How ‘catastrophic ice crash’ 450,000 YEARS ago helped defeat Hitler – and other weird ways Earth changed our history

How 'catastrophic ice crash' 450,000 YEARS ago helped defeat Hitler – and other weird ways Earth changed our history

EARTH’S shape and features have guided our entire history – and even helped defeat Adolf Hitler during WW2, a top professor claims in his new book.
Professor Lewis Dartnell told The Sun that London’s tube network, Labour voting patterns, New York’s tall skyscrapers and even California’s existence can all be explained by the natural world beneath our feet.
A new book claims Earth’s natural features helped defeat Hitler – and change the UK’s political and metropolitan landscape
How an ancient cataclysm helped the UK defeat Adolf Hitler
“Britain was created as an island about half a million years ago,” Dartnell told us, referring to the Anglian glaciation 450,000 years ago, which experts believed created the potential for Britain to split off from continental Europe.
“There were two great big ice sheets – Scottish and Scandinavian – that spread down and trapped a great big lake of meltwater in front of them, which started to overspill this land and spill over in Calais.
“We used to be connected to Europe by a 30km-wide bridge of land. Water started spilling over in waterfalls, and the dam gave way in this mega-flood. This created Britain as an island.”
He said this changed our history forever, allowing us to be close enough to Europe to trade – but with the ability to “step back behind a salt-water moat”.
Getty – Contributor Hitler would be furious to learn that he may have been scuppered by 500million-year-old ice movements
This protected us throughout history, the professor believes.
“The last full-scale invasion of Britain was the Norman invasion of 1066, and we’ve been protected for a thousand years since then,” the University of Westminster boff said.
“It’s protected us from the Spanish, who pulled together an Armada.
“It’s protected us from Hitler, who was able to Blitzkrieg across Europe.”
He went on:“The fact we’ve had this moat is very important for British sovereignty – but also very important for European history.
“It’s prevented any one power from building an empire across the entire Europe. This island nation has helped maintain the balance of power.
“So clearly our history and the history of Europe would be very different if Britain wasn’t an island.”How dying trees helped secure Labour votes in the north
“If you look at a political map of where people around Britain voted, and specifically voted for Labour, you’ll see these clusters of Labour constituencies,” Professor Dartnell told The Sun.
“Those constituencies remain Labour no matter which election you look at.
“When you compare that map of Labour voted to a geological map of the UK, you find very close correspondence – an almost perfect match – to rocks of a political age: carboniferous, from around 320million years ago.”
Professor Lewis Dartnell Labour votes and carboniferous rocks appear to be a direct match-up
Professor Dartnell explains that the carboniferous era was a “weird period for Earth”.
“Our planet’s recycling systems broke down and trees would grow and fall over and die, but would not rot.
“A huge amount of coal built up from that carboniferous era, and fuelled the industrial revolution.
“So the Labour votes are following the carboniferous rocks. The Labour Party was formed out of trade unions and miners.”How flooding seas changed America’s voting patterns forever
There’s a similar story in the USA, with an even “stronger chain of connections” according to the professor.
“If you look at the southern states, there’s a great big sea of red,” he told us, referring to a political map of the USA.
“Southern states tend to vote Republican – apart from this curve, a crescent of Democratic blue. For some reason, counties are voting Democrat rather than Republican.
“When you look at the underlying geology, that crescent perfectly aligns. It’s sat right on top of rocks which are more recent – cretaceous-age rocks.
“The chain of explanation here is that these cretaceous rocks were laid down in a period of our history when the climate was. Warmer and sea levels were higher.
“Sea flooded into the UK, laid down sea-floor mud, fertile mud that compacted and was re-exposed as a cretaceous crescent. This gives you very fertile black rich soil.”
Professor Lewis Dartnell Professor Dartnell has an explanation for an arc of Democrat votes in the USA’s southern states
This, Professor Dartnell believes, can be linked directly to the slave trade.
And the consequences of that inhumane system can still be seen today, politically.
“In the 1800s, this very fertile soil was great for growing cotton, a cash crop,” he said.
“Growing cash-crop meant using human slaves shipped over from Africa to work on plantations. And despite centuries of history since then, the largest concentrations of African American population’s communities along that arc of rocks are voting for democrats.
“Again there’s this really nice chain of causation, the way people vote and the elections today, linked to the ground beneath their feet.”
Professor Lewis Dartnell This arc appears to match an arc of cretaceous-age rocks in the USA
Why ‘crumpling’ rocks shaped London – and its low skyline
London is a famously low city, with just a few small areas of skyscrapers – a far cry from Manhattan.
But it’s also got one of the world’s most famous tube networks, and neither of those facts are a coincidence, according to Professor Dartnell.
“London, or the Thames basin, sits in what’s known as an anti-cline – a folding of the rocks that’s dipping down in this wedge shape that London sits within,” the professor explained.
“That rippling of rocks is the same process of the same crumpling-up as the Alps mountain range – continental Africa driving into Europe with continental drifts.
“London sits in one of those dips. London is a very clay-rich area that settles into the dip. So London is not a supportive city for building very tall skyscrapers. All skyscrapers, like at Canary Wharf, are built with very deep – and therefore expensive – foundations.
Getty – Contributor London’s historic tube network is partly thanks to soft clay layers below ground
“But the clay beneath London is a wonderful material to drill tunnels through. So London has got one of the first and most expansive tube networks of any city.
“But notably very good in North London and sparse in South London, because the clay layer is dipped a bit deeper south of the river.”How a long-lost mountain range in New York led to Manhattan’s skyscrapers
This contrasts completely with New York, and once again there’s a good reason for that.
According to Professor Dartnell, it’s all to do with an ancient mountain range that no longer exists.
“Manhattan has got patches of very, very hard rock called schist,” he told The Sun.
“Those outcrops of schist rock are the foundations of an absolutely ancient mountain range, which would’ve looked like the Alps and Himalayas about a billion years ago.
Getty – Contributor Remnants of an ancient mountain range makes it possible for New Yorks to build tall in Manhattan
“The foundations of those, the stumps of those mountain ranges forms very good bedrock for building absolutely enormous skyscrapers on.
“There are two particular regions that have dense pockets of skyscrapers, Midtown and Downtown, which reflects this area of schist underneath the surface.”How Earth’s wind changed global empires – and led to modern California
It’s not just rocks that have changed Earth’s history, however.
Professor Dartnell believes that the way the wind works has also completely changed the course of history.
“Because the atmosphere circulates in a very simple pattern around the Earth, the equator gets very warm, and air rises and rolls over itself at high altitudes, and then descends again at about 30 degrees north or south,” he explained.
“And that circulation current of air circulates back along the equator. Atmosphere circulating and turning over equals wind. Because Earth is not still, it’s rotating, as those winds blow back towards the equator, they get twisted by the Coriolis effect.”
Professor Lewis Dartnell Earth’s wind bands have changed the way humans move around the planet
There are lots of bands of wind going in different directions across Earth’s surface.
There are trade winds that blow in one direction, and westerly winds blowing in the opposite direction.
These, Professor Dartnell says, changed how humans navigated the world.
“You can only sail from particular places in the world by picking the right wind band to sail in.
“That’s dictated hundreds of years of sailing patterns and trade routes.
Margaret Duncan Coxhead – Romance of History, Mexico / Wikimedia Commons Spanish conquistadors relied on wind to travel to and colonise the Americas
“And the most strategic places like Cape Town on the southern tip of Africa, or California, which was important for the Spanish, that’s where the wind delivers you across the Pacific Ocean, if you sail from China.
“Again, that’s had influences for hundreds of years, shaping and moulding the modern world.”
Professor Lewis Dartnell’s book Origins: How The Earth Made Us is available to buy now for £13.50 as a hardcover or £9.99 on Kindle – buy now
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Do you agree with Professor Dartnell’s explanations? Let us know in the comments!

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