Skip to main content

EUROPEAN CHRONICLES PART 01: Looking at the history, heritage, and challenges facing the mother continent

Great Britain’s Contribution to Civilisation

When think of the words ‘Britain,’ ‘Great Britain,’ ‘England,’ and/or ‘United Kingdom,’ what comes to mind? Red double-decker buses? The Queen waving from the balcony of Buckingham Palace? Fish and chips, wrapped in newspaper and season with salt and vinegar? Furry-hat Beefeaters? Rugby and cricket?

In the gallery of today’s nation-states, Britain, along with a handful of others, clearly stands in a category called ‘unique.’ Great Britain is a leader among nations and this article will show, in part, its oversized contribution to civilisation. It has had 1,000 years to develop some of the finest traditions, institutions and inventions in history.

Before, if not during, the 2016 Brexit-remain referendum on Britain’s EU membership, a constant refrain came out of Europe. Perhaps not worded so starkly, it essentially said that Britain was no better than any other of the 28 members states in the EU. Instead of complaining about its large EU contribution, or the open borders, or the erosion of sovereignty - the European Union leadership hinted it was time for Britain to ‘pay up,’ ‘stop the whinging,’ and cooperate in building the European project.

Is Britain no different or better than any other country in the EU? Could such wording, even if only implicit, have driven the British electorate towards Brexit? What makes Britain stand out from other European countries?

Consider: Britain has the fourth biggest military, along with the sixth biggest economy in the world. London is a prime economic and banking hub, with over 1 million people employed in the sector. Even after Brexit, this arena is expected to continue and flourish.

Parliamentary Democracy: Thanks to the Magna Carta of 1215, which codified the rights and protections of the people, Britain’s democracy evolved to be highly representative of the people. It has been an inspiration throughout the world. ‘Common law' and ‘rule of law’ have also been a massive contribution to civilisation, starting with those nations that were once under Britain’s rule. The writings of John Locke (1632-1704), English philosopher and physician, the ‘Father of Liberalism,’ greatly influenced Voltaire, Rousseau, and the American revolutionaries, reflected in the American Declaration of Independence.

Constitutional Monarchy: Britain, along with Australia, Canada, New Zealand and other nations, are beneficiaries of this system of government which is demonstrably the most stable of all. The reason is that the head of state is above-politics, representing all parties. In republics, often times the head of state is a politician and has to to do much ‘horse-trading’ in order to get things done. Also, the apolitical monarch/governor general denies absolute power to any of the other branches of government: executive, judiciary, legislative, and military. That’s why a coup d’tat is much less likely in a constitutional monarchy.

Technological progress: Britain spawned an agricultural revolution and an industrial revolution. Charles Babbage invented the first programmable computer in the 1820s. A Briton named Alexander Graham Bell patented the telephone in the USA (1876). The first steam locomotive was given to the world by Richard Trevithick (1804). British inventor John Logie Baird developed the first publicly demonstrated television (1925). Railways, automobiles, and gas turbines, are a British invention.

And here is an interesting point: the world-wide web (www) came out of Britain. First of all, do not confuse this with the American-invented system of networked computers, which we call the internet. A British computer scientist named Tim Berners-Lee developed the system of webpages and websites, using interlinked hypertext documents, which are connected via the internet.

The above is only a very partial list of the technological contributions coming out of Britain.


Popular posts from this blog

A Prophecy for the Church in Malaysia

Malaysia is a very special country - beloved by its citizens and friends worldwide. Malaysia offers a warm welcome, ‘truly Asian’ hospitality, popular spicy food, tropical weather and scenery, and a dynamic local church. The following is a prophecy for the Malaysian church given on May 20, 2017 at Full Gospel Assembly, Kuala Lumpur, (following the introduction).
Introduction to Malaysia (Statistics courtesy of the CIA World Fact Book)
Location: Malaysia is on a peninsula in SE Asia. Singapore is to the south, Thailand to the north, and Indonesia is very close by. Two Malaysian states, Sabah and Sarawak, are located on the island of Borneo to the east of peninsular Malaysia. Borneo is shared by three nations: Malaysia, Brunei, and Indonesia.
Population of Malaysia: 30,949,962;
Ethnic groups: Malay 50%; Chinese 23%; Indigenous 12%; Indian 7%; non-citizens 8%.
Religious Affiliation: Islam 61%; Buddhism 20%; Christian 9%; Hindu 6%
Type of Government: Federal constitutional monarchy with the kin…

President Trump & the Iran Nuclear Deal

It should have come as no surprise. On Tuesday 8 May 2018, United States President Donald Trump made the grand announcement - that the United States was withdrawing from the Iran nuclear deal. He promised to do so during his 2016 Presidential campaign. He repeatedly made noises about this nuclear deal as being the ‘worst deal’ he has ever seen. So Mr. Trump has kept his campaign promise. What, however, does this mean for the world? Is it good news, bad news, or both?
For years, the world has looked with great concern as Iran pursued nuclear power, which, it consistently proclaimed was only for peaceful purposes. Why did a nation with 10% of the world’s oil and the 2nd largest gas reserves need to go nuclear? The Islamic Republic has a well-known habit of proclaiming ‘death’ to America. They predict that Israel will ‘disappear’ within 25 years. Why was Iran developing ballistic missiles that were able to reach all of the Middle East and much of Europe?
Despite the regime’s declared peac…


Just 8 1/2 months shy of his 100th birthday, Evangelist Billy Graham (November 7, 1918 - February 21, 2018) died peacefully at his home in Montreal, North Carolina. His longevity, influence, and role modelling have been epic. In a 60 year plus evangelistic career, it is estimated that he evangelised 210 million people in 185 nations, with 3.2 million recorded decisions for Christ. His most famous phrase in preaching: The Bible Says.
Graham met many world leaders and was confidant to 12 US Presidents. He didn’t limit his ministry to personal appearances: Billy harnessed the media and written material to get the gospel message out. So well-known and respected was Billy Graham that he was called ‘America’s Pastor’ and the ‘Protestant Pope.’ He was given a Presidential Medal of Freedom by Ronald Reagan. Hollywood even gave him his own ‘Billy Graham Star’ on the city’s footpath.

Billy Graham was greatly honoured in life and death. This blog will highlight his greatest legacy: The Bible Says.