Battery 9-10 of the Bucharest's Ring ...
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Panoramic photo by Andrei Zdetoveţchi EXPERT Taken 10:12, 13/09/2009 - Views loading...

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Battery 9-10 of the Bucharest's Ring of Fortifications - Inside room

The World > Europe > Romania

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Bucharest, the capital of Romania, is surrounded by a ring of 18 fortifications built in the late 19th century. At the initiative of King Carol I, a very able military professional formed and trained in Germany, the Belgian general Henri Alexis Brialmont was instructed to design the remarkable defence complex that stretched over a circumference of 72km around the city. Is a series of 18 forts placed at a distance of 4km from each other with another 18 intermediate batteries placed in between the forts. At the beginning of the 20th century, chemical and aeronautical advances rendered the forts obsolete a short while after their completion. Explosives and aerial bombardment made classical fortifications useless in modern warfare. In 1914, the Battle of Liege, in which the German Army broke through fortifications also designed by Brialmont with greater ease than expected, alarmed the authorities in Bucharest. The forts' artillery pieces—all top-notch Krupp cannons—were quickly dismantled and transformed into mobile artillery. Indeed, by 1916, when the German Army was approaching Bucharest, the forts had already been abandoned, and the city was taken without too much difficulty. Today, the military has abandoned most of the forts. Stray dogs seek shelter in some of them; storage space and mushroom-growing facilities are other reported uses. The forts are now in a ruinous state, deteriorating through neglect at an alarming rate. Nothing is being done by the government of the city authorities to redress the situation although the forts would constitute a major international tourist attraction. Although the fortifications are huge structures surrounding European Union’s 6thlargest metropolis, paradoxically not many of Bucharest’s citizens are aware about their existence, a result of the last six decades of communist and post-communist low quality education and lack of interest in their own heritage. Text sources are: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fortifications_of_Bucharest http://historo.wordpress.com/2009/08/29/vauban-type-fortresses-in-romania/

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A: Battery 9-10 of the Bucharest's Ring of Fortifications - Inside room

by Andrei Zdetoveţchi, 10 meters away

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Battery 9-10 of the Bucharest's Ring of Fortifications - Inside room

B: Battery 9-10 of the Bucharest's Ring of Fortifications - Gun room

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C: Battery 9-10 of the Bucharest's Ring of Fortifications - Inside corridor

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This panorama was taken in Romania, Europe

This is an overview of Europe

Europe is generally agreed to be the birthplace of western culture, including such legendary innovations as the democratic nation-state, football and tomato sauce.

The word Europe comes from the Greek goddess Europa, who was kidnapped by Zeus and plunked down on the island of Crete. Europa gradually changed from referring to mainland Greece until it extended finally to include Norway and Russia.

Don't be confused that Europe is called a continent without looking like an island, the way the other continents do. It's okay. The Ural mountains have steadily been there to divide Europe from Asia for the last 250 million years. Russia technically inhabits "Eurasia".

Europe is presently uniting into one political and economic zone with a common currency called the Euro. The European Union originated in 1993 and is now composed of 27 member states. Its headquarters is in Brussels, Belgium.

Do not confuse the EU with the Council of Europe, which has 47 member states and dates to 1949. These two bodies share the same flag, national anthem, and mission of integrating Europe. The headquarters of the Council are located in Strasbourg, France, and it is most famous for its European Court of Human Rights.

In spite of these two bodies, there is still no single Constitution or set of laws applying to all the countries of Europe. Debate rages over the role of the EU in regards to national sovereignty. As of January 2009, the Lisbon Treaty is the closest thing to a European Constitution, yet it has not been approved by all the EU states. 

Text by Steve Smith.

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