21 June, 2012

Jean-Pierre Petit



Jean-Pierre Petit is a French scientist, senior researcher at National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) as an astrophysicist in Marseille Observatory, now retired. His main working fields are fluid mechanics, kinetic theory of gases, plasma physics applied in magnetohydrodynamics power generation and propulsion as well as topology and astrophysics applied in cosmology. He is a pioneer in magnetohydrodynamics and has worked out the principle and techniques of parietal MHD converter. In cosmology, he worked on the bi-gravity theory.

Besides his adventure in the UFO topic as well as his assertions about the existence of Ummo, Petit has succeeded in pursuing a scientific career within the CNRS.

Now retired, he is involved with UFO-Science which he co-founded and LAMBDA (Laboratory for Applications of MHD in Bitemperature Discharges to Aerodynamics) which he founded. He claims a true scientific study of the UFO phenomenon would improve our scientific knowledge and help mankind.

Thomas Beecham


Sir Thomas Beecham, 2nd Baronet, was an English conductor and impresario best known for his association with the London Philharmonic and the Royal Philharmonic orchestras. He was also closely associated with the Liverpool Philharmonic and Hallé orchestras. From the early 20th century until his death, Beecham was a major influence on the musical life of Britain and, according to the BBC, was Britain's first international conductor.

Born to a rich industrial family, Beecham began his career as a conductor in 1899. He used his access to the family fortune to finance opera from the 1910s until the start of the Second World War, staging seasons at Covent Garden, Drury Lane and His Majesty's Theatre with international stars, his own orchestra and a wide repertoire. Among the works he introduced to England were Richard Strauss's Elektra, Salome and Der Rosenkavalier and three operas by Frederick Delius.

Together with his younger colleague Malcolm Sargent, Beecham founded the London Philharmonic, and he conducted its first performance at the Queen's Hall in 1932. In the 1940s, he worked for three years in the United States, where he was music director of the Seattle Symphony and conducted at the Metropolitan Opera. After his return to Britain, he founded the Royal Philharmonic in 1946 and conducted it until his death in 1961.

Beecham's repertoire was eclectic, sometimes favouring lesser-known composers over famous ones. His specialities included composers whose works were neglected in Britain before he became their advocate, such as Delius and Berlioz. Other composers with whose music he was frequently associated were Haydn, Schubert, Sibelius and the composer he revered above all others, Mozart.

Umberto Eco




Umberto Eco is an Italian semiotician, essayist, philosopher, literary critic, and novelist. He is best known for his groundbreaking 1980 novel Il nome della rosa (The Name of the Rose), an intellectual mystery combining semiotics in fiction, biblical analysis, medieval studies and literary theory. He has since written further novels, including Il pendolo di Foucault (Foucault's Pendulum) and L'isola del giorno prima (The Island of the Day Before). His most recent novel Il cimitero di Praga (The Prague Cemetery), released in 2010, was a best-seller.

Eco has also written academic texts, children's books and many essays. He is founder of the Dipartimento di Comunicazione at the University of San Marino, President of the Scuola Superiore di Studi Umanistici, University of Bologna, member of the Accademia dei Lincei (since November 2010) and an Honorary Fellow of Kellogg College, University of Oxford.

Raymond Aron






Raymond-Claude-Ferdinand Aron was a French philosopher, sociologist, journalist and political scientist.

He is known for his lifelong friendship, sometimes fractious, with Jean-Paul Sartre. He is best known for his 1955 book The Opium of the Intellectuals, the title of which inverts Karl Marx's claim that religion was the opium of the people -- in contrast, Aron argued that in post-war France Marxism was the opium of intellectuals. In the book, Aron chastized French intellectuals for what he described as their harsh criticism of capitalism and democracy and their simultaneous defense of Marxist oppression, atrocities and intolerance.

Critic Roger Kimball suggests that Opium is "a seminal book of the twentieth century."

Aron also wrote extensively on a wide range of other topics, however. Citing the breadth and quality of Aron's writings, historian James R. Garland suggests that "Though he may be little known in America, Raymond Aron arguably stood as the preeminent example of French intellectualism for much of the twentieth century."

