EARTH'S CATASTROPHIC PAST
The articles to follow will look at various questions of earth's natural history from a Velikovskian perspective. It will be seen that a great deal of what is stated in the textbooks about evolution, as well as the extinction of life forms, is quite simply false. Evidence of crucial importance is routinely ignored in the textbooks, producing a fictitious picture of our planet's history.
Dinosaurs and Gravitation
Many dinosaurs were big. Some were truly gigantic. Until quite recently, the brachiosaurus was the largest land-living dinosaur known. Estimates for the weight of a fully-grown brachiosaurus vary between thirty and sixty tons. A fully-grown male African elephant can weigh up to about ten tons. So, even the most conservative estimate of the weight of a brachiosaurus makes it three times heavier. In recent years however dinosaurs much bigger than brachiosaurus have been found. Argentinosaurus, a sauropod like the brachiosaurus, has been estimated to have weighed in at around ninety tons.
The age the of dinosaurs also bred monsters in the sea and air. The flying reptiles of the time, the pterosaurs, grew to an enormous size. Largest of these found to date was the quetzalcoatlus, had a ten meter (about 35 foot) wing span.
The main problem with dinosaur size (a problem almost never mentioned in textbooks, documentaries or even academic papers) is that under present gravitational conditions such creatures would not be able to function. The brachiosaurus, for example, would quite simply be crushed by its own weight. A male African elephant can just about get around at ten tons; a brachiosaur at forty or fifty tons would not. Early palaeontologists recognized this difficulty and imagined the sauropods as semi-aquatic creatures inhabiting shallow lakes or shorelines and feeding on vegetation growing from lake bottoms. However, it has now been demonstrated beyond reasonable doubt that the sauropods were land-dwellers who fed, like giraffes, on overhanging vegetation.
A search of the internet for a discussion of this topic reveals almost nothing. There is one fairly extensive paper by Ted Holden, a follower of Velikovsky, of which more will be said presently. The one mention of the problem by an establishment academic comes in a blog where the latter attempts to dismiss the question, posed by a contributor, by suggesting that there is no problem since dinosaurs, being related to birds, had bird-like light bone structures. There are two difficulties with this: (1) Avian bone-structure was evolved specifically for flight, so there is no reasonable ground for supposing that dinosaurs had bones of the same type. (2) Dinosaur weight is fairly well established by palaeontologists and it is enormous. The writer of the blog thus suggests that all mainstream calculations of dinosaur weight are in error, but he fails to mention this to his readers or to give a rationale. Furthermore, it should be mentioned that even if dinosaur bones were of bird-like structure, they would still be immensely heavy and unable to function. It is presumed, for example, that the flying pterosaurs had bird-like bones - but even they grew to enormous size, with ten-meter wing-spans. No modern bird has a wingspan above three meters, and would be unable to get off the ground if it had.
The only paper on the net which confronts the problem of dinosaur size head on is that of Ted Holden. As a Velikovskian, Holden examines several radical solutions to the conundrum, but in the end opts for one which is, in my opinion, unworkable. He suggests that during the Cretaceous and Jurassic epochs the earth was in close proximity to a very large body (namely the planet or "dwarf star" Saturn), whose enormous gravity cancelled out much of the earth's gravitational pull.
Velikovsky himself addressed the question, if somewhat indirectly, in a 1942 paper entitled "Cosmos withour Gravitation". Here Velikovsky surveyed a wide variety of evidence suggesting that gravity, as described by Isaac Newton, does not in fact exist, and that what we call "gravity" is little more than a function of electromagnetism. He does not attempt to explain precisely how electromagnetism generates gravity, but he does note (a fact often overlooked) that all molecular structures are held together by electromagnetism. One consequence of his proposal, he notes, is that the earth's gravitation would have varied in past epochs. Another consequence is that the masses of the planets have been calculated wrongly.
The whole question of gravity and its relationship to electromagnetism will be discussed at a later stage. Suffice to note for the present that the problem of dinosaur locomotion is yet one more vital clue to the earth's catastrophic past and the instability of the solar system.
Earth's Cataclysmic Topography
Evidence of the earth's catastrophic history is to be seen all around us, as soon as we remove the blinkers of an education based on uniformitarianism. Mountain ranges, for example, with their rugged towering peaks, are rather obviously the result of catastrophic seismic activity in the not too distant past. We are told repeatedly in textbooks and learned journals that mountain ranges took millions of years to raise, with slow and steady tectonic forces adding centimeters or even millimeters every year. Yet if this were the case, erosion would have reduced those same ranges to ground level before they could reach the status of mountains.
During his voyage to South America and the Pacific in the 1850s, Charles Darwin noted the existence of a raised beach, about 3,000 feet up in the Andes, complete with sand, rounded pebbles and sea shells, which ran down the Pacific coast of the South American continent. Commenting upon this feature, Darwin noted that the Cordillera must have been raised with immense speed, owing to the absence of intermediate beaches. But, he said, in order to raise such a vast range of mountains by 3,000 feet by the requisite speed, one "must shake the entire framework of the globe." All of which was of course perfectly correct. Had the Andes risen over millions of years, as the textbooks never tire of telling us, there would be many beaches between the present sea level and the one at 3,000 feet elevation. Beaches form very quickly, with shore-dwelling molluscs quickly colonizing new shorelines. The fact that they do not appear between the two means that they did not have time to do so.
