到一樣的問題。幸好我早有準備,拿出第二天早上離開關島的機票說我是來轉機的,因爲密克羅尼西亞到亞洲其他地方必須通過關島。邊檢官研究了一下,就蓋章放我進去了,臨走前告訴我必須按照預訂行程轉機,不可以直飛回夏威夷,否則身份會有問題。

歡迎來到美國關島

之前我在網上看到有人持有工作、學生簽證從上海出發往返關島,被拒絕入境的經歷。有人嘗試從上海/東京/首爾等大城市出發,從關島轉機去夏威夷,也差點被拒絕入境,原因是這條轉機路線「不合理」。東亞的大城市到夏威夷要麼有直飛航班,要麼從其他大城市轉機比較便宜,從關島轉機的機票從來都很貴。因此除非是去密克羅尼西亞,否則很難讓邊檢官信服你來關島的惟一目的是轉機。

抵達關島以後,我的太平洋跳島行程就此結束了。事實上美聯航還有另一個跳島航班,是從關島出發,經停雅浦島,到達帕勞共和國的科羅爾,航班號是UA185。經過此次飛行,我對所謂的美聯航「壟斷跨太平洋航線」又有了新的認知。

臨走之前我又去關島的遊客區杜夢看了一下,發現這簡直就是日本的飛地。街上的遊客幾乎全是日本人,商店餐廳也紛紛打出日語招牌,甚至日語是惟一語言,連公交車時刻安排說明都只有日語。據說,日本人喜歡來關島的原因只是想看看傳說中的美國到底是什麼樣。

關島夜景

Accepting refugees is not an obligation

The "Muslim Ban"

Recently, US President Trump signed an executive order banning national from seven countries to enter the US territory, even if he is a green card holder. The ban has been criticized heavily. Many media interpreted this ban as a "Muslim Ban". Such irresponsible interpretations are strongly provocative, which not only angered the American multiculturalists but also enraged Islamic Jihadists. Although the populations of the seven countries are predominantly Muslim, this does not apply to Muslims from all countries. Thus so-called "Muslim ban" is completely distorting the facts.

The first needed to be declared is that I do not support this ban signed by President Trump, because it is unnecessarily too strict, affecting many people confirmed no threat to the United States. I can totally understand President Trump and many Americans' urgent need for security, hoping to shut out terrorism. In fact, what is needed is just to strengthen the visa processing, as well as the immigration control. This would achieve the same or even better results. After all, terrorists are not only from these countries. Many are even holding EU passports. The seven countries are not all "dangerous", such as Iran, where the so-called terrorism has no foundation among the majority of the population who believe in Shia Islam.

Trump opponents tried to misinterpret the ban, saying it to be a prelude to the expulsion of all immigrants. They say soon Trump will deport Mexicans, Chinese, and even all the other "people of color" or "non-Christians". He is simply Hitler II. However, the US president is not the emperor, and therefore he does not have such a power. On February 3, a Seattle federal judge suspended the ban nationwide. In this regard, Trump is still appealing. No matter who is right, this reflected the separation of powers in the United States. If an order is not widely accepted, it is doomed to fail.

Why the United States has no obligation to accept refugees

I believe the intent of the ban contains the restriction to the refugee influx. CNN who has always been opposed to Trump also recently reported that tens of thousands of refugees with visas are affected by the ban. At this point, I support Trump's decision, because no matter what country the refugee is from, he should be prohibited.

At any time, it is a disaster when a large number of refugees flood into a country. Since the beginning of the war in Syria, millions of refugees entered into Germany through the "Balkan route" benefiting from Merkel's "Welcome Policy", and settled down there. These people do not all come from Syria or other countries at war, but also from relatively safe North African countries, such as Morocco. Merkel's Welcome Policy were not for those economic migrants from safe countries, but facing the influx of millions of refugees, even the identification of the country of origin of the refugees is a problem. How could they do a detailed background check? The consequence of the policy to Germany and other European countries is the deterioration of public security. The public is under the growing threat of terrorism.

A country has no obligation to accept refugees from other countries. Sovereign is a kind of collective property of citizens. Specifically, the right of abode and citizenship are privileges, rather than so-called "natural rights". As a refugee, fleeing is your own freedom, but this is not a reason for other countries to accept you. Countries receiving refugees, like the rich making donations, deserve respect. But countries which do not accept refugees should not be criticized. Requiring a country to accept refugees, is like forcing the rich to donate. It is a moral coercion. Refugees may leave their countries, but it is foolish if you expect other countries to accept you or accuse the country which does not accept you.

Refugees are living in difficult conditions. Indeed, they deserve sympathy. But at the same time, this is due to failures of their own countries. Such failures are accumulated by their progenitors. These people, as their descendants who inherited the blood, should inherit the status of their countries, too, like the people of Western countries inherited everything from their industrious ancestors. Freedom in a country is never free. Everybody is born not equal because there is no isolated individual. Everyone inherits everything from the ancestors, including genes, culture, property, place of birth and citizenship. It is a right for people living in war-torn countries to flee, but the attempts to live in someone else's homeland is not a human right and is not the obligation to other countries. To have the privilege, they need to be recognized and approved by the country they immigrate to. The approvals may be through investment which helps the economy, the expertise as skilled migrants, or just common culture, for example, many European countries are more willing to accept Christians from Syria. All in all, you have the freedom to flee your country, but other countries have no obligation to be your refuge.

I think it is in line with the national interests of the United States for Trump to limit refugees, and to increase the requirements for immigrants based on skills or investments.

Arguments

Many people who oppose Trump's refugee policy may have arguments, like:

1 "Universal Declaration of Human Rights" supports "freedom of movement".

Yes, it is written like this:

Article 13.

