## Sunday, December 30, 2012

### ancient indian aircraft tech

by D. Hatcher Childress
Source: The Anti-Gravity Handbook (Lost Science)
from WorldMysteries Website

Many researchers into the UFO enigma tend to overlook a very important fact.

While it assumed that most flying saucers are of alien, or perhaps Governmental Military origin, another possible origin of UFOs is ancient India and Atlantis.

What we know about ancient Indian flying vehicles comes from ancient Indian sources; written texts that have come down to us through the centuries. There is no doubt that most of these texts are authentic; many are the well known ancient Indian Epics themselves, and there are literally hundreds of them. Most of them have not even been translated into English yet from the old Sanskrit.

The Indian Emperor Ashoka started a "Secret Society of the Nine Unknown Men": great Indian scientists who were supposed to catalogue the many sciences. Ashoka kept their work secret because he was afraid that the advanced science catalogued by these men, culled from ancient Indian sources, would be used for the evil purpose of war, which Ashoka was strongly against, having been converted to Buddhism after defeating a rival army in a bloody battle.

The "Nine Unknown Men" wrote a total of nine books, presumably one each. Book number one was "The Secrets of Gravitation!". This book, known to historians, but not actually seen by them dealt chiefly with "gravity control." It is presumably still around somewhere, kept in a secret library in India, Tibet or elsewhere (perhaps even in North America somewhere).

One can certainly understand Ashoka’s reasoning for wanting to keep such knowledge a secret, assuming it exists.

If the Nazis had such weapons at their disposal during World War II, Ashoka was also aware devastating wars using such advanced vehicles and other "futuristic weapons" that had destroyed the ancient Indian "Rama Empire" several thousand years before.

Only a few years ago, the Chinese discovered some Sanskrit documents in Lhasa, Tibet and sent them to the University of Chandrigarh to be translated. Dr. Ruth Reyna of the University said recently that the documents contain directions for building interstellar spaceships!

Their method of propulsion, she said, was "anti-gravitational" and was based upon a system analogous to that of "laghima," the unknown power of the ego existing in man’s physiological makeup, "a centrifugal force strong enough to counteract all gravitational pull." According to Hindu Yogis, it is this "laghima" which enables a person to levitate.

Dr. Reyna said that on board these machines, which were called "Astras" by the text, the ancient Indians could have sent a detachment of men onto any planet, according to the document, which is thought to be thousands of years old. The manuscripts were also said to reveal the secret of "antima", "the cap of invisibility" and "garima", "how to become as heavy as a mountain of lead."

Naturally, Indian scientists did not take the texts very seriously, but then became more positive about the value of them when the Chinese announced that they were including certain parts of the data for study in their space program! This was one of the first instances of a government admitting to be researching anti-gravity.

The manuscripts did not say definitely that interplanetary travel was ever made but did mention, of all things, a planned trip to the Moon, though it is not clear whether this trip was actually carried out. However, one of the great Indian epics, the Ramayana, does have a highly detailed story in it of a trip to the moon in a Vimana (or "Astra"), and in fact details a battle on the moon with an "Asvin" (or "Atlantean" airship.)

This is but a small bit of recent evidence of anti-gravity and aerospace technology used by Indians. To really understand the technology, we must go much further back in time.

The so-called "Rama Empire" of Northern India and Pakistan developed at least fifteen thousand years ago on the Indian sub-continent and was a nation of many large, sophisticated cities, many of which are still to be found in the deserts of Pakistan, northern, and western India.

Rama existed, apparently, parallel to the Atlantean civilization in the mid-Atlantic Ocean, and was ruled by "enlightened Priest-Kings" who governed the cities, The seven greatest capital cities of Rama were known in classical Hindu texts as "The Seven Rishi Cities."

According to ancient Indian texts, the people had flying machines which were called "Vimanas." The ancient Indian epic describes a Vimana as a double-deck, circular aircraft with portholes and a dome, much as we would imagine a flying saucer.

It flew with the "speed of the wind" and gave forth a "melodious sound." There were at least four different types of Vimanas; some saucer shaped, others like long cylinders ("cigar shaped airships"). The ancient Indian texts on Vimanas are so numerous, it would take volumes to relate what they had to say. The ancient Indians, who manufactured these ships themselves, wrote entire flight manuals on the control of the various types of Vimanas, many of which are still in existence, and some have even been translated into English.