Born in Paris, the son of a secular Jewish lawyer, Aron studied at the École Normale Supérieure, where he met Jean-Paul Sartre, who became his friend and lifelong intellectual opponent.[3] Aron took first place in the Agrégation of philosophy in 1928, the year Sartre failed the same exam. In 1930, he received a doctorate in the philosophy of history from the École Normale Supérieure.

He had been teaching social philosophy at the University of Toulouse for only a few weeks when World War II began; he joined the Armée de l'Air. When France was defeated, he left for London to join the Free French forces, then edited the newspaper, France Libre (Free France).

When the war ended Aron returned to Paris to teach sociology at the École Nationale d'Administration and at the Paris Institute of Political Studies. From 1955 to 1968, he taught at the Sorbonne, and after 1970 at the Collège de France. In 1953, he befriended the young American philosopher Allan Bloom, who was teaching at the Sorbonne.

A lifelong journalist, Aron in 1947 became an influential columnist for Le Figaro, a position he held for thirty years until he joined L'Express, where he wrote a political column up to his death.

In Berlin, Aron witnessed Nazi book burnings, and developed an aversion to all totalitarian systems. In 1938 he participated in the Colloque Walter Lippmann in Paris. While generally considered to the right of most French and European intellectuals of his era, Aron believed in the need for a substantial welfare state.

Aron wrote important works on Karl Marx and on Carl von Clausewitz, the Prussian theorist of war. In Peace and War he set out a theory of international relations. For Aron, Max Weber's monopoly on the legitimate use of physical force held by the state in its internal affairs does not apply to the relationship between states.

Aron died of a heart attack in Paris on 17 October 1983.

He was elected a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1960.













Marcel Bigeard




Marcel "Bruno" Bigeard was a French military officer who fought in World War II, Indochina and Algeria. He was one of the commanders in the Battle of Dien Bien Phu and is thought by many to have been a dominating influence on French 'unconventional' warfare thinking from that time onward.  He was one of the most decorated soldiers in France, and is particularly noteworthy because he rose from enlisted as Second Class, the lowest possible rank, in 1936 and ultimately finished his career in 1976 with the rank of Lieutenant General

Laurent Moutinot



Lawrence Moutinot, is a former politician Swiss member of the Socialist Party.

At 19, he became a correspondent of the Genevan religious community of Taizé . In 1978 , he obtained a patent of attorney when he chaired the Geneva League of Human Rights.

Counsel for the ASLOCA from 1978 to 1997 , he joined in 1987 the Socialist Party with the support of former State Councillor Willy Donze who predicts a future of magistrate.

Annoyed at the Grand Council between 1993 and 1997 , he was head of the Socialist Parliamentary Group 1994 to 1996 . Elected to the State Council on 16 November 1997 , he became head of the department of planning, equipment and housing. Re-elected on 11 November 2001 and the 13 November 2005 , he took charge of the new department of institutions. He also chairs the State Council in two thousand and two - 2003 and again in 2007 - 2008 . The record of his activities as head of the department of institutions is particularly distressing because of security issues in Geneva highlighted by local media.

He is the father of three children he has raised in the town of Bellevue where he lives since the mid- 1980s . His wife Susan died in 2006.

Jean-Claude Malgoire



Jean-Claude Malgoire is a French conductor.

He was born in Avignon, France and studied music locally and at the Paris Conservatory. His early musical career was as an oboist.

In 1966 he founded La Grande Écurie et la Chambre du Roy, a period-instrument Baroque music ensemble. He later abandoned performing as an oboist and since the later part of the twentieth century he has been recognized as an important French conductor of mainly Baroque music.

Piem



Piem, whose real name is Pierre de Barrigue of Montvallon, is a designer "humanistic"

Son of Serge de Barrigue Montvallon, director of the Maison de la Chimie , and Madeleine Champavere, he married Elizabeth Lefebvre in 1947 . He has six children .

One of his children, Thierry, is designer under the pseudonym Barrigue .

A graduate of the National School of Fine Arts and the School Paul Colin , his life was Piem cartoonist and painter .

