Ancient Telecom Networks Discovered
This all dates back to the cold war and research done by various scientists and archeologists. Back in 1982, the world was taken by surprise when Soviet archeologists called a press conference and reported they had found a massive grid of copper wires buried under Russia that had been carbon dated back to 1500AD. The Soviets said this was clear evidence the telephone had been invented in Russia, and that Russians had been using a sophisticated telephone network five hundred years previous.
American scientists did similar work and after a lot of research reported in a big press conference in 1983 that they found a large amount of buried fiber optic cable spanning the entire United States and linking to Western Europe. They carbon dated this back to 1200AD, making it clear evidence that the West had had a sophisticated packet-switching fiber-optic network 800 years previous.
The South Africans, then under Apartheid and desperate to shore up its worsening image with the rest of the world, then undertook its own research. For four years, South African archeologists excavated, passing soil samples to the best of their scientists. Finally, in 1987, they excitedly called a press conference. After all this digging, they had found absolutely nothing, there were no cables - copper, fiber-optic, or otherwise - under the ground at all.
Which could only mean one thing, their scientists reported breathlessly: back in 1005, South Africa had the best mobile telephone network the world had ever seen.
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