Wednesday, May 25, 2022

From Ian:

Jonathan Tobin: How Jewish support for ‘anti-racism’ empowered anti-Semitism
While the idea that black lives matter was never up for debate, it was in that atmosphere that so much of the organized Jewish world felt impelled to sign on to support for the movement itself. That seemed like a cost-free gesture that allowed Jewish groups to virtue signal their opposition to racism. What they didn’t count on was the way this effort helped intersectional ideology, which falsely analogizes the Palestinian war on Israel to the struggle for civil rights in the United States, to become the guiding force behind an increasingly powerful left wing of the Democratic Party.

In this way, the catechism of diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) became not just pervasive on college campuses but the official policy endorsed by President Joe Biden on his first day in the White House in January 2021. Biden’s equity agenda, which is now being implemented in every government department, isn’t about promoting equality. In this context, equity means the opposite. It mandates racial discrimination while promoting the “white privilege” narrative in which Jews are transformed from a minority that is under attack from anti-Semites on both the left and right into part of an oppressor class. It allows an anti-Semitic BDS movement to similarly play the victim while the objects of its discriminatory campaign are treated as villainous opponents of “people of color,” despite the fact that the majority of Jewish Israelis trace their origins to the Middle East and North Africa.

Those voices raised against Jews—whether in academic settings where DEI has become inextricably linked to increased anti-Semitism, on the floor of Congress where the left-wing “Squad’s” embrace of lies about Israel has led to violence on American streets or in the mainstream media where anti-Zionism acts as a cover for anti-Semitism—have grown louder and more accepted in the last two years.

Legitimizing such a movement may not have been the intention of the Jewish leaders who signed declarations supporting BLM. Racism is terrible and opposing it is laudable. But by going along with the mob mentality that embraced the “1619” lies and legitimized a heretofore radical BLM movement, that’s exactly what they helped foster. That many of them also attacked and sought to treat those Jews who spoke up against it, such as the Zionist Organization of America, as beyond the pale is even more disgraceful.

The organized Jewish world needs to take a hard look at its mistakes and admit that its desire to play the fashionable “anti-racist” card strengthened forces that are inimical to Jewish interests, as well as to the cause of equality and racial harmony for American society. If the Jewish community is to successfully confront the rising tide of anti-Semitism on the left that the BLM moment empowered, there must first be a reckoning about why these groups failed to stand their ground against this dangerous trend in 2020.
Gil Troy: Zionist behavioral therapy can end antisemitism
Psychology of bigotry
Psychologists have long shown how perverse perceptions imprison people in misanthropic misconceptions. CBT – cognitive behavioral therapy – helps patients reframe their understandings of reality. Beware mental filters, therapists warn, brain fritzes blocking or shrinking the good, the generous, the comforting, while locking in and overinflating the bad, the negative, the unnerving. Such reframing, such brain fixes, reprogram what people see to be more accurate and constructive.

Instead, regarding Israel, many prefer de-framing – reframing reality to defame. Popular anti-Zionist perversions include:
Stretching: Anti-Zionists love “kitchen-sinking,” throwing everything at Israel, including the kitchen sink. As bogeymen rise and fall, fanatics try hogtying Israel to the big crime of the moment or the latest, trendiest ideological sin, like the Great Replacement theory, just as Israel is forever accused of racist, imperialist, colonialist crimes other powers committed, not Israel.

Indicting: Any mistake any Israeli makes, or any crime any Israeli commits, supposedly justifies Israel’s permanent place in the dockets of the UN, the International Criminal Court, and much of the human rights community. Somehow, mini-Israel looms super-large in the craziest worst-case scenarios of the far Left and the far Right.

Catastrophizing: It’s all black-and-white, totally bleak, regarding Israel. Too many conversations about Israel become no-nuance and complexity-free zones. Anything Israel does ends up integrated into some systematic conspiracy against the always blameless Palestinians. A journalist can die accidentally in a firefight, yet anti-Israel congresswomen declare that Israeli snipers targeted her, as though these 20-year-old soldiers fighting for their lives knew who she was – or cared.

