Claim: Ghenghis Khan rode climate change to power

From the National Science Foundation Press Release 14-032

Climate of Genghis Khan’s ancient time extends long shadow over Asia of today

Current drought in Mongolia could have serious consequences

View of the modern-day Orkhon Valley near KarakorumView of the modern-day Orkhon Valley near Karakorum, the ancient Mongol capital.

Credit and Larger Version

March 10, 2014

Climate was very much on Genghis Khan’s side as he expanded his Mongol Empire across northeastern Asia.

That link between Mongolia’s climate and its human history echoes down the centuries, according to findings reported in this week’s issue of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

But climate may no longer be the boon it was during the latter, wetter part of Genghis Khan’s reign. The early years were marked by drought.

Mongolia’s current drought conditions could have serious consequences for the Asia region’s human and other inhabitants.

The discovery linking ancient and modern history hinges on wood. Trees provide an extensive climate record in their rings.

The tree rings’ tales of ebbs and flows in water availability show that Genghis Khan took power during a severe drought, says Amy Hessl, a geographer at West Virginia University and co-author of the paper.

But, the scientists found, the rapid expansion of Genghis Khan’s empire coincided with the wettest period in the region during the last millennium.

“Through a careful analysis of tree-ring records spanning eleven centuries, the researchers have provided valuable information about a period of great significance,” says Tom Baerwald, a program director for the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Dynamics of Coupled Natural and Human Systems (CNH) Program, which funded the research.

CNH is one of NSF’s Science, Engineering and Education for Sustainability (SEES) programs. CNH is supported by NSF’s Directorates for Geosciences; Biological Sciences; and Social, Behavioral & Economic Sciences.

“The results also provide insights into the complex interactions of climate, vegetation and human activity in semi-arid regions today,” Baerwald says.

Though political realities would also have played into Genghis Khan’s power grab, the regional climate at the time appears to have supported his empire’s expansion.

The climate provided literal horsepower as armies and their horses fed off the fertile, rain-fed land.

“Such a strong and unified center would have required a concentration of resources that only higher productivity could have sustained, in a land in which extensive pastoral production does not normally provide surplus resources,” the paper states.

While the ramifications for past history are significant, so, too, are they for today’s.

The scientists believe that human-caused warming may have exacerbated the current drought in central Mongolia, similar to the drought that coincided with Genghis Khan’s initial rise to power.

“If future warming overwhelms increased precipitation, episodic ‘heat droughts’ and their social, economic and political consequences will likely become more common in Mongolia and Inner Asia,” according to the paper.

Hessl co-authored the report with scientists Neil Pederson of the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Nachin Baatarbileg of the National University of Mongolia, Kevin Anchukaitis of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and Nicola Di Cosmo of the Institute for Advanced Study.



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Steve Keohane

So it was wetter and colder in the latter part of Genghis Khan’s reign?

Lance Wallace

So the “mometer” part of treemometer actually stands for hygrometer?
On my (Chrome) the figure didn’t come through and the link doesn’t work.

Steven Devijver

No European of other Asian powers would have been able to fight off the Turkish/Mongol innovative tactics, whether is was led by Genghis Khan or anybody else. Let’s not forget that Genghis Khan led only one of several Turkish breakouts. Two centuries before Genghis Khan the Seljuk Turks – using basically the same innovations – broke out of Central Asia, defeated several Muslim empires, sacked Jerusalem and settled in Anatolia. After Genghis Khan his sons and grandson continued the spree of successful campaigns, conquering Russia, Hungary, large parts of the Middle East, Persia and again Anatolia. Where the crusades also helped by climate? What about WW1, WW2, Napoleon, Alexander the Great? Let’s not forget Hannibal, the Romans, the Egyptians, the American Civil War, the Revolutionary War, the Barbarian Wars, … . Many people will take this “link” between Genghis Khan and climate serious which is the most disheartening side of this story for me.