The Samara Sutradhara is a scientific treatise dealing with every possible angle of air travel in a Vimana. There are 230 stanzas dealing with the construction, take-off, cruising for thousand of miles, normal and forced landings, and even possible collisions with birds.

In 1875, the Vaimanika Sastra, a fourth century B.C. text written by Bharadvajy the Wise, using even older texts as his source, was rediscovered in a temple in India. It dealt with the operation of Vimanas and included information on the steering, precautions for long flights, protection of the airships from storms and lightening and how to switch the drive to "solar energy" from a free energy source which sounds like "anti-gravity."

The Vaimanika Sastra (or Vymaanika-Shaastra) has eight chapters with diagrams, describing three types of aircraft, including apparatuses that could neither catch on fire nor break. It also mentions 31 essential parts of these vehicles and 16 materials from which they are constructed, which absorb light and heat; for which reason they were considered suitable for the construction of Vimanas.

This document has been translated into English and is available by writing the publisher:
VYMAANIDASHAASTRA AERONAUTICS by Maharishi Bharadwaaja, translated into English and edited, printed and published by Mr. G. R. Josyer, Mysore, India, 1979 (sorry, no street address). Mr. Josyer is the director of the International Academy of Sanskrit Investigation located in Mysore.
There seems to be no doubt that Vimanas were powered by some sort of "anti-gravity."

Vimanas took off vertically, and were capable of hovering in the sky, like a modern helicopter or dirigible. Bharadvajy the Wise refers to no less than 70 authorities and 10 experts of air travel in antiquity. These sources are now lost.

Vimanas were kept in a Vimana Griha, a kind of hanger, and were sometimes said to be propelled by a yellowish-white liquid, and sometimes by some sort of mercury compound, though writers seem confused in this matter. It is most likely that the later writers on Vimanas, wrote as observers and from earlier texts, and were understandably confused on the principle of their propulsion.

The "yellowish-white liquid" sounds suspiciously like gasoline, and perhaps Vimanas had a number of different propulsion sources, including combustion engines and even "pulse-jet" engines. It is interesting to note, that the Nazis developed the first practical pulse-jet engines for their V-8 rocket "buzz bombs."

Hitler and the Nazi staff were exceptionally interested in ancient India and Tibet and sent expeditions to both these places yearly, starting in the 30’s, in order to gather esoteric evidence that they did so, and perhaps it was from these people that the Nazis gained some of their scientific information!

According to the Dronaparva, part of the Mahabarata, and the Ramayana, one Vimana described was shaped like a sphere and born along at great speed on a mighty wind generated by mercury. It moved like a UFO, going up, down, backwards and forwards as the pilot desired.

In another Indian source, the Samar, Vimanas were,
"iron machines, well-knit and smooth, with a charge of mercury that shot out of the back in the form of a roaring flame."
Another work called the Samaranganasutradhara describes how the vehicles were constructed. It is possible that mercury did have something to do with the propulsion, or more possibly, with the guidance system.

Curiously, Soviet scientists have discovered what they call "age-old instruments used in navigating cosmic vehicles" in caves in Turkestan and the Gobi Desert. The "devices" are hemispherical objects of glass or porcelain, ending in a cone with a drop of mercury inside.

It is evident that ancient Indians flew around in these vehicles, all over Asia, to Atlantis presumably; and even, apparently, to South America. Writing found at Mohenjodaro in Pakistan (presumed to be one of the "Seven Rishi Cities of the Rama Empire") and still undeciphered, has also been found in one other place in the world: Easter Island!

Writing on Easter Island, called Rongo-Rongo writing, is also undeciphered, and is uncannily similar to the Mohenjodaro script. Was Easter Island an air base for the Rama Empire’s Vimana route?

(At the Mohenjo-Daro Vimana-drome, as the passenger walks down the concourse, he hears the sweet, melodic sound of the announcer over the loudspeaker,
"Rama Airways flight number seven for Bali, Easter Island, Nazca, and Atlantis is now ready for boarding. Passengers please proceed to gate number..")
In Tibet, no small distance, and speaks of the "fiery chariot" thusly:
"Bhima flew along in his car, resplendent as the sun and loud as thunder... The flying chariot shone like a flame in the night sky of summer ... it swept by like a comet... It was as if two suns were shining. Then the chariot rose up and all the heaven brightened."
In the Mahavira of Bhavabhuti, a Jain text of the eighth century culled from older texts and traditions, we read:
"An aerial chariot, the Pushpaka, conveys many people to the capital of Ayodhya. The sky is full of stupendous flying-machines, dark as night, but picked out by lights with a yellowish glare"
The Vedas, ancient Hindu poems, thought to be the oldest of all the Indian texts, describe Vimanas of various shapes and sizes:
the "ahnihotra-vimana" with two engines, the "elephant-vimana" with more engines, and other types named after the kingfisher, ibis and other animals.
Unfortunately, Vimanas, like most scientific discoveries, were ultimately used for war.

Atlanteans used their flying machines, "Vailixi," a similar type of aircraft, to literally try and subjugate the world, it would seem, if Indian texts are to be believed. The Atlanteans, known as "Asvins" in the Indian writings, were apparently even more advanced technologically than the Indians, and certainly of a more war-like temperament.

Although no ancient texts on Atlantean Vailixi are known to exist, some information has come down through esoteric, "occult" sources which describe their flying machines. Similar, if not identical to Vimanas, Vailixi were generally "cigar shaped" and had the capability of maneuvering underwater as well as in the atmosphere or even outer space. Other vehicles, like Vimanas, were saucer shaped, and could apparently also be submerged.

According to Eklal Kueshana, author of "The Ultimate Frontier," in an article he wrote in 1966, Vailixi were first developed in Atlantis 20,000 years ago, and the most common ones are,
"saucer-shaped of generally trapezoidal cross-section with three hemispherical engine pods on the underside."
"They use a mechanical antigravity device driven by engines developing approximately 80,000 horse power."
The Ramayana, Mahabarata and other texts speak of the hideous war that took place, some ten or twelve thousand years ago between Atlantis and Rama using weapons of destruction that could not be imagined by readers until the second half of this century.

The ancient Mahabharata, one of the sources on Vimanas, goes on to tell the awesome destructiveness of the war:
"...(the weapon was) a single projectile
charged with all the power of the Universe.
An incandescent column of smoke and flame
As bright as the thousand suns rose in all its splendor...

An iron thunderbolt,
A gigantic messenger of death,
Which reduced to ashes
The entire race of the Vrishnis
And the Andhakas.

... the corpses were so burned
As to be unrecognizable.
The hair and nails fell out;
Pottery broke without apparent cause,
And the birds turned white.

... After a few hours
All foodstuffs were infected...
... to escape from this fire
The soldiers threw themselves in streams
To wash themselves and their equipment..."
It would seem that the Mahabharata is describing an atomic war! References like this one are not isolated; but battles, using a fantastic array of weapons and aerial vehicles are common in all the epic Indian books. One even describes a Vimana-Vailix battle on the Moon! The above section very accurately describes what an atomic explosion would look like and the effects of the radioactivity on the population. Jumping into water is the only respite.

When the Rishi City of Mohenjodaro was excavated by archeologists in the last century, they found skeletons just lying in the streets, some of them holding hands, as if some great doom had suddenly overtaken them. These skeletons are among the most radioactive ever found, on a par with those found at Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Ancient cities whose brick and stone walls have literally been vitrified, that is-fused together, can be found in India, Ireland, Scotland, France, Turkey and other places. There is no logical explanation for the vitrification of stone forts and cities, except from an atomic blast.

Furthermore, at Mohenjo-Daro, a well planned city laid on a grid, with a plumbing system superior to those used in Pakistan and India today, the streets were littered with "black lumps of glass." These globs of glass were discovered to be clay pots that had melted under intense heat!

With the cataclysmic sinking of Atlantis and the wiping out of Rama with atomic weapons, the world collapsed into a "stone age" of sorts, and modern history picks up a few thousand years later. Yet, it would seem that not all the Vimanas and Vailixi of Rama and Atlantis were gone. Built to last for thousands of of years, many of them would still be in use, as evidenced by Ashoka’s "Nine Unknown Men" and the Lhasa manuscript.

That secret societies or "Brotherhoods" of exceptional, "enlightened" human beings would have preserved these inventions and the knowledge of science, history, etc., does not seem surprising.

