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Prehistory 'paradigm-shift' Debate

"for every expert there's an equal and opposite expert"

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The long-running controversy over whether civilisation developed independently in various locations around the world, or whether it developed in one place and spread throughout the world from there, is getting increasingly heated. As amateur and professional archŠologists alike discover artifacts, monuments, and odd structures both on land and under the sea which do not fit in with the current model of prehistory as taught in our schools and universities, the apologists for the 'standard paradigm' of prehistory are becoming ever more hysterically defensive, it seems.

Whilst on the other end of the spectrum, increasingly gullible millions are lapping up the nonsense of those who seem to feel that everyone in authority in Egypt is deliberately 'spoiling their fun' by 'preventing THEM' from revealing the truth that the Giza monuments hold the secrets of a 'Lost Civilisation' in prehistoric times. In particular the Director of the Giza Pyramids, Zahi Hawass, has come in for some pretty harsh criticism from the ever-growing exponents of the "Giza Conspiracy" theory, and he has recently commented on the problems caused by some of the so-called 'New-Age Egyptologists'. The belief amongst these 'researchers' is that the Great Pyramid of Khufu, and the Great Sphinx, hold the secrets of Atlantis.

Dirty tricks abound, and in apparent unholy alliance with certain elements in the world's media, this could not have been more evident than in the 1999 two-part BBC "Horizon" programme purporting to give the advocates of Atlantis, and the existence of a lost civilisation, a fair and honest hearing.

Entitled "Atlantis Uncovered", Part I, broadcast in Wales, Scotland, England and the North of Ireland, on Thursday, November 28th 1999, began quite sensibly by outlining the existence of pyramid structures on both sides of the Atlantic ocean, in Egypt and Mesoamerica. Unfortunately, it then went on to detail the work of various archŠologists and prehistorians in a manner that had been selectively edited to destroy the credibility of almost everyone who has investigated the many archŠological anomalies that exist all over the world.

To the amazement and disgust of many of the viewers - some well informed archŠologically, others innocently curious about the mysteries of the past - the programme deteriorated into a dangerous farce that, despite Feder disclaiming as much, still left many viewers with the impression that even those simply 'interested' in the many myths and legends about Atlantis were on a 'slippery slope' leading to neo-nazi fascism, genocide and holocaust.

The following comments are quoted verbatim from the programme, and will give a good idea of the apparent 'hidden agenda' that the BBC production team seems to have kept from many of those they interviewed for the programme. The narrator was Dilly Barlow, who, after asking the opinions of a number of archŠologists about Atlantis, and receiving responses such as "preposterous", "misleading", "insideous", "garbage", "and you could summarise it by saying codswallop", attempted her own summing-up.

Barlow: "But in spite of all the evidence the lure of a lost civilisation is more powerful than ever."

It then cut to a computer-enhanced scene of people apparently 'floating' up the sides of a Mesoamerican pyramid.

Barlow: "Every year crowds flock to ancient sites in search of lost wisdom. Science continues to be ignored by a public yearning for the romance of a more mysterious past. Should this be dismissed as harmless fantasy? History has shown that fantasies about the past can lead to disaster."

It then cut to archŠologist, Prof. Colin Renfrew, who was sat in front of an impressive building, presumably at Cambridge University, and apparently staged to add credibility to the mischief the BBC "Horizon" team then either allowed, or encouraged, him to pour upon those whose views on prehistory differ from his own:

Renfrew: "It is dangerous when people have myths about their own past which have no foundation in reality. We've seen myths of that kind in our own time have tragic consequences. The National Socialists in Germany - the Nazis - had the notion of Aryan supremacy, and the Holocaust was built on pernicious myths of that kind."

On it's own not a truer word about the Nazis could ever have been spoken. But in the context of the vested interests archŠologists like Colin Renfrew have in perpetuating the incomplete picture of prehistory we are still being fed in our schools and colleges, his comments took on a pernicious slant of their own. Outrageously, the next scene cut to original colour archive footage of goose-stepping Nazis singing and marching with Swastika banners.

Barlow: "The Nazi idea of an Aryan elite is well documented. What is less well known is that prominent Nazis believed that the 'master race' originated in Atlantis. One of the most passionate believers was Heinrich Himmler, head of the SS. Himmler directed German scientists to seek the descendants of the Aryan super-race in places from the Andes to Tibet."

From here it cut to monochrome archive footage of a blond-haired man measuring the head of a Tibetan woman.

Barlow: "They scrutinised the physical features of the natives in search of any shred of evidence to support Himmler's notion that his Aryan ancestors - the Atlanteans - had lived there. These claims to an ancestral heritage in Atlantis fed the Nazi's belief in the supremacy of an Aryan master-race."

The programme then cut to archŠologist, Dr. Ken Feder, of the Central Connecticut State University, for an appropriate comment to end the programme with.

Feder: "When we come to something like the lost continent of Atlantis we are better off knowing that civilisations developed more or less independently - just so nobody can say 'some people are better than others, some are smarter than others'. Because we know what happens down the line when we believe that. So I'm not going to tell you that belief in Atlantis is necessarily the first step to genocide or holocaust. But what I'm telling you is we're on a very slippery slope if we believe in fantasies, and that those fantasies lead us down to places we really don't want to go."

As the credits rolled up the screen from the bottom, a male narrator voiced-over:

"Next week, in the second of this two-part 'special', Horizon examines the controversial theory of best-selling author, Graham Hancock, which is challenging mainstream archaeology."


The full transcript of Part One of the two-part 'special' is available on the Horizon website, and Graham Hancock's comments about Part One are available on his website which you can access directly by clicking on the banner above. It might be a good idea for visitors to look at these links before moving on to look at Part 2 ...

Horizon Debacle - Part Two


  Web The Morien Institute

... exclusive ...

October 2002 Morien Institute illustrated interview with Professor Masaaki Kimura of the
University of the Ruykyus, Okinawa, Japan, about the discovery of:

"More megalithic structures found off the coast of Yonaguni-jima, Japan"

please left-click to go directlt the interview with Professor Masaaki Kimura


see the evidence with 'unique underwater footage' of the Yonaguni structures
in the DVD of the 'History Channel' July 2002 television programme

Japan's Mysterious Pyramids"


please take a look at our Ancient Mysteries Bookshoppe for a wide selection of books
that challenge orthodox views of prehistory on every continent

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