You know who didin’t ride climate change to power? Al Gore in 2000. Didn’t work as he was considered to be a bit of a nut on global warming. But things changed. By the time he made his movie, after much data manipulation and the fabrication of the hockey stick, and after they skillfully orchestrated a msm driven campaign of labeling the “deniers” as the nuts, he may not have been driven to power, but he certainly was made rich off the scam.
Btw, Gore’s movie was based on a fallacious claim, a claim that even the ipcc two years before had conceded was false, that there was documented evidence that CO2 causes climate temperature change; Gore knew the ipcc had conceded the point (after a 4 year fight), but Gore still went ahead with the claim in his movie; it was willful deception, seen here in this 3 minute graphic debunking of Gore’s deception on CO2,:


Truly unbelieveable. The Mongol hordes are forced by a severe drought to leave Mongolia for greener pastures occupied by other ethnic groups. They eventually occupy much of Central Asia and rule it for a few hundred years. Now, another drought — manmade by assertion — could have disastrous consequences.
“If future warming overwhelms increased precipitation, episodic ‘heat droughts’ and their social, economic and political consequences will likely become more common in Mongolia and Inner Asia,” according to the paper.
Please! Technological progress has allowed humans to build dams, conserve resources, and, in general, cope much better with climate change.

Climate of Genghis Khan’s ancient time extends long shadow over Asia…
Climate wasn’t the only thing with a long shadow:
Genghis Khan a Prolific Lover, DNA Data Implies


I’m sick and tired of the words “climate change”….
but can’t think of anything better……
climate oscillation
climate cycle
climate sine wave
[‘Natural variability’? ~ mod.]

Robert W Turner

This just in: the formation of the universe shaped by climate change.

Crispin in Waterloo

We had previously been told that small tree ring widths meant it was colder. They should make up their minds, these dendochronolgists. Next they will be telling us ring width tells us the CO2 level.
The place is called Хархорум (Kharkhorum) and I visited it last July. There is a really nice new National Museum just east of the Erdene Zuu monastery with a model of the city. The museum has a spectacular collection of metal artifacts. The area is fabulously rich in history and artifacts and has hardly been explored – major archeological finds are made nearly every year.
One thing for sure, it was a lot warmer in those days. Travelling and fighting seem to have been possible 6 months of the year instead of today’s 3. The areas that supported grazing were far more extensive as a result of a warmer and wetter world. Whether or not this is a coincidence is hard to know, but drought? Possible. Chinggis wanted to find the fabled land to the West (Hungary) said to have the best grazing in the world. That was all he really wanted – the empire was incidental. The fact that he, a nobody herder, knew about the quality of grazing on the plains of Hungary shows there was consistent communication across Asia. The claim that ‘the current drought’ is caused by (17 years non-existent) warming in turn caused by AG CO2 is a pretty far fetched. As the ‘drought’ did not start during, say, the major warming of the 70’s and 80’s upon what is this claim based?
Something to watch for: anyone who claims that it was ‘colder and therefore wetter’ in 1190 is fibbing. If Mongolia in that region was any colder then than now there would have been no time to conquer anything other than making a fire and fending off wolves.
“Mongols distinguish ‘gobi’ from desert proper, although the distinction is not always apparent to outsiders unfamiliar with the Mongolian landscape.” “Mongolia’s weather is characterized by extreme variability and short-term unpredictability in the summer, and the multiyear averages conceal wide variations in precipitation, dates of frosts, and occurrences of blizzards and spring dust storms.”
For further reading, “The Mummies of Urumchi” (Urumqi) by Barber is the story of the fair-haired natives (Nordic-looking) of Western China on display in the Museum at Urumchi who lived and died during the period of desertification during the cooling that followed the Minoan Climate Optimum. It was warmer and wetter then, too.
As it cooled from 3000 BC the region got drier and drier. History facts say that when the NH warms, Central Asia gets wetter and the proof is lying right there in the sand. The primary conclusion, that Ghengis (Chinggis) Khan rode a climate optimum Westwards is correct. Given Mongolia’s recent descent into record cold and (relatively) increasing drought, it seems the paper’s secondary conclusion is in error, even if the authors did not remember to mention that the climate has always shown ‘extreme variability’.

While the ramifications for past history are significant…
I’m glad they specified past history! I might have thought they were talking about present history or future history.

Crispin in Waterloo

@Eric Simpson
>You know who didin’t ride climate change to power?
That is hilarious! I was going to phrase it, “Who didn’t ride climate change to power” with a list of Green Party members who got in on the % of vote system.

