May 15th, 2022
Christopher Columbus is known the world over for discovering the Americas. He is celebrated in many countries with a special Columbus day commenting his achievements. The sad reality is that he never achieved anything he set out to do. He happened upon the Americas by accident but didn't even know it. He thought he was in the East Indies. It was the Italian explorer Amerigo Vespucci who realised this was a new continent and that is why America carries his name and not that of Columbus. Think about it, it would be hard to sail westward from any part of the world and not bump into the Americas. Yet it is known that the Vinkings had arrived in Newfoundland five hundred years before, and there is a good argument that St. Brendan the Navigator, an Irish monk had reached North America nine hundred years before Columbus even wet his feet in the waters of the Caribbean. Columbus died still believing he had found the western route to Asia. That is, in my opinion as pitiful as aiming a rocket for the moon and hitting Saturn. Whilst his achievements are celebrated, his tyranny and brutality are swept neatly under the carpet. It's the same old story . Greed is the great motivator.