Calcifying: For anti-Zionists making up twistory, time stands still, nothing ever changes, progress must be ignored. It’s too much fun to keep shrieking about “Deir Yasin” and the supposed “Nakba,” as though it’s still 1948. And it’s too tempting to ignore Israel’s many attempts to make peace with Palestinians, its breakthroughs with Egypt, Jordan, the UAE, Morocco, and the Sudan, let alone countries like Saudi Arabia, which informally cooperate with the “Zionists.”
The 'Nakba' - catastrophe or success? - comment
In the intervening 70+ years the Nakba, or catastrophe, which Zurayk emphatically defined as the failure of ineffectual Arab states, who sought “the abolition of partition and the eradication of Zionism” only to “leave the battle having lost a not inconsiderable portion of the soil of Palestine” has been disingenuously redefined as the expulsion of Palestinians from part of the proposed State of Palestine.

In fact, in his book Zurayk made no mention of the Palestinians as a people or the formation of the State of Israel. The Nakba was the self-inflicted wound of the Arabs, not of Israel.

The politicized hijacking of a term the Nakba which bemoaned the absence of pan-Arab unity and castigated Arabs for their failings, into a term of abuse against Israel is a calculated and continuous act of deception, designed to absolve Arab states of blame and condemn Israel for successfully defending itself against attack.

Zurayk’s dismal conclusion on the outlook for Arab youth was as prescient as it was depressing. He accurately predicted that the absence of Arab unity would cause future generations to “fall prey to some destructive movement and find their consolation in uproar and disturbance for its own sake, regardless of the result”. Seventy years later, the pointless brutality of Hamas, Hezbollah and the PLO shows just how devastating the Nakba, or Arab failure, has been for Arab hope and Arab lives.

Unwilling to establish lasting peace
The recent treaty known as the Abraham Accords, which saw the four Arab Gulf states, the UAE, Bahrain, Sudan and Morocco, formally establish diplomatic relations with Israel, left the Palestinians looking isolated in the Middle East. Sadly, their isolation is self-inflicted. The Sunni Arab world is moving on and refusing to accept a veto from the West Bank or Gaza in the face of a growing threat from Iran.

In the absence of any movement on peace talks or willingness by Palestinians to negotiate, standing by the Palestinians is no longer a priority for the Gulf States, as protecting themselves from Iranian aggression is.

While most Palestinians are weary of their corrupt, ineffectual leaders and would welcome the chance of elections and a fresh start, neither seems to be on the agenda. 87 year old Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas probably isn’t the solution to constant factional infighting and endemic corruption, so in all likelihood, the Palestinian politics of grudge and grievance will continue.

Today, Palestinians and their apologists worldwide should stop to consider these realities and face up to the fact that the Nakba describes their failure, not Israel’s success.


The Caroline Glick Show: Radicals at war against Judeo-Christian roots of Western society
In this week’s “Mideast News Hour” with Caroline Glick, experts discuss the implications of the Labour Party’s victory in the Australian elections for Australian-Israel ties in light of the progressive fixation with esoteric issues like transgenderism and emotional responses rather than meat and potatoes issues regarding life as it is experienced by the vast majority of people.


Do cry for me, Palestina (satire)
You guys, the Zionists are being so mean to me!

All I've done is call (repeatedly) for the elimination of the world's only Jewish state "by any means necessary." Sure, any means includes violence and terrorism, but I made that sentiment a principal element of my organization "Within Our Lifetime."

And yeah, I might have said during a webinar last year that Zionism, the belief in a Jewish state in their ancestral homeland and a refuge against historic antisemitism, is "one of the most anti-Semitic ... things that we see." My host at that event is a known Palestinian Islamic Jihad board member who celebrated its deadly attacks and called for more.

But who would have a problem with that or find me an inappropriate speaker for a university commencement ceremony?? Islamophobes, that's who.

Those Zionists at the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting and Analysis (CAMERA) thought it was bad that I was chosen to speak to the City University of New York (CUNY) law school graduation earlier this month. They said I liked an Instagram post glorifying a recent bloody and deadly attack. I mean, I did, but what's that mean? They also weren't big fans of my organization Within Our Lifetime's call to keep "Zionist professors" off campus, and "Zionist students" away from Palestinian students.

"Are these the values CUNY Law believes best represent the school?" CAMERA's David Litman asked. "The Class of 2022? Does CUNY Law condone the vicious hatred that this speaker has displayed?"

That's what I meant when I wrote that, "My mentions are full of tweets slandering/attacking me for my commencement speech. It's funny because they literally prove my point. Palestinians speaking about our experience with zionist oppression terrifies zionists. They want us to silence ourselves."