The existence of the raised Andean beach, and similar features in many other parts of the world, suggests that, in the relatively recent past, titanic forces moved the earth's tectonic plates against each other. The South American plate must have crashed with great force against the Pacific plate, with the entire continent moving in a western trajectory. This means that the topography of the Atlantic Ocean too much have changed dramatically, and has a direct bearing on the age of that vast body of water. This is a topic which will be discussed more fully in another article.
But the sheer speed of mountain-building, which Darwin remarked upon, cannot be explained by a cataclysm of the type now generally admitted by mainstream scholarship - ie. by an asteroid impact of some sort. Since the work of Luis Alvarez and his son Walter in the early 1980s it has become part of received wisdom that some kind of asteroid impact annihilated the dinosaurs - supposedly 65 million years ago - and that other cataclysms of similar type may have terminated geological epochs at other times. It is now even mooted in mainstream publications that the Pleistocene may have been terminated in the same way - around 10,000 years ago. Whilst it is gratifying to see some form of catastrophism gaining acceptance in academia (especially in view of the derisory rejection of Velikovsky's work in the 50s, 60s and 70s), it has to be pointed out that only catastrophes of the type envisaged by Velikovsky can account for the evidence as we find it. As Darwin said, we need to shake the entire framework of the globe to explain what exists. In short, asteroid impacts, destructive though such events might have been, cannot cause major dislocation of the earth's tectonic plates. To account for such we have to postulate major disturbances in the constitution of the solar system itself - exactly as Velikovsky argued all those years ago.
How Old is the Atlantic Ocean?
The theory of Continental Drift teaches us that the continents of North and South America were once joined to those of Eurasia and Africa, and indeed the truth of this is verifiable by anyone in possession of a world atlas. A glance at such reveals that the eastern part of South America seems to fit like a jigsaw piece into the western part of Africa. With North America and Europe the fit is not quite so obvious, though looking at the continental shelves which now lie beneath the waves it is obvious that the North American plate to the east of Newfoundland fits perfectly well into the European plate at the Bay of Biscay. And detailed geological surveys have in fact shown that Europe and North America on the one hand and Africa and South America on the other, were indeed joined together at one time.
These continental masses, we are told, drifted apart some time in the age of the dinosaurs (either in the Jurassic or Cretaceous Period), with upward pressure from the volcanic fault line known as the Mid-Atlantic Ridge gradually pushing the continents apart and in the process creating the Atlantic Ocean. It is claimed that by the end of the Cretaceous (supposedly 65 million years ago) the final bridge of dry land between the Old and New Worlds was severed, and that from this time onwards all species of terrestrial animals and most plants which reached the New World came via the Bering Strait, the narrow channel separating Siberia from Alaska. Notwithstanding such confident assertions however irrefutable evidence shows that a land bridge between western Eurasia and Africa on the one hand and the New World on the other existed well into the age of the mammals.
To begin with, it should be noted that several species of warmth-loving animals which originated in Africa are also found in South and Central America. This is the case, for example, with monkeys and tapirs. Monkeys in particular avoid the cold and even establishment naturalists concede that these creatures, which first appeared in Africa during the Eocene or Oligocene phase of the Tertiary period (the last of the pre-human epochs), cannot have reached the Americas via the Bering Strait. (It is seriously suggested in some quarters that the monkeys actually hitched a ride on floating mangrove islands over hundreds of miles of ocean!). Of course, many other species of plants and animals are common to the Old and New Worlds, but in the great majority of cases these can be explained as having existed before the separation of the continents and the formation of the Atlantic Ocean (such as crocodiles, other reptiles and amphibians) or as having entered the New World via the Bering Strait (such as elephants, camels, big cats, etc). If we seek proof positive of a land link between Europe/Africa and the Americas in the age of mammals, we need consider only those species which came into being after the dinosaur epoch and/or which could not possibly have navigated the ice wastes of the Bering Strait (such as monkeys).
In actual fact a very great number of species of both flora and fauna satsify these criteria, and many life-forms which first appeared during the Miocene are found today in Europe and Africa on the one hand and the Americas on the other, and nowhere else. These lifeforms actually constitute what has been called an "Atlantic Zone" in terms of geographical habitat. In the words of Russian naturalist V. V. Bogachov, "The North American animals (particularly land mollusks) differ sharply from their European brethren, and the animals common to both areas are Miocene types. Hence the conclusion that the land communication between Europe and North America was cut off during the early Pliocene [immediate post-Miocene epoch] at the latest." (Bogachov, Atlantida (Yuryev, 1912)). In a similar tone, Argentinian scientist E. Amerigo demonstrated that the occurrence of some Argentinian mammals could be explained solely by the existence of some form of land bridge connecting the Antilles in the Caribbean with Senegal in West Africa as late as the Miocene epoch.
It is impossible, in the space of a short article, to provide an exhaustive or even comprehensive overview of the "Atlantic Zone" flora and fauna. A few examples, in addition to those mentioned above, is all that can be given here, though it should be remarked that a far more thorough treatment is provided by D. S. Allan and J. B. Delair in their book, When the Earth Nearly Died (1994). Most of the animals occurring on both sides of the ocean are small, the majority of them being insects and molluscs. This is to be expected, given the fact that the separation of the Old World from the New was cataclysmic in nature. Smaller life-forms such as these, which can shelter in tiny crevices and which can survive long periods underground, are far better adapted to surviving cataclysmic upheavals than larger species. Indeed, numerous species of snails and fresh water molluscs occur in Western Europe and North America, and in no other regions. Thus a type of freshwater mollusc inhabiting a bog in County Down, Northern Ireland, is a stunted form allied to some still living in Greenland and North America. The same affinities are found in the Atlantic Islands, particularly the Canaries and the Azores. On this topic D. S. Merezhkovsky noted, "The geographical distribution of the molluscs Oleacinidae, existed only in Central America, in the Antilles, the Canaries, the Azores, on the island of Madeira and in the Mediterranean basin, presupposes the existence ... of a continent embracing all these regions. Fifteen varieties of molluscs live only in the Antilles and on the Senegal coast of Africa, and it is impossible to explain their presence by the transportation of the embryos; while the coral fauna of the islands of St Thomas includes six varieties, one of which, apart from the island, breeds on the submarine rocks of Florida; while four are on the Bermuda isles, which again can scarcely be explained by the transportation of the embryos, as their watery life is too short to allow for their being transported by ocean currents." (Merezhovsky, The Secret of the West (1933), p. 118).
The important species of plants and animals from our point of view are those which appeared first in recent times, and this is the case with most of those mentioned by the above writers. In fact, in some cases species apparently even younger than the Miocene appear on both sides of the ocean, which means that the land connection across the Atlantic must have been severed at the end of the Miocene or the beginning of the Pliocene. This was a view expressed by no less an authority than L. S. Berg, Fellow of the Moscow Academy, in 1947: "The recent, Quaternary, existence of the [Mid] Atlantic Ridge explains many features of the geographical distribution of plants and land animals animals as a bipolar [on both sides of the Atlantic] distribution." (Berg, News of the USSR Geographical Society, 74 (1947)). He concluded, "There are all sorts of considerations regarding the biogeography of the Atlantic countries, but sight must not be lost of the sinking of the [Mid] Atlantic Ridge, part of which subsided in Quaternary times. The exchange of flora and fauna took place here not across some hypothetical bridge but across the spurs of the Atlantic Ridge or the chains of islands that stretched from the Atlantic Ridge to the east or west towards the continents."
In other words, evidence suggest that large parts of the now-submerged Mid Atlantic Ridge stood above water in the Pliocene and even Pleistocene epochs!
Before leaving this topic, a qualifying note is necessary. Whilst, as we have seen above, there seems to have been a land connection between North America/the Caribbean and Europe/Africa until the geologically recent Quaternary epoch, the link between Africa and South America was definitely severed much earlier. This is proved by the appearance in South America of the Xenarthra family of mammals, a group which includes sloths and armadillos. The Xenarthra group evolved in South America during the Paleocene, which immediately post-dated the age of dinosaurs. There is no question that during the Paleocene and for a long time afterwards South America was completely isolated, during which time many species of giant birds, as well as mammals such as the Xenarthra family, appeared on the continent. In the latter stages of the Pliocene, however, a land link between South and North America was formed, leading to a great faunal interchange, with species from North America migrating to the southern continent and vice versa.
None of this, of course, detracts from the evidence quoted earlier showing a continuing link between North/Central America and the Old World into Quaternary times.
Volcanic Activity at the End of the Pleistocene
The end of the Pleistocene epoch, which corresponds to the Palaeolithic (Old Stone) Age, was marked by an immense outbreak of volcanic activity. The evidence for this is found in every corner of the planet, yet it is rarely if ever discussed in mainstream publications. The vulcanism of this period was of a scale and intensity which dwarfs anything in the experience of modern man.
Perhaps the best-known example of late Pleistocene super-vulcanism is the gigantic caldera (volcanic crater) on the Aegean island of Santorini. The Santorini crater, which reaches to a depths of over 900 meters below sea level, is often popularly believed to have been the result of the volcanic erpution which buried the Minoan city at Akrotiri. But this is not the case. The eruption which buried Akrotiri under 15 meters of ash occurred during the Bronze Age and was a much smaller event (those still enormous by modern standards) than the eruption or eruptions which created the gigantic caldera. The latter feature is in fact said to have formed in three eruptions during the Pleistocene, the last of which occurred at the end of the epoch - supposedly 10,000 years ago. The latter event was of an intensity quite unlike anything in modern experience. We are talking about an explosion many times more powerful than the eruption of Krakatoa in 1883. Now, if the Santorini event had been an isolated one, it would still pose a major problem; however, evidence from all over the planet shows a mass outbreak of super-vulcanism at the time, an outbreak which is quite simply inexplicable in terms of conventional geological theory.
As with much else, Velikovsky wrote extensively on the volcanic activity of the Pleistocene, especially in his 1956 book Earth in Upheaval. Since that time, much new evidence has appeared - yet its significance has failed to be discussed, and Velikovksy's work remains unrecognized. In recent years, for example, it has become clear that the whole of the Yellowstone National Park is the result of an immense 'super volcano' eruption at the end of the Pleistocene, whilst evidence of massive volcanic activity at the time has emerged everywhere. In 1968, for example, it was reported that proof of large scale volcanic eruptions in New Zealand in the Pleistocene had been detected in deep-sea cores taken within around 1000 kilometers east of the country. (See Dragoslav Ninkovich, Earth and Planetary Scinece Letters, Vol. 4, No. 2 (1968)). In 1982 it was reported that there had been a "large magnitude" volcanic eruption in Alaska near the end of the Pleistocene. (See John A. Westgate, Science (November, 1982). And so it has continued. These more recent discoveries can be added to the voluminous evidence quoted earlier by Velikovsky. Evidence such as that discovered by Professor Maurice Ewing, who spoke of titanic eruptions in the Mid-Atlantic Ridge near the end of the Pleistocene. In the area of the Azores his expedition found an uncharted submarine mountain, 8,000 feet high, with "many layers of volcanic ash," and farther on, a great chasm dropping down 1,809 fathoms (10,854 feet), "as if a volcano had caved in there at some time in the past." All of this accords with the findings of Russian and Scandinavian geologists and oceanographers, who state that the entire Mid-Atlantic Ridge sank beneath the waves in one cataclysmic paroxysm at the termination of the Pleistocene. (See eg. N. Zhirov, Atlantis: Atlantology, Basic Problems, English ed. 1970)
Now the earth was already a very old planet by the beginning of Pleistocene epoch, so the volcanic activity of the time cannot have been the consequence of a young planet still settling down, as it were. Something must have triggered a renewed and spectacular outburst of seismic activity. In 1925 the great English explorer Colonel Percy Fawcett noted that in South America, "Devastating earthquakes seem to take place ... once or twice in a century. ... The whole of South America trembles periodically in the recurrent but diminishing waves of a vast eruptive age, the history of which can only be found in Indian legend." (Exploration Fawcett, (1953), p. 174) Evidently Fawcett did not believe this "eruptive age" to lie in the distant past.
Velikovsky explained the seismic eruptions of the Pleistocene as being the result of major upheavals within the solar system: A simple asteroid or small comet impact is insufficient to account for what we see. In Velikovsky's scheme, the Pleistocene disturbances would have been the result of a close encounter between the earth and a very large body, of planetary size; the resulting gravitational stresses producing major convulsions of the earth's tectonic plates - convulsions that would have continued for centuries, though diminishing in strength with the passing of time - much as Fawcett claimed. As such, Velikovsky pointed to the strength and frequency of seismic activity in ancient times - evidence for which is found both in literature and in archaeological excavation. The great eruption of Vesuvius, which buried Pompeii in 79 A.D., was far from being unique or even unusual in the ancient world. In the words of Velikovsky, "... earthquakes result from torsion of the crust following a change in the position of the equator and the displacement of matter inside the globe caused by the direct attraction of a cosmic body when in close contact. Pull, torsion, and displacement were responsible for mountain-building too." He continues, "If this conception of the causes of earthquakes is correct, then there must have been fewer and fewer earthquakes during the course of time since the last cosmic earthquake. The regions of the Appenine Peninsula [Italy], the eastern Mediterranean, and Mesopotamia, for which we have reliable records, can be compared in this respect to the same regions today. Earthquakes in Asia Minor, Greece, and Rome described or mentioned by many classic authors. For the purpose of comparison with earth-tremor activity of the present day, it is enough to fifty-seven earthquakes reported in Rome in a single year during the Punic wars (-217)." (Worlds in Collision, (1950), p. 267)
The cataclysmic volcanic activity of the Pleistocene epoch did not occur in the distant past; it occurred when men had already reached a high level of culture. The cosmic body, a gigantic comet, which brought these events, came to be worshipped by humanity and sacrifices offered to it. With its long 'tail' of debris which stretched right across the sky, the comet looked like a gigantic serpent, and was honored as the Cosmic Serpent, or dragon, in every corner of the globe. The dragon, all men insisted, brought with it the Flood, and the creature, in all its guises, was always associated with water (eg the Hydra). And it was in response to these events that mankind first built temples and established priesthoods - events which occurred in the years after 1400 B.C.
Fossilization and the Antiquity of the Dinosaurs
It is widely believed, and so it is stated in textbooks, scientific journals and television documentaries, that the process of fossilization - by which once-living tissue becomes mineralized and turns to stone - takes millions of years; and this is held to be evidence that the dinosaurs and other extinct creatures died out many millions of years ago. Yet fossilization does NOT take millions of years; many examples of fossilized bones and wood have been found which are no older than the ancient civilizations, and several examples have been found even from the medieval period.
When in 1876 Heinrich Schliemann uncovered the royal burials in the Shaft Graves at Mycenae in Greece, he was surprised to find that the bones of several of the persons interred therein had already been partly fossilized. Conventional scholarship dates the Mycenae burials to around 1500 B.C., though the present writer would place them near 720 B.C. Either date however is a major reproof to mainstream ideas that fossilization takes millions of years.
In his book 101 Questions About Dinosaurs, author Philip Curie notes that, "Fossilization is a process that can take from a few hours to millions of years." The first part of that statement, about a few hours, is based on observation; the second part, about millions of years is based on belief, or faith. Most dinosaur remains are found buried under many millions of tons of rock, so in their case the process of fossilization should have proceeded very rapidly. How much more shocking then that a large number of dinosaur remains have now been found in which the fossilization process has not been complete and organic tissue has survived. In fact, in some cases, excavators have even been able to detect the smell of docomposition from the rotting marrow of the bones' interiors. The survival of such tissue indicates that no great stretch of time separates us from the dinosaur age.
In the above-quoted volume, Curie refers to dinosaur bones which not only retained some organic material but which are in fact completely unfossilized: "In Dinosaur Provincial Park in Alberta, dinosaur bones were sometimes encased in ironstone nodules shortly after they were buried 75 million years ago. The nodules prevented water from invading the bones, which for all intents and purposes cannot be distinguished from modern bone. A more spectacular example was found on the North Slope of Alaska, where many thousands of bones lack any significant degree of permineralization. The bones look and feel like old cow bones, and the discoverers of the site did not report it for nearly twenty years because they assumed they were bison, not dinosaur, bones."
Which brings us back to a topic covered earlier: namely radiocarbon dating. Over the years numerous radiocarbon tests have been carried out on the organic material found in the dinosaur bones, as well as on coal dating from the epoch of the dinosaurs. Consistently, the results dated these samples to between 22,000 and 39,000 years before the present. Needless to say, these results have not been widely publicized. In order to 'explain' this, establishment academics have suggested that the bones and coal have been contaminated by radioactivity in the adjacent rocks. However, as Sean Pitman and several others have pointed out, for these rocks to have remained radioactive at this level from the supposed dinosaur era (i.e. 65,000,000 years ago), the rocks would need to have at that time been radioactive to a massive degree. Indeed, they would need to have been so radioactive as to actually glow and to make all life impossible.
I concede that the cosmic catastrophe which ended the dinosaur epoch probably saw the earth bombarded by substantial amounts of cosmic radiation. Nonetheless, this cannot have been so enormous as to make life impossible, as very many species survived the catastrophe. So, there probably has been some contamination that would distort the radiocarbon data - but not nearly to the extent claimed by establishment academics. Taking everything into account, and bearing in mind the extreme rapidity of the fossilization process - as well as the fact that that process is not complete in very many of the dinosaur remains - it seems fairly evident that the dinosaurs cannot have become extinct much before the lower estimate of the radiocarbon date - 22,000 years. Allowing for a little radioactive contamination, I would suggest that the dinosaur age came to an end roughly between 25,000 and 30,000 years ago.
The Origins of Coal
According to mainstream ideas, coal was formed - at different epochs - over many thousands and even millions of years, as trees and other plants died and fell to the earth, where the remains accumulated over long periods of time. Later, after additional millenniums, this material was covered by silt, which accumulated over many millions of years into large strata of rock, which in turn compressed the underlying vegetation. Eventually, this latter material became coal.
As with so much else, Velikovsky disagreed with the above explanation. For him, most coal was formed when burning forests were swept by giant tidal waves into great basins, where the semi-combusted trees settled and were eventually buried by vast amounts of clay, rock and gravel, which was swept into the same basins by further tidal waves. And if Velikovsky's view of the earth's history is correct, then this scenario is the only one which makes sense.
One of the most surprising characteristics of coal - one which most people are unaware of - is that it contains fairly large amounts of mercury. Indeed, coal typically has a mercury content far higher than contemporary vegetation. This feature can be explained fairly easily from Velikovsky's point of view, but is most mysterious from the establishment viewpoint. During the cosmic catastrophes of the past (of which there were many - each of them terminating a geological epoch), the earth experienced massive and prolonged volcanic activity. Mercury, being liquid at room temperature, is easily transformed into gas, and volcanoes are known to release large amounts of mercury vapor into the atmosphere. During a typical cosmic upheaval, exploding volcanoes released large amounts of mercury vapor, which found its way into the carbon of the burning forests. Thus is explained coal's mercury content.
It should be noted that the occurrence of seams of heavy metals of every type (gold, silver, lead, uranium, etc) in mountain ranges throughout the world is proof positive of massive vulcanism in the distant and (crucially) not so distant past. Most of our planet's heavy metals are found near the core, where they sank under the pressure of gravity during the earth's formation. (It is assumed that the earth, like all planets, began life as a molten ball of fire). When we find such elements near the surface, they can only have arrived there through very powerful volcanic activity, which brought this material, in liquid form, from the core or at least far down in the mantle. Now, if such deposits were only found in very ancient rocks, then we might suppose that they were brought to the surface in the eruptions which must have periodically affected a youthful planet. However, seams of gold, silver, lead and uranium are also found in rock formations of no great age - some of them dating from the Late Pleistocene - all of which further reinforces the conclusion that the earth was afflcited by massive volcanic activity at the time.
In the same category must be placed the iridium-rich layer which we now know marks the termination not just of the Cretaceous but also of virtually every other major geological epoch, including the Pleistocene. It is generally assumed that the iridium of the Cretaceous termination came from outer space, and certainly this is a possibility. However, iridium, like other heavy metals, is also found deep within the earth, and it is at least as likely that the iridium spike of the Cretaceous had its origin there. Iridium, like the other heavy metals, would therefore have been brought to the surface by titanic volcanic eruptions, and not from the impact of asteroids (though some may have arrived on the earth by this route too).
The Permafrost Regions of Siberia and Alaska
The whole topic of Pleistocene remains in the permafrost regions of the far north was dealt with fairly thoroughly by Velikovsky in his 1956 book Earth in Upheaval. Unfortunately however almost everything he said in this regard has been ignored by the academic establishment, with the result that the general public is largely unaware of the evidence and are regularly deceived by mainstream publications - including for example Wikipedia - which can (with a straight face) attribute the extinction of the Plesitocene megafauna to 'over hunting' by early humans. Such being the case, I feel it necessary to recapitulate some of the evidence, in the hope of setting the record straight and countering some of the disinformation coming from establishment sources.
In the Fairbanks district of Alaska, where the Tanana River joins the Yukon, gold is mined out of gravel and 'muck'. This muck is a frozen mass of animals and trees. Velikovsky quoted F. Rainey, of the University of Alaska, where he describes the scene: "Wide cuts, often several miles in length and sometimes as much as 140 feet in depth, are now being sluiced out along stream valleys tributary to the Tanana in the Fairbanks District. In order to reach the gold-bearing gravel-beds an over-burden of frozen silt or 'muck' is removed with hydraulic giants. This 'muck' contains enormous numbers of frozen bones of extinct animals such as mammoth, mastodon, super-bison and horse." (Rainey, "Archaeological Investigation in Central Alaska", American Antiquity, V (1940), 305)
It is freely admitted that these animals perished in comparatively recent times. Along with extinct species were found enormous quantities of animals of species still surviving. Mixed with the bodies of the animals, most of whom were dismembered and whose bones were smashed (although their flesh and skin are often well preserved), were found millions upon millions of uprooted and splintered trees, along with other types of debris such as sand and gravel. The whole mass of animals, trees and gravel is found thoroughly mixed in a promiscuous mass, as though thrown together by some immense and virtually random force. According to F. C. Hibben of the University of New Mexico, "Although the formation of the deposits of muck is not clear, there is ample evidence that at least parts of this material were deposited under catastrophic conditions. Mammal remains are for the most part dismembered and disarticulated, even though some fragments yet retain, in their frozen state, portions of ligraments, skin, hair and flesh. Twisted and torn trees are piled in splintered masses. ... At least four considerable layers of volcanic ash may be traced in these deposits, although they are extremely warped and distorted ..." (Hibben, "Evidence of Early Man in Alaska, American Antiquity, VIII (1943), 256)
The permafrost regions of the Russian north reveal a situation precisely paralleling that in Alaska. From the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, when Russian explorers and trappers began to penetrate the frozen wastelands of Siberia, there came reports of elephants, of a type no longer in existence, found in great quantities in the icy ground. A lucrative trade in mammoth ivory quickly developed. By the middle of the nineteenth century so much of this material was reaching Europe that people began to talk of the "Ivory Mines" of the region, and soon northern Siberia was to provide more than half the world's supply of the material.
One remarkable feature of these creatures was the state of preservation of the soft tissue. Flesh, skin and hair are often seen, and the flesh so well preserved by the cold that it can, on occasion, be safely eaten.
In the Arctic Ocean, just to the north of Siberia, lie various groups of islands. The earliest of these to be explored, the Liakhov Islands, were found to be absolutely packed with the bones of mammoths and other animals - both extinct and extant. "Such was the enormous quantity of mammoths' remains that it seemed ... that the island that the island was actually composed of the bones and tusks of elephants, cemented together by icy sand." (Garth Whitely, "The Ivory Islands of the Arctic Ocean," Journal of the Philosophical Society of Great Britain, XII (1910), 35) The New Siberian Islands present the same picture: "The soil of these desolate islands is absolutely packed fell of the bones of elephants and rhinoceroses in astonishing numbers." (Ibid.)
Experts agreed that these islands were formed, at least in part, by billions of tons of animal and vegetable matter, as well as sand and gravel, which was swept into the polar regions by enormous waves; waves which were, by the nineteenth century, termed "waves of translation". These waves, it appears, were accomapnied by a sudden and dramatic climate change. Temperatures dropped catastrophically. J. D. Dana, the leading American geologist of the second half of the nineteenth century, wrote: "The encasing in ice of huge elephants, and the perfect preservation of the flesh, shows that the cold finally became suddenly extreme, as of a single winter's night, and knew no relenting afterward." (Dana, Manual of Geology (4th ed. 1894), p. 1007)
Many of the Pleistocene herbivores had traces of their last meal in their mouths and stomachs: These invariably consisted of sedges, grasses and flowers, many of which today flourish hundreds of miles to the south of the permafrost regions. Furthermore, the flowers, such as daisies and buttercups, were in full bloom when they were eaten. This implies summer temperatures. How then to explain the 'suddenly extreme' cold mentioned by J. D. Dana which preserved the flesh of these creatures for thousands of years? Needless to say, this is an 'incovenient truth' invariably ignored by establishment academics.
The cataclysm which exterminated the Pleistocene megafauna did not take place in the distant but in the recent past. This was confirmed by the discovery of human artefacts in association with the extinct animals. In Velikovsky's words: "Worked flints, characteristically shaped, called Yuma points, were repeatedly found in the Alaskan muck, one hundred and more feet [about thirty meters] below the surface. One spear point was found there between a lion's jaw and a mammoth's tusk." (Earth in Upheaval, p. 5) Yet similar weapons were used only a few generations ago by the Athapascan Indians, who camped in the Upper Tanana Valley. According to Hibben, "It has been suggested that even modern Eskimo points are remarkably Yuma-like." (American Antiquity, VIII, 257) In Florida and other regions, Pleistocene remains were found in association with pottery and other utensils redolent of an agricultural society (See eg. E. H. Sellards, "On the Association of Human Remains and Extinct Vertebrates at Vero, Florida", Journal of Geology, XXV (1917); such discoveries recalling the opinion of several American scholars of the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries, who held that the Pleistocene epoch, "did not close until about the time that the civilization of Egypt, Babylonia and Western Turkestan had attained a high degree of development," a view opposed to the "greatly exaggerated ideas of the antquity of the glacial epoch." (G. F. Wright, The Ice Age in North America (1891), p. 683)
Origins of the Human Race
As a student of Immanuel Velikovsky I hold that life evolved in dramatic and almost sudden bursts under catastrophic conditions. As such, there is no need to postulate the millions and millions of years needed to account for the complex life forms inhabiting planet Earth which are necessary in the Darwinian scenario. (In actual fact, irrespective of how many millions of years supplied, Natural Selection could never produce the life forms that we now see). It is evident therefore that mankind's history is to be measured in thousands of years rather than tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands; but the question remains: How many thousands?
Professor Gunnar Heinsohn of Bremen University is also a Velikovsky acolyte and he has examined the question of humanity's age in a 2000 book entitled Wie alt is das Menschengeschlecht? (How Old is Humanity?). In the latter title he suggests that modern man, homo sapiens, is little more than three thousand tears old. I would agree that humanity is much younger than stated in establishment outlets, but 3,000 years?
Heinsohn's approach to the problem – examining the stratigraphic record – has served him well among the ancient civilizations of the Middle East. This method allowed him, correctly, to shear off 2,000 years of ancient Middle Eastern history which never in fact existed. And he is absolutely correct in dating the rise of the great literate civilizations of Egypt and Mesopotamia to around 1000 B.C. (Personally, I would say about 1100 B.C. or 1200 B.C., but this is a minor detail). But is stratigraphy the correct way to approach the Palaeolithic epoch? In the above book Heinsohn notes that the depth of strata found in caves occupied by Palaeolithic man would suggest that the Palaeolithic Age endured no more than a handful of centuries, or even decades. As such, he dates the appearance of modern man a couple of centuries before the great catastrophe (the Venus or Ishtar Flood) which terminated the Palaeolithic epoch around 1400 B.C.
What is to be made of such a startling claim?
In order to achieve this date, Heinsohn has, I feel, made a number of methodological errors. For example, he has overlooked the crucial fact that inhabited sites do not accumulate strata, so long as they are inhabited and in use. Typically, occupation stratums develop in sites where dwellings have been flattened by fire, earthquake, flood, or deliberate demolition. Once existing habitations have been levelled, the accumulated debris becomes the foundation for new dwellings or other structures. Now Palaeolithic man was a nomad who did not, in general, construct anything that would leave permanent debris behind. The caves cited by Heinsohn were temporary and probably very occasional dwellings for tribal groups as they traversed the landscape in pursuit of game and edible plants. Whilst families or individuals were ensconced in these caverns they would have been swept clean after meals and generally made debris free. This would have been all the more necessary as food fragments, especially fragments from a meat diet, would have produced a powerful and unpleasant smell if not removed thoroughly.
In order to check this I looked at several sites used by Australian aboriginals, a people who, until contact with Europeans, retained an essentially Palaeolithic culture of hunting and gathering. Now even Heinsohn would admit that the native Australians have inhabited the continent for several thousand years. They too, like the Palaeolithic peoples of Europe, occasionally occupied caves and rock recesses. At no site in Australia however does the occupation level exceed more than two or three feet.
What then of the real age of humanity and the duration of the Palaeolithic epoch? To answer this question, we must collate the evidence of several disciplines: Above all, it seems to me that, in this regard, the evidence of DNA and language cannot be ignored.
