This flying walkway commemorates the 'new' millennium. It is public art and part of the Phoenix Initiative. Phoenix because coventry represents that legendary bird rising from its own ashes, renewed in new life. Coventry's ashes was what was left of the town after blanket bombing in the 1940s which also took out the cathedral. In retaliation British and American bombers destroyed the city of Dresden including its cathedral, Die Frauenkirch. Now all is forgiven, well I hope so but when I visited Dresden, still part of the Deutsche Demokratische Republik then, and under Soviet influence, officially there was no forgiveness, instead signs around the city blaiming the sooty ruins on 'The British and American Flyers'. The fire bombing was not the cause of the all invasive black soot but actually the burning Brown Coal in homes and for industry. A little true anecdote, but it should not be allowed to detract from the real suffering of the people of those two towns.
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.