Errors Exposed in Harvard Clinic’s Submission to the UN
UK Lawyers for Israel (UKLFI) and the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting and Analysis (CAMERA) exposed numerous factual and legal errors in Harvard’s International Human Rights Clinic’s (IHRC) submission to the United Nations that slanderously accused Israel of being an apartheid state. UKLFI and CAMERA have urged the Dean of Harvard Law School to distance the school from this flawed report.

On 27 May 2021, following Operation Guardian of the Walls, the United Nations Human Rights Council created what is potentially the most anti-Israel mechanism to date: the United Nations Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem and Israel (“CoI”).

On 28 February 2022, the IHRC, along with Addameer – an organization tied to the terrorist organization Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine – made a joint submission to the COI, alleging that Israel is an “apartheid” state.

UKLFI and CAMERA have responded directly to Harvard Law, demonstrating to them that the submission not only failed to substantiate this serious allegation, but contained basic factual errors and demonstrated shockingly poor legal analysis for such a prestigious institution.

From IHRC contradicting its own incendiary claim that Jewish Israelis are “privileged” to presenting inaccurate figures that misrepresent the Jewish state, the submission is filled with falsehoods and omissions. In slandering Israel as an “apartheid” state, IHCR completely fails to account for the existence of armed conflict. Instead, the clinic simply states as truth that Israel’s security measures fail a “balancing test” without ever actually applying the test. IHRC fails to explain how Israel’s repeated offers of peace and statehood to the Palestinians is consistent with their claim that Israel has an “intent to dominate.” In a particularly absurd moment, the authors even suggest that Israel’s detention of a handful of terrorists is preventing political life for Palestinians.

UKLFI and CAMERA have written to the Dean of Harvard Law School, calling on him to distance Harvard Law School from the false and incendiary claims of the law clinic.
An Embarrassment to the Institution Seven Basic Errors and Deceptions from the Harvard Law Clinic’s “Israel Apartheid” Submission
On 28 February 2022, the Harvard Law School’s International Human Rights Clinic jointly submitted a report, alongside the organization Addameer, to a United Nations commission of inquiry against Israel, accusing the Jewish state of committing “apartheid.”

Unfortunately for Harvard’s reputation, that is not what the submission ends up showing. Instead, the submission shows that the students involved have failed to comprehend basic concepts of the rule of law. From committing basic legal analytical errors that would get them laughed out of court to getting basic facts wrong, here are just seven of the errors made in the submission.

1) Are Jews “Privileged” or Not? The Harvard Law Clinic Can’t Decide.
The submission repeatedly states that “rights and protections” are given to “Jewish Israelis,” implying the rights and protections are afforded only to Jews. This claim forms the basis of the report’s entire claim of “apartheid.” However, the submission itself admits the intellectual dishonesty of the statement by admitting those “rights and protections” are “guaranteed to citizens” (emphasis added), which includes Israeli Jews, Muslims, Christians, Arabs, Druze, Circassians, et cetera.

Distinctions based on citizenship are not just common sense. They are expressly allowed for under international law. Moreover, making Palestinians citizens of Israel would amount to the repudiation of the two-state solution.

2) The Submission Falsely Claims Israel Does Not Apply Military Orders to Israelis in Judea and Samaria While Also Completely Ignoring Palestinian Self-Rule.
The report attacks Israel for applying Israeli domestic law, and not Israeli military orders, to “Jewish Israeli settlers.” The problem? The statement is false on both counts and omits the application of Palestinian self-rule.

First, military law can be applied to Israeli citizens. Just a couple months ago, a Jewish Israeli was put under administrative detention out of concern for “the security of the country and the public” after allegedly vandalizing Palestinian vehicles and assaulting activists.

Second, certain domestic Israeli laws do apply to “Jewish Israeli settlers,” but they also apply to all other Israelis, regardless of religion, national identity, or ethnicity.

Third, the submission ignores the existence of another justice system. Under the Oslo Accords, the vast majority of Palestinians, who reside in Areas A and B – where Jews are prohibited from residing – are subject to the Palestinian Authority’s justice system.
Ombudsman Denies Anti-Israel Disinformation on Radio Program Constitutes Violation of CBC Standards
CBC Ombudsman Jack Nagler has denied that two of Carol Off’s radio interviews in May 2021, covering the war between Hamas and Israel on her former program, As it Happens, constituted a violation of CBC Journalistic Standards and Practices.

The complaint made by HonestReporting Canada subscriber Murray Teitel, took Carol Off to task for two radio interviews on May 14 and May 25, 2021.

