There have been many tales told over why America and its gang of bros invaded Iraq.
Weapons of mass destruction, oil, to show the world how big and righteous their dick is—forget all that, the reason is stargates.
Seriously, this theory is actually impressively popular and has inspired numerous articles and shitty youtube video after shitty youtube video garnering hundreds of thousands of views. Hell, it even once got the History Channel treatment so you know it's totally real, you guys.
For those of you not in the know, according to Hollywood, stargates are ancient alien devices that can allow any user to teleport instantaneously to another gate, no matter the distance—which, when you think of it, is super duper cool.
And, for you guys type-tapping away in the Facebook comments asking "why are you writing about this" well, firstly I consider myself a bit of a historian of weird internet thingys and, secondly, I am here to serve the people. Anyhoo, since we know America's new glorious head of state loves himself a good conspiracy theory (eg. global warming = Chinese hoax and Infowars = news) it's worth taking a peek at some of the more prominent "alternative facts" floating around the ol' interweb.
So, without further ado, let's dive head on into this theory. First I'm going to have to get you to stop thinking about Richard Dean Anderson and switch your mind over to that one episode of Ancient Aliens you accidentally watched.
To begin we're going to need to go way back in time and talk about the Sumerians, who lived in ancient Mesopotamia, an area that covers a portion of modern day Iraq. The Sumerians were one of the first civilizations in existence (around 3000 BC) and for a time worshipped the Anunnaki, their deities.
But what if they weren't gods? What if they were aliens!!! (Cue dramatic music, and that meme of the stoned dude with the weird hair.)
Remember that guy? He was like all the rage just a few years ago.
So, without getting too deep into the marsh (I don't want the true believers to get mad at me) the theory, which comes from writers like Zecharia Sitchin, posits that the Anunnaki were not gods but extraterrestrials that came and bestowed technology upon the Sumerians. This tech is what made their society so advanced at the time.
Ok, following along so far? Here is where it starts to get crazy.
Essentially, the Iraq War Stargate theory pushes and narrows this idea a little further. Saying one of the technologies that were gifted upon the Sumerians were stargates and their positioning was one of the major reasons for the years of strife in the Middle East. I reached out to Dr. Michael Salla, who wrote an in-depth article about the theory way back in 2003, to learn about it further.
Before we got into the nitty-gritty, I had to figure out if a stargate was just as cool as Hollywood made it out to be.
"It's kind of like an instantaneous space-time means of travel where people are instantaneously teleported from one area to another," said Salla.
Yup, super cool.
So, the stargate is apparently found near in the Nasiriyah, a city about 370 km south-east of Baghdad—in the ancient city of Ur—within that city is the great Ziggurat, a massive temple, which had a, you guessed it, stargate. Some theories also argue there is a stargate directly in the city of Baghdad, in one of the basements of Hussein's palaces— where he probably did some pretty freaky stuff with it.
While the locations and number of the stargates is in dispute, one thing the theorists do all agree on, is that the Iraq War wasn't the first time that a foreign power showed interest in it. In what sounds like a super sweet Indiana Jones fan-fic, the Nazis were fighting the British in during WWII over control of the Stargate.
Fast forward several decades and, according to some theorists,1980s Saddam started doing restoration to the temple worrying the world (read: the Illuminati). Oddly the theories don't really mention the first Iraq War but, after years of work, Hussein either was able to get the stargate working or learned something important from it and big-daddy America got concerned.
"The Bush administration recognized that Hussein had some very, very valuable relevant information concerning the ancient history of the planet," said Salla. "Either technology or texts basically confirming this and he was going to release this to the general public."
"I think that was a big part of the reason why the Bush Administration went into Iraq, to stop Hussein from revealing this information and to also get control control themselves."
Salla went on to tell me that while he wasn't the first person to write about the theory he was the first to write, in 2003, an in-depth article regarding it. Since that time he said numerous people have worked to further the idea and many whistleblowers have come forward that have corroborated the theory.
"Essentially more and more people are coming forward saying that they have been involved in these classified programs where these technologies are used quite regularly and that they are found all over the planet, Iraq is just one place they're found," said Salla.
"They are also located in places like Iran and Syria, which is why there is a push for America to go into Iran and intervene in the Syrian civil war. All this is very significant in what drives international conflict."
As for why the everyday person doesn't know about this, well, the government is super good at keeping mum, don't 'cha know? According to Salla, anyone looking into it is either discredited by character assassination or just straight up told to keep quiet.
"Any congressman who wants to investigate this topic, if they take steps to actually investigate it, they are quietly approached and given the ol' carrot and stick treatment and most congressmen accept the carrot and are basically promoted."
There is hope, though, the websites covering these theories are just a click away from Infowars and it's not too hard to imagine President Trump having one of his sleek and smooth underlings read it out to him before switching on Ancient Aliens. Like, imagine him sitting there, in his gold throne, leaning forward like a hungry baby bird with Ancient Aliens reflecting in his eye nodding gravely along.
It's easy to see, right?
So maybe President Trump's recent comments about how the US should have stolen Iraq's oil and his statement of "maybe we'll have another chance" are actually about that sweet, sweet teleportation tech.
Maybe President Trump will finally be the American leader to curl his tiny, tiny fingers around a stargate and know the true powers of the universe.
Only time will tell.
Lead illustration by Joe Frontel
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This article originally appeared on VICE CA.