Many well known historical personages including Jesus, Buddha, Lao Tzu, Confucius, Krishna, Zoroaster, Mahavira, Quetzalcoatl, Akhenaton, Moses, and more recent inventors and of course many other people who will probably remain anonymous, were probably members of such a secret organization.

It is interesting to note that when Alexander the Great invaded India more than two thousand years ago, his historians chronicled that at one point they were attacked by "flying, fiery shields" that dove at his army and frightened the cavalry. These "flying saucers" did not use any atomic bombs or beam weapons on Alexander’s army however, perhaps out of benevolence, and Alexander went on to conquer India.

It has been suggested by many writers that these "Brotherhoods" keep some of their Vimanas and Vailixi in secret caverns in Tibet or some other place is Central Asia, and the Lop Nor Desert in western China is known to be the center of a great UFO mystery. Perhaps it is here that many of the airships are still kept, in underground bases much as the Americans, British and Soviets have built around the world in the past few decades.

Still, not all UFO activity can be accounted for by old Vimanas making trips to the Moon for some reason. Undoubtedly, some are from the Military Governments of the world, and possibly even from other planets.

# Fragile Things

Fragile Things: Short Fictions and Wonders

The US cover of Fragile Things
Author(s)Neil Gaiman
CountryUSUK
LanguageEnglish
Genre(s)Fantasy
PublisherWilliam Morrow
Publication date2006
Media typePrint (hardcover)
Pages400 pages
ISBN0-06-051522-8
OCLC Number69241597
Dewey Decimal823/.914 22
LC ClassificationPR6057.A319 F73 2006
Fragile Things: Short Fictions and Wonders is a collection of short stories and poetry by English author Neil Gaiman. It was published in the USand UK in 2006 by HarperCollins and Headline Review.
Most of the stories in this book are reprints from other sources: (magazinesanthologies, and even CD sleeves).
Gaiman says in the introduction that the original title for the collection was These People Ought to Know Who We Are and Tell That We Were Here, after a word balloon in a Little Nemo in Slumberland strip.

[hide

## Stories and poems included

The three stories not included in the British edition are included in the British edition of Smoke and Mirrors.

## Awards

Fragile Things won the 2007 Locus Award for Best Collection, and "How to Talk to Girls at Parties" won for Best Short Story and was nominated for a Hugo Award.[1] Other Locus Award winners included in this collection are "Sunbird" (2006 short story), "Forbidden Brides of the Faceless Slaves in the Nameless House of the Night of Dread Desire" (2005 short story), "A Study in Emerald" (2004 novelette, and also winner of the 2004 Hugo Award for Best Short Story), "Closing Time" (2004 short story), and "October in the Chair" (2003 short story).[2]

Temporal range: middle Pliocene – Recent
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum:Chordata
Class:Mammalia
Order:Carnivora
Family:Mustelidae
Subfamily:Mellivorinae[2]
Genus:Mellivora
(Storr, 1780)
Species:M. capensis
Geographic distribution
The honey badger (Mellivora capensis), also known as the ratel ( or ),[3] is a species of mustelid native to AfricaSouthwest Asia, and the Indian Subcontinent. Despite its name, the honey badger does not closely resemble other badger species; instead, it bears more anatomical similarities to weasels. It is classed as Least Concern by the IUCN owing to its extensive range and general environmental adaptations. It is primarily acarnivorous species and has few natural predators because of its thick skin and ferocious defensive abilities.

[hide

## Etymology

Ratel is an Afrikaans word, possibly derived from the Middle Dutch word for rattle, honeycomb (either because of its cry or its taste for honey).