That Dynamics of Coupled Human and Natural Systems is part of implementing the Belmont Challenge the NSF is involved in and the Future Earth Alliance that replaced the Earth Science System Partnership at the beginning of 2013.
It also reflects the Big History push being funded by the Gates Foundation that was created by Professor David Christian. Deeply troubling and ideological. explains the importance of this global Big History ideological juggernaut and why we are seeing so much active cultivation of influential false beliefs by education.
And media for that matter as the other leg of communication but that’s a different story. The point is to develop perceptions that guide how reality is viewed so it is not perceived accurately. The false perceptions create a fuel to act though, which is the whole point and to want others to act as well.

Keith Willshaw

Seems to me that the rise of Genghis Khan and the Mongol invasion of Europe coincides rather well with the Mediaeval Warm Period. I can well believe the onset of this climate change had effects in Central Asia since we know that it did in Europe and the Atlantic region where Greenland was settled by the Vikings.
Given that CO2 levels were rather low at this period quite how this is supposed to prove the risks of AGW escapes me.

Chris R.

The Mongols largely came westward due to an accident of history. in 1218,
Genghis Khan sent a trade mission to the Khwarezm empire, ruled by Muhammad II.
Muhammad II had the 3 Mongol envoys executed. Genghis Khan wasn’t the man
to take this lying down, and he invaded and crushed Khwarezm in 1219. After
Muhammad fled, Genghis Khan sent a force of 20,000, led by his top generals
Subotai and Jebe, after him.
Subotai and Jebe, while pursuing Muhammad II, raided several Persian cities and
plundered into the Caucasus, Georgia, and eventually rode completely around
the Caspian Sea to reach home. Their reports of rich plunder fired up the Mongol
desire to conquer and raid into the West. Had Shah Muhammad II received the
Mongol envoys as ambassadors and opened peaceful trade–the Mongols probably
would have expended their energy conquering China 2 generations before they
did it anyway.


“The scientists believe that human-caused warming may have exacerbated the current drought in central Mongolia, similar to the drought that coincided with Genghis Khan’s initial rise to power.”
If human caused warming has made this drought similar to one coinciding with Khan…what caused the drought in Kahn’s time? Do these “scientists” not see the complete contradiction and lack of causation here?


This could be fun to watch. Historian spinners of tales and explainers of motivations vs. climate change shaman explainers. Break out the pens.


Genghis Khan invented the SUV?


This isn’t a new argument. Nels Winkless and Iben Browning made the argument decades ago that that the Central Asian steppe was subject to climate swings that periodically ran the inhabitants out of the region looking – literally – for better pastures.

Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7

Steven Devijver says:
March 12, 2014 at 1:14 pm
My God man, you’ve neglected to mention the unification of China under Xin, the Trojan war, the Persian wars, the Peloponnesian War, the Viking raids, the Reformation, the Glorious Revolution, the Armada, and the development of Coca-Cola. All of it is linked to climate change, or at least could be linked to climate change. Anyway I’m sure the models will show that with every one of these events some people were unhappy with local conditions either too hot, too cold, too wet, too dry, not enough women, etc. Not to mention all those people trying to save lobsters from resorting to cannibalism when they got too numerous by eating them first.
Yep, those Mongols were just one of a long chain of climate refugees, caused by too much human-emitted CO2. A pity they didn’t have Bill McKibben around back them to warn them of the dangers of having fires to keep themselves warm …


For those sleepless nights, or even just to put you to sleep.
You could hit part 1(of 5 ).—Wrath-of-the-Khans-I/Mongols-Genghis-Chingis
They are all free, all 5 parts.
The only mention of the weather I remember was when they drove into “tropical China”, the warmth exposed them to “bugs” they had no resistance against.
The full audio series takes about 9 hours, all about Genghis Khan.
(just hit the download link, it starts right up).


I’m a bit puzzled by the amount of publicity this claim that Ghenghis Khan rode to power on the benign climate of the times is actually news.
There are numerous references in the history of the Mongol Hordes of how they rose to power through a series of decades long good seasons across the steppes of Central Asia which allowed them to dramatically increase their livestock numbers, particularly the Mongolian Horses that were the backbone of their civilisation and also allowed their numbers to increase quite dramatically.
History shows that when such benign climates benefitted those ancient peoples all that was needed was for a charismatic war leader to emerge and the tribes went on a rampage of conquests and pillage over vast areas of territory.
So what’s news about this paper other than to prove that the Central Asian steppes climate went through a warm wet golden patch which allowed a warlike peoples to build up their resources and to go forth on a world conquest which is just what the history passed down through the ages has been telling us.

