Huangyangtan, China

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I think everyone here will agree with me, Google Maps is just cool! You can browse all around the globe looking at things. Tall things, deep things, grand things, and scary things… Like a little area in China… [ Google Map ]

At first glance it’s just another part of the world complete with snow tipped mountains, rivers, valleys, and lakes. Right? Until you zoom out and realize it’s a rectangular chunk that doesn’t look anything like the terrain around it… and it’s right next to what looks like a military base.

Taking a look zoomed out toward Kashmir (on the border of Pakistan, India, and China) you’ll notice something strange: another part of the world that (other than color and scale) looks just like that odd rectangle in China… Hmm… Why would China have a HUGE scale model of a territory-disputed chunk of land in such a remote and (apparently) military setting?

Their explanation? It’s all about figuring out how to beat sand storms that plague Bejing. If that’s the case, it’s (most likely) the world’s largest scale model.

Then again, what if they’re performing tactical training for an upcoming invasion?

In any event, call Mulder, this is a good one!

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