## Taxonomy

The honey badger is the only species of the genus Mellivora. Although in the 1860s it was assigned to the badger subfamily, the Melinae, it is now generally agreed that it bears very few similarities to the Melinae. It is much more closely related to the marten subfamily, Mustelinae, but furthermore is assigned its own subfamily, Mellivorinae.[4] Differences between Mellivorinae and Melinae include differences in their dentition formulae. Though not in the same subfamily as the wolverines, which are a genus of large-sized and atypical Mustelinae, the honey badger can be regarded as another, analogous, form of outsized weasel or polecat.
The species first appeared during the middle Pliocene in Asia. Its closest relation was the extinct genusEomellivora, which is known from the upper Miocene, and evolved into several different species throughout the whole Pliocene in both the Old and New World.[5]

### Subspecies

As of 2005, 12 subspecies are recognised.[6] Points taken into consideration in assigning different subspecies include size and the extent of whiteness or greyness on the back.[7]
SubspeciesTrinomial authorityDescriptionRangeSynonyms
Cape ratel
Mellivora capensis capensis
Schreber, 1776South and southwestern Africamellivorus (G. [Baron] Cuvier, 1798)
ratel (Sparrman, 1777)
typicus (A. Smith, 1833)
vernayi (Roberts, 1932)
Ethiopian ratel
Mellivora capensis abyssinica
Hollister, 1910Ethiopia
Turkmenian ratel
Mellivora capensis buechneri
Baryshnikov, 2000Similar to the subspecies indica and inaurita, but is distinguished by its larger size and narrower postorbital constriction[8]Turkmenistan
Mellivora capensis concisa
Thomas and Wroughton, 1907The coat on the back consists largely of very long, pure white bristle-hairs amongst long, fine, black underfur. Its distinguishing feature is the fact that unlike other subspecies, it lacks the usual white bristle-hairs in the lumbar area[9]Sahel and Sudan zones, as far as Somalilandbrockmani(Wroughton and Cheesman, 1920)
buchanani(Thomas, 1925)
Black ratel
Mellivora capensis cottoni
Lydekker, 1906The fur is typically entirely black, with thin and harsh hairs.[9]Ghana, northeastern Congosagulata(Hollister, 1910)
Nepalese ratel
Mellivora capensis inaurita
Hodgson, 1836Distinguished from indica by its longer, much woollier coat and having overgrown hair on its heels[10]Nepal and contiguous areas east of it
Indian ratel
Mellivora capensis indica
Kerr, 1792Distinguished from capensis by its smaller size, paler fur and having a less distinct lateral white band separating the upper white and lower black areas of the body[11]Western Middle Asia northward to the Ustyurt Plateau and eastward to Amu Darya. Outside the former Soviet Union, its range includesAfghanistanIran (except the southwestern part), western Pakistan and western Indiamellivorus(Bennett, 1830)
ratel (Horsfield, 1851)
ratelus (Fraser, 1862)
White-backed ratel
Mellivora capensis leuconota
Sclater, 1867The entire upper side from the face to half-way along the tail is pure creamy white with little admixture of black hairs[9]West Africa, southern Morocco, former French Congo
Kenyan ratel
Mellivora capensis maxwelli
Thomas, 1923Kenya
Arabian ratel
Mellivora capensis pumilio
Speckled ratel
Mellivora capensis signata
Pocock, 1909Although its pelage is the normal dense white over the crown, this pale colour starts to thin out over the neck and shoulders, continuing to the rump where it fades into black. It possesses an extra lower molar on the left side of the jaw[9]Sierra Leone
Persian ratel
Mellivora capensis wilsoni
Cheesman, 1920Southwestern Iran and Iraq