In January 1945 , he finished the war as "Corporal decorator" in Trier .
From 1947 , he collaborated with Christian Witness and Figaro (until 1981 ). Readers of the Point and Cross could also see his drawings .

Similarly, he defends the journalistic profession by syndicating the SNJ . He is also the creator of the Turlupin, who appeared in some newspapers in strips as Eastern Republican , especially in the 1970s.
It is also passed by the tavern: The head of bacon, the Olympia , Bobino .

He became known to the general public by participating in TV shows The Little Rapporteur ( one thousand nine hundred and seventy-five - 1976 ) and La Lorgnette in 1977 , .

Antoni Ferdynand Ossendowski


Antoni Ferdynand Ossendowski was a Polish writer, journalist, traveler, globetrotter, explorer and university professor. He is best known for his books about Lenin and the Russian Civil War, a war in which he took part.

Jacques Maritain


Jacques Maritain was a French Catholic philosopher. Raised as a Protestant, he converted to Catholicism in 1906. An author of more than 60 books, he helped to revive St. Thomas Aquinas for modern times and is a prominent drafter of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Pope Paul VI presented his "Message to Men of Thought and of Science" at the close of Vatican II to Maritain, his long-time friend and mentor. Maritain's interest and works spanned many aspects of philosophy, including aesthetics, political theory, the philosophy of science, metaphysics, education, liturgy and ecclesiology.

Maurice Denham



Maurice Denham OBE was an English character actor who appeared in over 100 television programmes and films throughout his long career.

Denham was born in Beckenham, Kent, the son of Eleanor Winifred (née Lillico) and Norman Denham. He was educated at Tonbridge School and trained as an lift engineer. Denham eventually became an actor in 1934 and appeared in live television broadcasts as early as 1938, continuing to perform in that medium until 1997.

Denham initially made his name in radio comedy series such as ITMA and Much Binding in the Marsh, and later provided all the voices for the animated version of Animal Farm (1954). He was nominated for the BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role for his performance as Blore in 1954's The Purple Plain. Other film credits include 23 Paces to Baker Street (1956), Night of the Demon (1957), Two-Way Stretch (1960), Sink the Bismarck! (1960), H.M.S. Defiant (1962), Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines (1965), The Day of the Jackal (1973), Minder on the Orient Express (1985) and 84 Charing Cross Road (1987).

Among his television appearances were as the father in Talking to a Stranger (1966), The Lotus Eaters (1972-73), All Passion Spent with Dame Wendy Hiller (1986), Behaving Badly (1989), Inspector Morse (1991) and the Sherlock Holmes story The Last Vampyre (1993).

He made a guest appearance in the BBC science fiction television series Doctor Who in the 1984 serial The Twin Dilemma, the first story to star Colin Baker in the title role as the Sixth Doctor. He later appeared in the Doctor Who radio serial The Paradise of Death in 1993 alongside Jon Pertwee. As The Honourable Mr Justice Stephen Rawley in several episodes of the BBC prison comedy Porridge, he ends up sharing a cell with Fletcher, whom he had sentenced.

In further radio work, he starred in a BBC Radio 4 version of the Oldest Member, based on stories by P.G. Wodehouse, from 1994 to 1999, as Rumpole in Rumpole: The Splendours and Miseries of an Old Bailey Hack, as Dr. Alexandre Manette in A Tale of Two Cities, as 'Father' in Peter Tinniswood's Winston series, and also as Chief Inspector Jules Maigret in several series beginning in 1976.

Charles Plisnier





Charles Plisnier was a Belgian writer from Wallonia. He was a Communist in his youth and briefly belonged to the Trotskyist movement in the late 1920s.

He disavowed communism, and became a Roman Catholic, remaining nevertheless a Marxist. He turned to literature, writing family sagas against bourgeois society. Mariages (1936; "Nothing to Chance") deals with the limitations of social conventions; the five-volume Meurtres (1939–41; "Murders") centres on an idealistic tragic hero, Noël Annequin, in his fight against hypocrisy. In 1937, he won the Prix Goncourt for Faux passeports, short stories denouncing Stalinism, in the same spirit as Arthur Koestler. He was the first foreigner to receive Prix Goncourt. He was also a Walloon movement activist and at the end of the Walloon National Congress there was a standing ovation after his speech, the assembly then singing La Marseillaise.