In the first broadcast on May 14, Off interviewed a Palestinian woman in Gaza named Rima Aburahma, who made repeated false statements, including that Israel does not allow any building materials into Gaza in order for bomb shelters to be constructed, that Israel was targeting homes where only children were present, and that Israel was “killing people and taking over our land.”

In his review, which can be read in full by clicking here, CBC Ombudsman Nagler wrote that “a radio guest making a claim is not the equivalent of CBC making a claim,” and that “the bar for me to find a violation of journalistic standards based on something the radio guest says is pretty high. The falsity of the statement needs to be incontrovertible, and the significance of the falsehood needs to be incontrovertibly high.”

Nagler wrote that while the interview subjects may have made claims which were objectionable to many, she was, in one instance for example, “was entitled to describe her reaction.”

Unfortunately, in the eyes of HonestReporting Canada, this is an insufficient defense. According to CBC’s journalistic standards, “In the case of comments made by a person expressing an honest opinion, we ensure that the opinion is grounded in facts bearing on a matter of public interest.”
Federal judge rejects American Muslims for Palestine motion to dismiss decades-old terror-financing case
A federal judge in Illinois rejected a motion for dismissal by defendants in a decades-old legal fight waged by the family of a slain Jewish teenager, whose parents allege that the defendants had, under other identities, provided funding to Hamas, members of which carried out the deadly 1996 West Bank attack.

Judge Gary Feinerman ruled that a case against American Muslims for Palestine (AMP), Americans for Justice in Palestine (AJP) and Rafeeq Jaber, a former president of both the American Muslim Society and the Islamic Association for Palestine, could proceed.

A judge had ruled in 2004 that the family of David Boim, who was 17 when he was shot and killed at a bus stop in the West Bank, could collect a $52 million judgment from the Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP) and the Holy Land Foundation. Both organizations shuttered in the early 2000s.

That judgment was tripled as a result of the Anti-Terrorism Act, which increased the amount of money that could be given to victims of terror and their families.

Attorneys for the Boim family say that IAP and the Holy Land Foundation reopened under new names, with similar professional and lay leadership, in an effort to evade paying the Boim family.

“They were going to have to pay a judgment,” Alyza Lewin, who has represented the Boim family for two decades, told JI. “And they didn’t pay it. They said, ‘We’re out of business.’ They weren’t really out of business. They basically quietly moved down the block, hung out a new shingle that instead of saying ‘Islamic Association for Palestine’ said ‘American Muslims for Palestine,’ and they were back in business.”

In his ruling, Feinerman denied the dismissal on four key issues: that the defunct organizations had overlapping leadership with the newly created entities; that the groups served the same organizational purpose; that the defunct organizations shared a similar operating structure; and that the defendants were seeking to avoid having to pay the judgment.


Beware: A new wave of anti-Semitism is sweeping New York City
As New York enters a post-pandemic new normal, a perfect storm has been brewing — involving rising anti-Semitic incidents and growing anti-Israel movements — that will have devastating consequences for the city’s Jewish community.

It’s clear the Jewish population is already in danger, given the citywide increase in hate crimes targeting Jews, the anti-Israel crusade on campuses like New York University and City University of New York and the success of efforts to delegitimize the Jewish state at the highest levels of these institutions.

Put another way, these events — individually and collectively — signify a new wave of anti-Semitism that is sweeping the city as never before.

Strikingly, anti-Semitic hate crimes in New York City were up by nearly 100% in March compared with March 2021, per NYPD data. That followed an even more disturbing 400% hike in February and a 300% hike in January.

The upsurge in anti-Semitic attacks in the city is driving a statewide crisis: Anti-Jewish violence here is at an all-time high, the Anti-Defamation League’s annual report released last month found — with the state leading the nation in such incidents.

Anti-Semitic incidents in the state rose 24% last year, with 416 recorded cases, including 51 assaults — the most physical attacks the ADL has recorded since it began collecting data more than 40 years ago. Attacks on Jewish institutions like synagogues and schools were up 41%.
German Antisemitism Monitor: Berlin Attacks Rose in 2021, Included Cases of ‘Extreme Violence’
Antisemitic incidents in Germany’s capital continued to rise last year, for the first time including a record of two cases of “extreme violence,” according to a report published Tuesday.

A total of 1,052 antisemitic incidents — an average of three incidents a day — were documented in Berlin in 2021, according a report by RIAS, a Berlin-based monitoring institute, which seeks to track cases that fall below the criminal threshold. The number compares with 1,019 cases in 2020 and 886 incidents in 2019.

