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Noah's Ark Newsletter, part 3


NOAH'S ARK--Continued
First metal detector scans

August 1984

In Ankara, Jim met with Kasim Gulek and his wife.   Dr. Gulek is the only man still alive who served as a cabinet member in Ataturk's government and he is a very influential man.  Ron accompanied Jim to the Gulek's home and this proved to be a very valuable meeting.  Here, Ron met several people who would soon become very important to Ron's work: Orhan Baser and Mine Unler, both whom would become governmental liaisons between Ron and the Turkish government. Ron was essentially no one of importance and would have had a difficult time meeting these people on his own.  But through Jim's kind help, Ron's efforts were about to make an impact.

The First Metal Detector Scans

They spent the night at the Guleks and the next day they went to Dogubeyazit.  Ron took Jim and several members of his group to the boat shaped object.  At that time, he employed the metal detectors on the site- Orhan Baser had secured permission for him to do so.  Jim was present when Ron and other members of the group used the 2 metal detectors along the sides and atop the entire length of the boat shaped object.

The results revealed a pattern of linear readings which showed an organized grid of metal within the object. Along the sides, they got readings every 9 feet. It was completely outside the realm of chance for this pattern to be natural.  In a video-taped interview with Ron, Jim stated:

"Yeah, we got some real positive readings, didn't we, as we went up and down the long direction of the formation....The spacing made it appear like, very much like it was, you know, a man-made object."

Jim wasn't convinced it was the ark, but he knew it had to be something man-made. He was dedicated to searching on Mt. Ararat, and he and Ron agreed that this was an absolutely necessary part of the whole picture. If the boat shaped object WAS the Ark, there were many who wouldn't accept it until the possibility of it being on Mt. Ararat had been ruled out. There was no competition between Ron and Jim, although there are those who would like you to believe there was.  Jim was one person that Ron felt he could trust- a gentleman and a man of his word, and he helped Ron immensely.

Interest in the Site Begins to Grow

After Ron and Jim visited the site and did the first metal detector scans, the word spread among the other ark-hunters who had gathered in the hotel lobby, and when they returned, another group expressed the desire to visit it too. This was a group headed by Marv Steffins and included Bulant Atalay and their helicopter pilot, "Whatcha" McCullum.  Ron went with them after lunch and they were thrilled to death when they saw the results of the metal detector scans.  It seemed as if Ron had found some allies, but it didn't quite turn out that way.

An Unfortunate Near Altercation

It was also at this time that another well-known "ark hunter" with very impressive credentials, heard about all the interest in the boat shaped object while in the hotel lobby. Ron told all the other ark hunters about the equipment White's Electronics had provided him and offered its use to anyone present- perhaps a naive thing to do, but nonetheless, it's what he did. At that point, this well-known ark hunter stood up and in a VERY loud voice told Ron, "YOU CAN'T USE METAL DETECTORS IN TURKEY!"  This was a ploy obviously designed to have the metal detectors confiscated by local authorities. And while this isn't something I'm happy to write about, it happened- Ron took this man by the collar and told him in no uncertain terms that if he did not keep his mouth shut, he would hit him.  The man only replied to Ron, "YOU'RE CRAZY!" to which Ron then replied, "I'M NOT CRAZY ENOUGH TO LET YOU DO WHAT YOU'RE TRYING TO DO."  Ron, as well as the ark hunter, both knew that even with permission from Ankara, the locals could still confiscate the equipment, and by the time Ron was able to get back in touch with Ankara, it would be too late to use it.

It was an unpleasant and unfortunate thing to happen, but it did- and the man never said another word about it.  In fact, he later even asked to go to the site, which Ron thought was strange since this man had already stated that he had "investigated" the site thoroughly on two occasions.

There was no more trouble from him that trip, but this man let it be known that he would do anything from that time forward to discredit the site- and that is exactly what he has tried to do.

More Specimens are Taken

Ron took numerous samples of material from the site as his liaison, Orhan Baser had secured permission for him to do so- Ron wasn't going to jeopardize anything by not getting the proper permission.  Marv Steffins did the same, only without securing permission.

Later that trip, Ron and Orhan decided to scour the region above the boat shaped object for any other evidences of the Ark.

Evidence that the Ark Landed Further Up the Mountain

Quite a way up the mountainside, Ron and Orhan came to a site which contained the remains of a very ancient stone building.  Since nothing else was around, it appeared to be perhaps a travelers' station or something of that type.

Close by, Ron found something VERY interesting- it was a section of earth that Ron measured to be 120 feet by 40 feet, which was rimmed by what appeared to be petrified wood, and within its perimeter was a massive amount of strange looking "rock."  This "rock" was quite heavy and tinged green in places, and therefore Ron believed it to be some type of metal.  He had an idea as to what the wood perimeter was, but perhaps a lab analysis of the "rock" material would help confirm his idea.

Ark Carried Down in Lava Flow

Since the boat shaped object is located in a mud-flow which contains remnants of volcanic rock, Ron believed this mud-flow was actually a deteriorated lava flow. The boat shaped object looked exactly like a ship wreck, but it was impaled on a very large outcropping of limestone from the western side to its mid-section.  To Ron, it looked as if the ship had been transported down the mountainside by the lava flow (which covered the ship) and, sliding sideways, it was impaled on this large outcropping of limestone which caused it to be "racked", exactly like a car that it literally wrapped around a telephone pole in an accident.