Joseph Grew



Joseph Clark Grew was an American career diplomat and Foreign Service officer. Early in his career, he was the chargé d'affaires at the American Embassy in Vienna when the Austro-Hungarian Empire severed diplomatic relations with the United States on April 9, 1917.

Later, Grew was the Ambassador to Denmark (1920 – 21) and Ambassador to Switzerland (1921 – 24). In 1924, Grew became the Under Secretary of State, and in this position he oversaw the establishment of the U.S. Foreign Service. Grew was the Ambassador to Turkey (1927 – 32) and the Ambassador to Japan beginning in 1932. He was the American ambassador in Tokyo at the time of the Japanese Attack on Pearl Harbor (December 7, 1941) and the opening of war between the United States and the Japanese Empire.
Ambassador Grew was interned for several months by the Japanese government, but he was released to return to the United States on June 25, 1942.


Grew was born in Boston, Massachusetts, in May 1880, and starting in his early years, he was groomed for public service. At the age of 12 he was sent to the Groton School, a boys' preparatory school whose purpose was to "cultivate manly Christian character". Grew was there just two grades ahead of Franklin D. Roosevelt. During his youth, Grew enjoyed the outdoors, sailing, camping, and hunting during his summers away from school. After graduating from Groton, one of only four men in his class to graduate, Grew attended Harvard University and then graduating in 1902. Following graduation, Grew made a tour of the Far East, and nearly died after being stricken with malaria. While recovering in India, he became friends with an American consul there. This inspired him to abandon his plan of following in his father's career as a banker, and he decided to go into diplomatic service

Grew's first job in diplomacy (in 1904) was as a clerk at the American consulate in Cairo, Egypt. President Theodore Roosevelt had read Grew's book about his journey in 1902, Sport and Travel in the Far East, and Roosevelt was impressed with the chapter about Grew's experiences in fighting a tiger and wrestling with a bear. Grew was then promoted to vice-consul in Egypt.

Grew married Alice Perry, a granddaughter of famed American naval hero Oliver Hazard Perry. She became Joe Grew's life partner and helper as promotions took him to work in Mexico, Russia, and Germany. As an aide to the American ambassador in Berlin from 1912 to 1917, Grew stayed in Germany until the United States entered World War I in April 1917 and hence broke diplomatic relations with Germany. Grew later found himself in a very similar situation when the United States went to war with the Japanese Empire in 1941.

Grew's book Sport and Travel in the Far East was a favorite one of Roosevelt's. The introduction to the 1910 Houghton Mifflin printing of the book features the following introduction written by Roosevelt:
"My dear Grew,- I was greatly interested in your book "Sport and Travel in the Far East" and I think it is a fine thing to have a member of our diplomatic service able both to do what you have done, and to write about it as well and as interestingly as you have written.... Your description, both of the actual hunting and the people and surroundings, is really excellent;..."

Alice Perry Grew was the daughter of premier American impressionist painter Lilla Cabot Perry, daughter of Dr. Samuel Cabot (of the New England Cabots) and her husband, noted American scholar Thomas Sergeant Perry.

After the Armistice was signed with Germany in November 1918, Grew worked at the United States Department of State in Washington, D.C. In 1922, he and Richard Child acted as the American observers at the Conference of Lausanne. In 1927, Grew was appointed as the American ambassador to Turkey. He served in Constantinople for five years until he was offered the opportunity to return to the Far East.
Grew's daughter, Lilla Cabot Grew, married Jay Pierrepont Moffat, the American Ambassador to Canada, in 1927.

Grew was appointed, by President Herbert Hoover to succeed William Cameron Forbes as the United States Ambassador to Japan in 1932, where he took up his posting on June 6. The Ambassador and Mrs. Grew had been happy in Turkey, and were hesitant about the move, but decided that Grew would have a unique opportunity to make the difference between peace and war between the United States and Japan. The Grews soon became popular in Japanese society, joining clubs and societies there, and adapting to the culture, even as relations between the two countries deteriorated. On January 27, 1941, Grew secretly cabled the United States with information gathered from a Peruvian diplomat that Japan was considering a surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, information declassified twelve years later. Grew continued to serve as U.S. Ambassador until December 7, 1941, when the United States and Japan severed diplomatic relations after the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor.

