A handbook companion to the mystery thriller The Columbus Conspiracy, explaining the facts that inspired the fiction
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This is a handbook companion to the mystery thriller “The Columbus Conspiracy” (Karlos K.), summarizing the key facts and mysteries that inspired the fiction.
The book provides an overview of the evidence against the schoolbook account of Columbus: the contradictions, the trail of forged documents and the academic developments since the turn of the century that suggest the traditional version of Columbus may be nothing but a fairy tale. The voyages of Columbus are so memorable exactly because they are loaded with mysticism, delusion, obstinate courage and drama. If nothing else, Columbus was a most skilful writer and actor, turning his four voyages into epic adventures and his life into a true Shakespearean play.There is a lot of myth-making PR around Columbus, turning him into a global celebrity. He has been turned into a symbol of the New World, with more than 100 monuments worldwide. The mystery around his identity and origins, the rags to riches novella, it all contributed to elevate Colon’s to global stardom: the myth of a man who, by strength of character, vision, genius and courage, fought the “fossilized” middle ages flat Earth cosmography and found the New World. We now realize that glorified image is only one side of the coin.There is also a dark side of Columbus and the “Conquistadores”. The Admiral was an inspired, brilliant but mercurial and self-serving adventurer, lost at sea most of the times, an opportunistic climbing up the social ladder who made his great discovery by chance and never recognized his mistake of reaching the wrong Indies, a tyrannical governor obsessed with gold, prone to atrocities against his own crew, let alone the cruelty, genocide and enslavement of the entire native Taíno population. However, there is also evidence to suggest he may have been promoting a rebellion, looking for an alliance with the local Taíno leaders to expel the Spanish settlers and crown himself king of Hispaniola. Although part or most of these accusations may be true, the contradictions may simply be a cover up for something entirely different. The traditional account depicts a man dissociated of reality, a lunatic living his own illusions of grandeur, unable to use nautical instruments and confused about measurements or distance… but at the same time capable of extraordinary feats, not least deceiving one of the most powerful countries of his time for almost a decade. There are also strong indications of censorship and even threats against academics who tried to investigate Columbus true identity and mission. What reasons could justify why so many have, for so long, gone to such great lengths to hide Columbus true identity and mission? Was Columbus “the last Templar” with a secret mission? Was he a “converso” Jew with a cabalistic signature looking for a new Promised Land for the Jews and heretics expelled by the Spanish Catholic Monarchs? Was he a Portuguese high noble, an agent of the Portuguese King to send the Spanish Catholic Monarchs in a wild goose chase across the Atlantic and protect the Portuguese maritime route to India around Cape of Good Hope and the profitable spice trade?