Lake Baikal, in the Russian Federation, reared its metaphorical head in the summer of 2009(a) as a possible location for Atlantis. The lake, held sacred by the local Buryat people, is the deepest lake in the world and was recently discovered to be dramatically younger than the generally ascribed 25 million years and led to its candidacy as a potential Atlantis site. Plans are now being made to use mini-subs in 2011 to search for supporting evidence. This report comes from the Russian Information Agency, Novosti.
In 2007, architect Lubov Makagon when visiting Port Baikal, at the southern end of the lake, noticed that one of the neighbouring hills was pyramidal in shape. In 2012, she returned with a group of her students to study the 80 metre high feature in greater detail and concluded that it was a pyramid and that further investigation was warranted(b). You can expect this to be as controversial as the Bosnian ‘pyramid’ at Visoko.
>A May 2020 report(c) on the Ancient Origins website informed us that “Using human population genetics, ancient pathogen genomics, and isotope analysis, a team of researchers assessed the population history of the Lake Baikal region, finding the deepest connection to date between the Upper Paleolithic Siberians and the first Americans.”<
(b) See: Archive 3573
Bosnia was dragged into the Atlantis debate in 2006 when a self-styled archaeologist, Semir Osmanagic, claimed that he had discovered five pyramids in his ancestral Bosnia near the town of Visoko. His claim received widespread media coverage and sparked a debate that continues today.
Osmanagic maintains that the largest one is bigger than the Great Pyramid at Giza, and that the Bosnian pyramids date to 12,000 B.C. In response Archaeology Magazine noted that “Construction of massive pyramids in Bosnia at that period is not believable. Curtis Runnels, a specialist in the prehistory of Greece and the Balkans at Boston University, notes that “Between 27,000 and 12,000 years ago, the Balkans were locked in the last Glacial maximum, a period of very cold and dry climate with glaciers in some of the mountain ranges. The only occupants were Upper Paleolithic hunters and gatherers who left behind open-air camp sites and traces of occupation in caves.”(j)
The Atlantis connection emerged from the belief of Osmanagic that the original ancestors of the Maya, Basques and other ancient peoples were descended from the peoples of Atlantis and Lemuria whose founders arrived on earth from the Pleiades. According to Osmanagic’s strange logic this gives the ‘pyramids’ of Bosnia an Atlantean pedigree.
Fortunately, Mark Rose, editor of Archaeology, who published a critical review(a) of Osmanagic’s weird ideas in Archaeology magazine, was also widely quoted, adding some balance to the debate. The same magazine carried a brief but highly critical review of Osmanagic’s theories from Zahi Hawass(h).
In 2006, Robert Schoch visited the Bosnian ‘pyramid’ and subsequently wrote a highly critical assessment of Osmanagic and his theories. However, some time later, Osmanagic responded with a scathing review(c) of Schoch’s work!
In September 2014 the Science Channel aired an episode of The Unexplained Files series in the US, which attempted to justify Osmanagic’s claims. However, Jason Colavito has highlighted the many flaws in the program’s content(d).
A more sober attempt to link the Bosnian region with Atlantis has been made by Fatih Hodzic(b). Part of his theory attempts to identify the thousands of stone blocks or ‘stecaks’, spread widely in Bosnia, as remnants of Atlantean buildings. His ideas are interesting but unconvincing.
In 2014, Paul A. LaViolette visited the Visko pyramid in Bosnia and published an extensive illustrated article in which he expressed his amazement at what he saw there and concluded(g) that he considers “this to be one of the most important archaeological excavations going on at this time on our planet.”
Philip Coppens has also defended the reality of Osmanagic’s pyramids in The Lost Civilization Enigma[1275.39], nevertheless, the debate is still open as can be seen in a February 2016 blog(f), in which many reasonable questions relating to the construction of the ‘pyramids are still unresolved. For my part, I find Osmanagic’s personal credibility questionable, considering his previous claims regarding Atlantis and ancient aliens, which are not, in my view, the conclusions of a person with his critical faculties intact.
Another claim from Osmanagic emerged in April 2016, when he claimed that huge stone spheres that exist in Bosnia ‘prove’ the existence of an advanced civilisation more than 1,500 years ago(e)!
>Nevertheless, a pretty vigorous defence of the reality of the Bosnia pyramids was published by Richard Hoyle on the Ancient Origins website in January 2020(k).<
Late 2018 saw the UK’s Express tabloid’s online edition entertain us with the headline(I) – Bosnian pyramid SHOCK: ancient civilisation received knowledge from SPACE.
(f) See: Archive 3187