And, in parallel, the Dark Ages (right after the Roman Warm Period) were closed by the invading European tribes coming south and west over the Rhine (and other rivers) as THEY tried to get to warmer environ’s ….

Gary Pearse

Yeah as it heats up, the Mongols are in trouble. But for now its -21C over half way through March.
On the other side of the globe in Dryden Ontario, its around the same – how would you like to be shoveling this walk:


The scientists believe that human-caused warming may have exacerbated the current drought in central Mongolia, similar to the drought that coincided with Genghis Khan’s initial rise to power.
“If future warming overwhelms increased precipitation, episodic ‘heat droughts’ and their social, economic and political consequences will likely become more common in Mongolia and Inner Asia,” according to the paper.

I Khana agree with this captain.

Fahu Chen et al
A mid-Holocene drought interval as evidenced by lake desiccation in the Alashan Plateau, Inner Mongolia China
The mid-Holocene in China is traditionally thought to be a warm and humid period with a strong summer monsoon, and is often termed the Holocene Climatic Optimum or Megathermal Period. Here we present lake geomorphologic and lithological evidence from the Alashan Plateau, part of the Mongolian Plateau, that indicates strong lake desiccation during the mid-Holocene. High resolution pollen data from Zhuyeze Lake, at the present summer monsoon margin, is also presented. These data show that present lakes and wetlands in the Juyanze Lake basin west of the Badain Jaran desert, in the Zhuyeze Lake basin between the Badain Jaran and Tengger deserts, and in lakes in the eastern Tengger desert, dried or experienced low lake levels in the mid-Holocene around 5000–7000 cal yr BP. Pollen data further indicate that the vegetation cover declined in both the local areas and in the Qilian Mountains, suggesting the climate was drier than that associated with the present Asian summer monsoon. This mid-Holocene drought interval was present throughout a quite large region of the south Inner Mongolian Plateau. The period was also probably colder, at least in the high Asian plateaus and mountains.
Holocene environmental changes in the central Inner Mongolia, based on single-aliquot-quartz optical dating and multi-proxy study of dune sands
Alternating units of dune sands and paleosols in the central Inner Mongolia imply multiple episodes of dune building and stabilization, in response to the waxing and waning of the East Asian monsoon. Such eolian deposits were dated by using the single-aliquot-quartz optical dating method. Combined with the multi-proxy study on the deposits, the past environmental changes during the Holocene have been reconstructed. Our results indicate that widespread eolian sand mobilization occurred in the studied region during the beginning of the early Holocene from 11.5 ka to ∼ 9 ka. The climate became warm and humid during the period between ∼ 9 ka and ∼ 5.6 ka (Holocene Optimum). After ∼ 5.6 ka, the region again became arid, as inferred from dune building. However, the environmental changes during the late Holocene have been affected by both climate and human impacts, and the presence of desert environment in such semiarid region is not only the result of climatic drought of the late Holocene, but also related to poor land-use practices.
Reconstruction of climate and vegetation changes of Lake Bayanchagan (Inner Mongolia): Holocene variability of the East Asian monsoon
A high-resolution pollen and Pediastrum record, spanning 12,500 yr, is presented for Lake Bayanchagan (115.21°E, 41.65°N, and 1355 m a.s.l.), southern Inner Mongolia. Individual pollen taxa (PT-MAT) and the PFT affinity scores (PFT-MAT) were used for quantitative climatic reconstruction from pollen and algal data. Both techniques indicate that a cold and dry climate, similar to that of today, prevailed before 10,500 cal yr B.P. The wettest climate occurred between ∼10,500 and 6500 cal yr B.P., at which time annual precipitation was up to 30–60% higher than today. The early Holocene increases in temperature and precipitation occurred simultaneously, but mid-Holocene cooling started at approximately 8000 cal yr B.P., 1500 yr earlier than the drying. Vegetation reconstruction was based on the objective assignment of pollen taxa to the plant functional type. The results suggest that this region was dominated by steppe vegetation throughout the Holocene, except for the period ∼9200 to ∼6700 cal yr B.P., when forest patches were relatively common. Inner Mongolia is situated at the limit of the present East Asian monsoon and patterns of vegetation and climate changes in that region during the Holocene probably reflect fluctuations in the monsoon’s response to solar insolation variations. The early to middle Holocene monsoon undoubtedly extended to more northern latitudes than at present.

