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Enviro Eco Nature    H4'ed 8/14/21

Why historians lie.

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Why do historians lie?

They don't lie so much as dissemble the truth (from Latin dissimulare: to hide or conceal). They do this because modern history is a very lucrative socially constructed reality. Textbook sales in the USA amount to over ten billion dollars annually. Every academician wants a piece of that action. The adage is Publish or Perish. Survival in the academic world depends upon the recognition of and adherence to the prevalent ideology. Historians must present books and scholarly articles that conform to it and the system that emerges weeds out nonconformists. This includes the ever-present World War documentaries that dominate cable outlets. So for example, a recent television documentary about the 1943 Battle for Italy shows footage of cheerful and even ecstatic Italians welcoming German (Nazi) soldiers with wine and roses; but without any sort of commentary. This is how dissimulare works. The fact that northern Italians saw the German army as protectors is hidden from the viewers by silence. The facts are shown, but neither discussed nor elaborated upon. It's understandable especially in today's political climate. Very few can survive the fascist label in an academic and cultural system that is politicized in every field of endeavor.

Egyptology seems to have been at its peak in 1875 David Grant Stewart

One might think that the study of Ancient Egyptian history wouldn't be so political. It was a long time ago and very few people can grasp or care that Egyptology (the study of Ancient Egypt) is highly biased precisely because it is so obscure. A very select and specialized scholarly caste is this ancient civilization's sole purveyors of the truth. They present Ancient Egyptian culture, despite its fantastic monumental achievements, as fundamentally primitive. One need only observe the monuments at Karnak and Luxor (for example) to suspect that slaves armed with copper hammer and chisel didn't build them. Some other process was at work. But Egypt as a primitive culture with rudimentary tools conforms to the slow but steady evolution of all things from the Big Bang right up onto modern society; a progression that is always presented as the inevitable highlight of world history. This ever upward arc of history towards present enlightenment is essential to the false consciousness that defines our socially constructed reality.

How old are the pyramids?

As a social science, Egyptology is controlled by the exceptionally few people who can read and decipher Egyptian symbolic writing known as Hieroglyphic Script. Nobody in the field may deny that Hieroglyphic Script is understood; that would negate an elaborate social construction. This would also mean professional ostracism for any Egyptologist who doubted the reality: no more textbook sales at $124.99 each; no more publications; and no more free eats at plush conferences in Paris. The final obstacle towards open inquiry is the Egyptian government itself; for if the monuments are indeed 10,000 years old (or older), it means that Egyptians didn't build them! This would further indicate that all of history is a misconstruction and that everyday knowledge presented as fact is actually a finely and elaborately wrought fabrication.

The Rosetta Stone

The tablet was discovered by French troops in Napoleon's invasion of Egypt in 1798. It was a proclamation in Greek language about an upcoming royal festival (c.200 BC) because Egypt's rulers were Greek. Next to it on the stone were translations into both Egyptian written characters and symbolic (hieroglyphic) script. From this, various scholars felt that they were finally able to successfully translate the mysterious hieroglyphics that adored Ancient Egyptian monuments. This was and is very exciting. Up until then Ancient Egypt was a complete mystery wrapped in the proverbial enigma. Nothing was known about it. The pyramids are not dated and even though they are said to be royal tombs, no mummy has ever been found in one. How old were they? Nobody knew. Was the lion-like Sphinx constructed in the Age of Leo, 13,000 years ago? Nobody had the slightest clue. The Rosetta Stone seemingly changed all that. Because Greek was known, the indecipherable hieroglyph symbols could apparently be translated. However it is not clear that an accurate translation was made and it should be discomforting that each hieroglyph may be any one of four things: a sound, a letter in an alphabet, an actual representation of the symbol itself or a conceptual ideogram: all of it dependent upon where each pictogram or symbol is placed in relation to the others. As a result, every assembly can mean almost anything the translator wishes. Naturally, a cohort of dedicated and sincere linguists worked out a coherent scheme. But is it authentic? They all spoke Indo-European languages and tried their best to transcend their own cultural and linguistic biases. One problem was that the Rosetta Stone's lingo was not literature. Here are some brief but completely representative passages from the Rosetta Stone into English from the original Greek:

Whereas king Ptolemy, the ever-living, the beloved of Ptah"has been a benefactor both to the temples and to those who dwell in them, as well as all those who are his subjects, being a god sprung from a god and goddess" and whereas he has remitted the debts to the crown being many in number which they in Egypt and in the rest of the kingdom owed; and whereas those who were in prison and those who were under accusation for a long time, he has freed of the charges against them; and whereas he has directed that the gods shall continue to enjoy the revenues of the temples and the yearly allowances given to them, both of corn and money"

The entire proclamation is written this way and is why hieroglyphic translations all sound like this. There are no nuances of language; no similes, no allusions, no metaphors; and how could there be? If you were visitor from another planet arrived on earth, and passages like this were your only lexicon in the English language (as the Rosetta Stone is for hieroglyphics) would you, along with any army of translators, ever be able to translate and read this passage?

Call me Ishmael. Some years ago-never mind how long precisely-having little or no money in my purse, and nothing particular to interest me on shore, I thought I would sail about a little and see the watery part of the world. It is a way I have of driving off the spleen and regulating the circulation. Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before coffin warehouses, and bringing up the rear of every funeral I meet; and especially whenever my hypos get such an upper hand of me, that it requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from deliberately stepping into the street, and methodically knocking people's hats off-then, I account it high time to get to sea as soon as I can.

If your dictionary was the landscape of the Rosetta Stone you could never accurately comprehend this. Another problem is that the hieroglyphs on the stone are a late translation, written, at least, 2000 years after the high culture of Ancient Egypt flourished. Consider our own language only 1000 years ago; Old English from the Epic Poem Beowulf:

Beowulf wæs breme (blæd wide sprang), Scyldes eafera Scedelandum in. Swasceal geong guma go de gewyrcean,fromum feohgiftum on fæder bearme þæt hine on ylde

This is English but who can read it but a specialist? We can figure out Beowulf was and a few other words but translation is only possible because the alphabet is the same and Old Norse and Old Frisian are similar. With the Rosetta Stone there is nothing like that; only vague supposition about people who, apparently and incomprehensibly, were technically, scientifically and spiritually far more advanced than we are. The Cairo Museum has hundreds of hard-stone artifacts from Ancient Egypt that could only have been cut with steel and diamond edged power tools. The Museum doesn't say anything about them; they are simply indicated as pre-dynastic (before pyramid construction) and presented without commentary. Egyptology thus ignores them and also the mountain of evidence that suggests Ancient Egyptian history is far older than imagined. A 13,000 year old Sphinx would place it (and all Egyptian monuments) in the same time-frame as Göbekli Tepe: a massive, but only partially excavated Neolithic city built, intentionally buried and then abandoned by peoples unknown. The supposition presented is that "hunter-gatherers" suddenly discarded their baskets and instead took up the advanced mathematics and geometry needed to construct essentially modern architecture. Most people are not aware that Egyptian history begins with pyramid construction. There is no introductory phase; "hunter-gatherers" just suddenly decided to build complex monuments. The proposition is patently absurd but we swallow it whole. The masonry at Göbekli Tepe is very similar to Egyptian and all of it was probably built by the same peoples. But the strong possibility of a worldwide advanced civilization in the late Ice Age cannot be admitted. Our ancestral roots and true heritage is thereby desecrated and that makes our present wage-enslavement easier to enforce. False-consciousness is reinforced by the notion that this civilization is the best ever. The mantra is; things have never been better as we stagger in and out of hospital. The truth might be the exact opposite: things have never been worse than now. This is the nadir of western civilization. Our high culture existed 10,000 years ago and the last ten millennia have been a slow and steady collapse into the terror of techno-medical tyranny.

 

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John Henry Egan lives in the Mojave Desert and has a degree in History from Hofstra University, He is published nationally and internationally in military history and film theory. His latest book is; War and Migration 1860-2020: The Ruin of (more...)
 

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