## Physical description

The honey badger has a fairly long body, but is distinctly thick-set and broad across the back. Its skin is remarkably loose, and allows it to turn and twist freely within it.[12] The skin around the neck is 6 millimetres (0.24 in) thick, an adaptation to fighting conspecifics.[13] The head is small and flat, with a short muzzle. The eyes are small, and the ears are little more than ridges on the skin,[12] another possible adaptation to avoiding damage while fighting.[13]
The honey badger has short and sturdy legs, with five toes on each foot. The feet are armed with very strong claws, which are short on the hind legs and remarkably long on the forelimbs. It is a partially plantigrade animal whose soles are thickly padded and naked up to the wrists. The tail is short and is covered in long hairs, save for below the base.
Honey badgers are the largest terrestrial mustelids in Africa. Adults measure 23 to 28 cm (9.1 to 11 in) in shoulder height and 55–77 cm (22–30 in) in body length, with the tail adding another 12–30 cm (4.7–12 in). Females are smaller than males.[12][14] Males weigh 9 to 16 kg (20 to 35 lb) while females weigh 5 to 10 kg (11 to 22 lb) on average. Skull length is 13.9–14.5 cm (5.5–5.7 in) in males and 13 cm (5.1 in) for females.[15][16]
There are two pairs of mammae.[17] The honey badger possesses an anal pouch which, unusual among mustelids, is reversible,[18] a trait shared with hyenas and mongooses. The smell of the pouch is reportedly "suffocating", and may assist in calming bees when raiding beehives.[19]
The skull bears little similarity to that of the European badger, and greatly resembles a larger version of a marbled polecat skull.[20] The skull is very solidly built, with that of adults having no trace of an independent bone structure. The braincase is broader than that of dogs.
The dental formula is: $Upper: 3.1.3.1, lower: 3.1.3.1$. The teeth often display signs of irregular development, with some teeth being exceptionally small, set at unusual angles or are absent altogether. Honey badgers of the subspecies signata have a second lower molar on the left side of their jaws, but not the right. Although it feeds predominantly on soft foods, the honey badger's cheek teeth are often extensively worn. The canine teeth are exceptionally short for carnivores.[21] The tongue has sharp, backward-pointing papillae which assist it in processing tough foods.[22]
The winter fur is long (being 40–50 mm long on the lower back), and consists of sparse, coarse, bristle-like hairs lacking underfur. Hairs are even sparser on the flanks, belly and groin. The summer fur is shorter (being only 15 mm long on the back) and even sparser, with the belly being half bare. The sides of the heads and lower body are pure black in colour. A large white band covers their upper bodies, beginning from the top of their heads down to the base of their tails.[23] Honey badgers of the cottoni subspecies are unique in being completely black in colour.[9]

## Behavior

### Habits

Black ratel (M. c. cottoni)
Although mostly solitary, honey badgers may hunt together in pairs during the May breeding season.[22] Little is known of the honey badger's breeding habits. Its gestation period is thought to last six months, usually resulting in two cubs, which are born blind. They vocalise through plaintive whines. Their lifespans in the wild are unknown, though captive individuals have been known to live for approximately 24 years.[7]
Dentition
Honey badgers live alone in self-dug holes. They are skilled diggers, being able to dig tunnels into hard ground in 10 minutes. These burrows usually only have one passage and a nesting chamber and are usually not large, being only 1–3 m in length. They do not place bedding into the nesting chamber.[24] Although they usually dig their own burrows, they may take over disused aardvark and warthog holes or termite mounds.[22]
Honey badgers are intelligent animals and are one of a few species known to be capable of using tools. In the 1997 documentary series Land of the Tiger, a honey badger in India was filmed making use of a tool; the animal rolled a log and stood on it to reach a kingfisher fledgling stuck up in the roots coming from the ceiling in an underground cave.[25]
As with other mustelids of relatively large size, such as wolverines and badgers, honey badgers are notorious for their strength, ferocity and toughness. They have been known to savagely and fearlessly attack almost any kind of animal when escape is impossible, reportedly even repelling much larger predators such as lions.[26] Bee stings, porcupine quills, and animal bites rarely penetrate their skin. If horsescattle, or Cape buffalos intrude upon a ratel's burrow, it will attack them. They are tireless in combat and can wear out much larger animals in physical confrontations.[21] The aversion of most predators toward hunting honey badgers has led to the theory that the countershaded coats of cheetah kittens evolved in imitation of the honey badger's colouration to ward off predators.[27]
The voice of the honey badger is a hoarse "khrya-ya-ya-ya" sound. When mating, males emit loud grunting sounds.[5] Cubs vocalise through plaintive whines.[7] When confronting dogs, honey badgers scream like bear cubs.[28]

### Diet

Next to the wolverine, the honey badger has the least specialised diet of the weasel family.[13] In undeveloped areas, honey badgers may hunt at any time of the day, though they becomenocturnal in places with high human populations. When hunting, they trot with their foretoes turned in, moving at the same speed as a young man[clarification needed]. Honey badgers favor beehoney, and will often search for beehives to get it, which earns them their name. They often follow a honeyguide (a bird that eats bee larvae) to find the beehives. They are also carnivorous and will eat insects, frogs, tortoises, rodents, turtles, lizards, eggs, and birds. Honey badgers have even been known to chase away young lions and take their kills. They will eat fruit and vegetables such as berriesroots and bulbs.[22]
They may hunt frogs and rodents such as gerbils and ground squirrels by digging them out of their burrows. Honey badgers are able to feed on tortoises without difficulty, due to their powerful jaws. They kill and eat snakes, even highly venomous or large ones such as cobras. They have been known to dig up human corpses in India.[29] They devour all parts of their prey, including skin, hair, feathers, flesh and bones, holding their food down with their forepaws.[30] When seeking vegetable food, they lift stones or tear bark from trees.[22]