It is worse than we thought, now we have the specter of a CAGW induced modern Genghis Khan risking Western Civilization.


I still Khana understand this captain. We know that the late Holocene has been cooling until the Hokey Schtick.

Holocene East Asian monsoonal precipitation pattern revealed by grain-size distribution of core sediments of Daihai Lake in Inner Mongolia of north-central China
…………….During the Late Holocene since ca 3100 cal yr BP, grain-size values suggest that precipitation decreased. However, during the Late Holocene, relatively higher Md values and silt contents occurring between ca 1700 to 1000 cal yr BP may denote an intensification of hydrological cycles in the lake area. Changes in the East Asian monsoonal precipitation were not only directly linked with the changing seasonality of solar insolation resulting from progressive changes in the Earth’s orbital parameters, but also may have been closely related to variations in the temperature and size of the Western Pacific Warm Pool, in the intensity of the El Nino–Southern Oscillation, and in the path and strength of the North Equatorial Current in the western Pacific.

Old England

‘Riding the Business Cycle’ was, from memory, written and published around the late 1990s. One of the areas it explored was how the cooler (colder) periods of history produced more conflict and the migration and conquests of people such as the mongols. Warmer periods were marked by stability, major cultural advances and an absence of wars. Interesting book with some pertinent comments and predictions, and well worth reading.
So much ‘research’ now seems to cover topics that have been well researched before, but seeking only to add a climate change dimension and gather the funds that support it. I was going to say that, to me, it becomes ever more difficult not to view climate scientists producing this type of research (aimed at climate change dollars) as no different to prostitutes , but I think prostitutes have more honesty and integrity so I would be wrong to think that.

There is nothing new about any of this material. Ellsworth Huntington wrote an article in 1907 titled “The Pulse of Asia”. It built around the idea of wet and dry cycles in central Asia, in particular the Tarim and Dzungarian Basins. The growth of population in wetter periods led to outpouring of what became known as Asian hordes both east into China (hence the great Wall) and west at on point as far as Rome in 300 AD.
Huntington wrote a book in 1915 titled “Civilization and Climate” that later, along with the works of Ellen Churchill Semple became part of environmental and climatic determinism.
Semple was involved in the ideas of anthropogeography paralleling the work done by Friedrich Ratzel in Germany. Sadly all of these became used by Hitler to justify Aryan superiority and a bizarre form of social Darwinism that had the State as an organism that had the natural right to grow at the expense of weaker states.
The drought cycles in Asia are part of the well documented drought cycles of the mid latitudes that correlate with the 22 year sunspot cycle. The droughts alternate between hot and dry cycles with the more delay hot droughts occurring about every 44 to 50 years. They are also reflected in the other well known assessment of cyclical precipitation patterns in Asia the Kondratieff Cycle.
So much sidelined by the absolutely useless political climate of the IPCC.

Steve from Rockwood

Crispin in Waterloo says:
March 12, 2014 at 1:58 pm
@Eric Simpson
>You know who didn’t ride climate change to power?
That is hilarious! I was going to phrase it, “Who didn’t ride climate change to power” with a list of Green Party members who got in on the % of vote system.
That’s because Gore got on the wrong train – the gravy train.

Steve from Rockwood

Tree rings are a proxy for temperature.
Tree rings are a proxy for precipitation.

We should also discuss the implications of the NSF position that natural and human systems are coupled. Most people are unaware of just how much of a role the behavioral sciences now play in what NSF funds and advocates for.
Coupling goes beyond that and no chuckling at the implications. These are not fun. That’s a euphemism for NSF asserting there is a dialectical (think Marx and Hegel) process going on where one changes the other. It is an inherently political and transformational weapon to be yielding that goes far beyond the way any of us use the term ‘science.’
Back to making clam chowder for college kid headed home for spring break.

Bruce Cobb

These pseudoscientists sure are riding the faux issue of manmade climate change. But, I predict a serious drought in their future climatist careers.

