Asia– World’s Largest Continent
1. East- Pacific Ocean
2. West- Ural Mountains
3. Southwest- Suez Canal
4. South- Red Sea
5. North- Arctic Ocean
Importance of Knowing Asia
a. We are Asians.
We should know more about Asia than any other region in the world.
b. Asia dominated the world’s development during the last part of the 20th century.
c. Philippines as the “Light of Asia”.
Great role in Asian renaissance.
East and West
1. East (Orient)- Asian world and said to be the region of the rising sun.
2. West (Occident)- Europe and North America and said to be the region of the setting sun.
Regions of Asia
1. Southwest Asia– ethnic
1.1. Arab Bloc
1.1.1. Syria– Land of Saladin
1.1.2. Lebanon– Divided by a Civil War
1.1.3. Jordan– Desert Arab Kingdom
1.1.4. Saudi Arabia– Cradle of Islam
1.1.5. Yemen– Land of Sheba
1.1.6. Oman– Land of Frankincense and Myrrh
1.1.8. Qatar– World’s Largest Gas Reserves
1.1.9. Bahrain– Gulf Archipelago
1.1.10. Kuwait– World’s Richest People
1.1.11. Iraq– Where Civilization First Began
1.2. Non- Arab Bloc
1.2.1. Turkey– Republic on Two Continents
1.2.3. Israel– Birthplace of Christ and Homeland of the Jews
1.2.4. Iran– Land of Daniel and the Persians
1.2.5. Afghanistan– Crossroads of Conquerors
2. South Asia– religious
2.1. Hindu Bloc
2.1.1. India– World’s Largest Democracy
2.1.2. Nepal– Only Hindu Kingdom
2.2. Non- Hindu Bloc
2.2.1. Pakistan– Halfway to the Middle East
2.2.2. Bangladesh– Bengali Nation
2.2.3. Bhutan– Land of the Thunder Dragons
2.2.4. Sri Lanka– isle of Sorrow
2.2.5. Maldives– Smallest Nation in South Asia
3. North and Central Asia– political
3.1. Mongolia– Land of Genghis Khan
3.7. Russia (Siberia)- Land of Ice and Tears
4. East Asia– ideological
4.1. Socialist Bloc
4.1.1. China– World’s Biggest Nation
4.1.2. North Korea
4.2. Democratic Bloc
4.2.1. Japan– Industrial Giant of Asia
4.2.2. South Korea
4.2.3. Taiwan– Island- Bastion of Nationalist China
5. Southeast Asia– geographical
5.1.1. Myanmar– Land of Golden Pagodas
5.1.2. Thailand– Land of the Free
5.1.3. Vietnam– Victor of the West
5.1.4. Cambodia– A New Dawn
5.1.5. Malaysia– A Malayan Federation
5.1.6. Laos– Kingdom of the Million Elephants
5.2.1. Indonesia– World’s Largest Archipelago
5.2.2. Philippines– A Unique nation with Four Cultural Heritage
5.2.3. Brunei Darussalam
5.2.4. East Timor– The Youngest Nation
5.2.5. Singapore– an Island City- Republic
1.1. Himalayas– Abode of Snow
1.2. Ural Mountains
1.3. Caucasus- where Zeus chained Prometheus for giving the fire of the gods to mortal men.
3.1. Indian Ocean
3.1.1. Indus River
3.1.2. Ganges River
3.1.3. Brahmaputra River
3.2. Pacific Ocean
3.2.2. Hwang- Ho (Yellow River)
3.2.4. Si Kiang
3.3. South China Sea
3.3.1. Mekong– runs through Asia’s rice bowls: Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam.
3.4. Persian Gulf
4. Tundra– frozen soil covered by snow most of the year.
5. Steppes- semi- desert areas
Climate and Rainfall
Cherrapunji, Assam, India– holds the world record of the heaviest annual rainfall- 10, 417 inches from August 1, 1890 to July 31, 1891.
Philippines– holds the world record of the heaviest 24- hour rainfall- 979.4 mm. on October 17, 1967.
Kara Kum Desert, Turkmenistan– one of the driest deserts on earth.
Siberia– holds the record for the lowest temperature- minus 108 F in 1892. It is also the coldest part of the world in winter.
Monsoon– an Arabic word for rainy season.
Typhoon– a Chinese word for strong wind.
Asia’s Rich Natural Resources
– 60% of the world oil reserves
– 50% of the world coal deposits
1. Middle East, Brunei, Indonesia– float in a sea of oil.
2. China– produces 50% of world supply of antimony (mineral used in steel) and 30% of tungsten (mineral used for light bulbs).
3. Malaysia– world’s greatest producer of rubber and tin.
4. Indonesia– greatest exporter of kapok, pepper and quinine.
5. Philippines– ranks first in coconut and hemp production.
6. Greatest Rice Bowls of the World
7. Bangladesh– the leading producer of jute– the tough fiber for making sacks.
Reasons Why Most Asians Remain Poor
a. Some resources are not developed.
b. The developed resources are mostly controlled by Western multinational companies and not by Asian entrepreneurs.
c. The environment is not protected from natural and man made damage.
Mt. Everest (29, 028 ft.)- world’s highest peak.
Dead Sea (303 m. below sea level)- world’s lowest land area.
Pacific Ocean– largest ocean.
Philippine Deep (10, 918 m below sea level)- the world’s deepest ocean depth.
Indonesia– World’s largest archipelago consisting of more than 3, 000 islands with a total area of 741, 030 square miles.
Caspian Sea (143, 550 square miles) Siberia- largest lake (inland sea) on earth.
Lake Baikal (5, 710 ft. deep) Siberia- world’s deepest lake.
Bengal Bay, India– largest bay in the world.
Malacca Strait– world’s longest strait.
San Juanico Strait– narrowest strait in the world.
Man- Made Wonders
Great Wall of China– the most colossal edifice ever fashioned by human hands. It was built by Emperor Shih Huang Ti as a defensive rampart against the marauding Tartars. It is also the world’s largest cemetery.
Ifugao Rice Terraces of the Philippines– like a colossal stairways into the clouds built about 2, 000 years ago by bare human hands.
Taj Mahal (Crown of the Palace)- a magnificent marble tomb in Agra, India and hailed as the most beautiful and most perfect of all buildings in the world.
Borubodur in Java, Indonesia– a massive masterpiece of Indonesia’s Buddhist architecture.
Angkor Wat in Cambodia– most splendid of the Khmer temples.
Shwe Dagon– a fabulous golden pagoda in Rangoon, Burma.
Dome of the Rock (Mosque of Oman)- an Islamic shrine in Jerusalem.
Reference: History of Asian Nations (Sonia Zaide)
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