Mundane Astrology
The Knepf's Snake-eye

"The game is over... Saddam Hussein will be stopped."
- George Bush, 4:42 PM EST, Feb 6, 2003, at the White House.

It's Getting Sirius, Folks

Some months ago, we at put some rules of Masonic astrology to the test with the new efforts concerning Iraq. Noticing that the classic weaponry/war star Antares was prominent as Bush signed Resolution 114 in October of 2002, it only followed that future alignments of planets and this star would be prominent in the excecution of this Congressional authorization.

I had chosen the dates of January 22 and February 6 as likely candidates for the "go" orders from the Commander in Chief to the military, or for an opening salvo. I made these calls before the UN intervened with their own resolution 1441 and disrupted the timetable of Bush & Co.; the schedule of deadlines and reports was (I believe) clearly designed to eclipse the window of opportunity for the military to take advantage of favorable seasonal weather, meaning non-summer desert temperatures (not to mention a favorable JU=MA/SA).

More importantly for us, there was no way to tell if the Antares alignments were part of the plan, and thus in the tradition of the Federal government's astrology.

At least that's what I thought until this afternoon! To my surprise, George Bush gave what can only be called a "we're going to war" speech from the White House with Colin Powell at his side. The text is rather unambiguous in language:

...the United States, along with a growing coalition of nations, is resolved to take whatever action is necessary to defend ourselves and disarm the Iraqi regime.
We will not wait to see what terrorists or terrorist states could do with chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear weapons.
Saddam Hussein can now be expected to begin another round of empty concessions, transparently false denials. No doubt, he will play a last-minute game of deception. The game is over.
Saddam Hussein has the motive and the means and the recklessness and the hatred to threaten the American people. Saddam Hussein will be stopped.

Although a paragraph or two call upon the UN to further sanction USA preemptive action, this language is at best moot according to the rest of the text which basically is saying, "We're going in whether you like it or not." My feelings are that this is not the speech Bush was hoping to give to the American people on this date; Bush was looking rather defeated, as nothing Powell did on the 5th was convincing to the parties that think Bush & Co. are not acting on principle (meaning that they are not getting enough of the post-Saddam spoils). This was, in my opinion, intended to be the "D-Day" of Bush's second war. It ended up being a day of the USA again playing the "loser nation."

Astrologically, the speech was significant as it used the time-honored electional technique of transpiring while the fixed star Sirius was rising. The speech started at 4:33 P.M. EST and ended at 4:42 P.M. EST, during which time Sirius went from -1°49' Altitude to +0°20' Altitude, as highlighted in the next two sky maps:

 Figures 1 & 2  These to maps show the progress of Sirius during Bush's speech. Sirius rises over Washington D.C. while Bush was delivering his message.

In and of itself, this might seem unremarkable. However, in this current context, it is a dynamic, symbolic gesture, in the geodetic sense. Firstly, there is no doubt that Sirius is atop the 'pantheon' of Masonic star-deities used in their ritual astrology. A quick review of this fact can be referenced in the series on the Geometry and Astrometry of Washington D.C. Moments of this gravity are usually elected to coincide with particular elevations of Sirius. Secondly, this "sun-star," as it is called in ritual (owing to it's brightness), connects the world's two foremost centers of power astrocartographically. As Sirius rises over Washington D.C., it culminates over London simultaneously, as can be seen in the following table which measures Sirius on the date of L'Enfant's astronomical survey that determined the angle of Pennsylvania Avenue:2

Measure of Sirius on August 12, 1791 - SkyMap Pro 9 data
Sirius rises at Washington D.C.:
38N54   77W00
9:12:54 AM GMT
Sirius culminates at Greenwich, London:
51N30   00W00
9:12:55 AM GMT

Sirius' lines of ascension and culmination are graphically expressed in an A*C*G graphic (crudely with Astrolog 5.41; if anyone out there can send me a superior graphic, I'd sure appreciate it. Please contact me at or

 Figure 3  The red line represents Sirius' rising; the yellow Sirius' culmination; the blue Sirius' setting.

The high coincidence of this -- to one second of time -- can surely mean that the planning of the locale of Washington was indeed deliberate, as Washington employed not only L'Enfant, but also an accomplished astronomer named Andrew Ellicott. The precision of the above numbers suggests that Ellicott was needed to pinpoint a pre-determined latitude on a specific longitude, which was no easy feat in the late 1700's. With accurate tables from the Royal Observatory, a skilled stellar mathematician could have calculated the "correct" latitude for Sirius' cartographic intersection with God's Longitude of 77°.

