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Sat, 17 Feb 2018
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Groundbreaking DNA test on 10,000-year-old fossil reveals first modern Brits were black

Cheddar Man
© Justin Tallis / AFP
A pioneering genetic analysis of the UK's oldest complete skeleton, which is around 10,000 years old, has revealed that the first modern Britons had a "dark to black" complexion.

The National History Museum carried out cutting-edge genetic sequencing and facial recognition technology on the 'Cheddar Man,' the skeleton found near Gough's Cave in the Cheddar Gorge, and found that the first British settlers had dark skin, dark curly hair and possibly blue eyes.

The research on the Mesolithic fossil undermines the commonly held assumption that a people's geographical origin is a determinant of skin color and physique.

Pharoah

Egypt: 4,400-year-old tomb discovered near Cairo

wall paintings inside the tomb of an Old Kingdom priestess

A general view shows well-preserved and rare wall paintings inside the tomb of an Old Kingdom priestess discovered by Egyptian archaeologists on the Giza plateau on the southern outskirts of Cairo on February 3, 2018
Egyptian archaeologists on Saturday unveiled the tomb of an Old Kingdom priestess adorned with well-preserved and rare wall paintings.

Antiquities Minister Khaled al-Enany told reporters that the tomb on the Giza plateau near Cairo was built for Hetpet, a priestess to Hathor, the goddess of fertility, who assisted women in childbirth.

The tomb was found during excavation work in Giza's western cemetery by a team of Egyptian archaeologists led by Mostafa Waziri, secretary general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities.

People 2

Everything old is new again: Toxic masculinity, 1920s-style

saloon protest q920 womens movement
"Don't Blame Mental Illness for Mass Shootings" a recent headline at Politico begins, "Blame Men." To be fair to the author, Laura Kiesel, she probably didn't choose that title. And to be doubly fair, she doesn't blame men in general for mass shooting. She does - correctly - point out that the overwhelming majority of people who shoot other people are men.

These nuances, however, have done little to shield Kiesel from what was probably the expected response. "Politico Blames Masculinity for Mass Shootings. Here's Why That's Ridiculous," an article in The Federalist fires back. Many other responses were less polite. When it comes to mass shootings, it seems that "toxic masculinity" rears its head yet again.

Many readers, even those not prone to thinking up defenses of men, might think that blaming "men" for mass shootings takes things a bit far. Some might even think that such a claim takes anti-man rhetoric to a new level.

Such thinking would probably be wrong. There have been other times in American history when men have been blamed for most of society's ills. And some of those campaigns were even more aggressive than what we might think of as anti-male campaigns today.

Blackbox

500-year-old code used by Ferdinand II finally cracked by Spain's intelligence agency

King Ferdinand II
© Creative Commons
King Ferdinand II of Spain
The cipher that King Ferdinand II used to communicate with his general was highly sophisticated and was constructed using over 200 characters.

The letters of King Ferdinand II addressed to his general Gonzalo de Córdoba, on display at Spain's Army Museum in Toledo for quite some time, have finally been deciphered with the help of Spain's secret service. The code was extremely complex, featuring more than 200 characters, with all words being written without spaces between them.

Dig

Ancient mass grave likely contained 300 Vikings from 'Great Heathen Army'

skull
© University of Bristol
Some 300 bodies discovered in an ancient mass grave in England may belong to Vikings from the 'Great Heathen Army' of the 9th century, new research suggests.

A team of archaeologists from the University of Bristol believe that the remains, initially discovered in the '80s, are those of warriors sent to England to fight the King of Mercia, driving him into exile in the year 873 AD. A number of artifacts including weapons and silver coins were also believed to be from the time.

MIB

Declassified documents from 1957 reveal CIA-MI6 plot to terrorize Syria, spark fake revolution, assassinate leadership

Image

Catapulting the propaganda: Britain's MI6 has been doing this with their fellow psychopaths in the Mossad and the CIA for a long time...
Documents show White House and No 10 conspired over oil-fuelled invasion plan

Nearly 50 years before the war in Iraq, Britain and America sought a secretive "regime change" in another Arab country they accused of spreading terror and threatening the west's oil supplies, by planning the invasion of Syria and the assassination of leading figures.

Newly discovered documents show how in 1957 Harold Macmillan and President Dwight Eisenhower approved a CIA-MI6 plan to stage fake border incidents as an excuse for an invasion by Syria's pro-western neighbours, and then to "eliminate" the most influential triumvirate in Damascus.