Ron suspected that the 120 X 40 foot section above the site was actually a portion of the bottom of the ship which had sunk into the mud as the flood waters subsided. When the earth was dried, this section was firmly embedded in the ground, and as the ark was swept down the mountainside, this portion was ripped away. The strange looking "rock" he found within this perimeter was very similar in appearance to "rock" he found just below the lower section of the ship- the broken off section.

He theorized that this was ballast material placed in the hull of the Ark, and when the portion of the bottom was ripped off, a large amount of ballast fell out.  Other ballast which remained in the intact portion of the ark was now falling out from the broken off lower section.  Ron and Orhan kept this information to themselves.

A Stele Depicting Noah's Ark

As they proceeded up the mountainside to the top of the ridge near the Iranian border, they found the broken remains of an ancient stele which was being used in a more recent structure. The broken pieces were quite large and most were exposed which allowed Ron to photograph them for later analysis and piecing together.

This stele contained numerous inscriptions in what looked like three different forms of writing. One segment was particularly legible- this was a scene depicting the unique ridge just above the site, a mountain peak in the background, a ship with eight faces in it, and two ravens - one flying above the ship and one above the mountain.

The rest of the inscription featured several animals.  But the importance of the stele was that the shape of the boat was almost identical to the 1950s aerial photo of the boat-shaped object.  The eight faces within the boat needed little explanation.  But most importantly, this stele was just beyond the site where Ron had found the 120 x 40 foot section he believed to be a portion of the bottom of the ship.  He would study the inscription more later, but for now, it appeared to him that it was marking the location of the original landfall of the ark.

Ron's 1980 Booklet

It was this trip when Ron brought numerous copies of the little booklet he had published in 1980, "Noah's Ark Found," and handed them out to all those interested in the site.  Within a few months, he would regret having done this.

A Surprise in Athens

Finally, it was time to leave.  Ron got on his flight in Istanbul and headed to Athens, Greece, where he was to pick up his international flight to the US. But a strange series of events was about to take place.  As he was waiting in the airport, he picked upt a New York Times newspaper and read an article that nearly knocked him off his feet.  He had been accused of taking artifacts illegally out of Turkey!  The story told how Marv Steffins, who had promised to keep a low profile about the site, had gone to Ankara and produced some "wood" specimens, called a news conference and proclaimed that Noah's Ark had been found!  Since he had not obtained permission to take any samples, his were confiscated, and he told the authorities that Ron Wyatt had also taken illegal samples, even though Ron did have permission.

Imprisoned in Saudi Earlier that Year

In the years since 1978, Ron and the boys had been working in Egypt and Israel. When they found the chariot parts in the Red Sea, they then knew that Mt. Sinai was across the Gulf of Aqaba in Saudi Arabia.  For over 4 years, Ron had tried to get a visa into Saudi, but when it seemed impossible, he and the boys decided to enter illegally. Before he left on that trip in December of 1983, he told two people what they planned to do. One of those people was Jim Irwin. The other was an ark-hunter.  Soon after they arrived at Jebel el Lawz, they were imprisoned for 78 days, accused of being Israeli spies, and didn't arrive back in the US until April 18, 1984.

Ron was becoming acutely aware that his archaeological work was not without danger. But it was becoming VERY apparent that the danger was from those whom he thought were friends.  It was an "ark hunter" who called the Saudis and told them the Wyatts were Israeli spies.  It was an "ark hunter" who told the Turkish authorities that Ron had taken illegal artifacts out of the country.  But in both cases, the end result would be that each site was taken VERY seriously by its own government.

Vindication of All Charges

It was a long flight home for Ron.  He knew that the penalties for taking artifacts were stiff and he knew that all he could do when he arrived in New York was turn himself in.  So, when he arrived, his first call was to the Turkish Consulate.  He explained the situation- that Orhan Baser had obtained permission for him to take the samples- and he offered to turn them over to the Turkish authorities.

That afternoon, three men from the Turkish Consulate came to Ron's hotel room, examined the specimens, and then told him to keep them. They had checked out Ron's story and found he was telling the truth.  But Ted Koeppel didn't know that and accused Ron on Nightline of being a thief.  It was not a pleasant situation. Ron called his own news conference and told his story.  The Turkish government issued a statement clearing him of all charges, however, Ted Koeppel neglected to mention this on any later broadcast.

Again, it all turned out for good.  A reporter from the United Nations Observer and International Report did an article on Ron and his work on the site, which was published in the January 1985 issue.  Until this time, Ron had no allies other than Dr. Shea.  He hoped that now, help would be forthcoming.  But the Marv Steffins incident proved to be the mold for the future pattern- Mr. Steffins told the press HE had discovered Noah's Ark.  No mention of Ron's efforts were ever made other than the fact that Ron had taken "illegal artifacts."

Meanwhile, back in Turkey, all the bad press combined with the positive results of Ron's investigations had led to the Turks taking a serious interest in the site.

(to be continued next page)

Next Page: Analyses of the New Specimens

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