A startling journey of adventure and exploration that could turn the conventional view of world history on its head. This fascinating documentary examines the mystery surrounding the sailing exploits of the legendary Admiral Zhen and his 30 year command of a gigantic Ming fleet. The Chinese court burned all records of Admiral Zhen His daring voyages and achievements, and unwittingly created a mystery that tantalizes the world 500 years later. An account of new information uncovered by Gavin Menzies, a former British submarine commander who has spent nine years trying to prove that Zhen reached America decades before Columbus. Menzies, author of the best selling book 1421 The Year China Discovered the World, has assembled evidence that he believes substantiates his theory. The first part of the documentary presents 15th century China as an emerging super nation with an armada of treasure junks that dominated the Indian Ocean. At the behest of Chinese emperor Zhu Di, Zheng He sailed this fleet to far flung outposts throughout the eastern hemisphere, established major ports and extended the commercial reach of “the Middle Kingdom” far beyond its previous bounds. This documentary recounts this story through re-enactments, extensive location filming and innovative computer graphics imaging models of the fleet itself. 1421 The Year China Discovered America? investigates the major historical mystery that arises from Menzies’ theory Could this incredible and intrepid fleet have shown the European explorers the way to the west reaching America’s shores decades before Columbus? Menzies seeks to prove his extraordinary theory by retracing the steps he believes the Chinese took from Africa to Europe to the Caribbean and along the eastern coast of the United States. The program examines the evidence behind his theory, then puts it to the test, drawing together historical accounts, archaeology and information from consultations with contemporary historians, archaeologists and scientists. The results are often dramatic and, like Menzies’ theory itself, highly controversial.