Don’t bother with Netflix’s Ancient Apocalypse: debunking the racism of Graham Hancock’s theories – Screen Shot
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Don’t bother with Netflix’s Ancient Apocalypse: debunking the racism of Graham Hancock’s theories

If you’ve ever found yourself idly scrolling through Netflix in search of something to put on, you may have come across a new series called Ancient Apocalypse. Don’t let your curiosity get the better of you however, this one is not worth your time. Starring conspiracy theorist and Joe Rogan regular Graham Hancock, the series follows a historic hypothesis of an ancient world-ruling civilisation that was wiped out in an apocalypse pre-ice age.

What this show unfortunately embodies is a racist line of thinking which perpetuates the idea that ancient civilisations like the Mesopotamians, Indus Valley natives or the Egyptians could simply have not achieved what they did without the assistance of external forces or some form of higher being. These theories go hand in hand with History Channel’s notorious show Ancient Aliens, which began in 2009 and has repeatedly claimed that extraterrestrial input must have played a role in the creation of the pyramids, for example.

Thankfully, the internet is here to save the day and debunk these highly racist theories regarding Indus Valley civilisations and the building of the Old Kingdom Egyptian pyramids, which, unsurprisingly, have links to Nazism.

These internet spooks, long discredited by professionals, tend to focus on the Great Pyramid of Giza and the fact that the stones were simply too big for the ancient Egyptians to move on their own. This hypothesis was further pushed into the limelight in 2020 when Twitter fanatic Elon Musk tweeted out in support of the alien theory. Oh Elon, why must you do these things?

Vice spoke to Egyptologist Dr Nicky Nielsen on the matter, who said that there is tremendous amounts of evidence proving the Egyptians were in fact responsible for their pyramids, as seen via excavated quarries, diaries and tools. As to how they got the stones up the mountain, Nielsen stated that it was simply “pulleys.” Who’d have thought?

The expert went on to say that “they could pull very heavy blocks up a very steep gradient using pulleys and a ramp. The actual ramp that’s preserved is very steep, I think it’s something like 16 degrees.”

So, with that debunked, it’s time to delve deeper into why the internet is so obsessed with secret ancient civilisations, and indeed, the origins behind them and their activities. Dr Nielsen reminds us that these theories are designed to remove “agency from indigenous cultures” and “take their ownership of their own history away from them.”

“Arabic writing from the time pretty unanimously says it was the Egyptians, but nobody bothered to check for a long time,” the egyptologist concluded.

The routes back to Nazism are reflected in well-known Nazi distaste for egyptology. In the 1930s, a chief archeologist was known to despise the sculptures and busts of Pharaohs as it contradicted Nazi ideals of the superior race.

This is why Hancock’s documentary is so problematic—it directly platforms unfounded and poorly researched theories that detract from entire civilisations’ achievements. Ancient Apocalypse was thankfully torn to shreds by YouTuber Milo Rossi, in an engaging video essay on why so many of the featured theories are bogus.

The series has Hancock searching everywhere for an answer to his hypothesis of a hidden, advanced civilisation that bestowed the gifts of agriculture and mathematics to the Neolithic man. In the first episode, the pretend journalist turns to the megalithic site of Gunung Padang in Indonesia. Heavy stones and mysterious chambers are used to support the theory that there must have been a second party involved.

Rossi suggests a far more likely and less insane theory than Hancock’s notions, noting that these chambers are actually the remnants of a lost city used to teach the ancient Indonesians. The mysterious chambers have a much higher chance of being lava tubes, left behind from the days of Gunung Padang’s life as a volcano.

And as for the stones, they are actually lighter than those used to build the pyramids in Giza, and we already know that that was a feat well capable by man. Rossi’s whole takedown is very gratifying to see and really puts the ludicrous series in its place.

Racist conspiracy theorists will look anywhere for an answer that diverts success or legacy away from the world’s ethnic and native ancestors. If you’re interested in understanding the truth of history, I’d stay far away from Netflix’s new pseudohistory hit.

From rape accusations to seized supercars, here’s what you need to know about Andrew Tate’s arrest

The infamous, self-proclaimed ‘Top G’ was probably one of the worst things to show its face in 2022. Suddenly, out of nowhere, yet another misogynist had taken over the social media cycle, spewing out dangerously inflammatory content everywhere you looked. The shady former Big Brother contestant was promising an ultra-luxurious lifestyle, promoted as attainable by upholding a mindset of coercion,  manipulation and superiority.

