It’s no secret that I have devoted considerable space to discussing the close connection between the collection of topics loosely grouped as “fringe history” and the alt-right and other extreme right groups. These connections were comprehensively documented by the sociologist Michael Barkun in his book A Culture of Conspiracy (2006, rev. 2013), a volume that made the case that extreme rightists had purposely and purposefully infiltrated ufology and related fringe fields in order to use them as a recruiting tool for extremist ideology. These connections became only more obvious in wake of the rise of Donald Trump, with Trump supporters such as Alex Jones, Jason Reza Jorjani, David Wilcock and others spouting a range of ancient astronaut and anti-government conspiracy theories that circle around white nationalism, anti-Semitism, and extreme conservative politics.
Yesterday, U.S. president Donald J. Trump met with Russian president Vladimir V. Putin in Helsinki for a controversial summit denounced by Republicans and Democrats alike. In advance of the summit, members of an anti-immigrant organization known as the Soldiers of Odin, whose leader is a self-described Neo-Nazi convicted of a hate crime, knelt before Trump banners in a show of deference to the American leader. The anti-immigrant hate group was founded in Finland in 2015 to intimidate immigrants, and it now boasts chapters in Anglophone countries, including the United States, Canada, Australia, and the U.K. Although the organization denies being racist or Neo-Nazi, studies by the Southern Poverty Law Center and Finland’s Yle public broadcaster found that its members were predominantly white supremacists and supporters of the extreme right.
Much of this week I have spent researching the myth of the Watchers as presented in the influential chronicle of Annianus, an Alexandrian Christian monk of the fourth century. Because his chronicle was used by Christian and Islamic writers alike for a millennium, it shaped the development of ideas about antediluvian history right down to the 1700s, when traditional myths and legends finally started to give way to a more scientific view of deep antiquity. But I did come across a little sticking point where scholars have very little to say.
While I was researching the fragments of Annianus this past week with an eye toward assembling them into a reconstructive narrative, I ran into an odd academic article I had never before encountered. Written in 1971, R. E. Kaske’s “Beowulf and the Book of Enoch” appeared in the unfortunately named journal Speculum and made a case that the beloved Old English epoch poem is founded on the Watchers myth taken directly from the Book of Enoch.
Last week, in the run-up to the annual UFO festival in Roswell, New Mexico and World UFO Day, the Socorro County Chieftain ran an article describing the actual military project believed to be behind the legend of the Roswell UFO crash. On June 4, 1947, Project MOGUL launched a balloon carrying microphones designed to help triangulate the location of Soviet atomic bomb test explosions by monitoring sound waves carried in the zone between the troposphere and the stratosphere, about 50,000 feet up. It crashed, but the description of the balloon is interesting:
In lieu of a blog post today, I present a project I have been working on for a few days now. As most of you know, the myth of the fall of the Watchers and the birth of the Giants has been a major influence on fringe history. However, the most influential version of the story was not the original, from the Book of Enoch, but the revised version harmonized with the legendary histories of Babylon and Egypt created by the Egyptian monks Panodorus and Annianus around 400 CE. This version was inherited by the Middle Ages and gave rise to the legends of the pyramids, the mythology of Freemasonry, and the occult traditions of the Hermetic occultists--and through them modern occultism, alternative archaeology, ancient astronaut theories, etc. I have taken all of the references to Annianus' work and collated them into a composite, with extensive notes, reconstructing as best as is possible what Annianus said so we can see in full the story that played such a major role in the development of fringe history claims. Apparently, no one has done this before since modern scholars primarily care about Annianus in terms of his work to establish the date of Jesus' birth, so they don't care much about the Watchers. I don't pretend my reconstruction is definitive, and it is a work in progress, but I think you'll be surprised at how well the many different partial sources dovetail together into an almost coherent epic of the antediluvian world. You can read it here.
Friends of David Wilcock Say He Resigned from Gaia TV over Bad Pay, Poor Working Conditions, and Lucifer
Late Friday night, ufologist Laura Eisenhower released a letter she said that ancient astronaut theorist David Wilcock sent to his employer, Gaia TV, asking to be let out of his contract. According to the letter, Gaia TV has an abusive work environment, unfairly compensates its employees, and deceptively edits its programs to promote what Wilcock described as “Luciferian” beliefs. “This is already starting to cause me significant career damage and it will get far worse if I don’t do something about it, fast,” Wilcock is said to have written. “I have willfully ignored an enormous number of offensive, disrespectful and abusive situations in order to do this job the last six years – primarily out of a sense of financial dependency.” He attributed this to having suffered physical abuse at the hands of his former girlfriend.
Over the past decade or so, Hollywood has become obsessed with the imminent downfall of civilization. From The Walking Dead to the Planet of the Apes franchise to a countless number of young adult dystopian nightmares, the theme has grown into such prominence that major newspapers and magazines have begun writing long think pieces on what it all means. Why is it that in a time when the Earth is more geopolitically stable, more peaceful, and more economically prosperous than it has been for centuries, we are as a culture worried that the end has finally about to hit? Is it because we need enemies to provide purpose? It almost seems as though the collapse of the imperial order and the end of the Cold War took away the very raison d’ être for the political and social order, and en masse countries and their peoples turned on themselves
This week, Nephilim theorist L. A. Marzulli welcomed giant hunter and frequent History Channel barnacle Hugh Newman to Acceleration Radio to talk about—what else?—giants. Newman was on to promote the book he wrote with Jim Vieira, Giants on Record, a book that he self-published in 2015. The interview got off to a bad start, half an hour into the show, which began with Marzulli’s borderline alt-right brand of conservative commentary, followed by commercials for urine stain remover. In the context of Marzulli’s idolatrous worship of Trump as God’s chosen savior of America, there is certainly some humor in his sponsor being a urine removal spray.
Andrew Collins Promotes "Cygnus Key" by Doubling Down on Lost, Advanced Denisovan Civilization Claim
Back in January, I reviewed Andrew Collins’s new book The Cygnus Key (Part 1 and Part 2), which was recently published, based on the publisher’s galley proofs. I found the book to be a poorly reasoned effort to imagine a lost white race of godlike ancestors, this time identified with the Denisovans, a poorly understood species or subspecies of human. The publisher had placed the proofs on their online press site, but my review must not have gone over well with either Collins or the publisher, or both, since they pulled the galleys within hours of my review going up. Well, the book is now out and Collins is busy promoting the volume. To that end, he prepared a teaser article that he has circulated on a number of fringe websites, including Graham Hancock’s, over the past three weeks. It’s a doozy, but one that tells us a lot about Collins’s thinking.
I'm an author and editor who has published on a range of topics, including archaeology, science, and horror fiction. There's more about me in the About Jason tab.
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