  1. Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the borders of each state.
  2. Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country.

Article 14.

  1. Everyone has the right to seek and to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution.
  2. This right may not be invoked in the case of prosecutions genuinely arising from non-political crimes or from acts contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations.

If you read carefully, you will see Article 13 only mentioned the freedom of movement within the borders, and to leave and return to his own country. The Article 14 limited to political asylum. After all, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is just a declaration and does not have any binding.

2 Many countries have signed the "Refugee Convention".

The convention has only the rule of "no deportation" and does not mention anything about entry to a certain country. Moreover, the convention only applies to political refugees, not including refugees of war, natural disasters, economic reasons or any other form.

3 It is like China, Soviet Union or North Korean to disallow people to move.

The communist countries are/were restricting people's freedom of movement within the territory, as well as the freedom to leave their country. This is totally different from the prohibition of arbitrary entry of foreigners.

4 US interfered in Middle East wars, leaving a mess, and therefore the US has the obligation to admit these refugees.

There is not enough evidence that the refugee problem in the Middle East is only caused by the United States. Sectarianism and extremism made more people homeless. As for the US invasion of Iraq, each part has no obligation to accept the belligerent other's refugees.

5 If every country is so cold-blooded, where do refugees go?

Wherever refugees go, it is their freedom. Of course, for most people who are unable to obtain the right of abode in other countries, they should stay, try to end the wars and rebuild their countries.

6 Refugees can increase cultural diversity.

Maybe, but is "cultural diversity" really a good thing as many imagine? Stay tuned for my next article "Criticism of multiculturalism."

Jihadists

byvoid.com is now AMP enabled

After a redevelopment, my website (byvoid.com) has supported AMP now. Specificically, when you open any article on byvoid.com on a mobile phone, such as this one, you will see the AMP version. The AMP page loads several times faster than the desktop version and the original mobile version, and requires less traffic, mainly thanks to the dynamic image loading.

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Similar technologies

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China's most popular instant messenger "Wechat" and micro-blog "Weibo" are also similar to Facebook.

Unfortunately, these technologies can only be used in their "walled gardens". AMP is a real open source project and standard. Google only helps you cache AMP pages, and use the cache to accelerate page loading when users click on Google search results only.

Journey through Moldova - I

This article is machine-translated by Google.

Referred to "Moldova" in this country, I am afraid that most people's first reaction is "heard." This small country in Eastern Europe presence in the world is very low indeed. On the population of Moldova only a few more than three million, while land area equivalent to the Netherlands, there are 16 million. On the economy, Moldova ranked last in Europe, GDP per capita is less than $ 2,000, is China's third than Ukraine, Kosovo is even lower. On the history and culture, it seems to be no significant historical events occurred. Why should I go in this country? To attract my "Transnistria Republic."

Moldova was once part of the Soviet Union, now sandwiched between Romania and Ukraine, two Eastern European countries, the country as individuals born in the Soviet Union in 1991, its predecessor was the "Moldavian Soviet Socialist Autonomous Republic" of the Soviet Union Russian abbreviation Moldavia (Moldavia). After months of careful planning, in March 2016, I finally came to Moldova personally. Why do I call this behavior journey through it? On the one hand because I travel from west to east, from south to north through the most about this country, on the other hand is as if I had time and space through the general returned to the Soviet era, as well as the history of Moldavia.

"Transnistria"

"Transnistria Republic" is one of the few countries not generally recognized in Europe, it is also considered pro-Russian separatists. The country is located in the eastern part of Moldova, Transnistria zone, most of the territory is located in Transnistria, so called "Transnistria", "outside of the Dniester River." Transnistria's independence from the Soviet Union Moldova's civil war, the cause is due to the Transnistria Slavs dissatisfaction Moldovan authorities tried to incorporate Romania and cancellation of official status of the Russian language. Russia sent a peacekeeping force to interfere civil war, and the garrison has become a patron of Transnistria, a de facto government of Moldova has never ruled Transnistria.

Transnistria Republic on many occasions asked to join the Russian Federation, but did not receive a positive response in Russia. Status of this country have not been recognized by any major country, including Russia. Similarly in Abkhazia, South Ossetia and Karabakh three countries, together with Transnistria, the four pro-Russian separatists since 2007 mutual recognition and establishment of diplomatic relations (recently seemed also added " Donetsk people's Republic " and " Luhansk people's Republic ").

I've always been such a national convergence zone has a very strong interest, plus it is a part of the Soviet Union, I deepened my desire. Many countries joined the Soviet Union and its satellites are the downfall of the night, as if frozen in time that era, cause for regret. Personally visit these sites, brought me more shocked beyond words (see my Bulgarian Exploration and Kosovo a day exploring ).

Moldova History

Moldova and Romania deep ties, because most of the residents of Moldova are the Romance languages ​​Romanians. Moldova historical region contains the Carpathians to the Prut river between the western half and the Prut River to the eastern half of the Dniester River, which is also called the Eastern Bessarabia ( Bessarabia) . Today, the Republic of Moldova is located in Bessarabia, in Romania's western half is also called Moldova region (Romania by the Wallachia, Moldova and Transylvania Transco composition).

Romanian constitution

In the fifteenth century, Stefan III unified from the Carpathians to the Dniester Moldovan principality, and successfully resisted the expansion of the Ottoman Empire. But then the Ottoman Empire was occupied by Moldova, and ruled for two hundred years. Early nineteenth century Russo-Turkish war , the defeat of the Ottoman Empire and ceded Bessarabia to the Russian Empire. The early twentieth century, Bessarabia briefly independent, but then re-occupied by the Soviet Union. The southern half of the Soviet Bessarabia was ceded to Ukraine, the northern half of the establishment of the "Moldavian Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic", which is the predecessor of today's Republic of Moldova.

