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We are featured as one of the New York Times' top news stories of 2016! Take a look!
Copy and paste this URL into your browser: http://nyti.ms/2hWADwe
New York Times Science writers have picked the discovery of the Holocaust period escape tunnel, dug by the “Burning Brigade” in the Ponar forest of Lithuania, as one of the top science stories of 2016. The 34 meter tunnel was dug by hand over 76 nights by Jewish slaves assigned to burn 100,000 bodies at the Ponar extermination site (see earlier Facebook posts). The pro bono geophysical work was done by Dr. Alastair McClymont and Paul Bauman from the near surface geophysics group in Calgary, Alberta, under the direction of archaeologists from the University of Hartford, the Israel Antiquities Authority, and the Gaon Museum in Lithuania.
Besides the tunnel, we also identified the original Soviet fuel storage pit used for the mass burial of the initial 25,000 victims, the intact sub-levels of the “Great Synagogue” in Vilnius ransacked by the Nazis and later razed to the ground by the Soviets, and an individual and likely very significant grave inside the Rasu Prison that only 3 weeks ago was excavated and the tooth of a skeleton was removed, and is presently undergoing DNA analysis (more to come!).
Below is a link to an earlier interview with Paul Bauman by the National Post, the link to the original New York Times Science Section article, and the link to the recent top 2016 science article retrospective. Paul and Alastair will be back in Lithuania in July doing pro bono investigations at other mass burial sites, particularly in Kaunas, the capital of Lithuania during the period between World War I and World War II.
Unfortunately, and even tragically, the even more impressive and important water exploration pro bono work that 7 geophysicists (Erin Ernst, Randy Shinduke, Doug MacLean, Paul Bauman, Landon Woods, Coln Miazga, and Franklin Koch) from the Calgary office carried out in the Kakuma Refugee Camp and the Turkana Desert of northwest Kenya did not receive similar international media attention – though perhaps it will this year as the ongoing regional refugee crises become a worldwide calamity.
For the NY Times "Science News that Stuck with us in 2016", copy and paste this URL into your browser: