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Wed, 23 Aug 2017
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The original Americans: First settlers came from Siberia over 23,000 years ago

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The migration route of Siberians into North America and the subsequent split into northern and southern Amerindian populations. A new analysis of current and ancient genomes shows that there also was some later interbreeding between East Asians and Inuit.
The original Americans came from Siberia in a single wave no more than 23,000 years ago, at the height of the last Ice Age.

New research says they hung out in the north of the country - perhaps for thousands of years - before spreading in two distinct populations throughout North and South America, according to a new genomic analysis.

The findings, which will be reported in the July 24 issue of Science, confirm the most popular theory of the peopling of the Americas, but throws cold water on others, including the notion of an earlier wave of people from East Asia prior to the last glacial maximum.

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Indigenous memory technology used to explain Stonehenge

© Larissa Romensky/ABC central Victoria
Dr Lynn Kelly is pictured holding a 100-year-old girl's coolamon, an Indigenous Australian carrying vessel and memory device.
Castlemaine science writer and Honorary Visiting Research Fellow at La Trobe University Dr Lynne Kelly says she has uncovered the true meaning of famous archaeological sites including Stonehenge using Indigenous memory technology.

Dr Kelly uses logic to understand how ancient cultures stored knowledge and found all of them fit the same pattern by which practical information is stored.

Whether they were a mobile hunter gatherer culture or a settled culture, Dr Kelly says they all used the same methods for storing information.

The devises may have changed over time but the methods remained the same.

She sees Stonehenge and many other ancient structures including hand held devices as memory technology.

"What the theories don't include is how much practical knowledge and how much rational intelligence these people must have had because biologically they are exactly the same as us," said Dr Kelly.

She said there is a tendency for oral cultures to be understood in simplistic terms using spirituality and religion to explain structures where in fact they developed complex systems.

"In all oral cultures they have to store the information in memory, they can't write it down so they have the most extraordinary memory methods," said Dr Kelly.

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17th-century noblewoman discovered fully clothed in France; buried with her husband's heart


Archeologists working at the Rangueil forensic institute in Toulouse, after the discovery of a lead coffin containing an exceptionally well-preserved body of a noble woman from the XVII century, wearing religious clothing.
A fully dressed and well-preserved corpse of a noblewoman who died in the 17th century has been discovered by French archeologists. The woman's body was in a lead coffin, along with the heart of her husband.

The body was found in the chapel of St Joseph's convent in Rennes, Brittany, in northwest France, in March 2014. However, the identity of the lady was only revealed on Tuesday by the French National Institute for Preventative Archaeological Research(Inrap).

The body, 1.45 meters in length, was still wearing shoes and a cap. It is thought to be Louise de Quengo, a widow of the Breton nobility who died in 1656 when she was about 60 years old.

The team from Inrap says that the body is "in an exceptional state of preservation."
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© via [email protected]
Convent In Rennes: The exceptional burial of Louise De Quengo, lady of the seventeenth century. One of the five coffins of lead unearthed by archaeologists at the search, contained a body in a state of exceptional conservation, Louise De Quengo, lady of brefeillac. Louise de quengo bears the habit of religious, a complete costume of the seventeenth century: Cape, chasuble, dress of Bure Brune In Wool Twill Rude, shirt in canvas, or chausses leggings in wool twill and mules soled leather in liège.
The study, LED by an interdisciplinary team, is a rare testimony of funeral practices of the elites of the seventeenth century and provides valuable information on the history of science and medicine.

Beaker

Science historians are re-creating recipes from 400 year old manuscript

© Making & Knowing Project
In the 16th century, encasing living objects and insects in metal was a popular endeavor.
Deep in the national library of France sits a 400-year-old recipe book, its pages jam-packed with handwritten instructions for producing ancient pigments, varnishes, colored metals, and fake gems; for casting coins, cannons, and jewelry; and for doing creative—if disturbing—taxidermy that merges cats with bats. The manuscript is a rarity: Although printed recipe books were relatively common in the 16thcentury, this text was the equivalent of a lab notebook for an ambitious, anonymous French craftsman, someone who didn't just collect useful recipes but actively tinkered with them, obsessively noting observations and protocol improvements in the margins.

