By: Arron Williams
June 9 2023
The fire at the Manila Central Post Office, on May 21, 2023, was caused by a sudden explosion from a car battery. It was not related to Tartaria.
A video on TikTok with over 1 million views claims Manila Central Post Office in the Philippines is a structure that belonged to the lost civilization Tartaria. The author suggests a mysterious and suspicious fire in May 2023 at the building, indicating that the fire was planned, burning the post office down to cover up the building’s Tartarian history. Comments on the video further amplify this, with statements that history is being erased and the truth covered up.
There is no evidence that the Manila Central Post Office fire was planned. According to CNN, the fire started around 11:45 p.m. on May 21, 2023, and continued to burn until it was extinguished at about 7 a.m. on May 22. The fire had burnt through the internal wooden structure of the building from the basement to the third floor. According to a CNN Philippines report from June 6, the Bureau of Fire Protection reported that the cause of the fire was the explosion of a car battery.
The car battery was in a basement storage room alongside office and paint supplies. The self-discharge of the battery led to a thermal run-away, which caused a build-up of heat that eventually resulted in an explosion. The combustibility of the storage rooms’ contents and the enclosed area also influenced heat build-up and further enabled the spread of the fire.
The post office’s history is also well documented. According to Bloomberg, the structure is the headquarters of the Philippines Postal Service and was designed by architects Juan Arellano, Tomas Mapua, and Ralph Doane. It was first built in 1926, with its riverside location making it easier for mail transportation at the time. However, in 1945, during WW2, the structure was destroyed in the Battle of Manila before being rebuilt a year later.
Claims of a Tartarian Empire are related to the known Tartaria conspiracy theory, which believes, according to Bloomberg, in an alternate history where a technologically advanced empire called Tartaria, situated in north-central Asia, built structures and infrastructure around the globe. It was then supposedly wiped out, and its existence covered up. However, while “Tartaria” or “Tartary” was a general term historically used for north-central Asia, there is no evidence it was ever an empire, nor is there evidence the post office was a Tartarian structure.
The Tartaria conspiracy gains consistent attention on social media, primarily TikTok, where it has grown in popularity. The central claim made by Tartarian conspiracy theorists is that classical or non-modern structures are Tartarian in origin, and history has been rewritten to present them as belonging to other civilizations. Other claims include that these structures produce free energy, that Tartaria had energy weapons, and that Tartaria was destroyed and physically buried by a mud flood. This content usually shares an image of a non-modern building and baselessly asserts that it is Tartarian. Logically Facts has previously checked claims that the Great Wall of China was built by Tartaria and found them false.
The Manila Central Post Office was not deliberately burnt down, and the Tartarian empire is not real. Therefore, we have marked this claim as false.