One is entombed live and kicking; the other is hung on a stake
With the Enkites having refused to surrender Marduk to the Enlilites and having pronounced forth his acquittal, the headstrong Inanna-Ishtar decided to take the law into her own hands. She unilaterally declared war on Marduk, challenging him to emerge from the Giza Pyramid so the two could engage in a military showdown, failure to which she would reduce the great structure to rabble.
In his response, Marduk dismissed her threats with the contempt they deserved. He said he was not in the mood to pit military wits with a trigger-happy amazon. He dug in his heels in the “Ekur”, as the Great Pyramid was otherwise called. Inanna took Marduk’s response as a dare and decided to teach him a lesson. She got into a fighter craft which was loaded with an array of weapons that deployed by the press of a button, set course for the Giza Pyramid, and took indiscriminate aim. She had just instituted the Third Pyramid War, in which she was literally the only belligerent. Both the Enkites and Enlilites urged her to cease fire but she gave them the middle finger, vowing that she was not going to stop till the structure “fell to the ground.”
She “ceased not striking at its corners, even its multitude of stones”, according to the Sumerian records. At some stage, Marduk thought he had had enough of this relentless, one-sided broadside at an iconic structure that was the most prestigious symbol of Enkite power. He radioed a message to Enlil that if Inanna was not tamed, he would resort to the use of a weapon “whose outburst was terrible”. This was a weapon Enki had prevented him from using at the height of the Second Pyramid War.
Fearing the possible ramifications, the Enlilites became frantic. They sent an urgent message to King Anu on Nibiru beseeching him to help ram sense into his intractable great granddaughter who was also his mistress. The response was quick in coming: the king ordered that Inanna withdraw and that Marduk appear for trial before an Enlilite tribunal. The message was accordingly relayed to Marduk who “despite the anger of his heart” and “clear tears into his eyes” consented to the idea of the trial. The trial was held in a temple that stood by a river bank within the vicinities of the Giza Pyramid. The case was prosecuted by Inanna.
MARDUK IS SENTENCED TO A SLOW DEATH
Although the tribunal was an all-Enlilite affair, it was far from partial. Inanna prayed for the death penalty but the bench was dead-set against this course of action, insisting there wasn’t a scintilla of evidence that Marduk had a direct role in the death of Dumuzi. But a game Inanna wasn’t yielding either: she countered that if Marduk could not get a direct death penalty, at least he deserved an indirect death penalty as the circumstances in which Dumuzi died arose from Marduk’s scheme to frame him with the concocted rape of Geshtinanna. Indeed, in her testimony, Geshtinanna confessed to having plotted the whole thing with Marduk and said she regretted the abominable deed. She also made it clear to the bench that the scheme did not extend to causing the death of Dumuzi, thus absolving Marduk of premeditated murder.
Having digested Inanna’s petition, the panel asked her what form Marduk’s indirect death sentence should take. Inanna proposed thus: “There is a way to sentence Marduk to death without actually executing him. Let him be buried alive within the Great Pyramid! Let him be sealed there as in a gigantic envelope – a great envelope that is sealed, with no one to offer him nourishment. Alone he should suffer, with the potable water source cut off … Let the encased hiding chamber be Marduk's stone coffin.”
It was game, set, and match: Marduk was sentenced to “entombment” alive in the Great Pyramid of Giza. He was going to be dungeoned right within the innards of the pyramid, in a sealed compartment known as the King’s Chamber. But there would be no luxury to indulge even if it would be staring all around him. For a day or two, he’d have a bit of air to breathe all right but no food or water, meaning he’d be dead within weeks, or at most a month if he was a strong guy. As if that was not harsh enough, he’d be without artificial light of any from – in absolute darkness.
Marduk was accordingly stripped of his regal attire and draped in a shroud to symbolise the fact that the solitary chamber of his confinement was a virtual coffin. But he did not allow himself to be led away meekly, like a sheep to the slaughterhouse: he resisted with every fibre of his being as he angrily and vociferously enunciated his innocence. The Enlilite police were forced to give him a bloodied nose in a bid to neutralise him. His father Enki and his mother Damkina, who were present at the trial, shed a copious amount of tears as they watched their firstborn son weather the furious assault.
