The mysterious Georgia Guidestones have been bulldozed after sustaining significant damage in an apparent bomb attack. Residents reported hearing a thunderous explosion near their location around 4am on Wednesday.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigations (GBI) told reporters that preliminary information suggests someone used an explosive device to damage the pillars.
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The Elbert County Sheriff's Office is working with the GBI to investigate the attack on the structure.
The GBI released CCTV footage showing a car driving near the monument just after the explosion.
The guidestones — sometimes called America's Stonehenge for their appearance after being erected in 1980 — consist of six granite slabs, with an inscription carved in eight different languages across the slabs.
(1/3) The GBI is releasing surveillance video from this morning’s explosion that destroyed the Georgia Guidestones. pic.twitter.com/Vo3RyjDxdN
— GA Bureau of Investigation (@GBI_GA) July 6, 2022
The inscriptions contain guidelines — hence guidestones — for pursuing human progress.
Those recommendations include items like "maintain humanity under 500m in perpetual balance with nature" and "unite humanity with a living new language."
Residents who live near the statue said they felt and heard an explosion near the stones' location at around 4am.
Chris Kubas, Executive Vice President of the Elberton Granite Association, said that the stones had suffered defacement in the past, but that Wednesday’s bombing far surpassed any previous damage it had sustained.
The guidestones were opened in 1980 and were commissioned by a "small group of loyal Americans" through a man who used a pseudonym.
The owners of Elberton Granite Finishing Company, which was commissioned to build the slabs, said the man claimed the monument was meant to act as a compass, calendar and clock that could withstand catastrophic events.
The company claims it tried to discourage the man from pursuing the project by offering a comically inflated price for the project, but were surprised to find the individual accepted the quote.
The monument has become the focal point of conservative conspiracy theories over the last years, with allegations that the message on the slabs are instructions for the coming "new world order."
Kandiss Taylor, a far-right conspiracy theorist who ran in the state's Republican gubernatorial primary against incumbent Brian Kemp, made the destruction of the guidestones a central pillar of her campaign.
In a glossy campaign video, she announced her "executive order 10," which would see the monument demolished.
Throughout the video she nods to other conservative talking points and conspiracy theories.
The video starts with a reference to a Covid-19 vaccine conspiracy, with Ms Taylor saying "over four million people got injected with something that took only nine months to create. Ask yourself why."
(3/3) For safety reasons, the structure has been completely demolished. pic.twitter.com/hrpqN2Sphr
— GA Bureau of Investigation (@GBI_GA) July 6, 2022
It then moves onto demonic human sacrifice.
"Human sacrifice was a form of demonic worship, we're still doing it in present day by killing our unborn," she says, while a graphic about the number of abortions performed worldwide splashes across the screen. "It's the same demons, the same sacrifice, the same sin, it's just a different time."
Then she shifts focus to the "new world order" and the insinuation that the Georgia Guidestones are a message from the demon-worshipping elite who secretly rule the world as to their plans.
"The new world order is here and they told us it was coming," she says.
Shortly after news broke that the stones had been damaged, rather than denouncing the destruction of private property by a protester — which is standard for most Republicans — she suggested that God struck down one of the stones.
God is God all by Himself. He can do ANYTHING He wants to do. That includes striking down Satanic Guidestones.
— Kandiss Taylor (@KandissTaylor) July 6, 2022
Her video was posted to Twitter just two months before the explosion.
HBO’s John Olliver, host of Last Week Tonight, lampooned Ms Taylor and her bizarre stance agaisnt furries and the Georgia Guidestones, noting that her fixation on the monument was the lynchpin of her campaign.
“That was the closing argument of her campaign,” Mr Oliver said. “Raising the obvious question: Hey, Kandiss Taylor, what the f*** are you talking about?”
Infamous conspiracy theorist Alex Jones also responded to the bombing, saying he enjoyed it on “an animal level,” but utlimately disagreed with the attack.
“We need that evil edifice there as a confession letter led by a consortium of eugenicists,” he said.
Ms Taylor was crushed in the Georgia Republican primary in May. Mr Kemp won more than 70 per cent of the vote, with former Senator David Perdue coming in second with around 22 per cent. Ms Taylor earned only 3 per cent of the state's vote.
Despite the severity of her loss, she took a page from the MAGA playbook and claimed that "cheaters" rigged the election against her.
“I want y’all to know that I do not concede,” Ms Taylor said in a video posted to social media. “I do not. And if the people who did this and cheated are watching, I do not concede.”
MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell later vowed to investigate the loss.