The Ancient Alien Question 

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Debunking Ancient Aliens Debunked

Philip Coppens


“Ancient Aliens Debunked” is a YouTube released, 190 minutes long documentary by Chris White. In the documentary, he tackles 16 topics that in his opinion form the backbone of the Ancient Alien Hypothesis, which White claims he conclusively refutes, which in his opinion conclusively proves that the evidence presented in the series Ancient Aliens is factually incorrect and worse, he claims, sets out to deceive.
He concludes: “The main thing I want to stress is that I’m not trying to suggest that, while Ancient Aliens got a few claims wrong, there’s room for truth in their main theory. That, in light of this information, is not a tenable position. You have just witnessed the unmistakable symptoms of the entire theory being wrong.”

This is a heavy claim to make! In short, he argues that in his opinion the series has failed to show we were visited by ancient aliens and implies we should therefore forget all about it! So it is now up to television series to prove or disprove scientific theories? Wow! It’s a heavy burden to place on any television series! Far more importantly, it would leave the likes of Carl Sagan flabbergasted, as he felt there was good evidence to look into a number of ancient contact scenarios, especially the story of Oannes – which for some reason, White does not include in this documentary. Why?

White continues: “I would ask you also to take a long, hard look at the authors, speakers and charismatic personalities that led you to believe some of the things that I hope you can now see are wrong. I hope that this helps you realize they are not as smart as they have led you to believe, and to consider what other untruths they may have taught you.”

I am one of those people, I assume, seeing I feature in the documentary. So I took this rather personally. White has accused the makers and contributors of this show of a number of things: first, even though he claims we are not that smart as we apparently have told the world we are (where did we say that?), we also are apparently, according to White, very smart, but use our intelligence to knowingly deceive the audience. (Which one is it, Mr. White?)

He claims that we create false dichotomies.

So how does White go to work?


I will use the subject of the crystal skulls as the first example. The conclusion of this section is, for White, the following: “In conclusion, all of the proposed crystal skulls have now been conclusively proven to be hoaxes. The last holdout (the MHS [The Mitchell Hedges skull]) was only still a candidate because it was not allowed to be examined until recently. Its history is full of greed and lies, and it genuineness could only be accepted by the most dedicated devotee given the facts we now know.”

This is simply not true. For one, the “MHS” was studied by the likes of Hewlett-Packard and the British Museum more than three decades ago. When Anna Mitchell-Hedges came to Britain to have the latter tests performed, there were reports and footage of the event. The Hewlett-Packard testing was reported by the organization themselves and I have copies of it – as have hundreds of other people, no doubt. But White either is not aware of this, or as it does not fit his agenda, disregards it. White instead opts for or – to use the type of wording he prefers to use on the documentary in making accusations – “leads us to believe” that in 2007, when Bill Homann took the skull to the Smithsonian, it was finally revealed to be a fake. That is once again not the case. That the skull is a modern reproduction is indeed the opinion of Jane Walsh, who was present at this test. But she arrived at that belief many years before ever meeting this skull. Though I was not present, I do have in my possession the complete video footage of the 2007 Smithsonian session, and I can assure anyone, and will make available if needed, sections of this tape (it is many hours long) that will show a radically different nature of this session than what White pretends the meeting was all about. Let me note that White was not present and has never seen this footage.

As mentioned, it is absolutely false that Anna Mitchell-Hedges never allowed for any testing. Nor is it true that “Anna spent her entire life trying to sell the skull.” Some of the other claims he makes in this section, that Mitchell-Hedges lied about the origins of how he acquired the skull, are true. But let it be clear that the likes of White were not the ones who discovered this, even though he implies quite cunningly that he somehow seems to have been involved in finding these documents, by making claims he has seen letters and the like. So have thousands of others, as these letters are in the public record. I personally wrote that the story was an invention, and that there are good reasons why Mitchell-Hedges created the story. It can be read here. Mr White seems to be unaware of this, or fails to mention it.

In short, the conclusion White reaches on the crystal skull is representative of the entire documentary. His conclusions are simply wrong and it is my opinion that he knows they are wrong, but presents them nevertheless in this manner so that he can make it appear that there is nothing to crystal skulls. And though aspects of the argument he represents are on a number of instances indeed correct, rest assured White did not uncover these, and in the case of the crystal skull, are well-known and discussed, as shown above. Somehow, White fails to include that, for if he did, he would be unable to maintain the serious, yet ridiculous and erroneous allegations he makes.

I would agree with the criticism against Sitchin – I have written this myself in my book, The Ancient Alien Question. But even in these sections, it is clear how manipulative White is with his debunking. At one point, Giorgio Tsoukalos says: “Were they giants or is that the wrong word and [should] the correct word be an extraterrestrial?” I leave it up to Giorgio Tsoukalos to defend himself, but it is clear that he means here that we’ve labeled them giants, but that maybe we should call them extraterrestrial instead. Yet White interprets this statement to say that Tsoukalos is claiming the word Nephilim has been mistranslated as giants and should be instead translated as extraterrestrial! From the very excerpt White includes, it is clear this is not the tone or the implication one should make from this. Similarly, when Erich von Däniken states: “How can angels have sex? This is impossible. In our view, angels were something spiritual not something that has a body and the feeling of sex… but they had sex.” White ridicules this statement, stating: “Von Daniken’s idea of an angel is defined more by hallmark cards than ancient texts. Obviously ancient cultures including the writers of the Bible believed that angels could and did have sex with human women.” This is precisely the point Erich von Däniken is making too, but it is clear that White fails to see this! Either White is stupid, or deliberately deceptive.

But maybe I am nitpicking – which is what White engages in, as shown in the above accounts, constantly. When at one point in a show, the narrator relates that there is a written source dating from 6000 BC, White then relates that Tsoukalos in an interview gives the correct age. So the narrator made a mistake. In 48 hours of footage, you will find some, obviously! Let me assure White that in his 190 minutes, he has made several more! But for White, this is once again evidence of a conspiracy by everyone involved in Ancient Aliens to deceive, in a type of conspiracy theory that defies all logic, but which is apparently clear to White. Which is why he uses such bombastic phrasing as: “Ancient Aliens just adds another 5,000 years as if no one would notice. They’re actually even contradicting themselves with this date because in another episode they correctly state that the oldest writings in the world are the Sumerian tablets, the oldest of which date to about 4000 BC. So why they now say that there are some writings 2,000 years older than the oldest writings, I don’t think anyone knows.” Mr. White, most people will know, but clearly you don’t: as I said, it’s an error by the narrator. These things happen.

White also claims us experts are bad researchers. Within the first few seconds of his documentary, White claims that “Ancient Aliens […] premiered April 20, 2010”. Well, you see, it did and it didn’t. You could say that, but what about the two hour special, also called Ancient Aliens, on March 8, 2009, which on Wikipedia is referred to as a pilot – it was not really a pilot, though. It was a two hour special which proved popular, as a result of which a series was created. But it was not created as a pilot as such. But here is the issue: you can take it both ways. You can say the series started either in 2009 or 2010. Both are right. But if ever such a choice is available when it comes to the evidence under discussion in Ancient Aliens, White will make sure to highlight the other possibility and claim Ancient Aliens instead set out to deceive and misrepresent!

When he goes after Tsoukalos for not knowing that the material at Puma Punku is andesite, while Tsoukalos says diorite, White doesn’t seem to realize there is no true difference between those two, or deliberately chooses to ignore or reference that! Yes, Tsoukalos is wrong, but it is truly a tiny error. The two rocks are equivalents, but are given different names because of the manner in which they were created. But when it comes to hardness, there is no difference. White fails to point that even though Tsoukalos is indeed in error, this error does not change the debate. But wait, instead, White pretends the error does change the debate. It does not.

Though the section on the show itself addresses the hardness of the rock, White makes it appear as if the mystery of Puma Punku is that ancient alien theorists pretend the polishing of the stones is somehow otherworldly. This is a misconception White arrives at either through his own stupidity or misdirection. The mystery of Puma Punku is that a number of stones – not all of them – have remarkable drill holes that, in the opinion of experts on the subject matter, can only be made with mechanical tools. White never addresses that enigma – for it is an enigma. Instead, he creates a false dichotomy and then disproves it, pretending it was the point the show was trying to make.

But Puma Punku is about far more than the archaeology. This is the area where Viracocha, a god, was said to have manifested on Earth. That is not a claim made by the series, but by the Inca. White is clearly of the notion that the Inca invented a deity and that we should not at all take this claim of theirs seriously. It is the bog standard line that we should not trust our ancestors. Mr. White, that specific stance is precisely why series like Ancient Aliens were created and you merely state the bog standard perspective, somehow pretending or assuming that is the truth.

Ancient Aliens is based on the premise that the pool of evidence of history and archaeology allows for an other than standard interpretation. Our ancestors reported that they had been visited by a non-human intelligence, and there is evidence both in the archaeological and historical record that suggests that our ancestors could be correct.

White writes: “Part of the Incan state religion was that the Incan empire was the first civilization and was created by God himself. It was a very convenient idea for bolstering the Incan case for the right to rule everyone else.” White here clearly assumes the Inca invented this “convenient” lie.

The rest of his section once again clearly presents his total neglect or misunderstanding of the legends of Viracocha. He claims that the show mistakenly depicts Viracocha as a sky god, not a sea god. In truth, Viracocha is both, and neither – he was a creator god most specifically. But when you rely on Wikipedia and especially, it seems, the first opening lines of a Wikipedia entry, you tend to come up with the erroneous conclusions White makes throughout this show. But once having established such “truths”, he then pretends the show and its contributors are the ones falsifying it all!

And again, White sides with the bog standard view that archaeologists have conclusively dated the site. They have not. The dating of Puma Punku is indirect, and everyone knows it. The “official dating” of Puma Punku is based on circumstantial evidence and though that circumstantial evidence might be true, it is not, as White pretends, right by default!

Specifically, what “ancient alien theorists” try to show, is that in the very location where Viracocha was said to have emanated, there is a site which has anomalies, and which shows workmanship that is at odds with the rest of that civilization and even that very site, and is suggestive of a higher technology. But White dismisses it out of hand, as he knows the Inca “conveniently” created Viracocha. It seems that for Mr. White, the Inca were just as deceptive as the producers of Ancient Aliens!

In the interest of brevity, I will mainly focus on the other topics in which he features me. Everyone else on the show, given that they have sufficient time, can speak for themselves if they feel the need to.

On Baalbek, he suggests that 630 tons is the same as 1200 tons, and hence that because Romans could lift 630 tons, they could have lifted 1200 tons. Uhm… 1200 tons is pretty much double. Also, when he draws the comparison between 630 and 800 tons, he says “just 100 tons more”. It’s actually 170 tons more! Details, but important, for he is trying to minimize the difference, which in truth, is still quite a bit larger.

In my book The Ancient Alien Question, I clearly state that at the end of the 20th century, we had no tools in existence to lift 1200 tons. That’s a fact. A fact White conveniently sidesteps, instead focusing on other things and trying to bedazzle his audience with things that might seem important, but truly are not.

It is also disingenuous to pretend that these stones are not part of the foundation, but instead of a retaining wall. I don’t know what universe White lives in, but it is clear that the retaining wall is part of the foundation on top of which the temple was built. And it is a platform. Sitchin is indeed wrong to claim it is a landing place, but it is clearly a platform and a foundation on top of which at some point a Roman temple was built. Also, simply because Baalbek is not a landing place, doesn’t mean it’s not an anomaly! White also conveniently forgets to mention that there are no records at present that show the Romans actually built the retaining wall/foundation. That is right: no evidence. It is an assumption. Even some of the illustrations he shows in his documentary have the words “hypothetical” written on them, but White seems to feel he does not need to point this out.

In the Tolima “fighter jets”, he uses a quote of mine arguing I make a leap of faith. What he fails to highlight is that officially, the “goldflyers” are classified as insects. Sure, White can make the point that they are fish, but his beloved experts in this subject matter have identified these as insects, not fish. So either White is wrong, or the experts are. I am merely pointing this out, because once again, we are confronted with a pool of evidence, in which the experts have decided to label them insects, White decides to label them fish, and ancient alien theorists have highlighted the resemblance to modern planes. The type of insect that is proposed – a bee or a fly or like – indeed does not have wings at the bottom of their body, which is why we have said that these goldflyers cannot be such insects. But instead, White shows us completely different insects, with no resemblance to the golden objects at all, to pretend we are somehow wrong. In truth, he creates a misdirection.

In this section, his logic is this: “Consider that all we know about this culture reveals them to be simple farmers, fisherman [sic], and artisans; people that lived of the land and, considering that there is nothing in the extensive amount of archeological material from this culture that would suggest knowledge about planes landing and taking off all the time, is it logical to assume that aliens landing and taking off in their back yards made so little impression on them that they only devote 10 of the 100s of figurines to it, and only in one tomb?”

First of all, “all we know” is clearly the traditional academic perspective. Science by default excludes the ancient alien hypothesis, so you can use “all we know” all the time. Again, White seems incapable of realizing what this series is about: to discuss material that science refuses to reconsider or analyze from a different perspective.

But, specifically: how many of us wear jewelry that has a space shuttle on it? I’ve seen few people wear such gold jewelry! But, clearly, in White’s opinion, there has to be far more than ten percent of our current jewelry on Earth with space imagery, as we have witnessed objects going into space. I can safely say that if all our jewelry of Mankind is put together, produced since 1960, not even one percent will reveal objects of spaceflight. Yet, somehow, in White’s world, aliens landing and taking off would lead to thousands of golden figurines depicting this! It is a false premise, Mr. White, which you created, either of out stupidity or to deceive your viewers.