Months before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Japan's naval ministry registered a fallacious protest with Ambassador Grew in Tokyo: "On the night of July 31, 1941, Japanese fleet units at anchor in Sukumo Bay picked up the sound of propellers approaching Bungo Channel from the eastward. Duty destroyers of the Japanese navy investigated and sighted two darkened cruisers that disappeared in a southerly direction behind a smoke screen when they were challenged." The protest concluded: "Japanese naval officers believe the vessels were United States cruisers."

Though at war, the United States and Japan negotiated a plan for the repatriation of their diplomats. In July 1942, Grew and 1,450 other American and foreign citizens went via steamship from Tokyo to Lourenço Marques in Portuguese East Africa (now Maputo, Mozambique) aboard the Japanese liner Asama Maru and her backup, the Italian liner Conte Verde. The Japanese Ambassador to the United States, Kichisaburo Nomura, along with 1,096 other Japanese citizens, steamed from New York City to Lourenço Marques on board the Gripsholm, an ocean liner registered in Sweden. On July 22, the exchange of personnel took place, and then the Gripsholm steamed to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and thence to New Jersey.

Grew was appointed as an Under Secretary of State upon his return to the United States. In 1943, Grew received a L.H.D. degree from Bates College. He served as the Acting Secretary of State for most of the period from January through August 1945 while the Secretaries of State Edward Stettinius and James F. Byrnes were away at conferences. Among high-level officials in the Truman Administration, Grew was the most knowledgeable of Japanese issues, after having spent so many years in Japan. Grew was also the author of a profoundly influential book about Japan, titled Ten Years in Japan.

Grew wrote in 1942 that while he expected Nazi Germany to collapse as the German Empire had in 1918, he did not expect the Japanese Empire to do so.

By May 1945, the U.S. held a number of Soviet prisoners-of-war (POWs) who had been captured while serving voluntarily or involuntarily in some capacity in the German Army, mostly as rear area personnel (ammunition bearers, cooks, drivers, sanitation orderlies, or guards).

Unlike the German prisoners, who were looking forward to release at war's end, the Soviet prisoners urgently requested asylum in the United States, or at least repatriation to a country not under Soviet occupation, as they knew they would be shot by Joseph Stalin as traitors for being captured (under Soviet law, one only had to surrender to earn the death penalty).

The question of the Soviet POWs' conduct was difficult to determine, though not their fate if repatriated. Most of the Soviet POWs stated that they had been given a choice by the Germans: volunteer for labor duty with the German army, or be turned over to the Gestapo for execution or service in an arbeitslager (a camp used to work prisoners until they died of starvation or illness). In any case, in Stalin's eyes they were dead men, as they had 1) been captured alive, 2) had been 'contaminated' by contact with those in bourgeois Western nations, and 3) had been found in service with the German army.

Notified of their impending transfer to Soviet authorities, a riot at their POW camp erupted; while no one was killed by the guards, some were wounded while other Soviet prisoners hanged themselves; President Truman granted the men a temporary reprieve. Nevertheless, Grew, as Acting Secretary of State, signed an order on July 11, 1945 forcing the repatriation of the Soviet POWs to the Soviet Union. Soviet cooperation, it was believed, would prove necessary to remake the face of postwar Europe. On August 31, 1945, the 153 survivors were officially returned to the Soviet Union; their ultimate fate is unknown.

Grew left the State Department in 1945. He died two days before his 85th birthday on May 25, 1965.

Frank Knox



William Franklin "Frank" Knox was an American newspaper editor and publisher. He was also the Republican vice presidential candidate in 1936, and Secretary of the Navy under Franklin D. Roosevelt during most of World War II.

William Franklin Knox was born in Boston, Massachusetts. His parents were both Canadian: his father was from New Brunswick and his mother Sarah Barnard, was from Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island. When he was nine, his family moved to Grand Rapids, Michigan, where his father ran a grocery store. He attended Alma College in Michigan, where he was a member of the Zeta Sigma Fraternity.