Washington insisted that the new Federal city be located where it now stands.3 Could he have been prodded by the Masonic fraternity to be so staunch? Ovason claims that Ellicott was the most brilliant civil entineer in the colonies, as well as a man who associated with the influential crowd:

"In the case of [personal friends] Benjamin Franklin and David Rittenhouse, there was also an exchange of ideas relating to Ellicott's highly proficient knowledge of astronomy, which played such an important role in his pioneering work as a surveyor of uncharted lands. In his guise as a civil engineer, Ellicott marked out the boundaries of such states as Virginia, Pennsylvania and New York."
"It is clear from Elicott's fascinating journal -- which reads partly as an adventure story set in the wilds, and partly as a cool scientific record of astronomical and thermometrical observations - that he had a profound knowledge of stellar observations. Undoubtedly, this enthusiasm had been fostered by his father, who was so deeply interested in the subject that he built an observatory in one of the gabled bedrooms of his house a few miles from Ellicott Mills. Andrew's proficiency is evident from the many entries which intersperse his journals -- a sample of which may be recorded from those taken on Union Hill, near the Mississippi, when he was determining the boundary of the United States, in May 1798. Using his six-foot Zenith Sector he recorded accurately the positions of the five stars, alpha Andromeda, Castor, Pollux, beta Pegasi, and Alpha Berenices.
"In 1790 Ellicott was appointed by the government (undoubtedly at the suggestion of George Washington) to survey the new federal city... Two years later he was made surveyor general of the United States. After his work in Washington, his growing fame led him into many useful enterprises; in 1817 he was appointed by the government to make certain astronomical observations necessary to the fulfillment of parts of the Treaty of Ghent.... His brother Joseh (born November 1, 1760) collaborated with him in the surveying of the federal city...."

The story of L'Enfant's demise as chief engineer of the city is well documented, but Ovason has pointed out that Ellicott's tweakings of L'Enfant's master design were improvements on the original design that amounted to slight alterations here and there, with practical purpose:

"Careful examination of the changes made by Ellicott reveals that they are all, without exception, improvements, and are, more often than not, sensible adaptations to accommodate topographical requirements. This is especially evident in the adjustments he made to improve communications with Georgetown, which would surely have suffered had L'Enfants' plan been put into operation.
"Although Ellicott did adjust minutely the orientation and the placing of squares along Pennsylvania Avenue, the one thing which the two men seemed to hold in agreement was that this avenue should link the Capitol with the President's House, affording a reciprocal view of each."

While the choice of L'Enfant was wise in light of his visions regarding the aesthetics of the city, and the grand expirement of using the city's geometry and patterns to symbolize the republican and Constitutinal form of government, Ellicott, in the end, perfected the themes, and finalized the work with finesse and detail. The only non-negotiable features of the Capitol were to be longitude and latitude, the angle of Pennsylvania Avenue, and other principle geometric elements.

Recalling the sunset chart that L'Enfant used to measure the proper angle for Pennsylvania Avenue, we are reminded that indeed Antares' ecliptic longitude was culminating on that day specifically:

 Figure 4  

As can be seen in Figure 3, there are other locations on the Eastern seaboard where Sirius would fit the cartographic requirement as seen above. Washington D.C., however, sits exactly on the longitude of 77° West, a desireable and "majickal" line, which has come to be called "God's Longitude" by current scholars, for reasons to do with the 33-year calendar devised by John Dee for the Pope (who rejected it as it was, after all, designed by non-Catholics) in the 16th Century. This bizarre calendar connection centers on the observational fact that this and only this longitude will not see a deviation of more than 24 hours on either side of midnight at the (2 days) of vernal equinoxes with the particular 33-year cycle of leap years.

It is also the longitude on which the first English Freemason to set foot in what is now the USA, Captain John Smith, established his doomed colony in 1607.4

77° West longitude is 89°30' separated from the Vatican, which reflects why the above 33-year cycle works at this longitude, as it is a cardinal point in realation to 12°30' East. Yet, we are off by 30' of arc, which is two minutes of time by comparison, which is significant within the tolerances of Washington, Ellicott, et al. Perhaps the answer lies in how we count longitudes: counting ordinally, the line of 77°00'00" West is the 78th longitude, and 19.5, a recurring number in Washington D.C., is a factor of 78. 39 is another factor, and this line of latitude runs across the northernmost tip of the District, but we are back to counting cardinally.

