Secret History


Artefacts discovered amid submerged ruins of cities of Thonis-Heracleion and Canopus unveiled

Bronze statuette of a pharaoh. Photograph: Christoph Gerigk
Spectacular ancient Egyptian treasures are to be exhibited for the first time having been discovered underwater in the submerged ruins of the near-legendary cities of Thonis-Heracleion and Canopus.

A finely sculpted statuette of a pharaoh and a golden-eyed depiction of god Osiris are among antiquities to be unveiled in a major exhibition in Paris from next month.

The cities were almost erased from mankind's memory after sinking beneath the waves in the eighth century AD following cataclysmic natural disasters including an earthquake and tidal waves.

Across a vast site in Aboukir Bay near Alexandria, the seabed has been giving up secrets from a lost world in an excavation led by Franck Goddio, a French marine archaeologist.

Founding head of the European Institute for Underwater Archaeology in Paris, Goddio is working with the Oxford Centre for Maritime Archaeology at the University of Oxford, and the Egyptian authorities.


Largest sand desert in the world may have been the site of an ancient great river

Painting of Bedouin camp circa 1892
The Bedouin of the southern Arabian desert have a legend about a great river in the west, and an eighth century Arabic poem talks of wild cows living in the Empty Quarter. Can it be true?

The Empty Quarter, also known as the Rub al-Khali, is the largest sand desert in the world, covering an area of 650,000 square kilometers (250,966 square miles) or around one third of the southern Arabian Peninsula. It is also one of the hottest most arid environments on the planet with temperatures regularly above 50 C (122 F) and less than three centimeters (one inch) of rain per year.

Comment: See also: Before the sand: Ancient Mega-Lake Found in Egyptian Desert


Polish explorer claims he's found massive underground Nazi shelter

© AP/Poland Out
The abandoned building of a German nazi-era railway installation in Walim, near Walbrzych, in Poland, photographed on Friday, Sept. 11, 2015. An explorer says he has found massive underground World War II installations in the neighborhood that were probably intended as a anti-nuclear shelter for Hitler.
A Polish explorer claimed Friday he has found a massive underground structure in southwestern Poland that, he says, the Nazis built to protect thousands of people.

Krzysztof Szpakowski told a news conference that he has no doubt as to his find, which he says was based on evidence that he has gathered for decades, including witness statements, old documents and an examination of the area by ground-penetrating radar and by dowsers.

© AP/Poland Out
Explorer Krzysztof Szpakowski, right, with his legal advisor,attends a news conference at the provincial governor’s office in Walbrzych, Poland on Friday, Sept. 11, 2015.
Speaking on TVN24, Szpakowski said the structure was part of the "Riese" (giant) system of railway tunnels, corridors and shelters that the Nazis were building during World War II in the mountains around the city of Walbrzych.

He said that anything from technical appliances to armaments could be inside, but "not a gold train."

His conference was hosted by Walbrzych regional authorities, who said they have officially registered his information and are seeking state funds for the exploration.

Last month, two other men sparked a gold rush by claiming they have fund a tunnel at a separate location in Walbrzych that contains a Nazi train that could be carrying valuables. Now they say it could be rather precious minerals for the war industry. Nothing has been found yet.

Historians say there are dozens of kilometers of tunnels and only 10 percent of them have been uncovered. No documents have been found to indicate their overall purpose, but they have attracted explorers and inspired legends of a hidden Nazi train laden with gold.

The region was in Germany until the war's end and then became part of Poland. The Red Army resided in the area for some 18 months after the war before handing it over to the Poles.


The mysterious holes of Peru: A pre-Columbian domestic water source for trans-oceanic travelers?

No really serious attention has been paid by scientists to resolve the mystery of nearly 7000 'pits' that snake their way for almost one mile across the rugged Cajamarquilla Plain bordering the Pisco Valley of Peru, South America.

Just as with their near neighbour the famous Nasca Lines, this curiously patterned stream of cavities (pits) now attracts a plethora of theories concerning its original purpose: silos for grain storage, for water, local tribal defenses, vertical tombs in a mass graveyard - or even a coded message to the Sky Gods! To date the site has revealed no real artifactual evidence whatsoever—just a path of empty holes excavated into a limestone escarpment for no apparent rhyme or reason. No tools have been found, no skeletons or bones, no potsherds or textiles—nothing.

However, the 'pits' are extremely interesting. Around 7000 have been excavated into a band some 20 meters wide (65 feet), each hole averaging half a meter in diameter (25 inches). Some pits are set in near perfect straight lines, some in curved rows. Each row averages between nine and 12 cavities. Again, as with the Nasca Lines, only from aerial photographs can you truly observe the unique and deliberately precise nature of the elaboration.

Red Flag

Standard operating procedure: American false flags that started wars

© AP Photo/File
In this March 13, 1964 file photo, President Lyndon Johnson, right, talks with Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, center sitting, after McNamara returned from a fact-finding trip to South Vietnam, at the White House in Washington. Fifty years ago Sunday, Aug. 10, 2014, reacting to reports of a U.S. Navy encounter with enemy warships in the Gulf of Tonkin off Vietnam, reports long since discredited, Johnson signed a resolution passed overwhelmingly by Congress that historians call the crucial catalyst for deep American involvement in the Vietnam War. (AP Photo/File)
As this is being written, Congress is experiencing extensive and dramatic hand-wringing as it decides between doing what is best for the country and the world or doing what is best for the American Israel Political Affairs Committee. This is no easy task for members of Congress, especially Democrats who, on the one hand, want to assure a "victory" for President Barack Obama, but who are also loathe to displease the Israeli lobby. Whether preventing a war factors into their deliberations is not known.

AIPAC and its countless minions in Congress are painting the recent agreement reached between Iran and the P5+1 (China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States, plus Germany), as nothing short of the end of Israel.