Tom J

I say let’s run with it: Global warming will cause Genghis Kahn to return! Even the National Science Foundation supports this kind of conclusion! Who knows, maybe the Senate Democrats really did an all nighter this week to prevent the return of Genghis Khan? The son of Genghis Kahn. The Bride of Genghis Kahn. The Return of Genghis Kahn. Yes folks, all of you, must sacrifice, give up your ease of travel, your AC, your private suburban homes, your lifestyles, to prevent the return of … Genghis Kahn.


Since Warmists like using weather events to back their case here is the effect of global warming.

3 July 2013
“19 killed as torrential rains hit Erdos, China’s Inner Mongolia”
29 July 2013
Rain-triggered floods hit Inner Mongolia
China: Floods and Hailstorms – May 2012
Since early May 2012, torrential rains have been lashing regions across China…….
A new round of rain storms starting in late June have killed at least 61 people with 11 others missing in 10 provinces affecting approximately 17.44 million people in Jiangsu, Anhui and Shandong provinces in the east; Hunan, Hubei, Jiangxi provinces in central China; Guangxi and Guangdong provinces in the south; Chongqing Municipality and Sichuan Province in southwest; and Shaanxi province and Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region in northwestern China. Latest reports state 1.17 million people have been evacuated, while about 982,400 hectares of farmland have been affected by bad weather and about 66,000 houses have collapsed.

Please nobody tell me that this is unfair. Tell that to the Warmist first. They CLING to every bloody weather event to back their failed hypothesis. Sauce, goose, gander and all that.


To add to the above couple of posts, a short summary of the immense wealth and populations of the Central Asian cities destroyed by the Mongol Hordes,
Such cities of perhaps a half a million or more each in population would never have arisen in droughted periods of climate across Central Asia.
[ quoted]
“The following Table 1 summarizes our information about the seven most important cities of Central Asia,so that we might ask, which of them had risen in the early modern age, to millionaire-city status.
They are Merv, Nishapur, Herat, Samarkand, Bokhara, Rayy, Balkh, and Urgench.
This information will be compared with data for Zhongdu (Beijing), and Baghdad. The important part of that information relates to the numbers reportedly killed by Mongols in the course of their campaign of conquest against the Khwarazm empire, These were then probably among the wealthiest, most literate and generally civilized areas of the world.
The question is the following: do the extant historical accounts of Mongol massacres over the period 1215-1258 allow us to draw conclusions about Central Asian city populations in 1200, and the preceding one-two centuries?”

Crispin in Waterloo

“There are numerous references in the history of the Mongol Hordes of how they rose to power through a series of decades long good seasons across the steppes of Central Asia which allowed them to dramatically increase their livestock numbers, particularly the Mongolian Horses that were the backbone of their civilisation and also allowed their numbers to increase quite dramatically.”
A Mongolian friend of mine claims that the reason for their success was in large part due to their invention of a weapon: the use of the horse as a weapon of war. Horses were previously used as transport, but not as an actual weapon. I can’t prove it, but an effective 18th Century cavalry charge was a formidable weapon. Did the Mongolians invent that?
Khan hated farmers because he felt fields were a waste of perfectly good grazing. He had millions of farmers killed in China. The diet consisted mainly of meat with meat on the side.
I asked, “Aren’t there any vegetables in the traditional diet?” and was told. “In Mongolia, chicken is a vegetable.”


Assuming we could control the weather.
Drought/flood, warm/cool.
Where would “we” make it occur ?
Or is there a goldilocks plan in the works ?
Where warring nations, respect the climate normality ?
Ya gotta be kidding.

D Nash

@Steve from Rockwood
It depends on the tree. The Mongol trees (highly mobile nomadic trees) have tree rings that are dependent on water alone. The more stationary trees of the north have tree rings dependent on temperature. It’s the crazy aquatic trees that have the CO2 tree rings. Since no tree growth is dependent on the sun, shading, wildlife, insects or earth composition, these are the only three types of ometers available in tree ring study.

D Nash

@Crispin in Waterloo
Cavalry charges were first used many centuries before the Mongols (Romans, Greeks and Persians and others were pretty good at it). What the Mongols brought to the table was their mounted archery and ability to maneuver at high speeds on their sturdy little mounts as they moved in and out engagements.