During the Spanish-American War, he joined the Army, and served in Cuba with the Rough Riders.
After the war, Knox became a newspaper reporter in Grand Rapids. This was the beginning of a career that included ownership of several papers.

He changed his first name to Frank around 1900. In 1912 as founding editor of New Hampshire's Manchester Leader, forerunner to the New Hampshire Union Leader, he supported Theodore Roosevelt's Progressive ticket. However, with that exception, he adhered to the Republican Party.

During World War I, Knox was an advocate of U.S military preparedness and then of participation in the war. When the U.S. declared war on Germany, he rejoined the Army. He reached the rank of Major and served as an artillery officer in France. After the war he returned to the newspaper business.
In 1930, Frank Knox became publisher and part owner of the Chicago Daily News.

In the 1936 election, he was the Republican nominee for vice president under Alf Landon. Landon and Knox were the only supporters of Theodore Roosevelt in 1912 to be later named to a Republican ticket. They lost in a landslide, winning just Maine and Vermont against the Democratic ticket of President Franklin D. Roosevelt and Vice President John Nance Garner.


During World War II, Knox again was an advocate of preparedness. As an internationalist, he supported aid to the Allies and opposed isolationism. In July 1940, he became Secretary of the Navy under Franklin D. Roosevelt; the Democratic president sought to create bi-partisan support for his foreign and defense policies following the defeat of France.

As Secretary, Frank Knox carried out Roosevelt's plan to expand the Navy into a force capable of fighting in both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. He traveled extensively to Navy installations worldwide.
Following a brief series of heart attacks, Secretary Knox died in Washington, D.C. on April 28, 1944 while still in office. He was buried on May 1, 1944 in Arlington National Cemetery with full military honors.


Léopold Sédar Senghor


Léopold Sédar Senghor was a Senegalese poet, politician, and cultural theorist who for two decades served as the first president of Senegal (1960–1980). Senghor was the first African elected as a member of the Académie française. Before independence, he founded the political party called the Senegalese Democratic Bloc.

Hunter S. Thompson




Hunter Stockton Thompson was an American journalist and author who wrote The Rum Diary (1998), Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1971), Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail '72 (1973), The Curse of Lono (1983), and Hell's Angels: The Strange and Terrible Saga of the Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs (1966).

He is credited as the creator of Gonzo journalism, a style of reporting where reporters involve themselves in the action to such a degree that they become central figures of their stories. He is known also for his lifelong use of alcohol, marijuana, LSD, mescaline, and cocaine (among other substances); his love of firearms; his inveterate hatred of Richard Nixon; and his iconoclastic contempt for authoritarianism. While suffering a bout of health problems, he committed suicide in 2005 at the age of 67.

Bob Monkhouse


Robert Alan 'Bob' Monkhouse OBE was an English entertainer. He was a successful comedy writer, comedian and actor and was also well known on British television as a presenter and game show host.

Jose Luis Balbin



José Luis Balbin Meana ( Pravia , Asturias , on August 19 of 1940 ) is a journalist Spanish who has worked in various media.

His moment of greatest popularity coincided with the broadcast Key in its first stage, between 1976 and 1985, Spanish Television .

He became Director of News between 1982 and 1983, following the appointment of Jose Maria Calviño as Director of RTVE. However, he was sacked a few months later. After a series of pressure from the socialist government, presiding Felipe González, the program was closed and gradually led to Balbín clearly opposed positions with the government of that time. At that time focused his career in the world of radio where space triumphs with Zero Hour , of Antena 3 Radio .

In 1990 he returned to television, with his legendary new space for debate The key , though this time in Antena 3 . The program continues until 1993. In 1994, in the same chain, hosts a talk shows, The Path .

In 1992, after the closure of Radio Antena 3 chain moves to COPE , sitting as a member of the party program Lantern , directed by Luis Herrero and for years would remain as a partner in the chain, the aforementioned first and Lantern , from 1998 in The Morning .

In 1998 he returned to TVE with the "keys" in interviewing large Spanish and foreign characters. The program ran from September 1998 to April 1999.

In 1999 he was appointed editor of the weekly general information Article 20, edited by Tesla Publishing Company, Inc. The magazine folded a few months after his arrival in January 2000 after a strike.

In November 2000, he founded the weekly general information The Key , where he was director from its inception until its closure in July 2008.

Pierre "Peyo" Culliford



Pierre Culliford, known as Peyo, was a Belgian comics artist, perhaps best known for the creation of The Smurfs comic strip.

Peyo was born in 1928 in Brussels as the son of an English father and a Belgian mother.

He took on the name "Peyo" early in his professional career, based on an English cousin's mispronunciation of Pierrot (a diminutive form of Pierre).

Peyo began work, fresh from his coursework at the Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts in Brussels, at the Compagnie Belge d'Animation (CBA), a small Belgian animation studio, where he met a few of his future colleagues and co-celebrities, like André Franquin, Morris and Eddy Paape. When the studio folded after the war, the other artists went to work for Dupuis, but Peyo, a few years younger than the others, was not accepted. He made his first comics for the newspaper La Dernière Heure (The Latest Hour), but also accepted many promotional drawing jobs for income. From 1949 to 1952, he drew Poussy, a stop comic about a cat, for Le Soir. For the same newspaper, he also created Johan.

In 1952, Franquin introduced Peyo to Le Journal de Spirou, a children's comics magazine published by Dupuis which first appeared in Belgium in 1938. Peyo wrote and drew a number of characters and storylines, including Pierrot, and Benoît Brisefer (translated into English as Steven Strong). But his favourite was Johan et Pirlouit (translated into English as Johan and Peewit), which was a continuation of the series Johan he had created earlier. He also continued Poussy in Spirou.

Set in the Middle Ages in Europe, Johan et Pirlouit stars a brave young page to the king, and his faithful, if boastful and cheating, midget sidekick. Johan rides off to defend the meek on his trusty horse, while Peewit gallops sporadically behind on his goat, named Biquette. The pair are driven by duty to their king and the courage to defend the underpowered. Peewit only appeared in the third adventure in 1954, but would stay for all later adventures.

The first smurf appeared in Johan and Peewit on 23 October 1958 in the album La Flûte à Six Schtroumpfs (The Six Smurfed Flute). As the smurfs became increasingly popular, Peyo started a studio in the early 1960s, where a number of talented comic artists started to work. Peyo himself supervised the work and worked primarily on Johan and Peewit, leaving the smurfs to the studio. The most notable artists to come out of this studio are Walthéry, Wasterlain, Gos, Derib, Degieter, and Desorgher.

In 1959, the Smurfs got their own series, and in 1960, two more began: Steven Strong and Jacky and Célestin. Many authors of the Marcinelle school collaborated on the writing, or as an artist, including Willy Maltaite (aka 'Will'), Yvan Delporte, and Roger Leloup. Peyo became more of a businessman and supervisor, and was less involved in the actual creation of the comics. He let his son, Thierry Culliford, lead the studio, while his daughter Véronique was responsible for the merchandising.

The merchandising of the Smurfs began in 1959, with the PVC figurines as the most important aspect until the late 1970s. Then, with the success of the Smurf records by Father Abraham, the Smurfs achieved more international success, with a new boom in toys and gadgets. Some of these reached the United States, where
Hanna-Barbera created a Saturday morning animated series in 1981 in which Peyo served as story
supervisor. Peyo's health began to fail.

He died at age 64, on Christmas Eve 1992, of a heart attack in Brussels. His studio still exists and new stories for various series are regularly produced under his name.

Anton Walbrook



Anton Walbrook was an Austrian actor who settled in the United Kingdom.

Walbrook was born in Vienna, Austria. Originally known as Adolf Wohlbrück, he was descended from ten generations of actors though his father broke with tradition and was a circus clown. Walbrook studied with the director Max Reinhardt and built up a career in Austrian theatre and cinema.