Moldavia

The old capital of Moldova - Iasi

My journey began in Moldova through the trip from Cluj - Napoca to Iasi overnight train, both locations in Romania. Since Basel Feike Lu straight day - Napoca, I chose to fly to Cluj - Napoca, in some local exploring, then take a train to the capital in the history of Moldavia Iasi. Incidentally, Cluj - Napoca (Cluj-Napoca), Transco was the capital of Transylvania (Transylvania) in the past but also a large number of German-speaking inhabitants, called German Klausenburg. Cluj The word comes from the Latin clausus, and Klause homologous, meaning both "canyon", Cluj - Napoca is located gorge. And Napoca is a few decades ago to emphasize the historical identity of the Romanians, with Dacia language name. Transylvania can be split into Latin trans "outer" and silva "forest", meaning the place across the forest.

I advance on the Romanian railway site to buy Advanced single box of ticket ( ticket PDF ), as long as the price of RON 181.05, as long as the equivalent of less than 40 euros. Romanian train senior box is in very good condition, it can be locked to ensure safe, clean and comfortable bunks inside the box as well as sinks and electrical outlets. Train from Cluj departure time is 21:29 at night, to Daya Xi time is 6:49, just right for a night to sleep comfortably.

Then to Iasi, I went to the bus station next to the train station and asked to go to the Moldovan capital Chisinau car. Timetable is not very useful, basic or ask to be on the spot to confirm the departure time. Migrants may be power driven, may also be due to leave the communist-era system of basic education, general English proficiency young Eastern European countries is also good, even if it is less developed, no foreigner place. Confirmed the departure of a group of minibus after 9:30, I teach the Iasi. Minibus conditions in general, inexpensive, as long as 35 Romanian lei, the equivalent of seven euros, although you can also hear a counter-offer.

Moldova Iasi is the cultural and religious center, there are many Orthodox churches. Despite being more than seven in the morning, every church, there are many devout believers, most of the elderly. There are many church door selling candles and some branches of vendors, go to church almost every people will buy it, probably the local religious customs. Iasi not only has a long history of many churches from the war, there are many new churches, more modern interior.

Iasi Church

The largest center of Iasi, the most beautiful building is a palace, was the "People's Cultural Palace Iasi."

People's Cultural Palace Iasi

Iasi There are many communist imprint from red scarf on Pepsi ads can be seen.

Iasi red scarf

Entering "Transnistria Republic"

Moldovan capital Chisinau Iasi to two hundred kilometers, taking into account the infrastructure, backward Eastern European countries, is estimated to fifty-six hours to get to. Surprisingly, after only three and a half hours less bumpy ride, I went to Chisinau. Chisinau after, I bought a local phone card for Internet access, the clerk comes to Transnistria before you buy can also be used, in fact, not the line. 4G unlimited traffic card price 30 days as long as 50 Moldovan, almost as long as 2 euros. I found the phone traffic communist countries of Eastern Europe before the price is very cheap, including Russia, Ukraine, the Caucasus and the former Yugoslavia to join the country. These countries may be left over from a huge infrastructure, but per capita income is very low, so in order to have cheap communication. On the other hand should thank Huawei, many operators of the communications infrastructure in these countries have used Huawei equipment, but also cheap quality assurance.

Near the bus station just had something to eat, and at the station near the bazaar around the shop, I got on a minibus to Transnistria capital Tiraspol. The minibus cheaper, as long as 36.5 Moldovan, which is less than 2 euros. We drove one hour later, we went to the Dniester River "border checkpoints," this is not a border checkpoint, but checkpoint Transnistria unilaterally established. That is, since Moldova does not recognize Transnistria independence, no freedom of movement in "the territory of Moldova" set limits. The other side of the Dniester River consider themselves an independent country, so of course you want to set up a border. This side of the border there, while there is no border situation like Serbia and Kosovo ( Kosovo Travels ).

Transnistria border checkpoint

Checkpoint police car owner came to check identity documents, because I was the only foreigner, it was brought to the checkpoint hut registration status. When asked about the registration on me to do, and the residence address, and then gave me a printed "immigration card." It is said that immigrants do not lose the card, otherwise it will exit in big trouble.

Transnistria immigration card

Is 70 km from Chisinau, on the road spent a total of half an hour, I finally arrived at the legendary Tiraspol. Tiraspol bus station in front of the train station, in fact, no specific bus station, just a few stops only. I saw to Moscow, St. Petersburg, Sochi, Yalta, Kiev, Odessa stop sign, showing a much closer Transnistria with Russia, Ukraine ties than with Moldova, Romania ties.

Tiraspol Train Station

The typical architectural style of the Soviet Union Station. While read Cyrillic Romanian гара (gara), the other side says Russian вокзал (vokzal).

Tiraspol train schedules

Inside the train station hanging year timetable (possibly the Soviet era), who here is a transportation hub, with several classes to Moscow by train, as well as to the Crimean capital of Simferopol, the Bulgarian coastal city every day Varna, and even as far as the Arctic Circle to the city of Murmansk. After the fall of the Soviet Union allies, the gradual decline of passenger rail, bus became the main alternative modes of transportation. Today, only two lines have been Tiraspol, Chisinau to Moscow is one, one is Chisinau to Odessa.

Moldova there is little tourism, but very few people visit the Dniester River. Tiraspol I stayed at a place called Go Tiraspol Hostel where a Soviet-style community located upstairs (now renamed the Lenin Street Hostel). Go Tiraspol Hostel is a time not long opened youth hostel, in fact, more should be said that B & B, is Dmitri sideline business. In Transnistria, even if it is for any business operating hotels are very difficult. In order to avoid regulatory authorities (blackmail), Dmitri gave me another address when registration for entry, but do not know why immigration officials said address is not valid point, I had to provide a real address. Because of my "migrant card" valid for only one day, but I want to stay for two nights, Dmitri also specifically took me to the local police station to register, to extend my immigration card is valid.

