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Papers reveal US-backed Brazil's role in installing and supporting Pinochet in Chile

Pinochet
© Getty Images/Horacio Villalobos
Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet
Washington's involvement in the violent overthrow of the democratically elected government of Chile in September 1973 is by this point well known. The pivotal role played by Brazil has not been as clear until now.

On the anniversary of the 1964 US-backed coup that led to Brazilian President Joao Goulart being replaced by a military junta, the National Security Archive has published a trove of previously classified documents showing the role that junta later played in subverting democracy in Chile, and its subsequent support of General Augusto Pinochet's brutal repression of political opponents.

The file trail begins September 22, 1970, 18 days after Salvador Allende of the Popular Unity alliance narrowly won the Chilean presidency. A document, prepared for General Emilio Garrastazu Medici - then the third president of Brazil's military dictatorship - summarizes a recent meeting between the US ambassador to Chile, Edward Korry, and his Brazilian counterpart.

Following Allende's victory, Korry, a veteran diplomat during the administrations of Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, and Nixon, vowed that "not a nut or bolt shall reach Chile" under the socialist's rule, and if and when he took office in November that year, the US would "do all within our power to condemn Chile and the Chileans to utmost deprivation and poverty."

Accordingly, the summary makes clear US plans to undermine Allende were well underway by the time the two ambassadors met.

Info

Rock shelter in Kalahari Desert show early humans as innovative as their coastal neighbours

An international team including the geologist Michael Meyer provided the oldest proof for modern humans in the Kalahari Desert in Africa. The archaeological finds are more than 100,000 years old, as constrained by Optically Stimulated Luminescence (OSL)-dating in the Innsbruck laboratory. The study is challenging the idea that modern human behaviour was linked to coastal environments.
South Africa's Kalahari Desert
The origins of modern humans and modern human cognition are thought to lie in southern Africa, as suggested by numerous archaeological findings from the southern tip of the continent. Many of these archaeological sites are located near the coast. This led to the widespread view that the evolution of complex symbolic and technological behaviour of Homo sapiens presupposing cognitive abilities very similar to ours today, were linked to the sea and it´s rich marine resources such as shellfish, fish and and marine mammals.

However, new archaeological findings in the Kalahari Desert in South Africa (the "African Outback") now shed new light on human prehistory and the evolution of modern human behaviour. The current archaeological thinking is that behavioural innovations in early human history are tied to coastal landscapes, and particularly to the south coast of South Africa that is particularly rich in natural resources and offered plenty of marine food year-round, hence served as an evolutionary hotspot for our species. And indeed, archaeological evidence for early behavioural innovations are clustering along South Africa´s coast line.

"In the present study we analysed findings from a rock shelter more than 600 kilometres inland and determined an age of 105,000 years for the archaeological layers and artefacts. They prove behavioural patterns equivalent to those found near the coast at the same time," explains Michael Meyer. The geologist is head of the OSL Laboratory at the Institute of Geology at the University of Innsbruck and was responsible for dating the sediment samples from the South African archaeological excavations together with Luke Gliganic, a former post-doctoral researcher at the University of Innsbruck. The results were published in the journal Nature.

Bacon

6,000 year old salt hub reveals extraction was happening in Britain 2,000 years earlier than first thought

Excavations

Excavations at the archeological site near Loftus in North Yorkshire
Neolithic people were manufacturing salt in Britain almost 6,000 years ago, before the building of Stonehenge and more than two millennia earlier than was first thought, a new archaeological discovery suggests.

Excavations at a site at Street House farm in North Yorkshire have revealed evidence of the earliest salt production site ever found in the UK and one of the first of its kind in western Europe, dating to around 3,800BC.

The finds, uncovered at a coastal hilltop site near Loftus, include a trench containing three hearths, broken shards of neolithic pottery, some still containing salt deposits, shaped stone artefacts and a storage pit - all key evidence of salt processing.

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Info

3,000-year-old mural of knife-wielding spider god discovered in Peru

Ancient Spider
© Screenshot: Agencia de Noticias Andina/YouTube
A view of the uncovered mural. The spider’s leg and hilt of the knife are visible.
It likely had eight legs, and at least one of them is still brandishing a knife. That's the report from archaeologists in northern Peru, who have announced the discovery of a 50-foot mural that once was the centerpiece of a pre-Columbian shrine.

The find was made in November 2020, when farmers seeking to expand their land partially destroyed a huaca — a Peruvian ceremonial structure — sitting among their avocado and sugar cane crops. The huaca, now cut in half, revealed a striking mural.

"What we have here is a shrine that would have been a ceremonial centre thousands of years ago," Régulo Franco Jordán, one of the archaeologists who went about excavating and preserving the elements of the ancient artwork that hadn't been demolished, told the Peruvian newspaper La República.

Blue Planet

Ancient international trading routes between Exeter and Europe revealed in new study

Bamburgh

A previous study revealed that while most of Britain was in the 'Dark Ages' one area was playing host to visitors from across Europe, researchers studying bones uncovered near Bamburgh Castle claim
Cutting-edge scientific techniques used to study ancient artifacts found in Exeter have revealed more about the ancient international trading routes between the city and Europe.

A five-year research project by a team of archaeologists led by Professor Stephen Rippon at the University of Exeter shows the links between merchants in Exeter and France, the Low Countries, Spain, Italy, Portugal, and the Mediterranean.

The artifacts are held by the Royal Albert Memorial Museum and Art Gallery in Exeter. The analysis has helped experts establish where various pottery vessels found in Exeter were made,

Comment: There is strong evidence that at different points in time throughout humanities history our world was better connected, more civilized and more sophisticated than was previously believed: Also check out SOTT radio's: MindMatters: America Before: Comets, Catastrophes, Mounds and Mythology


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The Mountain capital of the Dacians

Sarmizegetusa Regia was the capital and political centre of the Dacians, located in the Orăştie Mountains of the Grădiștea Muncelului Natural Park, in present-day Romania.
Sarmizegetusa Regia
© Balate Dorin - Shutterstock
The Dacians were a Thracian people who inhabited the cultural region of Dacia, an area that incorporated parts of modern Romania, Moldova, as well as smaller parts of Bulgaria, Serbia, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia and the Ukraine.

During the reign of the Thracian King Burebista (82/61 BC to 45/44 BC), the Getae and Dacian tribes were unified into the Dacian Kingdom, with the capital being moved to Sarmizegetusa Regia (possibly from the Geto-Dacian stronghold at Argedava).

Sarmizegetusa Regia was situated at an elevation of 1200 metres near a mountain summit, serving as a nucleus of a strategic defensive system that included the fortresses of Costești-Blidaru, Piatra Roșie, Costeşti-Cetățuie, Căpâlna and Băniţa.

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Genomes trace the origin and decline of the Scythians

Generally thought of as fierce horse-warriors, the Scythians were a multitude of Iron Age cultures who ruled the Eurasian steppe, playing a major role in Eurasian history. A new study published in Science Advances analyzes genome-wide data for 111 ancient individuals spanning the Central Asian Steppe from the first millennia BCE and CE. The results reveal new insights into the genetic events associated with the origins, development and decline of the steppe's legendary Scythians.
Aerial view of Hun-Xianbi culture burials
© Zainolla Samashev
An aerial view of Hun-Xianbi culture burials. Both horses and warriors can be identified.
Because of their interactions and conflicts with the major contemporaneous civilizations of Eurasia, the Scythians enjoy a legendary status in historiography and popular culture. The Scythians had major influences on the cultures of their powerful neighbors, spreading new technologies such as saddles and other improvements for horse riding. The ancient Greek, Roman, Persian and Chinese empires all left a multitude of sources describing, from their perspectives, the customs and practices of the feared horse warriors that came from the interior lands of Eurasia.

Still, despite evidence from external sources, little is known about Scythian history. Without a written language or direct sources, the language or languages they spoke, where they came from and the extent to which the various cultures spread across such a huge area were in fact related to one another, remain unclear.

Colosseum

World's earliest stone technologies likely to be tens of thousands of years older than previously thought

handaxe
© W. Roebroeks
Acheulean handaxes from the site of Boxgrove, England, which dates to about 500 Ka. The handaxes
are made of flint and are between 12 and 14.5 cm in length
A new study from the University of Kent's School of Anthropology and Conservation has found that Oldowan and Acheulean stone tool technologies are likely to be tens of thousands of years older than current evidence suggests. They are currently the two oldest, well-documented stone tool technologies known to archaeologists.

These findings, published by the Journal of Human Evolution, provide a new chronological foundation from which to understand the production of stone tool technologies by our early ancestors. They also widen the time frame within which to discuss the evolution of human technological capabilities and associated dietary and behavioural shifts.

For the study, a team led by Kent's Dr Alastair Key and Dr David Roberts, alongside Dr Ivan Jaric from the Biology Centre of the Czech Academy of Sciences, used statistical modelling techniques only recently introduced to archaeological science. The models estimated that Oldowan stone tools originated 2.617-2.644 million years ago, 36,000 to 63,000 years earlier than current evidence. The Acheulean's origin was pushed back further by at least 55,000 years to 1.815-1.823 million years ago.

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Better Earth

World's oldest wooden statute the Shigir Idol discovered to be even older at 12,100 years old

shigir idol

Shigir Idol
A wooden statue discovered in Russia in 1890 is more ancient than previously thought, making it twice as old as Stonehenge, researchers claim.

The Shigir Idol was first discovered by Russian gold miners who stumbled upon the large object in the Shigir peat bog 62 miles north of Yekaterinburg.

Radiocarbon dating from the 1990s placed the idol at 9,750 years old, but researchers have since re-dated it, finding it is about 12,100 years old.

This makes it almost twice as old as Stonehenge in the UK, which had been dated back about 5,000 years.

The tree that provided the wood to carve the large statue was about 12,250 years old based on the 159 growth rings seen within the statue itself, the team from the University of Gottingen and Institute of Archaeology RAS discovered.

Comment: See also: And check out SOTT radio's:


Info

3,000-year-old gold mask linked to enigmatic civilization found in China

Gold mask China
© Photo by Shen Bohan / Xinhua via Getty Images
Fragment of a gold mask unearthed at Sanxingdui, an archaeological site in southwest China .
Archaeologists have uncovered a trove of 3,000-year-old artifacts — including fragments of a gold mask — at Sanxingdui, an excavation site in China's Sichuan province.

As Stephen Chen reports for the South China Morning Post, the researchers, who began digging at the site in 2019, found more than 500 objects, most of which were crafted out of gold, bronze, jade and ivory.

Experts are unsure who made the artifacts, but they speculate that the cache's creators belonged to the Shu state, a highly skilled civilization conquered by the neighboring state of Qin in 316 B.C. Because the people of Shu left behind few written records, notes Oscar Holland for CNN, historians' knowledge of their culture is limited.

A major highlight of the find is a 0.6-pound fragment of a gold mask that may have been worn by a priest during religious ceremonies, reports the Global Times' Chen Shasha. About 84 percent pure gold, the piece likely weighed close to one pound in its entirety, making it one of the heaviest gold masks from that time period discovered in China to date. The Sanxingdui team found the mask, along with an array of other ornate items, in six rectangular sacrificial pits.