This online rhetoric unfortunately led to him winning the hearts and minds of many adolescent boys—in part made worse by a parasitic TikTok algorithm—and has since been the subject of much controversy.

For those who aren’t fully aware of where Tate even came from in the first place, here’s a quick explainer. Once a relatively good kickboxer, Tate’s athletic career eventually waned, leading him to retire and instead focus his attention on a webcam sex service in 2015. This was then followed by fake hustling and ‘get rich quick’ schemes, all backed up by pretend godly faith and traditional values. Incredibly ironic, I know, given the views and attitudes he holds, especially when it comes to the treatment of women.

The self-avowed guru has seen a meteoric rise since he switched into a hyper-masculine, incel-worshipped influencer but, over the past few months, his online presence has begun to dwindle due to rather delayed action taken by social media platforms to prevent the damage he and his cronies had been inflicting on impressionable minds.

Why was Andrew Tate arrested in Romania?

Thankfully, it seems that Tate’s house of cards has finally buckled under the enormous weight of the mounting allegations made against him. According to the BBC, on 29 December 2022, the con man was arrested alongside his brother Tristan in Romania on charges of rape and human trafficking.

A spokesperson for the Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT)—a law enforcement agency of the Romanian government—told the BBC that prosecutors had applied to hold the influencer at a detention centre for an additional 30 days.

The Tate siblings are accused of having “created an organised crime group with the purpose of recruiting, housing and exploiting women by forcing them to create pornographic content for an online cost.” Essentially, the two have allegedly associated themselves with and actively participated within a trafficking group, a fact that the former TikTok cult figure hardly even hides anymore, having once stated that the reason he moved to Romania was because “rape laws are more lenient there.” Lovely stuff.

The 2015 rape charges that led Andrew Tate to leave ‘Big Brother’

For those clued in on Tate’s background and history, these charges may not come as much of a surprise. A recently released report from Vice has unearthed details surrounding a previous rape investigation involving the former kickboxer.

In what can only be described as a horrendous mishandling of justice by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), the misogynist walked free in 2015 after two women accused him of rape and assault. Despite being suspected of a criminal offence and under investigation by Hertfordshire Police, Tate initially kept his spot on the reality show Big Brother, which he was a part of in early 2016.

Viewers initially suspected that the reason he was subsequently booted from the programme was due to an incriminating video surfacing—the contents of which showed Tate slapping an ex-girlfriend and hitting her with a belt. However, Banijay UK—the parent company behind the production of Big Brother—has since confirmed that he was ultimately removed from the reality TV show as a result of the aforementioned police investigation.

Unfortunately, the CPS failed to follow up on the report in any meaningful capacity at the time, leaving the victims neglected and overlooked in their trauma as a result of the influencer.

Did Greta Thunberg assist in the arrest of Andrew Tate?

Much of the speculation online over Tate’s arrest began following an altercation on Twitter between the Hustler’s University founder and climate activist and gen Z legend Greta Thunberg. It’s worth noting that Tate was first banned from the bird app in 2017 for a tweet suggesting that women were in part responsible for being raped—a callous comment he made in response to allegations made against Harvey Weinstein at the time. He then got his account back when Elon Musk took over the platform. Nice one, Elon.

Unprompted, Tate fired over a combative tweet to the activist, obnoxiously listing his arsenal of luxury vehicles and detailing how much emissions several of his cars emit, gloating proudly about the impact he alone has on climate change—Tate of course being a feverish denier of the science.

Thunberg clapped back in the best way possible and had Twitter absolutely alight for days following his arrest.

Tate retaliated with a long (and very boring) video message again coming for the teenager, a person who is 17 years his junior. The clip notably showed the controversial man eating from a local pizza box, a point of interest that Twitter users theorised aided the authorities in locating the criminal and making his and his brother’s arrests.

Although this was later debunked, the young activist’s final tweet on the matter was the best way to end 2022:

Andrew Tate’s car collection has been seized

Following this online spat and the subsequent arrest, Tate has now had his vehicle collection seized, as reported by Romanian outlet Spy News. The Romanian authorities are said to have confiscated the assets, worth roughly €5 million, as well as taking control of several buildings where Tate was alleged to have been housing his victims.

Among the seized vehicles were a Rolls-Royce and a Bugatti, but it should be noted that the grand total of 33 cars—aka the amount that Tate himself boasted he had to Thunberg—seems to be missing from the police report.

Though it remains unclear as to exactly what faces Tate at the end of his 30-day detention, we can only hope that this is the beginning of the end for the king of toxicity.