After the registration finished, I went to a nearby supermarket which changed the local currency "Transnistrian ruble." Local banks do not seem to connect with the outside world, all ATM machines can only use a local bank card, so I can only take cash for euro. Transnistrian ruble is the currency in a completely controlled by the authorities, all the same price points redemption, and bid-ask spread is not small. I use 1: 12.6 exchange rate change of 20 euros.

Transnistrian ruble

Transnistrian ruble by Transnistria issue of the Central Bank of the Republic, is the only local legal tender. Moldovan can not be used in the local area, but can be exchanged. In turn, the control region of Moldova, Transnistrian ruble is waste paper, simply can not be redeemed. Transnistrian ruble the most unique place in that it has three rubles, 5 rubles, 10 rubles plastic coins, game cards like the same.

Transnistrian ruble coins

Transnistria price is very cheap, cheaper than Moldova, but mainly low-end services and products related to the labor force. Prices of local high places is not cheap, not local people generally affordable. Since the first night really do not know what to eat, so he walked into an upscale restaurant. Elegant surroundings restaurant, elegant decoration, customer looks are rich. I ordered a barbecue and Dniester style red soup, red soup taste very good, with freshly baked bread, sliced ​​garlic, can be said to be the best I have tasted drink red soup. The last price is 142 rubles, equivalent to 11.2 euros. The price is cheap for lunch the next day I was five times the price.

Tiraspol upscale dinner

After dinner I was the only one returned youth hostels, Dmitri his friend Irina also called over, second and third day of the planned itinerary. Irina is a local English teacher, Dmitri let her take me the next day to visit Tiraspol and Bender near the castle, she can be considered a low-income subsidy. The three of us chatted for a long time, they introduced me to all aspects of the Dniester River. Most Russians Dniester River want to join Russia, not because, as a resource, it is not internationally recognized small countries, their development is too limited a. Here the Russians generally have at least two passports, someone has three or even four. First Transnistria Republic passport, the passport documents only when the domestic use, there is no national recognition.

Transnistria passport

Secondly, Russia may apply for a passport in Russia, Ukraine Ukraine may apply for a passport, if the two countries have relatives, then two passports can apply. Finally, some people still apply for a passport Moldova, purely in the EU in order to facilitate travel (visa), most people do not want to apply for self-esteem Moldova passport. Dmitri had Transnistria, Russia, Moldova three passports.

Income of local civilian population is very low, basically the lowest level in Europe, probably with considerable Ukraine, in terms of monthly salary is about 100 euros. Due to low local price, according to purchasing power parity, I guess probably the equivalent of 250 euros purchasing power in Germany. Taking into account the income of local people, local imports can be said to be expensive. Russia and Ukraine similar, Transnistria's economy is controlled oligarchy "dual economic system." The so-called binary and refers to the middle class in this country no social structure, society is split to the wealthy few and the vast majority of the poor. Due to currency instability, things are a little bit expensive euro, dollar-denominated, while the local currency inflation seriously. Long-term result of the high inflation is to master a large number of assets, foreign exchange rich are getting richer, the poor hands of only the local currency has been poor. This social structure seems very unstable, we are not afraid of the poor rich rebel it? Of course afraid, so rich in basic property in Switzerland, Panama, Cyprus and obtain a passport ready Pao Lu.

By and Dmitri, Irina chat, and later observed, Transnistria also retained similar to the Soviet economic system. Former state enterprises were privatized several oligarchs, of which the most prominent is called a Sheriff ) Group, in business for supermarkets, gas stations, restaurants, factories, import and export, football, almost all industries. Transnistria people to be proud to work for Sheriff. Sheriff and governments, central banks are closely related, and even can be said that corporate control of the economy of the whole country Dniester ruble is almost Sheriff Group coupon.

Transnistria Central Bank

In addition to Sheriff Group, as well as industrial plants Transnistria and Russian military bases. Dmitri special day trip back took me to the south along the Dniester River near the Ukrainian border on a Soviet-era legacy of power plants.

Living in Switzerland (IV): The frontier of civilizations

This article is machine-translated by Google.

European continent on the map from Brussels to Trieste even a line can be drawn with the intersection of the two peoples. This intersection is the core zone with European culture, starting from the Belgian capital of Brussels, Luxembourg connections, through Alsace, along the Rhine, arriving in Basel, Switzerland, and then continue south through Bern, wear along the glaciers in the Alps east Ticino over ridges and valleys Graubünden Engadine, and then connect the Italian South Tyrol, to the southeast reach of the Slovenian border town of Gorizia, finally connecting the Adriatic port city where ya Manchester. This line is what I conceived Brussels - Trieste line, I call it "Germanic - Latin civilization split band" ( the Google the My Maps ).

This line roughly sketched out the Latin and Germanic peoples ethnic boundaries, not only is the boundary Germanic and Latin civilization, but also the most densely populated in Europe, the most historical monuments convergence zone. In central Switzerland, this line has become an important buffer two peoples. In the southeast end of this line, the only European or Germanic, Latin and Slavic three ethnic crossroads - Trieste.

Brussels - Trieste

Brussels

From northwest to southeast, Brussels is the first big city to bring division, which is located in the middle of Belgium, the Flemish region in the French enclave. Belgium, France and the Netherlands buffer zone north of the Dutch-speaking Flemish region, the southern French-speaking Wallonia, there is a small part of the eastern German population. Brussels is located in the Dutch region, but it is a French city, showing its long cultural integration. Before the rise of English, French has been the lingua franca of the European continent, but Dutch and German and even English is considered to be no culture of language, and a country all in French is a very natural thing, even if it is by the Dutch language siege. The figure is the Grand Place in Brussels.