Even a brief look at the history of language is enough to convince that Heinsohn’s conclusions are wrong, and wrong to a dramatic degree. The language from which most modern European dialects evolved is popularly known as Indo-European, or Old Indo-European. The great linguistic groups already attested in antiquity, such as Celtic, Germanic, Italic, Greek, etc, all evolved from the parent Indo-European several centuries before the start of recorded history. This is evident from the fact that the earliest Greek inscriptions, which even Heinsohn would place around 700 or 650 B.C., are clearly written in a well-developed Greek language very different from the other contemporary Indo-European tongues of Europe such as Celtic or Italic. The absolutely most recent date at which the original Indo-European dialect could have begun splintering into the historic languages of Europe and the Indian subcontinent must be about 1200 B.C.; in other words, shortly after the time of the Flood catastrophe.
If we move on from that to look at the wider picture we find that Old Indo-European was related to the so-called Afro-Asiatic language group (formerly known as the Hamitic-Semitic group), a family of languages that included ancient Egyptian, Berber, Hebrew, Babylonian, and Arabic. That these languages shared a common ancestor with Indo-European is illustrated by a brief glance at some of the parallels observable in commonly-used words. Thus the Egyptian ‘mut’ (‘mother’), is clearly cognate with the Indo-European word, whilst the Egyptian phallic god Min has a name obviously related to the Indo-European ‘man’. In the same way, the Hebrew ‘sabbat’ (‘seven’) is evidently related to the Indo-European word, whilst the Arabic ‘talet’ (‘three’) has an obvious relation to the Indo-European term. So, the Afro-Asiatic languages shared a common ancestor with the Indo-European, and this begs the question: when did these two groups diverge? Clearly, we are talking about a date well before 1400 B.C. It is impossible of course to state precisely how long before, but judging by the enormous differences already evident in their earliest surviving inscriptions (ie. Egyptian and Babylonian, which even Heinsohn would date to around 1000 B.C.), we can say with a reasonable degree of certainty that the Indo-European and Afro-Asiatic parent languages must have parted company some time between 3000 B.C. and 2500 B.C., at the latest.
In recent years, linguists have increasingly been drawn to the conclusion that all of mankind’s languages had a common parent, an archaic language employed by the first human clan before it broke into different groups and spread throughout the planet. This conclusion has been strongly suggested by the universal occurrence of a small but important group of words which are not onomatopoeic or otherwise occurring naturally. Among these universal words is ‘aqua’, water, and several other familiar terms. But to account for the vast differences observed for example between modern English and modern Chinese how many aeons of linguistic evolution are necessary? Clearly we are talking in terms of several millennia.
So much for the evidence of language; that of genetics points in the same direction. If we consider the striking differences between the various racial groups we cannot fail to conclude that a substantial period of time must be postulated to account for them. I am by no means a Darwinist and agree with both Heinsohn and Velikovsky that evolution occurred in rapid bursts and invariably in catastrophic conditions. This being the case, it is evident that the main racial groupings of mankind, namely the Caucasoid, Mongoloid and Negroid, must have formed during a catastrophic epoch preceding the historical catastrophic epoch initiated by the Venus Flood of circa 1400 B.C. It is also clear that these divisions must have occurred very shortly after the actual birth of the human race, homo sapiens, since the adaptations associated with each of the various races must have occurred before mankind had acquired the skills (such as use of fire, clothing, etc.) which would have made those genetic adaptations unnecessary. And it is interesting to note here that such adaptations can be observed in contemporary cases of so-called ‘wild children’, ie children raised among animals. It has often been noted that such children are found to be covered in a thick coating of hair, which gradually falls off when the child is introduced into human society and afforded the protection of clothing and shelter. Such adaptation, which might be called bio-reflexive or even bio-instinctive, seems to offer a clue to the real cause of evolution, in contradistinction to Darwin’s ridiculous concept of Natural Selection.
When then can we place this catastrophic epoch which saw the emergence of the first homo sapiens? Palaeontology speaks of an epoch preceding the Pleistocene which it terms the Pliocene and an epoch preceding the Pliocene named the Miocene. The evidence would seem to indicate some major catastrophic episode at the termination of the Miocene, whilst the Pliocene seems to have been more or less contemporary with the Pleistocene. Such being the case, it would appear that modern man must have appeared at the termination of the Miocene. But when did this occur? It will be obvious that all dates encountered in the textbooks are fictitious and must be ignored, based as they are on the absurd uniformitarianism of Lyell and Darwin. As regards the much-touted scientific dating methods, such as radiocarbon analysis, these are so much peppered with pitfalls of various types as to render them almost useless. However, taking into account the genetic and linguistic diversification mentioned above, and bearing in mind the relative speed of change demanded by Velikovsky’s cosmology, I feel we would be on reasonably safe grounds if we concluded that the modern human race, homo sapiens sapiens, appeared on the earth some time between 5000 and 3000 B.C.
Before finishing, it needs to be emphasized that the various hominid species of the Pliocene and Pleistocene, such as australopithecus, which are currently presented as human ancestors, were nothing of the sort. They were anthropoid apes who were actually contemporaries of early humans. This is proved beyond question by Michael Cremo in Forbidden Archaeology, where he lists numerous instances of human remains found underneath (and therefore of earlier date) those of hominid species. Neanderthals, on the other hand, were fully human - though of a different species from modern man - and they only became extinct at the eand of the Pleistocene (though some seem to have survived into the age of Greece and Rome and even the Middle Ages).