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Thu, 19 Oct 2017
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Question

Fireball of 1910 remains a mystery in Kenosha, Wisconsin

Was it an astral body or a weather anomaly that a Kenosha neighborhood witnessed on a summer's morning more than 100 years ago?

The incident was recorded on the front page of the Kenosha Evening News of Aug. 25, 1910.

Witnesses said a great ball of fire came through the sky in the area of Grand Avenue (52nd Street) and Ashland Avenue (Sheridan Road) just before 8 a.m.

The sky was dark, and it was raining hard, with thunder and lightning. But the people who saw the phenomenon felt sure it was not a creature of their imaginations.

The news article reported: "The people in the neighborhood of Congress and York Streets (today's Tenth Avenue and 54th Street) were just sitting down to their breakfast when they saw a great light.

"So intense was the light that, notwithstanding the storm, it lit up their homes like bright sunlight, and they rushed to the windows just in time to see the ball of fire coming through the heavens in a southwesterly direction.

"It was only a few feet from the tops of the houses when it was seen by most of the witnesses
, and the women were so frightened that they fled from the windows."

Telescope

Oldest known European calendar was based on the constellation Orion


Orion's Belt and Vucedol Pot
In the late 1970s during the construction of an atomic bomb shelter, a shattered pot was found amongst the rubble. Archeologists were baffled by the strange patterns on the vessel, which dates back to 2600 BC until Dr. Aleksandar Durman finally cracked the code: it was a calendar. Yet, unlike the contemporary Egyptian or Sumerian calendars, this European timetable was based not on the sun or the moon but rather on the stars. Central to the charting of the seasons was the constellation named after the noble Greek hunter, Orion.

The pot was unearthed on March 21, 1978, during construction of what is now the Hotel Slavonija in Vinkovci, Croatia. Archeologists quickly recognized it as an artifact of the ancient Vučedol culture, which flourished on the western banks of the Danube River between 3000 and 2200 BC. However, though researchers knew it to be of the Vučedol people, the pattern was not decoded for several decades.

Easter Egg

The origins of the cannabis trade: Eurasian Steppe nomads were world's first 'pot dealers'

The nomad tribe known as the Yamnaya, who were among the founders of the European civilization, may have been the first pot dealers, archaeologists say. Moreover, they were responsible for the first transcontinental trade of cannabis.

The tribe of nomads came from the eastern Steppe region, which is nowadays Russia and Ukraine, and entered Europe about 5,000 years ago, bringing with them herding skills, metallurgy and even the Indo-European languages. According to a recent analysis, they were also responsible for introducing marijuana and establishing the first transcontinental trade of the herb.

According to Seeker.com, the research carried out by specialists from the German Archaeological Institute and the Free University of Berlin, involved a systematic review of archaeological and paleo-environmental records of cannabis fibres, pollen and achene across Europe and East Asia. During the study, they concluded that the herb was not first used and domesticated somewhere in China or Central Asia. Rather, it was used in Europe and East Asia at the same time - between 11,500 and 10,200 years ago. As Tengwen Long and Mayke Wagner at the German Archaeological Institute, and Pavel Tarasov at the Free University of Berlin, and colleagues wrote in the journal Vegetation History and Archaeobotany :
"Cannabis seems to have grown as a component of natural vegetation across Eurasia from the early Holocene''.

Eye 2

"Christian" Europeans: The most brutal and genocidal people of all time?

"It is true that the "new Europe" has largely kept itself in check over the past few decades choosing peace and prosperity over war. But is that about to change? Is "Western Christian" Europe backsliding and reverting to her old ways?"

The author is Professor of Humanities - Moscow University Touro.

Let us begin with the spiritual words uttered by the 16th century German preacher and theologian Thomas Muentzer:
"Curse the unbelievers ... don't let them live any longer, the evil-doers who turn away from God. The sword is necessary to exterminate them ... if they resist let them be slaughtered without mercy ... don't be moved by pity ... At them! At them! While the fire is hot! Don't let your sword get cold! "
Sound familiar?

Many will complain that the comparison is unfair, but history teaches us to be very wary of Europeans. Here's why...

Footprints

Unknown hominin species found in Australasian family tree

© Penny Tweedie/Panos Pictures
Go west? Or go east?
Who's your daddy? An unknown hominin species that bred with early human ancestors when they migrated from Africa to Australasia has been identified through genome mapping of living humans.

The genome analysis also questions previous findings that modern humans populated Asia in two waves from their origin in Africa, finding instead a common origin for all populations in the Asia-Pacific region, dating back to a single out-of-Africa migration event.

Modern humans first left Africa about 60,000 years ago, with some heading west towards Europe, and others flowing east into the Asia-Pacific region.

Previous research looking at the genomes of people living today has revealed that the Asia-Pacific arrivals mated with two hominin species they found there - the Neanderthals and the Denisovans.

Mysterious ancestor

But when Jaume Bertranpetit at Pompeu Fabra University in Spain and his colleagues analysed the genomes of living Indigenous Australians, Papuans, people from the Andaman Islands near India, and from mainland India, they found sections of DNA that did not match any previously identified hominin species.

These DNA sequences are not present in the genomes of living Europeans or east Asians, suggesting that the ancestors of these people met and bred with a mystery hominin in south Asia or the Pacific region, who left their genetic legacy in the area's present-day populations.


The unidentified hominin may be Homo erectus or "upright man", says Bertranpetit. H. erectus is believed to be the first hominin with a similar stature to today's humans, and the first to leave Africa.

Pyramid

Canal found under Maya pyramid

© Thinkstock
Mexican archeologists have discovered a canal system under the pyramid containing the tomb of a Mayan ruler, suggesting the water tunnel could represent a symbolic path to the underworld.

The hydraulic system was found under the Temple of the Inscriptions, which houses the seventh-century tomb of Pakal "The Great" in Palenque, the ancient Maya city in southern Chiapas state, the National Anthropology and History Institute announced Monday.

"The presence of these canals is very important and very significant," said Arnoldo Gonzalez, the directory of archeology in Palenque.

An inscription in the tomb says that to be accepted in the underworld, the dead must be submerged in the water of a god called Chaac.

The underground network of canals has different levels and goes in different directions, and it was built "well before" the pyramid, according to the national anthropology institute.

Beaker

Madam Marie Curie's research papers still radioactive 100+ years later

© The Wellcome Trust
One of Madame Curie's research notebooks
When researching a famous historical figure, access to their work and materials usually proves to be one of the biggest obstacles. But things are much more difficult for those writing about the life of Marie Curie, the scientist who, along her with husband Pierre, discovered polonium and radium and birthed the idea of particle physics. Her notebooks, her clothing, her furniture, pretty much everything surviving from her Parisian suburban house, is radioactive, and will be for 1,500 years or more.

If you want to look at her manuscripts, you have to sign a liability waiver at France's Bibliotheque Nationale, and then you can access the notes that are sealed in a lead-lined box. The Curies didn't know about the dangers of radioactive materials, though they did know about radioactivity. Their research attempted to find out which substances were radioactive and why, and so many dangerous elements - thorium, uranium, plutonium - were just sitting there in their home laboratory, glowing at night, which Curie thought beautiful, "like faint, fairy lights," she wrote in her autobiography. Marie Curie carried these glowing objects around in her pockets. She and her husband wore standard lab clothing, nothing more.

Marie Curie died at age 66 in 1934, from aplastic anemia, attributed to her radioactive research. The house, however, continued to be used up until 1978 by the Institute of Nuclear Physics of the Paris Faculty of Science and the Curie Foundation. After that it was kept under surveillance, authorities finally aware of the dangers inside. When many people in the neighborhood noticed high cancer rates among them, as reported in Le Parisien, they blamed the Curie's home.