Brussels

Luxembourg

Along the dividing line between the French and Dutch, with a touch of the split area is next to Luxembourg. Similar and Belgium, Luxembourg is a buffer zone between the empire, which has a large number of Luxembourgish (German dialect) residents, but also the French city of Luxembourg city, visible cultural dominance of the French language. Luxembourg With its crossroads position as the EU and the richest countries within the euro zone.

Luxembourg City

Alsace

Su Rhine and on the split strap through the Alsace region of France. Alsace was one of the major causes of conflict Germany and France, are alternately occupied countries. For this historical reason, the EU set up a special World War II many of the bodies established in Strasbourg the capital of Alsace (French Strasbourg, German Strassburg). Germany and France's rapprochement is the most important EU political foundation.

Many people know Daudet's "Last Lecture" , tells the story of the German occupation of Alsace, were assimilated German education story. The story is the narrative perspective of the French population, and the fact is that most of the Alsatian dialect-speaking residents of Alsace is a Germanic language, very different with the French. Alsace nationalism and national identities are still controversy spawned Alsace independence movement. The picture below is my 2014 winter in Alsace, the famous town of Colmar (Colmar) captured procession.

Alsace Independent

Basel

Continue along the Rhine, to Dadefarui tri-border city of Basel, a German city. City of Basel can be traced back to Roman times, the east of Basel near Augusta Lao Lika Roman Empire important line of defense on the Rhine, it is as a stronghold of the Roman Empire began the conquest of the Gauls and Germans expansion. Basel is always traffic center, because from here, off to the North Rhine and navigation capability greatly enhanced.

As tripoint, Basel has three railway stations, belonging to the Swiss Federal Railways (SBB), Deutsche Bahn (DB) and the French National Railways (SNCF). Switzerland and France, where the station stand, located in the south bank of the Rhine, Germany Baden Train Station called, according to the German state of Baden-Wuerttemberg name, located in the north shore of the Rhine. The figure is the train station in Basel, Switzerland.

Basel, Switzerland train station

Basel also has a territory of France St. Louis Airport, 名叫巴塞尔 - Mulhouse - Freiburg airport, also known as the European airport (EuroAirport). The airport is only two European airports condominium, set in Switzerland and the French Quarter area within the airport. Before Switzerland joined the Schengen Agreement, the airport has a complex transit area, and there is a direct airport Basel without crossing roads. The airport has three different IATA airport code, respectively, BSL, MLH, and EAP.

Basel - Mulhouse - Freiburg airport

All the way from the Alps to the southeast depth Basel until the Gotthard Pass. Here is the dividing line between Italian and German-speaking area of ​​Switzerland, as well as the Mediterranean climate of the watershed. In 1882, the Swiss repair pass through Gotthard Pass, 15 km-long rail tunnel across the Alps from road is no longer impossible for the county. 2016, a hundred years later, after 17 long years of construction, repair Swiss again through a 57-kilometer Gotthard Base Tunnel .

Engadine valley

Alps along the ridge to the east, is the Grisons Engadine valley. Where the first language is Romansh , Switzerland In addition to German, French, Italian fourth official language. Romansch Although the number is very small, but it is an ancient language, once widespread Alps gorge. And in different German Alps, Romansh is the Latin family scarce remaining in the Alps region. Starting from the Roman Empire conquered Gaul, across the Alps from north to south of Rome gradually nation whose language is popular Latin instead. After the rise of the Germanic people, the residents of the Alps valleys speaking Latin began a thousand years of Germanic. An important clue is not far from Zurich southeast of Lake Walen (walensee), which see the German "lake" means, but walen to modern German welsch homologous ultimately from Proto-Indo-European language of walhaz , meaning is "foreign," "exotic." welsch has also expressed in Swiss German is spoken by people, including French, Italian and Romansch. Today, Valencia is located in Lake unquestionably German-speaking Switzerland, and its name is revealed here in the naming of the Romance language-speaking ethnic group of the land, is perhaps Romansh ancestors.

Turning back to the Engadine valley, to say my favorite views in Switzerland where, no doubt is the Engadine valley. Here in addition to a unique Romansch, as well as the most original ecological scenery of Switzerland. This original ecology from sparsely populated and inaccessible. Trains here is relatively small, and not stop at every station, if you need to get off, as required in the bus, like prior request to stop the press. Below is my Engadine valley mountain town of Guarda photos.

Engadine valley - Guarda

Engadine valley is the largest town in Scuol (Scuol). Scuol is famous for its hot springs, from Roman times, where it already has a spa, it is now a major tourist attraction of the land. The figure is the canyon of Scuol, visited in October 2015 becoming cooler autumn occasion.

Engadine valley - Scuol

South Tyrol

Leave Switzerland from the eastern end of the Engadine valley, into Italy's Bolzano mountains. Bolzano also called South Tyrol, Austria and North Tyrol belong together in the Tyrolean mountains. Residents of South Tyrol is the main German-speaking inhabitants, it was once part of Austria. But after World War I, Austria vanquished the South Tyrol was ceded to Italy. Italy, under the leadership of Mussolini began a resident of South Tyrol German campaign of repression, attempting to Italy of this, but was not very successful. In recent years, South Tyrolean secessionist movement intensified, forcing the Italian had to make concessions and to grant rights to South Tyrol autonomous region.

South Tyrol and Engadine valley adjacent to the scenery is much better. Traveled around Europe, I still feel South Tyrol only be called paradise. Here lake intoxicated meantime, so far aftertaste.

South Tyrol scenery

Gorizia - Nova Gorica

Continue southeast from South Tyrol Alps before the trip departure, arrived in Italy and Slovenia border - Venezia Giulia Region (Venezia Giulia). Venezia Giulia conflict frontline Latinos and Slavs, the Italian border town of Gorizia (Gorizia) and Slovenia Nova Gorica (Nova Gorica) is to be divided into two cities. Gorizia and Nova Gorica at the junction of the outer square Alps from Italy Gorizia see the square opposite the train station is a station in Nova Gorica, Slovenia. Here was the front line of the Cold War, Yugoslavia repaired wall "Little Berlin Wall" in 2007 after Slovenia joined the Schengen Agreement was finally removed. The wall of the city into two Gorizia, Italy belong to the South train station, Gare du Nord belong to Slovenia. The train station was the Austro-Hungarian Empire, outside the Alpine railway (Transalpine Railway) between important sites from Vienna to Trieste, and now as long as a few trains still running.

I visited in March this year when Gorizia, a quiet and peaceful here. If not doing homework beforehand, you may feel humble here, completely unable to imagine I was standing on the front line of the Cold War.

Square outside the Alps

Slovenia border - Italian Alps outside on the square

Gorizia and Nova Gorica name is typically the same name in a different language variants, Italian Gorizia from Slovenian Gorica. Gorica can be divided into gora and -ica, where gora meaning "mountain", -ica Yugoslav language suffix indicating "small", so Gorica's means "the hill." This is a very rare Slavic enter the Latin name of the city, at the junction of the Latin and Slav-Venezia Giulia, Istria (Istria) and Dalmatia (Dalmatia), most of the city names are Latin language as a strong input Slavic.

Trieste

South along the foothills of the Alps, and finally arrived in the city is the port on the Adriatic Sea - Trieste. Deepest Trieste in the Adriatic, is a natural harbor. Trieste is also worthy of the only European crossroads of Latin, Germanic and Slavic three civilized peoples. It originated in Roman times, it was built after Caesar's conquest in Istria. During the thirteenth century, the Republic of Venice occupied Trieste, and then presented to the Austro-Hungarian Empire, the Austro-Hungarian Empire to become the only access to the sea. Between the Austro-Hungarian Empire occupied for centuries, Trieste became a German city, culture closer to Central Europe, the Mediterranean instead. In the outskirts of Trieste, a seaside castle - Miramare. The castle was built in the nineteenth century, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, is a palace. No matter the style of the castle interiors or gardens, are exactly like moved here from Vienna, rather than the style of the Adriatic Sea. However, it is really very beautiful, I've been so far still the most beautiful seaside palace.

On the outskirts of Trieste Miramare Castle

After the collapse of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, World War I, the Italian occupation of Trieste, he began to re-Latinized movement. In fact, only several hundred years, the city is Trieste Germans, Slavs surrounding countryside are Slovenia. Although Mussolini forcibly suppressed Slovenia, did not change the racial makeup of the city outside. The edge of the town of Trieste Villa Opicina and Trieste mountaineering tram connections, charming scenery along the way. However, Villa Opicina is in fact a small town inhabited by Slavs, from its name can be seen. It itself is called Opcina, meaning in Slavic language is the "community", "city."

The latter part of World War II, Yugoslav strongman Tito occupied Trieste opportunity to try to incorporate it into Yugoslavia, on the grounds that most areas are Slavic-speaking population. But it is the Italian city of Trieste for the passage of the language, so after the war the Allies established the Free Territory of Trieste, divided into A, B two districts, each occupied by the Anglo-American and Yugoslavia. Trieste city and area includes the northern zone A, and B, the southern zone. This tension lasted for many years, in 1975, Italy and Yugoslavia signed the secret Treaty of Osimo, finally admitted the fact that occupation. After the disintegration of Yugoslavia, Area B belong to Slovenia and Croatia both countries.

On the outskirts of Trieste Miramare Castle

Living in Switzerland (III): The ethnic map of Eastern European

This article is machine-translated by Google.

Latin and Germanic Europe in addition to the two peoples, as well as Slavs and many other nationalities. Slavs is Europe's most populous nation, not Slavs, ethnic map of Europe eclipsed. At first before coming to Europe, my nation in Europe and there is nothing very detailed understanding, especially large tracts of land in Eastern Europe, is simply a black hole. After a year of traveling, I finally have been to all the European countries except Belarus (including the fact that an independent Kosovo and Transnistria). These countries, each have their own nation's history, each with its own language, each have their own culture, in which the feud and bad, 箇中 what, after all, is to speak out. Want to understand the European crossroads of the Swiss armed neutrality, we can not understand the first European nation. So I "lived in Switzerland mind" series, this one is inserted.

Europe 1923 National Atlas

If the Germans and Latins inhabited place is Western Europe, Eastern Europe, so vast it is almost Slavs dominated territory. Slavs can be divided into the East Slavs, West Bluff and Yugoslavs. East Slavs is also Russians, Ukrainians and Belarusians. West Slavs including Poles, Czechs and Slovaks. Yugoslavs constitute the most complex, including the Slovenes, Serbs, Croats, Bosnians, Montenegrins, Macedonians and Bulgarians, including the most complex relationship.

Byzantine successor - All Russia

The largest ethnic Slavs East Slavs, the so-called all-Russia : Great Russia, Little Russia, Belarus: (the Great, the Little and the White). Great Russia is now Russia, mainly from the expansion of the Moscow principality. Little Russia is Ukraine, although the territory is not small, but it is relatively large in Russia is relatively small, its capital Kiev was the first country of the East Slavs of Kievan Rus birthplace. Kievan Rus Scandinavians have long been the rule, so the Russian people and the Nordic Germanic people have complex origins. Belarus (Belarus) is both a translation of the Chinese name is a transliteration, which means white Bela, and Beo homologous Belgrade (Beograd) "White City".

East Slavs use text dates back to the First Bulgarian Empire, the Greek missionaries Cyril and beauty Dodd invented the Glagolitic alphabet , and later his disciples and according to legend, the Greek alphabet to improve the Glagolitic alphabet, so called for the Cyrillic alphabet .

East Slavs exactly have to say, is to use the Cyrillic letter Orthodox people, such as Russia, Macedonia, Bulgaria. Orthodox religion was once the Byzantine Empire, in the Middle Ages for a thousand years has been known as the Roman Empire inherited the legal system. In the fifteenth century, the Byzantine Empire and finally the Ottoman Turks conquered the repeated destruction, the former world metropolis of Constantinople became Istanbul Turks. Russia thinks Byzantine orthodox successor, the new self-appointed guardian of the East. Russian flag and national emblem of the double-headed eagle is the symbol of the Byzantine Empire inherited. Since then hundreds of years in the Russian Empire launched SECOND Russo-Turkish war , the ultimate goal is to recover Constantinople.

Russia's double-headed eagleByzantine double-headed eagle

Interestingly, many Islamic countries, including Turkey flag on the moon and stars symbol is actually Constantinople city flag, it originated in ancient Greece, but it became the national symbol of Islam. The following figures are Turkish and Byzantine moon and stars moon and stars.

Turkey moon and starsByzantine moon and stars

West Bluff and "do not talk to people."

West Slavs and Germans distributed in areas adjacent to Central Europe, including Poland and Czechoslovakia. Western Slavs from the Middle Ages to the Germans has been ruled directly or indirectly, in the shadow of Germanic culture. West Slavs adopted the Latin alphabet, especially by German spelling affected. For example, and German, the actual pronunciation of the Polish alphabet w / v /. Shenzhen West Slavs Germanic cultural influences that originated in the Middle Ages the Holy Roman Empire (the so-called "neither holy, nor Roman, but non-imperial") rule. As the Czech capital of Prague, it was once the largest city in the Holy Roman Empire.

West Bluff and the Germans on a long history of living together and now Slavs living in Pomerania , East Prussia , Silesia , Bohemia , Moravia , and even the Volga River basin have had a lot of Germans. Compared to the local Slavs, Germans mastered the more advanced civilization, the monopoly of the local city of culture, trade and industry and commerce. The Slavs places mainly farmers, living in the surrounding cities. This situation continued until the end of the war, after the defeat of Germany, a large number of Germans living in Eastern Europe have been forcibly deported to Germany , even in local life has been for hundreds of years people are not immune. Mathematician Euler was in East Prussia Konigsberg long-term residents, and made famous Seven Bridges of Königsberg , thereby creating a graph theory. Konigsberg is now in Russia's Baltic enclave of Kaliningrad , a no Germans. In contrast, in a West Slavic Sorbian people , still living in Germany, Saxony and Brandenburg.

At the time of the Slavs opinion, these German people completely understand exactly speaking alien languages. This makes Slavic in German is called немецкий (nemetskiy), origin of the word is немой (nemoy), which means dumb. So he said the German people is the "dumb people" the.

From the beginning of the 17th century, many Protestant Germans mass migration to the United States. Most of these people come from southern Germany to the north of Switzerland Alamein Virginia and West Slavs and mixed population of Moravia, the first major gathering in Pennsylvania, known as Pennsylvania Dutch .

Yugoslavia - Europe's powder keg

Slavs from a thousand years ago and gradually into the Balkans, and slowly assimilated the indigenous Illyrians . Balkan Slavs for a long period of time are Byzantine, Venetian powers, Austria and other indiscriminate treat as barbarians, until the Ottoman Empire ruled most of the Balkans. Ottoman rule philosophy is different ethnic divide and rule, is actually means Millett system (Millet) . Millett similar ethnic autonomous system, but the difference is that there is no fixed area in favor of nationalities live together. In a region inhabited by various ethnic groups, everyone is subordinate to a Millett, all religious, legal, and economic activities, including taxation, including by Millett responsible. Almost all the powers and duties of the Ottoman sultans are decentralized Millett, Millette leaders by the specific discretion. Millett is a mix of religious and ethnic groups, mainly through religion, rather than linguistic groups. Millett system eventually led to ethnic divisions. Balkan Slavs under Ottoman rule, gradually differentiate into Serbs (Orthodox), Croats (Catholics), Bosniaks (Muslims), and a little distant source of pro-Bulgarians (Orthodox).

In addition to the Ottoman Empire, the Balkans as well as under the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Slovenia control, as well as Latin-controlled Dalmatia (Dalmatia) States - the Venetian Republic and the Republic of Ragusa. Ottoman Empire had only in the Adriatic sea just nem (Neum), now part of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, the ancient city of Dubrovnik (Ragusa) became the enclave. Complex ethnic relations and geopolitical powers such that the Balkans into a wrestling arena, there is the "powder keg of Europe", said. World War I was triggered took place in Sarajevo (Sarajevo). Ironically, a hundred years later, Sarajevo is still not out of the title of a powder keg, and now the Republika Srpska tensions and Bosnians continued.

