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Famous rock art cave in Spain was used by ancient humans for more than 50,000 years

Cave Excavation
© Ramos-Muñoz et al., CC-BY 4.0 (creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
Excavation area in Cueva de Ardales with evidence from the Middle Palaeolithic period.
A cave in southern Spain was used by ancient humans as a canvas for artwork and as a burial place for over 50,000 years, according to a study published June 1, 2022, in the open-access journal PLOS ONE by José Ramos-Muñoz of the University of Cadiz, Spain, and colleagues.

Cueva de Ardales, a cave in Málaga, Spain, is famous for containing more than 1,000 paintings and engravings made by prehistoric people, as well as artifacts and human remains. However, the nature of human usage of this cave has not been well-understood. In this study, the authors present the results of the first excavations in this cave, which shed light on the history of human culture in the Iberian Peninsula.

A combination of radiometric dating and analysis of remains and artifacts within the cave provide evidence that the site's first occupants were likely Neanderthals more than 65,000 years ago. Modern humans arrived later, around 35,000 years ago, and used the cave sporadically until as recently as the beginning of the Copper Age. The oldest rock art in the cave consists of abstract signs such as dots, finger tips, and hand-stencils created with red pigment, while later artwork depicts figurative paintings such as animals. Human remains indicate the use of the cave as a burial place in the Holocene, but evidence of domestic activities is extremely poor, suggesting humans were not living in the cave.

People

Modern Ukraine was built on an anti-Russia foundation, but a large part of the country refused to play along

Ukraine 1
© Getty Images / Brendan Hoffman
The conflict in Ukraine has many frontlines. The world is mostly focusing on the hostilities, but an even more serious conflict is unfolding inside the Ukrainian camp. This standoff between Ukrainians and Russians as two political nations has been developing since 2014, but it entered a new, decisive phase after Russia began its military offensive, three months ago.

Since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, three groups with strong identities have co-existed in Ukraine. A state which first came into being as recently as 1917, and had its current borders set by Joseph Stalin, the Georgian dictator who led the USSR until his death in 1953.

The first one, Ukrainian-speaking Ukrainians (or Galicians, named after the historical region of Galicia), mostly live in Ukraine's western and central territories. Their ethnic narrative is very clear, they consider Russians to be their enemy, and their main icon is the World War Two Nazi-collaborator Stepan Bandera.

The Galician motto is something along the lines of "if you disagree with us, there is still time - pack your suitcase and catch the next train to Russia." They are pushing the narrative that Ukraine as a nation doesn't depend on Russia and the Russians. This is supported by their choice of national heroes. Hetman Ivan Mazepa sided with King of Sweden Charles XII during the Great Northern War between Russia and Sweden. Symon Petliura was the president of the Ukrainian People's Republic during Ukraine's sovereignty in 1918-1921. The aforementioned Bandera founded and led the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists from the 1920s to the 1950s.

Black Magic

Rudolph II: The alchemist Emperor of Prague

Michael Sendivogius  alchemy prage middle ages prague

Polish alchemist Michael Sendivogius (1566-1636), painted in 1867 by Jan Matejko. Sendivogius was one of many alchemists who practiced in Prague with the encouragement and support of Rudolf II.
As the Holy Roman Empire descended into religious conflicts, its Habsburg ruler surrounded himself with magicians, astrologers, and scryers.

From the 15th to the 17th centuries, most European rulers dabbled in alchemy and magic. These were not seen, however, as diversions from rulership. They were central to it, for the realms of magic and of hidden truth were thought to hold the solution to how the world might be brought into conformity with the cosmic order.

The content of the occult world, as it was imagined in early modern Europe, is best broached through The Emerald Tablet (Tabula Smaragdina), a cryptic text believed to have been originally carved on a slab of jade that Alexander the Great found in the crypt of the magician Hermes Trismegistus (the Thrice Great). In fact, it was probably first composed in the Syriac language in the eighth century before being translated into Arabic and then into Latin.

Colosseum

Ruins of hidden 3,400-year-old-city emerge as giant dam dries up

Mosul
© Universities of Freiburg and Tübingen, KAO
The archaeological site of Kemune in the Mosul Dam.
The tightening grip of climate change on our planet is revealing secrets buried for millennia.


Comment: Note that a great many archeological sites were buried by climate change, which only further supports the fact that a shifting climate and weather extremes are cyclical, rather than being due to 'human emissions'.


As waters and ice recede under warming conditions, the traces of people and civilizations long gone from the mortal realm emerge. In recent months, Iraq has been hit particularly hard, battered by extreme drought, with the Mosul reservoir shrinking as water is extracted to keep crops from drying.

Amid this crisis, the ruins of an ancient city, submerged for decades, are once again on dry land. Since the dam was created in the 1980s before the settlement was archaeologically studied and cataloged, its re-emergence represents a rare opportunity for scientists to explore it. The archaeological site has been named Kemune.


Comment: It's a bit of an ideological stretch to call this an issue of 'climate change' if the dam has only been in use for 40 years, and they knew about the archeological site prior to its submersion.


The ruins consist of a palace and several other large structures, dating back to the Bronze Age in the region, around 3,400 years ago. Scientists think the ruins might be the ancient city of Zakhiku, a bustling center for the Mittani Empire, which thrived on the banks of the Tigris River between 1550 and 1350 BCE.

Comment: See also: Skeleton of young man killed by tsunami caused by eruption of Thera 3,600 years ago found on Turkish coast


Info

First Pompeiian human genome sequenced

Pompeii site
© SINAnet ISPRA – Dem75 (QGIS 3.22 ‘Biatowieza’)
Geographic location of the Pompeii site, Campania (Italy).
The first successfully sequenced human genome from an individual who died in Pompeii, Italy, after the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 CE is presented this week in a study published in Scientific Reports. Prior to this, only short stretches of mitochondrial DNA from Pompeiian human and animal remains had been sequenced.