In 1936 he went to Hollywood to reshoot dialogue for the multinational The Soldier and the Lady (1937) and in the process changed his name from Adolf to Anton. Instead of returning to Austria, Walbrook, who was classified under the Nuremberg Laws as "half-Jewish", settled in England and continued working as a film actor making a speciality of playing continental Europeans.

Producer-director Herbert Wilcox cast him as Prince Albert in Victoria the Great (1937) and Walbrook also appeared in the sequel, Sixty Glorious Years the following year. He was in director Thorold Dickinson's version of Gaslight (1940), in the role played by Charles Boyer in the later Hollywood remake. In Dangerous Moonlight (1941), a romantic melodrama, he was a Polish pianist torn over whether to return home. For the Powell and Pressburger team in The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (1943) he played the role of the dashing, intense "good German" officer Theo Kretschmar-Schuldorff, and the tyrannical impresario Lermontov in The Red Shoes (1948). One of his most unusual films, reuniting him with Dickinson, is The Queen of Spades (1949), an odd, Gothic thriller based on the Alexander Pushkin short story in which Walbrook co-starred with Edith Evans. For Max Ophüls he was the ringmaster in La Ronde (1950).

Red Shoes co-star Moira Shearer recalled Walbrook was a loner on set, often wearing dark glasses and eating alone. He retired from films at the end of the 1950s and in later years appeared on the European stage and television.

Walbrook died of a heart attack in Geretshausen, Bavaria, Germany in 1967. His ashes were interred in the churchyard of St. John's Church, Hampstead, London, as he had wished in his testament.

Gustaf Grundgens



Gustaf Gründgens was born Gustav Heinrich Arnold Gründgens, was one of Germany's most famous and influential actors of the 20th century, intendant and artistic director of theatres in Berlin, Düsseldorf, and Hamburg.

His single most famous role was that of Mephistopheles in Goethe's Faust in 1956/57, which is still considered by many to have been the best interpretation of the role ever given.

Born in Düsseldorf, Gründgens after World War I attended the drama school of the Düsseldorfer Schauspielhaus and started his career at smaller theaters in Halberstadt, Kiel, Berlin. In 1923 he went to the Kammerspiele in Hamburg, where he also appeared as a director for the first time, co-working with the author Klaus Mann, son of Thomas Mann, and his sister Erika. Gründgens, who meanwhile had changed his first name to "Gustaf", married Erika in 1926.

In 1928 he moved back to Berlin to join the renown ensemble of the Deutsches Theater under director Max Reinhardt. Apart from straight theatre, Gründgens also worked with Otto Klemperer at the Kroll Opera, as a Kabarett artist and also as a movie actor, most notably in Fritz Lang's 1931 film M, which decisively added to his popularity. From 1932 he was a member of the Prussian State Theatre ensemble, first scintillating as Mephistopheles.

Gründgens' career proceeded after the Nazi Machtergreifung: in 1934 he became intendant of the Prussian State Theatre and was later appointed as a member of the Prussian state council by the Prussian Minister President Hermann Göring. In 1941, Gründgens starred in the propaganda film Ohm Krüger and also in Friedemann Bach, a film he also produced. After Goebbels's total war speech on 18 February 1943, Gründgens volunteered for the Wehrmacht but was again recalled by Göring, who had his name added to the Gottbegnadeten list.

From 1936 till 1946, Gründgens was married to the famous German actress Marianne Hoppe. The wedlock was widely seen as a lavender marriage.

Imprisoned by the Soviet NKVD in 1945, Gründgens was released thanks to the intercession by the Communist actor Ernst Busch, whom Gründgens himself had saved from execution by the Nazis in 1943. During the denazification process his statements helped to exonerate acting colleagues like Göring's widow Emmy and the director Veit Harlan (Jud Süß). Gründgens turned back to the Deutsches Theater, later became intendant of the Düsseldorfer Schauspielhaus and from 1955 directed the Deutsches Schauspielhaus in Hamburg. He again performed as Mephistopheles, the 1960 film Faust by Peter Gorski was shot with the Deutsches Schauspielhaus ensemble.

On October 7, 1963, while traveling around the world, Gründgens died in Manila of an internal hemorrhage.  He is buried at the Hamburg Ohlsdorf Cemetery.