The plans, frighteningly frank in their discussion, were discovered in the private papers of Duncan Sandys, Mr Macmillan's defence secretary, by Matthew Jones, a reader in international history at Royal Holloway, University of London.

Comment: 'The plan' may not have been 'actionized', to borrow spook-speak, back then, but it is precisely what happened to Syria half a century later. The reason why there is a 50-year lag between the earlier articulation of this plan and its execution is because Western powers always use the same basic plan. They just didn't get around to 'doing' Syria until other circumstances permitted.

Keep in mind that the CIA's "fear of the spread of communism" was total BS, of course, just as today's 'fear of Russia' or 'fear of Islamism' is.

As explained by former CIA Station Chief John Stockwell, the real goal was to keep Third World countries as Third World countries by fighting a prolonged Third World War. They knew the Soviets were no threat. But the rise of 'socialist' policies (that is, policies that actually raised people out of poverty, thus strengthening national independence) threatened the US' global order.

John Stockwell - CIA's War on Humans


2 + 2 = 4

Secret DDR escape tunnel discovered in Berlin reveals story

hand through remains of Berlin Wall
© AP Photo/ Markus Schreiber
An 80-meter-long tunnel connecting the eastern and western parts of Berlin was accidentally discovered in the Mauerpark in Prenzlauer Berg district during construction works almost 30 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Dig

Mexico: Ancient skeletons found buried in a ring formation

mexican skeletons
© INAH - Mauricio Marat
Ten skeletons precisely arranged in a bizarre spiral formation have been discovered by archaeologists investigating a 2,400 year old burial site in Mexico.

The skeletons include adults, children and even an infant. They were buried with interlinking arms in a large ring. Two have been identified as female and one as male. The ancient bones were found at an archaeological site in the town of Tlalpan, just south of Mexico city.

In a dark twist, archaeologists from Mexico's National Institute of Anthropology (INAH) and History said in a statement that because of the strange way that they were laid out, the bodies may have been part of a ritualistic burial.

However, it is not yet known whether their deaths were natural or also part of the ritual.

Binoculars

Russia's historic Ryazan Kremlin seen through 100 years of photographs

Ryazan Kremlin 1
We are very pleased to present an article from the great Professor William Brumfield, (Wikipedia), Professor of Slavic Studies at Tulane University, New Orleans, USA.
William Brumfield
Professor William Brumfield is among the world's foremost experts on Russian architecture, and he has a genuine heartfelt love for the Russian culture and people. His work in photographing some of Russia's most famous, and obscure sites has gone a long way in preserving these parts of Russia's national heritage, by drawing attention to their beauty and need for preservation.

Question

Did ancient Greeks sail to Canada?

Greek triremes
© Chronicle/Alamy Stock Photo
Greek triremes were sizable oared ships used by ancient Mediterranean cultures for naval warfare. Typically, Greek sailors stuck close to shore. In new research, however, scientists suggest these sailors took to the high seas, making repeated trips across the North Atlantic Ocean.
The story of the European settlement of North America usually features a few main characters: red-headed Norsemen who sailed across an icy sea to set up temporary outposts, Spanish conquistadors, white-collared English separatists, French trappers, and Dutch colonists. Now a team of Greek scholars proposes another-and much earlier-wave of European migration: the Hellenistic Greeks, in triremes powered by sail and oar in the first century CE, nearly a millennium before the Vikings.

These ancient Greeks regularly visited what is now Newfoundland, the study's authors say. They set up colonies that lasted centuries, and they mined gold. They made recurrent trips every 30 years. Some travelers would return home after only a brief stay, but for others the voyages were one way-they came to know the North Atlantic, not the warm Aegean, as their home waters.

To be clear, there is no firm evidence of the ancient Greeks' purported voyages. There are no known physical remains of these historic Greek settlements in North America, nor are there first-hand descriptions of such journeys in anything but one account from antiquity. The idea is based entirely on a new examination of a dialogue written by the influential Roman author Plutarch, who lived from 46 to 119 CE.

"Our intention is to prove, with modern science, that it was possible for this trip to be made," Ioannis Liritzis, an archaeologist at the University of the Aegean who proposed that the ancient journeys took place, wrote in an email. Liritzis presents his argument in a new paper, co-authored with astronomer Panagiota Preka-Papadema, philosopher Konstantinos Kalachanis, meteorologist Chris G. Tzanis, and information technology consultant Panagiotis Antonopoulos.

Greek historians and maritime archaeologists are wary, however. Several people contacted for this story say Liritzis's claims are unfounded, and unlikely at best.