People 2

Cooperative system: Hunter-gatherer multi-level social networks were built around food sharing

© Rodolph Schlaepfer
This photograph shows seafood gathering among Agata children.
Long before the advent of social media, human social networks were built around sharing a much more essential commodity: food. Now, researchers reporting on the food sharing networks of two contemporary groups of hunter-gatherers in the Cell Press journal Current Biology on July 21 provide new insight into fundamental nature of human social organization.

The new work reveals surprising similarities between the Agta of the Philippines and Mbendjele of the Republic of Congo. In both places, individuals maintain a three-tiered social network that appears to buffer them against day-to-day shortfalls in foraging returns.

"Previous research has suggested that social networks across human cultures are structured in similar ways," says Mark Dyble (@DybleMark) of University College London. "Across societies, there appear to be similar limits on the number of social relationships individuals are able to maintain, and many societies are said to have a 'multilevel' structure. Our work on contemporary hunter-gatherer groups sheds light on how this distinctive social structure may have benefited humans in our hunting-and-gathering past."

Question

Neanderthals in Germany: Population peak and rapid extinction

© www.dailymail.co.uk
The mysterious rise and fall of Neanderthals.
Neanderthals once populated the entire European continent. Around 45,000 years ago, Homo neanderthalensis was the predominant human species in Europe. Archaeological findings show that there were also several settlements in Germany. However, the era of the Neanderthal came to an end quite suddenly.

Based on an analysis of the known archaeological sites, Professor Jürgen Richter from Collaborative Research Center 806 -- Our Way to Europe, in which the universities of Cologne, Bonn and Aachen cooperate, comes to the conclusion that Neanderthals reached their population peak right before their population rapidly declined and they eventually became extinct.

Neanderthals lived in the Middle Paleolithic, the middle period of the Old Stone Age. This period encompasses the time from roughly 200,000 to 40,000 before our times. In his article published in the Quaternary International Journal, Richter comes to the conclusion that more than 50 percent of the known Neanderthal settlement sites in Germany can be dated to the Middle Paleolithic. More precisely, they date back 60,000 to 43,000 years before our times. Thus, the Neanderthal population peak seems to lie in this period.

The number of sites, their analysis and the analysis of the artefacts found at these settlements indicate that the Neanderthal population in Germany was subject to extreme demographic fluctuations. During the Middle Paleolithic, there appear to have been several migrations, population increase and decline, extinction in certain areas and then a return of settlers to these areas.

While for the time period between 110,000 to 70,000 years ago there are only four known settlement sites, in the following period from 70,000 to 43,000 years ago there are ninety-four. In less than 1,000 years after this demographic peak, however, there was a rapid decline and the Neanderthal disappeared from the scene. Precisely why the species died out is still unclear. Perhaps it was due to low genetic diversity, perhaps to the rise of Homo sapiens. This question will continue to occupy scientists.

SOTT Logo Radio

The Truth Perspective: Beyond Iran-Contra: The secret history of America's covert wars, with Hugo Turner


The original 'moderate rebels', the Contras, on patrol in 1987.
For the first hour of the show, we were joined by blogger Hugo Turner of Anti-Imperialist U to discuss the thirtieth anniversary of the Iran-Contra scandal. Funding the Contras in Nicaragua was just a small window into a much wider history of American death squads, drug trafficking, torture, arms smuggling, regime change, and terrorism that was nothing new in the 80s, and hasn't changed much at all today. We talked about how it all fits together, and how it relates to what's going on today. You can read Hugo's Iran-Contra series on SOTT:

Beyond the Iran-Contra Affair Part 1: The secret team
Beyond the Iran-Contra Affair Part 2: World War 3 has already happened
Beyond the Iran-Contra Affair Part 3: The World Anti-Communist League

In the second half of the show, discussed the aftermath of the failed coup in Turkey, the mass shooting in Munich, and other current events, followed by a Police State Roundup.

Running Time: 02:20:36

Download: OGG, MP3


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Here's the transcript of the show: