Thursday, February 10, 2011

Der Riese

A sketch of Die Glocke in its mounting
The WWII era has often been called the fastest period of technological advancement in human history. In the space of a decade humanity went from aircraft powered by propellers that could barely exceed 500km/h to turbojet fighters capable of doing over 900km/h. Surprisingly, many of these innovations were pioneered by researchers working under the Nazi regime. Termed "Wunderwaffe", or Wonder Weapons, these projects ranged from the relatively standard (various U-Boat designs, etc...), to the outlandish (the Landkreuzer P. 1000 Ratte tank weighing over 1000 tons), to the positively ridiculous (an orbiting parabolic mirror to focus sunlight on concentrated points on earth). But nothing I've come across can top what was (supposedly) done in the Wenceslas Mine in southern Poland.

In 1943, the Schlesische Industriegemeinschaft AG (Silesian Industrial Company) was established as a front or operating name for an immense tunnelworks project beneath the Lower Silesia region. Miles of shafts and caverns were excavated, and narrow rail lines were installed, along with telephone lines and other amenities. This undertaking was preformed by slave labourers from various concentration camps, and later renamed Project Riese (Giant). Not much is known about this project, or what the caverns were used for. Many still have massive pieces of equipment like dams, culverts and immense hydraulic devices whose purposes remain unknown. Project Riese consisted of 7 subterranean complexes, some mapped and explored, many collapsed and completely unexplored.

Of these, the facility within Wenseclas Mine (Wencezlaus, in Polish) has proven to be the most enigmatic. The Mine was not, in itself, a construct of Project Riese. Instead, it had been constructed as a mine prior to the war and was taken over by the SS. Located roughly at 50°37'4"N 16°29'40"E, the complex housed an ammunition plant aboveground, and a large mine works below. What happened in these tunnels is still primarily a matter of conjecture. Polish journalist and historian Igor Witkowski claims to have had access to transcripts of the interrogation of SS Gruppenf├╝hrer Jakob Sporrenberg. He claims that these documents, shown to him by an anonymous Polish intelligence operative, tell of a device called Die Glocke (The Bell). This device was supposedly very powerful, and caused the deaths of many researchers and test subjects.

Die Glocke was reportedly a bell-shaped object (hence the name), roughly 9 feet wide and 15 feet tall. Within it were two counter-rotating cylinders filled with a mysterious compound known as Xerum 525. This compound was a violet metallic fluid, similar to mercury, carefully stored in lead-lined flasks a meter high, compared to a thermos bottle, which I assume means they were also vacuum-sealed. When the device was activated, a curious blue glow could be seen, and a loud buzz would be heard. Massive quantities of electricity were fed into the Bell from enormous trunk cables dropping into it from above. This comes up again in the discussion of a structure known as the Henge, or specifically a large vent supposedly located by researchers Nick Cook and Igor Witkowski. That will be covered later. Some reports mention an unusual metallic taste in the mouth, headaches and neural disruption among workers. This, along with reports that the device was covered in ceramic insulation, has lead to speculation that the Bell emitted large amounts of ionizing radiation. Cook goes on to say that in 1944 tests were preformed on organic tissue. These tests resulted in "crystals" forming within tissues, with fluids gelling and separating. This would not be consistent with ionizing radiation or any other naturally-known phenomenon.

The Henge
Another site is often referred to along with Die Glocke. Near the facility, which is commonly called Der Riese, there is a large concrete structure, often called The Henge or the Fly Trap. It is a large concrete ring, supported by 12 concrete pillars, with traces of camouflage paint still visible. The estimated diameter is 90 feet. Nearby, a vent shaft containing massive cables snakes upwards from underground. Speculation abounds to the purpose of this structure. Some believe it to be a cooling tower, others a testing facility for vertical take-off vehicles, and many think it was connected to the Bell somehow, possibly for anti-gravity devices.

Not much hard evidence exists as to what happened to Die Glocke after the war. It may have gone to the United States as part of a deal with the SS. It could have gone to a Nazi-friendly nation in South America with escaping officers. Many (myself included) believe it lies at the bottom of an abandoned, collapsed mine shaft in southern Poland. One solid fact that has been learned from captured documents about the project is this: Reich High Command had designated the project as Kriegsentscheindend, or decisive to the war. Most other secret projects, notably the V-series rockets were classed as Kriegswichtig, or important to the war. The fate of the researchers assigned to the project is unknown as well, with some claiming all 62 were executed by the SS to avoid their secrets falling into Soviet hands.

What Die Glocke actually did is highly contested. Nick Cook speculates that it was designed to harness "zero-point energy", which is incredibly complicated in explanation, but in practice essentially means free energy. I personally favour a theory tying it to the well-known Nazi nuclear program. It is thought that relativistic physics, as described by Albert Einstein, was "unclean", as Einstein was a Jew. Instead, the Nazis would likely have sided with quantum physics as originated by native German Max Planck. Following this pattern, any research into relativistic theory would be considered inferior to quantum. This leads some to believe the nuclear weapons program was a "detonator" of sorts for a far more powerful quantum weapon. This could also explain why all files relating to Operation Alsos are classified until 2045. Speculation among some communities states the the Bell was a time-travel device, or an anti-gravity generator, and link this to sightings of UFOs over Poland during the war.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The Valley Of The Headless Men

Aerial view of a section of the Nahanni valley
The Nahanni Valley of Canada's Northwest Territories has been called one of the last truly unexplored places in the world. Lying above the 60th Parallel, it is accessible only by air, water or a long overland journey from the village of Tungsten. As a result, much of the area remains unexplored, despite being declared a national park in 1976, and a World Heritage Site in 1978.


   Native tales tell of an unknown evil lurking within 200 Mile Gorge, and most avoid the area. Local oral history also tells of a mountain-dwelling tribe known as the Naha. The Naha were feared by the region's Dene people, as they often descended to raid nearby villages. These tales end with the rapid, mysterious disappearance of the Naha. No trace of this tribe has ever been found.

   The eerie nickname attached to 200 Mile Gorge is the Valley Of The Headless Men. This name comes from a series of unexplained incidents in the Gorge during the Gold Rush of the early 20th century. Two brothers, Willie and Frank McLeod left in 1906 in an attempt to reach the Klondike through Nahanni. Nothing was heard from them for the next two years. Rumours spoke of the two finding the "mother lode" of gold. Despite this, no efforts were made to find them. In 1908, another prospecting expedition discovered two bodies, later identified as the McLeod brothers. Both had been decapitated. This incident would likely have been marked up as just another macabre tale of North had they been the only headless bodies.  In 1917, the body of a Swiss prospector by the name of Martin Jorgenson was found next to his burned cabin. Decapitated. In 1945, the body of a miner from Ontario, whose name seems to be lost to history, was found in his sleeping bag, without a head. A trapper named >John O'Brien was found frozen next to his campfire, matches still clutched in his hand. I cannot find any reference to the state of his head.

Theories abound as to what happened to these men, and others (up to 44 people are said to have disappeared there). Some put these attacks down to grizzly bears, some feuding  prospectors, others natives. Some say the area is naturally heated by hot springs, and is practically a tropical paradise, a Shangri-La if you will, with the valley floor covered in gold nuggets. These theories often speak of the valley being a haven for the Sasquatch. Some even claim the valley is an entrance to the "Hollow Earth". My view lies somewhere in-between all these. I believe that the native Naha people discovered this sheltered valley, and settled there. Theoretically, food would be plentiful if the valley is the veritable paradise described in some reports. These people then likely became highly territorial over their lands, and killed any trespassers. The decapitation is reminiscent of certain other tribal practices designed to instill fear in their enemies. The image provided is for reference only, and as far as I am aware, there are no images of the 200 Mile Gorge available online.

An Introduction

Greetings. Call me Raven. I've made this blog primarily as a tool to aggregate information on certain subjects, namely the paranormal, a subject with which I've been fascinated for many years. My intent is to create a dumping ground for personal speculation, information found elsewhere, views and overviews of various unexplained or bizarre phenomena. I may also occasionally post various bits and pieces of fiction I write, but for the most part the supernatural will be the topic. Feel free to use my research as a source for your own. Just keep in mind very little of the information I use is properly verifiable.

With that out of the way, it's time to dive into the unknown.