## Range

The species ranges through most of sub-Saharan Africa, from the Western CapeSouth Africa, to southern Morocco and southwestern Algeria and outside Africa through ArabiaIran and westernAsia to Turkmenistan and the Indian Peninsula. It is known to range from sea level to as much as 2,600 m above sea level in the Moroccan High Atlas and 4,000 m in Ethiopia's Bale Mountains.[1]

## Relationships with humans

Honey badgers often become serious poultry predators. Because of their strength and persistence, they are difficult to deter. They are known to rip thick planks from hen-houses or burrow underneath stone foundations. Surplus killing is common during these events, with one incident resulting in the death of 17 Muscovy ducks and 36 chickens.[22]
Because of the toughness and looseness of their skin, honey badgers are very difficult to kill with dogs. Their skin is hard to penetrate, and its looseness allows them to twist and turn on their attackers when held. The only safe grip on a honey badger is on the back of the neck. The skin is also tough enough to resist several machete blows. The only sure way of killing them quickly is through a blow to the skull with a club or a shot to the head with a gun, as their skin is almost impervious to arrows and spears.[31]
A short article on the honey badger published in The Independent on the 4th of February 1904 mentions that "The Boers of South Africa hold them in high respect, as do the natives, and assert that a pair of these beasts will occasionally attack a human being. I have heard of men being treed by these animals, but whether the tale was true or false I am uncertain."[32]
During the British occupation of Basra, rumours of "man-eating badgers" emerged from the local population, including allegations that these beasts were released by the British troops, something that the British categorically denied.[33][34] A British army spokesperson said that the badgers were "native to the region but rare in Iraq" and "are usually only dangerous to humans if provoked".[35] The director of Basra's veterinary hospital, Mushtaq Abdul-Mahdi, confirmed that honey badgers had been seen in the area as early as 1986. The deputy dean of Basra's veterinary college, Dr. Ghazi Yaqub Azzam, speculated that "the badgers were being driven towards the city because of flooding in marshland north of Basra."[34] The event received coverage in the Western press during the 2007 silly season.[36]
In many parts of North India, honey badgers are reported to have been living in the close vicinity of human dwellings, leading to many instances of attacks on poultry, small livestock animals and, sometimes, even children.[citation needed] They retaliate fiercely when attacked, and are reviled in North India.[citation needed] According to a 1941 volume of The Fauna of British India, the honey badger has also been reported to dig up human corpses in that country.[37]
In Kenya, the honey badger is a major reservoir of rabies[38][39] and suspected to be a significant contributor to the sylvatic cycle of the disease.[40]

## In popular culture

A honey badger appears in a running gag in the 1989 film The Gods Must Be Crazy II.[41]
The viral video Crazy Nastyass Honey Badger became a popular Internet meme in 2011, attaining over 54 million views on YouTube as of November 2012.[42] The video features footage from theNat Geo WILD network of honey badgers fighting jackals, invading beehives, and eating cobras. The video includes a comical voiceover by "Randall" in a vulgar, effeminate, and sometimes exasperated narration, including lines like "Honey badger don't care!" and "Honey badger don't give a shit!"[43] Randall subsequently published the book Honey Badger Don't Care in the same year. The video has been referenced in an episode of the popular television series Glee and commercials for the video game Madden NFL 12 and Wonderful Pistachios.[44] The video has also influenced references to honey badgers on the show American Pickers.[45] In Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked, a honeybadger makes a brief appearance.
Australian Wallabies and Western Force rugby player Nick Cummins nickname is "Honey Badger", drawn from his attitude towards strong defence and based on the above internet meme.[46]
Former LSU Tigers' football player Tyrann Mathieu's nickname is "The Honey Badger". The nickname became popular during the 2011 college football season, when it was often referenced in the national media. "He takes what he wants" said CBS sportscaster Verne Lundquist of Mathieu, in reference to the Internet meme.[47]