Were treasures from the tomb of Gilgamesh discovered just before the Iraq war and did the U.S. military or Hillary Clinton cover it up? No, that's not true: This video is footage of one of several fake mummy hoaxes that have occurred over the years.
In April 2003, there was news about a German team's archeological finds associated with the ancient city of Uruk in Iraq. That discovery did not include a tomb full of golden treasures or a king's mummy. Jorg Fassbinder, a professor of geophysics, and a team of archeologists used a magnetometer to detect brick structures buried under river sediment. They found something "very similar to that described in the epic" that he thought could be the grave of King Gilgamesh.
A BBC News article reported, "Gilgamesh tomb believed found" on April 29, 2003. Over 20 years later, on May 16, 2023, clips from a much circulated video were republished on TikTok (archived here), purporting to show footage of the Gilgamesh tomb. It was captioned with hashtags:
#question #everything #truth #knowledge #beauty #love
original sound - Jessica Love
This is what the post looked like on TikTok at the time of writing:
(Source: TikTok screenshot taken on Fri May 26 14:13:03 2023 UTC)
The scope of this fact check will only address the Tomb of Gilgamesh claims in the first minute of this TikTok video and will not cover any of the additional topics @jessicalove9578 introduces in the second half. This claim is complex because there are elements of truth that have been misrepresented or misunderstood, historical fictional narratives as well as modern elements that are utterly false.
In the TikTok video, @jessicalove9578 makes a claim without actually connecting the dots. She says:
I found footage of the Gilgamesh Tomb, far exceeding my expectations, it's beautiful.
You can pull this off the Freedom of Information Act. This is legit. It's Hillary Clinton requesting the information; originally it was hacked.
Anybody who doesn't know the tomb of Gilgamesh situation ... They found the tomb of Gilgamesh in Iraq, and as soon as they did before the story broke, the American government set up camp on their territory, kicked out all the media, went down into the tomb, removed a bunch of stuff and the story disappeared.
Hillary Clinton's emails and foia.state.gov
The screencapture image of the Freedom of Information .pdf viewer that appears eight seconds into the TikTok video is real, but it has nothing to do with Hillary Clinton. It shows page 470 of 483 and points to the request reference F-2019-02110 requested by Denetra D Senigar on December 13, 2018. The subject is:
Requesting documents pertaining to the resurrection chamber of Gilgamesh, the location of his body and the location of the buried Nephilim.
(Image source: foia.state.gov screenshot taken on Fri May 26 18:50:21 2023 UTC)
Anyone can request information through the Freedom of Information Act from a federal agency. On October 12, 2020, a redditor, @xorist on r/conspiracy explained in depth how human error in setting up search parameters resulted in this Clinton email conspiracy theory running wild.
Apparently someone was looking for the word "nephilim" within the collection of Clinton emails, but they structured the search in such a way that they got any results with the word nephilim. The existence of Senigar's request isn't proof of anything other than a curious person looking for answers.
Gilgamesh was an ancient Mesopotamian hero, a figure who appears in legends, poems and sculptural artifacts of several cultures. He is also listed in the Sumerian King List and is believed to have been a real person who ruled Uruk sometime between 2700 and 2500 B.C. Some of the adventures, now known as the "Epic of Gilgamesh," were inscribed in Akkadian on clay tablets long after his lifetime. In the "Epic" he is described as a demigod, two-thirds god and one-third human.
The ancient and abandoned city of Uruk (modern satellite view) was once surrounded by a wall and the Euphrates River ran northeast of the city -- the dry riverbed is still visible from above. Currently the modern Euphrates River runs in straight channels for irrigation southwest of the city.
Archeological finds at Uruk (Warka) in the 21st century
German teams had been conducting archeological work recording the topography of Uruk and traces of the ancient city using a method called Caesium-Magnetometry in 2001 and 2002. This technology (pictured below) allowed geophysicists to detect and map the foundation outlines of buried structures made of mud brick and fired brick, differentiating it from the surrounding soil or river sediment up to a depth of 16 feet below the surface.
The BBC News headline "Gilgamesh tomb believed found" did not clearly communicate that what had been found was something detected underground. They were not reporting on a chamber full of treasures or mummified remains of King Gilgamesh. The BBC quoted Jorg Fassbinder, of the Bavarian Department of Historical Monuments in Munich:
'I don't want to say definitely it was the grave of King Gilgamesh, but it looks very similar to that described in the epic.'