Gabriele Scorrano and colleagues examined the remains of two individuals who were found in the House of the Craftsman in Pompeii and extracted their DNA. The shape, structure, and length of the skeletons indicated that one set of remains belonged to a male who was aged between 35 and 40 years at the time of his death, while the other set of remains belonged to a female aged over 50 years old. Although the authors were able to extract and sequence ancient DNA from both individuals, they were only able to sequence the entire genome from the male's remains due to gaps in the sequences obtained from the female's remains.

Comparisons of the male individual's DNA with DNA obtained from 1,030 other ancient and 471 modern western Eurasian individuals suggested that his DNA shared the most similarities with modern central Italians and other individuals who lived in Italy during the Roman Imperial age. However, analyses of the male individual's mitochondrial and Y chromosome DNA also identified groups of genes that are commonly found in those from the island of Sardinia, but not among other individuals who lived in Italy during the Roman Imperial age. This suggests that there may have been high levels of genetic diversity across the Italian Peninsula during this time.

Syringe

The story of how the CIA conducted secret LSD experiments on unwitting US citizens

cia crest
© gettotext.com
After World War II, the possibility of gaining control over a person's mind became one of the top pursuits for intelligence services. Amid never-ending spy games, the capacity to make someone tell the full truth during an interrogation, or to wipe out a subject's personality and impose another - perhaps, a controlled one - became quite attractive to secret services.

In 1979, former US State Department officer John Marks published a book called 'The Search for the 'Manchurian Candidate'', which focused on the CIA's mind-control experiments and is based on agency documents released under the Freedom of Information Act.

The term 'Manchurian Candidate' emerged from a title of a novel by Richard Condon, first published in 1959, which tells the story of a US soldier brainwashed and turned into an assassin by the Communists. Back then, the fear that America's rivals might use such techniques was not only a fictional fantasy, but a matter of very serious concern.

Георгиевская ленточка

Historian Egor Kholmogorov: The intertwined roots of history explain why Russia can't let go of Ukraine

statue Prince Vladimir  Moscow
© Andrew Surma / NurPhoto
Monument of Prince Vladimir in Moscow, Russia.
Centuries of shared history mean that the fate of Kiev will always remain Moscow's core interest

In August 1948, the US National Security Council issued memorandum (NSC 20/1 1948), requested by then Defense Secretary James Forrestal. The document described American objectives with respect to the Soviet Union.

A significant part of the memorandum focused on Ukraine. American analysts were convinced that the territory was an integral part of greater Russia, and it was highly unlikely that Ukrainians could exist as an independent nation. Most importantly, it noted, any support given to separatists would be met with a strong negative reaction by Russians.

Magnify

Maria Zakharova takes Japan to task for their historical ties with Nazism

Maria Zakharova
© Maria Zakharova, spokeswoman for the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Some may be perplexed by the fact that Japan, with 7,000 kilometres separating it from Ukraine, has been acting as if it was a quasi-state within the United States in its relations with Russia over the past several years. What compels a sovereign state to sign all Russophobic lists concocted by the Anglo-Saxons, and join Washington and London in every initiative targeting our country?

The West has a singular way of justifying its accusations. You did this because you have done it before. That's what they say.

But what if we look back?

Comment: Japan has been very subservient in following the Anglo-Saxon world in their proxy war with Russia. Japan has condemned Russia over its military operation in Ukraine, and has imposed economic sanctions on Moscow. Tokyo has also broken with decades of pacifism and sent non-lethal military aid to Kiev.


Info

Lasers reveal 'lost' pre-Hispanic civilization deep in the Amazon

Screenshot from a 3D animation of the Cotoca site.
© . Prümers / German Archaeological Institute
Screenshot from a 3D animation of the Cotoca site.
Millions of lasers shot from a helicopter flying over the Amazon basin have revealed evidence of unknown settlements built by a "lost" pre-Hispanic civilization, resolving a long-standing scientific debate about whether the region could sustain a large population, a new study finds.

The findings indicate the mysterious Casarabe people — who lived in the Llanos de Mojos region of the Amazon basin between A.D. 500 and 1400 — were much more numerous than previously thought, and that they had developed an extensive civilization that was finely adapted to the unique environment they lived in, according to the study, published online Wednesday (May 25) in the journal Nature.

The study researchers used airborne lidar — "light detection and ranging," in which thousands of infrared laser pulses are bounced every second off the terrain to reveal archaeological structures beneath dense vegetation — and discovered several unknown settlements within a network of roads, causeways, reservoirs and canals that was centered on two very large Casarabe settlements, now called Cotoca and Landívar.

"In one hour of walking, you can get to another settlement," study lead author Heiko Prümers, an archaeologist at the German Archaeological Institute in Bonn, told Live Science. "That's a sign that this region was very densely populated in pre-Hispanic times." Prümers and his colleagues have studied the Casarabe ruins in the region, now part of Bolivia, for more than 20 years.

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MindMatters: Critical Race Theory's Race To The Bottom

race marxism
Critical Race Theory did not come ready-made out of a box. What we see and know today as CRT has, as its basis, several schools of pseudo-philosophical thought and areas of academic study - one built and twisted on another. But these influences and the progression of these ideas can, for all their wrongheadedness, be traced and seen for what they are. Today on MindMatters we delve further into the ideological roots, conceptual frameworks, contemporary movements and ultimate end game of CRT as described in James Lindsay's new book Race Marxism: The Truth about Critical Race Theory and Praxis.

Other sources:
Andrew Lobaczewski's Political Ponerology
Arthur Versluis's New Inquisitions


Running Time: 01:29:13

Download: MP3 — 123 MB