When it comes to ancient nuclear warfare, we are once again treated to a careful editing of the case. The fact – yes, fact – that there was a radioactive patch in an area of India over which the gods were said to have fought a battle in the sky is never mentioned by White. His argument on Mohenjo Daro is so badly produced he actually contradicts himself, when he argues the series doesn’t mention the names of experts, but he seems to have forgotten he himself has included the section where the series says it is Davenport!

Most importantly, White makes the allegation that the dead at Mohenjo Daro are buried and did not die in some type of massacre. On his site, he refers to a source, which redirects to another source, where we find the basis for his claim. This source, however, says something far different than what White pretends. The source says that the way in which the excavations happened have left us in a situation in which no-one – that is right, no-one – can conclude whether the dead died in a massacre or were buried. Seeing that some were holding hands however, would suggest they might indeed have suddenly died in a massacre, not? And the possibility that there was a massacre is not speculation created by ancient alien theorists, but an opinion held by many experts in the field – something White fails to highlight for by now obvious reasons.

Again, from a pool of evidence, Ancient Aliens and its contributors have made an alternative suggestion, which is not excluded by the evidence. But White instead pretends it is, even though the very sources he cites, show differently!
In the opening section of the documentary, White states: “I hope that, even if you disagree with my conclusions, you will come away from this essay believing that I reviewed the claims of Ancient Aliens with respect and without bias.” I would disagree both on the respect and the bias.

Speaking of motive: White is a Christian fundamentalist. So he will side with such topics as the Nephilim as being real, but claims they cannot be alien. As White is somewhat unclear about what he believes they are, I do believe he doesn’t consider them to be human. So if not human, what are they? By default, that makes them alien – though not extraterrestrial as such, indeed – but then the evidence shows they descended, so clearly they came from above, suggestive of an extraterrestrial origin. But at the very least he cannot exclude an extraterrestrial origin. Yet White somehow feels he can! The mind boggles…

A quick overview of the rest, maybe? Jean-Pierre Houdin’s theory of how the pyramids were built is totally irrelevant in this documentary. It addresses no single point of criticism, and White even says that he explores this out of his own interest. Clearly, the documentary wasn’t long enough without it, in his opinion. All the other allegations about the pyramid construction are once again carefully edited. Where does he tackle the Davidovits claims? Oh wait – nowhere! On Easter Island – which I personally don’t see as evidence of an alien intervention – his bias is once again on show. Sure, the statues could have been put in place with wooden rollers. But the stories are that the statues walked into place, which is why there is speculation about levitation in the first place. That our ancestors stated they walked into place is another fact White somehow fails to include in the documentary. Why?

In my book, The Ancient Alien Question, I outline that Pakal’s tomb, the Nazca lines and a few other subjects White has included in the documentary are not evidence of alien contact. But even in those sections of White’s documentary, I would disagree on a number of points with the way in which White sets out his argument, and on a number of occasions uses deception in order to make a point he could have made if he had done some proper research or, heaven forbid, read my book.

Finally, I would like to tackle the section on Ezekiel, but quite frankly, this section was incomprehensible to me. I do not understand what his argument is, apart from the obvious fact we are clearly and obviously wrong.

I think I have clearly shown that White has made exaggerated claims about his debunking, in e.g. the case of the crystal skulls. That he is deceptive, in e.g. the case of Mohenjo Daro. They are, as outlined above, not the only errors, but representative of his methodology. For whatever reason White has produced this documentary, it is clear that White has done so not because he feels he needs to warn the world of gross untruths in the series, for if that were the case, his documentary would not have resorted or needed to resort to falsifying the counterarguments. In my opinion, White is upset with the notion that Ancient Aliens is making people re-evaluate certain paradigms, and his documentary is all about trying to pretend that we should not do that.

However, it is deplorable that White makes the false dichotomy that Ancient Aliens and the Ancient Aliens Hypothesis are one and the same. Clearly, the series is a visualized rendition of a debate – not the debate itself.

It is impossible to counterargue every counterargument White has made in this ridiculously long documentary as it would take months. But I think I have shown Mr. White is white (read: innocent) in name only. In Mr. White’s opinion, we are a black kettle. He is definitely not a white pot.

PS. It is now entirely possible that this reply will be used to create another reply, in the vain hope of trying to elicit from me another reply, so that the debate goes on endlessly, with loads of blablabla. As far as I am concerned, the debate ends here. The very reason why this reply was created, was because people wanted me to reply and hear my opinion on the documentary, so I did. In truth, I feel I have written more than 4100 words that I could have written about far more important topics than Mr. White’s documentary.