The Utah Monolith
On Wednesday, November 18, 2020, the crew of a helicopter from the Utah Department of Public Safety was working with the State Wildlife Resources Division (Division of Wildlife Resources) to censure sheep in the south-east region of Utah, spotted a strange silver metal object in a red sandstone slot canyon.
After one of the biologists of the team noticed the metal monolith in a rocky desert zone, the helicopter landed in the area and the occupants went to analyze the bizarre structure which measures about three meters high and was firmly planted in the ground.
Although the Department of Public Safety did not disclose its exact location, Reddit users found the monolith using GPS mapping software: from the information circulated it seems that it was illegally placed (it is forbidden by law to place any structures in public places without the necessary permits) between July 2015 and October 2016.
The mystery deepens: no one knows where it came from nor who placed it there.
Aliens, Cinema or Art Installations?
According to the declarations of the helicopter pilot Bret Hutchings, to the local television KSL, it could be an art installation in homage to the famous "black monolith" of Kubrick's masterpiece film 2001: A Space Odyssey.
Another hypothesis is that it is an object of scene accidentally forgotten during the shooting of some films, it is not excluded that it is an advertising stunt in anticipation of the immediate release of some movies/series (the most popular at the moment is the new season of Westworld).
Some observers have compared the monolith to panel sculptures by artist John McCracken, who lived in New Mexico and New York until his death in 2011. McCracken's gallery owner, David Zwirner, when questioned on the matter, said he initially thought that was a work of Mc Cracken but to have later changed his mind.
Someone thought of attributing it to Petecia Le Fawnhawk, a southwestern artist who lived and worked in Utah and who had previously installed sculptures in the desert but Petecia herself told Artnet News that she could not claim this work.
It has also been speculated that it was made with the same goliardic spirit of the crop circles of the pranksters Doug Bower, Dave Chorley and John Lundberg who have been associated with aliens and UFOs since the 1970s.
There is no lack of hypotheses of a real alien intervention of a "sacred" function of the structure, linked to some mythological element or mysterious prophecies, but there is no evidence, not even circumstantial, in this regard: even admitting its extraterrestrial, esoteric or pseudo-archaeological origin, it is not clear what exactly its purpose would be, especially since, on the night of Friday, November 27, according to the statement released by the federal office for land management of Utah, the monolith was taken away "by strangers": someone removed the slabs embedded in the ground and left a small pyramid of stones in their place.
Ross Bernards, an adventure photographer, who was in the place of the installation on Friday revealed what was behind the disappearance of the "sculpture": as a series of his photos would show, around 9 pm four men came out of nowhere and after disassembling the monolith they took away its disassembled parts.
The Romanian monolith
The next day, another four-meter metal monolith suddenly appeared on a hill: it happened on the Batca Doamnei plateau in Piatra-Neamt, a city in northeastern Romania, where an iron figure similar to the American "twin" was found among the ruins of the abandoned fortress of Petrodava: the only difference between the two it would be some spiral designs that appeared on the second, which in any case is more rough and less shiny.
In this case the thing that somehow refers to the field of pseudo-archeology is the fact that the Romanian monolith is oriented towards the Ceahlu massif, a mountain sacred to the ancient local population of the Dacians.
And if the mayor of the Romanian city, Andrei Carabelea, did not deny a possible visit of beings from other worlds, Rocsana Josanu of the Provincial Directorate of Culture of the Province of Neamt, stated that the monolith was found on private property, in a protected area of an archaeological site and that it would have been necessary to obtain a permit, never required, to be able to install it.
To add fuel to the fire, this monolith also disappeared as mysteriously as it appeared.
The Californian monolith
A few days ago the news of the local newspaper of the city of Atascadero according to which yet another silver column was found at the top of Pine Mountain: the three-sided obelisk appears to be made of stainless steel, 3 metres high and 5 metres wide. The object is welded at each corner, with rivets securing the side panels to a likely steel frame inside.
The triangular monolith at the top of Pine Mountain was removed by a group of vandals before it could be further secured. Overnight, in the early hours of Thursday, a group of young men traveled from Orange County to remove the object in the name of “Christ is king" calling the object an “alien obelisk”.
At this point the questions regarding the monoliths are many: Where do they come from? what is their meaning? Who is the author? Where will the next one appear? Is it really just a joke?
There are those who think that they are part of an elaborate media campaign, others of a gimmick to distract the public from the COVID health emergency, others that there are hidden purposes and that this "Operation Monolith" is a piece of a conspiracy against the humanity, whose reasons for now remain unknown.
For now we just have to wait for the next appearance and any developments.
"The crew of Apollo 8, who at Christmas, 1968, became the first men ever to set eyes upon the Lunar Farside, told me that they had been tempted to radio back the discovery of a large black monolith: alas, discretion prevailed."
Arthur C. Clarke
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