“The rising number of antisemitic incidents shows very clearly that antisemitism is becoming more and more aggressive,” commented Samuel Salzborn, the city’s antisemitism commissioner.

For the first time since 2015, the organization said it recorded two cases of “extreme violence,” described as physical attacks that may lead to loss of life or that constitute serious bodily harm, and the use of firearms. In one of the incidents, in October, a man walking on a sidewalk was brutally beaten by a group of three attackers, suffering serious injuries, after he refused their demand to say “Free Palestine.”

In another incident in August, a bullet was shot from a rifle or pistol through a window into the reception room of a Jewish community center in Berlin. No one was harmed.

Overall, RIAS Berlin last year documented 22 antisemitic attacks, which included physical assaults, beatings in the underground metro, spitting on the street and attacks using tear gas. In fourteen cases the victims were Jewish and were addressed as such. The monitoring group also recorded 43 cases of damage to property, 28 threats, 895 incidents of harmful behavior and 62 antisemitic mass letters.
$15 Million Gift to Help US Holocaust Museum Digitize and Expand Collections
The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC, has received a $15 million donation to help support, preserve, expand and digitalize the Holocaust documentation collection.

The endowment gift, part of the museum’s $1 billion fundraising campaign, is from Jewish philanthropist and author David M. Rubenstein. In recognition of the donation, the collection will be renamed the David M. Rubenstein National Institute for Holocaust Documentation.

According to the museum, the institute’s collection includes some 24,000 objects and more than 111 million pages of archival documentation with 200 million digital images. It also contains more than 114,000 photographs and images; 1,500 hours of historic film footage; and 23,000 oral testimonies.

The Rubenstein National Institute for Holocaust Documentation supports scholarship, exhibitions, publications, films and more.

Rubenstein co-founded the private-investment firm Carlyle Group. Among his many endeavors, he hosts “The David Rubenstein Show: Peer-to-Peer Conversations” for Bloomberg TV and PBS.
The Netherlands Searches Art Collection for Nazi-Looted Works in Government Buildings, Museums
The Netherlands is probing whether there are any Nazi-looted artworks from World War II in its national holdings, including government buildings, according to a report Monday by the Dutch-language RTL News.

The Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands will examine all the works in the Netherlands Art Property Collection that were returned to the country from Germany by Allied forces after World War II, including paintings that are currently in museums, the Senate, House of Representatives, embassies and other government buildings. A team has been set up to conduct the investigation, which is expected to take roughly four years.

The Dutch government began a similar investigation last year, and the present inquiry began after questions surfaced about the painting “Fishing boats off the coast” by Dutch painter Hendrik Willem Mesdag, which has hung in the Dutch parliament for decades.

Speaker of the Dutch House of Representatives Vera Bergkamp said as soon as she discovered concerns that the Nazis may have stolen the painting from a Jewish family during World War II, she had the artwork taken down. “When I read that, I immediately said it should be investigated as soon as possible. It is my moral responsibility to cooperate with this,” Bergkamp told RTL News.

The Netherlands Art Property Collection includes 3,500 works of art, Dolf Muller, of the Cultural Heritage Agency, told the Dutch broadcaster. He added, “If the researchers discover looted art in the Dutch collection, they’ll do everything they can to find the original owner.”
Israeli researchers discover gene mechanism thought to cause some forms of autism
Tel Aviv University researchers have identified a previously unknown mechanism shared by mutations in two genes which are thought to cause autism, schizophrenia and other conditions, the institution announced Tuesday.

Researchers also found that an existing experimental drug may be suitable for treating a range of rare syndromes caused by these mutations, which impair brain functions.

According to the researchers, their new findings could lead to the development of effective treatments for some cases of autism, schizophrenia and neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s.

“Some cases of autism are caused by mutations in various genes,” said Prof. Illana Gozes from the Department of Human Molecular Genetics and Biochemistry at the Sackler Faculty of Medicine and the Sagol School of Neuroscience at Tel Aviv University. “Today we know of more than 100 genetic syndromes associated with autism, 10 of which are considered relatively common (though still extremely rare).”

The study focused on one such syndrome, called activity-dependent neuroprotective protein (ADNP) syndrome, which is caused by mutations in the ADNP gene and disrupts the function of the ADNP protein. This leads to structural defects in neurons in the brain. The disorder can affect muscle tone, feeding, growth, hearing, vision, sleep, fine and gross motor skills, as well as the immune system, heart, endocrine system, and gastrointestinal tract. ADNP syndrome causes behavior disorders such as autism spectrum disorder.
Mike Pompeo and David Friedman making Bible film on Route 60
On a normal day, cars travel down a highway that runs through the land of Abraham and Jesus.

Former US secretary of state Mike Pompeo and former ambassador to Israel David Friedman want to teach Christians and Jews about the places where Ruth wept and Jacob dreamed in an upcoming Trinity Broadcast Network documentary called Route 60: The biblical highway.

“As you stand in some of these spots, you think back to the days when there were pilgrimages to Jerusalem, over a period of a thousand years,” Friedman said as he sat in his Jerusalem apartment.

“You try to put yourself back in time and think of the ancient life of the Jewish nation and what it was like,” Friedman said. He had just completed a number of days of filming with Pompeo, who was returning to the US.“We were deeply moved by all these places,” Friedman said.

The documentary produced by filmmaker and TBN president Matt Crouch sets out a “challenge to the viewer,” Friedman said, adding that “this is where the Bible happened, and it’s still here.”

“It happened within kilometers of this road in any direction,” he said. “Do you care about it? Do you think it’s important that the Bible not just be taught but actually be experienced the way it was experienced thousands of years ago?"

“The theme is to educate. At every place along the way, we explained what happened – anything from Jesus’s birth to the burial of Rachel along the side of the road.”
Gal Gadot Investing in Israeli Edtech Startup Safe School
Actress and film producer Gal Gadot and her husband Jaron Varsano have announced they are investing in ed-tech startup Safe School, founded last summer by former journalist Doron Herman.

Safe School is a content streaming platform for schools and municipalities. The company creates personalized educational plans to combat and reduce bullying and cyberbullying. The platform is currently operating in Israel, where it has onboarded almost 600 schools. Gadot and Varsano’s investment comes on the back of a $2 million Seed round led by Safe School’s Co-Founder, Nir Zohar, President and COO of Wix.

The size of the investment made by Gadot and Varsano was not revealed, but according to Calcalist estimates is believed to be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

“When I left journalism a year-and-a-half ago I was looking for people who could talk and empower girls aged 12-13. Someone suggested we approach Gal Gadot and after talking with her the idea was born that she and Jaron would join as active partners,” Herman told Calcalist. “We had many meetings and she heard many children talking about being bullied and excommunicated.”

Safe School’s content is created within the framework of Social-Emotional Learning (SEL), focusing on children’s rapidly changing digital life. Safe School is led by a team of former news and media experts and education professional (teachers, social workers, school counselors, and educational psychologists). The team has created hundreds of video units with accompanying teaching material that gives tools to educators to deal with everyday school climate challenges, with topics including online safety, sex education, empowerment, learning skills, empathy, digital orientation, teamwork, and more.


2,100-year-old agricultural farmstead uncovered in dig in northern Israel
Around 2,100 years ago, during the Hellenistic Hasmonean period, the inhabitants of an agricultural farmstead at what is today Horbat Assad near Nahal Arabel in the eastern Galilee had to leave suddenly, perhaps because of impending danger such as a military attack, with no time to take their possessions.

In a recent excavation carried out by the Israel Antiquities Authority prior to a project transferring desalinated water to the Kinneret (Sea of Galilee) being carried out by Mekorot, Israel's national water company, their belongings were uncovered as if frozen in time.

The dig revealed tens of loom weights used for weaving garments, large ceramic storage vessels, and iron agricultural implements, including various picks and scythes. The coins retrieved date the farmstead to the second half of the second century BCE, according to the IAA.

In addition, the foundations of buildings, pottery vessels and other finds dating to the Iron Age, (10th-9th centuries BCE) were uncovered.

“We were very lucky to discover a time-capsule… in which the finds remained where they were left by the occupants of the site, and it seems that they left in haste in face of an impending danger, possibly the threat of a military attack,” said Dr. Amani Abu-Hamid, director of the excavation on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority, noting that weaving loom weights were still on the shelf, and the storage jars were intact.

“We know from the historical sources that in this period, the Judean Hasmonean Kingdom expanded into the Galilee, and it is possible that the farmstead was abandoned in the wake of these events, he said. "More research is required to determine the identity of the inhabitants of the site.”

The finds shed light on little-known activity in this area in the Hasmonean Period, the authority said.






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A new, better definition of antisemitism


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