Archaeologists at an excavation site in Pakistan were shocked last week upon discovering dozens of prehistoric artifacts decorated with swastikas, providing solid evidence that Nazis existed well before the 20th century.
At least 34 swastika-adorned items have been uncovered from a dig 20 miles (32 km) from Hyderabad, on the Indus River in the southern part of the country. Members of the excavation team have posited that that items, including bowls, vases and jewelry, were made during the Bronze Age, around 2500 BCE.
Philippa Rhodes, who oversees the excavation, says that the hair on her toes stood on end when she understood the significance of what the team had found. She recalls how scared and intrigued she was when, as a girl, she found a Nazi flag that her grandfather, a former RAF pilot, had brought back from Germany after the Second World War, and how she experienced a similar feeling last week.
“I was using my cute little archeology brush to remove dirt from a terracotta vase, and I nearly dropped it when I saw the little black swastika peeking through,” she said. “I had no idea Hitler’s reach went so far back into the past, and so geographically far from Nazi party headquarters in Munich.”
While some observers say that we must not jump to conclusions, most agree that this discovery proves once and for all that even in neolithic times, the ideology of fascism and racial purity that underlies German national socialism was alive and well — even among civilizations whose inhabitants had dark skin, spoke a now-extinct language, and believed that a half-buffalo, half-human beast attacking an evil tiger was implicated in the creation of the world.
“It’s just really weird,” said Unni Brekke, a scholar from Oslo who specializes in the semiotics of lines. “Germany was, like, thousands of years in the future. Hitler’s ancestors were probably still wearing bear skins, scavenging for wild plants to eat, and solving tribal disputes by throwing stones at each other.”
“Yet this ancient civilization was full-on Third Reich,” she said.
Peter Hunt, a Kansas State University physics professor, says not to buy into the hysteria, that there is no reason to believe that a tribe of Nazis inhabited the Indian subcontinent thousands of years ago. The best explanation, he says, is also the simplest.
“Hitler was very keen on developing time travel,” he said. “It wouldn’t surprise me if he sent some SS officers back in time to bury these swastikas near the sites of ancient civilizations, so that when they were discovered he could use them as propaganda, proof of the mythical origins of the Nazi party.”
The items will likely be briefly put on display in Karachi, before being sent to London to be destroyed.