The scientists believe that human-caused warming may have exacerbated the current drought in central Mongolia, similar to the drought that coincided with Genghis Khan’s initial rise to power.
Right. You can believe all you want, but if it isn’t backed up by proof, belief is all it is.

Box of Rocks

didn’t some folks head over to what is now called the ‘americas’ when the water froze and a land bridge was exposed so they could literally just walk over….

Crispin says:
A Mongolian friend of mine claims that the reason for their success was in large part due to their invention of a weapon: the use of the horse as a weapon of war.
Many scholars say it was the invention of the stirrup that made the difference, because it enabled the rider to shoot arrows from a relatively stable platform.
[Loved the chicken as vegetables story…]

Retired Engineer

D Nash says:
“these are the only three types of ometers available in tree ring study.”
So a tree ring circus?
(sorry about that …)


Steve Keohane says:
March 12, 2014 at 1:06 pm
So it was wetter and colder in the latter part of Genghis Khan’s reign?
Cold and dry THEN warm and wet.


Warmer earth, more atmospheric moister. More moister, wetter deserts. Wetter deserts are cooler deserts.

Chris R. says:
March 12, 2014 at 2:13 pm
Had Shah Muhammad II received the
Mongol envoys as ambassadors and opened peaceful trade–
Sometimes it is the little details in life that can make a large difference.


Problems with this study:
So, tree rings measure rain, not warmth like Mann said? The peeps who made this study must be burnt as heretics!
So let me get this straight, wetter Mongolia means more resources to conquer with, dryer less. Ghenghis conquered China and much of the surrounding kingdoms when he had less resources then, right? I mean, at that time, the only resources he had came from that drier Mongolia. And then he was able to move into more territory when he already owned most of Asia and thus did not need the resources of a wetter Mongolia? So, how, exactly, did a wetter Mongolia help him? Does less rain or more rain help you conquer, I am confused!
The plan, associate “Climate Change” with Ghenghis and Mongol Hordes, thus associating it with fear, an advertising trick.
The computer models say that warmth created by more CO2 will increase the amount of water vapor, which will increase the warming to dangerous levels (no water vapor increase, no dangerous levels). This brings two problems, the first being that no such increase of water vapor has been seen, and second, more water vapor in the air brings drought??
With no warming for over 17 years, what, exactly, is causing this drought?
There was drought during those olden times, this was, of course, caused by Ghenghis invading China using millions of SUV’s, right? No? But, but, but, you mean they had a drought caused entirely by natural causes? And that means that the drought today could be caused by the same, as could future droughts? So, this is a relevant study…how?
Though political realities would also have played into Genghis Khan’s power grab, uh, yeah, kinda an understatement there. With that level of understatement, I have to assume that they know very little of how Ghenghis did it. By the time he moved on (a now weak and decadent ) China, he had the most loyal, well led, well trained, well disciplined, toughest army ever seen, possibly ever in this worlds history (that only lasted some decades, though, they got soft). He had also already conquered several large, horse breeding areas, and thus did not need a wetter Mongolia to provide his standard 4 (up to 16 for long campaigns) horses per man. It also helped that his armies extreme long range coordination, incredible speed, and incredible training, moral, and leadership meant that he was often outnumbered yet won easily anyway, so they did not need huge resources back home because they did not need a larger army than their, uh, victims. They had already thoroughly spied out their enemies as well, and knew all their weaknesses and exploited them, as well as mapping and a preliminary propaganda campaign, making things much easier (they had a 17 year plan for dividing and conquering Europe). Many of their enemies during his time, such as China and Persia, had become weak, decadent, and divided anyway. I could tell you more but it comes from “The Secret History of the Mongols”, and you don’t have clearance. Sorry.
By the way, Ghenghis did not conquer China because his area was in drought, he conquered it because they had decades earlier, when they were strong and smart, supported some Mongol tribes against others, so as to keep them divided and weak. One of the tribes they supported poisoned his father, the tribal chief, causing his tribe to dissolve. He then started, with only two troops ( he killed the third) and 8 1/2 horses, on a long campaign of payback. A very determined fellow, and his mother (who he was terrified of all his life, and for good reason) even more so. After he conquered Mongolia proper, mostly made possible by no interference from a now weak and decadent China, he turned on China (first taking out their former, but now abandoned allies who were in the way anyway). And then, without any drought to prompt it, he moved on from there, go figure.
Mongols versus climate:
When they invaded China, they killed about 1 out of every 3 Chinese, that plus many other mass killings and destruct ions of towns and cities elsewhere should have made a pretty big impression on the climate back then, right? I mean, all those burning cities (and towns, and villages), all that CO2, all those areas now devoid of people, farming, and the like, all that new wilderness.
When they invaded Persia, they did not want to be outflanked though this one area, so months before they went into that large, green, fertile area and converted it into a desert. It has stayed a desert to this very day. You don’t need modern industry to destroy an environment, a fact that will be discovered if the warmists have their way, destroy the economy, and desperate people do whatever they can to survive.
Oh, and when they decided to invade Russia, they went in the winter, so that the rivers would be frozen over and make movement easier.