If this deal preventing Iran from developing nuclear weapons is approved, they warn darkly, Iran will secretly develop nuclear weapons. This will mean the destruction of Israel, they say. But if it isn't approved, Iran will develop such weapons. This, they say, will also mean the destruction of Israel. Feel free to re-read those sentences whenever time allows.

From this point of view, the only alternative is war, with the ostensible purpose of destroying Iran's nuclear capabilities — capabilities that the Islamic Republic has always said are for peaceful energy purposes. Yet the risk of Iran ever having nuclear weapons is too great. If it did obtain them, then Israel would have a hostile nation to counterbalance its power in the Middle East, and, of course, it doesn't want that competition. And whatever Israel wants, the U.S. wants. Hence the fear-mongering.

Comment: Make sure to check out Robert Fantina's book, Empire, Racism and Genocide: A History of U.S. Foreign Policy, published by Red Pill Press.


Arctida: Russian scientists find two ancient continents existed before Arctic

© Kathryn Hansen/Reuters
The modern Arctic turns out to be the third incarnation of an ancient landmass at the top of the world. A group of Siberian scientists has discovered that the northern most continent broke apart twice, and not once as was previously thought.

An ancient continent named Arctida formed around one billion years ago, but then split apart around 750 million years ago, only to come back together again after another 500 million years, TASS reports, citing the findings of the Institute of Petroleum Geology and Geophysics of the Russian Academy of Sciences and Novosibirsk State University.

"There were at least two continents and not one as it was thought before," head of the General and Regional Geology Department at Novosibirsk State University and leading author of the study, Dmitry Metelkin, said.

The structure of the continent, however, did not stay the same in both instances when the constituent elements of Arctida came back together again.


Wayfinding: Dying wishes from one of the last remaining Micronesian master navigators

© Daniel Lin

Master Navigator Francis Sermonyoung holds up a Rogarog, a sacred weather charm belonging only to a few navigators. The Rogarog gives the navigator the ability to fight off bad weather out at sea.
In a world where information is accessible at the touch of a button, there is something extra special about the few remaining pockets of knowledge that exist only in the minds of a few individuals. Traditional navigation in Micronesia is one of those last bastions of knowledge that, to this day, is passed on almost exclusively through oral teachings from a master navigator to his chosen students. Also known as "wayfinding", traditional navigation involves finding one's way across vast distances using only the natural surroundings (stars, swells, clouds, etc) as guides.


New human species with orange-size brain discovered

© Mark Thiessen/National Geographic
Paleoartist John Gurch spent some 700 hours recreating the head of Homo naledi based on bone scans.
A newly discovered extinct human species may be the most primitive unearthed yet, with a brain about the size of an orange. But despite its small brain size, the early human performed ritual burials of its dead, researchers say.

This newfound species from South Africa, named Homo naledi, possessed an unusual mix of features, such as feet adapted for a life on the ground but hands suited for a life in the trees, that may force scientists to rewrite their models about the dawn of humanity.

Although modern humans are the only human lineage alive today, other human species once walked the Earth. These extinct lineages were members of the genus Homo just as modern humans are. The earliest human specimens found yet are about 2.8 million years old. [See Images of the Newfound Human Relative]

Though the researchers aren't sure how far back this human relative dates, it is the newest addition to the genus Homo. "It's a very exciting finding," said paleoanthropologist Ian Tattersall at the American Museum of Natural History, who did not participate in this research.

However, Tattersall suggested these new hominins might not belong to genus Homo. "I'm a great advocate for the notion that the genus Homo has been made overinclusive," he said. "I don't like to stuff new things in old pigeonholes. I don't think we have the vocabulary needed to describe the diversity we're seeing in early hominins."


New human-like species discovered in S. African cave with 'tiny brain, slender body'

© John Hawks / Wits University
Scientists in South Africa have unearthed a new species of human relative in a burial chamber deep down in a remote cave system, naming it Homo naledi. It's the single largest fossil hominin find yet made on the continent.

It's believed the discovery, consisting of over 1,550 numbered fossil elements representing at least 15 individuals, may "alter views of human behavior." Paleontologists have come to the conclusion that H. naledi deliberately deposited bodies of their dead in a remote cave chamber - behavior previously thought limited exclusively to humans.

According to scientists, H. naledi had a tiny brain, about the size of an average orange (about 500 cubic cm), perched atop of a "very slender body."

Blue Planet

2,500-year-old city buried under flood sediment may belong to lost civilization in Spain

Manuel Cuevas is 52 years old and is not only an entrepreneur, but also a passionate independent researcher. A few days ago, this resident of Sanlucar de Barrameda (Cadiz) sprung into the Spanish media after presenting a report to the Register of the Ministry of Culture of Andalusia. This report provides the coordinates of what has been interpreted to be four large buildings and a town from at least 2,500 years ago. One of these structures, a building or square surrounded by buildings, has measured 360 by 180 meters (1181 by 591 feet), while another, according to information provided by Antena3, reaches a size of about 180 by 100 meters (591 by 328 feet): unusual measurements for such ancient buildings.

The ancient city would be located in the area of Pinar de La Algaida covering an area of about 8 square kilometers (5 square miles.) This is where Cuevas claims to have recognized structures of entire buildings, with the appearance of having been preserved under multiple layers of sediment after suffering a major flood. The researcher believes that the architectural structures are older than that of the great Pharaonic and Mesopotamia monuments. Moreover, some of these buildings, due to their depth, refer to the period in which the mouth of the Guadalquivir River was a huge estuary, when the sea water covered the present city of Seville. Thus, at least some of the buildings may correspond to a time in which the common technology available would not have been sufficient to build such structures - making the city the location of a possible lost civilization.