After World War II, Croatia was born political strongman Tito (Tito) with the support of the Soviet Union with an iron fist unified Yugoslavia, it just has a few hundred years each ethnic feud of the twisted strands of a rope. The disintegration of the former Yugoslavia, the country, once so to describe:

 `七條國境(意大利、奧地利、匈牙利、羅馬尼亞、保加利亞、希臘、阿爾巴尼亞)六個共和國(斯洛文尼亞、克羅地亞、塞爾維亞、波黑、黑山、馬其頓)五個民族(斯洛文尼亞人、克羅地亞人、塞爾維亞人、黑山人、馬其頓人)四種語言(斯洛文尼亞語、塞爾維亞語、克羅地亞語、馬其頓語)三個宗教(東正教、天主教、伊斯蘭教)兩種文字(拉丁字母、西里爾字母)一個國家(南斯拉夫)` 

This diversity is doomed from the beginning of the birth of Yugoslavia is not stable, then no second Tito "Yugoslavs." History will eventually make it to several brutal bloody war ended, another six republics disintegrated, leaving only Serbia. Even Serbia, and this is still the question of Kosovo (see my Kosovo Travels ).

Several wars of the twentieth century, the Swiss received hundreds of thousands of refugees from Yugoslavia. Today, the Middle East and the influx of refugees in Germany, the rapid influx of refugees difficult to integrate into the local community. Most of the year came to Switzerland Yugoslav refugees not well educated, these people make Switzerland Yugoslavs, or even all Slavs had a very serious prejudice. To this day, the eyes of the Slavs still has a bad impression of the Swiss.

Other nations

In addition to occupy the vast majority of the population of Germanic, Latin and Slav peoples on the European continent these three also many smaller nation, roughly: the Greeks, Celts, Ural people, Balts, Albania people, Basques and Turks, as well as two countries no nation: Jews and Gypsies.

Greek

Origin of Greek civilization is the whole of European civilization, Alexander the Great had been brought to the Far East. Before the Greeks reach the Indus, Buddhism is not idolatry, Greek sculpture is to bring Buddhist statues ( Greek Buddhism ). Although the Greeks created a brilliant civilization, but later Roman Empire was more dazzling brilliance overshadowed, then the Greeks would have been other ethnic domination. Despite the late Byzantine Empire has become a Greek national from a Latin country, modern Greece until the nineteenth century before independence from the Ottoman Empire became the new nation-state. Until the early twentieth century, the Greeks are also widely distributed in the Aegean Sea and the east coast of Anatolia, especially in the Black Sea coast, such as Trebizond (Trabzon). Greece and later the birth of the nation-state of Turkey in 1923 there was a large population exchange , the Greeks from Asia Minor completely left.

Celtic

The Celtics are now Scottish, Welsh, Irish and Breton. In the Roman Empire, the Celtics once the barbarians across the European continent, which is the Gauls. Gauls and Germans had been two scourge of the Roman Empire. In the early period of the Roman Republic, the Gauls had even captured the city of Rome. Period until Julius Caesar, the Roman Empire was thoroughly conquered Gaul. Today Celtics have almost disappeared in Europe, only France, Brittany.

Ural people

In addition to the distribution of people in the Urals in Russia near the Ural Mountains, as well as Hungarians, Finns and Estonians. This nation is considered Eastern barbarians, especially the Hungarians, and the early Middle Ages in Europe raiding "Huns" and even Huns in northern China have a subtle connection.

Balts

Balts is a distant relative Slavs, including Lithuanians and Latvians. As a weak nation Baltic, Balts long lived in the shadow of the East Prussians, Vikings and Russians in the past one hundred years, first by the merger of the German Empire, the Soviet Union after being embezzled.

Albanian

Albanian is an Indo-European-speaking ancient nation, its language and other Indo-European far. The origin of this nation not yet been finalized, but the Albanians consider themselves Roman Empire Illyrian descent. There are a large number of Albanians living in Kosovo and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia parts of Serbia, the Kosovo issue is also consequent. In recent years, many people choose to spend the Albanian Adriatic to Italy to make a living, plus reduce the population of Italy, was born in southern Italy, a lot of the Albanian village.

Basques

Basque is a minority in Spain and France, living in the vicinity of northern Spain and the Pyrenees. The national origin nor conclusive, may not be the Iberian Peninsula Roman assimilation of aboriginal descent. Basque people, almost half are RH negative blood type , this ratio can be described as unique in all nations.

Turks

Turks in addition to the Turks, as well as Crimean Tatars and Orthodox faith Gagauz people . After the Soviet Union collapsed, the Gagauz people tried to Transnistria Russians as independence from Moldova, the establishment of "Gagauz Republic."

Jew

Jews speak flash containing ethnic language, Arabs, Egyptians are closely related. Jewish ancestors founded a monotheistic Judaism is Abraham three religions (Judaism, Christianity and Islam) ancestor. Before Christianization, the Indo-European peoples and India, Iran's Aryan as believe in polytheistic religion. After the destruction of the Jewish kingdom, the Jewish diaspora around the world, and in Europe a thousand years to depend on others, can be described as very unique. Since there is no land, generations of Jews engaged in commerce and industry, under the law of natural selection will become the most business people. But precisely because of deliberately keep a distance from other ethnic groups, Jews always become a target for other nations.

Jews in Switzerland has a very complicated feelings. World War II, to escape Nazi persecution, a large number of Jews fled to Switzerland, these Jews really dodged a bullet. However, Switzerland at the time of the Jews very welcome, the majority of asylum Jews were denied entry, and even trying to have landed the repatriation of Jews to return to Germany. World War II killed a large number of Jews in Switzerland large amounts of deposits is still missing, there are still many Jews the right to organize in the recovery of assets from Switzerland.

Gypsies

Like Jews, Roma is a nation depend on others. But different Jews, Gypsies chose another to survive: in the circus, acrobatics, fill the pot, begging and so on. Gypsies call themselves "Roma", "Gypsy." The name was changed to Egypt, because Europeans first thought that darker skin Gypsies come from Egypt. But the latest study found that , Roma ancestors may be India's Dalits (untouchables). Different traditional culture and genetic make Jews and Gypsies have a different fate and social status.