"The text is so unruly that you can't really read the manuscript—you have to decipher it," says Pamela H. Smith, a historian of science at Columbia University. Smith launched a project last September to transcribe, translate, and re-create recipes from a digitized version of this chaotic manual, whose banal name, "Ms. Fr. 640," belies its enticing contents. Funded by the National Science Foundation and dubbed the Making & Knowing Project, this venture has Columbia students systematically re-creating the book's recipes as part of their coursework. Over the next few years, the plan is to compile the results of these modern re-creations in an online portal.

Comment: We ignore ancient knowledge at our peril as recent discoveries of recipes from old manuscripts show that they are sometimes more efficacious than our modern medicine: Ancient Anglo-Saxon herbal potion found to kill MRSA


Telescope

Were the ancient Irish the first to record an eclipse? 5,000-year-old drawings in mysterious cairn show celestial event

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It's thought that ancient Irish people were the first to record a solar eclipse 5,355 years ago. This piece of rock art is said to show the celestial event
Stone Age monuments such as Stonehenge suggest our prehistoric ancestors were keen astronomers.

Now archaeologists believe that the ancient Irish were the first to record an eclipse 5,354 years ago.

A geometric carving said to depict the phenomenon lies on the wall of a mysterious mound known as Cairn L outside Kells in County Meath, Ireland, where the landscape is covered in Neolithic ruins.

The etching is one of the main focuses of the cairn and is situated at the back of the chamber, which has seven recesses - three on each side and one at the back, Martin Byrne, author of blog carrowkeel explained.

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The image of concentric circles is thought to have been scratched into the rock on November 30, 3340BC, which fits with one of the 2 solar eclipses in history tracked by Irish archaeoastronomer Paul Griffin. This image shows a solar eclipse on August 11 1999
The image of concentric circles and lines is thought to have been scratched into the rock on 30 November, 3,340 BC.

This date fits with the 92 solar eclipses in history tracked by Irish archaeoastronomer Paul Griffin, Irish Central reported.

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Experts at Astronomy Ireland surmise the carvings were made on stones by Neolithic astronomer priests and that the eclipse was likely viewed from the cairn, which is perched on top of the hill (shown)

Binoculars

Massive man-made monolith over 10,000 years old found in Mediterranean Sea

© sciencedirect.com
A massive monolith over 10,000 years old has been found in the Mediterranean Sea near Italy, scientists say. The block, which was apparently constructed by humans, bears traces of prehistoric civilization.

The 12-meter-long monolith "resting on the sea-floor" was located at a depth of 40 meters, in a shallow bank of the Sicilian Channel, says the report by ocean scientists from Italy and Israel published in July.

"It is broken into two parts, and has three regular holes: one at its end which passes through from part to part, the others in two of its sides."

According to the study, the site was abandoned at about 9,350 ± 200 years BP (Before Present) and the morphological evidence, underwater observations and results of petrographic analysis suggest that the monolith was made by humans.

Eye 2

The psychopathic logic of the U.S. dropping the atom bomb on Japan 70 years later

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Hiroshima and Nagasaki: Worst single terror attacks in history
Even if we accept that there was a plausible military imperative to drop the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki - to bring about a swift defeat of Japan and thus an end to the Pacific War - the horror of civilian death toll from those two no-warning aerial attacks places a disturbing question over the supposed ends justifying the means.

But what if the official military rationale touted by US President Harry Truman and his administration turns out to be bogus? That is, the real reason for dropping the A-bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki 70 years ago on August 6 and 9, 1945, had little to do with defeating imperial Japan and saving the lives of American troops. What if the real reason was the deliberate and cold-blooded demonstration of raw military power by Washington in order to warn the Soviet Union of America's postwar demarcation of global hegemony?