During the first week of Marduk’s incarceration, his supporters ran riot throughout Egypt. They had pitched stone-pelting battles with those sections of the Egyptian community who revered Enlil and Inanna. It took a heavy-handed response by Ishkur-Adad, coupled with Enki’s repeated appeals for calm, to quell the nation-wide unrest.
SPARE MARDUK, PLEADS NINMAH
The first to raise a hue and cry about Marduk’s plight was his firstborn son Nabu. Nabu had boycotted the trial, which he had pre-dismissed as a travesty of justice, as a kangaroo court of some sort in that one clan was at once prosecutor and judge. Now upon learning that his father was set to languish in the bowels of the Giza Pyramid, he immediately left Borsippa, his cult city in Sumer, to check on his condition. By the time he arrived at Giza, however, Marduk was already in confinement and an indefinite prohibition to entry into the pyramid was already in place.
Equally gutted was Sarpanit II, Nabu’s step mother. Following the death of his Earthling wife Sarpanit in 3800 BC, Marduk had re-married. This time around, he had chosen a half-sister, a daughter Enki had with his step-sister Ninmah. The name Sarpanit was now a title for Marduk’s spouse and so his new wife also went by the same name. Sarpanit II too had boycotted the trial of her husband but when she learnt of his slow-death sentence, she set up a wailing racket.
Then with her step son Nabu in tow, she set course for Enki’s mansion on Abu Island, whereupon she implored him to do something to have his son spared from certain demise. Enki in his usual diplomatic style first suggested that Sarpanit II approach Inanna’s father Nannar-Sin and her twin-brother Utu-Shamash, who being her closest relations were best-placed to prevail over her to file for a prerogative of mercy. Where that failed, she should approach Ninmah and beseech her to broker a meeting between Enlil and himself.
Sarpanit II paid heed and mobilising priest-astronomers, she went to see Sin and Shamash in the presence of Inanna herself. “Reciting prayers and incantations,” say the Sumerian records, “offerings were made to Ishtar (by the astronomer-priests) that she may show her mercy. The high priest appealed to Sin and to Shamash: ‘Restore Bel (Marduk) to life!’” But Inanna simply wasn’t budging. “For the death of my beloved, the Instigator (Marduk) must die!” she thundered in response, adding that if only she was the one to directly erase him from the face of the Earth.
Having hit a brick wall, Sarpanit II then proceeded, as per Enki’s suggestion, to approach Ninmah, Dumuzi’s grandmother. Ninmah, who was as tender-hearted as Enki, had sympathy for Sarpanit notwithstanding that it was by the machinations of her husband that she lost a treasured grandson. Soon she had arranged a meeting with Enlil, with her own son Ninurta in attendance. Ninmah proposed that Marduk be released and sent into exile under one strong precondition – that he relinquishes his entitlement to supremacy in the forthcoming Age of Aries and that that right be ceded to Ninurta. “Punishment to Marduk must come, death is not warranted,” she posited. “Let Marduk in exile live, the succession on Earth to Ninurta submit!”
MARDUK SENTENCE COMMUTED
Both Enlil and Ninurta endorsed Ninmah’s proposition, as did Inanna herself. When the proposition was relayed to Enki, he embraced it not wholeheartedly but with resignation. “If between succession and life the choice is, what can I, a father, say?” Enki muttered. The Enlilite tribunal sat again and announced a new verdict – from death by hunger and suffocation to exile, which was a typical pronouncement for erring members of the Anunnaki pantheon. Ninurta then tasked a certain Nusku to promulgate the news to all the Anunnaki. Ninurta’s own wife Gula, who was also known as Bau, even provided Sarpanit II with a set of new clothing and sandals for Marduk as a gesture of goodwill.
It was Ningishzidda, the architect of the Giza Pyramid, who was called upon to undertake the arduous task of extricating Marduk from his predicament. Zidda took days to do so as it was like prying open a strong room purely by mechanical rather electronic means. By the time Zidda made the breakthrough, Marduk had already passed out. It was thanks to Zidda’s resuscitative prowess that Marduk came to. He was given food and water and although he did not gain his full strength there and then, he was able to talk.
When Enki spelt out to him the terms and implications of his release, Marduk was furious. He made it clear that whilst he was prepared to go into exile, there was no way he was going to trade his imminent rulership of Earth for anything under the Sun. “I would rather die than my birthright forfeit,” he underscored. The Enlilites were disappointed but half a loaf was better than nothing: Marduk and Sarpanit II were immediately made to embark onto a skyship and flown to the “Land of No Return”, where “horned beasts are hunted”. This was the Amazonian wilds of South America.
Marduk, however, was not destined to live long in exile this time around. According to a Babylonian text titled The Death and Resurrection of Bel-Marduk (metaphorically speaking), it turned out Dumuzi did not die accidentally as such but was startled into falling below the boulder he stood on behind the Nile cataract by one of his pursuers, an Anunnaki. This pursuer, dubbed “The Evil One”, later confessed. He was ultimately “smitten and slain”. With the real culprit having surfaced, Marduk was exonerated and his exile came to a sweetly quick end.
INANNA BARRED FROM HUBBY’S FUNERAL
With the Marduk saga having concluded, the official funeral of Dumuzi now had to proceed. It was to be held in the “Lower Domain”, that is, southern Africa, which was Nergal’s fiefdom. The venue was Nergal’s palace, where the body of Dumuzi had lain in state since it was retrieved from the banks of the Nile. Every Anunnaki whose name was not Marduk was called upon to attend the funeral except Inanna, who was barred from doing so by Nergal’s wife Ereshkigal, the ceremony hostess. Why her?
First, let us appreciate that as the widow, Inanna had to be at the funeral as a matter of course. It was she who was to take the remains of her husband to Nibiru for burial. However, Inanna had indicated to Enki, Enlil, and her father Sin that she would not fulfil that obligation if one strong precondition was not met – that of Nergal taking her hand as wife No. 2. Now, that is not as outlandish a stance as it may sound. According to the Anunnaki’s marital and succession laws, a surviving brother was under obligation to marry his late brother’s widow even if he was already married. The idea was to produce a heir so that the deceased’s name “shall not be blotted out”. This law would later apply to Enlil’s chosen people, the Jews, as crystal-clearly set out in DEUTERONOMY 25:5-10.
Dumuzi had several brothers but Marduk as firstborn had the prior right to execute the levirate marriage with Inanna. Having been implicated in the death of Dumuzi, however, Marduk had already forfeited this eligibility, which meant Nergal, who was next in the sibling pecking order, had to step into the breach. With Marduk and Zidda now out of contention for the rulership of Egypt, Nergal was practically a shoe-in. This prospect, more than anything else, was what Inanna wished to position herself for – as the next Queen of Africa at the expense of Ereshkigal and possibly the next Queen of Earth if Nergal perchance became the new Enlil in the Age of the Ram, a direction in which she would do her utmost to nudge him.
Having gotten wind of the stirrings of what Inanna was indeed up to, Ereshkigal disinvited her from attending the funeral. She didn’t want to afford her a platform to pitch her levirate propaganda and sensitise Nergal up-close on the idea. Ereshkigal feared that if the levirate marriage with her husband took place, Inanna might go to any lengths imaginable to supplant her as Nergal’s Queen given her penchant for bare-knuckle tactics in achieving any end. Furthermore, Inanna’s son with Nergal would in future be the cause of endless succession polemics.
Inanna, however, was not the one to take any obstacle flung her way lying down. Parrying the advice of Enlil, Enki, and her father Sin to keep away from the funeral given Ereshkigal’s veto of her prospective presence there, she vowed she was going to make a showing come rain or shine and that she was going to create one hell of scene right at the palace if her wish to marry Nergal and produce a little Dumuzi was not granted. And when Inanna made up her mind, nothing would stand in her way.
INANNA IS KILLED
Nergal’s palace in today’s South Africa was its own, gated estate with oodles of acreage. In order to reach the plush edifice itself, one had to negotiate seven gates, where they were thoroughly vetted by heavily armed guards using very sophisticated scanning equipment. Maybe Nergal was paranoid but he didn’t want to let his guard down in the slightest and consequently court harm. Security was particularly heightened on this occasion with the entire Anunnaki royalty in attendance.
Inanna arrived at the palace with great pomp and circumstance. Accompanied by a posse of gun-wielding body minders, she was clad in “emblems and regalia of divine status”, with miniature, high-tech weapons concealed under her clothing. The moment she showed up at the first gate, the gate keepers refused to admit her as per Ereshkigal’s instructions, but she told them in no uncertain terms that if she was barred from entry, she would raze down the palace with incendiary devices that were replete in her plane. “If thou openest not the gate so that I cannot enter,” she went on, “I will smash the door, I will shatter the bolt, I will smash the doorpost, I will move the doors.”
Alarmed, the guards made her presence known to Ereshkigal as well as her threats and upon hearing that, Ereshkigal’s face “turned pale, her lips turned dark”. Ereshkigal then gave orders that Inanna be stripped of her ostentatious royal attire and that she be strip-searched at each gate. Ereshkigal’s aim was to at once humiliate her and ensure that she was completely disarmed. “One by one, the seven gates leading to the abode of Ereshkigal were opened to Ishtar,” the Sumerian records relate.
When at long last Inanna stood stark naked before Ereshkigal, who sat on Nergal’s throne surrounded by seven Anunnaki with a judicial capacity, Ereshkigal “burst at her”. She blitzed her with insults and all manner of vitriol, accusing her of “scheming a heir by my husband Nergal”. Hot-tempered by nature, Inanna lost her cool and charged at Ereshkigal, wounding her badly (she was a decorated martial artist of black belt pedigree) before Ereshkigal’s security detail had time to intercept her. She was there and then arrested, arraigned for attempted murder (probably an exaggeration) and put on trial as the judges were already present.
It was a hasty trial that was no more than a caricature of justice. Inanna was sentenced to a slow death by induced illness on a stake. The judges there and then ordered Namtar, Ereshkigal’s “vizier”, to “let loose against her the sixty diseases” that would kill her practically overnight. But Namtar was not human: the Sumerian records describe him as armless, feetless, and incapable of eating or drinking water. In other words, he was an android. His name actually meant “Terminator”. The Babylonian texts refer to him as “Memittu”, meaning “Angel of Death”. He was a cyborg who was deployed to cause death in all sorts of ways – the Anunnaki’s version of a Tokoloshe.
Once Namtar was done with her, Ninmah was loaded onto a chopper, taken deep into the African wilds, strapped high on a tree trunk, and left to die. All this was taking place without the knowledge of the rest of the Anunnaki pantheon, including Nergal, who were busy with the week-long funeral ceremony in the palace hall.
In 2005, the Business & Economic Advisory Council (BEAC) pitched the idea of the establishment of Special Economic Zones (SEZs) to the Mogae Administration.
It took five years before the SEZ policy was formulated, another five years before the relevant law was enacted, and a full three years before the Special Economic Zones Authority (SEZA) became operational.
… courtesy of infiltration stratagem by Jehovah-Enlil’s clan
With the passing of Joshua’s generation, General Atiku, the promised peace and prosperity of a land flowing with milk and honey disappeared, giving way to chaos and confusion.
Maybe Joshua himself was to blame for this shambolic state of affairs. He had failed to mentor a successor in the manner Moses had mentored him. He had left the nation without a central government or a human head of state but as a confederacy of twelve independent tribes without any unifying force except their Anunnaki gods.
If I say the word ‘robot’ to you, I can guess what would immediately spring to mind – a cute little Android or animal-like creature with human or pet animal characteristics and a ‘heart’, that is to say to say a battery, of gold, the sort we’ve all seen in various movies and tv shows. Think R2D2 or 3CPO in Star Wars, Wall-E in the movie of the same name, Sonny in I Robot, loveable rogue Bender in Futurama, Johnny 5 in Short Circuit…
Of course there are the evil ones too, the sort that want to rise up and eliminate us inferior humans – Roy Batty in Blade Runner, Schwarzenegger’s T-800 in The Terminator, Box in Logan’s Run, Police robots in Elysium and Otomo in Robocop.
And that’s to name but a few. As a general rule of thumb, the closer the robot is to human form, the more dangerous it is and of course the ultimate threat in any Sci-Fi movie is that the robots will turn the tables and become the masters, not the mechanical slaves. And whilst we are in reality a long way from robotic domination, there are an increasing number of examples of robotics in the workplace.
ROBOT BLOODHOUNDS Sometimes by the time that one of us smells something the damage has already begun – the smell of burning rubber or even worse, the smell of deadly gas. Thank goodness for a robot capable of quickly detecting and analyzing a smell from our very own footprint.