 Figure 5  The only known authentic painting of Washington commissioned by his lodge in Fredricksburg.

All of which brings up the obvious question of why in the world would George Washington, Commander of the Armed Forces of the United States, who had fought to extricate British rule from the Colonies for eight full years, insist on a site for his new Federal City that was connected so prominently in this way to London? The only answer is that London was the epicenter of Freemasonry.

Even after the British defeat, there still existed social contact between both realms, and cultural ties were strong on many levels. Masonry, for all of the angst it would cause down the road, was a remarkable force that could foster goodwill in the a-political -- or better yet super-political -- strata of gentlemen, prominent citizens and clergy.

 Figure 6  The December 3, 2001 issue of National Review depicted a somewhat doltish Dubya as a Knight Templar Crusader, perhaps unfortunately thrust into an archaic religious conflict that he can never truly grasp.

All of which brings us back to the February 6 speech by George Bush, given as Sirius rose over our beloved Capitol city. The message, for anyone who wants (or needs) to see, is that the long-time allies, USA and UK, bound together by something more than a political alliance that is older and more permanent than the UN, are about to act in unsion, and too bad if you don't like it.

The National Review's cover is incomplete, as the real Knight Templars' seal depicted two men on one horse. Surely our missing man is Tony Bliar, the staunch supporter of the USA's otherwise unilateral crusade. I don't see why else the President would give a speech at this strange time of day, as it was only him and Powell in the room, and most people were heading home on the freeways. One suggestion was that Bush was hoping to disrupt a critical and unfriendly Oprah Winfrey Show:

The Oprah Show had clips of interviews from around the world -– apparently they had tried to find pro-war interviews but only got a few, except for Kuwaitis. This show was much more balanced than the shows she had done in the Fall which were more pro-Administration. The Administration would have known the content and timing of today’s show because it is broadcast live and/or in the morning in many markets such as Oprah’s home base in Chicago.

In fact, I don't really see why he had to give this speech at all, if indeed it is only a "good boy!" adulation for Powell and a "bad boys!" scolding of the UN members who aren't rolling over like dogs for the corporate elite of the USA. No, rather, this President was shoved out on the stage by his masters to fulfill some ritual and to remind us that they will do as they willst. The star timing of the event is a signal for those 'in the know' that the alliance is speaking through something larger and more powerful than the White House.

1 Personally, I applaud the UN for having the good sense to recommence arms inspections in Iraq while stifling this (what I think is) ridiculous march to war for narrow objectives that lie outside of the best interests of the USA. The Bush Administration's incompetent foreign policy, coupled with the obvious self-serving corporate interests that would benefit from this war, are nothing less than treasonous. This is the most horrendously revolting group of people to inhabit the Executive Branch since Nixon, and these are the darkest days in American history I have experienced in my lifetime. NOT IN MY NAME, Mr. Bush, Mr. Cheney, Mr. Ashcroft, Mr. Wolfowitz, Mr. Rumsfeld, Mr. Rove, and Mr. Powell. You lying heinous bastards have dishonored America and her dignity.
{Ahh. That felt good!}

2 (Keep in mind that this calculation from SkyMap Pro assumes a constant atmospheric refraction, and this time for Sirius' rising is computed with this in mind. The refraction results from the composition and density of Earth's atmosphere and how it bends light. In other words, the light from any star, planet, or the Sun becomes visible about two minutes earlier than it would if there was no atmosphere to bend light (more if extreme north or south). At the horizon, atmospheric refraction tends to raise objects by about 34 minutes of arc. This effect decreases as objects near the zenith. In the 18th Century, this effect was not really understood, but any star tables would have been equally skewed for all stars that rose far above the horizon. What I'm getting at with this is that refraction can change with altitude, temperature, and weather, and to a tolerance of more than one second in time, which may mean that the actual moment of "rising" listed above for Washington in 1791 might be different.)

3 The record of this fact is echoed in many references. A more recent exposé of this is Greenberg, Allan, Washington as Architect, Andres Papadakis Publisher, Windsor, England, 1999; another is Bowling, Kenneth, The Creation of Washington D.C.: The Idea and Location of the American Capital, George Mason University Press, Fairfax, VA, 1991

4 Tudhope, George V., Freemasonry Came to America with Captain John Smith in 1607, Health Research, 1993.

Mundane Astrology

Copyright © 2003 Edward Kohout. All Rights Reserved.