Crispin in Waterloo @ 4.34pm
As I understand the history of Ghengis Khan’s [ born “Temujin” 1162- August 1227. reputed to have died of a nose bleed ] Mongol hordes it was as you say. each Mongol warrior was accompanied into battle by his three other horses.
As one tired he switched to the next one which enabled the Mongols to cover vast distances at speeds that were almost incomprehensible to the city dwellers of Central Asia and northern China.
The Mongols also had a means of communication and / or planning which enabled a battle where the opposition was locked into what seemed the main battle front when another cavalry mounted Mongol army would appear almost if out of nowhere and without any warning from a different direction and roll up the opposing army from the flanks or rear.
That allied with the invention of the immensly powerful compound bow made for a fast moving , highly flexible horse mounted, warrior cultured army to rapidly destroy the far more traditional opposition armies composed of a small group of professional foot soldiers reinforced by a vast bulk of poorly trained, poorly paid poorly armed peasant conscripts.
The stirrup appears to have been invented sometime around 200 or 300 AD or a thousand years before the Mongols went a’conquering
It may have been re-invented a number of times and in many different places. There is no record of just who or where the original invention of the stirrup occurred as all the early versions were made from either wood or bone and are long gone.
The realisation is that the horse reliant Mongol armies could not have reached their recorded historical performance in the field of battle across Asia without a series or decades of good seasons to enable them to build up both the numbers of well fed war horses [ more like ponies of immense endurance and fully adapted to the harsh conditions of the steppes, than horses as we think of them ] that were trained for battle as well as their tribal population numbers to be able to sustain those conquests over such distances and decades of time.
Drought of any duration during the period prior to and during the Mongol conquests would have both weakened their war horses as well as reduced the horse numbers which for the totally horse reliant Mongols would have created a much higher level of hunger and deprivation which in turn would have prevented the large increase in the various Mongol tribe’s populations which was a prime requisite that enabled Ghenghis Khan and his horse mounted Mongol armies to conduct a sustained long distance war on the scale they did across central and western Asia.
The changing climate has had an immense effect upon human history for the couple of millions of years the precursors of our modern Homo Sapiens species has been around .
And that includes the human bottleneck of some 80,000 years ago where our species with only perhaps no more than 20,000 breeding pairs or even less in numbers came very close to extinction.
The cause is arguably but not totally accepted and still to be proven for the bottleneck , explosive eruption of Tambora in the northern part of Sumatra and the possible decades long severe global cooling that took place after that colossal volcanic event.
And for what it is worth, we were all black when our species moved out of east Africa across the land bridge into what is now the Middle East.
The white skin is an adaption to the absolute need for Vitamin D production from the lower UV of the more northern climes.
Even now black skinned races oft times suffer severe Vitamin D deficiencies when residing for long periods in the more northern, lower solar radiation climates.


By the way, the idea that Ghenghis was able to conquer with many people and horses who grew due to wetter climate does not exacly square with reality. Before he moved on China, Persia, etc, he first conquered all the surounding nomad tribes, since they had been formerly pitted against each other and him by China. He thus grew his army, and it’s horses, not so much by growth as by assimilation. He also conquered China’s major horse breeding area as well. This policy continued, with him and his decendants assimilating others into their army, targeting especially all nomadic, horse breeding areas. He also converted large areas of China into horse breeding territory since it was now devoid of people.
In the new, Mongol dominated China, the earliest Mongols told the Chinese artists that all they wanted was pictures of horses.