A*Library Bot The A*Star (Singapore) developed library bot which when books are equipped with RFID location chips, can scan shelves quickly seeking out-of-place titles. It manoeuvres with ease around corners, enhances the sorting and searching of books, and can self-navigate the library facility during non-open hours.
DRUG-COMPOUNDING ROBOT Automated medicine distribution system, connected to the hospital prescription system. It’s goal? To manipulate a large variety of objects (i.e.: drug vials, syringes, and IV bags) normally used in the manual process of drugs compounding to facilitate stronger standardisation, create higher levels of patient safety, and lower the risk of hospital staff exposed to toxic substances.
AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY ROBOTS Applications include screw-driving, assembling, painting, trimming/cutting, pouring hazardous substances, labelling, welding, handling, quality control applications as well as tasks that require extreme precision,
AGRICULTURAL ROBOTS Ecrobotix, a Swiss technology firm has a solar-controlled ‘bot that not only can identify weeds but thereafter can treat them. Naio Technologies based in southwestern France has developed a robot with the ability to weed, hoe, and assist during harvesting. Energid Technologies has developed a citrus picking system that retrieves one piece of fruit every 2-3 seconds and Spain-based Agrobot has taken the treachery out of strawberry picking. Meanwhile, Blue River Technology has developed the LettuceBot2 that attaches itself to a tractor to thin out lettuce fields as well as prevent herbicide-resistant weeds. And that’s only scratching the finely-tilled soil.
INDUSTRIAL FLOOR SCRUBBERS The Global Automatic Floor Scrubber Machine boasts a 1.6HP motor that offers 113″ water lift, 180 RPM and a coverage rate of 17,000 sq. ft. per hour
These examples all come from the aptly-named site www.willrobotstakemyjob.com because while these functions are labour-saving and ripe for automation, the increasing use of artificial intelligence in the workplace will undoubtedly lead to increasing reliance on machines and a resulting swathe of human redundancies in a broad spectrum of industries and services.
This process has been greatly boosted by the global pandemic due to a combination of a workforce on furlough, whether by decree or by choice, and the obvious advantages of using virus-free machines – I don’t think computer viruses count! For example, it was suggested recently that their use might have a beneficial effect in care homes for the elderly, solving short staffing issues and cheering up the old folks with the novelty of having their tea, coffee and medicines delivered by glorified model cars. It’s a theory, at any rate.
Already,customers at the South-Korean fast-food chain No Brand Burger can avoid any interaction with a human server during the pandemic. The chain is using robots to take orders, prepare food and bring meals out to diners. Customers order and pay via touchscreen, then their request is sent to the kitchen where a cooking machine heats up the buns and patties. When it’s ready, a robot ‘waiter’ brings out their takeout bag.
‘This is the first time I’ve actually seen such robots, so they are really amazing and fun,’ Shin Hyun Soo, an office worker at No Brand in Seoul for the first time, told the AP.
Human workers add toppings to the burgers and wrap them up in takeout bags before passing them over to yellow-and-black serving robots, which have been compared to Minions.
Also in Korea, the Italian restaurant chain Mad for Garlic is using serving robots even for sit-down customers. Using 3D space mapping and other technology, the electronic ‘waiter,’ known as Aglio Kim, navigates between tables with up to five orders. Mad for Garlic manager Lee Young-ho said kids especially like the robots, which can carry up to 66lbs in their trays.
These catering robots look nothing like their human counterparts – in fact they are nothing more than glorified food trolleys so using our thumb rule from the movies, mankind is safe from imminent takeover but clearly Korean hospitality sector workers’ jobs are not.
And right there is the dichotomy – replacement by stealth. Remote-controlled robotic waiters and waitresses don’t need to be paid, they don’t go on strike and they don’t spread disease so it’s a sure bet their army is already on the march.
But there may be more redundancies on the way as well. Have you noticed how AI designers have an inability to use words of more than one syllable? So ‘robot’ has become ‘bot’ and ‘android’ simply ‘droid? Well, guys, if you continue to build machines ultimately smarter than yourselves you ‘rons may find yourself surplus to requirements too – that’s ‘moron’ to us polysyllabic humans”!