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Patuxay Monument, Vientiane, Laos. Patuxai (Lao: ປະຕູໄຊ, literally meaning Victory Gate or Gate of Triumph, formerly the Anousavary or Anosavari Monumentm known by the French as Monument Aux Morts) is a war monument in the centre of Vientiane, Laos, which was built between 1957 and 1968. Patuxai is dedicated to those who fought in the struggle for independence from France. In romanising the name from the Laotian language, it is variously transliterated as Patuxai, Patuxay, Patousai and Patusai. It is also given the name of Patuxai Arch or the Asian version of Arc de Triomphe of Vientiane as it has general resemblance to the Arc de Triomphe in Paris; however, it is typically Laotian in design, decorated with many Buddhist mythological figurines such as of kinnari (half-female, half-bird figures).
Asia is the biggest continent on Earth, a darling little gem floating around in space.Hm, what is Asia? Who's in on it?China and India are safe bets for Asian nations. Korea, Japan, Thailand, you're fine.Europe? No. Europe would sort of be on the "Asian continent" if not for those pesky Ural mountains dividing things up in the middle, and then also the whole lineage of kings and wealth and nations and the EU and all that "give me my respect" stuff.Russia would probably be happiest as its own continent, so for now we'll leave it in "Eurasia" and just hope the natural gas supplies keep flowing.Pakistan and Afghanistan are dang close to Asia, but politically they show up in "Middle East" news stories an awful lot. Verdict: Eurasia.I guess we'll actually have to consider everything from Turkey on eastward to be "Eurasian", although the moniker seems overlappitory of the territory.The Asian economy is now officially raging like a wild furnace of lava that consumes everything in its path. Japan has had the largest individual economy in Asia for decades, but it is forecast that both India and China will outstrip Japan within twenty years.China is the largest holder of United States debt and is positioned to become the world's next superpower, provided that Godzilla doesn't return and decide to stomp everybody back into the Shang Dynasty.Text by Steve Smith.