(Image source: Screenshot from becker-prospection.com "Uruk (Iraq) in March 2001 Caesium-magnetometry with Scintrex Smartmag SM4G duo-sensor" taken on Fri May 26 17:28:01 2023 UTC)
The newspaper from 2008
As is sometimes seen in movies to prove someone is alive on a certain date, the hoax video of the Gilgamesh mummy shows the front page of a newspaper. The newspaper Iran (pictured below left) is published by the Islamic Republic News Agency. The dateline says it is Saturday, May 5, 2008, and the text of the headline (translated by Google) reads:
The number of Iranian martyrs and wounded in Diyala and Kazmin reached 154 people
The bloody days of the pilgrims of the holy shrines
This tells us that the video could not have been made as early as 2003, when the potential finding of Gilgamesh's tomb was reported.
The TikTok video (below middle) does not present the clip showing the front page of the newspaper as prominently as other, longer copies of this hoax video (pictured below right) such as this 2013 YouTube upload entitled, "Родамир" (Rodamir). Lead Stories was able to identify the date of this newspaper using the Google Lens tool to detect the Persian script and search for the Persian headline.
Complicating matters, there is a static videotape timestamp, "3 12 2002," that appears (at the 1:26 mark) in the YouTube video. It does not match the other footage that has a timer displayed. It is possible the date was not properly set in the camera, was intentionally set wrong or that some of the clips came from a different date,
The Zagros Graveyard find of 2008
The discovery of an ancient graveyard in Kurdistan, Iran, in November 2008 also spawned elements of the hoax. A 2012 academic report (.pdf here) titled, "The iron age 'Zagros Graveyard' near Sanandaj (Iranian Kurdistan): Preliminary report on the first season" described the find and the hoaxes. Magiran.com reported one fraudster was even arrested and the fake mummy confiscated, found to be a mannequin with a wig. The academic report describes:
The initial press-reports on the Sanandaj graveyard mentioned the discovery of five burials with spears, bronze bracelets and earthenware during the first week of the excavations (Paivand News 11/20/2008). Within a week, however, a hoax was created around this discovery that gained worldwide momentum through blogs and websites. Reports and press releases began mentioning the discovery of six corpses instead of five and they became a 'mummified king and five of his bodyguards'. This media frenzy was supported by a 36 seconds video-fragment that was placed on You Tube and various other sites. It is the orchestrated 'discovery' of a bearded mummified 'king' with a crown, a gem encrusted gold box and two gem encrusted 'gold' plates with cuneiform inscriptions. One of these was fish-shaped and placed on the chest; the other had the shape of a loincloth with an Achaemenid type spouted jar depicted on the front (apparently copied from the Persepolis reliefs). The forgery was so crude that no professional archaeologist could ever be fooled by it but many others were and unfortunately such Indiana Jones style stories are persis- tent and keep circulating on the web ...
This report includes an image of the "Royal Mummy" (below left) with a beard and white dots over the eyes (full November 2008 footage on YouTube). This is not the same figure as the copper-colored one with the red beard (bottom center) shown in the TikTok video. These two mannequins and their adornments have many similarities. Regardless of how they are represented -- as sleeping immortal giants in a state of stasis, as the mortal mummies of Gilgamesh and his friend Enkidu, "The Monarch," the "Jaromir Wizard" or Nephilim Annunaki -- the two hoax videos are almost always paired.
The video still pictured on the right shows what appears to be a corrugated cardboard box painted gold among the mummy's "treasures." It appears at the 1:17 mark into a YouTube video titled, "(IRAN) Giants Kept Inside Glass Capsules. Best PROOF Existence Giants EVER!" The laquered gold trinkets show a mix of sculptural elements borrowed from Buddhist and Egyptian traditions.
(Image source: Lead Stories composite image with Researchgate and YouTube screenshots taken on Fri May 26 22:12:09 2023 UTC)
The 2015 sleeping giants episode of 'Cosmic Disclosure'
The two hoax mummies are featured in this Gaia TV episode with hosts Corey Goode and David Wilcock that aired on August 4, 2015. The text transcript of the first season's sixth episode is on the Internet Archive (begins on Page 70). The fake "Royal Mummy" was already documented to be a hoax before this episode was made and aired. Lead Stories could not find any copies of the full episode available online and it appears to have been retracted -- one short clip posted on Facebook in 2022 has Gaia watermarks. There is an entry about the episode entry on IMDB:
Corey Goode reveals the mysteries of the Ancient Builder Race's technology, the sleeping giants and what their awakening heralds for humanity. Eons later, scattered among the ruins, a younger race of giant redheaded beings use this ancient technology to sleep in stasis, awaiting their appointed day of awakening.