First-Ever Excavation of Nazi Death Camp Treblinka Reveals Horrors

The first-ever archaeological excavations at the Nazi death camp Treblinka have revealed new mass graves, as well as the first physical evidence that this camp held gas chambers, where thousands of Jews died.  Presented in a new documentary, “Treblinka: Hitler’s Killing Machine,” which will air Saturday (March 29) on the Smithsonian Channel, the excavations reveal that the Nazis weren’t as adept at covering up their crimes as they believed when they razed the death camp in 1943. Brick walls and foundations from the gas chambers remain, as do massive amounts of human bone, including fragments now eroding out on the forested ground surface.

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Was Jesus’ Brother’s Burial Box Vandalized?

A limestone box said to have once held the bones of the brother of Jesus was at the center of the most controversial forgery case in decades — and it was allegedly vandalized by the Israeli government before being returned to its owner.  Called the James ossuary, it is a small stone box with an inscription that reads, “James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus.”  That Jesus had a sibling at all is a controversial idea disputed by the Roman Catholic Church. If the box itself were authentic, it would be considered the first physical link to Jesus.  A three-judge panel of Israeli Supreme Court justices ordered the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) to return the box and several other artifacts to antiquities collector Oded Golan last month, after the agency spent 10 years accusing Golan of forging the items.  The box will soon go on display for the public to view for the first time since 2002. There’s just one problem: Reddish stains now appear over the inscription, remnants of a silicon substance applied by the Israel Police Forensics Laboratory to help determine the authenticity of the James ossuary.

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Ben Franklin Wasn’t Allowed to Write the Declaration of Independence Because They Thought He’d Sneak In Bad Jokes

Franklin Was the Best Writer … But He Was Also a Prankster

Today I Found Out notes:

Franklin was known for putting more subtle jokes in many of his other papers that only the most astute would spot. He was so famous for this that, according to Ormand Seavey, editor of Oxford’s edition of Ben Franklin’s autobiography, when they were deciding who should write the Declaration of Independence, they partially chose Jefferson over the significantly more qualified and respected Franklin, as some feared Franklin would embed subtle humor and satire in it that wouldn’t be recognized until it was too late to change. Knowing this document would likely be examined closely by the nations of the world at that time, they chose to avoid the issue by having the much less gifted writer, Jefferson, write it instead, with Franklin and three others to help Jefferson draft it.

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Ritual America -A lecture on Freemasonry

The following lecture was filmed at the Esoteric Book Conference in Seattle which I was able to attend last summer.  The lecture focuses on images, often rather humorous, that the presenter has collected over the years.

Ritual America -A lecture on Freemasonry, Part 2

Ritual America -A lecture on Freemasonry, Part 3

Ritual America -A lecture on Freemasonry, Part 4

Ritual America -A lecture on Freemasonry, Part 5