That leads to the most chilling conclusion - a conclusion far worse than the official American narrative would have us believe. For it means that the act of obliterating up to 200,000 Japanese civilians was an event of premeditated mass murder whose intent was solely political. Or, in other words, an ineffable act of state terrorism committed by the United States.

Comment: See: Nuclear bombing of Hiroshima, Nagasaki was unjustified - US experts


Airplane

Delta Flight 191 crash: 30 years since a 'microburst' caused tragedy at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport

© David Breslauer, AP
Delta Flight 191 crashed short of the runway at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport Aug. 2, 1985. Twenty-seven people survived the disaster.
DALLAS — Sunday marked the 30th anniversary of the crash of Delta Flight 191 at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport.

The Lockheed L-1011 jumbo jet was coming in for a landing on a rainy Friday evening Aug. 2, 1985, when it encountered a "microburst" that sent the aircraft careening along the ground north of runway 17L, according to the National Transportation Safety Board. The plane struck a car on Texas Highway 114, killing its driver, then broke up in a fireball as it slammed into two large above-ground water tanks.

The crash killed 136 passengers and crew on board plus the motorist; 27 people survived the impact.

The NTSB investigation said although the pilot was experienced and competent, training in dealing with microbursts was lacking. After the crash, pilots were required to train to react to microbursts and quickly take evasive action. Since then, weather forecasting and windshear detection also has improved.

War Whore

A century ago the U.S. invaded and occupied Haiti setting the template for inequality and misrule


On the morning of Wed., Jul. 28, 1915, U.S. Marines landed near Port-au-Prince, beginning a brutal 19-year military occupation of Latin America’s first independent nation that left deep scars on the Haitian population and psyche.
A century ago, American troops invaded and occupied a foreign nation. They would stay there for almost two decades, install a client government, impose new laws and fight insurgents in bloody battles on difficult terrain. Thousands of residents perished during what turned out to be 19 years of de facto U.S. rule.

The country was Haiti, the Caribbean nation that's often seen by outsiders as a metaphor for poverty and disaster. Yet rarely are Americans confronted with their own hand in its misfortunes.

On Tuesday, a group of protesters marched to the U.S. Embassy in the Haitian capital Port-au-Prince in commemoration of the grim legacy of the U.S. occupation, which began in July 1915 after President Woodrow Wilson used political chaos and violence in the country as grounds to intervene. Some in Washington feared the threat of competing French and German interests in the Caribbean.

The liberal, democratic values Wilson so famously championed in Europe were not so visible in Haiti, a largely black republic that since its independence from France a century earlier had been regarded with fear and contempt by America's white ruling classes. "Think of it! N------s speaking French," quipped William Jennings Bryan, Wilson's secretary of state, in a chilling echo of the Jim Crow-era bigotry of the time.

It was also a moment where Washington did little to disguise its sense of imperial entitlement in the neighborhood. A number of fledgling governments in the Caribbean and Central America all suffered U.S. invasions and the imposition of policies favorable to American strategic interests and big business. Banana republics didn't just spring up on their own.

Comment: It appears that not much has changed - when the U.S. decides to spread 'freedom and democracy' to further its own political and economic interests, the local population will suffer extreme brutality.


Blackbox

The secret history of Alaska: How Russia was led to sell its American stronghold

© Flickr / Teddy Llovet
There is still a lot of controversy about Alaska's cession to the United States by Russian Emperor Alexander II; some experts call the treaty in question, suggesting that Alaska may hypothetically be returned to Russia.

The real story of the cession of the Russian Possessions in North America — Alaska — by "his Majesty the Emperor of all the Russians" Alexander II to the United States of America is still shrouded in mystery.

The Treaty of Cession of Alaska was inked 148 years ago, on March 30, by Russian and American plenipotentiaries: the Privy Councillor Edward de Stoeckl and US Secretary of State William H. Seward, respectively.

Comment: For more secret history, check out: