Ancient Origins fancies itself a one-stop shop for fringe history claims, but it tends toward the lost civilization and ancient mysteries end of the fringe spectrum. As a result, we also have Ancient Code, a website from Ancient Origins writer Ivan Petricevic that’s exactly the same but focused on ancient astronauts. Both sites are larded with crippling amounts of advertising—my browsers routinely crash when trying to load their pages—and both are characterized by recycled content and very bad, sometimes incoherent, writing. Nevertheless, they are wildly successful with their audiences due to a mixture of clickbait and seeding article links across the web.
In a recent article on Ancient Code, Petricevic claims that “investigators” have developed a “new theory” that human beings with Rh-negative blood (blood that lacks the so-called D antigen) are the descendants of a race of humans created by space aliens known as the Anunnaki to serve as their slaves. But because Petricevic is a poor writer, he does not identify who the “investigators” are who proposed this idea. It also turns out that it isn’t “new.” Like many articles on Ancient Code and Ancient Origins, it’s recycled from other writers and other websites, repackaged and presented as “news.”
Petricevic notes that the British royal family have Rh-negative blood and therefore are likely to be part of an intergalactic conspiracy. This is all standard ancient astronaut material, and Petricevic never bothers to do more that feint toward any reason to suspect that a particular blood protein would be associated with both slavery and absolute power, or why those two concepts would be the same thing.
However, as it turns out, a Sitchin-inspired writer named Betty Rhodes explained this much better than Petricevic in her self-published 2006 book Keeper of the Celtic Secrets. This book is presented as a novel, but like the quasi-fiction of Kathleen McGowan Coppens or the Shaver Mystery, Rhodes tells her readers that her novel might really be true beneath its “heart-wrenching love story.” It is also unsurprisingly racist, in which divine aliens create white people as the master race, a claim she attributes to ancient “St. John family journals” from Ireland written by a certain Job St. John around 1650 that reveal the following:
1) Caucasoid, or the WHITE races, descend from the Anunnaki, including the Elohiym godhead. And yes, the ancient Israelites, are actually descendants of the Elohiym royal family.
You can read much more of her racism here, if you are so inclined. She goes into detail about how the slave Rh ended up in some white people due to miscegenation with “the Browns.” In her view, the red-haired white gods (i.e. Celts like her) created dark-skinned, dark-haired people as dumb beasts of burden. In the excerpt that follows, she uses the word “ruddy” to mean black or brown skinned, not “red” as is usual: “The Elohiym family of ‘gods’, originally created the ‘black-haired’ people, in part because the Anunnaki hated to do manual labor, such as, mining gold, diamonds, and other precious metals. Therefore, the creation of black-haired, ruddy-skinned peoples was initially to provide manual workers for the extraterrestrials, a.k.a., the Anunnaki people.”
What can you expect, though? She is merely echoing Erich von Däniken’s explicit claim in Signs of the Gods that the “black” race was a “failure,” and marrying that to Zecharia Sitchin’s adoption of the (genuine) Mesopotamian myth that humans were created as servants for the gods—a myth meant to explain the origins of labor, just like the Hebraic myth that Adam’s sin led to him being condemned to labor for his sustenance. To this, she adds more than a little Victorian-era scientific racism.
But Rhodes didn’t invent the Rh-negative claim; she merely made it explicitly racist. The claim already appears in David Icke’s The Biggest Secret (1999), in which he identified the Anunnaki not as cosmic Aryans but as cannibalistic crypto-Jewish Reptilians, and he suggested that Rh-negative blood was a sign of Reptilian (read: Jewish) ancestry. These Reptilians, who control world governments and manipulate global finance out of a lust for money, “certainly feed off human blood and flesh,” presumably in their Passover matzo balls, as in the old blood libel Icke draws upon but never quite makes explicit.
Icke’s views carried over to anti-Semitic literature, where the undated, anonymous book called The Truth about Freemasons, Illuminati, and New World Order connects Rh-negative blood to a global Jewish elite trying to destroy the world through Zionism. The book says that Rh-negative “blue bloods” came from the Caucasus mountains, and the authors mistakenly think that aristocrats literally turn blue at birth due to their Rh-negative blood, whereas the phrase refers to the blue veins visible through the skin of really pale white people, who in Spain were the aristocratic elite, unmixed with darker Moors. The phrase comes from the Spanish sangre azul.
So, while Petricevic presents the “new” idea that Rh-negative blood might be associated aliens as some kind of entertaining lark, in reality it’s more often been used as a kind of dog-whistle calling to racists and anti-Semites under the cover of “harmless” extraterrestrial speculation. At any rate, the idea is not new and to present it as such is false advertising. But what can we expect from ad-choke fringe history clickbait?
Update: As I learned this morning, the “news” value in the story apparently refers to Nick Redfern, who has a new book out about the Rh-factor called Bloodline of the Gods, published last week, in which he recycles the above material to hunt for alien ancestors.
I am an author and researcher focusing on pop culture, science, and history. Bylines: New Republic, Esquire, Slate, etc. There's more about me in the About Jason tab.
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